Bacon's Rebellion: COVID-19 Update: From Exponential Increase to Arithmetical?

Link to source.

Interesting statistical observation about coronavirus infection rates in Virginia.

I was surprised to hear the president say during yesterday’s task force press conference that it may soon be time to start thinking in terms of going back to work. I am cautiously open to the idea. With effective testing and public health surveillance, it is not unreasonable to imagine that infection flare-ups will be caught early. Also, various doctors on TV last night were saying that a host of treatment options will be coming out in the next week or so such that we may be able to deal with new hot spots when they emerge.

The old adage applies: You need to conceive of higher possibilities to be able to find the means of achieving them.

8 thoughts on “Bacon's Rebellion: COVID-19 Update: From Exponential Increase to Arithmetical?

  1. I’m just curious if you read any of the comments below Mr. Bacon’s (VERY level headed) piece. Even he aid to be careful as the numbers could change again tomorrow in answer to someone else’s comment about not getting ahead of the game on numbers:

    “I totally agree — let’s not jump to conclusions. The data comes with all sorts of caveats. The curve could change radically tomorrow.

    All I’m saying at this point is that the latest numbers are not consistent with a runaway, exponential increase in the spread of the virus.”

    Good to be hopeful with numbers to back the hope up. But things should be couched IOT not get to optimistic to fast.

    And maybe the numbers have been going down because the actions recommended by Northam, and followed by the citizenry, have been effective in slowing the spread. Just a thought.

    And I agree with his statement that the governor, out of an overly cautious place, may have closed the schools for the year too soon. However, if things DO improve (and I do hope and pray that they do), the schools could be ramped back up pretty quickly. I know my daughter would much rather be in the classroom Monday-Friday then on the computer 2 hours a day, 4 days a week to interact with her students.


    1. RE: “I’m just curious if you read any of the comments below Mr. Bacon’s (VERY level headed) piece.”

      No. Bacon is clear about the caveats in the body of the piece.

      I felt the article was useful in several ways, not the least of them being a mild challenge to pessimistic assumptions. Do you not find it so?


  2. Arithmetic or exponential growth?

    What does that mean?
    Arithmetic growth would mean that the line of growth is a straight line that has an unchanging slope.
    Exponential growth would mean that the line of growth is curving upward and constantly getting steeper.

    We are on an exponential growth track. The number of cases in the United States is – at this moment – 50,206. When Trump spoke less than a month ago to reassure the nation that the number would soon be zero it was – according to him – 15. THAT growth is exponential as seen on the chart. THAT is what must be changed by social distancing. It is absolutely necessary that we do that. Talk of re-opening the economy is both premature and dangerous.

    As an aside, any pretense that this fellow is what he claims to be – objective and non-partisan – is destroyed by this little bit of bullshit . . .

    “It’s easy to second-guess the decisions of the guy in charge. I don’t want to do to Northam what CNN and MSNBC are doing to President Trump. “

    Liked by 1 person

    1. RE: “Talk of re-opening the economy is both premature and dangerous.”

      Planning for re-opening the economy is neither premature or dangerous. Even Governor Cuomo of New York has begun speaking in those terms.


      1. @Roberts

        Sure, we should be planning what we are going to do when the threat recedes.

        We should not, however, try to force the economy back to “normal” while the threat is still very real. That curve has got to be flattened and there is no point in pretending that it will happen by means of a “miracle.” It will not be done in weeks. It will take months.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Planning is good. If Trump had been better at it, maybe things would not bad as bad as they are.

        Setting a date, prematurely, can lead to things like… I don’t know, people using fish tank treatments to prevent getting sick. It is being considered as a treatment, not a preventative.

        Liked by 1 person

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