There is nothing happening other than COVID-19 . Nothing. I’ve looked. It’s COVID-19 all the way down. And whatever happens one day, the next day is even more incredible. So far, the hair-on-fire alarmists have a comfortable lead over the nay-saying cool hand Lukes, probably warranted, although reliable numbers are largely missing or misrepresented.
On the up side, the virus has replaced global warming as the “root cause” of all our earthly troubles. On the down side, it’s getting a bit tedious being protected in ways last seen in occupied Minsk. It’s a real pandemic however, those in charge of nomenclature have declared it so.
As of Saturday, there is one death from Kung Flu every seventeen minutes in New York City. Of the 17,412 tests run by New York State on Friday, 44% of them (7,681) were positive. 15,000 new cases per day in America. The total for the U.S. was 101,707 Friday, doubling in three days. The U.S. death count crossed 2,100, more than double the level from two days ago.
Optimists make a case for a peak in May, pessimists for August. Given the determined incompetence of the government agencies involved, the latter appears more realistic.
John Stossel explains how the CDC has been an impediment to handling the COVID-19 epidemic, in his essay, The Red Tape Pandemic, at Patriot Post. An excerpt:
That’s because people in Korea could easily find out if they had the disease. There are hundreds of testing locations — even pop-up drive-thru testing centers.
Because Koreans got tested, Korean doctors knew who needed to be isolated and who didn’t. As a result, Korea limited the disease without mass quarantines and shortages.
… the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention made its own tests and insisted that people only use those CDC tests. But the CDC test often gave inaccurate results. Some early versions of the test couldn’t distinguish between coronavirus and water.
Taiwan, Singapore and Vietnam were also prepared and responded with massive testing.
James Copland also cites the CDC for preventing a timely and effective response to the epidemic in his essay, The Real-Life Costs of Bad Regulation, at City Journal. An excerpt:
By aggressive testing, South Korea was able to trace viral spread and contain it. Without it, the U.S. was left with little choice but the draconian measures that have shut down much of American life.
… the CDC’s in-house testing design was flawed, thus compromising early testing results. Mistakes happen, but the impact of the test-design flaw was much greater than it should have been—owing to the U.S. bureaucracy’s tightly controlled process. Even had the CDC test worked perfectly, not nearly enough tests would have been available for wide-scale testing on the South Korean model.
… it’s hard not to believe that the U.S. agencies’ decision to micromanage all national testing for Covid-19 was fatally flawed.
The CDC has revealed itself as a threat to public health if not criminal malfeasance. They had one job. They didn’t perform. They kept others from performing. There is no excuse. As a thought experiment, imagine the doors of CDC headquarters had been welded shut and the utilities disconnected long ago. Would we be worse off ?
The emergency exposed missing stockpiles of N95 masks. Turns out they were drawn down a decade ago and not replaced. Apparently the funds were diverted to fight “the epidemic of racism and obesity”, another way diversity makes us stronger, doubtless.
That these outrages are inevitable doesn’t make them excusable. The consequences have been substantial. This is from the New York Post. It’s not about some tottering clinic on the upper Amazon, it’s about Mount Sinai West in Manhattan:
Worker at NYC hospital where nurses wear trash bags as protection dies from coronavirus … were using the same PPE between infected and non-infected patients. “We had to reuse our masks, gowns and the [face] shield,” one nurse said. “We were told, ‘You get one for the entire time until this is over.’”
The outbreak overwhelmed New York City in just a few days. ProPublica reports rank incompetence from the beginning.
Internal Emails Show How Chaos at the CDC Slowed the Early Response to Coronavirus … the CDC underestimated the threat from the virus and stumbled in communicating to local public health officials what should be done