Surviving Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) Day Three

Surviving C-19 Day Three
April 3, 2020 7 AM
75 Days since first US infection

Global Increase19,1381,274
USA Increase3,391208
208 Americans died since yestermorn.

“In the late 1940s, polio outbreaks in the U.S. increased in frequency and size, crippling an average of more than 35,000 people each year. Parents were frightened to let their children go outside, especially in the summer when the virus seemed to peak. Travel and commerce between affected cities were sometimes restricted. Public health officials imposed quarantines (used to separate and restrict the movement of well people who may have been exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become ill) on homes and towns where polio cases were diagnosed.

Polio was once one of the most feared diseases in the U.S. In the early 1950s, before polio vaccines were available, polio outbreaks caused more than 15,000 cases of paralysis each year. Following introduction of vaccines—specifically, trivalent inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) in 1955 and trivalent oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) in 1963—the number of polio cases fell rapidly to less than 100 in the 1960s and fewer than 10 in the 1970s.

Thanks to the polio vaccine, dedicated health care professionals, and parents who vaccinate their children on schedule, polio has been eliminated in this country for more than 30 years. This means that there is no year-round transmission of poliovirus in the United States.

Since 1979, no cases of polio have originated in the U.S.  However, the virus has been brought into the country by travelers with polio. The last time this happened was in 1993.  It takes only one traveler with polio to bring the disease into the United States. People most at risk are:  Those who never had polio vaccine.  Those who never received all the recommended vaccine doses.  Those traveling to areas that could put them at risk for getting polio.  The best way to keep the United States polio-free is to maintain high immunity (protection) against polio in the population through vaccination.”—CDC

“The history of polio (poliomyelitis) infections extends into prehistory. Although major polio epidemics were unknown before the 20th century, the disease has caused paralysis and death for much of human history. Over millennia, polio survived quietly as an endemic pathogen until the 1900s when major epidemics began to occur in Europe. Soon after, widespread epidemics appeared in the United States. By 1910, frequent epidemics became regular events throughout the developed world primarily in cities during the summer months. At its peak in the 1940s and 1950s, polio would paralyze or kill over half a million people worldwide every year.

The fear and the collective response to these epidemics would give rise to extraordinary public reaction and mobilization spurring the development of new methods to prevent and treat the disease and revolutionizing medical philanthropy. Although the development of two polio vaccines has eliminated poliomyelitis in all but three countries (Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria), the legacy of poliomyelitis remains in the development of modern rehabilitation therapy and in the rise of disability rights movements worldwide.”—Wiki

See, we have been here before and not only survived, but thrived and grown during the epidemics.  We have to learn to live with C-19, which means ducking when it outbreaks and working your ass off to make up for lost time afterwards. I hope that one of the results of this C-19 outbreak is the demolition of the Anti-vax crowd who have fallen prey to a combination of disinformation, misinformation and human bias.  I await the development of a vaccine for C-19, I expect three years, a normal turnaround.  To hope for less is to await disappointment, vaccines are not easy things to create and test and then implement.

Lots of speculation if the virus is airborne, or aerosolized, hence the notion to put everyone in masks, as our breath may spread it.  It is possible that C-19 has such spread vectors, we have not disproved that but we have not proven that either.  We are however very sure it is an asymptomatic spreader, and that alone, in my view, indicates surgical masks for all, that way those who are infected and asymptomatic, who do not know they are infected can reduce or eliminate their spread.  With a disease like this it makes sense to assume you are that asymptomatic person, shedding Virus all over unwittingly, and for that reason masking up makes a lot of sense.  It does not make sense to use up the PPE those on the front lines need a lot more than you or I.

If you are like me and have a mind that desperately wants a reason, a meaning to the virus, you are normal.  Our brains will try and seek that “Temptation of Meaning” and play fill in the blanks.  For instance the following notions have occurred to me and seem appealing but have zero evidence.  I have thought “Is this a Bio-Weapon”, “Is this an act from others like China, or Russia, or Oligarchs?”  I have no doubt that social media is rife with such notions and far worse, but they have no value.  First each such idea follows Slajov’s “Temptation of Meaning” Model, that is my mind would feel more comfortable with someone or something to blame, and we don’t have that, we can blame evolution, but that is not something you can blame, that you can fault.  It just is.  Thus I daily have to remind my brain what I already am well aware of, that C-19 is a competing lifeform on the planet which uses us as factory farms to reproduce itself and that sometimes kills us.

We need to adjust to the new normal, a viral posture against a new opponent.  We will get past this like we did Polio, Smallpox, and Measles, now resurgent because of anti-vaxers.  Be glad C-19 is not measles, which is airborne.  It floats about and its water droplets stick to dust and remain viable for a long time, blowing around and being breathed in on the dust.  The danger created by the anti-vax movement cannot be allowed to affect the vaccine we develop for C-19.

Nor is C-19 a mild illness for those who get it.  Yes, some people are asymptomatic, but most suffer.  CNN Broadcast personality Chris Cumo explained his symptoms last night.  Cumo’s misery was as follows, a 102-104 temp, miserable body and muscle aches, profuse sweating, sinus pressure and headaches, and “wicked phantasmagorical experiences” because of the fever.  Fever hallucinations are not a good thing, it’s not like MDMA but akin to a bad acid trip as a result of your brain cooking in your skull.

A lot has also been made of the death rate, which is the % of deaths vs infections.  Getting an accurate death rate during a bloom is very difficult or impossible.  The math is easy, dead divided by infected equal’s % of deaths.  Thus for the Us it’s 6058 divided by 245573 = 0.0246688, or rounded to 2.5%.  However this is a non-viable number, as we won’t be certain how many people died undiagnosed, how many were asymptomatic and how many of those deaths were collateral.  It will remain a vague, not trustworthy number until the outbreak is over and most of us have been tested.  If we do the same math on world numbers it is closer to 5%, but with so many unknowns involved, variations in testing and reporting will lead to inaccurate base numbers upon which we then do math.  For perspective 5% of America is 18+ Million, 2.5% is 14 Million, but such projected numbers from the “death rate” will be inaccurate as the base numbers have not been validated as good.  The models being used also use this death rate with a lot of other important factors involved in the model, those say 80,000 to 250,000, this is why Trump said 100,000 deaths were good, 100,000 death can only be “good” when compared to 18 million, which as I said is not a valid projection.

Another issue I have noticed and I suspect is not well understood is the sharing of numbers from other nations in a pandemic.  From the view of science everything should be utterly transparent so we can share data in real time and fight the virus.  From the military view this is not so.  In the military view we expect competitors and adversaries to lie about the numbers to exploit the outbreak for their own advantage.  Plan for the worst, prepare for the worst, and hope for the least.  For these reasons and for scientific reasons real time numbers are always suspect.  The population does not seem to see this.  I see Dr. Fucci explaining he lacks trust in models because they are models and only as good as the assumptions they make. 

This is basic science; we make models and then test them for accuracy.  Where they are wrong is where we learn new things, and then adjust the model to build another, improved model.  In many things this is just in the lab, the model predicts a result, we get a-b result.  We make a new model and try again, accounting for that a-b result.  Repeat until the model is flawless.

In a viral outbreak we have shitty models because we are ignorant.  That does not make them useless, far from it.  Our best and brightest are making models with assumptions based on other evidence, like Sars1, Flu, and scientific history.  They include real time numbers on both the low and high side, and when they are not perfect, when their flaws are revealed, then we learn.  The horrid thing in an outbreak is we learn in real time from the dying we are helpless to aid.  We make their deaths count, we learn from them, and input those ideas not only into improved models in real time but in the development of treatments and vaccines.

It is going to be a long road, I expect three years before we begin to get a real handle on it.  It will come in waves, and in between we will all pick up the pieces and bury our dead.

“Around the world, millions of people are now practicing social distancing to help stem the spread of the COVID-19 virus. In cities renowned for café culture, restaurants sit empty. Town squares are deserted; gatherings from sporting events to music concerts have been banned; some people are staying 6 feet away from every other human on the planet.  For some, particularly self-described introverts, this new form of distancing may not feel so different from their previous everyday life. But for many, it forces a pattern of behaviors that feels unnatural and uncomfortable, feeding a rising sense of anxiety.

Why does intentionally avoiding physical interaction with other humans during our daily routine feel so strange? The answer may lie in millions of years of behavioral and cultural evolution. Since our evolutionary split from chimpanzees around 7 million years ago, humans have become increasingly dependent on complex social cooperation to survive and thrive. People sometimes think of humans as fundamentally selfish or violent, but anthropological research shows that we have evolved to work cooperatively and live in supportive communities. Thanks to COVID-19, that evolved tendency is now being strained.”—

Our entire society is struggling with C-19 now, but emissions are at levels not seen since WW2.  Since we are all at home it is starkly obvious that our lifestyles greatly contribute to climate change.  I have known that for decades.  I was that annoying person you knew in the 80’s who told you to ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’.   I had seen those numbers at the start of that decade and realized it’s not just pollution that is the problem, we are. 

In the 80’s we mandated that cars be smaller and more fuel efficient, it led to years of little boxy cars no one much liked.  By the 90’s the auto industry had found a legal workaround to those prohibitions.  You take a Truck frame, which makes the vehicle fall under truck and not car guidelines, then you stick a luxury car body on it, wala you have the SUV.  They quickly replace the fleets of boxy cars, which had replaced the boats we drove in the 70’s.  They had the muscle of the bigger cars and the comfort of the boats plus 4 wheel drive on demand, no manual flipping of axel switches involved.  Soon all reductions of emissions made from a decade of boxy little cars was lost in a glut of ever bigger SUV’s.

I watched those models like I watch they C-19 models, and the reaction to those models is far worse than our fatal under reaction here in the states.  The reality is we are living in the 6th great extinction event, we are responsible for it by altering the chemical makeup of our global environment to the extent that we are warming the globe.  I see C-19 as a symptom of that.

Virus effects on previous extinction events are unknown, but speculated as a serious factor.  This is because of what we understand about both virus and extinction events, it would only make sense that virus would factor in.  Take the extinction event you most likely know some about, the asteroid extinction of the dinosaurs.  All life was not destroyed by the impact, that means that remains were just lying about all over, and we know remains are a virus and bacteriological factory.  We take special precautions against large numbers of dead because of disease concerns.  Dinosaurs could not do that, so virus on top of starvation after impact seems very likely.

Extinction events create survival bottlenecks.  More and more species go extinct until the ones left are competing for resources.  There is a theory in evolution which says that under such circumstances it is more likely to see spurts of evolution than in other times as organisms struggle to adapt to survival conditions.  Thus it seems quite plausible to me that the virus c-19, Sars2, called Coronavirus in general; simply evolved due to the pressures exerted upon it.

All evidence shows this virus came out of the open wet meat markets in Wuhan.  DNA shows it originated in bats, but likely went through the Pangolin and then into humans. Viruses evolve a lot faster than larger organisms as they are less complex.  Since we are in an extinction event it seems logical to me that C-19 is a result of the pressures from climate change, not directly of course, just another domino falling.

Climate Change however, has not stopped.  It is not possible to measure how deeply our new stay at home lifestyles have benefited the Climate Change issue.  It is plainly obvious that we can, with the proper choices, significantly lower our emissions.  The parallels between how we need to deal with C-19 and how we need to deal with Climate Change are obvious.  We can reduce how much we drive, we can live without jet setting all over the globe, we can live without gorging on buffets while aboard floating cities, we can, but we have just chosen not to.  In the same way those making poor choices endanger the ‘at risk’, those of us making poor choices endanger us all.

If your boss or your corporation can have you work from home, and thereby save your travel costs and emissions, why not stick with that?  We as individuals can only do so much, Industry is the biggest contributor followed by us driving around and living in a neon landscape that never lets us see the stars because of the haze we create in the air.  If C-19 is showing us anything it is that Corporations can behave differently and make huge strides, but it is not as profitable.  We need to insist upon such changes in the new paradigm we are moving into, or suffer the consequences.

A deep concern I have at this moment is unspoken in press.  It’s the ‘What if’ scenarios for our current climate issues.  Every spring there are floods in the Midwest, over recent years they have been getting worse.  More humidity in the air equals more rain equals more flooding.  How do we respond to flood or flash floods in a C-19 environment?  How do we respond to an Earthquake, a Hurricane, a savage Nor-Easter, an outbreak of tornadic activity, or the wildfire season lurking just ahead?  Where the hell do we send victims if the Hospitals are stuffed with contagious people and the health workers are all busy? 

Even if we all lived like this right now, for the future two decades, between now and then we would continue to see melt of glaciers, of Greenland, of Antarctica.  The diagrams they use for “the peak” and to illustrate “holding down the curve” are equally useful for Climate Change, it is exactly what we need to do, hold down the bell curve of warming, but for a decade or more, not a year or so.  We need to transform the way we all live to achieve this.

E Pluribus Unum

“Doctors, nurses contracting coronavirus at alarming rate”
“Gov Cumo “I’m not taking ventilators, I’m borrowing them”
“Gov Cumo “My brother is going to be a public service in the end. “
“He is showing people in real time how to live with C-19″
“Jon Meacham: Coronavirus Has Become A Partisan Pandemic”
“Speaker Nancy Pelosi: How We Go Forward Has To Have Transparency And Accountability”
“Gun Sales Are Up, Jobs Are Down & Dr. Fauci Faces Threats”

Now compare and contrast that with a collection of Fox News headlines.

Kudlow: ‘No question unemployment will be very bad’ in coming weeks
unemployment will be very bad’ in coming weeks
Navy captain fired for flagging coronavirus 
NY Gov Cuomo speaks as state passes 100,000 confirmed cases
Coronavirus isn’t our only national security threat
McCarthy rips Pelosi’s ‘pure politics’ response to coronavirus
Ingraham: What is coronavirus doing to us as a people?
Sen. Kennedy says country is ‘catching fresh hell’ from coronavirus
Hannity: Media mob wants to censor daily White House coronavirus presser
Tucker: The New York Times’ coronavirus coverage can be explained in 4 steps
Trump: Cuomo would be a better Dem candidate than Biden
Biden: Banning travel may slow coronavirus, but it won’t stop it
Sarah Sanders warns Biden would be a ‘dangerous’ president

As I was doing this it dawned on me that I have already missed the earlier Fox news viewpoints expressed to the majority of Americans, which is resulting in this partisan response to a virus.  As I prepared to go deep diving for hours I discovered the latest installment of one of these late night shows, The Daily Show, no longer hosted by John Stewart but by Trevor Noah, a south African Comedian who is hilarious while bringing raw facts. Trevor does so with an African understanding many Americans don’t have, for instance he will use native languages of Africa to say things, and tell Americans they mean something else.  Trevor saved me a lot of time, although it will be laborious to take the facts from his comedy bit and transcribe them. It is a list of statements made by Fox and Sinclair news Outlets, complete with speaker names and date spoken.
Now to transcribe it, many thanks to the Daily Show for its efforts.

Feb 24 Rush Limbaugh
“I’m dead right on this.  The Coronavirus is the common cold.  Folks the hype of this thing as a pandemic, as the Andromeda strain, as oh my God if you get it your dead.”
Feb 25  Larry Kudlow
“We have contained this, we have contained this, I won’t say airtight, but pretty close to airtight.”
Feb 26 President Donald Trump
“This is a flu, it’s like a flu.”
Feb 27 Sean Hannity
“Zero people in the United States have died from the coronavirus. Zero.”
Feb 27 President Donald Trump
“it’s going to disappear.  One day like a miracle it’s going to disappear.’
Feb 27 Sean Hannity
“Tonight I could report that the sky is absolutely falling. That we are all doomed, that the end is near, the Apocalypse is imminent and you’re going to all die or at least that’s what the media mob would like you to think.”
Feb 28 Geraldo Rivera
“The far more deadly threat right now is not the coronavirus it’s the ordinary old flu.  People aren’t dying right now.  No one has died in the united States that we know of from this disease.”
Mar 2 Dr. Drew Pinsky
“it’s milder than we thought, the fatality rate is going to drop.”
Mar 3 Jessie Watters
“Wanna know how I really feel about the coronavirus?  If I get it I’ll beat it. I’m not afraid of the coronavirus and no one else should be that afraid either.”
Mar 4 Matt Gaetz
Gaetz wears a gas mask into Congress to mock coronavirus concerns.
Mar 6 Kellann Conway
“it is being contained, and, do you not think it’s being contained?”
Mar 6 Dr. Mark Segal
“This virus should be compared to the flu because at worst, at worst case scenario it could be the flu.”
Mar 7 Jeanine Pirr
“It’s a virus! Like the flu. All the talk of coronavirus being more deadly does not reflect reality.”
Mar 8 Pete Hegseth
“The more I learn about Coronavirus the less concerned I am, there’s a lot of hyperbole.”
Mar 9 Laura Ingram
“But the facts are pretty reassuring, but you’d never know it, watching all this stuff.”
Mar 10 Lou Dobbs
“The National Left Wing media is playing up fears of the Coronavirus.”
Mar 10 Tomi Lauren
“The sky is falling because you have a few dozen cases on a Cruise ship?  I am far more concerned about stepping on a used Heroin needle than I am of getting the Coronavirus, but maybe that’s just me.”
Mar 10 Ed Henry
“When you hear the context it’s not quite as scary.”
Mar 10 VP Mike Pence
“in our line of work, uh, you shake hands. I expect the President to continue to do it, I’ll continue to do it.”
Mar 11 Matt Schlap
“it is very very hard to contract this virus.”
Mar 11 Sen James Inhofe
When asked what precautions he was taking replied “Wanna shake hands?”
Mar 13 Ainsley Earhardt
“It’s actually the safest time to fly.  Everyone I know that flies right now, the terminals are pretty much dead, and then the planes, remember back in the day when you had a seat next to you possibly empty and you could stretch out a little more?  It’s like that on every flight now.”
Mar 15 Rep Devin Nunes
“One of the things you can do, if your healthy, you and your family, it’s a great time to just go out and go to a local restaurant, it’s likely you can get in easily.”
Mar 17 President Donald trump
“I thought it was a pandemic long before it was called a pandemic. I took it very seriously.”
Mar 18 Sean Hannity
“this program has always taken the coronavirus seriously.”

Please bear in mind these are the Presidents favorite news people on TV taking about C-19, shows he is known to watch every day and apparently he favored them over a professional like Dr. Fauci.  This is the world we find ourselves in today. The POTUS is in a digital bubble too.

Schumer to Trump ““As the Coronavirus spreads rapidly into every corner of our nation and its terrible, grim toll grows more severe with each passing day, the tardiness and inadequacy of this Administration’s response to the crisis becomes more painfully evident.”

Trump Response “As you are aware, Vice President Pence is in charge of the Task Force. By almost all accounts, he has done a spectacular job.”

‘Appalled:’ Sen. Chuck Schumer Responds to President Trump’s Letter

Trump Calls States ‘Complainers,’ Says Federal Govt. Is Just a ‘Backup’
De Blasio: Not Enough Ventilators for Next Week
Lawrence: President Donald Trump Is Not a ‘Wartime President’
ER Doctor Says Unemployment, Coronavirus Threat Is A ‘Double Whammy’
Chris Hayes: The Pandemic Is Coming For Every State

To Date these states have not issued stay at home orders
Alabama, Arkansas, South Carolina, North and South Dakota, Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Utah, and Wyoming

BBC Headlines
Hancock: Staying at home this weekend is an instruction “not a request”
Coronavirus: More than 10,000 lives lost in Spain
Coronavirus: UK death toll rises by 684 in a day
Coronavirus: UK hospital built in two weeks opens its doors
French headlines
Exclusive: Niger’s Issoufou echoes warning that coronavirus could kill millions in Africa
Confinement, week #3: Migrants, undocumented workers and a rise in child abuse
Covid-19 & inequality: Testing in India no problem if you’re rich

Global Infected 1,094,068
Global Dead      58773           

Increase Infected 63,440
Increase Dead       4,636

US Infected     273,880
US Dead              7,077

Increase Infected 28,307
Increase Dead       1,019

Maine infected     432
Maine Dead         9    

Increase Infected 56
Increase Dead       2

While I surfed for data and wrote these words 4,636 people died, of those 1,019 of them my fellow Americans, of those two were my fellow Mainers.  Remember please, these folks won’t even get funerals really, no mass gatherings and thus for most a private funeral if any at all.

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