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 February 2, 2020  Posted by at 3:30 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,


Samuel Colman The Edge of Doom 1836-38

 

What the future will bring for the 2019nCoV novel Wuhan coronavirus is still unclear. An epidemic it already is, but is it also a pandemic? Some 20 countries have reported infections, but it still could all fizzle out; 305 deaths can be forgotten by next week. Nobody can tell you how this will play out, not even the most experienced and/or smartest virologists and other experts.

Because there’s no telling what viruses will do, not even for them, and because while they have some idea about the infinitesimal size and lifespan of viruses, “ordinary” people have no grasp of either, and that includes managers, planners and politicians. Whether in the rich west or in “up and coming” China.

 

The timeline is quite literally terribly obvious. In early December -and it could have been even earlier-, it was obvious to doctors and Communist Party (CCP) politicians in Wuhan that something was wrong. But their painfully predictable reaction was to hope this would pass. Never a bad word should be uttered about the Party, and nothing said that could embarrass it.

December passed, as news was getting worse and more obvious due to a large number of “pneumonia” patients. Chinese doctors published an article in the Lancet this week (this week, 6 weeks after the fact!) saying human-to-human transmission had been established by mid-December.

But the code of silence was not broken, even when a man died from the virus on January 9. It took until mid-January before word got out, a full week later. By then millions of people had left and/or entered Wuhan, a city of 11 million, potentially infecting millions of other Chinese and perhaps people abroad. 5 million later left the city for Lunar New Year.

On January 10, the virus was defined and the sequence was shared, but testing didn’t start for another week; patients were registered as pneumonia sufferers, including those that died (we have no idea how many there were).

 

 

Then, mid January, doctors starting testing for the virus. The first “exported” case was noted in Thailand on January 13, but it still took more time for the potential threat to be realized and reported. The Party boys were still hoping it would all pass. Can you blame them? They are civil servants, they don’t know anything about viruses, or their threat.

Ironically, over 300 civil servants (Party officials) and health care workers were sanctioned very recently for not doing enough. The Party makes sure the blame is put on individuals, not on itself. Even if all they’ve done is follow the party line. It’s very simply how the system works. And not just in China. If the virus might come to a town near you, check where the blame is placed. It won’t be the president or prime minister, health workers will be first in line, civil servants second.

It’s good to note how fast the novel virus has spread. If only to show what those who are determined to keep such a thing silent are up against. Can’t be easy. 291 cases on Jan 20, 14,562 cases 13 days later. Those are exponential numbers, even if the number of fatalities “only” rose by 46 overnight.

It’s also good to keep in mind that the main threat in viruses is their ability to mutate and become deadlier. This virus now has at least those 14,562 hosts which they can use to mutate in. Hong Kong University doctor and epidemiologist Gabriel Leung and his team said in a Jan 31 report: “In our baseline scenario, we estimated 75,185 infections as of Jan 25.” . And they were reporting on Wuhan alone. In other words, well over 5 times as many hosts and chances for the virus to mutate in just one city. In a city of 11 million people, numbers like that are perhaps not that extreme.

 

 

Back to politics. We have had two phases so far. 1 is first discovery followed by total silence. 2 is damage control, and deflecting all blame from the Party.

We are now in phase 3. The WHO, which was caught napping as much as the Party in phase 2, lavishes great praise on that same Party now for its “extraordinary safety measures”. Locking down entire cities (increasingly people are not even allowed to leave their homes), speed-building hospitals, you name it. And the WHO is not the only entity praising the Party.

The reason why there is so much emphasis on this is that the CCP is desperate to show everyone, at home and abroad, that it is in control. That there is no reason to worry, at least not due to actions by the Party. If other countries have problems, that is not the Party’s fault.

And also, the Party will take it from here, no need for foreign assistance. They’ll allow in some doctors, preferably WHO related, and they have asked both the US and EU for medical equipment and doctors’ uniforms, hazmat suits, that sort of thing, just so nobody asks any further questions: see, we do accept help! We’ll let you know if we need anything.

Other than that, the Party is in full control, thank you very much. And if Chinese people start protesting the failures of the Party so far, as they are, that is none of anyone else’s business. “We” have it under control”. Ask the WHO, they said so too.

 

If the Party is allowed to get away with this behavior aimed at self-preservation above anything else, including human lives of both Chinese and foreigners, something bad is sure to happen. Maybe not this time, maybe this one will fizzle out. But the next one, or the one after that, will not.

It is obvious how dangerous this is, putting the interests of the Party, or the economy, above the risk of spreading global pandemic. But is is also obvious why it happens. And it wouldn’t or couldn’t happen only in China. Though the country in its present state is a ideal breeding ground.

Flights are halted. Hundreds of millions will soon be in lockdown. Exports will plunge, because production will. Which will hit the west as much as China. Just so the Party can say it did what had to be done, and so it will stay in power. Xi Jinping knows his power depends on the economy, but he thinks he has what it takes to hold on to power even when the economy tanks.

He can simply declare force majeure, he can tell his people how much worse things would have been had he not decided to lock down everything.

We’ve been following the numbers of infections and fatalities now for 2 weeks or so, even as we know they don’t mean much, they’re just Party propaganda. The Party will release what it thinks it must, but no more. Perhaps we need other sources; these will come if and when things get out of hand. Not that we know they will.

Xi can claim today that he has control. He can say things are not too bad, but we don’t really know, he’s issuing the numbers. What we do know, and there’s the crux, is that he was 6 weeks late in starting to acknowledge the epidemic, in contacting the outside world, in acknowledging his mistakes, and in acknowledging that such mistakes are baked into the model that keeps him in power.

Phase 1 is complete denial, not a word. Phase 2 is damage control, massaging the numbers downward. Phase 3 is “close all the doors, not to worry, nothing to see here, we got this, no you can’t come in, too risky!”

But, yeah, praise him while you can. The only praise he cares about is from people just as clueless as he is anyway.

The Party is a highly effective vehicle for protecting its own interests and survival. For other things, perhaps not so much. Viruses can be quite deadly at times. Combine them with politics and the risk factor rises exponentially.

Tragedy assured. Just not every single time.

 

 

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Home Forums The Party and the Virus

This topic contains 11 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  John Day 8 months, 2 weeks ago.

Viewing 20 posts - 1 through 20 (of 20 total)
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  • #53355

    Samuel Colman The Edge of Doom 1836-38   What the future will bring for the 2019nCoV novel Wuhan coronavirus is still unclear. An epidemic it alr
    [See the full post at: The Party and the Virus]

    #53356

    boscohorowitz
    Participant

    What’s ludicrous in all this is the belief that we can somehow have 7 billion people crawling around urban termite mounds interpenetrated by myriad passenger-laden vehicles traveling here and there from 60mph to 500 mph 24/7, and somehow control the microscopic life-forms we all carry and are, in fact, essentially composed of.

    Rollin Rollin Rollin

    The model described above, btw, has its analog even in our weapons delivery systems, designed to fly above the stratosphere and then rain various forms of unholy fire on said termite mounds in a balance of power called Mutually Assured Destruction.

    We have no agreed upon plans for reducing the population, which is the most important step to reducing the insane recipe for global catastrophe described above. It goes against nature for people to plan how to make less of themselves, much less design systems whereby they enjoy less delicious foods designed to titillate not nourish, and less magically flowing electrical energy allowing us to turn darkness into light and boredom into enthrallment, at what used to be the touch of a finger but is now only a word spoken to a robot.

    I’d plant that mulberry tree Doctor D suggested if there were a place to plant it. Here in apartment row on the Portland/Beaverton divide called West Slope (but I call Mayberry), there’s no place to plant anything but a few pretty flowers in planter boxes.

    Too Many People

    Kowloon

    #53360

    zerosum
    Participant

    Everything is under control.
    Travelling should only be by private jets.
    Street people might be more resistant than the rich who have private toilets, sinks, showers.
    There are a lot of people in China, India, Africa, Philippines, who don’t have private indoor plumbing.
    Treat your live in servant and cook properly to avoid coughing on your soup.
    ——

    Did you figure out the problem/make the link ….
    Canada has ???? under house arrest for the USA
    China has arrested 2 Canadians
    China has allowed other countries to fly their citizens home.
    Why does Canada finds all kind of road blocks to fly their citizens out of China?

    #53365

    boscohorowitz
    Participant

    “That sentiment was echoed by National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien who told CBS “Face the Nation” on Sunday, “Right now there is no reason for Americans to panic” regarding the coronavirus. O’Brien added, “this is something that is a low risk we think in the US.”

    Some dumbass CNN article with a picture of an airport lobby empty save for one person wearing a mask, cuz a picture tells 1,000 words or something.

    There is no looming shortage of paranoiaic skepticism among TAE’s readers, so I don’t have to elaborate on the subliminal undertones in “Right now there is no reason for Americans to panic”.

    There is no dearth of contempt among TAE readers for the dogmatic institutionalized stupidity of opur elected and appointed officials, so I don’t have to elaborate that it seems normal for those officials to not think past ‘right now’ unless told to do so otherwise, nor is it unusual for them to say things implying that there are times when panic is proper, right, and useful for population counted in millions.

    1

    2

    #53368

    zerosum
    Participant

    Who is doing the counting Who is adding up the totals
    https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/who-warns-countries-should-prepare-local-outbreaks-pentagon-readies-quarantine-housing
    Coronavirus Latest: WHO Warns “Prepare For Local Outbreaks” As 20 French Evacuees From Wuhan Exhibit Symptoms

    Update (1500ET): According to AFP, 20 French citizens evacuated from Wuhan, China have symptoms of Coronavirus. Earlier in the day, officials said that when the flight left Wuhan, none of the passengers had symptoms of coronavirus. They include French, Belgians, Dutch, Danes, Czechs, Slovaks and some citizens of African countries, the Associated Press reported. The happens as around 500 people, including hospital staff, form a human chain in front of the Robert Debré Hospital in Paris to denounce a lack of resources in French public hospitals.

    #53369

    boscohorowitz
    Participant

    b s

    If it looks like a bl;ack swan, and quacks like a black swan… it’s probably an audio hologram of a bl;ack swan, but close enough, eh?

    #53370

    zerosum
    Participant

    https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/who-warns-countries-should-prepare-local-outbreaks-pentagon-readies-quarantine-housing
    Second Case Of Coronavirus Declared In California As NYT Suggests Pandemic

    Update: Santa Clara County health officials on Sunday afternoon have confirmed a second coronavirus case, reported KRON 4 News.

    Officials said this is unrelated to the first case that was confirmed on Friday.

    KRON 4 News said health officials would hold a news conference at 2 p.m. to inform the public about the new case.
    The confirmed case is a woman who recently traveled to Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the outbreak. Officials have so far said, she arrived in the U.S. on Jan. 23 to visit family during the Chinese New Year.

    Officials are unclear on her exact movements and how many people she could have infected.

    Her family was also quarantined on concerns they have contracted the deadly virus.

    The first case was confirmed in Santa Clara County on Friday, was a man who recently traveled to Wuhan.

    This is the ninth confirmed case in the U.S., with cases expected to rise in the days and or weeks ahead.

    Earlier on Sunday, The New York Times suggested coronavirus “looks increasingly like a pandemic…”

    “It’s very, very transmissible, and it almost certainly is going to be a pandemic,” said Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease. “But will it be catastrophic? I don’t know.”

    #53371

    zerosum
    Participant

    HELP IS COMMING TO THE NEEDY
    China’s central bank will pump 150 billion yuan ($21.7 billion) into markets, and has banned short selling on Monday to prevent a sell-off.

    #53372

    zerosum
    Participant

    Update (1900ET): According to the latest daily update from the Chinese CDC, there are now 17,205 confirmed cases across China, a jump of 2,829 overnight – the biggest daily increase since the epidemic started – with another 181 cases abroad. Global fatalities increased to 362, with the daily increase of 58 also the biggest since the pandemic started, although as noted previously, China has been resorting to various measures to mask and hide the true number of corona casualties. The number of cured or discharged patients rose to 475.

    #53373

    V. Arnold
    Participant

    Noteworthy (or not) b over at MoA said (yesterday) the cases of corona were on the decline…
    One thing is certain; we don’t know shit!
    The sheer quantity of stinking bullshit in the media is a blizzard, obscuring the few facts, and is probably more dangerous to us humans than the virus itself…

    #53374

    V. Arnold
    Participant

    Samuel Colman The Edge of Doom 1836-38

    Very dramatic; and pleasing to the eye.
    Possibly a snapshot of us today…

    #53375

    VietnamVet
    Participant

    Wuhan Coronavirus is an epidemic in China now. Like all human institutions, the Chinese government didn’t see the deadly infection until it was impossible to ignore. The party then quarantined 55 million people – roughly equivalent to isolating all of America’s Mid-West Rust Belt States. This is a draconian measure that is sure to cause a global recession. The ultimate question is will it work. If not, an economic depression and hundreds of millions of lives will be lost. The USA is rapidly devolving in a third world nation. The new Western Empire is done for. The money that used to go to public health and education now goes into the pockets of the rich. There is not the infrastructure in the West or the will to do what is needed to save deplorable lives.

    The future will be insane conflicts between the surviving connected factions at “The Edge of Doom”. Impeaching Donald Trump was the tip of the iceberg. The investigations ignored the intentional corruption of Imperial Democrats who restarted the Cold War with Russia in Ukraine for its profit.

    The Elite will never do what is necessary for human beings to survive. We need air, water, food, education, healthcare, shelter and a purpose in life. That requires their money.

    #53376

    boscohorowitz
    Participant

    Posted here for current visibility’s sake, but is a response to Planetary Citizen’s remark on yesterday’s AE (the one with the football pic):

    “In 1905 there were 19 deaths from high school and collegiate football and another 137 were seriously injured.”

    Which is why they were wearing leather helmets and a bit of protective gear in 1923 — 18 years after 1905 — when the picture Doc D commented on was taken.

    Plastic helmets weren’t added until 1939, the technology not being available until recent to that year. 80 years later, we have massive body armor to protect ridiculously massive men from ridiculously massive men taking drugs also not available in 1905 or 1923 — steroids. And so forth. The damage done to them is now spread out, and less horrific to view. Maybe the overall damage is less, maybe more. A couple of highly visible deaths and traumatic injuries are tragic; statistics on overall physical damages to today’s pro-ballers are just a buncha numbers justifying an inherently vicious sport. Want safe football? We have it. It’s called touch football. But who would pay to see that? No one’s banging the shit out of each other. Maybe pro football would not be the enormous industry and moral brain-drain that it has become if we hadn’t sanitized it as we have.

    What It Was, Was Football

    While I do not share Doc’s nostalgia for the good old days, that being a conservative trait more than a liberal trait, his point still stands: you can’t remove danger from inherently dangerous activity, and football is inherently dangerous.

    I have no interest in football, find it nauseating, in fact, but I accept it because I see it as part of inevitable male coalitional violence, which is endemic to homo saps. Team sports in general bore me as such because they define themselves by winning vs. losing, and that’s boring and pointless to me.

    Likewise driving at 20mph to 75mph in 1,000s of pounds of steel. Seatbelts minimize certain risks but serve to justify more and more people driving more and more cars. The problem with football and autos is the same: they’re both ridiculously dangerous. Weighing pros and cons of added safety features only obscures the primary fact: they’re both very dangerous. Too little safety gear, you get one kind of inescapable injury. Two much, you get another spectrum. You can’t protect bodies from the effects of very rapid sudden acceleration/decceleration in an activity based on same.

    ” In 2010, there were an estimated 5,419,000 crashes, 30,296 deadly, killing 32,999, and injuring 2,239,000. About 2,000 children under 16 die every year in traffic collisions. Records indicate that there were 3,613,732 motor vehicle fatalities in the United States from 1899 to 2013.” (some place what calls itself wiki)

    Here’s a graph illustrating the more-or-less-the-sameness of the plus ca change-yness of it all:

    graff

    Looks to me like the only thing down from when the auto age started is Deaths per Miles Traveled (VMTs in the graph), which itself relates to the rise in heart disease, obesity, and generally inability to wipe our butts without robotic aid that continues to grow under liberal and conservative administrations alike.

    “You mean one that can recognize the fact that nearly every country that was a satellite of the USSR was clamoring to get into the EU. ”

    That’s nice. The USSR collapsed in 1989, and Russia as we know it today was in place by 1999 when Putin took charge. this is 2020, and Russia is again Russia, not USSR.

    A few data:

    a) “Of the four major western European countries that are not EU members, Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland have submitted membership applications in the past but subsequently frozen them, while the United Kingdom is a former member.”

    b) Europe has always treated Russia as an outsider, so countries coming out from under the Soviet lash naturally leaned to the EU both for reasons of geographical identity and abhorrence of Soviet rule which, I remind us again, has been absent for 30 years.

    The USSR’s non-European satellite states have not applied for membership in the EU, and are instead joining the Silk Road club, which is only logical. I say that “nearly all satellites of the USSR” kinda insults places like the five ‘stans, two ‘ians, and Georgia”. That’s eight Asian former satellite states that stayed out, and eight (or 9?) European states that opted for Europe, for mysterious reasons like being European nations.

    The Cold War is over, except in both parties of the duopoly. Only critters in D.C who seem to recognize that are Trump. Tulsi, Ron/Rand Paul.

    “You mean one that knows an invasion when they see one instead of “reunification.” Ala Crimea and Ukraine, and yes Iraq and Afghanistan as well. Not to mention Viet Nam. That liberal Democrat?”

    Rather than bog down in the myriad details that show that Russia’s military involvement in Crimea and the Ukraine are hardly expansion-of-empire invasions, but instead, stabilization-of-neighbor-states-being-manipulated-by-Euromerican-dickwads (as has been the case since, like, for-ev-ah, I’ll point out that Iraq, Afghanistan, and Viet Nam are halfway around the globe and never presented even the slightest threat to USA sovereignty.

    Russia has had intimate involvement with Ukraine and the Crimea for almost 1,000 years. Ukraine has good reason to hate the Soviets, but Russia left them alone until we started agitating Ukraine via the Maidan, To quote dear old Noam’s favorite line: “You can look it up. It’s in the history.”

    None of this makes Russia a saint but it doesn’t make it an evil aggressor, either. Comparing contemporary Russia to contemporary USA does, however, tend to make Russia look a whole lot better than us… if you survey the actual facts. This guy does that tolerably well:

    Politics, like football, is a team sport. Like football, it is full of sound and fury signifying nothing while getting people hurt. We adopt safety gear in the form of measures like “holding the nose and voting for the lesser evil”, in the process dragging both parties down to a level where the differences between them are superficial, concealing an equally vile rot underneath the charade. We seek logical reasons for supporting our team but they almost always come down to sentimental attachments that rarely submit to logic or notions of integrity. I assume that that phenomenon is behind your statement here:

    “Yes we realize the division and dualism with the the Democratic Party. Republicans on the other hand revel in their monolithic duplicity and lack of moral courage.”

    I don’t see it. I see BOTH parties reveling “in their monolithic duplicity (a coy trope, that one) and lack of moral courage”. If you’re trying to make the case for some kind of liberal superiority, you’re achieving the opposite of your aim. I just see plain old partisan/ideological chauvinism.

    Ah, the brisk invigorating wind. Bosco pees into as powerfully as a 64-year old bladder allows… but pees downward, legs spread wide, aiming at the ground between him and his fellows, the one thing they indubitably share in common, not at their seperate belief systems. Works like a charm. Even my shoes are dry.

    #53377

    boscohorowitz
    Participant

    “THis guy does that tolerably well”

    This is “this guy”:

    Russia Observer

    #53378

    boscohorowitz
    Participant

    Man, I love how Vietnam Vet lays out big logical fact-based pictures with just a few strokes. I’ll add that while the Dems were more in the center of the Ukraine jumpstart of the Cold War, Dubya actually got that ball rolling. As for Obama, I quote Dubya himself from late 2008, maybe early 2009 (parpahrase alert): “I’d have given him my endorsement if they’d asked me.”

    Obama carried the neocon program right nicely, especially with Hillary helping.

    Obama the Conservative

    #53380

    V. Arnold
    Participant

    The concensus seems to go with the corona virus going pandemic…
    We’ll see…

    #53393

    Dr. D
    Participant

    I’d say guerilla gardening. Find a wild corner of a nearby park or some train tracks. Law? Nobody else follows it while killing people, why should I follow it saving them?

    No need to ask anyway: nobody knows what a tree is anymore, they won’t recognize the action.
    Speaking of drones, etc, all that rot makes no financial or engineering sense. Robot drones flying/driving from the warehouse/factory to your front door, for groceries no less! Garbage! Expensive! Lowers sales as you don’t impulse buy! What ARE they thinking?

    …Unless there’s an epidemic. Then all of that makes perfect, perfect sense. And all those wasted billions suddenly pay off, a big, darn coincidence.

    And what’s better than when you can only buy online or risk death outside, which all depends on your social credit score with FB and Spamazon? …But just ’cause it’s a plan doesn’t mean it’ll work and not be stopped.

    “there are now 17,205 confirmed cases across China,”

    What I was saying about getting enough tests into enough hands, I bet. Lead time is a pain but 6 days is still light-speed for such a task.

    #53394

    Dr. D
    Participant

    What ARE they thinking?

    …That goes double for driverless Uber-cars, they were disturbingly, illogically hot to MUST HAVE!!!! before 2020/2024. Must have or the world ends, dogs and cats, everybody dies!!!

    Nobody knew nuttin’. Uh-huh.

    #53417

    boscohorowitz
    Participant

    “No need to ask anyway: nobody knows what a tree is anymore, they won’t recognize the action.”

    here’s literally no space around me. It’s all forest or someone’s backyard, and I’m too old and frail to be planting some railroad plot.

    I do have a buncha two year old weed seed, half of which should be viable, that I’d like to scratch into some wild place off a county hiway come March, cuz reefer is good medicine and legal weed is as vulnerable to foinancial failure as corn crops. Any real physical effort I make anymore is about cooking good food for my hard-working wife, giving her deep massage, keeping our prison cell apt complex clean, and making love.

    My planting days are over. But I like having crows as friends, and intend to stockpile peanuts along with rice, beans, oatmeal, and the like. WOn’t be much good if the water pumps driving local water supply don’t run, but someone else may find them useful once wells have been dug.

    Me? Greta gonna kill me. I’m old. 😉

    #53434

    John Day
    Participant

    Dr. Francis Boyle Creator Of BioWeapons Act Says Coronavirus Is Biological Warfare Weapon
    Francis Boyle is a professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law. He drafted the U.S. domestic implementing legislation for the Biological Weapons Convention, known as the Biological Weapons Anti-Terrorism Act of 1989, that was approved unanimously by both Houses of the U.S. Congress and signed into law by President George H.W. Bush.
    In an exclusive interview given to Geopolitics and Empire, Dr. Boyle discusses the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China and the Biosafety Level 4 laboratory (BSL-4) from which he believes the infectious disease escaped. He believes the virus is potentially lethal and an offensive biological warfare weapon or dual-use biowarfare weapons agent genetically modified with gain of function properties, which is why the Chinese government originally tried to cover it up and is now taking drastic measures to contain it. The Wuhan BSL-4 lab is also a specially designated World Health Organization (WHO) research lab and Dr. Boyle contends that the WHO knows full well what is occurring.
    Dr. Boyle also touches upon GreatGameIndia‘s exclusive report Coronavirus Bioweapon – where we reported in detail how Chinese Biowarfare agents working at the Canadian lab in Winnipeg were involved in the smuggling of Coronavirus to Wuhan’s lab from where it is believed to have been leaked.

    Dr. Francis Boyle Creator Of BioWeapons Act Says Coronavirus Is Biological Warfare Weapon

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