Governmental response to Covid-19, Sweden, etc

(Bacon by any other name would taste just as great.) #305

Folks, let’s avoid politicising this conversation, please. Remember the deal, that we would allow a Covid forum, but there was to be no politics.

(I admin it, that’s a terrible pun.) #306

That goes for you too, @OldDoug. :wink:

(Doug) #307

Darren, I really think I haven’t brought politics into it… Not sure if you were serious or not. :slightly_smiling_face:

(I admin it, that’s a terrible pun.) #308

Totally joking, Doug.
Sorry if I offended you.

I thought the “wink” emoji was good enough, to indicate I was joking, but maybe not.

(Doug) #309

:smile: No worries, man… :grin: I thought of the ways it could have been meant, i.e. including a recognition that I hadn’t been political about it at all. I just should have smiled and winked at you back. :relaxed: You know, we really don’t have a good “Embarrased” or “Rueful” emoticon. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

(I admin it, that’s a terrible pun.) #310

Well, maybe we’ve lightened the mood with our jovial banter. :grin:

(at any rate, the members know there’s a bunch of admins watching this thread. :face_with_raised_eyebrow:)

(Bacon by any other name would taste just as great.) #311

Youse guys are too much! :rofl::rofl:

(Polly) #312

Here is a chat between two of my favourites, Ivor Cummins with Dr Malcolm Kendrick (a GP in the UK who has a special interest in cardio-vascular disease and a prolific author)


It seems that we as a society are enabling metabolic issues by basing our policies - from shutdowns to vaccines - on folks with metabolic disease. It’s a large-scale dysfunctional situation.

(Bob M) #314

Not looking great in Sweden:

My wife’s sister and her family live in Sweden,although one of the many “rural” areas, so not that near Stockholm.

(Bob M) #315

What you seem to be implying is that if you don’t have “metabolic disease”, you won’t need a vaccine or get sick. How do you explain how the Indians were nearly wiped out in the US after introduction to diseases? Smallpox, in particular, was bad. A similar thing occurred in many other countries.

I don’t think it’s true that if you’re “metabolically healthy” (assuming we could attempt to define this, which we can’t), you’re immune to disease. This guy looked pretty healthy, but died of coronavirus:

I think those of us who are holier than thou because we follow some kind of miracle diet should rethink this.


They expected a rise in the fall, as per usual in the flu/cold season but likely worse because of COVID, and the reporting is extremely selective: for the weeks that Sweden is doing well, it totally disappears from the news. Do we see headlines like this when ICUs are full in places that have lots of mandates in place?

And I’d like to see the coverage on the social experiment being run in places with ongoing shutdowns. Here in my state we’re undertaking a massive experiment on our young people. No public school from March 2019 to June 2020. That’s quite an experiment. Where are those headlines?


Actually, no: what I’m implying is that we’ve skewed our entire societal response because so much of the population is unhealthy. There’s nothing holier-than-thou about it, and I don’t think there are miracle diets.

I also never said that if you’re metabolically healthy you’re immune to disease. On a statistical level, the reason COVID is such a disaster is because we’re overwhelmingly unhealthy. That doesn’t mean there won’t be outliers, and no one is immune to all disease.

Indigenous people who haven’t been exposed to common colds are a population that is extremely vulnerable to this virus and I hope that they can stay isolated. This is true of other strains of corona and influenza.

[edited for punctuation]

(GINA ) #318

I was scrolling through some news articles this morning and there were several graphs of the recent rise in cases, including Sweden’s. They all look the same.

The article upthread has the hyperbolic headline about Sweden’s ICUs being near capacity, so their ‘no lock-down’ plan was a failure. But you can see the same headline for many locations. I keep hearing ICUs are full around California and that’s why we need new statewide lock-downs. Does that mean how California’s lock-down failed? Apparently not, because we are doubling down on everything we have done before, evidence of effectiveness or not.


Yes, the framing of all of this is a mystery to me.

Also, lockdowns are a new strategy for a corona virus, so I’m not sure how the Swedish approach (which is actually pretty similar to what the other Scandinavian countries have done) is an “experiment.”

And in any case the ICU numbers are given out of context. This time of year is usually pretty rough in ICUs. In some areas, it does seem to be worse this year than usual but it’s not as if ICUs are generally empty at this time of year.

(Bob M) #320

More bad news for Sweden:

As a scientist, I understand there is no “right” or “wrong” way to do things. There are only theories. But when people start using one country (and this applies to food, also) as an exemplar, they should understand why. And they don’t. And I know I don’t know why Sweden did fairly well until now, though I have theories. But Sweden is not doing well now.


So the place that’s having the worst week is the one that is screwing up?
That would make Italy, New York, the UK, France, Belgium… there are lots of places that have had bad stretches, and many of them have had extremely strict lockdowns. Are you saying they all did it wrong?
I’m not clear on why there were so few headlines about Sweden when it was doing well - and so few conclusions drawn from that in most media - but now that it’s in a surge that the Swedish officials predicted, suddenly it’s in the spotlight again.

In COVID deaths per 1 million inhabitants, Sweden is sitting at #24, so does that mean we’ll find similarly critical articles for numbers 1 - 23?

(Peter) #322

A lot of them locked down WAY too late into the process, so anyone or any media outlet trying to use them as examples of how lockdowns don’t work is either showing a lack of knowledge of their processes or is deliberately deceptive, and whichever one it is that the proponent of the argument is using, it’s extremely unhelpful (often deliberately so).

The US is impossible to use as an example of anything except how a lack of leadership causes chaos - it’s like the idiots who hold Chicago up as an example of how “gun control doesn’t work” while ignoring all the neighbouring states that have no gun control measures.


Most of the places that locked down did so as soon as they reasonably could have. If you have extreme advance warning because most of the world is in chaos and you don’t yet have much of a virus problem - New Zealand, for instance - you’re in an incredibly fortunate position.

In any case, those critical arguments could still happen on all of the countries in 1-23 positions (with the exception of the US), many of whom put into place some kind of shutdown as soon as it was feasible. Maybe the criticism would focus on the timing of the shutdown, maybe on the underlying health issues of the population. It just doesn’t make sense to me that anyone would be focusing on how Sweden is doing right now (“look! they did it wrong!”) when so many places have done far worse.

I deliberately left the US off of the list because the states have so much freedom in how they handle the virus (and there’s such a large geographical span) that treating it as a whole just doesn’t make any sense. I’m in a state that shut down relatively early (when our numbers were quite low) and has been in some state of modified or extreme shutdown since then, including no public school since March. We have worse numbers than Sweden, as do most of the states that have had shutdowns. I’m not saying that to attack shutdowns necessarily*; my post that you reference was about the absurdity of pointing the finger accusingly at a country that’s done better than so many others.

*personally I would be in favor of an extreme and short lockdown as early as possible


Comparing like with like, Sweden haven’t done well at all and the reason they attract so much attention is because they took a very different approach.