Jerry Zeis is back with more data and more questions.
I am a data freak. The more information you have, the more informed the decisions. That is until money and politics gets in the way and obfuscates every iota of information. My data is widely available on the internet. Current data will come from WHO, and CDC. Projections will come from University of Washington. All data is current as of May 11th. I will show graphs for The United States, New York, Denmark, and Sweden. I picked these, because they are my home country, home state while Denmark is reopening, its elementary schools have been open for 4 weeks at the time of this writing. It is expected by the time you read this, all schools, barbers, restaurants, and many other phase II businesses will be reopened. I picked Sweden, as a famous case study. All recommendations, no laws were passed on restrictions. Just follow common sense, and good practices without the government stepping in to be your brain. I chose graphs for number of cases of coronavirus over deaths for a few good reasons. I did the check of both. The graphs are very similar in shape. Due to lack of space I only choose cases. Additionally, with the larger number of cases over deaths, the curves will be smoother, less apt to have variations. All the graphs are of countries with very good health care systems. That means the death rates, length of hospital stay, and similar metrics will all be similar. Now onto the data. The main question, “Social distancing having an effect? Is a second wave in the future?”
First, the shape of the graph is what is important. I apologize for not being able to read the scales of the axis. Sweden and the US are similar. Denmark has not had an increase or ‘second wave’ after it reopened, but did look ‘stable’ (and lower) after reopening. Sweden and the US have plateaued, Denmark appears past the plateau. All are the same date range.
Now for some projections all set to per 100,000 population of deaths per day. The charts are all in the same order as above (Sweden, Denmark, US). The projections were made May 1st and are through August 1st.
My questions? Why is the University of Washington expecting all nations to have this under control, practically eradicated by August 1st? The shaded sections are projected possibilities, 11 days into the projections, and the real numbers are 50% below the pink ‘worthless’ projections. Is that the second wave in pink? Why is there no third, or fourth wave like fear mongers are speaking of? 75% error by professional health experts. Is the US really past peak? On August 1st, The United States projected to have 134,475 deaths attributed to Covid-19. That is double the number of a harsh Flu year. Horrible, yes. We are already below projection range though. We are 70-80% through this, worth all the precautions, or are we just being tested to see responses. Is there a bigger science project happening?
A few more facts about flattening the curve. We have all seen the pictures. The purpose is not to overwhelm the health care system. Here is what they don’t tell you about flattening the curve. The area under the curve is the same! That means, the same number of cases, the same number of deaths (if everyone receives the best health care available)
The difference is the length of time the infection is active. How long can the fear go on? Years? Whether the cure was flattened or not, the number of cases and number of deaths will be a certain percentage of the population. More testing will not change the final numbers, curve flattening can only change the length of time the disease will be a threat in the population. Another way to put this is according the US graph above. 0.04% of the US population will die by August 1st. 0.01% of both Denmark Sweden will die. To put things in perspective, Italy, a hard-hit nation using the same university projections will have 0.05% of their population die. New York state the epicenter of death, is projected at 0.16% NY City already experienced ¾ or more of their expected deaths according to experts. They are well past peak (at least in New York City). Those are the facts that I am presenting to the right.
Here are my questions. I do not have the ability to get answers to, but they are still valid questions. Why is August 1st chosen, when we have heard it could last for years? The first graphs depict the full spectrum of protective measures from just good hygiene practices, to total lockdown for three countries. They all end up the same. Was the curve really flattened compared to Sweden? What have precautions done for overall safety? Why has not New York reopened if they are well past the ‘hump’, while 45 other states have reopened? There are many more questions sparked in my head, but please consider your own questions, I just want to present the facts
One final comparison, The bubonic plague, a bacterium, not a virus, has been found in archaeological digs dating back to late bronze age, about 3500 years ago. It started in China, or the Asian Steppes. Once travel became more abundant, it spread rapidly in the 1300’s presumed to have been spread by ship, and the silk road. Huge percentages of people died. It was estimated up to 50% of Europe died. Is travel well above the level of the 1300’s? yes? Are fleas and rats still common to transmit the disease? Yes. Is the plague bacterium still present today? Yes. How many cases happen in the US per year? Under a dozen, mostly in the western United States. Why is the plague not killing millions anymore? The people who survived, had children who could resist the disease better. Is Corona Virus here to stay? That is what we are being told by the experts. The solution? It may sound cold. The people who will die, they will die, sooner or later. The ones that live will reproduce. The old phrase by Tennyson that nature is red in tooth and claw comes to mind. There is a war for survival going on with all living things. The strong survive. It is the basis of natural selection. Human laws and recommendations may have no impact on this war.
My opinion is that governments on most levels are manipulating to consolidate power. Reminiscent of Stalin at a staged photo op on a farm. He plucked the feathers roughly off a hen, but then fed the hen out of his hand minutes later. People will forget the savagery done to them, if they are hungry enough. They will not bite the hand that feeds them. They will welcome those same people as heroes. I see way too many people slowly being plucked without giving it a second thought. They only see their rescue, but not what it cost them. I hope the data leads you in the same direction I see. If I use persuasive words, someone could be more persuasive in the other direction, that is why I try to write the facts first. Let you form your own opinions.
As I wrote this article, I must confess I felt a loathing. Anger for power hungry politicians who say ‘never to waste a good crisis.’ I feel that my Governor is not serving the public. He is preparing to be president. Well written speeches, while his people suffer 10 times worse than the rest of the nation. I wrote two weeks ago about inflated deaths from covid-19, and showed influenza decreased at miraculous rates in New York. As he reopens, the cooked books will return to normal, and he will get praise for handling the situation with aplomb and wisdom, hero material. This loathing was at odds with my Christian character. It reminded me of the story in Daniel. Nebuchadnezzar during his arrogance had a dream that was interpreted to say that Nebby will roam the wild, eating grass like a cow for 7 years. He was humbled beyond belief. He then came to his senses, and worshipped the true God. I found myself wishing similar curses on those who disagreed with my opinion. That is where I should repent. I now pray for my officials to find the wisdom of following Jesus sooner, rather than later. The arrogance is reigned in before the horrible consequences.