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COVID-19 News

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
On the contrary ...
That is one perspective. It has some good points. But it's not the only perspective. More than one view can be beneficial. In this case the two are complementary as opposed to at odds.
None of this has anything to do with the politics of China and how the disease was first spread. That ship has sailed ...
Not exactly. The question was whether or not Obama would have done better. What if he was given exactly the same bad information? I doubt he would have put the country into a panic and locked everything down in January over one case in the USA either. He also had a deeper respect for people's rights and freedoms, so maybe he would have taken a more holistic approach, which in my view would have been better, but also contrary to the reductionist approach of those who are looking only at the virus.
... although it would be nice to do a more detailed postmortem when the current emergency is past.
I'm sure someone will, and I'm confident that much of what I've been saying will be included. It has already started to some degree, but is being largely ignored: "COVID-19 is taking its toll on the world, causing deaths, illnesses and economic despair. But how is the deadly virus impacting global poverty? Here we’ll argue that it is pushing about 40-60 million people into extreme poverty, with our best estimate being 49 million."


For now, I am sick and tired of living in a combat zone.
I don't blame you. It makes a person like me feel so helpless. All I can do is post here and there, and maybe talk a bit about it on the show. However one thing I'm very confident of is that humanity ( including the USA ) will get past COVID-19. It's just not that bad a disease. There's more at risk from the fear, economic collapse, and the way it's being politically handled, than the disease itself. But even in the worst case scenario, life will go on.
 
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Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
Here's a scientific study of the origins of the coronavirus:

Lots of interesting data relevant to everything except how the virus made the jump to humans. That part is a small subset of the total data covered in the article, and it doesn't include anything not already referred to here. In other words don't make the mistake of assuming it explains the zoonotic transmission of COVID-19. It doesn't. It says so itself. It's just done in a convoluted way.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
This is like some Version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Seriously, it's straight out of the playbook. All you have to do is switch modes from the Contagion plot, to one where people start getting sick from some invisible pathogen that takes over the PTB. From there it's easier for them to control those who haven't yet been affected. For civic safety, everyone will need to be controlled, and if anyone protests, there has already been enough restrictions of freedom that people are getting used to it. Some even agree with it, and betray humanity, while the invaders lead us to our extinction.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
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Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
Lots of interesting data relevant to everything except how the virus made the jump to humans. That part is a small subset of the total data covered in the article, and it doesn't include anything not already referred to here. In other words don't make the mistake of assuming it explains the zoonotic transmission of COVID-19. It doesn't. It says so itself. It's just done in a convoluted way.
It's about the origins rather than the transmission, although there are theories about that which make sense, or at least make sense to scientists, such as:

 

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
I heard about this on the news this week. I am so sorry this sort of thing is happening. It is totally wrong and makes me feel ashamed to be Canadian. Please, let's not allow these incidents to divide us. We need to be better than this.

The wearing of masks is an issue of political contention in the U.S. very much because of Trump's erratic attack and defense and attack and defense of them. He can't keep his stories straight, and nowadays wants to pretend we have defeated the virus other than a few "embers" here and there, embers causing over 1,000 deaths a day of innocent people.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
The wearing of masks is an issue of political contention in the U.S. very much because of Trump's erratic attack and defense and attack and defense of them. He can't keep his stories straight, and nowadays wants to pretend we have defeated the virus other than a few "embers" here and there ...
That article wasn't so much about masks as the way that some people are resorting to vigilantism to stop what they perceive as disease bearers from outside their territory from coming into theirs.
... embers causing over 1,000 deaths a day of innocent people.
As covered earlier, assigning the "cause" of death to COVID-19 is more biopolitical than objective. Spin it one another way and you would have entirely different numbers, probably less than 1 percent of deaths are directly attributable to the virus. So the real number is probably less than 10 people a day, but the number needs to be inflated to justify the budgets and control measures.

Of growing concern is the rising rate of overall mortality, which is primarily a reflection of preexisting conditions and the consequences of disease management e.g. the economic shutdown, rising substance abuse, emotional fatigue, and stress, mainly from fear mongering. Such deaths have nothing to do with the virus itself, but are an indirect result of sociopolitical pressures.

This is what happens when a combination of germaphobes and control freaks get political power and influence.
 
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Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
Of growing concern is the rising rate of overall mortality, which is primarily a reflection of preexisting conditions and the consequences of disease management e.g. the economic shutdown, rising substance abuse, emotional fatigue, and stress, mainly from fear mongering. Such deaths have nothing to do with the virus itself, but are an indirect result of sociopolitical pressures.
I'm thinking strictly of deaths attributed to the virus.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
I'm thinking strictly of deaths attributed to the virus.
And as I've exposed earlier, what counts as "attributed" is different depending on where you go and who you ask. Rarely is it the case where it is the virus alone that causes death. In fact I don't know of a single death caused solely by the virus alone. Every single death I've seen "attributed" to the virus so far involves serious underlying conditions which are not necessarily age specific.
 

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
That may only demonstrate that an already weakened system worsens the possibility of death from the virus.

Of course, that's true with the flu as well.

I don't know about Herman Cain's physical condition (he is a former candidate for President), other than being in my age group. But it's also true, evidently, that blacks and latinos tend to have higher death rates, but largely because they tend to have poor health care in this country. I assume Cain, being a former pizza chain executive, was reasonably well off.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
That may only demonstrate that an already weakened system worsens the possibility of death from the virus. Of course, that's true with the flu as well.
Exactly; along with a number of other "upper respiratory" diseases or conditions that are usually the last straw instead of COVID-19, and could still be the last straw, because as soon as someone is diagnosed as COVID-19 positive, that has been deemed the cause of death if they die, regardless of all the rest. The big difference with the other diseases is that they didn't shut down the world economy, pushing deaths from that decision up as well.
I don't know about Herman Cain's physical condition (he is a former candidate for President), other than being in my age group. But it's also true, evidently, that blacks and latinos tend to have higher death rates, but largely because they tend to have poor health care in this country. I assume Cain, being a former pizza chain executive, was reasonably well off.
There you are seeing the picture in a truer light.
 

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
These are deaths that otherwise wouldn't have happened. Hospital ICUs are clogged in states where there are more infections; morgues are overwhelmed with bodies. So, yes, these are largely additional deaths that would not otherwise have occurred.

Remember most other countries have figured this out to control the outbreak. But the U.S. with about 4.25% of the world's population continues to have a quarter of the infections and a quarter of the deaths.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
These are deaths that otherwise wouldn't have happened. Hospital ICUs are clogged in states where there are more infections; morgues are overwhelmed with bodies. So, yes, these are largely additional deaths that would not otherwise have occurred.
Otherwise than what exactly? There has been a rise in deaths as an indirect result of the way the situation has been handled that have nothing to do with the virus itself. I recently posted an article where more people died of overdoses in British Columbia than of COVID-19, and the study attributes that directly to the control measures, not the virus itself. Then there are the rest.
Remember most other countries have figured this out to control the outbreak. But the U.S. with about 4.25% of the world's population continues to have a quarter of the infections and a quarter of the deaths.
Again, those numbers are spun to blame the virus when in truth it is underlying preexisting conditions, not only in patients, but in your healthcare and social welfare system, combined with the way the disease is being managed biopolitically and geopolitically. The virus itself is literally the smallest part of the problem.
 

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
Otherwise than what exactly? There has been a rise in deaths as an indirect result of the way the situation has been handled that have nothing to do with the virus itself. I recently posted an article where more people died of overdoses in British Columbia than of COVID-19, and the study attributes that directly to the control measures, not the virus itself. Then there are the rest.
Other than before the pandemic hit.
 

Constance

Paranormal Adept
@USI Calgary, I left a request for you two days ago to respond in the consciousness forum to your having deleted a post of mine because the link it contained didn't work for you. Copying my post below and asking that you respond to my question there.

Received a notice today that one of my posts has been deleted because the link it included failed. I would prefer, and others might also prefer, that instead you note that the link is not working for you, enabling us to attempt to post a better link. Otherwise, the entire reference to a relevant paper might be erased before it can be read. Randall, would you please also let me know which post of mine you have deleted? Thanks.

ETA -- flagging @USI Calgary
Consciousness and the Paranormal — Part 13
 

Constance

Paranormal Adept
As covered earlier, assigning the "cause" of death to COVID-19 is more biopolitical than objective. Spin it one another way and you would have entirely different numbers, probably less than 1 percent of deaths are directly attributable to the virus. So the real number is probably less than 10 people a day, but the number needs to be inflated to justify the budgets and control measures.
Would you link for me your earlier representation of the use of the term 'biopolitical' with reference to the coronavirus pandemic? As the wikipedia article on biopolitics indicates, the term has a checkered history in its applications in the late 19th century and currently a range of definitions and applications. Secondly, do you imagine a vast worldwide conspiracy involving governments, physicians, and hospitals around the planet all unified for some {what?} reason in attempting to generate fear of infection with Covid-19?

Of growing concern is the rising rate of overall mortality, which is primarily a reflection of preexisting conditions and the consequences of disease management e.g. the economic shutdown, rising substance abuse, emotional fatigue, and stress, mainly from fear mongering. Such deaths have nothing to do with the virus itself, but are an indirect result of sociopolitical pressures.
I think you are suffering from cognitive dissonance, which might be a preexisting condition or one caused by the pandemic. My advice is to wear a mask, wash your hands frequently, carry a bottle of hand sanitizer, and relax.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
I was trying to make a different point - about politicization of science and medicine vs opinion and alternative facts.

I'm not so sure. I mean, we're chatting using technology that would have been magic a few decades ago. Heck, I can yell into the air and make things happen, or make phone calls hands free from my watch. I can even tell both to turn off a robot vacuum cleaner. Seems like a lot of the 60s and 70s versions of science fiction are coming true, and some of the 80s and 90s versions of sci-fi might just be around the corner.
It seems we're on two different tracks. That could be a mistake in my interpretation, but what sparked the response was the idea that those who don't approve of all the social controls being put in place by government under the banner of COVID-19 safety are "further attempting to undermine science and reason".

That is when I pointed out that technocrats tend to have an unrealistic mindset, but didn't convey the point well. So I'll put it another way. I don't believe people should be punished for their personal choices because it doesn't agree with someone else's worldview. Yes there can be exceptions when it is proven that there is intent to harm the innocent, and that the innocent will definitely be harmed by neglecting to take appropriate action.

However IMO there are two important factors to consider when it comes to deciding what is "appropriate". First, the measures should not be so sweeping that they affect people that the situation doesn't apply to in any substantial way. But blanket legislation regardless of the situation is one of those bad habits of politicians. They tend to take as much power as they can whether they need it or not.

The other factor in deciding what is appropriate is that the measures need to do more good than harm, not only for the immediate local situation, but on the larger longer-term situation. In the case of battling a pandemic, the science is largely reductive, meaning it's focused on the virus down there under the microscope, and what can be done about it at that level, and less about what will happen out there in the larger world.

Like the utopian vision of robots doing work for the laborers did not lead to the workers they replaced enjoying the fruits of that technology, technocrats who use science politically by propagating fear and control at the expense of the quality of life, and lives of those who are already suffering out here in the larger world, simply isn't appropriate. It has nothing to do with "undermining science" and everything to with using it responsibly.

As a real life example, I was listening to CBC radio interview a mayor of a smaller outlying community ( I don't recall which one ) who said he wished the Alberta government would make mask wearing a blanket law. However Alberta's Chief Medical Officer said she didn't want to do that because there were communities where it simply wouldn't do any good because there's no evidence of infection.

Three cheers here for science, and boo to the politician who is using fear to foist blanket measures onto the general population. This sort of thing has taken various forms. Another more local "mask advocate" ( I'll leave unnamed at the moment ) convinced City council to pass the mask wearing bylaw by claiming it has been shown that for every mask worn, x number of lives would be saved. That is sheer nonsense.

Why is it sheer nonsense? Because healthy person A who puts on a mask in a location where there is no contamination will not prevent person B in a location where there is contamination from getting an infection. Broad based statistics that do not take into account local situations are typically used to bring in sweeping and unnecessary controls, and City Council bought it hook, line, and sinker.

The same logic can be applied to increasingly smaller situations, all the way down to individuals, where provided the individuals in the situation aren't in a high-risk group or situation, and are not experiencing any symptoms, the use of a mask is totally unnecessary, and can even be detrimental, if not from a health perspective where it reduces oxygen and traps heat, but also from a psychological perspective in that it perpetuates unnecessary fear.

Not to forget to mention the fines. I'm sure they'll really help "save lives" too. Isn't it convenient how fining people for failing to abide by an unnecessary law suddenly casts officers in the role of our great saviors? Next, anyone who dares voice opinions like these will be labeled as a subversive who is a danger to society. We already can't freely gather to protest and are now being forced into wearing something whether we need it or not.
 
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marduk

quelling chaos since 2352BC
It seems we're on two different tracks. That could be a mistake in my interpretation, but what sparked the response was the idea that those who don't approve of all the social controls being put in place by government under the banner of COVID-19 safety are "further attempting to undermine science and reason".

That is when I pointed out that technocrats tend to have an unrealistic mindset, but didn't convey the point well. So I'll put it another way. I don't believe people should be punished for their personal choices because it doesn't agree with someone else's worldview. Yes there can be exceptions when it is proven that there is intent to harm the innocent, and that the innocent will definitely be harmed by neglecting to take appropriate action.

However IMO there are two important factors to consider when it comes to deciding what is "appropriate". First, the measures should not be so sweeping that they affect people that the situation doesn't apply to in any substantial way. But blanket legislation regardless of the situation is one of those bad habits of politicians. They tend to take as much power as they can whether they need it or not.

The other factor in deciding what is appropriate is that the measures need to do more good than harm, not only for the immediate local situation, but on the larger longer-term situation. In the case of battling a pandemic, the science is largely reductive, meaning it's focused on the virus down there under the microscope, and what can be done about it at that level, and less about what will happen out there in the larger world.

Like the utopian vision of robots doing work for the laborers did not lead to the workers they replaced enjoying the fruits of that technology, technocrats who use science politically by propagating fear and control at the expense of the quality of life, and lives of those who are already suffering out here in the larger world, simply isn't appropriate. It has nothing to do with "undermining science" and everything to with using it responsibly.

As a real life example, I was listening to CBC radio interview a mayor of a smaller outlying community ( I don't recall which one ) who said he wished the Alberta government would make mask wearing a blanket law. However Alberta's Chief Medical Officer said she didn't want to do that because there were communities where it simply wouldn't do any good because there's no evidence of infection.

Three cheers here for science, and boo to the politician who is using fear to foist blanket measures onto the general population. This sort of thing has taken various forms. Another more local "mask advocate" ( I'll leave unnamed at the moment ) convinced City council to pass the mask wearing bylaw by claiming it has been shown that for every mask worn, x number of lives would be saved. That is sheer nonsense.

Why is it sheer nonsense? Because healthy person A who puts on a mask in a location where there is no contamination will not prevent person B in a location where there is contamination from getting an infection. Broad based statistics that do not take into account local situations are typically used to bring in sweeping and unnecessary controls, and City Council bought it hook, line, and sinker.

The same logic can be applied to increasingly smaller situations, all the way down to individuals, where provided the individuals in the situation aren't in a high-risk group or situation, and are not experiencing any symptoms, the use of a mask is totally unnecessary, and can even be detrimental, if not from a health perspective where it reduces oxygen and traps heat, but also from a psychological perspective in that it perpetuates unnecessary fear.

Not to forget to mention the fines. I'm sure they'll really help "save lives" too. Isn't it convenient how fining people for failing to abide by an unnecessary law suddenly casts officers in the role of our great saviors? Next, anyone who dares voice opinions like these will be labeled as a subversive who is a danger to society. We already can't freely gather to protest and are now being forced into wearing something whether we need it or not.
I understand your position even as I disagree with it.

Masks have their utility, and if they help re-open the economy, that’s good. It’s not like they’re really asking anyone to give up their freedoms - it’s a mask that doesn’t harm anyone.

But I understand the worry about government overreach.

I’m the same way about guns - take ‘em all away, I don’t care about the loss and I do care about the gain.

But that’s me.
 


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