Sweden Moves Against the Tide
Rather than taking the “one size fits all” prison-nation approach to dealing with the Chinese pandemic, the Swedes boldly chose to face the Wuhan virus as free people.
“When you (in the US and elsewhere) ease the lockdowns you will have more deaths…We will not have as many deaths because we will have herd immunity by the time the other countries start to lift their lockdown which means the virus won’t spread much more in Sweden, whereas you will have a higher number of cases and deaths.”
If Giesecke is right, then Sweden is on the path to “normal” while the US is still chasing its tail, still following a policy that is clearly counterproductive, and still listening to self-appointed pontiffs like Bill Gates who obviously want to drag this thing out forever so he can implement his vaccination-surveillance panopticon. This needs to change. The safety and well-being of the American people should take precedence over the Hodge-podge of competing interests and conflicting agendas that have shaped the current policy. __ https://www.unz.com/mwhitney/sweden-is-the-model/
It is good to see courage and good sense displayed in the midst of global fear, panic, and dictatorial power grabs. Sweden refused to destroy its economy in the futile attempt to prevent something that has already happened.
With a death rate significantly lower than that of France, Spain, the U.K., Belgium, Italy, and other European Union countries, Swedes can enjoy the spring without panic or fears of reigniting a new epidemic as they go about their day in a largely normal fashion.
For now, the US has a significantly lower COVID death rate than most countries of Europe, probably due to lower population density, less average use of mass transit, and perhaps more natural “social distancing” in terms of normal greetings and conversation stances. Nursing home deaths account for an out-sized proportion of COVID deaths in both Europe and the US. Statistical analysis of lockdowns vs. no-lockdowns do not show a benefit of more draconian policies of economic lockdowns.
Both nursing homes and mass transit seem to be the epicenters of spread in many locations. It also seems that particular people are at especially high risk for infection. When such people are excluded from analysis, the remaining population is far less susceptible, and public policies should reflect such differences.
An analysis by Dr Muge Cevik of St Andrews University of 14 similar studies concluded that prolonged and close contact is necessary for transmitting the virus and the risk is highest in enclosed environments: households, long-term care facilities and public transport. She adds: ‘Casual, short interactions are not the main driver… Epidemic intensity is strongly shaped by crowding.’
If the elderly, obese and frail are not just at greater risk of dying, but also more susceptible and more infectious, then by definition everybody else is less so. Gabriela Gomes and colleagues at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine looked at what would happen if the susceptibility of different segments of the population to the virus is very different, and concluded that in some circumstances effective herd immunity could be achieved with as little as 10 per cent of the population immunised. In the words of the study: ‘Individuals that are frailer, and therefore more susceptible or more exposed, have higher probabilities of being infected, depleting the susceptible subpopulation of those who are at higher risk of infection, and thus intensifying the deceleration in occurrence of new cases.’ __ Matt Ridley
Disease models have failed us in this pandemic. Many of the routine assumptions that are used when simulating epidemics of influenza and other respiratory viruses, seem not to hold with COVID.
Once the epidemic is under control in hospitals and care homes, the disease might die out anyway, even without lockdown. In sharp contrast to the pattern among the elderly, children do not transmit the virus much if at all. A recent review by paediatricians could not find a single case of a child passing the disease on and said the evidence ‘consistently demonstrates reduced infection and infectivity of children in the transmission chain’. One boy who caught it while skiing failed to give it to 170 contacts, but he also had both flu and a cold, which he donated to two siblings. Children appear to have ACE2 receptors, the cellular lock that the coronavirus picks, in their noses but not their lungs.
This makes models based on flu, a disease that hits the young hard, misleading. The more the coronavirus has to use younger people to get around, the weaker its chances of surviving. Summer sunlight should slow it further, both by killing the virus directly and by boosting vitamin D levels. __ Matt Ridley
Important Things to Know About COVID
Most US deaths are taking place in a handful of cities and states. Half of all US counties have had no COVID deaths at all. Today’s young and early middle-age adults appear to be suffering the most — not from COVID but from their own panic and lack of internal substance. COVID panic is leading directly into the next wave of deaths — lockdown deaths.
People who are dying as a direct result of economic lockdowns are not given front page stories in newspapers, nor are they eulogized on network news. But their numbers are growing rapidly.
… go ahead and try to enforce an indefinite shutdown. Every day the traffic is getting heavier. Are we going to lead our barbers, tailors, and salesmen away in handcuffs at the point of a gun? These folks are getting desperate for money and supplies. Do you think at some point these people will have nothing left to lose and will risk challenging and breaking down authority? Do you think those with authority won’t strike back harder against those disobeying indefinite, vague, crippling restrictions that risk wasting away people’s life’s work, leading to a massive escalation in force?
And what is an essential business that is okay to furlough? Is it okay for a child not to have access to shoes she can fit into? Is it essential for a health-care provider to have a working car to get to his place of work? Do we need a home internet repair man if the person at home is using the internet to coordinate deliveries of viral testing devices? Can going to a park or trail to exercise be an essential and permissible activity when we know fat and deconditioning are directly contributing to COVID-19 deaths? __ Federalist
Mike Rowe is Disgusted With These People
Politicians and pundits seem to think that policies for COVID must be “all or none.” Either lockdowns must go on indefinitely until society is perfectly safe from Wuhan coronavirus, or we must throw all caution to the winds and send everyone out to face their doom. It is a stupid false dichotomy, but is typical of the type of thinking that our high caste overlords attempt to foist upon us every day in their talking points. Mike Rowe is tired of it.
“We’re trapped in a prison of two ideas: the idea that releasing the lockdown is somehow going to be irresponsible, and extending the quarantine is going to be cowardly. These are bad choices,” Rowe said, “but it’s what happens when we dispense cookie-cutter advice.”
Rowe talked about his “safety-third” theory, reasonably weighing risks and rewards equally to make a decision.
His theory is in stark contrast to Cuomo’s relentless belief that locking down the state is worth it if even one life is saved, regardless of the economic or lifestyle destruction that occurs in the process.
“Not to pile up on the governor,” Rowe began, “but a couple weeks ago he said another thing that really snapped my neck.
“He said ‘no measure, no matter how drastic or draconian should be deemed unjustified if it saves a single life,’” Rowe said, paraphrasing the governor.
“The notion that nothing in the country is more important than staying safe, that’s not something common-sensical people embrace,” Rowe added.
“That’s something you hear from people who are trying to sell you something or politicians who are trying to get re-elected.”
Mike Rowe is right — putting safety above all else is not a principled philosophy, but rather a tactic of power-hungry politicians like Cuomo.
It’s time to empower struggling Americans by giving them the chance — and more importantly the freedom — to get back to work. __ Western Journal
How Many Lives Will Politicians Sacrifice by Lockdown?
Politicians and their mind-numbed followers appear religiously committed to a absolutist faith in lockdowns. But how many people are they willing to sacrifice on their sacred lockdown altar?
“The focus on saving ‘just one life’ from the coronavirus, as Cuomo put it in March, to the exclusion of all other considerations likely will prove a catastrophic failure of policymaking.”
“The devastation to individuals’ ability to flourish or even survive may soon become irreversible,” she added.
Indeed, the lockdown itself poses significant health risks of its own, including countless deaths. The public has been bombarded with constantly changing models purporting to show the massive amount of coronavirus hospitalizations and deaths that will ensure should lockdown restrictions be lifted.
But where are the models projecting the deaths and suffering resulting from the lockdown itself? Why are our rulers so intent upon keeping those tradeoffs from entering the public debate over the lockdown? __ Mises Institute
The news media and the rest of the chattering classes appear determined to never hold these politicians to account for the deadly consequences of their over-reaction to the Chinese pandemic. By acting as if there were only two possible responses — when in reality there are hundreds of potential approaches — politicians/media hacks/academics/pundits have committed a grave injustice to the public.
What we are not being told by these self-proclaimed overlords is how deeply they are committed to regime change in the US, come November — whatever the cost. Viewing their actions through the lens of regime change goals, would make a lot more sense.
There was never any evidence that lockdowns reduced overall death rates and now that we have some experience, it is becoming clear that lockdowns at best change only the timing of fatalities.
A recent study looked at how soon states went into lockdown after reaching the threshold of one death per million. Although lockdowns are still touted by the “experts,” the data clearly showed that whether states locked down early, late, or not at all had no effect on death rates.
Fortunately, as Sweden is demonstrating to the world, certain characteristics of the coronavirus render it vulnerable to herd immunity. Most people that develop immunity don’t get that sick, vulnerable populations are easily identified, and the others are almost totally protected.
Under newly calculated death rate determinations, people aged 18 to 45 have a death rate of 0.01% while for those under five, the death rate is effectively zero. Meanwhile, of 8,000 NYC deaths investigated, 99.2% had identifiable underlying conditions.
This means that, rather than hectoring productive workers to “stay home!“ (and then showering them with handouts for not working), it makes more sense to allow them to work and keep the economy alive with suitable protections for the vulnerable. That would allow herd immunity to develop. Our one-size-fits-all lockdown strategy resulted in a double whammy: economic devastation and the prospect of more infections and deaths due to lack of herd immunity. __ Source
The Florida governor said that most businesses were essential, including gun shops and liquor stores, so it was mostly the nail salons, hair salons, nightclubs, gyms, tattoo parlors and second-hand shops that were suffering. One of the gyms had yoga and zumba at the park with appropriate physical distancing. People went to their favorite hairdresser’s house for a trim or a perm. Probably went to get tattoos as well. (Yeah, that money isn’t going to be reported to the Feds. Florida doesn’t care; no state income tax.)
Our lives didn’t change much under the quarantine. We still went to restaurants but picked it up to go (we can eat inside now if we want). We still went to hardware stores and gun shops and grocery stores. We could drive wherever we wanted except on the beach. The state parks were closed; the county and city parks were open. We could go kayaking or fishing or boating.
Now, almost everything is open, although it is still phase 1. It is beautiful weather; beauty salons are doing highlights in barber chairs on the sidewalk. Movie theaters are setting up drive ins. People are drinking adult beverages with their food at the beach side cafes again.
Jacksonville mayor said that businesses could resume working from their offices and no longer had to have employees working from home. Most businesses there reportedly said “Nah, we good, we’ll keep distancing for awhile.” In our county, nobody was required to work from home but some business owners did voluntarily.
Our most vulnerable elderly population are doing fairly well for Governor DeSantis locked those nursing homes down tightly immediately, tests the workers regularly, and provided PPE. When somebody tests positive, they are transferred out to protect the other elderly residents. They don’t return until they test negative in consecutive tests. He ordered the people 60+ and/or with comorbid conditions to shelter in place in March while this thing gets sorted out. We sheltered in place for a couple weeks, then wore PPE and went where we wanted/needed to go.
Two thirds of the people in our county that contracted the disease are recovered. We have had one death. In the past two weeks, we had 5 test positive, then 7 days with no cases, then another one yesterday. We are either way behind on our herd immunity or maybe, as a lot of people think, this thing went through here early in the year when there were a lot of people deathly ill with what everybody assumed was influenza. Maybe it was. Maybe it was the WuFlu.