COVID-19 Lethality Not Much Different Than Flu, Says New Study

Possible really good news from a population screening antibody test study in Santa Clara County, California


Between 48,000 and 81,000 residents of Santa Clara County, California are likely to have already been infected by the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, suggests a new study by researchers associated with Stanford University Medical School. The researchers tested a sample of 3,330 residents of the county using blood tests to detect antibodies to determine whether or not they had been exposed to the coronavirus. If the researchers' calculations are correct, that's really good news. Why? Because that data will help public health officials to get a better handle on just how lethal the coronavirus is, and if researchers are right it's a lot less lethal than many have feared it to be.

Currently, the U.S. case fatality rate, that is, the percent of people with confirmed diagnoses of COVID-19 who die, is running at 5.2 percent. But epidemiologists have known that a significant proportion of people who are infected are going undetected by the medical system because either they don't feel sick enough to seek help or are asymptomatic. For example, recent research in Iceland suggests that about 50 percent of people infected with the virus have no symptoms.

In the new study, the researchers sought residents through Facebook to whom they could administer the antibody tests. The results were an unadjusted prevalence of coronavirus antibodies of 1.5 percent. After making various statistical and demographic adjustments, researchers calculated the likely prevalence ranged from 2.49 to 4.16 percent. At the time that these tests were administered, there were about 1,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 32* deaths from the disease in Santa Clara County. The upshot is that "these prevalence estimates represent a range between 48,000 and 81,000 people infected in Santa Clara County by early April, 50- 85-fold more than the number of confirmed cases."

Using these data, the researchers calculated the infection fatality rate, that is, the percent of people infected with the disease who die: "A hundred deaths out of 48,000-81,000 infections corresponds to an infection fatality rate of 0.12-0.2%," they report.* That's about the same infection fatality rate the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates for seasonal influenza.

The researchers conclude:

While our study was limited to Santa Clara County, it demonstrates the feasibility of seroprevalence surveys of population samples now, and in the future, to inform our understanding of this pandemic's progression, project estimates of community vulnerability, and monitor infection fatality rates in different populations over time. It is also an important tool for reducing uncertainty about the state of the epidemic, which may have important public benefits.

Assuming that their findings are happily confirmed, among the important public benefits would be a quicker end to the pandemic lockdown we are all experiencing. It's high time the CDC gets it act together and conducts similar antibody population screening to determine the prevalence of the disease across the nation.

*UPDATE: One caveat is that a rough calculation applying the Santa Clara infection fatality rate to New York City's 11,000 COVID-19 deaths would imply that essentially all of city's residents have already been infected with the coronavirus. This seems implausible.

*CORRECTION: I inadvertently used the projected number of 100 deaths from the study instead of the actual figure of 32 deaths on April 2, 2020. I regret the error.

NEXT: Antibody Tests in Colorado Highlight the Huge Gap Between Confirmed COVID-19 Cases and Total Infections

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  1. Stanford University Medical School = MAGA

    1. This is just more proof that Ivy League colleges are the best, apolitical institutions for higher learning. The federal, state, and local governments must do everything in their power to stop the spread of COVID-19 and save every life possible! #Resist45

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      2. Apolitical???? Are you not paying attention?

    2. The study is NOT saying it has the same infection rate as the seasonal flu, only that it has the same lethality. Meaning more people are going to catch it and thus more people will die of it.

      Meaning this is still a problem, and not the hoax you are wishing it to be. It’s NOT like the common flu because more people are going to catch it. We lack the herd immunity and the vaccines.

      1. You’re right.

        “Everyone back in the house!”


        1. Fist is in it for the jokes, but, you, on the other hand are one of the ones that have an agenda of really needing COVID-19 to be fake news for the glorification of your Dear Leader Trump.

          1. Suck my COVID covered balls. Oh, and I don’t shave, so if you have any loose teeth, be careful. They’ll get pulled right the fuck out.

            1. DEATH PANELS FOR CAPITALISM!!!!!!

              please refrain from using death panels in the future. You’ve exposed yourself for the ignorant person you are.

              1. Jesus, Hihn.

                How many fucking accounts can you create?

                1. Good job at willful ignorance

                  1. Nobody, but NOBODY matches you in that regard, asshole.

                    1. Ahhhhh ignorance, and the willing suspension of disbelief. It’s so obvious.

                    2. Ahhhhh ignorance, and the willing suspension of disbelief. It’s so obvious.

                      Still hiding in your house from the coof like a bitch? Pro-tip: if you tie an ordinary plastic grocery bag around your head and keep it knotted for about 30 minutes, you’ll never have to worry about catching it.

                    3. “Ahhhhh ignorance, and the willing suspension of disbelief.”

                      Combined with a willingness to be lead by those in power, and we have pretty good approximation of lefty assholes like you

      2. It says their estimates are 5% of the population as a high as infected. Closely matches the Princess Cruise lines.

        But please, keep assuming everyone is going to die.

        1. The Diamond Princess cruise line is great data but will overestimate both infection rate (we are not jammed into a boat) as well as the lethality. (The cruise passengers were much older and sicker than the general population.)

          The USS Theodore Roosevelt is also great data. The infection rate should also be higher but the lethality rate will be lower (much younger and healthier than the general population). The Navy tested the sailors and found that 14% (660) of the crew had the disease. There was one death. That is a mortality rate of 0.15%. Note that the infection rate does not include those that were infected and cleared the virus. They are starting to do antibody testing now.

          1. That mortality rate of 0.15% among mostly 20 and 30 somethings is not at all at odds with current covid19 mortality data and way different from seasonal flu.

            CDC only has flu/age data broken into 18-49 age bucket but that probably covers the overwhelming majority on a navy ship. For 2017-2018 flu season, there were 2803 flu deaths out of an estimated 14.4 million SYMPTOMATIC flu infections in that age group. Flu has roughly the same asymptomatic/symptomatic split as covid19 – which would indicate about 28.8 million actual flu infections in that age group that year. That’s a 0.01% mortality rate for that age group – in what was a very bad flu year. So in that sample, covid19 is 15x more lethal than seasonal flu at its worst.

            Granted that sample size (and fatality as outcome) is too small to be meaningful. But still – just because seasonal flu OVERALL is about a 0.1% fatality rate does not mean that is the fatality rate for all ages.

            1. Just to compare that 0.15%. The total annual death rate from ALL causes for the 25-34 age group is 0.2%.

            2. The problem with comparing this to the flu is this is not an influenza virus but more correctly compared to the virus or viruses that cause the common cold. If you base your estimates on that then yes the infection rate should be much higher than the seasonal flu, so call this the “Uncommon Cold”. This would account for the higher death for elderly and infirm and would also make the possibility of creating a successful vaccination very unlikely as to my knowledge there has never been a working vaccination for the cold as it mutates to rapidly. On question I have is how many of the fatalities are also being tested for presence of the influenza virus? Could the cases that included a Cytokine Storm be caused by the presence of the influenza virus as well?

              1. Note that mutations of SARS-CoV-2 have already been observed. Most mutations make an organism less viable. Some don’t change its behavior much, but may render a vaccine useless (common cold). Tiny chance of becoming something that kills young people in the same way it kills the old.

            3. Keep picking, JFree! Maybe one of those cherries will be true.

              1. I hope SEVO remembers this when he cries death panels.

              2. Your life must be so utterly pathetic

            4. That’s not how flu fatality rates are estimated. It’s done statistically, not by identifying definite cases, because they know they can’t identify all flu cases.

            5. Until we know the percentage of people that are asymptomatic everything is a guess. It could end up the coronavirus is not as bad as suspected. If a high enough percentage of the population has already had it and didn’t know it the rate of death could decline. With the flu very few are asymptomatic. It could be Covid 19 is only as lethal as the flu and doesn’t even make as many people sick. At this point they are only guessing. The anti-body test will give a lot of answers. When you consider the number of people that flew into the US from the Wuhan area during December and January it may be much wider spread then we are hearing. China shut down travel from the Wuhan area to other areas in China but allowed international travel. Why?

          2. Jesse and Geraje can’t wait for more studies or more data. They need to jump to conclusions that support their agenda NOW.

            1. More studies will prove that we were right and that assholes like you and JFree are panic riddled little cunts.

              1. There’s those manners, tolerance, and opene mindedness you are known for.

                1. This is not an emotional support website.

                  Millions are not going to die, and I know that fact upsets you.

                  1. Yeah, right.

                    1. Fine.

                      Millions will die.

                      Feel better, your sadistic fuck?

                    2. Yeah, right.

                    3. Uh huh. Sure.

            2. Oh look, another fuck sock.

              Yes, generally it’s a good idea to wait for more data and studies to determine the best course of action. Unless you’re a spineless authoritarian fuck who likes putting a boot on their fellow mans neck because of worst case scenario fear.

          3. Using one death to make a mortality rate of 0.15% is poor math. You can’t make any kind of reasonable statistical models with groups that have a sample size of one. At best you can say that the mortality rate is probably somewhere between 0.0% and 0.15%.

      3. It kills at the same rate as the flu, except we have partial immunity to flu and no immunity to covid-19. Yes, we should totally still panic.

        Even when you show people evidence something isn’t that big a deal, they still want to panic.

        1. We have yearly vaccines for the flu. That’s the big difference.

          1. And the vaccines worked so well that during the 2017-2018 flu season, 80,000 peopled died anyway, all because YOU didn’t social fucking distance, you worthless cock.

            1. Very disingenuous of you. We all know about the uncertain nature of the flu vaccines. Let’s cherry pick one of the worst seasons.

              1. So, what you’re saying is you don’t give a fuck about the people that died that year? Got it.

                But, this year, you care, because the big bad bug has a different name.

                Fuck off.

                1. And scumbag can blame TRUMP!

                2. Sure, that’s what I said.

                  You are crazed. Unhinged. Losing it.

                3. I don’t know what point you’re trying to make.
                  Has your doctor taken care of patients year in and year out for the past 30 years, this year and this disease doesn’t seem any different than any other year.
                  In My experience, elderly patients with comorbidities get flu (and the associated bacterial pneumonia) and die in the thousands.
                  No one felt any need for social distancing or to shut down the economy last year, five years ago, or 10 years ago.
                  I’m even willing to grant a 10 times greater mortality from this particular disease.
                  It’s still minuscule, and it’s still in my experience only female in the elderly with those with severe co morbidities

              2. Apparently you dont understand the uncertain nature as you brought them up dummy.

              3. Christ on a cracker, you REALLY need this thing to be the End of Times, don’t you?

                1. Huh?

          2. The vaccines are a country flip at being effective.

            Do any of you idiots even understand the issue? Likewise less than 40% of people get flu shots every year.

            1. Coin flip*

            2. JesseAz,

              I think you don’t understand.

              The quoted fatality rate for seasonal flu is the fatality rate for symptomatic cases, whereas the study calculated a fatality rate for all (symptomatic and asymptomatic) cases of this coronavirus. Moreover, the flu shot had about a 27% effectiveness against the dominate strain in the 61,000 death 2017-2018 flu season. 27% is far from great, but not nothing. Assuming the worst, 27% effective and 40% got the shot, about 11% of all people had protection in 2017-2018. Of course, the 40% is likely heavily concentrated in at-risk groups, so the at-risk groups would have had more protection than 11% implies. Plus, a certain percentage of the population has, if not always immunity, at least a more effective immune response to the H3N2 flu that hit in 2017-2018 because of prior exposure to that flu strain (particularly if they were exposed in childhood).

              In short, you don’t seem to understand that this novel coronavirus is more likely to infect more people (no vaccine, no prior immunity, no prior exposure for a more robust immune response) and, even taking that study as fact, the death rate for symptomatic infections (the only stat I see being thrown around for the seasonal flu) with the novel coronavirus is likely twice that for the seasonal flu (just a guess, because the study doesn’t say how many residents had symptomatic coronavirus which is what would allow apples-to-apples comparison).

              Consequently, we should expect a much higher death toll than 61,000 from the coronavirus absent extreme measures such as social distancing, etc., and maybe even then. And stats suggest we will likely see many more than 61,000 deaths from the coronavirus before this is over, or even just by August. (Also, check the all deaths stats from UK, the Netherlands, Spain, and Italy and they are all way, way higher than usual, including during the 2017-18 flu season.)

              1. The quoted fatality rate for flu is actually a statistical approximation that uses a small sample of hospitalizations, multiplies by a rate of infections:hospitalizations, and corrects for under-reporting, and does similar procedures to calculate deaths. It does not actually rely on overall symptomatic flu infections nor overall flu deaths, or even try to collect such information.

          3. We have yearly vaccines for the flu. That’s the big difference.

            Exactly. With vaccines the flu killed about 80,000

            If C19 kills that many WITHOUT vaccines then it is FAR less lethal.

            1. 80,000 in one cherry picked year where the flu vaccines weren’t as effective.

              What is wrong with you people? Why do you need to make all of this so political?

              1. So, what you’re saying is you don’t give a fuck about the people that died that year, but suddenly care now.

                Fuck off.

                1. Rightio: that’s what I was saying.

                  Unhinged much?

                  1. The veneer of your puerile concern trolling is wearing off. Now put on some pants, put down your mom’s grilled sandwiches, and take a walk outside.

                    I promise it won’t kill you.

                    1. I am your mirror.

                    2. It’s like you’re my mirror
                      My mirror staring back at me
                      I couldn’t get any bigger
                      With anyone else beside of me
                      And now it’s clear as this promise
                      That we’re making two reflections into one

                      This is how I know you’re a fucking twat.

                    3. Your shiny, shiny mirror.

                    4. Your shiny, shiny mirror.

                      Figures a liberal wouldn’t take responsibility for their actions.

                    5. What about a classical liberal?

                    6. Nope, definitely not that. Classical liberals don’t need to revolve their online identity around one shitposter.

            2. Azathoth!!,

              The estimated number of flu deaths in 2017-18 is 61,000, for starters, per the CDC.

              “If C19 kills that many WITHOUT vaccines….”

              A major assumption. Estimates are 51,000 deaths by May 1st. So far, the daily/weekly estimates have been routinely low compared to actual deaths, often spectacularly low. But even if the prediction is accurate, the virus won’t be gone by May 1st. If we open up, there is a good chance of a new wave with another 40-50k deaths. We need testing, testing, and more testing (virus and antibody) coupled with contact tracing to open up safely and with minimal spread.

          4. “We have yearly vaccines for the flu. That’s the big difference.”

            How old are you? Really, serious question.

            The flu vaccine is relatively new- as in the last 20 years. Most countries don’t even use it widely.

            We never shut down our country on this scale prior to the flu vaccine. This is crazy. Even in some of the WORST countries, you are talking 400 deaths and 999,600 living. And for this we are shutting down the entire country.

            1. What? Why are you laying the blame for the decisions to impose social distancing and stay-at-home orders at my feet? I haven’t said one word opining on those.

              We are talking about the implications of a medical study, and you are drawing up political battle lines, and then assuming who is on who is on which side of those lines. I refuse to even play that game.

              1. “What? Why are you laying the blame for the decisions to impose social distancing and stay-at-home orders at my feet? I haven’t said one word opining on those…”

                Of course you haven’t. You’ve just been puffing the reasons to do so, right?

                1. Poking at Geraje’s unhinged extremism is advocating for the extreme opposite of Gerage’s ideas?

                  1. You are my mirror, babe. Seven years of good luck.

                    1. I am all your rude online behavior, thrown back at you.

                    2. Careful, this dumb cunt rag is going to all Crow on us. Well, he’ll definitely get as far as putting the make up on, and then cry in the bathroom like a bitch with regrets over her abortion.

          5. We have yearly vaccines, and the flu is still just as dangerous as covid-19?

            Come on. Vaccines are a product of the mid-20th century, which means the flu was even more dangerous before then, and no one shut down the economy because of seasonal flu.

            1. Whether the economy should be shut down is a separate debate from whether vaccines have helped reduce the rate of spread of the flu, which isn’t even a controversial statement, except with Geraje and his buddies.

              1. Still doesn’t understand how vaccines work.

                1. Still coy about what I don’t understand about how vaccines work. Nice how the coyness helps you look smart instead of revealing that whatever you think I don’t understand is just some hairsplitting detail that doesn’t matter.

                  1. I can’t make you understand how vaccines work.

                    1. You’re a child, Geraje.

        2. Please tell all those asymptomatic carriers we have immunity, and likewise the estimated 5% infected rate.

          Here is a hint we arenr immune to any virus mutation. But we dont act like scared Karen’s everytime something mutates.

        3. It kills the same proportion of those infected as the flu. That’s not the same as killing at the same rate. The rate of transmission affects that. It will almost certainly kill more people than a typical flu season.
          But we definitely shouldn’t panic. And we sure as fuck shouldn’t be even considering such a thing as a “lockdown” being imposed on anyone who isn’t in prison. I don’t think anything justifies government doing that.

          1. Are we assuming that the percent of people who would die remains constant?

            I mean, how many 85 year olds are there? At some point, everyone that was going to die, dies. The rates should drop off at some point.

            1. Maybe, just maybe, there could be a response somewhere between the lets-lock-everything-down and Geraje’s what’s-the-problem-well-eventually-run-out-of-frail-people.

              1. Maybe there could be. But that response is a non-starter because assholes keep making projections based on numbers they are making up.

                Now we are firmly in an alternate universe where nobody can go to work unless all deaths are prevented.

                Why? Because of stupid and unrealistic projections peddled by people that have no business writing about science or epidemiology.

                1. If only unreason would see the light and hire you as their science writer.

                  1. You mean … hire **you** as their science writer? You’re my mirror, babe.

                    1. Good, I’ve got you to the point of pure derangement.

            2. Those are all good questions. At some point it will probably go as you suggest. A lot of people dying were probably going to die this year or next anyway. I’m thinking about the short term, maybe 6 month, excess death count.

      4. I’m pretty sure Fist is just in this for the chance to claim first and crack jokes, not for the glorification of Dear Leader Trump.

        1. How dare you. YOU DON’T KNOW ME.

          Although I do admit to secretly hoping the pandemic isn’t as lethal as is currently believed.

          1. Who is rooting for it to be more lethal besides Hillary?

              1. Yeah, but that’s not surprising BUCS

      5. B: Assuming a 70 percent infection rate in an immunologically naive population that would yield something like 270,000 deaths. Just a for instance calculation.

        1. Here we go again.

          Your last estimate was 325,000 deaths, no? Don’t worry, we’ll slowly get there, you delusional bastard, you.

          1. He’s slower than the IMHE model at revisions.

            1. I use ihme to demonstrate everyone’s stupidity all the time – the numbers speak for themselves, at least in California.

              1. California has about 5% of New York’s deaths per million population. About half the Covid deaths in the country are in New York and New Jersey.

          2. What do you think it will be? I think it’s likely to be well under 250,000. But who the fuck knows?
            But even if it is 270,000, that’s whole lot less than what they used to sell the tyranny and destruction and certainly tolerable when set against the destruction of rights and livelihoods of everyone else.

            1. Even with all the fudging of the numbers, I think we’ll struggle to break 60K.

              1. Which would be a middle-of-the-road “bad” flu season. But, you always have to ask, and I’m surprised more people aren’t asking, “how many of the people that died from COVID-19 would have died from flu anyway?”

                1. This is called overlap and this is completely ignored by the government and much of the scientific community (the ones who failed statistics and the importance of sample size and the difference between correlation vs causation). It’s ignored to keep the danger level high, is my guess. (sensationalism generates more revenue for the media companies & lets governments pounce on your freedoms)

                2. Look for a ‘statistical excess deaths’ for the year for covid-19. Someone should have calculated one by december. The difference between the nominal death count and the statistical excess deaths is how many of those deaths would have been expected anyway.

          3. GG: Simple math: 330 million x 70% = 231 million x 0.0012 (infection fatality rate) = 277,200 deaths. All depends on the data.

            1. We knew the infection transmission, asymptomatic and death rate rate 6 weeks ago.

              See diamond Princess cruise.

              3700 on board. 700 got infected and 12 died. 100% testing. Recirculated air supply and single source food supply.

              1. l: You do realize that’s a horrific 1.7 percent infection fatality rate, don’t you?

                1. That’s 17x worse than seasonal flu.

                  1. How many of them had underlying medical conditions?

                    1. These cruises are usually and overwhelmingly older people (and a lot of obese people in poor physical condition). Surely this counts for something, statistically.
                      I made the mistake of going on a cruise once (it’s not like what you might see in the movies).

              2. Cruise ship passengers are mostly old, but not the sickest old people. Anyone boarding a cruise ship is well enough to travel. (The data also included the crew, who would be under retirement age and healthy enough for physical work.)

                So the cruise ship data gives a rough idea of the fatality rate among relatively healthy old people – except that it also shows only 1 out of 6 being infected at all (including asymptomatic cases, which were nearly half of those tested who had COVID-19). I don’t think that infection rate means anything except that it takes more than two or three weeks for the virus to spread more widely, given reasonable precautions.

                I have also seen this data broken down by age. All the fatalities were over 60. The infection rate was highest in the older age groups. It did not give the data that I would find most important in the short term: The rate of cases requiring hospitalization and requiring intensive care, by age. _That_ is what we need to know the effect of allowing the young and healthy to mingle while trying to protect the more vulnerable – would this fill up the medical facilities with young people (nearly all of whom will recover with treatment) and leave other severe cases without the treatment they need?

                1. All relevant considerations … all ignored by Ron, every time. This is the kind of shit that happens when you have a guy with a degree in philosophy writing about “science.”

                  You get middle school level science, and palm reader quality prognostication.

                  1. The Ron in your head.

                    The real Ron always acknowledges the problems with the studies so far, and emphasizes that better information is needed. The real Ron called weeks ago for widespread antibody testing as the only way to really know what is going on.

                    1. //GG: Simple math: 330 million x 70% = 231 million x 0.0012 (infection fatality rate) = 277,200 deaths. All depends on the data//

                      Yup. This is definitely acknowledging the problems. By pulling an infection rate out of his ass and sticking with an absurd projection, Ron is being honest about his assessment.

                      Fuck off, troll.

                    2. “All depends on the data”. Right there he is clearly acknowledging that the data may be incorrect. That’s about what one would expect a science writer without an agenda to do.

                    3. He’s actually making up the data, and pulling a 70% infection rate out of his ass.

                    4. And he clearly said it was “just a for instance calculation”. Like Ron said, he has reason to doubt your reading comprehension.

                    5. //And he clearly said it was “just a for instance calculation”. //

                      In other words, he made it up, like I said from the start. What more can we expect from a philosophy major?

                2. It did not give the data that I would find most important in the short term: The rate of cases requiring hospitalization and requiring intensive care, by age. _That_ is what we need to know the effect of allowing the young and healthy to mingle while trying to protect the more vulnerable – would this fill up the medical facilities with young people (nearly all of whom will recover with treatment) and leave other severe cases without the treatment they need?

                  Yes! that is really the information we need. I haven’t seen anyone try to work out those numbers. I certainly hope someone is trying. Seems like that is the most useful and important thing we could know at this point. If there are a lot of younger people who might have died without intervention, that’s pretty scary. But I doubt that is the case.

            2. Sure, as long as you assume everybody in the country is equally susceptible.

              1. Precisely.

                At some point people have to admit that there cannot possibly be an infinite population of susceptible individuals. At some point, every person that is going to die from this, will die. There’s a cap on death, and this is also why flu deaths vary widely by year (among other factors).

            3. I know we’ve played this game before.

              If we get anywhere near 277,200 deaths (maybe provide a timeframe when all these bodies will pile up?) I will donate $1,000 the next time Reason begs the commentariat for money.

              If we do not reach that absurd number, you have to change your name to “Ron Swanson, Purveyor of Mustache Rides”


              1. Why would he accept a bet with some worthless piss-ant troll?

                1. He wouldn’t and he won’t, because he knows, as do you, that his numbers are insane and unrealistic. But, there is an interest in spreading panic, because then you get to write about the panic.

                  Fuck off.

                  1. Ron has had his job at Reason, writing about science from a libertarian perspective, for years before this thing came along. He has a pretty calm, non-panicky writing style, except in your head.

                    1. He made up a 70% infection rate.

                    2. In “just a for instance calculation”. That sure don’t sound like he’s claiming those numbers as gospel.

                    3. Nobody gives a fuck about his stupid “for instance” calculations. Everybody is going to die is another “for instance” calculation, and it doesn’t mean dick.

                      You fucking loser.

          4. So, his estimate was at the same order of magnitude, which is pretty consistent for a subject where so much is not certain. But not good enough for ol’ Geraje, no siree.

            1. At least he came down from 325,000 deaths, to 277,000 deaths. He is negotiating with himself, haggling with delusion, and relying on insane assumption while ignoring variety of relevant factors.

              Pretty consistent.

              1. You do realize that 277,000 and 325,000 are basically the same estimate, don’t you?

                Nobody is claiming precision here. This is back of the envelope, lucky if we can figure out the order of magnitude stuff.

                What is your fucking problem? Why are your turning all this into a personal vendetta?

                1. Nobody is turning anything into a personal vendetta. But when you have insane projections being thrown around, projections that actual epidemiologists aren’t even making, you have to wonder: “What the fuck is Ron smoking, and why is he lying to people?”

                  It’s dishonest fucking hackery.

                  It’s the same dishonest fucking hackery that Ferguson vomited up with his absurd “2 million will die!” projections.

                  It’s dishonest. And it leads stupid, scared people to do stupid, scared things, like cripple the economy and throw millions of Americans into abject poverty.

                  So, with all due respect, go fuck yourself and die.

                  1. You are physiologically incapable for understanding how to behave with due respect. You’ve proven that over and over again.

                    1. I am your mirror. So, really, aren’t we just splitting hairs here? We are one. You’re the faggot part, and I’m the normal part. Like a fucked up duality, mercilessly in love with itself.

                    2. Yeah, kinda.

                      But more like I’m the batman and the Joker all rolled into one, toying with a dullard character, like Thug Unloading Truck #2.

                    3. You’re more like a joke.

                    4. “You are physiologically incapable for understanding how to”


                    5. Don’t think you know what “physiological” means either, but its tough to tell because the whole sentence is just idiocy

                  2. THANK YOU ????????????????????
                    “It’s the same dishonest fucking hackery that Ferguson vomited up with his absurd “2 million will die!” projections.

                    It’s dishonest. And it leads stupid, scared people to do stupid, scared things, like cripple the economy and throw millions of Americans into abject poverty.”

              2. Seems to me all he is doing is extrapolating from the best data available. Which is still pretty bad data. I don’t see him denying that.

        2. except the infection rate is closer to 15%. Lift the lockdowns.

        3. No pandemic has ever had a 70 percent infection rate, afaik. Certainly no pandemic flu.

          Also, 270k deaths is an acceptable margin for a functional economy. But we were never going to actually see 270k deaths.

          1. Also, 270k deaths is an acceptable margin for a functional economy.
            This. Sorry, it’s a drag, but diseases kill people. If the actual disease is not going to be bad enough to tank the economy without government’s help, which seems pretty clear at this point, then there is absolutely no justification for government to impose a cure that’s worse than the disease. Even if I did think that government could ever be trusted with such powers.

        4. Serious questions:

          -How low does the infection fatality rate have to be for you to decide no panic is warranted?
          -What number of deaths would be acceptable?

          ie, what does reality have to look like to disprove your apparent hypothesis that this is worth panicking about.

          1. 0% infection, and no deaths, and a miracle cure, and complete and permanent eradication of the virus.

            This is now the standard the panic merchants are pushing, because it is impossible. Since it’s impossible, the lockdowns will continue in one form or another into perpetuity.

      6. Well when you put it that way It really makes me happy that the economy has been destroyed, millions are out of work and the government is destroying the currency. All worth it because old people who wouldn’t have lasted six months anyway can be made more miserable being “treated” by strangers instead of being allowed to die at home with people who actually give a shit about them.

      7. You won’t save all of them mate….

      8. Even the highly infectious nature or its R Naught number may come down with more research.
        If China had this since December, and if it is so infectious, then the virus in US and EU should have been there since December itself or since early January as air travel was at peak or near peak around that time. The virus had 4 months to spread since then.

      9. What those trying to downplay the mortality rate of COVID-19 conveniently pretend to forget is that many with the “seasonal flu” may also be “asymptomatic cases or undiagnosed people who recover at home” thus reducing its mortality rate – With the result that the COVID-19 mortality rate is still a lot higher than the “seasonal flu mortality rate” that these vile evil sociopaths are trying to peddle to justify their evil.

      10. One thing to note, immunity is a huge deal.
        Do you know what the Spanish Flu was? H1N1. A hundred years of exposures and flu shots turned a plague that hit some populations like the black death into just a very bad flu season.

        Conversely, Europe had been exposed to so many plagues over the years that when the first explorers arrived in America, simple exposure caused wave after wave of plague to rip through the American population with devastating mortality. In the aforementioned Spanish Flu, some isolated communities and especially Pacific Islands reached nearly 100% death toll.

      11. You have that backwards. The more people that test positive and never show symptoms, means that it has the same lethality as influenza. That means this who thing has been one massively over exaggerated reaction to the common cold. It means that we’ve destroyed thousands of small businesses and bankrupted millions of people for basically nothing. It means we’ve taken our country to the brink of collapse for something our community’s have been dying from for centuries.

    3. So perhaps they could apply the same reasoning to the Smithfield meat packing plant in South Dakota, Tyson foods chicken processing in Iowa, JBS meat packing in Colorado and JBS in Minnesota. It seems that it is very easy to spread the virus in these environments and mortality rate is higher for some reason.

    4. It’s amazing what you can make up out of a couple of numbers that constantly change, oh, a bit like a slot machine…..

      1. It’s estimation. Nobody is claiming accuracy.

        1. //Nobody is claiming accuracy.//

          Then shut the fuck up about it. If your estimates aren’t worth shit, shut the fuck up and stop estimating.

          But, no. These panic merchants want to have it both ways: “Take heed, these numbers are serious – but, remember, these numbers are not accurate and probably wrong.”

          Fuck off, scumbag.

          1. “liberateunreasonfromlc1789
            April.18.2020 at 11:33 am
            It’s estimation. Nobody is claiming accuracy”

            The moron wrote that thinking he wasn’t going to come off looking like a complete invalid

          2. Maybe you could get some kind of subscription to help you with your emotional problems.

            1. You misspelled prescription, moron.

              1. It was probably spell correction.

    5. Overall, the CDC estimates that 12,000 and 61,000 deaths annually since 2010 can be blamed on the influenza flu in the US. So how do the flu and coronavirus compare? The death rate from influenza is generally 1%, the coronavirus’ global death rate is about 6.4% globally, based on the current numbers of cases and deaths, calculate the death rate by dividing total deaths by the number of known cases. So, while the influenza flu is a dangerous seasonal scourge, new data on the COVID-19 epidemic underscore a frightening fact: COVID-19 is even deadlier. An average coronavirus patient infects two to 2 1/2 others. That makes COVID-19 more contagious than the seasonal flu. We’re talking about estimates of 61,000 deaths annually from the influenza flu, current cases and deaths of COVID-19 in the US as of 4-21-20, 794,347 cases and 43,115 deaths, that’s a death rate of 5.4%. The US reported its first death from COVID-19 Feb 29, 57 days ago.

  2. Shit, Ron.

    Good work.

    Rationality prevailed.

    Still hate me?

    1. Ronnie was wrong on framing yesterday. He knows he was. He was shitting on hydroxychlorine despite the issues pointed out in the thread. He even hinted at why the chinese study probably didnt matter in the last paragraph. He deserves to be told to fuck off.

      There was no need to denigrate hydroxychlorine to talk up restivan.

      1. Shhh!

        Don’t provoke his ire, or he’ll refer to you an article written by Sullum as a rebuttal.

      2. Nobody needed to be told to fuck off, you fuckhead.

        You and Geraje could have politely disagreed with Ron, but not sure you know how to exhibit manners. Kinda explains how you are not bothered at all by Trump’s lack of manners, though.

        1. >>how to exhibit manners … you fuckhead

          is this how?

          1. I’m your mirror. You created me. I used to be a polite poster, but I realized it was pointless.

            1. So you’re saying you’re weak and you allowed the comments of a few people on an obscure blog to dominate you and change your personality.

              1. LMAO!!

            2. So it is sarcasmic. Was guessing that.

              And you were never polite.

              1. This site gets better everyday.

        2. There are three people living rent free in your head. Stop charging your brain rent, because that junkie clearly doesn’t have the means to pay.

          1. And I’m up in your head, bunko. It’s tit for tat. You started it.

            1. Be polite.

              1. Fuck you. I tried that with you assholes.

                1. Then pull your piece, GIRL!

                  1. That’s all there is left. The Trump mean girls ruined the commentariat long ago. It’s a fait accompli.

                    1. Which is why you run around playing with the girls and have 20 different socks, you pathetic delusional bitch.

                      Go suck on a handgun.

                    2. Might as well have fun with the Trump morons hanging out in the smoldering remains of the commentariat.

                    3. Hahahahahahahahaha.


                      (And no, I’m not a fan of Trump)

        3. “Nobody needed to be told to fuck off, you fuckhead.”

          “not sure you know how to exhibit manners. ”


        4. You talking about manners is kind of funny dummy. You go out of your way to make socks about people and do nothing but provide useless ad hominem attacks.

          1. Fuck off. I’m your mirror.

            1. You’re *my* mirror. Monogamy is important to me, babe.

              1. That made no sense.

  3. see visuals of ER in NY, NJ, Chicago, New Orleans hospitals.

    1. Okay.

      Now do the other 95% (or more) of the hospitals nationwide.

      Many hospitals have entire wings closed. They’re cutting shifts. I know because a very good friend is a RN at a large hospital in a metro area of FL, and his shifts have been cut because his entire floor has been closed.

    2. Yes, let’s see those visuals, Mr Koss.

      Do you have some? any? no?

      Would you know the difference between visuals of ERs in NY during a bad flu season, or say, July 4th? Or after the latest riot?

      See, here’s the thing: Your desire to go to “visuals” is a desire to stop talking about facts, and get to emotion. Don’t let emotion run your life. That’s what cows do. They munch docile in the field all day. They fuck when it suits them. Run away from loud noises. And follow the food bell each day until that last day when the food bell goes into a warehouse.

      Don’t be a cow.

    3. “see visuals of ER in NY, NJ, Chicago, New Orleans hospitals.”

      Does picking cherries pay minimum wage?

    4. You are being sold a bill of goods and the currency is emotion and hysteria.

    5. Consider the possibility that is got so bad in a certain minority of hospitals because it spread around in those places before people realized what was going on and infected lots of sick people who are especially vulnerable.

  4. So how many on here are going to say ‘told you so ‘? If true, the economy was shut down for nothing. Real good fucking news. The health ‘experts’ and the government types that grab all the power they could should be hung from their heels Italian style. I’ve been carrying a letter saying I could go to work the last month.

    1. Whoa, whoa. Let’s not suck each other’s dicks just yet, gentlemen.

      I am sure there’s a new virus in the works somewhere and, let’s be honest, there has to be at least one half-dead geriatric out there worth saving at the price of complete economic collapse.

      1. Uh, no. Neither Biden nor Sanders.

      2. SECOND WAVE. This isnt over fellas. Can even go the MADD route and include suicides from economy as covid related.

        1. okay, you got me. I literally laughed out loud at the end.

        2. Fucking best comment ever!


        You’ve heard it here several times folks.

        1. Yes, and we’ve read your many other lies several times also.

          1. Can you tell us about those lies?

            1. 1a death panels by capitalism.

              1b you’re not a raving lunatic

              1. Just two lies off the top of my head.

                1. I guess you haven’t read many books.

                  1. I guess Young Adult novels about teenage wizards that you indulge in technically count as books, but they don’t make you well-read.

    2. It was obvious day one that the IMHE models were bullshit. JFree will never admit he is wrong though.

      1. Yep. Vastly overestimated resource usage based out of Wuhan (terrible air quality), and Italy (intermingled already-hospitalized patients with covid patients). I can understand the caution, but for the last couple weeks the data has been pretty clearly pointing in one direction.

      2. Nothing was obvious from day one. It’s not even obvious when “day one” was. The only people to whom everything was obvious without doing any studies were navel-gazing Trump worshipers.

        1. Your 1950’s lingo is on point.

          1. 1950s lingo? Huh?

        2. No. It was obvious for anyone who had worked with models and has actually had to deliver results from accredited models.

          1. When was “day one”?

            1. The day your mom should have fucking swallowed rather than dedicating seven months of her life to incubating a premature, brain damaged twat like yourself.

              1. Fucker! Leave my mom outta this!

                1. Your cunt mom brought you into this world. I call that aiding and abetting. She calls it a mistake. Now fuck off like a big boy.

        3. You misspelled skeptical misanthropes.

          Because you can absolutely be skeptical of the narrative being pushed and not be a Trump supporter.

  5. Possible really good news from a population screening antibody test study in Santa Clara County, California

    Possible really bad news we’re entering a years long depression in response to an ordinary flu.

  6. Thank god some science writer for reason last week wasnt talking up 600 deaths.

    1. He reported on what is known at the time he writes, asshole.

      1. Yup.

        It was definitely known that 2 million people were going to die, therefore, he’s excused.

      2. “He reported on what is known at the time”

        I took this great course back in High School- Theory of Knowledge. Despite the maths and history and all that nonsense, I feel like ToK was probably the most valuable class I took.

        I don’t think you know what “Knowledge” is. And that is probably what leads you to think that sentence was an acceptable response. In fact it is an indictment of just exactly what is wrong with modern discourse, government and experts in this day and age.

        But maybe, maybe, there is time for you to ruminate on just how wrong that sentence is, and just how much humility it should inject in how much you advocate for Expert-advised boots on peoples’ backs in the future.

      3. No he doesn’t. He reports what supports his assumptions dummy.

        1. No, he sometimes reports on studies that you don’t like because they contradict your pro-Trump agenda.

          1. Not being an irrational and panicked little bitch is “pro-Trump”?

            Fuck, dude.

            Forget the virus, because there’s no way you’re going to survive November.

            1. This dude is so broken, I really think he might be on the verge of suicide

              1. Who are you voting for, Nardz? Be honest: bet your guys last name starts with a T.

                1. And I bet you hate yourself

            2. I doubt I’ll vote for anyone for President because both the major candidates suck. Who you voting for, Geraje? Be honest.

              1. Trump.

                And, he’s going to win, so you can get your crying in now.

  7. Yeah, real scientific; sample only from social media to be sure you get a wide age representation, and extrapolate from 3,330 out of a population of 1,781,642 (2010 census)
    0.00186. Yeah; that has to be as accurate as the global climate warming change models.

    1. To be fair, I 100% did not die from COVID-19.

      1. me neither but it did stop me from celebrating 4:20 for a couple weeks in January

        1. Don’t you dare tell me you’re STILL smoking????

          1. well not at this moment, no

    2. To be fair, 3330 is more than enough people to get good statistical data for 1.7 million. It’s enough to do statistically relevant statements for the whole US.

      On the other hand, i do agree the methodology using social media to get participants is probably flawed, but without reading the actual study, I won’t know what else they did to correct for that bias. And until you can show a better study, the methodological minutiae are irrelevant next to it being a serological population study of any sort.

    3. Virtually everyone in Silicon Valley is on social media.

  8. Well, at least we won’t fall for this shit next time.

  9. “*UPDATE: One caveat is that a rough calculation applying the Santa Clara infection fatality rate to New York City’s 11,000 COVID-19 deaths would imply that essentially all of city’s residents have already been infected with the coronavirus. This seems implausible.”

    Read about the NYC hospital github dump. They started back classifying deaths from Jan and feb as well as not testing everyone who dies. That 20% pay bump for covid deaths on the last bill is quite the motivator.

    1. Just like that article about that girl in Wisconsin. She had a cough and a chest congestion and tested negative, and they still diagnosed her with COVID-19 because science.

      1. They were hoping she would die. When she didn’t, it fucked up the narrative so they called the cops to memory hole her.

    2. Why is it implausible that most New Yorkers are already infected? It’s likely that some asymptomatic Chinese cases reached NYC in December, a month before China or the WHO even admitted that it was spreading by contacts between humans. It was then nearly two more months before US governments at any level realized that the hospitalized patients were only a small part of the carriers, and began trying to limit contacts between the apparently unaffected general population in order to slow the spread from unknown asymptomatic carriers. That’s nearly 3 months that the disease was spreading freely among a dense population with no immunity. If this is as infectious as influenza, that’s long enough for it to reach nearly everyone.

  10. If true this is actually less dangerous than the flu. I say that because the flu, while still biased to the right in terms of mortality among age groups, it is far less biased to the right (e.g. the right on a normal distribution curve would be the eldest among us) then COVID-19.

    1. Except we have vaccines for the flu, which cut the number of infections down drastically.

      1. Chalk one up for another person that doesn’t understand how the flu vaccine works, or what it does.

        1. Vaccines are magic bullets. Influenza is a notoriously stable virus that doesn’t mutate or anything like that. It comes back in the same form every year, and it’s glorious.

        2. OK, it’s just saline water. WTF?

          1. Your brain is saline water.

          2. Curious assumption to make from what I said, but no, the flu vaccine doesn’t make sure you don’t get infected. It trains your immune system to fight a disease with no known cure.

            1. What’s perhaps the most pathetic thing is this is the amount of ignorance surrounding one of the most common vaccines in modern history. A child in elementary school should be able to tell you how this shit works.

              1. Uh, no.
                But that child in elementary school can tell you all about racism and transgenderism, and how Republicans are ruining the country.

            2. Dude, even the CDC site on the influenza vaccines speak of the vaccines as preventing infections. If you want to make some hair splitting distinction about the exact mechanism of vaccines that goes against common usage, go right ahead, but don’t act like you are some special genius.

            3. What you said above was coy. It hinted that I was wrong about something or don’t understand something about flu vaccines, but you didn’t bother to say what that supposed misunderstanding is.

              My guess what you were getting at is that the vaccine is more effective some years and less effective in others. Everyone knows that.

              Let me ask you this. Do you get a flu shot every year?

              1. Vaccines don’t prevent infection.

                That’s why you’re an idiot.

                1. They literally do the exact opposite, which makes this hilarious

                  1. This dork is literally sitting in his jizz covered hoodie (and, it’s not even his jizz) shaking like a fucking leaf as he refreshes the death count on the CDC website every five seconds.

              2. something like 65% of adults don’t get one.

      2. First vaccines only reduce, not eliminate, your chance of developing symptoms. Secondly, most vaccines are only effective, at best, 60% of the time. For herd immunity you would need 80%+ of the population to be vaccinated. We have never even come close to achieving that. Even in semi closed populations, approaching near 100% vaccinations rates, e.g. nursing homes, the mortality rate of influenza is still higher than in unvaccinated populations of younger cohorts. Vaccines are effective but their efficacy is limited. So, yes we have a vaccine for influenza, with poor compliance among the larger population and efficacy under 50%.

        1. Soldiermedic76, right on. Btw adult flu vaccine rate is 45%, worldwide 500k die from the flu. The only good thing from the corona virus awareness/situation/fuckup is that we all rediscovered water, soap and flu shots so hopefully from now on 60-80% of adults will obtain an annual flu vaccine. American flu deaths may decrease to <20k.

          1. *in the years that they correctly predict the strain. In the years they wrongly predict the strain, we will have deaths way worse than covid-19, and no one will say shit.

            1. We don’t know that yet. Only you have this absolute certainty, because it fits your political agenda. And, apparently some need to feel like you are the smartest guy in the room and not being duped by those darned liberal lies.

              1. We already had 2017-2018, and 80K dead. Nobody said shit. Nobody closed the economy.

                But you don’t give a fuck about those dead people because that’s a “cherry picked” year.

                You concern trolls should be rounded up and shot … right in your bare nads … with COVID covered spit balls.

                Fucking twat.

                1. They don’t care about the 250,000 killed annually in this country by medical mistakes, either. Or the millions worldwide who die of pneumonia every year. Or of malaria. Or in car accidents. They care about these particular deaths–many of which are deaths of people who die *with* wuflu instead of *of* it–because they’re frightened by the scary germs and can’t stand the thought that they’ve been shitting themselves over nothing.

                  1. That and they finally have their avenue to drag socialism’s rotting carcass across the finish line under the guise of being outstanding humanitarians that only care about saving lives, instead of accumulating power at all costs.

      3. A virus if it has the same CFR as flu without a vaccine is less lethal than flu then, isn’t it?

  11. HTTP: //

    1. Ugh, a bunch of links with no explanation at all. Great work.

      1. Ugh, you’re another stupid sock account who is just a piece of shit.

        1. Pretty much everyone here is an anonymous poster using an alias instead of their real name.

          1. Just you wait until this virus makes the first amendment catch up with the second amendment and we all have to go get fingerprinted and background checked and use our real names and pay for training to get a first amendment permit. Then we can post one twit a day, and one facebook per day, and one reply at Reason per day.

  12. I suppose some commentators here should apologize to those of us who have been saying this since the start of this panic. We gave them better information than any publication, for free.

    1. Now, now. I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that government has stood in the way of getting the data we need to make informed decisions while government passes out trillions of dollars to the well-connected.

      1. We’ve had the data to make informed decisions for weeks now, we just collectively ignored it because people don’t know jack shit about anything anymore.

        We’ve known since at least the cruise ship numbers that the panic was overwrought, but it was pretty clear from the get-go that the lack of ‘bring out the dead’ carts was a giveaway that mortality was not significant.

        If, for example, there was somehow an Ebola outbreak you wouldn’t doubt the numbers because you’d see people dying all around you. The lack of COVID people dropping dead in huge numbers was always the clue.

        It basically boils down to big numbers scare people because people are shitty at context.

        1. Your eyes are lying to you, peon.

    2. word. numbers don’t lie … or wish H was president

    3. JFree will still insist he was right all along. He refused to give a number for infection fatality rate which would prove him wrong. He’ll just goalpost shift to saying we should panic over the seasonal flu too.

      1. Apparently some people can’t recognize a real disaster from a fake one. JFree isn’t alone in that, but it isn’t a great look when someone gets suckered by such an obvious ploy.

        What should be of concern to thinking people is how easy it was to provoke such an absurd response from lawmakers and how little push back there was. And how the scientific community went full-blown bonkers with zero data.

        The stage has been set for the next ‘disaster’, to be sure.

        1. And how the medical community–people who should actually know something about medical crises, disease, and risk–pussied out and provided zero pushback on something they should have known was horseshit. Every doctor’s office that’s called me to cancel an appointment “until further notice” has said the same thing: “We know it’s bullshit but we have to go along with it.” Because…you’ll lose your license for practicing fucking medicine? It turns out that there are two kinds of doctors: The ones too stupid to think for themselves who believe this is a real thing, and the ones who know better but are too pussy to say anything publicly.

      2. Jfree is even now spouting chinese propaganda and saying how effective they were for simply stopping counting.

    4. Why? If you were saying this from the start, you weren’t basing it on any evidence.

      1. Skepticism should be the default reaction to insane claims. Going all in, immediately, without any reliable information, is a reaction that only idiots like you nurture.

      2. So, just so I have it straight, if I claim it’s no big deal at the start without evidence that’s bad. But if I claim it is a big deal from the start without evidence that’s good.

        Do I have that straight? Because that road would appear to run in both directions.

        One could make the observation that massive economic harm without evidence is pretty bad. If it’s a good thing, because precautionary principle or something, then you’d have to say we should shut down everything each flu season. After all, it’s a different flu than last time and people will certainly die from it.

        Is this what is meant by ‘new normal’? Months long shutdowns each year where touching is illegal?

        Sure, I see that flying with Joe Q. Public.

        1. “So, just so I have it straight, if I claim it’s no big deal at the start without evidence that’s bad. But if I claim it is a big deal from the start without evidence that’s good.”

          You bet! That way, if you’re a tin-pot-dictator-wannabe with some claims to power, you can cripple the economy for the foreseeable future ‘if it saves just one life!’

        2. Right, because I said that. Right.

          Fuck off. It is impossible to have a conversation with you Trump fellators. You will always exclude the middle. You will always conflate things said by different people.

          1. Someone who calls anyone who disagrees with them a Trump fellator accusing others of being difficult to have a conversation with… Do you realize the lack of self awareness it takes to make that kind of comment?

            1. The Trump mean girls started it. I am their mirror. I am echoing back all the behaviors they have engaged in.

              1. You are an idiot with the emotional fortitude of a pregnant teenager.

                Go fucking cry some more.

              2. This is why leftists can’t meme, and suck at parody.
                They take themselves so seriously, and live in such a bubble, that they have no understanding of their target.
                The end product isn’t so much a reflection of others as it is an inadvertent revelation of themselves

              3. Mommy Tommy hit me first…

        3. Yes, the road runs both ways. Exactly.

          To jump to conclusions without evidence from “the start” (whenever that was) is bad science. It’s just navel gazing or political agenda driven.

      3. We were basing it on historic pandemics and early data sets like the princess Cruise dummy.

  13. This is my shocked face.

  14. Soldiermedic76, right on. Btw adult flu vaccine rate is 45%, worldwide 500k die from the flu. The only good thing from the corona virus awareness/situation/fuckup is that we all rediscovered water, soap and flu shots so hopefully from now on 60-80% of adults will obtain an annual flu vaccine. American flu deaths may decrease to <20k.

  15. Someone needs to learn how to calculate mortality rates, you only include cases that have come to conclusion, which is the entire reason the site they pulled the info from includes a concluded case with mortality rate. It’s a lot higher than 5%, but it’s also likely super inaccurate, but so is the entire study they are citing so hardly surprising.

  16. “COVID-19 Lethality Not Much Different Than Flu, Says New Study”

    Well, in that case, I guess it’s a good thing that Newsom and the rest of the tin-pot-dictator-wannabes tanked the economy!

  17. Like many of us predicted here. No big surprise. Just more government overreaction. Next time, no dice.

    1. Next time, new virus. The horizon for the unknown is endless.

    2. The media needs to put in woodchippers for inciting hysteria. This way they never try this again,

  18. Do 20% (or more!) of people who are hospitalized with “just the flu bro” die? Because that’s what it is running with Covid.

    1. How many of those who get hospitalized with the flu have underlying conditions? For COVID deaths, it’s running about 98%, and anywhere from 25-50% have been nursing home residents.

      1. Well, given that a large number of Americans have underlying conditions (obesity, diabetes, etc.), off the top of my head I’d say it’s pretty likely that a large number of those hospitalized with the flu would also have underlying conditions.

    2. For reference the flu has a fatality rate of just below 10% for this hospitalised.

      1. Those*

      2. So what we’ve got is a disease that’s roughly twice as deadly as flu. That’s bad, but not the orders of magnitude we were told to fear.

  19. How can you resolve these Stanford estimates of death rate which is 20 times lower than the death rate on Diamond Princess of 2%? A population in which everyone was tested. Dr. Fauci’s estimate of 1% is still probably the most accurate guess.

    1. Checked the USS Roosevelt lately? That’s a crew of 4,800, and in the 24 days since they discovered the first three cases, there have been a little over 600 sailors that have tested positive, and about half have been asymptomatic. Five have had to go to the hospital, and one has died. These guys are all in close proximity to each other, and it’s a damn aircraft carrier so it’s not like they can sanitize the entire ship 24/7 just to keep people from getting sick.

      This is about as close to a medium-term petri dish as we’re going to see, for a virus that the doomers said would quickly rip through entire populations, kill millions, and lead to people dying in the hospital hallways. Instead, in a closed environment with relatively limited healthcare resources, they’ve had an infection rate of 12%, half of whom have been asymptomatic, and a hospitalization rate of 0.1%.

      1. A Navy crew has been selected for good health and is mostly young. Most people enter military service either after high school or after college (ages 18-23), and either get out after a 4 to 6 year enlistment, or stay in for mandatory retirement starting at 20 years (age ~ 38-43). A few qualify to re-enlist for up to 30 years of service. Hardly anyone over 55 is in the service. So the carrier statistics just confirm what we already knew: healthy young people will have the lowest infection, hospitalization, and death rates. The death rate is not zero – but I doubt it will exceed the death rate from accidents when the crew is on shore leave.

        In contrast, a cruise ship passenger list is mostly elderly. The crew is younger and healthier, but not so much as the Navy.

        1. A Navy crew has been selected for good health and is mostly young.

          Sure, you know that. I know that. But I keep getting told by Very Smart People that anyone can die from this, it’s unavoidable that we’re all going to get infected, and that there’s a high probability that we’re going to end up in the ICU when it does.

          Something like this, and especially the homeless shelter in Chelsea that was reported on recently, are anecdotal data sets which show the virus isn’t nearly as potent as people are claiming.

          Hell, even in NYC, which certainly has the motivation to goose their numbers as much as possible, have only found something like 40 people had no underlying conditions when they died. Something like 5800 had at least one, and the rest are pending, but that non-condition figure has barely moved despite drama queens like Stephen Lathrop claiming that NYC is like the Battle of Gettysburg every week.

    2. S: Good point.

    3. It’s a cruise ship, which isn’t representative of the general population. Tends to be full of retirees who are going to be more at risk. If you use the cruise ship numbers you need to adjust the fatality rate lower to compensate.

      1. Passengers on certain cruise ship voyages might be aged ≥65 years, which places them at greater risk for severe consequences of SARS-CoV-2 infection (4).

      2. Thats the other point. The death rate of the Diamond Princess was likely higher than the USA would be. The media and state governors took it the other direction.

  20. CNN, of course, was johnny-on-the-spot to claim that the tests couldn’t be trusted because they identified other coronaviruses in the bloodstream, not the current BatAIDS. I suppose in previous times, it might have occurred to these galaxy-brains to actually contact the doctors who did the study and ask about it, but they’re so desperate to nuke the economy that anything that might ruin the narrative gets poo-poo’ed.

  21. The near nationwide shelter in place order likely ensured widespread in house infection. And Americans didn’t start to wear masks in earnest (the nation almost did never did that prior to covid19, whereas it’s common way of life in Asia) until last week or so.

    A crushing hospitalization rate should have happened by now. For the most part, it hasn’t. There are no hospitals approaching war zones anywhere near my house. Some hospitals are starting to send out excess ventilators.

    What we’re seeing is buffoonish politicians enforce a policy based on “if we can just save one life” criteria without opposition. They finally get to play out their fantasy and they’re squealing like kids at a candy store.

    The depressing la mayor Garcetti repeats this line at his press announcement- “I won’t reopen our economy one day later than we have to, but also I won’t open it one day earlier. We have to listen to science, not politics”

    Apparently science says it’s ok for people to go to Walmart under certain conditions but no one can visit a dentist or a barber. Union guys parade around the streets but a dad will get arrested for playing with his kids at an empty park. Why can a woman get an abortion but I can’t buy seeds in some states?

    Minorities, immigrants and small businesses can’t magically build an economy when capital, investments and disposable income vanishes. LA is a poor house underneath the roof of Hollywood and glitzy 1% enterprise. But the left wing clowns who run big states think the economy can be preserved until a glorious multi ethnic coalition will save us on the strength of their diversity and hard work stupid white people wont do.

    1. “Why can a woman get an abortion but I can’t buy seeds in some states?”

      Maybe they’ll let you buy them if you promise to immediately destroy them

      1. Because they have to let women get abortions so we have a good case for telling the politicians who say fascism is OK “to save one life” that they are full of shit hypocrites.

  22. HUGE FAIL!

    In doing comparisons, it’s important to make sure that the measurements are being done on equivalent populations.

    Stanford’s study tested ASYMPTOMATIC or subclinical (?) people for ANTIBODIES…

    Unless the flu statistics are likewise based on serological studies of the asymptomatic or subclinical population looking for antibodies…

    …then comparison is invalid.

    This is an IMPORTANT distinction, and should at the very least be addressed in an article by a science reporter for a site as prestigious as Reason.

    I personally do not know how flu statistics are collected, and maybe they ARE based on serological testing of a similar population. I don’t know.

    But neither does the reporter have enough sense to address this issue.

    And THIS is how idiotic ideas and comments get spread.

    1. L: Interesting observation but is there evidence that there is a substantial number of asymptomatic flu infections that serological testing would uncover? Seriously, send along any studies that suggest that that might be the case.

    2. L: Also check out the CDC flu link in the article for more details.

  23. This is interesting but hardly changes the calculus on COVID. Lethality is only part of the problem with COVID.

    1. Yeah, there’s the predictions of mass hospital resource shortages where even social distancing was included in the calculus, and then magically ramped back by up to 84% in some states when the predictions fell flat on their face.

      1. Red, there are several aspects of this virus you’re not addressing. I am not slamming you, just providing some additional context.

        1. We don’t know actual KungFlu (btw, what a label; the one who thought of that was ingenious) contagiousness yet.
        2. We don’t know KungFlu actual incidence yet.
        3. We do know that when KungFlu victims are hospitalized, the use of ventilators is unusually high. Way more than influenza, or even pneumonia for that matter. That has a disproportionate impact to our healthcare system (uses a lot of people at a tremendous economic cost).
        4. We do know that among the symptomatic people who went for a test and were subsequently hospitalized that roughly 30% require ICU/critical care. That is a very high rate, Red. I base this ~30% on current data (4/18/2020) from the People’s Republic of NJ, health department dashboard.
        5. When in your lifetime did you ever hear of a crash program to develop antibody testing like we have now? I never have.
        6. When in your lifetime have you ever seen a virus sweep worldwide in less than 90 days (2/1/2020 – 4/30/2020)? I never have.
        7. We do not know the long-term effects of KungFlu on victims.

        There is so much more that we do not know about KungFlu than what we actually do know. I would submit to you, respectfully, that the steps taken by states and the federal government are a reasonable response to this emergency. I don’t think there is a clear ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ answer here; and besides, we won’t know that for many years anyway. The country ‘shut down’ (I use this term loosely, it is not really accurate) around 3/15/2020. By 5/01/2020, we will have re-opened most of the country, with NY and NJ and a few other areas being notable exceptions.

        WRT projections…with so many variables and so many unknowns, what exactly are you looking for in terms of precision for predictive modeling? Predictive modeling is a guide, an indicator; it is not gospel.

        1. They steps taken were an unprecedented and irrational response.
          “We don’t know, but it might be worse than the flu” isn’t a good justification for destroying the lives of tens of millions of people and seizing totalitarian control over the populace

          1. Ah…but we do know some things already, Nardz. See 3,4 above. Think about the implications of #3 and #4 if we had done nothing to mitigate.

        2. 2/ But the few serological studies that have been done suggest incidence is way higher than the official confirmed cases. Including the one in this article.

          4/Symptomatic people *who were given tests*, is not the same as ‘who wanted a test’. Hospitals are only testing severe symptoms in most of the country, especially the hardest hit parts. That biases those hospitalization statistics quite a bit.

          Not in my lifetime, but
          5/ ’57 flu vaccine was developed in 4 months. It was pretty early on in vaccine history, they didn’t even have gene sequencing, yet it still only took 4 months. We knew about covid-19 in december, and had it sequenced by early january, yet no vaccine to speak of.

          6/ Why are you starting from Feb 1st? The US already had cases in January and *confirmed* community transmission by february 1st. Start from December, when China admitted to the first cases.

          ’57 flu took 5 months to go worldwide (from Singapore).

          ’68 flu started in July and was worldwide by September, which is just 2 months. It took another 3-4 months to burn out.

          Your lack of knowledge isn’t an indication that this is unusual, but that you lack sufficient scope of knowledge to be relevant. If the ’68 pandemic flu wasn’t in your lifetime, then are there any pandemics you’re actually comparing this to? It’s like the people who build houses on floodplains, and then get shocked when their house gets flooded, because 20- and 50- year floods happen infrequently enough people remember them as unique events rather than relatively common occurrences over long timescales. When your memory only effectively goes back 5 years (as it seems to for most people on most topics), you can’t use your memory as a relevant guide, because you’ve memory holed the relevant information.

          7/ Lack of knowledge is no excuse to panic. We had pretty good information early on that Covid-19 wasn’t that dangerous to most people. Quarantine the sick and elderly, otherwise let the economy function. Stop the panicking like we’re all going to die – we aren’t, at least not from covid-19. Accept that there’ll be some reasonably rare medical consequences. Yes, it sucks if you’re part of the statistics, but we can’t wreck everyone’s lives for a handful of people.

          1. Oh yeah, the 1889 flu pandemic went worldwide once it hit St. Petersburg in only 4 months, with 1889 technology. (The first case was 6 months earlier, but in Bukhara, with 1889 travel frequency and technology, so pretty isolated. But when it got to St. Petersburg it quickly went global).

            1. So of all the pandemics you mentioned, only the 68′ flu was faster than the KungFlu. Okaaaaaay. I think my points stand. We do not know the contagiousness, or incidence – yet. Nor do we have any idea of long term impact. Nor does a treatment exist currently. Nor is there a vaccine. What we do know is when you’re hospitalized, it gets expensive.

              Condescension does not become you, btw.

              1. Come now, transportation is much faster today than it was in the past. That the 1889 flu was basically as fast in a much less interconnected world should be astonishing to you. And if you corrected for interconnectedness and ease of transportation, the ’57 flu was probably faster as well.

                It’s not condescension to say people have functionally short memories. That’s proven fact. Especially since the timescales for things like ‘waiting time till next global pandemic’ or ‘next big earthquake in Los Angeles’ are such that most people will only ever experience a handful of them. You can’t depend on your memory to inform you what normal is, because memory is fickle and short.

  24. A question that’s been rattling around in my head: These studies are treating everyone who tests positive for antibodies as past infections — or at least, this is how the media is reporting the findings — yet anyone who has taken immunology knows that antibodies can be produced after any sufficient exposure to an antigen, regardless of whether or results in what we would clinically define as an infection. Wouldn’t it be more accurate to describe these as exposure rates rather than infection rates, since we don’t know what proportion of these exposures actually progressed to infection. For that matter, given what a high proportion of exposed individuals remain asymptomatic, I wonder if we’re going to see the beginning of a widespread colonization, particularly among less vulnerable populations. It’s conceivable that carrying SARS-CoV-2 around in your tissues could become as commonplace and harmless as gonococcus in your nares or S. epidermidis on your skin.

    1. Excellent points!

    2. I think they’re looking for a particular threshold of antibodies, not just any level of antibodies. That said, these are still just *estimates* of infection rate. But they’re certainly better than the confirmed cases, since hospitals have mostly been testing only those with severe symptoms.

  25. Anyone who dies for any reason with COVID is listed as a COVID death. You can’t trust the numbers.

  26. So, I see this headline–

    “COVID-19 Lethality Not Much Different Than Flu, Says New Study”

    but don’t see the accompanying scraping apologies to those who were saying this from the first.

    1. What an odd thing to say. You are owed an apology, why?

      Because Ron Bailey is a governor that ordered businesses closed? Because Ron Bailey voted for a two-trillion dollar stimulus package. All he has done is science reporting.

      1. “What an odd thing to say. You are owed an apology, why?”

        What an idiotic question.
        Because, when someone has mislead you, you are due an apology from that person.
        Even a caveman knows that, but lefties are a bit on the slow side.

        1. Ronald Bailey misled you?

      2. Even with all the data presently available, Bailey is on record as still predicting **at least** a quarter million deaths based on unsupported assumptions that even the most panicked epidemiologists aren’t making.

        Bailey’s reporting is always marred by political signaling and a helping of irrational panic.

        Why? Because without panic, there’s nothing for him to write about other than fake articles plugging his own books.

        1. If you are referring to his numbers above, all he said is that if you do the math based on this study, that’s what you get. That’s not a prediction on his part. He hasn’t claimed the study is valid.

          1. I missed the part where his study provided for a 70% infection rate.

      3. Owed?

        Who said anything about ‘owed’?

        Decent people admit that they were wrong and apologize to those they hurled invective at. Ron wasn’t just wrong, he was –still is– nasty about it.

        1. *Ron* was nasty? Check out how Geraje and JesseAz have spoken to him in the past few days.

          1. Ron said we have “reading incomprehension” problems because we called out his bullshit, and then we became intolerable “trolls” because we refused to endorse his unsupported conclusions.

            Ron is not a scientist, and he’s not particularly good at reporting on science. He is good at fomenting panic and plugging his shitty books. But, you know, we’re the assholes.

          2. Ron is supporting a stance that leaves people dead. While lamenting that people are dying.

            Jesse and Geraje are supporting the idea that it’s worth taking a chance on the drug combo.

            Can you see how someone could describe that as ‘nasty’?

            1. Jesse and Geraje are taking out their pro-Trump political agenda on a science writer because he (gasp) reported on breaking science news.

              Geraje acted like an asshole toward Ron BEFORE Ron started questioning his reading comprehension.

              Geraje started acting like an asshole toward others from his appearance here. Same with Jesse.

              1. Who are you trying to convince? Ron? I’m sure he’ll send you a postcard one day, thanking you for the support.

                Delusional twat.

                1. Well, I am probably higher on the waiting list for Ron’s Christmas cards, but I’m not trying to convince anyone of anything.

                  You are, kind of. If one looks past all the tantrums.

                  1. Ron is a married man. Trolling for gay sex with Reason editors is unbecoming.

  27. So, the CDC just stopped reporting cases by date of estimated symptom onset…. considering their data was seems to have been showing the US had already peaked around 3/26, that’s a little suspicious… why not confirm the decline?

    (And that’s symptom onset, which means the peak is for infections that started at least 5 days earlier, ie, the first week all the lockdowns were being declared).

    1. It’s more than a little suspicious.

      1. Oh, sure. It’s the deep state, again. Conspiracy. Wooooo!

        1. It’s balls deep.

          You suck at trolling.

    2. Probably trying to give the governors cover for keeping their lockdowns in place through May.

      Guys like Polis are likely going to be letting up by the end of the month irrespective of what the numbers say, because their local governments are getting jack-hammered by the lack of sales and income tax revenue. Idiots like Whitmer and Northam will likely keep everything going well into June out of sheer spite, but we’ll see. Northam can afford to hold off for a bit, because his primary constituency in NoVa are federal employees who don’t have to worry about missing paychecks.

  28. I think you may want to recheck your math here …
    *UPDATE: One caveat is that a rough calculation applying the Santa Clara infection fatality rate to New York City’s 11,000 COVID-19 deaths would imply that essentially all of city’s residents have already been infected with the coronavirus. This seems implausible.
    The problem here is that Santa Clara County has a population of 1,928,000 and the article clearly states: “After making various statistical and demographic adjustments, researchers calculated the likely prevalence ranged from 2.49 to 4.16 percent.”

    That is how you get to the 48k to 81k possibly infected.

    New York City has a population of about 18,804,000. Apply the above percentages and you get about 468k to 782k potentially infected, which given their population density (27,000 p/sq mi) is much more plausible. And JFTR, the population density of Santa Clara County is about 6,327 p/sq mi.

    1. Only 8 million in NYC buddy, 19 million in the whole state. I’m not going to attempt the math on how the writer came to his conclusions just figured I’d give you a heads up

    2. You may want to recheck your reading of Bailey’s article here. Bailey said that the estimated “infection fatality rate” for Santa Clara County, if applied to NYC, would imply that almost all of the city’s residents were already infected. But you do your “debunking” of his point using the study’s estimated infection rate for Santa Clara County.

      The infection rate and the infection fatality rate are not the same thing. The former is the percentage of the population who are infected. The latter is the percentage of those infected who become fatalities.

      The Santa Clara County study’s lower bound for the estimated infection fatality rate is 0.12%. In other words, one death for about 830 infections. If you assume the same ratio for NYC, with over 11,000 deaths (I have seen some recent reports that put the figure at over 13,000 now), 830 infections for every death would imply over 9 million infected in a city of 8.4 million people.

  29. This is misleading. From the viewpoint of any individual, one suspects that he is ill only when he experiences symptoms. This is also true for the flu. If an individual experienced flu-like symptoms, prior to the existence of Covid-19, that person could expect to have a 0.1% chance of dying from the flu. Now, perhaps everyone in the whole country also had the flu and most of them did not show symptoms, but the 0.1% chance of death for flu is commonly understood to apply to those who are symptomatic. The same would apply to Covid-19. What matters to me is that a large number of people are getting this in my community and if I become symptomatic and test positive then I have about a 1.5% chance of dying. This is 15 times the chance of dying that I would have had if I were, instead, symptomatic from the common flu. Perhaps everyone in New York City actually is infected by Covid-19. Then the death rate, figured from using that 100% prevalence, would be much lower than the death rate figured on the basis of symptomatic individuals, but does anyone believe that this would magically change the fact that the intensive care units are overwhelmed with cases and almost all of the healthcare workers in the big city New York hospitals report that they are overwhelmed with their workloads? Are they imagining this? Are they unnecessarily admitting well patients to the intensive care units and pretending that these people are sick. Did someone invent the 17,000 deaths in New York City. Not likely.

    1. “What matters to me is that a large number of people are getting this in my community and if I become symptomatic and test positive then I have about a 1.5% chance of dying.”

      Then you should probably wash your hands frequently, wear a mask, and stay home avoiding human contact.
      We wish you luck with that.
      Now that you know what to do, mind your own business

    2. Except they aren’t testing everyone with symptoms of covid-19, only people with severe symptoms. But even ignoring people who want to get tested and can’t, it’s not just asymptomatic cases that don’t even try to get diagnosed. Mild Covid-19 is just another cold.

      For the flu, the CDC uses mathematical models to estimate total infections, and only samples a small number of hospitals for input data. It doesn’t try to literally count all flu patients. They basically have an historically validated number for flu infections per hospitalization, so they get the number of hospitalizations from a sample of hospitals, multiply by that number to get the number of flu infections, and then multiply by the ratio of population between the whole US and their sample hospitals. Similarly, they have statistical methods for counting deaths from flu, because it’s underreported on actual death certificates.

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  31. The World Health Organization, now exposed as totally corrupt and counterproductive by its failure to prevent spread of coronavirus and its subservience to China, is hosting this international online concert to raise money for itself and above all to create a positive PR propoganda cloud of blue smoke to hide behind. Please tweet the following article (or similar expose) to their hashtag #togetherathome, and if you are feeling really zany, to Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, and anyne else using the hashtag. Thank you.

    1. Totally corrupt? Exaggerate much?

  32. It’s all collated here. This is not spam.

  33. Dipshits that say the virus was discovered not developed probably still believe in Santa Claus.

    Since the early 2000’s the leading Chinese virologist t Doctor Shi Zhengli has been engineering Coronaviruses working in North Carolina with millions in US grants.

    In 2014 the Obama administration initiated a temporary moratorium on “gain of function” engineering which enhances virus communicability and lethality.

    Shi moves back to Wuhan China to continue the engineering with the US grants.

    In 2015 their careless behaviour released a SARS variant killing several people.

    In 2017 the Trump administration rescinded the moratorium, which enabled new grants for gain of function engineering.

    In 2018 US embassy inspectors were allowed to review the work in China’s only p4 virus lab which was located in Wuhan. They reported back that it was not secure and a SARS like global pandemic was likely to originate there.

    The US government funded the development of COVID19, sent it to China and ignored their own warnings.

    Covid19 behaves like nothing we’ve seen before.

    Apparently they were trying to make a Coronavirus infect people with an HIV vaccine.

    1. This will be a very costly venture when the US and China are held legally liable for the global losses to life and economies.

    1. Thanks. Good review.

      Numbers do not add up here.

  34. The white paper is actually a test of a test. The assay is distributed by Premier Biotech and manufactured by Hangzhou Biotest Biotech, Co., Ltd.

    It is a rapid IgG/IgM test for SARS Covid-19 antibody response. Easy to use. The authors did a small test of the assay with comparison to ELISA results through the Stamford lab. Then they did the population study. Note that this is one geographic location and they recruited through Facebook. They did try and adjust for that but the limitations are significant.

    Would not make more of it other than a simple test like this could be very helpful if such a test could be available.

    Here is the website from Premier about it.

  35. Too many people are rushing to embrace the conclusions of this not-yet-peer-reviewed paper, without stopping to at least look at contrary views. Just over the weekend, several serious critiques of the Santa Clara study have been written up.

    Andrew Gelman of Columbia has done a detailed critique from an empirical social science perspective at his blog:

    People should also look at a number of Twitter threads responding to the paper, such as those from Natalie Dean of Florida (@nataliexdean), Trevor Bedford of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, or A. Marm Kilpatrick of UC-Santa Cruz (@DiseaseEcology).

    1. “… this not-yet-peer-reviewed paper…”

      IOW like pretty much everything else we have about this situation.

      Peer review takes months.

      1. Yeah but this has clear problems that people have been able to quickly point out even without full access to the data.

  36. This is some irresponsible use of healdlines.

    While yes, the amount of people infected with this will have the a typical fatality rate in line with the flu, a HELL OF A LOT MORE people will be infected. Hence the overall death rate of the population will be worse.

    An example of this is NY. In a typical yeah 4,500 people die of the Flu. So far in the past 6 weeks or so they have had 13,000+ deaths. Obviously it doesn’t take a brilliant mathematician to see that Covid-19 will cause substantially more deaths than the Flu, while still having an infected death rate similar to a flu.

    1. “…a HELL OF A LOT MORE people will be infected.”

      On what basis do you make this assertion?

  37. “*UPDATE: One caveat is that a rough calculation applying the Santa Clara infection fatality rate to New York City’s 11,000 COVID-19 deaths would imply that essentially all of city’s residents have already been infected with the coronavirus. This seems implausible.”

    Santa Clara’s infection mortality rate could be much lower than the study suggests OR the reported number of COID-19 deaths in NYC could be overstated. There have been suggestions that the the number of deaths from COVID-19 is in fact overrated because of the CDC guidelines on determining cause of death.

    It is hard to know what to believe anymore……

  38. Then who the heck is dying by the tens of thousands in NYC? I looked at Reuters infected and deaths by states..NY, NJ and NE seem to be the large drivers. Why? Other cities are dense. Are the deaths “tested” positive for Covid or is it just the assumption of the attending doc? Or something else. And what about the horror stories abound the last month…have the diagnosed cases all been tested? I thought we had few tests and it took days? So much doesn’t make any sense and the media seems to be cheerleading for Trump’s demise and not asking some tough questions.

    This was never the bubonic plague that killed 30-40% of anyone who got it…but it is being advertised as such. Vulnerable folks should have hunkered down, people sick should have stayed home and really sick folks go to quarantined wards..the rest of us perhaps cold have gone about our business..I guess we will see. You get the feeling the media doesn’t want this to end..they love stories of pain and suffering even when they are causing it.

  39. Ronald, I see you picked up on the fact the numbers from this study make no sense when applied to NYC. (And anybody who thinks the problem in NYC is an overcount of COVID deaths, is simply dreaming. Results elsewhere demonstrate that when we go back look at excess deaths vs. prior year averages, we should fully expect to find that the actual attributable deaths are much higher.)

    But there are other sanity checks that this study’s data doesn’t pass. In Korea, the CFR stands at 2.12%. Korea has been best in class in testing (and managing the disease generally). So for this study’s stimates to be accurate, we’d need to believe that Korea, despite it’s effective testing, has 10-18x as many cases as they realize. This too seems implausible.

    Furthermore, this test has a false positive rate of at least 0.5% from prior testing, and could be as high as 1.8%. Here we have them reporting an actual positive rate of 1.5%. Do you see the problem? Are we seriously to believe that we can tell anything at all from these results? The prevalence of antibodies in the community being tested is simply too low for this test to produce reliable data.

    What’s more, there are also questions about selection biases in this study.

    In short, you really need much more of a jaundiced eye in evaluating the results of this study.

    1. Other randomized antibody studies are now coming back with almost exactly the same results.

  40. “UPDATE: One caveat is that a rough calculation applying the Santa Clara infection fatality rate to New York City’s 11,000 COVID-19 deaths would imply that essentially all of city’s residents have already been infected with the coronavirus. This seems implausible.”

    This means any lethality rate calculated from the study is bullshit.

    Don’t go prancing around licking doorknobs in celebration.

    The idea of social distancing is not to eliminate all deaths or all eventual deaths. It’s just to slow down the rate so that the hospitals can handle it. A lot of cancer patients (including young ones) are going to die because their operations are being delayed because the hospitals are full of COVID-19 patients.

    “It’s just like the flu” if the flu was much more contagious and there was no vaccine for the flu.

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  42. ‘One caveat is that a rough calculation applying the Santa Clara infection fatality rate to New York City’s 11,000 COVID-19 deaths would imply that essentially all of city’s residents have already been infected with the coronavirus. This seems implausible.’

    Yes it is implausible, because you have to apply the concept of viral load. CoVid-19 is not a bacteria, it is a virus and therefore how sick you get (and therefore the death rate) will depend upon how much virus you encounter. I suspect the subway users in New York City were exposed to much higher levels of the virus and therefore will have a higher death rate.

  43. And the vaccines worked so well that during the 2017-2018 flu season, 80,000 people died anyway, all because YOU didn’t social fucking distance, your worthless cock.


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