Using excess deaths to correct Chinese-virus mortality counts #coronavirus

By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

The United Kingdom now has a higher death toll than any other European country, and the second-highest in the world after the United States. Yesterday’s officially declared count was 29,427 (433 per million population), just above Italy’s 29,315 (485 per million).

However, Fig. 1, from the Cabinet Office daily briefing, shows that the seven-day rolling mean recorded daily deaths has been falling since April 14, about three weeks after the Prime Minister announced the British lockdown:

clip_image002

Fig. 1. UK recorded daily Chinese-virus deaths, March 14 to May 5, 2020 (COBR)

By contrast, the United States had reported 72,271 total deaths to yesterday, or 218 per million population.

However, such international league-table comparisons are problematic, for several reasons. The start-dates for the infection vary from country to country. Worse, the World Health Organization has failed to implement an agreed reporting standard for deaths. Therefore, different countries count the deaths in widely differing ways.

China, for instance, has been under-reporting both cases and deaths from the outset, and has recently ceased to report deaths altogether, even though outbreaks are known to be occurring in various provinces, notably Heiliongjiang.

For some weeks, the United Kingdom did not report deaths that occurred outside hospitals. This turned out to be a grave mistake, for it transpired that large numbers were dying in care homes, a problem that several countries have faced. Fig. 2 shows reported deaths by sector. It is about ten days behind the times, since the recording of deaths by the Office for National Statistics is a slower but more complete process than HM Government’s daily totals.

Now that the United Kingdom does report deaths in care homes and in all other settings as well as in hospitals, it is closer to the true numbers than Italy, for instance, where a recent audit suggested that fewer than half of all Chinese-virus deaths were being reported.

clip_image004

Fig. 2. UK recorded weekly Chinese-virus deaths by sector

However, even the more complete figures provided by the Office for National Statistics appear to be a significant undercount. For instance, the ONS weekly statistical report for the week ending April 24 shows that 8237 Chinese-virus deaths occurred. However, the excess mortality compared with the same week averaged over the previous five years was 11,539, suggesting that even HM Government’s revised death counts are underestimating the true position by 40%. If so, the true cumulative death toll may well exceed 41,000.

In the long run, and in the absence of a competent, internationally-standardized reporting protocol, it is the excess deaths that will be the best guide to the true fatality rate.

That the statistics should have been so inadequately kept as to allow a grave discrepancy between Chinese-virus deaths and excess mortality even in Western countries is bad enough. However, elsewhere in the world the under-reporting is still more severe.

In Brazil, for instance, where the President decided that no lockdown was needed despite the high population densities in the major cities, the hospital system has been overwhelmed, mass graves are being dug and the number of deaths reported is a severe understatement of the true position. The President also fired his health minister, who had criticized him for not following social distancing guidelines.

The Cabinet Office briefing on daily new cases (Fig. 3) shows that a peak was reached about two weeks after the Prime Minister’s announcement of the lockdown. The fact that the peaks in new cases and in deaths occurred two weeks and three weeks respectively after the lockdown was announced is an indication that the measures have had some effect.

clip_image006

Fig. 3. UK daily new Chinese-virus cases, March 21 to May 5, 2020.

Of the countries we have been monitoring, only Canada has a daily growth-rate in active cases (Fig. 4): all the others now show declines.

clip_image008

Fig. 4. Mean compound daily growth rates in estimated active cases of COVID-19 for the world excluding China (red) and for several individual nations averaged over the successive seven-day periods ending on all dates from April 8 to May 5, 2020.

As for cumulative deaths, Canada is again the high-end outlier, with a daily compound growth rate exceeding 5%. All others, including the U.S.A., are at or below 3%. However, there are signs that the slowing of the growth rates is itself slowing. Lockdowns can now be brought to an end, but with caution.

clip_image010

Fig. 5. Mean compound daily growth rates in cumulative COVID-19 deaths for the world excluding China (red) and for several individual nations averaged over the successive seven-day periods ending on all dates from April 15 to May 5, 2020.

Ø High-resolution images of Figs. 1-5 are here.

Today’s column will be the last in this series. I hope that readers will have found it useful to see, day by day, the decline in growth rates that provides governments with the opportunity to phase out their lockdowns.

225 thoughts on “Using excess deaths to correct Chinese-virus mortality counts #coronavirus

        • Well, the tedious “Greg” will now have to shill for the Chinese regime somewhere else. The peaks are separated by about a week. And anyone other than a wilfully ignorant armchair epidemiologist with more time on his hands than sense in his head would notice how steeply the incidence of new cases was rising up until the peaks and how – for now, at any rate – it is falling in a manner that seems to infuriate him.

          To see what happens in countries with high urban population densities where there were no lockdowns, let him look at Brazil or Ecuador.

          If he had known any elementary epidemiology, he would have been aware of the fatal weakness of the S-I-R model, which – in the simplistic form in which it is all too often used – makes no allowance for population density, which matters because it affects the mean person-to-person contact rate. And that contact rate becomes of particular importance in a pandemic that is considerably more infectious than flu. The low contact rate in Sweden has allowed it – to date at any rate – to avoid a strict lockdown, though there has been more of a lockdown even there than some commenters here would be happy to admit.

          Fortunately, the irresponsible Greg is far from the levers of power, and his petulant, sneering tone has commended him to none but himself. He and those like him – an unholy alliance of the embittered, extreme Right and the shills for the Chinese regime – have not prevailed. As a result, many lives that would by now have been lost have been saved.

    • Yes, the graphs are clearer with names separated on graph but would still be less fuzzy in saved as png, not jpeg.

      The fact that the peaks in new cases and in deaths occurred two weeks and three weeks respectively after the lockdown was announced is an indication that the measures have had some effect.

      Once again CofB just sees what he expects to see instead of what is there.

      Where does that “fact” come from. Looking at figure 3 cited for this, both deaths and cases appear to peak simultaneously around 10th April ( if we ignore single day peaks in data ). That is consistent with the “rolling 7d mean” of deaths in figure 1. This non centred trailing mean introduces a 3.5 day lag in the peak, which again indicates true peak on 10th.

      That there is no apparent delay between peak cases and peak deaths indicates that either the data is completely worthless ( highly like: 95% confidence ) or that patients are dying almost as soon as they get to hospital.

      • It would help to use the data that are aged to date of occurrence rather than date of reporting. That moves the peak back earlier, and also makes clear that the underlying rate of decline is somewhat faster.

        • Sometimes (often) we just can’t see the wood for the trees?

          Lord Monckton has generated very many “trees” and beautifully illustrated “trees” at that. However the salient question remains, that nobody has proved that all these deaths are being actually caused by infections of the SARS-2 Coronavirus CoViD-19 disease. Very many deaths in these totals are admittedly cited as being “deaths after having tested positive with CoViD-19”. The tests themselves being used are not able to differentiate between different Coronavirus species, and so nobody can say for certain, whether those figures have any meaningful value. Even if the mathematics and statistics are so eloquently presented by Lord Monckton, they may only serve to create yet more trees, so that “the wood” is obscured even further.

          “The Wood” is the true agenda behind the Global panic-demic, and those involved in it who stand to “Make a gain for themselves, or another; or cause a loss, or expose another to a loss.”; as a result of presenting information which they knew to be false, or might be false. In other words FRAUD ! Fraud by Ferguson, Fauchi, Gates et al, who stand to benefit financially. For those sorts of nihilists, the deaths are mere incidental statistics. The larger the figures, the better for their bank balance. Really for them they don’t care so much about the personal tragedies, or indeed the thousands of businesses that are made bankrupt, or the millions (billions) of unemployed state dependants left in the wake of their chicanery.

          • Very good comment. The evilness of Gates in particular, is ignored by the media,as usual. Hint- corruption!

          • In response to Mr Black, governments do not rely upon mere prejudice either for or against lockdowns. They check. And the UK Office for National Statistics, to take just one, has concluded that at least five-sixths of all the excess deaths in the UK are attributable to infection with the Chinese virus. The longer the lockdown endures, of course, the higher the fraction dying for lack of treatment for other diseases, or by suicide caused by the lockdown itself, will become. Which is one reason why, once lockdowns have achieved their primary purpose of preventing the hospitals from being overwhelmed as they have in no-lockdown Brazil, for instance, they should be brought to an end as quickly as possible.

            Fortunately, one vital statistic that has been learned during the lockdowns – for which there was some evidence in the Chinese data (which, however, are known to be generally unreliable – is that, though the infection is an order of magnitude more contagious than flu and, overall, an order of magnitude more fatal, the fatalities are very strongly clustered among the elderly, particularly with comorbidities. This fact – once governments have properly understood it – will allow them to unlock their under-60s very quickly – a step that this column has advised for quite some time.

        • The whole kludge of making a crude guess about the delay between +ve test and death , which has an enormous spread, was unnecessary. Most countries ( apart from UK and NL ) provide data for cured cases directly. He should have used that directly, then maybe the kludge for UK which is unable to count anything properly.

          Like Mickey Mann he never provided a full explanation of his work nor code so that anyone could reproduce or validate it.

          He repeatedly misinterpreted what his graphs showed, or provided spurious claims of what levels should be achieved before lockdown could safely be relaxed. And of course in his usual over-confident manner refused to take any comment, suggestion or critique on board.

          The whole series has largely been a waste of time except to provide a coat-hook for COVID discussions allowing the more competent here to exchange information. That much has been useful.

          • The ever-useless Greg appears not to have realized that Figs. 1-3 of the head posting relate to the United Kingdom, which appears to be almost alone in the world in not reporting recovered cases.

            Furthermore, if Greg were to scream less and read more, he would learn that the figures for recovered cases even in those countries that publish them appear to be a very considerable underestimate, making them an unreliable indicator. Let him have a go at estimating the case fatality rate as the ratio of the published death count to the sum of that count and the recovered cases. If the ratio were anything like as high as that calculation would suggest, then the argument for lockdowns having been introduced would become overwhelming.

            Fortunately, far wiser, less prejudiced and less petulant heads than his have taken the decision to protect their peoples with lockdowns. To his fury, the lockdowns are working, though he pretends that they are not. To his fury, the very rapid exponential growth rates in cumulative cases and cumulative deaths have fallen far faster as a result of lockdowns than would otherwise have been the case. But those with an ounce of common humanity have not been so churlish. He and his like have lost the public-policy argument, and deservedly so.

            And he whines – for whining is what he does best – that I did not declare in advance at what point the lockdowns could be brought to an end. Of course I did no such thing, for, unlike him, I am capable of understanding that the usual epidemiological model does not work well with a highly-infectious pathogen, for then the mean person-to-person contact rate becomes of primary importance. And that contact rate varies with population density, and with a number of other factors that vary not only from country to country but also within countries.

            The advantage of showing graphs comparing several countries of interest every day was to provide a visual indication of whether the lockdowns were working – i.e., whether the rate of growth was slowing enough to allow governments to start taking seriously the need to end the lockdowns. It is time that Greg learned that epidemiology is not one of the exact sciences and that, therefore, responsible governments will take precautions to protect the health and the lives of their peoples, whether he likes it or not.

      • Today’s column will be the last in this series.

        A merciful and to this unqualified ( in all senses ) mess.

        The crude attempt at estimating active cases was the closest this every got to telling us anything but he has still to tell us what it means when countries show an uptick as Aus , S.K. and several others are now doing. Does this mean they are losing the control they had or is this the end of the falling exponential. Sadly the graphs do not tell us, so what use are they.

        Since most countries do provide figures for successful outcomes that crude guessing game was unnecessary and only dictated by his lazy attempt to produce a one-size-fits-all , lowest quality analysis he could click out of Excel.

        A straight forward plot of new cases would have been more use.

        https://climategrog.files.wordpress.com/2020/05/2019-ncov-log-growth-spitswnor.png

        Keeping a close eye on Spain and Italy , who have already taken large moves towards deconfinement
        will be more useful in the weeks ahead.

        This analysis of Italian case numbers has proved to be very sensitive to change and should be the first place to detect an up turn as they start to move again.
        https://climategrog.files.wordpress.com/2020/05/2019-ncov-weekly-filter-italy-1.png

        The fact that there was very little change after the first relaxation on 14th April is a good sign and rather unexpected. Also Spain which got manufacturing and construction back to work at the same time has shown no visible up tick.

        This is surprising if we were to believe the classic epidemiological models which predict a “second wave” as soon as you relax the artificial controls on R0 by restricting movement.

        Apparently there are other significant factors in play that are not included in their simplistic models. That should not surprise regulars of WUWT, but is going require explanations from those who threatened us will millions of deaths if we did destroy our own financial situation and economic future.

        • And don’t forget the canard of excess deaths. As is slowly being brought to light, a good % of these are from the complete devotion to the C-virus. People not getting treatment are dying far earlier then they should.

          • Correct DeNihilist ! See my more detailed comment above.
            That’s a good moniker you have, and de-nihilism is exactly what we need, and we ought to make a start by prosecuting those nihilists like Gates & Fauci et al for their crimes!

            Wherefore art thou, Attorney General Barr ?

      • If you were to plot the total UK deaths for the period 1st January to date, say for each of the last 25 years, as adjusted by population, what would it look like?

        Is 2020, in any way significantly different? Are the total deaths more than the UK has seen before? I would expect that the UK has several times seen this sort of death toll during the past 25 years.

        Without actual autopisies we can have no confidence in the nember of people who have died of the virus, rather than those who have died with the virus, or even presumed to have been with the virus.

        The data here is very suspect.

        • Even autopsy data needs to be interpreted carefully. An otherwise healthy person who develops coronavirus pneumonia and then respiratory failure leading to multiorgan failure and death may be a fairly straightforward postmortem diagnosis. A frail, elderly patient with COPD and coronary artery disease who develops covid-19 pneumonia and then has a myocardial infarction resulting in heart failure with subsequent arrhythmias and renal failure on the way to death is not so simple—-and this second scenario maybe more frequent than the first with covid-19. Here Covid may be a trigger or cofactor, but not the proximate cause of death. Statistics based on such complexities are necessarily fuzzy.

        • In response to Mr Verney, the excess deaths in the past few weeks in the UK have been exceptionally high by the standard he mentions – and we are very far from the end of this pandemic. Within a month or two, provided that the current rate of decline in the rate at which new cases arise continues, one will be able to make a more reliable comparison, but it is already clear that this pandemic has killed between twice and thrice as many as the annual flu, and that is even after a quite strict lockdown and before taking account of the large number of deaths yet to come.

      • I have been looking at the daily death curves for about 14 countries. Nearly all of them show the daily deaths peaking about 30 days after the curve first starts to ramp up. This happens regardless of lockdown or not. Here it shows the same for the UK. It’s the same for Sweden, USA, Italy, California, etc. Japan doesn’t follow the pattern. Looks like Japan did flatten the curve without a lockdown. Clearly lockdowns did nothing.

        I used data from Our World in Data (Oxford) for world data and Covidtracking.com for US and state data.

        • Mr Breeding has made the elementary mistake of failing to allow for confounders. One thing that happens once a dangerous pandemic hits the headlines is that people begin to take precautions for themselves. That will slow the growth-rate in cumulative cases and in deaths.

          But lockdowns will slow that rate still more, for well-understood reasons. To see what life in a major city with a high population density would look like without lockdown, just look at Brazil.

        • I suggest that you look at New Zealand, peaked at day 17 after their first case and then you also have to consider the height of the peak.
          Australia 37 days.
          Denmark 21 days.
          Czechia 18 days
          USA 24 days
          Sweden 37 days
          Portugal 18 days
          Swiss 28 days
          Singapore 1 day
          Australia 37 days
          Germany 27 days
          France 51 days
          Ireland 42 days
          Israel 22 days
          These are from first cases, so a lot of variability.
          So not 30 days from ramp up, not even from first case.

      • I note from our diary that we thought twice about going to the theatre on feb 14 th and that my wife’s hairdressing appointment was cancelled at the end of February. We went to a cafe the next day and chose to sit outside due to concerns over cv

        So the mass voluntary lock down started up to a month before the lockdown in law so I agree it has been pointless, as the reduction in deaths had started before it would have been possible from The length of the quarantine times of the lockdown start

      • Could you say how you are defining “fatalities” and what the basis of those figures is?

      • “Old white guy” may care to look at the ratio of deaths to the sum of deaths and recovered cases. That is the least unreliable method of estimating how many may die in future from a pandemic that is still in its earlier stages. Hint: it is a whole lot higher than 0.1-0.2%.

        My best estimate, based on casting deaths back by two or three weeks, is that the infection fatality rate (which is, of course, going to be lower than the case fatality rate) works out at somewhere between 0.1 and 1%. At the lower bound, 8 million will die worldwide: at the upper bound, 80 million. To some commenters here, that does not matter. And it may be worse than that: we do not yet have enough data. Governments were right to take precautions.

  1. Thank you Lord Monckton for the work you have put in to produce the insightful analysis and clear graphics.

    • Lord Monckton
      Thank you for the update.
      Just as the Ruby princess gave us an interesting insight into how the virus spread, do we have any similar details from the numerous aged care facilities.
      My observation/guess is for a hundred bed aged care if COVID gets in 50 residents get 15-20 die
      And 20-30 staff get it but none die.
      Do we have similar numbers from UK or elsewhere?
      Thanks in advance

      • In response to Waza, this pandemic is more or less harmless to people under 60, and very, very harmful indeed to people over 80. In care homes where the most stringent infection control is not practised, large numbers of elderly residents have been dying in many countries, notably the UK and Sweden.

    • Thanks from us in Australia also.
      Some here are wondering if the Australian figures are from a less savage form of the virus.
      We are also still seeing too many clusters because clusters can quickly become hard/impossible to control. In many ways, clusters here have been THE news, from cruise ships to retirement homes to meatworks. Keep well, Christopher.

      • Sadly Geoff, that is the payback for being very efficient at quarantining incoming visitors and stamping on the infection in an effective way. The remaining population is still mainly naive to the virus and at risk of a rapidly expanding epidemic.

      • Mr Sherrington asks why there have been so few cases and deaths in Australia. That is because the Australian Government acted swiftly and decisively. The earlier control measures are introduced, the better they are likely to work, and the less they are likely to cost. Britain, which dithered for a month, is paying a heavy cost for its scientists’ indecision – a cost no less in lives than in treasure.

    • I would like to be able to revisit some of the patients I saw in the autumn , as several had a persistent cough for several weeks (which is what prompted their visit). My wife and I had a persistent cough lasting 4-6 weeks in October last year. It also appeared to be worse in patients with co-morbidities.
      I put all of this down to an upper respiratory tract infection with post nasal drip, but now I’m more concerned that it was CoViD19.
      If so then the number of people with antibodies could be significant and this is the second wave.
      It may be coincidence but October is the start of our university academic year with a large number of students from the PRC.

      • I too had what was probably this virus in December. A very odd cold is what I called it at the time, fever to start and a very persistent cough as well as feeling weak and below par during the whole time the cough persisted. My wife works in an international school and I expect this was the vector. The whole family had some symptoms, the children the mildest. I am 71 and the cough persisted well into January. Whole family had what we think was probably another strain just prior and during lockdown. Probably another strain. What characterised this was the fact that it seemed to be milder and came and went. We (my wife and I) – the kids dispatched with it in a few days – would get a cough and headaches which would then clear only to come back again in a few days, again persisted for several weeks.

        • john and newt2u
          yu[ crazy high fever I couldnt break non stop cough till after some 8hrs i had sore ribs n pulled muscles neuralgia and full on sinus swelling
          yet a nasal swab done after i checked into hospital came back wout much to sow no flu virus and maybe a rhino/
          Id eneded up thinking a reboot of whooping cough due tothe extended recovery 6 weeks or so and pneuomina as a follow on as well
          I dont travel but the well off around here do so too often.
          and I STILL have a raspy spot and cough up crap from that area almost daily.
          had a Covid test down the rd yesterday seems they remebered rural areas exist?
          wait n see but not blood so antibodies wouldnt show

        • Alex, useful link, the paper says this:

          Our results are in line with previous estimates and point to all sequences sharing a common ancestor towards the end of 2019, supporting this as the period when SARS-CoV-2 jumped into its human host.

          The “jump to human host” is total speculation , of course.

          Chinese doctors were reporting cases a new disease in December … until they got arrested. They were not “smart enough to identify it” they were dumb enough to try to suppress news of it’s existence. Finally some very brave chinese scientist decided to break the news 5th Jan and publish the gnome, which CCP were still withholding a week after it was reported to them.

          With the massive overseas travel of chinese it is not surprising that there were already isolated cases in Europe and other countries.

          None of that in any way goes against the most probable cause being a leak from the stupidly irresponsible work being done at WIV … with full knowledge of the West. This was not secret classified work !

          • You are certainly correct that this virus came from the lab in Wuhan. It may have been “stupidly irresponsible” and that seem to be what many want us to believe-at worst. Several reports and analyses indicating that “there is no evidence” that the virus was man made. No evidence that it was is not evidence that it wasn’t.
            We know that several Chinese researchers were working on bat coronaviruses. We know that they were engaged in “gain of function” work , whereby they alter the genetic coding to make it MORE capable of infecting other organisms. This virus seems to function very well in humans and appears to have a number of “features” that would be desirable in a bio weapon such as high infection coefficient and lengthy incubation period. Additionally, the Chinese government made considerable effort to cover up it’s presence. Then, despite the fact that they knew what it did, they shut down travel out of Wuhan to other parts of China while still allowing travel out of Wuhan to any other place in the world. They did not provide the rest of the world with the genomic sequence of the virus when they knew it. They used their corrupt influence of the WHO to assist the cover up and withhold valuable information about the virus and its treatment.
            To the extent that the world can help bring about the downfall of the Chinese Communist Party by attacking the Chinese economy and Chinese assets all over the world, it needs to do so. This disgusting crime ring of a government has to go.

        • Yup, add me to this growing list. I had what I thought was an unusual cold that started right before Xmas. Hung on for 2-3 weeks but the real kicker is I got a rash on my arm. Never seen anything like that with a cold and it is a reported symptom of covid-19.

          I would love to get an antibody test. Probably the only way I will find out the truth.

        • Anecdote after anecdote does not amount to data, especially when testing tools (like in France) have considerable false positive questions.

          The actual influenza data from the CDC from the last fall and winter does not show anything but a notably weak flu season (lower than the last 4 years), peaking in the first week of January of 2020. That’s what the actual data show.

          To attribute sniffles, coughs and fevers to something else in the US flu season is unfounded speculation.

          Dressing up confirmation bias as somehow “science!” Is depressing to see here, in these pages which hope to uphold some genuine standards of scientific reasoning.

          Elsewhere, I’m dead tired of the siren call attributing everything to the novel Corona virus. I’m dead to it. But here I have cause to be angry.

    • Thanks for pointing that out, I have been waiting for someone to do that. We could call it just as easily – Dr Fauci’s viris. Here’s a paper to explain how COVID 19 Coronavirus developed. https://www.nature.com/articles/nm.3985.pdf I quote: “. . . . to examine the emergence potential (that is, the potential to infect humans) of circulating bat CoVs, we built a chimeric virus encoding a novel, zoonotic CoV spike protein—from the RsSHC014-CoV sequence that was isolated from Chinese horseshoe bats —in the context of the SARS-CoV mouseadapted backbone. The hybrid virus allowed us to evaluate the ability of the novel spike protein to cause disease independently of other necessary adaptive mutations in its natural backbone. Using this approach, we characterized CoV infection mediated by the SHC014 spike protein in primary human airway cells and in vivo, and tested the efficacy of available immune therapeutics against SHC014-CoV. Together, the strategy translates metagenomics data to help predict and prepare for future emergent viruses.”

      • Great to see others researching the abundant papers encompassing the enormous amount of work Shi Zenghli & others were doing with Chimeric / synthetic viruses with increasing ‘gain-of-function’ capability – including the newly acquired furin linkage with gp-120 and gp-41 segments……all papers found back to 2006…

        • But Shi Zhengli checked all their samples and was “greatly relieved” to find none of them matched sars-cov-2. Since she had no reason to lie and did not have the CCP with an execution squad waiting out side, I’m sure we can regard the matter as closed.

          • The matter is closed, but not because they exonerated themselves. It is closed because there can be no viable investigation, from the guilty parties, and there is only one conclusion that fits the available facts.
            There has been no attempt to determine how else the virus would “spontaneously” jump from animal to human in Wuhan in late fall. The researchers travel 600 miles from Wuhan to find bats with colonies that have active virus circulating. The bats develop antibodies after infection so the virus must maintain a high rate of “contagiousness” to jump from the infected bat, to another bat. That second bat would have to be one of the few bats remaining in the colony that did not have antibodies. The bats have “herd immunity”, so only a minority are not immune, and only a tiny minority of these bats can have active virus strains at any one time. And only a tiny minority of colonies have any active infection.
            How did the 1 in a million bat with active virus get from Yunnan Province, 600 miles North to Wuhan? These are micro bats. Tiny bats with the mass of a small mouse. The bats that are eaten are the much larger megabats.
            And there were no bats for sale in the Wuhan Seafood Market.
            There is no statistically likely process for the Chinese virus to get to Wuhan circulating in the public, other than a leak from the lab. And the statistically most likely source thinks it is adequate to say “we didn’t find it here, so it didn’t come from here”.

      • The Chinese leadership are predators who are the enemies of the rest of the world. They seek world domination by any means necessary, legal or illegal, moral or immoral.

        They got a free pass for the last few decades. Not any more. Now we are going to start butting heads. No more Mr. Niceguy.

        The U.S. should start out by expelling all 400,000 Chinese students from American univerisities and sending them home.

        • Two things about sending Chinese students home from American universities:

          1) Those Chinese students get exposed to things that they’d never see back in China, like un-censored news, un-censored social media, the truth about Tienanmen Square and Hong Kong, and what Americans are really like. (While they may see bad things in the latter case, their impression will probably be better than what they’d see back in China.) You might even say their minds get “infected.”

          2) This is at least a positive cash flow for American universities, and for the businesses in the vicinity of those universities. I don’t want to say that cash flow is everything (much less harp on meaningless statistics like “jobs created”), but it does help. And universities (not to mention private businesses that cater to students) are very impacted by the present lockdown.

          In sum, the presence of Chinese students in American universities is IMHO the opposite of a free pass.

        • The more American Chinese live in China the more aware the Chinese become of how things could be better. There are lots of Chinese Christians who are a real worry for the Communists. The Hong Kongers are evidence that the Chinese are not the submissive types their overlords would wish. As tycoon Ian Dunross says in the TV series Noble House, “Either China will absorb Hong Kong or Hong Kong will absorb China.”

      • You have that right, almost goes without saying.

        There is no question in what country this originated. If they were smart enough to identify it, then was allowing it to spread intentional?

    • I am in Western Canada. When I read that many patients were asymptomatic I began to wonder as I had a persistent cough through Feb. and March with a slight fever. As a transplant patient I was a bit hyper alert to any kind of infection but shrugged it off as I decided that if I got it, it would be bad. But, who knows. Maybe I’m just one of the largely asymptomatic ones. We had no known infections in my region at that time. Somewhere in there I read an article that said that in California they looked back on some tissue sample from Dec. or Jan. that had been listed as flu for cause of death and found they weer positive for China virus.

    • Alex, who seems to be acting as a shill for the Chinese regime, disingenuously says that “the Chinese were smart enough to identify” their virus. Actually, the first indication that the outside world received that the virus was capable of passing from person to person came not from the Communist regime in Peking but from the democratic government in Taiwan. The World Death Organization, however, refused to act on Taiwan’s report that it was having to isolate cases of the new infection, while the Chinese regime not only failed to comply with its obligation at international law to report the emergence of the new infection within 24 hours but also lied to the effect that it could not pass from person to person long after it knew full well that it could. It also “disappeared” several doctors and researchers connected with the outbreak, and continues to lie about cases and deaths in China. And Alex calls these crimes against humanity “smart”. That is contemptible.

      The paper to which he refers makes it clear that there was a single case report in October and a handful in November inside China, not outside it. China could and should have reported the infection to the world community as early as October, but dishonoured its obligation to do so.

  2. Christopher……I have indeed enjoyed reading your postings every day although, as you know, we don’t necessarily agree on your particular interpretation of the statistics with respect to the impact of lockdowns.

    However, I do hope that, when the dust has settled, you will come back and wrote a post-pandemic analysis piece to provide us with your final thoughts on this affair. It would be interesting to see whether the lockdowns REALLY stand up to rigorous scrutiny, once we have ALL the available data at hand. Thanks!

    • They don’t. There are now tens of papers that show that every lockdown in Europe began after the peak and that every curve follows a typical infection curve with no change due to lockdowns. Not one.

      Moreover Sweden was predicted 86,000 deaths (median) without a lockdown and has so far 2,500. On a population basis that’s lower than Italy, Spain, the UK, Netherlands, France and Belgium. All of which had lockdowns.

      Sweden was the control, it proves the bull hypothesis- lockdowns were not necessary.

      • It’s not as easy as that. On the one hand, it makes sense to compare Sweden with Denmark and Norway. Both Denmark and Norway have had quite extensive lockdowns and managed to effectively slow down the virus, whereas in Sweden the restrictions have been much less strict. As a likely consequence, the virus has hit much harder in Sweden than in Denmark or Norway. Then again, if you compare Sweden with Finland, it gets more complicated. Finland has not shut its society down to the same extent as Denmark or Norway, but it still has maintained good control over the virus, as I understand it. It seems clear, however, that lockdowns had the desired effect (sans the enormous strain on the economy) in Denmark and Norway.

        • Gard
          Engineers and economists talk about a point of diminishing returns. That is, a small change may have a large effect on a dynamic system. However, typically, at some point the same amount of change again will result in a reduced effect. If one plots the change versus result, the curve shows a point at which the slope changes significantly; that is the point of diminishing returns. Might it be that social distancing alone is sufficient to have a large impact, and that lockdowns are overkill that have an impact, but aren’t justified by the small difference in improvement? It is even possible that there is an optimum value of social distancing, and with lockdowns people are held in close proximity for extended periods of time, putting household members at greater risk than if they were out of the house.

      • However, compare Sweden to its next-door neighbour Norway. The countries share a 1,000-mile border and there are many social and cultural similarities between them. The death rate per million population in Sweden is 291. In Norway it’s 40 per million population. Norway implemented strict lockdown quickly. Sweden only introduced relatively lax measures. Is it a coincidence that Sweden has seen such a drastically higher death rate than Norway?

        • No. But Norway remains highly vulnerable to future waves of infection. Are they going to lock down every time? Can they afford that? Do they have the tracing and quarantine to try instead?

          Meanwhile it is clear that even in the densely populated Stockholm area there has not been the kind of dramatic spread forecast by alarmist epidemiological models. Their epidemic is subsiding, instead of rising to some future peak that was forecast. See here, where the deaths are properly aged to date of occurrence

          https://adamaltmejd.se/covid/

        • Sweden has twice the population of Norway, there maybe an explanation there rather than in the lock-down, or may explain why Sweden didn’t implement a lock-down.

          • Norman Blanton

            “Sweden has twice the population of Norway…”

            Yes, but using a ‘rate’ (per million in this case) allows a like for like comparison. In absolute numbers Norway, population ~5.4 million, has had 209 deaths. Sweden, population ~10.1 million, thas had 2,941 deaths (all as of 7th May).

          • The size of the nursing homes in the various countries is one. Sweden has much larger than its neighbours. Once in there it affected more people. Another point is that Sweden’s immigrant population account for a very large percentage (~15%) of cases and deaths. They refused to stop meeting in large groups.

          • MarkW
            And the relationship of infection rate to population density may not be linear.

        • I suspect that functions of population density will need to be controlled before meaningful comparisons of different approaches can be considered.

          • Wood.
            Trees.
            One of those is not the same as the other.
            Think about that.
            🤔

        • Sweden has seen such a drastically higher death rate than Norway?

          This has mainly to do with nursing homes: Norwegian nursing homes are small units. Swedish nursing homes are large units. On top of that, the nursing homes in the Stockholm area have shown ignorance and neglect to a degree where an unscheduled government meeting is proposed.
          It is currently difficult to see if lock-down has had any significant positive effect, but likely to have a devastating social and economical negative effects.
          I do see many parallels to the “CO2 virus”, where draconian measures may have some positve effects (personally doubt it), but mainly terrible social and economic consequences.

        • SWEDEN, CORONAVIRUS AND THE CONCEPT OF ‘TRADE-OFFS’
          May 7, 2020 | Larry Elder
          https://www.bizpacreview.com/2020/05/07/larry-elder-sweden-coronavirus-and-the-concept-of-trade-offs-917850
          [excerpt]

          Sweden, unlike its Scandinavian neighbors, made different decisions to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. It issued no mandatory orders. It did not require its citizens to shelter at home. True, as of May 4, more Swedes had contracted and died from the coronavirus (2,679 total deaths, a rate of 263.08 per 1 million people) than people in Norway (211, rate of 39.7) and Denmark (484, rate of 83.49), but fewer when adjusted for its population size compared with the U.K. (28,446 deaths, a rate of 427.83), Spain (25,264, rate of 540.71), France (24,864, rate of 371.18) and Italy (28,884, rate of 477.96).

          It also remains to be seen whether, in the long run, the actions taken by other Scandinavian countries will result in fewer lives lost. This is because Sweden appears to be achieving “herd immunity” faster than other countries and because experts expect another spike in cases when lockdowns are lifted. Furthermore, the rationale for the lockdowns is to prevent a country’s health care system from being overburdened. If that is goal, Sweden has achieved it. Its hospitals, intensive care units and emergency rooms have not been overburdened, and the country has had no shortage of medical equipment.

          • They don’t. There are now tens of papers that show that every lockdown in Europe began after the peak and that every curve follows a typical infection curve with no change due to lockdowns. Not one.

            Well you don’t link a single paper but I challenge that claim ( which I doubt is a true reflection of your unprovided sources ).

            I was initially skeptical of whether the effect of lockdown could be seen in any actual data, hence some fairy “frank” exchanges with CofB who just asserted it was “blindingly obvious” without being able to say how we could see it in his graphs.

            So, I did the work, went to look and found it was clearly visible in Italian data.
            https://climategrog.files.wordpress.com/2020/05/2019-ncov-weekly-filter-italy-1.png

            Most countries were turning to a slower increase but I did not see a single one “peak” before restrictions were put in place.

            Much has been said about Sweden vs other scandanavian countries.

            The difference is clear, again we DO see the effect of lockdown in Norway:
            https://climategrog.files.wordpress.com/2020/05/2019-ncov-log-growth-spitswnor.png

            This does show that Sweden achieved a plateau without strict lockdown and stuffing their economy. I would maintain they made the right choice for their country. That does NOT necessarily mean it could have been the same in any country in the world.

            What we do see in Italy and Spain show started unlocking on 14th April, is that neither have seen the expected “second wave” or even a noticeable slowing of the decline in cases. Epidemiologists are going to have to rewrite the book.

      • One should add to Phoenix44’s big point:
        (1) It is too soon to decide the lockdown / no lockdown issue. Lockdowns delay the inevitable and may diminish the toll over the course of an outbreak. Not locking down hastens the inevitable and may increase the toll. One may need to wait until mid 2021 for the data needed to decide.
        (2) The issue should be decided on consequences for those directly affected by lockdowns. The directly affected are working age and school age people.
        (3) Furthermore, the decision should reflect C19 illnesses and deaths spared by lockdowns vs. deaths caused by lockdowns. The latter include additional domestic murders & anxiety related deaths (heart attacks, suicides, overdoses … ). Preliminary data indicate lockdowns kill more working and school age people than they save in the US.

      • Lockdowns, smockdowns, just go out and shag your mistress, the more times the better.

        This foolery began from the very top and from the very first projection meant to frighten the masses.

      • Phoenix44 is one of a small but irredentist number of commenters who are unwilling to understand the obvious, which is that in countries with high urban population densities lockdowns were inevitable once those countries had failed to introduce track-and-trace programs early enough (and that was difficult for them, because China and the WHO had covered up the danger till it was far too late).

        Sweden, though Phoenix44 is very careful not to say so, has an urban population density far lower than that of London or New York, for instance. To see what happens in a country with high urban population density and no lockdown, look at Brazil and be very grateful that your government is more responsible than Phoenix44 and his ilk.

      • On the contrary, it only shows that in making choices in utter ignorance of the character of an evolving virus whose infectious characteristics permit it to spread easily but with scientifically as yet, then, unknown lethal and crippling powers.

        Sweden, like Australia, got lucky. The fear was still that the CV19 viral strain that hit Italy and later NYC was just as (or more) lethal and crippling in Sweden or the rest of the US. Only in later April was the science clarified that these were different strains with different infectious characteristics and pathology. (SEE “Corona virus mutations affect deadliness” https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3080771/coronavirus-mutations-affect-deadliness-strains-chinese-study)

        Do not attribute to wisdom or malice decisions made in great ignorance and with demonstrably real fears.)

    • “It would be interesting to see whether the lockdowns REALLY stand up to rigorous scrutiny, once we have ALL the available data at hand. Thanks!”

      Yes that will be interesting. But what lesson do we gain from this knowledge for the future? I would submit that this doesn’t teach us much of anything about a new, unknown virus. Each new virus will have to be handled the same way. We will have to assume it is very deadly and if it spreads rapidly, then we will have to lockdown again until we can gain some understanding of what we are dealing with. Just like this time with the Wuhan virus.

      The way this virus spreads, we are just lucky it isn’t as lethal as the Ebola virus. If it were, defiant people like a hairdresser recently in the news, wouldn’t just get seven days in jail, she would be put in jail and the key would be thrown away to make her an example for the next fool who would endanger the public.

      No matter what we figure out about the Wuhan virus, you can’t legitimately go wagging our finger at the authorities, telling them they made a big mistake by imposing quarantines because the authorities didn’t have the luxury of having the information we have today, at the time, and had to act accordingly, and they wll be in the same position next time, and pointing at the end-game Wuhan virus example will not be relevant.

      Happily, when the next unknown virus comes along, the world wll be in a much better position to indentify and handle it from our Wuhan virus experience, and we may get so good at doing this that we can quell infections before they require large-scale quarantines. That should probably be one of our goals for the future. I’m sure it will be because everyone sees the problem now.

      • I’m a little surprised noone defended the hairdresser, considering all the praise she has been getting.

        Here’s my skeptical take on the Dallas hairdresser: She claimed she was defying the order to keep her shop closed because she had to feed her children. And of course, this elicited much sympathy, as it should. If it’s true. But, like I say, I always question the premise and I think there is no reason why this woman’s children (two of them) should be going hungry.

        First of all, she is eligible for the $1200 payment everyone in the U.S. is getting from Congress and the presdent, and in her case she will get $500 additional for each child for a total of $2200.

        She only has a week to go before her business could open up under the rules, so she should be able to survive on $2200 for that period of time.

        If, like me, she hasn’t recieved this payment (we can thank Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats for the two week delay), then she can go to the State and get food stamps to feed herself and her children.

        And she also has numerous food banks where she could get food to feed her family.

        So I don’t buy her excuse that her children are hungry. The judge is correct, she is selfish, but I don’t think she deserves to be put in jail.

        She’s been listening to too many off-the-wall talk show hosts and they got her all fired up over losing her rights and she decided to make a stand. But it wasn’t because her kids are hungry.

  3. Lord Monckton,

    Thanks you for the useful and insightful technical work.

    That said, I wonder if you would perhaps like comment on or, even better, apply your formidable capabilities towards investigating the information that has been drifting about for 2 months now – and which was finally given some substance by Newsweek (of all places – it must have tripped over its feet in the process) that illuminated the role of US, Australian and other funding for the Wuhan BLS4 facility’s research. Research, it now seems evident, that included a specific mandate towards “gain of function” outcomes for coronaviruses, ostensibly to prepare for or prevent outbreaks of…wait for it…coronaviruses.

    I presume you would agree with the old adage of the Fool that follows Another being the Greater? If, as you and many others here on WUWT have either implied and even directly asserted, the Chinese people suffer from some pathological (un-Western?) propensity towards incompetence and mischief, I find myself wondering why, then, the western cognoscenti and their politcal leadership were so happy to entrust these sinister buffoons – and this lab specifically – with such potentially explosive research? Research, it now seems evident, was funded at least in part by Anthony Fauci and his investors?

    Maybe you could also comment within the context of the well-chronicled mishaps and foibles by many laboratories in the West,and the USA specifically, over the past few decades. Lastly, seeing you understand much about probability and complexity theory, does the fact – thankfully – none of these incidents happened to result in mass death or a global lockdown obliterate the element of luck in those outcomes? Or is it perhaps a question on “Western luck” (framed here as ingenuity) versus inherent Chinese fecklessnes?

    Lest you, like others, obfuscate by pulling the “reverse PC/race card” – my question has nothing to to with race. I have many issues with China and how it is run. It has to do with Pavlovian jingoism and expedient hypocrisy. Possibly just for effect?

    I for one can’t wait for you to get back to Climate.

    Best

    • Yes, agreed, Peter Buchan. Lord Monckton I believe this is what Peter is refering to: https://www.nature.com/articles/nm.3985.pdf I quote: “. . . . to examine the emergence potential (that is, the potential to infect humans) of circulating bat CoVs, we built a chimeric virus encoding a novel, zoonotic CoV spike protein—from the RsSHC014-CoV sequence that was isolated from Chinese horseshoe bats —in the context of the SARS-CoV mouseadapted backbone. The hybrid virus allowed us to evaluate the ability of the novel spike protein to cause disease independently of other necessary adaptive mutations in its natural backbone. Using this approach, we characterized CoV infection mediated by the SHC014 spike protein in primary human airway cells and in vivo, and tested the efficacy of available immune therapeutics against SHC014-CoV. Together, the strategy translates metagenomics data to help predict and prepare for future emergent viruses.”

      thanks and best regards

      david

      • Another peculiar thing is that the SARS-COV-2 virus RNA differs from its closest relative, classic SARS, by the presence of 12 nucleotide bases that appear to have been inserted. I say inserted, because on either side of the insert, the bases are the same as with SARS . Even more striking is that this snippet codes for a furin cleaving protein which is essential in facilitating the entry of the virus into cells. If I was a suspicious person, I would think someone put it there deliberately.

        • Me too Vincent. There was the Indian paper withdrawn for methodological issues, which said just that. I presume you saw that before it was withdrawn.

      • In response to questions about whether the virus originated in the Wuhan laboratory, I have avoided that topic on the whole because I lack sufficient information or expertise. However, Western intelligence agencies are rightly taking a close interest in the Wuhan laboratory, which has recently been placed under the control of the People’s “Liberation” Army-Navy.
        1
        It is possible that researchers intending to study vaccines against coronaviridae, which are endemic in Chinese bats, had sliced sections of the GP41 protein from the HIV virus into the spike-protein section of the coronavirus genome to make it more infectious so that it was easier to study. However, a graduate researcher was splashed with bat blood and urine infected with the pathogen and may have been patient zero. No one knows, for she has been disappeared, as has the doctor who had been conducting the research, and seven other doctors.

        Getting to the truth when the Chinese regime is going to such lengths to conceal it is going to be difficult. But officials inside the regime are increasingly finding ways of getting electronic copies of the regime’s internal documents out to the West, and those documents are now undergoing intensive evaluation both to try to verify their authenticity and to learn from them just what the regime has been up to.

        Originally, the regime said the infection originated in a wet market in Wuhan. More recently, the Chinese Foreign Ministry has issued a public denial that any wet markets exist anywhere in China. In that case, the regime’s former statement that the virus originated in a wet market must have been a lie, and that lends some credence to the laboratory-origin hypothesis.

    • Nice try at diversion, Peter.

      The pertinent point in all this Wuhan virus business is it was spreading rapidly in China, the Chinese leadership knew this, and took action to restrict travel out of the Wuhan area to other areas of China, as a means of quelling the infection, but at the same time promoted international travel out of China, and then denied the virus could be transmitted human to human while knowing full-well in could and knowing full-well that their actions were spreading the Wuhan virus all over the world.

      That’s the pertinent point. The Chinese leadership and their flunkies cannot refute this reality. The Chinese leadership are guilty of deliberately foisting the Wuhan virus on the world. No doubt about it.

    • Mr Buchan carelessly mischaracterizes my attitude to China. I stand solidly with the suffering people of China against their hateful, murderous, corrupt Communist regime, and I long for the day when they find the strength, courage and unity of purpose to overthrow it.

  4. The assumption that non Covid-19 excess deaths are all in fact Covid-19 deaths needs to be supported not assumed as there is another big possible cause, the ruinous lockdown. The fact that the male-female ratios differ considerably between the two categories is a strong indication they are not all from the same cause.

    • It’s a nonsense to claim they are CIVID-29 deaths. They have either tested negative (80% of tests are negative) or have not been tested at a because they don’t have COVID-19 symptoms.

      So why on Earth would they be COVID-19 deaths? No symptoms of a disease, not hospitalised by it, but dying from it?

      The UK also tests post mortem, so again, many may well have tested negative after they died.

      This is nonsense, an attempt to increase deaths to justify the lockdown.

      • That’s blasphemy, you’re talkin blasphemy. Thou shall not question the gubmint data.

      • Phoenix44. Even people who aren’t tested are counted as Covid-19 deaths in the USA, that is, those with pre-existing comorbidities where it’s highly unlikely that the cause of death is Covid-19 are counted. WHO issued diagnostic codes, instructing doctors to count all these deaths as Covid-19 deaths, even though they died from cancer complications, or a heart attack, or a fatal car accident. “At the time of death, it was a COVID positive diagnosis, that means that if you were in hospice and already given a few weeks to live, and found to have COVID, . . . technically, even if you died from a clear alternate cause, but you have COVID as well, it would still be counted as a COVID death”. Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker and Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike have their daily update on coronavirus in Illinois. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYTSYO2Uppg&feature=youtu.be&fbclid=IwAR0Db-jzOeAio3j36pWnzcD9fF7kY26wKunmy-Fju_Ay7lr1EeC7RwSznLs

          • “”Underlying Conditions”

            Numerous media reports attribute deaths from COVID-19 to “Underlying Conditions”, with one report claiming that 88% of deaths involving COVID-19 deaths were not caused by COVID-19, and another claiming that 99% of COVID-19 deaths are not caused by the virus.

            The age- and clinical-condition associated increased risk, however, paints a different picture. Diabetics have a case fatality risk of over 6%, and while most deaths are in the elderly, 1/3 of deaths fall into the 20-30 year-old range. Based on egalitarian, non-agist principles, knowing that most of the deaths are in the elderly is no assurance at all without control of the exponential increase in deaths.”

            https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/cdc-borrowing-pneumonia-deaths-from-flu-covid-19-james-lyons-weiler/

          • “Sooner or later someone has to do a summary of all monthly deaths”

            It will all be straightened out eventually and will put to bed numerous theories.

          • The CDC publishes statistics on weekly mortality in the US. The website is http://gis.cdc.gov/grasp/fluview/mortality.html

            The most interesting thing to me is that there is really no excess mortality overall, but we do see the same spikes seen in 2017-2018, just moved over a couple months. Through week 16, there were 24,000 fewer deaths this year than in 2018. One caveat–it is not clear to me how complete the numbers are on the most recent weeks, even when presented as complete.

    • The fact that the male-female ratios differ considerably between the two categories is a strong indication they are not all from the same cause.

      Yes, I mentioned this over a week ago. The higher male mortality rate seen in known COVID-19 deaths is not seen in the non-COVID-19 excess deaths. In fact, the female mortality rate is higher in those now.

      There are two parallel upheavals concurrent with the UK high excess deaths:
      – COVID-19 epidemic (aka chicom act-of-war virus)
      – Lockdown / suspension (or avoidance) of other medical care

      It is unreasonable, and in defiance of evidence, to allocate most excess deaths to just one.

      • “The fact that the male-female ratios differ considerably between the two categories is a strong indication they are not all from the same cause.”

        This depends on how the male-female ratio differences are counted. For example, the simple ratio of male-female excess deaths from a nursing home or senior retirement community could show a much higher death count among females simply because there are so many more females that actually make it into those facilities. I play in 3 bands in the middle Tennessee area. One of those bands is a 5-piece jazz group that mostly plays at retirement communities, so I get to observe the lopsided male-female ratio on a regular basis. Our most recent gig was Feb 29th, leap year.

        Does anyone familiar with this know how the excess deaths between male and female are tallied at these facilities which are mostly occupied by females?

        • The normal ratio of sexes in deaths in the UK is close to 50/50 (actually very slightly more women than men, perhaps 1-2% at most) in recent years. Anything that implies non-Covid deaths are more predominantly women actually suggests that too many deaths have been allocated to a Covid cause. Re-allocating them back would increase the number of male deaths more than the number of female deaths, and remove the excess female deaths count, because there are clearly more men than women killed by the virus – approximately 60/40.

          • It doesn’t add up…,

            Since the average life expectancy in the UK is 83.28 (F) and 80.22 (M), and since the CV-19 median age of death in the UK is 80, one would expect the number of deaths to be skewed towards female. Is this accounted for in the analysis?

            Regards

    • Agreed: It is ludicrous to assign all excess deaths to WuWhoFlu. Additional domestic murders, anxiety related deaths (heart attacks, suicides, overdoses …), deaths amongst those who refused to seek healthcare out of fear of C19, deaths amongst sufferers of other afflictions whose treatments were delayed … caused many, perhaps most, such deaths.

  5. Milord, before you go:

    a) thanks for your efforts – as a result of those and quality review comments, I have learned FAR more about epidemiology and the progress of COVID-19 than from any other source (most of which just give “shock, horror X died today”, with absolutely no context)

    b) please tell me from where does one find the weekly deaths for the last five years. Are you taking them from: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/datasets/weeklyprovisionalfiguresondeathsregisteredinenglandandwales

    or from somewhere else? (Just want to be sure I’m looking in the right place – nothing sinister in the question)

    • Many thanks to OldFogey for his kind comments. The excess-mortality statistics are kept both by the Office for National Statistics: see, for instance, its report for the week ending April 24, the most recent available, which shows a large excess mortality compared with the mean mortality for the past five years. Another good source of excess-death figures and analysis is the European mortality monitoring agency.

  6. Chris

    Are these total winter deaths or just those who have contracted COVID-19.

    I only ask because according to the ONS there were ~50,000 Excess Winter Deaths in 2017/2018 (a bad Flu year) which passed without a murmur.

    • Good question HotScot my friend.

      A technical point:

      As I recall, most countries including the UK define Excess Winter Deaths (EWD) =
      Total Deaths [1DecYearN to 31MarYear(N+)] minus 1/2 * [Total Deaths Previous 4 months) + (Total Deaths Subsequent 4 months)]

      31Mar2020 fell on a Tuesday early in Week 14.
      Total Deaths from All Causes in Europe peaked in Week 14 (week 15 in England), so approx. half the deaths in Europe from the Covid-19 peak occurred AFTER 31Mar2020, so this will skew the calculation of EWD’s and create an artificially LOW value for this past Winter.
      https://www.euromomo.eu/graphs-and-maps/

      The above assumes I am thinking clearly this morning, which is never a certainly.

      I am desperate for a coffee and a haircut. 🙂

      Best personal regards, Allan in Calgary

  7. How do we know these are Corona – related deaths? You just accept ‘government’ figures – the same idiots with the fake models. Why? If the death rates have NOT spiked then we are dealing with mis-labelling. These death rates MUST spike vs previous years if your analysis is to have credibility.

    Why, when my wife works in the Retirement Home industry for a large employer in the South of England do they have ONE death from Corona – according to this article I should see hundreds. People die every day in these homes – how do you KNOW it is from Corona (Piers Morgan and the Fake News?)

    1500 people die per day in Italy and in the UK ‘normally’. Are these now ‘Corona deaths’? So where is the multi-year death rate analysis? Did the UK death rate spike? Were many of the 1500-2000 who die ‘normally’ in the UK mis-labelled as Corona ? Were they tested before death, where is that data? What was the rationale for the labelling of the death as Corona? And why are many hospital wards not busy and why was the White Elephant 4000 Bed London Field Hospital empty and then shut down?

    You reference the ONS data set – where is it so I can audit it ? Never given publicly that is for sure.

    Why, according to one study, is the average age of death in the UK Hospital system 80? The only hard analysis thus far given (UK study this week, of 20.000 who died in hospital). 60% had pre-existing conditions. Did they die of Corona or with it? How do you know?

    It is well known that the US gov’t is paying hospitals $13 k per Corona-respiratory case, so what is the motivation of the health industry – label all things Corona.

    Funeral directors are saying little testing or proof is given that the deceased died of Corona, as opposed to with it.

    Without the data I don’t believe a damn thing about this faux-demic, except what my lying eyes tell me – millions of unemployed and gross mislabelling of natural death causes as Corona.

    There are lies, damn lies and then Government statistics (with data and schemas hidden from the peasants).

  8. –However, such international league-table comparisons are problematic, for several reasons. The start-dates for the infection vary from country to country. Worse, the World Health Organization has failed to implement an agreed reporting standard for deaths. Therefore, different countries count the deaths in widely differing ways.–
    This problem will add tens of billions of dollars to costs.
    And due to lack of data, a very slow, and small steps to leave whatever lockdown conditions that any country has, would be wise.
    But as general rule higher population density , the more cautious. But higher density seems to have more “herd immunity”. Problem is we have not tested the effectiveness of herd immunity- and it’s possible the “herd immunity” one might “think” one sees, is mostly an illusion.
    I think New York City could a high level of “herd immunity” but it might just been a killing field of the elderly.
    Or any attempt at giving “herd immunity” to the elderly is as dumb as it gets.
    New York City now holds the world record of 1,323 deaths per million or total death of 25,956 for population of less than 20 million.
    If it was 1,323 deaths per million for 320 million it is 423,360 deaths. But if were trying to get herd immunity for all elderly, it seems you could get much higher number of deaths.
    So, perhaps one focus quite a bit more on isolating people in nursing homes.
    Is anyone testing the immunity of the group of people who are 60 or older.
    Younger people, below 30, are basically immune whether they have antibodies or not.
    One could say there is no point in measuring their immunity, or if 60 or older had their average resistance to effects of the virus, then there is no real problem to deal with.
    Or only problem I see is with very high viral loads, it’s seems “possible” that with high enough viral load, that no one has immunity to serious illness or death.
    Though I could give any kind measurement of a very high viral load- no idea how to quality a light viral load vs high viral load.
    Other then, if in enclosed space for long enough time with bunch people exhaling the virus, it seems it would be high. And if this bunch people were singing, it would probably would be terrifying to me, ie:
    https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2020-03-29/coronavirus-choir-outbreak
    Or certain people or at certain times within the infection period could give off more virus, though there is report {somewhere} that children don’t spread virus as much as adults.
    It seems if we had any intelligence, we would measuring viral loads of this virus in various environments.
    And I would start with hospitals. And if you can measure it, how about trying ways which could reduce it.
    I don’t suggest the Chinese thing of trucks spraying stuff into the air, or at least, measure it, before doing something that crazy.

    • There is a very strong relationship between density of living and the degree of spread of the virus. In an enclosed community such as a care home, the effective R is very high indeed, and therefore the virus will spread rapidly and infect almost all residents. The herd immunity level in such circumstances is redundant unless immunity is conferred through vaccination or some level of natural immunity arising from previous exposure to a similar pathogen.. given the high rates of mortality for the elderly and those suffering from other conditions, the only tactic has to be to keep the virus out of care homes, or at least send all infected residents to isolation homes where they cannot infect the uninfected.

  9. I very much doubt if those dying in care homes are dying “from” COVID-19. They have tested positive but COVID-19 kills progressively, giving plenty of time for those suffering to be hospitalised. It is difficult to believe that thousands of old people have been left gasping for breath for days before finally dying and have not been taken to hospital. Why would they just have been left? Either COVID-19 can kill you without you needing to go to hospital (how does that work?) or these are people dying from other things having tested positive.

    The UK now includes 300 deaths from hospices as well, so we are really throwing everything we can into the pot. Yesterdays hospital deaths included 100 from before 1st May, including one on 13th March.

    • “I very much doubt if those dying in care homes are dying “from” COVID-19. ”

      Well, you have explain why New York State is different than Florida State {which doing better job of protecting home care AND has higher population of them in New York State].
      Or New York city returned infected COVID-19 patients from hospital to home care {and sent them a bodybag with the still living patient}. Yeah crazy and they had all those empty beds provided by feds which they hardly used.

  10. I’ve been saying since the beginning of this crisis that in the UK the winter of 2017/18 had a very high excess winter death rate. In fact 2020 has only just overtaken the total (ONS Data) even though the UK locked the most vulnerable up together and left them therein conditions where they were more than likely to become infected and when they did to suffer dire consequences. This virus cannot be compared to winter flu as the most vulnerable are inoculated against what is predicted to be the main strains of flu.

    Apart from Diamond Princess there have been the CVN71 USS Theodore Roosevelt, and Charles De Gaulle where outbreaks on ships at sea run by government agencies were available for study, even to the casual observer it was obvious that you fit mainly male crew members survived and didn’t suffer serious consequences. Energy should have been put in protecting the vulnerable and caring for the very ill.

    The real lesson is that unpublished, secret models should not be relied on to create policy.

  11. Thanks Mockton for sharing your insights.
    I light of:

    In the long run, and in the absence of a competent, internationally-standardized reporting protocol, it is the excess deaths that will be the best guide to the true fatality rate.

    It will be interesting if you at a later point would provide a financial analyses.
    Wonder if such analyses will turn out as bizarre as the windmill thing:

    2020-05-07 08:00GMT UK wind/demand%: 0.801/24.698*100=3%

    Again thanks.

  12. I will again bother you with some questions !

    What is the mortality excess (other than by flu illness) directly due to the lockdown ?
    – Actually, nobody knows, but in Italy the first estimations are about 10000, so we must be very carefull with respect to all causes “excess mortality”: lockdown seems to have played (plays and will play) a huge role itself in the all causes excess mortality.

    What is the mortality excess in the nurses homes due to the infected that have been transferred there ?
    – In Italy the first estimation is that this caused about 1800 excess deaths among ederly :
    https://www.trtworld.com/magazine/the-massacre-of-italy-s-elderly-nursing-home-residents-35575

    What is the actual effect of lockdown on the daily deaths peak ?
    – The mean delay from infection to death is 28 days :
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8192993/The-coronavirus-death-lag-explained-weeks-fatality-recorded.html
    The mean observed delay between infection and firsts symptoms is 6,4 days (not 5 as assumed in the link above) so 28 days is a conservative delay (it may be higher than that) :
    https://covid19data.com/2020/03/04/expert-consensus-on-comprehensive-treatment-of-coronavirus-disease-in-shanghai-2019/

    Thus, 28 days is conservative : the actual mean delay may be even higher than that.
    This data will be used while analyzing the daily day peak with respect to the day the lockdown was applied.

    In the UK :
    The lockdown was applied on March 23 and was in law on March 26 :
    – How could the lockdown have had any effect on the daily deaths decreasing trend that began on April 9, i.e. two weeks later only ?

    In the US :
    Same thing with regard to hospitalization due to flu like illness in the US ;
    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/covidview/05012020/percent-ili-visits.html

    The hospital visists peak on 22 March can’t have been caused by any lockdown applied on March 18 since the mean delay from infection to hospitalization is at least 2 weeks since the delay between the daily confirmed cases and the daily deaths is about a week :
    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/us/

    Another approach to lockdown effectiveness (not yet peer rewieved paper) :
    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.04.24.20078717v1

    Actual lockdown and social distanciation feedbacks in the scientific litterature (WHO survey) :
    https://www.heise.de/tp/features/COVID-19-WHO-Studie-findet-kaum-Belege-fuer-die-Wirksamkeit-von-Eindaemmungsmassnahmen-4706446.html

    I understand that once lockdown has been applied, the subsequent policies must be consistent and the “lockdown exit” must be done carefully (as any exit !), but this will not prevent lockdown (as applied in UK, France, Italie, etc.) from proving to be a useless tragedy.

  13. Thank you CMoB for taking time to post.

    I notice you no longer repeat your admittance that lockdown has lead to deaths by Intentional Self Harm that you mentioned in an earlier post.

    Do you no longer consider this an important part of the overall discussion regarding the overall effectiveness of Lockdown, or just something you have admitted for brevity?

    Also, given that the ratio of tests to cases, and cases to deaths is about the same for both the UK and Sweden, implying their tracking methods and quality of health care are also about the same, how do you explain the significant difference in deaths per million between these two countries?

    • Craig from Oz,

      My observation is the difference between the UK and Sweden could be explained (at least partially) by population density. The UK has over 10x the population density as Sweden (UK – 281/Km2; Sweden – 25/Km2). (2020 worldometers.info) You could say that Sweden has some natural social distancing, on average, due to the lower population density.

      As a side note, the term “Lockdown” likely means different things to different countries/cultures, just like we are finding that CV-19 reporting is often apples and oranges between countries.

      Regards

  14. Correlation does not equal causation Lord Mockton … Of all people you should know that … What a waste of a post …

    • The Dark Lord needs to learn some elementary logic. First, the word “equal” is the wrong word, just as it would be the wrong word in “apples are equal to oranges”. The right word is “entail”. Secondly, one must add the vital word “necessarily”. Thus, the true statement is that correlation does not necessarily entail causation. Thirdly, one must understand that absence of correlation would necessarily entail absence of causation. Fourthly, one must conclude that, where a correlation obtains, and only where it obtains, causation is a possibility.

      So much for the elementary logic theory. Now for its application. The graphs show a correlation between the lockdown and the quite sharp peaking of the curves of new cases and of new deaths two weeks and three weeks respectively after the lockdown. Therefore, causation cannot be ruled out. The next question, then, is whether there is any reason to posit the causative link that the correlation indicates is a possibility. The answer is that, particularly with a highly infectious pathogen, the interference with the mean person-to-person contact rate that lockdowns have been demonstrated to cause will very greatly slow the transmission rate. In the UK the mean person-to-person contact rate has fallen by some 85%. Accordingly, the rate of growth in active cases has fallen below zero.

      Next, one must consider the confounders. Sweden did not lock down, and yet its death rate per head of population is well below that of the UK. How come? The answer is that Sweden not only has a far lower urban population density than the UK but also has a far lower person-to-person contact rate, and that Sweden has in fact implemented a partial lockdown, and the people are taking their own precautions.

      In the other direction, Brazil has a high urban population density, a high person-to-person contact rate and no lockdown, so the hospitals are overwhelmed and mass graves are being dug. Now, perhaps, The Dark Lord will understand how one takes a rational approach to life-and-death questions such as this.

  15. only Canada has a daily growth-rate
    =========≠
    Because we are in lockdown. 80% of our total deaths are seniors locked inside nursing homes. The rest of us are just locked inside, building no immunity, while the country crumbles under a mountain of debt.

    And Sweden, no lockdown, now is doing better than Canada. There has been a dramatic downward shift in model predictions for Sweden. Once again the experts are proven wrong.

    • Canada flattened the curve earlier and more successfully than the United States. That means the actual death rate per capita is still around half the American figure. If you take out the numbers for Quebec, Canada does even better on a per capita basis. link

      The northern hemisphere looks forward to the end of the flu season with the hope that will also squelch coronavirus. We’ll see about that. On the other hand, Australia and New Zealand are now approaching their flu season. Australia has a negative growth rate in cases but the growth in its growth rate looks a bit alarming.

      I’m also curious about the theory that areas with malaria do not get this coronavirus. It has to be looked at more closely than from just a country basis. Ecuador, for instance, has malaria but the city where all the deaths occurred is reported as being malaria free.

      I fully agree with CM that excess death rates are a better way of evaluating the effects of this coronavirus. As well, there are other signs, like mass graves in Brazil and bodies in the street in Ecuador, that the official coronavirus numbers are seriously understated.

      What’s with China? The Chinese members of the family tell me that the Chinese media apparently reports accurate sounding data but that those numbers don’t make it to the Western media. ie. they see much greater numbers reported in the Chinese media than in the Western media.

      And then there’s Taiwan. link I would say that Taiwan knows more about China than even the Chinese leadership (who apparently get lied to a lot). In future, we should ignore the WHO and just watch what Taiwan does.

      • ” In future, we should ignore the WHO and just watch what Taiwan does.”

        Excellent advice.

        It’s probably about time for a new defense agreement with Taiwan. That ought to really anger the Chinese leadership. The U.S. should oppose all Chinese efforts to subvert Taiwan on the international stage. Taiwan is a separate country from China and should be treated that way.

        The National Geographic should start showing Tibet as a separate country on their maps again. I remember when they removed it, under pressure from China. That had a lot to do with my cancelling my subscription; that, along with their constant promotion of the human-caused climate change hoax.

        No more kowtowing to the Chinese Communist Party. They won’t like it. They will threaten war and all sorts of things. That’s what bullies do. But they can’t take on the U.S. headon and they know it. Their only hope is that the U.S. has a weak leader like Joe Chna.

        Otherwise, if the U.S. has a strong leader, that leader can marshall the might of the United States and the Chinese cannot stand up to that might, nukes or no nukes. Their only option is suicide, if the U.S. has a strong leader.

        And I don’t think even these crazy people desire suicide, so in the end, they will fall into line. Or it’s war, and they will fall into line anyway, they’ll just have to do it the hard way.

        Remember: The Chinese military is used to losing battles. The U.S. military is used to winning battles. An American troop can go 10,000 miles from home and will fight as fiercely for the ground in front of his foxhole as he would if that foxhole were dug in his frontyard at home. Growing up with freedom, as takes place in the United States, makes fierce warriors. That’s something the Chinese don’t have and can’t match.

      • CommieBob – Canada has no metro NYC. Should anyone be surprised by that? Given that their Predominant viral strain is different? No.

    • ferdberple

      “And Sweden, no lockdown, now is doing better than Canada.”

      Not in terms of deaths per million population it’s not. Sweden currently 291 deaths per million; Canada on 112: https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/

      The first Covid-19 deaths in each country occurred around the same time (slightly earlier in Canada, in fact).

      • At this point in time, daily cases/deaths in Sweden are in decline. Cases/deaths in Canada are on the rise. Canada may not catch up with Sweden in terms of deaths per million, but it will close the gap, and it’s likely that Sweden will be over and done with the pandemic well before most countries.

        Russian looks like the country that will be challenging for second place overall. It will pass the UK in terms of number of cases within a week.

      • Here are some data to keep things in perspective (keep in mind that CV-19 reporting has not been consistent).
        Reported CV-19 deaths/1M pop through yesterday (5/6/20) in descending order:

        New York: 1323
        Sam Marino: 1208 (located within northern Italy)
        New Jersey: 965
        Connecticut: 759
        Belgium: 720
        Massachusetts: 647
        Andora: 595
        Spain: 553
        Italy: 491
        Louisiana: 465
        UK: 443
        Michigan: 427
        District of Columbia: 405
        France: 395

        Again, as CMoB and others have noted, the CV-19 data are not reported in a consistent manner so this data may not hold up to subsequent scrutiny and adjustment.

        I have been following the USA data by plotting reported deaths/1M pop verses time (7-day moving average) and have a couple of observations:

        1) Over 92% of the USA reported deaths have occurred since April 1st (in just 36 days). Those comparing CV-19 deaths to other causes such as annual flu and auto accidents, need to compare those deaths during the same time period (not seasonal or year-to-date).

        2) The reported USA daily death rate for the period 4/7 through 5/3 (using 7-day moving averages) has been 2037 deaths per day (plus or minus 120) with little or no downturn. This implies that the deaths are not behaving exponentially and that there is some limiting factor keeping the mortality rate fairly constant.

        We all hope for the best as the NH sun continues to rise higher each day. I welcome comment on these observations.

  16. Lockdowns can now be brought to an end,
    =======
    I’d like to see someone explain Sweden vs Canada.

    • “I’d like to see someone explain Sweden vs Canada.”

      The death rate per million population in Sweden is more than twice that in Canada (as of 7th May, 291 deaths per million in in Sweden vrs 112 per million in Canada). Covid-19 deaths started slightly earlier in Canada than in sweden. Canada introduced a strong lockdown, Sweden did not.

      https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/

      • Revisit this in two months. Canada will catch up to some extent. If the herd immunity hypothesis is true, then Sweden’s cases will be virtually gone.

      • We were told that the main purpose of lockdown is to prevent – predicted by models – ‘near exponential growth’ of cases in wide society. That in turn would overwhelm healthcare system by people in need of hospital treatment what in turn would cause more death due to collapse of the healthcare system. So the question is why this rapid growth, predicted by models, is not reflected in hospital admissions in Sweden with mild lockdown? Since 13th April daily admissions are pretty much flat and in fact for the last week is slightly falling. And the second observation: the UK has an awful death rate due to coronavirus yet at no point NHS was overwhelmed, so the number of deaths is more complicated factor than just capacity of the healthcare system.

  17. Yes, very useful series thank you.

    Using the excess deaths as an indicator should reveal a lot. What might reveal a little more is studying the reduction in deaths due to cancer and heart attacks, taking into account a possible increase in deaths due to strokes that might have been provoked by covid19 but not certified.

    It might indicate which governments have been gaming the numbers most.

  18. Nobody knows if flu will attack again in the fall. If a second wave of Covid-19 occurs, the number of excessive deaths may be higher than at present.
    In the northeast of the US, another wave of cold air will continue to hamper the fight against viruses.
    First of all, you must now secure medical personnel in all ways, because these people can carry the virus.

  19. “However, the excess mortality compared with the same week averaged over the previous five years was 11,539, suggesting that even HM Government’s revised death counts are underestimating the true position by 40%. If so, the true cumulative death toll may well exceed 41,000.”

    Another interpretation is that the additional excess deaths could be caused by the lockdown itself, either through mental state impacting existing underlying health problems or indeed as has been shown to be the case, failure to go the A&E due to the fear whipped up by the BBC.

    • It is intriguing that a small number of commenters here are insisting that the deaths caused by the lockdowns are more important than the deaths caused by the virus. That is wishful thinking. An analysis by the Office for National Statistics in the UK has demonstrated that about five-sixths of all excess deaths this year in the UK are attributable to the Chinese virus directly – and that does not rule out the possibility that many of the remaining one-sixth are also thus attributable.

      • and yet , Mr Monckton, doesn’t knows who died ” of” the virus or “with” the virus-

        “The Association of British Pathologists has therefore called for a „systematic review of the true causes of death’

        Why is he so blind?

  20. Sweden’s main problem appears to be very bad procedures at the nursing homes in the Stockholm area. 123 out of 227 elderly were infected during the Easter holidays. Witnesses confirm that personnel were working despite symptoms. Hygiene protocol was not followed.

    One of the leading parties, Sweden Democrats, has therefore called for an unscheduled meeting in the government to address this issue according to Chapter 6 §23.

    Ref.: https://sd.se/sverigedemokraterna-begar-sarskild-debatt-om-doden-pa-svenska-aldreboenden/

  21. Several hours ago Western Australia’s Health Minister Roger Cook repeated several points he’s made in recent days about influenza in the lockdown.

    • In April WA recorded just 20 cases of influenza, the lowest monthly total in history.

    • In the last two weeks there have been two reported cases of influenza, the lowest weekly rate in history.

    • WA had 548 influenza cases detected in April 2019 and 151 in April 2018.

    • In 2019, 80 West Australians died from influenza including five children aged less than 10.

    WA has so far had 551 confirmed COVID-19 cases (531 recoveries) and none reported in the last eight days, with a total of nine deaths and 11 cases still active.

    Australia-wide, an update from the National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System (http://www9.health.gov.au/cda/source/rpt_1_sel.cfm) on total cases of 67 diseases apart from COVID-19 …

    April 2019 – 139,788
    April 2020 – 101,611

    May 2019 – 194,747
    To 7 May 2020 – 627 (e.g. chlamydial infection 9,695 in May 2019 and so far 202 this May, but I’m nevertheless dubious that the overall reduction can be this huge)

    And specifically influenza numbers from Australia’s Immunisation Coalition (https://www.immunisationcoalition.org.au/news-media/2020-influenza-statistics/) …

    April 2018 – 1,977
    April 2019 – 18,667
    April 2020 – 262

    May 2018 – 1,717
    May 2019 – 30,571
    To 7 May 2020 – n/a (but the NNDSS suggests 280 in April and so far just nine in May)

    Nationally, Australia has so far had 6,895 cases of COVID-19 with 97 deaths.

    I don’t consider all the above figures totally accurate because I’m unsure how immediately the various state health departments make disease notifications, but the data on face value suggests over the past five weeks of lockdown Australia has had tens of thousands fewer cases of communicable disease, various of which can be deadly.

    There seems to be a media reluctance to draw attention to non-COVID-19 disease trends and I sense the numbers somehow offend both the “stop the lockdown today” and the “stop the lockdown months from now” cohorts. The latter group should use the data to support their argument.

    Whatever, there’s growing evidence to support the politically incorrect argument that COVID-19, or its associated lockdown, has saved lives – in Australia, at least.

    Surveys are suggesting that even without the lockdown laws most Australians would at the moment avoid crowded social venues such as concerts and sporting arenas, with uni boffins claiming that various of the social distancing traits will continue post-lockdown, at least for a fair while as the COVID memory lingers (assuming Australia reaches zero cases and keeps its international borders closed).

    Australia and a few other lucky countries might yet find that, despite the boredom of home isolation and the economic damage, COVID-19 (or the reaction to it) has been a huge benefit to overall public health.

    • Mr Gillham’s information from Australia about the decline in mortality from non-Chinese-virus infections is fascinating. I shall persuade the Office for National Statistics to conduct a similar analysis.

  22. Thank you for your focus on and attention to this disaster, Lord M of B, and I apologize for saying yesterday that “it appears all of the smart people got on the Mayflower”. Stay sane and safe.

    • Many thanks to Mr Long for his kind comment. I have a series of videos on the climate to make, so I must get on with that. But I posted this series here, with the kind indulgence of our host, because I was concerned that shills for the Chinese regime in one direction and extreme Right-wingers in another were making common cause to pretend that lockdowns don’t work. Fortunately, both sides of this debate have now been fairly aired. Though the extremists on both sides will not resile from their extremism, most people now realize that in countries with high population densities the lockdowns were unfortunately essential. But now they can be cautiously dismantled.

  23. COVID-19 SUMMARY TO DATE

    Total Mortality in Europe: https://www.euromomo.eu/graphs-and-maps/

    In Europe, Total Deaths from All Causes peaked in week 14, the week of 30Mar2020-5Apr2020, suggesting that the lockdown was too late to be effective.

    The exception was England, which has the worst Covid-19 death rate in Europe. Here is why:

    Dr. Malcolm Kendrick, a Scottish physician, wrote:
    [excerpt[
    “Unfortunately, it seems that COVID-19 has infected everyone involved in healthcare management and turned their brains into useless mush.

    [In my view, if we had any sense, we would lockdown/protect the elderly, and let everyone else get on with their lives].
    However, the hospitals themselves have another policy. Which is to discharge the elderly unwell patients with COVID directly back into the community, and care homes. Where they can spread the virus widely amongst the most vulnerable.
    This, believe it or not, is NHS policy. Still.”
    ___________________________

    Here in Alberta, the Covid-19 lock-down has resulted a debacle.

    Most of our deaths are in nursing homes – our policy seems to be “Lockdown the low-risk majority but fail to adequately protect the most vulnerable.” This was also true elsewhere in Canada and the USA – notably in Quebec.

    The global data for Covid-19 suggests that deaths/infections will total 0.5% or less of the total population – not that scary – but much higher and clearly dangerous for the high-risk group – those over-65 or with serious existing health problems.

    “Elective” surgeries in Alberta were cancelled about mid-March, in order to make space available for the “tsunami” of Covid-19 cases that never happened. Operating rooms were empty and medical facilities and medical teams are severely underutilized. The backlog of surgeries will only be cleared with extraordinary effort by medical teams, and the cooperation of patients who die awaiting surgery – patients who were impatient…

    Alberta started to re-open on 1May2020, exactly to the day as I predicted one week before. Elective surgeries re-started on 4May2020.

    In conclusion, the full-lockdown was an error – we should have followed the Swedish model and taken precautions but not shut down the economy, which harmed so many young people. We have over-protected the huge low-risk majority from a virus that typically does not harm them, and severely under-protected the high-risk elderly and infirm. What a mis-managed debacle!

    This is not 2020 hindsight. I reached my conclusion in mid-March 2020, based on data from the Diamond Princess cruise ship, South Korea, and total mortality in Europe. Iceland data was examined later.

    I wrote on 21Mar2020:

    “LET’S CONSIDER AN ALTERNATIVE APPROACH, SUBJECT TO VERIFICATION OF THE ABOVE CONCLUSIONS:
    Isolate people over sixty-five and those with poor immune systems and return to business-as-usual for people under sixty-five.
    This will allow “herd immunity” to develop much sooner and older people will thus be more protected AND THE ECONOMY WON’T CRASH.”

    “This full-lockdown scenario is especially hurting service sector businesses and their minimum-wage employees – young people are telling me they are “financially under the bus”. The young are being destroyed to protect us over-65’s. A far better solution is to get them back to work and let us oldies keep our distance, and get “herd immunity” established ASAP – in months not years. Then we will all be safe again.”
    __________________________

    Next time good people, listen to your Uncle Allan, who tries his best to take good care of all of you. Could’ve saved you a few trillion dollars… and all that trashing the economy, lockdown misery and the predicted economic recession/depression.
    __________________________

    • In response to the unduly self-congratulatory Mr MacRae, this column advocated drawing a distinction between the young and the old some weeks ago. And, whether he likes it or not, lockdowns were essential in the early stages, to prevent the hospitals from being overwhelmed in urban centers with high population densities, such as London and New York. Just look at Brazil. In Sweden, the urban density and the mean person-to-person contact rate were low enough to permit only a partial lockdown, but even then the death toll per head of population is considerably above that of any other Scandinavian country, and is continuing to rise. For good reason, responsible governments paid no head to armchair epidemiologists like Mr MacRae and instead looked to the safety and well-being of their peoples.

      With good reason, those who opposed lockdowns did not prevail in the public debate. However, it is now time to dismantle the lockdowns. Those under 60 are so little at risk that the lockdowns can be dismantled quite rapidly.

      • Sir, no need for you to be impolite. You disagree with me on this issue. Let the evidence speak for itself.

        The full-time epidemiologists did a much worse job than I (and Willis) did – their estimates were hugely inaccurate and excessive – especially those from England.

        The fact that Sweden did not do the full lock-down and is currently doing better than England should not be waived off due to population density or other such factors.

        I wrote on 21Mar2020 based on the data available at that time:
        “Isolate people over sixty-five and those with poor immune systems and return to business-as-usual for people under sixty-five.
        This will allow “herd immunity” to develop much sooner and older people will thus be more protected AND THE ECONOMY WON’T CRASH.”

        I still say that was the correct call.

        What actually happened DURING THE FULL LOCKDOWN in places like London and New York City was THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT I STATED:
        – A full lockdown of the total population and the economy, costing trillions of dollars, killing the economy, harming billions of low-income people and over-protecting the low-risk population.
        – Incredibly incompetent, almost criminal lack-of-protection of the high-risk population, such that ~half of the deaths occurred among the elderly in old-age homes.
        – Delay in building herd immunity, such that Covid-19 may return in the Fall of 2020.

        Let’s revisit this question in Winter 2020 and analyze how the “full-lockdown” countries have performed vs Sweden.

        • The global data for Covid-19 suggests that deaths/infections will total ~0.5% of the total population – not that different from other seasonal flu’s – but dangerous for the high-risk group – those over-65 or with serious existing health problems.

          Here in Alberta, the Covid-19 lock-down has resulted in a mis-managed debacle. Most of our deaths are in nursing homes – our policy seems to be “Lockdown the low-risk majority but fail to adequately protect the most vulnerable.” This was also true elsewhere in Canada (Montreal) and the USA (New York City) and in England (London).

          “Elective” surgeries in Alberta were cancelled about mid-March, in order to make space available for the “tsunami” of Covid-19 cases that never happened. Operating rooms were empty and medical facilities and medical teams are severely underutilized. The huge backlog of surgeries will only be cleared with extraordinary effort by medical teams, and the cooperation of patients who die awaiting surgery – patients who were impatient… Alberta started to re-open on 1May2020, exactly to the day as I predicted one week before. Elective surgeries re-started on 4May2020.

          Two doctors from Bakersfield California, Dr Dan Erickson and Dr Massihi doctors reached similar conclusions, and were censored by YouTube for expressing their honest views. Here is the Bakersfield doctors’ ~1.1 hour video that was repeatedly banned by YouTube, preserved elsewhere:
          https://savedmag.com/dr-erickson-covid-19.mp4?id=0

          The Bakersfield doctors were telling the truth – they were saying that Covid-19 was not more severe than other major seasonal flu’s and less severe than some.

          In Europe, Total Deaths from All Causes peaked in week 14, the week of 30Mar2020-5Apr2020, suggesting that the lockdown was too late to be effective. The exception was England, which has the worst Covid-19 death rate in Europe. Here is why:

          Dr. Malcolm Kendrick, a Scottish physician, wrote:
          “Unfortunately, it seems that COVID-19 has infected everyone involved in healthcare management and turned their brains into useless mush.
          [In my view, if we had any sense, we would lockdown/protect the elderly, and let everyone else get on with their lives].
          However, the hospitals themselves have another policy. Which is to discharge the elderly unwell patients with COVID directly back into the community, and care homes. Where they can spread the virus widely amongst the most vulnerable.
          This, believe it or not, is NHS policy. Still.”

          ___________________________

          In conclusion, the full-lockdown was a huge error – we should have followed the Swedish model and taken precautions but not shut down the economy, which harmed so many young people. We have over-protected the huge low-risk majority from a virus that typically does not harm them, and severely under-protected the high-risk elderly and infirm.

          This is not 2020 hindsight. I reached my conclusion in mid-March 2020 and published it on 21Mar2020, based on data from the Diamond Princess cruise ship, South Korea, and total mortality in Europe. Iceland data was examined later.

          • Like the phony issue of catastrophic human-made global warming (CAGW), the Covid-19 flu has become a subject of political manipulation and deceit.

            The left is opposing the re-opening of the economy, allegedly to “save lives”, but really to further harm the economy and the re-election prospects of their opponents, most notably one Donald Trump.

            Leftist states like New York have killed off huge numbers of their costly elderly and infirm, using deliberate policies that quarantine their high-risk populations in cramped quarters and expose them to the disease. Florida, with its huge elderly population, has fared much better under a Republican governor.

            The left has tried to draw parallels between Covid-19 and the bogus CAGW “crisis”, and has tried to use Covid-19 as a lever to double-down funding for costly, ineffective green energy schemes – utter nonsense!

            The real parallel between Covid-19 and the bogus CAGW “crisis” is this:
            States that adopt worthless green energy schemes, which are not green and produce little useful (dispatchable) energy, will experience many of the same symptoms as the full Covid-19 lockdown – huge unemployment, a failed economy, and a demoralized citizenry dependent on government handouts – who will typically vote for the left. That is why the Democrats do what they do – that’s how they roll.

        • Did New York Governor Andrew Cuomo copy British practice? He reportedly ordered Covid-19-infected patients into old folks homes and killed them all off. No wonder New York and London have very high death rates attributed to Covid-19 – it looks like the same deliberate government policy. Qui bono?

          Dr. Malcolm Kendrick, a Scottish physician, wrote:
          https://drmalcolmkendrick.org/2020/04/21/the-anti-lockdown-strategy/
          [excerpt[
          “Unfortunately, it seems that COVID-19 has infected everyone involved in healthcare management and turned their brains into useless mush.

          [In my view, if we had any sense, we would lockdown/protect the elderly, and let everyone else get on with their lives].

          However, the hospitals themselves have another policy. Which is to discharge the elderly unwell patients with COVID directly back into the community, and care homes. Where they can spread the virus widely amongst the most vulnerable.

          This, believe it or not, is NHS policy. Still.”
          ____________________

  24. M’Lud, isn’t it safe to say that, due to the number of cancelled operations and a general reluctance to go to hospital if it can be avoided, that there will be an increase in the number of excess deaths, even of people who have not tested positive for covid 19?

    • Bloke down the Pub is right that if the lockdown were to be persisted in there would be some excess deaths from cancellation of normal elective surgeries. However, these deaths will almost certainly be outweighed by a considerable reduction in mortality from infectious diseases other than the Chinese virus, at least in the medium term. In the longer term, the lockdowns will have been brought to an end.

  25. 195 countries with Corona. 37 countries with no deaths.

    The UK now has more deaths than 184 countries put together. Data from Worldometer.

    This is utter bull**** figures coming out of the UK-

    Great Britain
    “Cumulative all-cause mortality in the UK remains in the range of the five strongest flu waves in the last 25 years. The peak in daily hospital deaths was already reached on April 8 (s. chart below).
    New statistical data show that in mid-April, out of about 12,000 additional deaths, about 9,000 were „related to Covid“ (including „suspected cases“), but about 3,000 were „not related to Covid“. Moreover, of the total of about 7300 deaths in nursing homes, only about 2000 were „related to Covid“. In both the „Covid19 deaths“ and the non-covid19 deaths, it is often unclear what these people actually died of. The Association of British Pathologists has therefore called for a „systematic review of the true causes of death“.
    The temporary „Nightingale“ hospitals in the UK have so far remained largely empty. A similar situation was already seen in China, the US and many other countries.
    At the end of April it became known that the lockdown was apparently not, as officially stated, recommended by a scientific commission alone, but that a high government advisor had „pushed“ the scientists to support the lockdown.
    Peter Hitchens: We’re destroying the nation’s wealth – and the health of millions. „If you don’t defend your most basic freedom, the one to go lawfully where you wish when you wish, then you will lose it for ever. And that is not all you will lose. Look at the censorship of the internet, spreading like a great dark blot, the death of Parliament, the conversion of the police into a state militia.“

    • The prejudice demonstrated by “richard” is here repeated yet again. However, he and his ilk have lost the public debate about whether there should have been lockdowns. He may care to study the situation in Brazil, a country with a high urban population density and no lockdown. Or New York, where the lockdown was late and where, as in Brazil, mass graves had to be dug.

      No doubt he wishes that the excess deaths reported in Britain, which are very high and will of course go still higher in the coming weeks and months, were not attributable to the Chinese virus. But in that event what on Earth were they attributable to? The Office for National Statistics says that most of these excess deaths, even though they were not reported as Chinese-virus deaths, are very likely to have been attributable to it.

      That is why setting prejudices aside and looking at questions of life and death dispassionately is so important. “richard” has failed that test throughout. And that is precisely why he and his ilk have so comprehensively lost the debate. Their unwillingness to make the slightest attempt to be objective condemned them and their argument to deserved comtempt and oblivion.

      • Put up or shut up, Mr Monckton- Show us the proof that the deaths were “of’ corona and not “with” corona.

        All illustrations are revealing the numbers, like climate change, have been manipulated.

        Stop being a baggage handler for the Government.

    • Richard – and the vast majority of those 37 countries free of death, and soon CV19 virus free, are island states, de facto practicing “lockdowns” by closing their borders to air planes and boaters alike. We see this throughout the South Pacific, here, from New Zealand.

  26. I don’t share the view that all excess deaths should be attributed to the virus. If we look at the ONS data on provisional deaths to week 17 (24th April end date) we see a clear drop in deaths in hospitals for non Covid deaths which is exceeded by the rise in non Covid deaths in other settings. This clearly indicates that lack of hospital treatment has given rise to extra deaths not due to the virus.

    https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/0ZXy6/1/

    It must be borne in mind that the statistics reflect any mention of Covid on a death certificate, and thus are deaths “with” rather than “from” the virus. Moreover, when we look at the changes in the data compared with the previous week, we find that a number of previously recorded deaths are being reassigned as Covid deaths.

    https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/8BAcE/1/

    It also seems clear that the spread of the virus in care homes post dates that in the wider population. Of course care homes are essentially high population density environments where the effective R is much higher than in the general population, so once an infection takes hold it will spread rapidly and almost completely through a home. With those facts, the finger points clearly to failings in the health system as to why care homes have suffered so badly all round, with a doubling of non Covid deaths and then a surge in Covid deaths, likely on the back of the discharge of still infected patients from hospitals.

  27. Somewhat tangential, but I continue to believe we are making multi-trillion dollar decisions based on incomplete, inconsistent and sometimes inaccurate data. Toss in questionable models and political motivations and it’s hard to imagine anyone making good decisions.

    We have three petri-dish experiments that I’m aware of that should be mined for all the data we can get (should have been done already). The Diamond Princess, the Charles de Gaulle, and the Theodore Roosevelt. The last two are navy ships, which means (1) forget social distancing, and (2) you will get 100% compliance with orders to report for testing at regular intervals. It also means the sample set is biased toward young, male and fit relative to the general population, and a bit less so relative to the working-age population.

    The Charles de Gaulle lists a full compliment of 1,950 including both crew and air wing. Over 1,000 have tested positive. As of April 17, 500 showed symptoms, 24 were hospitalized, and 1 critical. The Theodore Roosevelt’s compliment is 5,680; of the 94% tested, 678 were positive [the testing numbers reported imply a complement of 4,500 rather than the claimed 5,680] So far 1 fatality, 7 remaining in hospital, 1 critical.

    What explains the much higher positive test rate on the Charles de Gaulle?

    What percent of the infected on both ships were rendered unfit for duty, required hospital care, etc.?

    It’s clear COVID-19 can be devastating in vulnerable populations; we really need to know how dangerous it is for people in the work force who can’t work from home. Detailed data from these three ships should tell us a lot more than we appear to know now.

  28. Lockdowns, at least in the U.S., will soon end themselves, rules or no rules.

    The decrees are unenforceable en masse, as more and more of the public (and the police) are coming to realize. Certain governors can throw their hubristic little tantrums all they want, but they’re irrelevant. The tide is turning.

    • Mr Cranch is right. Now that lockdowns have achieved their primary purpose of preventing the disaster that is unfolding in no-lockdown Brazil, people will not indefinitely tolerate the loss of their freedoms. Governments know this perfectly well, and, since they did not introduce the lockdowns for fun, they will end them just as soon as they judge it to be safe to do so.

  29. Perhaps I missed it but what is the average lag between “confirmation” of Covid-19 and death, and also the lag between death and reporting. The “Recorded daily deaths” chart peaks on roughly a weekly basis.

    • Recorded deaths show a weekly pattern because there aren’t so many people putting together statistics (or running tests) on a weekend, so there is a catch-up in the first half of the week. If you look at data aged to the actual date of death the pattern largely disappears, or even inverts to show the effects of reduced levels of care at weekends.

  30. No Lock down- “In February 1957, a new influenza A (H2N2) virus emerged in East Asia, triggering a pandemic (“Asian Flu”). This H2N2 virus was comprised of three different genes from an H2N2 virus that originated from an avian influenza A virus, including the H2 hemagglutinin and the N2 neuraminidase genes. It was first reported in Singapore in February 1957, Hong Kong in April 1957, and in coastal cities in the United States in summer 1957. The estimated number of deaths was 1.1 million worldwide and 116,000 in the United States’

    • If only “richard” were capable of making even the smallest attempt at objectivity, he would realize that the United States is heading for at least 110,000 deaths from the present infection, and that is even after bringing lockdowns into effect. From that consideration, even he should be able to discern that the death toll would have been considerably quicker and greater unless those states with high population densities had locked down.

      • Christopher
        But, it is interesting that Cuomo has said that something like 60% of the cases in NY were people who were “sheltering in place,” and were expected to be protected from the virus. Anyone who promotes lockdowns needs to explain why they don’t appear to be working as expected. Further, if they are not working as expected, can the loss of civil liberties and damage to the economy be justified?

        Might it be that the supposed efficacy of hard lockdowns is not what is hoped? If that is the case, might it be over-kill, even for high population density regions? Could hard lockdowns be contributing to the problem by keeping people close together for long periods of time when one of the household members is infectious? Might there be a moderate response of social distancing and hygiene that would be as effective as the hard lockdowns? Without evidence-based answers to these questions, then recommendations of particular protocol would be little more than informed opinion.

        • Clyde asks “Anyone who promotes lockdowns needs to explain why they don’t appear to be working as expected.” I’ll bite.

          Food parcel home deliveries made without scrupulously practicing viral hygiene to typically older and much older people, plus a strain of CV19 with high viral loading and therefore much more easily spread and contracted (not to mention more lethal), in the vast, greater NYC is areas.

          This strain turned out to be the same as the highly lethal strain seen killing in Italy, and different than the strain seen in the rest of the US and Canada, as well as Australia and New Zealand. (See “Corona virus mutations affect deadliness” https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3080771/coronavirus-mutations-affect-deadliness-strains-chinese-study)

      • “n my lifetime, there was another deadly flu epidemic in the United States. The flu spread from Hong Kong to the United States, arriving December 1968 and peaking a year later. It ultimately killed 100,000 people in the U.S., mostly over the age of 65, and one million worldwide.
        Interesting:
        Woodstock Occurred in the Middle of a Pandemic
        “Lifespan in the US in those days was 70 whereas it is 78 today. Population was 200 million as compared with 328 million today. It was also a healthier population with low obesity. If it would be possible to extrapolate the death data based on population and demographics, we might be looking at a quarter million deaths today from this virus. So in terms of lethality, it was as deadly and scary as COVID-19 if not more so, though we shall have to wait to see. ”
        https://www.aier.org/article/woodstock-occurred-in-the-middle-of-a-pandemic/

      • Mr Monckton continues with his nonsense without any proof of who died “with” the virus or “of” the virus.

  31. The Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford shows that COVID-19 deaths in England peaked on 8th April, too soon to have been influenced by ‘lockdown’ measures. As in USA death certificates are ‘generous’ with C-19 attributions. April 8th is based on the actual dates of death not the reported dates.

    https://www.cebm.net/covid-19/covid-19-death-data-in-england-update-2nd-may/

    This is the best guide I have found to reality, it is updated regularly.

    https://swprs.org/a-swiss-doctor-on-covid-19/

    Professor Johan Giesecke of Sweden’s article in ‘The Lancet’ seems to give a plausible prediction of where we shall all be in 12 months or so.

    ‘In summary, COVID-19 is a disease that is highly infectious and spreads rapidly through society. It is often quite symptomless and might pass unnoticed, but it also causes severe disease, and even death, in a proportion of the population, and our most important task is not to stop spread, which is all but futile, but to concentrate on giving the unfortunate victims optimal care.’

    https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)31035-7/fulltext

    • Mr Sherratt is incorrect. The interval between 23 March, when the UK lockdown was announced, and the peak in daily cases was about two weeks, which is very much what one would expect. Likewise, the interval until the peak in daily deaths was about three weeks, again much as expected. HM Government actually predicted that the peak would occur approximately when it did. For lockdowns reduce the mean daily person-to-person contact rate – in the UK by 85%. And that, like it or not, interferes with transmission, and is certainly capable of doing so in such a fashion as to show results after two weeks.

      Unfortunately, it looks as though HM Government is likely to be as dilatory in ending the lockdown as it was in introducing it in the first place. That is the problem with having people who are scientifically illiterate in charge. It does not help that the soi-disant “experts” in whom the Government has placed such touching but misguided faith have been quite unable to agree among themselves on anything much.

      • I believe that the information from CEBM at Oxford is accurate and the best we have. 15 days from March 24th to April 8th is not long enough to produce an effect from the house arrest of the entire nation. The house arrest and the destruction of the economy will have very measurable effects.
        This paper is pretty convincing on the lack of utility of quarantining the well.
        ‘Full lockdown policies in Western Europe countries have no evident impacts on the COVID-19 epidemic’ by Thomas Meunier; Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Falmouth, Massachusetts, Ensenada Center for Scientific Research and Higher Education, Ensenada, BC, April 24, 2020.
        ‘Abstract
        This phenomenological study assesses the impacts of full lockdown strategies applied in Italy, France,
        Spain and United Kingdom, on the slowdown of the 2020 COVID-19 outbreak. Comparing the trajectory
        of the epidemic before and after the lockdown, we find no evidence of any discontinuity in the growth
        rate, doubling time, and reproduction number trends. Extrapolating pre-lockdown growth rate trends, we
        provide estimates of the death toll in the absence of any lockdown policies, and show that these strategies
        might not have saved any life in western Europe. We also show that neighboring countries applying less
        restrictive social distancing measures (as opposed to police-enforced home containment) experience a very
        similar time evolution of the epidemic.

        https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.04.24.20078717v1.full.pdf

        Unfortunately we are all at home to Professor Cockup. Word of the week ‘stochastic’.

        • Mr Sherratt does his best, but is unconvincing. Like it or not, the mean person-to-person contact rate in the United Kingdom fell by some 85% as a result of the lockdown. Given the approximate period from incubation via frank symptoms to case report, and given the data shown in the Cabinet Office graph, it is as plain as the nose on your face that the lockdown prevented a far greater case growth rate and death growth rate. For there were simply not enough people infected at the time the lockdown was introduced to interfere significantly with the growth rates, which were 20% daily for cases and 26% daily for deaths, and had been so for several weeks.

          There had been some diminution in the growth rates before the lockdown was formally introduced, both because some measures were introduced before the full lockdown and because people were beginning to take precautions on their own account. Responsible governments, however, could not afford to take the risk of allowing transmission to continue at the then prevailing daily rates of growth.

          As this column has pointed out, now that the lockdowns have served their purpose, and now that detailed studies of those hospitalized, such as that which this column presented in some detail a few days ago, have shown clearly that those under 60 are not much at risk, it is possible for governments to end the lockdowns, while advising those over 60, and particularly the very elderly and infirm, to take particularly careful precautions.

  32. The fact that the peaks in new cases and in deaths occurred two weeks and three weeks respectively after the lockdown was announced is an indication that the measures have had some effect.”

    At quite an expense. An expense that will bring years to decades of financial misery to millions of middle class families. And in the end analysis, flattening the curve will not have changed the final area under the curve for several confounding reasons. One, this virus is everywhere now. Two, it is highly transmissible in a casual community setting, a passerby feet away, or a contaminated item on a store shelf waiting to be handled again and brought home. And thirdly, many infections have a 3-5 day asymptomatic phase, and for many young and healthy nothing more than an annoying cold sniffles. So unlike TB and Ebola, which both have high case fatality if left untreated and transmission requires more direct contact, thus demand contact tracing. All 3 facts make COVID-19 testing-contact tracing now useless, and in fact more likely counter-productive at this stage.
    And serology testing for CoV-2 for individual travel passports or work permits is an extremely bad public policy, for multiple reasons.
    The only thing that will stop this virus now is herd immunity. That will come either through naturally acquired infection, or by a widely-available vaccine.

  33. Lord Monckton

    Forget about “excess” deaths, whatever that is, let us deal with actual deaths. The best way to look at this is to plot the total number of deaths recorded from 1st January to date, for each of the last 25 to 30 years as adjusted by popultaion (or deaths per 100,000 for the past 25 to 30 years). Let us see one graph with 25 to 30 different curves.

    We can then see whether the total deaths in 2020 are higher than the number recorded in previous years, and if so by how much.

    I suspect that the total death toll (adjusted by population) will not be the highest these past 30 years, and I suspect that we have seen this type of death toll on a number of occassions in previous years, when there has been bad seasonal flu and/or and/or ineffective flu vacines and/or extremely cold weather.

    • Mr Verney wishes that we could forget about excess deaths. The statisticians, however, beg to disagree. Given that HM Government failed to introduce a common standard of prompt reporting both of new infections, new hospitalizations and deaths, and failed even to require a confirmatory test where a patient appeared to have died of the Chinese virus, the data are inadequate, and the excess deaths are a better guide. The very, very large surge in excess deaths coincident with the emergence of the pandemic is not very likely to be coincidental.

      • And in Western Europe, excess deaths by week have ranged from 20% in Scandinavia to 90% in Italy, with a mean of roughly 50%. And since vehicular deaths aren’t occurring, well over half of deaths in April, for instance, can sensibly be attributed to the Covid19 virus.

  34. I have been looking at the daily death curves for about 14 countries. Nearly all of them show the daily deaths peaking about 30 days after the curve first starts to ramp up. This happens regardless of lockdown or not. Here it shows the same for the UK. It’s the same for Sweden, USA, Italy, California, etc. Japan doesn’t follow the pattern. Looks like Japan did flatten the curve without a lockdown. Clearly lockdowns did nothing.

    I used data from Our World in Data (Oxford) for world data and Covidtracking.com for US and state data.

    • Yeahbut… When you don’t know what you’re dealing with extra precautions are necessary and prudent.

      • poshas94
        How does a prudent person decide when “extra precautions” are excessive? Is it prudent that a deer hunter carry an elephant gun because he is not certain that a rogue elephant has escaped from a local zoo? It seems to me that uncertainties that encompass low-probability events don’t warrant the same reactions as unknown uncertainties of high-probability.

    • Mr Breeding has uselessly repeated a comment he had already made upthread. The answer to his comment is as follows: Mr Breeding has made the elementary mistake of failing to allow for confounders. One thing that happens once a dangerous pandemic hits the headlines is that people begin to take precautions for themselves. That will slow the growth-rate in cumulative cases and in deaths.

      But lockdowns will slow that rate still more, for well-understood reasons. To see what life in a major city with a high population density would look like without lockdown, just look at Brazil.

  35. All the stats suck. In Illinois they report anyone who died “with” Covid as dying “of” Covid. This is a common practice. Since over half of all deaths were elderly, many would have died without Covid.

    I’ve come to the conclusion that the only meaningful statistic is the daily number of people hospitalized with Covid. Try to find that for each country.

    • Unfortunately. you’re correct, and we cannot trust ANY numbers coming out of the media. The numbers are being generated from base-line unreliable methods (ANYONE tested positive is listed as died-from) then reported by the even-less reliable and then by the bent-on-scaremongering marx-stream media.

  36. I’m still on the fence when it comes to using “excess deaths”. It almost sounds like using “dark matter” to fill in the blanks in a popular theory. 😉

    Regardless, I am grateful to Christopher Monckton of Brenchley for the series, and I’m looking forward to his next article.

  37. By contrast, the United States had reported 72,271 total deaths to yesterday, or 218 per million population.

    If one eliminated the count from the megalopolis area from DC northeast to Boston, the rate would be far lower. Of course, similar characteristics (urban areas/higher rates) would be true for any country. Point being, tho, the “shutdown” should have been limited to that urban area.

  38. The Medicare reimbursement scheme in the US has hospitals claiming patients who die of non-COVID aliments declared as COVID deaths because of an extra $3700 the hospital will receive for COVID deaths.

    • I heard that it was about $13,000 per CV19 patient, and about $39,000 per CV19 patient put on a ventilator. Where there is cash incentives, one has to be particularly wary of the figures; they are prone to distortion.

  39. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were 2,813,503 registered deaths in the United States in 2017.

    The age-adjusted death rate, which accounts for the aging population, is 7,319 deaths per million population in the U.S. This is an increase of 0.4% over 2016’s death rate. In comparison, 218 deaths per million population in the USA from Covid-19 aren’t necessarily extra deaths, but could be just earlier deaths, because of comorbidity.

    Why the Dempanic? Probably because Joe Biden is their Prescan.

  40. “Today’s column will be the last in this series.”

    Thank you CMoB, for all of these, all well-worth the time to read.

  41. Michael Osterholm, director of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Infectious Diseases Research and Policy, is worried people aren’t preparing for the possibility of a fall wave of infections — which some experts fear will be bigger than what we’ve seen so far — because they expect a vaccine will be at hand.

    “I’ve actually heard higher education experts say, ‘Well, you know, we’re kind of counting on the vaccine maybe by September because we keep hearing about that.’ And of course, in their mind, they’re equating [that to mean] colleges and universities will have the vaccine,” he told STAT.

    Osterholm and other experts make clear that there will not be enough vaccine for college-age students in that time frame, even in the best-case scenario. It’s likely any supplies that will be available — if any of the vaccines prove themselves to be protective by the fall — will be designated for health care workers and others on the front line of the response effort.

    “I don’t think we’re communicating very well at all with the public, because I keep having to tell these people, you know, even if we had a vaccine that showed some evidence of protection by September, we are so far from having a vaccine in people’s arms,” Osterholm said.
    https://www.statnews.com/2020/05/06/mounting-promises-on-covid-vaccines/

  42. Preparing for the worst
    They said government officials should stop telling people the pandemic could be ending and instead prepare citizens for a long haul.
    Three scenarios are possible, they said:

    Scenario 2: The first wave of Covid-19 is followed by a larger wave in the fall or winter and one or more smaller waves in 2021. “This pattern will require the reinstitution of mitigation measures in the fall in an attempt to drive down spread of infection and prevent healthcare systems from being overwhelmed,” they wrote. “This pattern is similar to what was seen with the 1918-19 pandemic.”
    Scenario 3: A “slow burn” of ongoing transmission. “This third scenario likely would not require the reinstitution of mitigation measures, although cases and deaths will continue to occur.”
    States and territories should plan for scenario 2, the worst-case scenario, they recommended.
    “Government officials should develop concrete plans, including triggers for reinstituting mitigation measures, for dealing with disease peaks when they occur,” they advised.
    Lipsitch and Osterholm both said they are surprised by the decisions many states are making to lift restrictions aimed at controlling the spread of the virus.
    “I think it’s an experiment. It’s an experiment that likely will cost lives, especially in places that do it without careful controls to try to figure out when to try to slow things down again,” Lipsitch said.
    Plus, he said, some states are choosing to lift restrictions when they have more new infections than they had when they decided to impose the restrictions.

    A vaccine could help, the report said, but not quickly. “The course of the pandemic also could be influenced by a vaccine; however, a vaccine will likely not be available until at least sometime in 2021,” they wrote.
    “And we don’t know what kinds of challenges could arise during vaccine development that could delay the timeline.”
    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/04/30/health/report-covid-two-more-years/index.html

    • “Julius” is a paid shill for the Chinese regime. There will be investigations of the regime’s lies and deceits, and of the origin of the virus. The regime that pays Julius originally said the virus came from a wet market in Wuhan, Hubei Province. More recently, the regime has stated that there are no such wet markets in China. Therefore, the likely origin of the virus is in a badly-run lab in Wuhan, where researchers had made coronaviruses more infectious so as to study opportunities to create vaccines. China failed to honour its international obligation to report the emergence of the pathogen within 24 hours; lied, in conspiracy with the World Death Organization, to the effect that the virus could not pass from person to person long after it can be proven to have known that such transmission was occurring; and now lies to the effect that there are no wet markets in China.

      I call the Chinese virus the Chinese virus for the same reason as I call a spade a spade.

      • Huh? I’m a shill for China? Go ahead and try to take the easy way out.
        But once again, for the clear thinkers out there, here are the myriad reasons Monckton is wrong:
        https://www.unz.com/article/objections-to-an-independent-investigation-of-china/
        Clearly the virus has been around a lot longer than the US deep state “China virus” narrative claims, which means your argument doesn’t hold water.
        Post reading this, if you stubbornly hold to your ignorant perspective, it will be willful, which means you can’t hide behind the excuse of being a mere useful idiot. You would be intentionally championing the agenda of the globalist agenda that is locking down the world’s population.
        Good luck with that, Viscount Monckton.
        The people, you know, the commoners, have a long memory.

        • Yes, Julius is a shill not for China but for the Communist regime. The half-baked propaganda that he tries futilely to peddle here is so pathetically crude that it bears all the hallmarks of Communist propaganda. And who would bother to circulate such half-witted material except one who was handsomely paid to do so?

          And there is no point in “Julius” trying to complain, for he does not sufficiently identify himself. It is fascinating how many of those who have tried to minimize the damage the Chinese virus is causing, or who are openly shilling for the Communist regime as Julius is, are too craven, too poltroonish, too yellow to identify themselves properly.

          • oh give me a break, those are some of the most respected alternative news websites out there. Your communist bogeyman meme just isn’t that scary anymore. People are actually much more wise to the propaganda of the western capitalist powers, which happens to have been more successful to date.
            Case-in point, the “China virus” narrative. Right out of the US deep state gamebook.
            No point going back & forth, I’ve passed on the facts, my job is done here..

  43. can’t believe you’re still publishing this US deep-state anti-China nonsense (“China virus” – term coined by the US deep state to further it’s agenda) from Monckton.
    Ok, he’s done some good work on the climate, but re Covid19 he’s either just being stubborn and refusing to admit he’s wrong (very bad trait for science reporting), or he’s a useful idiot unwittingly helping the US geopolitical agenda by using their mass-distraction name “China virus” instead of the scientific name.
    The origin has not been conclusively discovered, all signs (to anyone savvy enough to read beyond the headlines) have long since pointed to the US as the origin of the virus.
    Incidentally, anyone with half a brain cell learned in grade school that the loud mouth pointing the finger at/blaming someone else is usually the guilty party. The US is as usual playing the part of the loud-mouth bully:
    https://www.unz.com/article/objections-to-an-independent-investigation-of-china/

    Either way Monckton’s stubborn dis-information campaign is a disservice to the integrity of your site!

  44. Lord Monckton,
    Despite a handful of tenacious detractors, your posts have been a pleasure to read.

    The information on the prophylactic value of vitamin D was especially interesting. Perhaps you will consider additional timely updates on prophylactic and therapeutic treatments for the CCP virus?

    • I am most grateful to RobR for his kind comments. It is unfortunate that the internet seems to bring out the worst in the self-opinionated, but the number of objectors has been quite small, though they are tediously repetitive, suggesting strongly that some of them are paid to disrupt these threads.

      I shall keep an eye on prophylactic and therapeutic treatments. My suspicion is that a vaccine will not prove as easy to develop, or as effective once developed, as we should wish. That is why one may have to work the odds by measures such as universal Vitamin D supplementation, which is now recommended by Public Health England, for instance.

      • You were never able to illustrate the actual numbers – who died “of” or “with” the virus. So meaningless posts from yourself. Some actual in depth re-search into this would have been better spent time from yourself, time you normally spend in addressing facts from the alarmist, climate change crowd . oh how easily you slipped into this role yourself and condemned those that disagreed with you as “paid to disrupt” with out any evidence , how odious of you!. A term used by the alarmist climate mob.

        Again and again we illustrated with facts that the number of deaths were misattributed. Of course being a sensitive soul you saw this as disrupting your rather, baggage handling, theme to push the government’s reasons for lock down.

        So let’s , once again, run through observations from experts.

        Expert interviews
        “Stanford professor John Ioannidis explains in an interview with CNN that Covid19 is a „widespread and mild disease“ comparable to influenza (flu) for the general population, while patients in nursing homes and hospitals should receive extra protection.
        Stanford professor Scott Atlas explains in an interview with CNN that „the idea of having to stop Covid19 has created a catastrophic health care situation“. Professor Atlas says that the disease is „generally mild“ and that irrational fears had been created. He adds that there is „absolutely no reason“ for extensive testing in the general population, which is only necessary in hospitals and nursing homes. Professor Atlas wrote an article at the end of April entitled „The data are in – Stop the panic and end total isolation“ that received over 15,000 comments.
        Epidemiologist Dr Knut Wittkowski explains in a new interview that the danger of Covid19 is comparable to an influenza and that the peak was already passed in most countries before the lockdown. The lockdown of entire societies was a „catastrophic decision“ without benefits but causing enormous damage. The most important measure is the protection of nursing homes. According to Dr. Wittkowski, Bill Gates‘ statements on Covid19 are „absurd“ and „have nothing to do with reality“. Dr. Wittkowski considers a vaccination against Covid19 „not necessary“ and the influential Covid19 model of British epidemiologist Neil Ferguson a „complete failure“.
        German virologist Hendrik Streeck explains the final results of his pioneering antibody study. Professor Streeck found a Covid19 lethality of 0.36%, but explains that this is an upper limit and the lethality is probably in the range of 0.24 to 0.26% or even below. The average age of test-positive deceased was approximately 81 years.
        Biology professor and Nobel Prize winner Michael Levitt, who has been analyzing the spread of Covid19 since February, describes the general lockdown as a „huge mistake“ and calls for more targeted measures, especially to protect risk groups.
        The emeritus microbiology professor Sucharit Bhakdi explains in a new German interview that politics and the media have been conducting an „intolerable fear-mongering“ and an „irres­pon­sible disinformation campaign“. According to professor Bhakdi, face masks for the general population are not needed and may in fact be harmful „germ catchers“. The current crisis was brought about by the politicians themselves and has little to do with the virus, he argues, while a vaccine against coronavirus is „unnecessary and dangerous“, as was already the case with swine flu. The WHO has „never taken responsibility for its many wrong decisions over the years“, professor Bhakdi adds. (Note: The video was temporarily deleted by YouTube).
        The Swiss chief physician for infectiology, Dr. Pietro Vernazza, explains in a new interview that the Covid19 disease is „mild for the vast majority of people“. The „counting of infected people and the call for more tests“ would not help much. In addition, most of the people listed in the corona statistics did not die solely from Covid-19. According to Dr. Vernazza, there is no evidence for the benefit of face masks in people who do not show symptoms themselves”

  45. Long overdue-

    “There are increased calls for the British government to release the modelling upon which the national lockdown was based after it was revealed that its author, Professor Neil Ferguson, was found to have been flouting the social distancing rules in order to visit his left-wing activist married lover.

    Leading Brexiteer and Conservative MP David Davis said that “a bigger issue than Professor Ferguson’s private life is the accuracy of his model. When applied to the Swedish policy, it forecast 40,000 deaths by now, over 15 times the reality.”

    • Leading Brexiteer and Conservative MP David Davis said that “a bigger issue than Professor Ferguson’s private life is the accuracy of his model. When applied to the Swedish policy, it forecast 40,000 deaths by now, over 15 times the reality.”

      Indeed, in the case of Sweden Ferguson’ modelling is a total failure. Model built by some Swedish researches, which was closely based on Ferguson’ model, gives the following estimations:

      “Statement of principal findings
      This individual-based modelling project predicts that with the current mitigation approach
      approximately 96,000 deaths (95% CI 52,000 to 183,000) can be expected before 1 July, 2020.”

      Number of actual deaths in Sweden due to covid-19 as per 8th May: 3175.

      Number of ICU patients according to the model:

      “At the peak period (early May), the need for ICU beds will be at least 40-fold higher than the
      pre-pandemic ICU-bed capacity, not considering ICU admissions for other conditions.”

      From the graph we can tell that Ferguson’ model predicts 22,000 – 30,000 ICU hospitalizations in the early May. Actual number as per 7th May: 450. Contrary to the model the ‘peak’ plateau in ICU hospitalizations in Sweden was was between 13th April – 3rd May, not early May as predicted by models and also much flatter.

      Must be said that Swedes have properly aligned balls. They suspected that Ferguson’ model is – at least in the case of Sweden – complete fantasy.

      Intervention strategies against COVID-19 and their estimated impact on Swedish healthcare capacity

    • The profoundly prejudiced and insufficiently identified “richard” continues to display his prejudice. While I do not defend the Ferguson model, I do not defend the IHME model either. One appears to have overshot; the other appears to have undershot just as egregiously.

      However, during the weeks that this column has run, it has become apparent that those who thought that – to take one example – there would be only 10,000 deaths in total in the U.S.A. before the end of the pandemic, or – to take another example – that there would only be 1783 deaths in California by August 4, were incorrect. This virus must be taken seriously. This column has calculated, on the basis of casting back deaths, that the infection fatality rate for the Chinese virus is between 0.1% and 1%. If so, there may yet be between 8 million and 80 million deaths worldwide, unless palliative, prophylactic or therapeutic treatments can be found in good time. At the 0.2% infection fatality rate imagined by “richard”, there would be some 16 million deaths. So there is really no point in attempting to maintain that this virus is no worse than the annual flu. The UK figures have already shown that that is not the case.

      “richard” and his ilk have deservedly lost the debate about lockdowns. The lockdowns were introduced because, though some models were exaggerated, governments were not taken in by those models that have consistently and prodigiously undershot.

      It is also by now self-evident to all but the wilfully irredentist that the fatality rate for the elderly and infirm is very much worse than that of flu. Therefore, though it would now be right to end the lockdown for those under 60, those most at risk must not believe the likes of “richard”: they must realize that the risk to them is considerable, and they must take appropriate precautions against contracting the infection.

      • the numbers speculated for Sweden were 15 time less.

        Poor , Mr Monckton, continues to speculate with out any evidence of who died “with” or “of” the virus.

        “New statistical data show that in mid-April, out of about 12,000 additional deaths, about 9,000 were „related to Covid“ (including „suspected cases“), but about 3,000 were „not related to Covid“. Moreover, of the total of about 7300 deaths in nursing homes, only about 2000 were „related to Covid“. In both the „Covid19 deaths“ and the non-covid19 deaths, it is often unclear what these people actually died of. The Association of British Pathologists has therefore called for a „systematic review of the true causes of death“.

  46. Having commented before with concerns about attributing excess deaths to CoVID as the cause, I know that I have mostly focused, myself, on criticizing the exaggeration of the *rate* of death for infected people. This seeming exaggeration of the death rate (given a poorly understood ‘denominator’ for calculating the rate) is unfortunately something that the head poster C. Monckton has encouraged roundly at times — with his talk of how the Wuhan virus is somehow “ten times’ worse than influenza, etc? Now in talking about ‘excess deaths’ we are apparently talking about the size of the ‘numerator’ for such a calculation, so maybe that deserves a comment, too.

    Part of the problem with this, is simply that the numbers as such are bound to fluctuate week to week, and presumably it isn’t always easy to know how to account for variations in these numbers? So, once again there is a ‘trends and correlations vs. causation’ issue — and if *only* this were susceptible to some sort of easy statistics to separate out the causal effect! My point here is that this whole business is even more difficult than one would imagine just trying to take random fluctuations account.

    To see what I mean, just refer to the following news article and the quotation from that which follows:
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8216721/Boss-Britains-largest-care-operator-claims-TWO-THIRDS-homes-coronavirus.html

    (from the page referenced above)
    “A furious care home boss said ‘you’d be hard-pressed’ to find a care home provider that wasn’t angry about being told to re-admit COVID-19 patients..”

    Now, part of the problem with attributing causes is that the same event (like the death of an elderly person with CoVID), can easily have not one but *two* equally important causes. In this case the angry care home boss mentioned is concerned that large numbers of deaths due to CoVID are ultimately being caused by the medical system malpractice of sending infectious elders directly back to their group homes! In this kind of case (and my impression is that this is very significant in the numbers racked up) is the true cause of death the virus as such, or is it the common medical practice that has caused the death? Is the virus really so much more dangerous than other viruses, or is it the inappropriate handling of this virus that is the real culprit?

    In other words, even if the head poster, CoM, has separated the ‘signal from the noise’ properly here, has he reached the correct conclusion about where to assign ultimate blame/causation for the excess deaths?

    • ‘No!’ said Mole, ‘and that’s a fact, and no mistake!’

      ‘Of the 3,912 deaths that occurred in March 2020 involving COVID-19, 3,563 (91%) had at least one pre-existing condition, while 349 (9%) had none. The mean number of pre-existing conditions was 2.7.’

      https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/bulletins/deathsinvolvingcovid19englandandwales/latest

      ‘Across Europe, Covid only kills the under 60’s in very small numbers. For example in Italy which has had a relatively high number of deaths overall, less than 3% were under 60 years old. In England and Wales the corresponding percentage is around 7%. This difference shows up in the Euromomo charts, where the UK is more or less unique in having high mortality in the under 65’s.’

      http://inproportion2.talkigy.com/england_special_28Apr.html

    • Mr Blenkinsop selectively cites the Office for National Statistics, which has also concluded that most of the very large number of excess deaths in the UK are attributable to the Chinese virus. Yes, many of the deaths are in elderly people, and many of them have comorbidities, a point that this column has repeatedly made. But we are not God, and we cannot predict how long those with comorbidities would have lived had they not been finished off by the Chinese virus.

      This column has also fairly pointed out that many of the deaths have arisen in care homes, where the opportunities for transmission are many. Yes, the ill-considered policy of the UK Government to send infected people from hospitals into care homes contributed to the death toll, as did the failure of countries such as Sweden to inhibit visits to care homes by people who were infected. Like it or not, though, all or nearly all of the excess deaths in care homes arose because the Chinese virus was the proximate cause of death.

      We now have enough data to refine the lockdown-ending strategy set forth here some weeks ago. The most important distinction is between people under 60, who are not much at risk and can go back to work straight away, and those over 80, particularly with comorbidities, who need to protect themselves or – if they are vulnerable, as some of the very old are – be protected.

      On the data, there is no longer any need for lockdowns. They achieved their primary purpose of preventing the hospitals from being overwhelmed as they were in northern Italy and as they are in Brazil and Ecuador, to name but a few. Since the risk to people of working age is small, there is no longer any justification for locking down the economy.

      But there is no point in belittling the danger this virus represents to the old and infirm.

  47. Here’s what a couple of actual real-life investigative reporters (not independently wealthy and not connected to/serving the elite agenda) have to say about the BS red-baiting “China did it” narrative:

    The Deeper Historical Roots of Chinese Demonization
    https://www.globalresearch.ca/deeper-roots-chinese-demonization/5711679

    The AngloZionists are launching a strategic PSYOP against China
    https://thesaker.is/the-anglozionists-are-launching-a-strategic-psyop-against-china/

    • If the Chicoms had been up front about this, they would have earned a bit of sympathy on it, independently of any other problems with them. As it is, they’ve earned our contempt — again.

    • Julius, one of various paid agents of the Chinese regime who have infested this thread, should realize that given the facts it is futile to pretend that calling the Chinese virus the Chinese virus is a racialist attack. The virus originated in China, and the Communist regime that pays Julius can be proven to have known about it since mid-November 2019 (and may even have known about it as early as mid-October).

      However, the regime failed, for at least six weeks, to comply with Article 6 of the International Health Regulations, which require notification of new pathogens to the world community within 24 hours. It only reported the epidemic to its wholly-controlled subsidiary the World Death Organization on December 31. It then lied to the effect that the pathogen could not pass from person to person, and went on doing so for a further three weeks, and was supported in this contention by the World Death Organization, which failed to admit the person-to-person transmission for three weeks after it had been told in writing by Taiwan that patients infected with the virus were having to be placed in isolation.

      The Communist regime in China also disappeared numerous doctors and researchers who knew about the origin and transmission of the virus – and that in itself is a crime against humanity. It prevented the WHO from visiting the source of the outbreak for two vital weeks. It now refuses the international community the right to inspect the laboratory in Wuhan from which the outbreak appears to have originated. It will not allow anyone into China to investigate until the pandemic is over. In the meantime it can be proven to have destroyed evidence. Even then it will only admit the WHO to investigate, because the WHO is controlled by Communists who have shown themselves willing to do its bidding.

      This column stands solidly with the Chinese people in this affair, and as solidly against their government, which has committed the crimes against humanity of mass extermination and of disappearing whistleblowers.

      The fatuous links that the Communist shill Julius posts here are so silly that they serve as a marker of the increasing desperation of the Communist regime in Peking, which has ceased altogether to act rationally. Just one example: the regime originally stated that the origin of the transmission from animal to human was a filthy wet market in Wuhan. Now, however, its foreign ministry spokesman has declared that there are no wet markets anywhere in China. This declaration is, of course, hilariously at odds with the overwhelming evidence. However, let us pretend it is true. if it is true, then the infection cannot have arisen in the wet market in Wuhan, for no such wet market existed. In that event, the laboratory where experiments to make the coronaviridae more infectious were being conducted becomes far and away the most likely source.

      Of course, we shall never know for sure, because the regime has placed the laboratory under the control of the People’s “Liberation” Army-Navy, and is denying international access, and is busy continuing to destroy evidence. So there is really no point in Julius and his ilk trying to say that calling the Chinese virus the Chinese virus is racialist or indicates hatred of the Chinese people, any more than there is any point in trying to maintain that this virus is not killing very large numbers worldwide.

      If the Chinese Communist Party wishes to be taken seriously ever again, it will have to learn that crude Communist propaganda of the sort that Julius here tries to peddle fools no one except Communists – and they, as we have seen from the head-bangingly, cringingly deferential statements of the ghastly Communist Ghebreyesus at the WHO and his minions Aylward and Ryan, will lap up and parrot whatever nonsense the regime utters. The rest of the world is not fooled. It is very much in the world’s interest that the Communist regime in China be overthrown by its suffering people.

      Julius and his ilk had better be very careful. There will be prosecutions at the end of this affair, and those who have shilled for the Communist regime may yet find themselves standing trial for conspiracy with that regime to perpetrate crimes against humanity.

      • any proof yet of who died “with” or “of” the virus , Mr Monckton. Imagine all that time you wasted with speculation.

  48. Brazil’s President and Economy Minister have warned that Latin America’s largest economy is on the verge of collapse, underlining the Government’s controversial view that the fallout from social-distancing measures could be worse than the novel coronavirus itself.

    The individual states have taken strict social-distancing measures. This has to be remembered when being critical of the Federal Government.

  49. In Britain, following on from the ‘Carry on Covid!’ fiasco starring Professor Pantsdown:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mAg1s1ByYfM

    …..a new report has just come out from Oxford University.

    The data is now in and it makes the entire lockdown mullarkey look foolish, risible even; just plain silly:

    ‘Population 17,425,445 adults. Time period 1st Feb 2020 to 25th April 2020. Primary outcome Death in hospital among people with confirmed COVID-19.’ ‘Results There were 5683 deaths attributed to COVID-19.’

    ‘In summary after full adjustment, death from COVID-19 was strongly associated with: being male (hazard ratio 1.99, 95%CI 1.88-2.10); older age and deprivation (both with a strong gradient); uncontrolled diabetes (HR 2.36 95% CI 2.18-2.56); severe asthma (HR 1.25 CI 1.08-1.44); and various other prior medical conditions. Compared to people with ethnicity recorded as white, black people were at higher risk of death, with only partial attenuation in hazard ratios from the fully adjusted model (age-sex adjusted HR 2.17 95% CI 1.84-2.57; fully adjusted HR 1.71 95% CI 1.44-2.02); with similar findings for Asian people (age-sex adjusted HR 1.95 95% CI 1.73-2.18; fully adjusted HR 1.62 95% CI 1.43-1.82).’

    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.05.06.20092999v1

    That is 5683 Covid 19 deaths in England from results covering about one third of the population in England out of a cumulative total of all cause mortality for the same period of circa 180,000 in England and Wales; so crude extrapolation gives about 10% of all deaths directly attributable to Covid 19 during that period, mainly the aged, infirm, socially deprived, particularly amongst specific ethnic minorities.

    That seems to me to be pretty much in line with the expected outcome from a minor coronavirus/rhinovirus cold epidemic, which happens just about every other year!

    No wonder all the computer games modelling fun is coming to a close!

  50. Mr Monckton , in his own twisted way, lashing out at those who disagree with him, will continue with his foolish thoughts and never admit he was wrong. Once a baggage handler, always a baggage handler.

    • ‘richard’, Be Specific! The actual ‘lashing out’, by Lord Monckton (if it may be described so), was in his recent comment detailing the corruption and ineptitude of the the current government of China. If sound criticism of dangerous oligarchs is the ‘lashing out’ you refer to, then maybe we could use more of that?
      (At the same time, I could wish, myself, that Monckton was a bit more right wing skeptical, or ‘contrarian’ in assessing some of the unjustified lock down decisions, at least for countries or regions where the threat of overwhelming the health system was the merest supposition — but that’s more a ‘defense’ of establishment decisions, not a ‘lashing out’ — again, be specific?)

  51. Of course if the useless, Mr Monckton , actually did some re-search –

    “New study from Germany finds that every COVID-19 death was someone who had cancer, lung disease, was a heavy smoker or morbidly obese”

    “Head of Forensic Pathology in Hamburg on covid19 autopsy findings: “not a single person w/out previous illness has died of the virus in Hamburg. All had cancer, chronic lung dis, were heavy smokers or heavily obese, or had diabetes or cardiovasc dis” 1/3 https://t.co/u4Pi9ntRT0 pic.twitter.com/PaSdh2UnF5″

Comments are closed.