|You get that there's two ways to take that, and they're both complete |
opposites of each other, right?
Prognosticators and Flu-sayers are proposing (and TPTB are listening) that this week and next are the coming peaks of Kung Flu.
You can read their product here.
Are they correct?
I have no wild idea.
I do find it somewhat optimistic, but I'm open to persuasion.
I'd certainly like them to be correct.
When you project the peak in two weeks, at 3000 deaths/day, +/- 5000, that looks like shotgun forecasting.
I see no reason imaginable that things will get that bad, and then suddenly shrink, because Magic Brownies or something.
If they had some explanation for why things will tip over, and work out, beyond "I don't know; it's a mystery." and then actually start trending downward, I'd like to hear it.
Maybe it will work out, maybe it won't, but absent some rational theory, with viable and valid evidence, it sounds to me more like wishful thinking than actual analysis.
It seems to me the only way you know when you've crested a mountain on terrain you've never been to, is to wait until you start walking down instead of up.
IOW, when actual deaths trend downward, and keep on doing that, give a holler.
Forget cases. Testing is so screwed beyond belief, since ever, there's no one in Creation who has any bare clue how many people anywhere have been infected. When California is so backlogged they can't tell you how bad this was on March 20th until May 10th, anyone who says they can predict when this peaks, for any value of "whenever", is smoking controlled substances.
What I do know is this:
There's no vaccine.
There's no widely acknowledged effective treatment.
There's no immunity to it.
There's no way to test for who has had it, and gotten over it.
So unless and until people stop dying daily in growing numbers, and the death trend starts pointing downwards, we're not past the hump yet.
Worse, lifting things like lockdowns at that point may simply trigger the peaks to shift to areas less-affected now. Like everywhere west of the Mississippi River.
And while it would be nice, particularly for residents there, to hear that NYFC is finally over the hump in the pandemic, if we then lift lockdowns, and merely shift the locus of the problem back to the middle of the country or to the Left coast, it would be a pyrrhic victory. [Common Core grads: that's a case where the cure IS "worse than the disease". You could look it up.™]
It seems to me to get past this, you're going to have to first have a rapid-result test in quantity.
Then start by testing everyone working and deemed "essential", so you know they're okay to be out and about.
Then maybe start testing one zip code per day in as many regional areas as you can simultaneously, until they're all tested, and only people with no Kung Flu get out of self-quarantine jail.
Those positive are still in it, and get re-tested every 30 days.
Otherwise you're just turning people loose in the tiger cage, and waiting to see how many get eaten. If lifting lockdowns "just because" happens, and it kills scads of people, the last 0-3 weeks' lockdowns have been a total waste of time. Unlike in Iraq, we have no ability to surge medical resources to fight this, if we declare victory too soon.
So until this thing actually peaks, and we know it based on bona fide truth and accurate numbers, rather than pollyana optimism, I wouldn't put all my chips on this thing tapering off in a week or three, no matter how many Magic Beans the salesman promises us in return for the family cow - or the actual family.
I will believe this thing has peaked - when it actually does.
On a personal note, I was notified that one - of numerous - patients I cared for in the last few weeks, and was suspected of Kung Flu, was confirmed positive for it. That doesn't mean I've been exposed to it; that's why we wear PPE. But it means one of the rule-out cases scored snake eyes. It was the first for me, but it won't be the last. (Not least of which because some were tested, and died, and we're still waiting for their test results.) And it means if I pop on any of the symptoms, I've now got skin in the game.
As I said earlier on these pages, all I know is that as of yet, I'm not infected.
Until I am.
So I'll be finding out experientially if the PPE recommendations worked, or not.
Which is the same when you'll know when we're over the hump on this: when you see it (or not) with your own eyes.
When you walk into a swamp you've never been to before, at night, the only thing you know is that the farthest you can walk into it in any direction is halfway. But you can have no idea when you've crossed that point, because you don't know how big that swamp is.
Nobody knows how big this swamp is.
The projections referenced may be spot on, or they may be just quaint little fond wishes, with a sprinkle of hopeium. I can't see where they have any reason to think otherwise, but I'm open to reasonable explanations.
And even if they're right, we've still got a couple of really craptastic weeks coming up, don't we?
Dewey Defeats Truman was a funny headline for actual victor Harry S Truman the next day.
America Defeats Kung Flu will not be nearly as funny to us the morning after if it turns out Kung Flu won.
Don't believe me on that; ask Shrillary what it felt like to find out that the World's Foremost Experts got it totally wrong, and you believed them. Last I heard, she still hasn't sobered up since that night.