Intermarkets' Privacy Policy

Donate to Ace of Spades HQ!

Recent Entries
Absent Friends
Bandersnatch 2024
GnuBreed 2024
Captain Hate 2023
moon_over_vermont 2023
westminsterdogshow 2023
Ann Wilson(Empire1) 2022
Dave In Texas 2022
Jesse in D.C. 2022
OregonMuse 2022
redc1c4 2021
Tami 2021
Chavez the Hugo 2020
Ibguy 2020
Rickl 2019
Joffen 2014
AoSHQ Writers Group
A site for members of the Horde to post their stories seeking beta readers, editing help, brainstorming, and story ideas. Also to share links to potential publishing outlets, writing help sites, and videos posting tips to get published. Contact OrangeEnt for info:
maildrop62 at proton dot me
Cutting The Cord And Email Security
Moron Meet-Ups

Mid-Morning Art Thread | Main | Washington Post Suddenly Discovers That Bernie Sanders Has a Long History of Defending Indefensibly Oppressive Communist Regimes
February 27, 2020

The Morning Rant: Minimalist Edition


One of the mixed blessings of the information age is the instant and world-wide transmission of pretty much everything, from the raw data to wild extrapolations and interpretations and politically motivated screeds that may or may not be based on reality. Even worse is the lack of perspective, since hysterical tweets and headlines sell ads and newspapers, while sober reflection and interpretation is wiser and more boring.

And coronavirus is a great example of this. Is it the pandemic that will bring down the world economy, or is it just another flu-like syndrome that kills the old and the weak, just like the flu does...every single year. Last year the flu killed 20,000 people in the USA alone. And the year before was worse. World wide? WHO estimates that seasonal influenza may result in 290 000-650 000 deaths each year due to respiratory diseases alone.

So what is the official government response to this widespread yearly virus that kills hundreds of thousands of people each year? Pretty rational actually! The American government subsidizes vaccine research, tries to make the public aware of the basic precautions that will minimize exposure, and places it properly in the category of "manageable."

But hysteria usually wins out, and here is a great example of such.

Michela Musolino is a professional singer and a long-time reader and commenter at AoSHQ who was in northern Italy recently for a series of concerts, unfortunately right smack in the middle of Italy's coronavirus outbreak.

Her experience is fascinating, and her observations are equally valuable and worth a read.

Greetings From Coronavirus Central!

By Sunday afternoon, we found that we couldn't go anywhere because not only were all Northern regions cancelling all public activity, Southern regions in Italy were already barring entry to anyone from the Lombardia region. We felt like the "unclean" from the times of the Plague. Masses had been cancelled as well. This happened only days before Ash Wednesday, the start of Christendom's holiest season. All of our live performances had been cancelled, whether they were in the Lombardia or not, even if they were in a different region, more than three hours from any outbreak. Musician friends of ours were reporting that some of their shows on Saturday, the night before had been cancelled, even if in areas untouched by the virus. By Sunday night, everybody was sitting around telling stories to keep entertained and saying that we were reliving Boccaccio's Decameron, except by then that joke was already wearing thin.
Read the whole thing!

Here's what I think: Coronavirus is probably self-limiting, just like the flu. And when a vaccine is developed it will be relegated it to the back pages of newspapers as filler on a slow day. As Michela points out, there is very little information about the people who are actually dying of this. Are they old and sick? Are they smokers (the Chinese smoke like chimneys!), do they have other preexisting conditions that make the virus more dangerous? How many people who get it have mild symptoms and then recover quickly without coming to the attention of the statistics gatherers?

I am deeply suspicious of any analysis that does not recognize the realities of the differences in medical care and overall health between a country like China and a country like The United States. We deliver health care much quicker and much more effectively than China, our citizens are much healthier, and our culture limits exposure to these things in many ways. Why, it's almost as if there are qualitative differences in cultures and countries!

&topic=world_news">digg this
posted by CBD at 10:53 AM

| Access Comments

Recent Comments
DudeAbiding: "IMO there is no explanation for the 'failures' oth ..."

Anna Puma: "I will keep repeating this statement of mine about ..."

RedMindBlueState[/i][/b][/s][/u]: "Scoob, with the First! *golf clap* ..."

Ben Had: "Lesser known reporting is the assassin had bombs ..."

San Franpsycho: "You are not welcome to make any sort of threats or ..."

Wickedpinto: "Also, These FUCKING CUNTS, American Cunt, not Aust ..."

Are you sure about this sir?: "Seconded. "4 "You are not welcome to make any s ..."

Erebus- ex-killer whale: "Not senseless. It was a perfectly sensible act ..."

San Franpsycho: "If you were around March 30, 1981, its a little li ..."

Scuba_Dude: "Now begins the long dark slide into the work week. ..."

Kindltot: "[i]But--' have you ever stomped grapes in vat? Po ..."

Itinerant Alley Butcher: "Anyone go to the range? I could have but though ..."

Recent Entries

Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64