SIR OMICRON AND OTHER QUACKS
I had spent the better part of 2020 and a bit of 2021 providing statistics, graphs, and calculations for family and friends, in an attempt to dispel the Covidian hysteria. A summary piece can be viewed here. What I have not bothered to save are hundreds of links, daily data downloads, images from EuroMomo, Tweets, and debates, all in an attempt to prove that:
- Covid, even with exaggerated death counts, is marked by an average infection fatality rate of 0.23%, and a rate of 0.05% for those under 70. This is hardly the Bubonic Plague (this is higher than an average flu, yet much lower for anybody under 70).
- A simple comparison between lenient states and countries to restrictive states and countries shows no major differences across death rates.
3. With such a limited, and focused, risk profile, no draconic measures are justified, especially measures lacking any scientific validity such as masking and lockdowns. Also heckling and demonizing the unvaccinated is absolutely unnecessary. Who cares? Go and kiss a stranger on the mouth.
But here we are again. More panic.
A highly comical feature of our mass hysteria is the astonished “discovery” of forgotten features of biology.
Previously, I recall pieces in the New York Times all concerned and gloomy due to the realization that antibodies in the blood of those recovering from Covid decline within a few weeks. Clearly, somebody smoked weed instead of attending high school biology. That’s how the immune system works! Antibodies always decline, yet immunological memory remains in the ability to produce new antibodies when needed, and effective T-cells.
But gosh, Covid is a magic virus.
Currently, we are “discovering” the reality of virus variants. “Oh, no, will there be no end to these variants!?” Hello, that’s what viruses do! They mutate slightly and quickly, which is why we get a new flu shot every year. There is nothing magical or alarming about this. Covid, like any respiratory disease, mutates, and will mutate, and merges into our ever-changing cocktail of seasonal illnesses.
Is there a real reason to be concerned? No. Nothing thus far suggests the risk profile of the Omicron variant is more mischievous than the previous Delta, Beta or whatever variants. In fact, it seems to be LESS dangerous. While in theory a freak super lethal “variant” may appear, it is highly unlikely, in the same way that freak super lethal variants of the flu hardly ever appear.
The variant is aptly named though. Sir Omicron Pie is a stuffy quack in Anthony Trollope’s Barchester novels. A highly dignified doctor to the aristocrats and stars, whose reputation isn’t necessarily backed by any real science or results. Think of remedies such as a visit to a German spa.
The Omicron variant, or at least the surrounding hysteria, is also peddled by quacks and hysterics. Victorians by heart may at least find consolation in such Trollopism.