I’m thinking very seriously about making this my final COVIDIOT shamdemic post.
A recent study claimed that the annual motorcycle rally held last month in Sturgis, South Dakota was a “superspreader event” infecting more than half of the 460,000 attendees at a cost of $12 billion to our public health institutions.
In a report titled “IZA DP No. 13670: The Contagion Externality of a Superspreading Event: The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and COVID-19,” claimed that “large crowds, coupled with minimal mask-wearing and social distancing by attendees” turned the rally into a “superspreader” infecting 260,000 people.
Authors Dhaval M. Dave, Andrew I. Friedson, Drew McNichols, and Joseph J. Sabia concluded that “the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally generated public health costs of approximately $12.2 billion.”
The public health risks of Sturgis were so rigorously studied by the authors that “no medical journal would touch it,” as bestselling author and public health writer Alex Berenson noted on Tuesday. Instead, the report was posted on the website of the obscure Insitute of Labor Economics, a leftwing German thinktank.
Our infotainment industry — formerly known as “the mainstream media,” and prior to that as “the news business” — went bonkers over the claim.
The Hill — formerly a respectable Washington-based publication — breathlessly ran the study’s claims as though they were undisputed by anyone without a political agenda.
Here’s a partial list:
- NBC News: Sturgis rally may have caused more than 250,000 new coronavirus cases, study finds
- USA Today: Study says Sturgis bike rally was a ‘super-spreader’ event, led to 260,000 COVID-19 cases
- IBT: Sturgis Rally May Have Led To 250,000 New US Coronavirus Cases, Study Estimates
- Jalopnik: Results Are In: Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Was A COVID ‘Super Spreader’ Costing Billions
- Forum News Service: Researchers: Sturgis rally a ‘superspreader event’ linked to 267K coronavirus cases
- Kaiser Health News: Sturgis Biker Rally Linked To 260,000 COVID cases
PLEASE NOTE: I boldfaced all those mentions of new “cases” above for a reason, folks. To wit:
I am begging you not to use the enemy’s language. Stop saying “cases”. Correct people who do.
A positive test is not a case. A case is an active symptomatic illness in a person needing or seeking treatment. A case is not a person who just has the bug and has, say, only the sniffles. Most people who get this don’t develop anything like a serious illness. Many never even knew they had it!
Again, some positive tests are false. Most genuine positives tests not are not symptomatic. (Here is one example.)
Positive tests do not necessarily mean active infections. I told us months ago the test was likely picking up past infections. This has since been verified (and it was always likely). Also as we guessed a long time ago, using evidence from other similar infections, the best current guess of the infection fatality rate is about 0.3%. We used similar numbers to show pictures of the number of people likely already infected.
Propagandists and governments are using these false “cases” to cause unnecessary panic. When you hear somebody say “cases”, tell them, “You mean positive tests. How many of them required hospitalization? How many deaths were caused by the virus? How many died with it?”
Stop saying cases!
Also stop saying deaths. Say “attributed deaths”, or “deaths with but not necessarily by.” Poor use of language has exacerbated this crisis beyond all measure. Do not contribute to it.
From the very start of this fiasco, it’s been nothing but lies and deception, all the way down. Well, unless one would like to be generous about the thing and credit witless stupidity instead, which I admit is a possibility too. But either way, the scam served its purpose very well already; the soaring Trump economy has been thoroughly brought down, the Amerikan populace cowed and subjugated, the “new normal” established. The shamdemic horse has been well and truly flogged nearly unto death at this point, and I for one am sick and tired of hearing about the damned thing, much less talking about it here.
So unless it’s something other than yet another run-of-the-mill “whoopsie, got it wrong” admission from yet another gaggle of mutton-headed “experts,” I’m thinking of just packing it all in for good. Perhaps that will be harder to do than I think at the moment; could be my spluttering rage as TPTB smear yet another transparent lie into the faces of the gullible majority will force me to the keyboard for another rant on this tired topic. We’ll see.
Oh yeah, that Sturgis “superspreader” surge? Guess what.
According to South Dakota health officials, 124 new cases in the state—including one fatal case—were directly linked to the rally. Overall, COVID-19 cases linked to the Sturgis rally were reported in 11 states as of September 2, to a tune of at least 260 new cases, according to The Washington Post.
There very well may be more cases that have been linked to the early August event, but so far, that’s only 260 confirmed cases—about 0.1 percent of the number the IZA paper offers.
The results of the IZA paper “do not align with what we know,” South Dakota epidemiologist Joshua Clayton said at a Tuesday news briefing.
The IZA paper “isn’t science; it’s fiction,” Gov. Kristi Noem (R) said.
It’s also good election-time propaganda, apparently.
NOW you’re getting it.