Fire Wallensky Part 2

 

This is a sequel/update of my earlier post Fire Wallensky.

Our deeply pathetic CDC Director Rochelle (“Impending Doom”) Wallensky responded to the news of an increase in cases in Michigan by saying Michigan must “close everything.”  First off, now that we know with some certainty that SARS-COVID-19 has very definite seasonal preferences in very distinct regional patterns, an uptick at the same time of year in the same places was not a surprise or grounds for panic. Second, we know with some certainty that lockdowns and closure orders have enormous empirically verifiable costs and extensive harms but little or no impact on the spread of the virus.  Third, the COVID-19 fatality rate per case is dropping rapidly as COVID fatalities remain low.  Overall,  CDC counts of US excess death continue to drop rapidly.  (Dr. Wallensky can find that info in graphic form on this CDC web page.) Fourth, given the highly predictable curve of a COVID-19 outbreak, Michigan is likely already on the downslope for case numbers, once again averting “impending doom.”

Below is a ready-to-print crib sheet for Dr. Wallensky to take to her next presser–a single page of everything she needs to know about Michigan COVID numbers and what Whitmer did and whether any of it had any effect.  (Spoiler alert: zero effect.)

The circled graph sections are to draw attention to the enormous difference in COVID cases versus deaths in Michigan between April last year and this year.  The increase in cases is also likely due at least in part to the vastly greater availability and frequency of testing.  

Details of Michigan actions interactively plotted on the case numbers graph can be found here on the Johns Hopkins Michigan site:  

Even more detailed Michigan and other data can be found here at the National Governors Association site:  

[NOTE: Updates of some of these tracking sources appear to be flagging.  I suspect it is because after looking at the official actions plotted against case numbers in each state, the inescapable conclusion is that none of this crap accomplished anything.]

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  1. OwnedByDogs Coolidge
    OwnedByDogs
    @JuliaBlaschke

    How is Michigan doing with vaccinations? Did Whitmer institute the “you can only have the vaccine if you are the right color” rule?

    Wallensky is a political hack who says whatever the Democrat Politburo tells her.

    • #1
  2. DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) Coolidge
    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!)
    @DonG

    I hate all the government scientists, the corrupt media that supports them, and the Big Tech that suppresses any facts that don’t fit The Narrative.   We are living in a data-driven world and suffering through a data-free pandemic.   We only get bogus case numbers.  We don’t get any serology studies.  There is no quantitative studies of effectiveness of masks and hand washing and distancing.  We just get qualitative crap like “two masks are better than one” and “you are still at risk after vaccination”.   These people are all horrible.

    • #2
  3. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    OwnedByDogs (View Comment):

    How is Michigan doing with vaccinations? Did Whitmer institute the “you can only have the vaccine if you are the right color” rule?

    Wallensky is a political hack who says whatever the Democrat Politburo tells her.

    Michigan appears to be about average in total vaccinations:  https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/vaccines/us-states

    I don’t know whether or how the silly race preference aspect played out. In the DC Maryland suburbs, upscale assiduous internet-using white people from Montgomery County scarfed up a lot of timed slots for vaccinations in neighboring majority-black Prince Georges County.  I don’t know what (or whether) Michigan is doing anything to prevent something similar.

    I don’t think Wallensky needs direct orders to follow the party line.  Mediocrity in service of the defense of futile policies is a vocation for some people.

    • #3
  4. Doctor Robert Member
    Doctor Robert
    @DoctorRobert

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    OwnedByDogs (View Comment):

    How is Michigan doing with vaccinations? Did Whitmer institute the “you can only have the vaccine if you are the right color” rule?

    Wallensky is a political hack who says whatever the Democrat Politburo tells her.

    Michigan appears to be about average in total vaccinations: https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/vaccines/us-states

    I don’t know whether or how the silly race preference aspect played out. In the DC Maryland suburbs, upscale assiduous internet-using white people from Montgomery County scarfed up a lot of timed slots for vaccinations in neighboring majority-black Prince Georges County. I don’t know what (or whether) Michigan is doing anything to prevent something similar.

    I don’t think Wallensky needs direct orders to follow the party line. Mediocrity in service of the defense of futile policies is a vocation for some people.

    Mediocrity would be a step up for this incompetent fool.

    • #4
  5. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) (View Comment):

    I hate all the government scientists, the corrupt media that supports them, and the Big Tech that suppresses any facts that don’t fit The Narrative. We are living in a data-driven world and suffering through a data-free pandemic. We only get bogus case numbers. We don’t get any serology studies. There is no quantitative studies of effectiveness of masks and hand washing and distancing. We just get qualitative crap like “two masks are better than one” and “you are still at risk after vaccination”. These people are all horrible.

    Actually, there are lots of studies but Offical Experts ignore them.

    • #5
  6. Front Seat Cat Member
    Front Seat Cat
    @FrontSeatCat

    If Michigan is one of the strictest states for protocol, what is the reason for this big surge? It makes no sense at all. 

    • #6
  7. JosePluma Thatcher
    JosePluma
    @JosePluma

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):

    If Michigan is one of the strictest states for protocol, what is the reason for this big surge? It makes no sense at all.

    Maybe the protocols have no effect on the spread of a virus. Nah, that couldn’t be it. 

    • #7
  8. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):

    If Michigan is one of the strictest states for protocol, what is the reason for this big surge? It makes no sense at all.

    COVID’s gonna COVID.  Unless there is lots of resistance/acquired immunity, when the right condition pop, it will spread.  For example, there should be a pop in MD, VA, PA and DE beginning about now (VA is lagging) and there is. 

    Without vaccinations, FL would be expected to have a rise in June.  I predict it will be minimal but still proof that DeSantis is an irresponsible murderer.

    The case increase in Michigan is higher than I would have expected (higher numbers is one of the side effects of obsessive testing regimens) but the death rate has not grown.  Because it is still killing mostly the co-morbidity-prone elderly, it is probably using up its victim pool faster than aging and disease progressions can replenish it. 

     

    • #8
  9. Hammer, The Member
    Hammer, The
    @RyanM

    I would take it one step further and say that we should disband the CDC in its entirety.  There is absolutely no need for such an organization at public expense, especially one whose “recommendations” are generally accepted as if they carried all the force of actual law.

    • #9
  10. Flicker Member
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    Hammer, The (View Comment):

    I would take it one step further and say that we should disband the CDC in its entirety. There is absolutely no need for such an organization at public expense, especially one whose “recommendations” are generally accepted as if they carried all the force of actual law.

    And change the FDA back to judging only safety of a product without judging efficacy.

    • #10
  11. Hammer, The Member
    Hammer, The
    @RyanM

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) (View Comment):

    I hate all the government scientists, the corrupt media that supports them, and the Big Tech that suppresses any facts that don’t fit The Narrative. We are living in a data-driven world and suffering through a data-free pandemic. We only get bogus case numbers. We don’t get any serology studies. There is no quantitative studies of effectiveness of masks and hand washing and distancing. We just get qualitative crap like “two masks are better than one” and “you are still at risk after vaccination”. These people are all horrible.

    Actually, there are lots of studies but Offical Experts ignore them.

    Exactly.  There is ample evidence showing that “effectiveness” simply isn’t there.  But if people stopped wearing masks, the panic would subside (especially considering the fact that the vast majority of people who have died of covid are people for whom death was imminent, regardless.  Pandemics cause shock when they are perceived as being tragic, which covid simply isn’t).  I’ve pointed to a great many links about actual studies, and here are two.

    • #11
  12. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):

    If Michigan is one of the strictest states for protocol, what is the reason for this big surge? It makes no sense at all.

    COVID’s gonna COVID. Unless there is lots of resistance/acquired immunity, when the right condition pop, it will spread. For example, there should be a pop in MD, VA, PA and DE beginning about now (VA is lagging) and there is.

    Without vaccinations, FL would be expected to have a rise in June. I predict it will be minimal but still proof that DeSantis is an irresponsible murderer.

    The case increase in Michigan is higher than I would have expected (higher numbers is one of the side effects of obsessive testing regimens) but the death rate has not grown. Because it is still killing mostly the co-morbidity-prone elderly, it is probably using up its victim pool faster than aging and disease progressions can replenish it.

     

    It would be interesting to have the URL for that chart, though if it doesn’t lead to a comparison of recent age-specific deaths vs those from last year, then I’m not so interested.

    For context, here are graphs of 1) case rates and 2) death rates (7-day moving average for each).  The URL is here.

    As you can see, the death rate is going up here in Michigan, but not by as much as the case rate compared to the previous two major surges.

    I am told from several sources, though have not checked it out for myself, that the infections are now mostly among younger people who are not as likely to get severely sick or die from the disease. I think my wife also told me that our county is the 4th worst in Michigan (though by what metric, I don’t remember) and the part of the county where we live has the most of those cases. 

    Lots of people around here mask up when they go out, and there are plenty of people who refuse to, too.   They generally don’t kill each other or even bother each other too much, though if one listens closely one can hear grumbling here and there.

    According to a chart on this CDC page (you have to look hard to find it) Michigan is 35th out of 50 states in the percentage of its population that has been vaccinated.  It is also 35th out of 50 states in the percentage of its 18-and-older population that has been vaccinated. It has been as high as 20th and as low as 40th in all the times I’ve checked.   I forget just what the current guidelines are, but the adult son of ours who lives here just got his first shot (Pfizer) last week. 

     

    • #12
  13. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):

    If Michigan is one of the strictest states for protocol, what is the reason for this big surge? It makes no sense at all.

    COVID’s gonna COVID. Unless there is lots of resistance/acquired immunity, when the right condition pop, it will spread. For example, there should be a pop in MD, VA, PA and DE beginning about now (VA is lagging) and there is.

    Without vaccinations, FL would be expected to have a rise in June. I predict it will be minimal but still proof that DeSantis is an irresponsible murderer.

    The case increase in Michigan is higher than I would have expected (higher numbers is one of the side effects of obsessive testing regimens) but the death rate has not grown. Because it is still killing mostly the co-morbidity-prone elderly, it is probably using up its victim pool faster than aging and disease progressions can replenish it.

     

    It would be interesting to have the URL for that chart, though if it doesn’t lead to a comparison of recent age-specific deaths vs those from last year, then I’m not so interested.

    For context, here are graphs of 1) case rates and 2) death rates (7-day moving average for each). The URL is here.

    As you can see, the death rate is going up here in Michigan, but not by as much as the case rate compared to the previous two major surges.

    I am told from several sources, though have not checked it out for myself, that the infections are now mostly among younger people who are not as likely to get severely sick or die from the disease. I think my wife also told me that our county is the 4th worst in Michigan (though by what metric, I don’t remember) and the part of the county where we live has the most of those cases.

    Lots of people around here mask up when they go out, and there are plenty of people who refuse to, too. They generally don’t kill each other or even bother each other too much, though if one listens closely one can hear grumbling here and there.

    According to a chart on this CDC page (you have to look hard to find it) Michigan is 35th out of 50 states in the percentage of its population that has been vaccinated. It is also 35th out of 50 states in the percentage of its 18-and-older population that has been vaccinated. It has been as high as 20th and as low as 40th in all the times I’ve checked. I forget just what the current guidelines are, but the adult son of ours who lives here just got his first shot (Pfizer) last week.

     

    Those are the same two Worldometer graphs in the post. 
    Raw totals by age here: https://www.mdch.state.mi.us/osr/Provisional/CvdTable2.asp
    I don’t think the proportions of death by age group has changed since the pandemic started. 

    I suspect the increase in cases in younger people is as much a function of increased testing as it is of more interaction. In any case, the nature and scope of this current “outbreak” makes it even more obvious that the bug is not a significant lethal threat to people who are not significantly health-challenged and/or very elderly.

    When you look at the litany of Whitmer’s orders it comprises a delusional manipulation of non-existent control knobs. The entire population on Michigan is expected not to notice the truth and go along with the control knob fantasy as COVID does its thing, indifferent to the “interventions.”

     

     

    • #13
  14. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Old Bathos (View Comment):
    I suspect the increase in cases in younger people is as much a function of increased testing as it is of more interaction. In any case, the nature and scope of this current “outbreak” makes it even more obvious that the bug is not a significant lethal threat to people who are not significantly health-challenged and/or very elderly.

    I don’t know that there has been any huge increase in testing. You get symptoms, you get tested. It has been that way at least since last summer, when I was first tested. It’s not that hard to get a test. The information isn’t much use in stopping the spread, compared to what the inexpensive, rapid antigen tests could do if they were allowed, but it’s not that hard to get tested when you have symptoms.

    • #14
  15. RushBabe49 Thatcher
    RushBabe49
    @RushBabe49

    Another bad thing is the powers that be are not letting most people get medicines to treat the disease when they are infected.  There are medications that have been shown to reduce mortality and symptoms, and the government is positively refusing to promote them, or even acknowledge that they are available.  This is cruel.

    And, do we have a solid definition of what a “case” is, that everyone uses?  Is a “case” a positive test result?  Is a “case” a sick person?

    I don’t think that has ever been adequately answered.

    • #15
  16. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Old Bathos (View Comment):
    I suspect the increase in cases in younger people is as much a function of increased testing as it is of more interaction. In any case, the nature and scope of this current “outbreak” makes it even more obvious that the bug is not a significant lethal threat to people who are not significantly health-challenged and/or very elderly.

    I don’t know that there has been any huge increase in testing. You get symptoms, you get tested. It has been that way at least since last summer, when I was first tested. It’s not that hard to get a test. The information isn’t much use in stopping the spread, compared to what the inexpensive, rapid antigen tests could do if they were allowed, but it’s not that hard to get tested when you have symptoms.

    LTC staff per Whitmer rules, hospital admissions for all causes, survey sampling, contact tracing… lots of reasons why non-symptomatic persons get tested. Initially in March and April of last year, that scope of testing was not yet possible. Asymptomatic cases picked up in the count that way (especially younger people) would never have been known but for testing without a pre-req of symptoms. 

     

    • #16
  17. KCVolunteer Lincoln
    KCVolunteer
    @KCVolunteer

    In Michigan here is where to find the graph for testing, and much other data the state is willing to share. Coronavirus – Michigan Data

    Note the higher than usual serology (light blue at top of each bar, sorry about the fuss I need to figure out how to capture better, when I view it in my picture viewer it is sharp and fills half my 17″ screen width) during late May, though I haven’t been able to find the results of confirmed positives for these tests, the state certainly should have learned something. Maybe they could share.

    Another possibly valuable data point is LTC deaths that can be found at Coronavirus – Long Term Care Data (michigan.gov)

    Out of 16,577 confirmed covid deaths as of 4/13/21 state wide there have been 11,140 covid deaths (not counting staff) in LTCs as of 3/30/21. Over 2/3 of all deaths in Michigan attributed to covid have been in our LTCs. This is partially due to the fact that the hospitals send positive covid cases back to the LTCs. So due to the state’s failure to protect LTCs, 23% of all LTC residents that have tested positive (48,578) for covid have died, compared to (5,437) 0.77% of the general population that have been confirmed positive (7o7,986) for covid. I think I have done my math properly. How many lives have the governor and her minions destroyed for this, through their shut downs, delayed treatment protocols, &etc.?

    I’m done with this.

    • #17
  18. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Old Bathos (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Old Bathos (View Comment):
    I suspect the increase in cases in younger people is as much a function of increased testing as it is of more interaction. In any case, the nature and scope of this current “outbreak” makes it even more obvious that the bug is not a significant lethal threat to people who are not significantly health-challenged and/or very elderly.

    I don’t know that there has been any huge increase in testing. You get symptoms, you get tested. It has been that way at least since last summer, when I was first tested. It’s not that hard to get a test. The information isn’t much use in stopping the spread, compared to what the inexpensive, rapid antigen tests could do if they were allowed, but it’s not that hard to get tested when you have symptoms.

    LTC staff per Whitmer rules, hospital admissions for all causes, survey sampling, contact tracing… lots of reasons why non-symptomatic persons get tested. Initially in March and April of last year, that scope of testing was not yet possible. Asymptomatic cases picked up in the count that way (especially younger people) would never have been known but for testing without a pre-req of symptoms.

     

    OK, there has been an increase in testing. But the graph of tests per population can hardly be following the graph of cases per population, can it?  I presume that the rate of increase in testing over the period of the recent surge has been rather gradual in comparison to the increase in cases.  

    • #18
  19. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    KCVolunteer (View Comment):
    Out of 16,577 confirmed covid deaths as of 4/13/21 state wide there have been 11,140 covid deaths (not counting staff) in LTCs as of 3/30/21. Over 2/3 of all deaths in Michigan attributed to covid have been in our LTCs. This is partially due to the fact that the hospitals send positive covid cases back to the LTCs. So due to the state’s failure to protect LTCs, 23% of all LTC residents that have tested positive (48,578) for covid have died, compared to (5,437) 0.77% of the general population that have been confirmed positive (7o7,986) for covid. I think I have done my math properly. How many lives have the governor and her minions destroyed for this, through their shut downs, delayed treatment protocols, &etc.?

    That looks right.  Only 2-3% of Michigan COVID deaths are people under 60.  I looked at the Michigan state report of LTC COVID cases some months ago.  I don’t know how complete it was but I noticed that the great majority of LTCs seemed to be COVID-free but a few were serious kill zones with big numbers.  Obviously, not all facilities are the same in terms of quality and whether they are equipped for heavy medical care.  Having to biologically secure a facility on the fly, screen and train staff, tool up for testing, decontamination, isolation, etc is a tough test of management skill and resources, a test that some outfits clearly flunked.  

    Here in Maryland, the state rolled out its updated rules and policies for LTCs well after the peak of the first case wave, almost as if it were not the priority it should have been.

    Instead of focusing on bars, restaurants, and kindergartens, spending resources and manpower to batten down the hatches at all LTCs would have saved a hell of a lot more lives than mask mandates or wiping down the credit card entry panel in the grocery store after each customer.  But doing that would have been a tacit admission that the population as a whole was not at risk which was a grossly inconvenient truth for the fascists.

    • #19
  20. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    KCVolunteer (View Comment):
    In Michigan here is where to find the graph for testing, and much other data the state is willing to share. Coronavirus – Michigan Data

    The graph of testing sort of quantifies my point. Thank you.  The increase in cases is not due to an increase in testing. Testing is at a lower level for the current surge, but the current surge is about at the same level as the previous one.

    As to your point about deaths in LTC, I hadn’t known it was that extreme — that such a large portion of the deaths were in LTCs. Thank you for that information, too.  

    • #20
  21. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    OK, there has been an increase in testing. But the graph of tests per population can hardly be following the graph of cases per population, can it?  I presume that the rate of increase in testing over the period of the recent surge has been rather gradual in comparison to the increase in cases.  

    In the first couple of months of the pandemic there was an average of around 4,000 tests per day, over 30% COVID-positive.  In the last couple of months for which I saw data (up to early March ’21) there are now 36,000 tests a day with under 4% positive. (raw data here: https://covidtracking.com/data/state/michigan/tests-viral).  So the trough in reported case numbers in February ’21 (around 1,200-1,300) corresponds to the peak of the first wave (1,200 a day) which is what shows on the Worldometer graphs.

    So the testing frequency among the non-symptomatic does add a bunch of non-symptomatic cases and confuses the picture somewhat making the comparison to last year tougher.

    The raw death totals are much lower which would be consistent with a surge in “cases” overwhelmingly among the young and/or with, vastly better treatments and/or the early rapid elimination of a big chunk of the most vulnerable.

    Overall, the rise and fall is clearly COVID doing its thing–testing increases were incremental as you suggest. 

    • #21