One of the more infuriating aspects of the lockdown religion has been their incessant desire to credit masks and interventions for the disappearance of the flu. It’s infuriating not just because it’s inaccurate, but because it’s so easily disproven. Even the smallest amount of interest or research is all that’s necessary to point out the impossibility of interventions being responsible for the lack of flu cases. Unfortunately, as we’ve seen, the smallest amount of interest or research is simply too much to ask of those in the media.
This week’s culprit is from Scientific American. Here’s the money quote, from the esteemed experts who now control our lives:
The reason, epidemiologists think, is that the public health measures taken to keep the coronavirus from spreading also stop the flu.
This wildly inaccurate statement can be very easily disproven by looking at the timing of flu outcomes and the similarities in countries with wildly different “public health measures.” So, naturally, the writer shows no interest in questioning the assumptions of epidemiologists, one of society’s least accurate professions.
Japan & Sweden
To begin with, let’s look at Sweden & Japan. Japan has used masks from the beginning of the pandemic with universal compliance. Sweden has had some of the lowest mask wearing rates in the world, with the University of Maryland’s survey showing a peak of around 22% usage with low points in the single digits. Yet flu disappeared in both countries within a few days of each other and has remained at extremely low levels.
Here’s the visual from the UMD survey on the difference in mask wearing between the two countries, with Japan in red and Sweden in blue.
Both countries controlled the flu because of masks, see?
We’ll come back to Sweden, but for now let’s move on the United States.
Here I’ve notated specific moments early on in the pandemic, showing how mask usage was specifically discouraged as flu specimens were falling off a cliff. New flu cases had already reached ~zero by the time the CDC completed the flip flop on masks and recommended cloth face coverings on 4/3/2020.
So mask wearing is so effective that it can make flu disappear even before it’s widely adopted. More impressively, mask wearing can also make flu disappear in countries that have little to no compliance. And it also works in countries with universal mask wearing. It always works. Because it’s magical.
Norway & Sweden
Now let’s go back to Sweden.
Norway and Sweden are neighbors and have had wildly disparate COVID outcomes. Per data from The New York Times, Norway’s had a mortality rate of 14 per 100,000 people, while Sweden’s is 136 per 100k. There’s also a similar gap in case rates, with Sweden reaching 9,408 per 100k and Norway only 2,101, as of 4/30/21. Yet both saw flu disappear at the same time and never re-appear, regardless of how effective or ineffective their COVID mitigations supposedly were.
It’s important in this example to pause here and point out here the similarities in transmission dynamics with COVID and flu. After much debate, it’s become fairly clear that COVID and flu have similar transmission dynamics, with aerosols likely being primarily responsible for both. So if public health measures are effective at controlling one, they should be similarly effective in controlling the other. And yet Norway and Sweden have both been able to “control” the flu, yet had very different levels of success against COVID. Given the similarities in transmission between the two, how is that possible if “public health measures” were responsible?
Another way to point out the absurdity of attributing success or failure at controlling highly infectious respiratory illnesses to interventions would be to examine differences or similarities in behavior between the two countries. I.e. maybe the Norwegians stayed home more, reduced contact with others, or didn’t go to restaurants as often.
So let’s dig into the actual measured behavior of the two countries, because it’s one thing to ascribe results to interventions, and another to actually look at compliance, right?
From the same UMD International Survey, here’s a measurement of direct contact with others over the past ~5 months in Norway and Sweden. Norway’s in red, Sweden’s in blue. See the huge difference?
How about hand washing? Well apparently the Swedes have been washing their hands significantly more than the Norwegians.
Here’s working outside the home. Nope, nothing there either, Norwegians have spent more time out of the house.
This. This is the big one. This must be it. We’ve heard over and over again that going to restaurants is one of the biggest risk factors in getting COVID. The CDC even did a hilarious “study” about it.
And yet, there’s essentially no difference in restaurant visitation over the past ~five months either.
I could go on and on, but the simple point is that in terms of actual behavior, Norway & Sweden really haven’t been that different. Yet their COVID results are wildly different.
We’re supposed to believe, according to epidemiologists, that public health measures in Norway were totally effective in controlling COVID AND the flu, but with extremely similar behavior, Sweden was ineffective at controlling COVID but just as successful at temporarily eradicating the flu. It strains credulity to the point of impossibility.
One can wonder how many positives for Covid were just the flu?
The influenza virus doesn’t cause positive COVID-19 test results. The tests are specific to COVID-19 antibodies. Were that not so, EVERY COVID-19 test would be positive because everybody already has cold and influenza antibodies. A person would have to have lived in total isolation from the rest of humanity not to have already been exposed to colds or flu.
No one says it does. The question is, how many flu cases were CALLED COVID19 cases. The left politicized every aspect of the epidemic to the point that none of the data can be trusted at face value.
Owing to masks and social distancing, there was no 2020-2021 flu season.
Unless somebody has a alternative theory about what happened to the past flu season, I’ve got to believe that’s evidence that both mask and social distancing strategies reduce the spread of respiratory infections.
Pathetic brother, even the NYT has reported the high false positives when the cycles exceeded 30, and the CDC was recommending 40 cycles. There was also the financial incentive.
If COVID-19 tests were actually producing a very high percentage of false positives, the COVID-19 mortality rate would have to be MUCH HIGHER than anyone believes to account for the 576 thousand U.S. fatalities.
As one who has such expertise please outline why there would be more mortality, there were other experts that predicted 2 to 3 million. You know the technocrats models.
It’s a matter of simple arithmetic.
If the total number who become infected is much lower than the number that positive tests indicate, then COVID-19 must be killing a far higher percentage of those who actually are infected.
The 2 million projection was what could have happened without serious pandemic measures. Even with them, we’ve still lost 576 thousand US residents. What do you think would have happened without social distancing, masks, and the closure of crowded public settings? It IS a highly contagious viral disease.
PCR testing of over 30 cycles for COVID-19 in the US – are too sensitive and need to be adjusted down several cycles to rule out people who have insignificant amounts of the virus in their systems because they’re likely not contagious.
So, you’re 180 degrees wrong, Greg.
MOST people who had tested “positive” were not contagious because they had such a small amount in their systems!
The survival rate is even greater.
It is well over 99%.
That’s way better than the rate of suicidal depression we are learning about in our children who are being kept out of school, the business people being shut down and the vast swath of unemployed people who’ve been thrown into total poverty.
“So, you’re 180 degrees wrong, Greg.”
Comrade Greggie is not here to present you with correct information or to defend the truth. He is here solely to promote his Marxist philosophy, hoping someone might just buy into it. Nor is he here to admit when he is wrong. When proven wrong, he just moves on to another thread to provide us with more of his Marxist lies and bullshit.
I suspect the cognitive dissonance that delusional parents are creating in their children by pitting their party’s disinformation, false news, divisional politics, and increasing levels of paranoia against consensus reality is behind a lot of depression. Children shouldn’t have to deal with such pressures.
“I suspect the cognitive dissonance that delusional parents are creating in their children by pitting their party’s disinformation, false news, divisional politics, and increasing levels of paranoia against consensus reality is behind a lot of depression.”
Another fine example of nothing but psycho-babble bullshit from Comrade Greggie.
I’m surprised he had time to post today. After all, it is May Day, the Communist’s national holiday and there are marches all over. I thought he would be out marching trying to bring about Communism so he could help them rack up more millions dead.
“Another fine example of nothing but psycho-babble bullshit from Comrade Greggie.”
It might sound like babble to anyone who can’t figure out what the sentence means, but that isn’t really your problem. You just don’t like what it means, and have no good argument against it.
Your psycho babble is just that, babble, not meant to have an direct meaning and can be interpreted to mean anything someone wants it to mean. It’s called “wordsmithing” and is just another lame bunch of crap that you always push out.
Ah, kitt, Nan? Don’t feed the energy creature.
Masks have been shown to be totally useless and irreverent.
“Masks have been shown to be totally useless and irreverent.”
NOTHING OF THE SORT HAS BEEN SHOWN. In fact, THE EXACT OPPOSITE has been clearly demonstrated to be the truth.
You’re propagating disinformation, and it’s the sort of disinformation that leads people into dangerous behavior, not just for themselves but for those around them.
People can either believe the disinformation that Trump and his supporters have spread—for no other reason that pig-headed contrariness—or they can believe vetted expert medical opinion based upon multiple scientific studies like the following, which was published February 10, 2021 in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The studies upon which the conclusion is based leave NO ROOM FOR DOUBT that masks are an effective measure for reducing the spread of COVID-19:
Effectiveness of Mask Wearing to Control Community Spread of SARS-CoV-2
Well, this article pretty much shows it, and others…
No matter what the data shows, mask devotees still worship their masks
CDC, masks and shutdowns, <2.0% benefit
How effective are masks? There is no proof they are effective at all
CDC takes a stab at justifying masks… and fails
If only masks worked… that would be nice.
Dr. Fauci says to wear two or three masks… then says there’s no data to support that
Your "study" shows that places where masks were worn showed no spread of the virus, but the other studies show little or no spread of the virus were NO masks are worn. The other studies show COMPARISONS of masks and no masks and regions that are open and not masked did as well or better than your closed-off, freedom-suppressed Democrat utopias.
ALL the misinformation comes from the left. From, "Don't listen to Trump, PARTY ON!" to "HCQ will KILL YOU!!" to "I'll never take a vaccine developed under Trump" to "If you don't obey our arbitrary mandates, you'll die and kill everyone else in the bargain!!", Democrats have done nothing but lie about the epidemic to grab POWER. Power is all they've cared about. Don't forget the murderer Cuomo was going to be your next President. The greater the lie, the more popular the liar.