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Media Spin: Cases vs. Deaths
Source: I think it is pretty self-explanatory.
Published in General
As you can see: in the ‘first wave’, deaths closely followed new cases. Nothing of the sort is happening now. It could be masks reducing virus load, a natural weakening in the virus, increased human immunity, or the organic discovery of improved treatment protocols.
Whatever the reason, or combination of reasons, I’m extremely grateful. How unfortunate that the powers-that-be, as well as the media, can’t simply tell the truth.
I’ve read elsewhere that this is happening, but this graphic is very clear. Wow.
I am sure that there are young people all over the world looking at the presently inexplicable course of this virus and growing increasingly committed to spending their lives in the laboratory finding answers to the questions that seem to be popping up every second. :-)
We will have a renaissance in the life sciences over the next ten years. :-)
Yet people are more scared and screeching more than ever. I can’t figure it. Even the scolds should be happy that this virus is killing fewer people, but they seem angry.
Thanks for posting this iWe. All we hear about is the “spike” in infections with nary a mention of the death. It’s pretty clear to me that the goal is to keep the economy shutdown as long as possible to hurt Trump and the Republicans in the upcoming election. Another number I’ve never seen in one place, but which would be helpful for anyone making decisions is the death count by age and comorbidities.
With the mainstream media not talking about it, it’s entirely possible that they may not be aware of the fact that there is such a difference.
The CDC is ready to declare the epidemic over due to the lack of deaths. We will soon be locked down to protect us from a non-epidemic disease.
We can’t report the truth (read: good news) until November 4. It’s not November 4 yet.
One of my friends texted me about Florida cases yesterday and I think they were just legitimately unaware of any other measures about the virus. Hospitalizations, death rates, percent positive, contact tracing– the only thing on their mind was “but aren’t the cases increasing in FL? Isn’t that a failure?” Bad reporting on COVID has done a lot of damage to this country’s collective psyche.
But also, people have to take it upon themselves to get educated.
So true. But when you’re in panic mode all the time, it’s hard to focus.
I posted the chart with link on Facebook and as I suspected, one of my friends posted a warning about deaths being a trailing indicator up to 10-12 weeks. I remember when cases started going up hearing how deaths would be a 2 week lagging indicator. I guess at this point people will start declaring deaths a 17 week lagging indicator (up to November 3rd, as @buckpasser pointed out.
For some perspective, this is an old friend and retired nurse who is over the top on all this stuff and full of pure venomous hatred for the current occupant. Every other comment was positive.
If one has a positive attitude, one might say that the virus-containment measures–that is, first and foremost, identifying the most vulnerable–have succeeded. Of course, the critical and negative attitude is part of the human knowledge acquisition ecosystem, so it has been necessary for the process to succeed. :-)
I think I understand how viruses come about. I don’t understand why they seemingly disappear. In fact, I can’t help wondering if they don’t disappear in reality. Perhaps the coronavirus that emerged in China in 2003 actually didn’t disappear. Rather, it spread all around the world and became part of the human being’s innate immunity. We just didn’t know it because there were no symptoms to get our attention. That would certainly explain why young people didn’t get as sick as older people from this latest coronavirus.
I hope someday we can “read” a person’s innate immune system the way we “read” a person’s DNA.
Until then, I am really impressed with the speed with which we met and responded effectively to this virus. I went to the dentist last week, and I could not believe how many measures she has installed to prevent her patients from infecting each other or her staff. She has invested in the latest UV light technology and a vacuum to suck viral particles out of the air that might be released during a dental procedure. She also had an air vacuum machine that changed the air in the treatment rooms between patients.
This period in America has been very similar to the year after Pearl Harbor when our country retooled its factories and educated thousands of men and women to take the helm in all aspects of military life, from flying planes and servicing them to driving tanks and servicing them. Impressive knowledge and training and equipment buildup.
There are 330 million of us and 330 million opinions on every subject. But we are a hardworking nation of creative and talented and productive people. We look a little disorganized when we start out, but no other country gets the results we do. We’ll soon be traveling around the world again. :-)
I’m impressed by us. :-)
The dentist technology sounds cool. I agree with a lot of what was written. In many ways we really have done well. I am behind on my podcasts but a few weeks ago I was listening to some old Ricochet podcasts and I remember Rob Long saying something to the effect of “The American people did what they were asked to, it was the politicians who failed.” That really struck me because I wouldn’t have said that before listening to him make the argument.
But he was right. People in Florida (my parents, my church) really did stay home and socially distance. People on my college campus really did stay inside. As “14 days to slow the spread” became “two months to slow the spread,” and mutated into Governor Whitmer bullying business owners with lock-down threats to slow the spread, most Americans did comply, even as it hurt them. We flattened our curve like we were initially asked to. Outside of the Northeast we simply never peaked because we did what we were asked to do. It is shameful that northeastern media elites and twitter famous epidemiologists would bully the rest of us for compliance in the midst of such uncertainty.
Also, I like that Trump lead this response by deregulation and emphasizing state responsibility as oppose to federalizing it and using it as an excuse to grow the government. I don’t believe and won’t argue it was a perfect federal response, but it is really unique that this is one of the first major national emergencies where the Federal government worked to empower states to solve their problems in their own way, instead of taking more power for itself.
Yes! A thousand times!
(That said, I’ll bet there have been days when he has deeply regretted doing that. :-) :-) )
I live in Massachusetts with a Republican governor. I’m afraid we were probably part of the media group you are talking about. We have had, depending on the day of the week and whom you ask, the third- or fourth- or fifth-highest death toll from this virus. My daughter is in Manhattan where it was the worst. There have been some very bleak days over the past six months.
I’m not saying it didn’t happen, but I wasn’t aware of bullying the other states. I would say that they did not want the virus to spread. For people in New York City and Boston, it has been very much what the Navy SEALs call a VUCA situation: volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous. They simply did not know what exactly was going on. I truly do not believe any harm was meant in their reporting. Their own house was burning down, and they wanted to sound the alarm to the rest of the country.
I’m not saying their judgment was correct. I’m only saying I will never believe that the news media, in general, had any ill intent. It’s true they hate Donald Trump, but they are really open about that, to their credit. Republicans simply tune that out.
I don’t think anyone knew for sure what exactly what was going on.
I remember when President Bush talked about going after the heads of the terrorist groups after the terrorists attacks in New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington. Most people said, “That won’t do any good. They will just create new heads of these murderous groups.” He persisted, even creating or blessing his famous “Deck of Cards.” The strategy did work. The military did a truly brilliant job, which I trust the historians fifty years from now will acknowledge. But at the time, everyone thought he was wasting time and money and that the strategy wouldn’t work.
I feel like that’s what I’m looking at now, a confusing picture of our response and what was effective and what wasn’t.
And on some level, one has to be impressed by the Norman Rockwell America that refused to say old people’s lives don’t matter. :-) It was very touching to see. :-)
And now back to our regularly scheduled programming of healthy criticism and argument. :-) :-)
Or maybe it could be…
Originally, the tests were only conducted on people with two or more symptoms of the disease. This was because of the shortage of tests.
Lately the tests have become more available. They can test more people, and they are. This results in more “new” cases.
What is unclear (at least to me) is what is being tested, exactly. Are they looking for active infections only? The presence of antibodies indicating previous infections? How long after a previous infection are the antibodies still detectable? This test could be detecting both people who never exhibited symptom, or those whose symptoms were so mild as to be mistaken for a cold.
We need our media to start asking smarter questions, and reporting the answers.
I have become convinced of a few things regarding this pandemic and President Trump’s response to it:
You cock-eyed optimist you.
One of my frustrations is the politicization and manipulation of the underlying data itself.
There is now new guidance on what should be considered a positive or probable case. Basically, if you had any significant contact with a positive case, you are considered probable – even with no symptoms. A death ‘with’ Covid is considered to be a death ‘from’ Covid.
There are also a lot of cases where data suddenly shows up with no real explanation. An example of this is the bump in deaths at the end of June when NY added about 2000 found or re-defined deaths. Since the plot is a 7 day rolling day average, it takes a week for this to process through the system.
Because every night the news leads with “Stunning increases in new Covid cases……!” Intoned in a breathless, oh so excited voice.
My wife is from Germany, and her relatives over there who have friends in the medical field (especially in France) told her that they began losing fewer patients when they abandoned “expert” recommendations for treatment, including putting everyone on a ventilator, and began treating them the way they had traditionally treated similar patients in the past. I don’t know if this is true, but they seem to be convinced that it is.
You make some good points. Also, let me say, reading my post again, one interpretation is that I am suggesting people in the Northeast didn’t stay home or comply. That isn’t what I wanted to convey. I’m only saying, American stayed home, and visually, looking at cases/deaths what have you, the Northeast paked.
And being in Mass with a daughter in Manhattan must be nerve wracking. Honestly? I was a little upset with the coverage FL got because well, yes, I imputed bad faith to New York City media coverage generally, and NYC media coverage of Florida in particular, especially given that my parents and other family is there and that is still basically my home. At the same time, I don’t want to and can’t read out your perspective because it is interesting and gives me some insight. You were also right there watching this all happen. We might still disagree on the coverage but it is another way for me to think about it.
Great questions! The answer is… “Yeah.” Let me say: The positivity rate in Florida is a lot of South Florida and it is troubling to me. We are seeing some community spread driven by young asymptomatics. That’s a problem. And it could become a big problem at any second. When CNN had the lady who said FL was lying about cases it was all about whether you report anti-body presence as a case. And well, it’s a discussion worth having, but CNN went with the worst framing and encouraged the worst out of the lady.
At least in Florida, we are getting better at contact tracing (meaning testing is more likely to find positive cases, which is big) and we are pulling in more asymptomatics at hospitals and businesses openings, and we are doing it much less at random, which is the big key. We are now fishing for cases where there are cases, so while positivity rate is a helpful metric, it isn’t the only one. Simple plots of cases over time and across regions don’t account for this dynamic and are less and less useful for understanding effective policy. But they make for good TV, so I guess that’s useful, if you don’t like DeSantis? Trump? Want to stan Cuomo?
I imagine this dynamic about testing would also apply to many of the big states like TX (Abbott has his stuff together!) and GA, and honesty, it would apply to CA as well. Newsome has done a good job. I must be fair.
Thank you. I mean that. It is a truly perfectly gorgeous day here on Cape Cod, and I refuse to be miserable. :-) :-)
That said, my husband and son, both of whom are in the financial services industry, think I’m crazy. The financial losses have been terrible. There’s a lot of pain and suffering out there, and they see it every day. They think the nation’s leaders have lost their minds. :-)
So thank you for indulging my beautiful-day delusion. :-) :-)
Yes, known cases up, deaths down is good news.
Still. 5000 new cases; 500 new deaths: crude CFR = 10%. Which suggests we are still not doing a very good job either protecting or treating the most vulnerable demographic.
Lots of relevant data at Zero Hedge.
(I always advise not reading the comments at ZH)
One cautionary note: there may be long-term effects of getting the virus, even if visible symptoms are minimal or nonexistent. I’ve heard it claimed (by an immunologist) that the 1918 flu resulted in an uptick in cases of epilepsy, with a long lag time in between.
Interesting. I wonder how they could draw a direct relationship between the flu and epilepsy cases happening so much later. But then my knowledge of immunology is less than zero.
You’re reading the chart wrong. The number of new cases is the blue axis on the left; the number of COVID-19 deaths is on the right in burnt orange. So the US has had up to 50000 new cases in the last few days, with around 500-600 deaths per day in the last few days. So the crude CFR is around 1.1-1.2%.
If so, then this suggests we should be doing exactly this: exposing the young. As many of us have said since the beginning.
Confirmed! The second wave is total horsesh*t. Open the schools, open the businesses, open the parks, and OPEN THE GATES!!!
That requires smarter journalists. Good luck with that.