On Lockdown

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Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

I had written a long response but I must have failed to upload it. I don't have the energy to write it again. I keep having the feeling that you are motivated primarily by ideology, and that makes these discussions exhausting.

I'll just respond to two things.
It is likely, and was predicted early, that this virus is going to eventually infect most everyone.
No, that is not the prediction, and it doesn't have to end that way. If it did, millions in the US would die from this. This could have been stopped early in the US, with different leadership.
This is not the place for political discussion (in spite of some Trump-bashing that has happened even in this thread)
That would have been me. I mentioned that Trump's denialism and lack of leadership have hurt the effectiveness of the US response. Those are simple factual observations, not a political discussion. I'm pissed at most politicians of both parties for their handling of this and other issues.

ray_parkhurst
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Post by ray_parkhurst »

Lou Jost wrote:I keep having the feeling that you are motivated primarily by ideology, and that makes these discussions exhausting.
I am a pragmatist. Politically I am libertarian-leaning, but that does not drive my thinking. I just don't think it was wise to shut down the country for this disease, and now even less wise to keep it shut down. The price is too high, and ultimately the ramifications of the shutdown may kill more than the virus, perhaps many-fold more.

No, that is not the prediction, and it doesn't have to end that way. If it did, millions in the US would die from this. This could have been stopped early in the US, with different leadership.
All predictions were that 60-90% of the population would catch this thing, and too quickly for the healthcare system. Those numbers justified the shutdown. You may respond that those numbers were without mitigation, but all mitigation does is to "flatten the curve". Eventually nearly the same number of folks will catch the virus, it will just take longer.

Regarding leadership, I agree that if only the House had not been focused on impeachment, and the WHO on covering up for China, things could have gone better. Trump and the governors could have coordinated a response much earlier. Sadly our "leaders" are hamstrung by politics.

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

All predictions were that 60-90% of the population would catch this thing, and too quickly for the healthcare system. Those numbers justified the shutdown. You may respond that those numbers were without mitigation, but all mitigation does is to "flatten the curve". Eventually nearly the same number of folks will catch the virus, it will just take longer.

Yes, I would respond that those numbers were without mitigation. With mitigation, it is not true thayt 60-90% of the population will be infected.

Regarding leadership, I agree that if only the House had not been focused on impeachment, and the WHO on covering up for China, things could have gone better. Trump and the governors could have coordinated a response much earlier. Sadly our "leaders" are hamstrung by politics.
Blaming the House instead of Trump (who constantly lied about the virus and and downplayed its importance, and who constantly stonewalled Congress' constitutionally mandated attempts at oversight) is astonishing.

Saul
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Post by Saul »

Lou Jost wrote:
Regarding leadership, I agree that if only the House had not been focused on impeachment, and the WHO on covering up for China, things could have gone better. Trump and the governors could have coordinated a response much earlier. Sadly our "leaders" are hamstrung by politics.
Blaming the House instead of Trump (who constantly lied about the virus and and downplayed its importance, and who constantly stonewalled Congress' constitutionally mandated attempts at oversight) is astonishing.
....hmm, I'm little bit confused - is this discussion still photomacrophotography related ?
Saul
μ-stuff

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

It's a thread about the lockdown, how it might affect us, and how we might survive it.

ray_parkhurst
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Post by ray_parkhurst »

Lou Jost wrote:It's a thread about the lockdown, how it might affect us, and how we might survive it.
Still, it would be best to keep politics out of this. I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat, I just call them as I see them, and as I see it both sides are culpable. Let's please just keep to facts rather than opinions.

ray_parkhurst
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Post by ray_parkhurst »

rjlittlefield wrote: I've scratched my own head a lot, Ray, trying to figure out what's going on inside yours. At the moment, my best guess is that you're being gnawed by thoughts of what for you is the worst possible outcome -- some infringement of your personal liberties -- and you're doing a bang-up job of finding analyses that would avoid that.
Lou Jost wrote: I keep having the feeling that you are motivated primarily by ideology, and that makes these discussions exhausting.
I question the appropriateness of this speculation regarding my motives, but hopefully I have answered both of your concerns.

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

ray_parkhurst wrote:Let's please just keep to facts rather than opinions.
rjlittlefield wrote:The observed mortality rate for New York City currently stands at 0.2267%, trusting todays' figures from the New York Times.
ray_parkhurst wrote:That 0.2267% is probably also suspect (as is anything from the NYT)
I have no idea how we're supposed to discuss "facts", if we can't even agree on what sources to trust. So I suspect we've gotten down to the point where the discussion cannot productively go forward.

--Rik

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

Sorry. I should not have questioned your motives. However, I do not think we should hesitate to call out politicians when they do things that are dishonest, and the criticisms I made of Trump are about matters of public record, not matters of opinion.

I have just as often criticized Democrats.

I agree with Rik that we are running into the "alternative universes" problem that has become so severe lately in the US, making these discussions very difficult. I'm happy to end my side of it here.

ray_parkhurst
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Post by ray_parkhurst »

rjlittlefield wrote:
ray_parkhurst wrote:Let's please just keep to facts rather than opinions.
rjlittlefield wrote:The observed mortality rate for New York City currently stands at 0.2267%, trusting todays' figures from the New York Times.
ray_parkhurst wrote:That 0.2267% is probably also suspect (as is anything from the NYT)
I have no idea how we're supposed to discuss "facts", if we can't even agree on what sources to trust. So I suspect we've gotten down to the point where the discussion cannot productively go forward.

--Rik
It is for sure that we cannot trust the data, though we all have made conclusions based on either specific data or composites. I don't see this squashing discussion. Indeed it is these "facts" that are being used for decisions by our "leaders".

ray_parkhurst
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Post by ray_parkhurst »

Lou Jost wrote:Sorry. I should not have questioned your motives. However, I do not think we should hesitate to call out politicians when they do things that are dishonest, and the criticisms I made of Trump are about matters of public record, not matters of opinion.

I have just as often criticized Democrats.

I agree with Rik that we are running into the "alternative universes" problem that has become so severe lately in the US, making these discussions very difficult. I'm happy to end my side of it here.
No worries, Lou, but your Trump statements are all matters of opinion since the data sources are all biased. This is part of the "alternate universe" problem, ie there is really no data source that is fully trustworthy.

Bottom line with all this is that the shutdowns appear to be ending, though haphazardly. It's unfortunate that the data, models, and politics are throwing such a cloud over the situation that we can't say with any certainty what's going to happen, but for sure "time will tell".

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

This is part of the "alternate universe" problem, ie there is really no data source that is fully trustworthy.
The problem with these alternative universes is that people give up on trying to figure out what's true. They think that opinions and ideology are enough. The far right in the US thinks they can deny climate change and deny that we evolved from animals, for example, because it fits their prejudices. The left also has some ideological beliefs. But the truth is out there and could be found.

For the things I mentioned about Trump, there are no filters, all you have to do is watch Trump's briefings (I watched most of them in their entirety); his lies and denials are transparent and easy to check. He even often denies saying something that he had just said on camera a day or two before.

It bothers me a lot when people make claims that these things are just opinions.

ray_parkhurst
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Post by ray_parkhurst »

Lou Jost wrote:
This is part of the "alternate universe" problem, ie there is really no data source that is fully trustworthy.
The problem with these alternative universes is that people give up on trying to figure out what's true. They think that opinions and ideology are enough. The far right in the US thinks they can deny climate change and deny that we evolved from animals, for example, because it fits their prejudices. The left also has some ideological beliefs. But the truth is out there and could be found.

For the things I mentioned about Trump, there are no filters, all you have to do is watch Trump's briefings (I watched most of them in their entirety); his lies and denials are transparent and easy to check. He even often denies saying something that he had just said on camera a day or two before.

It bothers me a lot when people make claims that these things are just opinions.
Trumps fibs are well-known and documented. I was more referring to your "constitutionally mandated attempts at oversight" comment. There is actually nothing in the constitution mandating oversight.

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

Oh, that's different. I could certainly be wrong about that. I was basing that comment on my recollections of the Clinton and Nixon impeachments. Congressional subpoenas were served on Nixon, who fought them all the way to the Supreme Court, where he lost on what I recall as a unanimous decision. So Nixon had to release his tapes. Thus, in the opinion of the Supreme Court, Congress did have that power. But I don't know the details of the grounds of that decision.

On a side note, I once spent a week alone in the Amazon jungle with Bob Haldemann, Nixon's chief of staff, and his family. That was a weird experience.

ray_parkhurst
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Post by ray_parkhurst »

For those of you unaware of the scale of this pandemic, here is an infographic which shows that the worldwide death rate from COVID-19 has been ~2200 per day from Dec31-May15, peaking at ~7500 per day from Apr13-19. Total worldwide death rate is ~150k.

Image

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