From a Microbiologist

This is a re-share from Facebook.

Caveats:  Don’t know this person personally, it’s on Facebook, Did check profile and seems to be what he says he is.  This is informational only, not the final word on anything.

Re-shared WITHOUT permission at this time, I will attempt to get permission, but in general if someone has shared it to facebook publicly, it’s generally ok to share informational topics to the general public.

From Pat Fidopiastis on Facebook:

As anxiety levels rise due to COVID19 I just wanted to provide some essential context for some of the more alarming information being put out by officials. I have a Ph.D. in microbiology; I teach advanced courses in virus replication and pathogenesis, so if any of my opinions or facts offend you, spare me your Google Searches, you’re not telling me anything I don’t know. We’re in this together now and we must all see it through. But, we don’t need to endure it with any more added stress from the news headlines than is necessary to achieve the end goal. The situation is fluid, so some data and opinions might change going forward.

“COVID19 is 10X deadlier than the flu”.
There is nowhere near enough data to make this claim. Thus, reported case fatality rates are basically just a guess. Patients that have been tested for COVID19 are disproportionately the sickest patients because so far our limited testing capacity is reserved for them. Also, the COVID19 dataset is much smaller than the influenza dataset; bias is far greater in the much smaller COVID19 data set, especially when the calculations are swayed by numbers taken from groups of disproportionally older people stuck on cruise ships. Thus, I’ll bet my Ph.D. that fatality rates will drop dramatically as the overwhelming majority of mild cases are added to the COVID19 data set. Furthermore, COVID19 and flu viruses both have RNA genomes, however COVID19’s genome is non-segmented, while flu viruses have segmented genomes. The advantage of a segmented genome is that if multiple different flu viruses infect the same cell, they can swap genome pieces and create progeny with incredible variation. This is why our seasonal flu vaccines are usually not a good match to the types of flu viruses that are circulating, and why we are dogged by resistance to our flu drugs. It is also why my colleagues and I live in constant fear that a new variant of the flu will emerge that’s even deadlier than the 1918 strain. In contrast, COVID19 has remained relatively genetically stable and therefore should be an excellent vaccine and drug target, and it will be unlikely to surprise us with huge changes in its infection patterns.

“COVID19 spreads more easily than the flu”
There is not enough data to make this claim. The R0 (i.e. number of people each infected person will infect) reported for COVID19 ranges from 1.4 to 3.9 depending on which of the several published papers on the subject you rely on. Meanwhile the R0 for the 2009 H1N1 flu is about 1.5 and seasonal flu varies from 0.9 to 2.1. So, there is enough overlap in published R0 values to wonder which virus actually spreads easier. COVID19 appears to have entered our population back in mid-January when a traveler from Wuhan flew to Washington. As COVID19 spread freely during that time (prior to quarantines), it would have disproportionally struck down the most vulnerable first. Subsequently, human behaviors and fewer susceptible hosts would slow the spread. The dire models simply assume a constant rate of virus encountering highly susceptible hosts, which is never the case. The rate of COVID19 spread in Italy is truly staggering, but for context, there were well over 400,000 new cases of flu in Italy in a single week in January 2020. As of this writing, even though COVID19 was freely circulating for two months without any response, the United States has just about 28,000 identified COVID19 cases and about 400 deaths. There will no doubt be more cases and deaths. However, by comparison, in just the US alone, there were about 300,000 new flu cases per day, and 200 flu-related deaths per day, since October 2019. Not surprisingly, the need to stockpile ventilators for severe flu cases is an annual problem in the US; it’s not just an issue associated with COVID19. The fear of medical rationing during this COVID19 outbreak was the motivation for the “flatten the curve” mantra, in which doctors hoped to spread out patient loads to conserve resources. This fear continues to motivate the increasingly difficult restrictions we are facing.

“This situation is unprecedented.”
Our reaction to COVID19 is unprecedented for sure. However, the outbreak scenario is not unprecedented. Despite President Obama and the CDC’s efforts, the 2009 H1N1 swine flu infected roughly 60 million US citizens, resulting in about 274,000 serious hospitalizations (the high-end estimate is over 400,000 in the US), hundreds of pediatric deaths in the US, and at least 13,000 total US deaths (the high-end CDC estimate is over 18,000 deaths in the US). As that pandemic burned through the world, does anyone remember the level of fear and anxiety that we’re experiencing now? Clearly, we did not learn anything about pandemic preparedness because there have been between 140,000-800,000 hospitalizations and between 20,000 to 80,000 flu deaths each year in the US since 2009. Based on this year’s flu data, the US had roughly 300,000 new infections per day, and around 200 deaths per day since October 2019. The number of COVID19 deaths in Italy is frightening, but for context, a published paper on flu-related deaths in Italy revealed that between 2013 and 2017 there were a total of 68,000 deaths, with an average of 17,000 flu-related deaths per year in that time frame. We have a flu vaccine and oseltamivir, yet the WHO estimates there are about 500,000 flu deaths world-wide each year. Apparently, we’ve just decided to accept those numbers year after year. Amazingly, the staggering toll that the flu takes on us each year isn’t enough to motivate us to significantly increase funding for vaccine research, purchase more ventilators, or add more hospital beds; it took something “novel” to instill the level of fear that might motivate these improvements going forward.

COVID19 is “novel”
This is true. It’s clear from the COVID19 genome sequence that this is indeed a virus that only recently made the jump from an animal host to humans. However, related “mild” coronaviruses infect millions world-wide every year, with significant death rates among the elderly, and comprise a significant proportion (up to 11%) of lower respiratory hospitalizations in the US each year. So, while COVID19 is novel, as a group, coronaviruses are not novel.

“COVID19 remains viable in aerosols and surfaces for hours to days”
There is now published data to support specific claims about how long COVID19 remains viable on surfaces. However, there is a difference between “viability” and ability to cause disease in humans. First, it is important to note that details of the environment matter. To simply say that “COVID19 is viable on surfaces for days” oversimplifies the data. For example, small increases in temperature and humidity seem to dramatically interfere with COVID19 viability on surfaces. In order to conduct these experiments, researchers spray huge numbers of viruses onto a surface under defined environmental conditions, remove samples at regular intervals, and then attempt to resuscitate the viruses under ideal conditions in lab culture. In an actual outbreak scenario, in order for a virus sneezed onto a surface to infect a person, it would not only have to endure the environmental stress, but the potentially weakened (albeit viable) virus would then have to endure the various human immune system defenses in order to cause infection. COVID19 has a flimsy outer coating that is highly vulnerable to damage due to environmental stress. This means that just because a virus on a surface can be resuscitated under ideal conditions in a lab does not mean it is able to cause disease in humans. As with death rates, and other information being disseminated by officials, you’re getting worst case scenarios in order to encourage everyone to stick to the plan. However, even knowing that this is a worst-case scenario, properly wiping down surfaces with a disinfectant and practicing good hygiene should be something we do all the time, not just when we’re frightened during a pandemic.

“COVID19 can spread while you are asymptomatic”
This appears to be true and can complicate efforts to control the spread of COVID19. However, asymptomatic spread is true of many pathogens, which is why we should always be mindful of basic levels of hygiene, not just during a pandemic. For example, my students and I sampled college students for a highly communicable pathogen with a death rate of about 20%, responsible for at least 15,000 deaths annually and billions of dollars in added healthcare costs in the US. We detected asymptomatic carriage in 24% of the healthy population, and the strains were resistant to some of the strongest antibiotics we have. How many of us showing the worst side of humanity by overrunning grocery stores and hoarding food and supplies because of a theoretical COVID19 infection knows whether you’re an asymptomatic carrier of the killer we detected in so many healthy young people? Again, basic hygiene at all times and not just during pandemics is our best weapon.

“Nearly 40% of hospitalized COVID19 patients are aged 20-54”
This statistic is based on a cohort of 508 hospitalized patients, in which 38% (about 200) fell into the 20-54 age range. The vast majority (or likely all) of these individuals will recover but because they require resources, this is still a significant statistic. This information is being emphasized probably in response to images of college-aged Spring Breakers openly flouting the latest quarantine orders. The point is that there is still risk, even if you are younger. However, for context, nearly 500 children died of the flu during the 2018-19 flu season, and there were about 2,500 deaths in the 18-49 age range.

“The virus spreads by aerosols, hand to mouth contact with contaminated saliva, and hand to mouth contact with fecal material”
The virus targets ACE2 receptors, which can be found in the mouth, nose, gut, and lungs, so it has the potential for multiple entry points. Thus, each of these suggested transmission routes is supported. This is a strong reason to rely, first and foremost, on hygiene to inactivate and/or remove viruses on skin and inanimate surfaces to minimize the chances of transmission. Aerosol transmission might be mitigated by practicing “distancing” whenever possible, but this approach is simply not a good long-term solution. Notably, certain human behaviors, such as smoking or vaping, can damage the immune response in the lungs and increase the chance of a more serious COVID19 infection. Thus, countries like China with risk factors such as an aging population, cities with unhealthy air quality, and enormous numbers of smokers, are far more likely to have worse outcomes in this COVID19 pandemic.

“The pandemic will last 18 months or longer”
This is possible, but I doubt it. The dire mathematical models that are driving our response to the virus are based on extreme worst-case scenarios in order to force compliance and hopefully end this pandemic as quickly as possible. Still, rather than fret over worst-case models, it is more useful from a “sanity” perspective to look at outcomes in countries that are more like the United States. The first COVID19 case was confirmed in S. Korea on Jan 20, and as of this writing, the number of new cases slowed from nearly 1000 at its peak to about 70. Importantly, according to a recent news report,“S. Korea is experiencing these dramatic drops without locking down entire cities or taking some of the other authoritarian measures used by China to bring down its number of cases.” Apparently, the key to S. Korea’s positive outcome has been expanded testing to quickly identify new cases. To counter balance the dire predictions about the disease, there are equally dire predictions about the long-term effects of quarantines. Here’s a sample of some of the recent headlines: “Domestic violence calls increase as people shelter in place during COVID-19 outbreak”. “Job losses could quickly soar into the millions as coronavirus craters U.S. economy.” “Gun sales surge as coronavirus pandemic spreads.” “Covid-19 positive patient jumps to death in Delhi”. “The threat of quarantine looming over sick workers and school closures threatening food access and child-care shortfalls”, “The lack of paid sick leave for tens of millions of workers could be catastrophic for low-income families“, “The Economic Impact Of COVID-19 Will Hit Minorities The Hardest”. Another thing that fear will do is drive more people to go to the hospital with even the slightest symptoms, which the vast majority would not do during a normal flu season. This not only increases the spread of the virus, it will overrun hospitals, just as it drove people to selfishly wipe out supplies at stores.

The question that we have to ask ourselves is how did we get to a place where epidemic preparedness is an after-thought, yet there’s always money for massive increases in military spending? Why is it that public health officials are contacting me and my colleagues for molecular biology supplies to conduct COVID19 testing, and asking us to step in as volunteers in the event that case-loads get overwhelming? It is a constant struggle to get average citizens to stay focused on outbreak preparedness beyond each sensational news cycle. Who even thinks about Zika virus anymore? What do all of us need to do every day, not just during a pandemic, to limit the frequency of severity of disease spread? Why was it so hard for the wealthiest country in the world to rapidly mobilize our resources to develop test kits to quickly identify and quarantine people infected with the disease? I taught my 9 and 12-year old children to conduct PCR-based COVID19 testing, so it’s not an issue of technical difficulties, it’s just a matter of properly funding the problem in order to scale up resources. Decision makers in our government deemed this preparedness approach too expensive; they are all quickly learning that the costs of our current unsustainable response will be devastating. In the end, our lack of preparedness has resulted in decision-making based on limited data, painting a picture of extreme worst-case scenarios. In turn, once we move past COVID19, we’ll no doubt end up dealing with the fallout from decisions that were just as bad as the problem we were trying to solve.

National Emergency or Breaking the Constitution

In the US Constitution resides a clause basically making it illegal for the government of the US or any State to deny access to any citizens to any other state.  This is called the “Privileges and Immunities Clause” (aka “Comity Clause”).  The Constitution also contains the 14th Amendment, which will get to a bit later.

The clause states: No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities…

The Privileges and Immunities Clause as set forth in Article 4, Section 2 dictates that states may not prevent citizens from their basic rights according to that which is exhibited by civil rights statutes. In such a way, any discriminatory practices whatsoever are not tolerated. In order to be more specific, it states that citizens of all locales will be made eligible for the attainment of such outlined “privileges and immunities” set forth for all citizens.

Essentially, the Privileges and Immunities Clause prevents a state from treating citizens of other states in a discriminatory manner. Additionally, a right of interstate travel may plausibly be inferred from the clause (this is not limited to ‘interstate highways’ either, but may involve any mode of transportation, including bicycle, car, boat, airplane, bus, etc). The Privileges or Immunities Clause is Amendment XIV, Section 1, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution. Along with the rest of the Fourteenth Amendment, this clause became part of the Constitution on July 9, 1868. Text of the clause.

The Fourteenth Amendment to the U. S. Constitution reads:

Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

The point here is clear, the states have no legal right to deny access to their state for any reason.

Except….. States DO have police power functions to protect the health, safety, and welfare of persons within their borders. To control the spread of disease within their borders, states have laws to enforce the use of isolation and quarantine. (Quarantine Laws)

What they can not do, is deny entry to a state based on claims of “stopping communicable diseases” based on “license plates on cars” such as Florida has attempted to do. (Florida I-95 shut down)

Of course, they can certainly (and they did) stop traffic entering the state at Georgia, and “take everyone’s temperature”.  Which accomplished blocking up traffic for miles and miles.  People trying to get home to Florida, or to their other residence (remember, a lot of people have more than one place to live and stay).

Gov. Ron DeSantis said the purpose of the new checkpoint on I-95 south is to check for people coming from the New York City area — where there were more than 33,700 confirmed cases of COVID-19, as of Sunday — and help slow the spread of the deadly virus in Florida.

“Initially I was concerned about doing this because I don’t want there to be a backup,” DeSantis said during a news conference Saturday. “But they’re doing it in a great way where the trucks are going through. We’re not worried about that. We’re just worried about the people fleeing some of those areas.”

We get it.  They want to slow the passage of this disease.  They don’t want to STOP it, but slow it.  There’s almost no way to stop it now, based on the fact we didn’t close the airlines immediately.  So, it’s going to be passed along.

We get it. We don’t want to over run medical abilities to mitigate this, or the number of beds, respirators needed and so forth.

But, common sense…. right?

Wrong. North Carolina’s Dare County, the Outer Banks, the place so many people love to go to see the beaches and ocean, is shut.  It shut down in the middle of March. They blocked road accesses, and cruisers on boats (people who travel from place to place via boat) stated the “police were stopping boaters and turning them around” at first.  It turns out they no authority to stop traffic in the Intracoastal Waterway (a Federal jurisdiction).  Sailors/Cruisers, in general, when traveling are not exposed to diseases as easily as those who are coming in contact with their co-workers constantly, for instance. They tend to remain on their boats for days and weeks at a time. (Dare County)

More common sense? No.

On Oak Island, North Carolina, the Mayor, Ken Thomas has “decreed”  a ban on the sale and possession of “dangerous weapons”, and that police will ticket people who “are non-residents” for going on the beach.  “Some for me, none for thee” mentality?  Yes.  (Here is the ACTUAL statute, that the little island community MUST, but is not, following: (nc Enacted Legislation Chapter_166A/GS_166A-19.31.html)

The following links to the article int he Port City Daily news, a local paper in the area.

https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2020/03/30/oak-island-allows-beach-access-to-residents-but-not-visitors-prompting-discrimination-questions/

Local areas are, we understand, just simply attempting to protect human life.  We get that.  But, such restrictions on who can and can not “go to the beach” and “congregate” are discriminatory in the least, and against all manner of Constitutional right in the most.  And the state law is SPECIFIC in what local governments can and can’t do.  Oak Island and Dare County are BOTH going against those laws.  (see the enacted legislation link above).

A fairly large number of people who live in the area of Southport, NC, Oak Island and St. James are people from New York, New Jersey and the New England states.  The complaint on their local gossip site on Facebook have begun, complaining about the “New York Plates” and “Stay home” and similar remarks.

One man suggested “Blowing the bridges” (up) and blocking access.  Others are taking pictures of license plates and posting them on the Internet.

So – what has this declared pandemic wrought?  The kindergarten mentality of “tell on your neighbor”, “Big Brother” and “Let’s punish those we think are breaking a law”.

Classic Societal Breakdown has begun.

On the face of it, people want to protect themselves.  They want to protect their families. We get it.  We do too, but not at the risk of losing our society, our way of life, and our freedoms.

The access to those beaches and coastal areas are already limited by developers, and by ‘powerful people’ who want their ‘views un-compromised’ by anchored vessels near the waterway.  Or by people parking to walk on the beach for an hour.

We have to question how someone walking on a beach is going to spread a virus in the sun shine and salt air.  No, this is bigger, this is the mentality of “we don’t want to just protect our families, we want to deny access to anyone who isn’t from around here.”

This is precisely what these small towns along the coast are doing, too. Both Outer Banks and Oak Island love the tourists, they have a lot of rental properties for the “Spring Breakers” and others who come down every summer to spend time here.  They enjoy the money, and complain about the tourists.  How is that a good thing?

It’s not. But until the Federal Government steps in and says “You can’t do that!” they will continue.

At this end of all this, lies a light at the end of the tunnel.  A return to normalcy, but how far that track runs and whether that light is the other side, or an on-coming freight train, we have yet to find out.

President Trump has extended the “Social Distancing” guidelines until the end of April, another, FULL month.  For most, it has been about two weeks and the mental break down of some of these people has begun.

Those of us who have always advocating “prepping” (and many years ago, we were called “Survivalists”) understand “social distancing”, we always have.  We also prepared for things like this, but even so, many will have to, in a month, or soon after, go out for food, supplies, or something like… toilet paper.  (Not all preppers keep a year’s supply either….)

Watching this ‘apocalypse’ unfold before our eyes is both ‘enlightening’ as well as ‘terrifying’.  The thing we expected is coming true, but it’s not a natural disaster as most of us envision.  It’s not a world war, as many believed.  It’s not nuclear annihilation, as may thought.

No, it’s a virus, something you can’t see but makes you sick.  And no one knows who has it, because there’s a two week incubation period and you are likely contagious before you show symptoms.  That in and of itself is enough to stress out the calmest prepper, let alone people who have no idea what “prepping” is about.

Our advice is simple; stay home.  If you’ve not shown any signs of being ill for the two week period, then there’s no reason to stay in any longer.  If you have not isolated for two weeks, then, do it.  If you are sick, do NOT go out at all.   This applies to everyone.

The second piece of advice, is mind your own business.  Stay out of your neighbors face, business, stop taking pictures of their license plates and complaining on the Internet.  Don’t act like a “Kindergartner”.  Doing so is bad for your mental health and it’s bad for everyone else’s mental health – and eventually it will lead to bad health for everyone in the long run–when you create bad feelings, bad neighbors and create a bad name for yourself.

Side note and article.  When did this virus begin, and why is it important…. Read more at the link below.

https://www.conservativereview.com/news/horowitz-coronavirus-begin-us-matters/

A tale of two maps

At first, I wanted to think I was wrong. But now, it’s easy to compare. The Governor of North Carolina just announced that we have a “Stay at home” order starting on Monday.  Well, I’m an American, I’m a Veteran, I’m an old guy who is intent on staying alive, and staying in shape.

I refuse to “stay at home”.  Now, I think anyone sick should stay home. I think anyone with this virus or flu, ought to stay home (anyway).  I think if you are immune compromised, you ought to stay home.  I think if you’re over 60 and in poor health, stay the hell home.

The first map is the states currently CLOSED, with stay at home orders. The yellow means businesses are closed….  North Carolina is in Yellow at the moment, they close all the pubs, bars, restaurants over a week ago (Tuesday, 17 March 2020)

Map One – 27 Mar 2020

 

The Second map is showing in blue, all of the DEMOCRAT GOVERNORS. The RED is Republican.

Map Two – Dem vs Rep Governors

For the most part, the only states with “you’re confined to your house” are, in my words,  CommieCrats.

They are TESTING the WATERS friends.  If this were across the board, and the Republicans were doing it too, I might be less concerned.  But, at this point…. if they can get away with this, and force you to stay home, then they can force you to do anything they want. This is a test.

You’re going to fail.

You’re going to fail because most of the states have almost no cases, and if they do they are at home, or in the hospital, and it’s been two weeks of this…..

I do NOT plan to “stay home” or “inside”.  I’m NOT sick. I’ve been “quarantined already” for two weeks now.  Tuesday will be the 15 days.  I’ve had NO close contacts with anyone since the 17th other than my wife.  We’ve not been in physical contact with anyone.  I’ve been careful, washing hands, cleaning up after me, and her, and others, using hand sanitizer.  If I get this virus now… then it was not because I was not careful.

Just because I am OUT and ABOUT does not mean I’m going to get sick.

It does NOT mean I am going to catch something from some random person.

We have less than 700 people in this state (North Carolina) (allegedly) confirmed to have this virus. We’ve had 7 deaths so far.

We have a .45% mortality rate at this time.

Yes, I KNOW it could get worse.  I KNOW people can die from it.  But, they can die from getting hit by a bus.  They can die if they starve to death because “No job, no work, no money”….

Stop letting these States push you AROUND.

2A or not 2A – Sorry, Bill Shakespeare

The Covid-19, a corona virus unknown until present, has taken up all the news of late.  As well it should.

The human race and our survival is suddenly at stake.  Our rights are suppressed.  Our freedoms, suppressed.  Some states are attempting to introduce more laws against guns, gun makers, ammo, restrictions on guns and on people owning those things.

Several groups, including the III% United Patriots – or 3UP, have been clamoring for “action” against the government apparently.  Some of those people have threatened force “if all the boxes are checked”, including quarantine, etc.

This Patriot believes that, while we certainly need to maintain our rights, and stand up for them, and make it CLEAR to any local and state government that attempting to restrict our Freedoms is a no-go, also believes that at least we should also use common sense, and our God Given Talents at understanding what is really happening.

A) This virus is highly suspected to have been manufactured right there in Wuhan, China, where there is certainly a bioweapons lab.  SUSPECTED is a strong word.  It means we have intelligence on this from somewhere.  We have arrested several in connection with stealing information, lying about it, and attempting to smuggle vials out of the country.  All of them are connected to the Chinese government, one is a spy/military agent, a second a smuggler, and a third, American biomedical professor from Harvard, who, spent time in China and was being paid by the Chinese and lied about it.

B) The virus was already “floating around” in places and it hit Italy around the same time, but with more virility than it did in Wuhan.  Wuhan, and China put the kabosh on it quickly, locking people up, dragging them out and into the street, putting them in sealed, metal boxes and taking them to God Knows Where.  China, rapidly got the virus under control – because they are communists, and they will just kill anyone who doesn’t comply.

C) Italy isn’t so lucky.  They are number one on the infected/dead lists.  Italy also has a huge tourism industry, and more Chinese visit Italy than any other country.  Thus, it is not surprising, Italy caught the brunt of the disease, and they waited too long to take extreme measures.

D) Some of us believe the Chinese hid the details of this virus for up to thirty days before releasing information to the world, and it was an attempt to spread, rather than confine this disease.

E) Novel Corona Virus is actually called “2019 nCoV”,  Scientists gave the strain an interim name of 2019-nCoV, accounting for the year of discovery, its status as a “novel” virus, and its family name (CoV).  The new designation, while different, represents the same information.  I’ll just call it “The Chinese Virus” because it pisses off the Left, and everyone is claiming it is “Racist”.  In the past, diseases, foods, and many other things have been named for regions from which they originated.  I’ll stick to the “Old Ways”.

F) I believe this “Chinese Virus” was in fact a bioweapon designed specifically to attack humans, remain undetected for several days while carriers (the people infected) passed it on to many more people.  No other virus does this.  You get an infection, you start getting symptoms and are contagious.  This one is different, thus, man made.  It was designed to be passed rapidly and on a 1:2 or 1:5 basis.  Flu and cold virus have a near 1:1. You get it it, you pass it to one other.  When you pass it on a 1:2 factor, then they do the same, the mathematics tell you we’re in trouble.

G) Simple math.  I have the virus, and pass it to two, so we have 2 people, who pass to two more.  That is 2^2 (or 2 to the second power, four).  If this happens each day for 30 days, each of the persons passing to two more people, the total number of infected becomes: 1073741824 in just 30 days.  In two months, or 60 days that number jumps to 1.152921505×10¹⁸ or 115,292,150,500,000,000 – more people than live on Planet Earth.

H) We assume that only two are infected from each person.  We assume it goes unchecked for 60 days.  We assume everyone can catch it.  We assume no one is doing anything to stop it.  Obviously, we are, as are the people in other countries.  The problem arises though, that some are being completely overwhelmed, like Italy.  There are only so many hospital beds.

I) Given the fact this disease causes pneumonia-like respiratory problems and many (but not all) of the patients require at the peak of the disease, artificial breathing assistance from respirators (requiring intubation-the process of putting a tube over ones trachea tube and machine-breathing for them) we will see a time when hospital beds run out, there will be not enough respirators, and not enough medical professionals to assist the ill.  People will simply die from lack of care.  The death toll will increase dramatically.

Americans are used to freedoms, they are used to coming and going as they wish, and it’s a good freedom, it should NEVER be willingly given up.

HOWEVER, this is the entire human race we’re talking about here, and the whole “social distacing” thing they’ve come up with is a way to prevent us all from coming in to direct contact with others and thereby spreading the disease.

This isn’t about over reaching governments stopping people from having meetings.

This is about the survival of the entire human race at this point.

So… it’s not about 2A or not 2A;  it is about “To Be, or Not to Be…”

Stay home.  Don’t spread this disease.  Don’t come in contact with others.  Give it a few days.

The economy IS going to suffer for a time.  We’re going to go without certain things, for a time.  Life is GOING to be tough for a time – at least for the non-Preppers out there.

We do not have the ability to clone humans yet.  Pray we don’t have to do that, or, we become extinct because of lack of common sense on this planet.  Go home, stay there, watch television or better yet, turn it off and spend time with your loved ones.

Tomorrow is not promised, friends.

Survival is imperative, not socially drinking with your friends tonight.

 

A Different Kind of Climate Change

As a long time prepper – of decades, I’ve always been a firm believer in keeping necessary food supplies to last a small (or in our case, large) family able to survive without having to leave the house for months at a time.

When our kids were all young, my wife and I put together a large pantry in the basement of our home in Colorado.  We kept large packing tubs lined with food-safe plastic, full of beans, rice, flour, sugar, pastas, and shelves of canned food.

We didn’t go out and clear shelves in the supermarket.  We bought a little extra each time.  My wife was very good about doing it.  We rotated the food stocks, and everything she bought, we used and ate.  We didn’t buy things that we could never use, like “a ten year’s supply of freeze dried survival foods” from one of the guys who keep pushing that crap on people (because, they make MONEY off you if you buy it).

The climate has changed lately.  No, not “Climate Change” but a change in the world.  A pall of ignorance has fallen over society.  You would think that with the ability to see the news 24/7/365, collect and read so much data off the Internet, and study things for yourselves, people would be smarter, kinder, less prone to flights of fancy and even, one would hope, have more common sense.

But, no.  The advent of the Internet has dumbed down the human race to the point of drooling grass eaters.  Collective IQs have dropped, common sense has become so rare in any given group of people that you can rarely find anyone who can hold a political conversation without screaming and crying.   Along comes CoVid19….

When the Novel Corona Virus 19 was first announced in the news, it didn’t make a huge splash, not at first.  Then videos started coming out allegedly from Wuhan, China, of people “dropping dead” on the streets.  Plenty of sensationalism.  But, none of the videos were ever really “confirmed” to be real, and not “made up”.

In the past month now it has “spread like wildfire” (according to the news).

In truth, what has actually spread like wildfire was the stupidity of people, ignorance and misinformation.

 

Instead of taking an attitude that “something could happen” and being prepared, people take the laisser-faire attitude of “The stores have what I need, why bother to get extra stuff? I’ll just pick it up when we run out!”

Well, now you’re out.  The stores are out. The Just-in-Time chain has failed.  Trucks aren’t coming in.  This is the crap we’ve been predicting will happen, for decades.  You had been warned.  Now, fools and morons have broken the whole system.  Not everyone, but a FEW people did this.  Not everyone ran out and bought all the toilet paper and hand sanitizer.

Now, the looting will start in a few days.

Maybe.  I hope it doesn’t but, imagine this.  Power goes out a few days.  The grid nationwide goes down.  You can’t get gas, you can’t get anywhere, food is all gone.  You’re stuck at home and everyone is running out of food because the stores have been looted.  Where are the looters going after they get hungry?  Door-to-door, that’s where.  Every house and home in any neighborhood will be victimized.

Store shelves are empty, food is almost gone, and nothing seems to be coming in.  This is happening now, and these are actual images from a Walmart Store in Colorado Springs, on the south east side of the city.

Now, imagine that this virus IS actually dangerous, even deadly and these roving bands of vandals are carrying it, spreading it everywhere.

Where do we wind up with this lesson?

Simple.

  1. do NOT get out of the market if you’re in it.  If not, BUY!
  2. Don’t panic.  The virus is not as BAD as the media wants you to believe.
  3. It never WAS that bad.
  4. The virus isn’t spreading like they claimed it was in China (yet) but the US has taken steps.
  5. People ARE washing their hands.
  6. People are stealing toilet paper – seriously?
  7. Some enterprising idiots are trying to sell Purell for hundreds of dollars for a small bottle on Ebay.
  8. Don’t feed the feeding frenzy.  If you’re scared, stay the hell home.
  9. Don’t let this ever happen to you again, always prepare. Start small, and work your way into Prepping.

And for God’s Sake, wash your DAMNED HANDS.

CoronaVirus – This is why we Prep

Never let them make fun of you as a Prepper, or Survivalist.  NEVER allow them to take your Rights.

We prep because we can, because we believe the world is a place filled with evil people, and because the Universe is NOT going to protect our DNA from random acts of disaster.

This, right here, is why we Prep.

Right now in China, THOUSANDS have been reported to be infected.  Hundreds dead.  Media believes it is being under-reported.  You decide.

Coronavirus Model Predicts 183 Million Infections Before the End of February

There you have it.  183 MILLION people.  I don’t care who they are, Chinese, American, Russian.  They are PEOPLE.  And People caused this crap.  Someone helped this thing mutate, and people are passing it.

It’s a true Pandemic, as it is passed from animals to humans, and is spreading over a wide area.  Someone was concerned it wasn’t a “true pandemic” as they don’t understand the definition.