Will we ever learn?
(Image courtesy of The Guardian)
I am not a doctor. I’m not a mathematician, a physicist, an engineer, a biologist, or even a scientist, really, unless a degree in “computer science” counts. But I do know how to do simple math and apply it to things that most people seem unwilling or unable to. (Republicans, in particular, seem completely flummoxed by simple math, but that’s an entirely different post.)
Like the current COVID pandemic. And in this case, the math is quite ugly.
The current figures as of today from worldometers.info are 131,150 deaths out of 2,807,102 reported cases. That’s a fatality/mortality rate of 4.6%. I’m afraid I’m going to dig into some math now but bear with me: The math is very simple, and the results are quite depressing but important. And the scary thing here is: No one is pointing these things out.
First things first: Mortality rate. When COVID first hit, the epidemiologists were saying that the mortality rate would be between 1-2%, or possibly 2-3%. I have been tracking the numbers on the web site worldometers.info regularly for four months now and, while the percentage has slowly been dropping (4.6% is the lowest mortality rate so far), it has never gotten close to 2%. The high was just under 6% back in march, at 5.98%. Either the epidemiological model is off, or the reporting is wrong. Or some of both. Really it doesn’t matter, because neither one is going to improve over the course of the next year, in my opinion, especially with Republican government officials deliberately obscuring the figurers. We’re going to have to work with what we have. So let’s be wildly optimistic and set it at 4.5%.
Next is fatalities per day. All the various sites (including worldometers.info) start tracking on March 13, 80 days ago. That makes it an easy number crunch: 1639 deaths/day. Yup, there have been some days were it’s less, and some more, as we’ve seen once the curve flattened, it never started really going down because bonehead Republicans immediately starting engaging in measures to make things worse again.
Finally is the number of new cases per day. This is a bit trickier, because of various states being governed by morons, with some days being over 50,000, and other days being under 20,000, and of course adjustments being made in response to these numbers. But similar to mortality, I think it all evens out and we can just go with a regular average of 35,089 new cases/day.
Now unfortunately is the scary part: How long until things get better? And here is the bad news. Not until January at the earliest, and then we need a vaccine. So let’s run the math on that and see what we get.
Why January? The Republicans have made public health a political issue. Wearing masks is for wussie left-wing snowflakes. The cure is worse than the disease. Go to your Trump rallies! So your Trumper GOP neighbors will be out there, massless, until those insane, sociopathic maniacs are thrown out of office. Hopefully out of the Presidency, Senate, House, and various Governor’s houses. But until that happens—in January—we’re stuck with insanity. And that means 1639 deaths/day.
Do you know how many days there are between now and Inauguration Day, 2021? 202. And this is why it’s scary. Because 202 X 1639 = . . . 331,078 people. 331,078 more people dead before Democrats can take over and start fixing things. For a grand total of 462,228 deaths. Because of Trump and the Republicans. And I’m sorry to say it gets even worse, because it’s not like flipping a switch; there’s a ramp-down, just like there was a ramp-up, and unfortunately it’s not an inverse-exponential. And more will die during the ramp down.
This is more complex, and I’m not so good at this type of math, but based on Captain Shakeyhand Moran’s graphs, the grand total looks to be between 500,000-520,000 by the time all is said and done. Damn near Civil War numbers.
Half a million dead. Because of Trump, and his Republican enablers. Half a million.
Can this be avoided? Sure it can; we can stop listening to the lunatic in the White House and the lunatic Republican Governors around the country and do what we know needs to be done, as was done in the Northeastern cities, as they did in Europe and New Zealand and elsewhere.
Or we can end up with 10 million cases and half a million dead by this time next year. It’s up to us.
It’s just simple math. Showing there will be blood.