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

May 8th US Covid Data

Our benefactor writes:

We inexorably climb to 80,000 deaths. The lack of broad testing just results in the mortality rate continuing to go up. The number of cases is totally under-counted.

The results of the work I do, like this article, are free, but food isn’t, so if you value my work, please DONATE or SUBSCRIBE.


How Neoliberalism Destroyed Capitalism


Open Thread


  1. Daniel Lynch

    Re: fatality rate. For the U.S. it has been stable for a while at 5.9% for all cases, vs. 6.9% globally (data from worldometers).

    HOWEVER you have to compare that to the fatality rate for CLOSED cases — 26% in the U.S. and 17% globally.

    Which is correct? Neither, at the moment. Eventually, all active cases must close and when that happens the “all cases” rate will converge with the “closed cases” rate. Where they will converge is anyone’s guess. When the benefactor notes that the fatality rate for all cases has creeped up, what he is seeing is a convergence between the “all cases” rate and the “closed cases” rate.

    Of course the fatality rate is skewed by inadequate testing but I look at it as “the fatality rate for CONFIRMED cases.”

    All that said, bear in mind that the U.S. currently has 1 million “active” cases (per worldometers). Those are people who have tested positive, have not died (yet), but have not recovered yet, either. Multiply those 1 million active cases by your favorite fatality rate for confirmed cases — let’s say 10% — and that’s 100,000 additional deaths that the U.S. is LOCKED INTO even if there are no new infections.

    77,000 deaths so far, 100,000 additional deaths the U.S. is LOCKED INTO. The U.S. could easily hit 200,000 deaths by September.

    That’s the OFFICIAL deaths. True deaths as measured by EXCESS deaths seem to be running 40% – 50% higher than the official number.

  2. Ché Pasa

    And by the time the Covid situation stabilizes, if it does, and there’s a vaccine, if there is, the official (but unannounced) deaths will total 500,000 or so, with an actual death total of 1,000,000 or more.

    Almost the same as models predicted at the beginning of the pandemic if nothing was done.


  3. S Brennan

    The only thing that will move the death rate down is effective early treatment. Currently all official sources tell us to do NOTHING for the first 6-10 days. It is unacceptable that the US Medical establishment, the political [left/right/D/R], the media and all the main posters on this blog, has/have no interest in early treatment studies. And I add, unlike Germany, S Korea and Taiwan.

  4. Hugh

    The BLS jobs report is out. The employment data from the smaller household survey react faster to changes than the jobs data from the larger establishment survey. So seasonally unadjusted (what really happened) from February to April 24.691 million people ceased to be employed. This is of course a likely undercount since it misses the last 12 days of April. The reference period was April 12-18.

  5. Jill

    Mr. Welsh,

    I really don’t understand why you think the US is putting out reliable numbers. It isn’t. In leaked written directives the CDC has changed the way deaths in the US are being labeled. In truth, you can read this memo, hear the words of whistleblowers and coronors in PA have forced their state to correct the death count downward.

    In addition to having fudged numerators we do not have accurate denominators either. What we do have is several peer reviewed studies showing a death rate very much like a bad flu.

    I continue to be mystified by people who believe the USG. This govt. lies all the time (non partisan, doesn’t matter what the party in power is). I think Off Guardian in the UK is a good source of info. I don’t know if you’ve seen that site, but there are many professionals who criticize the USG numbers and explain why they are not correct.

    I just don’t know what to say.

  6. krake


    Does Massachusetts have an avg of 150 flu deaths a day for more than a month?

    (Hint: 2017 had less than 1500 for the entire year.)

  7. krake

    NY state had less than 5000 flu deaths for all of 2018, Jill.

    The 20k more covid-19 deaths, in a two month period (with a probable undercount not accounted for) – that’s a “bad flu”, eh?

  8. Ian Welsh

    I don’t think these numbers are accurate, I think they’re understatements. I have said that in multiple posts.

    They still give us trend lines and it’s useful to know what the official numbers are.

    I don’t know what to say.

  9. S Brennan

    I really wish those who wish to disparage Brother Ian would read the blog regularly, be halfway knowledgeable on current and past history and pay attention to the political realm in non-election years.

    Often I disagree with Ian and the “liberal” establishment, [not that I am saying they are the same thing] but, Ian is an honest actor and all due respect should be accorded him for retaining his intellectual honesty…in a time where such virtues are deemed vices.

  10. @S Brennan:

    Well, I may not be a “main poster on this blog”, but I’m certainly for early treatment. This is a no-brainer, as the most effective treatment, per the sermo poll, is hydroxychloroquine. Plus, even if you cure in late stages, there is likely going to be permanent or long-term damage to lungs – perhaps heart, kidney, who knows what else, also. The hydroxychloroquine/Zpak/Zn combo won’thelp much in late stages. So says Raoult, and a bunch of other people.

    In the youtube-censored video Plandemic, Part I, it’s stated that medicare pays $13,000 for each covid-19 admission to a hospital. If the patient that you’re calling covid-19 goes on a ventilator, madicare is paying $39,000. However, the Dr. Siegel guy that frequents Fox News said that hospitals only get 20% more for covid patients.

    Do you have any insight as to the accuracy of these claims? I suppose it’s possible that medicare could pay 80% of $13,000 for non-covid acute respiratory disease patients, so the covid-19 compensation claims could both be accurate.

  11. S Brennan


    You and I have disagreed in the past but, I hope you’ve noticed, I have been supportive of your posts on the subject of Covid-19.

    Early Treatment is the only way to unravel this mess.

    Best wishes

  12. Zachary Smith

    How Judy Mikovits & The Viral “Plandemic” Conspiracy Video Are Invading America

    Since the video went viral, Mikovits’s recently published anti-Fauci book Plague of Corruption rose to the top of Amazon’s bestseller charts, taking the number one spot.

    God must love stupid people – he made enough of them to put the book by a failed scientist to the top of Amazon’s list.

    From Science magazine:

    Fact-checking Judy Mikovits, the controversial virologist attacking Anthony Fauci in a viral conspiracy video

    Mikovits: Wearing the mask literally activates your own virus. You’re getting sick from your own reactivated coronavirus expressions, and if it happens to be SARS-CoV-2, then you’ve got a big problem.

    If this woman didn’t have such a history, she would have had a fair chance at convincing Trump to warn the nation about the danger of wearing masks. Telling him he was the Greatest President of All Time, and that she was a Ph.D. — it might have happened.

  13. @S Brennan

    Well, thanks. Of course, it’s most important to support the truth, whatever that turns out to be. There is now evidence that the active ingredient in Pepcid has some benefit; also selenium, as noted by Zachary Smith. Dr. Buttar, BTW, has suggested complete confidence wrt covid-19 infections (probably early stage), and uses intravenous selenium.

    I don’t know how well supported the recommendations of a medical group out of Virginia are, but they are well spoken of by a data driven (trained) scientist called Dr. Chris Martenson, who I’ve come to view as the most objective observer of things covid-related. (It’s a mystery to me, though, why he doesn’t even mention oxygenating therapies, though I’ve only heard about 5 of his talks). The Virginia group actually does have some recommendations for when the cytokine storm phase hits, at which point – if I understood correctly – the antivirals recommended in the first phase all become relatively useless. The protocols were far too involved to even be gone into in too much depth on Martenson’s longish show, but he does provide a reference. He has had a video of his disappeared by the youtube gods, but as of right now, the segment with discussion of advanced protocols is still available as “Coronavirus: The “Rescue” Is Stealing Your Wealth”. There is also a prophylaxis recommendation (10:24), which Martenson presents though he has some doubts and recommendations for improvement.

    Martenson’s website bears the unfortunate (to me) name of, and he seems knowledgeable about economic matters. (He better be, with a website of that name.) According to Martenson, the combination of a rising stock market with a 40% decrease in more essential valuations of the economy, has resulted in a massive upward transfer of wealth, such that the people on the top have doubled their wealth. I have no background in economics, and little head for it, so will not comment on this claim, further, other than to say that Martenson sounds like he knows what he’s talking about. 🙂

  14. Stirling S Newberry

    USA has found out the increasing age makes the population more stupid, until some whips out every one of a given age, regardless of whether the dead were stupid or not.

  15. @Zachary Smith

    It appears there’s a tradeoff involved in wearing masks. Relying on Dr. Chris Martenson, the science is generally in favor of it.

    While I haven’t heard Mikovits’ explanation of what she means by “reactivated coronavirus expressions”, it’s probably what Dr. Buttar means when he says the following quoted remarks. BTW, my understanding of virology is just about zero, but one thing I think I know is that, as Gary Null puts it, “there’s enough bad stuff in you (viruses and bacteria) to kill you”, PROVIDED the bad bugs are allowed to get out of control.

    Evidently, your knowledge of virology is as deep as mine – i.e., essentially non-existent.

    “in fact the true aspect of viruses most doctors don’t even understand they’re actually released secondary to a toxicological overload so the body is without viruses we would not be alive with that viruses humans that would have been extinct thousands of years ago tens of thousands hundreds of thousands years ago we are a viral system I want you to remember this Dominic this is key and for your listeners to remember this when you put a mask on your face you are reducing the flow of air which means you’re reducing the flow of oxygen so now you have to fight a little bit harder to get that oxygen when you get when your body is stressed because you’re not getting the normal flow of oxygen that increases your cortisol output which is your stress hormone which is now the sympathetic overtone the sympathetic sympathetic mimetic overtone of the body which is basically the flight fight response that increase in cortisol the the increase in heart rate the increase in peripheral vascular resistance that now the heart has to overcome to pump the blood these are all parts and parcel of stress it decreases your immune system it suppresses your lymphocyte subpopulation it decreases your natural killer cell it decreases your B lymphocytes your ability to then create antibodies to an antigen or hapten some type of foreign substance is hampered so by putting a mask on there further misinforming the public and causing people to now increase the stress in the systems and guess what when the body stressed that’s when the viruses are actually released from your cells ”

    BTW, your tendency to make absolutist, insulting pronouncements, in spite of evident and probable ignorance, is tiresome. I doubt that anybody posting here on covid-19 is an expert on virology, and likely not more than a small few have studied it in a college setting. I perused a debunker article on Mikovits, and it had the sheer gall to say that hydroxychloroquine doesn’t work, and it’s reference was the POS, total garbage VA retrospective study. (Nicely dissected by Dr. Chris Martenson, BTW). I have no problem with honest debunking (which must, of course, be balanced and try to get at their target’s true meaning). You, unfortunately, are only too happy to quote liars (by omission, at the very least) whose fondest desire appears to be character assassination.

    I have to wear a mask at work, and while I find it annoying, it’s livable. I don’t think the stress factor/cortisol elevation is all that much. However, I had to wear a mask when practicing my dribbling at a recently re-opened public park, even though there was nobody near me, and it definitely hampered my breathing in a significant way. I actually bent the mask away from my nose, making it more useless as a filtering agent, and even then I cut short and toned down my workout. Even mild suffocation just ain’t my thing.

  16. Stirling S Newberry

    Objectively speaking this is what flattening the curve is. It is a rather half-assed version of flattening the curve because if you get very early the disease does not spread hither and yon. But in the present circumstances with the present need for “freedom”, meaning the freedom to die, it is the best that we can do. But this means that the curve will go on for much longer than if we let it just spread. Now the death total would be logarithmically more, which is why screamed “millions” because that is what happens when unrestricted death total is left to run wild, but this was not going to happen because nobody in the same allows it and anyone who sends out of office. Including Trump.

    But what this means is that the curve of the disease will go on for much longer, as in many many much. Is that people who are in the uninfected is continue to think of incremental death totals rather than logarithmic death totals – because logarithmic death totals are rare, compared with incremental death tolls which are relatively common.

  17. S Brennan


    Because of the US Medical/media’s institutions failure to recommend anything other than just waiting, [after diagnosis], until hospitalization is required

    I again suggest that Ian pin a curated self-help post for days 0-10 or until hospitalization. The idea would be not as much prescriptive rather links to credible sources [and source removal when appropriate]. I think it would be the kind of self-help Ian ascribes to.

    The uppermost-class [D/R] and their minions have made it clear that their priorities are financial/political gain in this world crisis, normal people are on their own.

    I will add, many here seem to be cheering on world that’s a virus version of “Logan’s Run”. Why a sane person, of any political stripe, would want such a thing escapes me as it once did the frog crossing the river, like Aesop’s frog, I can never figure out the shortsightedness possessed by the various species of scorpions in this world.

    Oh, one last note, the Pepcid study AGAIN chooses to ignore the “in the field” reports that showed promising results for early use and instead FOCUSES LIKE A LASER BEAM, on delaying treatment in the study until the disease has a patient on death’s door. The inability too read and understand field reports and react accordingly is how wars are lost, in our case this seems to be a studied ignorance.

  18. bruce wilder

    The window of opportunity for extinguishing the contagion closed back in February.

    Lockdown mostly failed because of late timing and insufficiently aggressive testing and contact tracing (and ability to isolate infected persons away from family). New York City accidentally created the cruise ship model on a huge scale.

    Now most of those susceptible will become infected eventually. The number of new cases will continue at a fluctuating(?) rate, but pretty much everyone will be exposed and most sufficiently exposed to develop an infection. Social distancing etc may keep the reproduction rate close to 1 (we can hope so) but the reservoir of infection is large and scattered and the virus so contagious, no other outcome seems achievable.

  19. bruce wilder

    Modern medicine is really not good at developing effective and humane treatment protocols.

    I am not sure what sort of policy or institutional arrangement could improve performance.

    The abuse of statistics is not much of a method, but maybe we could get lucky. Nor is watching crazy cons on YouTube.

  20. S Brennan

    Correct Bruce,

    In a horrible replay of the Gen. Westmoreland experience in Viet Nam, the primary National effort amounts to a debate on how to implement a war of attrition…left to right, no other strategy need apply !

    Really, the parallels are ungodly

    Are the body counts accurate? How can we manipulate the numbers to cause to inflict maximum losses on our political opponents? How can lower the GI casualty rate, so we can continue this war of attrition indefinitely? Should we just pull out, is this a war really worth fighting? Blah, blah, blah…

    Nobody and I mean nobody questions whether Gen. Westmoreland’s attrition strategy is the right one. Yeah, the curve has flattened, now WTF? The deaths of tens of thousands bought a little time but, that’s it, that is the sum of the “strategy”, we either continue indefinitely this war of attrition or, we surrender. I’d rather argue over how many angel can dance on the head of a needle, stupid doesn’t begin to do the range of opinions justice.

    A strategy of buying time for the sole purpose of developing and disseminating a cost effective EARLY TREATMENT, makes sense. But nobody would make money on a cost effective early treatment, nobody at the top will get a cushy seven figure job out it. Neither D’s or R’s get campaign contributions for something like. There is no financial or political gain in solving the real problem.

  21. krake

    bruce: “… but the reservoir of infection is large and scattered and the virus so contagious, no other outcome seems achievable.”

    Making the US, so long as its West Coast and Northeastern enclaves remain captive, the long-desired “fortress Anerica”?*

    * – albeit with “fortress” replaced by “plague-nightmare charnel house”; still, the desired effect achieved: the world stays away while death cult dominionists ride the apocalypse into a fever dream tomorrow.

  22. Jill

    Stanford professor John Ioannidis explains in an interview with CNN that Covid19 is a „widespread and mild disease“ comparable to influenza (flu) for the general population, while patients in nursing homes and hospitals should receive extra protection. (one of the authors of a gold standard study)
    Stanford professor Scott Atlas explains in an interview with CNN that „the idea of having to stop Covid19 has created a catastrophic health care situation“. Professor Atlas says that the disease is „generally mild“ and that irrational fears had been created. He adds that there is „absolutely no reason“ for extensive testing in the general population, which is only necessary in hospitals and nursing homes. Professor Atlas wrote an article at the end of April entitled „The data are in – Stop the panic and end total isolation“ that received over 15,000 comments.”…

  23. Zachary Smith

    Evidently, your knowledge of virology is as deep as mine – i.e., essentially non-existent.

    It’s true my knowledge of viruses is not overwhelming. Still, I’ll take such my ignorance to the “expert knowledge” of the fellow who has made this claim:

    The image (here) shows the following quote: “If you’ve gotten flu shots during the past ten years, you will test positive for the Wuhan strain of the COVID-19 flu – Dr. Rashid Buttar”.

    His recent fame likely increases his grifting prospects enormously.

  24. S Brennan

    Well Jill, If there is no problem, no need to comment eh? You are all set, go about your business normally, why the agitprop?

    Jill, there are tens of thousands of grieving families who know you are full shit but, don’t let that deter your glib trolling. There are commenters on this board who have personally survived covid-19 who know you are full of shit but, don’t let that deter your glib trolling.

    As I said before to left-wingers, I say to your right-wing nuttery, this country doesn’t need left, right, D or R takes on today’s variant of Gen. Westmoreland’s failed strategy of almost 60 years ago.

    What we need now is

    1] For political/corporate hacks to stop using the deaths of thousands of their countrymen for political/monetary/personal gain, it’s disgusting.

    2] To develop and disseminate a cost effective EARLY TREATMENT

  25. Stirling S Newberry

    “The spice must flow”

    We, who burn the oil and drive along the asphalt,
    Oil’s unholy twoming twin,
    Must now die for its unheathly sluice
    Because the spice must flow,
    Down to the sea
    Which vomits up the ooze contiguous heat
    From lands of sand
    Upon which war had raged,
    And in flurried hour primeval graves,
    We speak of madness upon our epoch.
    We are mad, every single one.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén