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Fri, 23 Oct 2020
The World for People who Think

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Attention

USA - A nation under house arrest

"It is proper to take alarm at the first experiment on our liberties. We hold this prudent jealousy to be the first duty of citizens, and one of the noblest characteristics of the late Revolution. The freeman of America did not wait till usurped power had strengthened itself by exercise, and entangled the question in precedents. They saw all the consequences in the principle, and they avoided the consequences by denying the principle." — James Madison
House Arrest
© Premium Times Opinion
We have become one nation under house arrest.

You think we're any different from the Kentucky couple fitted out with ankle monitoring bracelets and forced to quarantine at home?

We're not

Consider what happened to Elizabeth and Isaiah Linscott.

Elizabeth took a precautionary diagnostic COVID-19 test before traveling to visit her parents and grandparents in Michigan. It came back positive: Elizabeth was asymptomatic for the novel coronavirus but had no symptoms. Her husband and infant daughter tested negative for the virus.

Now in a country where freedom actually means something, the Linscotts would have the right to determine for themselves how to proceed responsibly, but in the American Police State, we've only got as much freedom as the government allows.

That's not saying much.

Indeed, it's a dangerous time for anyone who still clings to the idea that freedom means the right to think for yourself and act responsibly according to your best judgment.

In that regard, the Linscotts are a little old-school in their thinking. When Elizabeth was asked to sign a self-quarantine order agreeing to check in daily with the health department and not to travel anywhere without prior approval, she refused.

"I shouldn't have to ask for consent because I'm an adult who can make that decision. And as a citizen of the United States of America, that is my right to make that decision without having to disclose that to somebody else," said Elizabeth. "So, no, I wouldn't wear a mask. I would do everything that I could to make sure that I wouldn't come in contact with other people because of the fear that's spreading with this. But no, I would have just stayed home, take care of my child."

Attention

Suicide rates soar in Japan, caused more deaths than COVID-19

COVID 19 deaths in Japan diverts attention from growing number of suicides

It's a long known but also a tragically long ignored problem in Japan: suicide.

With all the focus on COVID-19 nowadays, other more pressing problems often fall off the radar and get ignored.

One problem in Japan is suicide. And while economic hardship intensifies as stricter measures are implemented to avert COVID-19 deaths, suicides will surely increase.

Moreover, in the media the focus remains on the daily "new cases found", which serves for spectacular headlines which spread panic among, but distracts from the reality. Deaths from COVID-19 are tapering off in many countries

Looking at the new daily COVID-19 deaths in Japan, we see that daily deaths are now very low:

Deaths in Japan
© Worldmeter
Chart source: Worldometer.
Yet, the panic continues.

Bizarro Earth

Mysterious new invasive algae smothering Hawaii's coral reefs

Invasive Algae
© Taylor Williams/NOAA
College of Charleston professor of biology Heather Spalding documents a mat of invasive-like algae at Pearl and Hermes Atoll. The alga has smothered all native algae and corals.
Hawaii is famous for a lot of things. Perfect waves and perfect weather, to name a few. Stunning views and crystal clear water to name a few more. One of the most famous things it is famous for, however, is its coral reefs. And according to a study in the journal PLOS One, those reefs could be in some serious trouble.

Back in 2016, survey cruises conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) picked up strange specimens of an undetermined red alga. It "rapidly attained alarming levels of benthic coverage at Pearl and Hermes Atoll, Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, Hawaiʻi," which, in layman's terms, means it spread like wildfire in shallow shoreline waters. A few years later, they went back to have another look, and what they found was strange indeed.

"By 2019 the seaweed had covered large expanses on the northeast side of the atoll with mat-like, extensive growth of entangled thalli," the abstract from the study reads. "Specimens were analyzed using light microscopy and molecular analysis and were compared to morphological descriptions in the literature for closely related taxa. Light microscopy demonstrated that the specimens likely belonged to the rhodomelacean genus Chondria, yet comparisons to taxonomic literature revealed no morphological match."

In short, it appears that the alga is likely to be an unknown species. That's a problem, because the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument is uninhabited, remote, and pristine — which makes it susceptible to invasive species like this one.

Biohazard

48 confirmed Ebola cases in Congo, WHO declares it an 'active outbreak'

ebola
Ebola is spreading in western Democratic Republic of Congo, with nearly 50 known cases across a large region bordering the Republic of Congo and Central African Republic, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Monday.

Since authorities announced the outbreak on 1 June, 48 cases have been confirmed in Congo's Equateur province, with a further three probable cases and a total of 20 deaths, WHO's top emergencies expert Mike Ryan said. "This is still a very active outbreak, and I would say it is still a great concern," Ryan told a news briefing.

Comment: See also:


Map

Suspected case of bubonic plague registered in China, days after cases in Mongolia

plague mask
© Global Look Press / DPA / Arved Gintenreiter
FILE PHOTO.
A suspected case of bubonic plague has been registered in China's north, according to local health authorities. The news comes after two similar cases were detected in neighboring Mongolia.

The case was registered at a hospital in China's Inner Mongolia region, its health commission said in a statement on Sunday.

This prompted a third-level warning of a potential epidemic in the region. The alert comes into force immediately and will be in place until the end of this year. It's believed the patient in question is suffering from the bubonic form, which causes swollen lymph nodes, and is considered to be the most easily treated variant of the disease.

Comment: See also:


Attention

Big Pharma has been busy distorting science during the pandemic

Pills and Tablets
© Getty Images / SOPA Images
I've lost all trust in medical research - the financial muscle of Big Pharma has been busy distorting science during the pandemic

Evidence that a cheap, over-the-counter anti-malarial drug costing £7 combats COVID-19 gets trashed. Why? Because the pharmaceutical giants want to sell you a treatment costing nearly £2,000. It's criminal.

A few years ago, I wrote a book called Doctoring Data. This was an attempt to help people understand the background to the tidal wave of medical information that crashes over us each and every day. Information that is often completely contradictory 'Coffee is good for you... no, wait it's bad for you... no, wait, it's good for you again,' repeat ad nauseam.

I also pointed out some of the tricks, games and manipulations that are used to make medications seem far more effective than they truly are, or vice-versa. This, I have to say, can be a very dispiriting world to enter. When I give talks on this subject, I often start with a few quotes.

For example, here is Dr Marcia Angell, who edited the New England Journal of Medicine for over twenty years, writing in 2009:
"It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgement of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as editor of the New England Journal of Medicine."
Have things got better? No, I believe that they have got worse - if that were, indeed, possible. I was sent the following e-mail recently, about a closed door, no recording discussion, under no-disclosure Chatham House rules, in May of this year:
"A secretly recorded meeting between the editors-in-chief of The Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine reveal both men bemoaning the 'criminal' influence big pharma has on scientific research.

"According to Philippe Douste-Blazy, France's former Health Minister and 2017 candidate for WHO Director, the leaked 2020 Chatham House closed-door discussion between the [editor-in-chiefs] - whose publications both retracted papers favorable to big pharma over fraudulent data.

"Now we are not going to be able to, basically, if this continues, publish any more clinical research data because the pharmaceutical companies are so financially powerful today, and are able to use such methodologies, as to have us accept papers which are apparently methodologically perfect, but which, in reality, manage to conclude what they want them to conclude," said Lancet [editor-in-chief] Richard Horton."
A YouTube video where this issue is discussed can be found here. It is in French, but there are English subtitles.

USA

Michigan state passes controversial bill to microchip humans voluntarily 'to protect their privacy'

Microchip
© GreatMediaIndia
The Michigan House of Representatives has passed a controversial bill to microchip humans voluntarily in the state under the guise of protecting their privacy. The Microchip Protection Act would allow Michigan employers to use microchipping of their workers with their consent. However, research has shown that RFID transponders causes cancer.

The plan to microchip humans is sponsored by Rep. Bronna Kahle under the guise of protecting the privacy of workers. The stated objective of the bill is that it will protect the privacy rights of Michigan workers and promote further growth for job providers as it relates to microchipping - a cutting-edge technology on the rise that increases workplace efficiency.
"With the way technology has increased over the years and as it continues to grow, it's important Michigan job providers balance the interests of the company with their employees' expectations of privacy."

"Microchipping has been brought up in many conversations as companies across the country are exploring cost-effective ways to increase workplace efficiency. While these miniature devices are on the rise, so are the calls of workers to have their privacy protected."

Rep. Bronna Kahle, the Republican who sponsored the bill, said in a press statement.

Attention

Gigantic COVID case-counting deception at the CDC

COVID 19
© Wikipedia
For this piece, we have to enter the official world (of the insane) — where everyone is quite sure a new coronavirus was discovered in China and the worthless diagnostic tests mean something and the case numbers are real and meaningful. Once we execute all those absurd maneuvers, we land square in the middle of yet another scandal — this time at our favorite US agency for scandals, the CDC.

The Atlantic, May 21, has the story, headlined, "How could the CDC make that mistake?"

I'll give you the key quotes, and then comment on the stark inference The Atlantic somehow failed to grasp.

"We've learned that the CDC is making, at best, a debilitating mistake: combining test results that diagnose current coronavirus infections with test results that measure whether someone has ever had the virus...The agency confirmed to The Atlantic on Wednesday that it is mixing the results of viral [PCR] and antibody tests, even though the two tests reveal different information and are used for different reasons."

"Several states — including Pennsylvania, the site of one of the country's largest outbreaks, as well as Texas, Georgia, and Vermont — are blending the data in the same way. Virginia likewise mixed viral and antibody test results until last week, but it reversed course and the governor apologized for the practice after it was covered by the Richmond Times-Dispatch and The Atlantic. Maine similarly separated its data on Wednesday; Vermont authorities claimed they didn't even know they were doing this."

"'You've got to be kidding me,' Ashish Jha, the K. T. Li Professor of Global Health at Harvard and the director of the Harvard Global Health Institute, told us when we described what the CDC was doing. 'How could the CDC make that mistake? This is a mess'."

"The CDC stopped publishing anything resembling a complete database of daily [COVID] test results on February 29. When it resumed publishing test data last week [the middle of May]..."

Arrow Up

Sweden's COVID statistics update

COVID 19 deaths in Sweden continue their downwards trend towards zero, and are about 95% lower than model forecasts.

Covid Deaths Sweden
The same people who over predicted deaths in Sweden by 2000% now claim they have "the highest death rate in the world." But death rates in Sweden are lower than San Marino, Belgium, Andorra, UK, Spain, Italy, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Washington DC, Louisiana, Michigan, Illinois, Pennsylvania and Maryland.

Arrow Down

The very talented Greta Thunberg

Besides being able to see CO2, Greta is also a virus expert.

Greta Thunberg
Greta can see CO2!