Yesterday Issues & Insights posted an article about the reporting of the statistics regarding Covid-19.
The article notes:
Once again, the U.S. is undergoing a media-driven COVID-19 scare after a “spike” in infections. But as we noted earlier this week, the number of cases depends on the amount of testing. The key gauge to watch is deaths. They’ve been falling since April, and there’s strong reason to believe they’re lower than the official count suggests.
The dreaded Wuhan virus is no doubt a nasty bug, worthy of our vigilance and ongoing concern. That said, its virulence, as measured by the daily number of deaths, appears to be waning, as the chart with this piece, courtesy of the COVID-19 Tracking Project of the Atlantic, clearly shows.
This is the chart:
Dr. Deborah Birx, the respected physician who heads the Trump administration’s coronavirus team, reportedly argued back in May at a closed Centers for Disease Control meeting that the agency’s death estimates were 25% too high, according to a Washington Post report.
Anecdotal evidence at the state level suggests this is true. In fact, estimates may be off by more than 25%.
A review of Minnesota deaths through late May, for instance, found that of 741 registered COVID-19 deaths, fewer than 41% listed it as a “primary cause.” By that standard, George Floyd, who died in police custody and tested positive for the Wuhan coronavirus, could have been counted as a COVID-19 fatality had his death not been so well publicized.
How could this happen?
In most U.S. jurisdictions, unlike many other countries, if someone dies with COVID-19, that becomes the cause of death for official purposes. That’s true even if it didn’t technically “cause” the person’s death.
But sometimes even not being infected counts. After New York reported its 10,000 fatalities in May, the New York Times revealed that “3,700 additional people who were presumed to have died of the coronavirus … had never tested positive.”
The article concludes:
We bring all this up again to remind you: While this Wuhan bug is dangerous, it is likely not as deadly as advertised. The CDC’s own estimate for what’s called the Infection Fatality Rate (IFR), made early this month, is about 0.26%. The regular flu, by comparison, has an IFR of about 0.1%. So using the government’s own likely inflated COVID-19 death data, the IFR for the Chinese-origin virus is about that of a very bad seasonal flu — and not the 3.4% first estimated.
Subtract the impact of horrendous policy errors in New York, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio caused thousands of nursing home residents to die needlessly, and fatality rates shrink even further.
With COVID-19 infections indeed going up due to more testing, we’ll soon be hearing the same strident voices yelling for a shutdown. But the death rates once used to scare us into an extreme reaction now appear even lower than they do after weeks of decline.
Until our national “experts” can explain to us why we should take these bad numbers seriously, don’t be panicked by phony warnings about possible increases in deaths. Manipulated numbers should never be used to make sweeping public policy decisions. That’s especially true now, with the left looking for any way it can find to shut down the economy again and end Trump’s presidency.
Take care. Wear a mask if you are comfortable wearing one. Stay away from sick people. Don’t hug strangers. Other than that, enjoy life and realize that you are not totally in charge.