Since math is based on logic, you would think that Raymond has a logical mind. Sometimes, yes, but most of the time no. He may be a super-genius in some respects, but he is more a creature of habit than logic. At the institution Raymond was raised in, every weekday at four o'clock would find the patients in the common room watching The People's Court. This is one of the few constants in Raymond's life that absolutely must be met. If there is even a hint that Raymond will miss his daily fix of Judge Wapner, logic goes right out the window as Raymond's emotions take over and he flies completely out of control.
As the two brothers are driving across the rural midwest, four o'clock nears, and Raymond begins making noises about four o'clock being the time Judge Wapner comes on: "Gotta watch Judge Wapner," he repeats, "Definitely gotta watch Judge Wapner."
His brother tries using logic on Raymond, pointing out they are in the middle of nowhere, there is no TV in the car, no motels where they can stop to watch TV, and there's just no way it's going to happen. But Raymond is immune to logic. He becomes increasingly agitated, and Charlie has already seen what happens when Raymond loses control. Finally, with a minute to spare, they pull into a farmhouse where Charlie tries to con the woman who answers the door into letting them come in and watch TV:
The question arises: Why would someone so adept at mathematics lose all ability to reason logically in the real world? And the answer is: with Raymond it isn't about logic, Raymond is all about certainty. Just as mathematics is the science of certainty, Raymond must have some degree of certainty to keep from spiraling out of control. Raymond doesn't do well with surprises; he needs order. Raymond must be able to depend upon some things in his life that are always constant. Things that do not change. Things like the ability to watch The People's Court every weekday at four, even though it is very doubtful he has any inkling about what those people on the TV screen are even talking about.
As Eugenia Chang, author of The Art of Logic in an Illogical World reminds us, what was true about math two thousand years ago is still true today. The answers to mathematical questions are always certain, never changing. And this is true, as Dr. Chang points out, even though math nearly always deals with abstracts, and not with the real world:
"I could consider one apple and another apple, or one bear and another bear, or one opera singer and another opera singer, and all those situations would become '1+1' in the abstract world."One plus one equals two. Two plus two equals four. And four o'clock? In Raymond's world that equals Judge Wapner, which means if there is to be a modicum of certainty in his life, he can't afford to miss The People's Court.
It is that very certainty that we see in mathematics that Raymond requires in order for his life to make sense. According to Raymond's logic, life must go according to the pattern he is familiar with or everything flies into chaos.
Put that information in your back pocket for a minute, because we will return to it after we talk about science.
Math And Science: Two Different Kinds Of Logic
Math is a set of results that has been proven to be true according to logic. Science is also based on logic, but science relies mostly on evidence. What evidence? The evidence that accumulates as we ask logical questions. As Dr Chang reminds us, although mathematics from 2,000 years ago is still considered true and indeed is still taught, this is different from science, which is continually being refined and updated. There is little in the way of science from 2,000 years ago that is taught as valid today. That's because science, by its very nature, represents the acquisition of additional knowledge. We add more truth while we peel away the falsehoods. Anyone who tells you that "the science is settled" on any question does not understand what science is. Science is never settled. There is always more to learn, more changes to observe.
So let's take a moment and recall what we learned back in 9th grade science class about the scientific method. We start with a theory. A "theory" is just a proposed explanation for something. Emphasis on proposed. We neither believe nor disbelieve the theory; we don't accept or reject it right off the bat. We simply start with that hypothesis and then go from there, asking questions in an effort to ascertain whether or not that theory has validity. As we ask questions, we observe, always keeping in mind that for truth to emerge, we must question and observe while being both skeptical and open-minded. While we observe, we peel off that which no longer serves the truth.
We stay skeptical so we don't fall into the trap of coming to false conclusions, and we stay open-minded so we can accept what the evidence is telling us, always keeping in mind that the goal is to get to the truth.
In the example we are currently concerned with, we start with a theory about this new virus that has been given the name COVID-19. Our theory, based on what we initially observed, is that this virus seems to be highly contagious, and it seems to be deadly. After stating the hypothesis, we then begin collecting data to find out if the theory holds water. So is the theory valid?
So far, yes. It does seem to be highly contagious. But is it deadly? Well, kinda-sorta. What we want the data to tell us is precisely how contagious and precisely how deadly this thing is.
Well then. Employing the scientific method of questioning, observing, experimenting, and observing some more, we are finding out that our original expectations regarding the COVID-19 virus were way out of line with reality.
The COVID-19 virus does seem to be highly contagious, and it can turn out to be deadly -but only to a small group of people who fit a certain category, namely the very old and very ill. For everyone else, it turns out to be far less deadly than originally surmised. And if this is true (and again the data tells us it is) what does the contagion factor really matter?
Here is how not deadly the COVID-19 virus is: more than 98% of those who contracted this virus simply did not bother to die from it. The overwhelming majority of people who did die turned out to belong to that category of patients who would have died at this stage of their lives anyway, either from old age or from one or more serious illnesses unrelated to the Coronavirus.
Virtually everyone else, with very rare exceptions, recovered -if that's what you want to call it, because it seems a bit odd to list hundreds of thousands of people as having "recovered" from an illness who never knew they were sick in the first place. Although this particular virus appears to be highly contagious (and that merely means that, like the common cold, it is easy to catch; it doesn't mean it's particularly dangerous), the vast majority of those who caught it never even knew they had it. And among those who did feel a bit squeamish, a vast majority of those people reported not feeling ill for very long -often for only a day or so with very mild symptoms. Which tells us that although this virus remains nominally "contagious," that word has little meaning if it means you never really felt sick. And it especially has little meaning if you caught it and you didn't die.
Most significantly, a recent Stanford University Study reveals that between 55 to 85 times more people have been infected with the virus than previously thought, and if you think that's bad news (higher rates of infection must mean a greater catastrophe, right?) you don't understand the math. With hundreds of thousands more people contracting the virus, and the number of deaths remaining the same, what the data is telling us is that this thing is far less deadly than previously assumed. Whole orders of magnitude less.
When assessing the seriousness of any virus, scientists look at the percentage of deaths relative to the number of people who contracted the virus. When hundreds of thousands more people catch this bug, yet the number of actual dead remains the same, that tells us it is far less dangerous than anyone ever thought. If the number of dead had increased substantially, then we'd have an epidemic. But the numbers remained the same, which means the percentages are vastly lower.
What does this mean? Well, looking at New York, believed to be the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, earlier predictions had placed the percentage of dead at 7.4%. What we are actually seeing is .75%, which is a lot fewer. So hooray for science.
How do those numbers compare with the flu that just ended this season? Numbers from the CDC indicate possibly 56 million cases of flu in the United States, while COVID-19 accounted for just under 846 thousand confirmed cases. 740,000 people were hospitalized with the flu this year. Want to know how many people were hospitalized with COVID-19? A mere 122,000. Deaths from the flu this season: 62,000. Deaths from COVID-19: not quite 47,000.
Ignore all those ignorant news comentators who told you "we can't compare the coronavirus with the flu." Of course we can. Researchers do it all the time. It's called science.
Remember those fake stories you heard of hospitals being so overrun with coronavirus patients that bodies were spilling out onto the sidewalks and being stacked in refrigerator trucks? Makes you wonder how this country's hospitals managed to accommodate 810,000 flu patients that showed up at their doors last year. That's 688 thousand more people showing up at hospitals because they had the flu last year than showed up this year with the coronavirus, yet we heard nothing in 2018 about hospitals being overrun with flu patients.
Trust the Science
You'll notice I said trust the science. I didn't say trust the scientists. Because although most of the time you can heed the words of a scientist, I recommend only doing so when they cite actual science to back up their opinions.
Take Dr. Anthony Fauci, for instance. As I pointed out in part one of this series, when he wrote in the peer-reviewed New England Journal of Medicine, Fauci was careful to only cite the science. In that journal he said COVID-19 was proving to be no more serious than the Asian or Hong Kong influenzas of years past. But earlier (perhaps because he was dazzled by the TV cameras and forgot himself), Fauci had blurted out that COVID-19 would be ten times more deadly than the flu. He cited no science to back that up, and indeed there had been no research to suggest such a wild prediction might come true. He just pulled it out of his butt, and the media ran with it as though it were really going to happen.
More recently Fauci opined that in the future when the coronavirus is behind us, "I don't think we should ever shake hands ever again, to be honest with you."
Okay, fair enough. It's his opinion, but whether its an opinion based on scientific research he didn't say. But then during an interview with Vanity Fair he was asked about the wisdom of a person having sex with a stranger he or she might meet online.
"If you’re willing to take a risk—and you know, everybody has their own tolerance for risks—you could figure out if you want to meet somebody. And it depends on the level of the interaction that you want to have. If you’re looking for a friend, sit in a room and put a mask on, and you know, chat a bit. If you want to go a little bit more intimate, well, then that’s your choice regarding a risk."Well, he's right of course. People should assess their own risks and make their own choices. But remember, Fauci is being consulted specifically because he has a reputation as the Top Doctor in the country right now. People want to know about the medical risks to having sex with a stranger, and the same guy who warned against anybody ever shaking hands with anybody else ever again at any future time -well, he sure seemed pretty cavalier about the intimate exchange of bodily fluids with a complete stranger.
A vulnerable young woman could have asked that question of Ted Bundy and got a similar answer: "Sure, why not?" But whether the ambivalent counsel came from Fauci or Bundy, being naked and alone and at your most vulnerable with a complete stranger doesn't strike me as a particularly wise thing to be doing, virus or no virus.
So don't be fooled into heeding the advice of "experts." I know I keep harping on this, but you don't need the advice of so-called "experts," you want actual science explained to you by competent virologists, immunologists, epidemiologists, microbiologists, and other scientists who are known to engage in actual scientific research. There are plenty of journalists and politicians who will be happy to give you their opinions, but if those opinions are not backed up by scientific research, what good are they?
Below is a link showing twelve experts in their respective fields in medicine. They have been trying to get the word out almost from the beginning that this over-reaction to COVID-19 was a very bad idea. And they had the science to back up those opinions -which is to say they were calm and dispassionate and not inclined to set anyone's hair on fire. These actual scientists are well worth listening to again, now that several weeks have passed and we're beginning to realize we've been had.
12 Experts Questioning The Coronavirus Panic
And speaking of being had, here's Kevin McCullough with a rundown of the recent science proving that we've been snookered big time:
Antibody Testing Proves It: We've Been Had
The Science Behind The Lockdowns
Believe it or not, there is science behind the lockdowns, but none of it supports the current mania that insists the only remedy is to stay home and stay inside. The country of Sweden refused to join everyone else in the hysteria over COVID-19, and guess what? They are doing far better than citizens in countries that have the most stringent lockdowns. In fact, as one Swedish writer put it,
"It's Game Over and the Swedish-Belarusian Herd Immunity Model Has Won. One third of Stockholmers have already had Covid-19, shook it off, and are now immune."
Here's a photo of people in Sweden gathering together and enjoying being outdoors like normal people:
|Looks kind of unnatural to those of us being warned about getting too close to each other, don't it?|
And below is a graph showing the faulty model predicting how bad things would get if the Swedes failed to stay locked indoors. This is an excellent case study of how wrong every one of these computer models turned out to be. The blue represents the expected number of deaths per 100,000 in a worse case scenario, that is, if the people of Sweden did not stay home and isolate themselves. Expected deaths from the virus were predicted to be 18 deaths per 100,000. The yellow section represented the moderate "median" case scenario, predicted to be 9 deaths per 100,000. That tiny red area at the bottom represented the smaller number of people expected to die if everyone in Sweden stayed home and self isolated themselves for five full months (!)
Guess what? See that tiny, almost imperceptible section in red? That's the tiny number of people who died without Sweden ever going into lockdown. And that almost imperceptible number turned out to be people well over age 65. I highly recommend reading this entire piece.
Writes British author Rob Slane,
"It appears quite clear to me that thus far, the figures represented in yellow, which are roughly what we should be seeing in Sweden, according to the Imperial College model, are proving to be a gross overestimate.
"Instead, the truth appears to be this: Sweden is achieving the kind of numbers that the Imperial College report claims could only be achieved under conditions of 5 months of full lockdown. Meanwhile Britain, which has been put under full lockdown for one month, is actually doing worse than Sweden (26 deaths per 100,000 population, compared to 18 for Sweden).
"I have a feeling that many people are one day going to wonder whether destroying the economy and trashing civil liberties was a price worth paying for something that could have been dealt with without doing any of these things, but instead pursuing a more moderate course. Is there still time to reverse that course?"That's a question a lot more Americans should be asking.
A Nation Of Idiot
Unfortunately, we now seem to have devolved into a country where an untold number of people either don't follow the science or just don't care. I was in Walmart the other day and noticed more shoppers wearing surgical masks and other face coverings than I had seen previously.
For heaven's sake, people, this is small-town, rural Northern Idaho! If you're sick, stay home. If you aren't sick, stop walking around like a paranoid mental patient. Would you like to know how many cases of the coronavirus have been identified in my entire county?
Wanna know how many deaths?
If you live in rural America and you go outside wearing a surgical mask, you may as well get out a Sharpie and write the word "GULLIBLE" across the front of it, because that's what you're telegraphing to everyone who sees you.
I got to wondering why it was that after all this time so many people were still falling for the hysteria. One reason, of course, is it's all they hear about on the news. Naturally the media continues to promote the hoax, because they benefit from scaring people. So do the politicians, because keeping you fearful means keeping you under their control. What neither the media nor the politicians ever consider is how these shutdowns will prove to be infinitely deadlier than the virus.
But why were Joe and Sally Sixpack still worried about something that is not only less harmful than the seasonal flu, but likely to fizzle out with a whimper within a couple of months?
I think I've figured it out. I think most people haven't been keeping up with the evidence that this is just a whole lotta hot air. How would they? Those who depend on the legacy media to keep them informed have not been told that the epidemiologist who initially predicted 2.2 million Americans would die from the virus has long since downgraded that prediction, and downgraded it drastically. The public hasn't been told that these computer models are highly speculative and based on guesstimates fed into a computer. You know the old adage, "garbage in, garbage out." Few actual scientists would ever bet money on the reliability of a computer model.
Writes author Scott Adams,
"If you have no experience in the field of science, you might think the climate models created by scientists are "science" because scientists make them. But prediction models are not science. They are an intelligent combination of scientific thinking, math, human judgment, and incomplete data. That's why there are a lot of different climate models, all different."Relying on computer models to show you how a particular virus might play out is like using the same method to pick stocks. You wouldn't want to bet the farm.
The average American simply has not been told that the data reveals that the only category of people who have true reason to be concerned are still the same people who need to be cautious during any flu season, namely the elderly and those suffering from other serious illnesses. Instead of information they can use, all Joe and Sally Sixpack see day in and day out is some alarmist on their television screen waving his arms and shouting "Boogah Boogah!"
I think what is happening is that these people are still in the "theory" stage of the scientific method, still stuck back there when the coronavirus was widely presumed to instantly kill anyone who gets near it. These people seem to believe it's going to fly around supermarket corners and sneak into their nostrils.
That would sure explain why some people become inordinately angry just hearing about those protesters in Michigan who want to know why their governor won't let them plant tomato seeds or buy a car seat for the baby -as if any of that has anything remotely to do with keeping them safe. I suppose if I lived under the illusion that accidentally breathing the same air as someone who might be carrying the virus -which, in the current mania, would be assumed to be absolutely everybody- I suppose the thought of my being hospitalized with a ventilator down my throat followed by an agonizing death would be enough to get me to cancel my porch tomato plans for the time being, too.
But the science tells us something different. What we are seeing all around us is Rain Man thinking. It isn't logical. Certainly this is not the way of rational, thinking grownups. Like Dustin Hoffman's character Raymond Babbitt, some people just need a sense of certainty in their lives, and if that "certainty" means allowing some tin-pot dictator in the governor's mansion taking over and telling them what they can and cannot do, well by golly I guess that's what they have to have in order to get them through the day.
You may have noticed it's impossible to try and have a rational discussion with someone whose hair is on fire. They simply are not capable of critical thought. Science? Never heard of it. Logic? What's that? Evidence, reason, and common sense? What are you, some kind of Commie agitator?
Better to be wrapped up safe in their cocoons of certainty like Raymond, where they can be calmed and coddled by the sound of the kindly Judge on the television, secure in the knowledge that Big Brother is on the case and looking out for their well-being.
Don't get me wrong. The virus is real, and if you don't want to get sick from it, you should do what you should be doing at the outset of every flu season: work toward strengthening your immune system so that if you are inadvertently exposed to the virus you will have a better chance of being among that 98 percent whose lives don't become unduly disrupted.
Otherwise, live your life as you always do, taking the usual sensible precautions, because there are always going to be hidden dangers lurking. That's just the way it is here on planet earth. In case nobody told you, this life ain't no picnic.
As an example of the kind of people we're dealing with, neighbors pinned this note on a sick, elderly woman’s front door after her daughter dropped off some groceries.
Well, the good news is that a growing number of people are rapidly waking up. Every day more and more of your fellow citizens are stepping outside and testing the waters, putting their toes into the pool and discovering it is not filled with man-eating piranhas after all. It will be the people who decide when they are finished with the lockdowns, and there is not a damn thing the politicians will be able to do to keep them in check. A return to sanity brings with it a positive side effect: you become immune to propaganda.
A Couple Of Thoughts To Part On
I had intended to close out this piece by including several links to scientific research papers proving the politicians are going about this all wrong. Maybe next time. There is just so much important stuff appearing all the time that I can't get to most of it. I already failed in my initial goal to post something on this topic here every couple of days, but happily no one has complained that I haven't assigned them enough to read.
As long as I continue to be obsessed with this topic, I'll probably show up here with another rant every couple of weeks. I do post a variety of stuff on my Facebook page every day, so if you have only been seeing what the establishment wants you to see about the coronavirus, I urge you to look outside the mainstream. There are plenty of reliable sources of information out there. I spend several hours a day keeping up with the medical and legal journals, but there are also sources that translate those findings for the layman, and I try to share them online. Come take a look.
For now, let me finish with two short videos. The first is related to the information exposed on my last post regarding the way in which the CDC, in collusion with hospitals all over the country, are counting deaths as having been caused by COVID-19 even when it is known COVID-19 had nothing to do with those deaths. I know it was astonishing enough when Dr Birx admitted it, but here is the Illinois Director of Public Health making no attempt to conceal the perfidy. If you weren't shocked before, you will be now:
Whatever you want to call that folderol, it has nothing to do with science.
And finally, at a time when investigative journalism is almost non-existent within the mainstream media, Tucker Carlson is backed up by a team of the best investigative journalists you could wish for. I never miss an episode of Tucker Carlson Tonight; I consider it essential viewing. Here is Tucker's report from Wednesday April 22nd, on the grossly mismanaged and unscientific lockdowns:
Okay, I can't resist adding one more report from tucker Carlson, for two reasons:
First, it is titled "Only Science Will Free Us From This Pandemic" and secondly it brilliantly demonstrates how tone-deaf many in the news media are about science and how it is folly to believe anything they tell you that has anything to do with medicine. You may have heard reports that hydroxychloroquine turned out to be a massive failure for the treatment of patients with COVID-19. The reality is it is anything but a failure. These amateurs just don't know what they're talking about. (See my previous post in which I explain how the journalism majors I went to school with were among the dumbest people on the planet.)
Fear Is A Virus
Science Is Your Friend
COVID-19 Is Real But The Test Is A Fraud
And Should We Die?