Intelligent Design

Pass me a Corona! II

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The comments to the original Pass me a Corona! post are closed. Additional comments on that topic should be posted below. I will start this post with PaV’s last comments to the prior post [i.e., everything that follows is PaV, not Barry].

Today the paywall for a Spectator USA article has been lifted. The article is by a retired pathologist who worked as a pathologist for the NHS in the UK, Dr. John Lee. I mentioned his article yesterday.

Every point he makes parallels arguments I’ve made here, though not so much the time period of death–though this, too, parallels a concern over “excess deaths.”

Here are some relevant comments:

The distinction between dying ‘with’ COVID-19 and dying ‘due to’ COVID-19 is not just splitting hairs. Consider some examples: an 87-year-old woman with dementia in a nursing home; a 79-year-old man with metastatic bladder cancer; a 29-year-old man with leukemia treated with chemotherapy; a 46-year-old woman with motor neurone disease for two years. All develop chest infections and die. All test positive for COVID-19. Yet all were vulnerable to death by chest infection from any infective cause (including the flu). COVID-19 might have been the final straw, but it has not caused their deaths.

Here’s a comment that might well be directed at the deaths we see coming out of Italy and Spain. Are these deaths due to a variety of causes but simply attributed, blindly, to the SARS-CoV-2 virus?

Next, what about the deaths? Many UK health spokespersons have been careful to repeatedly say that the numbers quoted in the UK indicate death with the virus, not death due to the virus — this matters. When giving evidence in parliament a few days ago, Prof. Neil Ferguson of Imperial College London said that he now expects fewer than 20,000 COVID-19 deaths in the UK but, importantly, two-thirds of these people would have died anyway. In other words, he suggests that the crude figure for ‘COVID deaths’ is three times higher than the number who have actually been killed by COVID-19. (Even the two-thirds figure is an estimate — it would not surprise me if the real proportion is higher.)

If we take Ferguson literally, does this mean that the actual number of deaths worldwide due to SARS-CoV-2 is not 35,000, but around 12,000? Will we ever know? The people responsible for finding this out are the same people who might have been gigantically wrong about their numbers. What would be their motivation to prove how incompetent they were?

It should be noted that there is no international standard method for attributing or recording causes of death. Also, normally, most respiratory deaths never have a specific infective cause recorded, whereas at the moment we can expect all positive COVID-19 results associated with a death to be recorded. Again, this is not splitting hairs. Imagine a population where more and more of us have already had COVID-19, and where every ill and dying patient is tested for the virus. The deaths apparently due to COVID-19, the COVID trajectory, will approach the overall death rate. It would appear that all deaths were caused by COVID-19 — would this be true? No. The severity of the epidemic would be indicated by how many extra deaths (above normal) there were overall.

Let me point out that this very problem is what has been going on now for over thirty years in the case of HIV. This is exactly how HIV/AIDS is defined. And Dr. John Lee says this is wrong. He’s a pathologist. So, Dr. Fauci, in charge of HIV/AIDS for over thirty years has been employing a definition for HIV/AIDS that is wrong, not true. Is it any wonder, then, that we are in this quandry?

Today, Fauci is quoted as saying that the number of deaths he expects from CoVid-19 is between 100,000 and 200,000. No way that is going to happen. Are the blind leading the blind?

Here’s a fresh perspective on numbers:

Let me finish with a couple of examples. Colleagues in Germany feel sure that their numbers are nearer the truth than most, because they had plenty of testing capacity ready when the pandemic struck. Currently the death rate is 0.8 percent in Germany. If we assume that about one-third of the recorded deaths are due to COVID-19 and that they have managed to test a third of all cases in the country who actually have the disease (a generous assumption), then the death rate for COVID-19 would be 0.08 percent. That might go up slightly, as a result of death lag. If we assume at present that this effect might be 25 percent (which seems generous), that would give an overall, and probably upper limit, of death rate of 0.1 percent, which is similar to seasonal flu.</blockquote. Let’s note that 0.08% is less than the mortality of seasonal flu. That’s how this entire thread started. Is the Deep State at work again?

This thread began on March 18th. Total number dead on that date: 150. Twelve days later–almost two weeks, the number is 2613. So, 2,470 people died in an almost two week period.

And how many have died of seasonal flu since Feb 28th? 4,000–as of March 19th.

We’re being had.

437 Replies to “Pass me a Corona! II

  1. 1
    rhampton7 says:

    Does PaV still believe that “we’re being had”?

  2. 2
    orthomyxo says:

    Bizarrely, he seems to. This post was from earlier today.

    I am not sure there is any way to get through to someone who thinks the total deaths doubling four times in two weeks during is evidence that this epidemic will be relatively minor.

  3. 3
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @rhampton in a few minutes the global death toll is going to hit 37,000, and we know that’s an undercount.

    You are not a person I would say is being misled by propaganda.

  4. 4
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Several hundred more Americans have now died from the coronavirus than died in 9/11.

  5. 5
    MatSpirit says:

    Go to church, PaV. This is all a hoax. God will protect you.

  6. 6
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    JVL
    March 30, 2020 at 11:48 am
    Here’s another approach: if life shows signs of design and viruses are a kind of life (debatable, I know. Debate it. ) then by what criteria can you determine whether COVID-19 is designed or not?

    The virus has RNA, so obviously ID Scientists will calculate the CSI and from that tell us if it’s positive for design or not. It should be a powerful, groundbreaking paper.

  7. 7
    rhampton7 says:

    As of Monday, the state (California) had 1,432 hospitalized, roughly double the number from four days ago. And there are 597 people in intensive care unit beds, roughly triple the 200 who were in those beds four days ago.

  8. 8
    Truthfreedom says:

    Case scenario 1: SARS-Cov-2 encounters a human immune system. Selective pressures acting here: _____
    Case scenario 2: SARS-Cov-2 encounters a drug synthesized using human intelligence and lots of resources. Its numbers are dramatically reduced.
    Selective pressures acting here: _____
    Role of the intelligent agent (human):____

    Tip: Consciousness is an illusion is not a valid answer. You atheists have tried it and failed miserably 🙂
    C’mon, you know it all.
    Explain it to the theists.
    We’re waiting.

  9. 9
  10. 10
    ET says:

    Jim- One thing we know for sure is that no one will tell us how nature didit.

  11. 11
    Latemarch says:

    We are already past the peak.
    COVID 19 Live Updates
    New cases are down. The peak of sick and dying will continue to rise a bit but not for much longer.

  12. 12
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    So . . . what tests could be run to determine if COVID-19 was designed?

    ID scientists just need to do a CSI calculation, duh. It has been asserted in dozens of articles and several books that CSI is the ID method for distinguishing design from not design. Biologists, and Information Theory experts have claimed that CSI is useless garbage, but all ID people need to do to determine design is to give us a good CSI calculation. If they do, it should Blow Away stupid Darwinists.

  13. 13
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Derek Lowe has some right wing politics that I don’t always agree with, but his medical chemistry is always spot on.

    https://blogs.sciencemag.org/pipeline/archives/2020/03/29/more-on-cloroquine-azithromycin-and-on-dr-raoult

  14. 14
    ET says:

    Jim, your ignorance of ID, while amusing, just proves that you are an ass. Those Darwinists can’t even test their own claims.

  15. 15
    ET says:

    Earth to Jim, Chloroquine is being used successfully to save lives from COVID 19. That is REALITY. But I understand why you would want to deny reality.

  16. 16
    kairosfocus says:

    LM, I trust, THE peak, but it may just be this peak. And yes, I find graphs very important. KF

  17. 17
    Ed George says:

    KF and LM, I like graphs as well, but they have to be interpreted with great caution. The Canadian case is a good example, and probably not unique.

    The new cases plots are currently showing a fairly rapid increase. However, knowing the situation on the ground, it took a while for them to get the testing ramped up, but not the sampling. Samples were taken rapidly but there was a backlog in the labs. The delay in reporting was as long as ten days. During this time testing capacity was being ramped. As such, the new cases reported today could have been from samples collected several days ago.

    The other stat used is new deaths. But these suffer from the same flaw. Some progressions are quick, and some slow. And they are not a great indication of the current rate of spread.

    What this means is that we are past the peak before we can detect it.

  18. 18
    Latemarch says:

    KF,
    Not sure that I understand your comment.
    It is true that as we continue to ramp up testing we might move on back up into a second peak of new cases. A peak that has been there all along but not seen because of the limits we set on who we will and will not test. Said criteria will probably change as tests become more available and timely. It remains to be seen.

    In a former life I briefly ran a pathology residency program. We employed a statistician who was very helpful in setting up research protocols and evaluating results. He always said that the first thing to do when looking at the results was to graph the data. If you couldn’t see any difference it wasn’t worth applying the math (torturing the data) trying to ferret out a supposed statistical significance.

  19. 19
    Ed George says:

    LM, I agree that the first step is to graph the data. My daytime job involves reviewing data for inter-laboratory comparisons. On occasion the graph will clearly show bi-modality. But it is at this stage where it becomes necessary to “torture” the data. It would be easy to conclude that the bi-modality is due to different analytical methods being used, which is usually the case. But on more than one occasion, when I plotted the same data against order of sample production, I saw the same bi-modality. The cause was sample inhomogeneity, not analytical method.

    That is why the randomized double-blind clinical trials are so critical to testing the efficacy of a treatment. A simple graph can be dangerously misleading.

  20. 20
    Latemarch says:

    Ed,
    A simple graph can be dangerously misleading.
    Oh boy, can they….still the first step is to graph the data. Apply intelligence (data has no meaning in of itself). Then proceed to torture “;^)

    The chloroquine studies out of France leave much to be desired. As Richard Feynman said “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool.” It’s easy to believe that you’ve found what you’re looking to find. Still I’m intrigued that there does appear to be something there. I’m hoping that the trials in New York are set up better and we should know more soon.

  21. 21
    ET says:

    Good luck telling the dead patient’s relatives that you gave them a placebo instead of the real drug just because you wanted data.

  22. 22
    Latemarch says:

    ET,
    It’s not necessary to compare the treatment you’re interested in to placebo. Most chemotherapy agents for instance are compared to best known treatment.
    They could for instance compare chloroquine to remdesivir another agent with possible effects. Or perhaps chloroquine to plasma infusion from recovered patients. A therapy that has a long track record of working though quite labor intensive and expensive.

    You are assuming that you know the answer to the question before us.

  23. 23
    ET says:

    Umm, there isn’t any known working therapy for covid-19. Boston hospitals are doing the clinical trials with remdesivir. I am not sure what else they are using for a comparison. But chloroquine has already worked. I don’t know the success rate, though.

  24. 24
    Latemarch says:

    ET,
    Umm, there isn’t any known working therapy for covid-19.
    I am unaware whether or not plasma therapy has been tried yet with covid. Plasma infusion does, however, work quite well for a whole host of other virus so will most likely work for covid. It’s just not very useful with large numbers of patients in a pandemic due to the cumbersome and expensive procedure of harvesting and concentrating the plasma.

  25. 25
    ET says:

    I know that they want to try it- plasma. I know they are asking for people who have recovered to donate plasma. But I haven’t read any reports on its use- yeah, pretty meaningless what I haven’t read.

  26. 26
    Ed George says:

    LM

    It’s not necessary to compare the treatment you’re interested in to placebo.

    And clinician trials are voluntary. The people enrolled in them know that they may be given a placebo.

  27. 27
    BobRyan says:

    Influenza kills an average of 500,000 people every year. Are we to shut down the global economy every flu season? There is no quick recovery from the economic hit this has already taken. We are headed into a depression and jobs will not be available. This is the destruction of the middle class the socialists have been salivating over in the United States.
    Socialists see people as nothing more than animals to be controlled and slaughtered as necessary. They have a love affair with mass murderers, like Che Guevara and Mao. The only thing that matters is they helped to reduce the global population. This is why they salivate like Pavlov’s dogs over the number of children murdered through abortions.
    China lies about everything. They are not allowing any independent verification. They can claim anything they wish, but will not allow the WHO to do any testing in any city. Lying is a socialist value, since the ends justify the means.

  28. 28
    kairosfocus says:

    LM, the Spanish Flu in 1918 – 20 came in three waves with Wave 2’s strain the most potent. I gather, this virus already has 2 – 3 strains. In addition, we are looking at the next flu season. My concerns are in part reflecting model projections I see with a possible next wave come Northern Hemisphere Autumn on. So, THIS wave. Where, while the new cases pulse clearly shows a dip beginning (echoed in a flattening of the concave up cumulative cases function), it projects an uptick too, in the linked tabulation for the USA. KF

  29. 29
    kairosfocus says:

    LM & EG: I suggest, that France is not the only relevant data and analysis source. Where, chemical action of the Chloroquine family is on record in the literature for 15 years and Raoult et al have provided a supportive cross check, i.e. we see more or less reliable repetition. With the known ability of the drug to work in vivo, with various ways to insert it and with known manageable toxicity, there is reason to have some confidence. Besides, with the China study at 100 or so and the second Raoult study at 80 [backing up the early study he did], with a clear pattern of effectiveness by the 5-day point, odds that such is by happy accident are extraordinarily low. Yes, further studies are always welcome and important, but we are on a global war footing with an estimate of loss of life potentially up to the level of the European aspect of WW2, 40 millions. That significantly shifts where the point of responsibility to act is.

  30. 30
  31. 31
    Barry Arrington says:

    KF
    Concerning your link at 30,

    Dr. Zelenko said the whole treatment costs only $20 over a period of 5 days with 100% success. He defines success as “Not to die.”

    Seems like he is setting the bar too low. Let’s say the death rate generally is 5% (double even the most dire prediction I have seen). If that is the case “doing nothing” has a 95% “success” rate under Zelenko’s definition. I suppose a counter argument would be “apples/oranges.” Zelenko’s denominator is likely “people who report for treatment,” while the denominator of the general mortality rate is “everyone who tests positive.”

  32. 32
    kairosfocus says:

    BA, yup. I think we need to hear him, but obviously not only him. I have put up his interview and am about to look at a project by MIT to do a US$ 100 ventilator based on something used in ambulances. KF

  33. 33
    PaV says:

    RHampton7:

    Let me walk back that comment a bit: we’re NOT being had–in the sense that this is a deadly outbreak, no doubt, and that without social-distancing total deaths would be much higher. Right now I feel like we’re being kept in the dark in terms of what the government knows about this virus. That is, what we’re seeing might be explicable if one knew the true state of things.

    What has changed my mind is the failure to truly level off in Spain. I went to bed with one set of numbers only to wake up to much worse numbers in the morning. This failure could possibly mean we’re not near the end of the climb. That would mean a lot more deaths. So, at this point, my feeling is that all we can do for right now is to ride this thing out and then ask all the hard questions afterward–with the caveat that it’s possible the numbers will clearly tell us something as we go along that would deserve commenting.

    What’s troubling about this virus is the “hotspots” it creates, which leave individual municipalities–like New York, swamped. This is something I don’t think we’ve seen in this country for quite some time. It’s this fear that our public leaders must deal with and which has led to the social distancing mandates now in force including, today, Arizona.

    But, no, there’s is a stark reality about this virus and it’s better to reserve harsh judgements to a time when we have a better idea of what happened.

    Dr. Fauci says that up to 100,000 Americans might die. Well, of course, he means over the full course of this viral epidemic, which will likely be for more than a full year. Yet, two years ago, 68,000 Americans died of the common cold. So, we can, in a certain sense, handle those kinds of numbers; but, there is something nastier here, and it can overwhelm our medical community’s ability to deal with it. And, of course, the 100,000 figure involves what we’re now doing: i.e., social distancing. So, there’s a long ways to go. We should always prepare for the worst. But, right now, I can’t see 100,000 dying. Again, Dr. Fauci might know a lot more than we do, but cannot simply let the American public in on it for fear of a greater panic.

  34. 34
    Truthfreedom says:

    Well, if thoughts are physical, and using our thougths we enhance our immune systems i. e. with a vaccine, then the conclusion follows:
    The brain is part of the immune system. Like our tonsils or our spleen. It helps to fight infections. 🙂

  35. 35
    Truthfreedom says:

    I’ve had an idea. The brain is a spandrel of the immune system. It makes no sense? Well, naturalism is non-sensical. Who cares then? I want my prize. 🙂

  36. 36
    daveS says:

    PaV,

    Right now I feel like we’re being kept in the dark in terms of what the government knows about this virus. That is, what we’re seeing might be explicable if one knew the true state of things.

    Uh-oh, it sounds like you’re going full doomer. 🙂 Just kidding, I’m sure that thought has crossed many of our minds.

    But is it really necessary to postulate a government conspiracy? To my uneducated eyes, this looks more or less like a once in a century pandemic. It spreads like wildfire, and is very severe in a few percent of cases. I have heard that it can really trash your lungs, perhaps producing significant permanent damage even if you’re fortunate enough to survive. A large majority of patients who end up on a ventilator die, apparently.

    This is certainly an extraordinary event, but pandemics and plagues happen, so I’m not convinced the government is trying to cover up something.

  37. 37
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @daveS It just seems like a novel coronavirus that really damages peoples lungs. Possible origins in Pangolins. No government conspiracy required. But the pro Trump cartoonist Ben Garrison is going full-blown anti-VAX conspiracy nut. He is saying this has something to do with Bill Gates creating it in a lab to do eugenics. Of course he referred to “Bill Gate’s” plan. I’m generally of the opinion that if somebody can’t get basic punctuation right, I don’t really need to listen to them.

  38. 38
    Truthfreedom says:

    It is now thought that viruses may play an esential role in the evolutive processes. They are ‘jumping genes’ that might model living organisms on Earth.
    It is estimated that there are 10^31 viruses. 10^31 is bigger than the estimated number of stars in the Universe. Most are non-pathogenic.
    Darwin was completely ignorant about viruses (about everything I’d say).

  39. 39
    daveS says:

    JT,

    Wow, I hadn’t seen the Garrison statements.

    I did see Sheriff Clarke ranting about how George Soros was probably behind all this. What a nut.

  40. 40
  41. 41
    Truthfreedom says:

    10.000.000.000.000.000.000.000.000.000.000 viruses on Earth.
    Jumping from one organism to another.
    They constitute the major’s planet gene pool.

  42. 42
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    From ET’s link

    Pangolins can harbor coronaviruses related to the new coronavirus, a study finds.

    Scientists studied viruses in pangolins (Manis javanica) captured in anti-smuggling activities in southern China. The identified coronaviruses, however, are different enough from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, to hint that pangolins were not directly responsible for transmitting the virus to people, which had been suggested.

    One of the pangolin viruses does have a structure that closely resembles the new coronavirus’ spike protein, which allows the pathogen to get into cells, infectious disease researcher Tommy Tsan-Yuk Lam of the School of Public Health at the University of Hong Kong and colleagues report March 26 in Nature.

    The closest relative of SARS-CoV-2 is still from a bat, the only other known mammal found to be infected with similar coronaviruses.

    Good thing I said “possibly” came from a pangolin. 😀 . Anyway, weird that ET uses a link to research from evolutionary scientists, not intelligent design scientists. I am dying to know how much CSI is in the rna code.

  43. 43
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    “They constitute the major’s planet gene pool.”

    Could you please re-write this in a way that makes sense.

  44. 44
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @DaveS he is definitely crazypants. But you could tell that from the way his cartoons feature Trump as a muscular handsome guy with a small waist. Anyway here’s what he said.

    A PLAN YOU CAN’T TRUST!

    For the past decade, Bill gates has been warning us about an inevitable pandemic. Conditioning us. Getting us used to the idea.

    Last year, he even held a summit on the matter and ran computer simulations to predict outcomes. Why did a former computer nerd and mogul become so interested in vaccination and disease? Possibly because he’s worth over $100 billion and thinks he owns the world. He also wants to make an impact on humanity. Getting rid of excess humanity, that is. Bill’s father was once the head of Planned Parenthood. He comes from a eugenics background. Gates frets about world population growth. Is it any wonder he pushes Monsanto’s GMO food as well as harmful vaccines?

    Apparently Bill’s computer simulations discovered that people would easily fold under government pressure combined with an unseen enemy. Billions of people are under lockdown right now. Half the world is shut down. Gates must marvel at how easy it was to do it. Things are going according to plan.They can’t control us physically, but he can control us mentally through fear drummed into our brains 24/7 by mass media.

    The corona virus is real, but we’ve had many waves of flu viruses throughout the years. Many thousands die each year from the flu. Our elderly and infirm are the hardest hit. This time the deaths are being magnified by the Fear Porn Channels. Statistics are controlled and manipulated to produce panic and hysteria.

    The Democrats failed with their Russia collusion lie. They failed with impeachment. They are all for this hysteria because they can blame it all on Trump.

    Trish Regan was just fired from Fox Business Network because she called out concerns that the Chinese coronavirus was just another attempt to impeach President Donald Trump.

    That was too close to the truth for Fox. They fired her.

    We now have social distancing to further divide the human race—as if we were all some sort of disease in need of eradication. The corrupt WHO and CDC have us controlled like puppets on strings. We obey without question. Citizens are not allowed to question medical ‘authorities’ without fearing censorship or ridicule. When the time comes for a mandatory vaccine, people will already have become conditioned to obey the medical ‘authorities,’ and it’s all going according to plan.

    But some plans have a way of not working out as planned.

    Never take your eyes off government in a crisis.

    —Ben Garrison

    Dude is cookoo bananas.

    https://grrrgraphics.com/the-plannedemic

  45. 45
    Truthfreedom says:

    @Jim Thibodeau
    We are dying to know how a mega-mega-mega-mega-mega Universe created itself from NOTHING.
    Oh. It just happened. Of course. It’s very logical. 🙂
    That is something that ‘nothingness’ does when it gets bored.

  46. 46
    daveS says:

    JT,

    I didn’t realize Garrison was such a crackpot. I’ve never read his stuff, but up to this point, I actually assumed he was somewhat sane, and it was just the 4chan crowd making him look crazy with their “edits” of his cartoons.

  47. 47
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    There are too many doofuses not taking this seriously, so here’s an interesting thread from Twitter.

    Dana Goldstein
    @DanaGoldstein
    Profile picture
    2 hours ago, 15 tweets, 3 min read
    Bookmark Save as PDF My Authors
    1. Tomorrow I am going back to work after 2 weeks off, in which my family – myself (35/pregnant), husband (40) and daughter (2.5) – had Covid. I am grateful to be alive. We had “mild” cases, but it was a nasty bug that left me confined to bed for the better part of a week.
    2. I will say a bit about my symptoms and what it was like to handle them and recover at home. As the virus spreads, I think we are facing a severe, national crisis of infection among family members, which was a driving factor in China.
    3. I almost didn’t go to the doctor. My first symptoms were sore throat, sinus pressure, wet cough. I never had a fever and had no contact with known positives. I saw friends, family, colleagues the week before diagnosis, which I greatly regret.
    4. ????If you have *any* cold symptoms, no matter how mild, please stay isolated. ????
    5. I was able to get diagnosed because I am 5 months pregnant. I was tested March 16 at a CityMD urgent care, after my regular doctor essentially threw me out of her office, saying she lacked the protective gear to examine me for what I thought was an ordinary sinus infection.
    6. Because both my husband and daughter had mild cold symptoms on the day I was tested, I was told if I was positive, they would be “presumed” positive, but that they would not qualify for testing.
    7. By the time my test result came back positive on March 18, I had major fatigue, body aches, chest tightness, mild shortness of breath. A few days later, I lost my sense of smell, but not taste. Weirdly, I never lost my appetite and was in fact really hungry throughout.
    8. My body and eyes felt “heavy,” continuously drawing me back into bed for many days. I knew I had turned the corner around day 14 of symptoms, when I was able to dress my daughter and participate in a few household chores. Second week was MUCH worse than the first.
    9. Needless to say, this has been a scary experience, especially because I am pregnant. There are reasons to be optimistic, but this is a new disease, and we won’t know the impact on my pregnancy for quite awhile.
    10. I’ve read all the accounts of people isolating at home to protect their partners and kids. We read the CDC/WHO guidelines for how to do this, but could not carry them out. Here’s why.
    11. We lacked masks, surgical gloves and a second bathroom. My husband was taking on all childcare and could not also disinfect every item I touched. In a functioning system, medical supplies would be provided to affected families, or sick patients would be cared for elsewhere.
    12. My husband @ascheink was a hero. He took care of me, our toddler and the house despite being sick himself. Both he and she experienced fatigue and cold symptoms, thank god nothing worse. They could have been infected before my diagnosis or after. It’s impossible to say.
    13. We have been told there are no tests available to confirm we are negative for the virus, so have no way of knowing exactly when we are no longer contagious. This is frustrating and seems contrary to public health. We plan to act extremely conservatively.
    14. We live a few miles away from our parents but have not seen them. This virus turns every household into an island, which is heartbreaking.

    We are immensely thankful for the support of family, friends and colleagues via phone, text message, gifts and video chat.
    14. Love to all. Be safe!

  48. 48
    Truthfreedom says:

    Only losers care about Twitter garbage.

  49. 49
    rhampton7 says:

    Deaths by common cold are without social distancing, quarantines, border closures, et. al.

    Deaths by COVID are with all those precautions, Keep that n mind

  50. 50
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @rhampton7 and the case fatality rate so far in the US is almost 2%. That will go down as testing increases, but it’s a pretty shitty place to go down from.

    For the record he CFR of the flu is like 0.1-0.2%

  51. 51
    ET says:

    Jim T- you are clueless. Those scientists don’t have any clue as to how blind and mindless processes produced pangolins. No one does. The concept is useless and worthless, just like you.

  52. 52
    ET says:

    The whole world’s population wants to know how blind and mindless processes can produce coding RNA and proteins. Why is it that no one is working on it? It’s as if they already know it’s a fool’s errand.

  53. 53
    orthomyxo says:

    LM, the Spanish Flu in 1918 – 20 came in three waves with Wave 2’s strain the most potent. I gather, this virus already has 2 – 3 strains. In addition, we are looking at the next flu season. My concerns are in part reflecting model projections I see with a possible next wave come Northern Hemisphere Autumn on. So, THIS wave. Where, while the new cases pulse clearly shows a dip beginning (echoed in a flattening of the concave up cumulative cases function), it projects an uptick too, in the linked tabulation for the USA. KF

    There aren’t really “strains” in the way we thinking of them for flu, just distinct evolutionary lineages of the virus defined by shared mutations. THere is no evidence that those exposed to one lineage will not be able to mount a response to second infection of another lineages (most of the mutations that exist, and certainly the deep ones, are not related to the antigen binding for example).

    The 1918 flu was a bit different because (a) it was a flu and therefore seasonal in a way covid-19 is unlikely to be and (b) appeared to acquire a mutation that the virus much more virulent than its ancestor (especially in younger people). There is no evidence than any of the mutations now known effect virulence.

    We should absolutely expect a second wave of cases when measures are lifted, unless that happens along with very thorough case-finding and patient-isolation. And, of course, the current wave is not near to its peak yet.

  54. 54
    orthomyxo says:

    Right now I feel like we’re being kept in the dark in terms of what the government knows about this virus. That is, what we’re seeing might be explicable if one knew the true state of things.

    I’m not sure what remains inexplicable. A highly contagious disease with hight mortality and very high serious morbidity rates is spreading throughout the world. In the early stages. The impact differed regionally and nationally depending on population density, the different measures put in place to stop the spread and dumb luck of having more “seed” infections to kick the epidemic off. We now see very serious epidemics in places like NYC, Lombardia and (presumably, though I’m not sure the data is disaggregated enough to see this) London. Hopefully current measures will save other regions the worst of the epidemic, but everyone is going to have to deal with it in some way.

  55. 55
    ET says:

    Is COVID-19 Seasonal?

    Preliminary evidence suggests that COVID-19 will be a seasonal virus, meaning it waxes and wanes as the seasons change just like the common cold or the flu. However, Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), cautioned that at first, COVID-19’s changes with the seasons means we’ll need to be prepared for another spike in cases. While we wait for a vaccine or more effective treatments, we may need to be prepared to take social distancing measures again in the fall.

    There is a plethora of articles about the seasonality of covid-19. But we won’t know until it happens.

  56. 56
    kairosfocus says:

    JT, there is no one side of ill informed people saying utterly ill advised things. Try this. KF

  57. 57
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    I never claimed there was. I didn’t say anything about sides. I said there were too many doofuses not taking this seriously. That is a true statement.

  58. 58
  59. 59
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @Rhampton: Dreher had an interesting point a week ago about how politicians who call themselves pro life are more than happy to demand that poor young women go through with a pregnancy that might hurt them, but they’re also eager to sacrifice mamaw and papaw for some better values on the Dow Jones. I’m not used to Dreher taking Republicans to task like that.

  60. 60
    Truthfreedom says:

    Surely some ‘evolutionary psychologist’ knows why people behave like that during an epidemic. Oh. Wait. 🙂

  61. 61
    ET says:

    Abortion is murder, Jim. Just think if the covid-19 virus took as many lives as abortions do. Lefties are clueless.

  62. 62
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    There are now 26,600 US hospitalizations due to this virus. A friend of mine who works on this stuff in San Francisco estimates that 100,000 hospitalizations is the point where our medical system gets crushed and the CFR goes way up. A week ago his model predicted 27,449 hospitalizations by today. His model, revised today, estimates 100,000 hospitalizations by about the end of next week.

    I told him I hope his model is a Libtard Hoax.

  63. 63
    Truthfreedom says:

    @Jt
    Stop imagining ‘friends’ and situations you never were in. And stop pretending you have a clue about science or philosophy.

  64. 64
    Truthfreedom says:

    ___
    Homework for the naturalist:
    Case scenario 1: SARS-Cov-2 encounters a human immune system. *Selective pressures acting here: _____
    Case scenario 2: SARS-Cov-2 encounters a drug synthesized using human intelligence and lots of resources. Its numbers are dramatically reduced.
    *Selective pressures acting here: _____
    *Role of the intelligent agent (human):_____

  65. 65
    vividbleau says:

    I am glad Dreher is taking Republicans to task it looks like he writes for a conservative publication another good thing. I wonder if more progressive news outlets will hold De Blasio to task who has more influence I would assume than Sarah Carter

    DE BLASIO: It’s important. Just go about your lives. Continue living as you have.

    New Yorkers should go about our lives. Continue doing what we do.

    This should not stop you from going about your life, should not stop you from going to Chinatown and going out to eat.

    We want people still to go on about their lives. We want people to rest assured that a lot is being done to protect them.

    (END VIDEO CLIP)

    TAPPER: The last clip was from March 13, just about two weeks ago.

    In retrospect, is that message, at least in part, to blame for how rapidly the virus has spread across the city?

    Kudos to Tapper and CNN. Unfortunately this kind of advice also was echoed by one of the senior health officials in NY. Any wonder they are hit so hard compared to the very liberal state of Ca that took it seriously. Pelosi was in Chinatown after Trump closed travel to China encouraging San Francisco residents to visit China town. Trump also downplayed early on the seriousness although cutting off China travel and European travel were highly criticized,. I would say that Sara Carter ( although fair game) is hardly as influential as others.

    Vivid

  66. 66
  67. 67
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Small correction, I must’ve read some numbers wrong 10 days ago, I thought 61,000 people died in the US last year from the flu, Trump says it was 37,000 people.

  68. 68
    Truthfreedom says:

    @61 PaV:

    “… determining the true death rate requires accurate data on the number of people who have contracted the virus but are asymptomatic, or show no symptoms, a metric that has been glaringly lacking thus far.”

    Yessss! When will people understand this?
    https://www.dailywire.com/news/study-coronavirus-death-rate-lower-than-previously-reported
    Maybe when our naturalist friends understand that the distinction they try to force between ‘natural’ / ‘artificial’ selection is garbage?

  69. 69
    rhampton7 says:

    “This is going to be a rough two week period,” Trump said. “As a nation we’re going to have a really rough two weeks. Our strength will be tested and our endurance will be tried.”

    At another point, Trump said: “This could be a hell of a bad two weeks. This is going to be a very bad two or maybe even three weeks. This is going to be three weeks like we’ve never seen before.”

    “It is absolutely critical for the American people to follow the guidelines,” Trump said during a daily press briefing. “It’s a matter of life and death.”

  70. 70
    vividbleau says:

    “,. I would say that Sara Carter ( although fair game) is hardly as influential as others.”

    To clarify no commentators on this thread are saying that she is

    Vivid

  71. 71
    Ed George says:

    R7@69, that’s a big change from his promise to have packed churches by Easter. But his TV ratings have never been higher.

  72. 72
    daveS says:

    It’s almost frightening to see Trump so serious. I’m glad he’s saying this.

  73. 73
    vividbleau says:

    EG
    When did he use the word promise.?

    Vivid
    .

  74. 74
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Jesus, people are still downplaying this thing.

    Marketwatch:

    Even some of the staunchest Trump supporters have backed away from the idea that the coronavirus pandemic is a “media hoax” aimed at destroying the president’s chances for re-election.

    Not Diamond and Silk.

    The vloggers, who are frequent Fox News guests and have their own show on the streaming channel Fox Nation, suggested Monday that the surge in reported deaths from the coronavirus outbreak is merely a media tactic “to make it look bad in front of our eyes.”

  75. 75
    ET says:

    President Trump did NOT promise to have packed churches by Easter. Why does this site allow blatant liars a forum to spew their blatant lies?

  76. 76
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Well this is interesting. When it came out that Trump was warned about this in January, and some wackadoodles said well he couldn’t possibly have done anything about this in January because he was being impeached? Yeah Trump just said that’s all wrong.
    The Hill:

    President Trump: “I don’t think I would’ve done any better had I not been impeached. And I think that’s a great tribute to something. Maybe it’s a tribute to me.”

    Ouch.

  77. 77
    Ed George says:

    JT

    It’s almost frightening to see Trump so serious. I’m glad he’s saying this.

    He is taking it so serious that the stress has turned his orange hair grey.

  78. 78
    Truthfreedom says:

    Maybe some ‘evo psych’ will help us to understand why people interpret the same data in a different manner… With some unproven and unprovable crap theory about genes, or maybe something related to gene deletions, or maybe something related to gene replication. Or gene dominance. Or gene transpositions. Or…
    Oh. Wait. Nevermind.
    It won’t happen.

  79. 79
    ET says:

    Wow, Jimmy, you are beyond pathetic. The people just said he was pre-occupied. No one said that he couldn’t possibly have done anything about it. And at the time there wasn’t a problem to do anything about. Now, had the Chinese told him back in November, when the outbreak started, he may have been able to do something by January- or sooner.

    The anti-ID pinheads are just a bunch of lowlife liars.

  80. 80
    Truthfreedom says:

    Something has occurred to me… There are different multi-verses, each one with multiple different types of pot and boltzmann’s brains are being forcefully fed it…
    A typical display of naturalist ‘science’. 🙂

  81. 81
    ET says:

    This is sad. California, at one time, had the medical supplies needed to fight a crisis. Then they squandered it: California once had mobile hospitals and a ventilator stockpile. But it dismantled them. So now it’s Trumps’ fault.

    Totally pathetic

  82. 82
    MatSpirit says:

    Vivid, De Blasio seems to be as dumb as Trump. Vote them both out of office.

  83. 83
    ET says:

    Fortunately Trump will never be as dumb as materialists and evolutionists. 😛

  84. 84
    kairosfocus says:

    JT, consistently one-sided examples, language and tone send a message. KF

  85. 85
    kairosfocus says:

    PaV,

    I clip Lancet:

    The death rate from confirmed COVID-19 cases is estimated at 1.38%, while the overall death rate, which includes unconfirmed cases, is estimated at 0.66%; these rates are slightly lower than some estimates for COVID-19 to date, which had not adjusted for undiagnosed cases or for the number of people in each age group of a population

    Death rates vary substantially, ranging from 0.0016% in 0 to 9-year-olds to 7.8% for people aged 80 and above

    Differences in hospitalisation rates by age were reported, increasing with age – with 11.8% of people in their 60s, 16.6% of people in their 70s, and 18.4% of those in their 80s and above estimated to develop symptoms severe enough for hospitalisation

    These hospitalisation rates compare with 0.04% of 10 to 19-year-olds, 1.0% of people in their 20s, and 3.4% of people aged 30 to 39. Hospitalisation rates nearly double from 4.3% in 40-49-year-olds to 8.2% in 50-59-year olds

    Nearly one in five over-80s infected with COVID-19 are likely to require hospitalisation, compared with around 1% of people under 30, according to an analysis of 3,665 cases in mainland China, published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases journal.

    All I can say is it is better to be roughly right than precisely wrong.

    KF

  86. 86
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Notice, the tip-toe away on Chloroquine? Guess why and what that implies. KF

  87. 87
    daveS says:

    Eh, tip-toe? Could you explain this post?

  88. 88
    rhampton7 says:

    The commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt, a US Navy aircraft carrier where an outbreak of the coronavirus has spread to at least 70 sailors, has warned Navy leadership that decisive action is required to save the lives of the ship’s crew.

    “We are not at war. Sailors do not need to die. If we do not act now, we are failing to properly take care of our most trusted asset — our Sailors,” Capt. Brett Crozier wrote in a memo to the Navy’s Pacific Fleet, three US defense officials have confirmed to CNN.

    “The spread of the disease is ongoing and accelerating,” he added.

  89. 89
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Now it’s potentially 200 sailors, 4% of the crew.

  90. 90
    daveS says:

    5000 in total? Sheesh, I hope they do something quickly.

  91. 91
    vividbleau says:

    EG
    Second request, when did Trump use the word promise.?

    Vivid

  92. 92
    Marfin says:

    Can any of the atheist materialist who comment on this site please explain to me why people dying or dying in general is such a big deal. On average 2.5 million people die in the U.S. every year and world wide that number is 57 million each year.So whats the big deal ,at present more people are born each year than die , and life goes on as it always does so why are we all so concerned that this virus has increased the death rate by a small percentage over other years . I mean its not like we are working toward some grand goal or final solution were nobody dies and some nirvana is reached. So random bags of chemicals pass from one state to another state why the big fuss.

  93. 93
  94. 94
    kairosfocus says:

    JT, 74:

    You cite with approval:

    Even some of the staunchest Trump supporters have backed away from the idea that the coronavirus pandemic is a “media hoax” aimed at destroying the president’s chances for re-election.

    You have already been corrected on this, but reflect the way media smears multiplied by the polarisation they helped to create and keep on reinforcing forms a persistent, stuck record narrative of strawman caricature, belittling, demonisation and scapegoating of the despised other.

    Of course, that speaks volumes on how if one is induced to make a crooked yardstick one’s standard for straight, upright and accurate, what is genuinely such will never meet the demand to match crookedness. Plato’s cave world indoctrination is persistent until and unless things go over the cliff, as — oddly, enough — happened through the plague and its effects in Athens in the early years of the Peloponnesian wars. The deep social breakdown it led to:

    [Wiki:] The Plague of Athens (Ancient Greek: ?????? ??? ?????? Loimos tôn Athênôn) was an epidemic that devastated the city-state of Athens in ancient Greece during the second year of the Peloponnesian War (430 BC) when an Athenian victory still seemed within reach. The plague killed an estimated 75,000 to 100,000 people and is believed to have entered Athens main city through Piraeus, the city’s port and sole source of food and supplies.[1] Much of the eastern Mediterranean also saw an outbreak of the disease, albeit with less impact.[2] The plague had serious effects on Athens’ society, resulting in a lack of adherence to laws and religious belief; in response laws became stricter, resulting in the punishment of non-citizens claiming to be Athenian. The plague returned twice more, in 429 BC and in the winter of 427/426 BC. Some 30 pathogens have been suggested as having caused the plague.[3]

    . . . is fairly directly echoed in Plato’s later summary in The Laws, Bk X:

    Ath [in The Laws, Bk X 2,360 ya]. . . .[The avant garde philosophers and poets, c. 360 BC] say that fire and water, and earth and air [i.e the classical “material” elements of the cosmos], all exist by nature and chance, and none of them by art . . . [such that] all that is in the heaven, as well as animals and all plants, and all the seasons come from these elements, not by the action of mind, as they say, or of any God, or from art, but as I was saying, by nature and chance only [ –> that is, evolutionary materialism is ancient and would trace all things to blind chance and mechanical necessity] . . . .

    [Thus, they hold] that the principles of justice have no existence at all in nature, but that mankind are always disputing about them and altering them; and that the alterations which are made by art and by law have no basis in nature, but are of authority for the moment and at the time at which they are made.-

    [ –> Relativism, too, is not new; complete with its radical amorality rooted in a worldview that has no foundational IS that can ground OUGHT, leading to an effectively arbitrary foundation only for morality, ethics and law: accident of personal preference, the ebbs and flows of power politics, accidents of history and and the shifting sands of manipulated community opinion driven by “winds and waves of doctrine and the cunning craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming . . . ” cf a video on Plato’s parable of the cave; from the perspective of pondering who set up the manipulative shadow-shows, why.]

    These, my friends, are the sayings of wise men, poets and prose writers, which find a way into the minds of youth. They are told by them that the highest right is might,

    [ –> Evolutionary materialism — having no IS that can properly ground OUGHT — leads to the promotion of amorality on which the only basis for “OUGHT” is seen to be might (and manipulation: might in “spin”) . . . ]

    and in this way the young fall into impieties, under the idea that the Gods are not such as the law bids them imagine; and hence arise factions [ –> Evolutionary materialism-motivated amorality “naturally” leads to continual contentions and power struggles influenced by that amorality at the hands of ruthless power hungry nihilistic agendas], these philosophers inviting them to lead a true life according to nature, that is,to live in real dominion over others [ –> such amoral and/or nihilistic factions, if they gain power, “naturally” tend towards ruthless abuse and arbitrariness . . . they have not learned the habits nor accepted the principles of mutual respect, justice, fairness and keeping the civil peace of justice, so they will want to deceive, manipulate and crush — as the consistent history of radical revolutions over the past 250 years so plainly shows again and again], and not in legal subjection to them [–> nihilistic will to power not the spirit of justice and lawfulness].

    It was in the aftermath of Athens’ crushing ultimate defeat, that the sort of re-thinking Plato here exemplifies took hold.

    Now, going back to specifics, we can start with Snopes [not exactly noted for sympathy to Mr Trump]:

    What’s True

    During a Feb. 28, 2020, campaign rally in South Carolina, President Donald Trump likened the Democrats’ criticism of his administration’s response to the new coronavirus outbreak to their efforts to impeach him, saying “this is their new hoax.” During the speech he also seemed to downplay the severity of the outbreak, comparing it to the common flu.

    What’s False

    Despite creating some confusion with his remarks, Trump did not call the coronavirus itself a hoax.

    (Of course, the ‘flu regularly is a key cause of 10 – 60 to 70 thousand deaths in the US per year, biased to the old and those with existing preconditions . . . mostly, by way of “complications” such as pneumonia; a point Mr Trump noted that he learned from his CV task force, which he set up on January 29th. In short — absent the extreme polarisation, pouncing and twisting, media lynch mob tactics, the flu is a very reasonable yardstick of comparison . . . and we don’t declare an annual pandemic for the flu. Jan 29 is also about the time he put in place travel restrictions from China [Fri Jan 31]; that timeline is suggestive that the “ban” was an early action recommended by the task force. Such, is instantly not the behaviour of a man imagining that an epidemic is a hoax. Where, from about October, the impeachment push had moved into high gear, leading to the Pelosi-led vote Dec 18 and her hold for about a month, so the Senate voted Feb 5 — all of this time being dominated by a media frenzy replete with questionable tactics and claims. And, Mr Trump was and is right to be concerned about the potentially devastating impact of shutting down the economy for weeks to months. In that context, hope is important, and pointing to promising potential treatments is a further reasonable action. In recent days, his highlighting of [Hydroxy]chloroquine has been increasingly vindicated.)

    Now, let me cite Nolte of Breitbart, who as at March 17, speaks in harsh but unfortunately fair comment terms [if you doubt the degree of irresponsibility being exposed, simply read the article]:

    America’s deeply unserious but very corrupt and unreliable establishment media have no intention of changing their dangerous ways in the age of the Wuhan coronavirus . . . . Coronavirus is not a D.C. food fight. Like the CNN Race Riots of 2014, it affects everyday people: we have shut down our economy. The stock market is going insane. People are scared, worried, stressed, and have reason to be. Even if you remove the fear of the virus, no one can escape the fear of the panic, and the media’s blatant lies are only adding to this uncertainty and fear . . . .

    Trump Declared the Coronavirus a Hoax!

    This desperate lie, launched by the far-left Politico, was quickly debunked by fact-checkers, including the far-left Washington Post. That’s how big of a lie it is — the Washington Post conceded it was a lie.

    Nevertheless, CNN continues to spread this lie . . .

    Note, WaPo, March 13:

    At the 10-second mark [of a Biden campaign video clip], the camera shows a tight shot of the president saying “coronavirus” and then cuts to a wide shot where he says, “this is their new hoax.” Both clips are from Trump’s Feb. 28 campaign rally in North Charleston, S.C., but he never said “coronavirus, this is their new hoax.” Rather, Biden’s ad clipped a large part of Trump’s speech to make it seem as though he had. Here’s the president’s full quote (emphasis added to show the omission):

    “Now the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. You know that, right? Coronavirus. They’re politicizing it. We did one of the great jobs, you say, ‘How’s President Trump doing?’, ‘Oh, nothing, nothing.’ They have no clue, they don’t have any clue. They can’t even count their votes in Iowa, they can’t even count. No, they can’t. They can’t count their votes. One of my people came up to me and said, ‘Mr. President, they tried to beat you on Russia, Russia, Russia.’ That didn’t work out too well. They couldn’t do it. They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything, they tried it over and over, they’ve been doing it since he got in. It’s all turning, they lost. It’s all turning, think of it, think of it. And this is their new hoax. But you know we did something that’s been pretty amazing. We have 15 people in this massive country and because of the fact that we went early, we went early, we could have had a lot more than that.”

    The full quote shows Trump is criticizing Democratic talking points and the media’s coverage of his administration’s response to coronavirus. He never says that the virus itself is a hoax, and although the Biden camp included the word “their,” the edit does not make clear to whom or what Trump is referring.

    Moreover, at a news conference Feb. 29, the day after the rally and three days before Biden’s ad was released, Trump was asked about the “hoax” comment. He clarified, “ ‘Hoax’ referring to the action that [Democrats] take to try and pin this on somebody, because we’ve done such a good job. The hoax is on them, not — I’m not talking about what’s happening here [the virus]; I’m talking what they’re doing. That’s the hoax. … But the way they refer to it — because these people have done such an incredible job, and I don’t like it when they are criticizing these people. And that’s the hoax. That’s what I’m talking about.”

    Now, of course, I find Mr Trump to be a populist [not a compliment] and to be anything but eloquent and clear in how he speaks in a staccato, context loaded pattern. I find that historical parallels might be Cyrus and Constantine [not compliments and in the latter case pointing to much worse to come as a civilisation continues to fall apart]. However, scapegoating him is not a solution. The problem is across the board on all of the seven mountains.

    It is time for a serious rethink and for a fresh, more responsible approach; across the board.

    KF

  95. 95
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: My antivirus is messaging me to avoid fake corona virus news. KF

  96. 96
    john_a_designer says:

    Yeah Trump can be arrogant and egotistical. So what? To be fair he can also be very funny, gracious and kind.

    Who are the people who are most upset by the President’s political rhetoric? Other smug, arrogant and egotistical people. They can’t stand him… they are also dishonest and stupid people who don’t understand basic logic.

  97. 97
    kairosfocus says:

    JAD, pride is of course a deadly sin. That it seems to have spread widely among our civilisation’s elites does not speak well. Likewise, power-lust is deadly and that too is tainting so many things. So is deceit. More too, but the point is, we are in big trouble. KF

  98. 98
    Truthfreedom says:

    @98 John_a_designer:

    Who are the people who are most upset by the President’s political rhetoric? Other smug, arrogant and egotistical people. They can’t stand him… they are also dishonest and stupid people who don’t understand basic logic.

    Excellent analysis. 🙂

  99. 99
    kairosfocus says:

    TF, I think, the matter is much broader and deeper: that we see refusal to recognise the inescapable first duties of reason, to truth, to right reason [which yes, includes basic logic starting with LOI, LEM, LNC], to prudence [warrant, core of epistemology], to sound conscience [inter alia guided by the above], to neighbour, to fairness and justice etc. In and around UD, that is manifestly in part because that points to the nature of the roots of reality, in directions too many are loath to go. KF

  100. 100
    daveS says:

    JAD,

    Yeah Trump can be arrogant and egotistical. So what?

    For starters, it’s plausible that those very traits are going to lead to significantly more suffering and death than would have occurred had he put his own personality in the background and treated this problem seriously earlier.

  101. 101
    ET says:

    daves- Then it is VERY telling that the democrats griped about his travel ban to China and then Europe. If he didn’t do that we would have more death and suffering. So clearly he was more serious about it than the lefties.

  102. 102
    Truthfreedom says:

    @92 Marfin:

    So random bags of chemicals pass from one state to another state why the big fuss.

    Naturalists are curious people. They get too emotional with certain types of ‘natural selection’ (SARS-CoV-2, esrthquakes) and do not care at all about other types of ‘natural selection’ (abortion-that is a ‘greater good’ and should be promoted, annual flu, etc…)
    As John_a_designer says, they do not understand logic.
    And be sure none of them at UD will bother replying to your post.

  103. 103
    Truthfreedom says:

    @99 Kairosfocus:

    TF, I think, the matter is much broader and deeper: that we see refusal to recognise the inescapable first duties of reason, to truth, to right reason [which yes, includes basic logic starting with LOI, LEM, LNC], to prudence [warrant, core of epistemology], to sound conscience [inter alia guided by the above], to neighbour, to fairness and justice etc.

    Are not they all intertwined? 🙂

  104. 104
    Truthfreedom says:

    @OM

    There aren’t really “strains” in the way we thinking of them for flu, just distinct evolutionary lineages of the virus defined by shared mutations.

    ?

    ” A new non-peer reviewed study published in the open platform MedRvix indicates that the SARS-Cov-2 coronavirus could be evolving or mutating into various strains with each a different mode of attacking or binding to human host cells and with different infected patients varying symptoms and effects.”

    “In this new study alone, 49 new strains were identified and one strain in particularly that was identified as the ZJ101 Strain was completed different from the earlier strains that were first identified in Wuhan.”
    https://www.thailandmedical.news/news/breaking-new-research-indicates-sars-cov-2-coronavirus-is-indeed-mutating-into-various-strains-that-have-specific-preference-of-attacking-human-host-

  105. 105
    JVL says:

    Martin: Can any of the atheist materialist who comment on this site please explain to me why people dying or dying in general is such a big deal. On average 2.5 million people die in the U.S. every year and world wide that number is 57 million each year.So whats the big deal ,at present more people are born each year than die , and life goes on as it always does so why are we all so concerned that this virus has increased the death rate by a small percentage over other years . I mean its not like we are working toward some grand goal or final solution were nobody dies and some nirvana is reached. So random bags of chemicals pass from one state to another state why the big fuss.

    Since you clearly do not care what I, as a fellow human being, feel or think and would rather attack a straw version of what you think atheists think I shan’t bother to reply in any great detail.

    Did it ever occur to you that you can appear to be just as unempathetic as you assume I should be? AND how many atheists have you heard that sound like your version?

  106. 106
    kairosfocus says:

    TF, yes, inextricably and inescapably intertwined and literally unprovable as these are what we must build any proof on. Such, will it ever be with that which comes . . . FIRST. Even this note exploring such depends on them. Our indoctrination makes it ever so hard to accept these as inescapable, self-evident first plausibles. Though, obviously, by themselves they cannot span the framework for any reasonably rich worldview. However, once we are willing to acknowledge what we cannot escape, they serve admirably as naturally straight and upright plumb lines. Something else ever so many are loath to acknowledge: moral-logical government of responsible, rational freedom. KF

  107. 107
    Truthfreedom says:

    Correction @104:
    ZJ 01 Strain (not ZJ101 Strain).

    It is thought that the continuous ‘war’ between hosts and genetic mobile ‘parasites’ is one of the major drivers of evolutive processes (Koonin).
    Forget all the gradualist from bacteria to dinosaurs non-sense. It was ‘fine’ in the 19th Century and if you were not very intelligent.

    “No more infinitely small one base mutations to eventually achieve a new improved protein with the same, or even different function. Instead horizontal gene transfer for the lowly microorganisms, or gene duplication for the lofty eukaryotes. In both case, the organism purchases an entire protein or even a whole set of genes to play with”.

    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.amazon.es/Logic-Chance-Biological-Evolution-Science-ebook/dp/B0058I5U2C&ved=2ahUKEwil0vijvMfoAhUs8-AKHaZYBz0QFjAhegQIDRAB&usg=AOvVaw0jvFlt72kT1gnVrYh8RICf

  108. 108
    kairosfocus says:

    JVL, I would think the issue being raised [however it is phrased] has been on the table since Plato — likely, i/l/o the aftermath of the Plague of Athens — the moral coherence challenge faced by evolutionary materialistic humanism and/or its fellow travellers. That does need a cogent answer. KF

  109. 109
    ET says:

    The atheists and materialists of today ride the coattails of the religions. Their morality is directly linked to them.

  110. 110
    kairosfocus says:

    ET, 49 strains? That is astonishing. KF

  111. 111
    JVL says:

    KairosFocus: That does need a cogent answer.

    When I get a cogent and respectful question from someone who is really trying to understand instead of just treating me like a caricature I’ll respond in kind. ‘Til then I’ll do my best to ignore such snide (and frankly insulting) comments.

  112. 112
    ET says:

    KF, you meant TF @ 104, not ET

  113. 113
    ET says:

    JVL:

    ‘Til then I’ll do my best to ignore such snide (and frankly insulting) comments.

    That’s rich coming from you.

  114. 114
    daveS says:

    Question: In view of this is London doomed? I keep seeing people packed together quite closely on the tube. Seems like a very good way to spread the virus.

    Edit: Not sure of the date on this image, but ‘people are saying’ that this sort of thing is still occurring.

  115. 115
    kairosfocus says:

    DS, see my latest OP. My project of the day was to convert my old faithful volcano dust mask to two-way filtering by blocking or removing its rubber flap filters; it used to rely on overpressure to drive exhaling. Obviously, alky spray will sanitise. I have my goggles and my heavier duty cartridge mask. I think masks and gloves with sanitiser might save the underground — which goes all the way back to Brunel. KF

  116. 116
  117. 117
    kairosfocus says:

    JVL, the principle is clear, every worldview is subject to comparative difficulties. Some may not pose the matter well, but it has long been on the table, for cause. KF

  118. 118
    Truthfreedom says:

    @109 Kairosfocus:

    49 strains? That is astonishing.

    Some sites say 2 strains, others say 8 strains, others 11, the one I linked to says 49…

  119. 119
    ET says:

    It is all a strain on all of us.

  120. 120
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    US intelligence says China is hiding the real numbers of cases and deaths.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-01/china-concealed-extent-of-virus-outbreak-u-s-intelligence-says

  121. 121
    Truthfreedom says:

    And having ‘mild’ symptoms is not necessarily ‘better’. It seems that some people with less acute reactions could suffer liver/kidney damage due to the residual viral loads.
    Let me please find the link and I’ll share it here.

  122. 122
    ET says:

    As if we needed the intelligence agency to tell us that China is holding back. 🙄

  123. 123
    JVL says:

    KairosFocus: Some may not pose the matter well, but it has long been on the table, for cause.

    I understand but considering some of the posters here this may not be the place to have a collegial conversation about the issue. I certainly do not feel inclined to participate if my view and opinions are assumed to be some cartoon version of something I haven’t actually discussed. A discussion or debate means a certain amount of mutual respect for the format and forum at least.

  124. 124
    john_a_designer says:

    KF @ #97,

    JAD, pride is of course a deadly sin. That it seems to have spread widely among our civilisation’s elites…

    Well, whether or not Trump’s pride is deadly, he has certainly been clever like a snake, though he probably won’t get much credit for being harmless as a dove (Matthew 10:16.) But dovishness doesn’t work, if it ever did, in any kind of democratic political setting. Politics after all is all about power. For example, Trump has been able to very cleverly use his rhetoric to infuriate and enrage his political opponents while at the same not alienating his political supporters and allies. For example, what he says at his rallies and writes on twitter is very shrewd and calculating. That’s not to say he succeeds every time but more often than not he does. His approval numbers among his base and the Republican Party are very high. Ironically, his numbers even rose during his faux impeachment and trial.

    Christians should not be trying to Christianize politics. Someone has said that “politics is down stream of culture.” If Christians want to have an influence on politics they need work upstream on and in the culture (Matthew 5:13-16.) Unfortunately, American Christians have squandered dozens of opportunities over the past few decades creating a vacuum that is being exploited though not necessarily filled by anti-Christian activists.

  125. 125
    MatSpirit says:

    112
    ET
    April 1, 2020 at 10:10 am

    KF, you meant TF @ 104, not ET

    Don’t worry, if you read it then Truthfreedom read it.

    Ask TF if his name is “Sharon”, a “female retired marine biologist”.

  126. 126
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Why are we surprised that a Communist regime directly derived from those who killed many dozens of millions would lie on matters of life and death? What was done to doctors who spoke out, not only early on but recently? (Look up the disappeared doctor.) Why should we expect truth or balance or fairness from media, pundits, pols and officials committed to enabling the onward slaughter of a further dozens of millions of our living posterity in the womb, just counting the USA? (If we count the global toll it is about a million per WEEK.) Let us wake up. KF

  127. 127
    ET says:

    matspirit, the April fool

  128. 128
    PaV says:

    You can remember the shouting that took place when I said that two years ago the P&I was over 10% for four consecutive weeks and saying that the definition of an epidemic is that the P&I is over 7.3%.

    Well, look at this chart taken directly from the CDC website: notice that in the 1917-1918 season, the red line in the right-hand graph spikes at 10.9%. Notice that we have barely edged into ‘epidemic’ territory, 7.4%. I was blasted by some for taking the position I did and for insisting that the definition I used was the very one used by the CDC. This chart tells us the whole story. Compare this flu season vs 2017-2018. Two year ago seemed a lot worse. How come our hospitals could handle the situation back then, but not now. Is all of this being driven by model projections? If so, this has to be critically looked at again.

    Nevertheless, two years ago, I don’t remember an ice rink being used as a morgue (Spain) or a hospital set up in Central Park (New York). Yet, please excuse my scepticism here: are these being staged? This question seems outlandish. But, if it is, in fact, the computer models projecting what will be needed and none of what is being positioned and acquired now is actually used, then an answer to this question is absolutely needed. Again, have we been had? This question nags at me.

    You might want to look at these numbers–though I couldn’t find them at the CDC website myself.

    I took a look at the UK. This is a pdf report for the 2017-2018 flu season. Go to page 47. At the bottom, you’ll see that in the 2013-2014 flu season, only 3,100 people died. Yet, a year later, 2014-2015, 34,300 died. What is the projection in the UK for Corona Virus deaths? Well, Ferguson once said 500,000. Now he says, 5,700. How does 5,700 compare with 34,300 deaths? What about a differential in deaths from pneumonia and influenza-like-illnesses of 31,200 from one year to the next? Something stinks. I’m sorry. But it will take months to ferret out all of what’s happened.

  129. 129
    daveS says:

    KF,

    I don’t think any of us are surprised or have unrealistic expectations about what is happening. At least concerning the human response to the pandemic, that is.

  130. 130
    PaV says:

    As to the overload our hospitals and medical staffs are experiencing, there’s this chart. Go to the Section: “Influenza-Associated Hospitalizations” to view the chart. Compare 2017-2018 to the current chart for 2019-2020.

    Hospitalizations were much higher for 2017-2018. Why then do we hear how overwhelmed the medical care system is right now? Looking just at the numbers, it just doesn’t add up. We’ve already gone from the Spanish flu mortality rate, 3-5%, down to 0.66%. Will it go further down? To what level? Was this extreme economic disruption called for? I continue to scratch my head.

    Remember, the Diamond Princess cruise ship data told us 7 out of 3945 died, or, 0.18%, almost the same as the seasonal flu. And the population make-up, when factored in, brought this down to LESS than 0.1%. Is that where we’re headed? Why were models embraced when actual raw data told medical experts pretty much all they needed to know? Will we learn any lessons from all of this?

  131. 131
    daveS says:

    PaV,

    5700 total deaths projected for the UK? I haven’t followed the situation there, but currently there are ~2352 deaths total, with 563 in the last day.

  132. 132
    ET says:

    Remember, The Diamond Princess quarantined everyone to stop the spread. There were 542 cases identified. 7 deaths out of 542 = 1.3%

  133. 133
    daveS says:

    PaV,

    I don’t know how accessible these statistics are, but Italy had over 900 deaths in one day, mostly in the North. Does that occur in a typical flu season?

  134. 134
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    10 people from that ship died.

  135. 135
    ET says:

    Twelve- according to Wikipedia. Makes it a 2.2% death rate

  136. 136
    MatSpirit says:

    127 ET April 1, 2020 at 2:02 pm

    ET: “matspirit, the April fool”

    As you wish, Sharon Joe.

  137. 137
    ET says:

    Yup, you have the full month. But I am sure that won’t prevent you from being a fool every day of every month.

  138. 138
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    4,757/213,342 have died in the US, which is also 2.2%. That case fatality rate rate has gone up over the last week. Hopefully it’ll go back down.

    Johns Hopkins added about 25,000 US cases in the last 24 hrs and about 700-800 deaths.

  139. 139
    PaV says:

    Several questions have been posed. It’s hard to get an answer to them. Italy? Five years ago they had 43,000 excess deaths in one flu season. How many have died of Corona Virus? 17,000? And did some of these souls die because of a simple cold infection, or did they die from underlying health conditions and simply tested positive for the virus? These are questions we may never have answers to.

    One big problem for all of us, and here I certainly speak for myself, is that we’re not used to looking at these kinds of numbers. For example, 100 people die each day from car accidents. If, for the last three weeks we had been tracking deaths through car accidents, it would amount to 2,100 deaths. We don’t stop to think about these things. Anyway, let’s hope we get through this economic and cultural crash and get back to a normal lifesytle as soon as we can, which, of course, would mean that daily numbers of death will have fallen.

  140. 140
    daveS says:

    PaV,

    At this point, Italy has had a bit over 13,000 deaths since March 1. I think another factor is that patients are hospitalized for a long time on average, even those who survive. So while the number of deaths will be relatively high but not completely off the charts, the hospitals will tend to be very full.

  141. 141
    PaV says:

    DaveS:

    Yes, Neil Ferguson revised his numbers from 500,000 to 20,000, but then said that 2/3 of this 20,000 might really have been affected by something other than CoVid-19. One-third should actually be roughly 6,700, but somehow the 5,700 number made the rounds.

  142. 142
    daveS says:

    PaV,

    Neil Ferguson revised his numbers from 500,000 to 20,000

    I’ve seen this claim in several places, but then some sources (such as the National Review, and Dr Ferguson himself) say it didn’t happen. Do you have evidence that this rather extreme revision actually occurred?

  143. 143
    orthomyxo says:

    You can remember the shouting that took place when I said that two years ago the P&I was over 10% for four consecutive weeks and saying that the definition of an epidemic is that the P&I is over 7.3%.

    Well, look at this chart taken directly from the CDC website: notice that in the 1917-1918 season, the red line in the right-hand graph spikes at 10.9%. Notice that we have barely edged into ‘epidemic’ territory, 7.4%. I was blasted by some for taking the position I did and for insisting that the definition I used was the very one used by the CDC.

    Why on eearth would the proportion of people dying of influenza and pneumonia be a useful statistic for following the covid-19 outbreak? Those deaths wont be in P&I (as they’ll be coded Covid-19, which is not flu).

    For some context, there are about 3 million deaths per year in the US, which amounts to ~8,000 a day. Yesterday there were more than a thousand covid-19 deaths. That’s 1000 covid /9000 total ~ 11% for covid-19 alone (not with sundry pneumonia seats added as per P&I).

    I really wonder how serious this has to get before you will admit to yourself that you have this very very wrong.

  144. 144
    orthomyxo says:

    What is the projection in the UK for Corona Virus deaths? Well, Ferguson once said 500,000. Now he says, 5,700.

    He absolutely does not. His numbers are 500,000 without measures and 20,000 or perhaps fewer with strict measures.

  145. 145
    rhampton7 says:

    Michigan Hospital at Capacity with Coronavirus Patients in the County That Swung the State for Trump

    As of Wednesday morning, the Henry Ford Health System reported that they had 594 patients hospitalized at their hospitals in Southeast Michigan, including: 281 at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit; 105 at Henry Ford West Bloomfield; 113 at Henry Ford Macomb; 73 at Henry Ford Wyandotte; and 22 at Henry Ford Allegiance Health.

    https://www.breitbart.com/health/2020/04/01/michigan-hospital-at-capacity-with-coronavirus-patients-in-the-county-that-swung-the-state-for-trump/

  146. 146
    rhampton7 says:

    A physician in San Diego, California, and data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are reporting that the coronavirus is now the third leading cause of death, killing 748 people a day in the United States.

    This is only outranked by deaths from heart disease (1,774 a day) and cancer (1,641 a day).

    https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020/04/01/cdc-coronavirus-now-third-leading-cause-of-death-in-u-s-behind-heart-disease-cancer/

  147. 147
    orthomyxo says:

    I’m sorry, this goes on…

    As to the overload our hospitals and medical staffs are experiencing, there’s this chart. Go to the Section: “Influenza-Associated Hospitalizations” to view the chart. Compare 2017-2018 to the current chart for 2019-2020.

    Why would influenza associated hospitalizations be relevant to covid-19, which is no influenza?

    Remember, the Diamond Princess cruise ship data told us 7 out of 3945 died, or, 0.18%, almost the same as the seasonal flu. And the population make-up, when factored in, brought this down to LESS than 0.1%. Is that where we’re headed? Why were models embraced when actual raw data told medical experts pretty much all they needed to know? Will we learn any lessons from all of this?

    Well, 4 more people have died from that cruise since then. Best estimates of the IFR for the ship while modelling the lag between onset and death are on the order of 1.5%: https://www.eurosurveillance.org/content/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2020.25.12.2000256, pretty consistent with other estimates of a little under 1% for most western populations.

  148. 148
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @rhampton7 A few days ago I mentioned my friend in San Francisco who is following hospitalization numbers, because if the hospitals get overwhelmed and start turning people with Covid away, the case fatality rate goes way up. Looks like in limited areas it’s starting to happen. Hopefully not very many places.

    By the way, according to the site my friend follows, nationwide, 34,142 people have been hospitalized with this. Two days ago that number was like 16,000.

  149. 149
    PaV says:

    Here’s what so strange. I live in California. We have roughly 40 million people. How many people in California came down with seasonal flu this year? If you figure 8%, that means 3.2 million people caught the flu. Meanwhile, the numbers from Worldometers.info says that in California–after what, five, six weeks of exposure to SARS-CoV-2, there are only 9,732 cases, with 207 having died.

    Let’s assume that only 10% of the 8% that normally get the seasonal flu came down with CoVid-19. That’s 320,000 people. Now, let’s calculate the CFR: 207/320,000 = 0.064%. This is a plausible number. And the Corona Virus is supposed to be MORE contagious than the regular flu, so shouldn’t there be even more than 320,000 infected. [Is this going to be like the “swine flu” all over, with a final CFR of 0.02%, one fifth the mortality rate of the common flu?]

    IOW, the 9,732 number is meaningless. We have no idea how many people have come into contact with this Chinese virus and fought it off successfully, or, had such mild symptoms as to have hardly noticed.

    Thus, the CFR becomes meaningless. We’ll know what it really is when all of this is over. But, how much havoc will have been wrought in the meantime? We’re flying blind in all of this. Nevertheless, we’re now calculating CFR’s of 2% and sweating about it. All meaningless. The Diamond Princess Cruise Ship numbers are what we should be looking at and basing policy on.

  150. 150
    daveS says:

    There were a lot of geezers on the Diamond Princess, so perhaps they are not a very representative sample.

  151. 151
    orthomyxo says:

    Let’s assume that only 10% of the 8% that normally get the seasonal flu came down with CoVid-19. That’s 320,000 people. Now, let’s calculate the CFR: 207/320,000 = 0.064%. This is a plausible number.

    What? You think it plausible that 320,000 people had the coronavirus ~3 weeks ago (that’s the lag time from infection to death) because you arbitrarily decided 10% of completely made up number of flu cases (for the whole year)? You think that’s plausible?

  152. 152
    rhampton7 says:

    President Donald Trump said Tuesday that the risk from coronavirus is emphatically worse than regular flu, reversing his previous statements.

    Trump told a White House press conference that “a lot of people” had previously suggested the country should simply let the coronavirus take its course, just like the seasonal flu.

    “Ride it out, don’t do anything, just ride it out and think of it as the flu,” they said, according to Trump, who said: “But it’s not the flu. It is vicious.”

    “If we did nothing, if we just carried on with our life,” he said, “you would have seen people dying on airplanes, you would have seen people dying in hotel lobbies. You would have seen death all over.”

  153. 153
    PaV says:

    Look at Figure 1 from the CDC site on the Flu Burden:

    Notice that the “top end” is from the 2017-2018 flu season, which passed without a comment from the entire media mob. From that season we have: 45,000,000 illnesses, 810,000 hospitializations and 61,000 deaths.

    7.5% of those hospitalized eventually died. 1.8% of those who had the illness ended up being hospitalized.

    Making the simple assumption that everyone who has been diagnosed with CoVid-19 ends up in the hospital (but this is obvously an inflated number since we know people who have been tested and who have tested positive but not gone to the hospital [Tom Hanks, e.g.]. So, let’s say only 1 out of 3 positive cases ends up being hospitalized). Well, this means that if CoVid-19 is no more than a seasonal flu, we should expect 7.5% of the confirmed cases, divided by 3, will end up in death.

    What’s the number? 5,373 deaths. What are the deaths in the U.S. as of today? 5,099.

    Now let’s look at the hospitalizations. In 2017-2018, there were 810,000 hospitalizations. Let’s assume, for this comparison, that half of those testing positive have ended up in the hospital. That’s 107,000 so far. So, 107,000 versus 810,000, with the 810,000 being spread out over 24 weeks, or 33,750 a week. We’ve been going on with the Corona Virus for about two to three weeks. That’s about 67,000 to 101,000 hospitalizations during the worst of 2017-2018, which is in the ballpark for what might now be happening. Again, what is driving all this fear are the projections. Yet, we have no way of knowing if these projections are accurate. Ferguson has gone from 500,000 to 20,000. Quite a correction. And, if someone says this is because of mitigation efforts, let’s remember that it will be weeks before those mitigation efforts will bear fruit; and, it’s possible that the virus will have basically run its course in the UK in those three weeks. We shall see what we shall see.

  154. 154
    rhampton7 says:

    So you’re back to believing “we’re being had”

  155. 155
    rhampton7 says:

    Among the trends in Utah: The largest age group of sufferers is relatively young: 400 of Utah confirmed cases are in people aged 25-44. 320 are 45-64 years old. 115 are 65-84 years old.
    Older Utahns are more likely to be hospitalized. 13% of those aged 45-64 are hospitalized. 25% of those aged 65 to 84 are hospitalized.

  156. 156
    orthomyxo says:

    . Well, this means that if CoVid-19 is no more than a seasonal flu, we should expect 7.5% of the confirmed cases, divided by 3, will end up in deat

    You are still forgetting it takes a long time to die from this. The deminator for the IFR or whatever comparison you aretrying here should be the number of cases that existed ~ 3 weeks ago, not the number known today.

    Ferguson has gone from 500,000 to 20,000. Quite a correction.

    No. He. Hasn’t. There is no new estimate based on new data. 20,000 was the number expected with mitigations before the mitigations started, and he stands by that number.

    What is wrong with you?

  157. 157
    vividbleau says:

    Ortho

    I agree With you about Ferguson but did he not also say that the lowers number was if we did mitigation for 5 months or am I mistaken? Thanks

    Vivid

  158. 158
    orthomyxo says:

    Hi Vivid,

    That’s right, partly bacause that’s the only thing that his team modelled in that paper.

    I suspect the approach taken by the UK and other countries with major outbreaks will be to weather this first peak in lockdown, then try to ramp up testing to the point you can isolate individual outbreaks and live with less severe measures (with local lockdowns or rolling lockdowns when things get worse again).

  159. 159
    vividbleau says:

    Ortho
    “That’s right, partly bacause that’s the only thing that his team modelled in that paper.”

    Now I am not picking a fight here ok? Very much appreciate your comments as well as others but his model , using the 20k number, was for 5 months but we have not been in mitigation for 5 months doesnt this suggest he is in someway deviating from his model?

    Vivid

  160. 160
    daveS says:

    PaV,

    Ferguson has gone from 500,000 to 20,000. Quite a correction.

    Ok, this looks like drumbeat repetition of talking points with no regard for the truth.

  161. 161
    PaV says:

    I think I’ve stumbled onto something helpful in understanding what’s going on. Here’s an editorial from the New England Journal of Medicine.

    Lots of good information. What caught my eye, though, was what they called the basic reproduction number, R_0. For the seasonal flu, it’s about 1. That is, each person who catches the flu causes one other person to become sick. Here, with the Corona virus, it’s each person causes 2.2 other persons to become sick. This would then be the logic for “social distancing”: to slow the spread down.

    Yet, this can all be turned around. I linked to a preprint of a paper by Sunetra Gupta, et.al in an earlier post. Their interest was in how quickly a “herd immunity” would be established. They ran their models using an R_0 of 2.25. It was their model that showed, given the best match to actual numbers, that they the actual mortality rate of the virus was on the order of 0.1%. With a low virulence virus spreading quickly, so, too, does the “herd immunity” spread quickly. And, if it is of low virulence, then everyone develops immunity at very little cost of life. It appears that the UK was at first betting on the “herd immunity” model, where a spreading virus works in your favor. They then went to a “social distancing” model, which occassioned Ferguson’s new numbers. So, now the UK is betting that a low spread rate is their best friend. We’ll all know better when the final numbers have run their course.

    But this R_0 number helps make sense out of the strategy the president has chosen to follow. It’s a big gamble. I hope he made the right decision. But, in the meantime, the numbers are so low as to make you think that almost the entire medical profession has made the mistake of thinking this virus is much more virulent that it may actually be. What this means is that because of the supposed high virulence, they think that shielding us from acquiring immunity is the best strategy. But there are consequences if this is not true. It means that when the flu season comes round again, and in the absence of a developed vaccine, then gobs of people–with no acquired immunity, will be left to fight off the virus on their own. This could make for a very difficult flu season next year. So there is risk involved in employing this strategy.

    The UK experience, however, might let us know whether it was a good gamble or not: if their mortality rate spikes quite high and then begins to fall somewhat precipituously–as the “social distancing” slows down the spread of the virus, then we’ll know that the virus is on the deadly side and that the best strategy was, indeed, to keep away from it and keep people separated. But the numbers might show just the opposite. And then the can will have been pushed down the road, calamity will not have struck, but it may have come at the cost of another “Great Depression”? Quite a gamble!

  162. 162
    rhampton7 says:

    “ And will the cost then be another “Great Depression”? Quite a gamble!”

    With every other major economy shut down, it would not matter if everyone went back to work tomorrow — imports aren’t coming in and exports have no where to go.

  163. 163
    PaV says:

    From the charts for Spain and Italy, right now it looks like it’s 3 weeks of rise, one week of leveling off, and then a decline (hopefully no new ‘peak’). The US is in its third week–two or three days in. So, we have about four or five more days of rise in the daily number of deaths, and then a leveling off.

    My best guess is that the leveling off will be at about 1300-1400 deaths each day. Then, hopefully, downward. My estimate for total deaths in the US would be 31,500. Two years ago, 61,000 died and nothing was said. And now, with the measures that have been taken, people will have lost their life savings, companies will have gone out of business, the US debt will have exploded, and lives will have been ruined. Wow. How did we get here? We’ll know a whole lot more in two weeks–which seems like an eternity away.

    As to a new “Great Depression,” you can look here.

  164. 164
    orthomyxo says:

    Now I am not picking a fight here ok? Very much appreciate your comments as well as others but his model , using the 20k number, was for 5 months but we have not been in mitigation for 5 months doesnt this suggest he is in someway deviating from his model?

    No, the 20,000 number was calculated before any mitigations were put in place, it’s not a new estimate based on what’s happening now. After he mitigation was put in place he was asked how many deaths we might expect, and he quoted the estimate under similar conditions from his paper. Doesn’t require a change in his model.

  165. 165
    rhampton7 says:

    It’s getting even uglier out there in the ocean trades.

    Not only are “blank” (canceled) container-ship sailings surging — spiking from 45 to 120 in the past three days — but schedule reliability for non-canceled sailings is poised to deteriorate.

    Demand from cargo buyers in the U.S. and Europe is collapsing at an alarming pace. Hopes for a second-half V-shaped rebound are dwindling. Containers already delivered to import terminals are piling up, prompting at least one major carrier to launch a stopgap storage plan.

  166. 166
    rhampton7 says:

    SINGAPORE (ICIS)–South Korea’s factory output and chemical exports deteriorated in March as new orders plunged following the coronavirus outbreak.

    Production has declined to levels not seen since early 2009, industry and official data showed on Wednesday.

  167. 167
    rhampton7 says:

    – China’s ports and shipping firms are bracing for a second wave of supply chain disruptions that may be deeper and more prolonged than during the country’s coronavirus lockdown as the global spread of the virus chokes off international demand.

  168. 168
    daveS says:

    RH7,

    I wish I knew more about these shipping stats. For some reason I find them fascinating. I recall hearing about the Baltic Dry Index moving drastically around the 2008 financial crisis; quite ominous at the time.

  169. 169
    PaV says:

    Orthomyxo @164:

    The virus has spread unabated for weeks now. It is preposterous to now say that a figure he calculated using a completely different strategy is now in play. It’s too late for that. It looks very much like a “save-face” play that anything else. He should have recalculated things. He was responding to Gupta’s report which showed that the mortality rate for this virus is likely in the 0.1% range and that “herd immunity” has developed. He basically capitulated.

  170. 170
    rhampton7 says:

    Manufacturing activity in the eurozone has suffered its largest fall since the 2008 financial crisis and factories in Italy endured the fastest contraction in output on record as the coronavirus pandemic hit the continent’s economy, according to a widely watched survey.

  171. 171
    vividbleau says:

    Ortho
    “No, the 20,000 number was calculated before any mitigations were put in place, it’s not a new estimate based on what’s happening now. “

    Agreed

    “After he mitigation was put in place he was asked how many deaths we might expect, and he quoted the estimate under similar conditions from his paper. Doesn’t require a change in his model.”

    I agree it does not require a change in his model IF mitigation lasts 5 months but it has not been 5 months but he is going with his lower estimate.

    Vivid

  172. 172
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    I don’t think we need the Baltic Dry Index to tell us that the economy is now in the crapper but it can be a good indicator to presage when the recovery might be starting another would be the transportation index.

    Vivid

  173. 173
    orthomyxo says:

    The virus has spread unabated for weeks now. It is preposterous to now say that a figure he calculated using a completely different strategy is now in play. It’s too late for that. It looks very much like a “save-face” play that anything else.

    The paper was published March 16th, the lockdown started on the 23rd. A best estimate is that about 3% of the UK population has been infected so far (https://www.imperial.ac.uk/media/imperial-college/medicine/sph/ide/gida-fellowships/Imperial-College-COVID19-Europe-estimates-and-NPI-impact-30-03-2020.pdf, maybe 4% with a lower IFR), so I think it’s fair to say letting it run wild and infect the rest would chance the number of deaths

    He should have recalculated things. He was responding to Gupta’s report which showed that the mortality rate for this virus is likely in the 0.1% range and that “herd immunity” has developed. He basically capitulated.

    We was not. I don’t know if you get this stuff from out there news sites or just make it up. His actual evidence to select committee is here https://parliamentlive.tv/Event/Index/2b1c71d4-bdf4-44f1-98fe-1563e67060ee

  174. 174
    orthomyxo says:

    I agree it does not require a change in his model IF mitigation lasts 5 months but it has not been 5 months but he is going with his lower estimate.

    Yes, it’s very likely mitigation efforts (but not full lockdown) will last at least that long (though maybe the US is not talking about that yet)

  175. 175
    daveS says:

    Vivid,

    Thanks, I’ll take a look at that index also.

  176. 176
    vividbleau says:

    Ortho
    Given that mitigation can take so many forms, and we will be implementing some form of mitigation for years, I would say his model is pretty much unfalsifiable. As Fauci basically said, at least to my ears “ who knows”when asked about the accuracy of models, “it’s all about the assumptions”

    Working on Wall Street I have a deep and warranted suspicion of models that end up blowing up the financial system ala Long Term Capital.

    Don’t get me wrong we have to take this virus seriously , my daughter in law who is a nurse who has been on the frontline has a fever and cough and is on her way to the emergency room to be tested as we speak.

    Vivid

  177. 177
    Barry Arrington says:

    Vivid, best wishes and prayers for your daughter-in-law.

  178. 178
    Ed George says:

    My best wishes as well, Vivid. My daughter-in-law is also a nurse, and being told only to wear a mask if the patient has symptoms.

  179. 179
    orthomyxo says:

    Vivid,

    Of course, there is a great deal out uncertainty in the modelling, but it’s the best tool we have for estimating how different actions will change the pandemic.

    The Imperial model tests a few versions of suppression and shows the results of each differ, but they all greatly limit the death rate when compared to letting the virus burn through everyone.

    The exact measures taken anywhere will certainly differ from those in the model. But I think the models remain useful for understanding how interventions work, and nothing in Ferguson’s statements suggests he’s dodging or charging his tune from the paper (again, he has said as much explicitly).

    Best wishes for your daughter in law, and for everyone else facing this onslaught.

  180. 180
    vividbleau says:

    Barry, Ed, Ortho
    Thanks
    Hopefully know test results in a day or two.
    My son is a PMT with the Fire Dept, his wife is a nurse, my daughter is a nurse as is her husband and my other daughter In law , the one being tested, is a nurse. The math says that the odds are high that someone in that list either has it or is going to get it.
    The odds are also high that they would recover.

    Vivid

  181. 181
    Marfin says:

    JVL-you missed the point ,I am asking about consistency of position ,I am asking a real question why should we care if people die ?. why are humans deserving of this lofty position.
    Now this position you hold of human life being so valuable, is that all human life and if so will you join me in preaching the message about the evils of alcohol, drugs, gluttony, abortion,greed,and immorality all of which prematurely end millions more lives than corona virus ever will , or is it only the lives of you and your friends and relatives you care about.

  182. 182
    Marfin says:

    JVL- And another thing , I assume your desire for the wellbeing of other humans is an evolutionary trait
    (if no GOD it then has to be) is someone`s lack of care for other humans also an evolutionary trait and if so which of these traits is good or bad, or increases or decreases the possibility their genes will be the ones to proliferate.
    You won`t answer because if you did you would expose the bankruptcy of the AM MAT position

  183. 183
    Truthfreedom says:

    @182 Marfin:

    …and if so which of these traits is good or bad, or increases or decreases the possibility their genes will be the ones to proliferate.

    What is patently clear is that abortion is not the way to help proliferate your genes. Darwinism is outdated, useless and explains nothing.
    Role of abortion under darwinist premises, please?

  184. 184
    JVL says:

    Marfin: Now this position you hold of human life being so valuable, is that all human life and if so will you join me in preaching the message about the evils of alcohol, drugs, gluttony, abortion,greed,and immorality all of which prematurely end millions more lives than corona virus ever will , or is it only the lives of you and your friends and relatives you care about.

    I’m a real human being and I don’t fit into either of those ends of a spectrum you have elucidated.

    You won`t answer because if you did you would expose the bankruptcy of the AM MAT position

    I’m not going to answer because you clearly are more interested in propping up your view of what the “AM MAT” position is. You don’t really care what I, personally, think because you’ve already decided what I should think based on your interpretation of what you think my stance is. I’m just a cartoon character to you and so you don’t have to treat me with respect and dignity or attempt to understand my thoughts.

    Truthfreedom: I started off trying to have good conversations with you but now you just jump on the dump on atheists/materialist bandwagon whenever you get bored. Again, IF you really care what I think and feel then I’ll talk to you but so far you’ve given no indication that you do.

  185. 185
    Marfin says:

    JVL- You are right I have jumped to a conclusion re your position and if I am wrong in that I apologise but logically speaking there are only two positions for reality and all we see around us, its either God did it or nature did it, if you know of a third I would be really interested to here what it is. If there is no third position, what is your position is it God or nature, super natural or natural , and do you believe your world view is consistent with that position.

  186. 186
    kairosfocus says:

    Vivid, I pray that God puts his thumb on the dice in favour of your kids and their spouses. Here, we are seeing health workers on the front lines and by that being at relatively high risk of exposure. If that HCQ cocktail with Zinc supplements had full approval on testing as a broad spectrum antiviral a decade ago, there’s a good chance we wouldn’t be where we are now. KF

  187. 187
    JVL says:

    Marfin: its either God did it or nature did it, if you know of a third I would be really interested to here what it is.

    It seems to me there are differing opinions of what and how much (and when) God did whatever he/she/it did. So perhaps there is a sliding scale of causation instead of just a dichotomy.

    If there is no third position, what is your position is it God or nature, super natural or natural , and do you believe your world view is consistent with that position.

    Do you mean by ‘consistent’ that IF I say it’s all unguided processes then you will say that means there is no ultimate meaning and i have to think that everything should be allowed. And IF that’s the way the conversation is going I’m not interested.

    You’re so convinced you are right (not only about God but about what my opinion implies) that I can’t see going through the motions. You are sure there are only two positions and nothing grey between. I’m not going to change your mind on that am I? Based on what you’ve already said.

    YOU think that atheists/materialists shouldn’t care about people living or dying, shouldn’t care about ethics or morals (or can’t find a foundation for them at least) and we should all be raping and killing and such because there’s no reason not to. You’ve made that very clear. I don’t know any atheist like that. Until you can find a way to treat caring, kind, compassionate, supportive, intelligent atheists like equal human beings then I’ve not got much to contribute to a conversation.

  188. 188
    ET says:

    JVL- All atheists and materialists of today are riding the coattails of religions. Your morality comes from that.

  189. 189
    Truthfreedom says:

    @186 Kairosfocus:

    If that HCQ cocktail with Zinc supplements had full approval on testing as a broad spectrum antiviral a decade ago, there’s a good chance we wouldn’t be where we are now.

    Specially knowing that a *coronavirus* pandemic was on the horizon. Under ‘darwinian premises’ it was unavoidable.
    What is the use of that ToE (‘Theory of Everything’) then? A broad spectrum antiviral should have been tried long ago.
    SARS-COV-1: 2003
    H1N1: 2009
    MERS: 2012

  190. 190
    Marfin says:

    JVL , I have never said Atheists cannot be moral or should go about raping and murdering , all I have ever asked for from atheists is a definition of what constitutes moral and how do you know that definition is correct , I have yet to receive an answer . So you can see my scepticism for those claiming to act in a way they cannot even define.

  191. 191
    Truthfreedom says:

    Question #1: CORONAVIRUS: WHERE ARE THE EVOLUTIONISTS?

    “Why are they not flooding the news media with articles telling us that this is just “Mother Nature” doing her thing, killing off her children, sacrificing them to the god of “Natural Selection?” After all, isn’t “Nature” just running its course here, culling out the “unfit” members of our species so the robust ones can continue enjoying their lattes unimpeded?”

    “Why are evolutionists not proclaiming their gospel that we’re nothing but stardust anyhow, so what difference does it make if a few of us are returning to the status of a bunch of random molecules? Who cares? Why SHOULD we care? Why aren’t they telling us to pull out our darwinian books to read them in search of answers? Perhaps because, in dire situations like the present, they know full well there ARE no answers in empty darwinist philosophy? Could that be why?”

    “Because they’d be embarrassed to face someone who’s lost a loved one and tell them, “Well, it’s over. They’re gone. Nature at its best.”

    https://www.evolutionisstupid.com/

  192. 192
    daveS says:

    “Why are they not flooding the news media with articles telling us that this is just “Mother Nature” doing her thing, killing off her children, sacrificing them to the god of “Natural Selection?” After all, isn’t “Nature” just running its course here, culling out the “unfit” members of our species so the robust ones can continue enjoying their lattes unimpeded?”

    I think this guy might be a moron.

    Edit: Apparently he’s 65 years old!

    In the late 1960s and early 1970s John went through a “hippie” stage and was the lead singer and organist in a rock group.

    Perhaps too much acid?

  193. 193
    JVL says:

    Marfin:

    If you ask a specific question I’ll try and answer it if you also answer the question and answer follow-on questions from me.

  194. 194
    Marfin says:

    JVL
    The question is please provide a definition of morality and please state how you know that definition is correct.
    And yes I will answer your follow up questions

  195. 195
    JVL says:

    Here’s a few:

    Morality (from Latin: moralitas, lit. ‘manner, character, proper behaviour’) is the differentiation of intentions, decisions and actions between those that are distinguished as proper and those that are improper. Morality can be a body of standards or principles derived from a code of conduct from a particular philosophy, religion or culture, or it can derive from a standard that a person believes should be universal. Morality may also be specifically synonymous with “goodness” or “rightness”.

    : a moral discourse, statement, or lesson; a literary or other imaginative work teaching a moral lesson; a doctrine or system of moral conduct; conformity to ideals of right human conduct

    “morality” can be used either
    descriptively to refer to certain codes of conduct put forward by a society or a group (such as a religion), or accepted by an individual for her own behaviour, or
    normatively to refer to a code of conduct that, given specified conditions, would be put forward by all rational persons.

    Sounds like a doctrine or code of conduct considered some sort of standard.

    I do not know which definition is ‘correct’ because words are human constructs and their usage and ‘definitions’ can change. For example: awful used to mean ‘full of awe’ but doesn’t anymore.

  196. 196
    PaV says:

    Orthomyxo:

    The virus has been in the UK for weeks now. Look at what’s happened in italy. They started “sheltering” weeks ago, while in England and the UK the virus spread unabated. How do you get the genie back in the bottle?

    Italy has almost the same population size as the UK. Why wouldn’t the UK’s numbers be worse than for Italy, which, right now, is almost 14,000. Please circle this square.

  197. 197
    kairosfocus says:

    JVL, much more than that. Unless we are significantly free, our intellectual endeavours are decisively undermined. If we are free and rational, then mechanical necessity and/or blind chance do not exhaustively govern or behaviour, leaving the IS-OUGHT gap on the table at the level of freedom to choose. Thus we come to inescapable first principles and duties of reason: to truth, right reason, prudence, sound conscience, neighbour, fairness, justice etc. Those carry with them deep issues on the roots of reality. In this context, we are under moral government reflected in an intelligible, built-in natural law that is coeval with our roots as a race. That law BTW, frames sound legal codes that duly balance rights, freedoms and responsibilities i.e. the civil peace of justice. More later. KF

  198. 198
    PaV says:

    Here’s thenub of where we’re at in terms of models and the policies now employed.

    “What we’ve been seeing in Europe in the last week or two is a rate of growth of the epidemic which is faster than we expected from early data in China,” said Ferguson, who testified from his home via video link. “So we are revising our central, best estimate of the reproduction number [i.e., the number of people the average carrier can be expected to infect] to something on the order of 3 or a little bit above rather than about a 2.5 level.” In his view, that revision “actually adds more evidence to support the more intensive social distancing measures applied this week, because the higher the reproduction number is, the more intensive the controls need to be to achieve suppression of the epidemic.”

    A substantially higher reproduction number implies that the COVID-19 virus can be expected to spread more quickly than the Imperial College group imagined. But it also means that many more people in the U.K. already have been infected, which implies a bigger gap between known cases and the actual number of infections. That, in turn, implies that the true CFR is lower than the 0.9 percent rate that Ferguson and his colleagues used in their projections.

    The Imperial College CFR estimate is far lower than the crude CFR for the U.K., which is currently about 5 percent. The difference reflects the understanding that the true number of infections is bound to be much larger than the official numbers reflect, because many people with mild or nonexistent symptoms (as is typical of COVID-19) will not seek medical treatment or testing. The size of that group is a crucial question in estimating the true CFR.

    Ferguson believes the number of undocumented infections is not nearly as high as a recent estimate by researchers at Oxford University, who suggested that half of the British population is already infected. If that were true, the CFR for COVID-19 in the U.K. would be something like 0.002 percent, making the disease much less deadly than the seasonal flu, which has an estimated CFR of 0.1 percent.

    “I don’t think it’s consistent with the observed data,” Ferguson said of the Oxford estimate, citing the results from comprehensive testing of Italian villages and the Diamond Princess cruise ship’s passengers and crew. Raising the reproduction number from 2.5 to 3 or more nevertheless implies that the number of undocumented infections is higher than Ferguson’s group originally thought.

    I hope to find time to look at R_0 today. There’s this Wikipedia entry you could look at right now.

    BTW, if you look at the Table on the top right of the opening page at Wikipedia, you’ll notice that the number that Ferguson is using for R_0 is 2.5-3.0 or a bit higher. This puts it in the same category as the Spanish Flu and E. bola. But then look a little higher and you will find that an “airborne droplet” of the common cold is the SAME! So, why are we worried? Because the CFR is thought to be high. But is that true? We’re back to where we’ve started.

    Incidently, the Oxford study, which viewed this virus differently than Ferguson and the Imperial College study, finds that using a R_0 of 2.25 and a CFR of 0.1% best extrapolates to death and illness data in the UK and Italy. So, we have Ferguson’s “belief” versus Gupta’s back-fitted numbers. Which should we choose? How will all of this play itself out?

  199. 199
    PaV says:

    From Wikipedia:

    When calculated from mathematical models, particularly ordinary differential equations, what is often claimed to be R0 is, in fact, simply a threshold, not the average number of secondary infections. There are many methods used to derive such a threshold from a mathematical model, but few of them always give the true value of R0. This is particularly problematic if there are intermediate vectors between hosts, such as malaria.[31]

    What these thresholds will do is determine whether a disease will die out (if R0 1), but they generally cannot compare different diseases. Therefore, the values from the table above should be used with caution, especially if the values were calculated from mathematical models.

    We’ve gotten nowhere. How do we get somewhere? Do random testing. Then you’ll know just how much this virus has spread. This will zero you in on a true R_0.

    Meanwhile, if Ferguson really believes that R_0 is over 3, then this virus has been spreading wildly in Britian and the United States. But, this means that CFR will be on the high side, because the true number of infections will be quite a bit higher than anyone realizes. How do we get out of this problem spot? Do random testing for antibodies. They announced this was going to begin being done last night. We await.

  200. 200
    PaV says:

    Now there’s this on the origin of the Wuhan virus. Was a bioweapons scientist involved with bats?

    I just peeked at it. Hard to know its reliability.

  201. 201
    Bob O'H says:

    PaV – even The Sun is suggesting this is a conspiracy theory.

  202. 202
    Ed George says:

    KF

    If that HCQ cocktail with Zinc supplements had full approval on testing as a broad spectrum antiviral a decade ago, there’s a good chance we wouldn’t be where we are now.

    On this we agree. And more importantly, what other existing drugs have we not tested?

  203. 203
    rhampton7 says:

    Dallas is not a hotspot, yet, however…

    Data released Thursday shows about half of the city’s more than 4,000 available hospital beds are currently occupied. At the city’s 12 hospitals, about 56% of intensive care unit beds and about 30% of ventilators are in use.

    To put that into perspective, Dallas County health director Dr. Philip Huang said the number of ICU hospitalizations is on par with or slightly exceeds the worst part of the 2019-2020 flu season.

    “We have a pretty good capacity right now. The problem is as we’ve talked, we’re just on the beginning of that curve and we’re seeing a pretty good increase of people in the hospital,” Jenkins said.

  204. 204
    PaV says:

    Orthomyxo:

    Look at Ferguson’s paper. Look at Figure 2 (blue graphline). Look when the peak is scheduled to show up————at the end of June!! What a joke!! So Ferguson tells us that since the UK has started with their sheltering policies, only 20,000 Brits will die. Really! June 20th is over TWO MONTHS away!! And what i the total number of deaths so far? 2,900. How many died today? 569. If this isn’t the “peak,” then by June there will be tens of thousands dying each day. OTOH, the UK could easily be marching toward a peak that will come within two weeks, or less, and then fall off, with total deaths being quite low. His model is a joke. He’s capitulated.

  205. 205
    PaV says:

    Italy has peaked in new cases and is on the way down. Daily deaths have levelled off and should, perhaps today, start on their way down. Total deaths in Italy from the Corona
    Virus? 13,900. (The UK is about a week and a half behind, maybe two weeks.) Five years ago, excess deaths from pneumonia and influenza-like-illnesses were 46,000. How did the world stop ‘revolving on its axis’ because of this?

  206. 206
    kairosfocus says:

    PaV, if the disease has been spreading wildly, the reported cases and fatal outcomes should be widely scattered, in addition to concentrations tracing to particular outbreaks from original lodgements. Think about the pattern with annual flus and colds. KF

  207. 207
    Ed George says:

    The world has now surpassed one million cases and 50,000 deaths.

  208. 208
    bornagain77 says:

    From death to life: How God delivered me from coronavirus
    By: Megan Cornwell | 30th March 2020
    Premier Christianity’s deputy editor Megan Cornwell had an unexpected encounter with God during her (life and death) battle with Covid-19
    https://www.premierchristianity.com/Blog/From-death-to-life-How-God-delivered-me-from-coronavirus

  209. 209
    Truthfreedom says:

    @207 Ed George

    The world has now surpassed one million cases and 50,000 deaths.

    Uh. Oh. As if health and life were objective, desirable goods.

  210. 210
    Truthfreedom says:

    @53 Orthomyxo

    We should absolutely expect a second wave of cases when measures are lifted

    Why?

    And, of course, the current wave is not near to its peak yet.

    When will the peak occur?

  211. 211
    PaV says:

    KF:

    The whole reason for this reaction, as best I can judge, is that the R_nought (British-ese) is considered quite high. Well, doesn’t that mean that it easily spreads? So, you’re arguing that it hasn’t spread. So, that means that R_nought is average, like for a seasonal flu. Well, OK, but then there must be excess deaths associated with its virulence. Yet, if you look at the CDC’s P&I, it’s only 7.4. In fact, if you look here at CDC’s website, notice that the P&I is lower right now than it’s been for the LAST 5 flu seasons! Where are the excess deaths? Nowhere to be found. So, per your argument, the R_nought is like the flu, and the excess deaths are like the flu. So, then, if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck it is a duck: that is, SARS-CoV-2 is much like a seasonal flu. And we’ve turned off the world economy because of it.

    Now, I think the R_nought is high, that it has spread quickly, and that this quick spread has overburdened certain areas with an elderly population–much of Europe, e.g. That would suggest that a “herd immunity” has been, and is, developing. That’s really good news, as I see it. Because it means that the worst is over.

    But, as far as the US is concerned, and I suppose Europe if one looks closely (just a presumption on my part), all the peaks in cases and deaths have occurred in “port” cities: New York, New Jersey (effectively a part of the Hudson Bay), Chicago, New Orleans, Detroit and Seattle (Kirkland) [I just googled Kirkland to make sure it’s near Seattle. What was the image I got? One of shipyards!!]. Is it due to the shipments coming over from China in the commercial boxes? Were dock-workers the ones first affected, unknowingly? Now, this is a piece of the puzzle that should be pursued.

    As to whether the worst is over, so quickly, consider how quickly the epidemic ended in China and S. Korea. It was fast–that is, quick spread, high hospitlizations and deaths, and then the “herd immunity” likely set in. IOW, I think this confirms the S. Gupta’sOxford study. They project low levels of death in the U.K in their study. And, it seems confirm actual data. I think Ferguson quickly walked back his numbers in response, no matter what he’s publicly saying. [In a post responding to Ortho, I mentioned his study, which shows the peak of deaths occuring, with social distancing in late June of this year. No way.]

    The US, as best I can divine the graphs, is about a week, to a week-and-a-half, from daily deaths beginning to fall. That’s just a week or so and we’ll have a good idea. Obviously the numbers from China are not to be believed, but Spain and Italy, and even France, show a similar pattern. And Italy seems to clearly be in the downside of this epidemic. (Even a seasonal flu can reach epidemic proportions, as it did, wildly, and without notice, in the 2017-2018 season.) Based on those patterns, we should have a good idea of what the next two weeks here in the US should look like. After that, we can evaluate the advice the president was given and the advice that most leaders of the world followed. [N.B. Sweden has put into place only mild distancing measures–to the point of almost not having them. Their numbers are low, thankfully.]

  212. 212
    Truthfreedom says:

    @144 Orthomyxo

    His numbers are 500,000 without measures and 20,000 or perhaps fewer with strict measures.

    So Homo sapiens is capable of counteracting the evolutive pressures he is subjected to.
    Am I right?
    And how that does fit in the darwinian scheme? Is natural selection being had?

  213. 213
    rhampton7 says:

    Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said Michigan is probably a month away from reaching the peak of the coronavirus outbreak, which topped more than 10,000 cases and 417 deaths in the state Thursday.

  214. 214
    rhampton7 says:

    Gov. Bill Lee announced Thursday he is signing a new executive order requiring Tennesseans to stay at home unless they are conducting “essential activities,” citing data showing an increase in residents’ movements across the state.

    Lee’s move came shortly after former U.S. Sen. Bill Frist, a Tennessee Republican and heart transplant surgeon, joined other physicians across the state in urging Lee to take action. Frist signed his name on their online petition.

    Lee had previously resisted calls to take a tougher approach.

  215. 215
    rhampton7 says:

    The Peach State is now locking down to curb the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus. Gov. Brian Kemp’s order goes into effect Friday and will remain so until April 13. The state has around 4,683 cases of infection today, but being so close to a hotbed state like Florida, it’s bound to increase. Unlike Virginia, this stay-at-home order comes with some teeth concerning enforcement. State police and other officials that he plans to deputize will be out to enforce the order. The National Guard will also be deployed in hotspots across the state

  216. 216
    PaV says:

    I didn’t look closely enough at Kirkland. It doesn’t appear to be a shipyard. Sorry.

  217. 217
    orthomyxo says:

    The virus has been in the UK for weeks now. Look at what’s happened in italy. They started “sheltering” weeks ago, while in England and the UK the virus spread unabated. How do you get the genie back in the bottle?

    Start a lockdown, get R0 below zero. It might be that the UK has too many baked in cases to limit deaths to 20,000 but I’m not sure what point that makes for you. I though you were arguing the death toll will be low and Fergusson was scrambling? But not you think his is an underestimate?

    I hope to find time to look at R_0 today. There’s this Wikipedia entry you could look at right now.

    Do you think, maybe, if basically every epidemiologist in the world thins this is a very serious threat and you are discovering R0 today that you should give some heed to the epidemiologists?

    BTW, if you look at the Table on the top right of the opening page at Wikipedia, you’ll notice that the number that Ferguson is using for R_0 is 2.5-3.0 or a bit higher. This puts it in the same category as the Spanish Flu and E. bola. But then look a little higher and you will find that an “airborne droplet” of the common cold is the SAME! So, why are we worried? Because the CFR is thought to be high. But is that true?

    The CFR is certainly higher than the cold (which is basically zero). The other concerns are the fact there is no natural immunity (so the virus may well infect > 60% of a population is spreads in) and very high disease toll (so health systems may be over-run, leadin to much higher CFR and additional deaths in those that would usually be treated in hosptials).

    Incidently, the Oxford study, which viewed this virus differently than Ferguson and the Imperial College study, finds that using a R_0 of 2.25 and a CFR of 0.1% best extrapolates to death and illness data in the UK and Italy. So, we have Ferguson’s “belief” versus Gupta’s back-fitted numbers. Which should we choose? How will all of this play itself out?

    We should look at the evidence multiple sources and decide. Those with appropriate background might also address the strenghts of other papers. The 50% infected figure from the Gupta paper is from a model where the proportion of population susceptable to sever disease is set to 0.001. If you fix that number, then it’s no suprise fitting to the observed deaths requires a lot in infected people, so how useful is the model? In the recent Imperial paper they come up with about 3% infection rate in the UK, but that is based on a fixed IFR of 1%. We have a little reason to think the IFR might slightlly lower (maybe 0.66% ), so the Imperial estimate might be on the low side (more like 4-5% than 3%).

    As you say, seroprevelance testing will tell us finally. But I’m not willing to bet too many lives of the most extreme parameter-run of the Gupta model being the right one.

    Look at Ferguson’s paper. Look at Figure 2 (blue graphline). Look when the peak is scheduled to show up————at the end of June!

    Without a lockdown. The whole point of the lockdown is to change R0 and alter the course of the epidemic. Figure 3 shows the predicted results with supression (green line being closest to what is enacted) producing a peak a few weeks after measure come in to play.

    Italy has peaked in new cases and is on the way down. Daily deaths have levelled off and should, perhaps today, start on their way down. Total deaths in Italy from the Corona
    Virus? 13,900.

    After extraordinary measures were taken to break transmission, the curve is starting to flatten. As epidemiologists predicted. Italy is a long way from out of the woods, but if they do limit deaths to less than there worse flu season it will be a result of their suppression.

  218. 218
    orthomyxo says:

    PaV,

    I think it’s probably very obvious to everyone that I find your inability to correct your errors very frustrating. Can I ask you to do a couple of things.

    Reflect on the fact you once though there would be fewer than 27,000 deaths in the whole world form this virus. That’s a number we are about to double, while the epidemics in the US, UK and much of Europe are very much picking up steam (and the situation elsewhere is less well understood). You got that number horribly wrong, is it possible your instincts for these outbreak are leading you astray.

    Second, you constantly make errors in interpreting health statistics and reports. And the start of all this, you confused the CDC’s P&I reporting with a CFR, and recently you thought covid-19 deaths would be included their P&I. These are both wrong. You misread Fergussons’s report to mean that the peak of cases would occur in June even with suppression when it’s clear the figure you are referring to is for mitigation strategies and not suppression (the central crux of the whole report is the difference between these). It seems to me that you are going off hunting for factoids that you think might support a low threat from this virus, but not taking much time to understand the data in its context.

    I would like to really encourage you to take a more considered approach.

  219. 219
    orthomyxo says:

    We should absolutely expect a second wave of cases when measures are lifted

    Why?

    Because there are still millions of people that are not immune to this virus. If it is allowed to transmit freely it will run through them.

    And, of course, the current wave is not near to its peak yet.

    When will the peak occur?

    If a lockdown it truly enacted, then you might expeqct the peak of hospitalizations to occur in two weeks and deaths a week to so after that. I’m not in the US, so it’s not clear to me how strongly or widely the supressions measures are being applied.

    WhenI say “nowhere near to” I mean to the height of the peak — as in things will get worse before they get better.

  220. 220
    PaV says:

    It appears that France has added to today’s daily deaths the elderly who have died in homes for the elderly, whereas previously, they only reported those who died in hospitals. So, in a way, it’s an outlier number.

    It does, however, highlight who is especially at risk, the elderly, and that better precautions are in order for future possible outbreaks. If, at it appears, the R_nought, the reproduction number for the virus, is high, then it can spread very quickly in convalescent homes and homes for the elderly. Lesson learned (the hard way!), hopefully.

  221. 221
    rhampton7 says:

    In a Gallup poll taken mostly over the weekend, only 14% of Americans want to go back to their normal routines immediately in this coronavirus pandemic.

    More than half of Americans feel they personally are at significant risk of contracting COVID-19.

    The most optimistic want to wait for a significant decline in COVID-19 cases, and that may not come for at least another month nationally.

  222. 222
    rhampton7 says:

    Flu cases have fallen so much that the Pennsylvania Department of Health is ending its regular reports for the season, it said this week.

    It was an unusually long season, with a lot of cases, but at least in Pennsylvania not particularly deadly. The state reported 102 flu-associated deaths statewide.

    By contrast, Pennsylvania has reported 90 COVID-19 deaths in the past two weeks, and many more are expected as the pandemic continues.

  223. 223
    rhampton7 says:

    California Gov. Gavin Newsom said 1,922 people who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus are currently hospitalized while 816 are in ICU beds, an increase of 5.4 percent from Wednesday.

  224. 224
    Ed George says:

    PaV

    It does, however, highlight who is especially at risk, the elderly, …

    Over half of the COVID-19 deaths in Canada have been in seniors homes.

  225. 225
    Truthfreedom says:

    @219 Orthomyxo

    Because there are still millions of people that are not immune to this virus. If it is allowed to transmit freely it will run through them.

    So what should be done is: to enact a lockdown of ____ duration (weeks). After that, lifting the ban should be allowed + practicing (massive?) antibody screening + isolation of those people testing positive?
    Am I right?
    To change the R0? What R0 would be good to end the pandemic?

  226. 226
    orthomyxo says:

    So what should be done is: to enact a lockdown of ____ duration (weeks). After that, lifting the ban should be allowed + practicing (massive?) antibody screening + isolation of those people testing positive?
    Am I right?
    To change R0? What R0 should be good to end the pandemic?

    Pretty much. I don’t claim to have all the answers, but in general, a big lockdown to limit transmission followed by relative easy of restrictions makes sense. For that to work, you likely need to test very hard to find cases and isolate them and their contacts.

    Any R0 below one will kill the epidemic locally, The problem, of course, is any little outbreaks can kick-off continued transmission.

  227. 227
    Truthfreedom says:

    @226 Orthomyxo

    Any R0 below one will kill the epidemic locally,

    How long would it take to kill the epidemic locally after having reached R0<1?
    Meanwhile, should travel be banned? No mixing populations allowed?

  228. 228
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    I talked to a corrections officer in Florida today. He said that every single prison in Florida is transferring no inmates to anywhere else, and there are no visitors allowed right now. So that’s a small, hopeful sign.

  229. 229
    Truthfreedom says:

    What is the role of the lockdown in the pandemic under the darwinian paradigm?
    Its purpose is to lower SARS-CoV-2 numbers to the point of almost extincion/ extinction.
    It has to have a biological role/ description.
    Oh, does that mean that we are ‘naturally selecting’ SARS-CoV-2?

  230. 230
    Truthfreedom says:

    Darwin thought that ‘nature’ is like a pigeon/dog breeder (but without a mind). How stupid.
    He wanted the mind but without the mind. A logical impossibility of course. Failed theologian and failed doctor. Inbreeder. Barnacle collector. What a piece of work.

  231. 231
    rhampton7 says:

    The news site Mississippi Today first reported the high rate of hospitalizations, citing data compiled and updated by The COVID Tracking Project. Currently, the rate of hospitalizations in the southern state stands at about 31 percent, with 332 people hospitalized out of 1,073 infections. Twenty-two people have already died in Mississippi due to COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus.

    Comparatively, in the state of New York, which has the highest number of confirmed cases of any state nationwide, the hospitalization rate is currently significantly lower at about 22 percent. But New York also has more than 83,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus, while over 18,000 have been hospitalized and nearly 2,000 have died.

  232. 232
    rhampton7 says:

    The latest statewide tally of new coronavirus cases showed a significant increase as of noon Thursday with 24 more deaths caused by the virus in Georgia, the Georgia Department of Public Health said. The updated numbers reflect an increase of more than 700 cases from noon on Wednesday, bringing the total to 5,348 coronavirus cases, and 24 additional deaths, for a total of 163. There are currently 1,056 people hospitalized from coronavirus.

  233. 233
    orthomyxo says:

    How long would it take to kill the epidemic locally after having reached R0<1?
    Meanwhile, should travel be banned? No mixing populations allowed?

    These are the sorts of questions that really require a model with relevant parameters. But it takes a while to detect the effects of a lockdown — weeks for new cases, longer for hospitalisation and deaths.

    Travel bans and the like are a policy question, that require more than just science to decide. Travel bans might stay in place, others might require quarantines or even certified antibody tests to prove immunity.

  234. 234
    Seversky says:

    Marfin @ 190

    … all I have ever asked for from atheists is a definition of what constitutes moral and how do you know that definition is correct , I have yet to receive an answer. So you can see my scepticism for those claiming to act in a way they cannot even define.

    I suspect that this has been answered before but, be that as it may, this is my take.

    To understand what morality is, you need to look at what it does. What is its function? What is its role in society?

    I say “role in society” because morality has no bearing on how the wind or the sea or geological fault-lines or other animals behave. It doesn’t even matter to someone living alone on a desert island. What do prohibitions against theft, rape or murder matter if there is nothing to steal and no one to rape or murder?

    In other words, the function of morality is to regulate the behavior of human towards one another. The purpose is to protect the legitimate rights and interests of the individual member of society from being infringed by others. For example, if someone were to be killed by a boulder falling on them after it was dislodged by a storm we might consider it to be a tragedy but we would not consider it immoral. If, on the other hand, that boulder had been pushed down the hill by one of the victim’s enemies then we would consider that act immoral.

    Why should it matter whether the boulder was dislodged by the storm or pushed? The victim is just as dead either way. One difference is that we can do something about human behavior. The other, and more important, lies in what we call “the golden rule” or empathy.

    I can imagine to some extent the suffering of somebody being raped or tortured or murdered. I would certainly not like it to happen to me. I would certainly like it to happen to those I care about and, by extension, I would not like it to happen even to those I don’t know. That in itself is a sufficient basis for morality. I do not need some extraterrestrial intelligence, however great it might be, to come along and tell me it is “evil”, particularly when it is reluctant to provide any rationale for those views.

    As an atheist/agnostic I also believe that this is the only life I will ever have as me and I would like to enjoy it for as long as I can. I assume that others feel much the same. It is not exactly hard to see that under those circumstances it is to everyone’s advantage if we can agree that we should try to refrain from killing each other except in certain specific circumstances, such as self-defense. That doesn’t require any external validation either.

    This is also where the atheist/agnostic “worldview” is more coherent than the Christian. If killing someone sends them on to an afterlife that is infinitely better than this “vale of tears” and is one where they will be reunited with all the loved ones and friends that have gone before, then how can that killing be a bad thing? If Christians truly believe in such an afterlife then why aren’t they killing themselves now rather than wasting any more time than they have to in this much inferior world? The atheist/agnostic has a perfectly good rationale for wanting to enjoy this life for as long as possible. The Christian doesn’t.

    The Christian concept of a deity is riddled with discrepancies, inconsistencies and outright contradictions. We have a God who tells Adam and Eve that they will die on the day they eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. How is that moral? We have an omniscient God who didn’t know that was what they did until he discovered them in the act. Was He lying and, if so, how is that moral? We have a faultless God who, instead of killing A&E, settles for banishing them from the garden of Eden. Why would such a god tell fibs and how is that moral? We have a God who prohibits killing but wipes out whole cities, lays waste to many countries in the region and even wipes out almost all life on the surface of the Earth. How is that moral? We have a supposedly omnipotent God who apparently did not have the power to do otherwise. We have a supposedly all-loving deity who apparently didn’t have the benevolence to do otherwise. How is that moral? We have a God who manifests himself on Earth in human form and arranges the street-theater act of the crucifixion, knowing full well that He is immortal and human beings have no power to harm Him in the slightest. How is that moral?

    It is this contradictory and illogical and immoral being that is supposed to be the basis of Christian morality, the root of all goodness, that can somehow bridge the is/ought gap.

    It is my contention that, far from being ill-founded or incoherent, it is the atheist/agnostic “worldview” that has a more solid grounding and a more coherent rationale for morality than does Christianity.

  235. 235
  236. 236
  237. 237
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    “The notion of the federal stockpile was it’s supposed to be our stockpile. It’s not supposed to be states stockpiles that they then use.”
    -Jared Kushner, 4/02/2020

  238. 238
    kairosfocus says:

    OM:

    Any R0 below one will kill the epidemic locally, The problem, of course, is any little outbreaks can kick-off continued transmission.

    Unstable so not a true solution.

    What is needed first is an effective treatment that shifts the resolved case partition ratio between fatalities and recoveries, for existing cases. This is why it was so irresponsible and such a failure that HCQ etc were not pursued aggressively over a decade ago [after SARS-1], given the desperate need for approved effective broadly acting antivirals. Doubtless there were other leads that should have been followed up too. Then, there is the ventilator stockpiling question, with the MIT conversion of an ambu-bag a logical issue.

    Second, we need border protection measures that screen and lock out transmission, where possible. Where I sit there was a public call to cancel the local national day festival but it was not heeded. The result was, BA flight 2157 on March 10 bearing two patient zeros, one for here and one for Antigua alike.

    The pattern here is to minimise lodgement.

    At lodgement points, quarantine and treatment. (That should work reasonably well for most cases but here we have latency period transmission and mild or “no” symptom cases likely to transmit, wit that period seeming to average 5 days but in enough cases to matter extending to 14. And, there are super carriers.)

    What is called social distancing seems applicable here, with personal protection. Two-way breath filters and hand-face cleaning and contact minimisation seem necessary here. The breakdown of stockpiles of masks, gloves and higher level protective equipment.

    the issue of community curve flattening to contain within reasonable medical treatment surge capacity comes in, in effect a degree of quarantine of communities.

    All of this is is unstable, breakouts are likely leading to quasi-exponential growth. That points to seeing such as needing to be persistently applied until the disease dies out.

    The biggie is where we copy God and his solution, boosting the immunity system, by vaccination. In this context, recognising pandemics and life threatening epidemics as the moral equivalent of war leads to seeing a justification for conscription of each of us at immune system level. That gets us to a good form of herd protection.

    The problem here, is that immunity fades, micro-organisms form new strains and so we face a perpetual war, a multiple front arms race.

    A key point is, that the history of the Peloponnesian war needs to be widely taught, regarding how democracies can fail; including the impact of the Plague of Athens. And yes, that is replete with worldviews level issues, issues we must face as a civilisation.

    What scares me is, the germ warfare planners are seeing what a natural plague can do, and in the shadows, they are planning.

    Getting broadly acting effective antivirals and a new cluster of antibiotics becomes a national and global security issue.

    KF

  239. 239
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @Ed George if American Christians like Jerry Falwell Junior ignore the quarantine rules and have big gatherings, I’m not going to tell them no. Religious Freedom.

  240. 240
    kairosfocus says:

    Sev,

    the function of morality is to regulate the behavior of human towards one another. The purpose is to protect the legitimate rights and interests of the individual member of society from being infringed by others.

    Question-begging, smuggling in the IS-OUGHT gap without a genuine solution. Such a solution can only occur without the Humean problem of un-grounded ought, at reality-root level.

    We need a source of worlds adequate to sustain ought.

    KF

  241. 241
    kairosfocus says:

    EG, pardon, your hostility is showing. There is a widespread problem of non-compliance with reasonable restrictions on social contact and assembly, including for example the London Underground. To single out religiosity-motivated cases reflects imbalance and in context a pattern of hostility. Yes, these church goers and their leadership are not living up to core morality and core Christian teachings on loving neighbour and on prudence or more broadly wisdom [not a surprise in a sadly superficial age], but moral challenge is part of the hazard of being human; it is not particular to religion. KF

  242. 242
    kairosfocus says:

    JT, Mr Falwell gave a strong response to the way what he did for students at his university has been portrayed in the press. Did you consult it before singling him out? What is your response to his explanation? KF

  243. 243
    kairosfocus says:

    JT, strategic reserves controlled at top level back up operational and tactical ones, a general principle of military strategy. Which is highly relevant. Notice, deployment of field hospitals and naval hospital ships. I note too that Samaritans Purse, with its global experience of disaster response and setting up of a field hospital in NYC, is a case in point. KF

  244. 244
    daveS says:

    Bucky Pizzarelli has died, apparently a victim of the coronavirus.

  245. 245
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Notice the strikingly different balance provided by the headline and leading words of the Guardian article:

    [Head:] Churchgoers all over world come to terms with physical distancing advice

    [Subhead;] Services from Moscow to Rio go ahead as some clerics disregard coronavirus risk . . .

    Millions of people across the world tuned into online church services on Sunday as their usual places of worship were closed, but in some places clerics insisted on their doors remaining open.

    The day after Pope Francis delivered a blessing in an empty St Peter’s Square, watched on television by an estimated 11 million people . . . [it then turns to problematic cases]

    That’s a far better balanced presentation than the effect of what you highlighted, EG.

    KF

  246. 246
    kairosfocus says:

    Condolences on the passing of a Jazz Guitarist, at 94. KF

  247. 247
    ET says:

    seversky:

    It is my contention that, far from being ill-founded or incoherent, it is the atheist/agnostic “worldview” that has a more solid grounding and a more coherent rationale for morality than does Christianity.

    It is a reality that materialistic atheism is ill-founded, incoherent, illogical an irrational. It is also a fact that the atheists of today ride the coattails of religions. Their morality is derived from religions.

  248. 248
    kairosfocus says:

    ET, Sev:

    Well-founded, like this?

    First, some materialists actually suggest that mind is more or less a delusion, which is instantly self-referentially absurd. For instance, Sir Francis Crick is on record, in his 1994 The Astonishing Hypothesis:

    . . . that “You”, your joys and your sorrows, your memories and your ambitions, your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behaviour of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules. As Lewis Carroll’s Alice might have phrased: “You’re nothing but a pack of neurons.” This hypothesis is so alien to the ideas of most people today that it can truly be called astonishing.

    Philip Johnson has replied that Sir Francis should have therefore been willing to preface his works thusly: “I, Francis Crick, my opinions and my science, and even the thoughts expressed in this book, consist of nothing more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules.” Johnson then acidly commented: “[t]he plausibility of materialistic determinism requires that an implicit exception be made for the theorist.” [Reason in the Balance, 1995.]

    In short, it is at least arguable that self-referential absurdity is the dagger pointing to the heart of evolutionary materialistic models of mind and its origin. For, there is a very good reason we are cautioned about how easily self-referential statements can become self-refuting, like a snake attacking and swallowing itself tail-first. Any human scheme of thought that undermines responsible [thus, morally governed] rational freedom undermines itself fatally. We thus see inadvertent, inherent self-falsification of evolutionary materialism. But, “inadvertent” counts: it can be hard to recognise and acknowledge the logically fatal nature of the result. Of course, that subjective challenge does not change the objective result: self-referential incoherence and irretrievable self-falsification. (An audio clip, here, by William Lane Craig that summarises Plantinga’s argument on this in a nutshell, is useful as a quick reference.) . . .

    KF

  249. 249
    rhampton7 says:

    A Pentecostal Church in a suburb of Sacramento has been linked to nearly six dozen cases of the new coronavirus, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. According to the Sacramento County public health department, 71 members of Bethany Slavic Missionary Church’s 3,000-member congregation have tested positive, including the pastor, with more confirmed cases likely on the way. The church didn’t stop holding large services until March 18, and church greeters typically welcome congregants with a handshake, the Chronicle reports.

  250. 250
    Ed George says:

    KF

    To single out religiosity-motivated cases reflects imbalance and in context a pattern of hostility.

    On the contrary. Church leaders have a leadership role and trust level amongst their community that teens on March break, or people who believe that the virus is some big conspiracy, do not have. As such, they have a level of responsibility, obligation, and accountability that most others don’t have.

    These priests and ministers knew the risks and insisted on holding services anyways. Thankfully, they are in the minority. But regardless, given that many church goers are elderly, the most at risk from this virus, how many people are going to suffer or die from their negligent actions.

    But I do have a question for you. Do you think these priests and ministers should be charged? If not, why not?

  251. 251
    rhampton7 says:

    North Carolina public health officials said Monday that “multiple cases” of coronavirus have been linked to a church event a week ago at a Durham hotel.

    Durham County health officials declined to provide details on how many people might have attended the event, how many were tested and how many positive tests came back.

  252. 252
    rhampton7 says:

    At least 43 parishioners of The Life Church Glenview, (IL) along with the pastor and his family, are suffering symptoms suspected from COVID-19 coronavirus, leaders of the church said in a Facebook post this week.

  253. 253
    rhampton7 says:

    Governor Andy Beshear (KY) used his Wednesday news conference to call out a Dawson Springs church for helping with the spread of the COVID-19 virus in Hopkins County.

    The Hopkins County Health Department said they had 26 confirmed cases as of Wednesday afternoon. The governor said a church in Dawson Springs that he did not mention by name held a revival recently and as a result, the virus spread throughout the county.

  254. 254
    rhampton7 says:

    At least five rabbis from the close-knit ultra-Orthodox Jewish community in Lakewood, N.J., have died in the past few days from coronavirus, reports from local media say.

    Lakewood is a town of about 100,000 with an Orthodox Jewish population that is thought to be approaching 70 percent of the total population. Despite very high infection rates in Lakewood, some residents of the town have prioritized religious imperatives over the stay-at-home order that Gov. Phil Murphy instituted on Mar. 21.

  255. 255
    rhampton7 says:

    Four heavily Orthodox neighborhoods in Brooklyn have especially high rates of the novel coronavirus, according to data released by this city’s Department of Health.

    Israel is experiencing an even more extreme phenomenon, as more than a third of the total population of the haredi city of Bnei Brak is estimated to have coronavirus, according to the Times of Israel.

  256. 256
    Ed George says:

    Another article on churches defying anti-assembly orders.

    https://www.google.ca/amp/s/www.cbc.ca/amp/1.5515436

  257. 257
    rhampton7 says:

    The Kansas Department of Health and Environment issued a statement Tuesday saying people who attended Kansas East Jurisdiction’s Ministers and Workers Conference from March 16-22 at the Miracle Temple Church of God in Christ at 2106 Quindaro Blvd. may have been exposed to the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

    “This event has been identified as a place of exposure for multiple people in Kansas who have since become ill and tested positive for COVID-19,” the agency said in a statement.

  258. 258
    Ed George says:

    And here is a church exemption to lock down rules granted by a government.

    https://www.democracynow.org/2020/3/27/headlines/brazils_president_exempts_churches_from_lockdown_as_covid_19_surges

  259. 259
    rhampton7 says:

    On February 18, a 61-year-old South Korean woman associated with a religious group in the city of Daegu tested positive for the coronavirus disease Covid-19 – becoming the country’s 31st patient. Before she was isolated, she was part of a congregation with an estimated 1,000 group members at the Shincheonji church.

    In less than a month, as South Korea’s cases rose from 50 to close to 8,000, officials estimated at least 60% of these – around 4,300 — were linked to the group.

  260. 260
    rhampton7 says:

    Several positive cases of COVID-19 have been traced to Palmer Grove Baptist Church in Waynesboro.

    According to a Georgia Department of Public Health announcement, the church had services through Sunday.

  261. 261
    Marfin says:

    JVL Thanks for answering my question while so many refused, now you have given a definition and acknowledged you cannot know if this definition is correct , you have to also accept the definition uses words like goodness, rightness, proper behaviour, but this puts us back to square one as who decides what is good, right, proper. The definition takes it for granted that we take these words as a given and that good , right and proper are somehow concrete positions , but alas they all need to defined just like my original question on morality IE define , good, right, proper, etc.
    For me unless there is a moral law giver you cannot have a moral law, so in 1 John 3;4 is states that sin is breaking Gods law ,simply put the God who created the universe and us, lays down certain laws and these laws determine what is good, or evil moral, or immoral. Now you may believe this is nonsense and there is no God but my position is a consistent one as if there is an almighty creator and maker of all surely he gets to decide what is right, proper, good , moral , as the alternate position has no solid foundation.
    Simply put how can right and wrong be determined by creatures who have been formed by a random process which churns out creatures who will eat their young and creatures that will die to protect them If that process (evolution) has delivered both behaviours who are you to say one is good or bad moral or immoral, as both behaviours have passed the evolutionary test and have survived till now.

  262. 262
    Marfin says:

    During the abortion debate here in Ireland one slogan from the women on the pro abortion left was ” My body my choice” so the baby or the father of the baby have absolute no say in the matter.
    No matter what harrowing emotional effect it had on the father no matter that a baby was being killed it was ” My body my choice” and everyone else can just shut up. No if I want to shop, play golf, go to church, go to work, is it ok for me to say when stopped by the police “My body my choice” every one else should just shut up or am I expected to take the lives and feelings of others into account , seems a little unfair as its “My body my choice”

  263. 263
    kairosfocus says:

    EG, community leaders in general have significant trust, access and responsibility. Again, you are tellingly selective. Yes, church leaders should act prudently, but that is clearly a much broader problem. Indeed, I notice and remarked on how skepticism has been promoted to virtue status inappropriately at civilisation level, leading to a breakdown of the responsible balance in decisions as to what and when to accept, decide and act. You will notice, that in discussing first principles and duties of reason, I have identified as yardsticks, the duties to truth, right reason, prudence, sound conscience, neighbour, fairness, justice etc. The etc implying, and the like. Prudence is there precisely as it or its opposite will affect our response to warrant, moral responsibility to accept to some degree, decision and planning then execution of action. The balance implied in this is something we need to restore. Indeed, that prudence seems now to be a rare word speaks volumes on the status of the classical cardinal virtues in our thought (never mind the theological ones). The steady erosion of morality in our civilisation through the imposition of evolutionary materialistic scientism and/or fellow travellers, has sobering consequences. KF

  264. 264
    kairosfocus says:

    RH7, SK’s patient 31 was a super-carrier, acting before there was an adequate appreciation of the potential impact. Here and next door, two patient zeros travelled on one aircraft, March 10. They came from the UK. KF

  265. 265
    kairosfocus says:

    Marfin, in addition to JVL at 195, you may look at Sev at 234. Neither is satisfactory but that speaks for itself. In addition, Sev projects an unfortunately strawmannish caricature of God (in general and in Christian scripture and thought). The failure to understand the worldview context of understanding and accurately describing morality leads to various challenges. Yes, morality can be characterised at descriptive, normative and meta levels. It also emerges as a concomitant of genuine freedom, especially given that one has neighbours of similar dignity and worth. That is, we find ourselves inescapably bound and governed by first duties of rational, responsible agency, forming a governing morally grounded built in law of our nature. This has direct implications for civil law and government as well as for how communities and their members should act. Such inescapable first duties include the duties to truth, right reason, prudence, sound conscience, neighbour, fairness, justice etc. The etc implying, and the like. KF

  266. 266
    kairosfocus says:

    PS: One of the core challenges is that morality (rightness vs wrongness) implies freedom of action, so a gap between the IS and the OUGHT. What ought to be needs not become so, through wrong choice. Directly, what is, is not necessarily what ought to be.

    This for example answers de Sade in his assertion that as the male is naturally stronger than the female, he has power . . . and the “right” . . . to impose as he will (especially sexually, hence the philosophy — yes, philosophy — of sadism). The foreshadowings of nihilism should be plain.

    The IS-OUGHT gap, post Hume, can only be bridged in the root of reality, wellspring of worlds. In that context, we consider grand inference to best explanation i/l/o comparative difficulties constrained by the existence of ourselves as inescapably morally governed rational creatures.

    After centuries of debate, that points to there being just one serious candidate for such a world root. If you doubt, simply provide another ______ and address the comparative difficulties ____ . Easier said than done.

    That serious candidate must bridge is and ought inseparably in the root of reality. Thus, it must be ONE and must be necessary of being [as root of reality as infinite regress and circular cause are equally absurd], the IS, as well as essentially, inherently good and utterly wise [this is no demiurge].

    Looming out of the mists of our thought, we see Candidate Zero: the inherently good and utterly wise creator God, a necessary and maximally great being; one, worthy of loyalty and of the reasonable, responsible, freely given service of doing the good that accords with our evident nature. From this, we find a material slice of the Judaeo-Christian conception of God, studied in biblical and systematic as well as philosophical theology.

    Such, being disciplines studied by several of the top dozen or few leading lights of our civilisation over the past 3500 years. That’s why, instantly, any caricatured, strawmannish incoherent picture of God is instantly discredited. Minds of that calibre — think, Wesley, Calvin, Aquinas, Augustine, Paul, Jesus, Isaiah, Solomon, Moses and the like — are not going to be detained for more than five minutes by such a cartoonish character. The new atheism is fundamentally superficial and amateurish.

    Where, BTW, maximal greatness of being implies possession of all great-making characteristics [which are bound up in one another] to maximal compossible degree. Necessity of being pivots on there being a going concern world, which gives every evidence that others are possible. So, on logic of being — ontology, roughly — we find possible worlds as sufficiently describable coherent states of affairs, and thus conceive of a two-dimension matrix: possible vs impossible being, and of the former, contingent vs necessary. Necessary beings exist in all possible worlds, being causally independent of characteristics that vary cross-world, i.e. they are part of the framework for any possible world to exist. For instance, numbers such as 0,1,2 etc are necessary, built in aspects of the structures and quantities of any world.

    It is in such a context that we speak of God as necessary and maximally great.

    In that light, Boethius — while awaiting unjust execution on trumped up false accusations — speaks in his Consolation of Philosophy. As the founder of UD noted:

    In his Consolation of Philosophy, Boethius states the following paradox: “If God exists, whence evil? But whence good, if God does not exist?” Boethius contrasts the problem that evil poses for theism with the problem that good poses for atheism. The problem of good does not receive nearly as much attention as the problem evil, but it is the more basic problem. That’s because evil always presupposes a good that has been subverted. All our words for evil make this plain: the New Testament word for sin (Greek hamartia) presupposes a target that’s been missed; deviation presupposes a way (Latin via) from which we’ve departed; injustice presupposes justice; etc. So let’s ask, who’s got the worse problem, the theist or the atheist? Start with the theist. God is the source of all being and purpose. Given God’s existence, what sense does it make to deny God’s goodness? None . . . . The problem of evil still confronts theists, though not as a logical or philosophical problem, but instead as a psychological and existential one [as was addressed above] . . . .

    The problem of good as it faces the atheist is this: nature, which is nuts-and-bolts reality for the atheist, has no values and thus can offer no grounding for good and evil. As nineteenth century freethinker Robert Green Ingersoll used to say, “In nature there are neither rewards nor punishments. There are consequences.” More recently, Richard Dawkins made the same point: “The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind pitiless indifference.” [“Prepared Remarks for the Dembski-Hitchens Debate,” Uncommon Descent Blog, Nov 22, 2010]

    There is of course much more.

  267. 267
    JVL says:

    Marfin: Simply put how can right and wrong be determined by creatures who have been formed by a random process which churns out creatures who will eat their young and creatures that will die to protect them If that process (evolution) has delivered both behaviours who are you to say one is good or bad moral or immoral, as both behaviours have passed the evolutionary test and have survived till now.

    We do the best we can given the circumstances. Things are clearly much better now than they were 1000 years ago regarding general protections for many people of the world. More people have access to health services, fewer people are exploited by companies or governments, nore people have the right to vote, life expectancy overall is much greater, more people are literate and fed properly. These and many other objective measures mean I’d rather be living now that at any other time in the history of the planet.

    I’m not saying there is not a lot more that needs to be done but we seem to be heading in the right direction in our bumbling and slow way. “Right” meaning fewer people are living in fear and hunger and poverty with no medical care or wages or homes. I suppose you will ask me why that matters. I would say that I consider each person to be as valuable and as interesting and as worthy as I consider myself. I have no reason to suppose otherwise (with the few exceptions of individuals who are clearly ‘broken’ and need to be isolated for the good of all others) and so I have a choice of considering us all worthless or considering us all valuable. And when I look at some of the amazing achievements that human beings have brought about I come to the conclusion that we are all equally worthwhile. You never know where the next Mozart or Newton or Galileo or Confucius or Buddha or Zoroaster or Thomas Jefferson or Leonard Euler or Rene Descartes or Hypatia or Albert Einstein or Alan Turing will come from. Our very survival as a species may depend on some future genius who could come out of nowhere.

    For me unless there is a moral law giver you cannot have a moral law, so in 1 John 3;4 is states that sin is breaking Gods law ,simply put the God who created the universe and us, lays down certain laws and these laws determine what is good, or evil moral, or immoral. Now you may believe this is nonsense and there is no God but my position is a consistent one as if there is an almighty creator and maker of all surely he gets to decide what is right, proper, good , moral , as the alternate position has no solid foundation.

    But he’s changed his mind over the course of things hasn’t he? Thou shalt not kill and yet he sanctioned the killing of thousands of non-Jews in the old testament. Thou shalt not steal and yet he directed his ‘chosen’ tribe to confiscate lands ruled over by other people. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife and yet David was only marginally punished for just that sin. And what about Solomon who reportedly had hundreds or thousands of wives? Why is that not allowed today. What happened to all the laws in Leviticus that are no longer followed apparently with no retributions? Why weren’t the Crusaders punished for their widespread slaughter including many white Europeans who simply disagreed with some aspects of doctrine? God him/her/itself wiped out most of the human population at one point with a great flood no doubt killing many innocent people. How can there be a moral code when even the code-giver them-self is not bound by it?

    What about this notion of heaven and hell? I’ve heard since I was little that good people go to heaven and bad people go to hell (leaving limbo and purgatory out of the discussion for simplicity). But then I also hear about some future second coming when the righteous and unrighteous will be judged. So . . . what’s all that about heaven and hell now? If people are judged when they die then why do you need a second coming? It’s confusing and hard to understand. Shouldn’t that be cleared up so that even the least educated person can understand it?

    I hope Catholic priests are not still actually swirling wine about in their mouths and spitting it back into the communion chalice! Maybe they are, but that would be pretty horrific these days. And yet that was the practice for hundreds of years. Why? So that parishioners could drink the blood of Jesus? Really? I don’t know about any of you but transmogrification sounds pretty weird to me, both theologically and in (what used to be) common practice. I hope all Christian churches have changed their rules but, again, if the rules can change then . . .

    Let’s acknowledge too the fact that even amongst Christians (a fairly narrow theological group given the various beliefs systems extant on the planet even now) there is widespread disagreement over certain issues: Abortion, gay marriage, women as priests/deacons/cardinals, eating meat on Friday (maybe not that one so much but it was a controversy until fairly recently), divorce (only recently being settled in Ireland), etc, etc, etc. You all read the same scriptures and yet you do not agree on many issues.

    So, my question to you is/are: where is this consistent, objective, moral code and, if it exists, then why can few people agree on what it says even, seemingly, God him/her/itself? I’m not asking for your version of it, I want to know where it is, how can it be consulted when things are disputed and why there is so much disagreement over what it says. If you just respond by telling my what you think it clearly is then you’re not answering the question. How does anyone know what your purported objective moral law say in any given situation? As the world changes new issues come up all the time that need addressing? Can all future situations be addressed by a few simple laws that never change?

    Thanks.

  268. 268
    Marfin says:

    JVL-Can all future situations be addressed by a few simple laws that never change, simply yes, two laws actually. First law you shall love the lord your god with all your heart, soul,mind, strength, and second you shall love you neighbour as yourself, Luke 10;27.
    The fact the a lot of people want to interpret the scriptures to suit themselves is on them i`m afraid, and if people want to add stuff that is no where even mentioned in the scriptures Limbo and purgatory being a case in point is again their problem , but if you were familiar enough with the bible you would know this..
    So eating meat right or wrong, so divorcing my wife and leaving her with 3 kids so I can be with a younger model right or wrong ,gambling, drunkenness, sleeping around , drug abuse, abortion right or wrong please tell who gets to says right or wrong , and what the penalty for the wrong.
    And lastly you say you consider each person , please tell me when you say you, what do you mean by you , is you just your brain or is there something aside from your brain doing the considering , because if not then its the chemicals in your brain doing the considering ,so please tell me how do chemicals know right from wrong.

  269. 269
    JVL says:

    Marfin: First law you shall love the lord your god with all your heart, soul,mind, strength, and second you shall love you neighbour as yourself, Luke 10;27.

    Okay, you think those two ‘rules’ are the basis for God’s moral law. So . . . how does that apply to gay marriage? Women as priests? Divorce? Should priests be allowed to marry? What about the Pope? Is killing in self defence okay? What about killing in war time? What if it’s not an “official” war, like Vietnam? Is it even okay to declare war? Should the teaching of intelligent design be banned from science classrooms? Should the Westborough Babptist Church be allowed to protest at the funerals of homosexual soldiers? Is it okay for the Ku Klux Klan to have a TV channel? What about assisted suicide? As I said before: Christians disagree about many of these issues so are your two rules enough? They don’t seem to be working in the way you think they should.

    You’ve also completely side-stepped several of the other issues I brought up: what about the cases where God him/her/itself seems to have changed its mind about the rules? Some of those changes seem to be around doctrine which would seem to be important points. Where is the constant moral law?

    And lastly you say you consider each person , please tell me when you say you, what do you mean by you , is you just your brain or is there something aside from your brain doing the considering , because if not then its the chemicals in your brain doing the considering ,so please tell me how do chemicals know right from wrong.

    Consciousness is a big question and I don’t fully understand the arguments that say it’s just an emergent property of the brain. I can’t defend those notions so I won’t try. I don’t think it’s the chemicals doing the considering because chemical don’t think. But some kind of self-awareness is, influenced by it’s upbringing, its genetics (meaning a chemical influence), its experience and its own reasoning and feelings. Exactly where that awareness comes from I don’t know. I personally have seen no evidence of some other plane of existence but that doesn’t mean it’s not there. So, whether or not free will exists I have to act like it does because otherwise the idea of reasoning would be a non-starter.

  270. 270
    JVL says:

    The commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt has been removed after saying the US Navy was not doing enough to halt a coronavirus outbreak on board the aircraft carrier.
    In a letter, Capt Brett Crozier had urged his superiors to act to prevent US troops dying outside of wartime.
    But acting US Navy Secretary Thomas Modly said the commander “exercised extremely poor judgement”.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-52145230

  271. 271
    kairosfocus says:

    MacArthur, meet Truman . . . and Matt Ridgeway

  272. 272
    bornagain77 says:

    Now this is interesting, Seversky, at 234, finally attempts to give a coherent answer to the question of “where exactly does morality arise from for the atheist?’

    He first states,

    To understand what morality is, you need to look at what it does. What is its function? What is its role in society?

    I say “role in society” because morality has no bearing on how the wind or the sea or geological fault-lines or other animals behave. It doesn’t even matter to someone living alone on a desert island. What do prohibitions against theft, rape or murder matter if there is nothing to steal and no one to rape or murder?

    Here is Seversky’s first major mistake, The first moral duty of humans, even if we were alone on a desert island, is to ““‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

    Matthew 22:36-38
    …“Teacher, which commandment is the greatest in the Law?” Jesus declared, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.…

    I certainly can see where someone who is stuck on a desert island would be very angry towards God and blame God for the injustice of being stuck on a desert island all alone, apart from any other human contact, and thus I can easily see this first moral law being easily broken by someone who has no contact with any other human.

    Thus Seversky’s claim that morality “doesn’t even matter to someone living alone on a desert island” is simply a false claim. The ‘morality’ of the situation would be front and center on the stranded person’s mind!

    In the biblical view of morality, we must, first and foremost, get our ‘personal’ morality with God right before we can faithfully fulfill our second moral responsibility towards other people. i.e. the second commandment,

    Matthew 22
    39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

    In fact, God often uses isolation to purify a person morally.

    Jesus Himself, after His baptism by John, was immediately ‘led into the wilderness’ where he fasted for 40 days and 40 nights and then, after all that, was tempted by the Devil himself.

    Matthew 4
    Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”
    4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.”
    5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:
    “‘He will command his angels concerning you,
    and they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.”
    7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.”
    8 Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. 9 “All this I will give you,” he said, “if you will bow down and worship me.”
    10 Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.”
    11 Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.

    Many other examples of God isolating people so as to morally purify them are found in the Bible, such as Moses, Joseph, Elijah, and Paul,

    Deserts of Development: How God Shapes His Leaders in the Wilderness – Jeffrey Ryan Dickson
    Excerpt: Examples of such experiences permeate both the Old and New Testaments. Moses, Joseph, Elijah, Paul, and even Jesus Christ all travelled through times in which God allowed them to experience the difficulties, temptations, and lessons learned in the wilderness
    https://digitalcommons.liberty.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1121&context=honors

    Jesus Himself exhorts us to pray to God privately

    Matthew 6:6
    But when you pray, go into your inner room, shut your door, and pray to your Father, who is unseen. And your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

    Thus Seversky claim that morality “doesn’t even matter to someone living alone on a desert island” is simply a false claim. Morality always begins with God and thus our personal relationship with God is of paramount concern if we are to get our moral relationship with others right.

    Might I even be so bold as to suggest that we use this current time of social isolation to recenter our lives on God, as Mike Lindell recently exhorted the nation to do? i.e. “I encourage you to use this time at home to get back in the Word. Read our Bibles and spend time with our families.”

    “God had been taken out of our schools and lives, a nation had turned its back on God. I encourage you to use this time at home to get back in the Word. Read our Bibles and spend time with our families.”
    – Mike Lindell
    https://thefederalist.com/2020/03/31/media-freaks-out-on-mypillow-ceo-mike-lindell-for-encouraging-americans-to-read-the-bible/

    Seversky, ignoring the vital link that our personal relationship with God has on our own moral actions towards others, goes on to claim,

    In other words, the function of morality is to regulate the behavior of human towards one another. The purpose is to protect the legitimate rights and interests of the individual member of society from being infringed by others.

    I guess that is right in so far as it goes, but it still does not go one inch towards answering the primary question of “where exactly does morality arise from for the atheist?’

    As Jordan Peterson observed, “What the hell is irrational about me getting exactly what I want from every one of you whenever I want it at every possible second? Why is that irrational and how possibly is that more irrational than us cooperating so we can both have a good time of it. I don’t understand that.
    I mean they talk as if the the psychopathic tendency is irrational. There’s nothing irrational about it. It’s pure naked self-interest. How is that irrational. Why the hell not every man for himself and the devil take the hindmost? It’s a perfectly coherent philosophy and it’s actually one that you can institute in the world with a fair bit of material success if you want to do it.”

    Insisting on the truth in times of chaos — Jordan Peterson – David Fuller – May 19, 2017
    Excerpt: What the hell is irrational about me getting exactly what I want from every one of you whenever I want it at every possible second? Why is that irrational and how possibly is that more irrational than us cooperating so we can both have a good time of it. I don’t understand that.
    I mean they talk as if the the psychopathic tendency is irrational. There’s nothing irrational about it. It’s pure naked self-interest. How is that irrational. Why the hell not every man for himself and the devil take the hindmost? It’s a perfectly coherent philosophy and it’s actually one that you can institute in the world with a fair bit of material success if you want to do it.
    To me I think that that the universe that people like Dawkins and Harris inhabit is so intensely conditioned by mythological presuppositions that they take for granted the ethic that emerges out of that as if it’s just a rational given. And this of course was precisely Nietzsche’s observation as well as Dostoyevsky’s observation.
    I’m not arguing for the existence of God. I’m arguing that the ethic that drives our culture is predicated on the idea of God and that you can’t just take that idea away and expect the thing to remain intact midair without any foundational support.”
    https://medium.com/perspectiva-institute/the-man-for-the-times-of-chaos-jordan-peterson-2df43c24672f

    Self-sacrifice lies at the heart of loving others as yourself. As Jesus stated, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.”

    John 15:13
    Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

    Indeed, every medal of honor that has ever been awarded has been awarded precisely because of such selfless acts of courage.

    Atheists simply have no foundation for that selfless ethic of self sacrifice that lies at the heart of loving others as yourself. As Seversky himself stated, “As an atheist/agnostic I also believe that this is the only life I will ever have as me and I would like to enjoy it for as long as I can. I assume that others feel much the same.”

    As an atheist/agnostic I also believe that this is the only life I will ever have as me and I would like to enjoy it for as long as I can. I assume that others feel much the same.

    Or as Paul put it, “If the dead are not raised, let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die.”

    1 Corinthians 15
    32 If after the manner of men I fought with beasts at Ephesus, what doth it profit me? If the dead are not raised, let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die.

    After basically admitting that he has no foundation for the crucial ethic of self-sacrifice that lies at the heart of the golden rule, Seversky goes on to claim

    It is not exactly hard to see that under those circumstances it is to everyone’s advantage if we can agree that we should try to refrain from killing each other except in certain specific circumstances, such as self-defense. That doesn’t require any external validation either.

    No it is certainly not “hard to see’ that loving others as you love yourself is to “everyone’s advantage”, After all God has made such moral things plain for us to see. The point is that the atheist has no way to ground the ethic of the golden rule that Seversky admits is not hard for him to see,

    In fact, Seversky’s Darwinian morality i.e. ‘survival of the fittest’, is completely at odds with the ‘not hard to see’ golden rule. To repeat Jordan Peterson’s observation, “Why the hell not every man for himself and the devil take the hindmost? It’s a perfectly coherent philosophy and it’s actually one that you can institute in the world with a fair bit of material success if you want to do it.”

    And indeed, many atheists have instituted that Darwinian ethic with “a fair bit of material success”

    How Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Marx, and Lenin were all directly influenced by Darwinian ideology
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/historian-human-evolution-theorists-were-attempting-to-be-moral-teachers/#comment-668170

    For Seversky to completely ignore the direct contradiction in morality that his Darwinian worldview actually entails, i.e. ‘survival of the fittest’, compared to the morality that Seversky espouses as ‘not hard to see’, i.e. a morality he sees as being ‘self-evidently true’, i.e. loving your neighbor as you love yourself’, is for him to deceive himself. Seversky has not gone one inch towards explaining “exactly where does morality arise from for the atheist?’ He has merely pointed out what is self-evidently true for all of us to see morally speaking and then pretended that he has somehow given us a coherent explanation for its existence. Again, Seversky has simply deceived himself into believing that he has somehow given us a coherent explanation for the existence of objective morality within his atheistic worldview. The fact of the matter is that he has not even begun to give us a coherent account of objective morality..

    Seversky goes on to to make this claim,

    This is also where the atheist/agnostic “worldview” is more coherent than the Christian. If killing someone sends them on to an afterlife that is infinitely better than this “vale of tears” and is one where they will be reunited with all the loved ones and friends that have gone before, then how can that killing be a bad thing? If Christians truly believe in such an afterlife then why aren’t they killing themselves now rather than wasting any more time than they have to in this much inferior world? The atheist/agnostic has a perfectly good rationale for wanting to enjoy this life for as long as possible. The Christian doesn’t.

    Well actually, the Christian knows perfectly well that there is a purpose for this life, and that there is also value and meaning for this present life. And also knows that our actions in the here and now will be rewarded (and/or punished) in the life to come. The Christian can therefore live perfectly consistently in the present having that hope for eternal life after this earthly life, Whereas the atheist, on the other hand, since it is impossible to live his life as if it had absolutely no meaning, purpose, and/or value whatsoever, is forced to deny the nihilism that is directly implicit in his atheistic worldview, and ‘pretend’ that his life somehow has meaning, purpose, and/or value.

    The Absurdity of Life without God – William Lane Craig
    Excerpt: Meaning of Life
    First, the area of meaning. We saw that without God, life has no meaning. Yet (atheistic) philosophers continue to live as though life does have meaning. For example, Sartre argued that one may create meaning for his life by freely choosing to follow a certain course of action. Sartre himself chose Marxism.
    Now this is utterly inconsistent. It is inconsistent to say life is objectively absurd and then to say one may create meaning for his life. If life is really absurd, then man is trapped in the lower story. To try to create meaning in life represents a leap to the upper story. But Sartre has no basis for this leap. Without God, there can be no objective meaning in life. Sartre’s program is actually an exercise in self-delusion. Sartre is really saying, “Let’s pretend the universe has meaning.” And this is just fooling ourselves.
    The point is this: if God does not exist, then life is objectively meaningless; but man cannot live consistently and happily knowing that life is meaningless; so in order to be happy he pretends life has meaning. But this is, of course, entirely inconsistent—for without God, man and the universe are without any real significance.
    https://www.reasonablefaith.org/writings/popular-writings/existence-nature-of-god/the-absurdity-of-life-without-god/

    Is There Meaning to Life? – Dr Craig videos (animated video)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKGnXgH_CzE

    Seversky, after having failed to go one inch towards explaining the existence of objective morality, goes on to, much like Dawkins did in “The God Delusion”. morally rage against God for supposedly violating the objective morality that Seversky has not gone one inch towards explaining the existence of

    The Christian concept of a deity is riddled with discrepancies, inconsistencies and outright contradictions. We have a God who tells Adam and Eve that they will die on the day they eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. How is that moral? We have an omniscient God who didn’t know that was what they did until he discovered them in the act. Was He lying and, if so, how is that moral? We have a faultless God who, instead of killing A&E, settles for banishing them from the garden of Eden. Why would such a god tell fibs and how is that moral? We have a God who prohibits killing but wipes out whole cities, lays waste to many countries in the region and even wipes out almost all life on the surface of the Earth. How is that moral? We have a supposedly omnipotent God who apparently did not have the power to do otherwise. We have a supposedly all-loving deity who apparently didn’t have the benevolence to do otherwise. How is that moral? We have a God who manifests himself on Earth in human form and arranges the street-theater act of the crucifixion, knowing full well that He is immortal and human beings have no power to harm Him in the slightest. How is that moral?

    It is this contradictory and illogical and immoral being that is supposed to be the basis of Christian morality, the root of all goodness, that can somehow bridge the is/ought gap.

    It is my contention that, far from being ill-founded or incoherent, it is the atheist/agnostic “worldview” that has a more solid grounding and a more coherent rationale for morality than does Christianity.

    Instead of pointing out the fact that Seversky has a very sophomoric understanding of scripture and then tearing him apart piece by piece on his sophomoric understanding, I will instead point out the established fact that, as far as historical evidence is concerned, Jesus most certainly rose from the dead. And as CS Lewis pointed out, that established fact is of ‘infinite importance’

    Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.“
    – C.S. Lewis

    The Resurrection Argument That Changed a Generation of Scholars – Gary Habermas at UCSB
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ay_Db4RwZ_M

    Verse:

    2 Peter 3:11
    Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,

  273. 273
    Marfin says:

    JVL- To love God with all you heart etc is to do his will unconditionally , as is loving you neighbour as yourself , how do you treat people you truly love, not the pop song you look great lets sleep together love, but self sacrifice put others before yourself love.
    So gay marriage, divorce , women priest, what does the God I love say about these , well thats what I will
    do , once again you show your lack of bible knowledge as there is no pope mentioned in the scriptures, all Christians are priests and are saints , sleeping with someone of the same sex is a sin, sleeping with someone who is not your wife also a sin, divorce only allowed on the grounds of unfaithfulness.
    So you still dont accept you have no basis for mortality but must accept its only a construct of a brain which may or may not allow you to have free will .
    So please answer this, if hetero sexuality homo sexuality and the desire to sleep with children are all a products of evolution, which without god they must be, how exactly are any of these desires and acting on these desires wrong.

  274. 274
    daveS says:

    Marfin,

    It looks like sectarian conflict has (perhaps) already surfaced. How should Catholics and Protestants deal with this conflict in a way which honors God’s commandments? Do such arguments between Christians not undermine your thesis?

  275. 275
    Truthfreedom says:

    @250 Ed George

    As such, they have a level of responsibility, obligation, and accountability that most others don’t have.

    And a bunch of chemicals have communicated this to you. And those chemicals are of course right, because we all learned about chemistry and its properties: chirality, bonding, reactivity and morality.

  276. 276
    Truthfreedom says:

    @272 Marfin:

    So please answer this, if hetero sexuality homo sexuality and the desire to sleep with children are all a products of evolution, which without god they must be, how exactly are any of these desires and acting on these desires wrong.

    And sex with corpses is fine, because you are harming no one. It is your pleasure (‘good’) and a bunch of un-structured random chemicals. And no need to worry about pregnancies either.
    What taught Darwin about this?

  277. 277
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    55,100 deaths at the moment, and no sign of things slowing down.

  278. 278
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    Dave Daubenmire: “Coronavirus” is Just a Reaction to 5G Signals!

    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/dispatches/2020/04/02/coach-dave-coronavirus-is-really-a-reaction-to-5g-radiation/

  279. 279
    Truthfreedom says:

    @261 Marfin:

    Simply put how can right and wrong be determined by creatures who have been formed by a random process which churns out creatures who will eat their young and creatures that will die to protect them If that process (evolution) has delivered both behaviours who are you to say one is good or bad moral or immoral, as both behaviours have passed the evolutionary test and have survived till now.

    Excellent question and chain of reasoning.

  280. 280
    Ed George says:

    KF

    EG, community leaders in general have significant trust, access and responsibility.

    But few, other than in authoritative regimes, have the power over “their” people that religious leaders do. If a Legion hall or a Lion’s club disobeyed government directives on assembly, they would likely be standing in front of a very sparse audience. However, when a church leader calls a service in defiance of government directives, they pack the hall.

    Commenters here have often claimed that people who go to church live longer, and I don’t argue that point. But I would argue that people who are active in the non-religious social institutions that involve mutual support also live longer. That is, it is the social and supportive nature of religion that affords the benefit, not the belief in a higher being.

    But this benefit of social assembly is a double edged sword. During times of epidemic, this can facilitate the spread of the disease. I have not read anything about this but I would be willing to bet that attendance at church services contributed significantly to the spread of the black death in Europe. They can be forgiven because germ theory had not yet been discovered. Modern day religious leaders can’t use that excuse. And, rightfully, some of these have been charged.

  281. 281
    Truthfreedom says:

    @266 Kairosfocus

    Minds of that calibre — think, Wesley, Calvin, Aquinas, Augustine, Paul, Jesus, Isaiah, Solomon, Moses and the like — are not going to be detained for more than five minutes by such a cartoonish character. The new atheism is fundamentally superficial and amateurish.

    Heaveweights vs featherweights.

  282. 282
    bornagain77 says:

    I wonder how many atheists will volunteer at food banks in this time of need as compared to Christians?

    Atheism and charity
    https://www.conservapedia.com/Atheism_and_charity

  283. 283
    Ed George says:

    JVL

    How can there be a moral code when even the code-giver them-self is not bound by it?

    In that case, we would call the law-giver a dictator.

  284. 284
    Ed George says:

    BA77

    I wonder how many atheists will volunteer at food banks in this time of need as compared to Christians?

    I volunteer at the food bank and serve meals at the Salvation Army. And I give at least ten percent of my gross salary to various charities. And yet I am not a theist. Go figure.

  285. 285
    JVL says:

    Marfin: To love God with all you heart etc is to do his will unconditionally , as is loving you neighbour as yourself , how do you treat people you truly love, not the pop song you look great lets sleep together love, but self sacrifice put others before yourself love.

    So, again, how do you square this with the commands from God to slaughter 1000s of non-Jews? To go out and collect the foreskins of Philistines? For God themself to kill almost all of the existing humans in a flood? You keep not addressing this and other issues I asked about. You said you would.

    sleeping with someone of the same sex is a sin

    Some other Christians disagree with you. Who decides who is right? Do your two rules give you a way to decide? All you can say is that your interpretation is correct. Who decides? You?

    sleeping with someone who is not your wife also a sin

    Like David did? And how was he punished? And his son, Solomon . . . how many wives did he have? Why is that not allowed now and how do your two rules give you a way to differentiate between Solomon being allowed to do that and you not being allowed to do that?

    divorce only allowed on the grounds of unfaithfulness

    Why? How do your two rules apply? If a husband is physically abusive to his wife, punching her hard enough to put her in the hospital, but has not been unfaithful then you think they must stay married? Really?

    So you still dont accept you have no basis for mortality

    See, you’re pushing your opinion again. You only accept your stance. Atheists cannot possibly have a basis for morality (you meant) because we don’t believe in a God who might not exist? Have you ever thought . . . gee, what if there is no God? Where do all these ideas and laws and rules come from then? What is the basis for morality then?

    must accept its only a construct of a brain which may or may not allow you to have free will .

    Not A brain! It’s not all an illusion. As I said, things have been developing over thousands of years involving the entire human population.

    So please answer this, if hetero sexuality homo sexuality and the desire to sleep with children are all a products of evolution, which without god they must be, how exactly are any of these desires and acting on these desires wrong.

    I think all those things are greatly affected by the culture and environment one grows up in. I personally don’t have a problem with homosexuality between consenting adults. Having sex with children (which is not the same as the desire, I agree) does not meet that criteria. I don’t know what other cultures have decided but most people on this planet now think that it is wrong because it’s more about control. How many priests have had carnal thoughts about children? We know quite a few have acted on those thoughts so even more must have had the thoughts. What does the church do about that? They don’t often pass them on to the civil authorities. Sometimes they just bury the case and hope it goes away. What do your two laws say about that? Why is the church amongst all organisations so bad at handling this?

    What do your two laws say about people who kill abortion doctors? Clearly it’s against the civil law but it is one of the acceptable types of killing that God has sanctioned in the past? Answer?

    And, again, you’ve dodged addressing some of my specific questions. I’m going to wait ’til you do.

    Truthfreedom: And sex with corpses is fine, because you are harming no one.

    You seem to have a weird fixation with odd forms of sex. What does your spouse think about that?

  286. 286
    Truthfreedom says:

    @EG

    But few, other than in authoritative regimes, have the power over “their” people that religious leaders do.

    And surely there is a reason behind it all.

  287. 287
    ET says:

    JVL:

    How can there be a moral code when even the code-giver them-self is not bound by it?

    What are you talking about?

  288. 288
    bornagain77 says:

    EG: “we would call the law-giver a dictator.”

    Funny sort of dictator that died for our sins?

    The evidence for the Shroud’s authenticity keeps growing. (Timeline of facts) – November 08, 2019
    What Is the Shroud of Turin? Facts & History Everyone Should Know – Myra Adams and Russ Breault
    https://www.christianity.com/wiki/jesus-christ/what-is-the-shroud-of-turin.html

    Of further note:

    This Theologian Has An Answer To Atheists’ Claims That Evil Disproves God – Jan, 2018
    Excerpt: In “The Last Superstition: A Refutation Of The New Atheism,” Feser, echoing Thomas Aquinas, notes that the first premise of the problem of evil is “simply false, or at least unjustifiable.” According to Feser, there is no reason to believe that the Christian God, being all-good and all-powerful, would prevent suffering on this earth if out of suffering he could bring about a good that is far greater than any that would have existed otherwise. If God is infinite in power, knowledge, goodness, etc., then of course he could bring about such a good.
    Feser demonstrates his reasoning with an analogy. A parent may allow his child a small amount of suffering in frustration, sacrifice of time, and minor pain when learning to play the violin, in order to bring about the good of establishing proficiency. This is not to say that such minimal suffering is in any way comparable to the horrors that have gone on in this world. But the joy of establishing proficiency with a violin is not in any way comparable to the good that God promises to bring to the world.
    In Christian theology, this good is referred to as the Beatific Vision: the ultimate, direct self-communication of God to the individual. In other words, perfect salvation or Heaven. Feser describes the Beatific Vision as a joy so great that even the most terrible horror imaginable “pales in insignificance before the beatific vision.” As Saint Paul once said, “the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”
    Your Argument Assumes Its Conclusion
    I can already see the disciples of the Four Horsemen readying their keyboards, opening a copy of Dawkins’ “The God Delusion,” and preparing their response. An atheist may claim that he cannot possibly imagine anything in the next life that could possibly outweigh the Holocaust, children’s suffering, or any other instance of significant suffering in this world. According to Feser, this response is precisely the reason he states that the problem of evil is “worthless” as an objection to arguments in favor of the existence of the Christian God.
    The problem is that the only way the atheist can claim that nothing could outweigh the most significant suffering on earth is if he supposes that God does not exist and therefore there is no Beatific Vision. But he cannot presume that God does not exist in the premise of an argument that aims to prove the conclusion that God does not exist. By doing so, he is begging the question, or arguing in a circle, and therefore does not prove anything at all.
    As Feser goes on to demonstrate, the atheist is essentially stating: “There is no God, because look at all this suffering that no good could possibly outweigh. How do I know there’s no good that could outweigh it? Oh, because there is no God.”
    http://thefederalist.com/2018/.....oves-gods/

  289. 289
    bornagain77 says:

    EG: “I volunteer at the food bank and serve meals at the Salvation Army. And I give at least ten percent of my gross salary to various charities. And yet I am not a theist. Go figure.”

    Well good for you, but you are a rare exception to the rule:

    Atheist Myth: “No One Has Ever Killed in the Name of Atheism” – Nov. 2016
    Excerpt “”where are the army of atheists humanitarian traipsing about Africa and Asia giving hope to the poor and disadvantaged? Certainly none of the famous atheist polemicists have ever done so. Christopher Hitchens was asked on multiple occasions if he or other atheists who similarly had a poor opinion of St. Mother Teresa have actually gone to India and rolled up their sleeves to bathe lepers. I’ve asked many atheists including P.Z. Myers, Patricia Churchland and Christopher Hitchens and none have responded in the positive. Madalyn O’Hair never mentioned having done so. Mao and Stalin were busy killing tens of millions of their compatriots by engineering famines in their respective countries so it’s hard to imagine they also helped poor people. When I volunteered at Mother Teresa’s street clinics in Calcutta, I never met an atheist doing the same work but I routinely met Catholics doing so.”
    http://www.ncregister.com/blog.....of-atheism

    Who really cares? The fallacy of charitable secularism – Dec 18, 2017
    Excerpt: “Charitable”? “Giving”? Really?
    The most laughable part comes when Sam (Harris) begins arguing about “charitable giving.” He knows he cannot honestly claim that atheists give more to charitable causes than religious folk, so he uses the word “charitable,” but narrows the definition of the word almost into nothingness. He says,
    “Countries with high levels of atheism are also the most charitable both in terms of the percentage of their wealth they devote to social welfare programs and the percentage they give in aid to the developing world.”2
    Such a fact might shock the average casual reader until he sniffed out Sam’s fishy “terms.” Then we, together, have a good full belly-laugh. If by “devote” and “give” Sam means “devote through government confiscation, and give by forced taxation,” then he can hardly call it charity. Is this the charity of atheism? “Giving” when you may not want to, an amount you may not want to, and to be spent somehow you may not care for? What a blessed assurance! My, how charitable our atheist is with other people’s money. No, charity is voluntarily given. If it’s tax-generated, it ain’t charitable. Besides, boasting that less religious countries take more in government welfare reveals about as much as pointing out that Christians put more in church offering plates than atheists do. What? Really? Get outta here!
    If, however, Sam means “devote” and “give” in the true sense of “charity,” then his claim is so embarrassingly bogus that not even a third-world tax bureau would accept his tax returns. Unfortunately for Sam, he wrote this nonsense in his Letter to a Christian Nation just a few months before the actual science was done on charitable giving. November 2006 saw the release of the definitive in-depth study on the subject of charitable giving: Who Really Cares? by Syracuse professor Arthur Brooks. Results? Across the board, in every category, accounting for every variable, no matter how you slice the pie, the single biggest factor behind charitable giving is . . . religious faith.3 The amount of private charitable giving from American individuals alone (not including foundations, corporations, etc.) could easily finance the entire gross domestic product of Sam’s more “atheistic” nations, Sweden, Norway, or Denmark.4
    The results must be alarming for all secularists. The working poor in America give more than the poor on welfare who have the same income. In fact, the working poor give a larger percentage of their income than the middle class. Two-thirds of American private donations go to other than religious activities (in other words, about 70% in places other than church offering plates). Yet, religious people are more likely to donate even to secular causes than non-religious people are. America gives as much to foreign aid as other nations do, the difference is that we do it mostly through private charity and not government aid. We give it freely—not through socialist government compulsion. No European nation comes close to us in freely-given charitable donations.
    https://americanvision.org/1820/who-really-cares-the-fallacy-of-charitable-secularism/

  290. 290
    Truthfreedom says:

    @JVL

    How can there be a moral code when even the code-giver them-self is not bound by it?

    Is He not bound by the Code, or is it that limited, fallible creatures can not fully understand what is going on?

  291. 291
    ET says:

    JVL:

    Thou shalt not kill and yet he sanctioned the killing of thousands of non-Jews in the old testament.

    There was most likely a reason for that. Your ignorance of it isn’t an argument. The same goes for all your other tard-gallop questions.

    You weren’t there and you don’t know.

    For God themself to kill almost all of the existing humans in a flood?

    That should make you wonder just how bad humans were to incite such wrath.

  292. 292
    kairosfocus says:

    Looks like qualified good news, this wave looks like it is peaking:

    https://uncommondescent.com/medicine/tracking-covid-19-apr-3-are-we-peaking-for-this-wave/

    S Korea looks like it has credibly beaten the disease.

  293. 293
    Truthfreedom says:

    @283 Ed George

    In that case, we would call the law-giver a dictator.

    Uh. Oh. And ‘evolution’ has ‘taught’ you that dictatorships are ‘bad’ things.
    Evolution has coded morality using Carbon, Nitrogen, Hydrogen and Oxygen.
    Your own ‘Commandments’, written in neurochemicals instead of in stone.

  294. 294
    Marfin says:

    JVL – There you go getting personal , lets just stick to the topic please.
    My position is a logically valid position because if there is a God,a creator, the maker of man and everything else, it is logical to conclude that this God dictates the moral law.
    If this god does not exist then my position is completely wrong.
    Now my basis is Gods law, so if God says abortion is wrong then its wrong , so making it simple for you is abortion right or wrong and how do you know.

  295. 295
    JVL says:

    Marfin: There you go getting personal , lets just stick to the topic please.
    My position is a logically valid position because if there is a God,a creator, the maker of man and everything else, it is logical to conclude that this God dictates the moral law.

    How do you rectify being told that killing is wrong but then having the God who told you that command the Israelites to slaughter thousands of non-Jews? When Joshua led the army of Israelites did he sin? Did Solomon sin when he took hundreds of wives? Is God above his/her/its own moral law? Does God just decide or is God subject to some law as well? Why did God dictate all those laws in Leviticus which have nothing to do with loving your neighbour or respecting God except maybe in doing what he tells you to do? And now no one takes them seriously anyway. What was the point?

    I don’t understand your God’s law. Not even Christians can agree what it means. And God him/her/itself seems to violate it at will. And the interpretations of it keep changing. I asked you to tell me what God’s laws are and you gave me two but you can’t explain how they have been applied so widely different at different times by different groups of people.

  296. 296
    Ed George says:

    BA77

    Funny sort of dictator that died for our sins?

    What sort of sacrifice was that? He is omniscient and new that he would continue to exist and have all of the same powers he had before, including the power to instantiate in human form again if he wants.

  297. 297
    ET says:

    This is hilarious watching Biblically ignorant atheists try to use the Bible to slander God.

  298. 298
    JVL says:

    ET: This is hilarious watching Biblically ignorant atheists try to use the Bible to slander God.

    I don’t think asking questions is slanderous. Can you address my queries?

  299. 299
    daveS says:

    Marfin,

    Do you think you could have determined that abortion is wrong without knowing anything about God’s word (say if you were Chinese and had never heard of Jesus)?

  300. 300
    Truthfreedom says:

    @285 JVL

    You seem to have a weird fixation with odd forms of sex.

    ??
    ‘Weird’ and ‘odd’ according to whom?
    Who are you to label them as such?
    What is morally wrong with necrophilia? And consensual incest?
    And asking theoretical questions is not the same as practicing them.
    Most atheists avoid these themes because they feel uncomfortable.

  301. 301
    Truthfreedom says:

    As if I cared just a little bit about other people’s neuronal chemistry. In a few years I’ll be gone. I just wanna have fun. And dead people do not complain. No insatisfaction problems. No pregnancy problems. No yelling. No alimony. The perfect relationship. 🙂

  302. 302
    daveS says:

    TF,

    Or you could get one of them realistic dolls, like me.

  303. 303
    Truthfreedom says:

    @285 JVL

    What does your spouse think about that?

    Which one? I have four. Do you find it demeaning? It’s something very evolutive. Spreading my genes like a good darwinian.

  304. 304
    Truthfreedom says:

    @302 DaveS

    Or you could get one of them realistic dolls, like me.

    I prefer (decaying) flesh and bone. It’s probably related to some (unknown) evolutive process.
    Is it morally wrong?

  305. 305
    ET says:

    JVL:

    I don’t think asking questions is slanderous.

    It doesn’t matter what you think.

    Can you address my queries?

    Yes I can. But if I do I will most likely be banned, again.

  306. 306
    ET says:

    daves:

    Do you think you could have determined that abortion is wrong without knowing anything about God’s word (say if you were Chinese and had never heard of Jesus)?

    Yes, just by using science.

    It is said that a society is judged by the way it treats its most vulnerable. We rip them out of the womb. What do you think that says about us?

  307. 307
    daveS says:

    TF,

    I’d first need to know precisely what you mean by “morally wrong”. If you tell me, I will answer.

  308. 308
    PaV says:

    Orthomyxo:

    As to the total deaths world-wide, I discounted China’s numbers, but we have only recently found out that the real numbers were around 40,000 and not 3,900. Big difference there, right. Yet, S. Korea’s numbers, and associated charts, were similar to those of China’s. It was this that made me generate that estimate. I mentioned that this was the condition under which I was making such an early estimate. I now suspect one of two factors are in play: either (1) S. Korea, in a face-saving effort, suppressed their actual numbers, or, (2) because of their country’s vicinity to China, the S. Koreans may already, like the Chinese perhaps, have an immunity to corona viruses that is much greater than in the US, but especially in Europe.

    Neil Ferguson showed 2 million Americans dying. Was he wrong? As to his report and the June 20th date, if you simply move up a page or two and look at Figure 1, which represents an “unmitigated” scenario, the peak, once again, is in the middle of June. It moves to late June when “mitigation” efforts are considered.

    Yes, I’m looking for evidence for this virus not being such a great threat as the experts tell us. Well, the experts don’t look so well right now. I also issued a new estimate just for the United States based on patterns we’re seeing in Europe. Things change quickly; but, shouldn’t our undertanding of what’s happening also change quickly? Or do we simply accept models?

    Dr. Fauci said yesterday, I believe, that he won’t recommend suspension of “sheltering” strategies until there is “no more new cases and no more new deaths.” This is radical. It is outlandish, fanatical. And It shouldn’t be listened to. My argument here has been that experts should be listened to, but that their recommendations have to balanced by other important realities. Dr. Fauci’s comments are exactly those that could cause great harm. My comments here, OTOH, will harm no one.

    I’m not pontificating here; I’m looking for answers. Because I’ve learned just how limited expert answers can be. And they shouldn’t be the answers used exclusivel by our state and national leaders as we work through the reality of this virus.

  309. 309
    Truthfreedom says:

    @307 DaveS

    I’d first need to know precisely what you mean by “morally wrong”. If you tell me, I will answer.

    That’s a good question.
    From an atheist POV, (we’re evolved ‘bags of chemicals’), should necrophilia be:
    -encouraged?
    -punished?
    -ignored?
    I mean, is there a ‘standard’ to judge?

  310. 310
    bornagain77 says:

    At 296 Ed George tries to downplay the significance of God’s self-sacrificial love displayed on the cross.

    What sort of sacrifice was that? He is omniscient and new that he would continue to exist and have all of the same powers he had before, including the power to instantiate in human form again if he wants.

    Basically Ed George is saying “so what?”

    Might I suggest that Ed George does not even begin to have a clue as to the magnitude of suffering that Christ actually endured on the cross when he took on the sins of all humanity and was forsaken by God?

    The Reach of the Cross – By William A. Dembski – 2006
    https://billdembski.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/2006.10.the_reach_of_the_cross.pdf

  311. 311
    JVL says:

    Truthfreedom: What is morally wrong with necrophilia? And consensual incest?

    I’m just wondering why you bring them up so often. You seem to have a need for people to address those issues.

    ET:Yes I can. But if I do I will most likely be banned, again.

    I don’t understand. Why cannot you not address the questions in a fair and collegial fashion?

    Truthfreedom: From an atheist POV, (we’re evolved ‘bags of chemicals’), should necrophilia be:
    -encouraged?
    -punished?
    -ignored?
    I mean, is there a ‘standard’ to judge?

    Again, you seem to favour certain topics. If you have a point to make you could make it without bringing up the same practices over and over again.

  312. 312
    daveS says:

    TF,

    I’d like to answer your question first, if you would please tell me what you mean by “morally wrong”.

  313. 313
    rhampton7 says:

    Israel’s caretaker Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday gave the green light for soldiers to be deployed in a mostly ultra-Orthodox Tel Aviv suburb regarded as the epicenter of the country’s coronavirus outbreak.

    The military is expected to deploy about 1,000 soldiers in Bnei Brak to assist local authorities due to the severity of the situation there and the reported lack of implementation of health ministry instructions.

  314. 314
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    The people who commit more crimes should ask the people who commit fewer crimes for help improving their morality.

  315. 315
    Truthfreedom says:

    @311 JVL

    I’m just wondering why you bring them up so often. You seem to have a need for people to address those issues.

    I do not care about your ‘wonderings’.
    It is pretty clear that you have no answer to my question. You know you can’t offer any argument and you are dodging it because it’s uncomfortable.

  316. 316
    Truthfreedom says:

    It’s necrophilia ‘wrong’ or not? It’s a very straightforward question.

  317. 317
    bornagain77 says:

    JT: “The people who commit more crimes should ask the people who commit fewer crimes for help improving their morality.”

    Better yet, perhaps they should ask Him who is sinless?

    John 8
    31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
    33 They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?”
    34 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35 Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

  318. 318
    JVL says:

    All and sundry:

    I have an idea, some of you will hate it and not want to participate. Some of you will grudgingly agree to play along just out of curiosity. And some of you will desperately want to hear what others will say. Given all of that I propose . . .

    We all, honestly and clearly, state why we do or do not believe in God. I was trying to find a way to phrase that more vaguely and leaving more wiggle room but I think the bold and straightforward question really is best. And I’m looking for personal statements and the reasons behind them. For the person that says: it just makes sense could we hear the reasons it makes sense. For the person who says: I just don’t buy it could you specify the reasons you don’t buy it.

    Why am I proposing this? I think the discussion I’ve been having about morality does, in some part, come down to whether or not you believe in a deity which created the universe. And in part I agree, having that belief changes everything. So, I’d like to know why you all do, or do not, believe in God. I have no intention of arguing with you about your reasons, I’d just like to know what they are. It would help me to understand the people I am talking to. It would help me to avoid wasting time in the future. It would help me be more sympathetic.

    Let me start: I have personally not seen any incontrovertible evidence of God. I have seen many things which I cannot answer. I have experienced many things which made me doubt a strictly materialistic view. But I have not been confronted with something that is strong enough to convince me of a greater being which is more or less involved with the universe. It may be that you and I have different levels of evidence but I am just speaking for myself.

    So . . . what do you all say? It’ll be interesting just to see who responds . . . and how.

  319. 319
    Truthfreedom says:

    @JVL

    Again, you seem to favour certain topics. If you have a point to make you could make it without bringing up the same practices over and over again.

    I’ll keep bringing them up as long as I want to. Who are you to censor me? Please tell me, are incest and necrophilia wrong or not? And based on what exactly?

  320. 320
    daveS says:

    TF,

    It’s necrophilia ‘wrong’ or not? It’s a very straightforward question.

    Just tell us what you mean by “morally wrong”, and everything will be cool.

  321. 321
    JVL says:

    Truthfreedom: I do not care about your ‘wonderings’.
    It is pretty clear that you have no answer to my question. You know you can’t offer any argument and you are dodging it because it’s uncomfortable.

    Gosh no, it’s not uncomfortable at all. I have a very clear view about that issue. But I don’t keep bringing it up, flogging a dead horse as it were. It just makes me wonder why you’re so interested . . .

  322. 322
    bornagain77 says:

    JVL, easy.

    At a very low point in my life, God was unquestionably ‘there for me’ when I finally turned to Him for help.

  323. 323
    JVL says:

    Truthfreedom: I’ll keep bringing them up as long as I want to. Who are you to censor me? Please tell me, are incest and necrophilia wrong or not? And based on what exactly?

    Why do you keep bringing them up? And why are you so upset when I don’t answer your questions? Could it be that I just don’t like your tone and your approach rather than that I condone such behaviour? I’m not censoring you, you seem to be poor at considering what has been said.

    I’m sorry if I find your constant interjections not worth responding to. Perhaps if you made them more sensible and respectful? Just a suggestion.

  324. 324
    Truthfreedom says:

    @320 DaveS

    Just tell us what you mean by “morally wrong”, and everything will be cool.

    ‘Punishable’ under ‘materialist laws’.

  325. 325
    JVL says:

    Bornagain77: At a very low point in my life, God was unquestionably ‘there for me’ when I finally turned to Him for help.

    Thank you. I won’t ask for details. But thank you for that brief but clear explanation. I can understand that.

  326. 326
    bornagain77 says:

    DaveS at 320 hesitates on calling necrophilia wrong?

    You just can’t make this stuff up,

  327. 327
    Truthfreedom says:

    @323 JVL

    Why do you keep bringing them up? And why are you so upset when I don’t answer your questions? Could it be that I just don’t like your tone and your approach rather than that I condone such behaviour? I’m not censoring you, you seem to be poor at considering what has been said.
    I’m sorry if I find your constant interjections not worth responding to. Perhaps if you made them more sensible and respectful? Just a suggestion.

    No answer then. Just dodging.

  328. 328
    PaV says:

    Dr. Fauci was on Fox & Friends this morning. [No more than a hint, Dr. Fauci? How about the study from France? How about the doctors reporting back in New York? How about other doctors with similar experiences? Does this all mean nothing to him?]

    Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was asked Friday morning on Fox & Friends to respond to Oz, who earlier in the program left a question for Fauci about a small Chinese study he said showed the use of hydroxychloroquine led to “statistically significant improvement” in cough, fever, and pneumonia among patients with a mild case of COVID-19.

    “That was not a very robust study,” Fauci cautioned.

    “It is still possible that there is a beneficial effect,” he added. “But the study that was just quoted on a scale of strength of evidence — that’s not overwhelmingly strong. It’s an indication — a hint of it.”

    His comments are exactly the problem with experts: he’s not concerned with what his very eyes can see, but only if this reality is confirmed by a rigourous study. Who has such a luxury? How many people will die if hydroxychloroquine isn’t given them? And why would they have died? Because a year-long study of some sort has not yet been carried out yet. So, when the mortality of the virus has ended, then, with study in hand, we could feel free to prescribe hydroxychloroquine.

    By analogy, after the economy of the United States and the entire world has been completely ruined, we can begin to work again because “there are no more new cases and no more new deaths.”

  329. 329
    ET says:

    The people who commit crimes and call themselves a Christian are lying about the latter. 😛

  330. 330
    JVL says:

    Bornagain77:

    I promise you that I will always try and keep your declaration in mind when I read your posts and choose to respond to them in the future. We will continue to disagree about most things but i will try really hard not to demean you and your reasons for believing.

    And I apologise now if I have treated you poorly in the past. I should have tried harder to get to know you first. I have to uphold my own morality at least don’t I? (that being that we are all worthy and valuable)

  331. 331
    vividbleau says:

    JVL re 318

    What a refreshing post, thanks.!! I have other things going on at the moment but will respond when I can.. Thanks again for the spirit in which you posed your questions

    My best

    Vivid

  332. 332
    JVL says:

    Truthfreedom: No answer then. Just dodging.

    I just don’t like your tone. If I thought you really wanted a dialogue I would answer. But it seems to me you just want to score points.

  333. 333
    JVL says:

    Vividbleau: What a refreshing post, thanks.!! I have other things going on at the moment but will respond when I can.. Thanks again for the spirit in which you posed your questions

    I’m glad you think so. And thanks for taking me seriously. I really mean it. I have just realised, with regard to BA77, how I have probably behaved poorly in the past and I really want to make things better.

    Anyway, I’ll be away for a bit. But I’ll be back later to see how things get on.

  334. 334
    daveS says:

    TF,

    I don’t know, you’ll have to speak with a materialist.

    Are you Origenes, btw?

  335. 335
    orthomyxo says:

    I’m not potificating here…

    5 minutes later

    His comments are exactly the problem with experts …

    I don’t know man, seems pretty pontificat-ish to me.

    Seriously, I can’t believe I have to say this, if you really want to learn about the threat of the virus then going out of your way to find little threads of evidence that support your existing position is not the way to go.

    It leaves you open to making stupid mistakes like no understanding the difference between mitigation and suppression in the Imperial report, so continuing to not understand its major finding (that mitigation efforts alone won’t halt the virus very much, and stricter suppression measures will be required to limit deaths to a few tens of thousands in the UK).

    Lots of people are being given hydroxychloroquine in trials or as “compassionate” dispensations. But the clamour over its benefit is really based on a couple of not-well-designed trials. We should probably have some evidence that the drug works before we re-direct tonne of people’s automimmune disease medicince to those with covid-19.

  336. 336
    ET says:

    RE 318- The overwhelming and incontrovertible evidence for Intelligent Design does NOT point to any God. But Intelligent Design does make it so that you can be an intellectually fulfilled theist in the 21st century and beyond.

  337. 337
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: The “kill” in the KJV rendering means what we today denote as murder, willful shedding of innocent blood. Elizabethans spoke of “slay” much as we use “kill” today. There are cases where homicide is justifiable or excusable [essentially, as lesser of realistic evils present in an existential situation], and that’s so before we come to the highly relevant moral status difference between fellow creatures and the author of life, eternal and temporal. KF

  338. 338
    Ed George says:

    BA77

    Might I suggest that Ed George does not even begin to have a clue as to the magnitude of suffering that Christ actually endured on the cross when he took on the sins of all humanity and was forsaken by God?

    I suspect about the same amount as the millions of others who have suffered and died. Jesus, however, had the luxury of being omniscient and, therefore, knew that he would be resurrected and taken up to heaven to be God.

  339. 339
    Ed George says:

    JVL to ET

    I don’t understand. Why cannot you not address the questions in a fair and collegial fashion?

    Winner of the “Rhetorical Question or the Century” award. 🙂

  340. 340
    kairosfocus says:

    JVL, fundamentally, I believe in God because I have met him in life saving, life transforming power. Without those encounters, I would have been dead for 50 years now. That’s a personal reason, and it is operationally decisive, as it is with literally millions of others across the centuries and today. Nor, are we delusional . . . that would be devastating to the general reliability of the human mind. Intellectually, the prophesied and witnessed resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth leading to unleashing the sort of power just described is again decisive. Going further, while say compelling evidence of design in the world of life is not, strictly, theistic, when it is combined with the fine tuning design of a cosmos set to a deeply isolated operating point for C-chem, aqueous medium, cell based life, that points to a powerful cumulative case. Then, I ponder the instrument I use, my mind with rational responsible freedom governed by inescapable first duties of reason. Without such freedom, again, my mind self-undermines. With it, the IS-OUGHT gap I posted on earlier must be faced, it is only bridgeable in the root of reality. Moral government is built into the fabric of creation from the roots up. That requires that the root of reality and wellspring of worlds is inherently good and utterly wise. Where, already such a root is necessary being and capable of building worlds including our own. So, there is excellent reason to believe in God. KF

    PS: In how many actually observed cases have language, complex alphanumeric codes, algorithms and associated execution machinery come about by blind chance and/or mechanical necessity?

  341. 341
    bornagain77 says:

    Ed George states this in regards to the suffering that Christ endured on the Cross:

    I suspect about the same amount as the millions of others who have suffered and died.

    So again, might I suggest that Ed George does not even begin to have a clue as to the magnitude of suffering that Christ actually endured on the cross when he took on the sins of all humanity and was forsaken by God?

    “We do not know of the spiritual suffering He endured on the cross. Of course His spiritual suffering must have been the greatest of all His suffering. But that is beyond our comprehension. We can never know the real nature of that spiritual agony.”
    – Paul Kanamori – 1920
    https://books.google.com/books?id=2SI3AAAAMAAJ&pg=PA136

    Moreover, the suffering that we can somewhat understand of the Cross, i.e. the physical suffering of Jesus Christ on the Cross, was certainly no picnic in and of itself:

    CSI Jerusalem: A Physician Looks at the Crucifixion – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H25zDG4wvz4

    The Silent Witness – Forensic Analysis (of the Shroud of Turin)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5QEsaNiMVc

    Verse:

    2 Corinthians 5:21
    21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

    Also of related interest, there is no account of humans bearing their earthly scars in heaven, but Jesus’s scars were present in his resurrected body.

    “See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. (Luke 24:39–40)
    The apostle John reports that Jesus “showed them his hands and his side” (John 20:20) and includes the account of doubting Thomas, who “was not with them when Jesus came” (John 20:24). Thomas insisted he must see Jesus’s scars for himself, to confirm it was in fact him. In divine patience, Jesus waited eight days to answer Thomas’s prayer, and when he finally visited, he offered him the scars. “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe” (John 20:27).
    https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/his-scars-will-never-fade

  342. 342
    jerry says:

    The Silent Witness – Forensic Analysis (of the Shroud of Turin)

    I have seen the Shroud of Turin. I spent the better part of a year researching it before going to Turin. They allowed us (my wife and another couple) to get about 15 feet from it.

  343. 343
    rhampton7 says:

    JBS, one of the world’s largest meatpackers, continues to struggle with the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Earlier this week, news broke of its plant in Souderton, Pennsylvania, limiting production due to senior staff members having flu-like symptoms. Now there are positive cases tied to the JBS packing plant in Grand Island, Nebraska.

    NTV News reports that the Grand Island mayor confirmed 10 JBS employees have tested positive for COVID-19.

    “If the plant were to idle or limit production this could send shockwaves through an already declining cattle market,” Patton said. “The cattle market is in a bearish territory with a more than 20% decline in recent weeks.”

  344. 344
    rhampton7 says:

    Indian authorities fear that many thousands of people may have been exposed to the virus as a result of the congregation of the Tablighi Jamaat group at a mosque in the Nizamuddin neighborhood of New Delhi last month. In India, at least 647 attendees have shown symptoms of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, while six people have already died. (India has officially recorded 2,567 cases and 72 deaths.)

  345. 345
    JVL says:

    ET: The overwhelming and incontrovertible evidence for Intelligent Design does NOT point to any God. But Intelligent Design does make it so that you can be an intellectually fulfilled theist in the 21st century and beyond.

    Are you trying to answer the “Why I believe/do not believe” question? You don’t seem to be doing it very well. I’m interested in your personal opinion, is there a God or not? And why do you think so.

  346. 346
    rhampton7 says:

    As of 8:00 a.m. on Friday, a total of 1,198 people were being treated for coronavirus Covid-19 in intensive care units at hospitals across the Netherlands, according to figures released by foundation NICE. 74 Dutch hospitals have at least one coronavirus patient in their ICU.

    A total of 1,629 Covid-19 patients have been treated in ICUs since the outbreak started in the Netherlands at the end of February. 214 of them died. Others recovered and were discharged from the intensive care.

    Hospitals across the Netherlands are currently working to increase the number of ICU beds to 2,400, up from 1,150 under normal circumstances. 2,400 beds in intensive care is really the maximum that can be done, according to both Diederik Gommers of intensive care association NVIC and Gerton Heyne of nurses’ association V&VN.

  347. 347
    JVL says:

    Kairosfocus: fundamentally, I believe in God because I have met him in life saving, life transforming power. Without those encounters, I would have been dead for 50 years now. That’s a personal reason, and it is operationally decisive, as it is with literally millions of others across the centuries and today.

    Thank you for being so honest. I do not think you are delusional. I think you have had a personal, transformative experience which I have not have. I cannot say I would have responded in the same way you have but I know I lack that experience.

    And, again, if I have demeaned you in the past for your beliefs then I apologise. I’m sure I will continue to disagree with you regarding certain issues, as I have done for quite a while now, but I will try very hard not to question your reasons for your faith.

  348. 348
    JVL says:

    Truthfreedom: No answer then. Just dodging.

    Let me give you another answer: when you ask a question that you are pretty sure you know what the answer is going to be then you’ve got an agenda. You’re trying to score some points.

    You ask about highly emotive issues, like necrophilia, and insist I answer you. You know I cannot condone such behaviour so you’ve asked the question as a set up for some follow-on reply. I’m not playing your rhetorical game. If you really want to know about my beliefs and values then ask sensible questions not ones guaranteed to provoke a response you can then attack.

    And, please, respond to my honest query about why you believe. I’d like that.

    And I’d like the atheists in the crowd to respond as well. I cannot pretend to speak for you so make sure your view is accurately recorded.

  349. 349
    kairosfocus says:

    JVL, did you notice that you cut off your reckoning as soon as I spoke to my further reasons? The effect, is to create a strawman caricature. KF

    PS: Perhaps, this historically pivotal sermon may say something. Paul, at Mars Hill, Athens, c 50 AD, in words now affixed to that hill in a Bronze Plaque:

    Ac 17: 22 So Paul, standing in the center of the Areopagus, said: “Men of Athens, I observe [with every turn I make throughout the city] that you are very religious and devout in all respects.

    23 Now as I was going along and carefully looking at your objects of worship, I came to an altar with this inscription: ‘TO AN [d]UNKNOWN GOD.’ Therefore what you already worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you.

    24 The God who created the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; 25 nor is He [e]served by human hands, as though He needed anything, because it is He who gives to all [people] life and breath and all things.

    26 And He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their lands and territories.

    27 This was so that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grasp for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us. 28 For in Him we live and move and exist [that is, in Him we actually have our being], as even some of [f]your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His children.’

    29 So then, being God’s children, we should not think that the Divine Nature (deity) is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination or skill of man.

    30 Therefore God overlooked and disregarded the former ages of ignorance; but now He commands all people everywhere to repent [that is, to change their old way of thinking, to regret their past sins, and to seek God’s purpose for their lives], 31 because He has set a day when He will judge the inhabited world in righteousness by a Man whom He has appointed and destined for that task, and He has provided credible proof to everyone by raising Him from the dead.”

    Such is reasonably accessible to essentially any seriously interested inquirer. And indeed, the present circumstances are an obvious example of the kairous Paul spoke of that day. And, more.

  350. 350
    JVL says:

    Kairosfocus: did you notice that you cut off your reckoning as soon as I spoke to my further reasons? The effect, is to create a strawman caricature.

    No, I read your whole response. And I did not feel the need to reproduce the whole post; interested readers can peruse it at their leisure.

    What I did was to reproduce the part of your post that I, personally, found compelling and beyond reproach. Which is why I commented on it the way I did.

    If you are going to distrust me whenever I respond in ways you don’t approve then it would be best we stop conversing right now. There would be no point. I ask your indulgence and final judgement based on my follow-on behaviour. Please. I’m not saying I will agree with you in the future, but I will do my best to respect your reasons for your beliefs. Okay?

  351. 351
    rhampton7 says:

    The FDA has declared shortages for critical ICU sedation drugs midazolam and ketamine due to high demand for COVID-19 coronavirus patients.

    Demand rose at least 51% in March for common sedatives and anesthetics used in the ICU — propofol, dexmedetomidine, etomidate, ketamine, lorazepam, and midazolam, but the fill rate dropped to 63% before the end of the month, according to data from Vizient, the group purchasing organization for about half of U.S. acute care centers, reported by STAT.

    The dropoff in elective surgery had helped conserve the medications, but ICU patients rip through much larger supplies of these drugs, he noted in an interview monitored by his organization’s media relations.

    Manufacturing supply problems stemming from shutdowns of Chinese producers of active ingredients due to COVID-19 have yet to ripple through the distribution channels, he noted. “It’s yet to be seen just what impact that might have.”

  352. 352
    vividbleau says:

    JVL
    Once again thanks for your thoughtful post,very refreshing.
    I am a Christian theist, reformed theologically. My story and why.
    I was raised Catholic, Catholic education, altar boy , etc. In college I left the church for a host of reasons none of I think relevant for this discussion and still have deep respect for individual Catholics.
    In college I became an agnostic and in my senior year I started to grapple with what I wanted to do going forward in my life, I was not exactly following the plan of my family and was getting significant push back as my lifestyle was not in accord with their wishes. I was really struggling as to how to go forward since the overriding thought for me focused on the question of meaning, does life have a meaning? My philosophical framework was “we are born, we live for awhile, then we die”, so what does it matter how I live.
    In my senior year in college and I was in the athletic training room and the head trainer came to me and said you have a phone call from your roommate. I got on the phone with him and he says “there this guy in our room talking about heaven and hell and Jesus Christ and if you don’t get back here I am going to kill him” I rushed to my dorm room and my roommate had the guy by the throat threatening his life, I am not making this up, I separated the two and asked the guy what all this is about. The guy was sharing the Gospel and this was totally foreign to me, I never heard it explained to me the way he did I promptly ushered him out of my room. BTW my roommate eventually became a Christian.
    Fast forward a few months later I was lying in bed one night and I could not get to sleep as I was grappling in my mind the haunting question that I was preoccupied with “Does life have a meaning” Laying there in my bed I started to work out the inescapable logic, if life had no meaning it doesn’t matter what I do because death is the ultimate outcome. The only way that life can have a meaning is that there must be something beyond death, some sort of meaning giver however the question remains which is does it have a meaning or not, more importantly how could I ever know?
    I remember thinking “well I cant go to something that does not exist and ask it to show itself I can only go to something that possibly exists and if it does then certainly he, she, or it has the power to do so and thats what I did. It went something like this, “God if you exist, and I am not saying you do, but if you do I want to know you, reveal yourself, I don’t need a priest, preacher, church or people to communicate with me, you reveal yourself and if Jesus is who that guy in my room says he is let me know but I am not going to rely on others, surely if you exist you have the power to do that” Then I went to sleep.

    The next morning things started happening that were totally out of character for me, I had this overwhelming desire to read the Bible. I never read the Bible, never even thought about it but I had this desire that I have to find a Bible, I mean this desire stunned me. Since I was home from school I started ransacking the house for a Bible , it took me awhile and I found this small black Bible and started at the beginning and read it from beginning to end over the next few months.
    Another change, after a few days I noticed that something was missing and what was missing was my foul language, in fact I realized that since that night I had completely changed, before that night I had the foulest mouth imaginable and it just stopped. More changes started happening that were more incredible but I don’t want to reveal them, the extraordinary thing was that I wasnt trying to change anything, it was just happening, I had changed.
    Ok I will stop here because this is long enough for one sitting, but I next want to talk about evidence outside of experience and I will do that later. Honestly I find experience to be inadequate evidence there will be a post regarding non experiential evidence.

    BTW I have no problem with people challenging my worldview so fire away LOL

    Vivid

  353. 353
    vividbleau says:

    I forgot to add the most important question one can ask oneself is this “ Do you want to know the truth no matter what that truth is”?

    Vivid

  354. 354
    JVL says:

    Vividbleau: Ok I will stop here because this is long enough for one sitting, but I next want to talk about evidence outside of experience and I will do that later. Honestly I find experience to be inadequate evidence there will be a post regarding non experiential evidence.

    BTW I have no problem with people challenging my worldview so fire away LOL

    On the contrary, I find your personal experience very compelling and persuasive. Thank you for taking the time to convey it to us. As I’ve said to others who have responded to my query: thank you, and, if I have belittled you in the past for your beliefs then I promise to do better in the future. You and I will most likely disagree about a lot of things but I will not question the grounding of your faith. On that, you have my word . . . whatever it’s worth.

    Thank you again. I would ask everyone to please read Vividbleau‘s entire response. And all the other responses I have received to my query. These are powerful and important statements.

    I forgot to add the most important question one can ask oneself is this “ Do you want to know the truth no matter what that truth is”?

    Personally, yes.

  355. 355
    PaV says:

    Total deaths in England are at 3,600 with over 600 for today alone. The Gupta study was estimating total deaths to be as low as 4,000. We’re past that tomorrow, no doubt. This means that their figure for CFR of 0.1% is too low.

    When I calculated CFR from the Diamond Princess cruise ship data, the CFR was 1%. I noted, though, that the population of the ship tended to be older. Correcting it to reflect the U.S. population, I arrived at 1/3 of 1%, or, 0.33%. For an older Europe, the data would look more like 2/3 of 1%, or, 0.66%. We’ve seen that number in print as an estimate of the CFR for this virus.

    My hunch, then, is that we’re zeroing in on the CFR. For the U.S., I suspect it will be about 0.33%, or three plus times higher than the seasonal flu. Undoubtedly, though, the R_nought, the reproduction number, is around 2.5 (Gupta), maybe higher. So, this is a bad combination. This is going to be worse than the swine flu in 2009, whose CFR ended up being 0.02%. Now, as a rough estimate, you could say that the corona virus is going to be 16 times more deadly. This doesn’t take into account the R-nought for the swine flu, which was less than for this virus. Leaving this consideration aside, we know that in 2009, 12,469 persons died. 16 x 12,469 = (roughly) 200,.000 persons. If these numbers are good ballpark figures, then the need for “social distancing” becomes clear. An overburdened, and afflicted, medical care system might collapse with even more deaths as a result. With the social-distancing, the R_nought effect is lessened. So, using these numbers, one might expect that the total deaths might be reduced–and this is a pure guess, by as much as 60 to 70%, depending on the length of time the social distancing is employed. Thirty percent of 200,000 is 60,000. My recent estimate is that 31,000 will die. These are ballpark figures. But they do show the need for social distancing.

    So, let it be known, while at first I thought the social-distancing was an over reaction, given that it is now clear that the reproduction number for this virus is high, coupled to a higher than normal virulence, I can now see the wisdom in the actions President Trump has taken. Now it is a matter of how quickly the numbers can be dampened, which would allow the social distancing to end.

    Now, the downside of the social distancing will be that unless “herd immunity” has developed, should the virus start up in the Fall, which is likely, we will have to go through this again. Maybe the Good Lord is truly sending our world a message: we don’t have tomorrow. Life is a gift given to us each day. Use it well. Learn to love.

  356. 356
    daveS says:

    Very nice post, Vivid.

  357. 357
    JVL says:

    PaV: Maybe the Good Lord is truly sending our world a message: we don’t have tomorrow. Life is a gift given to us each day. Use it well. Learn to love.

    I can agree with that!! Do not squander the time you’ve been given.

  358. 358
    PaV says:

    Vividbleu:

    Thanks for sharing your conversion experience with everyone here. Nice story. I could probably tell a similar one.

    “Vividbleu,” is that like the ‘blue’ we see in the sky?

    PaV

  359. 359
    JVL says:

    Pav: Thanks for sharing your conversion experience with everyone here. Nice story. I could probably tell a similar one.

    Why not do so? I, for one, would like to hear it.

    I think we need to get to know each other, real people. In the past, I admit, I have had cardboard cutout versions of ID proponents in my head. But those mental space-holders are a lie. The truth is that there are real, sincere, intelligent people ascribing to those beliefs. And I’ve figured out . . . I’d like to know who they are and why they hold the beliefs they do. When you get to know people you spend a lot less time trying to change them or belittle them. That’s what I’ve found.

  360. 360
    PaV says:

    JVL:
    I agree with you. I would only add this: we become wise when we’re able to understand that our most worthy actions are those that have an eternal quality to them. This can be understood even by someone outside of mainline religion. (There are rotten Christians and truly caring and ethical atheists)
    But religions can help clarify and purify, espeically Christianity. (Because the truth that reason could never at, God has revealed in His Son, Jesus Christ)

    Jesus said: “Whatever you do to the least of my brethren (all of us), that you did unto me.” This is a “Person-centric” statement, independent of religion itself.

    Sorry, JVL, I meant only a couple of sentences, and then I got carried away.

  361. 361
    PaV says:

    JVL:

    I was living with someone outside of marriage, and saw a Bible there in her home, and had the urge to read it. And I haven’t been the same since. And, along the way, Jesus made himself known, in ways ordinary, and sometimes a bit out of the ordinary.

    Vividbleu’s story is good enough. If we’re open to the truth (Truth), the Lord then has a way of entering our hearts. Usually, though, He wants to make sure we’re paying attention. And He has lots of ways of getting our attention, even viruses!

    I consider our social distancing to be a gift of an extended “Sabbath rest,” given to a nation (world) that sees no need to stop on the Sabbath and give thanks and to reflect on life. Blessed be God forever. (Just thought I needed to add that last sentence for my own sake as I reflect on the gift aspect of what our nation is now going through. BTW, God usually gets our attention when things go wrong. When they’re going well, we’re too distracted by what makes us happy.)

  362. 362
    JVL says:

    Pav: Sorry, JVL, I meant only a couple of sentences, and then I got carried away.

    Never, ever apologise for being sincere and honest. And thank you for being sincere and honest. I find a lot of common ground with you to be honest. Again, I implore people to read PaV;s whole post. I would really love to hear your own story of how you came to faith but I understand if you'd rather not share it. I am really encouraged that so many people of faith have responded honestly. I am disappointed to have NO responses from the atheist crowd. C'mon guys! Man up!!

  363. 363
    PaV says:

    JVL:

    And I’ve figured out . . . I’d like to know who they are and why they hold the beliefs they do. When you get to know people you spend a lot less time trying to change them or belittle them. That’s what I’ve found.

    What you’ve written is, of course, true in BOTH directions!

  364. 364
    JVL says:

    PaV: I was living with someone outside of marriage, and saw a Bible there in her home, and had the urge to read it. And I haven’t been the same since. And, along the way, Jesus made himself known, in ways ordinary, and sometimes a bit out of the ordinary.

    I can resonate with this, in more ways than I can explain. Thank you for your statement.

    the Lord then has a way of entering our hearts. Usually, though, He wants to make sure we’re paying attention. And He has lots of ways of getting our attention, even viruses!

    Yes, this makes sense. Based on my own experience. I really should share it . . .

    I don’t want to go into too many details because I’d like to protect the identity of the people involved but basically . . .

    There was a time in my life when I felt drawn to a woman who had faith. And I started seeing ‘signs’ in my daily life, things that I thought were very improbable, very odd, very directed. Directed in that they spoke to my mathematical training, they hit my detection point of highly improbable. I even approached a very supportive and understanding colleague who I admired very much who had/has great faith.

    I won’t go into the reasons why it all fell through, I only bring up the example to let you all know: I understand, even if in a minor way, what a personal experience can feel like. I get it. And, maybe, I wonder why I wasn’t able to take that last final step . . .

    Anyway, thanks again. For taking my request seriously. I think your response will help.

  365. 365
    JVL says:

    PaV: What you’ve written is, of course, true in BOTH directions!

    I hope that is the case. That is my own personal goal. I cannot speak for anyone else.

  366. 366
    JVL says:

    PaV: God usually gets our attention when things go wrong. When they’re going well, we’re too distracted by what makes us happy

    In my case, it was the other way around!! Which is what started to grab me . . .

    Anyway, carry on!!

  367. 367
    PaV says:

    We all come around to certain things slowly:

    Case in point: Dr. Fauci:

    “Bottom line. We don’t have to worry about this one, right?” Newsmax anchor Greg Kelly asked Fauci on January 21.

    “Obviously, you need to take it seriously, and do the kinds of things that the CDC and the Department of Homeland Security are doing, ” Fauci responded. “But, this not a major threat for the people of the United States, and this is not something that the citizens of the United States right now should be worried about.”

    CDC Director Robert Redfield told Fox News’ Brian Kilmeade late last month that he agreed with Fauci’s assessment at the time, and said that nobody could have predicted the outbreak that would eventually occur in the U.S.

    “Obviously that became corrected as they saw in the first three, four weeks in January that human to human spread was not only occurring it’s actually, as I said, more infectious and I think that led to the situation that we’re in today. I think no one could have predicted how transmissible, how infectious this virus really is,” Redfield said.

    Fauci made similar comments in February, saying the threat to the U.S. from the coronavirus was “minuscule.” By early March, Fauci had changed his tune, saying the virus “could be really, really bad,” but still said he believed the situation could be mitigated.

  368. 368
    PaV says:

    JVL:

    Your openness and sincerity are appreciated–and, may I say, by all.

  369. 369
    PaV says:

    @355, I wrote this:

    If these numbers are good ballpark figures, then the need for “social distancing” becomes clear. An overburdened, and afflicted, medical care system might collapse with even more deaths as a result. With the social-distancing, the R_nought effect is lessened.

    What I wrote basically means that social-distancing will NOT lessen the total number of people who will die from this virus. All that social-distancing does is, as Dr. Fauci has so often said, lower the peak number of deaths. While this helps the medical care system throughout the nation, which is an important consideration and a just rationale for social-distancing, a balance needs to be struck between our medical system and our economic system. Again, social-distancing doesn’t lower the total amount of deaths; it just spreads it out in time.

  370. 370
    vividbleau says:

    JVL
    Evidence
    Then the doubts came in.

    I am somewhat of an obsessive compulsive after a few months I started to ask uncomfortable questions. I know what I experienced but the mind is a funny thing and I recognized hey you are basing your life on this belief which is a serious commitment maybe I am deceiving myself “Am I sure?” and of course I was not sure I needed more.
    One of my strengths, and is always the case can be one of my greatest weakness, is that I have a very open mind, its not empty but open. I also think that to confront ones doubts one must face the opposition and their strongest arguments honestly and without distortion. Its a blessing and a curse because it is very tough to engage arguments that are contrary to what you believe. This is important, I recognize that I am not objective, I am guilty of observational bias, by recognizing this I recognize that I have to fight that and the way to do that is to expose oneself to ideas opposite of your own. I remember once on this site I mentioned that I was prone to observational bias and someone was surprised by that (it was not you) and I thought “are you kidding me”? Its a human condition.

    It took many years but in a nutshell here is where I have landed.

    Evidence is a plastic word and needs to be defined, here is how I prioritize evidence.
    1) My starting point is where all of us start, and where many are ignorant that they start there, which is a set of unprovable assumptions, everyone has them. Everyone starts with metaphysics! I assume the reliability of mind.

    2) Reason and its sister Logic is superior to experience. Logic cannot tell us what is but it can tell us what is NOT.

    3) Because everything starts with metaphysics faith is not unreasonable, nor is fideism the same as faith.

    4) Every worldview is a set of faith assumptions about the nature of things ie is a metaphysical belief.

    5) Every worldview has difficulties.

    6) To echo KF we should adopt the worldview that has the least number of difficulties.

    As to the materialist, atheist, agnostic I GET IT. I understand why when we look over history, the pain and suffering that exists in our world, the evil and mayhem, atheism to me is a reasonable position but entails more difficulties than theism.

    Here is my answer as a theist to the problem of evil, I don’t have one nor does anyone else, Jonathan Edwards, one of the greatest minds America has produced, spent his whole life contemplating this question and could not answer it. Those who appeal to the free will of man etc, just demonstrate to me that they dont gasp the extent of the problem, I am laying it all out here and I know this will rankle some theists here but thats a fact. As an aside I think the problem of evil is more a problem for the atheist than the theist

    I will end here. JVL Ive been as honest as I can and hope this is the type of response you were looking for.

    FYI you have to my knowledge ever demeaned me or belittle my beliefs. Challenging is not belittling.
    Vivid

  371. 371
    Ed George says:

    R7

    The FDA has declared shortages for critical ICU sedation drugs midazolam and ketamine due to high demand for COVID-19 coronavirus patients.

    Have they asked Canada Or Germany for help? They both have many pharmaceutical manufacturers. As this is a worldwide crisis, and given that we will have to work with each other to get over this, I’m sure that Canada and Germany would help. Well, maybe banning all shipments of PPE from the US to Canada, and highjacking a shipment of PPE from China to Germany was a shortsighted strategy.

  372. 372
    daveS says:

    JVL,

    I am disappointed to have NO responses from the atheist crowd. C’mon guys! Man up!!

    Sorry, JVL, I don’t have an interesting transformation story like others here. And while I do engage in a few debates or discussions concerning the existence of God, outside of here, it’s not really a big part of my life. I’m more interested in issues around mathematics and philosophy.

  373. 373
    vividbleau says:

    PAV
    “Vividbleau,” is that like the ‘blue’ we see in the sky?”

    Yes because Vividblue , the name of a secret military program, was taken.

    Vivid

  374. 374
    vividbleau says:

    Dave S
    Thanks. Always have respected your comments and views. I must confess the math is way over my head LOL You always treat people with respect.

    Vivid

  375. 375
    ET says:

    PaV:

    Your openness and sincerity are appreciated–and, may I say, by all.

    Hook, line and sinker.

  376. 376
    Ed George says:

    We were sent to Sunday school by our parents but I suspect that was just so they could get a couple hours to themselves.

    I’ve always been very inquisitive. When I was 17 I spent thee months in hospital after surgery to fuse most of my vertebrae together. And then a couple years later I had a collapsed lung and subsequent surgery. Rather than feel sorry for myself, or pray, or blame God, I was intrigued by the procedures performed on me and the equipment I was hooked up to. I approached it as a learning experience.

    When my father died of an aortic aneurism caused by Marfins (a genetic disease) a month before my wedding, and a few years later when my mother died of breast cancer at the age of 54, I never felt the desire to pray, or to blame God.

    When I later found out that I also have Marfins and have a higher risk of aneurism, I never thought, ‘why me?’, or felt the desire to pray.

    In short, I have never experienced anything in my life where I felt that there must be something more, as BA77 did. I have reviewed much of the evidence that is purported to support the existence of Jesus and God, and have not found it very convincing.

  377. 377
    ET says:

    The explanation for the relieving of Captain Brett Cozier, USS Theodore Roosevelt: ‘Not acceptable’: Navy claims it fired the captain dealing with coronavirus outbreak for sending ‘blast out’ email to at least 20 people with ‘unclassified’ system:

    US Navy
    The Secretary of the Navy offered more details into his decision in relieving the commander of a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier dealing with a coronavirus outbreak.
    Capt. Brett Crozier of the USS Theodore Roosevelt penned a letter to his superiors about the urgent situation aboard his ship, which was dealing with the spread of the coronavirus.
    “The letter was sent over non-secure, unclassified email even though that ship possesses some of the most sophisticated communications and encryption equipment in the fleet,” the Navy Secretary said.
    He said that the captain should not have sent a “blast out email to anybody who he knows about the situation,” adding that it was “copied to 20 or 30 other people.”

    Definitely not acceptable. So it isn’t that he complained. It was his methodology.

  378. 378
    rhampton7 says:

    Public health experts are increasingly worried that Americans are underestimating how long the coronavirus pandemic will disrupt everyday life in the country, warning that the Trump administration’s timelines are offering many a false sense of comfort.

    Coronavirus cases are expected to peak in mid-April in many parts of the country, but quickly reopening businesses or loosening shelter-in-place rules would inevitably lead to a new surge of infections, they said.

    Meanwhile, other parts of the country are only now implementing restrictions and others have not yet ordered the closure of non-essential businesses, creating a patchwork response that will slow progress toward the goal of driving down transmission of the SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19.

  379. 379
    JVL says:

    Pav: Your openness and sincerity are appreciated–and, may I say, by all.

    Thanks! Thank you for your thoughtful and open responses.

    I also think that to confront ones doubts one must face the opposition and their strongest arguments honestly and without distortion. Its a blessing and a curse because it is very tough to engage arguments that are contrary to what you believe.

    I quite agree!

    As to the materialist, atheist, agnostic I GET IT. I understand why when we look over history, the pain and suffering that exists in our world, the evil and mayhem, atheism to me is a reasonable position but entails more difficulties than theism.

    Thanks for that! I find it more parsimonious but we do see the same data.

    Here is my answer as a theist to the problem of evil, I don’t have one nor does anyone else, Jonathan Edwards, one of the greatest minds America has produced, spent his whole life contemplating this question and could not answer it. Those who appeal to the free will of man etc, just demonstrate to me that they dont gasp the extent of the problem, I am laying it all out here and I know this will rankle some theists here but thats a fact. As an aside I think the problem of evil is more a problem for the atheist than the theist

    I think you might be right in your conclusion there. A very interesting point. And I really appreciate your honesty.

    I will end here. JVL Ive been as honest as I can and hope this is the type of response you were looking for.

    Yes indeed! Thank you so much for taking it seriously and taking the time to tell us all your tale. Now when I see one of your posts I will always have your explanations in my mind as I read. Which is the point isn’t it? Remember the person behind the text.

  380. 380
    JVL says:

    DaveS: Sorry, JVL, I don’t have an interesting transformation story like others here. And while I do engage in a few debates or discussions concerning the existence of God, outside of here, it’s not really a big part of my life. I’m more interested in issues around mathematics and philosophy.

    Okay! Thanks for responding honestly.

  381. 381
    JVL says:

    EdGeorge: In short, I have never experienced anything in my life where I felt that there must be something more, as BA77 did. I have reviewed much of the evidence that is purported to support the existence of Jesus and God, and have not found it very convincing.

    I could see someone coming through the same experiences and having the opposite conclusion! You were just wired differently it seems. Anyway, as I just said to PaV from now on, when I see one of your posts, I will remember the person behind the text. Thank you very much for your tale.

  382. 382
    JVL says:

    ET: Definitely not acceptable. So it isn’t that he complained. It was his methodology.

    Yes, clearly against all protocol.

  383. 383
    kairosfocus says:

    JVL, nope, I think you do not realise that you are failing to see the effect of cumulative warrant. This is in my view part of the impact of substituting selective hyperskepticism for balanced, sober-minded prudence in our mental furniture. KF

    PS: This is also precisely what is warping our response to the Covid-19 pandemic, eg on HCQ etc. Notice, too how evidence that the disease is peaking, i.e. saturating, is not being recognised for what it is.

  384. 384
    kairosfocus says:

    PaV, lowering the peak buys time to deploy treatments that favourably shift the partition between death and recovery for serious cases. Then, if we can fast track vaccinations, we impose artificial herd immunity. KF

    PS: The ECDC and other tracking statistics point to peaking for this wave: https://uncommondescent.com/medicine/tracking-covid-19-apr-3-are-we-peaking-for-this-wave/

  385. 385
    kairosfocus says:

    Vivid:

    1) My starting point is where all of us start, and where many are ignorant that they start there, which is a set of unprovable assumptions, everyone has them. Everyone starts with metaphysics! I assume the reliability of mind.

    2) Reason and its sister Logic is superior to experience. Logic cannot tell us what is but it can tell us what is NOT.

    3) Because everything starts with metaphysics faith is not unreasonable, nor is fideism the same as faith.

    4) Every worldview is a set of faith assumptions about the nature of things ie is a metaphysical belief.

    5) Every worldview has difficulties.

    6) To echo KF we should adopt the worldview that has the least number of difficulties.

    Correct.

    The problem is, worldviews analysis on comparative difficulties is hardly ever integrated into our basic “K – 12” or equivalent education. In an era of intellectual turmoil and massive manipulation, that leaves us vulnerable. No prizes for guessing why business as usual balances of power leave that in place in the general community. In the churches, there is a shocking superficiality reflecting the failure of the general community. That’s the context in which the “prosperity” debate has surged. Francis Schaeffer’s general challenge to the Christian church is increasingly on target, a generation later. But, by and large, we are not listening.

    Coming back, worldviews are assessed on comparative difficulties across factual adequacy, coherence and balance of explanatory power [neither simplistic nor an ad hoc patchwork]. In that context, recognising the reality of finitely remote first plausibles (which define pour faith-points, thus worldviews] and that of self-evident first truths is pivotal. In that context, I have come more and more to see the significance of inescapable first principles and first duties of reason. (My ever-evolving 101 discussion is here on in context.)

    A strong result is that worldviews evaluation is on a cumulative case basis, with many converging lines of evidence. That’s part of why factual adequacy and coherence are key criteria. In that context, schemes of thought and linked cultural agendas that undermine credibility of mind and core morality — given first duties of reason — are self-undermining. This specifically includes evolutionary materialistic scientism and its fellow travellers.

    That’s part of why our civilisation is suicidal, yet again.

    I think a recognition of the warning Plato gave in The Laws Bk X, likely informed by the socially and spiritually chaotic impact of the Plague of Athens [itself reflective of the failure of Athenian Democracy], is appropriate:

    Ath [in The Laws, Bk X 2,360 ya]. . . .[The avant garde philosophers and poets, c. 360 BC] say that fire and water, and earth and air [i.e the classical “material” elements of the cosmos], all exist by nature and chance, and none of them by art . . . [such that] all that is in the heaven, as well as animals and all plants, and all the seasons come from these elements, not by the action of mind, as they say, or of any God, or from art, but as I was saying, by nature and chance only [ –> that is, evolutionary materialism is ancient and would trace all things to blind chance and mechanical necessity] . . . .

    [Thus, they hold] that the principles of justice have no existence at all in nature, but that mankind are always disputing about them and altering them; and that the alterations which are made by art and by law have no basis in nature, but are of authority for the moment and at the time at which they are made.-

    [ –> Relativism, too, is not new; complete with its radical amorality rooted in a worldview that has no foundational IS that can ground OUGHT, leading to an effectively arbitrary foundation only for morality, ethics and law: accident of personal preference, the ebbs and flows of power politics, accidents of history and and the shifting sands of manipulated community opinion driven by “winds and waves of doctrine and the cunning craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming . . . ” cf a video on Plato’s parable of the cave; from the perspective of pondering who set up the manipulative shadow-shows, why.]

    These, my friends, are the sayings of wise men, poets and prose writers, which find a way into the minds of youth. They are told by them that the highest right is might,

    [ –> Evolutionary materialism — having no IS that can properly ground OUGHT — leads to the promotion of amorality on which the only basis for “OUGHT” is seen to be might (and manipulation: might in “spin”) . . . ]

    and in this way the young fall into impieties, under the idea that the Gods are not such as the law bids them imagine; and hence arise factions [ –> Evolutionary materialism-motivated amorality “naturally” leads to continual contentions and power struggles influenced by that amorality at the hands of ruthless power hungry nihilistic agendas], these philosophers inviting them to lead a true life according to nature, that is,to live in real dominion over others [ –> such amoral and/or nihilistic factions, if they gain power, “naturally” tend towards ruthless abuse and arbitrariness . . . they have not learned the habits nor accepted the principles of mutual respect, justice, fairness and keeping the civil peace of justice, so they will want to deceive, manipulate and crush — as the consistent history of radical revolutions over the past 250 years so plainly shows again and again], and not in legal subjection to them [–> nihilistic will to power not the spirit of justice and lawfulness].

    KF

    PS: In this context, the onward impacts of the recession induced by the pandemic and our attempts to deal with it may well be telling.

  386. 386
    daveS says:

    Vivid,

    Thanks for the kind words.

  387. 387

    .

    I have reviewed much of the evidence that is purported to support the existence of Jesus and God, and have not found it very convincing.

    As you know, this is an intelligent design blog, not a church. You’ve now made more than 1,000 comments here over several months, and thus far you haven’t demonstrated that you’ve “reviewed” that evidence in any meaningful way whatsoever.

    To the contrary, you’ve demonstrated that you all but run from the evidence of design in biology, yet you continue to promote yourself here as a person with a high regard for physical evidence and reason. Humans have been collecting images of lifeless planets for decades on end, and we understand (and can mathematically model) the forces that result in what we see. Get one of those outstanding images in front of you and imagine a living thing suddenly appearing there. Do you think that living thing would have to be specified from memory in order to exist, or no? If so, just exactly what do you think the process of that specification would entail? The answer to this question is certainly no mystery from a scientific standpoint. In fact, both the empirical evidence and recorded history are quite clear on the matter. If you’ve actually deliberated these things, as you say you have (concluding no evidence of design), then tell us – how did you deal with all the well-documented evidence to the contrary? How did you come to conclude that a semantically closed multi-referent symbol system could come into being from nothing more than the forces that result in a lifeless planet? When you “reviewed” the evidence, you surely found that the mathematics we use model one cannot be used to model the other – that they indeed require complimentary (non-integrable) descriptions throughout physics and biology. What did you do with that little tidbit of information?

    And while I have you on the phone … in your (demonstrated) zeal to demean religious men, did you not recently tell a 60 year-old grown Christian man on this blog that if his wife wasn’t getting it from him the way that your wife was getting it from you, then you felt sorry for his wife? Very obviously this is not a bar, and you were not back-slapping your old buddy from the factory – we can all be honest about that, right? And the grown man that you said these things to; isn’t he among those you were outright lying to when you first came here, trying to deceive them into believing you were a religious ID proponent? The only reason I bring this up is because you used the notion of being personally offended as the means to avoid discussing the history and physical evidence eluded to in the previous paragraph. I find it hard to believe that a man who presumes (and speaks of) the intimate practices of his intellectual opponents (using it as fodder on a blog) would truly have such thin skin. Why don’t you just tell us how you dealt with the simultaneous physical requirements of discontinuous association, spatial orientation, and semantic closure appearing in a dynamic system? Then we would know that you’ve actually “reviewed” the evidence, and have found it “not very convincing”.

  388. 388
    Truthfreedom says:

    @387 Upright Biped:

    And while I have you on the phone … in your (demonstrated) zeal to demean religious men, did you not recently tell a 60 year-old grown Christian man on this blog that if his wife wasn’t getting it from him the way that your wife was getting it from you, then you felt sorry for his wife? Very obviously this is not a bar, and you were not back-slapping your old buddy from the factory – we can all be honest about that, right? And the grown man that you said these things to; isn’t he among those you were outright lying to when you first came here, trying to deceive them into believing you were a religious ID proponent?

    Superb. 🙂

  389. 389

    .
    No answer Ed?

    Are you still avoiding the physical evidence?

    Are you also avoiding your record of comments on this blog?

    This is not surprising.

  390. 390
    PaV says:

    I certainly argued forcefully at times when, in retrospect, I could have held off the edginess. It wasn’t meant to be edgy, but simply was part of the struggle to make sense of things. The reality is that this “sheltering-in-place” has very real effects. It’s a known evil, while the potential harm posed by this virus–after seeing how quickly and with few deaths both China and S. Korea ended this virus’ incursion, it was at first hard to see what we were dealing with, Further, everything we were hearing came at this in a highly theoretical way–something I’m naturally skeptical of.

    But, we began to see the deaths in Italy rise, then in Spain. So, the anecdotal evidence that began to emerge started to make me see that this could quite possibly be an extraordinary virus we were dealing with. Then there was the battle of the models, Oxford versus Imperial College of London. And in the background was a political fear–was this virus response being manipulated. Just yesterday, with the numbers coming out of the UK, it became clear that the Oxford study had missed the mark. This got us, or, me, at least, back to the numbers for the Diamond Princess cruise ship. All of this made clear that the R_nought, which was sort of dangling in background during the Presidential press conferences, was very much a part of what we were seeing, and it was high. I worked out some numbers and I reached the conclusion that we will, in the long run not save any lives (though an effective vaccine, earlier rather than later, will indeed save lives), but that the real concern was for our medical care system in places where the virus had spread rapidly and where the populations were most susceptible. As I stated yesterday, I can now see the wisdom in what our leadership has done and the need to continue thier policies for a few weeks more. So, I’m much more at peace with where things stand. But I’m, of course, concerned with the loss of life and with the medical personnel that are charged with their care. We can certainly keep them in our prayers.

    Mimus, if you’re looking in, I’ve made an attempt to have you post here again, but I’m not quite sure how to do that. Perhaps Barry or News can do that. I hope you understand that I was on a journey of understanding, wanting to know why the severe measures we now live under had been justified by the President and others. I was rather sure that there were others who felt the same way.

    I’m not content to just listen to “experts.” I want to understand what’s going on myself and in my own terms. It took a while, and now I see that while a lot of models got a lot of things wrong, there are models that seem to be getting important things right. So, I hope you understand why I just didn’t accede to your thinking.

    The question now is: if in New York there are almost 400 people dying each day and in California, a state of about the same population, maybe more, there are only 24 deaths a day, then why the same lockdown measures?

    But, the better way of putting this is: what are medical professionals and scientists doing to try and figure out a way to get the numbers in New York down? IOW, is there a plan we can put into place where tracking and quarenting can be done in a more effective way? If this is done, then with an action plan in place, it’s possible to start back on the road to normal life more quickly. But I don’t see any indications of that. The S. Koreans had such a plan, and I don’t understand why we don’t. In the meantime, like everyone else, we hold on for the ride. It’s going to be bumpy!

  391. 391
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @rhampton I live in Florida with a disproportionate number of people who get bad info. Last week I literally had a guy sneer at me because “this is just a cold, everybody’s overreacting” but it looks like finally the good info is seeping through. My job has been deemed Essential because a small part of our VOIP network deals with a special channel that only first responders are on. So, the good thing is I’m getting 20% more money than normal, but the bad thing is I’m still at work five days a week. But a good sign is on the way home at seven tonight, the streets of this town were deserted to the point that they had the same traffic patterns as they do it like 3 AM on a normal day.

  392. 392
    ET says:

    What I hear/ read people say is that there is a 96-98% survival rate so it can’t be that bad.

  393. 393
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    One of the good things that has happened is so far the administration claims that they are going to pay for hospital bills for anybody who gets coronavirus, so we’re getting a kind of universal healthcare, at least for this one particular type of illness. As 600,000+ Americans declare bankruptcy every year from medical bills, this is a small good thing.

  394. 394
    daveS says:

    ET,

    Let’s hope the survival rate is much higher than that. The way this spreads, only 96% to 98% would be horrendous

  395. 395
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    If 50% of Americans get it, a 3%mortality rate would be almost 5 million Americans dying. I’ve been trying to tell people here for a couple of weeks that this thing is serious, and it’s probably not going to kill 5 million people, but it’s still goddamn serious.

  396. 396
    Ed George says:

    JT, yes, those survival rates could be horrendous. If we assume that 20% become infected, a distinct possibility, that would mean between 1.3 and 2.6 million.

    Are there any here that still believe that 100,000 deaths in the US is out of the question?

    [Edit: JT, you were obviously exercising your gozintas at the same time I was. 🙂 ]

  397. 397
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    If we are extremely lucky drug treatments will make a big impact.

  398. 398
    Truthfreedom says:

    If SARS-CoV-2 is ‘natural’ selection, what are the containment measures then?
    ‘Artificial’ selection?
    Genetic drift?
    HGT?
    Magic?
    Hey, think, naturalist, think!

  399. 399
    Ed George says:

    JT

    If we are extremely lucky drug treatments will make a big impact.

    As long as the US doesn’t rely on a foreign supply for any of these drugs. Given the way Trump has treated its allies during this crisis, he might find it difficult to find a country willing to share any of their supply.

  400. 400
    Truthfreedom says:

    What does a naturalist say to someone who has lost a loved one in the pandemic:
    a) Do not worry, he/she was just a ‘bag of chemicals’?
    b) Do not bother burying him/her, morals are illusory and epiphenomenal?
    c) Consciousness is an illusion, therefore your suffering is an illusion too? (Maybe while holding an fMRI scan?)

  401. 401
    Jim Thibodeau says:

    @EdGeorge in 291 days we will have smart, competent people back in charge. I hope we do okay til then.

  402. 402
    Ed George says:

    TF

    What does a naturalist say to someone who has lost a loved one in the pandemic:

    “I’m very sorry for your loss. If you need anything, do not hesitate to call.”

    What do you say? “Given that he is now in heaven I am so glad that he died.”?

    See, I could stoop you your level of childish retorts but I prefer not to. Bye.

  403. 403
    Ed George says:

    JT

    @EdGeorge in 291 days we will have smart, competent people back in charge.

    For the sake of the world, I hope you are right.

  404. 404
    ET says:

    Ed George has no idea how Trump has treated our allies. Ed George is an imbecile who can’t assess evidence.

    And yes, in 291 days President Trump will be re-elected and smart, competent people will be back in charge. Joe Biden isn’t smart and he isn’t competent.

  405. 405
    ET says:

    The virus is deadly serious to people who don’t take care of themselves. Nursing homes- the people most likely don’t get much sun and their serum vitamin D is very low. The winter time- northerners don’t get much sun and their serum vitamin D is low. Low serum vitamin D = a compromised immune system. It is very telling that flu season is during the time of limited Sunning.

    There are many people who get the virus and are asymptomatic. Many others have mild symptoms.

    There needs to be a study on those people- their blood, genetics and supplement habits. Too bad that may never happen.

  406. 406
    daveS says:

    Hm, looks like they came to their senses? 3M will continue to export masks to Canada

  407. 407
    Ed George says:

    Wisconsin Republicans force in-person election rather than a mail in ballot. So, rather than agree with the Democrat Governor they would rather put voters at risk.

    https://apple.news/Aumx1mZ8YTb-dsMhj6q83VQ

  408. 408
    Ed George says:

    DaveS

    Hm, looks like they came to their senses? 3M will continue to export masks to Canada

    I hope this is true, but I wouldn’t bet on it.

  409. 409
    ET says:

    Why do Republicans have to vote in the primary? Why doesn’t Bill Weld just drop out? It isn’t as if it’s a contested race.

  410. 410
    ET says:

    I hope this is true, but I wouldn’t bet on it.

    Too bad, because you would lose, as usual.

  411. 411
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    Hm, looks like they came to their senses? 3M will continue to export masks to Canada“

    This reminds me of EG use of the word “promise” which after three requests he still has not documented when Trump used that word. To say looks like they came to their senses is to assume they are reversing policy.

    I have heard repeatedly from Trump on live TV saying that as t relates to foreign nations he feels that the US has a special obligation to Canada and Mexico Just like I saw what he said about his aspiration and hope to open things up by Easter, never once making a promise now it’s “ coming to their senses” as if this is some kind of change in direction.

    Vivid

  412. 412
    daveS says:

    Vivid,

    I could be wrong, but it does look like a change, based on this?

  413. 413
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    So I am supposed to believe MMM press release and the CEO of MMM rather than my own ears?

    Vivid

  414. 414
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS

    In that article who claimed that Trump was restricting exports to Canada and Latin America?

    Vivid

  415. 415
    ET says:

    Anything from the WH that supports the claim, daves?

  416. 416
    daveS says:

    Vivid,

    I would trust the CEO of 3M over Trump, quite frankly.

    Here’s part of an AP story:

    Late Friday, the president announced that he will direct the Federal Emergency Management Agency to prevent the export of N95 masks, surgical gloves and other medical protective gear. He said exceptions might be made to help Italy and Spain, which have been hit hard by the coronavirus outbreak.

    Do you think Trudeau and Ford also misinterpreted the president’s order?

  417. 417
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    This not about trust it’s about facts Dave

    Vivid

  418. 418
    ET says:

    So nothing directly from the White House. Got it. 🙄

  419. 419
    Ed George says:

    DaveS

    Do you think Trudeau and Ford also misinterpreted the president’s order?

    Not likely. If they misinterpreted it why would Trudeau be talking to various levels in the Trump admin to try to get the masks that Canada ordered and paid for? Why would he talk about not retaliating? Why would he talk about shipments coming from China but not from the US?

    https://www.google.ca/amp/s/www.cbc.ca/amp/1.5522003

  420. 420
    daveS says:

    Vivid,

    Well, you did ask who you should believe, your ears or 3M!

    I’ll have to do more checking, but it seems many news sources as well as Trudeau and Ford interpreted the order to mean halting 3M’s exports of masks to Canada. I admit I could be wrong, however.

  421. 421
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    “Do you think Trudeau and Ford also misinterpreted the president’s order?“

    So we have Truedeau responding to a report from MMM that the govt was going to restrict masks to Canada and the narrative now morphs into “did Truedeau misinterpret the Presidents order“ What order? Truedeau was responding to MMM claims. Sheesh

    Vivid

  422. 422
    daveS says:

    The order referred to here:

    President Trump announced Friday evening that he is invoking the Defense Production Act (DPA) to prevent the export of surgical masks and gloves outside of the country.

    The White House said the order is intended to prevent “war profiteers” from hoarding supplies to generate foreign demand and then exporting the goods, and that it will not interfere with the ability of manufacturers to export personal protection equipment (PPE) “when doing so is consistent with United States policy.”

  423. 423
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    “I’ll have to do more checking, but it seems many news sources as well as Trudeau and Ford interpreted the order to mean halting 3M’s exports of masks to Canada. I admit I could be wrong, however“

    Ahhh yeh news sources I don’t trust one thing coming out of the news sources.

    Vivid

  424. 424
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    “and that it will not interfere with the ability of manufacturers to export personal protection equipment (PPE) “when doing so is consistent with United States policy.”

    Did you miss this part?

    Vivid

  425. 425
    ET says:

    Let’s see- the CEO of 3M is upset with Trump for pushing for more masks to be made. Trudy never liked Trump. And as a politician, lying is a thing.

    That said, Trump has ALWAYS maintained America FIRST. Always. So we get ours and then Canada and Mexico will get theirs. But liberals are just too tarded to grasp that. They are like little impatient people waiting to point fingers instead of understanding the situation and finding solutions.

    They have billionaires in Canada. Why aren’t they helping out their country?

  426. 426
    ET says:

    Reading for comprehension has never been a strong suit of Trump’s detractors.

  427. 427
    Ed George says:

    VB, I agree that there may be misinterpretations. But if there are, it would be by 3M, not Trudeau or Ford. Based on Trump’s order 3M stopped shipments to Canada. If it was an innocent misinterpretation why has Trump not cleared it up with 3M or Trudeau?

    What is really sad is that a country that has jailed two Canadians in retaliation for Canada arresting one of their citizens over a US extradition order is the country that is helping Canada fill their PPE needs.

  428. 428
    ET says:

    What is really sad is Ed George spouting off on things he clearly doesn’t understand. You are just an inciteful punk, Ed.

    Trump doesn’t have to clear up your strawman, Ed. Grow up.

  429. 429
    vividbleau says:

    EG
    “If it was an innocent misinterpretation why has Trump not cleared it up with 3M or Trudeau?“

    What do you mean, any possible misinterpretation was cleared up yesterday with Navvaros announcement !! What can be more clear than that? Really unbelievable.

    Vivid

  430. 430
    daveS says:

    Vivid,

    After looking at a few more sources, I believe you are correct and I am wrong.

    I didn’t find a White House response to the 3M claim until just now:

    “All we get from the C.E.O. on down to the head of their P.R. department is lie upon lie, the latest of which — which is dead wrong — is that we demanded 3M not send production from its U.S. plants to our friends and allies in Canada and Mexico,” Mr. Navarro said.

    Thank you.

  431. 431
    vividbleau says:

    DaveS
    No I thank you! We disagree but as I have told you before I respect you even though I know we probably disagree on many things. The one thing you are not is your not intellectually dishonest you have set an example for me to follow so once again “thank you”

    Vivid

  432. 432
    Truthfreedom says:

    As we get ours and then Canada and Mexico will get theirs. But liberals are just too tarded to grasp that.

    Every randomly-assembled bag of chemicals for itself! 🙂
    Too bad that naturalists do understand their own (self-refuting by the way) philosophy.
    Where in that ToE says people have to share resources?
    My resources help me to spread my genes (except when I abort the foetus, of course. No baby, no genes.)

  433. 433
    daveS says:

    Vivid,

    Once again, I appreciate the kind words. You set a good example by encouraging the rest of us to focus on finding the truth, without inflaming tensions, something I need to aspire to.

  434. 434
    Ed George says:

    What do you mean, any possible misinterpretation was cleared up yesterday with Navvaros announcement !! What can be more clear than that? Really unbelievable.

    What is clear is that 3M is not shipping masks to Canada. The advisor may be correct, but this wouldn’t be the first time that Trump ignored his advisors.

    Living in Canada, I honestly hope you are correct. But I do find it strange that both Canada and Mexico announce that they are prepared to follow the trade agreement immediately.

    Trump

    We need the masks. We don’t want other people getting it. … If people don’t give us what we need for our people, we’re going to be very tough, and we’ve been very tough.”

    If Canada will receive the masks, why is Trudeau trying to arrange a call with Trump to ask him to release the masks?

  435. 435
    ET says:

    Again, Canada has rich people. Why aren’t they stepping up to help their country? Why isn’t Ed George harping on them?

  436. 436
    Truthfreedom says:

    @435 ET:

    Why isn’t Ed George harping on them?

    Because he is an indoctrinated crétin that does not understand survival of the fittest.

  437. 437
    PaV says:

    This is an article from the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons.

    You’ll find that my analysis is very similar to this doctor’s views.

    As to the actual CFR for this virus, here are two articles.

    The first is from the Lancet, and gave the number for the CFR as being 0.66%. A very recent reexamination of their numbers based on further testing indicates that tens of millions of people have been infected world-wide, with the concomitant result that the CFR is likely, like the swine flu, going to be around 0.02%. What has happened will not hold up to scrutiny.

    Meanwhile, we have videos showing Dr. Fauci give the thumbs up, in one case, and waving in the other, to partisan journalists. Just what, exactly, are Dr. Fauci’s politics? Just what has been going?

    My question from the beginning.

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