Saturday, October 17, 2020

Open Thread

 Rudy Giuliani is Roger Stone without the boyish insouciance.

57 comments:

Fred C. Dobbs said...

Questionable NY Post Scoop Driven By Ex-Hannity Producer And Giuliani

NPR - October 17

----

Biden email episode illustrates risk to Trump from Giuliani

via @BostonGlobe - October 16

WASHINGTON (AP) — A New York tabloid’s puzzling account about how it acquired emails purportedly from Joe Biden’s son has raised some red flags. One of the biggest involves the source of the emails: Rudy Giuliani.

Giuliani has traveled abroad looking for dirt on the Bidens, developing relationships with shadowy figures, including a Ukrainian lawmaker who U.S. officials have described as a Russian agent and part of a broader Russian effort to denigrate the Democratic presidential nominee.

Yet Giuliani says foreign sources didn’t provide the Hunter Biden emails. He says a laptop containing the emails and intimate photos was simply abandoned in a Delaware repair shop and the shop owner reached out to Giuliani's lawyer.

That hasn’t stopped the FBI from investigating whether the emails are part of a foreign influence operation. The emails have surfaced as U.S. officials have been warning that Russia, which backed Trump’s 2016 campaign through hacking of Democratic emails and a covert social media campaign, is interfering again this year. The latest episode with Giuliani underscores the risk he poses to a White House that spent years confronted by a federal investigation into whether Trump associates had coordinated with Russia.

The Washington Post reported Thursday that intelligence agencies had warned the White House last year that Giuliani was the target of a Russian influence operation. The newspaper, citing four former officials, said that assessment was based on information including intercepted communications showing Giuliani had been in contact with people tied to Russian intelligence.

The newspaper said national security adviser Robert O’Brien had warned Trump that information Giuliani brought back from Ukraine should be considered contaminated by Russia, but that Trump brushed off the warning.

Far from distancing himself from Giuliani, Trump has made the purported Hunter Biden emails one of his main talking points in the final weeks of the campaign as he tries to disparage his Democratic rival. ...

2slugbaits said...

Sandwichman,

Rudy like Roger Stone? Now I'm stuck with this mental image of Donald Trump tattooed on Rudy's back fat. Thanks.

Fred C. Dobbs said...

Just give poor people money

via @BostonGlobe - October 17

The Nobel-winning World Food Program is one of many agencies increasingly handing out cash rather than goods. But the international aid system still isn’t putting this powerful idea to its full potential.

When the United Nations World Food Program won the Nobel Peace Prize on Oct. 9, newspapers and television programs around the world illustrated their stories with quintessential images of food aid: Huge sacks of rice or flour, stacked high in a field tent or moving, bag by bag, atop someone’s head.

These days, those sacks are almost quaint. Last year, nearly 40 percent of World Food Program assistance wasn’t food at all. It was cold, hard cash.

In 2019, the WFP handed out more than $1.2 billion in cash and more than $860 million in vouchers to nearly 30 million people in 64 countries. And while the WFP is the biggest humanitarian player to use cash handouts, it’s hardly an outlier. What was once a fringe idea has moved to the humanitarian mainstream. Cash or vouchers now account for about one-fifth of all humanitarian aid.

A decade of data shows that giving people cash instead of food or other in-kind aid empowers recipients, is harder to steal, and pumps money into local economies. In some settings, recipients’ assets, nutrition, and even survival outcomes increase. “There are lots of good reasons to deploy humanitarian cash transfers,” says Kenn Crossley, WFP’s global cash transfers coordinator, “but at the bottom line, cash can empower people to address their own priorities.”

In the last three years, humanitarian organizations have doubled their cash and voucher programs, giving out $5.6 billion last year, according to an annual survey by the Cash Learning Partnership, or CaLP, a network of 90 humanitarian groups around the world. “Fifteen years ago, we were five organizations trying this weird new thing: What if we just gave cash to people?” says Sophie Tholstrup, policy coordinator with CaLP.

What became apparent is that the recipients would prioritize their needs and spend money in ways that set themselves up for the long term. In the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tholstrup says, families might skip a meal in order to send a child to school. “It’s a terrible choice to have to be making, but families were able to choose, and it struck me that that’s where the decision-making power should be,” she says.

Cash is also less prone to diversion or outright corruption. Cash distributions are often digital, and deposits are more discreet and more difficult for middlemen to steal. You can’t hold a village’s worth of mobile money deposits hostage at a rebel checkpoint. But even inside humanitarian aid groups, that part of the story hasn’t taken hold yet. More than one-third of the humanitarians CaLP surveyed last year think the risk of fraud or corruption is still too high, despite growing evidence to the contrary, Tholstrup says.

Indeed, irrational feelings about cash may have been the biggest obstacle to getting it in people’s hands. For decades, the assumption has been that poor people will make poor financial decisions. GiveDirectly, a pioneer in giving cash to impoverished families in East Africa, encounters the assumption so often that it keeps a disclaimer near the top of its “about” page: “No, people don’t just blow it on booze and women.”

In fact, a 2018 US Agency of International Development study of cash giving in nutrition programs in Rwanda, conducted in partnership with GiveDirectly and other assistance groups, found that households that got cash instead of standard aid packages saved 60 percent more, consumed 32 percent more, and expanded productive assets like livestock by 76 percent more. Cash recipients' diets improved, and so did their children’s height, weight, and chances of survival. ...

Fred C. Dobbs said...

“Cash has been robustly evaluated over 200 times at this point,” says Michael Faye, co-founder and president of GiveDirectly. “I think we often end up holding the poor, the recipients of aid, to a higher bar than we hold ourselves to, and that shows up when you hear the question, ‘Why cash?’ I think we should start with recipient empowerment and choice and ask, ‘Why not cash?’”

When the coronavirus pandemic hit, GiveDirectly expanded its efforts to collect individual and corporate donations and distribute them to people in need in places such as Rwanda, Uganda, Liberia, Malawi, and Kenya — lower-income countries where the economic fallout of the pandemic hits especially hard.

In Kenya, that money has made a big difference. GiveDirectly partnered with Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO), a community-based organization that works in 11 low-income neighborhoods. GiveDirectly provided cash — $30 once a month for three months — and SHOFCO identified families most in need. Nearly 35,000 families got a total of more than $2.4 million.

In the places SHOFCO works, which residents nonjudgmentally refer to as slums, even a small sum goes a long way. Kenya’s slums are also the economic engines of the country. They’re the places rural people settle when they look for low-wage work as minibus conductors, baggage handlers, newspaper hawkers, or busboys. Since the beginning of the pandemic, more than 90 percent of those workers have lost some of or all of their income. A mere $30 a month can keep the rent paid or an extended family fed.

That, in turn, keeps a community alive. Every unrestricted dollar of direct giving creates $2 of value in local economies, according to several studies. There’s no comparable multiplier effect from handouts of food or other goods. ...

pgl said...

Fred - thanks for this Boston Globe story which included this:

"Yet Giuliani says foreign sources didn’t provide the Hunter Biden emails. He says a laptop containing the emails and intimate photos was simply abandoned in a Delaware repair shop and the shop owner reached out to Giuliani's lawyer."

I seriously doubt Hunter Biden took this laptop to the Delaware repair shop. More like some Russian operative who had doctored a bunch of phony photos and fake emails. Easy to do. Something tells me that this repair shop owner is a MAGA hat wearing fool who would not know Hunter Biden if he saw him. Giuliani might deny this but Giuliani lies even more than Trump.

Anonymous said...

https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2771764

October 12, 2020

The COVID-19 Pandemic and the $16 Trillion Virus
By David M. Cutler and Lawrence H. Summers

The SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) pandemic is the greatest threat to prosperity and well-being the US has encountered since the Great Depression. This Viewpoint aggregates mortality, morbidity, mental health conditions, and direct economic losses to estimate the total cost of the pandemic in the US on the optimistic assumption that it will be substantially contained by the fall of 2021. These costs far exceed those associated with conventional recessions and the Iraq War, and are similar to those associated with global climate change. However, increased investment in testing and contact tracing could have economic benefits that are at least 30 times greater than the estimated costs of the investment in these approaches.

Since the onset of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in March, 60 million claims have been filed for unemployment insurance. Before COVID-19, the greatest number of weekly new unemployment insurance claims (based on data from 1967 on) was 695 000 in the week of October 2, 1982. For 20 weeks beginning in late March 2020, new unemployment claims exceeded 1 million per week; as of September 20, new claims have been just below that amount.

Recessions feed on themselves. Workers not at work have less to spend, and thus subsequent business revenue declines. The federal government offset much of the initial loss owing to the shutdown, which has averted what would likely have been a new Great Depression. But the virus is ongoing, and thus full recovery is not expected until well into the future. The Congressional Budget Office projects a total of $7.6 trillion in lost output during the next decade.

Lower output is not the only economic cost of COVID-19; death and reduced quality of life also can be measured in economic terms....

Anonymous said...

October 17, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,342,665)
Deaths   ( 224,282)

India

Cases   ( 7,492,727)
Deaths   ( 114,064)

Mexico

Cases   ( 841,661)
Deaths   ( 85,704)

France

Cases   ( 867,197)
Deaths   ( 33,392)

UK

Cases   ( 705,428)
Deaths   ( 43,579)

Germany

Cases   ( 361,733)
Deaths   ( 9,853)

Canada

Cases   ( 196,321)
Deaths   ( 9,746)

China

Cases   ( 85,659)
Deaths   ( 4,634)

Anonymous said...

October 17, 2020

Coronavirus   (Deaths per million)

US   ( 676)
Mexico   ( 663)
UK   ( 641)
France   ( 511)

Canada   ( 258)
Germany   ( 117)
India   ( 82)
China   ( 3)

Notice the ratios of deaths to coronavirus cases are 10.2%, 6.2% and 3.9% for Mexico, the United Kingdom and France respectively.  These ratios are high, but have been significantly higher, while falling recently.

Anonymous said...

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-18/Chinese-mainland-reports-13-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UGf88nckdW/index.html

October 18, 2020

Chinese mainland reports 13 new COVID-19 cases

The Chinese mainland on Saturday registered 13 new COVID-19 cases, all from overseas, the National Health Commission announced on Sunday.

No deaths related to the disease were reported on Saturday, and 20 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospitals, the commission said. A total of 389 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation.

The COVID-19 tally on the Chinese mainland stands at 85,672, with 4,634 fatalities.

Chinese mainland new imported cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-18/Chinese-mainland-reports-13-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UGf88nckdW/img/c2df015576a24baaa1cbe2217df8c50b/c2df015576a24baaa1cbe2217df8c50b.jpeg

Chinese mainland new asymptomatic cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-18/Chinese-mainland-reports-13-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UGf88nckdW/img/4a4ab60b1ce34e8bb3e60b058d3962ad/4a4ab60b1ce34e8bb3e60b058d3962ad.jpeg

[ There has been no coronavirus death on the Chinese mainland since May 17.  Since June began there have been 3 limited community clusters of infections, in Beijing, Dalian and Urumqi, each of which was contained with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine, with each outbreak ending in a few weeks.

Currently there is another limited community cluster in Qingdao, with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine again being used to identify the origin of as well as to contain and end the outbreak.

Imported coronavirus cases are caught at entry points with required testing and immediate quarantine.  Asymptomatic cases are all quarantined.  The flow of imported cases to China is low, but has been persistent.

There are now 252 active coronavirus cases in all on the Chinese mainland, 5 of which cases are classed as serious or critical. ]

Anonymous said...

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2020-10/18/c_139448027.htm

October 18, 2020

Xi stresses advancing development of quantum science and technology

BEIJING -- Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, has stressed the importance and urgency of advancing the development of quantum science and technology.

Xi made the remarks while presiding over a group study session of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee held Friday.

Xi also stressed the importance of strengthening strategic planning and systematic layout for the development of quantum science and technology, as well as grasping the general trend and playing good first moves.

Xi pointed out that quantum science and technology has developed by leaps and bounds in recent years and become the frontier field in a new round of sci-tech and industrial revolutions.

It plays a very important role to accelerate the development of quantum science and technology in promoting high-quality development and safeguarding national security, he said, stressing that quantum mechanics is a major achievement in human's exploration of the microworld.

The development of quantum science and technology is of great scientific significance and strategic value. It is a major disruptive technological innovation that impacts and restructures the traditional technological system and will lead a new round of sci-tech revolution and industrial transformation, he said.

China's scientific and technological workers have made great efforts to catch up in quantum science and technology and made a number of significant innovations with international influence. On the whole, China has possessed the sci-tech strength and innovation ability in this field, he said.

China's quantum science and technology development still has many weak links and faces multiple challenges, Xi said, calling for efforts to follow the path of independent innovation, make breakthroughs in key core technologies, ensure the safety of industrial and supply chains, and enhance China's ability of responding to international risks and challenges with science and technology.

It is imperative to systematically sum up the successful experience of China's quantum science and technology development, learn from useful practices of other countries, thoroughly analyze and judge the development trend, and find out the breakthrough point for the development of quantum science and technology in China, Xi pointed out.

He called for efforts to foster strategic emerging industries such as quantum communications to gain an upper hand in international competition and build new advantages for development.

Xi stressed the need to strengthen top-level design and forward-looking layout....

Anonymous said...

https://itep.org/supreme-court-could-provide-massive-tax-cut-for-the-rich-if-it-strikes-down-affordable-care-act/

October 13, 2020

Download National and State-by-State Data
By Steve Wamhoff

If the Supreme Court strikes down the Affordable Care Act (ACA), as argued for by the Trump administration and the president’s nominee to the court, Amy Coney Barrett, one under–appreciated result will be a tax break of roughly $40 billion annually for about 3 percent of Americans, who all have incomes of more than $200,000....

Anonymous said...

https://itep.org/supreme-court-could-provide-massive-tax-cut-for-the-rich-if-it-strikes-down-affordable-care-act/

October 13, 2020

Supreme Court Would Provide Massive Tax Cut for the Rich if It Strikes Down Affordable Care Act
By Steve Wamhoff

If the Supreme Court strikes down the Affordable Care Act (ACA), as argued for by the Trump administration and the president’s nominee to the court, Amy Coney Barrett, one under–appreciated result will be a tax break of roughly $40 billion annually for about 3 percent of Americans, who all have incomes of more than $200,000.

As illustrated in the table below, the IRS’s most recent data show that 3.3 percent of tax filers paid more than $30 billion cumulatively in net investment income tax (NIIT) in 2018, while 2.8 percent of filers paid more than $9 billion in additional Medicare tax, which is a supplemental payroll tax on high-earners. Striking down the entire ACA in its entirety would nullify both taxes.

[ https://itep.sfo2.digitaloceanspaces.com/ACA-Taxes-2018-table-4.jpg ]

The share of taxpayers in each state paying the NIIT varied from a low of 1.4 percent in West Virginia to a high of 5.4 percent in Massachusetts (or 7.1 percent in Washington, DC, if it is counted as a state).

The share of taxpayers in each state paying the additional Medicare tax varied from a low of 1 percent in Mississippi to a high of 5.2 percent in New Jersey (7.1 percent in Washington, DC)....

Not Trampis said...

Russian Rudy

Fred C. Dobbs said...

As the Virus Surges, Stark Differences Over What Is Around the Corner

NY Times - October 18

As the coronavirus continued to surge in many parts of the United States, officials and experts offered starkly different outlooks on Sunday about what was to come and when the situation might improve.

Alex Azar, the secretary of Health and Human Services, noted that many people had grown tired of pandemic precautions, and tried to paint an optimistic picture of how much longer they would be needed.

“Hang in there with us,” he said on Sunday on the NBC program “Meet the Press.” “We’re so close. We’re weeks away from monoclonal antibodies for you, for safe and effective vaccines. We need a bridge to that day.”

“Please,” Mr. Azar said, “give us a bit more time of your individual, responsible behavior,” referring to hand washing, wearing masks and maintaining social distance.

But any notion that life in America might be returning to normal within weeks, or even within a few months, was too hopeful, other officials and experts said. The public health strategies with which the public is fatigued will be needed for some time to come, even after new drugs and vaccines can be approved. And compliance with those strategies is already spotty.

The statistics are headed the wrong way: More than 70,450 new coronavirus cases were reported in the United States on Friday, the highest figure since July 24, according to a New York Times database, and more than 900 new deaths were recorded. Case counts are rising in 41 of the 50 states, with much of the worst news in the Great Lakes region.

Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, said the public did not know whom or what to believe about how soon a vaccine would be available. Communicating clearly and credibly with the public is just as important as the science, Dr. Osterholm said, because slowing the spread of the virus depends on individuals taking the right precautions.

With infections rising and compliance eroding, “the next six to 12 weeks are going to be the darkest of the entire pandemic,” he said on “Meet the Press.”

A similar warning was sounded by Dr. Scott Gottlieb, a former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. He said on the CBS program “Face the Nation” that the country was headed into “probably the most difficult phase of this epidemic.” “I think the next three months are going to be very challenging,” he said. ...

Related?

With Covid-19 Under Control, China’s Economy Surges Ahead

BEIJING — As most of the world still struggles with the coronavirus pandemic, China is showing once again that a fast economic rebound is possible when the virus is brought firmly under control.

The Chinese economy surged 4.9 percent in the July-to-September quarter compared with the same months last year, the country’s National Bureau of Statistics announced on Monday. The robust performance brings China almost back up to the roughly 6 percent pace of growth that it was reporting before the pandemic. ...


Anonymous said...

https://twitter.com/BenjaminNorton/status/1318045436087799808

Ben Norton @BenjaminNorton

Bolivia's leftist presidential candidate Luis Arce, from the Movement Toward Socialism (MAS) party, won in a landslide with 65.3% in the capital La Paz and 63.1% in the major city Cochabamba, according to the exit polls

12:24 AM · Oct 19, 2020 from Bolivia

Anonymous said...

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-19/China-s-GDP-expands-4-9-in-Q3-UI1qzuOQhy/index.html

October 19, 2020

China's GDP expands 4.9% in Q3, economy grows 0.7% in first three quarters

China's economy expanded 4.9 percent year on year in the third quarter of 2020, faster than the 3.2-percent growth in the second quarter, according to the latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

The country's gross domestic product (GDP) bounced back from during the COVID-19 epidemic and expanded 0.7 percent year on year in the first three quarters of 2020.

Read more:

China's Q2 GDP growth recovers to 3.2% after steep slump, beats forecast

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-07-16/China-s-GDP-declines-1-6-in-first-half-of-2020-up-3-2-in-Q2-SalyAYgOrK/index.html

China's GDP posts first decline in decades, contracting 6.8 percent

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-04-17/China-s-GDP-drops-6-8-in-the-first-quarter--PKOPsQrWXC/index.html

Fred C. Dobbs said...

Election officials are looking into the use of unofficial ballot drop boxes installed by the CA Republican Party

NY Times - October 14

Over the weekend, reports and images surfaced of unauthorized ballot drop boxes that were fraudulently labeled “official” in Los Angeles, Fresno and Orange Counties. On Monday, California’s secretary of state, Alex Padilla, made it clear that unofficial drop boxes are illegal and can lead to voter fraud.

“Misleading voters is wrong regardless of who is doing it,” Mr. Padilla said in a conference call with reporters.

Republican officials admitted to purchasing and placing the boxes near churches, gun shops and Republican Party offices in conservative areas across the state.

Mr. Padilla and Attorney General Xavier Becerra sent a cease-and-desist order to the state- and county-level Republican parties, ordering them to remove the boxes immediately.

More than 50 boxes had been placed over the weekend before they became public, but party officials said they bought about 100 total in an attempt to boost turnout.

Hector Barajas, a spokesman for the California Republican Party, said that the party would continue to distribute the boxes, which he referred to as “our ballot harvesting program.”

Mr. Padilla said they would “entertain all legal options” to protect voters from unauthorized ballot receptacles going forward.

How can I spot an official ballot drop box?

Only official drop boxes that have been authorized by the state can be used to collect mail-in ballots. Official ballot drop boxes are secured in designated locations and marked with a county seal. “Any misuse of a county seal is a violation of law,” Mr. Padilla said.

You should use only collection sites listed on the state government’s election website.

What are the other ways I can return a mail-in ballot?

If you do not want to use drop boxes you can, of course, easily return a ballot in the mail being that there is no postage required. You can also return them at voting locations.

You can also vote in person, and election officials have taken precautions to reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus at polling sites. There are a few things to keep in mind, however, like holding on to your mail-in ballot in case you are required to surrender it at the polls.

What if I accidentally returned my ballot to an unofficial drop box?

The concern for people who might have left ballots in unauthorized boxes is that there is no official path to having it returned to an elections office. An unknown person has custody of those ballots. Although state law requires people who assist in the delivery of ballots to deliver them within three days, it is unclear whether this has happened. In addition, some of the boxes placed by state Republicans did not have locks.

However, if they are received by county officials, the ballots will be counted even if they do not have a third-party signature typically required for collected mail-in votes, Mr. Padilla said.

The reports of illegal boxes first surfaced in Orange County. Neal Kelley, the county’s chief election official, told me, “It’s unclear how many voters may have used these unofficial drop boxes or exactly how many were placed, however, I reacted quickly to this issue and my office has passed along reports of social media posts of unofficial drop boxes to the Secretary of State and our local district attorney.”

If you think you might have dropped your ballot into an unauthorized ballot box, Mr. Padilla is urging voters to sign up for the Where’s My Ballot? tool to ensure that it has been processed and counted.

What should I do if I see an unofficial drop box?

Voters should report any unauthorized ballot drop boxes to their county elections office or to the Secretary of State’s office at 1-800-345-VOTE or email votesure@sos.ca.gov. ...

Fred C. Dobbs said...

California Eases Off Legal Threats Over GOP Unauthorized Ballot Drop Boxes

NPR - October 16

The state of California appears to be backing off legal threats against the California Republican Party over its use of unauthorized ballot drop boxes.

On Monday, California's secretary of state and attorney general sent a cease-and-desist order to the California GOP and several county party offices, ordering they remove unauthorized boxes to collect ballots, some of which were labeled "official."

At a press conference Friday, Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Secretary of State Alex Padilla, both Democrats, didn't announce any additional enforcement action against the party, saying the California GOP agreed to modify how they were collecting ballots.

But while the California Republican Party agreed not to place unauthorized ballot drop boxes outdoors, leave drop boxes unattended or present them as official, the party said it will continue to accept ballots delivered by voters to local party offices and secure them in boxes attended by staff or volunteers. ...

Anonymous said...

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/18/business/china-economy-covid.html

October 18, 2020

With Covid-19 Under Control, China’s Economy Surges Ahead
Exports jumped and local governments engaged in a binge of debt-fueled construction projects. Even consumer spending is finally recovering.
By Keith Bradsher

BEIJING — As most of the world still struggles with the coronavirus pandemic, China is showing once again that a fast economic rebound is possible when the virus is brought firmly under control.

The Chinese economy surged 4.9 percent in the July-to-September quarter compared with the same months last year, the country’s National Bureau of Statistics announced on Monday. The robust performance brings China almost back up to the roughly 6 percent pace of growth that it was reporting before the pandemic.

Many of the world’s major economies have climbed quickly out of the depths of a contraction last spring, when shutdowns caused output to fall steeply. But China is the first to report growth that significantly surpasses where it was at this time last year. The United States and other nations are expected to report a third-quarter surge too, but they are still behind or just catching up to pre-pandemic levels.

China’s lead could widen further in the months to come. It has almost no local transmission of the virus now, while the United States and Europe face another accelerating wave of cases.

The vigorous expansion of the Chinese economy means that it is set to dominate global growth — accounting for at least 30 percent of the world’s economic growth this year and in the years to come, Justin Lin Yifu, a cabinet adviser and honorary dean of the National School of Development at Peking University, said at a recent government news conference in Beijing....

Anonymous said...

October 18, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases ( 8,387,799)
Deaths ( 224,730)

India

Cases ( 7,548,238)
Deaths ( 114,642)

Mexico

Cases ( 847,108)
Deaths ( 86,059)

France

Cases ( 897,034)
Deaths ( 33,477)

UK

Cases ( 722,409)
Deaths ( 43,646)

Germany

Cases ( 366,981)
Deaths ( 9,866)

Canada

Cases ( 198,148)
Deaths ( 9,760)

China

Cases ( 85,672)
Deaths ( 4,634)

Anonymous said...

October 18, 2020

Coronavirus   (Deaths per million)

US   ( 678)
Mexico   ( 665)
UK   ( 642)
France   ( 513)

Canada   ( 258)
Germany   ( 118)
India   ( 83)
China   ( 3)

Notice the ratios of deaths to coronavirus cases are 10.2%, 6.0% and 3.7% for Mexico, the United Kingdom and France respectively.  These ratios are high, but have been significantly higher, while falling recently.

Anonymous said...

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-19/Chinese-mainland-reports-13-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UHSO6VbeZa/index.html

October 19, 2020

Chinese mainland reports 13 new COVID-19 cases

The Chinese mainland on Sunday registered 13 new COVID-19 cases, all from overseas, the National Health Commission announced on Monday.

No deaths related to the disease were reported on Sunday, and 16 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospitals, the commission said. A total of 401 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation.

The COVID-19 tally on the Chinese mainland stands at 85,685, with 4,634 fatalities.

Chinese mainland new imported cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-19/Chinese-mainland-reports-13-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UHSO6VbeZa/img/9f998d441abc4abc8bc5ee06823acd90/9f998d441abc4abc8bc5ee06823acd90.jpeg

Chinese mainland new asymptomatic cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-19/Chinese-mainland-reports-13-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UHSO6VbeZa/img/d0bb4658e9c6442a97edb38b2e72921d/d0bb4658e9c6442a97edb38b2e72921d.jpeg

[ There has been no coronavirus death on the Chinese mainland since May 17.  Since June began there have been 3 limited community clusters of infections, in Beijing, Dalian and Urumqi, each of which was contained with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine, with each outbreak ending in a few weeks.

Currently there is another apparently limited community cluster in Qingdao, with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine again being used to identify the origin of as well as to contain and end the outbreak.

Imported coronavirus cases are caught at entry points with required testing and immediate quarantine.  Asymptomatic cases are all quarantined.  The flow of imported cases to China is low, but has been persistent.

There are now 249 active coronavirus cases in all on the Chinese mainland, 4 of which cases are classed as serious or critical. ]

Anonymous said...

October 19, 2020

Coronavirus

Israel

Cases   ( 304,635)
Deaths   ( 2,260)

Deaths per million   ( 246)

---------------------------------------

July 4, 2020

Coronavirus

Israel

Cases ( 29,170)
Deaths ( 330)

Deaths per million ( 36)

Anonymous said...

Having apparently approached a containment of the coronavirus in June, the Israeli government incautiously opened schools and businesses, and the result has been a persistent community infection spread contributing to what are now 304,635 cases in the small country as compared to 85,685 in all through all of mainland China.

Israel has unfortunately more than three-times the number of coronavirus cases in mainland China.  Paul Krugman noticed the Israeli “disaster” on September 14 when there were 160,000 coronavirus cases.  The per capita case rate is startlingly high.  The persisting difficulty in limiting a new spread of infections in so developed a country has become startling to me.  Obviously there is a profound public health infrastructure failing, that shows a development failing and will have to be addressed.

Anonymous said...

https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/status/1318230115101429766

Glenn Greenwald @ggreenwald

Bolivia Returns Evo Morales’ Party to Power One Year After a U.S.-Applauded Coup

https://theintercept.com/2020/10/19/bolivia-returns-evo-morales-party-to-power-one-year-after-a-u-s-applauded-coup/

Bolivia Returns Evo Morales’ Party to Power One Year After a U.S.-Applauded Coup
Right-wing forces cheered by the U.S. tried to destroy one of Latin America’s most vibrant democracies. Voters just restored it.

12:38 PM · Oct 19, 2020

Fred C. Dobbs said...

Epidemiologist warns next 6 to 12 weeks will be ‘darkest of the entire pandemic’

via @BostonGlobe - October 19

... A chorus of experts have been saying they are expecting a surge in cases — with one warning of a “perfect and terrible storm” — in coming months unless the United States steps up its effort to prevent it.

While cases have gone up nationally, so far the death toll has stayed relatively flat. But experts have said deaths tend to lag cases because it takes time for the virus to kill people. Marc Lipsitch, a professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and director of its Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics. said Monday in a briefing with reporters that an increase in the number of deaths is “inevitable.”

Over the past week, there has been an average of 56,615 cases per day, an increase of 30 percent from the average two weeks earlier, the New York Times reported. At least 219,500 people have already died from the virus. ...

Related: Trump attacks Fauci as ‘a disaster’ and dismisses fears about the still-raging coronavirus

NY Times - October 19

President Trump attacked Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease specialist, as “a disaster” on Monday and said, despite experts’ warnings that the nation was headed toward another peak in the coronavirus outbreak, that people were “tired” of hearing about the virus and wanted to be left alone. ...

“People are tired of Covid,” he complained. “I have the biggest rallies I’ve ever had. And we have Covid. People are saying, ‘Whatever. Just leave us alone.’ They’re tired of it.”

He added, “People are tired of hearing Fauci and these idiots, all these idiots who got it wrong.” ...

The attack on Dr. Fauci comes after advisers have tried to get the president to lay off the infectious diseases specialist, who remains popular. They also come after Dr. Fauci, in an interview with “60 Minutes” that aired on Sunday, dismissed the president’s claim that the end of the pandemic was just around the corner. ...

Anonymous said...

October 18, 2020

Coronavirus

Massachusetts

Cases   ( 143,660)
Deaths   ( 9,737)

Deaths per million   ( 1,413)

Fred C. Dobbs said...

... “The next six to 12 weeks are going to be the darkest of the entire pandemic,”
Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research &
Policy at the University of Minnesota, said Sunday on NBC-TV’s “Meet the Press." ...

Epidemiologist warns next 6 to 12 weeks will be ‘darkest of the entire pandemic’

Anonymous said...

October 19, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,431,085)
Deaths   ( 225,044)

Fred C. Dobbs said...

A Viral Theory Cited by Health Officials Draws Fire From Scientists

NY Times - October 19

As the coronavirus pandemic erupted this spring, two Stanford University professors — Dr. Jay Bhattacharya and Dr. Scott W. Altas — bonded over a shared concern that lockdowns were creating economic and societal devastation.

Now Dr. Atlas is President Trump’s pandemic adviser, a powerful voice inside the White House. And Dr. Bhattacharya is one of three authors of the so-called Great Barrington Declaration, a scientific treatise that calls for allowing the coronavirus to spread naturally in order to achieve herd immunity — the point at which enough people have been infected to stall transmission of the pathogen in the community.

While Dr. Atlas and administration officials have denied advocating this approach, they have praised the ideas in the declaration. The message is aligned with Mr. Trump’s vocal opposition on the campaign trail to lockdowns, even as the country grapples with renewed surges of the virus.

The central proposition — which, according to the declaration’s website, is supported by thousands of signatories who identify as science or health professionals — is that to contain the coronavirus, people “who are not vulnerable should immediately be allowed to resume life as normal” while those at high risk are protected from infection.

Younger Americans should return to workplaces, schools, shops and restaurants, while older Americans would remain cloistered from the virus as it spreads, receiving such services as grocery deliveries and medical care.

Eventually so many younger Americans will have been exposed, and presumably will have developed some immunity, that the virus will not be able to maintain its hold on the communities, the declaration contends.

But it does not offer details on how the strategy would work in practice. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease expert, has dismissed the declaration as unscientific, dangerous and “total nonsense.” Others have called it unethical, particularly for multigenerational families and communities of color.

Alarmed and angry, 80 experts on Wednesday published a manifesto of their own, the John Snow Memorandum (named after a legendary epidemiologist), saying that the declaration’s approach would endanger Americans who have underlying conditions that put them at high risk from severe Covid-19 — at least one-third of U.S. citizens, by most estimates — and result in perhaps a half-million deaths. ...

Fred C. Dobbs said...

We cannot rely on magical thinking: Herd immunity is not a plan

via @statnews - October 16

... Achieving herd immunity would require recovered people to have lasting immunity, but scientists do not yet know how long immunity lasts. Reinfections are rare, but have occurred. Though much has been learned about the immune response to SARS-CoV-2, and the importance of antibodies and T cells, there is no test a person can take to determine if they are immune or to know if their immunity has waned.

Without a vaccine, the human cost to reach herd immunity would be profound. There is a range of models for herd immunity thresholds, depending on how much weight is given to vaccine efficacy, degree of social distancing, and how long immunity lasts. Most models, however, indicate it would require 60% to 80% of the population to be infected, which would be a minimum of nearly 200 million cases in the U.S. alone. Approximately 8% of the U.S. population has been infected with SARS-CoV-2, based upon the prevalence of antibodies, so significantly more infections would be required, leading to at least 510,000 deaths based on the current fatality rate and equations for herd immunity.

Relying on herd immunity alone would overwhelm hospitals. And infections, hospitalizations, and deaths would continue to disproportionately impact Black people, Indigenous people, and people of color — something the declaration conveniently omits.

Calls for a herd immunity strategy have been met with strong resistance from experts, including the 12,000 members of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, hundreds of signatories to the John Snow Memorandum, and 17 public health organizations, led by the Trust for America’s Health. Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health has condemned the idea as “nonsense and very dangerous.” ...

Anonymous said...

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/19/opinion/joe-biden-deficit-spending.html

October 19, 2020

Why Biden Will Need to Spend Big
The economic case for deficit spending is overwhelming.
By Paul Krugman

What should Joe Biden’s economic policy be if he wins (and Democrats take the Senate, so that he can actually pass legislation)? I’m pretty sure I know what his economists think he should do, but I’m not equally sure that everyone on his political team fully gets it, and I’m worried that the news media will experience sticker shock — that is, they may not be ready for the price tag on what he should and probably will propose.

So here’s what everyone should understand: Given the current and likely future state of the U.S. economy, it’s time to (a) spend a lot of money on the future and (b) not worry about where the money is coming from. For now, and for at least the next few years, large-scale deficit spending isn’t just OK, it’s the only responsible thing to do.

Today’s column will be about the economics; I’ll talk about the politics another day.

First things first: If Biden is inaugurated in January, he will inherit a nation still devastated by the coronavirus. Trump keeps saying that we’re “rounding the corner,” but the reality is that cases and hospitalizations are surging (and anyone expecting a lame-duck Trump administration to take effective action against the surge is living in a dream world.) And we won’t be able to have a full economic recovery as long as the pandemic is still raging.

What this means is that it will be crucial to provide another round of large-scale fiscal relief, especially aid to the unemployed and to cash-strapped state and local governments. The main purpose of this relief will be humanitarian — helping families pay the rent and keep food on the table, helping cities and towns avoid devastating cuts in essential services. But it will also help avoid a downward economic spiral, by heading off a potential collapse in consumer and local government spending.

The need for big spending will not, however, end with the pandemic. We also need to invest in our future. After years of public underspending, America desperately needs to upgrade its infrastructure. In particular, we should be investing heavily in the transition to an environmentally sustainable economy. And we should also do much more to help children grow up to be healthy, productive adults; America spends shamefully little on aid to families compared with other wealthy countries.

But how can we pay for all this investment? Bad question....

Anonymous said...

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2020-10/18/c_139448027.htm

October 18, 2020

Xi stresses advancing development of quantum science and technology

BEIJING -- Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, has stressed the importance and urgency of advancing the development of quantum science and technology.

Xi made the remarks while presiding over a group study session of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee held Friday.

Xi also stressed the importance of strengthening strategic planning and systematic layout for the development of quantum science and technology, as well as grasping the general trend and playing good first moves.

Xi pointed out that quantum science and technology has developed by leaps and bounds in recent years and become the frontier field in a new round of sci-tech and industrial revolutions.

It plays a very important role to accelerate the development of quantum science and technology in promoting high-quality development and safeguarding national security, he said, stressing that quantum mechanics is a major achievement in human's exploration of the microworld.

The development of quantum science and technology is of great scientific significance and strategic value. It is a major disruptive technological innovation that impacts and restructures the traditional technological system and will lead a new round of sci-tech revolution and industrial transformation, he said.

China's scientific and technological workers have made great efforts to catch up in quantum science and technology and made a number of significant innovations with international influence. On the whole, China has possessed the sci-tech strength and innovation ability in this field, he said.

China's quantum science and technology development still has many weak links and faces multiple challenges, Xi said, calling for efforts to follow the path of independent innovation, make breakthroughs in key core technologies, ensure the safety of industrial and supply chains, and enhance China's ability of responding to international risks and challenges with science and technology.

It is imperative to systematically sum up the successful experience of China's quantum science and technology development, learn from useful practices of other countries, thoroughly analyze and judge the development trend, and find out the breakthrough point for the development of quantum science and technology in China, Xi pointed out.

He called for efforts to foster strategic emerging industries such as quantum communications to gain an upper hand in international competition and build new advantages for development.

Xi stressed the need to strengthen top-level design and forward-looking layout....

Anonymous said...

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2020-10/20/c_139454748.htm

October 20, 2020

China's COVID-19 vaccine capacity to reach 610 million

BEIJING -- China's total annual production capacity of COVID-19 vaccines will likely reach 610 million doses by the end of the year, a Chinese official said on Tuesday.

The production capacity will continue to expand next year to meet the demand for COVID-19 vaccines in China and other countries, said Zheng Zhongwei, with the National Health Commission, at a news conference in Beijing.

As a public product, the vaccines will be priced according to the cost rather than supply and demand, Zheng said. The price of China's COVID-19 vaccines will be acceptable to the public, he added.

Priority for receiving vaccines should be given to certain people with a high risk of exposure to the virus, Zheng said.

Anonymous said...

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2020-10/20/c_139454628.htm

October 20, 2020

60,000 volunteers receive Chinese COVID-19 vaccines in phase-3 trials

BEIJING -- A total of about 60,000 volunteers have been given Chinese COVID-19 vaccines as part of phase-3 clinical trials, with no severe side-effects reported, a Chinese official said Tuesday.

Four Chinese vaccine candidates have entered international phase-3 clinical trials so far, said Tian Baoguo with the Ministry of Science and Technology at a news conference in Beijing. All trials are progressing well, he said, with initial indications that the vaccines are safe.

According to Tian, the most common adverse reactions in phase-3 clinical trials are pain and swelling at the injection site, followed by fever, both of which are mild.

The two inactivated vaccines developed by China National Biotec Group (CNBG), which is affiliated to Sinopharm, and the Wuhan Institute of Biological Products, have started phase-3 clinical trials in 10 countries, with more than 50,000 volunteers taking part, said Liu Jingzhen, chairman of Sinopharm.

Sinovac Biotech, another vaccine developer, said that the company's partners in Brazil, Indonesia and Turkey have established monitoring systems for adverse reactions in accordance with internationally accepted standards. So far, no severe adverse reactions related to COVID-19 vaccines have been reported.

Anonymous said...

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6942e2.htm

October 20, 2020

Excess Deaths Associated with COVID-19, by Age and Race and Ethnicity — United States, January 26–October 3, 2020
By Lauren M. Rossen, Amy M. Branum, Farida B. Ahmad, Paul Sutton and Robert N. Anderson
Summary

What is already known about this topic?

As of October 15, 216,025 deaths from COVID-19 have been reported in the United States; however, this might underestimate the total impact of the pandemic on mortality.

What is added by this report?

Overall, an estimated 299,028 excess deaths occurred from late January through October 3, 2020, with 198,081 (66%) excess deaths attributed to COVID-19. The largest percentage increases were seen among adults aged 25–44 years and among Hispanic or Latino persons.

What are the implications for public health practice?

These results inform efforts to prevent mortality directly or indirectly associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, such as efforts to minimize disruptions to health care.

Anonymous said...

October 19, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,456,653)
Deaths   ( 225,222)

India

Cases   ( 7,594,736)
Deaths   ( 115,236)

France

Cases   ( 910,277)
Deaths   ( 33,623)

Mexico

Cases   ( 851,227)
Deaths   ( 86,167)

UK

Cases   ( 741,212)
Deaths   ( 43,726)

Germany

Cases   ( 373,731)
Deaths   ( 9,899)

Canada

Cases   ( 201,437)
Deaths   ( 9,778)

China

Cases   ( 85,685)
Deaths   ( 4,634)

Anonymous said...

October 19, 2020

Coronavirus   (Deaths per million)

US   ( 679)
Mexico   ( 666)
UK   ( 643)
France   ( 515)

Canada   ( 258)
Germany   ( 118)
India   ( 83)
China   ( 3)

Notice the ratios of deaths to coronavirus cases are 10.1%, 5.9% and 3.7% for Mexico, the United Kingdom and France respectively.  These ratios are high, but have been significantly higher, while falling recently.

Anonymous said...

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-20/Chinese-mainland-reports-19-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UJAAT6tcPu/index.html

October 20, 2020

Chinese mainland reports 19 new COVID-19 cases

The Chinese mainland on Monday registered 19 new COVID-19 cases, all from overseas, the National Health Commission announced on Tuesday.

No deaths related to the disease were reported on Monday, and 10 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospitals, the commission said. A total of 403 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation.

The COVID-19 tally on the Chinese mainland stands at 85,704 infections, with 4,634 fatalities.

Chinese mainland new imported cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-20/Chinese-mainland-reports-19-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UJAAT6tcPu/img/81da9babb64240bc849ea2978690c6b7/81da9babb64240bc849ea2978690c6b7.jpeg

Chinese mainland new asymptomatic cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-20/Chinese-mainland-reports-19-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UJAAT6tcPu/img/bdf0e27eaf6c4760a1e19b5a0dbf3c9d/bdf0e27eaf6c4760a1e19b5a0dbf3c9d.jpeg

[ There has been no coronavirus death on the Chinese mainland since May 17.  Since June began there have been 3 limited community clusters of infections, in Beijing, Dalian and Urumqi, each of which was contained with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine, with each outbreak ending in a few weeks.

Currently there is another apparently limited community cluster in Qingdao, with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine again being used to identify the origin of as well as to contain and end the outbreak.

Imported coronavirus cases are caught at entry points with required testing and immediate quarantine.  Asymptomatic cases are all quarantined.  The flow of imported cases to China is low, but has been persistent.

There are now 258 active coronavirus cases in all on the Chinese mainland, 4 of which cases are classed as serious or critical. ]

Anonymous said...

October 20, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,501,596)
Deaths   ( 225,904)


Anonymous said...

October 20, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,505,237)
Deaths   ( 225,929)

Serious, Critical Cases   ( 15,511)


Fred C. Dobbs said...

Dozens of former intelligence officials sign letter warning Hunter Biden story could be Russian disinformation

via @BostonGlobe - October 20

More than 50 former intelligence officials have signed a letter publicly stating their belief that the disclosure of e-mails allegedly belonging to Hunter Biden, son of Democratic nominee Joe Biden, possesses “the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.”

The letter was provided to POLITICO by Nick Shapiro, a former top aide under CIA director John Brennan, on Monday, the news outlet reported.

The joint statement focused on a trove of documents released last week by the New York Post in an article centered around Hunter Biden’s alleged “secret e-mails.” The article, which was deemed so dubious that Twitter and Facebook limited its distribution, suggested the former vice president was connected with his son’s Ukrainian business dealings.

A number of outlets, among them the New York Times and the Washington Post, could not independently verify the authenticity of the data in the article. The New York Post reported that the photos and documents were obtained from the hard drive of a laptop — alleged to be Hunter Biden’s — given to them by President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani.

Giuliani, according to the New York Post, was given the hard drive from a computer repair shop owner in Delaware, who said he had alerted authorities to its existence.

But in the letter, signed by those including former Trump administration officials, the authors said they were “deeply suspicious that the Russian government played a significant role in this case.”

Though they did not provide new evidence, the authors stated that they had “devoted significant portions” of their lives to national security and that they see “Russia as one of our nation’s top adversaries.” Most importantly, the signatories said, they believe that American citizens “should determine the outcome of elections, not foreign governments.”

“It is for all these reasons that we write to say that the arrival on the US political scene of e-mails purportedly belonging to Vice President Biden’s son Hunter, much of it related to his time serving on the Board of the Ukrainian gas company Burisma, has all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation,” the letter states.

The former intelligence officials emphasized that they do not know if the e-mails described in the New York Post are genuine, nor do they have explicit evidence of Russian involvement.

But they outlined a number of factors that awakened their suspicions. For one, they argue that such an operation would be in line with Russian objectives highlighted by the United Stated Intelligence Community — namely to create “political chaos” in the nation and deepen divisions, but also to “undermine the candidacy” of Biden.

“For the Russians at this point, with Trump down in the polls, there is incentive for Moscow to pull out the stops to do anything possible to help Trump win and/or to weaken Biden should he win,” the letter states. ...

Anonymous said...

October 20, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,520,307)
Deaths   ( 226,149)

India

Cases   ( 7,649,158)
Deaths   ( 115,950)

France

Cases   ( 930,745)
Deaths   ( 33,885)

Mexico

Cases   ( 854,926)
Deaths   ( 86,338)

UK

Cases   ( 762,542)
Deaths   ( 43,967)

Germany

Cases   ( 380,898)
Deaths   ( 9,955)

Canada

Cases   ( 203,688)
Deaths   ( 9,794)

China

Cases   ( 85,704)
Deaths   ( 4,634)

Anonymous said...

October 20, 2020

Coronavirus   (Deaths per million)

US   ( 682)
Mexico   ( 668)
UK   ( 647)
France   ( 519)

Canada   ( 259)
Germany   ( 119)
India   ( 84)
China   ( 3)

Notice the ratios of deaths to coronavirus cases are 10.1%, 5.8% and 3.6% for Mexico, the United Kingdom and France respectively.  These ratios are high, but have been significantly higher, while falling recently.

Anonymous said...

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-21/Chinese-mainland-reports-11-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-ULd3ntGhAA/index.html

October 21, 2020

Chinese mainland reports 11 new COVID-19 cases

The Chinese mainland on Tuesday registered 11 new COVID-19 cases, all from overseas, the National Health Commission announced on Wednesday.

No deaths related to the disease were reported on Tuesday, and 22 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospitals, the commission said. A total of 403 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation.

The COVID-19 tally on the Chinese mainland stands at 85,715 infections, with 4,634 fatalities.

Chinese mainland new imported cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-20/Chinese-mainland-reports-19-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UJAAT6tcPu/img/81da9babb64240bc849ea2978690c6b7/81da9babb64240bc849ea2978690c6b7.jpeg

Chinese mainland new asymptomatic cases

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-20/Chinese-mainland-reports-19-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UJAAT6tcPu/img/bdf0e27eaf6c4760a1e19b5a0dbf3c9d/bdf0e27eaf6c4760a1e19b5a0dbf3c9d.jpeg

[ There has been no coronavirus death on the Chinese mainland since May 17.  Since June began there have been 3 limited community clusters of infections, in Beijing, Dalian and Urumqi, each of which was contained with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine, with each outbreak ending in a few weeks.

Currently there is another apparently limited community cluster in Qingdao, with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine again being used to identify the origin of as well as to contain and end the outbreak.

Imported coronavirus cases are caught at entry points with required testing and immediate quarantine.  Asymptomatic cases are all quarantined.  The flow of imported cases to China is low, but has been persistent.

There are now 247 active coronavirus cases in all on the Chinese mainland, 3 of which cases are classed as serious or critical. ]

Anonymous said...

October 21, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,538,526)
Deaths   ( 226,564)

Anonymous said...

October 21, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases   ( 8,545,453)
Deaths   ( 226,664)

Serious, Critical Cases   ( 15,771)

Notice the number of coronavirus patients listed as "serious, critical."  This has been the situation for months.

Anonymous said...

October 20, 2020

Coronavirus

Massachusetts

Cases   ( 145,464)
Deaths   ( 9,758)

Deaths per million   ( 1,416)

Anonymous said...

October 20, 2020

Coronavirus

New York

Cases   ( 522,513)
Deaths   ( 33,507)

Deaths per million   ( 1,722)

Anonymous said...

https://cepr.net/bolivians-reclaim-their-democracy/

October 21, 2020

Bolivians Reclaim Their Democracy
By MARK WEISBROT

The overwhelming MAS election victory is a repudiation of the racist coup regime as well as the Trump administration and the OAS, which helped install it.

On Sunday, October 18, Luis Arce won the presidency of Bolivia, in a pronounced repudiation of last year’s military coup, which had put the current government in power. Arce is the former economy minister for Evo Morales, who was the first Indigenous president of the country with the largest percentage of Indigenous people in the Americas. Morales’s democratically elected government was overthrown in November of last year.

The November coup was backed by the Trump administration, and the Organization of American States (OAS) leadership played a central role in laying the foundations for it. Sunday’s election thus has enormous potential implications not only for Bolivia, where it was a necessary step toward the restoration of democracy, but also for the region, in terms of democracy, national independence, economic and social progress, and the struggle against racism.

First, the election: unofficial quick count results show Arce winning with more than 50 percent of the vote, and at least 20 percentage points ahead of his closest competitor, Carlos Mesa, a former president. A majority is decisive, but even if the final, official count were to put Arce below 50 percent, his margin over Mesa is virtually certain to be large enough to win the election in the first round (to win in the first round, a contender must get more than 50 percent of the vote, or at least 40 percent with a 10-point margin over the runner-up). Mesa has already conceded, and the de facto president, Jeanine Áñez, congratulated Arce on his victory on Sunday night.

It’s not difficult to see why Arce would have won even if he were not up against a violently repressive, racist government installed by a coup. As minister of the economy ever since Morales took office in January 2006, Arce can claim much credit for what any economist would say was a remarkably successful economic turn-around for Bolivia. When Morales was first elected, income per person was less than it had been 26 years prior. By contrast, in the 14 years of his Movement Toward Socialism (MAS) government (2006-19), it grew by about 52 percent. This is a sizable improvement in living standards (sixth out of 34 countries in the region), following on the heels of a stupendous long-term economic failure.

Poor Bolivians, who are disproportionately Indigenous, benefited even more than others from the MAS government’s economic successes. Poverty was reduced by 42 percent and extreme poverty by 60 percent. Poorer Bolivians also benefited disproportionately from a very large increase in public investment, including in schools, roads, and hospitals.

By contrast, the 11 months of coup government since last November have been a disaster....

Anonymous said...

October 21, 2020

Coronavirus

US

Cases ( 8,584,819)
Deaths ( 227,409)

India

Cases ( 7,705,158)
Deaths ( 116,653)

France

Cases ( 957,421)
Deaths ( 34,048)

Mexico

Cases ( 860,714)
Deaths ( 86,893)

UK

Cases ( 789,229)
Deaths ( 44,158)

Germany

Cases ( 391,355)
Deaths ( 9,999)

Canada

Cases ( 205,954)
Deaths ( 9,826)

China

Cases ( 85,715)
Deaths ( 4,634)

Anonymous said...

October 21, 2020

Coronavirus   (Deaths per million)

US   ( 686)
Mexico   ( 672)
UK   ( 649)
France   ( 521)

Canada   ( 260)
Germany   ( 119)
India   ( 84)
China   ( 3)

Anonymous said...

Notice the ratios of deaths to coronavirus cases are 10.1%, 5.6% and 3.6% for Mexico, the United Kingdom and France respectively.  These ratios are high, but have been significantly higher, while falling recently.

Anonymous said...

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2020-10-22/Chinese-mainland-reports-14-new-COVID-19-cases-all-from-overseas-UMRq6Ev10Q/index.html

October 22, 2020

Chinese mainland reports 14 new COVID-19 cases

The Chinese mainland on Wednesday registered 14 new COVID-19 cases, all from overseas, the National Health Commission announced on Thursday.

No deaths related to the disease were reported on Wednesday, and 16 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospitals, the commission said. A total of 406 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation.

[ There has been no coronavirus death on the Chinese mainland since May 17.  Since June began there have been 3 limited community clusters of infections, in Beijing, Dalian and Urumqi, each of which was contained with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine, with each outbreak ending in a few weeks.

Currently there is another apparently limited community cluster in Qingdao, with mass testing, contact tracing and quarantine again being used to identify the origin of as well as to contain and end the outbreak.

Imported coronavirus cases are caught at entry points with required testing and immediate quarantine.  Asymptomatic cases are all quarantined.  The flow of imported cases to China is low, but has been persistent.

There are now 245 active coronavirus cases in all on the Chinese mainland, 2 of which cases are classed as serious or critical. ]

Anonymous said...

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/22/business/economy/economy-coronavirus-lockdown-iowa.html

October 22, 2020

Iowa Never Locked Down. Its Economy Is Struggling Anyway.
President Trump has blamed Democratic officials’ rules for impeding the recovery. But even where restrictions are few, business is far from normal.
By Ben Casselman and Jim Tankersley

As far as the law is concerned, there is no reason that Amedeo Rossi can’t reopen his martini bar in downtown Des Moines, or resume shows at his concert venue two doors down. Yet Mr. Rossi’s businesses remain dark, and one has closed for good.

There are no restrictions keeping Denver Foote from carrying on with her work at the salon where she styles hair. But Ms. Foote is picking up only two shifts a week, and is often sent home early because there are so few customers.

No lockdown stood in the way of the city’s Oktoberfest, but the celebration was canceled. “We could have done it, absolutely,” said Mindy Toyne, whose company has produced the event for 17 years. “We just couldn’t fathom a way that we could produce a festival that was safe.”

President Trump and many supporters blame restrictions on business activity, often imposed by Democratic governors and mayors, for prolonging the economic crisis initially caused by the virus. But the experience of states like Iowa shows the economy is far from back to normal even in Republican-led states that have imposed few business restrictions.

A growing body of research has concluded that the steep drop in economic activity last spring was primarily a result of individual decisions by consumers and businesses rather than legal mandates. People stopped going to restaurants even before governors ordered them shut down. Airports emptied out even though there were never significant restrictions on domestic air travel.

States like Iowa that reopened quickly did have an initial pop in employment and sales. But more cautious states have at least partly closed that gap, and have seen faster economic rebounds in recent months by many measures....

Anonymous said...

https://glineq.blogspot.com/2020/10/ban-this-book-review-of-daniel.html

October 18, 2020

Ban this book! A review of Daniel Markovits’s “The Meritocracy Trap”

Daniel Markovits has written in “The Meritocracy Trap” such a frontal assault on the meritocratic system that undergirds and sustains today’s US society that, were the book on a similarly self-sustaining ideological rationale written in pre-revolutionary France, or Brezhnevite (let alone Stalinist) Russia, the book would have been burned and its author sent into exile or worse.

Markovits argues that “what is conventionally called merit is actually an ideological conceit, constructed to launder fundamentally unjust allocation of advantage”. The system is relatively easy to explain by writing it as a modified Marx’s famous M-C-M’ scheme (invested money => production of commodities => more money). Here it is M-E-M’ where E stands for production of children’s education. The moneyed elite, itself well educated and hardworking, dedicates an enormous amount of effort and money to place its children through the most expensive, elitist and competitive education system in the world that begins with pre-K and ends with the graduate school—in order to make sure that children earn even higher incomes and stay on top. “Meritocracy” is thus just another way to create and maintain a de facto ruling class, an aristocracy, where the birth advantage (fundamental to its power) is concealed by educational credentials. In a number of instances, Markovits indeed likens today’s meritocracy with the old-fashioned aristocracy (and not always favorably).

Meritocracy has several features. Its members are highly educated and credentialed; they are hardworking (“today’s Stakhanovites are the one-percenters”) and combine “progressive virtues” of inclusion and privacy, with “conservative virtues” of hard  work, saving and contempt for the poor.

Through such contempt and their belief that advantages they enjoy are fully merited, meritocrats have created a deep chasm within the US polity between themselves and the rest, most notably between themselves and the middle class (the poor never played much of a role anyway). As Markovits argues, not only in income, but in consumption patterns, beliefs, attitude to and health outcomes etc. the gap between the meritocrats and the middle class is wider today than the gap between the middle class and the poor....

-- Branko Milanovic

Anonymous said...

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/20/health/coronavirus-excess-deaths.html

October 20, 2020

The Pandemic’s Real Toll? 300,000 Deaths, and It’s Not Just From the Coronavirus
A C.D.C. analysis finds that overall death rates have risen, particularly among young adults and people of color.
By Roni Caryn Rabin

The coronavirus pandemic caused nearly 300,000 deaths in the United States through early October, federal researchers said on Tuesday.

The new tally includes not only deaths known to have been directly caused by the coronavirus, but also roughly 100,000 fatalities that are indirectly related and would not have occurred if not for the virus.

The study, published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is an attempt to measure “excess deaths” — deaths from all causes that statistically exceed those normally occurring in a certain time period. The total included deaths from Covid-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, that were misclassified or missed altogether.

Many experts believe this measure tracks the pandemic’s impact more accurately than the case fatality rate does, and they warn that the death toll may continue an inexorable climb if policies are not put in effect to contain the spread.

“This is one of several studies, and the bottom line is there are far more Americans dying from the pandemic than the news reports would suggest,” said Dr. Steve Woolf, director emeritus of the Center on Society and Health at Virginia Commonwealth University, whose own research recently reached similar conclusions about excess deaths.

“We’re likely to reach well over 400,000 excess deaths by the end of the year” if current trends continue, Dr. Woolf said....