Scenes from Italian hospitals and videos of pleas from overwhelmed Spanish doctors would have us unquestioningly believing the narrative of a highly viral and vicious illness ripping through the world, but do the facts really reflect this and do the experts really think this?
The truth is that putting the entire world on Pause for months at a time will definitely result in sickness, global famine, mass poverty, the further consolidation of power and wealth into the hands of banks and corporations, and will permanently erode our civil liberties – surely these high stakes are reason enough to take a step back and ask some probing questions.
Before continuing, everyone should read and share two lists, compiled by The Off-Guardian, of leading scientists questioning the seriousness of this pandemic, here and here. If you don’t read it all, pay special attention to the findings of Dr. Sunetra Gupta and her team at the top of the second list.
Diagnosis of Covid-19 is not a straightforward affair – what’s even less straightforward is the issue of distinguishing between people who “died with” and people who “died FROM” Covid-19.
Let us consider the tragic story of Chloe Middleton, a young English woman of only 21 years of age, who was rushed to hospital and died soon after arriving. The media announced, such as in this tweet by Sky News (archived link in case it’s scrubbed!), that she was the first young person to die without underlying conditions from Covid-19. Two days later, on March 27th, The Guardian reported that she in fact died of a heart attack. The coroner had classified her death as Covid-19, much to the dismay of her family and the medical staff who saw no evidence of Covid-19 complications.
In West Virginia (United States), Sundale nursing home had reported to the DHHR (Dept. of Health and Human Resources) that a 76 year old resident had passed away from Covid-19 complications in hospital, which the media promptly reported on. It wasn’t long before it was revealed that the man in question was very much still alive and that he was in hospital due to underlying conditions.
The point of me sharing these stories is to put human faces on these numbers we’re about to discuss on a much grander scale, as well as to understand the media mechanism’s desire to attract views and clicks by reporting the most shocking stories of all – the very young and the very old dying.
In Britain, they can’t even agree on how many people are dying, as hospitals are declaring 3 times as many deaths as the responsible government agency is reporting.
In Italy it’s common knowledge that 88% of cases being reported as Covid-19 deaths are, in fact, deaths with the infection and not of the infection. In response to the study revealing this fact, science advisor to the Ministry of Health, Walter Ricciardi, has said the following:
The way in which we code deaths in our country is very generous in the sense that all the people who die in hospitals with the coronavirus are deemed to be dying of the coronavirus […] On re-evaluation by the National Institute of Health, only 12 per cent of death certificates have shown a direct causality from coronavirus, while 88 per cent of patients who have died have at least one pre-morbidity – many had two or three,
This is a grossly-overlooked reality of Italy’s crisis. We may say that this degree of death is still a crisis worthy of our immediate preventative action, but we should ask how closer to death did Covid-19 really bring these people. When we look closer at this report from Italy’s National Institute of Health, we get somewhat of an answer.
Overall, 2.1% of the sample presented with a no co-morbidities, 21.3% with a single comorbidity, 25.9% with 2, and 50.7% with 3 or more.
I would hope that it comes as much of a shock to you as it did to me to read that over half of recorded deaths with Covid-19 were in patients with three or more other serious/chronic illnesses. Pairing this with the vast majority of deaths in the 60 to 90 age-range (peaking at 80-90), it should be fair to say these people were already at death’s door – especially when you consider the listed co-morbidities. Ischemic Heart Disease (27.8%), Atrial Fibrillation (23.7%), Heart Failure (17.1%), Stroke (11.3%), Hypertension (73%), Diabetes (31.3%), Dementia (14.5%), COPD (16.7%), Active Cancer in the past 5 years (17.3%), Chronic Liver Disease (4.1%), Chronic Renal Failure (22.2%). Having any 3 of a mix of these conditions will already have you on death’s door.
Much like the Hubei province of China, North Italy has had its environmental problems causing disease outbreaks. In January 2017, it was reported that North Italy had smog way above safe levels for several days in a row, with city officials telling people to stay in doors as much as possible and avoid using cars when possible. In September of 2018, it was reported that Lombardy experienced a pneumonia epidemic due to a bacteria in the water supply.
If this virus is truly stronger than a gardener variety coronavirus (which we’ll later prove it isn’t), then this data should at least draw our attention to how unhealthy we are as a species – eating crap food, breathing crap air, drinking crap water, existing in an electromagnetic soup 24/7, and putting crap inside our bodies.
It’s also time we spoke about vaccines. Yes, I’m going there. A study published at the beginning of this year involving 2,880 US Military personnel and their families has revealed that frequent flu jabs not only have varying levels of success (protecting some, protecting others not at all), but they make a person 36% more susceptible to Coronaviruses and other respiratory illnesses. It’s interesting then, that as-of March 25th, a quarter of confirmed Irish cases were medical workers – being a group targeted for mandatory flu jabs.
The Question of Testing
People say that one person dying of a virus is one person too many. Regardless of your philosophical position on that, the truth is that viruses kill people all the time. If we’re talking about radically altering society, it’s kinda important we get the truth of how many people it’s killing – whether it’s any more than the average flu season. For that we need extensive testing, which almost no country is doing.
I’ve been trying to find a way of succinctly expressing the following idea, and I think I’ve got it – you don’t see what you haven’t looked at.
Join me, if you will, on a visual analogy, no matter how ridiculous it might seem. Wearing red makes people ill. For some reason people are stupid enough to keep wearing it, so you need to find everyone wearing red, convince them not to, and isolate them from everyone else in the meantime so they don’t convince other people to. You only have a certain amount of time and manpower to test people with. The people wearing red pants and red jackets, you need to get them into isolation and treatment ASAP because other people will notice them and think red is pretty stylish. Problem is, most people are idiots who like red jackets for some reason, so most of your time is spent with them. A second segment of people are wearing red t-shirts under their shirts. They’re easy to see once you start looking (you can see the red collar sticking out), but you can only test and isolate a few of them due to limitations. Then you have the third segment of people who wear red underpants. You’re relying on those people to come to you willingly, because you have no resources left and it’s against the Constitution to randomly stop people on the streets and pull their pants down.
Two weeks later: Out of a million people you found 5% of them wearing jackets and a fifth of those people die, and you found 5% of them wearing undershirts and a fifth of them also die. 2% of the infected have died from wearing red. Is that true? Scientifically, no. You have to count the people wearing red underwear, which you haven’t done. You only counted the people who are crazy enough to wear red on the outside of their clothing – they weren’t strong enough to resist the urge and the sickness had rotted their minds. You don’t actually know how many people are out there, casually wearing red underwear and not progressing to even further heights of insanity. You don’t know, because you haven’t pulled down any of their pants. You neither know what it is about a person that makes them think red underwear is wild enough for their tastes and choose to not take things any further. For all you know, the 200,000 people who have died represents a TWENTY PERCENT mortality rate from wearing red. That’s a mistaken and dangerous assumption.
This is the wisdom most countries are basing their decisions upon and which the public are basing their FEAR upon, in the face of Coronavirus.
Take a perfect petri dish example, the Diamond Princess, containing 3,711 passengers and crew. On the deck of a cruise ship you have fresh air, but within the cruise ship you have air circulation between compartments – not quite as air-tight as an aeroplane, but air tight enough to spread an airbourne virus to almost everyone over the course of a month while in quarantine. Out of 3,711 passengers and crew, 696 cases were detected (410 of which were asymptomatic) after extensive testing. 18.7% were eventually ultimately infected and 58.9% of these cases were asymptomatic. 7(?) of these people died – that’s 2.4% of symptomatic cases, 1% of all cases, and 0.1% of the ships population. We need to take into consideration the age range of people who take Carnival Cruises. We don’t have data about this particular cruise of the Diamond Princess in terms of who these people are, but according to Cruise Lines International Association’s 2018 Report, the age-breakdown of Italy’s infected is remarkably similar to the average cruise-goer’s age-breakdown:
So, we have an aging population stuck on a cruise ship which circulates air (and it’s now found that this virus stays alive in the air and is circulated), and only 1% of infectees lost their lives to it. They say Italy has an aging population, but not that old. As of 2018, 15-64 year olds accounted for 63.9% and over 65s (the prime at-risk group) accounted for 22.7% – a whole 10-ish% less than on a Carnival Cruise. We know this illness is effecting the older people (isolated exceptions reported by media aside) and massively effecting sick old people (according to Dr John Ioannidis of Stanford, a common cold can have an 8% mortality rate amoung the elderly). This isn’t to cast off the old people as disposable, but it does suggest that maybe the answer isn’t economic and social suicide, but instead is to live healthier lives and have adequate healthcare.
The Question of Spread
No matter whether you believe this to be a pandemic threatening human existence or not, we can agree on one thing: the World Health Organisation is so corrupt that it’s slow to react. Due to Chinese influence they failed to declare SARS-CoV-2 as a pandemic until March 11th, weeks after it was confirmed to have gained a foothold in several nations outside of China. For those who believe this to be a serious pandemic, the WHO have questions to answer as this delayed governments and corporations in responding appropriately to the threat. They’ve also been consistently bad at informing the world of features and symptoms of the virus and illness reported by scientists and doctors. So, it’s no surprise that they should get egg on their faces when a Chinese study revealed that asymptomatic carriers can spread the virus with comparable efficiency to carriers with symptoms. We should question the received wisdom our governments are running off of – namely, when the infection began to spread in their respective countries.
We know now that this is an incredibly durable virus – living on different surfaces for varying lengths of time, including up to days on asphalt. Suspicions have been developing around the world by ordinary people about whether the infection had reached their country earlier than it was noticed. For example, in my tiny island nation of Ireland, my cousin turned into a bed-ridden zombie in late November and my sister had an awful flu with faint pneumonia symptoms over Christmas – but before you knock this as “conspiracy theories”, “fake news”, or “WhatsApp rumours”, you should know that officials/professionals around the world have been wondering the same thing.
Dr. Grant Tarling, Chief Medical Officer of Carnival Corporation, has said the man who infected 30 other people on the Grand Princess cruise he joined, most likely contracted the virus in California before he boarded the ship due to the timing of his symptoms.
According to Prof. Hendrik Streeck, director of the Institute of Virology and HIV Research, at Bonn University, “The special thing is that Sars-CoV-2 replicates in the upper throat area and is therefore much more infectious because the virus jumps from throat to throat, so to speak. But that is also an advantage: Because Sars-1 replicates in the deep lungs, it is not so infectious, but it definitely gets on the lungs, which makes it more dangerous.” This is a very infectious virus which, according to Infectiologist Dr. Pietro Vernazza, had an 85% rate of asymptomatic infections in China. Considering this is the first pandemic during the era of heavy air travel and a booming China, this infection may have been circulating for months in hermetically-sealed aeroplanes, depositing it in multiple countries, and spreading asymptomatically. The cases which aren’t asymptomatic may have experienced worsening of their pre-morbidities and simply went unrecognised since hospitals wouldn’t think to test for a coronavirus.
Writing for the Conservative Review in the United States, Daniel Horowitz asks:
You see an insanely dangerous trajectory of cases taking off in March. But what exactly happened in March? The virus was introduced in Wuhan in November. And even without testing, we did detect a handful of cases here, the first known case being on January 21. So why would we suddenly experience the outbreak in March? It’s quite evident that the culprit for the spike in the chart is simply because that is when the testing began because Trump dropped the FDA regulation barring private testing after the government testing didn’t work.
Again, we confront the deceptive devil of testing. Horowitz later estimated that 600,000 people had traveled from China to the United States in the time between the Chinese outbreak and the travel restrictions (including returning immigrants from Wuhan visiting family for festivities), making it inconceivable that the United States only had a handful of cases until an explosion in March. Even Dr. Deborah Birx, the coordinator of Trump’s coronavirus response task force, said yesterday of the spread in New York City, “Clearly the virus had to have been circulating for a number of weeks in order to have this level of penetrance in the community.” One thing is for certain, people only start freaking out when you start testing very sick people and find they have the virus.
After a study by Imperial College of London put pressure on Boris Johnson’s government, the UK went on lockdown for weeks, until it was later found to be spuriously based on fudged and incomplete data. It’s original claim has been 120,000 deaths (out of 63 million people), but has since been revised a number of times to bring it down to a more realistic number – 3,500. A huge disparity. Of course, mainstream media and government still use this drastic prediction and proclaim that lockdown measures assured the country against it. However, while the country remains on lockdown as of this writing, the UK government removed Covid-19’s “High Consequence Infectious Disease” status on March 19th (Link and archived link). In light of the actual deathtoll, the UK government no longer believes its own bullshit, yet still maintains its draconian measures.
University of Oxford’s Evolutionary Ecology of Infectious Diseases lab released a report on March 24th, flying directly into the face of the Imperial model, suggesting that over half of the UK may already be infected, dwarfing the fatality statistics.
Consequences of World-Wide Lockdown
Since this has been an exploration of assessing the need for a lockdown, we should look at the effects the measures have had and will have if continued.
As the lockdown hit Ireland and more businesses were forcibly shut, Covid-19 unemployment claims rose from 220,000 last week to half a million (April 5th). Vast numbers of small businesses have had to shutter, with business owners only receiving €350 a week – not nearly enough to cover the average person’s living expenses, never mind the overhead of a business receiving no revenue. This is being repeated across the world where the same measures are in place. Many of these businesses will not return, opening us up to further corporate consolidation. No aid packages for small businesses, just giant corporations.
The globe’s food security is threatened in an already-unstable growing season, due to locust swarms in Africa and a wet Spring in Europe and America. Farms will be left with food rotting in them as seasonal farm workers can’t take up work to harvest them. In many cases, seasonal farmers will just decide to stay at home and receive an unusually-generous welfare payment. Wheat and corn prices are due to skyrocket as production wains and countries like Russia temporarily ban their exports. Italy and African nations are already suffering food shortages, not because of panic buying, but moreso because of the lockdown stopping labourers from reaching farms and imports from reaching stores before the food rots. This mixed with the inherently bad year (and predictably, the next few years) of bad growing seasons will have a domino effect that will reach the entire world.
Civil liberties are a precious thing. Normally in modern nations they’re protected by a country’s constitution – a guiding set of principals which set out how the government of the people is formed, how that government functions, and what laws may be passed. Primarily they’re written to protect the liberties of the individual from the actions of other individuals and, most importantly, from the actions of the government. These are inviolable rights guaranteed by a higher power (God, Creation, the Universal Spirit etc). Yet, when a whole nation is gripped in panic in the face of a war, a strange ideology, or (new excuse:) a pandemic, the people can be easily swayed into allowing their government to invoke “emergency powers” – putting the constitution on pause for the duration of the crisis. Thing is, once you break this seal, it’s broken. You either have inviolable rights or your rights have been violated, and they can be violated again and again, with greater ease. We have sacrificed some FUNDAMENTAL rights here – the right to move, the right to bodily integrity, and the right of speech. The only time a people have ever won these rights is when the people have sacrificed the blood of their youth in a civil war. Our people have greatly disrespected those young men of yesteryear, rendering their sacrifices NULL AND VOID. It’s going to take yet another generation of young, innocent, men to die in order to reclaim them – sometime in the distant future.