Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Thoughts on COVID-19

Standard & Poor's, who rate investment market participants, says the coronavirus "will reduce US GDP growth in the first quarter to just 1 percent, down from a previous forecast of 2.2 percent."

That's huge, considering how much wider the virus could spread. (Hopefully it's enough to damage Trump's reelection chances.) They say "the impact could be more or less severe depending on the longevity and intensity of the outbreak...."

Here are the numbers for coronavirus cases, which is now officially called Covid-19:

Exponential growth is over (if you can believe the numbers). The polynomial fit is a quadratic.

Can we believe the numbers, especially out of China? (China's cases represent 99% of global cases being reported.) But you as well as I have read about Chinese patients roaming around their city sick, turned away at hospital after hospital, only to ultimately be rejected and going home to convalesce there. Only hospital admissions are being counted in China, not any of the rejected.

If that doesn't sound like something right out of The Stand, complete with cold weather in a heavily polluted city, I don't know what does.

Somewhere I can't now find the link to said the mortality rate of this coronavirus is 1%. Maybe that's true if the official statistics are too light. But here's what I find for total deaths as a percentage of total cases -- it's rising:

It is a shame -- and maybe a dangerous shame -- that the world can't count on China to be truthful about what they're up against -- about what is on the verge of becoming a global pandemic.


Besides this, I can't believe the Democrats are so stupid as to nominate Sanders to take on Trump in November. He will get his clock thoroughly cleaned in what really is the most important election of a generation. Same for Buttigieg.


Layzej said...

How do you feel about Bloomberg?

David Appell said...

I'm liking him more than I once did, before I realized Biden wasn't going to get the nomination and Democrats were prepared to slash their throat.

How do you feel about him?

Thomas said...

Regardless of what you feel about Bloomberg as a person, the way he is trying to use his wealth to openly buy the presidency is extremely dangerous.

Victor Venema said...

Isn't it normal for new viruses to become less deadly? Or is that not such a solid rule? I wonder whether epidemiologists would see this as a sign that the numbers are not okay. I guess the numbers would have to be hugely off to be still in the exponential regime.

David Appell said...

Thomas: I hear you. But Bloomberg might be the best answer to a difficult problem. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, etc.

Bloomberg Klobuchar 2020?

David Appell said...

Victor, I don't know about viruses, but two weeks ago The Lancet published a study saying the number of Covid-19 cases was 76,000 when the official count was 761.


Layzej said...

I don't have strong feelings on Bloomberg (or Sanders). What is your objection to Sanders?

David Appell said...

I like most of Sanders' policies. I just don't think he has a prayer of being elected -- the whole "socialist" sign that will be,not without reason, rung around his neck. His honeymoon in the USSR, etc. He's almost the perfect candidate for Trump to run against. Even though I like his radicalism, I don't enough Americans can support that to get him elected.


Layzej said...

I'm not sure I've heard him say anything that radical... You may be right about his chances though.

PaulS said...

I don't know if it's necessarily a matter of truthfulness. The numbers in these kind of events tend to represent confirmed cases rather than estimates of actual cases, which will always be higher, maybe much higher at this stage. I would tend to think organisations tracking these things aren't necessarily working on those numbers exactly.

Layzej said...

Coronavirus: 14,000 new cases in one day after China switches to new detection method.

Layzej said...

Here are the Sanders and Bloomberg climate policies. Sanders has a very ambitious plan. It involves a moratorium on new nuclear power licenses as well as renewals which cripples the plan in my mind.

Bloomberg's plan is very light on specifics. It's more of a wish or a hope.


David Appell said...

Thanks L. I know I should do a better job of writing about the candidates' positions on climate change. It doesn't come as naturally to me as does the science and numbers, but I'll try.

Layzej said...

There's no obligation :)

But since you brought up Sanders I thought I'd look up whether he or his alternative have a good climate plan. If it were up to me I wouldn't go with either plan. Of the two I think Sanders is more committed, but getting rid of nuclear is really not good.