Bed-Wetter Logic Unmasked

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“There’s a virus out there that’s killing people.”

“Really? Which people?”

“Well, the median age is 80, and about half the people who died were in nursing homes.”

“Oh my god! Ya know what we should do? We should close all the schools!”

“Uh … but —”

“I mean, some young people died too, right?”

“Turns out the virus is less likely to kill young people than the ordinary flu, but yes, some younger people died. Nearly all of them had pre-existing diseases or metabolic problems like obesity, diabetes—”

“Holy moly! In that case, we need to cancel college sports! We can’t take a chance that 20-year-olds in peak athletic condition will get sick and die!”

“But … ya see … I was just pointing out that—”

“Is there any indication of when this horrible virus will stop killing people?”

“Actually, in most regions, hardly anyone is dying from it now. People aren’t even showing up in hospitals anymore.”

“That’s terrible! We need to make sure everybody wears a mask so this senseless slaughter will stop!”

Welcome to the world of bed-wetter logic, where facts and data bounce off people’s heads like tiny ping-pong balls.

Remember a few months ago, when the bed-wetter media breathlessly reported on the rising number of deaths? You don’t see that much anymore. Now the bed-wetter reports are mostly about THE RISING NUMBER OF CASES!

Well, yes, the number of people testing positive for some fragment of the virus is rising and rising and rising. That’s because we’re testing like crazy, and – surprise! – finding more of exactly what we’re trying to find. The vast majority of the people who test positive have no symptoms, which means for the vast majority of us, coronavirus barely qualifies as a cold. That ought to be good news.

But no, the bed-wetter media insist on reporting the rising number of (ahem) “cases” as if it’s proof the equivalent of airborne AIDS is blowing around out there and we’re all in danger. Not surprisingly, surveys show that a huge chunk of the public wildly overestimates how many non-elderly people have died. Here are some typical survey results:

Six months into this pandemic, Americans still dramatically misunderstand the risk of dying from COVID-19:

On average, Americans believe that people aged 55 and older account for just over half of total COVID-19 deaths; the actual figure is 92%.

Americans believe that people aged 44 and younger account for about 30% of total deaths; the actual figure is 2.7%.

Americans overestimate the risk of death from COVID-19 for people aged 24 and younger by a factor of 50; and they think the risk for people aged 65 and older is half of what it actually is (40% vs 80%).

Yup, lots of people out there believe thousands of school-age kids have died. That’s what happens when the bed-wetter media are more interested in scaring the hell out of the audience than in … oh, I don’t know, let me think back to journalism school and see if I can remember the supposed purpose of news organizations … oh, yeah: informing the audience.

Substitute watch TV news for read the newspaper, and Mark Twain’s observation has never been more relevant than it is today:  If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re misinformed.

Thanks to our bed-wetter media, here’s how badly misinformed people are:

This misperception translates directly into a degree of fear for one’s health that for most people vastly exceeds the actual risk: we find that the share of people who are very worried or somewhat worried of suffering serious health consequences should they contract COVID-19 is almost identical across all age brackets between 25 and 64 years old, and it’s not far below the share for people 65 and older.

The discrepancy with the actual mortality data is staggering: for people aged 18–24, the share of those worried about serious health consequences is 400 times higher than the share of total COVID deaths; for those age 25–34 it is 90 times higher. The chart below truly is worth a thousand words:

The hysteria and the wild overestimation of actual risk among the misinformed has allowed bed-wetting politicians to get away with authoritarian overreach and impose restrictions that make absolutely no scientific sense.

In California (governed by a world-class bed-wetter) the schools are closed for the foreseeable future. We just can’t risk exposing kids to this horrible, deadly disease, doncha know. And how many school-age (under 18) kids have died from COVID-19 in California? Wait for it …

One. That’s right, one. In the entire USA, a grand total of 92 school-age kids have died from COVDID-19, and most of them had pre-existing health issues. Those are the actual facts. But thanks to the bed-wetter media’s constant hyping of the RISE IN CASES!, people are afraid their kids will get sick and die if they go to school.

The bed-wetter media apparently exist all over the world. Check out this video of a doctor being interviewed on Spanish television. (If you don’t speak Spanish, you’ll have to read the subtitles.) The journalist clearly wanted the doctor to confirm the EVERYTHING IS AWFUL angle of the story. Lucky for the viewers, the doctor told the truth instead. He keeps trying to point out that positive tests among people with no symptoms don’t mean anything, and the epidemic is basically over. Meanwhile, the bed-wetting journalist keeps interrupting to cite the positive test numbers as proof that EVERYTHING IS AWFUL. Never mind what the doctor who actually works in a hospital says.

Ivor Cummins has been using the term casedemic to describe the current round of bed-wetting. I don’t know if he originated the term or not, but it’s perfect. Here he is, using data to explain the difference between an actual epidemic and the current casedemic:

If you chose to skip the video, here’s what Ivor is talking about:  The bars above the red lines are cases, which are rising because of all the testing.  The bars below the red lines are deaths, which have plummeted to nearly zero, despite all those (ahem) “cases.”

Thank goodness, at least a few media outlets are making the distinction between cases and actual illness. Here are some quotes from an article in the U.K.’s Sunday Times:

The number of people in hospital with Covid-19 has fallen 96% since the peak of the pandemic, official data reveals.

Remember when lockdowns were all about flattening the curve so healthcare systems wouldn’t be overwhelmed? They’re clearly not overwhelmed. And yet the hysteria continues. Anyway, back to the article:

Hospital staff are now treating just 700 coronavirus patients a day in England, compared to about 17,000 a day during the middle of April, according to NHS England.

Last week, some hospitals did not have a single coronavirus patient on their wards, with one top doctor suggesting that Britain is “almost reaching herd immunity”.

I believe that’s true in the U.S. as well.

Wait … before any bed-wetters out there jump into the comments section to berate me, yes, I’m aware that deaths have been rising in some southern states, such as Florida. The summertime rise in the south is following the same curve as previous flu outbreaks. And as we saw elsewhere, 82 percent of deaths in Florida have occurred among the elderly, and nearly half of those occurred in nursing homes. Regardless of the recent (and predictable) rise in deaths in the south, here’s the latest CDC chart showing the deaths by age since the epidemic began.

Notice how younger people barely show up on the chart. And yet I’ve seen bed-wetters on Twitter post links to articles like this one, apparently thinking they’ve proved something awful is happening:

A Georgia school district that does not require masks has closed a high school and now has over 1,100 students and staff in quarantine due to the coronavirus.

Naturally, the bed-wetter reporter had to work does not require masks into the article. Yeah, that must be why the kids are infected, boy oh boy.  It couldn’t be that they were already infected and didn’t know it until they were tested.

The Cherokee County School District, based in Canton about 40 miles north of Atlanta, made the announcement Tuesday, just eight days after its schools reopened.

“This decision was not made lightly,” Superintendent Brian Hightower said in a statement about the temporary halt to in-person instruction at Etowah High School.

Ahhhh, the decision wasn’t made lightly. So there must have been a major outbreak of COVID-19 among the students, leading to a bunch of hospital admissions.

He said the high school had 14 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 15 tests pending as of Tuesday morning.

An entire high school was closed because 14 kids tested positive for a virus that’s soooo deadly, they didn’t know they’d been exposed … at least not until testing added them to the casedemic files.  I asked the bed-wetter who posted this article on Twitter to find the follow-up article telling us how many of those 14 kids required medical treatment.  I’m still waiting for his reply.

If closing schools actually stopped the spread of coronavirus, we’d see dramatic differences (or even kinda-sorta moderate differences) in outcomes between areas that closed their schools and areas that didn’t. But we don’t. Here are some quotes from an article in the Irish Times:

The reopening of schools in many EU countries has not led to significant increases in community transmission of Covid-19, according to a new report.

Child-to-child transmission of the disease in schools is uncommon and not the primary cause of infection in children attending class, particularly in preschools and primary schools, the report by the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC) suggests.

Schools are unlikely to be more effective environments for propagating the virus than other work or leisure settings with similar densities of people, the report states.

There’s a good reason schools are unlikely to be an effective environment for spreading COVID. Watch this report from the BBC and, if you’re impatient, skip ahead to about the 2:15 mark:

I’ll repeat what a researcher says in the report, in case you skipped the video entirely:

Unlike illnesses like influenza, which are spread wonderfully by children — they’re very good at spreading influenza — children don’t seem to be spreading the COVID 19 virus to anything like the same extent. and that’s very different from most respiratory illnesses, where it’s usually the child that’s brought the illness into the household. So there’s something different about this that provides some reassurance when it comes to opening schools.

Closing schools hasn’t made a difference. Lockdowns haven’t made a difference either. As I’ve been saying since coronahysteria began, the virus is here and it’s going to spread, period, whether we impose lockdowns or not. Here are some quotes from a BBC article:

Exposure to Covid-19 is similar in Stockholm and London, based on antibody tests, despite different lockdown strategies, research suggests.

Sweden chose to avoid a strict lockdown, with shops and restaurants staying open.

Health experts predicted that 40% of the population in the capital, Stockholm, would have developed antibodies to the disease by May.

The actual figure was 17%, according to a review of evidence.

The research, published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, found that 17% of people tested in April in Stockholm had developed antibodies.

This compares with 17% of Londoners tested in April and May, and 5%-10% of people living in Geneva.

Sweden adopted a lighter-touch strategy for dealing with the pandemic compared with most other European countries, deciding not to institute a widespread lockdown, and putting in place relatively few restrictions.

This was based partly on the idea of letting Covid-19 sweep through the population creating so-called herd immunity. Such an approach was considered but then abandoned in the UK.

The herd-immunity approach shouldn’t have been abandoned, but unfortunately, the bed-wetters won the day.

By the way, if you’re thinking 17% of a population testing positive for antibodies doesn’t sound like herd immunity, think again. Remember, most people who test positive for coronavirus fragments never felt ill. It turns out many people shake off the virus without producing antibodies. Here are some quotes from an article in the U.K. Telegraph:

Antibody tests may be missing large numbers of people who contracted Covid-19 because they don’t work for people who had a mild infection, new research from Oxford University suggests.

A study of more than 9,000 healthcare workers suggested significant numbers of people were getting ‘negative’ test results, despite probably having had the virus.

The work has major implications for government health policy, and scientists said it might also mean reviewing where the threshold between negative and positive results lies.

Hospitalizations and deaths in Sweden – with no lockdowns and no masks — are now close to zero. I’m pretty sure at this point, the bed-wetters would prefer to pretend Sweden doesn’t exist. A professor of microbiology and immunology in Tel Aviv name Udi Qimron made that point when interviewed for the Israel National News:

“There is a very great interest for anyone who has supported the draconian measures taken around the world to say that Sweden’s policy has failed. Because if it succeeded, and trillions went down the drain for no reason, someone will have to answer for it.”

“That is why all over the world they prefer to claim that [Sweden] was wrong. But in the end, the truth came to the surface. In a world where decision makers, their advisers and the media were able to admit their mistake and the initial panic that gripped them, we would have long since returned to routine. The ongoing destruction due to the inability to admit this mistake, despite the epidemic’s small mortality numbers, is outrageous.”

Yup. It’s been several years since I mentioned the terrific book Mistakes Were Made (but not by me), which explains why people who take very public positions find it darned near impossible to admit they were wrong, even when the evidence proves they were wrong. We’re seeing the phenomenon described in the book among all the bed-wetter politicians now.

Back to Professor Qimrom in the Israel National News:

He said smart behavior would be the opposite of what we do today; Populations not at risk should become infected and create chains of immunity, which will protect the sick and the elderly. We are currently working for sweeping social distancing, which prevents such differential immunity, he said.

He went on to explain that infection of children is a welcome thing, because it protects at-risk populations. “For the same reason, I would open up the whole education system, because the vast majority is made up of people who are not at risk. Of course a solution needs to be found for teachers suffering from diabetes or other background diseases, but I see no reason to prevent activities that encourage the economy. Not only because it allows parents to go to work, but also because it lowers mortality in the long run. I would also ask children and young people to take off their masks.

But … but … in a Georgia high school that does not require masks, 14 kids were found to have fragments of the virus!

I was more or less agnostic on the wear your mask! issue at first. I suspected they wouldn’t do much to stop the virus because I saw at least three doctors explain that the virus is so tiny, wearing a mask to avoid spreading it is like trying to keep out mosquitos by putting up a chain-link fence.

But I also had my doubts because of some basic logic: if areas that imposed lockdowns didn’t fare any better than areas that didn’t impose lockdowns, why the @#$% would telling people to wear masks make a difference? Let’s think through that logic, shall we?

Okay, keeping people apart didn’t work, so we’ll let them out in public again – but they need to wear some cotton on their faces, because that will somehow do what keeping them apart didn’t do.

Suuuure, it will.

The wear your mask! crowd trots out studies showing one of two results: 1) wearing a mask reduces the distance saliva droplets travel if you cough or sneeze, or 2) the rate of infection among healthcare workers declined after they and all patients were required to wear masks in hospitals.

So if you’re out in public and still sick enough to spread the virus via your saliva (in which case, why the heck are you out in public?), a mask might stop you from sneezing the virus onto another person. Okay, we’ll go with that.

As for the reduced infections among healthcare workers after mask mandates were imposed … that could be a coincidence.  I haven’t seen anything like a control or comparison group for the same time period.

For the sake of the healthcare workers, I sincerely hope the masks do work. But again, we’re talking about healthcare workers who treat COVID patients sick enough to show up at a hospital. That means up-close-and-personal interactions with people who are likely coughing and sneezing the virus into the nearby air. It’s probably putting masks on the patients that made the difference, not putting masks on the healthcare workers.  Either way, that tells us absolutely nothing about the effectiveness of ordering asymptomatic people to wear masks when they’re out in public.

Scientists in other countries have formed an opinion, however:

Denmark boasts one of the lowest COVID-19 death rates in the world. As of August 4, the Danes have suffered 616 COVID-19 deaths, according to figures from Johns Hopkins University.

That’s less than one-third of the number of Danes who die from pneumonia or influenza in a given year.

Despite this success, Danish leaders recently found themselves on the defensive. The reason is that Danes aren’t wearing face masks, and local authorities for the most part aren’t even recommending them.

This prompted Berlingske, the country’s oldest newspaper, to complain that Danes had positioned themselves “to the right of Trump.”

Because wearing a mask should, of course, be a political decision, not a scientific one. No wait … that doesn’t sound right …

This apparently did not sit well with Danish health officials. They responded by noting there is little conclusive evidence that face masks are an effective way to limit the spread of respiratory viruses.

Denmark is not alone.

Despite a global stampede of mask-wearing, data show that 80-90 percent of people in Finland and Holland say they “never” wear masks when they go out, a sharp contrast to the 80-90 percent of people in Spain and Italy who say they “always” wear masks when they go out.

Well then, Spain and Italy must have much lower COVID deaths rates than Finland and Holland, thanks to those masks. Let’s check the data:

Oops.

Dutch public health officials recently explained why they’re not recommending masks.

Does the explanation look something like this?

“From a medical point of view, there is no evidence of a medical effect of wearing face masks, so we decided not to impose a national obligation,” said Medical Care Minister Tamara van Ark.

There’s more about Holland’s decision not to mandate masks in the U.K. Daily Mail:

The nation’s top scientists, having examined key data and research, have declared there is no firm evidence to back the use of face coverings. Indeed, they argue that wearing the wretched things may actually hamper the fight against disease.

Face masks in public places are not necessary, based on all the current evidence,’ said Coen Berends, spokesman for the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment. ‘There is no benefit and there may even be negative impact.’

Norway isn’t requiring masks either:

In a memo, published in English on its website, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, said that even in the best case, with medical masks which prevent 40 percent of infections, 200,000 people would have to wear them to prevent just one new infection per week.

That’s one COVID case, not one COVID death.

This, it said, meant that the likely negative impacts outweighed any benefits “in the current epidemiological situation”.

“The number of people who experience undesirable effects is likely to be much larger than the number of infections prevented,” it said.

Wait, what? Ya mean wearing masks can have undesirable effects?

Why yes, they can. Here’s a video posted by a woman who’s spent 20 years working as an OSHA-approved Personal Protective Equipment expert.

Yes, it’s a long video. I’d urge you watch to it, but in case you don’t, here are some of the points she makes:

  • Masks can’t possibly stop you breathing in or breathing out the virus because it’s incredibly tiny. (Again, I’ve heard doctors describe wearing cotton or even surgical masks to stop the spread of COVID as the equivalent of putting up a chain-link fence to keep out mosquitos.)
  • Yes, masks do reduce the amount of oxygen you breathe. She mentioned that several doctors and nurses have disputed that point by saying they wear masks in surgery all the time and breathe just fine. But what they don’t know is that OSHA has stringent requirements for hospital environments, including … wait for it … extra oxygen pumped into operating rooms because OSHA knows masks reduce oxygen intake. (I don’t need an OSHA expert to tell me that. When I wear a mask at the grocery store, I have to periodically pull it away from my face and take a few deep breaths to avoid feeling light-headed.)
  • Because masks reduce your oxygen intake, OSHA doesn’t allow employers to mandate masks unless each employee passes a medical exam to prove the mask won’t cause problems … and again, OSHA often requires the employer to pump extra oxygen into environments where masks will be worn. Now OSHA has mysteriously set those requirements aside.

Perhaps the dumbest argument I’ve heard for wearing masks goes something like this: Sure, there’s no evidence they actually stop the spread of the coronavirus. But if you wear a mask when you’re in a public place, it will make the people around you feel safer.

Allow me to interpret that:

Now that we bed-wetters have needlessly scared the hell out of everyone over a virus that’s a threat to almost nobody who goes out in public, we need you to wear a worthless mask on your face so the people we’ve terrified will feel less terrified. It’s your civic duty, doncha know.

Here’s my alternate suggestion: The virus is here, it’s not going away, and it’s going to spread, period … no matter how many lockdowns the bed-wetters impose, and no matter how many asymptomatic people they force to wear cloth over their faces. And for the vast, vast majority of us, that’s not scary news at all.  In fact, the sooner we get to herd immunity (if we’re not there already), the better.

So let’s tell the bed-wetters to @#$% off, put on their big-boy pants, and leave the rest of us alone. We have lives to live.

 


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118 thoughts on “Bed-Wetter Logic Unmasked

  1. Jim Tubman

    In Canada, population about 38 million, the rolling 3 day average of COVID deaths reported has been in the single digits since July 22, and nowhere are the hospitals close to being overwhelmed. But the country’s chief public health officer says that we should expect to be social distancing and wearing masks for the next 2 to 3 years, even with a vaccine. https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/covid-19-vaccine-tam-1.5673729

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Two to three years?! Good lord, we’re like people wearing crosses to keep the vampires away now.

      Reply
      1. Jim Tubman

        One of the things that I fear from this experience is that, once again, the medical establishment will latch on to some bad ideas and won’t let go of them for at least a generation, like they did with dietary cholesterol or blood-letting.

        Reply
        1. GEORGENE

          While I don’t disagree entirely, we have a long history (as a people) of ignoring medical advice – and for good reason, as we all know.

          I think the bigger concern is that these petty tyrants, especially State governors and city mayors, will enjoy their heady taste of power so much that they will/are unwilling to let it go. In fact, all one has to do is look at California, Michigan, and some of the others that are so draconian in lockdown toi understand that it’s already too late. And Texas. For the first time in my life I’ve stated several times recently: “Thank GOODNESS I don’t live in Texas!” People who know me know it took a LOT to get to that statement.

          Fantastic article, Tom! I’ll be sharing this!

          Reply
      2. JillOz

        Similar in Australia Tom. Dan Andrews, the Premier of the State govt of Victoria wants an extension of the current State of Emergency – for another year – to basically lock people down for the next year and to give the Chief Health Officer – unelected – increased powers to force people to wear masks, stay home etc. EVEN IF THERE ARE ZERO CASES!!
        Basically both State and Federal govts, having restricted simple cheap effective methods of treating Covid, are forcing people to stay put until they can force a vaccine on them – or rather, us.
        The Prime Minister says he can’t make people take it but he wants it made “as mandatory as possible” and his federal Health Minister/ health officers want social penalties to apply if you don’t take it – no restaurants, no welfare, no work, no overseas travel.
        So you can stay in Australia but can’t leave the country if you’re not vaccinated.
        The company the PM wants to buy it from has an ex-Liberal Chief of Staff as the director of Governance there.
        The company itself is Astra Zeneca which is indemnified against liability in many countries and probably will be in the case of Australia.
        They say you don’t have to take it for medical reasons but they want at least 95% uptake.
        Melbourne is under curfew, can’t leave the house between 8pm – 5am.
        You need work permits and travel documents to move around and are in a 5k limit ghetto. You can’t go further unless you work somewhere and they want you to work and educate kids at home.

        There have already been quite a few hundred suicides.

        People are very angry – well, the sane ones and politicians are getting hammered on their respective phones even though many of them too are not allowed to open their offices.
        It’s all very antidemocratic.

        Reply
        1. JillOz

          “The company the PM wants to buy it from has an ex-Liberal Chief of Staff as the director of Governance there.” He was a govt adviser.

          I forgot to mention the PM, Scott Morrison, is from the Liberal Party which in Australia is more or less conservative, but they are acting like greedy Stalinists.

          Borders between states are also closed and people living and working around the borders are going nuts because they can’t look after their farms or go for medical care.

          Reply
  2. Firebird7479

    “I was more or less agnostic on the wear your mask! issue at first. I suspected they wouldn’t do much to stop the virus because I saw at least three doctors explain that the virus is so tiny, wearing a mask to avoid spreading it is like trying to keep out mosquitos by putting up a chain-link fence.”

    Just got into an argument with a friend of mine over this. We grew up together and he’s running for council in the town we grew up in (again) where he will lose (again) because of the corruption in town government which is handed down from generation to generation. I am a member at Atilis Gym (the one you see on Tucker Carlson). I suggested he got introduce himself to them and talk to them about the issues they are having with King Murphy of New Jersey and the borough’s power brokers. He didn’t want to. His bullet points:

    – I care about my town and what they are doing is wrong! I’ve seen the videos…nobody is wearing masks!

    Masks don’t work, Bill!
    -Yes they do!
    No they don’t Bill. I have a video of an OSHA PPE Inspector w/20 years experience who will tell you why they don’t work.
    – I don’t need a PPE Inspector to tell me. I work in Pharmaceuticals.
    So, you know drugs, but not masks.
    – Listen, they’re just doing it wrong.
    Bill, the governor is applying pressure to the borough to shut down this business. It’s the second largest anchor store in the shopping center. Even the Dollar General employees know how much traffic they get through the front door from the gym…so does the Aldi up the street! Most members of that gym don’t even live in the town. The gym gets forced shut, Dollar General, the pizzeria, chiropractor, etc. all lose business.
    – But I care about my town. They are harming it.
    🤦‍♂️

    Meanwhile, King Murphy: I just don’t know how to open gyms and indoor dining!
    ME: You said, “Close!” Now say, “Open!”

    Lady I know has a friend near Trenton, NJ. She has to dine outdoors in NJ but can walk 1600′ across the bridge, over the Delaware to PA, go to a restaurant over there and eat indoors.

    Headline: The virus can’t swim.

    Reply
  3. Jeff

    Not related to the virus itself, but I saw an amazingly hysterical, fear-mongering headline the other day. I have come to believe the media will do *anything* for clicks. The headline from a USA Today article (you can search for it; I won’t link to it): “Outdoor dining may save restaurants during COVID-19. But are diners at risk from cars plowing into them?”

    Unreal.

    Reply
  4. Charles-André Fortin

    Hi Tom,

    I have to not agree with some of your argument. If you look at the meta-analysis here : https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1477893920302301 you can see that there is an effect of wearing mask for healthcare people in general that also seem to show a effect for non-health worker. But there is a big but, you have to be in a high risk environment… Like having a sick person home you need to take care… I’m really not sure (really really skeptical) if you can translate that to the entire population…

    My ex work at a children hospital that were designate to handle all the children case in our region… In total, they hospital around 67 children. Guest how many were in the IR… 1 because he had an operation, not because of the covid and we had over 60000 cases total… And we talk about that why, because I also learn that they are begin to consider putting mask for every child over 2 years old instead of all over 10 years old… For **** sake…

    The second part is the oxygen part… What mask do is make the air harder to get, so you need to put a little more effort to breath. That’s why boxers often use them for training, it’s help increase the strength of their breathing muscle. For the vast majority of people, it’s barely an inconvenience, especially if you wear them less then 30 min at a time to go at the grocery. Now going back to children under 2 years old… they don’t have the lung capacity to wear mask.. that’s why is a no no… It’s not my expertise but it has something to do with the fact that you have around 5 ml of exalt air (hope it’s the right word) in the mask and for them it’s significant compare with an adult that same 5 ml is irrelevant because we breath so much more air…

    I personally would not put mask on children under 12 years old just you know to be on the safe side and the fact (it is stupid) they don’t spread the virus a lot any way.

    “Now that we bed-wetters have needlessly scared the hell out of everyone over a virus that’s a threat to almost nobody who goes out in public, we need you to wear a worthless mask on your face so the people we’ve terrified will feel less terrified. It’s your civic duty, doncha know.” I still find it is a compelling argument, I find that living in society resemble living with a woman. Sometime you need to compromise and for no good reason… and unfortunately I prefer the mask over a lockdown…

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I can see where a mask would actually work in situations where it prevents an actively symptomatic person from sneezing the virus onto others, as in the situation you described. But good grief, we’ve got perfectly healthy people walking around covering their faces for no reason that makes any scientific sense.

      Reply
      1. Tom Welsh

        Have you read about the desperate, extreme efforts that were made during the 1918-19 flu epidemic to demonstrate transfer of the flu virus by physical means? They did everything including taking mucus from sick people and shoving it into the upper respiratory tracts of well people. Nothing worked.

        “Spread of Spanish Flu Was Never Experimentally Confirmed”
        https://medium.com/microbial-instincts/spread-of-spanish-flu-was-never-experimentally-confirmed-9f91b37c4dd8

        They isolated microbial mixtures from the throat and noses of carefully selected influenza cases from an outbreak location. The researchers then administered these to 10 young U.S. navy volunteers without prior exposure to influenza. None fell sick.
        They drew blood from influenza patients and transferred it to the navy volunteers. None fell sick.
        They collected influenza patients’ mucous membranes with swabs and filtered them to exclude larger microbes like bacteria. They then injected the filtrate into the navy volunteers. None fell sick.
        They brought the navy volunteers to meet influenza patients. They shook hands and conversed. The patients also exhaled (as hard as possible) onto the volunteers’ face for five times. Then the patients cough directly onto the volunteers. None fell sick.

        Reply
          1. Terry Jones

            it is covered here https://virologyj.biomedcentral.com/track/pdf/10.1186/1743-422X-5-29

            It tracks back to work a GP in the UK did over 40yrs; tracking flu outbreaks. He said the way the outbreaks happened; it could not be sick to well; well becomes sick; and spreads.

            The flu has spread quietly months before; it embeds itself; it comes alive in the late winter, in northern temperate zones; Ivor Cummins has talked of this extensively recently: very well presented.

            Dr Hope-Simpson; Ivor Cummins offers a pdf of HS’s book “transmission of influenza”: it is a wonderful read.

            Reply
      2. Elenor

        “But good grief, we’ve got perfectly healthy people walking around covering their faces for no reason that makes any scientific sense.”

        But good grief, we’ve got perfectly healthy people DRIVING around ALONE IN THEIR CARS covering their faces for no reason that makes any scientific sense.

        The truth must out! (Or is that the LIES must out?)

        Reply
        1. Tom Naughton Post author

          I’ve seen people wearing masks in cars, and I can only guess that they’re protecting themselves from themselves.

          Reply
        2. Susan

          I think the ultimate stupidity was the boss who mandated that his remotely working employees sitting alone at home, must wear a mask during Zoom sessions because “it sets a good example.”

          And now we have Slo Joe, in his best Anointed mode, saying he thinks everyone should wear a mask and social distance at all times. And if he’s elected, he’ll make sure it comes to pass.

          Reply
    2. Firebird7479

      Forget the virus. I have an eye disease called keratoconus. The mask interferes with my vision. Imagine being one of these idiots who is alone in their car wearing a mask while driving, then throw KC into the mix. Poor result. And 30 minutes IS an inconvenience for me because even with glasses that aid w/KC, the mask makes things worse. It’s not just a question of misreading labels but also misjudging distances and banging into objects in the store.

      Getting myself an exemption for this, although, scientifically, there is no basis to be wearing one in the first place.

      Reply
      1. Tom Welsh

        Even medical staff in hospitals normally wear masks for only 30 minutes or so. The duration of an operation, just so they don’t sneeze or drip actual drops of snot into the patient’s open wounds.

        As well as being uncomfortable and distracting, a mask demonstrably lowers blood oxygen levels and causes a built-up of carbon dioxide. Which both tend to reduce the efficiency of doctors and nurses.

        Reply
        1. Firebird7479

          My does the billing for a local doctor. She wears a mask all day, every day.

          And she came down with pneumonia. I read another article where a woman came down with Legionnaire’s Disease. Others are coming down with pleurisy.

          The cure is worse than the disease.

          Reply
          1. Tom Naughton Post author

            I don’t need to read articles or watch videos to know that a mask reduces my oxygen intake. I wear one for a while, I have to pull it down and take a few deep breaths to avoid feeling light-headed.

            Reply
          2. Firebird7479

            So you’re saying that my sister is lying about contracting pneumonia from wearing a mask all day in a doctor’s office as well? Because if there are two places where you’re guaranteed to get sick, it’s a doctor’s office or a hospital.

            I’ve also seen videos where the 02 rate drops from mask wearing. Of course, those have been Orwelled.

            Reply
  5. Lori Miller

    The private school by my house is in session. I haven’t noticed if the kids are wearing masks, but it looks like reason has prevailed in at least one little spot.

    And I see kids outside playing like I’ve never seen before.

    Reply
  6. Desmond

    I picked up a few cool looking seamless face covers. Wearing them lets me into the stores in town that require them. But the fabric is so thin that if I haven’t shaved I can feel the whiskers poking through. Definitely a chain-link mosquito barrier. But they are effective for saw dusk if I am using my skilsaw. I also will save them for some cold winter days.

    A few months ago, I had a business trip that took me through your neck of the woods. I was near Leipers Fork… very pretty country!

    Reply
  7. Nann

    A study came out today that states

    “The authors further state that the failure to mitigate COVID-19 in the U.S. will paralyze the healthcare delivery system as well decrease the ability to provide lifesaving measures for patients with COVID-19 or other serious conditions. They further state that it is more imperative than ever that the U.S. abandon “pandemic politics” and focus solely on effective public health strategies. The authors raise the specter that, if the current numbers of cases and deaths and their trajectories in the U.S. continue, a coordinated national shutdown of sufficient duration, which was not achieved previously, may become necessary. For example, the continued exponential growth of the virus in the U.S. is reflected by the markedly decreasing number of days to achieve each million case from 97 to 44 to 28 to 15 days.”

    OMG, absolute insanity. Now they seem to be pretending that their ability to provide health care will be impacted if we don’t “lock down” again and this time, much more seriously.

    Reply
  8. pablo

    Hi Tom, always enjoy your take on things. A figure jumped out at me while reading your post. It was the 17% rate in Stockholm and the 17% in London. Way back when, when this insanity was just beginning, there was a Princess Cruise ship where the virus spread. 7 people died out of over 3700. All over 65, and probably compromised already. But the figure that stuck with me was the number of passengers and crew who tested positive for the virus. The number was 17%. Also, if we figure on 7 people over 65, that works out to 3.3% of all over 65 that died. I know we shouldn’t extrapolate using only one example, but I did it anyway. Using those figures, and figuring on 3.3% of all over 65 dying, how many should be dying in the various states? Turns out, the states that are doing the best in saving lives are California, Florida, Texas, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee and so forth. All of those states have had far fewer deaths in the over 65 crowd than 3.3%. And the worst states? I’m glad you asked. They are Louisiana, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and the grand prize winner, New York, with more than 17,000 extra deaths over the 3.3%. Even though I am currently in Massachusetts, looking after grandkids, I’ll be returning to my red-neck home in Florida shortly after school begins. If it ever does, here in the land WEAR YOUR MASK!

    Reply
  9. K2

    Hi Tom,

    Wow. Great post with incredible information, sound reasoning, and real science. I need to read it again – and maybe again after that – to fully absorb it.

    One thing to consider are the “number” of cases. The numbers are so inaccurate as to be useless. Consider that in Florida where my parents live, several labs were caught reporting the same positive results two days in a row, so if John Doe was in the positive list on Tuesday, he was there again on Wednesday, doubling the numbers for who knows how long. Also, I have heard reports that hospitals are reporting results from people being treated for covid as separate positive cases. That is, if someone is in the hospital for 10 days, testing every day until a negative test result for their release, that would be 9 positive results appearing to be 9 new cases, not just one person.

    Those are just two examples of how numbers can get skewed, and those are not being corrected. We have no idea how many people have actually tested positive. And yet policy decisions impacting the nation and our economy are based on them. As you say so well: Bang. Head. On. Desk.

    But wait, it gets better. I live in Maryland where our governor with delusions of royalty – King Larry Hogan – appears to have earned a medical degree in his spare time when he isn’t bashing President Trump or procuring iffy covid-19 testing kits from South Korea, and has banned the sale of hydroxychoroquine, even if prescribed by a doctor to treat covid. King Larry claimed this was to protect the limited supply, but now with loads of it everywhere, he still hasn’t lifted his royal decree. So a valid, useful treatment is being denied for people with covid in Maryland, mostly out of political posturing rather than even bad science.

    Thank you for continuing to put out facts and reasoned arguments. It is quite refreshing at any time, but especially after months of misguided advice, bad information and flat out harmful lies.

    Take care.

    Kelli

    Reply
  10. j

    Tom, thanks for the always full of common-sense posts.
    At some point, people are going to have to stop fearing loss and start very very assertively resisting what’s happening. There’s only so much complaining online can do. Actually almost nothing. I’m not saying do anything violent, get into fights etc (although i don’t see how this won’t be the future of things to come). But people are going to have to take a stand and say no I will NOT comply with mask mandates, business closures etc. Even if that means getting citations or arrested (don’t resist arrest btw).
    This is a war for your freedom and way of life, whether some know/admit it or not.
    This is why they wanted all of us fat and sick, and with no 2a.
    It’s only going to get worse if allowed to continue. A lot worse.
    Don’t believe me? Well, history shows otherwise.
    The grip is tightening. Eventually, no one will be able to breathe. How long are we going to wait?

    Reply
  11. Micky P

    Face masks are bollocks. It’s more about complying with authority than for our safety. Whether it’s for a future war with China or the US election who knows.

    Reply
  12. Anne Robertson

    Brilliant post, Tom. I think this obsession with masks is a conspiracy to drive all deaf people to suicide since masks prevent them from lip-reading and hearing aids aren’t good enough to help them hear the muffled output from behind those masks. Being totally blind myself, I’m useless at social distancing… but I’m really good at washing my hands!

    Reply
  13. Tim Heineman

    Tom, you put in a lot of work on this. You’ve pulled in a plethora of evidence, accompanied it with pertinent logic and covered the issues comprehensively. But I know what my friends will say, “he calls people bed wetters. Thats ad hominem.” And I will wearily tell them no, his arguments are no ad hominem. Bedwetters is simply a conclusion. F them and many thanks to you.

    Reply
  14. Breandan

    One question though. If we’re approaching herd immunity why do we still have so many deaths each day here in the US? I’ve noticed many of the northern states have dropped off significantly, but Florida continues to climb along with many other southern populations. It seems concerning, but I’m not an expert in such things.
    I did get a message from my kids’ school though that said they could ride the bus but they had to have all the windows down. Going into fall its in the mid 50’s around here most mornings. Which I’d imagine will cause more kids to get sick… Very frustrating.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I’ve been posting about this on Twitter, including screen caps charts. Southern regions in the U.S. have summertime spikes for respiratory diseases. Florida gets a big rise every summer. So what’s happening is normal.

      Reply
    2. GEORGENE

      While chilly air is uncomfortable, especially for people living in Florida for a long time, one does not get sick from cold air. Having the windows down might be a good idea, though still, children are at such low risk it’s all silly. Bundle your kids up and they’ll be fine!

      Reply
  15. Tom Welsh

    “This apparently did not sit well with Danish health officials. They responded by noting there is little conclusive evidence that face masks are an effective way to limit the spread of respiratory viruses”.

    Hmmm. Doesn’t look quite accurate to me.

    “This apparently did not sit well with Danish health officials. They responded by noting there is NO evidence that face masks are an effective way to limit the spread of respiratory viruses”.

    FTFT.

    Although actually there is an even more fundamental problem with that sentence. Limiting the spread of respiratory viruses is not an obvious end result unless you have reason to believe that the spread of those viruses will cause some harm.

    And there is no such reason. Every year the average adult gets two colds, and the average child about four colds. Those are caused either by coronaviruses or by similar viruses such as rhinoviruses. Yet the vast majority of those people suffer no serious illness – just some temporary discomfort and inconvenience.

    (Does anyone else find the term “rhinovirus” really, really funny? Hippovirus, anyone? Elephantovirus? Buffalovirus? OK, OK… how about crocovirus?)

    Oh well… maybe I should leave the comedy to Tom Naughton…

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yup, I don’t understand the fetish for stopping the spread. All that will do is delay reaching herd immunity, since ultimately there’s no stopping the spread, only slowing it down.

      Reply
    2. Robert

      Coronaviruses also cause SARS and MERS in humans which had a mortality rate of 15% and 30% respectively. There are a huge number of them existing in bats and other animals. Anytime one jumps species you will have new unknown problems to deal with.

      Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I see attacks on her credentials, but not much actually disputing the essence of what she said. We can quibble over statements like “99% of people who get it will be fine” (which remains to be seen), but that doesn’t really negate anything she said about masks being ineffective for stopping the spread of the virus.

      Reply
      1. Robeert

        She flat out lied about her credentials. You didn’t much actually disputing what she said? From the article:

        “She is correct in stating the 0.3 μm threshold of the N95 mask and notes the virus is smaller at about 0.1 μm. However, misses that masks are meant to prevent the spread of the relatively enormous respiratory particles which can easily be stopped by even a cloth mask. She also fails to realize O2 and CO2 moleucles are up to 100x smaller than the virus in her claims they are trapped in the mask.”

        “She correctly states Operating Rooms (ORs) have a “negative pressure,” but this means they contain a higher pressure inside the room than outside to ensure particles generally move outwards from the sterile environment.

        She constantly interchanges the words “air flow” for “oxygen flow.” This difference is extremely important as oxygen is a flammable gas. When localized oxygen hook ups are installed in an OR, there are strict safety precautions involved to make sure they do not leak any of the flammable gas into the room, where sparks could ignite an explosion. I’m not sure how she missed this in her OSHA safety training.

        Herrema Clark uses these claims in an attempt to debunk the many demonstrations by health professionals that wearing a mask all day did not affect their SpO2: “They don’t understand they are working in a room with a very precisely controlled O₂ level…O₂…to make up for the fact they’re working with a mask. Most medical professionals have no clue.”

        She also falsely claims that Bill Gates owns a patent to SARS CoV-2. She’s a crank.

        I understand if you think we went overboard with the shutdowns. I disagree but it’s a somewhat reasonable position because of the economic costs. But, you’re going down a rabbit hole with some of the stuff you’re posting. And you have some complete cranks here too.

        I hope you and your family stay well.

        Reply
        1. Tom Naughton Post author

          You’re engaging in the deconstruction technique where you quibble over a few details to suggest the entire message is wrong. I don’t really care if air flow and oxygen flow don’t mean exactly the same thing, etc. Her point is that masks don’t stop us from breathing the virus in or out, and that they make it more difficult to breathe — which I can tell your from personal experience is definitely true in my case.

          Reply
    2. Firebird7479

      Who fact checks the fact checkers? I’ll take the word of a PPE Expert for OSHA with 20 years of experience before a national figure head who hasn’t seen a patient in 40 years, or a billionaire eugenist who wants to jab everyone with a vaccine who has no background in medicine.

      Reply
    3. Kay

      I agree. I haven’t checked this site in years and I can’t believe what I’m reading. What happened? Did Tom start taking Statins?

      Reply
      1. Tom Naughton Post author

        No, Tom is as skeptical of government advice as he’s always been and looks at the data as he’s always done. If you think lockdowns are a good idea, tell us about the job you lost that you consider a worthwhile sacrifice to save 80-year-olds from dying from COVID instead of whatever else would have killed them this year.

        Reply
  16. Martin Levac

    Tom, there’s no virus: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/343399832_Face_masks_lies_damn_lies_and_public_health_officials_A_growing_body_of_evidence

    The paper is clear enough, but to summarize in my own words, what this paper says is that all deaths attributed to the presumed SARS-CoV-2 virus (that’s the name of the presumed virus, the name of the presumed disease cause by this presumed virus is COVID-19) are in fact due to the emergency measures themselves. The main point made in that paper is that the death curve sits in a spot on a timeline where no other virus of the same class, or of any class, otherwise sit. Or if you prefer, the death curve sits on the emergency measures timeline. Recorded deaths started to rise precisely when measures were implemented, then fall as the measures were relaxed, went to zero as only distance and masks (neither of which are effective to any degree at mitigating even a tiny iota the transmission of a virus of that class) are in effect.

    Or if you prefer still, things like DNR orders even against the patient’s or relative’s wishes, literal abandonment of old and sick and dying patients in long-term care facilities (where the bulk of deaths are reported to have occurred), forced isolation of those same patients, visits from relatives prohibited, lack of essential medical care, and so on and so forth, are the actual causes of deaths, but in this case of premature deaths to be more precise due to the (true) cause of all those deaths being existing and severe medical conditions of all sorts, the sort that nobody of that age and health condition gets better from, and ultimately die in short order.

    So, instead of appropriate care by any measure for people who are extremely vulnerable to even a common cold or a small cut on a finger, the care was withheld and people were left to die, were left to starve, to shit on themselves. There’s no good word to say here, sorry.

    Finally, deaths that are completely unrelated to any of this have been and continue to be reported as Covid-19 deaths, and are only removed from the records as such if and when they are pointed out.

    But what about the PCR tests, a skeptic would ask? I barely understand what that test is, but from what I’ve read and watched, a PCR test cannot possibly detect a virus. So, whatever it is the PCR test detects, it’s not a virus and is likely to be present in healthy persons, thus the more people are tested (regardless of symptomology), the more presumed cases are detected. Or if you prefer, the more living walking breathing people we look for, the more living walking breathing people we find.

    It’s a sad day when I can’t think of a single thing you can use to write something funny.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Interesting article. I’ve read elsewhere that the “treatments” killed some people, but I believe any virus that causes respiratory stress will kill some vulnerable people too, whether they’re treated incorrectly or not.

      Reply
    2. Robert

      So people started dying in droves in places like New York, Italy, Iran, China and Russia just to name a few before the lock downs due to the lock downs. Are you seriously that delusional?

      Oh, and here’s an article describing what PCR tests are and how they work.

      https://discoverysedge.mayo.edu/2020/03/27/the-science-behind-the-test-for-the-covid-19-virus/#:~:text=When%20a%20cell%20divides%2C%20it,2%20virus%20in%20clinical%20samples.

      Quit listening to complete nut jobs Tom.

      Reply
      1. Martin Levac

        Yes, Robert, I agree. Tom should quit listening to complete nut jobs. But then, if he did that, he wouldn’t have any material for his next funny blog. But seriously.

        Some guy named Robert tells me something, without any link to any source for what he says, that what I cited (therefore whoever wrote that paper I cited, author Denis Rancourt), and what I wrote about it, is wrong. What I wrote is wrong, I concede. But then, what you wrote is wrong too, Robert, and you should concede as well. Because what either of us wrote is an opinion, and we all know by now what they say about opinions. However, between the two sources cited by you or me, there’s only one which relates directly to the lockdown and its detrimental effects. Between what you said and what I said, that source supports what I said about it, and does not support what you said on it.

        The PCR source has no bearing on that.

        On the other hand, I’m well aware of what’s called the fallacy of genelization, where one thing is shown to be false (i.e. the PCR stuff I wrote about), therefore all things must be equally false. I don’t bite, cuz I’m immune to fallacies. Also, I did start with the phrase “I barely understand what that test is,…” And so, thank you very much, Robert, for providing me with more information on the PCR so that I can then form a more robust opinion on that. Having said that, that source does not in fact persuade me otherwise. I am also aware of what’s called Koch’s postulate, which is necessary to be certain of the very existence (and virulence, and contagion, etc) of a pathogen, and this was not done with this presumed SARS-CoV-2 virus. Thus, the RT-PCR test used here cannot possibly tell us what it is detecting. My opinion stands.

        Have a good day, Robert.

        Reply
  17. Elenor

    Well, come on, Desmond… don’t be coy. WHERE did you get these oh-so-fine masks so we can start a toilet-paper-style run … er … PANIC on them?

    Reply
  18. A

    I completely quit reading and watching the news two months ago. I also can’t access a single major social media site such as Twitter or Facebook. I got blocking software and put it on my phone and laptop. I’ve never been happier. I read a few blogs and rely on the odd video on YouTube to keep me updated on the world, but I probably refer to those sources once a week. The hysteria is out of control and I’ve voluntarily stepped out the nonsense. I might not return. Recently I’ve been spending my free time on books and online courses and I haven’t felt so productive and stress free in my life. Nobody needs to participate in this.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      This is why it helps to have a background as a comedian. I view the hysterics as cartoon characters whose actual purpose is to make me laugh.

      Reply
      1. Firebird7479

        My 83 year old father use to be a news junkie. When I stayed with him in December for a couple of weeks while transitioning from one home to the other…the TV would be on GMA, The View, CNN…all day.

        Now it’s on MeTV — Matlock, In the Heat of the Night, and he’s happier for it.

        He’s also fed up with the lockdown and the limitations on where he can/cannot go because we “gotta protect him”.

        Reply
    2. Lori Miller

      It’s classic rock, video games and home repair for me. I’ll check out Tim Pool once in a while, but that’s about it. I’m so much happier. I’m at low risk for a bad case of coronavirus, and any rioters who show up in my area are apt to be shot by civilians.

      Reply
  19. Tom Naughton Post author

    My apologies to everyone for the delay in getting to your comments. Been a busy few days, and in my limited free time I was distracted by Twitter debates.

    Reply
    1. Firebird7479

      I’m Day 3 into a 7 Day Twitter Jail sentence. Twitter didn’t like what I said about the woman who ripped a MAGA hat off a 7 year old boy at an Anti-Biden protest during the DNC. Accosting a 7 year old boy is fine. The penalty I said she should get, apparently, is not.

      Reply
      1. Tom Naughton Post author

        That’s Twitter for ya. They have “community standards” but only apply them to perceived conservatives.

        Reply
  20. Jim Tubman

    A couple of encouraging bits of news from north of your border: first, an article about COVID in British Columbia on the CBC News web site (of all places) included data, not just about cases, but also about current hospitalizations and deaths. Most coverage here has been ignoring actual bad outcomes and focusing solely on test results. The headline is intended to alarm people, but the text is a big improvement over what we’ve been hearing lately: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/covid19-update-august-24-1.5698223

    And the chief medical officer of health in my province (Alberta) is going to send her own children back to school, and gave a coherent explanation for it. I’ve disagreed with her about this and that, but on this issue, she’s no bed-wetter. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/alberta-edmonton-deena-hinshaw-covid-19-coronavirus-coronavirus-1.5693663

    Reply
  21. Nikki

    I’m losing my mind here… my daycare has just announced that all kids over 2 need to wear masks all day, everyday now. They haven’t had a single case at the daycare. I want to pull my kid out, but need child care, of course. What a nightmare this thing is.

    Reply
  22. K

    I lost my job due to the Covid lockdowns. I’m been on government money and I’m struggling to find work. I’m in my early 30s and I’ve become increasingly depressed and sad and have even contemplated suicide. I’ve spoken to other people and they’ve thought the same thing, but they haven’t had the courage to speak about it openly. I believe Covid measures are causing a massive mental health crisis that will cause the current situation to pale in comparison.

    Reply
    1. Nikki

      I haven’t lost my job but my business is not doing well. My friends are all so afraid of the virus that we can’t do anything. I feel so isolated and I’m definitely depressed. Every person I talk to online said they are feeling depressed. I haven’t met a single person that hasn’t had mental health issues due to this pandemic.

      I have no idea why no one is talking about this. It’s impacting kids, too.

      Reply
      1. Tom Naughton Post author

        A psychologist on Twitter tweeted that she’s seeing more kids feeling stress and an increase in bed-wetting — yes, we are literally turning people into bed-wetters with this hysteria. The kids are afraid they’re going to kill grandma with their germs. That’s how insane this is.

        Reply
        1. Nikki

          It really is insane. So, my question is, what can we do about it? I read things and post online, but obviously that isn’t doing enough to change anyone’s mind. My husband thinks I’m being too doomsday about this, but I think the “precautions” we’re taking are ineffective at best and they have definitely been harmful to our collective mental health.

          The people I know are all hinging everything on a vaccine coming out. But, it will take years to effectively distribute the vaccine, assuming people are even willing to get it. I’m personally on the fence about it. I get other vaccines and get flu shots, but those have been around longer and tested more.

          So, what sort of action can a regular person even take? The new mask mandate in Illinois has me not wanting to go to restaurants at all. I’m worried about the restaurants in my town closing for good, but taking a mask on and of 10 times while eating outside in 90 degree heat isn’t my idea of a good time. It seems like I can’t even vote with my wallet lately. I personally feel very powerless.

          Reply
          1. Tom Naughton Post author

            Pretty sure civil disobedience on a mass scale will do the trick.

            I’m not taking a vaccine rushed through the process. Actually, I haven’t had a flu vaccine in 20 years … and haven’t had the flu during that span either.

            Reply
  23. Nann

    I also feel powerless. Fortunately I do have a job. But my job has become so much more difficult from home and I am feeling apathetic about doing it. The bottom line is that this is going to stay like this because most people are employed and most people love it. One reason my job sucks now is that it is SO much easier for people to make work for me. Before they had to drive in, get dressed up, and come in and file the right things. Now, they only have to submit from the PJs and often use the excuse why their item is wrong due to “technical difficulties” which I have to fix. E-mails are placed to me at 8 PM and half of my staff is obviously not doing their work. I don’t see anyway out of this because IMHO 60% of the people do not want this to end for their own selfish reasons. Nothing to do with covid.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yup, it’s a classic case of the haves vs. the have-nots. The have-nots work (generally) lower-paying jobs in service industries, and many of them are currently unemployed and suffering. The haves still have their jobs, and now they get to WORK AT HOME! So of course they think the lockdowns are a great idea. They’ll have a sudden change of heart if the economy slows down enough to cost them their jobs.

      I still have my job, but this whole situation — including the callousness of the haves towards the coronahysteria-unemployed — pisses me off.

      Reply
      1. Nikki

        It really is sort of mind blowing how many people are completely ignoring the unintended consequences of this whole pandemic. My friends used to care about financial inequality and worry about the concentration of wealth in this country. Now, no one cares. All but one of my friends still has their job, so they just flat out don’t care about people who work in the arts, restaurants, retail, etc. who are losing their jobs. They have just tossed their hands up and said that there’s nothing we can do, there’s a pandemic.

        This pandemic has already caused a (bigger) mental health crisis. Economic inequality is going to increase drastically. Kids are not getting the educations they should. Kids who previously had school as a safe space have lost that. Drug abuse and alcoholism are increasing. Domestic violence has increased. Women have been set back dramatically in the workforce because it’s mostly women leaving their jobs to institute e-learning for their young kids. These are all things that used to be democrat issues, and now suddenly none of them matter to anyone. It blows my mind.

        Reply
        1. Tom Naughton Post author

          Exactly. The reaction from people who think they care about the have-nots is stunning. They clearly don’t care.

          Reply
  24. Leila

    It’s funny that the people attacking your post mostly had a go at the PPE lady but said nothing about the rest of the information. I particularly really liked the video of the Spanish Doctor, he said as much with his facial expressions as he did with his voice.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yup. It’s the deconstruction technique: find a few minor details the person delivering a message you don’t like got wrong, then use that to dismiss the entire message. Her message is that masks don’t prevent the spread of the virus, and they make it harder to breathe. I’ve yet to see anyone prove either point wrong.

      Reply
      1. Firebird7479

        Atilis Gym has had a safety inspector from Florida at their facility for the past two days, in preparation for the lawsuits and court battles with King Murphy. Atilis paid for the study with their own money. Inspector shows up and asks why nobody is wearing masks? Owners said, “Because they are ineffective.” The inspector laughed and said, “Finally! Somebody is speaking up about that!” The inspector wore a mask all day but returned today with no mask (which his bosses required of him). His inspection turned up superior safety standards, “better than anything we’re seeing in Florida’s gyms.”

        Masks don’t work.

        Reply
          1. Firebird7479

            Yes!

            I wear an Atilis Gym baseball cap when I’m out running errands. I get a lot of people coming up to me saying how much they support them and what they are doing, along with, “I don’t know anyone who is sick with this virus.”

            Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Here’s my rebuttal: the article quotes a WHO official … we’ve seen how reliable that organization is. And if herd immunity didn’t work, Sweden wouldn’t be down to near-zero hospitalizations and deaths.

      Reply
  25. Robert W.

    I’ve made other comments as “Robert,” but to distinguish myself from the other “Roberts” posting on here, I’m now Robert W. Now to the subject of my comment. After the final night of the RNC, which I watched from start to finish, the bed-wetting hypocrites of the lamestream media were spreading along with their usual “Orange Man Bad” bile, that attendees of the event had few masks and were not practicing social distancing. Wah wah wah. I noticed they don’t criticize rioters…I mean “peaceful protesters” for the same sins. They were waxing poetically over the people commemorating the March on Washington. Simple message from the media, “Covid 19 is deadly and highly contagious and large groups should be avoided…unless it’s a cause we approve of. Rioting, looting, and protesting in the name of what we deem ‘social justice’ provides protection while gatherings we disapprove of accelerate the spread.” They have no credibility.

    Reply
  26. Firebird7479

    So, in the cloak of darkness, the CDC quietly changed the death toll numbers.

    6% of the 153, 504 died FROM Covid, or 9,210 deaths. The other 94% had comorbidities or old age.

    We’ve been played.

    Reply
    1. Nann

      I agree that we have been played and the death number is much lower than they are stating but I am not sure about this latest number. First — right now at age 45, you could say I have several comorbiitiies if I died from Corona Virus. I am overweight and my A1c is slightly prediabetic and I have a blood disorder that could be pointed to. All are not really dangerous – because of various reasons – but if I passed away they could easily classify me as having comorbidities. Every time I go to the doctor my doctor puts me as suffering from conditions that are either speculative or very very unserious. These go on my records and are very hard to get off. Also, Germany is counting only “pure” covid deaths and their number is 9000 with a much lower population than us. I think the best numbers will post after all the deaths for 2020 are counted and we can see if we had more deaths in the year than we would normally have.

      Reply
  27. Bret

    I am incredibly disappointed in many of my fellow Americans.

    It is difficult to tell how serious the virus really is due to all the number fudging (attributing cancer deaths with covid as caused by covid, car accidents, etc), but even so half of us appear to have no impulse to question it. Just look to the govt & news media to assign our opinions to us. Live in fear of gyms, airplanes, etc, until the govt tells us it is ok. I wonder if it’s ok with the govt if I wipe my butt this evening…

    Even if the virus was as bad as the headlines say, what then? We all hide in our homes indefinitely, induce a Great Depression, and die of starvation & exposure to the elements due to a complete breakdown of commerce & collapse of service industries?

    At some point people have to decide to STOP BEING SO WEAK AND AFRAID. Live your life & let the chips fall where they may. And yet there is no apparent shortage of citizens who insist on doing the exact opposite. They appear to believe government can just provide for them forever by waving a magic wand and making food & services fall from the sky.

    I am completely out of patience & sympathy for these repugnant excuses for citizens. They’re on an acid trip without the acid. The academics & govt bureaucrats are perhaps the worst on average. They’re all just leeches on productive citizens. Shutdowns & widespread economic pain are fine as long as they keep their jobs & get to bury their heads in the sand & pretend everything is fine.

    Reply
  28. Bret

    In fairness to the virus hysterics, we do indeed have higher all-cause mortality this year compared to previous years. Unless the pure death counts are fraudulent (unlikely), we have remained clearly well above the weekly mortality numbers for a sustained period.

    For the first 12 weeks we tracked right along with 2019, only varying by a few hundred or less than 3%. Starting in week 13, here are weekly 2019 deaths vs 2020 in thousands, and % increase:
    Week 13 – 56.7 vs 62.6 (10.5%)
    Week 14 – 56.6 vs 71.9 (27.0%)
    Week 15 – 55.5 vs 78.6 (41.7%)
    Week 16 – 54.5 vs 76.3 (40.2%)
    Week 17 – 53.7 vs 73.4 (36.8%)
    Week 18 – 54.0 vs 68.8 (27.4%)
    Week 19 – 53.5 vs 66.4 (24.1%)
    Week 20 – 53.6 vs 64.0 (19.5%)
    Week 21 – 53.7 vs 61.1 (13.8%)
    Week 22 – 52.7 vs 59.1 (12.1%)
    Week 23 – 53.1 vs 58.2 (9.5%)
    Week 24 – 52.6 vs 57.2 (8.7%)
    Week 25 – 52.3 vs 57.0 (8.9%)
    Week 26 – 52.2 vs 57.2 (9.6%)
    Week 27 – 52.3 vs 57.7 (10.2%)
    Week 28 – 51.9 vs 58.5 (12.6%)
    Week 29 – 51.6 vs 58.7 (13.6%)
    Week 30 – 51.7 vs 58.6 (13.5%)
    Week 31 – 51.4 vs 56.7 (10.2%)
    Week 32 – 51.7 vs 52.5 (1.4%)
    *Note, Week 32 ended Aug 9th.
    **Same caveat for lagging data applies for recent weeks, looking at 31 & 32.

    Sorry for the data dump, but this is posted nowhere online that I could find, so I thought it might be useful to present everything raw. I had to download it from the CDC website [1] & sort it myself (I find it baffling this isn’t readily available online in graphical format).

    This blog [2] depicts the data for the first 17 weeks only, comparing years 2015 through 2020, and shows the same sharp increase in Week 13 of 2020. Look for second graph on the page.

    Now, to be fair, we saw a good bit of variance upwards in the 2017-2018 flu season vs the previous year (beginning Week 51 of 2017 and going thru Week 6 of 2018), but this was much shorter lived.

    What’s my point with all this? The data does force me to admit that this SARS-CoV-2 virus does appear to be spurring on significantly more death this year than in previous years. It would be dishonest of me to pretend this information does not exist or downplay the virus as completely harmless.

    But it is neither catastrophic nor panic-worthy, and certainly not worth putting millions of people into extreme poverty while we hide with no plan or irrationally hope for a vaccine. It’s not Smallpox or Bubonic Plague. And as Tom mentioned, Sweden’s persistently near-zero daily covid deaths for the past 5 weeks [3] amid no lockdowns & no mask orders should give us a whole lot of relief going forward.

    1. https://gis.cdc.gov/grasp/fluview/mortality.html (click green “Download” button for data…total deaths in Column K of resultant spreadsheet)
    2. https://healthfeedback.org/claimreview/mortality-in-the-u-s-noticeably-increased-during-the-first-months-of-2020-compared-to-previous-years/ (scroll down to second graph with the red line)
    3. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/sweden/ (scroll down to “Daily New Deaths” graph)

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I looked at the data as well. Yes (and I don’t know anyone who denies this), total mortality is higher this year because of COVID. But as you’ve demonstrated, it’s absurd to believe COVID killed 175,000 people who would otherwise be alive. The majority of them likely would have died this year from some other cause.

      Reply
      1. Bret

        Either this year or next, or perhaps the next. I think it is fair to estimate that covid pushed 183K people over the edge (that is the total excess from Week 13 to 30, weirdly the exact same number as the official death count), but how much time did they lose?

        I predict all cause mortality in 2021 & 2022 will be significantly lower than in 2018 & 2019. I think covid may have shaved a year or two off most of its victims’ lives.

        That doesn’t mean it isn’t sad for each of those people, but it does mean these lockdowns/panics are insane & unjustified.

        Reply
        1. Tom Naughton Post author

          Agreed. Don’t remember which one, but a few months ago I heard one virologist describe the lockdowns as choosing to shut down the economy and bankrupt countless businesses so the vulnerable people might live an extra six months.

          Reply
  29. torcuato gemini

    Back to back sentencesfrom the OSHA PPE supposedly expert:

    “Masks can’t possibly stop you breathing in or breathing out the virus because it’s incredibly tiny.”
    “Yes, masks do reduce the amount of oxygen you breathe.”

    Even setting aside the fact that the virus doesn’t travel by itself but attached to water droplets (and that’s what masks stop), she’s saying that the virus gets through but oxygen molecules (which are orders of magnitude smaller) don’t?

    Sorry Covid truthers, you can’t have it both ways.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      https://www.technocracy.news/masks-are-neither-effective-nor-safe-a-summary-of-the-science/

      This 2019 study of 2862 participants showed that both N95 respirators and surgical masks “resulted in no significant difference in the incidence of laboratory confirmed influenza.” (4)

      Face mask use was likewise found to be not protective against the common cold, compared to controls without face masks among healthcare workers. (7)

      Healthcare workers wearing cloth masks had significantly higher rates of influenza-like illness after four weeks of continuous on-the-job use, when compared to controls. (39)

      Surgical mask wearers had significantly increased dyspnea after a 6-minute walk than non-mask wearers. (30)

      Pregnant healthcare workers were found to have a loss in volume of oxygen consumption by 13.8% compared to controls when wearing N95 respirators. 17.7% less carbon dioxide was exhaled. (32)

      Reply

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