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    • Mon, Jan 11, 2021 - 10:58am

      #3
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      Asymptomatic Covid Spreaders

    They “assumed” only 30% of individuals with infection don’t develop symptoms and that asymptomatic individuals are 75% as infectious as those who develop symptoms.

    Both assumptions are wrong.

    Garbage in, garbage out.

    • Fri, Jan 08, 2021 - 10:54am

      #3
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      Reply To: Using HELOC to pay off mortgage early

    There is more risk in a variable rate loan than a fixed rate loan.  Also, never roll an unsecured debt in to a secured debt.  Why put your home at risk for credit card debt?

    Just pay off your debt.  That will make you more resilient.

     

     

    • Mon, Dec 21, 2020 - 12:09pm

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      I am wondering if a mutation is spreading in Iowa.

    This is anecdotal but I personally know of  14 people off the top of my head who have tested positive.  The first person was positive way back in April.   Then nothing until a woman in her 60’s with what she acknowledged were severe comorbidities tested positive in September.  She ended up in a hospital, but is doing OK.  Starting in late October, there are 12 people I know of that were positive.  Nine had nothing more than a headache, not even a fever.  The others had mild flu-like symptoms, which none described as especially bad.

    There are also plunging case counts and hospitalizations.  Case count is down 67%, hospitalizations are down 57%, ICU down 51% since mid November.  What makes this weird is that cases, hospitalizations, and deaths all peaked within days of each other.  There is supposed to be a 2 week lag between each.  Caveat:  The peak in deaths was more like a two week plateau the last half of November, and the state back fills deaths to the day they occurred so the data may change some.

    The most likely explanation I can think of is a less virulent strain started spreading and has now become prevalent.  There is no change in behavior that I know of that can explain this.  Iowa has the 6th lowest per capita rate of new cases in  the US all while most schools are in person, restaurants are still open for indoor dining, bars are open, and Thanksgiving wasn’t cancelled.   Ironically, the governor instituted a limited mask mandate (only if you are in public, indoors, and within 6 ft of someone for more than 15 minutes) 5 days after cases peaked and the exact day hospitalizations peaked.

    • Tue, Dec 01, 2020 - 10:43am

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      Reply To: Exponential growth in COVID deaths

    You cant just extrapolate the past into the future.  Daily cases have already peaked in the North Central US.  The supposed epicenter of the winter surge. Despite wildly different policies and behavior in each state the peaks all fell within one week of each other.

    • November 14 – South Dakota
    • November 15 – Iowa
    • November 16 – Illinois
    • November 17 – North Dakota and Kansas
    • November 18 – Wisconsin
    • November 19 – Missouri
    • November 20 – Minnesota and Nebraska

    Virus gonna do what virus gonna do.

    • Tue, Nov 24, 2020 - 04:42pm

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      Nobody should be wearing masks

    Not one person in a thousand uses them correctly.  These instructions are from the Mayo Clinic:

    How to wear a cloth face mask

    • Wash or sanitize your hands before and after putting on and taking off your mask.
    • Place your mask over your mouth and nose.
    • Tie it behind your head or use ear loops and make sure it’s snug.
    • Don’t touch your mask while wearing it.
    • If you accidentally touch your mask, wash or sanitize your hands.
    • If your mask becomes wet or dirty, switch to a clean one. Put the used mask in a sealable bag until you can wash it.
    • Remove the mask by untying it or lifting off the ear loops without touching the front of the mask or your face.
    • Wash your hands immediately after removing your mask.
    • Regularly wash your mask with soap and water by hand or in the washing machine. It’s fine to launder it with other clothes.

    Anybody on here do this?

    The focus on masks distracts everyone from what really works.  Physical distancing, by the number of people you interact with and how far apart you are is what matters.

    Also, look at the graphs of any country or US state.  It is impossible to tell if or when a mask mandate went into effect.

    • Mon, Oct 05, 2020 - 10:39pm

      #26
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      The “Sweden States”

    Dave and Quercus,

    I appreciate both of you taking the time to read this thread and provide feedback.

    I have no idea how to share a google sheet.  The data is all on the CDC website.  The first link below is for cases.  I export it to a CSV and then open it in a Libre Office spreadsheet.  The second link is for deaths.  I only copied the latest data to my spreadsheet.

    https://data.cdc.gov/Case-Surveillance/United-States-COVID-19-Cases-and-Deaths-by-State-o/9mfq-cb36

    https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid19/index.htm

    I feel for you Dave, and anyone else living in CA, NY, or any of those hard lock-down states.  I’m from Iowa.  Most people have learned to live with the virus and have gotten along with their lives.  Some larger events are still being canceled, but life has been pretty normal since May.  Most everything has been opened back up for months now.  I have worked in person the entire time.  Kids played Little League this summer and take the bus to school now (ful ltime).  We wear masks more, but some people figured out that most stores that require masks don’t actually enforce it so even in these stores around 1/3 of people don’t wear them.  I have never seen another customer call them out on it either.

    For Quercus I compared cases on May 15 and deaths on June 15.  The relationship is largely the same.  Urbanized states had 2.4 times the cases and 6.2 times the Covid deaths.   I couldn’t find cumulative excess death for June 15.  But on September 21 non-Covid excess deaths are negative in the Sweden States and for the 6 urbanized states are about 1/3 of the COVID deaths.  Add 1/3 to 701 and drop 113 by a little you are well over ten times the excess death.

    table 6

    Think of how many cases urban lock-down state needed to have if the relationship between cases and excess death rate is the same everywhere.  There would have had to been easily over 50,000 cases per day in NY alone at their peak.

    I wish I had more time to dig into this.  Like Eshkaljka said for ND hospitalizations are rising in IA too, but there has been so much spread this summer, and Vitamin D levels are still elevated, so I don’t expect any sort of pandemic wave like other states have experienced.  I do expect the excess death gaps to narrow.  Maybe a monthly update would be good.

    • Fri, Oct 02, 2020 - 10:09pm

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      The “Sweden States”

    Had some feedback that these were rural states and the difference in excess death was just because there were fewer cases because the virus couldn’t spread as much.

    Not so fast.  Check out the cases per million in the original Sweden states vs. the rest of the country.  All case counts are from August 21.  One full month before the excess death data, which is the accepted lag time for deaths.

    Table 3

    RoC has FIVE times the excess death with only 1.1 times the Covid cases.

    Same with the expanded state list.

    table 4

    RoC has 6.6 times the excess death with only 1.2 times the cases.

    Finally here are the 6 Sweden states vs. the 6 most urbanized states (NY, NJ, CA, MA, NV, and RI)

    table 5

    This time TEN times the excess death with only 1.2 times the cases.  By the way the 6 most urbanized states also rank as the number 10, 2, 3, 4, 30, and 11th most restrictive states respectively.  And Nevada (#30) only has 4% of the combined population.

    Something is going.  Either states that don’t lock-down catch every Covid case AND every state that decided to lock-down and stay locked down missed 80-90% of their Covid cases OR lock-downs kill people.

    • Wed, Sep 30, 2020 - 10:32pm

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      The Goldilocks Zone

    This blog post has a great section on the seasonality of influenza.

    https://jbhandleyblog.com/home/2020/7/27/lockdownlunacythree

    This one is a scorecard of social distancing, but I linked to it specifically for it’s Encounter Density statistic.  As you can see residents of South Dakota, the state with the fewest restrictions still have an encounter density 90+% less than the national average.

    https://www.unacast.com/covid19/social-distancing-scoreboard

    I’m starting to think the states I highlighted and a few others I’ll add below ended up in a sort of regional Goldilocks zone that Quercus alluded to earlier.  They avoided a pandemic spike in  the spring and allowed the virus to circulate when natural immunity is highest in the summer.

    Looking again at the COVID restriction rankings I added some northern states that locked down but have consistently had few restrictions.  Missouri (average rank 8.25), Wisconsin (average rank 7.5), Oklahoma (average rank 12) and Idaho (average rank 6.9).  I thought about adding Montana (average rank 16) and Kansas (average rank 16.5), which are only slightly higher than Nebraska (average rank 13).  But Montana is at #28 now and Kansas has never been in the top ten.

    The rest of the country has 6.6 times the excess death of the expanded list of states. 109 vs. 707.  To be fair the states in this region all have lower death rates than the rest of the country.  The ones that aren’t on this list (Minnesota, Montana, Colorado and Kansas) still have half the excess death (337 vs. 707)

    Now I expect the differences will narrow after this winter.  The real proof of whether these states got it right will be if the excess mortality is still lower this spring.  That will mean the virus did keep circulating this summer and substantial immunity was achieved during the most optimum season.

    • Wed, Sep 30, 2020 - 11:43am

      #12
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      The “Sweden States”

    QB,

    Short answer is, yes, the Urbanization index is correlated with excess mortality.  R-squared = .27.

    Long answer is the correlation with urbanization, and lock-downs may be somewhat a  function of the geographic location of many of  these states in the North Western / North Central region.  I’ll dig into it more and see if any relationships present themselves.

    • Tue, Sep 29, 2020 - 11:30am

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      The “Sweden States”

    No lock-downs are the driver of this difference.  Adding Arkansas, the only no lock-down state with a mask mandate, to the Sweden states still leaves a big gap between them and the rest of the country.  Adding the rest of the no mask mandate states to the Sweden states makes the excess death gap all but disappear.

    Table 2

    If I get time I may look into other health outcomes of these states vs ones that implemented lock-downs.

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