The CDC Is a Dangerous Group of Idiots

 

Many of us have thought that the risk of outdoor transmission of COVID have been wildly exaggerated. Thus, we’ve been skeptical of the mask madness. Now there is a huge oops.

The New York Times is reporting that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was relying on a faulty study in declaring a 10 percent chance of the transmission of Covid-19 outdoors. After using the “miscalculation” to support outdoor mask mandates for over 300 million Americans, the CDC now says that it is more like one percent. It is astonishing that such a key and controversial component of our Covid policies was not just based on a miscalculation but never actively questioned or reexamined to discover the error……..

I can understand the reliance on an article in the prestigious Journal of Infectious Diseases. I cannot understand the failure to closely examine its basis since it appears to have been the primary basis for the policy. Hundreds of millions of Americans were impacted as well as the economy. Yet, CDC is only now noting that the article appears to have been fundamentally flawed in its underlying assumptions and calculations.

The NYT article states:

An even bigger issue is the extreme caution of C.D.C. officials, who picked a benchmark — 10 percent — so high that nobody could reasonably dispute it.

That benchmark “seems to be a huge exaggeration,” as Dr. Muge Cevik, a virologist at the University of St. Andrews, said. In truth, the share of transmission that has occurred outdoors seems to be below 1 percent and may be below 0.1 percent, multiple epidemiologists told me. The rare outdoor transmission that has happened almost all seems to have involved crowded places or close conversation.

What do we pay these idiots? Their ridiculous 10% estimate may have been off by two orders of magnitude. Would the ancient practice of predicting the future by examining the entrails of a chicken be more accurate than the huge medical bureaucracies we fund so lavishly. They’ve caused huge economic damage by their stupidity and incompetence.

Note – edited to reflect the excellent comments.

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  1. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    From the same article quoted in the OP, the CDC’s actual estimate is off by two decimal points, quote:

    “That benchmark “seems to be a huge exaggeration,” as Dr. Muge Cevik, a virologist at the University of St. Andrews, said. In truth, the share of transmission that has occurred outdoors seems to be below 1 percent and may be below 0.1 percent, multiple epidemiologists told me. The rare outdoor transmission that has happened almost all seems to have involved crowded places or close conversation.

    Saying that less than 10 percent of Covid transmission occurs outdoors is akin to saying that sharks attack fewer than 20,000 swimmers a year. (The actual worldwide number is around 150.) It’s both true and deceiving.”

    • #1
  2. MWD B612 "Dawg" Member
    MWD B612 "Dawg"
    @danok1

    Two things:

    1. The CDC has admitted nothing. The NYT article drills down into the studies used by the CDC to come up with the “less than 10%” guidance. The reporter found out the issue; he never says the CDC has acknowledged this error.
    2. The CDC hasn’t said the risk is “…that it is more like one percent.” That comes from a researcher at Penn:

      “I’m sure it’s possible for transmission to occur outdoors in the right circumstances,” Dr. Aaron Richterman of the University of Pennsylvania told me, “but if we had to put a number on it, I would say much less than 1 percent.”

      Let’s not give the CDC credit it hasn’t earned.

    • #2
  3. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    Before using a study to develop a major policy I would have hoped they would have checked the math. 

    I also wonder at using a single study for the basis of virtually anything. Look at any other part of this, from the effectiveness of vaccines, to the effectiveness of various medications  or even the effectiveness of masks, there are studies all over the place. I would hope there would be a bit more to creating a nationwide mandate for something then “I read this one study”

    • #3
  4. DrewInTherapy Member
    DrewInTherapy
    @DrewInWisconsin

    The CDC seems to concern itself more with gun control and racism than it does actually “controlling diseases.”

    It’s been a rather dangerous group of idiots for quite awhile.

    • #4
  5. Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Democracy) Thatcher
    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Democracy)
    @GumbyMark

    The bigger question is why is the NY Times choosing to report this?   They must have some further agenda in mind.  CDC guidance has been awful since the start of Covid.  

    • #5
  6. Richard Easton Member
    Richard Easton
    @RichardEaston

    Thanks for your helpful comments. I’m tightening up my post to reflect them

    • #6
  7. David Foster Member
    David Foster
    @DavidFoster

    “10 percent of Covid transmissions occur outdoors” is a completely different statement from “there is a 10 percent change of Covid transmission outdoors”…the latter implies that, over some (unspecified) time frame, there is a 10% chance that a person outdoors who has Covid will transmit it to someone else who is outdoors.  Not clear that most of the media understands the difference.

    • #7
  8. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio…
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Demo… (View Comment):

    The bigger question is why is the NY Times choosing to report this? They must have some further agenda in mind. CDC guidance has been awful since the start of Covid.

    Good point.

    It may be that the media is finally starting to see the writing on the wall about Covid.  The overreaction was disastrous, and the expert advice dubious.  The media and Democratic political response was borderline madness.  

    The data over the past 3-4 weeks has shown an extraordinary decline.  I suspect that this thing is finally over.  People are starting to act like it’s over, at least where I am (in Tucson).

    The media may need to shift the narrative now, so that they don’t look quite so stupid and/or mendacious when the new consensus forms.

    • #8
  9. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention. It is worth pairing with Nicholas Wade’s Medium article, “Origin of Covid — Following the Clues.”

    The responsibility of the NIAID and NIH is even more acute because for the first three years of the grant to EcoHealth Alliance there was a moratorium on funding gain-of-function research. Why didn’t the two agencies therefore halt the Federal funding as apparently required to do so by law? Because someone wrote a loophole into the moratorium.

    The moratorium specifically barred funding any gain-of-function research that increased the pathogenicity of the flu, MERS or SARS viruses. But then a footnote on p.2 of the moratorium document states that “An exception from the research pause may be obtained if the head of the USG funding agency determines that the research is urgently necessary to protect the public health or national security.”

    This seems to mean that either the director of the NIAID, Dr. Anthony Fauci, or the director of the NIH, Dr. Francis Collins, or maybe both, would have invoked the footnote in order to keep the money flowing to Dr. Shi’s gain-of-function research.

    “Unfortunately, the NIAID Director and the NIH Director exploited this loophole to issue exemptions to projects subject to the Pause –preposterously asserting the exempted research was ‘urgently necessary to protect public health or national security’ — thereby nullifying the Pause,” Dr. Richard Ebright said in an interview with Independent Science News.

    When the moratorium was ended in 2017 it didn’t just vanish but was replaced by a reporting system, the Potential Pandemic Pathogens Control and Oversight (P3CO) Framework, which required agencies to report for review any dangerous gain-of-function work they wished to fund.

    According to Dr. Ebright, both Dr. Collins and Dr. Fauci “have declined to flag and forward proposals for risk-benefit review, thereby nullifying the P3CO Framework.”

    In his view, the two officials, in dealing with the moratorium and the ensuing reporting system, “have systematically thwarted efforts by the White House, the Congress, scientists, and science policy specialists to regulate GoF [gain-of-function] research of concern.”

    • #9
  10. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    A renewed skepticism of expertise and of the technocratic managerial class may be one of the few silver linings to this whole sorry Chinabug experience.

     

    • #10
  11. Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Democracy) Thatcher
    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Democracy)
    @GumbyMark

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Demo… (View Comment):

    The bigger question is why is the NY Times choosing to report this? They must have some further agenda in mind. CDC guidance has been awful since the start of Covid.

    Good point.

    It may be that the media is finally starting to see the writing on the wall about Covid. The overreaction was disastrous, and the expert advice dubious. The media and Democratic political response was borderline madness.

    The data over the past 3-4 weeks has shown an extraordinary decline. I suspect that this thing is finally over. People are starting to act like it’s over, at least where I am (in Tucson).

    The media may need to shift the narrative now, so that they don’t look quite so stupid and/or mendacious when the new consensus forms.

    That may very well be it.  I find it much more useful when reading anything from the Times to ask why it is being published at this particular time rather than paying any attention to the substance.  It is usually because it is alerting us to a new coordinated Democratic Party Line or, in other cases, because Left deviationists at the paper are seeking to move the Party Line in a particular direction. 

    • #11
  12. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty
    @BasilFawlty

    Richard Easton: Would the ancient practice of predicting the future by examining the entrails of a chicken be more accurate than the huge medical bureaucracies we fund so lavishly.

    No need to bring The Lincoln Project into this.

    • #12
  13. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio…
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Demo… (View Comment):

    The bigger question is why is the NY Times choosing to report this? They must have some further agenda in mind. CDC guidance has been awful since the start of Covid.

    Good point.

    It may be that the media is finally starting to see the writing on the wall about Covid.  The overreaction was disastrous, and the expert advice dubious.  The media and Democratic political response was borderline madness.  

    The data over the past 3-4 weeks has shown an extraordinary decline.  I suspect that this thing is finally over.  People are starting to act like it’s over, at least where I am (in Tucson).

    The media may need to shift the narrative now, so that they don’t look quite so stupid and/or mendacious when the new consensus forms.

    • #13
  14. James Lileks Contributor
    James Lileks
    @jameslileks

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    A renewed skepticism of expertise and of the technocratic managerial class may be one of the few silver linings to this whole sorry Chinabug experience.

    If it resulted in a bipartisan mood to reexamine the institutions and the trust placed in them, yes. Same with public schools. But whole lotta quadruplin’ down goin’ on, as the man sang. 

    • #14
  15. Vince Guerra Member
    Vince Guerra
    @VinceGuerra

    You mean an unaccountable government body made a declaration that flew in the face of common sense and physical evidence to the detriment of individual and collective freedom without any compensation or corrective action to the citizens? 

    Amazing.  

    • #15
  16. Gazpacho Grande' Coolidge
    Gazpacho Grande'
    @ChrisCampion

    Basil Fawlty (View Comment):

    Richard Easton: Would the ancient practice of predicting the future by examining the entrails of a chicken be more accurate than the huge medical bureaucracies we fund so lavishly.

    No need to bring The Lincoln Project into this.

    Basil for the win.  Again.

    Sigh.

    • #16
  17. Gossamer Cat Coolidge
    Gossamer Cat
    @GossamerCat

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Demo… (View Comment):

    The bigger question is why is the NY Times choosing to report this? They must have some further agenda in mind. CDC guidance has been awful since the start of Covid.

    Good point.

    It may be that the media is finally starting to see the writing on the wall about Covid. The overreaction was disastrous, and the expert advice dubious. The media and Democratic political response was borderline madness.

    The data over the past 3-4 weeks has shown an extraordinary decline. I suspect that this thing is finally over. People are starting to act like it’s over, at least where I am (in Tucson).

    The media may need to shift the narrative now, so that they don’t look quite so stupid and/or mendacious when the new consensus forms.

    And to make sure that Biden gets all the credit.  They had a vested interest in making it worse than it was.

    • #17
  18. Hammer, The (Ryan M) Member
    Hammer, The (Ryan M)
    @RyanM

    And the indoor mandates are just as idiotic. 

    Masks are about social control and propaganda, plain and simple. As such, there will never not be a need for them.

    • #18
  19. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    Same idiots who are trying to destroy the cruise industry. 

    • #19
  20. Paul Stinchfield Member
    Paul Stinchfield
    @PaulStinchfield

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Demo… (View Comment):

    The bigger question is why is the NY Times choosing to report this? They must have some further agenda in mind. CDC guidance has been awful since the start of Covid.

    Good point.

    It may be that the media is finally starting to see the writing on the wall about Covid. The overreaction was disastrous, and the expert advice dubious. The media and Democratic political response was borderline madness.

    The data over the past 3-4 weeks has shown an extraordinary decline. I suspect that this thing is finally over. People are starting to act like it’s over, at least where I am (in Tucson).

    The media may need to shift the narrative now, so that they don’t look quite so stupid and/or mendacious when the new consensus forms.

    Like the Pravda and Izvestia that they increasingly resemble, they will merely shift to a new narrative which they will repeat endlessly in the expectation that most people, lacking other sources of information, will forget the old Current Truth and absorb the new Current Truth. (Funny how today’s “liberals” resemble the old Soviets.)

    • #20
  21. Paul Stinchfield Member
    Paul Stinchfield
    @PaulStinchfield

    Richard Easton: What do we pay these idiots? Their ridiculous 10% estimate may have been off by two orders of magnitude. Would the ancient practice of predicting the future by examining the entrails of a chicken be more accurate than the huge medical bureaucracies we fund so lavishly. They’ve caused huge economic damage by their stupidity and incompetence.

    The CDC is obeying Pournelle’s Iron Law of Bureaucracy:

    “In any bureaucracy, the people devoted to the benefit of the bureaucracy itself always get in control and those dedicated to the goals that the bureaucracy is supposed to accomplish have less and less influence, and sometimes are eliminated entirely.”

    Politics is beginning to replace science at the CDC. But even without the corrupting efforts of the left, we can expect any government agency to grow increasingly sclerotic. It’s no surprise that the CDC would suffer this fate, since it is about 75 years old: The Decay is far more advanced at the Department of Labor, which is over a century old.

    • #21
  22. Gazpacho Grande' Coolidge
    Gazpacho Grande'
    @ChrisCampion

    EHerring (View Comment):

    Same idiots who are trying to destroy the cruise industry.

    See the source image

    Never happen.  He’s indestructible.  Haven’t you seen his movies?

    • #22
  23. David Carroll Thatcher
    David Carroll
    @DavidCarroll

    I stopped listening to the CDC a long time ago.  It is a bureaucracy.  It is inherently likely to be untruthful.  It can’t be helped. 

    • #23
  24. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Richard Easton: Would the ancient practice of predicting the future by examining the entrails of a chicken be more accurate than the huge medical bureaucracies we fund so lavishly.

    That, and chicken entrails don’t have a political agenda . . .

    • #24
  25. GLDIII Temporarily Essential Reagan
    GLDIII Temporarily Essential
    @GLDIII

    Stad (View Comment):

    Richard Easton: Would the ancient practice of predicting the future by examining the entrails of a chicken be more accurate than the huge medical bureaucracies we fund so lavishly.

    That, and chicken entrails don’t have a political agenda . . .

    Sound like we need to fund a governmental study to examine that premise.

    • #25
  26. Old Bathos Moderator
    Old Bathos
    @OldBathos

    The CDC was told by politicians that we have To Do Something About It.  The honest answer was that in the absence of a vaccine all we got are closures, travel bans, and masks and all of that stuff has very limited preventative value and only for a short duration.  In other words, politicians, we got nothin’. 

    But that truth is unacceptable.  We need to Do Something About It.

    Instead, we got a raft of absurdity denying the truth about how limited/useless this stuff would be. 

    My teacher wife was charged with implementing the CDC guidelines (as summarized and imposed by school system bureaucrats–two levels of excretion) for her K-8 school.  Outside during recess, kids were required to remain in their same classroom groups 6 feet apart from each other (even though they share the same air in a closed space for hours each day).  No objects (e.g. a ball) can be exchanged even within the group.  Each group must be 36 feet from any other group. (The sacred number 6 times itself! Short of human sacrifice, what could magically make us safer than that, right?) And remain masked at all times.

    There was no real science in any of this.  These asinine school guidelines were out when we already knew that (a) kids are at less risk than with normal flu (b) kids are really bad transmitters (c) outdoor transmission is astronomically unlikely (d) surface transmission is also equally unlikely.  But the need to appear to have methods and answers was the priority, no matter how costly or pointless.

     

     

     

    • #26
  27. CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill
    @CarolJoy

    Supposedly FB has issued an apology for its consumers who were put in FB jail, or were disciplined for mentioning the remedies for COVID.

    So many FB users had annoying “Your comment violates community standards and codes of conduct and is actually dangerous to the lives of our members.”

    That was what those of us who tried to put out the word that HCQ and other COVID remedies  like ivermectin are not dangerous, that studies saying they are were rigged, and that even the much referred to Lancet article on “risky dangerous HCQ” was retracted.

    Anyway there will be lawsuits regarding these things. I would like to se those lawsuits go right to the tiop and name Fauci for fraud, and for malicious neglect and pre-meditated murder. Period. After all, that little weasel even co authored a paper in 2005 stating the benefits for HCQ were immense in terms of clobbering corona viruses. But he forgot this discovery of his during the one time the info was most needed? During this pandemic itself?

    The numbers of people dying and being seriously disabled and adversely affected from the vaccines are far and above what the public is being told.

    None other than Dr Peter McCullough. a TX doctor and specialist in public health,  is being interviewed all over social media about how misrepresented the actual toll of these vaxxes is getting to be on our public. First they withheld the remedies – now they’ re killing and disabling Americans who would have not succumbed to COVID even if they got it, if they were under 70 years of age and healthy.) In many cases, the families of the deceased cannot argue the hospital or clinical personnel, who state the deaths are coincidental, as doing so will cost them financially.

    For instance if a man who is in his early 40’s gets a jab and then dies of a heart attack, if the family goes along with the medical staff that administered the shot and says, “Okay it is a coincidence,” then the survivors will see the beneficiary payouts due them from the deceased’s life insurance.

    But should the family  fight to have the truth be told, and note this: in some cases even the families’ cardiologists are saying the deaths are due to vaccines, then they will get squat. As in the fine print of most life insurance polices, it is stated no payouts for death due to a medical experimental treatment or therapy. (Which is how all of the COVID vaxxes are categorized – experimental!)

    • #27
  28. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    A renewed skepticism of expertise and of the technocratic managerial class may be one of the few silver linings to this whole sorry Chinabug experience.

    If it resulted in a bipartisan mood to reexamine the institutions and the trust placed in them, yes. Same with public schools. But whole lotta quadruplin’ down goin’ on, as the man sang.

    That is the sad truth.

    • #28
  29. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    All of the federal authorities based on this or that expertise (I don’t know how to characterize them any better) seem to be corrupted. NASA is at the front of the global warming swindle, for instance. CDC is obviously corrupt, and staffed by nitwits at that. We could compile a list of dozens of examples.

    So let’s assume that the wave of corruption is passing thru these agencies at the same rate everywhere. That seems the most reasonable assumption, given the fact that they’re nothing like transparent and we can rarely see into them. CDC has passed thru the “science is whatever the ideology demands” phase and is well into the “I’m here because I believe the ideology” stage.

    So what I’m sayin’ is, do not get on a NASA rocket. Or take advice from the CDC. Or the NOAA. Or …

    • #29
  30. EHerring Coolidge
    EHerring
    @EHerring

    Old Bathos (View Comment):
    Outside during recess, kids were required to remain in their same classroom groups 6 feet apart from each other (even though they share the same air in a closed space for hours each day).  No objects (e.g. a ball) can be exchanged even within the group.  Each group must be 36 feet from any other group. (The sacred number 6 times itself!

    Of course, the sacred number had to be 6. Or 6×6. Or more accurately 666

    • #30