John Comnenus: Never Again – What we must learn from COVID-19

The most important thing we need to learn from the COVID 19 experience is we need to find a better way of dealing with the next pandemic.

There is an exceptionally high probability that we will face another pandemic in the coming years. Australia cannot respond to a COVID 21 or SARS 25 in the same way we responded to COVID 19. We simply won’t be able to afford it.

We need to study the full range of international responses to COVID 19, from total lock down responses like the UK to the almost do nothing response of Sweden. We need to do so to learn how to more efficiently respond to the next pandemic. We can’t repeat a response that costs 20%-30% of GDP, causes a massive economic contraction, creates 20% unemployment and puts over 50% of the workforce on wage subsidies. We simply can’t afford to respond in this way ever again. We need to task our best and brightest to find a better way.

The only caveat to this is if we rapidly start to relax the current measures and avoid the massive costs and economic consequences the government currently plans to inflict on us. The longer the government delays the reopening of business, the greater the damage, the higher the total cost to respond to COVID 19 and the slower the recovery will be. As for paying back the debt – it won’t happen in my life time.

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42 Responses to John Comnenus: Never Again – What we must learn from COVID-19

  1. What we need are more celebrities. Through comforting words in their mansions and songs on YouTube, all such calamities will be avoided. Celebrities are our future!

    https://youtu.be/LIScLe9gSQk

  2. Beachcomber

    We need to task our best and brightest to find a better way.

    Oh FFS! That’s the last thing we need! Our “best and brightest” are the ones who created this ridiculous panic and the monumental disasters of the “cure”.

    We are always going to have flu seasons and new strains of flu virus. In the past when there were still vestiges of reason and common sense in Western societies, we dealt with them by protecting and treating the vulnerable and following sensible hygiene practices. Now the West and its’ governing establishment are so far removed from the realities of human experience and existence, that we go into a self-destructive, hysterical frenzy at the mere suggestion of a new strain of flu virus.

  3. MACK

    I think Bill Gates and Donald Trump will throw money at medical research until effective treatment/vaccine is discovered for all respiratory viruses.

  4. Tel

    At least we are guaranteed no one could come up with a worse way to deal with a pandemic.

    We are of course presuming that this doesn’t go all the way through to a full coup and perhaps there won’t be a next time. Clearly our leadership are at the point where they are utterly useless … so with that information understood it’s only a matter of time before that weakness gets pushed on.

  5. TBH

    I’d be interested in hearing some alternative strategies from some of the peeps here, given the breadth of knowledge and experience in these parts.

  6. Roger

    The most important thing we need to learn from the COVID 19 experience is we need to find a better way of dealing with the next pandemic.

    The solution is simple: declare China a pariah state until it cleans up its act and avoid the next pandemic.

    We can have international trade & travel or we can have exotic meat wet markets in China.

    But if we want a globalised world we can’t have both.

  7. stackja

    Red China started the virus.
    WHO seemingly did not care.

  8. NoFixedAddress

    TBH
    #3400506, posted on April 8, 2020 at 5:10 pm

    I’d be interested in hearing some alternative strategies from some of the peeps here, given the breadth of knowledge and experience in these parts.

    I suggest that we form The Australian Cabinet or whatever name you like but its deliberations will be live streamed.

    Members to include real people with real life experience.

  9. Caveman

    What we need are more celebrities. Through comforting words in their mansions and songs on YouTube, all such calamities will be avoided. Celebrities are our future!
    I’m in agreance with this but would also like to see more hashtags and emojimios.

    States to relinquish any power and orders to come from one body only whether it’s the PM or his hoochy Natinal Cabinet, communication from one source, no confusion, just do it.

  10. Tel

    Red China started the virus.
    WHO seemingly did not care.

    Those are in cahoots clearly … but the more difficult question is who else?

    The “expert advice” being given to the Aus authorities would appear to be almost deliberately bad. Although many of these people are incompetent, they can’t all be thay dumb, so the next stop on that train line would be consideration of motives. Petty power grab? Sure, happens all the time but don’t you feel a lot of this is surprisingly consistent across many countries? Like it’s been planned or something? If it’s been planned on this scale then it isn’t petty.

    Why would police be told to bust neighbours who talk to each other backyard to backyard even though they are at a reasonable distance and most totally obviously no threat to any bullshit “social distancing” ? What type of person gives those kind of instructions to police? I can think of a reason, but it’s a bit disturbing … the concept is a little to revolutionary, if you get my drift.

  11. Roger

    Petty power grab?

    Not petty at all.

    There are obvious benefits to China having WHO in its pocket.

  12. Spurgeon Monkfish III

    we go into a self-destructive, hysterical frenzy at the mere suggestion of a new strain of flu virus

    Once the chinese commie politbureau have stopped rolling around the floor laughing about how easily they were able to create such an economy and society destroying hysterical frenzy in western nations they’ll sit back and reflect on how easily they’ll be able to recreate these frenzies on a regular rolling basis – i.e. every few years.

    Whether the staggeringly stupid quisling dunderheads that are our alleged leaders have realised it or not, this entire tragic disgusting farce was a test – and one which they have failed miserably.

    Don’t think that hasn’t been noticed by those who undeniably would wish us further harm.

  13. Pyrmonter

    Two comments of general application:

    (a) temporarily reducing output by, say, 30% is the not the same as reducing it for a year or two. There has been a reluctance to incur short term cost for long term gain.

    (b) how many of the current policies – moral hazard-creating all, by ‘bailing out’ the undercapitalised businesses and consumers with no savings – have laid up problems for the future? Government cannot dispense benefits without private agents responding. And the lesson they have is that their losses will be socialised.

  14. Archivist

    We need to study the full range of international responses to COVID 19, from total lock down responses like the UK to the almost do nothing response of Sweden.

    If you’re hoping that Sweden will prove the case for a ‘do nothing’ response, you might have jumped the gun. Their curve has started bending upwards, both for infections and deaths.

    Depending on how steep their curve gets, they might end up being a salutory lesson in what not to do. Stay tuned.

  15. Archivist

    Once the chinese commie politbureau have stopped rolling around the floor laughing about how easily they were able to create such an economy and society destroying hysterical frenzy in western nations

    China has been smashed by this virus. Don’t believe the propaganda saying otherwise.

  16. Professor Fred Lenin

    So WHO .has been bought by Red China as well as the alp in Australia , keating. Carr ,desparatearry those Aldi bags get about dont we they ? The US decromats sound like they are getting them and the UK labour comrades .what is it about comrades and Aldi bags full of money ?

  17. Tel

    Don’t think that hasn’t been noticed by those who undeniably would wish us further harm.

    Yup. Our response to a stress test has been pathetic … screwed up at every level.

    That’s valuable information for both us and our enemies, but which side of that argument will get their shit together sooner? Right now Australia is in an excellent situation medically, almost no one is dead and the remaining people are mostly recovering. We are in a dreadful situation organisationally though.

  18. We need to learn from Taiwan. Despite their proximity to mainland China they have had only 356 cases.
    With a population similar to Australia that is 16 cases per million compared to 256 for here. They have had 16 deaths against 50. They must be doing something right ( unless their figures are fudged ).

  19. Beachcomber

    If you’re hoping that Sweden will prove the case for a ‘do nothing’ response, you might have jumped the gun. Their curve has started bending upwards, both for infections and deaths.

    Oh really. For sure the plague-mongers will get more positive results in whatever tests they are using, and more and more deaths will be ascribed to COVID-19.

    But it’s a funny thing, when the overall death rates in Europe are analysed, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and Belgium have recent upturns, but no worse than in an average flu season. France is up a bit, but everywhere else is flat, or even down. That includes Wales, Scotland, NI, Germany, and most interestingly … Sweden.

    Yes, Sweden is stubbornly showing no signs of impending doom despite their refusal to have a lockdown.

  20. egg_

    The most important thing we need to learn from the COVID 19 experience is we need to find a better way of dealing with the next pandemic the ruling class.

    FTFY.

  21. Wyndham Dix

    Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy, public face of health professionals informing Prime Minister Scott Morrison and the government on COVID-19, doubtless has a distinguished medical career. https://biosimilarhub.com.au/brendan-murphy-video/
    .
    I doubt that his experience in epidemiology matches the 20 years’ headship of The Rockefeller University’s Department of Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Research Design of Professor Knut Wittowski:- https://www.iceagenow.info/dr-knut-wittkowski-debunks-the-coronavirus-frenzy-important-video/ Notice: Epidemiology
    .
    Notice also, inert alia:-
    .
    “…social distancing and lockdown is the absolutely worst way to deal with an airborne respiratory virus.”
    .
    “With all respiratory diseases, the only thing that stops the disease is herd immunity. About 80 percent of the people need to have had contact with the virus, and the majority of them won’t even know they were infected, or they had very, very mild symptoms, especially if they are children.”
    .
    “So it’s very important to keep the schools open and the kids mingling. Elderly people should be separated and nursing homes should be closed during that time.”
    .
    Aside from the obvious good sense and agreement on protecting the elderly, and presumably other vulnerable people with co-morbidities, who to believe?
    .
    Have most politicians around the world inflicted untold harm on their constituents to no avail, especially if the virus returns and there is little immunity to it?

  22. Scott Osmond

    1 decouple from China and restore polocies to reenergise the local industry. Yes it will hurt but is cheap stuff that breaks down worth the grief? is the amount of money we get from coal and iron ore and agricultural less or more than the shutdown? what happens next time?
    2 floggings and keelhauling around the fleet. Pandemics aren’t new and the response has been fucking pathetic. Where were the pre-stock piles of meds and supplies? where were the action plans for closing things down and re-opening things? schedules, tables and suchlike? why wasn’t the coordination between the departments of health and border force worked out before things went pear-shaped? if we needed to isolate and enact social distancing why did everyone have to line up at Centrelink? with the tax office having everyone’s tax file number and bank details why didn’t treasury have in place a pandemic plan where they could find out which category of worker was placed in lockdown and credit their accounts whatever payment they were to be given?
    Idiots. Vindictive malicious incompetent arseholes the lot of them.

  23. egg_

    There has been a reluctance to incur short term cost for long term gain.

    Would you suspend all of your Insurance policies for 6 months?
    You seem to speak from an ivory tower.

  24. egg_

    consumers with no savings

    6 months wages?

  25. egg_

    Their curve has started bending upwards, both for infections and deaths.

    Is there any separation anywhere in the world between “died of pneumonia, CV-19 negative” and “died of pneumonia, CV-19 positive”?
    Hmmm?

  26. egg_

    China has been smashed by this virus. Don’t believe the propaganda saying otherwise.

    Proof?

  27. egg_

    Our response to a stress test has been pathetic … screwed up at every level.

    Generation cupcake at the levers.

  28. NoFixedAddress

    A good article here with many quotes and references from CS Lewis

    The Wuhan Virus Reminds Us: Beware Scientism and the Technocrats
    By Trevor Thomas

    To “fix” our problems (whether real or perceived) and to exert the power and influence necessary, today’s ruling class often tells us that we must more and more rely on the “experts,” and also on their computer models. This means that the politicians must increasingly rely on the knowledge and advice of scientists, until, in the end, the politicians become “merely the scientists’ puppets.”

    Thus, we get the motto of the technocrats: “only science can save us now” or “science is the way out” of our Wuhan virus crisis. Whether it is a global pandemic, global warming, stem-cell research, the beginning of life, healthcare, crime, homosexuality and marriage, or even gun control or economic policies, the technocrats claim to have the answers. After all, as Lewis also noted, “If we are to be mothered, mother must know best.”

    In other words, in times of crisis, many of our politicians (and scientists alike) are surrendering themselves to scientism. Scientism is not science. It is an ideology that is often confused with science. It is, rather, an abuse of the scientific method and scientific authority.

    In other words, scientism is a religion with many denominations: Darwinism, environmentalism, feminism, hedonism, humanism, Marxism, socialism, and so on. How many Americans now find their fulfillment and purpose in these movements? They celebrate Earth Day and Darwin Day. They boldly assert, “Science is my Savior.”

    Also, scientism arrogantly attempts to lift itself above all other beliefs and disciplines — philosophy and theology included. Thus, as we see, scientism seeks to elevate the methods of natural science to a level where it is the bar by which every other intellectual discipline is held. Scientism ridicules faith and religion and tells us that “God is dead.” Scientism tells us that the “debate is over,” so shut up and get in line.

    And, of course, scientism leads us to technocracy. “I dread government in the name of science,” said Lewis. “That is how tyrannies come in.” What a profound conclusion!

    https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2020/04/the_wuhan_virus_reminds_us_beware_scientism_and_the_technocrats.html

  29. Leo G

    With all respiratory diseases, the only thing that stops the disease is herd immunity.

    Sure. But how do you think you get past the 80% (minimum) immunity threshold for herd immunity without vaccination and without causing a large number of deaths?
    I believe that what we may learn from COVID-19- with post-infection antibody surveys- is that most of the so-called active cases weren’t actually infected, but were false positives, and that COVID-19 is less contagious but more deadly than presently portrayed.

  30. JC

    The rate per million deaths is not a stand out, Boris. It’s actually pretty middling and so far below Italy, which is in total lock-down.

  31. BorisG

    You need to compare apples to apples. Also it is the rate of growth that matters. Italy’s deaths have stabilized and even going down.

    Denmark and Norway are both smaller than Sweden yet have far fewer deaths.

    https://ourworldindata.org/grapher/total-deaths-covid-19?country=AUS+DNK+NOR+SWE

  32. BorisG

    Sweden is an interesting experiment. For one thing, no cats in their wildest dreams could have imagined that the socialist hellhole will become a beacon of freedom.

    Note that the Swedish PM has staked his career on this. I suspect that if this trend continues for a couple of weeks he will either change course or resign. Or both.

  33. BorisG

    The rate per million deaths is not a stand out, Bori

    Absolute numbers don’t matter. Rate of growth does. When China had thousands of deaths
    , Italy still had zero. It did not help, did it?

    It just incredible to suggest lockdown does not matter. Italy was growing exponentially until it was put into total lockdown. Now the daily deaths stoped growing. Not related to lockdown? Come on!

  34. Beachcomber

    BorisG at 2:26 am
    In Sweden –

    Daily new confirmed COVID-19 deaths.

    Uh huh. Yeah, sure. It looks like the Deep State operators in Sweden believe that not enough Statist totalitarian control is being enforced. They are forcing the government’s hand with a Very Liberal Approach to Mortality. The media can feed the scary numbers to plague hysteria-mongers like you.

  35. win

    The next time China has an agricultural epidemic. Bird Flue, Swine Fever as at the Chinese New Year that saw China with out pork we just stop all goods services and people entering from China. problem solved. China in global isolation. I am sure Twiggy Forest will find some one else to buy his ores.

  36. BorisG

    The media can feed the scary numbers to plague hysteria-mongers like you.

    Funny how denialists cite numbers when it suits their narrative but say they are fake when they go the wrong way.

  37. Kneel

    Is there any separation anywhere in the world between “died of pneumonia, CV-19 negative” and “died of pneumonia, CV-19 positive”?

    Is the test for Covid-19, or is it also triggered by other corona virii? Serious question.
    We already know that CCP CV tests are dodgy at 30 odd % accuracy… what about specificity?
    What is the error bias (if any) – no false pos, lots of false neg, or visa versa (type I vs type II error)?
    If we don’t know the prevalence in the general community, neither accuracy nor specificity even matters – as I’ve posted about before, even unrealistically good tests can give highly misleading results without this knowledge. That’s well known epidemiology and hell, it’s even common sense that anyone can follow if you explain it step by step.

  38. Michael

    Herd immunity? Well you would need to infect 3% of population a week to build it up in 6 months.
    Italy and Spain are nowhere near 1% infected after a few months, and look at the devastation.

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