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December 22, 2020 at 15:44 #63780SA
This of course makes sense, the more people are infected, the more chance of a mutation. You could argue that other factors may also come to play as the US for example has a higher infection and death rates per population but no mutations yet to this scale. It could of course also be a function of population density and infection and death rate, but I am not sure whether those would not also be a function of the total population.
The other extremely worrying development which seems to have been contained for the moment, is the outbreak in mink in Denmark as an escape to another host indicates also mutations that allow this to happen, and that such adaptations can also occur to pets and other farmed animals and wildlife.
The original ‘herd immunity’ model that was briefly flirted with and criticized has I think remained the essential policy of this government and at no stage was there a policy of total suppression, merely flattening the curve, and even that was done incompletely and not for a sufficiently long period.December 23, 2020 at 03:01 #63790Clark
Each person is at least slightly different, providing slightly different opportunities and challenges to the virus. Miserly and secretive to the people, the government gives information to the enemy as fast as health service capacity will permit.December 23, 2020 at 13:28 #63798Clark
Nature, 25 June 2020. Note the front cover. Ostensibly about a breakthrough in treatment for Parkinson’s disease, but an interesting choice of double entendre to blazon across the front cover in the middle of this pandemic.December 23, 2020 at 13:42 #63799Clark
ET – “The original ‘herd immunity’ model that was briefly flirted with and criticized has I think remained the essential policy of this government…”
– “When COVID-19 is no longer being transmitted within a community, schools can begin to reopen safely. It is not safe to reopen schools for in-person schooling while community transmission is still present.”
– “See a spreadsheet which details more than 400 articles about Covid-19-related school closures, cases, and deaths in the K-12 school system in the US (as of 14 Aug. 2020).”/em>December 23, 2020 at 17:24 #63808N_
Regarding the “discovery” of the “second new variant” of SARS… From British regime media: “(Health secretary) Mr Hancock said: ‘We are incredibly grateful to the South African government for the rigour of their science and the openness and the transparency with which they have rightly acted as we did when we discovered a new variant here.’ ”
He’s basically saying “Well done, darkies! And maybe a few voortrekkers too. You’re almost as good as us Brits. Keep it up. There’ll probably be one of you lot playing in an orchestra or working at a stock exchange in a few years’ time. For the time being, have a biscuit. You’ve earned it.”
What a patronising imperialist c***!
Who the f*** is a fly-by-night politician idiot in Britain, even if he did go to private school, Oxford, and Cambridge, to congratulate another country on its “rigour”, “openness”, and “transparency”, and the “rightness” of its actions?December 26, 2020 at 00:57 #63842ET
Have a happy Christmas and a greta new year all.December 26, 2020 at 11:27 #63849Clark
Thanks ET; Merry Christmas to you too, and to everyone.December 26, 2020 at 13:37 #63850SA
Seasonal greetings everyone.December 27, 2020 at 14:59 #63864nevermind
[ Mod: transferred from the “Fake Political and Media Class” BTL comment thread … ]
slightly O/T but topical due to the ongoing pandemic.
Switzerland declared a retrospective quarantine for all UK and SA tourists visiting ski resorts. Out of 420 identified UK residents, some 50 left instantly and by the weekend only 12 of the 470 left were still present, you could call them real skiers, but the vast majority of these quick fix skiing tourist, no doubt not packet tour aspirants, but fairly well off, had no compulsion to commit themselves to a quarantine.
These are the people who originally spread the virus around the world, with international air travel, and they are the one’s least complying.
That is one reason why bungling Johnson will never get a grip on this health crisis. Its in German, sorry. Any queries, just ask.December 27, 2020 at 16:48 #63866Clark
Hello Nevermind, good to see you. Yes, even back in March it was obviously the Frequent Fliers who were spreading it around the world. A host of celebrities, politicians and sport stars were reported to have it weeks before I heard any personal reports, and even then it was the Murrays :/
Those tourists presumably thought they might be infected, or why scarper so quick? I can’t think of anywhere better to be quarantined than Switzerland.December 28, 2020 at 11:47 #63875Dave
Viruses are always mutating, its how they survive, and nothing to be alarmed about, as the mutations may be more infectious but less serious health wise. Rather than try and suppress a virus with counter-productive restrictions, for political reasons, promote as opposed supress the cures.December 28, 2020 at 13:42 #63877ET
“Viruses are always mutating, its how they survive, and nothing to be alarmed about, as the mutations may be more infectious but less serious health wise.”
Or mutations could lead to more virulence and less infectious, or more virulent AND more infectious or less virulent AND less infectious. It’s random, we can’t know until it occurs. Each infected human is an experimental petri dish, the more infections the more likely a mutation.
What would they be? There are very few effective anti viral treatments for any virus. There are treatments to ameliorate symptoms and supportive measures but no real cures in the same way as antibiotics kill bacteria.December 28, 2020 at 14:52 #63879Dave
The reason we can assume viruses are mostly not deadly, except for the vulnerable ill, is because humanity is still here to tell the tale. 1000s of viruses survive, throughout the ages, because killing the host is self-defeating, so they don’t, they need us to live so they can too.
The “cures”! Humanity survives because of our immune systems and so a cure is to find ways to strengthen our immune systems, with healthy eating, exercise and socialising in the sunshine to grow Vitamin D, all things we are being ordered not to do. The government restrictions are the opposite to what’s needed. And therapeutics help us recover from illness, whereas vaccines rest on an assumption that all the rest can be avoided with a preventative magic jab.
But surely almost anything can count as an 95% effective vaccine when the mortality rate for a particular virus is less than 0.07%, but for whatever reason the government proscribes expensive medication rather than cheap and generic alternatives and good health care.December 28, 2020 at 16:15 #63883SA
Dave you make a lot of assumptions. Let me start with the most glaringly obvious one:
“But surely almost anything can count as an 95% effective vaccine when the mortality rate for a particular virus is less than 0.07%,…”
I have not seen this claim substantiated anywhere. The mortality of this virus is between 1.5, and 0.5% never seen such a low figure. It is also very variable and age and country dependent. In any case it is not just about mortality is it? Shall we ignore the 5% of those who get it who have severe illness and are admitted to intensive care, or the 20% who get milder symptoms and who are either debilitated or self isolate to prevent more people being infected. The high infectivity of the virus is what the vaccine is measured by not the mortality rate.
“…..ways to strengthen our immune systems, with healthy eating, exercise and socialising in the sunshine to grow Vitamin D,”
For an effect on good diet on the immune system you have to really be malnourished. The average citizen of the west will barely suffer such a degree of malnutrition as would affect their anti-viral immunity. The major effects of exercise and a healthy balanced diet are on such things as lifestyle illnesses including obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure and heart disease. Socialising is good for mental health but not during a highly contagious pandemic.
“…..whereas vaccines rest on an assumption that all the rest can be avoided with a preventative magic jab.”
It is not a magic jab it is a very carefully manufactured vaccine which produces antibodies against the virus and thereby reduces the number of individuals susceptible to the virus. The good diet and the vaccine are additive and the one does not exclude the other.
I agree that a virus mutation can mean that the virus is adapting to its new host in which case it may well cause it to become less deadly in time. To me at the moment the main significance of the mutation is that it is a measure of failure of the government policy of lockdown, i.e. that the lockdown is either not being observed or is poorly implemented. After all, the measures were designed against a highly contagious agent, and if it is more contagious it means that the measures were not severe enough.December 28, 2020 at 17:44 #63893Clark
– “Rather than try and suppress a virus…”
Oh go isolate and infect yourself with smallpox. Yeah, disease is great because it’s “natural”; just let all the diseases run riot.
Rational commenters, please note that Dave is a raving conspiracy theorist; any rationality you attempt to contribute will be entirely wasted.December 28, 2020 at 17:45 #63894Clark
Bring Back Bubonic is what I say. The world has never been the same. And let’s have leprosy, and polio. C’mon, more disease please!December 28, 2020 at 18:35 #63895SA
And in case Dave has not noticed:
https://www.bing.com/news/search?q=london+hospitals&FORM=HDRSC6December 28, 2020 at 19:02 #63898ET
“Bring Back Bubonic…………”
Occasional outbreaks do still occur……fortunately relatively easily treated with antibiotics.
“any rationality you attempt to contribute……….”
I didn’t reply because of this but here goes.
Unless one is deficient in a particular vitamin, electrolyte or trace element because of dietary deficiency or something interfering with it’s method of absorption (Vit B12) then extra supplementation has NEVER been shown to improve health outcomes in a double blind controlled trial. You will just excrete what isn’t required to top up bodily stores. If your diet is reasonable that should not happen. Vit D deficiency is endemic in north west Europe because of the lack of winter sun but even so most make up for that with diet. If you want to waste your money on ridiculously priced supplements, go right ahead whilst remembering that the supplement/health food industry is almost as bad as big pharma. See Ben Goldacre’s “Bad Science” and “Bad Pharma.”
All that can be said is that eating a balanced diet, moderate amounts of meat/fish and plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits, moderate alcohol intake and not smoking MAY extend your lifespan. No guarantees.
“The reason we can assume viruses are mostly not deadly, except for the vulnerable ill……….”
Every now and then something like 1918 flu comes along and takes out the healthy younger population. It was the second year of that pandemic that killed younger healthy people. We don’t know what is going to happen with Sars-Cov-2 yet so it makes sense to avoid getting it.
I wonder would people be so willing to discount vaccines if we were in the same conditions as 100 years ago. Polio, TB, bacterial infections and so on. The impact of infectious disease escapes notice but it is still a fair chunk of deaths globally.
https://ourworldindata.org/causes-of-deathDecember 28, 2020 at 19:06 #63899ET
“Bad Science” the 2 was meant to be quotation marks. [ Mod: Fixed. ] He did do a follow up book called “I Think You’ll Find It’s a Bit More Complicated Than That” which further illustrates the bullshit employed by the dietary supplement/health food/super food industry indulges in.December 28, 2020 at 19:08 #63900Clark
Dave, I know it’s wasted on you but as the discussion appears in public…
– “when the mortality rate for a particular virus is less than 0.07%…”
That’s false, but if it were true, 0.07% of the UK’s 67 million is nearly 47,000 people. But around two thirds of those needing critical care survive, so without “unnatural”, hospital care covid-19’s death rate would be about three times higher.
You seem to have misunderstood the problem. Without social restraint, covid-19 spreads very fast, far faster than hospitals can treat and discharge those needing care. With the hospitals stuffed full, what happens to the majority of those who get ill but can’t get into hospital? They suffocate slowly, over the course of days.
Fine, let’m; they were old and ill anyway. That don’t make me a fascist or nothin’.December 28, 2020 at 20:33 #63904Clark
– “…the supplement/health food industry is almost as bad as big pharma”
…and are wholly-owned subsidiaries of big pharma in many cases. After all, they’re both pill merchants.December 29, 2020 at 00:28 #63912Clark
Chinese citizen journalist Zhang Zhan jailed for reporting on early COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan
“A former lawyer, Ms. Zhang arrived in Wuhan on February 1 from her home in Shanghai. Her short video clips uploaded to YouTube consist of interviews with residents, commentary and footage of a crematorium, train stations, hospitals and the Wuhan Institute of Virology.” — Reuters
“A former lawyer, Zhang Zhan had been detained for seven months before she was sentenced on Monday by the Shanghai Pudong People’s Court. She was accused of “picking quarrels and provoking trouble,” a vaguely-defined charge that #Beijing often uses to silence critics.”
“At least three other citizen journalists, Chen Qiushi, Fang Bin and Li Zehua, have disappeared from public view after documenting the situation in Wuhan.”
– – – – – – – –
In China, the authorities tried to pretend there was no epidemic. Here, conspiracy theorists luxuriate in their freedom to pretend that there’s no pandemic, and actually believe that they’re providing an heroic service to the poor, deluded sheeple.December 29, 2020 at 03:42 #63914SA
The ‘COVID deniers’ are fixated on mortality rates without properly understanding the disease and ignoring all the morbidity and sequelae. Sadly there are websites that continue to regurgitate the sort of nonsense that Dave does here.
Interestingly when Steph refereed to the supposed unreliability of the PCR and other doubts, she quoted the WHO warning which later I found was the subject of a whole article on that website.
By the way, what happened to Duck?December 29, 2020 at 06:07 #63915Dave
Any mortality figure would be higher without treatment but the less than 0.07% figure is based on 50,000 deaths in a population of 68m. Less than 0.07% because the official figures conflate died FROM and died WITH including those dying for whatever reason within 28 days of testing Positive (includes False Positives).
This means anything could be taken and described as a vaccine, such as sherbet lemons, because how would you know otherwise when the risk is so small and even smaller for those under 70? Therefore to roll out an expensive vaccine, medication with side effects, for an entire population is profitably excessive for some, but potentially deadly for the elderly, who have weakened immune systems, due to the side effects.
There are 1000s of experts who challenge the best medical expert advice money can buy, which the official conspiracy theorists and apologists on this site dismiss, with unscientific claims about suppressing rather than building immunity to a seasonal ‘flu’ virus.December 29, 2020 at 10:23 #63918SA
“Any mortality figure would be higher without treatment but the less than 0.07% figure is based on 50,000 deaths in a population of 68m. Less than 0.07% because the official figures conflate died FROM and died WITH including those dying for whatever reason within 28 days of testing Positive (includes False Positives).”
Dave are you being serious or just disingenuous? Your figures are totally fallacious. The population of the UK is just under 68 million and increases at an annual rate of 0.53% per year. So the population increase is about 1000 per day. The number of people testing positive for SARS Cov-2 currently is 30,000+ per day. Therefore you cannot really take 68 million as a denominator for the mortality rate. That is just so obvious it does not really need explaining further.
The argument about dying with or because of covid-19 has also been discussed in this thread and you can go back and look. Also the number of false positive is as near zero as you can get, and this has also been argued above.
Now beyond that you have lost me. If we are to have a rational discussion then I will engage with you, but if we are into the fantasy world of likening vaccines to sherbet, then I concede defeat!December 29, 2020 at 12:52 #63920Clark
Why stop at 68 million? Using Dave’s method, we can reduce the “mortality rate” to a lot less than 0.07%. The total covid-19 deaths reported by China (population 1.44 billion) is 4,634, giving a “mortality rate” of 0.00032%, a two-hundredth of Dave’s inflated figure. Come to that, there must have been a time when only one person in the whole world (population 7.6 billion) had died from covid-19, yielding a “mortality rate” of 0.000000013%; Dave’s has exaggerated the figure a whopping five million times!
Dave, you shilling for the PTB? Forget it, I ain’t no sheeple.December 29, 2020 at 13:14 #63922Clark
Dave, please explain to me. If PCR produces mostly false positives, how does the number of positive tests predict the death rate two to three weeks later? You can see this effect in countless graphs, all linked from this page.
Maybe no one warned you, but something like thermodynamics applies to thinking. If we consider some construction eg. a pocket watch or a brick wall, random changes to it are far more likely to degrade its function than to enhance it. Basically, there’s only one way for it to be a watch or a wall, and an infinite number of ways it can cease to be one. Same goes for thinking; there’s really only one way of being right, and infinite ways to be wrong.
Now you can surf around the Internet collecting snippets that look like pocket watch parts – this seems like a face, these are clearly cogs, this must be the balance spring – and you might even be able to assemble them into something resembling a pocket watch, but will it match reality ie. tell the right time?December 29, 2020 at 14:44 #63924ET
In fairness to Dave, deaths/population is a figure used usually multiplied by a factor to get deaths/1000/100000/1M population but lets us use it in it’s proper context by comparing the same figure for all deaths or more correctly the crude death rate.
Using figures from the PHE dashboard “all deaths data” page (bottom right) they give deaths with COVID-19 on the death certificate by area which added gives us 79349 total deaths thus defined for the whole UK. Deaths/population x1000 gives 1.16 covid deaths/1000 population.
Using ONS all deaths figures from 2019, there were 530,841 deaths registered in England and Wales, using nrscotland, 58.108 in Scotland in 2019 and 15,758 in N.Ireland from NISRA giving a total 604,707 UK deaths. Using the same calculation the crude death rate is 8.89/1000 population.(I used 68M as the population denominator in both instances).
We now have two comparable figures. Covid at 1.16/1000 population and crude death rate at 8.89/1000 population. It doesn’t appear nearly so trivial now when used in context and compared to the crude death rate/1000 population.
I had to use 2019 figures for crude death rate obviously because all 2020 data isn’t available yet.December 29, 2020 at 15:13 #63926ET
The deaths from covid are defined as”total number of deaths since the start of the pandemic of people whose death certificate mentioned COVID-19 as one of the causes.” There is no reference to positive tests. See the earlier discussion in this thread about death certification.
The UK population in 2019 was not 68M but 66.4M. Using the correct figure would give a slightly higher crude death rate at approx 9.1 deaths/1000 population. I think the point still stands however.December 29, 2020 at 15:53 #63927Dave
If you have a national response to a problem you need to calculate nationally. If you want to be more specific, more specific figures and solutions are appropriate.
The majority of covid-related cases are in hospitals and care homes and mostly defined by age. Therefore improving hospitals and care homes to mitigate this virus, and all other causes of death, makes medical sense, but ordering all the healthy population to self-isolate makes no medical or economic sense and so is vastly disproportionate to the problem, hence why there is a political rather than medical agenda behind the unprecedented restrictions.
But as usual the fake-left are unmasked by their support for austerity on steroids for the many on behalf of the 1%.December 29, 2020 at 17:10 #63937SA
I am not sure you understand what a contagious disease is. Also you seem to ignore that many more people including young ones get very ill and require hospital facilities that cannot just be expanded overnight and are now at capacity. To give a sort of rather imperfect analogy, if you have leaking mains you direct your energy into stopping the leak not to building larger soakaways.December 29, 2020 at 17:17 #63938Charlie
“Dave, please explain to me. If PCR produces mostly false positives, how does the number of positive tests predict the death rate two to three weeks later? You can see this effect in countless graphs”
That is completely false, you would hope it were the case but it isn’t
Just another indicator of fake statsDecember 29, 2020 at 18:46 #63942ET
The graphs you posted to prove your argument Charlie actually disprove your argument. Increase in infection rate clearly leads a little later to increased deaths. It is especially evident in the late Sept to Dec parts of the graphs.
There was much less capacity for testing in March but a number of studies in different countries showed that approx 1 in 10 cases (give or take) were identified then so increase the infection rates by 10. Also testing didn’t really get going until after the deaths began so you are not going to see the lag so much. There are many other country’s graphs you could also look at. Also, the treatments have improved so there are fewer deaths overall compared to April. If you look at the latter 4 months of the year you can see the rising infections corresponding with rising deaths a little later, a dip in infection rates corresponding with a dip in deaths followed by a rise in both again. I cannot understand how anyone can look at those graphs and not come to the same conclusion.
An article here gives an idea of the timeline.December 29, 2020 at 19:07 #63944SA
The false positive rate of PCR is near zero. There is no data I have seen to show otherwise and if Charlie or Dave or Duck have data to show otherwise please show us.December 29, 2020 at 20:10 #63950Clark
London hospitals now setting up triage tents in their car parks.December 29, 2020 at 20:25 #63951Dave
All respiratory viruses must be infectious to varying degrees otherwise they wouldn’t survive, but that doesn’t make them deadly, particularly the coronavirus, which is mostly milder than the ‘flu’, and calling it a novel (new) virus and a novel-novel (mutation) virus is alarmism because viruses are mutating all the time.
The question remains can our immune systems deal with them and they mostly do. Therapeutics and good health help ill people recover, but vaccines are of little practical benefit when the mortality rate is so low, and counter-productive due to over-use and side-effects.
However a genuine, rather than expensive snake-oil, vaccine can be a benefit for different conditions if used sensibly on vulnerable groups, but again giving elderly people already on various medication and health problems more medication has its own dangers.
And the the PCR False Positives, which the government deliberately includes in the published figures, is easily web-searched
.December 29, 2020 at 20:39 #63953Dave
@ Clark “London hospitals now setting up triage tents in their car parks”.
Yes we’re getting a re-run of the first charade, like the mostly empty Nightingale hospitals and mortuary tents, and now mass-testing as the window dressing for a contrived crisis, making out the window dressing is evidence rather than a smokescreen for a heist.
The ruling class are having to double-down because Trump is fighting back against ‘pandemic’ assisted election fraud, and so the communist ban on political gatherings aka social distancing rules can be extended, but it looks like Trump will get his 2nd term.December 29, 2020 at 21:32 #63958Clark
Neither “fake stats” nor PCR false positives could overwhelm hospitals.
The day before yesterday Cardiff NHS had to ask on Twitter for medical students to come and work at the hospitals. Yesterday Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Woolwich declared a “major incident” due to covid, oxygen supply insufficient, and King’s College Hospital, South London put out a message to all staff, “major incident escalation: all staff asked to return to work if possible”. Official figures now show more people in hospital than in the March-April peak. The number in hospital in London rose from around 4000 on the 24th to 5000 on the 28th. One month ago NHS London expected to need 3000 beds for covid in worst case projection by end of year. They were at 5000 yesterday with three days to go.
Dr Samantha Batt-Rawden @sbattrawden – yesterday
– “When staff have spoken up on Twitter they have been told this is all a hoax. It’s not. Try holding an iPad for a patient to say goodbye to their family. Or having to ventilate a colleague. This is real & happening right now. Staff are broken and need support now more than ever.
– Hello, I run a network for 46k doctors. Things are really bad on the frontline and NHS doctors need help getting the word out. If you support the NHS would you tweet this to your followers so I can help get out what is happening on the ground?”
– – – – – – – –
I personally have a friend in hospital since last night. She had been feeling increasingly poorly over the last few days. The NHS 111 telephone service had been overwhelmed, and didn’t manage to provide any advice until yesterday afternoon. The advice, when it came, was to go to hospital. There, low oxygen saturation in her bloodstream was measured; she was taken in and put on oxygen support, so I hope very much that supply meets demand. This afternoon she and her husband were awaiting the results of last night’s PCR swab test.
As you might guess, I’m pretty pissed off with conspiracy theorists right now. Go look at some hospitals’, doctors’ and nurses’ accounts on Twitter and Facebook; “you have the Internet now; do your own research” as you are apt to tell others. You think these are all fake accounts? Fake stats and fake tests do not make people go to hospital, but thousands more people are going to hospital. Fake stats and fake tests cannot put huge peaks in the “deaths from all causes” graphs, but those graphs have huge peaks in them. It is time to say “sorry, we were wrong, we’ll think again.”December 29, 2020 at 21:48 #63959Clark
The Nightingale hospitals were a vanity project from the start; a show, a riposte to China for building a new hospital in under a fortnight. China, with a population of 1.4 billion, could call a few staff from all over that massive country to run that new hospital, whereas the UK could not. Hospitals can be built in weeks but doctors and nurses need to be trained which takes years.
China also imposed travel restrictions, thereby containing their epidemic, leaving medical staff free to attend the major outbreaks. The UK didn’t even close its borders during the stay-at-home restrictions in Spring. That’s the UK Tory party Brexit faction, elected on a “control our borders” mandate, didn’t close the borders. We already knew because South Korea, who did massive testing and tracing from the start, told the world in mid March that there were more cases coming in through the airports than there was domestic transmission.December 29, 2020 at 21:57 #63960Clark
– “Yes we’re getting a re-run of the first charade”
That’s right Dave; doctors and nurses are the bad guys, and Trump, who excluded the poor from healthcare, is Our Saviour. Trump, FFS! A property developer and ex game show host, with connections to the New York mob! This is whose word you take over thousands of doctors and nurses who, you claim, set up fake triage tents in hospital car parks as a favour to the “ruling class” – the same ruling class that has degraded their pay, conditions and facilities for decades!
Steph, won’t you please leap in and congratulate Dave on his “very good points”?
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