Coronavirus

Should Legal Restrictions Get Credit for the Recent Decline in New COVID-19 Cases?

Despite taking a much more restrictive approach, California saw a bigger surge than Texas, and the drop began around the same time in both states.

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Newly identified COVID-19 cases in the United States have fallen sharply since mid-January, a drop that may reflect the waning impact of infections tied to winter holiday gatherings. During the same period, daily deaths leveled off and dipped slightly, and they should decline in February given the recent downward trend in daily new cases.

According to Worldometer's numbers, the nationwide seven-day average of new cases yesterday was about 163,000, down 36 percent from the average on January 11 but still more than four times the level recorded in mid-September. The seven-day average of daily deaths was about 3,300, down a bit from the peak of more than 3,400 on January 16 and nearly five times the average in mid-October.

Researchers at Harvard University's T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that "deaths often occur 2–8 weeks after the onset of COVID-19 symptoms." That suggests the recent decline in daily new cases will be reflected in fewer daily deaths during the next month.

COVID-19 symptoms that might prompt someone to seek testing appear two to 14 days after infection, which makes it plausible that the surge between late December and mid-January was tied to Christmas and New Year's Eve celebrations. The decline since then suggests that people from different households are getting together less now, as you would expect. The absence of holidays might not be the only factor, since it seems plausible that Americans are exercising greater caution in response to the winter surge.

Did government-imposed restrictions help curb virus transmission? A comparison of California, where Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered a new lockdown on December 3, and Texas, where Gov. Greg Abbott has not imposed any new restrictions, does not provide much evidence that such measures make an important difference.

In California, the seven-day average of daily new cases has fallen by nearly half since January 13. That is twice as big as the drop Texas has seen since its peak on January 15. But California also saw a much bigger increase in newly identified cases in December, notwithstanding Newsom's sweeping restrictions. The seven-day average in California tripled between December 1 and December 22. In Texas during the same period, the average rose by about 65 percent.

Both states recorded a dip in late December, which probably was mostly due to holiday-related reporting delays. Then daily cases moved up again in both states. In California, the mid-January peak was about the same as the number on December 22. In Texas, it was 28 percent higher, meaning that daily new cases doubled between December 1 and January 15, which is still substantially smaller than the increase in California.

This week, Newsom lifted the new restrictions he imposed on December 3, which closed many businesses, required Californians to stay home except for "essential" purposes, prohibited outdoor dining at restaurants, and banned inter-household gatherings in regions where ICU capacity fell below 15 percent. Newsom reverted to his previous rules, which limit social and economic activity based on county-level COVID-19 data. Those rules are still highly restrictive by Texas standards.

"California is slowly starting to emerge from the most dangerous surge of this pandemic yet, which is the light at the end of the tunnel we've been hoping for," California Health and Human Services Secretary Mark Ghaly said on Monday. "Californians heard the urgent message to stay home when possible, and our surge after the December holidays did not overwhelm the health care system to the degree we had feared."

California Department of Public Health Director Tomás Aragón offered a similar spin: "Californians heard the urgent message to stay home as much as possible and accepted that challenge to slow the surge and save lives. Together, we changed our activities, knowing our short-term sacrifices would lead to longer-term gains. COVID-19 is still here and still deadly, so our work is not over, but it's important to recognize our collective actions saved lives and we are turning a critical corner."

The slippery language used by Ghaly and Aragón conflates exhortation with coercion and voluntary precautions with legal decrees. But there is little reason to think that Newsom's edicts—especially his bans on low-risk activities such as outdoor dining—did much to slow the surge or turn the corner. Despite taking a much stricter approach than Texas, California saw a bigger surge in cases, and that surge continued for weeks after Newsom's order. The subsequent decline began around the same time in both states.

"I'm not sure we know what we're doing," San Mateo County Health Officer Scott Morrow said a few days after Newsom's lockdown. That still seems like a pretty accurate assessment.

NEXT: Report: Health and Human Services Misused Millions Meant for Vaccine Research

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  1. No, it’s fucking seasonal. If the legal restrictions do anything they just prolong the problem. The states that have lifted their restrictions are doing better than those with harsh restrictions. The restrictions are reactive at best and political ass-covering.

    1. At the end of the day whether it worked or not is playing their game and I refuse to do it. I did it in the beginning with charts and graphs and none of it mattered then and it won’t matter now.

      1. I see what you mean. My immediate reaction was that no, this is not something government can be allowed to do under any circumstances. And you are right, the argument shouldn’t be about if it “works” in some sense. The extension of government power and the damage to people’s lives is not worth it, even if it all “works”.
        But when so many people are apparently not in agreement about the proper role of government, I feel I need to at least try to show them how even on that premise it doesn’t make any damn sense. Maybe it’s pointless, but I have to at least try to get people to see what’s actually going on.

        1. “Maybe it’s pointless, but I have to at least try to get people to see what’s actually going on.”

          There you go.
          Welcome to the party.

          1. Hey, man, I get it. I don’t want to stop you trying to tell people what’s going on as you see it. I just don’t happen to completely agree with you on every point and am perhaps slightly more optimistic.

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          2. You’re not looking to convince Jay Inslee, you’re looking to convince enough people that Jay Inslee is forced to stop.

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    3. Or it could be due to PCR testing adjustment per the WHO. You know… to get rid of all those false positives.

      1. That is not what the CDC memo said despite what Gateway wrote. It encouraged labs to process the tests as directed by the manufacturer.

        You will see lower specificity as more tests are to be given to the general population rather than only symptomatic individuals. The tests remain highly accurate.

        Let us say the test produces 2 false positives per 1000 people. If you administer the test to people with high pretest probability you still get a high true positive rate.

        If you administer the test to people with low pretest probability you get a lower percent of true positives vs false positives. Either way it is still 2/1000 tests.

        What is actually true is that the false negative rate in real life is higher than the false positive rate. This is likely due to processing errors such as taking an inadequate sample or other sample handling errors.

        It has nothing to do with the recommended number of cycles, generally 20-40. The optimum number depending on the specific polymerase, and other reagents in the ‘soup’. This is not new technology.

        Btw this test is actually a varient RT-PCR . Since PCR is a DNA test the viral RNA needs to be converted to DNA using a reverse transcriptase.

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  2. Herd immunity is the reason why covid cases have declined sharply in hundreds of counties and more than a dozen states.

    While 25 million Americans have tested positive for covid so far, studies have found 3 – 10 times more Americans were infected with covid than have tested positive. With increased testing, that ratio now appears 3 – 7 times (depending upon location).

    Herd immunity occurs after two thirds of people (in families, workplaces, communities, counties and/or states) have been infected or vaccinated, and the risk of infection declines by half when/after half of people have been infected or vaccinated.

    Despite NO news stories, the herd immunity process has been occurring in thousands of communities, hundreds of counties, and more than a dozen states, led by the Dakotas. By the time 10% of Americans receive covid vaccines, herd immunity will have already protected most Americans from covid.

    But Big Pharma, Democrats and lamestream media propagandists continue to deceive Americans to believe that herd immunity can/will only be attained via mass vaccinations.

    The Biden administration is now planning to vaccinate all Americans, including the 100 – 150 million Americans who are already immune (due to a previous covid infection), and the pro Biden news media has been promoting this potentially disastrous mass immunization plan ever since the election.

    1. 138 counties in the US (31 more than last week) have now surpassed a 13% covid rate (i.e. those who have tested positive).
      If 3 – 5 times more Americans have been infected with covid (than tested positive), herd immunity is now occurring in hundreds of counties and a more than a dozen states.

      Crowley, CO – 30.1%
      Chattahoochee, GA – 23.9%
      Dewey, SD – 23.4%
      Lincoln, AR – 22.6%
      Norton, KS – 21.8%
      Bent, CO – 21.8%
      Lake, TN – 21.4%
      Bon Homme, SD – 21.2%
      Trousdale, TN – 21.0%
      Buffalo, SD – 20.4%
      Buena Vista, IA – 20.0%
      Ellsworth, KS – 18.6%
      Alfalfa, OK – 18.6%
      Eddy, ND – 18.6%
      Jackson, AR – 18.1%
      Dakota, NE – 18.1%
      Childress, TX – 17.8%
      Lee, AR – 17.7%
      Bethel, AK – 17.6%
      Lafayette, FL – 17.4%
      Lassen, CA – 17.2%
      Hale, TX – 17.1%
      Nobles, MN – 17.1%
      Forest, PA – 17.1%
      Foster, ND – 16.9%
      Seward, KS – 16.9%
      Big Horn, MT – 16.9%
      Menominee, WI – 16.9%
      Pawnee, KS – 16.7%
      Logan, CO – 16.6%
      Sheridan, KS – 16.5%
      Wayne, TN – 16.3%
      Yuma, AZ – 16.3%
      Walsh, ND – 16.2%
      Ford, KS – 16.0%
      Finney, KS – 16.0%
      Texas, OK – 16.0%
      Lee, KY – 16.0%
      Aurora, SD – 15.9%
      Lincoln, CO – 15.8%
      Santa Cruz, AZ – 15.8%
      McKinley, NM – 15.7%
      Potter, SD – 15.5%
      Morton, ND – 15.5%
      Stutsman, ND – 15.4%
      Lyman, SD – 15.4%
      Nelson, ND – 15.2%
      East Carroll, LA – 15.2%
      Lubbock, TX – 15.1%
      Maverick, TX – 15.0%
      Burleigh, ND – 14.9%
      Chicot, AR – 14.8%
      Benson, ND – 14.7%
      Dickey, ND – 14.7%
      Sioux, ND – 14.7%
      Madison, ID – 14.7%
      Cass, IL – 14.7%
      Davison, SD – 14.6%
      Culberson, TX – 14.5%
      Woodward, OK – 14.4%
      Rolette, ND – 14.4%
      Faulk, SD – 14.2%
      Oglala Lakota, SD – 14.2%
      Imperial, CA – 14.2%
      Haywood, TN – 14.2%
      Toole, MT – 14.2%
      East Feliciana, LA – 14.2%
      Whitfield, GA – 14.1%
      Plymouth, IA – 14.1%
      Crocket, TX – 14.1%
      Douglas, SD – 14.0%
      Colfax, NE – 14.0%
      Lawrence, IL – 14.0%
      Nemaha, KS – 13.9%
      Minnehaha, SD – 13.9%
      Yell, AR – 13.9%
      Lamb, TX – 13.9%
      Scurry, TX – 13.9%
      Webb, TX – 13.9%
      Val Verde, TX – 13.8%
      Griggs, ND – 13.8%
      Beadle, SD – 13.8%
      Gove, KS – 13.8%
      Kearny, KS – 13.8%
      Wilbarger, TX – 13.8%
      Clinton, IL – 13.8%
      Republic, KS – 13.7%
      Crawford, IA – 13.7%
      Stark, ND – 13.6%
      Fayette, IL – 13.6%
      Golden Valley, ND – 13.6%
      Sevier, AR – 13.6%
      Pickett, TN – 13.6%
      Okfuskee, OK – 13.6%
      Grand Forks, ND – 13.6%
      Ramsey, ND – 13.6%
      Potter, TX – 13.6%
      Towner, ND – 13.5%
      Obion, TN – 13.5%
      Richmond, VA – 13.5%
      Henry, IA – 13.5%
      Madison, LA – 13.5%
      Rush, KS – 13.4%
      Jones, TX – 13.4%
      Kings, CA – 13.4%
      Dodge, WI – 13.4%
      Morgan, KY – 13.3%
      Sanborn, SD – 13.3%
      Utah, UT – 13.3%
      Coddington, SD – 13.3%
      Jones, IA – 13.3%
      Sioux, IA – 13.2%
      Wright, IA – 13.2%
      Hemphill, TX – 13.2%
      El Paso, TX – 13.2%
      Roosevelt, MT – 13.2%
      Perry, IL – 13.2%
      Deaf Smith, TX – 13.1%
      Tom Green, TX – 13.1%
      Dyer, TN – 13.1%
      Miami Dade, FL – 13.1%
      Webster, IA – 13.1%
      Dubois, IN – 13.1%
      Ward, ND – 13.1%
      Kusilvak, AK – 13.1%
      Jerauld, SD – 13.0%
      Pershing, NV – 13.0%
      Teton, WY – 13.0%
      Charles Mix, SD – 13.0%
      Brule, SD – 13.0%
      Thomas, KS – 13.0%
      Putnam, TN – 13.0%
      Moore, TN – 13.0%
      Saline, NE – 13.0%
      Dawson, TX – 13.0%
      Kandiyohi, MN – 13.0%

      1. 20 states with the highest covid case rate (i.e. positive tests) are
        https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/09/01/816707182/map-tracking-the-spread-of-the-coronavirus-in-the-u-s#curves

        ND – 12.8%
        SD – 12.2%
        RI – 10.7%
        UT – 10.7%
        TN – 10.5%
        AZ – 10.2%
        WI – 10.1%
        IA – 10.1%
        NE – 9.8%
        OK – 9.6%
        AR – 9.6%
        KS – 9.4%
        IN – 9.2%
        AL – 9.2%
        MS – 9.1%
        ID – 9.1%
        NV – 8.9%
        WY – 8.9%
        IL – 8.8%
        MT – 8.7%

        So far, 8.0% of Americans have tested positive for covid.

        1. To see how herd immunity actually occurs, simple go to
          https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/data/new-cases-50-states
          and look at the huge decline in new covid cases in many states during the past 6 – 10 weeks.

          States with the most significant declines in new covid cases
          (that appear to be achieving herd immunity) are:
          ND (-94%)
          SD (-89%)
          MN (-87%)
          WY (-85%)
          IA (-81%)
          AK (-80%)
          WI (-78%)
          NE (-77%)
          TN (-77%)
          MT (-76%)

          So why no news stories (especially at Reason)?

          1. To promote vaccines for all Americans (instead of just those who aren’t already immune), Big Pharma, CDC and FDA have colluded to downplay the importance of antibody tests (that find out if people have ever been infected with covid), which cost more money (and aren’t paid for, subsidized nor recommended by Big Government) than PCR tests (which only detect a current covid infection).

            Natural herd immunity is now being attained in hundreds of counties and more than a dozen states, but nobody is reporting this fact.

            C’mon Jacob, why not an article (or better yet, as many articles as you wrote trashing Trump) exposing this most recent (and ongoing) example of public health malpractice by Big Pharma, CDC, FDA, US SG, Big Medicine and Big News Media?

            1. And this is exactly the kind of shit Bailey and Sullum can be good at. I think that I am even more disappointed by Reason’s Rona coverage than by the freakout over Trump.

              1. I don’t think the two are unrelated.

              2. I will say in fairness to reason their were maybe 10 people in media who had the courage to say the lockdowns were the dumbest fucking idea ever and were going to cause problems far worse than the thing they were trying to prevent.

                1. Yeah, in absolute terms, Reason’s coverage of the pandemic has been disappointing. Though relatively speaking, compared to the vast majority of other media outlets, they have been subdued and measured in their tolerance of the blatant authoritarianism that’s been occurring.

                  I’d prefer the bar be set higher than “not completely cheerleading for statist interventions into every aspect of society.”

                  1. This has been the biggest attack on human freedom and individual rights in my lifetime for sure. I would like to think a publication supposedly in support of individual liberty would think that was kind of a big deal.

                    1. I expect it will be surpassed by year’s end.

            2. They have thoroughly fucked the testing system up by using the pcr at that amplification they have absolutely know idea who has had it. Sending these people to prison is the moderate position. Reason cowardly watched as they did this because to step up against the onslaught of saint fauci, big pharma, big tech, the political class, the media and the hysterical bleating sheep would have been uncool.

              1. Yeah, I’m barely joking when I say they should get the Mussolini treatment.

              2. It’s because they would have been accused of being Trump cultists if they had questioned rona. And no one wants to be tarred with that brush. Ewww.

                1. Note that most of the counties with the highest covid rates had outbreaks at state prisons, a US military base and Indian Reservations.
                  Crowley, CO – (State Prison)
                  Dewey, SD – (Indian Reservation)
                  Norton, KS – (State Prison, Nursing Home)
                  Lincoln, AR – (State Prison)
                  Bon Homme, SD – (State Prison)
                  Chattahoochee, GA – (Fort Benning US Military)
                  Buffalo, SD – (Indian Reservation)
                  Trousdale, TN – (State Prison)
                  Lake, TN – (State Prison)
                  Buena Vista, IA – (Tyson Meat Packing Plant)
                  Eddy, ND –
                  Ellsworth, KS –
                  Dakota, NE – (Tyson Meat Packing Plant)
                  Jackson, AR – (State Prisons)
                  Foster, ND –
                  Lafayette, FL – (State Prison)

                  1. Holman Jenkins amplified my argument in the January 13 WSJ at
                    https://www.wsj.com/articles/maximize-the-vaccine-11610494003?mod=opinion_lead_pos9

                    excerpt

                    Sen. Rand Paul was assailed for tweeting that his own natural infection was more than 99% protective against future illness, compared with 94.5% for a vaccine. He was not recommending people go out and indiscriminately spread the disease. But once you accept that we’re not just one or two preachments away from solving the problem of Covid with mask-wearing, it’s time to be grateful for the one upside of infection. “Herd immunity” was a taboo term when paired with the word “strategy” but needs to rehabilitated now as a description of the goal that both vaccine and natural spread are helping us achieve.

                    The U.S. will soon reliably be vaccinating a million people a day but natural infections, by conservative estimate, were already putting a million a day in the U.S. on the path to natural immunity, though only a fifth of them showed up for testing.

                    Either kind of immune response is considered almost sure to prevent serious illness from future infection. Less certain is whether either also prevents transmission. But as epidemiologists such as Yale’s Harvey Risch and Brown’s Ashish Jha independently predicted, new cases in the Dakotas are starting to fall precipitously with perhaps half their populations having experienced Covid 19.

                    The practical implications are obvious. Don’t spend vaccine in the short term on people who have already been exposed if at all possible. A second implication: Unlike other countries, the U.S. has been strangely resolute in pretending that “confirmed cases” are the measure of the epidemic. Seldom has there been a clearer test of how the media sets the agenda for politicians. The press repeats this misleading statistic a thousand times a day to no real purpose, leaving us only less certain where we stand in the herd-immunity race. Underplaying the disease’s true prevalence, we have (without realizing it) conditioned people to be less careful even as we preach at them to be more careful. We cause them to underestimate their exposure risk and overestimate their death risk. Now we’ve put ourselves in the weird position of being unready to use vaccines optimally to stop the epidemic as soon as possible. We find it hard even to admit to ourselves that natural immunity is helping to bring our goal within reach.

            3. Just so you know, as the media reports 100 gazillion CASES! This is where ‘CASES’ ceases to matter.

              1. Cases never mattered. They just became a talking point when the death tolls started to drop and there weren’t enough regular deaths to replenish the fear mongering.
                Interesting how all other causes of death dropped dramatically this year, in particular, heart disease. The number one killer year after year until 2020. Flu season was nonexistent this winter.

                1. +1000

            4. Natural herd immunity is now being attained in hundreds of counties and more than a dozen states, but nobody is reporting this fact.

              That’s because ‘now being attained’ is NOT a fact you fucking moron. You don’t understand the data you are citing. You probably don’t understand what herd immunity is or how diseases transmit (for stats/modeling purposes rather than medical/health).

              But hey maybe you can throw in some quotes too – like If a lie is only printed often enough, it becomes a quasi-truth, and if such a truth is repeated often enough, it becomes an article of belief, a dogma, and men will die for it. Goebbels Lenin Mao Genghis Khan Machiavelli Isa Blagden.

              1. Show the data/interpretation behind your assertions.

                1. The data above is the results of PCR testing – testing for the existence of the virus itself. That is the ONLY data that is being released to the public in any systematic way. And even then the interpretation of the data is not what the above is really indicating because high positive % is usually a consequence of not testing many people.

                  The only possible way to get info on whether we getting near herd immunity would be serology testing – testing for the existence of antibodies to the virus – plus vaccine administration %. Those latter two are available – kind of – erratically. But not yet really.

                  Three different things. Only one of them is available as real data – and it is the wrong data for the assertion being made. It’s the same bullshit and flimflam and fraud that has been happening all year by people who want to lie using numbers in order to sell their POLITICAL ideas.

                  1. JFree is misinterpreting covid infection rates with covid case rates, the former of which has been found to be 3 – 10 times greater than the latter.

                    But due to increased PCR testing, cumulative covid infection rates now appear to be 3 – 7 times greater than covid case rates (depending upon location), and a likely national average of 5 times greater.

                    By multiplying the case rates (i.e. data I’ve presented) by 4 – 6 times provides a very likely cumulative infection rate.

                  2. So in other words you got nothing.

            5. Bill…you say “..than PCR tests (which only detect a current covid infection).”

              You are incorrect. Perhaps you know this and you simply wrote this wrong?

              1. PCR tests do not detect past covid infections, only current infections.

                While some PCR tests have resulted in false positives (i.e. and a slightly higher covid case rate than exists), the dramatic decline in new covid cases (i.e. positive PCR tests) in hundreds of counties and a dozen plus states during the past 6 – 10 weeks documents that herd immunity is now occurring.

            6. antibody tests (that find out if people have ever been infected with covid)

              Well, kind of… There’s debate on just how long the antibodies actually hang around. But it appears that in most people, after the antibodies are gone, their B-cells maintain a memory of the virus and can quickly ramp up a response from T-cells (and maybe antibodies) upon re-exposure.

              1. There’s no debate among immunologists or virologists, just left wing totalitarians who want to control the lives and businesses of everyone else.

                While a small portion of those previously infected with covid (just like a small portion of those who have been vaccinated) may get covid in the next year, 95+% of them will remain immune, which is more than adequate to attain and maintain herd immunity.

              2. For every respiratory virus known to man, the antibodies go away after a period of time relegating the memory of the bug to B and T cells. This behavior has been known for decades but how many news outlets tell the public that the observed behavior is normal, that nobody needs to be alarmed that their antibodies are fading.

      2. Counties/states that have surpassed 13% covid case rate include:
        – North Dakota (18 of 53 counties)
        – South Dakota (17 of 66 counties)
        – Texas (18 of 254 counties)
        – Kansas (13 of 105 counties)
        – Tennessee (9 of 95 counties)
        – Iowa (8 of 99 counties)
        – Arkansas (6 of 75 counties)
        – Illinois (5 of 102 counties)
        – Oklahoma (4 of 77 counties)
        – California (3 of 58 counties)
        – Montana (3 of 56 counties)
        – Louisiana (3 of 64 parishes)
        – Nebraska (3 of 93 counties)

    2. Damn you and your facts!

      This url: https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/data/new-cases-50-states

      Shows infection rate thumbnails for each of the fifty states, arranged quasi-geographically. It demonstrates in spades what you have said.

      There is no correlation between mandates and infection rates; the only correlation is with climate zones.

      This pandemic will be over due to herd immunity before enough vaccinations happen to make any difference.

    3. Thank you again Bill for solid information.

      Have you listened to Ivor Cummins on YouTube? He does amazing analysis.

  3. Yes, but only if the legal restriction was put in place during the Biden administration.

    1. I like your RabbiHarveyWeinstein sock better.

      1. Fuck off, beaner.

        1. No really ir’s way better.

          1. Argentine? I can’t tell anymore. Are you white, or just stupid?

            1. like 2 or 3 times better

  4. lolololololololololololol no

    It’s been obvious for months that seasonality trumps anything we do. All the death and despair and chaos and turmoil, all for nothing.

    And we will continue paying for lockdowns for decades.

    1. And that is why we need to confront the climate “crisis.” We are not going to be able to effectively control the virus unless we can first control the weather.

      1. Since the wuflu infections expand in cold climate shouldn’t we cheer for global warming?

        1. No, because then the Yemenis we’ve been casually droning for the past five years are going to face an unprecedented drought.

          1. A drought in the desert world be problematic.

            1. In that case, the bombings are dispensations of mercy.

              1. Your RabbiHarveyWeinstein sock really was better, but it looks like you got tired of making bad jokes and getting ignored?

    2. Not for nothing – they seized ansolute power, destroyed small businesses, and completely changed our way of life.
      Big profit for some, and it only cost the rest of us everything.

      1. Give them a break, haven’t the hedge funds suffered enough with the gamestop short?

        1. Not yet.

  5. We’ve had legal restrictions in place for nearly a year, and they’re only now starting to work? Makes perfect sense.

    1. It’s so weird. It worked great over the summer, then stopped working for the fall and early winter and now it’s starting to work again. Clearly there can be no other explanation. These policies are the only factor here.

      1. LOL

      2. Ha! You know what? This is exactly how the Bean Counters think too…

  6. Pretty good evidence exists that people were restricting their activity and taking precautions before and in addition to any government orders. Smart people do not need governing.

    That the government orders incited some less smart people to increase their activity or decrease their precautions, with the “… you’re not the boss of me …” line of tween girls doing or about to do dumb things, may have actually made things worse.

    1. Objecting to arbitrary government diktats should not even be thing because, let’s face it, government IS the boss.

      #freedom

      1. When are you going ro switch back to your RabbiHarveyWeinstein sock?

        1. When your mother finishes swallowing my cum.

          1. So never?

            1. She’ll swallow a lot, apparently.

    2. If you don’t use your rights, you are more likely to lose them. I thing resisting the government mandates was a rational and reasonable response. Some things are more important than not getting one particular virus. Our basic, fundamental freedoms are one of those things. And no right is more fundamental than the right to go out in the world and make a living for yourself. The only problem here is that everyone didn’t resist when they went full dictator on us.

      1. Having two adversarial camps of Socialism is not an improvement over one.

        “Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all.” ~ Frederic Bastiat

        Blind obedience to one part of government just to oppose and adversarial part of government is still blind obedience to government, not resistance to government.

        1. I’m not following you. Where’s the blind obedience in resisting unreasonable government power grabs?

  7. Something something rule of headlines.

    NO!

  8. At the end of the day none of this matters. These fucking inter-dimensional demons who are appearing our physical plane completely fucked and squashed one class of people to protect another they deemed more valuable and had the audacity to do with slogans of “in this together” and “if you open up these specific business’s we’ve decided to destroy on a whim your a grandma killer and we are going to fine you into oblivion” meanwhile those same people never missed a fucking paycheck. What they did was immoral and fucking disgusting and the brave journalists meanwhile cowered and fear and mostly refused to ask questions while some of us went out and worked everyday at our failing business models that you assured us would only be shut down for two weeks to be extended for 9 months while we get swallowed up by debt and struggle to keep our people employed. Fuck you who cares if it worked. It was fucking disgusting.

    1. YES

    2. And the 56,000,000 children in U.S. public schools, and their families, have suffered. I know, as a Father of two school-aged kids. It is fucking brutal. Families are splitting up, divorcing, kids are so isolated they are starting to become clearly brainwashed and repeat

  9. The legal restrictions had almost on impact. First, cloth masks don’t do much except give people a false sense of security to mix and mingle. Second, almost everyone ignored the restrictions in November and December, because they were exhausted from following the restrictions since March that didn’t work.

    The winter surge coincided with normal cold and flu season, the election/Joe Biden victory street party superspreader event, Thanksgiving travel and Christmas/New Years gatherings. Cases are dropping quickly after those events concluded, and will drop even faster now that the PCR thresholds are increased, more people have already had COVID-19, and immunizations have started.

    1. There was no holiday surges.

      1. There was no holiday surges.

        ^^THIS^^

        +10000

  10. No. (of course)
    They can, however get credit for every job loss, new case of alcoholism, new or worsened mental illness, business closure, and the creation of tens of thousands of citizens who no longer trust the government at all for anything.

    Welcome to the revolution.

  11. The per capita death rates in New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts, for example, show just how effective Democratic governor’s lockdowns were.

    1. And the current death rates in those places show how well natural herd immunity works.

      1. The daily/weekly covid death rate was 5 times greater in NY and NJ last spring than it is now (and was 3 times greater in MA).

        Requiring nursing homes to admit patients with active covid cases from hospitals (to free up anticipated, but never needed, hospital beds) was public health malpractice (especially after Trump offered and built emergency hospitals that went unused).

        For that reason, the US Senate should reject Biden’s nomination of Rachel (formerly Richard) Levine for Assistant Secretary at DHHS. Wolf/Levine (in collaboration with other Democrat Governors/Health officials) ordered PA nursing homes to accept covid patients, which is why 70% of covid deaths in PA last spring occurred in nursing homes (and now 52% of all PA covid deaths).

        Levine removed his/her own mother from a nursing home after ordering all nursing homes to accept covid patients.

        1. My comment was not sarcastic at all, in case that wasn’t clear. The actual epidemic is over in the northeast.

          1. Exactly… It’s over in the upper Mid-West too. Looking better on the left coast every day. Might only be Texas and bits of the deep South left to experience their big wave.

        2. And if you look at NY by region, the picture is clear: if you got hit hard last spring, you have a small event now. If you dodged the bullet in Spring, you got hit by it this winter.

          https://forward.ny.gov/daily-hospitalization-summary-region

          1. Yep. Immunology 101 for decades.

            Gumpertz Curves don’t give a fuck about us or our superstitions.

  12. The problem all along has been that China has not been very forthcoming about where exactly the virus came from in the first place, whether it came from bats or pangolins or from human activity. It is absolutely critical that we know this because the magical rituals and incantations that must be performed by the priestly caste to rid us of this scourge are totally different depending on where the virus originated. For example, I think Gavin Newsom fucked up by dining at the French Laundry, that only works against chicken-sourced magicks whereas bat-inflicted magicks require his dining at Chez Pierre.

    1. Why does it matter? Lab OR natural, the Chinese don’t care, because they know that the West is 100% economically susceptible to the next hard-to-shake bug that pops up.

      1. Exactly correct.

        Let us assume, for the sake of the analysis, that the virus was engineered in a lab and deliberately released. What then? War with China? Sanctions? Retributive biological warfare, clandestinely carried out? More masks? More tests? More lockdowns? Travel bans?

        The only thing we know for certain is that our government, and most Americans, are perfectly comfortable with the prospect of wiping their asses with the Constitution in the name of “public health,” an arbitrary term that has come to encompass the pursuit of stamping out racism and making sure men can take shits next to little girls.

        People dying sucks — but, at the end of the day, the price of saving everyone is going to make us wish we were all fucking dead anyway.

        1. Your RabbiHarveyWeinstein sock really was better, but it looks like you got tired of making bad jokes and getting ignored?

          1. As a dirty goyim I enjoyed the Rabbi’s daily Semitic perspective. There is no Unity in division and we must learn of our failings from those above us or we will never grow.

    2. Very good chance it was an accidental release from the BL4 lab in Wuhan. They were performing “Gain of Function” research on the RaTG13 bat virus that is the closest known match to SARS-Cov2…shadow funded by NIH and researchers in the US performing GoF themselves. The bat from which RaTG13 originated lives 900 miles SW of Wuhan.

      https://nymag.com/intelligencer/amp/article/coronavirus-lab-escape-theory.html

  13. You mean keeping people from bars, resturants, and schools where almost no transmission occurs didn’t stop the spread!?

  14. Most of the covid articles by Reason have been good or at least reasonable. It’s the commentariat here that is stupid as rock snot and remains so.

    But yeesh Sullum. This stuff is starting to just look clickbaity. covid19 is not a horse race. Well Faulty Ticker is running strong with Malignant Blob a perpetual second. Same as every other race this year. These two are getting quite boring and predictable now. But look – the Wuhan Fluman is picking up the pace. Ooh he stumbled a bit. But ooh getting back up with a second wind. Rounding the corner with a burst of speed.

    and blahblahblah. Is that all this has become? A quota of coronavirus to see what’s changed since last week. Nothing that’s really in depth or leads to more understanding. Just journalist snippets to push the memes that need pushing.

    1. Poor jfree in his basement, wearing 4 masks.

    2. Oh fuck me, and fuck you. I am sorry the fear we all felt in March never left your mind, despite the ten months’ worth of data that should have emancipated you from this hysteria, had you just calmed the fuck down and used your reasoning brain.

      You are not alone, unfortunately.

    3. I find it illuminating that you never back anything up with an argument that includes data and interpretation of said data.

  15. deciding what states did or did not lock down is a little problematic because in places like Texas the state didn’t impose restrictions but individual mayors did. I think Florida is a better example because they were the most open state and yet by percentages their numbers looked almost exactly like California

    1. Just look at all nations in Europe. Most reopened schools for kids under 16 years of age in early May. Nothing happened.

  16. There are 56,000,000 students in the U.S. that attend public schools.

    A school district in Las Vegas, NV has seen an increase of student suicides from 8 to 18, 10 suicides above average, this year. There are 350,000 students in that school district. Do the math, extrapolate these numbers over the 56 Million U.S. students, and this equals nearly 2,000 more suicides than what is “average”. 2,000 is, by the way, 20 times MORE than the 100 or so school-aged people who have died of/with covid.

    Who will pay for the suffering these fucking Bean Counters have caused?!

    Europe opened schools under 16 years old back in early May. The data have been clear for over eight months now.

    What the Fuck have we done?!

  17. Every month I am earning online more than $8650 by doing a very simply online job from my home. By doing this in my part time I was able to save enough to buy me a new car in just a few months. This is so freaking easy that everyone should try it… Start making some dollars online today by following instructions on this website…….. USA ONLINE JOBS

  18. Gee, Jacob, after all of your hard work to replace a POTUS who refused to order sweeping mask dictats with one planning to go all out on government commandments, I would think that you’d be more proud of your work.

    1. Ha ha good one good one

  19. Live in central NY…have been shut down since April. People have been wearing masks in public inside since May…I even see people wearing masks while they drive their car…Cuomo created mass hysteria…at least our schools opened up 1/2 time which is better than Chicago. Conclusions on stats are all over the place..do masks work? Is the end game to suck it up and open things up and reach heard immunity? I come to Reason for serious fact based analysis but with “Cuties” its about making a statement…Trump is gone little man…but your authoritarian side is still showing..

    1. People mostly leave masks on in the car because if you are running errands it is often easier.

  20. I am creating an honest wage from home 1900 Dollars/week ,.READ MORE

  21. Live in central NY…have been shut down since April. People have been wearing masks in public inside since May…I even see people wearing masks while they drive their car…Cuomo created mass hysteria…at least our schools opened up 1/2 time which is better than Chicago. Conclusions on stats are all over the place..do masks work? Is the end game to suck it up and open things up and reach heard immunity? I come to Reason for serious fact based analysis but with “Cuties” its about making a statement…Trump is gone little man…but your authoritarian side is still showing..

  22. Both Florida and Georgia have been open for months.
    Here in Fort Lauderdale the restaurants, bars, clubs, and even the theme parks in Orlando are all open for business. Tourists are everywhere and driving slowly as always
    The beaches are packed with Snowbirds, mostly from NY, Ohio and Canada.

    I don’t know how California is doing so poorly, but I’m in my suburban South Florida hospital things look normal.
    Last I checked the medical intensive care unit had two corona patients out of 12 beds, and the surgical intensive care unit had none.
    I didn’t check the isolation rooms, but there is no problem getting corona patients admitted to the hospital and placed in isolation.

    1. I am in Georgia now. It is pretty much the same as every place else. All business must include masks and distancing. I have not been to the beaches but there are restrictions. Schools are on again off again.

      There has been a downward trend in cases lately. That is good. I don’t think it is because of government mandates. People are just naturally using common sense measures.

      In Georgia just under half of ICU beds are covid cases 1480 non covid and 1086 covid with 89% of beds filled.

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