COVID-19 And The Limits Of 'Modeling' Science

1) Death rates in the US are rising. But they still aren't exponential as seen in the first wave. Even looking at this in isolation of its impact on the poor and developing nations, you have to ask what measures actually buy you something. Contact tracing is totally overwhelmed and probably pointless. Other countries don't tend to have it worse, so you can open international air travel. Masks have lots of evidence behind them and should be supported. Testing and isolating in older communities is absolutely critical. School children > 10 seem to be good conductors, under 10 not so much. Thankfully, the economic cost of >10s not being in school is far lower than <10s. Again economic opening sounds to me like a very good idea with targeted limits focused on the biggest payoffs at the lowest costs.

2) Israel has reached death rates similar to round 1 but seems to be leveling off. The rate is relatively low. The Israeli government has new coronavirus management. They are planning on opening air travel, lots of businesses etc... soon. Masks remain enforced. This looks like a good mix to me.

3) Sweden's death rate is continuing to fall - despite no closure. This continues to suggest the possibility of community immunity of some form. I'm not suggesting they did it right. They didn't protect or treat the old, for example. I included a cumulative graph to show the price they paid. Despite their path being one I wouldn't recommend, they are still providing valuable data for the rest of the world. If we can have spread with limited infection doses (masks) and protection for the most vulnerable (trace and isolate elderly breakouts) that may be the fastest way to achieve a controlled virus at the least total cost - particularly in terms of deaths in the hand-to-mouth world due to economic collapse.

Finally, I was sent a note on science. I'm not a science denier. Clearly, our understanding of the virus is growing due to science. Our understanding of treatment is growing due to science. The possibility of a vaccine exists because of science.

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