Daily Archives: May 3, 2020

Chinese Virus – Real And False Dangers

 

So what is this Chinese Virus, or Covid-19 as they call it, exactly? How deadly, how dangerous?

The obsessive exactness of the Italian statistics, which I have followed every day for a week, seem to me to give a clear answer.

This is not the plague, obviously. Still, it is clearly worse than the flu. It is, as I have written in the past, like a particularly nasty flu, which, whilst not really grave for most people, can kill the “low hanging fruits”, or people with certain kind of vulnerabilities. Let us see some salient points:

  1. The average death in Italy hovered around 80 for most of the emergency. Mind, the virus also killed some in their Forties and Fifties. But the average around Eighty was, of course, after taking account of these unfortunate people. Therefore, for one who died at 47 there were many who died at well over 80.
  2. The Virus is clearly more dangerous for people whose immune system is less strong for some reason. If your immune system is fine, the virus can’t do much. If you have issues, it can be a big problem, perhaps with intensive care unit and, in this case, a 30% or 40% probability of death. It seems to me that in Italy, the Virus found many very old people who, whilst still alive, and in some cases reasonably healthy, could not react properly to the virus’ attack. But when you have so many old people, you also have many people who are old and sick already. Therefore, a Country with a big population of old people might have a multiple of the deaths of countries were people kill themselves before that time with booze, donuts or cigarettes. A populatio with a great number of older people obviously makes the “job” of the virus “easier”. In other Countries, like the United Kingdom, you have less old people, but you have many more obese people, which causes diabetes, which is another way the Virus gets at his victims.
  3. In some cases, the emergency was simply due to neglect. Boris Johnson needed his ICU (though he was never attached to the ventilator) because – having a Country to run in a time of emergency – he neglected to take care of himself properly when he became ill.

In short, you can make this kind of equivalence: imagine that your immune system is your kitchen sink, and that the virus is water pouring on it and locking the drains. If the sink is big enough and the water just stays there at half or less, you wonder what the fuss is about. If the water gets very near to overflow, it’s ICU. If there is overflow, you die. The fact that 99% of people survive does not mean that the disease is not potentially lethal, or is simply “the cold”. But in most cases, the immune defence sink will easily take care of the threat. In the other cases (old age, particularly with comorbidity, diabetes, and the like) it’s the ICU or the grave. This, I think, is what most people find most alarming: one can know how well his system reacts only when he gets the disease, and no one after a certain age can be sure that he is not one of those (tiny, but real) who will be in trouble.

The danger was very real. No flu causes the kind of emergency seen in Bergamo. Not even in the worst flu years. Not even remotely. This was not a cold, and was not a normal flu. I imagine it was a kind of Gollum Flu.

Still, this is not the plague. Most people survive. We can’t all stay locked until a vaccine is ready. The efforts must be directed toward the ICU end of the situation, and sensible rule to protect the general population.

It cannot be permanent lockdown.

Operation Chaos

 

I am not guilty of always agreeing with Breitbart’s John Nolte, but on this, he is most certainly right. 

The main quote:

What had been a national effort to save lives, a noble effort of national unity, has been twisted by Democrat governors into something unnecessarily punitive that reeks of a partisan power play to destroy President Trump’s re-election chances. Give me a better explanation.  Because this is the bottom line…

Unless you’re willing to wait for a cure (that is at least a year away or might never come at all), when there is no risk the health care system’s going to crash, what is the point of waiting one more day to open up the country when waiting doesn’t make us any safer?

Tomorrow, vast parts of Italy (the Country most brutally impacted by the virus, for a number of reasons going from a direct fly from Wuhan to Milan, to inter-generational living, to the excellent health service and health habits of the Italians allowing for a very high number of very old people, to others that will have to be investigated, like the stowing of, as it turned out, infectious people in care homes) will start what begins to be normal life. Many factories will reopen, many shops will reopen, etc. In short, the Country realises that life has to go on. In the UK, what appears to be a staggered reopening is going to be announced imminently.

Note that in Italy a Centre Left coalition is in power. They want to stay there, too. At some point, they have to be practical about it.

A different dynamic seems to be at play in several US States. It appears evident to me (and to Mr Nolte) that California, Virginia, North Carolina and Illinois are at the forefront of a different battle: the unseating of Trump through the damaging of the local economies.

The game is very obvious: smash the economy, blame Trump. It might not work, but without it Trump wins in a landslide anyway, so this reeks of a move out of desperation with no downside from the point of view of the power-drunk Democrats. In California, they run little risk anyway. In other states, there is no doubt a grateful party will provide plenty of opportunities for every Roy Cooper losing his job in “Operation Chaos”.

Well, look, I am not so entirely outraged. You elect a Democratic Governor, you run the risk of being used as a pawn in his desperate fight against Trump. Still, it’s sad for the people incvolved and outrageous for American liberties anyway.

The antidote to the Democrats’ poison:

  1. The Republican States must reopen fast and hard, making those in the Democrat states realise they are being used.
  2. Trump needs to call for the fast reopening of the Country almost anywhere, and he needs to attack those Governors who try to take their own state’s citizen as hostages for political reasons.

This is now past the original medical emergency, and is transmuting into an Orwellian rehearsal of Mass Power Seizure for the next emergency the powers that be decide to call: which can be “global warming”, hunger in Africa, pretty much everything under the sun.

Stay vigilant, and punish at the ballot all those who manipulate a real emergency in favour of a fake agenda.

Operation Chaos is threatening all of us.

 

 

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