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Old 1 April 2020, 11:14 PM   #4711
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There’s been debate on here for dozens of pages about the human cost of the virus itself versus the human cost of the economic disaster associated with trying to deal with it. I posted a while back that whilst we have an evidential basis for making predictions about the eventual mortality associated with viral infection, we don’t have similar data for the mortality associated with an economic depression.

The article I’ve linked to below starts to try to answer the question of exactly how much economic pain is worth enduring in the battle, firstly by pointing out - again - that all “Coronavirus” deaths are not equal and therefore that the mortality statistics associated with it need to be interpreted with caution; and secondly by suggesting that a contraction of the UK economy of 6.4% - which is in the ball park of the damage done by the 2008 financial crash - would cause a reduction in average life expectancy similar to that currently predicted to be associated with COVID-19.

Food for thought.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-51979654
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:17 PM   #4712
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I think that the free press is necessary to hold our leaders’ feet to the fire and to make them provide accurate information to the public.

Without being political, the President who said there were fifteen cases that will soon be zero has now said there will be 100,000 to 240,000 deaths.

I think that pressure from the press forces more open discourse. They are pressing for answers.

That said, I can only watch the unremitting bad news briefly. And I understand that the press can sensationalize for ratings. But we need accurate information and the press can help.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:21 PM   #4713
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I think I read that diabetics fare poorly with the disease. In the US, type 2 diabetics usually get diabetes from poor nutrition, leading to obesity, meaning their respiratory system is strained just moving their big masses around.

So, itís probably a good idea to keep hearts and lungs strong (as well as general immunities).
that makes a lot of sense. certainly along my current train (no pun intended) of thought.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:26 PM   #4714
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Tierney is the suspension of constitutional rights. It happens one little piece at a time. And the only way it can happen is by a group citizens saying that itís OK to do this little bit and then a little bit more and then a little bit more and then a few years down the line we find ourselves with no rights. We are going to see some huge supreme court cases over this whole mess and I welcome it. Iím still fascinated how some of you still think once unemployment hits 40%, and thatís predicted by the fed, that these people will all just sit home and say oh well. We have massive problems coming from that in the very near future.

Anyway I donít see why some people here are so offended by someone having a dissenting opinion. Whatís wrong with that? I have not been offensive or slandered anyone. I also have not broken any rules nor will I. I thought this thread was to discuss the topic of the virus and give our opinions. If some people only want a cut and paste of the articles defending their opinions I have tons of them.


Iím not offended. My suggestions were not aimed at any particular person.

My treatise, as it were, called mostly for some tolerance.

With all this time on our hands, I can recommend a free Harvard class on Justice to anyone who wants admission to it (just PM me).

And Jean Tierney has nothing to do with constitutional rights.



Just lightening it up there...couldnít help myself...


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Old 1 April 2020, 11:27 PM   #4715
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Death by slippery slope vs death by an un-bended curve? Are these really our choices?
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:32 PM   #4716
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I’m not offended. My suggestions were not aimed at any particular person.

My treatise, as it were, called mostly for some tolerance.

With all this time on our hands, I can recommend a free Harvard class on Justice to anyone who wants admission to it (just PM me).

And Jean Tierney has nothing to do with constitutional rights.



Just lightening it up there...couldn’t help myself...


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No doubt. Auto correct sucks.

I fixed it.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:32 PM   #4717
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There are two classes of numbers and I think they need to be treated differently.

1. Projections. These will continue to vary with time as more information becomes available, and as we take active and passive measures to affect those numbers. Any downward trending of the numbers is good news as these projections are based on the best data available at any given time. The nearer in the future, the better those numbers are as a projection. In reality it would probably be better to provide numbers with confidence intervals, but I'm sure that is not done as it's confusing. A fair analogy would be the cone of probability used for hurricane forecasting. The further away the timepoint, the larger the possible range of outcome X. But as time passes, the cone narrows. This is frustrating to those who think in black and white absolutes, but that's the way the math works. That said, the numbers generated using statistical techniques backed by solid underlying assumptions will ALWAYS be better than some random person's opinions on the matter.

2. Analysis of the past. This is where a person's or organization's bias can skew interpretation. There are things we know with reasonable certainty, like how many COVID-19 positive cases exist, how long they have been positive, and how many have died. We can only guess at how many have actually been infected, and changing this denominator changes the discussion. Frankly, it's almost pointless to dwell on these numbers now. The cow is out of the barn, and the wave of infection across the world will continue for weeks to months, with variable rates of death depending on measures taken to prevent the spread, and the ability to care for the infected. In poorer nations that are used to working with few resources and don't take strict measures, many will die. In wealthier nations providers will need to learn how to work with limited resources, many will die, but hopefully less if the public takes measures to limit the rate of infection.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:33 PM   #4718
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Tyranny is the suspension of constitutional rights. It happens one little piece at a time. And the only way it can happen is by a group citizens saying that itís OK to do this little bit and then a little bit more and then a little bit more and then a few years down the line we find ourselves with no rights. We are going to see some huge supreme court cases over this whole mess and I welcome it. Iím still fascinated how some of you still think once unemployment hits 40%, and thatís predicted by the fed, that these people will all just sit home and say oh well. We have massive problems coming from that in the very near future.

Anyway I donít see why some people here are so offended by someone having a dissenting opinion. Whatís wrong with that? I have not been offensive or slandered anyone. I also have not broken any rules nor will I. I thought this thread was to discuss the topic of the virus and give our opinions. If some people only want a cut and paste of the articles defending their opinions I have tons of them.
Can you link to the 40% unemployment prediction? That's higher than both I and colleagues have heard.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:35 PM   #4719
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I think that the free press is necessary to hold our leadersí feet to the fire and to make them provide accurate information to the public.

Without being political, the President who said there were fifteen cases that will soon be zero has now said there will be 100,000 to 240,000 deaths.

I think that pressure from the press forces more open discourse. They are pressing for answers.

That said, I can only watch the unremitting bad news briefly. And I understand that the press can sensationalize for ratings. But we need accurate information and the press can help.
I agree. I think the issue is that not all "press" is created equally. The televised talking "news entertainment" version of the press will always be weighed down by bias. But in general I think printed media has done a good job of verifying information and refuting falsehoods.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:40 PM   #4720
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Many people share different views about unlimited freedoms and rights versus certain reasonable controls for the benefit of the whole.

Staying out of the political, Iíd say some might benefit from considering the philosophy of Justice.

Letís raise the bar - illuminate our social responsibilities in the current situation, and the near-term future, versus a rigid constructionist interpretation of inalienable rights.

Tell me how life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness can really exist if we canít temporarily sacrifice its unlimited exercise in order to save lives?

Otherwise, one has succumbed to the tyranny of intolerance.

Aristotle, Bentham, JS Mill, Locke, Kant, Rawls are all recommended reading.

Iím not holier than anyone - just sharing in the spirit of reflection in our current condition.


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Good post Paul. There is always a tension as there should be. But "the constitution is not a suicide pact."
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:42 PM   #4721
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There are two classes of numbers and I think they need to be treated differently.

1. Projections. These will continue to vary with time as more information becomes available, and as we take active and passive measures to affect those numbers. Any downward trending of the numbers is good news as these projections are based on the best data available at any given time. The nearer in the future, the better those numbers are as a projection. In reality it would probably be better to provide numbers with confidence intervals, but I'm sure that is not done as it's confusing. A fair analogy would be the cone of probability used for hurricane forecasting. The further away the timepoint, the larger the possible range of outcome X. But as time passes, the cone narrows. This is frustrating to those who think in black and white absolutes, but that's the way the math works. That said, the numbers generated using statistical techniques backed by solid underlying assumptions will ALWAYS be better than some random person's opinions on the matter.

2. Analysis of the past. This is where a person's or organization's bias can skew interpretation. There are things we know with reasonable certainty, like how many COVID-19 positive cases exist, how long they have been positive, and how many have died. We can only guess at how many have actually been infected, and changing this denominator changes the discussion. Frankly, it's almost pointless to dwell on these numbers now. The cow is out of the barn, and the wave of infection across the world will continue for weeks to months, with variable rates of death depending on measures taken to prevent the spread, and the ability to care for the infected. In poorer nations that are used to working with few resources and don't take strict measures, many will die. In wealthier nations providers will need to learn how to work with limited resources, many will die, but hopefully less if the public takes measures to limit the rate of infection.
Interesting you bring up hurricanes in your point number one. Having lived in hurricane ally for the last 30 years I can pretty much tell you they are wrong 100% of the time. They have absolutely never been right one time when they predicted where the storm was going to go until they were literally a couple of days out. Hence your point number two. The after analysis. Most of us can look at a hurricane two days from landfall and tell you pretty much where itís going to hit. I donít trust these predictions these doctors are giving us one bit. I was skeptical before and now that they have massive revisions I am even more skeptical.

Anybody can say that the New England Patriots are going to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 56 to 0 and then halfway through the game revise that to Tampa Bay will win by seven points and still be completely wrong at the end of the game.

The difference is being wrong about a hurricane or a football game doesnít reduce the countryĎs GDP by 80% and cause people to give up their constitutional rights.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:55 PM   #4722
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Question:

Is there a list of countries that are not embracing, or unable to embrace the social distancing standards? I know I saw a few.

Clearly, some eastern countries had a lockdown.
Some western countries are doing what they can and most people are adhering.

But it appears some countries are doing mostly nothing. I’m curious which ones they are. I’d like to follow them and see how things unfold there in comparison.
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Old 1 April 2020, 11:58 PM   #4723
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Coast Guard: Cruise ships must stay at sea with sick onboard
https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/coas...122752320.html

Wow... Surprised they won't let them dock. It seems that a ship would be worse than shore.

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Old 2 April 2020, 12:00 AM   #4724
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I think we also need to keep in mind whilst analysing different countries approaches is that not one of the countries in the northern hemisphere have covered themselves in glory.

Every one of them watched the wave roll in until it was through the front door and then reacted.

If Iím wrong on that please name one that did, happy to be wrong.

So any league table or debate of countries tactics is really a case of who messed it up the least.


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Old 2 April 2020, 12:00 AM   #4725
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Interesting you bring up hurricanes in your point number one. Having lived in hurricane ally for the last 30 years I can pretty much tell you they are wrong 100% of the time. They have absolutely never been right one time when they predicted where the storm was going to go until they were literally a couple of days out. Hence your point number two. The after analysis. Most of us can look at a hurricane two days from landfall and tell you pretty much where itís going to hit. I donít trust these predictions these doctors are giving us one bit. I was skeptical before and now that they have massive revisions I am even more skeptical.

Anybody can say that the New England Patriots are going to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 56 to 0 and then halfway through the game revise that to Tampa Bay will win by seven points and still be completely wrong at the end of the game.

The difference is being wrong about a hurricane or a football game doesnít reduce the countryĎs GDP by 80% and cause people to give up their constitutional rights.
You can pretty much tell me anything you want. But I doubt it's true. In fact, I'm nearly certain. Care to share your data that 100% of the time the path of each hurricane in the last 30 years has tracked outside the cone of probability? I look forward to it. Furthermore, if you've got such a great record of predicting the site of landfall 2 days out, I'd love to hear more details on your methodology. I'm sure the National Hurricane Center could use all the help they can get.

And whether you personally trust the predictions being made by scientists, and presented by physicians and epidemiologists does not matter. They are the best we've got to go on and thankfully many of those in leadership roles are heeding the numbers and basing decisions on those numbers appropriately.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:01 AM   #4726
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There isnít a clause in the first amendment that says ďUnless of course thereís a virus and an unelected national doctors say soĒ.
I'm curious about this. This is a medical emergency: do you prefer to be directed in this case by a unelected doctor expert in the matter of by an elected former lawyer or farmer of whatever? (Please note that I don't have anyone in mind, of course, I barely know two or three American politicians).
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:02 AM   #4727
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The difference is being wrong about a hurricane or a football game doesnít reduce the countryĎs GDP by 80% and cause people to give up their constitutional rights.
I understand your position Brett but two points. First, I have live through a few hurricane predictions that wound up being in the main correct. On a couple of them, I ignored them but was to young to know better and thankfully got away with it

Second, I disagree when you say hurricane predictions don't cause people to give up their constitutional rights. What do you call mandatory evacuation orders and curfews?

Stay safe.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:04 AM   #4728
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Yes itís unpopular to disagree on this thread. I disagree with you yet Iím not hammering you over the head with an emoji or criticizing you.

But I have this on my side. The very people that told you 2 1/2 million Americans were going to die have revised their position on it two or three times now. Letís see how many more times they revise it. In last nights news conference they already prepared us for just that.
The reason theyíve revised their numbers is because of the actions taken. This is a fluid situation with imperfect assumptions. As more data becomes available, the models will improve, their accuracy will increase.

Just as if youíre running a business. Sales look as if theyíll be a little light in the quarter? Run a promotion. Experience will tell you the best promotions to run. You know their cost, you project the profit.

It really is no different, just different variables, different models. Iím sure you understand really!!

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Old 2 April 2020, 12:06 AM   #4729
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"University of Bristol researchers say the benefit of a long-term lockdown in reducing premature deaths is outweighed by the lost life expectancy from a prolonged economic dip".

I don't agree with that in this case.

In the 2008 crisis, sure, the cause was a bunch of bad large scale financial decisions that created an economic crisis that led to a downturn in health..not a massively contagious and lethal virus to compare it against.

"There is no functioning economy unless we control the virus"

I feel like it's magical thinking to believe that letting the virus run amok and stop the restrictions will allow the economy to just go back to the way it was...there will be an abundance of people too sick to spend money and work anyway..

Then, talk about financial ruin...the people who are unfortunate to catch this and spend 3weeks in a hospital without health insurance??? Huge money. Without control we will have a lot more of that.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:08 AM   #4730
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I have come to the conclusion that my solution of "go to bed and in the morning it will have all gone away," could very well be argued to be slightly off the mark and a slightly "laid back" approach.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:10 AM   #4731
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You can pretty much tell me anything you want. But I doubt it's true. In fact, I'm nearly certain. Care to share your data that 100% of the time the path of each hurricane in the last 30 years has tracked outside the cone of probability? I look forward to it. Furthermore, if you've got such a great record of predicting the site of landfall 2 days out, I'd love to hear more details on your methodology. I'm sure the National Hurricane Center could use all the help they can get.

And whether you personally trust the predictions being made by scientists, and presented by physicians and epidemiologists does not matter. They are the best we've got to go on and thankfully many of those in leadership roles are heeding the numbers and basing decisions on those numbers appropriately.
Yeah my proof as Iíve watched just about every single one of them from the time of their naming until they either made landfall or dissipated somewhere in the Atlantic. You know there are some really good apps with radar and satellite images to watch and track these things right?

I really donít have the time to go back and look up every hurricane. Just goggle some of the big ones yourself and see how wrong they were as to where they were going to land. And when I say wrong I mean 500-1000 miles off. That didnít stop them from bringing different sections of the economy in the southeast to a complete stop for one to three weeks while the news media went into complete panic mode and sensationalized it. Sound familiar?
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:14 AM   #4732
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Yeah my proof as Iíve watched just about every single one of them from the time of their naming until they either made landfall or dissipated somewhere in the Atlantic. You know there are some really good apps with radar and satellite images to watch and track these things right?

I really donít have the time to go back and look up every hurricane. Just goggle some of the big ones yourself and see how wrong they were as to where they were going to land. And when I say wrong I mean 500-1000 miles off. That didnít stop them from bringing different sections of the economy in the southeast to a complete stop for one to three weeks while the news media went into complete panic mode and sensationalized it. Sound familiar?
I'm sorry Brett I'm not going to do your homework for you. As you made the claim, you need to back it up. Just like those unelected physicians and scientists have done. Otherwise, it's just another false assertion.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:17 AM   #4733
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"University of Bristol researchers say the benefit of a long-term lockdown in reducing premature deaths is outweighed by the lost life expectancy from a prolonged economic dip".

I don't agree with that in this case.

In the 2008 crisis, sure, the cause was a bunch of bad large scale financial decisions that created an economic crisis that led to a downturn in health..not a massively contagious and lethal virus to compare it against.

"There is no functioning economy unless we control the virus"

I feel like it's magical thinking to believe that letting the virus run amok and stop the restrictions will allow the economy to just go back to the way it was...there will be an abundance of people too sick to spend money and work anyway..

Then, talk about financial ruin...the people who are unfortunate to catch this and spend 3weeks in a hospital without health insurance??? Huge money. Without control we will have a lot more of that.
This is the balancing act that needs to be managed. I believe we can't veer too much in either direction. Too much lockdown and the economy will implode. Not enough and the virus progresses.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:22 AM   #4734
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"University of Bristol researchers say the benefit of a long-term lockdown in reducing premature deaths is outweighed by the lost life expectancy from a prolonged economic dip".

I don't agree with that in this case.

In the 2008 crisis, sure, the cause was a bunch of bad large scale financial decisions that created an economic crisis that led to a downturn in health..not a massively contagious and lethal virus to compare it against.

"There is no functioning economy unless we control the virus"

I feel like it's magical thinking to believe that letting the virus run amok and stop the restrictions will allow the economy to just go back to the way it was...there will be an abundance of people too sick to spend money and work anyway..

Then, talk about financial ruin...the people who are unfortunate to catch this and spend 3weeks in a hospital without health insurance??? Huge money. Without control we will have a lot more of that.
To be clear neither the linked article nor (as far as Iím aware) anybody on this thread has advocated letting the virus run amok.

There is though a legitimate debate to be had about the risks and benefits of any given level of intervention. I say that as someone who agrees with the effective lockdown measures being implemented here and which are likely to be in place for several months.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:23 AM   #4735
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Yeah my proof as Iíve watched just about every single one of them from the time of their naming until they either made landfall or dissipated somewhere in the Atlantic. You know there are some really good apps with radar and satellite images to watch and track these things right?

I really donít have the time to go back and look up every hurricane. Just goggle some of the big ones yourself and see how wrong they were as to where they were going to land. And when I say wrong I mean 500-1000 miles off. That didnít stop them from bringing different sections of the economy in the southeast to a complete stop for one to three weeks while the news media went into complete panic mode and sensationalized it. Sound familiar?
How much do you know about meteorology and forecasting?

We are actually lucky they are that accurate. Countless variables mother nature throws our way that only supercomputers can deal with.

Same with this virus. Lots of variables that will affect the projections. Of course they will change over time.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:36 AM   #4736
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To be clear neither the linked article nor (as far as I’m aware) anybody on this thread has advocated letting the virus run amok.

There is though a legitimate debate to be had about the risks and benefits of any given level of intervention. I say that as someone who agrees with the effective lockdown measures being implemented here and which are likely to be in place for several months.
I guess, due to the nature of the contagion, I equivalate half measures (aka balancing) as running amok..

Look at our current situation in the US. Some states have a stay at home directive, others do not, with travel allowed freely between all regions. What good is that?
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:37 AM   #4737
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I heard a professor say, one time, “You use models; you don’t believe them”.

100-200k dead in the US. That’s a much better number than 1-2 million (doing nothing and hospitals overwhelmed nationally). It’s much worse than a bad flu. If it comes in at 80k or 220k, will you feel like they screwed it up? I won’t.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:37 AM   #4738
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Originally Posted by *LexLover View Post
This is the balancing act that needs to be managed. I believe we can't veer too much in either direction. Too much lockdown and the economy will implode. Not enough and the virus progresses.
Agree with you 100%. The expected unemployment for this scenario is going to have an impact that is far longer lasting than the short amount of time folks have to shelter in place. Just in my country, we are expecting two quarters worth of impact from an economic perspective. The longer the virus stays, the longer the duration of the after effects and the longer it will take to jump start the economy. We are past the point of people "just going back to work" which is a finer point you failed to call out in your simplistic response although implode may well describe it at a high level.
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:42 AM   #4739
Brew
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Even if we are inclined to ease restrictions, it seems to me they cannot be eased any more than our hospitals' capacities to care for the population, or risk collapse. Will that amount of folks going back to work really help matters, given the risks involved in these sort of calculations?
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Old 2 April 2020, 12:53 AM   #4740
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I would appreciate if the death toll would be less sensationalized and more "professional" in it's depiction of the health of the people before their contracting the virus.

I realize this is difficult but it would make for a far better analysis of when and how we lift restrictions on movements.

Now it's just xx died and we have no idea the ages, general previous health and complications they have pre-existing. We do know that smoking in China and Italy is a real thing. So did a large number of deaths have compromised lung issues previously.

An actor died a couple of days ago and there was no indication he was already sick when he contracted the virus but someone on a messaged board that knew him indicated he was. Obviously anecdotal but it would be nice to have more in depth reporting on this stuff. Then we have the Tom Hanks stuff where he and his wife pretty much sailed through the virus much like getting the flu.

Bottom line is how previously compromised are the patients that are dying when they show up in hospitals.

Stay safe everyone.
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