Are COVID Case Surges More Fake News?

Source: American Thinker.

Dr. Joondeph persists in his effort to bring perspective to understanding the Covid-19 pandemic. At issue are the definition of Covid cases as media use the term and the scope of testing in the U.S.

When the history of this pandemic is written, I believe the federal response will be described as technically consistent with “the science,” whereas the social and political responses will be described as inflamed.

28 thoughts on “Are COVID Case Surges More Fake News?

  1. If what the media is reporting even IF it is just positive tests (you cannot really believe such sources) is what I want to see reported. I do not care if the people around me are sick or not if they carry the virus and can make me deathly ill. The fact that there are many such people is what helps make this virus so insidious.

    By the end of the year, something like 400,000 Americans will have died from this virus. Trump world is fooling no one with their attempts to wish it away, pretend it was well-handled or that it is mostly “fake news.” It has been THE test of Trump’s Presidency. He has failed. Bigly.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. RE: “Trump world is fooling no one with their attempts to wish it away, pretend it was well-handled or that it is mostly ‘fake news.'”

      Assuming you are one of those who is not fooled, is there a public policy you would like to recommend? You say you are worried about beomining infected. Perhaps there is something you want to happen to alleviate your fears?

      Like

      1. I have answered this many times – the President should LEAD based on science. Instead he is STILL misleading and setting terrible examples. The simple act of wearing a mask in public and telling the truth about the danger from the beginning would have saved countless lives. When he was saying that it was nothing, Angela Merkel told her people the truth. Our deaths per capita is a multiple of Germany’s.

        Beyond that, science teaches that effective and immediate testing and serious contact tracing is a vital component of a science-based response. We have neither. Trump opposes testing because it “makes him look bad.” And, now he has sponsored a super spreader event but is hiding vital information and refusing to implement serious contact tracing.

        I will give credit where credit is due – the efforts he made to accelerate the development and deployment of vaccines was the right thing to do and should continue. With that said, he is undermining the credibility of his own team by over-promising what they can realistically do.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. RE: “the President should LEAD based on science.”

        Dr. Joondeph is arguably a scientist who is trying to improve public awareness of “the science” related to Covid. Are you asserting that the president’s performance deviates from Dr. Joondeph’s science in some way?

        Dr. Joondeph says, “The U.S. is performing 2.87 daily tests per thousand people, far more than most countries. For comparison, Canada is a third lower at 2.09 tests per thousand, France 1.9, Germany 1.87, Australia 1.21, and India 0.82.”

        Presumably, this is what you want. Are you not happy?

        The presiden’t leaderhip is largely beyond the scope of Dr. Joondeph’s commentary, other than approving of the president’s optmistic message on returning from Walter Reed. But on that topic, I recommend people read the administration’s Pandemic Influenza Plan, which HHS published in 2017, long before Covid-19 even had a name.

        https://www.cdc.gov/flu/pandemic-resources/planning-preparedness/national-strategy-planning.html

        That plan was state-of-the-art science/public policy at the time it was produced, and the administration implemented it exactly as written.

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        1. Try to get a timely reliable and affordable test. Go ahead. Try.

          From the INFLUENZA plan which was an update of plans developed by the Bush and Obama administration one finds the following key sentence . . .

          “The public must be informed about the potential threat, kept informed in
          an environment of uncertainty, and provided a solid foundation of relevant and usable
          information upon which people can base current and future actions”

          We now know that this vital part of the plan was not only not followed but, in fact, that the President spread false information.

          It is also notable that “Goal 1 Objective 1.1 – Expand global capacity to monitor and characterize seasonal and novel influenza viruses and infections.”

          was violated from the outset by the Trump administration.

          https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-china-cdc-exclusiv/exclusive-u-s-slashed-cdc-staff-inside-china-prior-to-coronavirus-outbreak-idUSKBN21C3N5

          It took about 2 minutes to find that, in fact, the existing plan was NOT followed “exactly as written.”

          Liked by 1 person

        2. RE: “We now know that this vital part of the plan was not only not followed but, in fact, that the President spread false information”

          What false information? I watched the daily briefings and news reports pretty closely, and never once saw a contradiction of anything the CDC and scientific community were saying publicly.

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          1. Frankly, trying to have an adult conversation with you is hopeless. You are like a child who thinks fairy tales are true and that actual facts do not matter. This has been noted before by myself and others.

            Trump lied again and again about the threat that the coronavirus presented to people. He is still lying about it every day. That he lied in the beginning is evidenced not only by his demonstrably false statements but by his admission to Woodward that he knew they were false. Say something that you know to be false – that is a lie. That is the clear record. And that is not to get into the MANY times that the experts around him at those pressers had to set the record straight. Or correct his statements later.

            Since you will not admit such a basic and relevant fact, all one can say is – typical. That is the way Trump rolls so why not his fervent admirers.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. RE: “Frankly, trying to have an adult conversation with you is hopeless.”

            Is that a personal problem for you?

            I notice that you haven’t answered the question by providing a specific example of false information the President spread. You apparently think he admitted to lying to the public in his Bob Woodward interview, but that’s debatable, and it is not the question I asked: “What false information?”

            As I remember the early stages of the pandemic, little was known with certainty about Covid-SARS-2. I’m glad the President chose to inspire optimism instead of fear, and I believe the record will show that his statements have been consistent all along with the scientific advice he’s been getting. If you can cite a contradictory example, let’s hear it.

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          3. I tried to keep it simple for you and simply reference the lies that Trump has admitted to. But if you want to insist on a more extensive list of his almost countless pandemic lies, here is a compilation of them with explanations as to why they are on this list. Warning – it is a very long list.

            https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2020/10/trumps-lies-about-coronavirus/608647/

            and here is another . . .

            https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/09/trump-escalating-coronavirus-lies.html

            and another . . .

            https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/trumps-epic-lies-become-his-campaign-coronavirus-story-line

            Enjoy.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. RE: “But if you want to insist on a more extensive list of his almost countless pandemic lies, here is a compilation of them with explanations as to why they are on this list.”

            I asked YOU for a specific example of false information the President spread. Instead, you give me three articles that claim the President spread falsehoods. Not very responsive. And doesn’t prove a thing.

            Why don’t you pick something from one of your sources to discuss?

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          5. Simply hopeless.

            Those articles did not “claim” that Trump spread falsehoods. They proved that he did with concrete evidence.

            Your original claim that there was never once any false information from Trump is clearly bunk. And even voluminous and detailed evidence will not get you to withdraw it. Sad.

            But if you want to discuss just ONE of his countless lies, go ahead and defend why he said and continues to say that Covid-19 is no worse than the flu. By EVERY measure of the severity of a disease Covid-19 is far, far more severe. Last year, the flu killed about 35,000 people with a mortality rate of 0.1% (1 out of a thousand). In JUST six months Covid has killed 218,000 people with a mortality rate of 2.8% (1 out of 35). So Trump is lying and his lies are killing uncountable numbers of people. Okay. Discuss.

            Liked by 1 person

          6. RE: “But if you want to discuss just ONE of his countless lies, go ahead and defend why he said and continues to say that Covid-19 is no worse than the flu.”

            That’s easy. Dr. Fauci (with others) made the flu comparison in the New England Journal of Medicine back in March. The article predicted that Covid-19’s infection fatality rate would turn out to be “considerably less than 1%,” and “the overall clinical consequences of Covid-19 may ultimately be more akin to those of a severe seasonal influenza.” Recent CDC estimates of Covid-19’s IFR confirm this early prediction for all age groups except seniors (70+) who account for half of all Covid deaths.

            The comparison with flu also holds up in terms of Covid-19’s basic reproduction rate (R0). A recent study in India found Covid-19 there to have an R0 of 1.3, only slightly higher than a typical influenza. For comparison, measles has an R0 of 15.

            Finally, flu and Covid-19 present similar symptoms because both are upper respitory infections.

            In other words, it is not a “lie” and it was never a “lie” to compare Covid-19 with the flu on the basis of similarity.

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          7. With all due respect, your arguments to prove a falsehood to be true are pretty lame. Covid is far more dangerous than the flu. Saying it isn’t is a bold-faced lie. The deaths and mortality data supplied above are definitive on that point. But let’s see what you have to say . . .

            1. The infection rate R0 is not a measure of how dangerous a disease is. Many diseases with a high R0 are not that dangerous and some diseases are hard to catch but extremely dangerous. With that said, you have cherry-picked an outlier study. The R0 of Covid is generally found to be higher than you claim. Somewhere above 2. And, because this factor works exponentially a small numerical difference is extremely significant.

            2. You can make the infection fatality rate as low as you want if you exclude the people that it kills as you have done. It is actually close to 3% while the flu is 0.1%. And if you apply the same “logic” of excluding older victims of the flu you would still find Covid is far more dangerous because the flu very rarely kills or even hospitalizes younger people while Covid kills maybe 1 in 100-200 young people who get it.

            3. Trump was not lying about the epidemiological outlook for Covid versus seasonal flu as you are trying to discuss from very early articles, he was lying about – AND STILL IS – the personal danger of contracting it. He KNEW how dangerous it was and chose to LIE. He has admitted it.

            4. Similar symptoms? That is a fallacious argument that does not need a rebuttal. And, of course, it is only superficially the same and THAT is at the very beginning. Covid affects far more bodily systems than the flu and does more lasting damage as well.

            Liked by 1 person

          8. RE: “Covid is far more dangerous than the flu.”

            Dangerous is a subjective term, not a scientific one.

            As I wrote, the scientists were telling Trump back in March — and probably earlier — that Covid-19 looked a lot like flu, and would probably present clinically a lot like flu. Trump was justified in making the comparison himself. It was not a lie.

            RE: “The deaths and mortality data supplied above are definitive on that point.”

            Either your numbers are wrong, or the CDC’s estimates of Covid-19 IFR are wrong.

            RE: “The R0 of Covid is generally found to be higher than you claim. Somewhere above 2.”

            Even at R0=3.57, which I have seen cited, Covid-19, is far less contagious than measles (15.00), and also is statistically comparable to some influenza strains, which is the point. It is not a lie to compare Covid-19’s contagiousness to the flu’s.

            RE: “You can make the infection fatality rate as low as you want if you exclude the people that it kills as you have done.”

            Nope. I said, “Recent CDC estimates of Covid-19’s IFR confirm [Fauci et al‘s] early prediction for all age groups except seniors (70+) who account for half of all Covid deaths.”

            Fauci predicted Covid-19’s IFR would be “considerably less than 1%.” For age groups 0-69, the CDC estimates an average IFR of 0.174%. For all age groups, the CDC estimates an average IFR of 1.87. Just as I wrote.

            According to the CDC, Covid-19 is only more fatal than flu for seniors. For young children, it is significantly less fatal than flu (IFR = 0.003).

            Again, Trump’s flu comparisons were and are consistent with the science.

            RE: Similar symptoms? That is a fallacious argument that does not need a rebuttal”

            The similarity is a valid basis for saying Covid-19 is a lot like flu.

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          9. Yes, I agree, “dangerous” is a subjective term not necessarily a scientific one.

            But Trump’s statements about flu are not about science. They were about danger. He was portraying flu as not dissimilar with respect to danger. So, whatever similarities you care to conjure up from the point of view of science the most salient dissimilarity is that one is far more likely than the other to kill you or ruin your health for life. Trump was lying. AND HE ADMITS IT.

            By the way, he is STILL doing it as documented here . . .

            https://apnews.com/article/virus-outbreak-donald-trump-ap-fact-check-anthony-fauci-flu-fe474f0c15f76adf324791a2cfc1e2bb

            Liked by 1 person

  2. When the history is written for this Pandemic, at least in the US, it will tell us that epidemiologic precautions were about as effective as could be expected in a free country, but the death toll will be double what it could have been due to the delay in application of effective treatments resulting from bureaucratic delay.

    It will confirm what GPs across the country have always known, that antivirals, whether it be HCQ, remdisivir, convalescent plasma or monoclonal antibodies, are most effective when provided as early as possible and largely useless after the patient is seriously ill.

    It will confirm that phase 3 testing, however appropriate when evaluating an improved drug for an already treatable disease, is insanity incarnate in the face of a deadly novel pandemic. Even under the best conditions, Phase 3 testing takes months to accumulate enough data to render an opinion on efficacy. And the more effective our public health measures are, the longer those results will take. With 20,000 people a month dying, that delay is unacceptable.

    Clinical experience, which in the age of the Internet can be shared nationwide overnight, will reveal what works and what does not in a fraction of the time standard clinical testing requires.

    We will learn that President Trump’s rapid recovery was largely due to the fact that his physician is not similarly restrained by the FDA and State Health Departments as yours are mine.

    Not that his physician is necessarily smarter than yours or mine, just that he enjoys greater freedom to act.

    Like

    1. RE: “Clinical experience, which in the age of the Internet can be shared nationwide overnight, will reveal what works and what does not in a fraction of the time standard clinical testing requires.”

      I think that will be one of the great lessons learned. The DoD discovered much the same thing during the global war on terror, and invented the term “net centric warfare” to capture the concept. With any luck “net centric medicine” will become a thing for our public health bureacracies.

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    2. ” . . . epidemiologic precautions were about as effective as could be expected in a free country”

      So, all of those dozens of other countries whose epidemiologic precautions resulted in far fewer deaths per capita are not free countries? Why, because they implemented epidemiologic precautions? Or is your statement just nonsense. It seems like it when places like Japan, Korea, Germany, Norway, Ireland, New Zealand and CANADA are actually free countries and actually did a lot better than we did.

      As for Trump’s “cure” he was given an experimental drug – developed thanks to research sponsored by the Obama administration after Ebola – that is simply not available to other Americans because it difficult to produce and almost completely untested. It MAY have resulted in his apparent quick recovery or it may not have. Nobody actually knows.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Japan and Korea have an admirable, cultural tradition of mask wearing and other steps to protect others from contagion from which we will hopefully learn.

        New Zealand is an island with 2 ports and 2 airports. Germany does not count deaths per 100K the same way we do, so I don’t know how well they did.

        But it is really amazing that the Obama administration somehow directed the creation of monoclonal antibodies specific to a virus that did not exist at the time. They must have obtained samples using their time machine.

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        1. Your rebuttal of my mention of Obama is kind of dumb. What is it you always say . . . “You should read more carefully.” I referred to the research that this particular mono-clonal work was developed from. Does it stick in your craw to give Obama credit for ANYTHING that your mind snaps shut and makes reading comprehension impossible.

          https://investor.regeneron.com/news-releases/news-release-details/regeneron-announces-agreement-barda-development-new-antibody

          Liked by 1 person

          1. So?

            Obama used automobiles during his term. Does that men he gets credit for the invention of cars?

            The technology was developed in the 1990s. It has been used for specific purposes many times since.

            Obama had nothing to do with the development of monoclonal antibody manufacture, he simply paid for some during the Ebola threat.

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          2. So, it does stick in your craw. Why am I not surprised?

            Regeneron as a company was in a position to do what it did for this virus because its basic research and the development of ITS capabilities was sponsored by the government including Obama’s government. In fact NONE of the various remedies that were used on Trump came from his time in office, but you would never know that if you listened to him.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. The technology for producing monoclonal antibodies preceded Obama’s term.

            Each time it is used, you have to start with a sample of the virus(or tumor) you want to target.

            Obama paid for the specific one applicable to Ebola during his term.

            The way you are giving credit, had Obama had the White House repainted while he was in office, you say he invented paint.

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  3. Sou. Korea and another country had identical epidemic plans.
    These two countries had their 1st recorded infections on exactly the same day.
    Sou. Korea immediately implemented their plan.
    They have 500 dead.
    The other country’s leader called it a hoax.
    They have 215,000 dead.

    Hahahaha, that’s some hoax!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. “Don’t let it dominate you. Don’t be afraid of it.”

    Just make sure you have access to unavailable drugs at high costs and be attended to by a personal medical team of a dozen or so doctors and specialists.

    A pox on those elderly, obese patients who died because they were to lazy to arrange that kind of treatment. They screwed up our president’s chances for another term.

    Did Soros pay those people to die? Were they suckers and losers anyway?

    I know. Silly, isn’t it?

    About as silly as the AT article. If you work in an office you would certainly not want positive cases surrounding you just because they feel fine.

    IMHO

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I have been working to arrange for the best available treatment to be ready should I become infected since this began.

      But I can’t really do it because the FDA and the VA Dept if heath will not authorize them until I am too ill for them to work at their best.

      Like

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