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Coronamonomania Thrives in Darkness, Part 38

By April 6, 2021Commentary

The state continues to be as evasive as it can be in answering Scott Johnson’s questions, but little by little we are learning more about death reporting.   One other nugget is that while the state has identified some cases of infection after full vaccination, there have been no deaths as of the end of March.  We also learned more about how both the department and the CDC count deaths.   Here is the DOH explanation for the difference between Minnesota and CDC death counts:

“on any given day, there are variables at play that can account for differences between MDH and CDC data at a single point in time. Differences include the fact that the CDC reports the number of deaths that occurred in MN while MDH is providing information about the number of MN RESIDENTS who died from COVID-19.  In addition, looking at the CDC National Center for Health Statistics website—it appears that the CDC reports figures that rely only on death certificates, whereas MDH has a dedicated mortality Investigation team that does more than look at the death certificate; the team double checks the person was reported to have a positive lab test and follow a standard protocol to ascertain COVID-19 is a true cause of death. In addition, we also receive reports of deaths from providers directly as well as from hospitals, long term care facilities, and others that we then subject to a cross matching verification process.  MDH-OVR does send a daily mortality file to the National Center for Health Statistics which is part of the CDC. NCHS assigns the ICD-10 Codes and returns the records to MDH. NCHS also uses the preliminary and annual mortality data from MN and other jurisdictions in the reports they release about U.S. deaths including the CDC reports about COVID19 deaths.”

So according to this, DOH makes a determination about whether a death is a CV-19, independent of whatever CDC does but is dependent on CDC to assign the death codes?  Makes no sense.  I am going to keep probing on this until we get a clear answer.  It appears that CDC does indeed have its own algorithms for determining what a CV-19 death is.  It is also interesting that DOH is only reporting deaths among Minnesota residents.  Trying to figure out if this is also true for cases and hospitalizations.  And apparently the department is getting death information not just from certificates but from other sources.  Sounds like a confusing process.   Meanwhile, the CDC in the past week added a death to the week of May 23, 2020, and one back to October.  Not sure how that happens under the process laid out by DOH.

Since we all are regularly exposed to seasonal coronaviruses, and develop some adaptive immunity to them, a frequently studied issue has been whether that adaptive immunity, particularly in the form of memory B and T cells, may contribute to limiting CV-19 infection and disease.  Another paper looks at this issue and the potential effect on vaccine effectiveness.  (Medrxiv  Paper)   The researchers were focused on T cells and found evidence of substantial levels of cross-reactivity, although this declined with age.  These cross-reactive T cells were linked to more mild disease.  In addition, vaccination appeared to engage these T cells and increase their activity.

Another study similarly finds that most adults have cross-reactive immune responses.  (JCI Paper)   The study comes from Canada, focused on antibody responses,  and determined that 90% of uninfected adults had some level of cross-reactivity to CV-19.

One more paper on whether schools being open contributes to case transmission.  (NBER Paper)   The authors basically compared cases in households with school age children to households without them in counties with varying levels of in-person schooling.  They found a very small increase in cases, around 3%, for a much greater rise in in-person school attendance.  In other words, there is an extremely low risk of increasing household transmission when you return to full in-person schooling.

If you are interested in succumbing to variant terrorism, this research from Ontario, Canada, finds that certain variants may be linked to greater household transmission, particularly by asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic cases.  People infected by a variant may have up to a 30% greater secondary attack rate.  As usual, the caution should be issues related to accuracy of contact tracing conclusions.  (Medrxiv Paper)   The presence of large numbers of asymptomatic infections would certainly not suggest that the variants cause more serious disease.

Yet another piece of research indicates that lockdown type measures had limited impact and that most analyses of their effect on cases overstate the effect because they fail to consider the contribution of voluntary behavior changes.  (NBER Paper)

Here is an interesting paper by researchers who are trying to develop a PCR method that actually identifies viable virus, not just random RNA fragments.  But then how would public health experts, the media and politicians sustain the panic and terror?  (Medrxiv Paper)

This is a completely gibberish study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association that purports to identify how many children lost a parent due to CV-19.  The astounding lie perpetrated by the study is that these were all deaths caused by CV-19.  They weren’t, these were largely deaths caused by lockdowns, i.e., drug overdoses, etc., among the younger adults who are parents.  They also make up a thing called a “bereavement multiplier” that makes no sense at all.  (JAMA Article)   And nothing in the article about all the damage done to children by closing schools.

Join the discussion 13 Comments

  • Harlan Johnson says:

    My brother is an Infectious Disease researcher, (C-Diff is his forte’), and he quite often dismisses your findings and opinions, as unqualified. I defend you, because we need a “layman’s” interpretation of the constant wave of info & opinions we’re saddled with each week. You are consistent, and do your best to filter this information, because we can’t all interpret the New England Journal.

  • J. Thomas says:

    Maybe Brother Johnson could put his time and energy into a blog to enlighten us all with his version of wisdom about infectious diseases ! At this point in the game, all it takes is common sense to sort out what’s been imposed upon us by our public servants. But common sense is dead and reviving it is woke, so we’re kinda’ stuck.

    Regarding death certs, are these in a public format that can be analyzed for the past 5 years to see how many deaths had any respiratory virus (flu) on the cert in any of the columns? My gut tells be that if we took this data and treat it like C-19 (with vs. from) we’d see an astounding similarity in the numbers. It’s extremely probable that viruses are present surrounding the death of an older person.

    Took a little break, headed to Charleston area for the Easter weekend. The Gov called off the mask nonsense weeks ago, but 95% of the people we passed outside of the city still had them on (even some morons on the beach). Most were under 50. This couldn’t be a scarier sight from my perspective. Either these people actually think they are safe(r) or they are spineless. Both types have been turned into perfectly loyal acolytes of the Fauci/CDC team . I did ask a few younger couples why they still had them on after the Gov called off the mandate … they said they just wanted to help the world ! A complete and thorough brain washing of our ‘educated’ youth has taken place, we’re doomed ! Or, maybe once their college debt is forgiven they can volunteer to pay down the national debt instead. That’ll help the world too 🙂

  • Joseph Lampe says:

    Appeal To Authority is one of the oldest logical mistakes. In 1966 physicist Richard Feynman said that “Science is the belief in the fallibility of experts.” C. diff expertise does not confer infallibility on Covd-19. Intelligent laymen are capable of understanding complex medical/scientific data. Especially if they spent 40 years in the biomedical industry.

  • Rob says:

    Nobody wants to admit how PCR can be manipulated to give desired results. Will be interesting to see if that paper gets memory-holed.

  • Cliff Hadley says:

    Mr. Johnson at 9:15… Perhaps you could invite your brother to comment at this blog, and he could tell us who and what to count on, and then we could weigh his qualified perspective with that of Mr. Roche. Most of of at this point trust Dr. Seuss more than Dr. Fauci.

  • Kevin Roche says:

    I am sure your brother is very knowledgable, but sometimes experts in a field are too confident in their knowledge. I have made that mistake myself. I would actually be really happy to have him point out specific areas where he thinks I am wrong and give me specific data or research that shows I am wrong.

  • Craig Belcourt says:

    In the JAMA article on the numbers of children affected by parental death from Covid, they state ” A natural herd immunity strategy that results in 1.5 million deaths4 demonstrates the potential effect of inaction: 116 900 parentally bereaved children.” The implication is we saved a million lives with our lock downs and mandates. Does anyone know of data supporting such a claim?
    I checked the solitary reference they listed but it was a worthless article from Nature Reviews Immunology (9/9/2020), that also made the claim ” At this stage, only non-pharmaceutical interventions, such as social distancing, patient isolation, face masks and hand hygiene, have proven effective in controlling the circulation of the virus and should therefore be strictly enforced.”
    Again, nothing of substance to back up the claim (opinion).

  • Paul says:

    Ah yes, the good old appeals to authority. Experts can never be wrong. /rolls eyes Because they’ve been so on the ball with Covid. In fact, they have us in this mess. The biggest mistake we ever did was let infectious disease doctors and epidemiologists dictate public policy. They’re effen clueless about that.

    All they know are ‘muh lockdowns’ and ‘masks’. A more unimaginative and authoritarian bunch I can’t conceive at the moment. The University of Toronto bangs out those fear mongering epidemiologists like Tm Hortons does Tim Bits.

    Look, to me, this ain’t no pandemic anymore. It’s endemic. Variants are an excuse to keep the pandemic going. As for the masks, at least the Governors are lifting the mandates. Here in Quebec, the state is doubling down (even though credible studies that were reported about potential cancerous harms. In the past, all you had to do was mention the ‘C’ won and people panicked. Apparently, people are willing to take the chance now because Covid is more dangerous in their minds) on it even though the population has been thoroughly brainwashed into believing they’re Magic Amulets. They may even stop bullets soon. The idiot Premier just so ‘believes in them’. People this stupid shouldn’t be allowed to use straws. Unbelievable. Anyway, remove the mandates you remove the fear and people can start to emerge from their Stockholm Syndrome. But can’t have that. Nope. VARIANTS.

    Canada on a whole has lost any semblance of common sense. The government – if you can call it that – has taken the one-dimensional strategy that the only way out are vaccines. And if they don’t work champs?

    People are starting to fight back. /crosses fingers.

  • Rob says:

    As a consumer I want to know the cv19 mortality rates at each LTC. The CDC may not have that information but the state DOH certainly does. Do the bureaucrats not want consumers making informed decisions? (Yes, that is a rhetorical question.)

    Now time for some math. If you toss a coin, you have a 50% chance of it not coming up heads. Toss twice and you have a 25% chance of it not coming up heads – 0.5 x 0.5 = 0.25. Toss it 3 times and you have a 12.5% chance of it not ever being heads – 0.5 ^ 3. Toss it 20 times and the chances of never getting heads is 0.000095 (0.5 ^ 20). Put another way, you have a 99.9999% chance of getting heads at least once in 20 tosses.

    Now consider a mask that is 95% effective. That is 95% effective per exposure. Assuming you can effectively replace the mask with a new one after each infected human contact and assuming you average only one new infected human contact per week (nearly impossible caution), your chances of not getting exposed to the virus by now is less than 7% (0.95 ^ 52 = 0.0694). And of course nobody is wearing masks that effective (to achieve 95% effectiveness an N95 mask has to be properly fitted and changed hourly – which is basically not happening outside a hospital setting).

    Even if you were diligent about replacing your store-bought mask 4 times a day the effectiveness of wearing a mask becomes close to nil after about 5 weeks. (0.9 ^ 35 = 0.025). And we are more than 52 weeks into this.

    Wear a mask and signal your virtue – and signal your inabilities to assess risk and understand 10th grade mathematics. Stupidity is not a virtue.

  • Kevin Roche says:

    That statement is typical BS based on the awful modeling at the start of the epidemic.

  • J. Thomas says:

    https://www.aier.org/article/if-you-had-covid-do-you-need-the-vaccine/

    Always interesting stuff at AIER and I surely respect their articles. Hopefully this will generate some feedback from more knowledgeable folks than myself on the the vaccine.

    I’m not sure why anyone under the age of 70, in generally good health, would get an experimental vaccine (with the minute death risk and other therapeutics proving to be successful) if their own immune systems response is such a better outcome than this vaccine’s targeted approach. But it seems to be all the rage, just as ‘doing your part’ by wearing masks was/is.

  • Alex says:

    “As a consumer I want to know the cv19 mortality rates at each LTC. The CDC may not have that information but the state DOH certainly does. Do the bureaucrats not want consumers making informed decisions? (Yes, that is a rhetorical question.)”

    I thought it was understood the vast majority of deaths are in LTC? I think it’s something like 80%? I know it is here in Quebec and Ontario not unlike New York, Massachusetts and elsewhere.

  • Corey says:

    J. Thomas – thanks for sharing that AIER article. It was extremely informative. I have speculated all along that natural immunity is preferable to vaccine-induced immunity and that article does a great job of explaining why that is likely true.

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