Congress passes a money virus bill while Britain stealthily downgrades COVID-19 as no longer being a high consequence infectious disease

Sars-cov-2

By Robert Willmann

As a social, cultural, and medical episode about a virus becomes more surreal each day, Congress passed a law to spend massive amounts of money the federal government does not have to assist a badly damaged economy the government itself caused — along with mass media — by their frantic, fear-generating publicity that emboldened state governors and local mayors to illegally give orders to restrict and shut down the very movement of people and their participation in personal, family, religious, business, and organizational activities, which were previously sustaining their lives and well being.  By failing to fully disclose and discuss publicly the structure and composition of the virus and its physiological effects before taking ham-handed, drastic steps, all levels of government have trapped themselves with no objective criteria and evidence on which to base a return to sane, normal life.

The virus in question is SARS-CoV-2:  Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2.  It is alleged to cause an illness called COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019), earlier called 2019-nCoV.

The Senate voted 96-0 to pass the bill at 11:17 p.m. on Wednesday, 25 March.  All laws appropriating money are required to start in the House of Representatives, so the Senate took an existing bill with a different subject relating to appropriations that had earlier passed in the House — H.R.748 — and replaced its contents with Senate amendment 1578, which was put into the Congressional Record on pages CR 2063 to 2156–

https://www.congress.gov/116/crec/2020/03/25/CREC-2020-03-25-pt1-PgS2063-3.pdf

Today, Friday, the House passed it by a shifty, and possibly outlaw procedure, bulldozing past Representative Thomas Massie (Repub. Kentucky), who demanded that a quorum be proved and that a recorded vote be taken on the proposed law.  It is not clear at this time exactly what took place within the context of the House rules and the constitution. 

The official version of the Senate bill in the Congressional Record provided above has a small font, appearing as small lettering.  The Senate bill which was passed by the House has 852 pages and is now available with a larger typeface [1].

The Big Enchilada, $500 billion, is in section 4003 for "eligible businesses, States, and municipalities".  A "mid-sized business" has between 500 and 10,000 employees, and the funds received by the business and associated with the Not-Federal Reserve Bank (the Fed) are to be used to retain at least 90 percent of the workforce, at full compensation and benefits, until 30 September 2020 (section 4003(c)(3)(D)).   The Secretary of the Treasury, Steven Mnuchin; his designee (section 4002(9)); and the board of directors of the Fed will decide in their discretion who gets a loan and on what terms under section 4003, within a few conditions and limitations in the new law.   A sum of money routed to the Not-Federal Reserve Bank, and then from it to regular commercial banks, can create a much greater dollar amount for loans, through the magic of fractional reserve banking.  To what extent the Fed will also create money out of thin air to contribute to providing "liquidity" to the financial system is not clear from the text.

The $500 billion is divided into $25 billion for passenger air carriers, $4 billion for cargo air carriers, and $17 billion for private businesses "critical to maintaining national security" (undefined, and perhaps including some Beltway Bandits).  The remaining $454 billion, plus any left over from the other three amounts, is for "loans and loan guarantees to, and other investments in, programs" established by the Fed.  Guaranteeing at least some of the debt created through banks is authorized in section 4008, using the Federal Deposit "Insurance" Corporation (FDIC), and for federal credit unions, using the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, ending the guarantee on 31 December 2020.  The board of the Fed may hold secret meetings exempt from the federal open meetings law for "unusual and exigent circumstances" announced in writing by the chairman, until the earlier of the end of the viral national emergency or 31 December 2020 (section 4009).

Millions of people including small business owners have lost all income, by the orders of governors and mayors.  But section 4004 helps officers and employees of some of the favored businesses under section 4003 to avoid a big pay cut, while also saying they cannot get a pay increase.  If an officer or employee of a business getting a loan or loan guarantee under section 4003 made more than $425,000 up to $3 million in calendar year 2019, then during the time the loan or loan guarantee is in effect and for one year afterwards, he or she cannot make more than that in compensation during a 12-month period.  If the poor-mouthing officer or employee made more than $3 million in 2019, he or she can continue to receive that, plus 50 percent of what was received over $3 million in 2019 [!], as compensation during a 12-month period. 

The nice, wide open discretion as to $500 billion for the Big Boys and Girls is — as you might expect — not available to the unwashed masses.  For example, businesses with up to 500 employees are going to have to struggle with applications to the Small Business Administration, and workers will have to try to get new unemployment compensation, after getting it under an existing program, and possibly for only 39 weeks.  Some workers may be able to withdraw or borrow from a retirement fund without a tax or other penalty.  Some businesses may be able to jiggle around with changes in federal tax rules.  

By reading sections 1101 through 2308, you can see what small businesses and workers are going to have to try to figure out and understand, before they can hope to get any relief.  Section 1107 appropriates $377 billion, $265 million ($377,265,000,000), but understanding how to get to the money and then getting it is a problem.

The enticing item to keep the lid from coming off and society from boiling over is the $1,200 payment to a person, plus $500 for each child.  To legally justify a dramatic action such as that, a gimmick using the income tax law has been invented.  Section 2201 amends the Internal Revenue Code after section 6427, and creates a "credit against the tax", that may turn into an "advance refund" or "refund" or a type of "rebate".

This law will produce a huge undertaking when the attempt is made to implement it, and I have not even touched on the sections involving hospitals and medical care.  It likely took quite a few people in and out of government to piece it together and write it in the stilted and contrived language used in most statutes.  It is organized to some degree, and you can take it apart to study subjects of interest.

One bit of hidden good news comes from Britain, the United Kingdom.  The government officially declared that–

"As of 19 March 2020, COVID-19 is no longer considered to be a high consequence infectious diseases (HCID) in the UK. … Now that more is known about COVID-19, the public health bodies in the UK have reviewed the most up to date information about COVID-19 against the UK HCID criteria. They have determined that several features have now changed; in particular, more information is available about mortality rates (low overall), and there is now greater clinical awareness and a specific and sensitive laboratory test, the availability of which continues to increase.  The Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens (ACDP) is also of the opinion that COVID-19 should no longer be classified as an HCID."

This should put the SARS-CoV-2 virus and COVID-19 into the standard category of an infectious disease, which would include types of "regular" flu.  Further down the page of information is an interesting table of what Britain considers to be the really bad stuff, the HCID.  Four types of Avian influenza and SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) are considered to be HCID, although, as the note says, no cases of SARS have been reported there since 2004–

https://turcopolier.typepad.com/files/britain_downgrades_covid_19_no_longer_hcid.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/high-consequence-infectious-diseases-hcid

It is a curious situation, in that the decision in Britain was reached on 19 March but was not published until Saturday, 21 March, and then the finding was not trumpeted by the government.  I do not know what restrictions were imposed on the public in Britain after 19 March, and apparently there were some, but on 25 March, a special law was passed called the Coronavirus Act 2020.  It is 342 pages long, and of course it creates new "authority".  That new law is to expire and end after two years, except when it does not!  (See section 90, page 60.)–

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2020/7/contents/enacted/data.htm

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2020/7/enacted/data.pdf

The sight of Congress and the executive branch strutting around pretending they solved a problem they created is beyond surreal. There are gaps in the public presentation of the virus, its history, and its effects on a person. The SARS-CoV-2 may replicate in the throat, making its transfer more contagious. It might have other features that help it to increase in number and negatively affect a person's physiology. The lack of detailed information about the virus is another subject.

 

[1]  https://www.congress.gov/116/bills/hr748/BILLS-116hr748eas.pdf

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/748/all-info

 

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37 Responses to Congress passes a money virus bill while Britain stealthily downgrades COVID-19 as no longer being a high consequence infectious disease

  1. Deap says:

    This curious UK conclusion deserves high-lighting, when compared to the Zombie Apocalypse hysteria we still find rabidly entrenched find in the US:
    “As of 19 March 2020, COVID-19 is no longer considered to be a high consequence infectious diseases (HCID) in the UK. … Now that more is known about COVID-19, the public health bodies in the UK have reviewed the most up to date information about COVID-19 against the UK HCID criteria.
    They have determined that several features have now changed; in particular, more information is available about mortality rates (low overall), and there is now greater clinical awareness and a specific and sensitive laboratory test, the availability of which continues to increase.
    The Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens (ACDP) is also of the opinion that COVID-19 should no longer be classified as an HCID.”
    This should put the SARS-CoV-2 virus and COVID-19 into the standard category of an infectious disease, which would include types of “regular” flu. ….”

  2. Jose says:

    This should put the SARS-CoV-2 virus and COVID-19 into the standard category of an infectious disease, which would include types of “regular” flu.
    IMHO, our public health system needs a serious review after this crisis.
    Please see this explanation from Germany as to why their rates are lower than ours, fits in with your analysis.
    https://www.npr.org/2020/03/25/820595489/why-germanys-coronavirus-death-rate-is-far-lower-than-in-other-countries

  3. Jack says:

    Robert,
    It seems like with most legislation emanating from DC that there are all kinds of loopholes designed for the clients of K St. I’ve read that airlines who spent much of their cash flow to support the debt incurred to buyback their stock to pad the compensation of their executives, plan to layoff many employees in the 4th quarter after the restrictions on their bailout funds ends.
    With tens of thousands of small businesses shuttered their losses continue to mount. This could cause many of them to file bankruptcy and not reopen when the shutdown is lifted.
    The flood of liquidity from the Fed is designed to lift financial assets. More importantly to allow Wall St to “sell” all their impaired credit to the Fed. A chart of the Fed balance sheet shows a vertical rise.
    In the UK both Boris and Charles have stated they’re isolating as they’ve tested positive for the virus. I’ve read that the Jarvits center in NYC has been converted into a hospital. There are conflicting reports of stress at ICUs. My grandson says that his VA hospital is not overwhelmed with coronavirus cases.

  4. JJackson says:

    Re
    “… all levels of government have trapped themselves with no objective criteria and evidence on which to base a return to sane, normal life.”
    There is a route back. It requires testing and contract tracing in areas with low disease burden and, once the numbers become more manageable due to the reduced transmission caused by the lock-downs, in hot spots. Once the authorities have a clearer picture of where the disease is they can ease restrictions in some areas with good contact tracing and gradually clear area by area of uncontrolled and undocumented spread. It is not quick but it is a tried and tested method which has been used to kill dozens of previous epidemics inc. Polio, SARS, Ebola etc.

  5. Artemesia says:

    Well well well.
    Gantz threw in with Bibi.
    Mnuchin and FED control doling out $500 billion.
    How much of that will find its way to Israel?
    Gantz realized Bibi had more experience fleecing USA than he did; better to join the crime gang than be cut off from the loot.
    A prediction: Coronavirus pandemic will end in the next very few days.
    The heist is a fait accompli, the distraction is no longer needed.

  6. JJackson says:

    This is a very clear and simple model explaining the basics of epidemiology and the effects of public health interventions.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gxAaO2rsdIs

  7. Chicot says:

    Interesting that the downgrading of covid-19 was held back until Saturday the 21st. On the 20th, pubs, bars and restaurants were ordered to close in the UK(previously they had been allowed to remain open but people had been warned not to go to them!). Meanwhile, the “expert” who’s apocalyptic predictions caused Boris to panic and change course has been busy downgrading his estimate of deaths yet again. Originally, it would have been 500,000, then it went down to 20,000 and he now estimates that the death toll may be only 5,700. Of course, it will be claimed that only the imposition of the police state averted armageddon.

  8. LondonBob says:

    Plod seem to adore their new powers here. Struggle to see a policeman in normal times, suddenly they are everywhere hounding the general public. Apparently I am no longer allowed to go cycling in the local park, regardless that I am probably as likely to die in a crash as I am to catch the virus from one of the ponces in their lycra outfits and racing bikes passing me.
    We shall see but Johnson is eager to end the restrictions as soon as possible, let us hope the data continues to suggest this is more benign than first feared. Italy has always been an outlier in such things.

  9. Timothy Hagios says:

    Many things are not adding up about the response to the coronavirus. It would be more logical to spend $2.2 trillion on creating accommodations for the 1-5% of the population that is actually vulnerable to the virus. How is shutting down the whole country, even temporarily, not going to lead to an economic depression? Another Great Depression will kill more people than would die even if the virus were allowed to circulate uninhibited.
    Could it simply be that the people in the government and the press have jobs that are not threatened by the lockdown, and thus have no inclination to think about the vast majority of workers whose survival is very much in jeopardy?

  10. Barbara Ann says:

    Thank you Mr Willmann, very interesting.
    Bloomberg (the financial media outlet, if the distinction can be made between its views and those of the eponymous failed presidential candidate) has an op-ed on the bill, which IMO is well worth a read. On the alphabet soup of asset purchase schemes:

    “So how can they [the Fed] do this? The Fed will finance a special purpose vehicle (SPV) for each acronym to conduct these operations. The Treasury, using the Exchange Stabilization Fund, will make an equity investment in each SPV and be in a “first loss” position. What does this mean? In essence, the Treasury, not the Fed, is buying all these securities and backstopping of loans; the Fed is acting as banker and providing financing.”

    And in case you were in any doubt as to he political implications:

    “In other words, the federal government is nationalizing large swaths of the financial markets. The Fed is providing the money to do it. BlackRock will be doing the trades.
    This scheme essentially merges the Fed and Treasury into one organization. So, meet your new Fed chairman, Donald J. Trump.”

    And to drive the point home:

    “In effect, the Fed is giving the Treasury access to its printing press. This means that, in the extreme, the administration would be free to use its control, not the Fed’s control, of these SPVs to instruct the Fed to print more money so it could buy securities and hand out loans in an effort to ramp financial markets higher going into the election.”

    https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2020-03-27/federal-reserve-s-financial-cure-risks-being-worse-than-disease

  11. Keith Harbaugh says:

    SJ: Who is COVID-19 killing?
    I think we need to consider that question.
    In the NYT, the epicenter of political correctness,
    two obituaries have been featured,
    one of Terrence McNally and one of Maurice Berger.
    TM died of COVID-19, MB “exhibited severe symptoms of coronavirus” before his death.
    Both were homosexuals.
    Question: Is COVID-19 primarily affecting, not merely the elderly, but also homosexual men?
    You know, we spend so much time thinking about who are “victims”;
    I think we should spend some time thinking about who bring on their problems by their own free-will choices,
    and the extent to which the larger society is obligated to bail them out from THEIR choices.

  12. vig says:

    It is alleged to cause an illness called COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019), earlier called 2019-nCoV.
    “alleged” in this case would need a huge worldwide conspiracy of scientists. You feel WHO and/or some (Chinese) mastermind could trigger something like that?
    i fully understand the legal expert has to stay “objective”, apart from having to either prove a client guilty or innocent on matters. Which from lawyers to media filtered down by now.

  13. JMH says:

    Mass hysteria, civil unrest, cascading economic death spiral: all averted. Thank God!

  14. Terence Gore says:

    https://twitter.com/ClimateAudit/status/1243702913790357504
    In a preliminary clinical trial on a small cohort of COVID-19 patients, we demonstrated that
    those treated with hydroxychloroquine (600 mg per day, N=20 patients) had a significant
    reduction in viral carriage at D6-post inclusion, with 70% of patients testing negative for the
    virus through nasopharyngeal PCR, compared to untreated controls (N=16) with only 12.5%
    patients testing negative using PCR at D6-post inclusion (16). In addition, of the twenty
    patients who were treated with hydroxychloroquine, six received azithromycin for five days
    (for the purposes of preventing bacterial super-infection) and all (100%) were virologically
    cured at D6-post inclusion, compared to 57.1% of the remaining 14 patients (16)
    https://www.mediterranee-infection.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/COVID-IHU-2-1.pdf
    From following links at Dan Bongino Twitter
    https://twitter.com/dbongino/status/1243891111921209344

  15. JerseyJeffersonian says:

    News from France on a treatment regimen.
    https://techstartups.com/2020/03/27/coronavirus-cure-new-results-french-study-shows-combination-hydroxychloroquine-plaquenil-azithromycin-successfully-treated-80-coronavirus-patients-significant-dr/
    Meanwhile, back here in the USA, at least two Democrat governors (Nevada and Michigan) have issued orders that doctors in their zones of autocratic control (a/k/a their states) are forbidden to prescribe chloroquinone or hydroxychloroquinone for the “off-label” use to treat CoVID-19, ostensibly to avoid hoarding and depriving others being prescribed these drugs on an “off-label” basis for maladies such as rheumatoid arthritis of their accustomed supply.
    Frankly, I doubt this “reason”; rather, the intent is to cynically prolong the outbreak to work political damage on President Trump.
    They are using their respective states’ control of medical licensing in weaponizing federalism to their political party’s perceived advantage, citizens of their states be damned.
    Well, we shall see how this advantages the Democrat party if the families of those afflicted with the virus find out that potentially life saving therapies are being withheld from their loved ones by these bloody-minded tyrants and their odious manuevers.

  16. Eric Newhill says:

    This is going to be revealed as one of the biggest and costliest hoaxes ( or hysterias or info ops – depending on how you choose to frame it) in the history of the country. Right up there with Iraqi WMD. Of course the politicians will say that it turned out no worse than a bad seasonal flu because of the smart and aggressive actions they took. Anyone questioning that official meme will be dismissed as a “conspiracy theorist” .
    There has been no spike in infectious disease deaths or mortality generally over previous years (adjusted for this and that to normalize the data). There is no “there”, there.

  17. BillWade says:

    I’m in the “way over hyped camp” myself. However I also think some regions will be hit hard. I’m concerned about Ft Myers, Fl.. A local 39 year old DJ, who had performed in many events prior to his death, including Spring Break events in Miami, has now died. His wife,a nurse, insisted he go to the hospital to be tested but they refused due to his youngish age. They did agree to test him for two strains of the flu, both came back negative only reinforcing his wife’s opinion. They wound up going back home till he became increasingly ill and she took him back. He tested positive and then shortly thereafter died. This man has been in contact with hundreds if not thousands of young party-goers in March.
    I’ve heard the Lombardy region of Italy has a much higher than normal amount of people with mesothemiola (sp?). Asbestos was heavily manufactured and used there up until 1992 – so those folks are likely (or were) elderly now, might account for the higher mortality rate.

  18. Upstate NY'er says:

    When hysteria meets common sense, hysteria usually wins.
    Then the Democrat-media flogs the hysteria to damage the President as much as possible – the country be damned.
    We now have “virus theatre” where the “inner cop” comes out of otherwise powerless people.
    Once again proof that the 80-90% of the American people are stupid, worthless, lazy followers.

  19. turcopolier says:

    upstateNYer
    Amen, but the ones who are part Neanderthal are the better ones.

  20. optimax says:

    I read that doctors are hoarding hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin for themselves and loved ones. You can be sure the political and financial elite will be able to get the drugs at the first sign of infection. But Joe and Josephine Blow may get it after they have been hospitalized, and by then it may be too late to prevent permanent lung damage, that is, if they survive.
    How does Germany treat its C-19 patients? Anybody know.

  21. Fred says:

    Timothy,
    The overwhelming majority of the vulnerable already have housing. As to homeless or adicts or other people sleeping in the feces covered streets of San Fran, well I haven’t heard CNN and company put out much news about them so either they aren’t dying like flies or they are no longer politically relevant to TPTB.
    Optimax,
    Pepe Escobar has a writeup on UNZ about the entire stockpile disapearing out the French health care system. Worry not, there are lots of very expense replacements just waiting for a purchase order, and that doesn’t even include the ones from China.
    https://www.unz.com/pescobar/why-france-is-hiding-a-cheap-and-tested-virus-cure/
    At least we can all look forward to $1,000 and the bail out bill.

  22. JohninMK says:

    Interestingly the UK temporally made the decision that COVID-19 should be considered to be a high consequence infectious diseases (HCID) back in January.
    This means that the UK Government has been aware since then that it had a potentially serious situation on its hands. Yet still did very little, until the day it is rumored that Macron told Boris to either act or France would close the border.

  23. elaine says:

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com: “China shuts down all cinemas, AGAIN.”
    Also a neighbor told me he has a buddie in China who said Wuhan
    is once again in total lock down.

  24. walrus says:

    There is an assumption underlying this comprehensive post that because Covid-19 is not “high consequence” then we are not facing a worldwide health emergency. I do not believe this is correct.
    The HCID classification relates among other things to the lethality of the disease. Covid-19 is not lethal enough to be labelled as high consequence. Fair enough, but the danger from Covid-19 is not primarily caused by lethality but by timing.
    Simply put, the forthcoming surge in Covid-19 patients will overwhelm all our health systems that is the source of its lethality. An overwhelmed healthcare system wont be able to treat any serious cases of Covid-19 or any other lethal conditions. According to epidemiologists, I’m told this is a matter of simple mathematics.
    Then there is, as Col. Lang has reminded us, the added problem of consequential deaths if hysteria causes a breakdown in the delicate, fragile, supply chains that keep us fed, watered and warm caused by public disorder.
    As for Britain, i have no faith in the British establishment whatsoever to do anything other than look after their own interests at the expense of everyone else.
    In that respect the British upper class are not alone, the Greens, the millenials and various economists and similar have already made it quite plain that they see the accelerated demise of older people as a great benefit to themselves.

  25. Mark Arnest says:

    Between January 31, when the first COVID-19 case was diagnoseed in the UK, and March 19, when COVID-19 was “no longer considered to be a high consequence infectious disease” in the UK, there were 144 deaths due to the disease. Between March 19 and March 27, there were 875 deaths due to the disease. The highest number of deaths, so far, was March 27. You may decide for yourselves whether this declaration was actually “good news.”
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_coronavirus_pandemic_in_the_United_Kingdom

  26. Jack says:

    Eric
    Since we’ve not tested many it seems the only two metrics are number of deaths and number in ICUs. It would be interesting to see Wuhan virus compared to other flus. I have read flus kill over 20,000. So far the Wuhan virus has not killed many here in the US or anywhere else except Italy and China. Are there other extenuating circumstances there?
    Whatever it may be we’ve shutdown large parts of the global economy. The real repercussions will only be felt in the second half of this year.
    It reminds me of 9/11. Three thousand dead, American icons felled in our nation’s financial capital by a bunch of ragtag Saudis. Our collective ego bruised. The fear the elites and ambulance chasing media exploited. Consider the trillions that it caused us to spend, borrowed from future generations. Consider who generated wealth stateside notwithstanding the grifters in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Iraq. It turns out rather than focus on hurting Islamic jihadists we invaded and destroyed the social fabrics of a few unrelated countries. We even wound up backing these jihadists in Syria to overthrow a secular regime.
    Will we look back at this in a few years and contemplate dispassionately who benefited or will our analysis remain muddled by our partisan lenses? As in 2008 the early signs are that the same financial, corporate and political elites are using this as an opportunity to continue to fleece not only the majority of the current generations but also future generations.

  27. optimax says:

    Fred
    Guess I forgot to link to the Unz article. The small study in France of hydroxychloroquine and arithromycine show a complete cure of c-19 virus in all patients that took the drugs together. Here’s the money-shot from the study.
    “When comparing the effect of hydroxychloroquine treatment as a single drug and the effect of hydroxychloroquine and azithromyc in combination, the proportion of patients that had negative PCR results in nasopharyngeal samples was significantly different between the two groups at days 3-4-5 and 6 post-inclusion (Table 3). At day6 post-inclusion, 100% of patients treated with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin combination were virologicaly cured comparing with 57.1% in patients treated with hydroxychloroquine only, and 12.5% in the control group (p<0.001). These results are summarized in Figure 1, Figure 2. Drug effect was significantly higher in patients with symptoms of URTI and LRTI, as compared to asymptomatic patients with p<0.05 (data not show)."
    Here's the study:
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0924857920300996
    While the press downplays the study and implies Trump is a buffoon for mentioning it as a possiblity, doctors and dentists have been been hoarding so much of the drugs that pharmacists are running short. Doctors and dentists aren’t waiting for the CDC and FDA to give their approval to use the cocktail, even off-label and they know more about medicine and what’s worth trying and what’s not than journalists. The power to control o
    the nation’s healthcare in one or two centralized beuacracies kills people.
    Walrus is right. Despite some thinking culling the herd to be socially desireable, we need to try and stop the number of infected from overwhelming the healthcare system. Doctors and nurses are dropping like old drunks off of bar stools. Even if they recover, the will be out for, what, 2,3 weeks a month or more.
    Heard on the radio a study that claimed only 17% of men wash their hands after going to the bathroom. Hope that includes all restaurant workers.

  28. Serge says:

    Not so much the mortality rate of SARS 2 that worries me but rather the unknowns as regards potential permanent health effects, even in those suffering mild symptoms. For example this study that found that sufferers with mild symptoms have half the normal level of testosterone:
    Effect of SARS-CoV-2 infection upon male gonadal function: A single centerbased study
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.03.21.20037267v1.full.
    >Theoretically, any cells expressing ACE2 may be susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection. According to the online database The Human
    Protein Atlas portal, testes shows the highest expression level of ACE2 protein and mRNA in the body

  29. Pundita says:

    From Sputnik’s Live Updates on the pandemic:
    “UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson will warn Brits in a letter in the coming week that the situation in the country will only get worse after the number of those who’ve perished from the coronavirus in the country spiked to over 1,000 in recent days.
    He will urge 30 million households “to stay at home and save lives”, and will say that further restrictions could be implemented if necessary.”
    https://sptnkne.ws/BQZy
    The British government, as with every other, has been trying to analyze fairy-tale statistics about the virus.
    See this report, “Confirmed Coronavirus Cases Is an ‘Almost Meaningless’ Metric” for some detail on how hard it’s been to capture accurate statistics.
    https://finance.yahoo.com/news/confirmed-coronavirus-cases-almost-meaningless-123550415.html
    In a perfect world, maybe in 2-3 weeks we’ll start getting a reasonably accurate picture.
    As to hysteria about the virus — so is that the new term for people being completely unprepared to deal with a threat they knew very well was on the way?
    Pardon my bitterness but governments, media, and the citizenry have had ten years — since the Swine Flu pandemic — to deal with the fact that a highly infectious lethal virus can now go from the outbreak stage to the pandemic stage within a week — even hours, depending on the time of year; e.g, Spring Break. That’s because of:
    > the huge number of international airports built all over the world since the 1990s;
    > dirt-cheap local and international airfares;
    > virtually unrestricted jet airline travel to most parts of the world.
    > the globalization of work and college attendance and mass tourism due to the above factors.
    In short, the 2009 Swine Flu pandemic taught that the modern era of international jet travel imposes great responsibilities on travelers and governments and severe penalties on the human race if the responsibilities are ignored.
    Nobody wanted to take the lesson. File under Human Nature.

  30. Eric Newhill says:

    Jack,
    “Since we’ve not tested many it seems the only two metrics are number of deaths and number in ICUs. It would be interesting to see Wuhan virus compared to other flus. I have read flus kill over 20,000. So far the Wuhan virus has not killed many here in the US or anywhere else except Italy and China.”
    Right. That’s one of my points. You can look at adjusted mortality rates and ICU rates. That’s it.; unless massive *random* sample of the population is tested for the virus.
    Another of my points is that just because you tested positive and are dead – or even in the ICU – doesn’t mean the virus is what got you there. How many of those unfortunates would have ended up in that condition due to other conditions that they have? Anecdotally, a lot of them. Certainly the statistics from Italy suggest the majority.

  31. walrus says:

    Australian Government just announced maximum meeting size is two people. As a 70 year old I’m now quarantined for 6 months as well.

  32. Jack says:

    “The grave mistake of shutting down entire countries instead of testing and providing equipment, protocols, and tools for businesses to manage the crisis.”
    https://twitter.com/dlacalle_ia/status/1244248762781970436?s=21
    I agree with Daniel Lacalle that not aggressively testing and isolating allowed the media and the various “pundits” to fan the flames of catastrophe. Here in the US we should have quickly enabled our vast molecular biology industry and the medical diagnostic infrastructure to manage the scale of testing required. Testing at mass scale paid by the federal government would have been less expensive to taxpayers than the current Wall St bailout. And more importantly would have provided a counter to the understandable public fears and the momentum to shut everything down.

  33. Keith Harbaugh says:

    So why has the media so relentlessly and luridly flogged the threat from COVID?
    I don’t have the slightest doubt that the following article gives the largest part of the answer:
    https://vdare.com/articles/jews-fear-they-re-prone-to-coronavirus-but-race-denying-ruling-class-suppresses-the-facts
    Note that it uses articles from several rxplicitly Jewish news sources as documentation.

  34. Fred says:

    Optimax,
    Thanks for the link. “we need to try and stop the number of infected from overwhelming the healthcare system” I agree, but we don’t need to destroy the Republic and what’s left of our economy while we do that. The ‘we’ve always done it that way’ attitude, much on display in our bureaucracies, is counter productive. For examples ‘masks’. Aparently these are magical devices that work for doctors and nurses but if you wear one, well, it’s not going to help.
    “Doctors and nurses are dropping like old drunks off of bar stools. ”
    Where? None of my contacts working in hospitals in Michigan report that. I’ve seen the videos on Facebook but the one I looked into, which a nurse friend of my put on her FB page, was unsubstantiated and only available on a community page whose originator is a personal injury attorney in Dearborn. The hospital referenced has zero information about said report nor was there anything in the local press about it.

  35. different clue says:

    @artemisia,
    If the corona pandemic fails to end in a few days, now that ” the heist is a fait accompli” and ” the distraction is no longer needed”; how will your theory explain the failure of the pandemic to end in a few days, and the failure of your theory to enable a correct prediction in that regard?

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