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Alan Weiss

I heard tonight that Washington State has changed its prediction from 1,400 deaths to 600, that the curve has flattened before anyone expected, and that they've sent hundreds of ventilators to states that need them more. This was a former "hot spot." 

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Heidipozzo

Scott,

So sorry to hear about you mom. Best wishes to you and the rest of your family for a speedy recovery.

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Heidipozzo

Greetings from WA state! It is interesting to see the changes in predictions. Same has happened in Oregon and they are sending ventilators out too. Watching the models has been interesting. They haven't made sense to me. Not an expert in health, but have studied numbers a lot.

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JeffreyScott

I am always amazed how models can predict change, but struggle to predict the rate of change, especially as the rate changes.

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Liz de Clifford

Scott,    So very sorry to hear about the passing of your Mother.  Please take care of yourself gently, and restfully...this takes a while to recover from.  My nursing background has often showed me some extra time to heal can help in the long run.

Liz

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Alan Weiss

Heidi, the inaccuracy of the  predictions in Washington should tell all of us to ignore either extreme and/or perhaps every prediction about the illness trends. I'm happy that they're better than the alarmists predicted.

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Alan Weiss

I was talking to a coaching client in Oslo this morning. Norway has a pretty tough control in place. But they share an enormous border with Sweden, and the Swedes are allowing mass gatherings, shopping, sports, etc. This time of year, for the holidays, the Norwegians habitually go to Sweden to shop. Norway imposed a $2,000 fine for crossing the border, but the population is simply paying it and shopping. No one knows what the results of this will be, there is no mandatory isolation.

Interesting fact: The Norwegians, who were allies during the war, as opposed to the Swedes who claimed neutrality, discovered oil to make the country wealthy, but the generation which did so remained very frugal from their poor days. The ensuing generations, growing up with oil, have no such frugality and spend with great pleasure. Reminds me that the third generation usually ruins businesses their members inherit.

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Linda Henman

My tax guy just called me today to discuss the ppp and EID loans. He's encouraging me to apply for both, even though I might not need either. I would encourage everyone to check with their tax people in the US to see what programs might make sense for you.

Scott, so sorry about your mother. I hope you and your family recovery quickly. Please keep us posted. 

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popky

Two other pandemic related aid programs I just heard about:

In CA, by law, property taxes are due tomorrow, April 10th. That can't be changed without a new law being passed. However, in some counties, like where I live, the tax collectors have decided they will not have their offices open until the lockdown is over (May 4th is the date as of now). If the office isn't open, then property owners can't be considered late on their payments, so they have in effect moved the due date out a month. Creative way to help out.

Second, and this may apply to most of us in the US. . . . Because the rate of car accidents has declined dramatically with virtually no one driving, most major auto insurers are offering a rebate to customers. It differs by company, but it's in the neighborhood of 15% of your premium. My agent contacted me to tell me about this, which will happen automatically. Glad to see them give the money back to their customers, rather than inflating their profits at a time when many people are hurting.

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andrewhollo
12 hours ago, Alan Weiss said:

Interesting fact: The Norwegians, who were allies during the war, as opposed to the Swedes who claimed neutrality, discovered oil to make the country wealthy, but the generation which did so remained very frugal from their poor days. The ensuing generations, growing up with oil, have no such frugality and spend with great pleasure. Reminds me that the third generation usually ruins businesses their members inherit.

I'm also fascinated by this Alan. Their government has taken care of the spendthrift potential in the population by creating the world's largest sovereign wealth fund, from which all Norwegians benefit ---  Last year’s return on investment amounted to almost $34,000 for each of the 5.3 million people living in Norway, and the overall value of the fund is now equivalent to about $207,000 for every man, woman and child. 

Andrew

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Alan Weiss

Excellent observation, Andrew. The Swedes benefitted by sitting on their hands during the war, the Norwegians fought hard, were invaded, and overrun. 

Immigrants fought hard to be in the US, survived massive discrimination, and established businesses, from laundromats to hot dog stands, and put their kids through college. The kids retained their parents' sense of frugality, and entered the business world or began their own businesses. The next generation simply assumed wealth was their birthright, and their values largely eroded. Unearned wealth can kill a society or a family, in my opinion.

The Norwegians are now in a position (by the way, my client in Norway is Hungarian, not Norwegian) where a generation is wealthy through no effort of their own and sees no risks where others do. Will that lead the country down a different path some day? Paying a $2,000 fine (if that's true, I'm citing a source I haven't confirmed) to shop in an area where few protective efforts exist against a communicable disease, and returning home to interact with others, is a staggering decision.

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KrisWalkerly

@scottsimmonds I am so sorry to hear about your mom, and I hope you and your father are recovering, and the rest of your family is doing OK.

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Alan Weiss

Latest factual reports are that even New York is handling the predicted "surge" and that the curves may be flattening. I have no idea if that's a blip or a trend. Russia has admitted that they haven't reported the real story, and the Mayor of Moscow is somewhat desperate. More and more people, the latest I've read is a highly respected former Times investigative reporter, are saying that we misinterpreted a great deal and therefore our resulting actions have been poor. I'm hoping that in May the authorities begin to open up the economy again. 

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scottsimmonds

Thank you all for your kind words.  Fortunately we had moved back to Maine three weeks before my Mom got sick. I was able to be her care-giver I got to show her love by action and caring. I'm 99% recovered.

I'm still thinking about the future.  

I've had it.  Frankly, I kinda feel like superman now.  I can go into a store confident (reasonably confident) that I can not get it again.  My sister lives a few miles away.  Nobody in her family has had it.  It dawned on me that I should be doing all her shopping. They risk infection every time they go out in the world.  If I go to the store for her half the time it cuts down on her exposure. 

Those of us who have had it can be helping those who have not had it.

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scottsimmonds

Delivery services hiring only people who have recovered...  Grocery stores with cashiers who have all recovered.   Our store is safer than their store because we have all had it.  Will proof of antibodies be a marketable value?

 

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Alan Weiss

How do you know who has recovered? A lot of people have had it and recovered and don't realize it. Do we need to carry antigen ID cards? 

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patrickdaly

The only way to know who has had it would be to have massive antibody testing and right now that capability doesn’t exist. It may well have to be part of the recovery effort though along with testing for the illness itself. 

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popky

Hi Scott. Glad you were able to take care of your mom. I’m sure that meant a lot to her. 
Good for you for shopping for your sister! Have you also thought of donating blood plasma? One of the quickest ways to develop treatments is to work with plasma from survivors. Your doctor can tell you if you would be a good candidate for donation.  

Take care of yourself. You’ve been through a lot. Don’t push too hard too quickly!

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DavidOgilvie
On 4/10/2020 at 9:32 PM, Alan Weiss said:

Unearned wealth can kill a society or a family

Alan, how then does the "old" European money continue to survive? Or doesn't it, is that simply a myth?

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Alan Weiss

Some of it survives because there is so damn much of it in some families that even wastrels can't spend it all. But there's less of that than in the US where, aside from the traditional fortunes (Vanderbilts, Cabots, Rockefellers, etc.), capitalism has created fortunes not seen since before the income tax became permanent (1920s or so, I'm too lazy to look it up). My father used to say, "Them that has, gets." I unabashedly admit I love having power, but there's a limit which we see in professional athletes, entertainers, and business moguls. Some people just have too much money.

Look at the disgusting college bribery cases here, and listen to these kids who gained entry through the bribes. Some of them are functionally inarticulate. 

Five guys came here this morning to remove a 50+ year-old fence around the tennis and basketball court in preparation for our new pavilion out there (I'm keeping my wife off the streets and away from online shopping). They're making $2,500 collectively, and brought three big trucks and equipment. When they looked in my garage they said, "Great cars!" They weren't resentful, they admired them and probably then went to ask my designer out there what the hell I did for a living (something we're all still trying to identify). This is not the land of the "tall poppy," it's the land of independence and allowing talent to prevail. Like anything that's terrific, there are extremes to be avoided.

IMG_0140.jpeg

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popky

I saw John Barry interviewed on a news program last week. 
Well, I saw just a bit of it. The man was a little too passionate about pandemics and death for my taste. I had to turn it off and go get a drink. And I don’t really drink. 

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Praveen

Here's how things might be when people finally go back to offices:

 

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Alan Weiss

I agree, if we continue to be so freakin' paranoid.

As I mentioned elsewhere, the doctor who approved me for the antigen test didn't have his mask on over his nose. 

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JeffreyScott

Alan,

If you did a case study around this, here is what I would recommend we do.

Given how the great influenza behaved (it killed 20-50M, up to 10%, in three waves BUT mostly people in their prime, not the elderly!)

And given that mostly the elderly are dying from Covid-19 (80%) due to how the immune system over reacts.

I recommend we could view Covid-19 in two segments.

  1. The % of elderly that die from it.
  2. The % of everyone else who dies from it.

If you remove the elderly from the overall equation of 2% dying from Covid-19, then in fact Covid-19 death rate is under 0.5% for everyone else (and possibly less depending on how many of that younger segment actually catch it.).

Thus I would recommend a segmented approach based on this.

  • Let the kids and young adults go back to school right away, assuming they are not living with their grandparents.
  • Open up all safe jobs right away, and  unsafe jobs depending on how it impacts the elderly.
  • Develop a strategy to protect the elderly specifically over the next 2 years, assuming this comes back in waves like the great influenza did.

 

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