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The Post Thanksgiving "Surge"?

PANIC PORN ALERT!

12/22/20

THE POST-THANKSGIVING “SURGE”!!!

 So as you may remember, for several weeks before Thanksgiving we were being warned of the grave danger (“is there any other kind?” shout out Jack Nicholson) of the post-Thanksgiving surge in coronavirus “cases” (a positive test is not a case) that would sweep the nation and kill most every grandma if we so much as said “Happy Thanksgiving” to another human being. We were “ordered” to not congregate with family and friends, to eat outside, to use disposable dishes, and for the love of all that’s holy, NO SINGING! Well, spoiler alert: the surge didn’t happen. Surprised? You shouldn’t be. This was just another in a long line of hysterical PANIC PORN prognostications divined by your overlords that never came to fruition. Below is a chart of US daily cases:

post surge

Please note the trajectory of the curve for the previous month before Thanksgiving, then the small dip immediately after, which is a holiday delay (you can see the same but smaller effect every week from weekend delays), then a resumption of the SAME trajectory as before Thanksgiving, and…then…what appears to be a leveling off of the daily new case count. Hmm, imagine that. I have been predicting this peak and subsequent decline in cases would happen sometime in January as this would be a completely normal behavior pattern for such a virus at this time of year, but maybe the ‘rona outsmarted me and decided to bow out sooner. I guess we’ll see what the next few months hold. In any event, there is certainly NO indication of a deadly spike in cases. You can see the same pattern in probably every state (although I haven’t looked at each and every one – even I have a life). But for the dozen or so I looked at, there is NO indication of ANY “surge” in cases at all. This, in spite of the very sincere and emotional warnings from very smart and caring people such as Lord Farquaad (I mean Fauci, sorry) and his entire cabal of ne’er-do-wells (I’m looking at you Murphy) who INSISTED it was imperative that you not enjoy your Thanksgiving because you would literally be killing people.

And just in case you thought your eyes were telling you (by the actual SCIENCE AND DATA) that there was no surge, you will find numerous “news” stories with titles like “First Signs of Thanksgiving COVID-19 Wave Emerge” published on 12/8 with quotes like this: “The first signs of a post-Thanksgiving surge in coronavirus cases are beginning to show up in data released by states across the country in a troubling prelude of what may become the deadliest month of the pandemic so far.” And this from another genius who often comments as an “expert” on the coronavirus: “‘At this point, we could be just picking up the beginning of the Thanksgiving surge, but surely in the following week we're going to see it,’ said Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Prevention at the University of Minnesota. ‘We're slingshotting this surge of cases into the holiday season in a way that is truly dangerous.’" The bolding is mine to make the point: “but surely in the following week we’re going to see it” Surely? He’s a big shot, well-respected and often-quoted expert and he said “surely”. Well, what the hell happened? Words used to mean something. When are we going to stop listening to these hysterical jackanapes who haven’t gotten one “prediction” right this whole year?

How about this piece published on December 10th entitled “The Post-Thanksgiving COVID-19 Surge Is Here: What to Expect Now” with quotes like (bolding is mine): “Two weeks after Thanksgiving, the spike on COVID-19 tracking graphs in the United States is a straight line going in the wrong direction.” Or “The number of new cases is up more than 20 percent from 2 weeks ago.” That, in actual fact, is true. But what they don’t tell you (I wonder why) is that the increase in the number of new cases in the two weeks prior was up 22%. So why isn’t the headline: “Good news, case increase slowed by 10% since Thanksgiving”? Don’t know, above my pay grade (Murphy). More gems from this article: “The surge in cases predicted after the Thanksgiving holiday appears to be here. And it doesn’t appear this is the peak either.” (see graph above if you dare) Or how about this nugget? “Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is predicting the COVID-19 crisis is going to get much more deadly. ‘We are in the timeframe now that probably for the next 60 to 90 days we’re going to have more deaths per day than we had at 9/11 or we had at Pearl Harbor…’” There’s a lot to unpack here. First, you may remember this is the guy who sat in front of Congress waving his mask around telling you it was more important than the vaccine (we’ll get to vaccines another day). Not sure what that says about the vaccine, as masks have been shown to be all but useless (see previous posts). Also, next to Redfield’s name in the article is a little blue check mark that means he’s a “trusted source”. Take that for what it’s worth (fact checkers!). And notice that there are usually qualifiers in their statements like “predicting” or “probably”. That way, nobody ever has to actually take responsibility for their PANIC PORN when proven wrong.  But not being held responsible for your statements because of qualifiers doesn’t seem to really matter in this day and age, anyway. Remember how Joe Biden warned us at the last Presidential debate (10/22) that “the next six to twelve weeks would be the darkest of the entire pandemic”? No qualifiers there, just straight talk from someone who knows. “Six to twelve weeks” was almost nine weeks ago. Now we’re being told (on December 10th) that the NEXT 60 to 90 days (that’s another eight to thirteen weeks) will be the worst. Well which is it? Notice how the goalposts keep moving. Can you say “two weeks to flatten the curve”? These PANIC PORN statements have profound effects on many people when they’re made, causing fear and anxiety in those people as well as often causing them to feel suspicion and derision towards their fellow man who doesn’t share their view of the “facts”. Even notice these days that people won’t even look at you as you pass them on the street? Then by the time those crazy-ass PANIC PORN predictions are proven to have been false, nobody remembers because we’ve been moved on to the next shiny object of oblivion (have you heard of the “new strain” of coronavirus in England that spreads “70% faster”?) Is anyone ever going to be held accountable for this mess?

And in case you think we avoided an Armageddon by hiding under our beds and drinking our liquefied turkey through a straw slipped carefully and briefly under our masks as our overlords commanded, I say nay nay. (hat tip John Pinette). According to an article published by NBC News “more people in the U.S. boarded planes the day before Thanksgiving than any day since March” and according to the TSA, this was “part of a surge in travel in the seven days leading up to Thanksgiving that brought more than 6.8 million people to airports across the country.” And this doesn’t account for all the people who went over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house.  So plenty of people were on the move, and plenty got together, and still no “surge”.

Just to put a cap on this “surge” nonsense, here are some numbers of the national case increase based on the graph above. For each two-week period, I show the increase in cases from one period to the one previous.

10/16-10/29:            +11%

10/30-11/12:            +16%

11/13-11/26:            +22%

11/27-12/10:            +20%

12/11-12/21:            +15%

Now to be completely transparent (an apparently “novel” idea, no pun intended) that last period only encompasses 11 days. But if you use the average daily “cases” of about 218,000 and add three days worth to the last figure you come up with a two-week increase in cases (12/11-12/24 compared to 11/27-12/10) of 19% (I’ll revisit this next week). That’s slightly less than the previous period (20%) and it certainly ain’t no “surge”. I am continually perplexed and dumbfounded at how people can convince themselves of something that isn’t there. How people refuse to accept the actual SCIENCE AND DATA because it doesn’t agree with the PANIC PORN worldview they have decided to embrace. So as we spin inexorably towards Christmas, and you’re told not to enjoy the holiday with loved ones and friends because we’re looking at “a surge on a surge” (shout out Anthony “first Instyle magazine, next Tiger Beat” Fauci) just remember the facts. Speaking of facts, one last thing. Joe “come on man” Biden told us on December 2 that while he doesn’t want to scare anybody, we need to “understand the facts, we're likely to lose another 250,000 people DEAD (his emphasis) between now and January. Ya hear me?” (notice the qualifier “likely”) We are now 22 days into the month of December and have recorded 52,472 COVID-19 deaths. A tragic number to be sure, I am certainly not trying to minimize people’s suffering, but is anybody going to ask Joe Biden what happened to 250,000 dead? And what exactly are those “facts” he understands that we don’t on which his prediction was based? Nothing has changed as far as people’s behavior is concerned, not that it would matter because masks and lockdowns do nothing to slow the spread of the virus, and we even came through Thanksgiving with lots of science-denying grandma-killers flaunting the rules of their masters, and yet Joe’s 250,000 prediction will be the most wildly exaggerated prediction since, oh, I don’t know, 2.2 million dead. Merry Christmas.

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