In early July, we released an exhaustive article on COVID-19 trends. It was meticulously researched, with dozens of subordinate links to data sources. In it, we cited our earlier prediction that, unless Americans were to act with unprecedented foresight and responsibility, we were looking at between one and six million deaths by the end of autumn. Our tracking gave us cause for cautious optimism.
Winter officially begins in one week, and the official COVID-19 death count just passed 300,000. Given the standard two to six week lag time in reports combined with a 3000+ person daily increase, the final numbers will be closer to 400,000 by that point. Advances in hospital treatment protocols combined with local lockdowns and responsible behavior in much of the country have prevented, at great cost, the loss of millions of American lives. Our optimism has proven justified.
October 31st, 2020 falls on a Saturday. It’s far too soon to know the weather, but the fact that there’s a full moon is pretty unlikely to change. In other years, this would be a Hallowe’en-lover’s dream. And I, as you know, am a Hallowe’en lover.
Recently, the CDC began releasing comorbidity data for use in hospital tracking and differential diagnosis. Social media seized on this as yet another excuse to declare COVID-19 a hoax. It’s not a hoax, people; COVID-19 can kill you.
(EDITOR’S NOTE: We are not doctors. At best, we’re debunkers of internet myths and news commentators. If you’re reduced to getting medical advice from an upjumped social media blog like this, you really need a better PCP. And no, that’s not medical advice any more than the rest of this is; it’s just informed opinion.)
Everyone’s got a position on HCQ, but most of you haven’t bothered to review the facts first before choosing which ground to stand. For a disturbing number of people, it’s enough that Donald Trump endorses it. (I blame our national trait for this — a uniquely American optimism. -Editor)
To be clear: It’s bad enough that people who esteem Trump highly will take his medical advice; he’s certainly no doctor. What’s terrifying is that people who believe Trump is (more…)
“Okay, fine. But why is that my fault?” I can hear you thinking this, perhaps a bit angrily, suspecting some sort of bait-and-switch. Don’t worry, it’s still your fault.
Oh, not the virus. That’s nature; that’s what nature does. There’s a reason we invented doors and windows and walls and things; it’s because otherwise nature will kill us. Plagues are just one of the more colorful weapons in its arsenal.
No, what’s your fault is that society has been continuing blithely along (more…)
The natural next step to this reasoning has dawned on some of you — the ones who are still reading, who haven’t moved on in horror and self-loathing, or alternately who aren’t so pissed off at me they’ve dropped their subscription (or would have done if only they’d not been too cheap to pay for one in the first place).
What I’m talking about isn’t a matter of fighting COVID-19 so much as it is sweeping cultural change of a sort that’s not merely necessary but long overdue. The fact that we’re in a crisis right now only makes it more obvious that our society is seriously broken; it’s not like it wasn’t broken before the virus came along.
In China, they halted the spread by shooting people who broke curfew. Doors were locked for months, and if you went hungry, too damn bad. It still got out because there’s a privileged upper class that habitually ignores the laws, and now there’s new outbreaks because it’s a sneaky bastard of a virus, but for a while it worked.
In New Zealand, they beat the epidemic by sealing the borders. Anyone that came in was put up in a hotel room for three weeks and tested repeatedly, and health care workers lived in quarantine. But they did well primarily through stopping it at a few dozen cases at a time.
(Editor’s Note: This is closing on 3000 words and growing, and even the best rants start losing people around the 1500 mark, so I’m chopping it into its component parts. Expect further installments.)
I have evidently been guilty of failing to express myself plainly. To be clear, then: When I say “This is all your fault”, I’m not implying that it might be someone else instead. I blame you.
I’m saying that all this is your fault. You personally. Yes, you, the one reading this right now. I know you don’t believe me, and if you’re starting to… no, it’s too farfetched, and you just think I’m nuts. Too damn bad, because it’s all your fault. You’re the one (more…)