The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

American and Sending Your Children Back To School In September? Bad Idea

OK, full argument incoming, but for the folks who only read the first paragraph: if you’re American outside of a very few Northeastern states and  can avoid sending your children back to school without going to jail, you probably shouldn’t.

Recently, in a 3 day summer overnight camp, 44% of attendees got Covid-19. They didn’t do everything perfectly: staff wore masks, students didn’t, and they didn’t leave doors and windows open to ventilate cabins.

The attack rate was 44% in just 3 days. Forty-four percent got the virus.

Now schools aren’t as bad as overnight camps. However, we can assume that mask compliance will be less than perfect, especially with younger children. Seven or so hours a day are spent inside, with bad ventilation.

And children will be there for months, day after day.

Now, the US Covid map for today, August 3rd, at 1 AM.

If you send your kids back to school in most of these states (there will not be a turnaround by September), there is very good chance they will get it. It may not kill them, though it may give them problems for the rest of their lives, but they will bring it home. You, not being young, then stand a good chance of getting it and dying. If you don’t die, there is reason to believe many people suffer permanent health issues from it, even if they live.

Then, of course, there are cases like this.

Grandparents? Prime death chance.

This isn’t just about killing kids, it’s about killing parents, teachers and grandparents.

This is either sheerest insanity (if you think elites are completely clueless) or a deliberate measure meant to kill hundreds of thousands more Americans.

Anyway, I know there are laws, and you should look into them. But I’d think twice before sending my kids back to school under these circumstances. Maybe you’ll dodge the bullet, but you may not, and a lot of people won’t.

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Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – August 2, 2020


Understanding Leadership Responsibility For Death, Harm & Welfare


  1. CMike

    Not sure this came out right:

    …if you’re American… and can avoid sending your children back to school without going to jail, you probably shouldn’t.

  2. Charlie

    “This is either sheerest insanity (if you think elites are completely clueless) or a deliberate measure meant to kill hundreds of thousands more Americans.”

    I am in the camp it’s the latter. While capital sees population growth as economic growth, my thinking has them seeing mass death as “creative” destruction. Monsters all.

  3. Ché Pasa

    “This is either sheerest insanity (if you think elites are completely clueless) or a deliberate measure meant to kill hundreds of thousands more Americans.”

    Yes. It’s both. Elites are clueless about most things, and this is one of them. And they and their handmaidens have deliberately set out to kill as many surplus Americans as they can get away with.

    Their motto: “As long as it’s not me, who cares?”

    The whole Back to School thing may have an underlying motivation to kill off public schools once and for all, as the indomitable Cruella DeVos has long sought. Never let a good crisis go to waste after all.

    The sacrifice of a few children and many teachers, parents, and grandparents is worth it, right?

    Leaving policies to voluntary observance in most cases ensures that certain elements of society will be preserved, protected and defended at all costs. You know who and what they are. The rest? Huh. Too bad, so sad.

    To the old, the unhoused, the imprisoned, the non-English speaking, the poorer, the darker, the already chronically ill — so long!

    This has been obvious from the outset of this pandemic, and absolutely nothing that’s been instituted since has changed the priorities. Save the rich, dispose of as many of the rest as can be done before the tumbrils roll and the guillotines slice.

  4. Plague Species

    I saw the masks. They were not masks in the truest sense. They were bandanas, which are not masks. Meaning, despite them saying they took precautions, they really didn’t take precautions, but still, I agree, children, at least children over ten years of age, should not be congregating close together in school until the pandemic is properly contained via a centralized, national, consistent and comprehensive protocol.

    Children under ten do not spread the virus easily even though they can be asymptomatic carriers, so they can probably attend but not in large numbers and not in cramped quarters and the teachers must remain masked at all times and properly masked and the children too if that can be accomplished.

    Fyi, today is my wife’s first day of class. She teaches 3-6 year olds in a private school setting that serves the wealthy. Her older sister, who is a devout Catholic, texted her last night and pleaded with her to pray for the blood of Christ to be sprinkled on her in order to protect her from this deadly disease. If only it were that easy. We’re terrified, but we’re also out on the street if she loses her job. I’m unemployable. Don’t get me wrong, I’m perfectly capable of a great many things, but considering the draconian corporate standards in place for screening applicants, I would never get past first base in that filtering process and a minimum wage job wouldn’t keep us off the street.

    When my wife left this morning for her first day teaching at her corporate-owned school thirty miles away, I escorted her out and gave her a big, long, heartfelt, loving hug and told her I loved her. We both noted when we walked outside the house, the neighbor, a black fella about 40 years old with three kids and they are often out and about town and can’t sit still, had a horrible dry hacking cough (he was watering some new sod he had just put down a week or two prior) that sure sounded like a COVID cough if ever there was one. Good grief. It feels like the biblical tribulation has begun even though I consider the bible nonsense.

  5. GM


    The mortality rate is not high enough for this to be a population control tool.

    Population has to be reduced drastically if civilization is to survive, but in general infectious disease is not the way to go, because the kind of epidemic that will reduce global population by the 95% that it needs to be reduced by will also destroy civilization.

    Which does not mean that we will not get such an epidemic. Encroachment on wildlife will continue to escalate, and with it more and more viruses will make the jump onto humans. Eventually one of them might turn out to have the perfect combination of properties, i.e:

    1. very long incubation period
    2. presymptomatic spread
    3. extremely high mortality

    But this is for the future.

    Right now this is all about not doing another lockdown. Because another lockdown may necessitate debt cancellation, and debt cancellation is the unspeakable horror that the deaths of millions and the permanent disablement of tens of millions in the USA alone are the price that will be paid to prevent.

    Debt is the key mechanism that funnels wealth from the many towards the few. It has to be kept sacrosanct at all costs, otherwise the system will fall apart.

    And this is why we are getting policies that seem like they are deliberately designed to infect as many as possible. Because they probably are. Once everyone is infected, there is no point in doing a lockdown. Mission accomplished (from their perspective).

  6. GlassHammer

    So let’s talk about college and the need to return and more specifically how that is driven by college sports.

    To save some time I am going to share this thread on the topic:

    The short version is that without college sports most universities will go bankrupt, without on campus student athletes there are no college sports, without the return of the student body there are no returning student athletes, thus the student b9dy must return.

  7. GlassHammer

    We should probably talk about re-opening daycare because what holds true for public schools holds true for them as well.

    FYI even the North Eastern states who aren’t forcing students back are re-opening day cares.

  8. GlassHammer

    Last thing our elites are pushing for homeschooling as the workaround and eventually the replacement for public schools.

    More specifically co-op homeschooling is the target/goal.

  9. StewartM

    Every parent knows that even in normal times, schools are germ factories. Send your kids there, they get what the other kids have, or give the other kids what they already had, and they all then bring it home to their adult caretakers and give it to them. Getting sick from one’s school-aged children is normal; it’s just in normal times these sicknesses don’t kill you. Maybe only bars or sporting events are worse.

    I’m much more equivocal compared to the “experts” who bemoan the benefits of school. Don’t get me wrong, schooling without ‘school’ leads to a lot of unequal opportunities–as someone who grew up with parents of high school education, and ‘competed’ academically against those who had college-educated parents, I now see they had all these advantages I lacked–and I can only imagine what it would have been like if my parents had been high school dropouts. Maybe 20 years ago I might have said “the internet can compensate” which is still true, but thanks to people like Steve Bannon, the internet has been so filled with sh*t that it takes a fair amount of honed discrimination power to sift the gems from the trash (being a Facebook holdout, I am appalled what garbage is there when I glance at someone’s Facebook feed). And while some homeschoolers do an excellent job–my former college landlady, for one, but you must bear in mind she was qualified to teach something like eight subjects in the public school system–other homeschoolers I have seen do far less well. In fact, I have concluded that most people either homeschool their kids or sent them to private school to indoctrinate them, and/or *keep* them from learning things the parents do not approve of–i.e., playing Joe Stalin over their kids–than to give them better educational opportunities. My former college landlady, who homeschooled her kids, said to me “most homeschoolers are control freaks”.

    (She was an awesome person, who died in 2012; and I treasure her memory. Long after I left college and started work, we would hook up to do things).

    But ti’s the ‘socialization’ part of school that I am very dubious about. I think we have applied the assembly line to life itself, we peer-age segregate people throughout life, from kindergarten to the nursing homne, something no society has done before. It doesn’t have to be that way, and it shouldn’t be that way, but that’s the way we do it. I think kids should spend at least 50 % of their time with adults or at least other kids above or below them in age; in earlier times, when kids worked, either as apprentices or with their families, this guide I think was followed. Nor do I see the benefits of this peer-aged segregation. All I can see is that we’ve constructed school to be an artificial cocoon, where the behaviors you need to be the most popular kid in class are not the behaviors you will need as an adult, so it’s actually harmful, as people have to UN-learn their peer-rewarded behaviors to succeed in the adult world. So anything that breaks this ‘assembly line’ I’m fine with.

  10. anon

    It’s not just the Trumpstains advocating for a return to school. I’ve seen plenty of “liberal” leaders promoting a return as well. Andrew Yang did an entire podcast recently about reopening schools. Funny because I’m sure the vast majority of these folks send their kids to private school or well-funded public schools in wealthy neighborhoods where it is almost certain they will provide virtual learning in the fall. Barron Trump’s private school will not have in-person classes in the fall.
    What we can take away from all of this is that the 1% will not risk their lives and the health of their children, but they will advocate for reopening schools in the poorest neighborhoods so that poor parents can get back to their minimum wage work without having to worry about childcare.

  11. GlassHammer

    “UN-learn their peer-rewarded behaviors to succeed in the adult world” – Stewart

    Yeah that is not good advise.

    Peer manipulation is how one ascends a hierarchy and how you defend yourself against malicious peers. It’s way too valuable a skill to be left underdeveloped. We don’t live in a high cooperation society.

  12. S Brennan

    Until the situation described by the Mayo Clinic below is rectified, re-opening school doesn’t make sense to me. Just because you are asymptomatic does not mean you are not capable of spreading the disease.
    Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) – Diagnosis and Treatment › coronavirus › drc-20479976
    6 days ago – Currently, no medication is recommended to treat COVID-19 prior to hospitalization.
    When the FDA/CDC decides to release a pre-hospitalization medication, then, and only then, can we start on the road back to normalcy…but..

    Since DC’s political apparatchiks that have captured those agencies, are largely, “never-trumpers”, [of both parties] such an outcome will have to wait until after the election. Withholding such drugs until after the election will destroy many people’s lives* and exacerbate the nation’s problems** but, it aids in Trumps removal so…it’s all good. For the vast majority of Clinton/Obama D’s and Bush/Romney R’s, Trump’s overthrow has been the nation’s #1 priority since November 2016. What’s few more thousand people’s lives when you dealing with getting rid of Trump…I am sure most people here would agree…no?

    We just have to be careful until after Biden is declared the winner, then treatments will roll out.

    **[serious but, only for the lower 80%]

  13. Plague Species

    Barron Trump’s private school will not have in-person classes in the fall.

    I think you’ll get a chuckle out of this. I did. More irony for the irony mill. What is good for the plutocratic oligarchy’s goose is not good for the unwashed’s gander, apparently.

    The peer-rewarded behaviors are what teach children to fuck one another over in the adult world in all the various organizations in which they are ultimately employed. It’s the TRUE purpose of education these days. All of that adult behavior in all the various organizations combined the world over becomes the banality of evil with everyone doing their part to destroy all life on the planet whether they’re witting or not to the fact that is indeed the goal.

    I was watching a doc about Venezuela this morning. Venezuela is America’s destiny if and until the planet becomes entirely uninhabitable which may be sooner than many think and believe. It’s where America is headed. A few filthy rich and the rest climbing all over each and screwing each other over like cockroaches crawling around in the muck and filth for a few measly crumbs and scraps.

  14. Guest

    “The mortality rate is not high enough for this to be a population control tool.
    Population has to be reduced drastically if civilization is to survive, but in general infectious disease is not the way to go, because the kind of epidemic that will reduce global population by the 95% that it needs to be reduced by will also destroy civilization.”

    If this thing keeps up long enough it could easily destroy what passes for civilization in the neoliberal west. If not by itself, then by the wars and unrest and gangster rule it triggers. That collapse gets you the other 90% of the way”. At what point does the Western Hemisphere turn into perpetual Syria, Libya or Guatemala or Bolivia?

    Also, that’s BS about college sports. That is such a grift I agree they ARE trying to protect it. But with a very few exceptions sports are a parasitic drain on the host colleges and public spending which would be better off if colleges just stuck to education instead of building stadiums and paying huge salaries to coaches to exploit unpaid athletes.

  15. GlassHammer

    “Also, that’s BS about college sports. That is such a grift”- Guest


    Part of the problem is both state and federal funding has dried up for colleges so they are stuck with sports as a revenue source.

  16. js

    I don’t think it’s a deliberate measure by some conspiracy of the elites. And btw many schools in many districts will not open.

    I think it’s a combination of factors. One: willful indifference to human life from the Trump administration. Soft peddling this to peddle conspiracies involving all of the “elite” instead in my view leads one further and further astray. I have no love of the elite, I just don’t think it’s the simplest explanation. Is even *this* Trump administration behavior outright malice? Not as traditionally understood! It’s indifference!

    So we have failure at the federal level where federal leadership is in most cases needed, except in the cases where states are able to take the hit. The financing of most states probably aren’t able to take the hit. David Dayen at the American Prospect has written about how the more states rely on income taxes the more likely they were to reopen prematurely. Heck even big blue states like California are overwhelmingly income tax based (Prop 13). I can attribute actions to pure evil, and they may well BE evil in their effects, but perhaps it’s a structurally driven evil.

    Two: schools, schools actually tie into reopening, schools are the de-facto baby sitting services in this society that allow the wage slaves to wage slave . Now they aren’t the only baby sitting services maybe, I believe many daycares have been open for awhile and I wish we had more data from them on covid. But schools are the main babysitters. They are what minors are meant to do so the adults can work, so that the reproduction of labor doesn’t interfere with actual labor in the here and now. Sometimes they also impart some knowledge but that’s not even the primary purpose.

    Btw having kids in this society seems more and more a nightmare. Never mind climate change etc.. To raise kids you need an actual society. Maybe not a village to raise them, that may be primarily the parents job, but you need to live in *a* society, not some every man for themselves social darwinist hellhole where life is cheap and disposable.

  17. Hugh

    No national plan. No national leadership. There are people trying to do the right thing but without the support and resources they need. Their efforts often end up making matters worse, kicking more holes in the side of a still sinking ship.

    The bottom line is that we do not have control of the virus in the US, but we are opening schools as if we do or soon will. Mitigation is not up to the scale or likely duration of the problem. So we will be having this conversation again in a month or 6 weeks as all the initial plans run out.

  18. GlassHammer

    “the more states rely on income taxes the more likely they were to reopen prematurely” – Jennifer

    Well many red states (like florida) rely on transaction taxes (sales tax) to fund the state so I don’t know if income taxes are the primary driver of early re-opening.

    Fun fact, Florida gets roughly 80% of its revenue from sales tax.

  19. Hugh

    Sales taxes are regressive and allow the rich to hold on to more of their wealth. Probably just an over-sight in Florida. /s

  20. Ian Welsh

    Criminal negligence is “when any reasonable person” would have known.

  21. GlassHammer

    “the more states rely on income taxes the more likely they were to reopen prematurely” – Jennifer

    Sorry I meant to refer to js.

    I really hate auto correct/complete.

  22. GlassHammer

    “Sales taxes are regressive and allow the rich to hold on to more of their wealth. Probably just an over-sight in Florida.” – Hugh

    Its an incentive for retirees to move there.
    States like Florida have high sales tax but little income tax or property tax.
    But you need lots of tourist to keep the state going since the elderly consume relatively little.

  23. GlassHammer

    “Criminal negligence is “when any reasonable person” would have known.” – Ian

    In a sane society it means that but in our society…….

  24. Hugh

    Yes, this is probably why soon to be retirees like Donald Trump and Joe Scarborough changed their residence to Florida.

  25. Jeffrey Wegerson

    The federal needs to be the economy until the virus is manageable everywhere. Money needs to be put in the hands of everybody who can be kept out of work till they are tided over.

    Bad map. Idaho is as bad as Texas while Maine and Vermont are as good as New York on a per capita basis. You allude to that by mentioning the Northeast. The point being that if I am in Idaho my kids are also going into a classroom with 20-30 others even if the next house is a mile down road rather than next door. The bar I visit could be as jammed as one in Florida.

  26. S Brennan

    Washington State has no income tax and it is D controlled, has been for many decades. Pols service the wealthy.

    People need to get over the idea that a [D] behind a name means something different than an [R] behind a name. Now, if you get off on meaningless platitudes that are meant to confuse and misdirect* then the D’s have an edge there.

    And let’s no confuse today’s Ds with the party of FDR, that train left the station back in 1977-8, today’s Ds are the party of Woodrow Wilson, racist, war-lusting, fascists thirsting for power and willing to perform any evil act to get it.

    Think of Hillary/Obama/Biden pillaging Libya because a few donors thought they could make a financial killing…it didn’t pan out but, that was the plan…people were hung in Nuremberg for far less. And yeah Bernie fans, Sanders voted to bomb the shit out of Libya…

    *so as to accomplish the greater evil

  27. js

    To the extent electoral politics CAN work, and it can be debated if it can work, I’m not sure there is a better strategy than to primary from the left, so running socialists or at least actual progressives. And there may be parts of the country that are just too conservative for this to ever work. But it’s a blue state or purple state (or city) strategy at any rate. And then the votes have to be counted correctly and who even knows if they are, and then there is Dem party opposition at times, and then there is that the voters themselves may choose terrible candidates. If we changed to rank choice voting it might also push things in a better direction, since there would be less need for “lesser evil” calculations.

    But the current mess, while one can’t prove a counterfactual, is Trump, it really is. It’s not even R’s (versus Ds’) although R’s under Mitch McConnel are indeed absolutely awful and of no economic help to anyone. It’s Trump.

    I’m not even convinced that states that mismanaged the pandemic did so because they are controlled by the wealthy. Sure business had it’s interest in reopening and that’s my first thought about what was behind it as well, but state budgets were also crashing. So even entirely independent of business interests, states had their own interest in reopening.

  28. RobotPliers

    What’s amazing to me is that about half my neighbors were planning to send their kids into school before our district announced 100% virtual a few weeks ago. Most of these families are not compelled to send their kids in for work/money reasons, but told me it was what they thought was best for their children, and they’d be fine going 100% virtual “if there’s an outbreak, but who knows what will happen?” These are also not “covid19 truthers” who think it’s no big deal or a hoax.

    The lack of thinking among my neighbors is disheartening.

  29. Synoia

    What is Sweden doing?

    Isolating the old and treating the younger is a socialist medical system,

    The risk in schools is in the Cafeteria, where by definition, it’s crowded (no spacing), and no masks (try eating while wearing a mask).

    My daughter, a teacher, predicts this term will be very short, about 4 weeks long.

  30. BlizzardOfOzzz

    Hard agree. As long as any virus exists, children should not be allowed to socialize with each other. If it gives even one 80 year old even one more month of life, it’s worth it. I’m a slave in all but name.

  31. GlassHammer

    “The lack of thinking among my neighbors is disheartening” – RobotPliers

    Most people live their life in an extremely inflexible and fragile state but are totally unaware of it.

    So they dont adapt and overestimate their odds.

  32. Willy

    Cant we just declare this all a kung flu hoax and imagine this thing away?

  33. Joan

    It certainly seems wise to try to home-school for the time being, until things calm down. Maybe online private tutoring has more demand, for fields in which the homeschooling parent isn’t up to the task. I went all the way through public schools, and am grateful I wasn’t homeschooled because some kids need rescuing from their parents, but having a respiratory pandemic on the loose…sheesh. I think of how crowded my middle school and high school had been and wow, it would spread like wildfire, even if only half the kids were there.

  34. Without reference to comprehensive quantitative cost/benefit analyses, I don’t see where anybody should express any opinion, with confidence, about what’s best to do. To this day, I’ve neither seen, nor heard of, any comprehensive (even if crude) projection of when it’s best to reopen, what and where, based on cost/benefit calculations. Presumably, the government does such projections; but, if so, why don’t they share the details?

    My sense of things, though, is that if the government aggressively promotes Vit D sufficiency, HCQ/zinc prophylaxis, and makes safety provisions for the elderly (this last is a tall order, compared to the 1st two, logistically), it’d be quite safe to reopen. That doesn’t mean, of course, that NOBODY will get sick, or die from covid, via an infection chain that came through a school.

    Dr. Risch has sort of made this case*. Here he is, explaining why Fauci, are full of crap: youtube video: Ep 313 – Dr. Harvey Risch on War Room: Pandemic After CNN Hit Job”

    Risch was too polite to call Fauci (and now Giroir) liars, when they crow about “no scientific evidence that HCQ works”. Fortunately, at least one member of Laura Ingraham’s medical cabinet did say that Fauci “lied by omission” when doing his “no evidence” spiel.


    * INGRAHAM: And Dr. Risch, how important would it be now or significant, if the administration basically through the FDA rescinded that warning about hydroxy. It was complete bunk, made a mistake about the warning and get out of the way of the relationship between the doctor and the patient for off- label use of a medicine that’s been around for 65 years. Shouldn’t Stephen Hahn of the FDA come out and say, look, we’re not going to micromanage your decisions and let this go?

    RISCH: Yes, it would be game-changing. In fact, all of the discussion that you had earlier on how to manage going forward through September, October and into next year will change if there’s prevention and treatment that works, that’s available and that’s safe. And that is, in fact, the case. But the problem is, of course, that nobody wants to hear it, and nobody lets it out except for you. You’re the only one who’s actually in any way the mainstream media that is allowing anybody to speak about the evidence for the usage of these drugs.

  35. S Brennan

    Agree with you Joan…

    “some kids need rescuing from their parents, but..”

    I know this to be true. For those so afflicted, distance and time are the only real treatment, fortunately…neither requires FDA/CDC approval or…a randomized, placebo-controlled trial.

  36. HawHaw

    Americans deserve this.

  37. bob mcmanus

    Both of us are very high risk. In Texas.

    F**k. G&&&d***mn b***tch roommate insists on getting central air conditioning installed this week and I can’t talk her out of it.

  38. Eric Anderson

    Two points:
    First, sending the kids back is perfectly within the DeVos playbook. Education is the one of the last bastions of “public goods” from which the neoliberals continue to “relentlessly jam [their] blood funnel” to extract “anything that smells like money.” These people want women barefoot and pregnant at home with the kids buying up their massed produced science lite, history revising “educational materials.”

    Yes. It’s calculated. The more pain they inflict on the “publicly educated” proles the better. If they can force you to homeschool, they win. You are not them. You’re subhuman. They don’t care. To predict their moves has become far too easy, just simply imagine the unimaginably evil choice. They don’t even try to disguise it anymore.

    Second: Sorry, this is a lawyer quibble.
    Criminal negligence is recklessness. You basically described just plain old negligence, Ian, which is defined as the failure to exercise the standard of care that a reasonably prudent person would have exercised in a similar situation. The situation drives the standard of care.
    Recklessness is defined as proceeding in the face of a KNOWN risk. It doesn’t matter if you’re reasonable or not. Everyone is assumed to know taking certain risks puts other people’s lives in danger. The intent is what makes it criminal. The law basically thinks you used such poor judgment you need to be punished criminally for it. See: Drunk driving.

  39. Stirling S Newberry

    This like end of empire in many ways – we can’t do for the populace what needs to be done and the rich only want to stockpile money.

  40. S Brennan

    Excellent comment Metamars…

  41. bob mcmanus

    “To this day, I’ve neither seen, nor heard of, any comprehensive (even if crude) projection of when it’s best to reopen…”

    However horrid our local governance, corona/covid is global, and some nations seem to be doing much better. I would watch East Asia etc for guidance. Not that there is a lot of certainty out there, but definitely better info and judgement than what we get in the States. And knowledge is growing every day. Maybe Asahi, Asian Times Online, SCMP would be good reads.

  42. Stirling S Newberry

    And I’m too polite to call Dr. Risch a liar either – the data is thin on the ground and it does not support his position of overwhelmingly a net positive.

    For example:
    “We examined the association between hydroxychloroquine use and intubation or death at a large medical center in New York City. Data were obtained regarding consecutive patients hospitalized with Covid-19, excluding those who were intubated, died, or discharged within 24 hours after presentation to the emergency department (study baseline). The primary end point was a composite of intubation or death in a time-to-event analysis. We compared outcomes in patients who received hydroxychloroquine with those in patients who did not, using a multivariable Cox model with inverse probability weighting according to the propensity score.”

    There are data points on both sides, it is too early to come down on either side. For example:

    “Conclusions: The prognosis of COVID-19 moderate patients is good. Larger sample size study are needed to investigate the effects of HCQ in the treatment of COVID-19. Subsequent research should determine better endpoint and fully consider the feasibility of experiments such as sample size.”

    The sample size are small – so much so that other factors are impossible to discount. This is the problem: you need a large study. He does not have a smoking gun.

  43. Trinity

    SBrennan, you need to lose the asterisks, they detract/distract from your message.

    Because this:

    People need to get over the idea that a [D] behind a name means something different than an [R] behind a name.

    is pure gold and spot on.

    The focus should be on what they do, not what they say, and definitely not their party affiliation. It’s meaningless.

  44. NR

    Hey, Blizzard is back. Remind me, how did his “It’S jUSt tHe FLu” prediction from back in March turn out?

  45. Willy

    Some say that the surest way to determine ones intelligence lies in their ability to accurately predict outcomes. Others say it lies in their ability to deny reality, shamelessly. I prefer the former.

  46. Stirling S Newberry

    Sometime in the next few days, COVID-19 will hit a global death toll of 700,000.

  47. Stirling S Newberry


    Quarantine online
    Unsurprising online streets
    circulation capturing
    4 police incited
    June uprisings unprecedented
    historic medium witnessing exceptionally
    struggle square
    unfolded Amid footage.

    Inundated Screenshots
    donations proliferate generated
    Webinars abolition constitute
    migrated pandemic – hallowed.
    encampments revolutionary 2020.

    sociologist networked mobilization uprisings,
    function of time.

  48. Stirling S Newberry

    Why do they do this?

    Every time a big number comes up, central government try and hide by reducing the body count – it is far too frequent to be just chance. There number are public and have a dozen statistical team on it. We know what influence random chance has and even random chance has it limits. This is why epidemiology basically raise to the power of two.

  49. Eric Anderson

    And cue Sarah Jones making the identical argument I posted up thread:

  50. @Stirling S Newberry

    so that I don’t waste my time reading garbage studies, please tell me if you’ve read these studies, or not. If you want to know why it’s often necessary to read a study, rather than just an abstract, you can search for my quote of Andy Cutler on the subject.

    If so, did they break out the time of treatment vs. stage of disease? We already know that HCQ doesn’t work well after the cytokine process starts (though sermo polls show it’s still used in ICU situations, so I assume some benefit is being observed, late in the disease process)

    Zelenko has advised 7 countries on his protocol, which is basically what Risch is backing. The Zelenko protocol includes zinc. Do the studies you cite include zinc, in a dosage range that would make Zelenko happy? (Not too high, not too low.)

    BTW, the question of whether saying there is “no evidence” for HCQ efficacy is a lie, or not, is distinct from the harder question of just how “thin” that evidence is. You certainly won’t hurt my feelings if you state that Risch is liar, as Fauci and Giroir clearly are.

    This page claims to show “normalized cumulative death curves between nations where the government endorsed using the Zelenko protocol and nations that have opted to discourage its use.”

    I’m not sure if this is literally true, as the graph breaks out “early HCQ use” countries from others which don’t fall into this category. If it is literally true, that would make the Fauci/Girior lies even more deadly.

  51. GlassHammer

    “Every time a big number comes up, central government try and hide by reducing the body count” – Stirling S Newberry

    It’s actually worse than that, in an event like a pandemic you don’t know the true mean (average) while you are in the event. The growth rate of the thing makes getting a feel/expectation for it nearly impossible.

    So suppressing the measurement makes it far more understated then you would assume.

  52. S Brennan

    Good comment Metamars; I too am tired of the postings where the headline from a “study” is touted and the poster hasn’t bothered to read far enough to understand the outline of the protocol…not the protocol itself, just the two or three paragraphs that outline it.

    On nit to pick on the graph you showed, the data set I am most interested in pre-hospitalization treatments is, hospitalizations after treatment vs hospitalizations after following the “do nothing treatment” recommended by Fauci and the above-commenter.

  53. NL

    js – “To the extent electoral politics CAN work, and it can be debated if it can work”

    Nope. Voting for people has never worked and will never work as a governance mechanism. This was known thousands of years ago. Wealthy members of your ‘society’ will simply buy up your representatives. I am pretty sure people here well know what the purpose of the elections is… Some would say “if you do not vote, you have no right to complain”. That is absolutely incorrect… when you (not directed at anyone, a general person ‘you’) vote, does not matter for whom, you legitimize and consent to the present rule… stop complaining, seriously… you got what you legitimized and consented too. I apologize in advance greatly, but once I see D and R mentioned, I get bored and skip. Like our president just said “it is what it is”.

    The alternatives are a) democracy when people vote for decisions and not for other people who vote for decisions – in the age of internet, it would be easy to provide that every citizen votes for decisions, and a committee of randomly selected citizens oversees and implements those decisions through professional workers

    b) sovereign could be a monarch, a religious leader (theocracy as in Iran, we could worship AI), an ideological leader/philosopher-king (as in China )

    Or we can get a cult-like committee of oligarchs who put themselves and us through hell.

    In line with the thesis that the oligarchy is about to go through a power struggle, Ritholtz in Bloomberg claims that 490 companies in the S&P 500 can be dispensed with…

  54. Hugh

    Offhand I would say that using kids as guinea pigs to help open schools is not going to be real popular among their parents. Yes, parents want schools open. No, they do not want to endanger their children.

  55. js

    A lot of moralizing about voting, but is not consenting actually doing anything either? I mean in order for that argument to make sense pragmatically, non-consenting (non-voting) would have to be shown to actually have some power or leverage. But so what if voter turn out is low? Do our leaders care? Does even the rest of the world looking on care? No. Even in the present situation, they’ll blame us for Trump, even though more voted for Hillary, and more didn’t vote. Such subtleties get lost in blaming some royal “we” for the situation regardless of what happens.

    At most it could be said voting tends to get people to accept their leaders more readily, so it may have a negative effect on the psychology of the ruled, but that has to weighted against whatever difference voting might make. I don’t think non-voting has any effect on the rulers at all, consent implies an effect on the rulers.

    I don’t think people even do vote for moral reasons, just as self-protection, as best as one can (not all that well via most voting). But I understand it

    I mean one needs to analyze what power they realistically do have to try to use it, may not be much. But I don’t even think consent and legitimacy via voting or not voting is a power we have. I mean focusing on power and not the purity of one’s conscience.

  56. GlassHammer

    Welcome to the first day back in the great state of Georgia:

  57. js

    BTW despite a tepid defense of voting as a very limited power we may (or may not if the machines are rigged) have, trying to get accountable vote counts is also something we should definitely try for, I find a system where we have to wait another 5 months to change a situation where people are dying at a clip of 1000 a day appalling.

    I find all those who would argue for voting for Biden as the answer to our current predicament make me want to throw up in my mouth. Yes, fine, whatever, vote for Biden, my argument isn’t even that he’s not a lesser evil, he probably is. But a system that would make us wait while 1000 people die a day due to arcane procedural garbage needs to be trashed, burned, and buried. And salt the earth afterward.

  58. NR

    Hugh: You are vastly overestimating today’s Republicans. Today’s Republicans are quite literally a cult who will kill themselves and their children, and you and your children, if their Dear Leader tells them to. And that’s exactly what he’s told them to do.

  59. @bob mcmanus

    Thanks for trying to address my complaint, but I was looking essentially for a publicly available models, that experts can examine, in detail; and non-experts (like honest journalists and bloggers) can explains.

    Here is an example of an insufficient step in this direction: on the Laura Ingraham show (if memory serves), she went next level one day, recently, and states something like suicides are up by a factor of 7 since the lockdowns. (Again, don’t quote me.)

    This is much better than making a purely qualitative comments, as I have done, and she has done, many times, about we can expect deaths ultimately due to lockdowns, go up because suicides will increase. Hence, “next level”.

    I can’t remember where I heard it (I think on the Hill program), but the statement was made that this is what public policy IS: cost/benefit calculations.

    I’m kind of tired of seeing CNN youtubes telliing us that re-lockdowns are necessary, because covid deaths went up; and FOX youtubes telling us people and businesses will die because of the lockdowns. I already know all that. My innate tendencies (I have a degree in math and physics) are crying out for something A) more quantitative and B) well motivated in terms of reasoning (which should be corrected as new data comes along) C) with statistical measures explicit

    It’s likely that, unless the model is quite simple (and I think there’s a place for these, even if only constructed by journalists, as a way of illustrating how non-transparent the health related edicts are), I personally wouldn’t want to get into the nitty gritty. Well, that’s what domain experts are for; and science and policy bloggers who can communicate with them.

    For people with both the relevant expertise, and time on their hands to dissect government lockdown edict ‘science’, the lack of transparency must be excruciating.

    In fact, I stumbled onto somebody that I think fits this description just an hour ago.


    “One such good guy and admirable Nobel Prizewinner is Sir Paul Nurse. He is neither virologist nor epidemiologist; rather, he is a geneticist who actually discovered something useful – several things, in fact – hence the Nobel Prize.

    “In the Guardian piece, Nurse claims that it has often been impossible to challenge emerging Covid19 policy – a situation that has fuelled poor decisions and put public trust at risk. He is quoted as saying:

    “Decisions are too often shrouded in secrecy. They need challenge and we need processes to ensure that happens. If they are going to keep the trust of the nation, they need to make those discussions more public. It sometimes seems like a ‘black box’ made up of scientists, civil servants and politicians are coming up with the decisions. It needs to be more open. We need greater transparency, greater scrutiny and greater challenge to get the best results.”

    One suspects this is a thinly-disguised attack on one-sided debates dominated by Big Pharma PR spin and the funding dependence of its creatures.”

  60. BlizzardOfOzzz

    NR, a brief PSA for you: more children die from the flu than from your fake commie virus. You may now resume your regularly scheduled pants-shitting.

  61. NR

    You all saw him say it, folks – Blizzard *still* thinks COVID is fake.

    This is what Trump supporters are really like, people.

  62. Willy

    Not really news around here, but the commie virus is a certified conservative killer. We designed it that way.

    To recap the stats, redneck/elderly Florida will soon top flamboyantly liberal California in the number of cases. Texas has long since topped the old dense epicenter New York. In Georgia it’s worse than in density epicenters Illinois and Jersey. Arizona, North Carolina and Louisiana are way past Massachusetts.

    And then the younger the American, fairly immune to the deadlier aspects, are leaning authoritarian/commie more than they ever did, possibly ever. And most kids growing up will stay commies since unlike in days past when they’d acquire the “wealth” they wanted to protect with selfishness, making them conservative, they wont anymore. Damn neoliberalism. Even Steve Bannon sez this shall be so.

    We’re gonna lose a lot of freedom fighting Karens. And Fox News is gonna lose a lot of viewers.

  63. capelin

    “NR permalink
    August 4, 2020
    Hugh: You are vastly overestimating today’s Republicans. Today’s Republicans are quite literally a cult who will kill themselves and their children, and you and your children, if their Dear Leader tells them to. And that’s exactly what he’s told them to do.”

    47% of deaths are 75 and older; 17 years and younger represents .04% of deaths.

    The kids’ll be fine.

    I agree that purposefully messing up public schools and those associated with them is a big driver in how this is being rolled out.

    Apparently France has had their schools open since the tail end of last year’s classes, but their country isn’t a full gong show like America.

  64. Stirling S Newberry


    The late maestro
    Soft sharp
    Check wares
    Ripened maturation
    Apprentices hardened
    mentorship reprimands
    cold century crest
    cheesemaking archeologist
    history surface relics rusting.
    disappointment dissent dismemberment death.

  65. NL

    js :”A lot of moralizing about voting, but is not consenting actually doing anything either? I mean in order for that argument to make sense pragmatically, non-consenting (non-voting) would have to be shown to actually have some power or leverage. But so what if voter turn out is low? Do our leaders care? Does even the rest of the world looking on care? No.”

    No moralizing here. At the very least you do not waste your time in sort of rather pointless conversations and moralizing and and prepare accordingly. Let’s say Biden gets elected — so what? In the grand scheme of things, nothing of significance to the populace will happen specifically because of Biden being the president instead of Trump. China bashing is here to stay, economic decline and impoverishment are here to stay. Surely, Biden will talk a lot, do some proposals, blah, blah, blah, yada yada yada .. nothing changes. Things will change, as the WSJ editorial stated today, history is accelerating, but things will change not because Biden won the right to live in the White House or because of his “leadership”. Or if H. Clinton was the president right now, would the response to the epidemic differ in any meaningful way? Different verbiage, same outcome..

    Next is the recognition that you have no real input into the decision making to protect your life, liberty and pursuit of happiness (whatever these things are) and to protect your economic interest. You can live with this, or maybe you will begin to consider alternatives and consider how to get there…

    …like the direct decision making by all citizens through the internet. That would be an interesting discussion

  66. Stirling S Newberry


    i have not seen any reason to trust you turd breath

    (it seems you only respond to the scatalogical)

  67. shrewberry

    your worst poetry yet
    I would bet
    it rises to new lows
    as far as it goes

  68. NR

    Capelin: Fine except for long-term health damage and potentially being orphaned when they bring the virus home to their parents, you mean?

  69. BlizzardOfOzzz

    NR, even with your commie dictatorship in place, and diktats that change daily with the wind, the virus is still spreading. Everyone is going to catch it eventually. So what was the point in all the misery you’re spreading? Meanwhile — since you’re a materialist slave who only cares about stopping death and suffering — what is the likely death toll of your newly established commie dictatorship, which will endure long after your precious virus is gone? Those deaths never seem to count to your ilk, do they.

  70. js

    I might be convinced the pandemic would be handled the same if there wasn’t so much evidence otherwise including from other countries. The weight of the evidence is on that, but of course one can’t prove a counterfactual. And there is much less evidence of any sort of unified elite behind the current pandemic chaos than on Trump culpability.

    But I’m not in a swing state so it really doesn’t matter how I vote for President. Where I have seen challenges from the left that I was thinking about initially was is in more local races, and they ALL lost, period, every single one of them lost so far, pretty much zero success rate. But still something could come from it. On a state level there is direct vote via voter iniatives.

  71. NR

    Commie dictatorship! Blizzard, you continue to be a shining example of your ilk.

    Everyone else, take note – this is what Trump supporters *actually believe.* They *actually believe* that measures taken to combat a deadly pandemic – which they believe is fake anyway, despite 150,000 dead – amount to a communist dictatorship.

    There is no reasoning with these people. None.

  72. Willy

    There are tons of videos out there with anti-maskers calling store owners Nazis and BLM niggers.

    There’s a Youtube athiest who may indirectly shine a light on all that. He says that the evidence is that theists don’t actually believe as they do. Instead, the need to believe as they do overwhelms their reason. Proving them wrong only makes them more entrenched because there’s an emotional payoff which exists outside of logic.

  73. NR

    “There are tons of videos out there with anti-maskers calling store owners Nazis and BLM niggers.”

    The American right is certainly a festering cesspool of racism and hatred, and now it’s mixed in with equal parts stupidity and willful ignorance.

  74. capelin

    NR permalink August 5, 2020 Capelin: Fine except for long-term health damage and potentially being orphaned when they bring the virus home to their parents, you mean? .04% is simply not \”Today’s Republicans are quite literally a cult who will kill themselves and their children, and you and your children\”, as your dramatic generalization stated.

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