We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Debate is good. New facts are useful too. As I understand it, though, lockdowns are not so much designed to prevent death as they were to slow the rate of serious infection - to extend the epidemic at a less intense rate.
The interesting new take is as they say, all the being locked away, masks, gloves, hand washing is going to raise the incidence of other microbial infections since our immune systems are growing weaker without the constant low grade onslaught.
"As I understand it, though, lockdowns are not so much designed to prevent death as they were to slow the rate of serious infection "
That was the idea, but it would only work if it actually significantly reduced spread. If there are a small number of infected people that would make a difference. But now that we know the virus is very widespread, exposure is pretty much universal, cutting down by percentages won't really change much. As long as there is activity, everyone will be exposed at least a few times. (ABSOLUTE TOTAL lockdown for 2-3 weeks would stop it but that's simply not possible)
Assuming no false positives which is a BIG assumption, only 20% in NYC were positive. That leaves a huge number of people still arguably unexposed and that is in NYC. Elsewhere the ratio is worse. The virus is clearly widespread but has it spread enough to have affected most of the vulnerable population yet?
I tentatively clicked on your Powerline link, hoping it would be someone other than Hindraker ranting. I like him and I think he is a smart guy, but at the moment he is the one panicking, yelling at everyone else that they are panicking. He has an idea. It's not a terrible idea, but at the moment he is unable to hear anything that is even 1% different from his idea. Would everyone please ignore him until he calms down?
Commenter after commenter on Maggie's is asserting things they think are science and are not. For example - and you are nice people and I don't want to keep kicking my friends - the first two comments here.
Immune systems do not grow weaker. Do you mean something about the group immunity? That's probably not true either.
Exposure is not universal, and even at the far-edge guesses of how widespread it is, that will not be true for many months.
I really want to open early. People need to work again. But the arguments in favor of that just have to be better than this.
Assistant Village Idiot
For example, these new expert doctors say that the number of deaths between Sweden and Norway are not statistically significant. This is deeply untrue. I will do my broken record thing again. And yes, I get it that all numbers are going to be revised over time to get better apples-to-apples comparisons. But for now, these are the numbers.
Sweden, deaths per million people 217.
Norway 37. How on God's green earth is that not statistically significant? The other Northern European countries are also well below Sweden's total.
Assistant Village Idiot
70%ish of those in ICU in Stockholm are not ethnic Swedes. Sweden also has much lager old age homes than either Denmark or Norway. Apples to oranges.
I would be willing to ignore them if people weren't so excited telling us how great Sweden is doing on this apples to oranges comparison.
Assistant Village Idiot
I noticed that "not statistically significant" dodge, too.
I think the better argument is that we know very little so far about what the total deaths will be, so we may be comparing deaths on different timelines in different countries.
The original idea was to prevent a swamping of ICUs. Now that we know that's barely a problem except in very unusual spots (for which help can be poured in from outside), we've shifted to the idea of reducing deaths from the entire timeline of the epidemic. But we have no reason to think we can do that by any means, and certainly not the means we're employing. Nor are we honestly discussing the trade-offs. We're still in politician mode of "if it saves one life," but we stubbornly apply that standard only to the medical side of the lockdown instead of all the other effects.
No one wants to kill 25MM jobs on the slogan of "if it delays one fairly inevitable death a month or two."
AVI; I agree with you. But we cannot stay shut down. In fact I don't even think it would withstand a court test. That is forcing people who are healthy to stay home. It violates almost everything in the constitution. We must and should open up. Quarantine those with the virus. Advise those who are in the high risk group to stay home and away from people. make sure we have all the PPE hospitals and other health care facilities need. Accept the prediction that there will be a second wave and be ready to deal with it.
I've seen the same Dr. Ericson video posted half a dozen times in my feed in the last couple of days.
Here's a non-hysterical, non-political response to the Dr. Ericson video from a widely respected expert in the field.
Spoiler: their statistical analysis is a joke.
It's roughly akin to saying that because there are exactly two possible outcomes to driving your car to the store- you get there alive, or you don't, which is true- that there is a 50% chance of dying if you drive to the store, which is obviously not true.
Dr. Kasten is a real trove of information. She's been presenting in depth analysis on her page for about a month, presented in a way that normal people can understand.