Wednesday, October 21, 2020

The Virus Response Goes Far Beyond Sanity

Two stories have emerged in the last few days.  One just stupid, the other ominously stupid.  The simply stupid one first

You may have seen this story at Western Rifle Shooters; Ireland, a country of about 5 million people, has gone to a severe lockdown system where people are forbidden to go more than 5 km, or 3 miles, from their homes. 

Irish biochemist and podcaster, Ivor Cummins shows data that during the worst of epidemic in Ireland, the death rate was approximately one person per million per week.  A total of 1,852 people are listed as fatalities of the virus, but as Ivor points out in the video, during the worst of the epidemic, when fatalities were rising almost vertically on the graph he shows, 95% of the people diagnosed with Covid were not given treatment (!) because they were considered too ill or weak for ICU treatment, and left to die (it's a Nationalized Health System there; they let people die all the time).  The 5% remnant that was treated represents 93 deaths, or just over 13 weeks at 1 death per million.  The situation isn't that bad now.  The current ICU population is around 7 people in ICU per million population. 

Why? This video from Ivor last week has the same question but outlines what seems to be the plans for the new lockdown.

The other case, as I said, is more ominous.  This story broke a couple of days ago and was picked up by Breitbart, linked from Watts Up With That.  Dr. Michael Levitt, winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize for Chemistry was cancelled from a biodesign conference, a specialty he practically founded, because of things he as published about Covid-19.  Read that again: the conference had nothing to do Covid-19, he was cancelled because conference organizers had received ‘too many calls’ from other speakers ‘threatening to quit’ because of his views on Chinese coronavirus. He has long maintained that the threat is overblown and that ‘we’re going to be fine.
Professor Levitt – Professor of Structural Biology at the Stanford School of Medicine – was one of the earliest critics of what he sees as the worldwide overreaction to Chinese coronavirus. He describes the extreme measures taken by many governments to control it as ‘another foul-up on the part of the baby boomers.’

He told the Unherd podcast:
I am a real baby boomer – I was born in 1947, I am almost 73 years old – but I think we’ve really screwed up…We’ve left your generation with a real mess in order to save a relatively small number of very old people.
Though his position has earned him many enemies within the scientific establishment,  his predictions of the disease’s trajectory have proved a lot more accurate than the scaremongering models of alarmists like Neil Ferguson.
Dr. Levitt put it this way in his Twitter statement:

His thought crime was to observe that in outbreak after outbreak of this disease, a similar mathematical pattern is observable regardless of government interventions. After around a two week exponential growth of cases (and, subsequently, deaths) some kind of break kicks in, and growth starts slowing down. The curve quickly becomes “sub-exponential.”  Pretty much everyone who has analyzed the numbers has seen this pattern, and  - Newsflash! - it's so common among viruses that it has a name, the Gompertz curve.  I know I've written about this before, referencing an article from April.  
This may seem like a technical distinction, but its implications are profound. The ‘unmitigated’ scenarios modelled by (among others) Imperial College, and which tilted governments across the world into drastic action, relied on a presumption of continued exponential growth — that with a consistent R number of significantly above 1 and a consistent death rate, very quickly the majority of the population would be infected and huge numbers of deaths would be recorded. But Professor Levitt’s point is that that hasn’t actually happened anywhere, even in countries that have been relatively lax in their responses.
Now practitioners in the field of Computational Biology and Biodesign are rejecting the father of the field because he points out a simple truth that anyone who can do computations should be able to recognize.   And yet these people call themselves scientists. 

As Dr. Levitt says, A New Dark Age Cometh.


  1. All of these "researchers" are funded by big government. Anything that makes the average blue collar Wal-Mart shopper question the truth of government pronouncements threatens the research income stream.

    Transcript of President Dwight D. Eisenhower's Farewell Address (1961)

    Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.

    In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

    Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been over shadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

    The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded.

    Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.

  2. But but but, Aesop said, well something or other, and I KNOW he's way smarter than a Nobel Prize winner in chemistry and Professor of Structural Biology at the Stanford School of Medicine. I'm not sure to whom I should listen...

    1. You win the Non-Sequitir Award Of The Week, but you'll still need another dose of butthurt cream for that outbreak.

      And Jimmy Carter, Barack Obama and Yasser Arafat all have Nobel prizes as well. Well played.

      Just because tyrants gonna tyrant, it doesn't invalidate epidemiology or germ theory, no matter how much spittle you froth.

      Bummer for you.

    2. Your false equivalency notwithstanding (you can, as they say, look it up), I see no spittle in the post above yours. Just because you have a blog doesn't make you an expert, but you do you and ROWYBS.

    3. @Aesop. Non-sequiter much? You are comparing Jimmah the Peanut, Barry Soetero, and Arafat (notice you left out AlGore) to a man who invented a scientific field of study and won a Nobel Prize for his work. I respect your years of work as an ER nurse, but do you really think you know more than Dr. Levitt does?

      PS Carter actually deserved a Nobel Prize for organizing the Camp David summit that resulted in a peace treaty between Israel and Egypt.

      PPS So does Trump for his achievements in negotiating peace treaties/normal diplomatic relations between Israel and the UAE, Bahrain, Sudan and between Serbia and Kosovo.

  3. I said to my parents at the start of the Covid insanity that, out of some leftover sentimental sense of civic responsibility, (and, though the Diamond Princess already indicated the disease wasn't nearly as bad as feared, out of respect for the caution that it was something like the Black Death) I'd give them the two weeks to "flatten the curve", but mark my words, once these tyrants gained the power they would never let it go. Our goodwill *would* be abused as part of a dominance game.

    Six months later: They haven't let go, and as I feared, the entire world is turning into the freaking airport TSA. Our rulers want to see our world turned into an open air prison and they'll push for it at every turn. Their vision for our lives is as

    I refuse to wear a mask now, unless it's necessary to obtain a necessity, and I'm cornered and the proprietor insists. No one is ever going to give us *permission* to live like free people again.