Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Swimming Under Water

Gasping For Air,

The Hermit Kingdom is locked down and apparently sick, too. Humanitarian aid is likely to be in order. Can that be done? This is actually a big chance for mending inter-Korean relations, if the US can allow it.
Kim Jong Un canceled a big parade with no real explanation just as the South Korean press reports coronavirus has hit North Korea hard and could explode there.

​These numbers are weeks old. It's bound to be huge.
At least 500 Wuhan medical staff infected with coronavirus
Medical sources in the city confirm rate of infection, but say they have been told not to release the full picture to the public

​As infections continue to surface on quarantined Diamond Princess, I feel the dread of confinement of the elderly passengers, but can you imagine being on a Chinese nuclear sub with contagion onboard, and an extended mission? Yeah, the Chinese military is infected at every level, and at every post and remove. The enforcers are sick. 
The machine translation does fine on this Falun-Gong, Epoch Times article.

Ben Hunt of (excellent) Epsilon Theory, looks at Chinese epidemic number management. Everybody knows the numbers are massaged, but just how, and how much and what are the real drivers of government policy?
​ ​I believe that the Chinese government is massively under-reporting infection data in the pandemic regions of Hubei and Zhejiang provinces.
Just like the American government massively over-reported North Vietnamese casualty data in the Vietnam War.
It’s not only that I believe the numbers coming out of China are largely made up.
More importantly, I also believe that Chinese epidemic-fighting policy – just like American war-fighting policy in the Vietnam War – is now being driven by the narrative requirement to find and count the “right number” of coronavirus casualties.

​Charles Hugh Smith:
​ ​Ending the limited quarantine and falsely proclaiming China safe for visitors and business travelers will only re-introduce the virus to workplaces and infect foreigners.
​ ​China faces an inescapably fatal dilemma: to save its economy from collapse, China's leadership must end the quarantines soon and declare China "safe for travel and open for business" to the rest of the world.
​ ​But since 5+ million people left Wuhan to go home for New Years, dispersing throughout China, the virus has likely spread to small cities, towns and remote villages with few if any coronavirus test kits and few medical facilities to administer the tests multiple times to confirm the diagnosis. (It can take multiple tests to confirm the diagnosis, as the first test can be positive and the second test negative.)
​ ​As a result, Chinese authorities cannot possibly know how many people already have the virus in small-town / rural China or how many asymptomatic carriers caught the virus from people who left Wuhan. They also cannot possibly know how many people with symptoms are avoiding the official dragnet by hiding at home.
​ ​No data doesn't mean no virus.

​A truly critical factor in the spread of newly-christened COVID-19​ is how long it remains invisible before surfacing as symptoms of illness, like fever, cough and abdominal pain. The shortest incubation-period being advertised is 6 days, and this may be the minimum of a spectrum. Most viruses you catch will make you sick 3 days after exposure. 6 days is a lot of time, life activity and distance covered. It gives an epidemic long legs.
However, the most commonly quoted incubation period is 14 days, 2 weeks, almost unbelievably long. Now there is good data that incubation can take 24 days in some cases, more than 3 weeks. 
Will quarantine periods be increased to 25 days? Will cases become apparent in those released from quarantine?

Survival rates being over 95%, we can probably agree that most people who drink cow urine for COVID-19, or plaster themselves with fresh cow dung, will get over the virus, but...
India's Leaders Claim Drinking Cow Urine Will Cure the Coronavirus

The political left is adrift, without a compass or star to follow, having abandoned support for working people as a class. 
It is sick with it's own progressively disfiguring disease.
How Privilege and Woke Politics are Destroying the Left

Little red rooster of the financial elites, former Goldman Sachs CEO tweets in favor of continuity for his pals. 
Lloyd Blankfein is (somehow) a registered Democrat, and supported Hillary Clinton enthusiastically in 2016.
"He'll Ruin Our Economy": Lloyd Blankfein Warns "Russians Will Reconsider Who To Work For" If Sanders Clinches Nomination

​New Hampshire Primary takeaways: Sanders won, and is probably the only candidate that can take the Democratic Party to a real contest against Donald Trump, but "centrists" don't want him (yet). 
Big winner on all counts? Donald Trump, so far.​

New Hampshire Primary Democratic voters support Bernie Sanders in inverse proportion to age. The older voters, more vested in current system and retirement arrangements are wary, whereas younger voters, who know they can expect to get nothing-ever, support Bernie enthusiastically. 
Will there be a sudden inflection in expectations before the Democratic Convention this summer?
Wuhan COVID-19 or global financial crisis breaching the walls of fortress America might change perceptions and votes.

Older Outlier

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