Jun 232021
 
 June 23, 2021  Posted by at 8:48 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  85 Responses »


Edward Hopper New York movie 1939

 

‘It’s Anti-science, And It’s Anti-me’ – Fauci (RT)
Mass Vaccination Drives A Rapid Evolutionary Response Of SARS-CoV-2 (VDBossche)
Ivermectin: The Forbidden Treatment (APL)
Oxford University Explores Ivermectin As Covid-19 Treatment (R.)
Nearly 4,000 Fully Vaccinated People in MA Positive for COVID-19 (ET)
3rd COVID Wave Will Kill Or Hospitalize 60 To 70% of Fully Vaccinated (GGI)
Daszak Leaves UN-backed COVID Origins Probe (NYP)
Media Allowed Itself To Be Duped By One Man On Covid-19 (Bloom)
Gabon Paid For Protecting Forests, In African First (Y!)
A Court Ruled Rachel Maddow’s Viewers Know She Doesn’t Offer Facts (Greenwald)
EU Opens Antitrust Probe Into Google’s Online Ad Tech Business (F.)
Millions Become Millionaires During Covid Pandemic (BBC)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Craig Kelly MP
https://twitter.com/i/status/1407280779055419394

 

 

All America has had to say for a year and a half. Poor. Can’t disagree with Tony, because that makes you far-right.

‘It’s Anti-science, And It’s Anti-me’ – Fauci (RT)

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the president’s chief medical adviser, has dismissed controversy surrounding numerous past emails being published as “anti-science” nonsense from the “far-right.” Fauci has found himself facing new waves of criticism since thousands of his emails were released via Freedom of Information Act requests through Buzzfeed and the Washington Post. Critics have timed what Fauci has said in some of the emails during the pandemic to what he was saying publicly and accused the infectious disease expert of hypocrisy on issues such as masking and theories about the origin of Covid-19. In an interview with the New York Times published on Monday, Fauci dismissed his “far-right” critics as being “politically motivated” and pushing “nonsense” to discredit him.


“It’s clear. It’s anti-science, and it’s anti-me,” Fauci declared. He went on to say that every piece of correspondence is “perfectly normal, perfectly innocent, and completely above board.” Fauci has long been accused of flip-flopping on key guidances in short periods of time during the pandemic, something he has denied, explaining that his opinion has changed as the “science” has, an argument he doubled-down on in his most recent defense. “So the people who are giving the ad hominems are saying, ‘Fauci misled us,'” he said. “‘First, he said no masks, then he said masks.’ Well, let me give you a flash. That’s the way science works. You work with the data you have at the time. It is essential as a scientist that you evolve your opinion and your recommendations based on the data as it evolves.”

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Spike proteins all the way.

Mass Vaccination Drives A Rapid Evolutionary Response Of SARS-CoV-2 (VDBossche)

We do know about the outcome of a natural pandemic but don’t know at all about the outcome of the ongoing pandemic, as the latter has now become a ‘pandemic of variants’. From what follows below (and which is basically a summary of findings made by molecular/ genomic epidemiologists that I put into a broader context), there is however, one certainty, which is that Sars-CoV-2 variants are rapidly evolving in response to the natural immune selection pressure they are experiencing. Phylogenetics-based natural selection analysis indicates that a substantial amount of the immune selection pressure exerted during this pandemic is directed at the Sars-CoV-2 spike (S) protein, which is targeted by the vaccines.

On their journey to adapting to the host(ile) environment of neutralizing antibodies (nAbs), variants further exploit their evolutionary capacity to overcome this S-directed, population-level immune pressure. Hence, in a given vaccination setting and stage of the ongoing pandemic, the success of mass vaccination campaigns will to a large extent depend on the evolving prevalence of increasingly problematic variants. Alternatively, S-directed immune interventions that seem effective in one vaccination setting and stage of this pandemic may not work as well when applied to another vaccination setting or when implemented at another stage of the ongoing pandemic.

The observation that the effectiveness of mass vaccination campaigns, as assessed during a pandemic of immune escape variants, oftentimes evolves very differently between countries or regions is, therefore, not surprising. It is only when the population-level selective immune pressure will culminate that variants and, therefore, the effects of these campaigns will start to globally converge to the same endpoint, which is ‘resistance’ to the vaccines. It is only at that very endpoint that all assessments of the alleged ‘effectiveness’ of this experiment will be unanimous and consistent. [..] as the immune selection pressure in the global population is now ‘massively’ rising and the set of naturally selected, S-directed mutations together with the plasticity thereof dramatically expanding, one can reasonably expect that the edition of a super variant capable of resisting S-specific Abs will be precipitated such as to emerge within the next few months.

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“Please may we start saving lives now.” She heard nothing back.”

Ivermectin: The Forbidden Treatment (APL)

On Dec. 8 2020, FLCCC member Dr. Pierre Kory gave nine minutes of testimony to the U.S. Homeland Security Committee Meeting on the potent anti-viral, anti-inflammatory benefits of ivermectin. Nine million people viewed the video on YouTube before it was taken down by YouTube’s owner, Google. Capuzzo said mainstream and social media have gone to extraordinary lengths to keep people in the dark about ivermectin. Three days after Kory’s testimony, an Associated Press “fact-check reporter” interviewed Kory. Then she wrote: “AP’S ASSESSMENT: False. There’s no evidence Ivermectin has been proven a safe or effective treatment against COVID-19.” Like many critics, she didn’t explore the Ivermectin data or evidence in any detail, but merely dismissed its “insufficient evidence,” quoting instead the lack of a recommendation by the NIH or WHO.

On Jan. 12, 2021, the Brazilian Ministry of Health tweeted to its 1.2 million followers not to wait with COVID-19 until it’s too late but “go to a Health Unit and request early treatment,” (Ivermectin) only to have Twitter take down the official public health tweet for “spreading misleading and potentially harmful information.” On Jan. 31, the Slovak Ministry of Health announced its decision on Facebook to allow use of Ivermectin. Facebook took down the post and removed the entire page it was on, the Ivermectin for MDs Team, with 10,200 members from more than 100 countries. In Argentina, Professor and doctor Hector Carvallo, whose prophylactic studies are renowned by other researchers, says all his scientific documentation for Ivermectin is quickly scrubbed from the Internet. “I am afraid,” he wrote to Marik and his colleagues, “we have affected the most sensitive organ on humans: the wallet…”

As Kory’s testimony was climbing toward nine million views, YouTube, owned by Google, erased his official Senate testimony, saying it endangered the community. Undeterred, many front-line doctors have tried to persuade their health regulators of the efficacy and safety of ivermectin as a covid treatment. They include Dr. Tess Lawrie, a prominent independent medical researcher who, as Capuzzo reports, evaluates the safety and efficacy of drugs for the WHO and the National Health Service to set international clinical practice guidelines: “She read all 27 of the Ivermectin studies Kory cited. The resulting evidence is consistent and unequivocal, she said, and sent a rapid meta-analysis, an epidemiolocal statistical multi-study review considered the highest form of medical evidence, to the director of the NHS, members of parliament, and a video to Prime Minister Boris Johnson with “the good news… that we now have solid evidence of an effective treatment for COVID-19…” and Ivermectin should immediately “be adopted globally and systematically for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19.”

Ignored by British leaders and media, Lawrie convened the day-long streaming BIRD conference—British Ivermectin Recommendation Development—with more than 60 researchers and doctors from the U.S., Canada, Mexico, England, Ireland, Belgium, Argentina, South Africa, Botswana, Nigeria, Australia, and Japan. They evaluated the drug using the full “evidence-to-decision framework” that is “the gold standard tool for developing clinical practice guidelines” used by the WHO, and reached the conclusion that Ivermectin should blanket the world. “Most of all you can trust me because I am also a medical doctor, first and foremost,” Lawrie told the prime minster, “with a moral duty to help people, to do no harm, and to save lives. Please may we start saving lives now.” She heard nothing back.

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Oxford is AstraZeneca. They should never lead a study like this. And they know it.

Oxford University Explores Ivermectin As Covid-19 Treatment (R.)

The University of Oxford said on Wednesday it was testing anti-parasitic drug ivermectin as a possible treatment for COVID-19, as part of a British government-backed study that aims to aid recoveries in non-hospital settings. Ivermectin resulted in a reduction of virus replication in laboratory studies, the university said, adding that a small pilot showed giving the drug early could reduce viral load and the duration of symptoms in some patients with mild COVID-19. Dubbed PRINCIPLE, the British study in January showed that antibiotics azithromycin and doxycycline were generally ineffective against early-stage COVID-19.


While the World Health Organization, and European and U.S. regulators have recommended against using ivermectin in COVID-19 patients, it is being used to treat the illness in some countries, including India. “By including ivermectin in a large-scale trial like PRINCIPLE, we hope to generate robust evidence to determine how effective the treatment is against COVID-19, and whether there are benefits or harms associated with its use,” co-lead investigator of the trial Chris Butler said. People with severe liver conditions, who are on blood-thinning medication warfarin, or taking other treatments known to interact with ivermectin, will be excluded from the trial, the university added. Ivermectin is the seventh treatment to be investigated in the trial, and is currently being evaluated alongside antiviral drug favipiravir, the university said.

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How it started and how it’s going is the same. No progress:

“The health agency added, “There is some evidence that vaccination may make illness less severe.”

Nearly 4,000 Fully Vaccinated People in MA Positive for COVID-19 (ET)

Nearly 4,000 people in Massachusetts who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 have contracted the virus, adding to the growing number of breakthrough cases nationwide. According to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, as of June 12, there were 3,791 people who tested positive for COVID-19 among the 3.7 million fully vaccinated people in the state, accounting for roughly one in 1,000 vaccinated individuals. “We’re learning that many of the breakthrough infections are asymptomatic or they’re very mild and brief in duration,” said Boston University infectious diseases specialist Davidson Hamer, the Boston Herald reported. “The viral load is not very high.”

“Breakthroughs are expected, and we need to better understand who’s at risk and whether people who have a breakthrough can transmit the virus to others,” Hamer added. “In some cases, they’ll be shedding such low levels of the virus and won’t be transmitting to others.” So-called breakthrough cases refer to cases appearing two or more weeks after a person’s final shot. That’s primarily the second Pfizer or Moderna dose, but can be the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. “Vaccine breakthrough cases are expected,” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states on its website. “COVID-19 vaccines are effective and are a critical tool to bring the pandemic under control. However, no vaccines are 100 percent effective at preventing illness. There will be a small percentage of people who are fully vaccinated who still get sick, are hospitalized, or die from COVID-19.”

The health agency added, “There is some evidence that vaccination may make illness less severe.”

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From April, but a keeper.

3rd COVID Wave Will Kill Or Hospitalize 60 To 70% of Fully Vaccinated (GGI)

According to projections by UK’s top modelling agency the third wave of COVID-19 spike will hospitalize and kill 60 to 70% of those people who took both the vaccine doses. The paper suggests that the resurgence in both hospitalisations and deaths will dominated by those who have received two doses of the vaccine, comprising around 60% and 70% of the wave respectively. The modelling (read below in full) was presented to the UK’s top scientific advisory body Sage by one of its sub groups, the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling, Operational (SPI-M-O). This committee of academics has done modelling work throughout the pandemic and has looked at the impact vaccination will have on hospital admissions, infections and deaths.

Its findings suggest that a third wave is inevitable but that the size of the spike in cases depends on the effectiveness of vaccines, the speed at which restrictions are eased and the impact new variants have on transmission and illness. It suggests that the resurgence in both hospitalisations and deaths will be “dominated by those that have received two doses of the vaccine”. “Maintaining a large reduction in transmission from such measures after Step 4 [England’s plans to remove all restrictions from June 21] is taken is almost certain to reduce the size of the subsequent resurgence. This latest modelling reinforces this finding, as lower adherence to baseline measures and the resulting increased transmission could lead to a peak close in scale to that seen in January 2021.” The paper looks at a range of possibilities what we can expect from Covid as we ease restrictions going into the summer. It takes into account a range of difference sources including modelling from the University of Warwick, Imperial College London and London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

“Scenarios with little transmission reduction after step 4 [full lifting of restrictions planned for June in England] or with pessimistic but plausible vaccine efficacy assumptions can result in resurgences in hospitalisations of a similar scale to January 2021.” The paper suggests that the resurgence in both hospitalisations and deaths will dominated by those who have received two doses of the vaccine, comprising around 60% and 70% of the wave respectively. “The resurgence in both hospitalisations and deaths is dominated by those that have received two doses of the vaccine, comprising around 60% and 70% of the wave respectively. This can be attributed to the high levels of uptake in the most at-risk age groups, such that immunisation failures account for more serious illness than unvaccinated individuals.”

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Where there’s Daszak, there’s Fauci.

Daszak Leaves UN-backed COVID Origins Probe (NYP)

The head of a New York City-based nonprofit that directed hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal grant money to the Wuhan Institute of Virology is no longer part of a UN-backed commission examining the origins of the coronavirus pandemic. EcoHealth Alliance president Peter Daszak’s profile on the website of The Lancet COVID-19 Commission has been updated to include the parenthetical quote “recused from Commission work on the origins of the pandemic.” Earlier this month, Vanity Fair reported that Dazsak helped organize a statement signed by 27 leading scientists that appeared in The Lancet — a prestigious British medical journal — in February 2020. The statement condemned what it called “conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin” and proclaimed “solidarity with all scientists and health professionals in China.”

“Conspiracy theories do nothing but create fear, rumours [sic], and prejudice that jeopardise [sic] our global collaboration in the fight against this virus,” the statement added. Though the statement initially claimed that the signatories had “no competing interests,” The Lancet issued a statement Monday saying it had invited all 27 signatories (at least one of whom has walked back his support of the natural, or zoonotic, theory) to “re-evaluate their competing interests.” The statement included an updated disclosure from Daszak attached to the February 2020 statement and two other pieces he co-authored or contributed to. In his expanded disclosure, Daszak stated that EcoHealth’s work in China — including at the Wuhan lab — was funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the US Agency for International Development (USAID). Daszak also denied that he or EcoHealth received money directly from the Chinese government.

“EcoHealth Alliance’s work in China … includes the production of a small number of recombinant bat coronaviruses to analyse [sic] cell entry and other characteristics of bat coronaviruses for which only the genetic sequences are available,” he wrote. “NIH reviewed the planned recombinant virus work and deemed it does not meet the criteria that would warrant further specific review by its Potential Pandemic Pathogen Care and Oversight (P3CO) committee.” The belated disclosure from The Lancet comes months after the nonprofit group US Right to Know reported that four of the statement’s co-authors had direct ties to EcoHealth Alliance. The Vanity Fair report stated that six signatories had either worked at EcoHealth Alliance or received funding from it.

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“What does it say about the state of our media and social media that one man can so wrongly shape a narrative?”

Media Allowed Itself To Be Duped By One Man On Covid-19 (Bloom)

The more we learn about Peter Daszak, one of the main villains of the COVID epidemic, the worse it gets. Daszak is president of EcoHealth Alliance, a nongovernmental organization mostly funded by the US government. EcoHealth passed some of that money on to the lab in Wuhan, China. It was Daszak who organized the letter in The Lancet from February 2020 dismissing as “misinformation” claims that the virus may have originated from the Wuhan Virology Lab. The letter created the illusion of consensus, which Internet companies proceeded to enforce through censorship, and the media reinforced by constantly interviewing Daszak himself. There might be journalistic value in hearing from the Chernobyl plant director about all those clouds floating over Ukraine.

But if he suggests the rash of mysterious sores and cancers were due to a faulty shipment of microwaves recently arrived in Pripyat, you’d probably think he was engaged in a bit of “motivated reasoning.” Apparently not the World Health Organization, which invited Daszak to join their microwave hunt in Wuhan. In the last two days, Daszak has been removed from The Lancet’s own UN-backed commission investigating COVID’s origins, though whether he removed himself or was fired remains unclear. It appears Daszak collaborated with Anthony Fauci as well, based on a recently released e-mail in which he thanks the NIAID director for “publicly standing up and stating that the scientific evidence supports a natural origin for COVID-19 from a bat-to-human spillover, not a lab release.”

To top it all off, the Trump administration canceled the EcoHealth grant in early 2020, a move that was characterized by “60 Minutes” and NPR as jeopardizing a possible COVID-19 cure. Both stories featured — guess who — Daszak. Now we learn that Google’s charitable arm may have also funded EcoHealth. Steve Hilton suggested Monday on Fox that the Google funding might have something to do with why information about COVID was so ruthlessly policed on social media platforms and search engines. We’ll be sorting through the many failures of the COVID pandemic for years, failures by the most important institutions of society, from big tech to scientific research to public health to the media, but whatever blame rests on them, we can say Daszak helped break them all. What does it say about the state of our media and social media that one man can so wrongly shape a narrative?

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Wonder where the loot ends up.

Gabon Paid For Protecting Forests, In African First (Y!)

Gabon has become the first African nation to receive a financial reward for protecting its forests as part of international efforts to fight climate change, the government announced Tuesday. Gabon has received $17 million in recompense for successfully cutting its carbon emissions by reducing deforestation and forest degradation, the environment ministry said in a statement. The payment came “after independent experts verified Gabon’s results” showing that the country’s carbon emissions in 2016-17 had dropped compared with the annual figures for 2006-15.

The funds were delivered by the Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI), an organisation launched in 2015 by the United Nations and backed by international donors. The scheme provides financial incentives to Central African governments to pursue economic growth without harming the vast forests that cover much of the region. The world’s rainforests are seen as a vital weapon in the fight against climate change by sucking out carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Gabon, where forests cover 90 percent of the territory, is home to some 18 percent of the Congo Basin forest, known as “the second lung of the planet” after the Amazon.

Under a 10-year deal signed with CAFI in 2019, Gabon is set to receive a total of $150 million if it meets its carbon-cutting targets. The small tropical country has pledged to cut its carbon emissions in half by 2025 from 2005 levels. The forests in Gabon alone “absorb a total of 140 million tonnes of CO2 each year, which is equivalent to removing 30 million cars from circulation throughout the world,” the environment ministry said. Gabon has been a leader in Central Africa in preserving its rainforests, creating 13 national parks since 2000 that cover around 11 percent of the country.

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For entertainment purposes only. Such an odd defense that Tucker can use it too.

A Court Ruled Rachel Maddow’s Viewers Know She Doesn’t Offer Facts (Greenwald)

In sum, ruled the court, Rachel Maddow is among those “speakers whose statements cannot reasonably be interpreted as allegations of fact.” Despite Maddow’s use of the word “literally” to accuse OAN of being a “paid Russian propaganda” outlet, the court dismissed the lawsuit on the ground that, given Maddow’s conduct and her audience’s awareness of who she is and what she does, “the Court finds that the contested statement is an opinion that cannot serve as the basis for a defamation claim.” What makes this particularly notable and ironic is that a similar argument was made a year later by lawyers for Fox News when defending a segment that appeared on the program of its highest-rated program, Tucker Carlson Tonight.

That was part of a lawsuit brought by the former model Karen McDougal, who claimed Carlson slandered her by saying she “extorted” former President Trump by demanding payments in exchange for her silence about an extramarital affair she claimed to have with him. McDougal’s lawsuit was dismissed in September, 2020, by Trump-appointed judge Mary Kay Vyskocil, based on arguments made by Fox’s lawyers that were virtually identical to those made by MSNBC’s lawyers when defending Maddow. In particular, the court accepted Fox’s arguments that when Carlson used the word “extortion,” he meant it in a colloquial and dramatic sense, and that his viewers would have understood that he was not literally accusing her of a crime but rather offering his own subjective characterizations and opinions, particularly since viewers understand that Carlson offers political commentary:

“Fox News first argues that, viewed in context, Mr. Carlson cannot be understood to have been stating facts, but instead that he was delivering an opinion using hyperbole for effect. See Def. Br. at 12-15. Fox News cites to a litany of cases which hold that accusing a person of “extortion” or “blackmail” simply is “rhetorical hyperbole,” incapable of being defamatory. . . .

In particular, accusations of “extortion,” “blackmail,” and related crimes, such as the statements Mr. Carlson made here, are often construed as merely rhetorical hyperbole when they are not accompanied by additional specifics of the actions purportedly constituting the crime. . . . Such accusations of crimes also are unlikely to be defamatory when, as here, they are made in connection with debates on a matter of public or political importance. . . . The context in which the offending statements were made here make it abundantly clear that Mr. Carlson was not accusing Ms. McDougal of actually committing a crime. As a result, his statements are not actionable.”

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Google’s monopoly is glaringly obvious. No probe needed.

EU Opens Antitrust Probe Into Google’s Online Ad Tech Business (F.)

The European Union on Tuesday opened a formal antitrust probe into Google to inspect whether the company violated the bloc’s competition rules by favoring its own online advertising technology over competing providers, in a move that follows a similar probe against Facebook earlier this month. The investigation will examine whether Google is distorting competition by restricting third parties from accessing user data for advertising purposes while using such data for its own service, according to a statement released by the European Commission. European Commission’s executive vice-president in charge of competition policy, Margrethe Vestager, said regulators are concerned that Google has made it harder for rival online ad services to compete.

Vestager also noted that the investigation will look into Google’s policies on user tracking to make sure they are in line with fair competition. The investigation will also look into the obligation to use Google’s ad manager when serving ads on YouTube, its plan to block third party cookies on Chrome and its plans to restrict access of advertising identifier information to third parties on Android devices where a user has chosen to opt-out of personalized advertising. The commission says it will take into account the need to protect user privacy under the EU’s data protection law but noted that it must ensure that all advertising market participants operate on a level playing field when it comes to protecting user privacy.

In a statement shared with Forbes, Google said their services are used by thousands of European businesses “because they’re competitive and effective” and it plans to answer the European Commission’s questions and demonstrate the benefits of its products. “Online advertising services are at the heart of how Google and publishers monetise their online services,” Vestager said. “Google is present at almost all levels of the supply chain for online display advertising. We are concerned that Google has made it harder for rival online advertising services to compete in the so-called ad tech stack.”

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“..if asset price increases, such as house price rises, were removed from the analysis, “then global household wealth may well have fallen..”

Millions Become Millionaires During Covid Pandemic (BBC)

More than five million people became millionaires across the world in 2020 despite economic damage from the Covid-19 pandemic. While many poor people became poorer, the number of millionaires increased by 5.2 million to 56.1 million globally, Credit Suisse research found. In 2020 more than 1% of adults worldwide were millionaires for the first time. Recovering stock markets and soaring house prices helped boost their wealth. Wealth creation appeared to be “completely detached” from the economic woes of the pandemic, the researchers said. Anthony Shorrocks, economist and author of the Global Wealth Report, said the pandemic had an “acute short term impact on global markets”, but added this was “largely reversed by the end of June 2020”.


“Global wealth not only held steady in the face of such turmoil but in fact rapidly increased in the second half of the year,” he said. However, wealth differences between adults widened in 2020, and Mr Shorrocks said if asset price increases, such as house price rises, were removed from the analysis, “then global household wealth may well have fallen”. “In the lower wealth bands where financial assets are less prevalent, wealth has tended to stand still, or, in many cases, regressed,” he said. “Some of the underlying factors may self correct over time. For example, interest rates will begin to rise again at some point, and this will dampen asset prices.” Total global wealth grew by 7.4%, the report said. Since the start of the 21st century, the number of people with wealth between $10,000 and $100,000 had more than tripled in size from 507 million in 2000 to 1.7 billion in mid-2020.

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