By SETH J. FRANTZMAN
This is a blog post of links to interesting content about the crises
SIX MONTHS of social distancing: March31; After England’s deputy chief medical officer warned on Sunday that the UK’s coronavirus lockdown could last for “six months or more”, experts say that prolonged social distancing measures – if not full-blown confinements – may well be necessary and that some permanent changes to behaviour are likely.
Lockdown could last six months, UK chief medical officer says
The poor have no place to socially distance.
UK coronavirus response criticized as people are filmed by drones and stopped while shopping; Widespread debate about police coronavirus tactics first emerged last week, when Derbyshire’s force posted a video of drone footage showing unwitting people walking through the area’s Peak District National Park.
Old people meet at border despite restrictions
Sweden has some of the fewest limits on social movement in any European country. Its containment of the novel coronavirus is largely based on voluntary action. CNN’s Bianca Nobilo report
Neil Ferguson and his models of death rates
British Airways suspends flights from Gatwick.
– Paris Orly airport to shut amid coronavirus.
CNBC urges people to follow Singapore
The “Second Curve” in Israel of unemployment
Police attack people inSouth Africa during lockdown
Drop in China cell users may mean death toll higher
China didn’t count coronavirus positives if they didn’t have symptoms.
“Any place but China is safe,” they said. China after the lockdown.
Why Iceland has chosen no to implement a lockdown.
Bolsonaro continues to prevent lockdown.
What happens to food supply if farmers can’ farm
Panama mandates which day men and women can leave home: “Panama has 1075 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 27 deaths, according to health officials, and has already taken some of the toughest measures in the region to stop the spread of the illness. The country has banned all domestic and international travel. It has shut down airports and — after a March 22 deadline — prevented even Panamanian citizens from traveling to the country. A nightly curfew already keeps Panamanians from leaving their homes from 9pm to 5am each day.”
CNN: France, like many other countries around the world, has entered a stringent lockdown and ordered residents to stay indoors. Any non-essential outing can draw a fine of up to €200 ($210)…I plotted the one-kilometer radius around our apartment to see how far I could possibly go, painstakingly wrote out my permission slip indicating my reason for going outdoors to exercise, and set off to explore my new ‘hood.
Security forces uses violence to enforce lockdowns across Africa.
April 4: Antibody testing may be the new way out of the crises.
April 5: A tiger has the virus.
Boris Johnson taken to hospital.
April 6: Israel failed against coronavirus, relating to testing and also quarantining areas.
US wasted months preparing to get masks.
Japan, which avoided lockdowns, may have state of emergency.
George W. Bush urged for plans for pandemic in 2005.
Austria plans to start reopening areas in mid-April.
Sweden considers u-turn on its more free view on the pandemic, considers closures.
US scrambles for ventilators, blocks some on way to Barbados, gets from Russians, tries to prevent exports to Canada. Everyone relies onChina. But quality control an issue. A $3.4 million check to a middleman in a Mcdonalds parking lot as states strive to get material.
UAE puts in place harsh new restrictions.
Wuhan ends lockdown, people say “please learn from our mistakes.”
BBC: But although there’s evidence that there may be other ways to contain the spread of infection other than harsh lockdowns, both men believe China is on the right path.
Wuhan has endured one of the most extensive and toughest set of quarantine restrictions on the planet. To begin with, people were allowed out to shop for food but by mid-February, nobody was allowed to leave their residential compounds. Delivery drivers became a vital lifeline. It’s a testament to the effectiveness of the lockdown which, despite doubts over the accuracy of the official figures, has undoubtedly slowed the infection rate dramatically. Over the past few weeks, some of the restrictions inside Wuhan have been slowly relaxed with some people being allowed out of their residential compounds and businesses beginning to reopen.
Guardian: Uncertainty of origin
In the public mind, the origin story of coronavirus seems well fixed: in late 2019 someone at the now world-famous Huanan seafood market in Wuhan was infected with a virus from an animal. The rest is part of an awful history still in the making, with Covid-19 spreading from that first cluster in the capital of China’s Hubei province to a pandemic that has killed about 80,000 people so far. Stock footage of pangolins – a scaly mammal that looks like an anteater – have made it on to news bulletins, suggesting this animal was the staging post for the virus before it jumped to humans. But there is uncertainty about several aspects of the Covid-19 origin story that scientists are trying hard to unravel, including which species passed it to a human. They’re trying hard because knowing how a pandemic starts is a key to stopping the next one.
CNN uncertainty of origin:
It’s “the most simple,obvious and likely explanation,” said Dr. Simon Anthony, a professor at the public health grad school of Columbia University and a key member of PREDICT, a federally funded global program investigating viruses in animal hosts with pandemic potential. PREDICT has discovered 180 coronaviruses over a decade. Though the scientists discount conspiracy theories about bioweapons, on other questions they are divided.
60% of ship tests positive: The ship set out on 15 March from the Argentinian port of Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world. It was to have undertaken a 16-day cruise to Antarctica and South Georgia, christened “In Shackleton’s Footsteps” after the Irish polar explorer, Ernest Shackleton…On Tuesday (April 7), the ship’s operator, Aurora Expeditions, said that of 132 passengers and 85 crew, 128 people had tested positive for Covid-19. Most on board are understood to be Australian, although there are also citizens of New Zealand, the US and the UK.
Japan to give economic support to those in sex industry “Those working legally in Japan’s sex industry will be able to access assistance in the government’s economic relief package, Health and Labor Minister Kazunobu Kato said in a news conference Tuesday.” Also “The government will provide a subsidy of 8,330 yen ($76) per day to businesses that allow employees to take leave to care for children out of school.” Bangladesh also supports sex workers with food.
Massive map of Israel police checkpoints.
New model shows less deaths in US.
CNN: Coronavirus may have been with us for years.Leading scientists tell CNN that it’s possible the virus didn’t just come from bats in the past months, but that it may have existed in humans many months or even years before it grew into a deadly pandemic. CNN’s Nick Paton Walsh reports.
Intelligence sources warned of outbreak in November.
Sweden “refuses” to lockdown.
Germany: Region eases Baltic coastal beach ban after court order.
Macron visitsdoctor who pioneered new drug to fight virus.
Japan pushes $1 trillion stimulus, EU has $500 billion, Singapore $48 billion,
Italy says more than 100 doctors have died of virus.
France considers digital tracking, raising privacy concerns.
Lockdown can’t end until vaccinne found, study clams.
India extends lockdown, Iran eases lockdown and Sweden concerned as deaths mount to 887 total.
NYT: Study shows virus outbreak in NY began in Europe.
Spain to ease lockdown. Israel increases lockdown for holiday. Adds military and police checkpoints in Jerusalem.
Iceland has tested ten percent of country, found half of cases asymptomatic.
Israel struggles to increase tests, one testing machine breaks on way from Switzerland, airport confusion and people sent to hotels, nursing home find numerous cases but can’t get them tested.
China imposes restrictions on academic papers about origins of virus.
Many older people may have died in nursing homes or at home and not been recorded.
How coronavirus spread in ultra-Orthodox communities via denial and stigma.
New Passover lockdown for Israel.
Handicapped children suffer under lockdowns, Amazon told to stop delivering “non-essential goods” in France, isolating children further. The lockdowns are a war on the poor and young.
McDonalds banned black people in China.
World facing depression worse than 1930s.
Austria and Italy reopen some shops.
Billionaires on yachts, Israel’s president apologizes for violating guidelines.
Social distancing may go on until 2022
Denmark children return to school.
People shamed for not social distancing when jogging.
France $110 billion for stimulus.
China concealed pandemic, M16 expert.
Bahrain sentences people for violating quarantine.
How come international community is so slow to work together on coordinated concerted effort toward vaccine? WHO only has a signed document now, most firms are private that are working on it, funds are short, disparate 115 efforts.
Amazon may stop shipping France due to court order of only bringing essential goods.
Antibody tests may not be the promise they seemed.
China didn’t warn of pandemic for six key days.
Condolezza Rice notes that China needs pushback about how it handled virus.
Paris police check people for signed forms that they were only out for two hours a day, Israel police breakup synagogue service in Beit Shemesh, fine group that had mass gathering. “5000ILS for leader of the Toldos Avrohom Yitzchok sect after the mass gathering over the holiday.” Israel police breakup testing facility in Silwan.
Israeli leaders under fire for not obeying guidelines: Netanyahu, Gallant, Liberman, Litzman, Rivlin.
Report that virus spreads through air conditioners.
Newsweek: “Less well understoodin this debacle is the role that the United States, and its allies in the developed world, played in allowing Beijing to become so influential in the WHO, with consequences that now appear to be ruinous. The coronavirus catastrophe is the second massive ‘China shock’ to hit the United States and the rest of developed world in the last 20 years. The first unfolded in slow motion, in the years after Beijing, with the U.S’s enthusiastic support, joined the World Trade Organization in 2001. What followed over the next decade and a half was, in the words of a landmark 2016 study by three U.S. economists for the National Bureau of Economic Research, “an epochal shift in patterns of world trade.” In industry after industry—including, we now learn, the pharmaceutical and medical equipment industry— large companies shifted their supply chains out of the United States and into China, lured by the extraordinarily plentiful and cheap labor available there. Entire industries were hollowed out, and in the Rust Belt in particular, entire towns were devastated.”
Poor communities with multigenerational families in cities suffer most in US.
Virus lockdowns empower “little tyrants,” also a concern about rising domestic abuse.
US funds 15% of WHO on eve of Trump’s cuts, while China funds around 1% but has more influence than US on WHO.
Liberal globalization has been harmed by pandemic.
The Diplomat: Did china deliberately sickenthe world?
Kushners ignore guidelines.
How Taiwan got it right.
60% of those on US carrier were symptom-free.
While small businesses get denied for stimulus large corporations that laid off staff get paid.
Police in UK enforce new “reasonable guidelines” for leaving the house.
Five NY zip codes with largest death toll are poor and minority areas.
China revises death toll. Read the original February WHO report that showed China’s cases rise and fall on a curve. China’s history of revisions go back to February when they revised the number of cases upwards by thousands, and then in April when it turned out they hadn’t included asymptomatic cases.
How the FT creates its charts.
Australia may keep lockdowns for a year.
Barcelona calls for children to be freed from lockdown. They are forbidden to leave home.
Germany says virus under control, will end lockdowns.
Saudi Arabia predicts air travel won’t resume for a year.
More than 20 million newly unemployed in the US.
UK paid $20 million for antibody tests that didn’t work.
CNN: China may emerge stronger
Denmark returns to school.
Turkey’s mixed lockdown policy as its cases are about to exceed Iran.
Remember when Turkey revealed Iran had 750 cases but only admitted 18?
Dart championship held at home wi-fi.
In Israel people go surfing and out in Florentine while in America armed men hold a rally against lockdown.
Did virus appear in context of US-China trade war?
Trump calls for liberation of several US states, “LIBERATE VIRGINIA, and save your great 2nd Amendment. It is under siege!”
US and Canada funded lab in Wuhan.
Police threatened to arrest a teen for posting that she had virus, claiming it caused panic.
Navy reviewing crozier case.
France denies lab it funded is linked to pandemic.
France considers phone tracking app.
Belgium biotech firm rolls out antibody tests
Clashes in Paris over “heavy handed enforcement” of lockdowns.
Italy promises lockdown plan.
Oil below zero. The black swan event, second curve rattles markets for oil futures.
Virgin Australia to go bankrupt.
Harvard got $9 million stimulus despite massive endowment…Shake Shake gave back $10 million it received as “small business”
China says it has found 30 mutated strains of the virus.
Spain to extend lockdown to mid-May
Germany to make masks mandatory, Austria has made them mandatory in shops while Switzerland has not.
US warns “Second wave” could be worse.
US says it has identified deaths due to virus earlier in year; “Autopsies on two people who died on 6 February and 17 February show they died with Covid-19.”
Antibody tests in California reveal more people had it than previously thought. This “is very consistent with the fact that the virus is very common but not killing at the rate we thought,” Dr. Ioannidis said. It may not be as lethal as we believe.
UN warns of “biblical famines.”
Half of France private sector unemployed.
Harvard profits from Us stimulus, while Bath Spa university charges students for unused dorms.
US failed to block virus vaccine resolution at UN.
China says virus can survive in human eye.
China shows off virus lab after claims the virus escaped from lab.
Syria’s Kurdish region angry at lack of support over pandemic.
Missouri sues China. US South wants to re-open. Protests increase in US.
In France riots in Paris suburbs over harsh police enforcement.
People starve in Nigeria amid lockdown.
The UAE’s National Disinfection Program has been so effective that international experts are now calling upon the US Homeland Security Dept to sit down and learn from them.
Comparing annual deaths this year and last.
Antibody tests: A total of 3,000 customers at supermarkets across the state of New York were randomly tested for coronavirus antibodies this week, Governor Andrew Cuomo said Thursday. Almost 14 percent of them registered positive, he told reporters. In New York City, 21 percent of tests came back positive.
China installs surveillance cameras to quarantine people.
New Zealand says it is virus free
As WHO says world should have listened, a remind that on Feb. 25 it misled people and waited until March 11, when outside China, 32,778 cases across at least 109 countries had been confirmed, to declare a pandemic.
Germany to give fines of up to $5,000 for improper wearing of masks.
Mystery as to low death toll in India.
Australians download virus tracking software.
Some children are returning to school.
Mystery of low death toll in India continues.
De Blasio slamsJews over coronavirus.
Argentina stopped al flights untilSeptember.
California closes beaches
Michigan – armed militia comes to capitol building.
WHO praisesSweden’s non-lockdown because people obey guidelines.
Human rights abuses in Central Asia during lockdown.
False positives continue to be a problem.
Coronavirus pushes people into poverty.
Half the world’s workers could lose their jobs.
Cyber spying by governments increases during coronavirus. Increased removals of context by social media giants. YouTube removes media interviews also: “We quickly remove flagged content that violate our Community Guidelines, including content that explicitly disputes the efficacy of local healthy authority recommended guidance on social distancing that may lead others to act against that guidance,” said the statement. “However, content that provides sufficient educational, documentary, scientific or artistic (EDSA) context is allowed — for example, news coverage of this interview with additional context…23ABC’s Bayan Wang asked Russomanno that with over 1 billion users and a haven for expression is YouTube considered a public forum that should uphold freedom of speech?”; In other cases anonymous “fact checkers” are able to flag and have content removed on Facebook that disputes scientific consensus. “Inaccurate: Genomic analyses of the coronavirus shows it was not engineered. So-called “HIV insertions” are actually found in many organisms. Genomic analyses of the novel coronavirus shows that it has a natural origin and was not engineered. The claim that the virus has genetic material from HIV is based on a preprint with significant flaws in study design and execution that was later withdrawn by the authors. As it turned out, the so-ca…”
China’s “mask diplomacy”
Arlines say it will be years until things are open.
“Before publicly acknowledging COVID-19 was capable of human transmission, China secretly launched a global plan to buy up personal protection equipment, contributing to world-wide shortages of the desperately needed pandemic supplies.”
ABC reported two days ago “Trump admin pulls NIH grant for coronavirus research over ties to Wuhan lab at heart of conspiracy theories”…and National Interest noted on April 29 “Secretary of State Mike Pompeo defended U.S. funding for the Wuhan Institute of Virology as a program “to protect American people from labs that aren’t up to standard” in a Fox and Friends interview on Wednesday.”
Canada also funded the lab: “The Canadian government did not explain why the Wuhan lab was chosen, in particular, as a research partner,” the Globe and Mail says.
Throwback to March 31 “WHO stands by recommendation to not wear masks if you are not sick or not caring for someone who is sick.” Same WHO wrote on February 25 that China “strategy that underpinned this containment effort was initially a national approach that promoted universal temperature monitoring, masking, and hand washing,” and affirmed wearing masks in general public.” Yet the WHO and western governments urged against masks for the next month. Now $1,000 fines for not wearing masks in some parts of US, includingTexas and Calfornia. On May 1 both San Diego and Denver made masks mandatory.
US government report assesses China intentionallyc oncealed severity of coronavirus.
France confirms a virus case from December, upending previous data.
Thousands of cruise ship crew still stuck at sea.
400,000 gowns from Turkey useless in UK
Virus began last year.
A new way to look at the ‘curve.’
Timeline of China’s response to the coronavirus.
“The European Union has acknowledged it allowed the Chinese government to censor an opinion piece published in the country, removing a reference to the origin of the coronavirus outbreak and its subsequent spread worldwide.”
Sex workers in Spain struggle amid pandemic.
Were lockdowns based on crude guesswork.
Minorities and people who stayed home make up new cases in NY.
BBC: Why we should all be wearing face masks.
Europe eases lockdowns, France let’s people out without permits.
China postponed and pressured WHO during early crisis.
China says it will test 11 million people in Wuhan due to new cases.
Emirates to restart flights
Virus may never go away-WHO
Boris Johnson promises virus alert level
Greta Thunberg on CNN “expert” panel about coronavirus.
Russia didn’t count 60% of virus deaths.
Controversy at French drug maker after claims US would get first vaccine shipments.
US sacked health expert warns of “darkest winter” as worldwide deaths cross 300,000
Baltic states coronavirus corridor.
US Senator investigated for insider trading “Mr Burr and his wife sold as much as $1.7m (£1.4m) of equities in February, just before markets plunged on fears of an economic crisis.”
Israel airport to try virus free areas, corridor proposed with Czech and other states as schools reopen.
Global inquiry into Covid-19 response.
Leaked database claims 640,000 may have been infected in China.
NY Mayor slams Jews a second time in tweet about “Yeshiva” after bashing funeral, adid rise in antisemitic attacks.
CNN notes that China could exploit time before review of WHO behavior. “Waiting until, in Xi’s words, the pandemic is “brought under control to sum up experience and address deficiencies,” could be a long wait indeed. By that time, China’s position globally could be vastly changed. The country’s economy has begun to reopen, and as it does it will become even more important to many of its trading allies, who have fewer partners to choose from right now. Beijing is also not blind to the potential opportunity to emerge from the crisis not weakened but stronger, taking advantage of how the crisis is affecting the US and the attractive sheen it is putting on China’s own brand of authoritarian control for some governments.”
America puts white circles in park to show how to social distance.
UN accused of failed response.
Covid-19 destroyed a generationin northern Italy.
Oxfam ends work in many countries.
Sweden’s approach questioned as numbersdon’t reach ‘herd immunity.’
China’s New Outbreak Shows Signs the Virus Could Be Changing
UK Prime Minister advisor accused of breaking lock down, “Dominic Cummings drove more than 260 miles (420 km) from London to Durham, where he stayed with family members just days after Johnson put the UK into lockdown and banned family visits, an investigation by The Guardian and Daily Mirror found.” He joins a growing list of officials who appear to have broke regulations, including Israel’s health minister, Presidentand PM, and Trump and Kushner and New Zealand’s Health Minister who took a trip to the beach; and Prof. Ferguson, Cabinet Minister Jenrick; in addition “Scotland’s chief medical officer resigned in April after twice breaking lockdown restrictions in order to visit her second home, which was located more than an hour away from her main residence in Edinburgh.”
Executives dump stock of company after vaccine results.
US billionaires got $434 billion wealthier during pandemic.
By sending Covid-19 patients to nursing homes, New York may have helped increase deaths by 5,000. “The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine, known as AMDA, had warned from the beginning that Cuomo’s order admitting infected patients posed a ‘clear and present danger’ to nursing home residents. Now, Jeffrey N. Nichols, who serves on the executive committee of the group, said ‘the effect of that order was to contribute to 5,000 deaths.'”
Beaches besieged by people going despite lockdown.
“The Lancet on Thursday retracted a study that raised safety fears over the use of a drug favored by President Donald Trump to treat COVID-19, after the paper’s authors said they could no longer vouch for its underlying data.”…Chris Chambers, a professor of psychology at Cardiff University, added the affair “raises serious questions about the standard of editing at the Lancet and NEJM — ostensibly two of the world’s most prestigious medical journals.”
No second wave in China: Central China’s Hubei Province cleared all its confirmed COVID-19 cases on Thursday, the provincial health commission said Friday
US protests continue across the country for a week now, with hundreds of protests, more than 11,000 arrests. Unclear Covid-19 impact.
Spike in Israel leads to more than 50 school closures and fear of “second wave.”
Australia bans“black lives matter” protest due to Covid-19
GAP loses $1 billion due to virus.
Doctors support protests in the US, claim it outweighs virus threat.
WHO: Coronavirus fight not over“until there is no virus anywhere in the world,” WHO says.
Germans protest Covid restrictions.