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HOT TOPIC The Worldwide Covid-19 Coronavirus Pandemic Discussion Thread...

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Xeon

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More recoveries, fewer deaths (than the feared spike in Italy).

Stimulus package announced, but it seems to favour lower-income earners more than SMEs.

Even if the government were to act on peoples feedback and adjust, I’m anticipating a Forrest Gump-shrimp boat scenario, where a typhoon wipes out most of the SME folks on the water, and leaves the Gump boats that kept going (with steady marketing and such).

Markets and essential shops are still opened, as well as some manufacturing businesses (running at 50% capacity only though)

But we had a major market in Penang or Taiping shut down, because the folks just weren’t keeping social distancing, and were mingling around even after shopping.

I have heard some worrying cases of crime in my hometown, especially when you think of laborers or foreigners who are desperate for cash, after their livelihoods got shut down.

But so far these cases are nothing compared to the insanity in other countries:


Great to hear that. SG is closely intertwined with MY, so if you guys are F*cked, we're F*cked as well lol
 

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Andy Black

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MTF

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Ah no. These are dark days. :(
Without any context these numbers are tragic (and of course every death is). But world is filled with death and suffering every day; we just don't focus on it obsessively unless it's a global crisis and media reports it 24/7 (or much more painfully, until a loved one dies). Again, I need to emphasize it strongly that I'm not downplaying any of the deaths, but trying to offer a different, Stoic-influenced perspective that might help some people process what's going on.

Resignation and gloom won't help us right now. We can help others stay sane during the crisis through keeping calm, humor, hope, asking constructive questions and having constructive discussions (I love @GIlman's contributions in this thread), sharing good news (bad news equals high stress equals disrupted immune system - all the fear mongering of media can make even more people die), and reframing the current situation.

On the same page (worldometers.info) you can learn that while over 43,000 people died from coronavirus roughly from the beginning of this year (probably more given China's lies), there were over 14,707,000 deaths in total (so official coronavirus casualties are 0.29% of that number). Before coronavirus, nobody was depressed knowing that so many people were dying every day. We all just carried on with our lives, knowing full well that people were dying all around us but choosing not to dwell on it (the fact that most of the deaths didn't make any headlines helped).

Out of 14,707,000 deaths this year so far, there are so many sad stories, many of which are never reported just because they happened in poor countries that didn't get a hashtag (it's extremely sad, but that's what it often is - a tragedy in, say, Australia, like the recent bushfires nobody cares about anymore, is known globally while a much more disastrous situation in, say, Central African Republic, isn't even mentioned anywhere).

The uncomfortable reality is that people living in developed countries rarely, if ever, consider how much death and suffering happens all around the world. Until it happens to us, we don't care. Which is understandable - we wouldn't be able to live if we constantly pondered on this sad reality.

All the following data comes from worldometers.info:
  • In the last FIVE DAYS, more people died of HUNGER than coronavirus. The worst thing about it is that while people are dying of hunger, there are millions of people around the world carrying dozens or hundreds of excess pounds. None of those deaths make headlines because they rarely happen in rich countries.
  • FIVE TIMES more people died this year from water-related diseases than coronavirus. Another completely preventable death limited mostly to poor countries while rich countries are wasting obscene amounts of water.
  • almost THREE TIMES more people died this year from seasonal flu than coronavirus. But it's just the normal flu so who cares, right? It doesn't make headlines, either, yet it's just as tragic.
  • almost TWO TIMES more mothers died during birth this year than people died from coronavirus. Again, most common in poor countries, virtually none of those tragic deaths are reported.
  • over SIX TIMES more people committed suicide this year than people died from coronavirus. Another extremely sad and often preventable death that rarely gets reported.
Again, to emphasize, I'm obviously not attacking you, Andy (I hope it's clear I have TONS of respect for you). Just wanted to put the current situation in context because all I can see everywhere is doom and gloom constantly being heightened by social media, traditional media, and doomsday preppers. We don't need that; it's not constructive. We need to focus on solutions or ways to stay sane and healthy until it's over.

Again, not trying to downplay any deaths and tragedies (I DO KNOW first-hand that it's no consolation at all for a person who lost their loved one - this is only a perspective for those of us who are unscathed), but we wouldn't even notice a 0.3% rise in deaths this year if they happened in, say, Myanmar (how many people know that THREE TIMES more people died in the aftermath of 2008 Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar?).
 

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I am reading scattered reports in a local chat group of random looting by single people/small groups (liquor stores, pharmacies, etc.). Minimal police presence right now, and I'm sure they've got other things to deal with, but some unscrupulous people are taking advantage of it.
I believe these were social issues and social problems before COVID19 Virus began. If you're a Human Service Worker or Civil Services you know the systems don't work. Not to mention the social classes all operate on different rules in the game of life.

This Virus is pretty much going to have people questioning their Values, Morals, Ethics, and perhaps change the systems for everyone. While you have the hoarders, the scammers, they're blatantly going to be caught as you see already in social media. Human nature is complex. Fortunately, until the Internet came around people were held back in society be ignorance. Education was limited globally. You didn't have all the social classes with access to education as they are now.

I can tell you in every social class you have those unscrupulous people taking advantage of someone else. There is no barrier in what one will do for power, dominance, and control over others. Hustlers in the hood know how to manipulate emotions, thoughts, feelings, and take advantage of the situation.

A perfect society we shall never see. And then you have those who take of their medical and mental health and those who don't. Belief systems, are only changed when you choose to remove yourself from a certain social group. Which there are tons of social groups, with their agenda, intentions, motivations, and harm others intentionally or not intentionally. This all depends on where you're standing in the world.

You have racism, prejudice, discrimination, and persecution in every culture. The Psychology is a contageon far more then the Virus in some social groups. You allow certain people to influence you and of course they have a cause and effect on whether you succeed or fail. We can push it further to life and death in this scenario.

It really shouldn't surprise us that an event like this which is basically all about the survival mode and survival mechanism would bring out the worst in human nature. Anyone can take the wrong action or right action. It just depends on what your values are, your ethics, your morals, and what you value the most.

For some people they don't even know how to value their own self worth, so of course they're not going to value yours. And even if you believe others value your life, you find out in events like this sometimes they don't value your life at all.

In my case, I understand as a former Nurse Aide and Mental Health Worker, human nature doesn't value anyone that isn't healthy, young, and wealthy. People are forgotten, left behind the scenes in hosptials, private homes, nursing homes, adult foster care homes, and it doesn't matter their social status or how much wealth they have.

I've seen the finest in human nature and fortunately, it is what it is. If you're lucky to have to the right people walk in your life at the right time, have grattitude, be thankful, appreciate for what they do for you. Quit the prejudice, discrimination, anger, rage, bitterness, and how all unfair it is. There are good people in every social class, just like there are people who don't do the right thing in every social class.

In this situation, no one's more special then the other. Even Bill Gates stated this himself. Stress, Anxiety, and Fear are your worst enemy. If you know how to control your thoughts, emotions, and feelings and focus on the positives you're better off.

Survival mode is living in fear, and attacking other people, blaming other people, harming other people when they have no control over the Corona Virus anymore then the rest of us.
 

Mattie

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I believe these were social issues and social problems before COVID19 Virus began. If you're a Human Service Worker or Civil Services you know the systems don't work. Not to mention the social classes all operate on different rules in the game of life.

This Virus is pretty much going to have people questioning their Values, Morals, Ethics, and perhaps change the systems for everyone. While you have the hoarders, the scammers, they're blatantly going to be caught as you see already in social media. Human nature is complex. Fortunately, until the Internet came around people were held back in society be ignorance. Education was limited globally. You didn't have all the social classes with access to education as they are now.

I can tell you in every social class you have those unscrupulous people taking advantage of someone else. There is no barrier in what one will do for power, dominance, and control over others. Hustlers in the hood know how to manipulate emotions, thoughts, feelings, and take advantage of the situation.

A perfect society we shall never see. And then you have those who take of their medical and mental health and those who don't. Belief systems, are only changed when you choose to remove yourself from a certain social group. Which there are tons of social groups, with their agenda, intentions, motivations, and harm others intentionally or not intentionally. This all depends on where you're standing in the world.

You have racism, prejudice, discrimination, and persecution in every culture. The Psychology is a contageon far more then the Virus in some social groups. You allow certain people to influence you and of course they have a cause and effect on whether you succeed or fail. We can push it further to life and death in this scenario.

It really shouldn't surprise us that an event like this which is basically all about the survival mode and survival mechanism would bring out the worst in human nature. Anyone can take the wrong action or right action. It just depends on what your values are, your ethics, your morals, and what you value the most.

For some people they don't even know how to value their own self worth, so of course they're not going to value yours. And even if you believe others value your life, you find out in events like this sometimes they don't value your life at all.

In my case, I understand as a former Nurse Aide and Mental Health Worker, human nature doesn't value anyone that isn't healthy, young, and wealthy. People are forgotten, left behind the scenes in hosptials, private homes, nursing homes, adult foster care homes, and it doesn't matter their social status or how much wealth they have.

I've seen the finest in human nature and fortunately, it is what it is. If you're lucky to have to the right people walk in your life at the right time, have grattitude, be thankful, appreciate for what they do for you. Quit the prejudice, discrimination, anger, rage, bitterness, and how all unfair it is. There are good people in every social class, just like there are people who don't do the right thing in every social class.

In this situation, no one's more special then the other. Even Bill Gates stated this himself. Stress, Anxiety, and Fear are your worst enemy. If you know how to control your thoughts, emotions, and feelings and focus on the positives you're better off.

Survival mode is living in fear, and attacking other people, blaming other people, harming other people when they have no control over the Corona Virus anymore then the rest of us.
Here in the netherlands we're up to 13, 614 cases. Not enough beds! Germany may be saving the lives of the Dutch and us U.S. Expats. I don't think their testing very much here either from what I've heard. I'll just stay in the apartment and sit on the balcony and enjoy myself. And flying hope to the U.S. would be sitting in Quarantine for 14 days and probably being contaminated. Although, I haven't seen them evacuate the U.S. There busy evacuating other cultures that might be more relevant.

The flower industry has taken a huge dive! Such lovely flowers. :(
 

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Here in the netherlands we're up to 13, 614 cases. Not enough beds! Germany may be saving the lives of the Dutch and us U.S. Expats. I don't think their testing very much here either from what I've heard. I'll just stay in the apartment and sit on the balcony and enjoy myself. And flying hope to the U.S. would be sitting in Quarantine for 14 days and probably being contaminated. Although, I haven't seen them evacuate the U.S. There busy evacuating other cultures that might be more relevant.

The flower industry has taken a huge dive! Such lovely flowers. :(
Hmm...the Herd Immunity! I'm not one to follow the herd in anything. But I have to say if we have issues here in the Netherlands in the next few weeks it was a deliberate choice.
 

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I was acceptant of the idea of utilising Herd Immunity for the masses while protecting the vulnerable, either until everyone was clear or a vaccine could be released.

It seemed pretty clear who was at risk and so a sensible option, but having 3 people of 21 years and under, (with no underlying health problems, if we are to believe the reports) die in the UK recently has made me wonder. I wasn't too worried about my children contracting Covid-19 but I am now.
 

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I was acceptant of the idea of utilising Herd Immunity for the masses while protecting the vulnerable, either until everyone was clear or a vaccine could be released.

It seemed pretty clear who was at risk and so a sensible option, but having 3 people of 21 years and under, (with no underlying health problems, if we are to believe the reports) die in the UK recently has made me wonder. I wasn't too worried about my children contracting Covid-19 but I am now.
Exactly, it's attacking any age. Even new borns are passing away and others surviving. I don't believe it matters how healthy or what age. They kept all the children in school here until the U.S. shut down schools. And they maybe already exposed here. Everyone I know is well for the most part. It's just starting to spread in my area. But they already are having a difficult time with the number of patients in hospitals and not enough medical equipment and supplies. Germany of course is supposed to be better equipped in the region. Hard to say how it will affect people. I have seen people of all ages be hit online.
 

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Exactly, it's attacking any age. Even new borns are passing away and others surviving. I don't believe it matters how healthy or what age. They kept all the children in school here until the U.S. shut down schools. And they maybe already exposed here.
Admittingly the odds of death in the young are extremely low but as a father we worry regardless. I listened to a recent podcast where the Doctor being interviewed stated that children now had a licence to kill. That really struck a cord. Just through the nature of being a child it made it so easy for them to pass the virus on. I think all schools should have been shut down sooner as I believe the spread would have been reduced by a significant factor which would have increased the available preparation time.
 

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I’ve been trying to sort out this face mask thing for days. I think that masks do reduce spread, I've thought this and said it quite a bit. But on the flip side I’ve been trying to make sense what the “experts” in the government have been telling us.

I think part of it is maybe how doctors view things. For instance if condoms prevented 50% of HIV infections we would proclaim condoms are not effective in preventing the transmission of HIV. While this is true if we view effective as preventing a large majority, it is misleading if our real intent is to protect people as much as possible in the moment given the circumstances.

Anything >0% effective is still better than zero. This is an example of paying attention to the tree and losing site of the forest. Because any reduction at all has a meaningful impact on the population as a whole.

Let’s go back to our (err my) favorite thing R0. Let’s assume masks only block 33% of infections, medically speaking that is not effective for any one person, their risk is still enormous. But from a population perspective it is effective and meaningful. We will also assume R0 with no one wearing masks is 3. What is the R0 (rate of transmission) if everyone wears masks?

R0 would be reduced from 3 to 2. Both are still logarithmic (hockey stick growth) just 2 is much much much slower. Look at these example of R0 of 3 vs R0 of 2 over 5 cycles of transmission.

R0 of 3: 1, 3, 9, 27, 81, 243
R0 of 2: 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32

Yeah 33% reduced risk of catching the infection wearing masks could result in a whopping order of magnitude difference in # infected.

Granted, I’m making up the number 33%, maybe the actual # is lower, much lower. Say 10%, or 5%, or 1%. But even at small numbers, the R0 decreases in a meaningful way and helps shift the curve down in a meaningful way. Also, maybe 33% in our example is actually low, and the actual effectiveness is higher, then the effect would be even more pronounced.

With a pandemic the goal is to get R0 so it’s less than one. At this point it means that each person who gets infected on average infects less than 1 other person. If each person infected infects less than one other person the infection actually starts to die out.

So wearing masks is a reasonable and effective way in helping to flatten the curve. Combined with other measures that also have an impact, we could likely reduce R0 below 1.

I’ll keep repeating, be careful of anything any expert says, especially in circumstances that are new with a lot of unknowns. They are guessing and passing those guesses off as facts. I probably have as much expertise as anyone on this forum in this one particular topic, but I would still advise caution in taking any assessment I am making as fact. They are just my best guesses. That’s why I’m trying to give the rational behind my thinking so you can look for errors or sources of bias.

EDIT: I calculated if you had a 3% effectiveness in masks preventing transmission. This would result in an expected R0 of 2.91. After 5 transmission cycles 208 would be infected vs 243 with no masks at all. You can see how quickly even small reductions in transmission results in greatly decreased # infected.

And the effect compounds more and more with each cycle of infection. At 7 cycles the difference is 1761 for mask wearers (3% effective) and 2187 for non mask wearers. The gap between the two just grows each cycle.
 
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WillHurtDontCare

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Some quotes:

"He said he has already started receiving calls from companies seeking guidance on whether a pandemic allows for contractual obligations to be voided."

"Allison Chock, Chief Investment Officer-US for Omni Bridgeway, says insurance-related disputes are likely to spike in the near term. Additionally, a nosedive by the economy likely would generate much more activity in the bankruptcy/insolvency space, she predicts."
 

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I was.

Posted about it a few times. Nobody cared until now.
Yes....I did as well. As tragic as this whole thing is, I believe that it will be meaningful for our "not my problem" culture that so much of our country has embraced. I am as much of a capitalist as the next person, but I hope that, at minimum, we get some sort of real universal healthcare out of this. I will pay more taxes if it means that me or one of my kids will have a viable way to visit a doctor, without going broke, if we were to fall into a situation where we couldn't provide for ourselves.

I am not particularly optimistic though. I know how politics works, and I know that its usually the campaign contributors that get their way.
 

Timmy C

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Yes....I did as well. As tragic as this whole thing is, I believe that it will be meaningful for our "not my problem" culture that so much of our country has embraced. I am as much of a capitalist as the next person, but I hope that, at minimum, we get some sort of real universal healthcare out of this. I will pay more taxes if it means that me or one of my kids will have a viable way to visit a doctor, without going broke, if we were to fall into a situation where we couldn't provide for ourselves.

I am not particularly optimistic though. I know how politics works, and I know that its usually the campaign contributors that get their way.

Universal healthcare I am 100 percent for myself.

It's one thing I am very grateful for living in Australia that our healthcare is top notch and doesn't come out of our own wallets every time we visit a doctor or go to hospital it's all covered.

I only pay for things such as physiotherapy, chiropractic, feet insoles, braces for your teeth,dental.

The most expensive is dental the others are relatively cheap, but even then it's nothing that sends you broke.
 

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Mother Nature's last warning, meaning one that spreads with a low mortality rate. In a matter of time something could get out that has a mortality rate of 50%+

The worst type of contagion is one that has a long incubation period with high shedding and infectivity that is ultimately fatal.
Should be interesting what happens with China and their relationships. Their numbers are being repressed, last I read they have numbers that are truly higher than that of the United States from sources there.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NpA7nf3sibM
 

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  • almost THREE TIMES more people died this year from seasonal flu than coronavirus.
I know you're just trying to give some context, but it's a good illustration of the two buckets that it looks like people have fallen into:
  • The people who think all of this is an overreaction are looking at the current numbers.
  • The people who are panicking are looking at the potential numbers.
The best spot is probably somewhere in the middle, but focusing on current numbers while the graph is still climbing doesn't look like sound logic to me. What are the chances that the flu kills 100x (1000?) the current number in the remainder of this year?

People aren't afraid of where it's at. They're afraid of where it's going.
 

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WillHurtDontCare

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Before coronavirus, nobody was depressed knowing that so many people were dying every day.
Out of 14,707,000 deaths this year so far, there are so many sad stories, many of which are never reported just because they happened in poor countries that didn't get a hashtag
@MTF I'd like to clarify from the get go that I am attacking the idea, not you. I understand why you'd say this and why others before you have said the same, but...

It's absurd to take responsibility for all of those people. You aren't God. Help who you can, and all the better if you can help a lot of people.

But never forget that there always has been and always will be plentiful and immense suffering in the world, and feeling this or that way will not change that fact.
 

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People aren't afraid of where it's at. They're afraid of where it's going.
I appreciate your response. Just so we stay on the same page, I'm not comparing it to the normal flu or downplaying its danger. I have no idea what's going to happen (how arrogant that would be?) other than to look at it from as many different perspectives as possible and try to think of a bigger picture. It's an extremely complex situation well beyond my intellectual capabilities.

Also, consider that the numbers I offered are also climbing as we're speaking. I posted my post 6 hours ago. The number of people who died of hunger TODAY is now more than double what it was 6 hours ago (it was over 8000 people 6 hours ago, it's almost 18,000 now).

Turns out I made a mistake as there are over 25,000 people who die of hunger each day (source: FAO : What the new figures on hunger mean), meaning that in just TWO days more people die of hunger than there are currently victims of coronavirus (without any claims that these numbers won't increase - just trying to put current numbers into perspective to help people understand that pre-coronavirus, many, many more people died each day with very few people ever thinking about it).

As for your buckets, I have mixed feelings, leaning towards the current restrictions (or what feels to me restrictions for the sake of restrictions without considering their effectiveness or how sustainable they are) turning out to be disastrous over the long term and causing much more suffering.

This is particularly concerning in poor overpopulated countries like India where imposing such restrictions makes no sense at all with people now forming even bigger crowds (example: Migrant workers sprayed with disinfectant in one Indian state) or causing even more danger as they migrate back to their villages (carrying with them the virus) hundreds of kilometers ON FOOT (example: Coronavirus update: A long walk home on empty stomachs for masked migrants) or stand in supermarket lines on top of each other, example:
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_bUpN52Iyw


IMO, this is what happens when countries blindly implement restrictions that might work in one culture, or that might have worked for a rich country, or a country with low population density, or a country with great healthcare, but that are unrealistic and counterproductive in a different place with no resources, no infrastructure, too many people, too much poverty, etc.

But like I said, I'm as stupid as everyone else when it comes to forecasting so it's just my uninformed opinion (which I believe is the point of this discussion anyway since none of us can do anything about it anyway).

But never forget that there always has been and always will be plentiful and immense suffering in the world, and feeling this or that way will not change that fact.
Which was precisely the point of my post so we agree with each other 100%.
 

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@MTF

The "if we do nothing" numbers are around 6 million people dead in the United States alone. Across the globe it's expected to be in the hundreds of millions.

The curve for COVID-19 is exponential. When unchecked, the number of infections doubles about every 2 days.

That's the problem.

Gilman (from the forum, who's been posting here) is a physician does a podcast. I was a guest the other week and we broke down many of the numbers.

Many of us have been watching Italy because that shows us where we're potentially going. Their entire healthcare system practically collapsed and patients were being treated in hallways. Someone was dying in Italy every 4 minutes. They literally couldn't cremate bodies fast enough.

So that's kinda why you're seeing this reaction.
 

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@MTF

The "if we do nothing" numbers are around 6 million people dead in the United States alone. Across the globe it's expected to be in the hundreds of millions.

The curve for COVID-19 is exponential. When unchecked, the number of infections doubles about every 2 days.

That's the problem.

Gilman (from the forum, who's been posting here) is a physician does a podcast. I was a guest the other week and we broke down many of the numbers.

Many of us have been watching Italy because that shows us where we're potentially going. Their entire healthcare system practically collapsed and patients were being treated in hallways. Someone was dying in Italy every 4 minutes. They literally couldn't cremate bodies fast enough.

So that's kinda why you're seeing this reaction.
I dont think anyone is downplaying the severity of the virus. What MTF is questioning is "Are we killing the patient to cure the disease?"

By shutting everything down, there are countless economic, health, etc impacts that people are either too ignorant to understand or they are so focused on the virus they stop paying attention to everything else.

47 Million people have been laid off. 47 million people potentially without healthcare anymore or on a time-clock until it runs out.

What happens when the hospitals stop getting paid for their services? What happens when people have no money to feed their kids? What happens when supplies, etc stop being produced. What happens when we have millions of people filing for bankruptcy 4-6 months from now?

The virus is undoubtedly bad. It's worse in Italy because of factors specific to their population. But the economic fallout has the potential to be significantly worse. The time to stop this was months ago, now we have to make some difficult choices as to how we want to move forward with it.
 

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Also @MTF People are worried about the economy simply because we have the luxury of worrying about the economy.

Italian Journalist Stefano Vergine:

"so the situation changed alot.. in the beginning the majority of the people were mostly worried about the economy. Now it's not like this any more. The most worrying thing is the health situation of the italian people."



This was 2 weeks ago. Now, New York City is starting to look like Italy did. After that other US Cities will start to look like New York City.

It's worse in Italy because of factors specific to their population.
We don't know that. Spain is quickly catching up to them. NYC may also be.
 

Bekit

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On Nov 18, 2019 the Wuhan Institute of Virology posted an open post doc position for research into long lived SARS and related corona viruses in bats.

About a month later an epidemic of corona virus breaks out, attributed to eating bat meat.

I'm sure this is just a coincidence and totally not evidence of an accidental release of a bioweapon.

Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS

Speculation aside, here's what we know. It's doubling every 30 hours or so, and that's just according to the officially acknowledged numbers. More disturbing, the number of fatalities is higher than the number of recoveries. What to make of that, I'm not certain, but it sure as hell doesn't look good. It means that of the resolved cases, half the people died and half recovered. How it will shake out in the coming weeks, we're just going to have to wait and see, but it sure doesn't look like a 3% fatality rate.
In case the posting gets scrubbed, here's a translated screen grab.

View attachment 29991
If you want to go further down this rabbit hole, here's a new video exploring this post a little deeper.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpQFCcSI0pU
 

Envision

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Spain and Italy both have similar characteristics.

Older population
Families live together longer
Hypertension & Smoking is common

Take a step back from all the media you're consuming and look at this for what it is.

1% death rate. 99% with existing conditions/older

 

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