French officials were forced to send out an alert on Twitter saying, “No, Cocaine does NOT protect against COVID19.” In Iran, at least 44 people have died of methanol poisoning — mistakenly thinking that downing bootleg booze would ward off the coronavirus. A surprising 38 percent of American beer drinkers surveyed insisted that they would not, under any circumstances, buy Corona beer because they believe they can catch the virus from drinking it. In Great Britain, so many hand sanitizers have been stolen from hospitals that there is now a shortage in health care facilities. “STOP STEALING ALCOHOL GEL! (we really need it),” paramedic Jayne Walters wrote. In Australia, a 60 year old woman and her daughter, who were hoarding bathroom tissue at a store, were in a fistfight with a younger woman who was begging them for just one pack of toilet paper.
These are just a few of the ridiculous overreactions from panic fueled by the press. This newsletter does not engage in hype and hyperbole, however. I always present facts and solutions. In Part 2 of the Coronavirus Crisis newsletter, I told you not to panic and yet some people overindulge their greatest fears and try to enroll you into their crazy “tin foil hat” world. I am here to assuage you from the hysteria.
As of the second week in March when this was written, 18,000 Americans have died from the seasonal flu according to the CDC. In 2018, there were 80,000 flu deaths. How many have died from the coronavirus? There have been 19 deaths out of 470 infected. Worldwide the flu kills up to 646,000 per year. COVID-19 has claimed 3,400 lives out of over 100,000 people that we know of, so far. That means this virus has afflicted fewer people in total than the seasonal flu does in days. Maybe we should start thinking about quarantining everyone for the common flu instead since it is so much more dangerous? “Of course not!” people would say. “That’s ridiculous!” Then why doesn’t it make sense when people much smarter than me are telling you not to panic about the coronavirus?
China has accounted for over 80% of the worldwide cases. If you read Part 2, you know where it came from (not from animals). At its peak, they were getting 4,000 cases per day. What the press is not telling you is that now it is down to just 400 new cases per day. This means that the virus has peaked like all other epidemics and pandemics.
Farr’s Law was developed in 1840 and is ignored by the press but it basically states that epidemics and pandemics tend to rise and fall in a bell-shaped curve. You remember those, don’t you? When you didn’t do so well on an exam in college, you hoped your professor would grade the class on that same bell-shaped curve. SARS, Ebola, and Avian Bird flu all reflected Farr’s Law. There are still more cases coming in more countries but they will follow this same pattern. There are now more people who have recovered from the virus than those presently infected. My hypothesis is that we won’t be reading about the coronavirus in June.
One way the press is tricking you is by using simple math. They are saying that the coronavirus has a mortality rate of 3%. First, like the seasonal flu, the majority of people affected with COVID-19 never show any signs or symptoms and get well using their own immune system. That means that there are more people than are actually reported who have the virus that are never counted. Secondly, the death rate has been exaggerated due to the fact that the vast majority of people who died were in a country with poor health care (rural China). Thirdly, let’s look at the following death rates by age:
- Above 80 years old- 14.8%
- Below 40 years old- 0.2%
- Below 10 years old- 0.0% (Part 1 of the newsletter)
The coronavirus like the flu attacks the elderly, those with compromised immune systems, and underlying health conditions like diabetes and heart disease. There are always exceptions but you cannot ignore the overwhelming data.
Lastly, if you look at warmer weather climates, they are not getting the coronavirus. In the whole continent of South America where hundreds of millions of people live, there are TWENTY FIVE CASES! The Philippines has over 100 million residents and there are ZERO CASES!
The last time I checked, we are days away from spring and summer will be here before you know it. Remember in Part 2, I told you how to fight this disease – open windows, get outside, soak up your best source of vitamin D3 (the sun), and turn off the news. When someone is hysterical around you, hand them Part 1, 2, and 3 of my newsletters…and please stop wearing those masks that don’t work! It makes me think that you have coronavirus!