Monthly Post

The Great Rehash, Part Three: Unsafe and Ineffective

In the first two parts of this sequence of posts (1, 2), I’ve outlined the background of the Great Reset, Klaus Schwab’s dreary rehash of the last half century or so of fix-the-world schemes, and used the creation and destruction of the Georgia Guidestones as a lens through which to see how those schemes have so reliably run face first into the brick wall of reality.  In this third part of the sequence I want to put those phenomena in a broader context.

My regular readers will not be surprised to hear that there are historical parallels for the situation we’re in, in which a complex society is managed by a caste of privileged intellectuals convinced that their mastery of abstract notions makes them uniquely qualified to run the world. That’s a common state of affairs at a certain point in the history of civilizations.  My regular readers won’t be surprised, either, to learn that quite often the point in question is roughly where the first half of the time-honored phrase “decline and fall” gives way to the second half.

Something of the sort happens tolerably often when a clerisy ends up in control of a society.  A clerisy?  Why, yes. For those of my readers who aren’t familiar with the further shores of English vocabulary, a clerisy is a group of people whose claim to privilege is that they’re better educated and therefore, at least in theory, smarter than the rest of us.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Samuel Taylor Coleridge, who was a better poet than philosopher and a better philosopher than political theorist, coined the word in 1818. He believed that in order to flourish, humanity needed the guidance of a secular organization of well-educated people to tell the rabble what to think. Being the Germanophile Romantic that he was, Coleridge borrowed the German world klerisei, a term for “clergy,” and Englished it.  He was ahead of his time; more than a century passed before  a fossil-fueled technological boom and the metastatic expansion of the university system after the Second World War created the clerisy he wanted and put the reins of power temporarily in its hands. Fortunately for Coleridge’s peace of mind, he didn’t live to see the complete botch they made of things.

Now admittedly our modern clerisy has two strikes against it that most of the clerisies of past civilizations haven’t had. To begin with, most clerisies in history have been religious in nature, not secular, and devoted much of their time and effort to pleasing the gods and achieving salvation rather than micromanaging political and economic affairs. I have no reason to think that religious clerisies are any less clueless than their secular counterparts, but their activities are less subject to empirical disproof.  Barring the invention of a soteriometer to measure the relative salvation potential in different dogmas, a great deal of empty handwaving will always be able to slide by in theological circles. Our clerisy isn’t so fortunate; it claims to be able to manage things down here on the material plane, where the results of its policies can be all too readily observed.

The second strike is a little subtler. Most of the secular clerisies of the past have had a pervasive conservative bias. The standard example is the Chinese mandarinate, which managed the affairs of the Chinese empire for more than two thousand years with tolerable success. They did it by clinging with monomaniacal intensity to the teachings of Confucius, who wrote concerning history and public affairs in archaic China many centuries before the mandarinate was born.  This rigid fixation on the outworn past, as it turned out, gave the mandarins a significant advantage in managing public affairs that our modern clerisy doesn’t have.

Doing the same thing over and over again for two thousand years. Oddly enough, it worked…

Human beings are not as creative as they like to think.  In particular, they like to make the same mistakes over and over again.  The more innovative they think they’re being, the more certain you can be that they’re rehashing a mistake that was already gray with the dust of centuries when Confucius was a little boy perched on his mother’s knees. Thus a student of the Confucian classics enters public service with a good general notion of what didn’t work in the past, and if you know that, you’ve got a very good idea of what won’t work in the future, either. This allows you to avoid a surprisingly large number of obvious but frequently repeated mistakes.

Our modern clerisy lacks that source of strength. Raised to believe that the world is progressing and that the past therefore has nothing to teach them, they inevitably fall into one overfamiliar mistake after another because they think they’re too wise to bother learning the obvious lessons of history. The result has been one abject failure after another.  Think back over the last three quarters of a century—the period, roughly, that our clerisy has been churning out the policies that politicians enact and the rest of us have to cope with.  How many of the grand promises of that period actually panned out, as compare to those that tripped and landed flat on their noses?  How many of the horrible apocalyptic dooms the mouthpieces of the clerisy so luridly predicted have turned out to be wholly imaginary?

One of the lessons of history, in turn, is that a clerisy that fails too reliably loses its grasp on the reins of power. In the days of the Chinese mandarinate, a clique of government officials that got too fixated on pursuing failed policies was normally removed from power by the good practical expedient of beheading:  either the emperor got tired of repeated failures and had his headsman take care of the matter, or the emperor lost the throne and the soldiers of the incoming dynasty handled the same job in their own ebullient way. Plenty of clerisies have ended the same way, with or without the elaborate formalities of execution in an imperial court; others have been removed from power in less sanguinary ways—but removed they have been.

…and this is one reason why it worked. Not that I’m recommending this, you understand.

I’ve come to believe that we may be fairly close to the point at which the current managerial clerisy in the Western industrial world will fall from power.   The fall of a clerisy, like that of any other self-selecting and self-promoting institution, usually follows on some pratfall sufficiently disastrous, preventable, and obviously self-inflicted that afterwards, no one can seriously believe in the pretensions of the people who claim to know it all. We’ve had quite a number of such pratfalls recently—how many recent official policies can you think of offhand that have actually achieved the goals their promoters claimed they would achieve?—but the great-great-grandmother of them all is unfolding right in front of us at present.

Yes, I’m talking about the Covid vaccines.

When yet another novel coronavirus came out of China early in 2020, the political establisment and the corporate media all over the Western industrial world insisted with a single voice that it was a dire threat that would surely kill us all unless the wonders of modern medicine stopped it. When the pharmaceutical industry obligingly came out with a series of vaccines—well, actually they were experimental genetic therapies unrelated to classic vaccines, but we’ll let that pass—the political establishment and the corporate media all over the Western world insisted with a single voice that the vaccines were safe and effective.

There are inexpensive and effective ways you can reduce your risk of this, too.

As it turned out, Covid-19 wasn’t a serious threat to most people. It has a 99.6% survival rate, around that of an average bad flu, and nearly everyone who died of it was either very old or immunosuppressed—the classes of people who are usually most at risk from a novel respiratory virus. If you’re younger than 60 and in reasonably good health, in other words, your chances of dying of Covid were not much worse than your chances of being struck by lightning. Most people know that now. My own experience was fairly typical; I caught Covid in April of 2020 and got over it promptly with rest, hydration, and alternative health care. I’ve had colds that were worse. Yes, there were some people who had a much more difficult time of it—that happens now and then when a new respiratory virus comes through, you know. For the vast majority of people who got it, however, it was an ordinary illness.

Then there are those three awkward words “safe and effective.” The Covid vaccines were neither. Let’s start with “safe.”  Here’s a convenient chart of the number of vaccine-caused deaths reported to the official US government program that tracks vaccine side effects. Notice the way the death rate exploded upwards in 2021, when the Covid vaccines hit the market and government and media alike were demanding, and in some cases mandating, that everyone get vaccinated. No other vaccine in history has driven anything like so large of a spike in deaths.

Deaths from vaccine side effects reported in the US, 1980 through July 29 of this year.

If you’d like to do a deeper dive into the data, this page links to more than 1250 peer reviewed studies in scientific journals documenting harmful or fatal side effects from the coronavirus vaccines.  (If you want to follow the science, that’s one way to start.) No, they’re not all rare—here’s a recent study that found heart damage in nearly a third of patients injected with Covid vaccine. You can find heartbreaking stories of people who’ve been crippled by Covid vaccine side effects here, among many other places; one thing that nearly all the accounts include is that the victims faced systematic gaslighting from a medical industry that, as usual these days, puts its profits and its reputation ahead of the health and safety of mere patients.

So much for “safe.” The “effective” side of the slogan hasn’t aged any better. Most people have noticed by now that it’s the people who took the vaccines, not the people who refused it, who are getting Covid over and over again.  Another curious detail—you can look this up yourself on the internet if you like—is that right now, all the countries in the world that are being hit hard by Covid are countries that had very high vaccination rates. Countries where the vaccine found few takers, by contrast, have next to no cases today. New Zealand, for example, has one of the highest Covid vaccination rates in the world; Haiti has one of the lowest. Care to guess which of them has a serious Covid outbreak raging as I write this?  Hint:  it’s not Haiti.

Nobody knows for sure why it is that people injected with the experimental genetic therapies marketed as “Covid vaccines” end up more vulnerable to Covid than the unvaccinated. The reason nobody knows is that the necessary testing wasn’t done. There have been other vaccines against coronaviruses developed in recent decades; none of them got through long term trials because the side effects were so bad. There have been other mRNA products developed, too; none of them got through long term trials either, for the same reason.  Pfizer, Moderna, et al. evaded that problem with the Covid vaccines by simply not doing long-term testing at all—the Pfizer vaccine, for example, got all of eight weeks of testing before it started being dumped into human bodies. All those claims that the Covid vaccines got tested as stringently as any drug on the market?  If liars actually did have their pants catch fire, the corporate shills who spread those claims would have been reduced to charred stumps from the waist down.

Just one more straw…

Now of course it’s only fair to say that this kind of blatant dishonesty and depraved indifference to human life is par for the course in corporate circles these days, especially but not only in the pharmaceutical industry. The difference this time seems to be roughly that between the last but one and the last straw piled on the back of the proverbial camel.  You can only gaslight people for so long, it turns out, before they start paying attention, talking to one another, and comparing notes. Once that happens, if your misbehavior hurts enough people, you may end up in much more trouble than you expect.

One of the indications that this is happening around us right now is the increasingly frantic outbursts emanating from from the medical and pharmaceutical industries these days.  The quest to find some reason other than vaccines why young vaccinated people are dropping dead of heart attacks in unprecedented numbers has spawned so many dubious media articles it’s practically an industry of its own. Meanwhile The New York Times, the voice of privilege in this country for well over a century now, features plaintive articles talking about how parents are refusing to vaccinate their children, and what can we do about it?  Pfizer has added to the conversation, in a certain sense, with a series of endearingly inept memes. One shows a milk carton with the words “trust in science” in place of the usual missing-children photo.

Um, I hate to break it to you, Pfizer, but that horse left the barn so long ago it’s filling out change of address forms in another state. If you want people to trust science, it would be helpful if the people who claim to speak for science didn’t tell so many lies. If you’d like to follow the science, here’s an article from the British Medical Journal—one of the world’s most reputable medical periodicals—talking in brutal detail about the way that “evidence-based medicine” has become a front for corporate profiteering, institutional corruption, and wholly avoidable injury and death. None of this is news for the millions of people who have been harmed by medical malpractice, drug side effects, nosocomial infections, et al.—but here again, it’s being discussed openly.

The question is what happens next.

“Trust me, I’m an expert,” (Just don’t ask how much money he’s pocketing from Big Pharma.)

The predicament faced by the clerisy of the modern industrial world is that its members staked nearly all that was left of their tattered reputations on that “safe and effective” label. From Joe Biden on down, governments, scientists, and the media insisted that the vaccines would keep people from catching or transmitting Covid-19.  Yes, they were wrong, but that’s not the crucial point. The crucial point is that they made that false claim in absolute terms, vilified and censored anybody who disagreed with them, tried to push the vaccines on everyone via dubiously legal mandates, and are still doing their level best to suppress information that shows that they were wrong.

Imagine, by contrast, an alternative timeline in which governments, scientists, and the media responded to the emergence of Covid-19 in a less dictatorial and more honest manner. Imagine Joe Biden et al. saying, “As far as we know, these vaccines are the best option we’ve got, but we’re going to monitor cases closely to make sure they don’t have nasty side effects.”  Imagine the media and the medical community encouraging the free sharing of data about alternative treatments and potential problems. Imagine the clerisy of the industrial world treating the rest of the population as adults whose rights and concerns deserved to be taken seriously. Had that happened, no matter what twists and turns history brought, the medical and pharmaceutical industries and the established order of industrial society would have come through the crisis with the renewed respect and support of the populace.

In charge of our nation’s destiny right now. (Gods help us all.)

But of course that’s not what happened. There are plenty of reasons why Joe Biden’s approval ratings are so abysmal right now. Equally, there are plenty of reasons why trust in the corporate mass media and the other official institutions of American public life is chalking up one record low after another. Those institutions, and of course Biden himself, have labored long and hard to shred the fabric of mutual trust and respect that’s essential to the functioning of any society. As the proverb points out, if you lie to people often enough, sooner or later they’ll stop believing a word you say—and that old saw still has very sharp teeth.

One of the things that interests me about the way this is playing out is that it has a very precise echo in American history. Two centuries ago, state and federal governments that were explicitly set up to preserve the privileges of the well-to-do against everyone else were shaken right down to their foundations by Jacksonian populism.  Laws restricting the vote to people who owned a certain value of property were overturned in state after state, and so were other bastions of privilege. One of these, and indeed one of the most hated of these, was the legal structure that kept medical practice in the hands of a wealthy and educated minority.

The reason that this was among the most hated bastions of privilege in those days is that the medical care that resulted was so bad. Scientific medicine at that time, backed up by all the most respected authorities of the day, focused with monomaniacal intensity on bleeding and purging, which by and large killed more people than they saved. Physicians also charged sky-high prices for these officially approved but ineffective treatments. Plenty of less harmful, less expensive, and more effective therapies existed, but people who tried to practice them faced the same sort of legal penalties you get for practicing medicine without a license today.

Like many other officially approved treatments, it hurt more people than it helped.

Enter the Jacksonian era. Faced with the prospect of social revolution, elite classes across the new republic realized that they would have to buy off the rebels by giving them some of what they wanted.  Throwing the medical industry of the time under the bus was an easy way to do that. Most state governments accordingly either lowered the requirements for a medical license to a nominal fee, or abolished medical licensing altogether. The result was a broad improvement in the quality of medical care, and a quick death for the bleed-and-purge school of health care.  Once the formerly licensed doctors were forced to compete on a level playing field against healers using other modalities, it became clear very quickly who the quacks were.

We could very easily see similar scenes repeating themselves in the years ahead. Far too many people no longer trust anything that comes out of the mouths of medical and pharmaceutical industry spokesflacks. What’s more, a vast number of those people have very good reasons for that mistrust. As populist opposition to our current dysfunctional clerisy builds, one easy way for elites to win a breathing space for their own malfeasance would be to throw the populists some red meat to chew on.  I’m pretty sure America’s public schools, which are even more dysfunctional these days than our medical system, will be among the tidbits thus tossed, but the legal privileges that keep the medical industry from facing the wholesome discipline of the market would make a very satisfying chew toy as well. So, of course, would the careers of those politicians and bureaucrats who so enthusiastically pushed Big Pharma’s agenda on the rest of us.

The question is what happens after that. In the final installment of this sequence, I’ll sketch out the possibilities as I see them.

337 Comments

  1. I for one do not believe a thing they say,I started wondering about everything when in 2nd grade our lessons included the Jolly Green Giant …..as a kid in 1989 I kept wondering why we learned about the cans I saw in the store with my mom .

  2. An interesting thing in this article https://www.dissentmagazine.org/article/is-anti-intellectualism-ever-good-for-democracy is how Irving Kristol came up with the idea of rallying opposition against an intellectual elite to preserve the interests of the corporate elite. The article then claims that when intellectuals act in their own interests they are confirming the case against themselves. But if they were already targeted by another group, then they can’t really be criticised for acting to protect themselves.

  3. So what happens next? Seems to me like we’re at the beginning of a potential renaissance of “alternative” health modalities. It is a setback that so many herbalists got behind that vaxx so quickly, and maybe they were the louder ones, but there are plenty in the alternative health community that stuck to their guns. We just released an interview today on the Plant Cunning Podcast with herbalist Ola Obasi where we talk about this near the end of the episode: https://youtu.be/ws8_-PZy-N4
    Gordon White of Rune Soup is also doing a series on energy healing, and in our last episode with him he said that the collapse of the western medical system is one of the primary motivations for getting into that field (he practices a form of “shamanic healing”.) I’m also seeing a lot of Christians getting into herbal groups on social media (fun to see them clash with the more “woke” crowd) and I am personally getting very interested in Medical Astrology, and seeing a lot of other people getting interested in that as well.

    We’ll see where this goes, but it seems to me that the (western industrial) world is going to need a lot of different health care practitioners in the very near future.

  4. I made a list of what I would call the Priest Class of the Covid Cult.A few weeks ago I noticed they were sensing that they were in physical damage, and some of them are fighting amongst themselves. I suspect a few will make the decision soon to rat out others to save themselves. One of the more bizarre things happened with a Dr. Peter Hotez,who was caught lying about his involvement in Gain of function. On Sunday he claimed his Twitter (his main social media platform) was hacked because the boilplate “I have 15 Sony PS5s to sell” hack post appeared and stayed for a very long time.His wife claimed his account was hacked,Twitter hasn’t responding etc.He has since then removed (or got control of his account) the spam post, removed his picture from his avatar and not posted anything in 3 days.Now he is a compulsive poster,I believe he faked the hack and is now going into hiding. I totally believe that some people will get through under the bus and it’s happening extremely quickly.USA rolls out a new “thing” right after Labor Day,what if they go after medical companies with the FBI of all things,we might get a head spinning shift in narrative very soon.

  5. I was visiting my dad in a retirement home this weekend. He related a story of a friend in the same facility who is currently on 28 separate medications. It occurred to me that this friend of my fathers’ “followed the science” and the advice of his doctors. This keeps the friend technically alive, but drugged out of his mind most of the time, drooling in a wheelchair. I plan on choosing another path, even if it cuts off a year of two of my life.

  6. The same reasoning can be applied across the board of activities overseen by members of the Professional Managerial Class. (PMC)
    In the USA the PMCs are represented by the Democrat Party, this is why the party is unreformable and non agreement capable.

  7. JMG,

    I don’t know how to thank you for your writing and warnings; its almost only island of lucidity in sea of hysteria. If not this blog (and pointers toward esoteric practice) I would not skip \(semi-mandatory in Poland) vaccine campaign. I had “bad vibe” about it and the blog posts convinced me to wait and wait as situation become clearer. Thank you so much.

    -changeling

  8. Excellent series of posts, JMG. It goes along with your call at the Dreamwidth blog to begin imagining a way forward after the pseudo-plague. I have been encouraged throughout this to recognize that we have a great capacity to be our own doctors in many things. We have the power right now to access good information from caring medical experts like the FLCCC, Dr. Mercola and others. At least for now, we can also access a wide variety of herbs and supplements we need through online commerce. When the thing first hit back in 2020, I got a copy of Stephen Buhner’s book Herbal Antivirals. I ordered the relevant herbs and made tinctures. Then I found a chart on Chris Martenson’s Peak Prosperity site to convert horse paste doses for humans. When I came down with covid in 2021, I immediately dosed with the horse paste and felt better within hours! I love it that ivermectin is cultured from a soil bacteria. If it is good enough for a horse, it is good enough for me.

    The other thing that is within our power is to grow at least some of our own food. Or at least to purchase high quality whole foods and cook our own meals. The poor nutritional quality of processed food is a big reason for ill health and susceptibility to viruses. If more of us took charge of our health in these ways, we could starve the beastly pharmaceutical and fake food industries.

    I personally have learned a lot about health over the past two years, and have shared my resources with my community. My biggest passion these days is to build soil and grow nutrient dense food. I am also lucky to have a naturopathic doctor to confer with. I did a series of blood tests a few months ago and found that at age 65, all my levels of minerals and vitamins are perfect. I attribute that to adding volcanic rock dust to my soil and eating lots of fermented foods. Sauerkraut is something that anyone can make at home. That’s another thing I learned recently from Dr. Sabine Hazan – a healthy gut microbiome is a key indicator that a person will have an easy time with covid and other diseases.

    Healing as a profession has always had its share of charlatans and evil witch doctors. I am thinking of a book by Malcolm Margolin called The Ohlone Way, about the 10,000 year stable society of the tribes that inhabited the San Francisco Bay Area. Margolin tries to recreate in our imagination the life of these people. It’s a fascinating book and there is no way for me to know how accurate it is, but it seems to align with all of the other anthropological reading about tribal societies that I have done over the years. The story that sticks in my mind is a description of the structure of a tribe. There are two “authorities” – the political chief who redistributes food and other resources, presides over disputes and receives diplomatic visits from other tribes (and becomes war chief on the rare occasions that is needed). The other authority is the shaman-healer. The people are musing on the conduct of these authorities, and the consensus is that they are lucky: their chief is a fair man and the healer, a woman, is not too “witchy” – that is, she is not manipulative and does not misuse her power as a healer. The other note of satisfaction with the tribe’s current leadership is that the healer and the chief have a balance of power. There is no collusion between them to control and manipulate the tribe.

    Medical licensing is a form of collusion between medicine and the state. I support the call to end it. In the meantime, I license myself to be my own doctor as much as I possibly can. I still need the shaman-healer (my naturopathic doctor) for guidance, but her power over me is limited because I am in charge of my own health.

    Finally, I also think it is interesting that in these tribal societies the healer and the spiritual guide are the one and the same. What have we lost by separating these functions into medicine and religion?

  9. A sea-change in the populous is indeed afoot. For the first time in my adult life, I will be voting straight-ticket Republican this November. I am mostly doing so out of raw revenge for the Democrats, cheered on by the Very Online Left, attempting to force the death-jab on me. But there is also an element of self-defense, too, as it is not lost upon me that the SCOTUS justices who struck down the Biden jab-mandate were largely appointed by Republicans. At the very least, it will be some first-class entertainment observing the reaction of the Very Online Left on the morning of November 9, won’t it? 😀

  10. “Speaking words of wisdom: let it be.”

    But we can’t just let it be. Is it because we are unwise?
    No, it’s just because we all are what we were meant to be.

    We can only blame/ignore The Creator if we firmly believe we would have had done better. But, in plain honesty, how can we tell?

    Radical acceptance – Brutal candor: we aren’t lost, therefore we can’t be saved.

    The things we are doing to help our children will eventually hurt our great-grandchildren.
    Is this a flaw?
    No, it is a feature: we can only act as long as we remain clueless about the future.

    We arguably care about our children but we don’t care that much about their children – that’s mankind’s distinctive watermark, our greatest claim to fame.

  11. JMG, thanks for another insightful post. It’s my sincere hope that the medical establishments beholden to the march of capitalist pharmaceutical machines will begin to rub the sleep from their eyes. To be certain, we’re on the cusp of something. And as we see ever more circus-like behavior from the top, I hope we (collectively, as a people) can take away the important lessons from this. I really do hope that we stop the cycle of repeating our histories over and over again. Also – clerisy? I’d never considered it – but how apt a descriptive! Thanks again.

  12. I wasn’t going to comment on this until I literally closed Ecosophia to find this email in my In box… https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2022/08/17/walensky-revamp-cdc-culture-covid/?utm_source=alert&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=wp_news_alert_revere&location=alert

    It is worth reading in full but, to sum it up, it is the usually liberal “We are doing something Very Important,” congratulate us without looking at the details. The CDC, realizing that has both a public image problem and a performance problem, is overhauling and streamlining it’s processes. The major thrust of this to place an emphasis on action rather than publication. After all, published positions offer a historic record immune to on-the-fly reversals of posotion that can be analyzed and critiqued. “Action” can only be judged by outsiders doing their own research. People who obviously misunderstood what the CDC was trying to do and at any rate are just second rate crackpots whose opinions are surely inferior to United States Center For Disease Control.

    Just a couple of quotes…
    “During the pandemic, some senior staff were exhausted by deployments that lasted longer than six months. It has also been challenging to persuade officials to step away from regular duties to take a tour of duty leading the covid or monkeypox responses.“Leaving your position, where you’re publishing papers, to lead [an outbreak response], that’s not rewarded right now,” the senior CDC official said.” Especially when that “response” is little more than a propaganda campaign on behalf of Establishment interest and you know it.

    “The senior official acknowledged that such a culture change might prompt some at CDC to leave, adding, “there will be some people … who would prefer to work at more of an academic institution and are going to feel like this is not the right fit.” Just… wow. At least they are being honest about it.

    “In addition, it will set up a new equity office that will work across the agency, including in recruitment and retention of employees of diverse backgrounds.” Because, of course, the propaganda has an added credibility problem when it’s being delivered by “Old White Men,” and presenting the propaganda in the voice of Approved Minorities will make all the difference.

  13. “STC, who was a better poet than philosopher and a better philosopher than political theorist” – ha! It’s been awhile, but I re-read biographia literaria periodically, just because he’s such a helluva good writer. He had one of the most interesting, seriously strange, imaginations in all of literature. Too bad he never finished Christobel.
    I got the vaccine, back in March of ‘21. I was convinced by a nurse friend that all the necessary research on mRNA vaccines had been done back in the 90’s. So far, so good – I don’t have any side effects (yet) that I can identify. But thinking back, I realize how difficult it can be to make decisions under stressful situations. As I’m sure you’ve mentioned somewhere in your writings, we are not primarily rational creatures. On the contrary, rationality is a thin veneer over our emotional/psychic/spiritual natures. I think this accounts for the outbreak of serious lunacy overwhelming us. I like to think that we’ll come out of this crisis having learned an important lesson, but who knows. There might not be enough left when this is all over for any lessons learned to make a difference.

  14. “In the days of the Chinese mandarinate, a clique of government officials that got too fixated on pursuing failed policies was normally removed from power by the good practical expedient of beheading”

    Ah, these old good times in the ancient China. Although I am an “humanist” enemy of capital penalty, I could do an exception with some famous pundits in the last times of Western culture…or at least, I would praise for a season in the Gulag equivalent for them.
    Oh, I can’t forget the Chinese tortures, so refinated…

  15. “the political establishment and the corporate media all over the Western world insisted with a single voice that the vaccines were safe and effective.”

    Thank you for your post, JMG, but…
    Don’t forget the “alternatives” in the extreme-Left (more or less Wokesters), who had promoted shamelessly the vaxxes “against the darkness of the past”, “trust the science” and other thought-stoppers. They have disappointed me the same as “moderated” politicians in both sides of the political western scene.

  16. The overriding aspect of this that hasn’t yet dawned on the clerisy is that the climbing excess mortality and declining fertility rates are self-inflicted wounds and thus are falling disproportionately upon them & their most rabid followers. IOW, they’ve virtually ensured their own politic demise for the foreseeable future.

    Perhaps that realization is sinking in among some of them given their desperate attempts to cling to power in the short term, which have been severely compromised by their utter incompetence at governing. Regardless, by the time 2024 rolls around I expect the Dems & RINOs to be relegated to long-term minority status. Barring a huge populist upheaval and shift back to a more JFK-like party their constituency will have jabbed themselves into irrelevancy. #PeakDemocrats

  17. Thanks JMG, I have long thought that the medical profession needs market discipline and it heartens me to see that you also advocate that. I worked in environmental consulting for much of my career and I can tell you that market discipline strengthens professional practice immensely.

    Great posting

  18. It was the late 1980s and the early 1990s when I noticed TV and my elders becoming more and more shrill about Health and Safety. That’s when Ted Turner had CNN post evil smoker news stories and every TV show had an evil smoker episode. It got so bad my friends and I started to call it the fascist health and safety state. If you didn’t use a seat belt you got the furrowed eyebrow look. Oat bran was all the rage, so much that SNL did a satire of healthy cereal called “Colon Blow.” The news was hysterical night after night about health and safety issues.

    Admittedly, Americans in particular have been very susceptible to health fads over the centuries. But I think the late 1980s might have been a turning point for this time period. It was when Americans put health and safety above every other priority. Maybe it was due to the rise in secularism. It explains why people who were normally anti-corporate suddenly thought Pfizer was the good guy. It also explains why the PMC doubled down on lockdowns, masks and vaccines.

  19. Esteemed Archdruid Emeritus,

    I anticipate eagerly your final installment in this series.
    Here in lovely British Columbia, we could easily change the name to Brutish Columbia, so nasty was the reaction of the trusting sheeple against those who were skeptical of the experimental injection. Letters to editor suggesting various punishments for the vaccine hesitant were a daily occurrence. Truly a mass formation, I believe that is the innocuous-sounding term for such violent widespread madness.

    You may be aware that the Honourable Brian Peckford, former premier of Newfoundland and the last surviving minister signatory to our Charter of Rights and Freedoms (going back to the era of Trudeau senior), is suing the Federal government of Trudeau junior over the suspension of the constitutional right to freely travel. We’ll see how the courts deal with that!

    My partner and I were so coerced into the jab by the need to travel.

    On our return we soon were informed that our doctor was giving up her practice, (not due to age) and no other doctor in our area is accepting patients. We are now among the million of the province’s population without a family doctor. So much for universal health care in Canada.

    It is now necessary for us to wait the whole day at the emergency department to get a prescription renewal or doctor’s attention, which is what my partner was forced to do.

    She just called and informed me that she is having an ECG examination, having noticed very high blood pressure recently. At least that’s something, an attempt at diagnosis. I have a suspicion, however, that her pre-existing heart problems have been exacerbated by the shot, as this is one side effect among the many now reported.

    Excuse my rambling, JMG, there are so many dots connecting.

    Robert

  20. Hi JMG,

    Definitely a post to mull over.

    I hadn’t been aware of so many “Covid vaccination” deaths and cripplings until this reading. I had heard about the possibility, but nothing reliable.

    With the state of people’s unfamiliarity with American history, some may not know that “Jacksonian” refers to President Andrew Jackson (1767-1845), who was president between 1829 and 1837.

    Wikipedia is not particular helpful.

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  21. Amen!
    I have no idea what happens after that, but even in the case when things go wrong, so much, so much, I wish to live enough to see the fall of this people with my own eyes!
    That will be a very sweet moment!

  22. I reckon there are two axis on the “expert” graph: ignorant-knowledgeable and influential-nobody gives a $#!t.
    Pity that the “ignorant:influential” cluster is a lot bigger than the rest.
    Guess which end the peak oil
    /climate/etc experts are on.
    Probably something to do with people in power not wanting to hear about reality because that would mean having to grow up and actually do something, which is hard, takes humility, long term thinking, and actually talking with people, not just at them.

    Trouble is, people have been so conditioned by the totality of their environments that they can’t think either. School, food, media, jobs, modern architecture being an expression of PTSD which is then reflected back into you, the diminishment of the Wild, etc, means even if people wanted to they cannot think outside the box. Hard to do unless you are thrust out for some reason, which is why critics of society tend to be those on the fringes. Easier to see the picture when you step back, or are kicked out.

    I guess somebody will think of something. Happens all the time in movies so it must be true.

  23. From Connie Barlow (on Michael Dowd’s computer)…
    JMG – Thank you! Your post offers me the first information I have read anywhere that now helps me finally see a possible hypothesis as to why Chinese officials are still engaging in a zero-covid policy, via lockdowns: that those who are “vaccinated” may have exceptional risks for developing lethal (and unstoppable) debilities IF they catch covid following such treatment. Such a hypothesis, in turn, makes sense only with an ancillary hypothesis: perhaps it is known or suspected that lethal consequences of the “vaccine” greatly diminish over time. So when that time is up, then the lockdowns will stop. QUESTION: How have you yourself made sense of the ongoing lockdowns in China?

  24. JMG,
    I hope that you are right that somebody, anybody in Big Pharma, the medical industry, and/or the political class, will pay for the disastrous consequences of the Covid 19 injections. I have my doubts. Big Pharma is so rich and so powerful that it seems impossible to bring them down. And they prop up the medical industry and the politicians. The only solution that I have in my own life is to refuse to participate in using their poisons and encouraging my family to do the same. Sometimes my encouragement works. Most of the time it doesn’t and my family members have all paid the price. They don’t acknowledge the price they pay though because big Pharma’s propaganda is everywhere and is hard to resist. The fear big Pharma promotes gets in the way. That is, fear that if you don’t do what big Pharma says YOU’LL DIE.

    Everything that rises will fall, but I don’t think I will see anyone pay in my lifetime. Maybe 50 years from now it will happen? Maybe 100? The end of cheap energy will erode big Pharma, but as you always say about the end of cheap energy, this will not be a sudden and complete apocalypse. Do you think that we will see anyone fall in say, the next 5 to 7 years? Just holding out hope…

  25. Thank you for this excellent post.

    I wonder how damaging this clerisy really is, in view of the fact that the empire that hosts it is already entering the dustbin of history. Americans, Japanese, Europe, Australia are not the dominant civilization on the planet anymore. The Chinese alone outnumber and outproduce that collapsing empire. Chinese a. did not require vaccines of their people but relied on the centuries old notion of quarantines, after finally responding to the virus borne in the labs there; and b. their vaccine was a real one, and not a goofy experimental and poisonous mRNA injection.
    India”s Upper Pradesh province very successfully employed superior, safe and effective treatment, news of which was squashed last year in response to pressure of Biden representative of the clerisy during his visit. India alone is bigger than the US and at some point will probably outproduce the amount of goods and services in an expanding economy.

    Perhaps the clerisy monsters in the falling empire will be replaced by the socialist dictators of a new emerging empire. I wonder how the new mandarinate masters in the East will deal with scientific truth and policies for the public good. I am not optimistic based on their clumsy dictatorial use of quarantines. We need to get past them. But the key to beheading the new mandarins in the East and to removal of the clerisy in the West is access to accurate information and secure communications.

    The clerisy know this and control the internet/google/wikipedia/social media to block truth and collusion leading to their replacement. The mandarins in the east similarly are frantically controlling their internet. This is the main problem to focus on because clear rational thinkers in the new dark age need a way to find and utilize truth about the real world, via confidential communications.

    Any real progress of civilization will require clear headed thinkers to develop and deploy their own information gathering and communications system. This is key. Scientific / philosophical thinkers of the middle ages along with new inventions such as the printing press got us out of that dark age. We need something analogous for the new dark age. But this needed encouragement and cooperation of rational thinkers will have to be developed in secret, by technologists who understand the hardware and software needed. I see some possibilities and am very hopeful, but this all requires a lot of work.

  26. JMG,

    I always appreciate your perspective and generally agree with you in broad strokes, but with today’s essay I feel the need to speak up because, based on my own personal experience, I think you’re badly mistaken in one vital respect.

    You’re describing a real phenomenon (these “vaccines” are killing and disabling people at a rate that would have been considered far beyond unacceptable for any prior vaccine), but you also believe that people are noticing this. I’m not at all sure this is true. In my own experience (as someone with strong opinions who has no particular trouble knowing, daring or willing but quite a bit of trouble remaining silent), every single person I know who condemns the vaccines had a strong preexisting animosity to industrial medicine. When I bring up the abysmal record of these “vaccines” with those who did take the jab, even those whom I would otherwise consider intelligent and thoughtful, the response is usually “well I took the vaccine and I feel fine” or something similarly glib. Pressing the issue, citing the FDA EUA memos, links to VAERS… their nonchalance is consistently ironclad and I’ve stopped trying to convince anyone of anything, because I always wind up feeling angry and impotent with no benefit. (For what it’s worth, I do not run in liberal circles, either.)

    Quite frankly, I do believe that the failure of these vaccines is barely a nick in the armor of industrial medicine. Hundreds of thousands of iatrogenic deaths have been recorded every year for decades prior, and that too has failed to change minds. As pessimistic as it is, I do suspect that people in general will line up for their next experimental gene therapy as enthusiastically as they lined up for the last one.

    All the same, our intellectual “elites” certainly don’t act like they feel secure in their power and influence, and they’re behaving in increasingly erratic and dangerous ways. I do agree that they don’t seem to have too much longer to hold on to the mandate of heaven…

    Warm regards,
    Amos

  27. Thanks for the well thought out article. Another botched punt by the Establishment has to do with MonkeyPox. The Government, Big Pharma and the Media want to make this the next crisis. They want those who are vaccinated and apparently watch CNN and the rest of the MSM news to get the upcoming booster from Pfizer. Big Pharma loves this because they make $Billions in profits with NO liability.

    A recent story posted on ZeroHedge, where a gay couple contracted MonkeyPox and to their amazement so did their dog. We then come to find out the alleged couple were getting a little too frisky with their dog Fido.

  28. Here’s a link to the ad being run by Pfizer today. Readers might enjoy a screenshot of it (idk how to post images).
    https://twitter.com/pfizer/status/1557107279924715521?s=20&t=Rcc8wsKTRP54zS8waI0SHQ

    I’m quite frankly furious at them running this ad. And so many acting like this is OK. While I am still banned from my job for not taking it! My Republican state representative supports the mandates keeping me from work in my state.

    It’s the having no recourse, no way to push back or get relief this whole time that leaves me bitter and unwilling to “understand” what has been done here.

  29. Gusgus, ha! It hadn’t gotten that far when I was a kid in the 1960s, but it was heading that way.

    Yorkshire, the quarrel between the clerisy and the rich is a matter of squabbles between thieves over who gets how much of the booty. Since there’s proverbially no honor among thieves, that quarrel has played out in any number of undignified ways.

    Isaac, I’ll be talking about that in two weeks. The short form is that, yes, it’s likely to be a very good time for alternative healing modalities whose practitioners weren’t trying to claw their way into a spot in the medical-industrial complex — as too many herbalists were.

    Hplovecraftsshadow, yes, I heard about the Dr. Hotez business. Now that the CDC has just announced that it’s going to do a thorough reorganization due to its failures in response to Covid — details here — I think it’s entirely possible that you’re right, and we could see some whipsaw-fast changes in the narrative.

    Lothar, I got to see the same thing repeatedly years ago when I worked in nursing homes as a nurses’ aide. That’s one of the reasons I don’t use mainstream medicine.

    Valiant, yep. We’ll be talking about that two weeks from now.

    Changeling, you’re most welcome! It means a lot to me that people take what I write seriously and do useful things with it, so thank you as well.

    William, thank you!

    Seaweedy, these are excellent points. I should probably note, though, that ivermectin isn’t the only option — I got through Covid just fine using cell salts and acupressure. (Not that I’m recommending these to anybody else, you understand!)

    Mister N, I had a certain amount of popcorn this morning while watching Liz Cheney eat crow. If that’s any indication of which way the wind is blowing, November 9 should be fun.

    Armenio, er, who is this “we” you talk about? It certainly doesn’t apply to all of humanity.

    Christina, I doubt the medical establishments will do that, as the consequence of losing their current state of privilege will be a rebalancing of incomes they won’t like at all. (There’s no good reason, after all, why a doctor should make more than a plumber.)

    Btidwell, I’m pretty sure they were told to do some pro forma reshuffling in a hurry. The question is whether it stops there. I have my doubts!

    Bill, oh, no question, Coleridge is worth reading. I just don’t agree with his political ideas!

    Chuaquin, I simply want the people responsible to be tried by a jury of their peers and to suffer the legal penalties for their misdeeds. Beheading is colorful, but I’m not holding out for it — no, not even for the pseudoradical Left, which displayed for all to see just how completely it’s a product, and a puppet, of the corporate system it claims to oppose.

    TJ, it astounds me that nobody saw that coming. Conspiracy theorists take note: if your sinister plan results in a large number of your actual and potential supporters dropping dead suddenly or being crippled by long term side effects, while your enemies go unscathed, you’d probably better get out of the conspiracy business and go back to playing with stuffed animals in a crib.

    Michael, you’re welcome.

    Raymond, the absurd cost and wretchedly poor performance of the US medical system are to my mind one of the best arguments in economic history against assigning an important economic sector to a self-selecting, self-regulating group of privileged practitioners. What health care in the US needs right now is new laws making it possible for nurses and physicians assistants to hang out their own shingles and diagnose, treat, and prescribe ordinary medicines for ordinary illnesses on their own, without a doctor’s notional supervision; eliminating the “crime” of practicing medicine without a license so that alternative health care practitioners can practice freely; and establishing — if possible, in state and federal constitutions — the right of individuals to make their own health care choices.

    Jon, yep. One of the things that’s been true since right after the Second World War is that whatever age the Boomers are at defines the concerns of the country. In the 80s and 90s, they weren’t young any more and middle age was starting to settle in, thus the frantic fixation on youth and health at all costs. The Covid fiasco wouldn’t have happened if Boomers hadn’t gotten old enough to be in the population mostly at risk. The bright side? Invest in funeral homes; they’ll be the center of attention soon enough.

    Robert, thanks for this. I’m very sorry to hear all that — but not surprised.

    Northwind, thanks for this. I know a lot of people haven’t heard about the hideously high rate of side effects from the Covid vaccines; that’s what you get when mass and social media are both censored in the interests of boosting the profits of the pharmaceutical industry.

    Nati, a lot of people share that feeling. That being the case, the fall may not be so long delayed.

    Benn, and yet the views on the fringes gradually filter into the center as the center fails to cope with its self-created problems. No, nobody inside the box is going to think of something — but more and more people are leaving the box.

    Connie, since I can’t get information about what’s going on in China except through the exceedingly inaccurate filters of partisan media, I frame no hypotheses.

    Jean, I’m sure that plenty of people in America in 1822 were sure they’d never see the medical lobby of that time humbled, either. The Mexicans have a useful saying: “Nothing happens until it happens.” That is to say, history is full of ugly abusive systems that held on, and held on, and held on — and then suddenly clutched their chest and fell over dead. Depending on just how bad the blowback from the vaccines turns out to be, that could well happen sooner rather than later.

    Mots, sure, but since I live in the United States and so do a lot of my readers, conditions here do still matter to us, you know. As for “any real progress of civilization,” er, do you actually believe in that?

    Amos, well, we’ll see, won’t we? Remember Kubler-Ross’s five stages of grief; what you’re seeing is denial. The next stage is anger…

    Rod, I’m fond of the suggestion that in the word “monkeypox,” the K is silent. 😉

    Denis, oof. I hadn’t seen that. I wonder if anyone at Pfizer realizes that they’re fitting a noose around their own necks.

  30. “There are plenty of reasons why Joe Biden’s approval ratings are so abysmal right now.”

    JMG and kommentariat: Do you think that BIden’s puppeteers could try to start a war against China for improving (?) the zombie approval ratings?? Why?

  31. There’s been a lot of discussion around the Fed trying to direct the markets and economy for a “soft landing”, and I would say the clerisy is in the same predicament with the Jabs. Won’t be surprised at all if there is significant violence, and a few judge/jury/executioner vendettas carried out. We are way past the potential for a soft landing.

    A very angry vibe from many – no love lost for the Covidians, for sure.

    Looking forward to the potential paths forward you’re thinking of, JMG.

  32. Nassim Taleb makes the point that doctors up until modern times were theoreticians, with little practical knowledge, and their theories tended to be deadly…Whereas lowly surgeons, disdained by doctors, were pragmatic and knew a lot about human anatomy, and therefore came up with the more useful treatments…And the surgeons, often barbers or butchers, were disdained for their lack of education, which was a huge advantage…Midwives, similarly, were invaluable, and mothers who used them had vastly better outcomes…

  33. Whatever happens, I hope that some of these PMC folks will be held legally accountable for what they’ve done. Fauci, in particular, probably deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison. He’s far from the only one. I think they’re trying to distract us with things like monkeypox and the raid on President Trump’s home. They’re failing, and getting more desperate.

    On a more positive note, I’ve mostly taken to using alternative medicine instead of the officially approved One True Medicine, Inc. I rarely visit a medical doctor, and only when home remedies like plenty of water, fresh air and sunshine, exercise, and homeopathic methods fail. I’ve seen my health improve considerably as a result, and that’s even after having taken the Janssen vaccine last year.

  34. Hi everyone, just to report that today I tested negative after one and a half weeks with COVID19. Given that information down the Internet is utterly partisan, I have followed during the past two years an approach of trusting what I see with my lying eyes. In this I am happy to report confirmation to JMG’s own observation: the first 36 hours where as bad as it gets in terms of a strong flue, but I have had it way worse (and for longer) with your run of the mill bacterial throat infection.

    When I finally dragged myself to the clinic and got tested (because my car broke a couple of days earlier and, of course, I prioritized fixing it) my vitals where better while covid-ridden that what those had been two years earlier while “healthy”. I suspect such a happy outcome would not have come to be if I had continued to neglect my physical shape during the pandemic. Plenty of vigorous exercise and sleep, healthy food, clean water, sunlight exposure: those will keep the doctor away.

  35. I will punt on the question of the vaccine and its efficacy–the data over the long term will bear out the consequences of it–but I will say I am no particular fan of mandating particular courses of treatment for anyone, nor any of the vitriol and spiritual strife that ensued from the psychological end of the pandemic.

    That said, dear Archdruid, I suspect your assertions about the relative severity of the virus are simply incorrect. And I have this from the first-person viewpoint of my mother, who has worked in the medical field, hands on, with patients, for more than 50 years.

    She observed, at our little urban hospital here in Greater New York, the pandemic tents going up. She saw entire families cut down–yes, the old and infirm, but in some cases the young and healthy. Having worked at the same hospital for decades, she saw a place with only six morgue spots that had previously never been filled overflowing with bodies, such that refrigerator trucks had to be brought in. She worked in the tents; she witnessed the effects of the virus.

    All of this BEFORE the vaccines had been rolled out, just in case there are those who’d like to attribute it to the vaccines.

    Now this woman is a devout Christian, and not prone to hyperbole (nor, in my experience, lying to her children). She herself questions many of the overreaches of the medical industry.

    Curiously, there have been no refrigerator trucks again, and no overflowing morgues, although things got dicey again late last year. (Make of this what you will. I myself am not sold on the particular efficacy of the “vaccine,” such as it is, but that’s another story.)

    Multiple things can be true at once. The virus can be particuarly bad, worse than the “average cold.” The vaccines can be not particuarly helpful, and even detrimental to some people’s health, in some instances. The elites can be bumblings and fumbling…and yet occasionally mutter things that are true.

    Again, my main qualm is not so much about the vaccine and its effects–ideally, the data, gathered over a long term, will spell out what the truth is, and the consequences thereof. We should hope, indeed, that we have forthcoming scientists who will tell us the truth, either way. And yet I suggest we should also step back and questions our biases, especially when a particular storyline (i.e. the crumbling of the admittedly long-in-the-tooh elites of the industrial world) seems to beckon irresistibly.

    Axé and all blessings to one and all…

  36. JMG,

    Do you expect a few sacrificial lambs (like medical overregulation or public schooling) being thrown under the bus to be sufficient for things to cool over?

    I can hardly imagine that, once enough people have gone through their respective stages of grief.

    This thing has hit so very close to home for almost everybody – it was pushed literally into people‘s homes, families, friendships and their very bodies – I somehow doubt that once the pushback start, a few bits or pieces here or there will suffice to appease people. Too much trust has been broken, and literally everyone has been affected in one way or another. In this particular case, I can‘t really imagine that anything but a full change of ruling will satisfy people.

    What I‘m personally hoping for right now is a. that the pendulum will swing back fast enough to spare my kids another very exhausting and abusive autumn and winter with masks and testing etc, and b. that it will swing back softly and gently. Sadly, I‘m not even sure one of that is possible, let alone both… 😉

    @Robert Becket #21

    All the best to your partner, and I hope her issues will resolve soon and she‘ll be fine!

    Milkyway

  37. The arrogance and naked self interest of the Medical Industrial Complex is truly something to behold. I’ve been treated for Lyme disease three times. The first time, I was a child. They prescribed antibiotics for about a week. The second time, I was around 20 years old. They prescribed antibiotics for two weeks as one week had since been found to be insufficient for some people.
    Still feeling some symptoms after my treatment, I decided to look up the disease online and found a vast community of people suffering from Chronic Lyme Disease. The Medical establishment at the time refused to accept this as a phenomenon for people who had been properly treated by them already. The CLD crowd were called hypochondriacs, attention seeking liars, conspiracy theorists etc. Eventually, my lingering symptoms either went away or I just learned to live with them.
    About ten years later, my knee became swollen and I was diagnosed with Lyme again. This time I got prescribed antibiotics for two months as a month had been found to be insufficient for some people. I was told by my doctor “The good news is: you are immune to Lyme Disease! Once you get it, you can’t get it again. The bad news is: you may still experience some symptoms. See, some people suffer from something called ‘Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome’”.
    Guess what – PTLDS? There is no treatment! I guess this was their way of saving face after treating people suffering from Chronic Lyme Disease so terribly – they can’t call it CLD or they’d have to admit they were wrong. The only downside of this cute rhetorical trick is that neither I, nor anyone else aware of this whole farce will ever trust mainstream medicine again.
    When the MRNA shots got rolled out and I had to put up with people trying to talk me out of my “hesitancy” (another cute rhetorical trick designed to make the treatment seem inevitable) I would tell them about my Lyme experience as explanation for my lack of faith in “Evidence Based Medicine”. The typical response would be a blank stare, or perhaps a condescending exhortation that my experience had nothing to say about the current situation.

    Thanks for this series of posts, JMG, they have been truly fantastic.

    Reggie

  38. “Once the formerly licensed doctors were forced to compete on a level playing field against healers using other modalities, it became clear very quickly who the quacks were.”

    What an intriguing throwaway line! I am obviously going to have to do some reading on this period.

    Thanks for the pointer!

  39. I was listening to a folk radio show last night. The radio host and the guest performer were both ecstatic because it was the first time the station had invited performers back since THE PANDEMIC.

    The performer expressed how grateful he was that his fans had donated and kept him afloat through THE PANDEMIC. He briefly mentioned that he is 50 yet cannot carry a guitar and walks with a cane. He said he has had Covid twice, the first time worse than the second, and the host immediately replied with “it wasn’t as severe because you had the vaccine by the second time!” The host phrased this more as a declarative statement than a question.

    I found the conversation infuriating. It is because of people like this — comfortable people who played along with the Narrative and even now in the avalanche of evidence refuse to admit the vaccines were killing people — that so many people lost their jobs, including performers whose fans could not afford to keep them afloat via livestream donations. I have a musician friend who is drinking himself to death on livestream. THE PANDEMIC or more honestly, the reaction to it, nearly took him out.

    Just my personal opinion here but I believe everyone who took the quaxx, including those who seemingly had no consequences, are still culpable for the damage they caused — the vaccine injuries, deaths, shuttered businesses, backslides into addiction, lockdown domestic abuse, damage from endless hours masked in school or at work, et m. I have no idea how this comes back to them or in what form or even in which life, but I have a strong sense that those who played this game win the appropriate prizes. That’s why I was willing to literally die rather than take the quaxx or to wear the mask that symbolized the regime pushing it.

  40. I was wondering when you were going to write on this topic.

    My confidence that there really is a big problem with these vaccines has been steadily climbing from concerned uncertainty (through fall 2021) to a reasonable probability (Winter 2022) to 90% certainty (Spring 2022) and has only recently reached the ~99% certainty level where I would be very surprised to be proven wrong by history. I suspect your willingness to post this now means you have reached a similar threshold?

    I’m amazed that this level of real-world evidence can coexist with the official narrative remaining intact, but then perhaps I haven’t read enough stories from the last days of the USSR.

    I’m also surprised to see no comments defending the official narrative among the first 30, unless you’ve been deleting them?

  41. Chauquin said in comment # 15

    Ah, these old good times in the ancient China. Although I am an “humanist” enemy of capital penalty, I could do an exception with some famous pundits in the last times of Western culture…or at least, I would praise for a season in the Gulag equivalent for them.
    Oh, I can’t forget the Chinese tortures, so refinated…

    I personally like Chairman Mao’s idea from the 1960’s. Parade members of the PMC through the streets wearing dunce caps and placards listing their “crimes against the people” and then shipping them off to remote rural communities to “learn from the Deplorables, er, peasants”.

  42. I would love to have a soteriometer. I’ve often wished for some sort of device capable of detecting energy, or perhaps vibrational frequencies (not sure of the proper scientific terminology), so I could point it at somebody, chirping tricorder noises would come out, and then it would tell me whether how enlightened or sinful that person is.

    Until the late 19th century, education in Western countries was dominated by the study of Latin (and to a lesser extent Greek, which in the 1840s was to some extent a rebel movement). This was not of much more practical use than the Confucian classics, although contemplation of ancient Rome was felt to encourage various virtues. Eventually the case for science and modern languages (and sport!) became too compelling, and these steadily crowded out classical languages, until early 20th century educators mounted a kind of rear-guard action in the form of the “great books” movement. (In earlier eras, reading classics in translation was considered cheating.)

    Northwind Grandma (no. 22), I was going to guess that the reference was to Michael Jacksonian democracy, or perhaps Janet Jacksonian. But Andrew enjoyed a brief resurgence of popularity a few years ago, when people started comparing Trump to him (and also King Cyrus, for some reason). Well, except for the military-hero thing. Remember all those calls to replace Jackson with, like, Harriet Tubman or somebody on the US $20 bill? It occurred to me that Trump could have trolled them by ordering the substitution of Ronald Reagan!

  43. I see that Liz Cheney apparently hasn’t learned anything from her loss and is now talking about running for the GOP presidential nomination in 2024, which she has a less than zero percent chance of winning. Cheney and other Lincoln Project RINO’s remind of nothing so much as that famous saw about the Bourbon dynasty in the 19th century, that they had forgotten nothing and learned nothing. But as a leading CNN political analyst put it, Cheney’s political party “is the Beltway media”. She elaborated by saying

    And, you know, she might get grand profiles in The Atlantic, and maybe she gets a cable news deal. But in terms of having actual Republicans who will follow her, we can see in the polling, we can see in the results from this race, but she, you know, is a person on an island in her party

    https://www.foxnews.com/media/cnn-analyst-liz-cheneys-political-party-beltway-media

    Ouch!

  44. Chuaquin, it seems unlikely to me, as the US would lose such a war, badly.

    Drhooves, economists are if anything even less competent than the medical industry, so yeah, that makes sense.

    Pyrrhus, he’s quite correct. The bias toward theory at the expense of practice (and human lives) remains firmly in place today.

    Brenainn, glad to hear it.

    CR, glad to hear this too. Of course you’re quite correct: take care of yourself and you’ll have much better outcomes than you will from the medical industry’s quack nostrums.

    Fra’ Lupo, I’ve heard such claims from some areas, and it seems entirely possible to me that they may be true. What I know is what I saw and experienced myself, and that doesn’t fit the claim that it was as dangerous as all that. One thing I did hear repeatedly from people here in East Providence was that going to the hospital was the worst possible thing to do — but again, that’s hearsay.

    Milkyway, I don’t know. I’m fairly sure that those gobbets will be flung to the dogs first, certainly.

    Reggie, thanks for this. That’s a great example of the arrogance and incompetence of the medical profession. I hope you find some better approach to managing the symptoms!

    Scotlyn, you’re most welcome.

    Kimberly, so noted. I don’t feel comfortable with so extreme a blanket judgment, but your mileage may vary, of course.

    Mark, partly it’s confidence, and partly it’s a sense that speaking out in this forum now — when the tide is on the turn — will have some effect, where doing so earlier would simply have caused more minds to slam shut. As for defenders of the status quo, the only ones who’ve tried to post are two obvious rent-a-trolls who’ve never posted here before and have a boatload of standard canned talking points, and their attempted comments went straight into the food bowl of my pet black hole Fido.

    Bei, I’d take a soteriometer, too, if they were for sale! As for the old classical education, it wasn’t just the Latin language, it was Latin and Greek works on history and philosophy, so it made a very close match to a Confucian education — and it generally led to better government, too.

    Sardaukar, I”m delighted to hear this. My next big investment will be in popcorn futures. 😉

  45. And here’s another interesting little factoid about Liz Cheney and the other nine RINO’s who sided with the Dems in the impeachment fiasco. Of those ten, four were smart enough to see the writing on the wall and announce they were retiring from Congress, four were successfully primaried and only two are on the ballot for November. Those two narrowly made it because they were running in states with top-two-finisher rather than party-based primaries and the populist vote was split among two or more rival candidates.

    The socio-political equivalent of a Richter 9 earthquake is coming…

  46. @ Fra’lupo #37 – thank you for this measured take. I dropped down to the comment section to say the same thing, but it appears you already said it, and better, than I would have.

    I find it tedious that the narrative became “couldn’t have been the virus, all those people just dropped dead for no reason”, and for reasons that appear, to me, more political, than fact/observation based.

  47. Regarding monkeypox lesions around the anus and mouth:

    This is not evidence that the infected animal or human got it through sex acts involving either of those orifices – it usually presents there. Monkeypox is transmissible by sex just like just about every other disease, but can be transmitted through touch, fomites, and through respiratory droplets in shared spaces as well. Right now the disease only appears to have a R0 over 1 (meaning the number of infected people will increase) in people who attend orgies, who are mostly gay men. The proportion of the population that are gay men who attend orgies is fairly small, and it seems likely to me that monkeypox will burn through that community and then go away.

    If monkeypox does mutate to have a R0 > 1 in humans who do not attend orgies on the regular, then hold onto your hat – the disease is very severe in infants, children and the elderly.

  48. I’m increasingly thinking of the clerisy (PMC/US federal government mashup) as a combination of the Russian intelligentsia and the tsar’s bureaucracy circa 1915. I know, I know; that’s a visual that no one wants to see. I know I don’t. Of course, the vast majority of Russians in 1915 were uneducated, unarmed peasants who were conditioned over centuries to revere the tsar. The vast majority of the US population today are a wee bit different.

    Sadly, I’m by nature and experience a pessimist. I can’t make myself believe that bureaucratic criminals will be brought to court, tried, convicted and punished. The clerisy would have to convict themselves, and that’s not going to happen. As some others have said, it looks like those in power will have to die off before they give up power.

    I also have given up trying to talk to people about the shots. Those who didn’t take them or were forced to are already convinced; those who did take them can’t stand to look at the evidence. How’s that Mark Twain quote go? “It’s easier to fool someone than it is to convince them that they have been fooled.” One of the websites I frequent talk endlessly about the virus, infection rates, deaths, etc., but never ever ask, “How many of those infected took the shots?” Heresy!

  49. Another area that is cruising for a giant bruising is higher education in the USA. Also Canada, though probably somewhat less spectacularly.

    Sky-high prices, lowered standards, too many graduates who then facing crushing debt loads and little improvement in their job prospects. There are other ways to learn a lot of things that are a lot less expensive. Provided that you don’t have to have a piece of paper saying you’ve taken a 4 year degree in that specific subject. Remove that roadblock, and oh boy are the universities going to be in trouble.

  50. Another very interesting post. Maybe because I live here in DC, but I don’t see anyone becoming disillusioned with the clerisy. I hope they will, though.

    I think things move so fast that even if the evidence gets mainstream traction and is no longer deniable to even the most devoted, the news will move so fast that it will be forgotten and it will be time to trust institutional authorities all over again on a different topic.

  51. Seaweedy #9, Ivermectin is good for people because it was developed for people. In particular, as a treatment for parasitic, disease-causing intestinal worms in tropical and sub-tropical Africa. The developers were awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in, I believe, 2015. That it is also helpful for other large mammals (humans are simply large mammals) is serendipity in action.

  52. I see a lot of comment about herbalists coming back into favor, which is great, but I would also like to see the same for Homeopathy. Homeopathy was forced out of the medical field centuries ago to allow allopathic medicine to be the only choice in healing. Homeopathy has so much to offer. it would be great to see many more people learn about it and practice it again. It really is safe and effective!

  53. I immediately burst out laughing when I heard what Biden said about the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act”….

    “With this law, the American people won and the special interests lost,” Biden said, claiming the bill is “one of the most significant laws in our history.”

  54. JMG, you wrote:”There’s no good reason, after all, why a doctor should make more than a plumber.”
    The advent of modern plumbing (bringing clean water, and removing waste) is the cause of most of the improvement in health in the last century, so I would argue that plumbers should be paid MORE than doctors.
    It saddens me to see longtime friends lamenting Liz Cheney’s loss in the primary. A lifetime of evil cannot be erased by a single gesture.

  55. Hi John
    I have been following your posts for years now and enjoy your deep insightful take on the world and its likely trajectory.
    However, I thought I should clarify the situation regarding the information given on COVID outbreak in New Zealand at present. The main reason we (I live in NZ) have COVID outbreak now is because the strict quarantine/border control of travel in/out of the country imposed for the past two years (which was easy to do for an isolated archipelago stuck down in the South Pacific), was relaxed in the past 4-6 months, and very quickly COVID cases started to rise from about the zero case line we have had since early 2020. So it is disingenuous to ascribe the current outbreak to the vaccine roll-out, which occurred during 2021. If the vaccine was killing people in NZ it would have done it last year. There were a few deaths (<5) attributed to the vaccine last year when we were recording few/none from COVID.

  56. @Lothar #5: I think I’ve told the story about my friend Daisy R., who came to our Circle (from out of town) as a total wet mess, and told us right off the bat that she was mentally ill. Some time later, she was complaining that her latest meds had unpleasant side effects and that her doctor prescribed still another med to cope with those side effects, and that he was always doing that.

    I asked her if there was a chain pharmacy within easy walking or bus distance of her apartment. If so, dump all her meds in a paper bag and ask to speak to the pharmacist. She did, and ended up with the number cut back quite a bit. Now, she still had other issues, including her family back in Arizona, who apparently treated her like an incompetent, but when I saw her last, she was doing very well, on only 3 meds (one for thyroid, one for diabetes, and I forget the other), had a number of friends and was a member of the local science fiction club and going to every one of their annual conventions and participating. IIRC, she dumped the doctor and her family’s evaluation of her along the way as well. Because the last time she visited them, she came back to say, “well, that’s just how they are; they’ll never change.” And, BTW, she turned out more socially at ease than I am. (Not a hard standard to meet.)

  57. Isaac Salamander Hill #3

    Re alternative health modalities

    You got me “to thinkin’.” I thought I would add my two cents.

    My experience with alternative health modalities = ✨🌟👏🥇.

    My opinion of “traditional medical community” = 🤮🤢💉🦠🥷.

    Whenever I get a new M.D., the first thing out of my mouth is (not joshing and no exaggeration): “It is nothing personal, but I loathe doctors (M.D.s). I come from a long line of doctor-haters§. I will use you for my own purposes, like refilling my medications and if I get the flu or come down with pneumonia. Other than that, you won’t know I exist. If I get cancer or have a fatal heart attack, so be it — it is my time. I neither agree to be a medical casualty nor will I let you make money off me. I am low-maintenance.🖕🏼” As long as I put it THAT (matter of factly and licely) way, the M.D.s accept it.

    § I was close to one grandfather — I follow his lead.

    I keep medications to an absolute minimum. I have high blood pressure, so am on one medication to lower it; otherwise, I don’t give a cr@p. A couple years ago, an M.D. said she wanted to put me on a second medication for high blood pressure — like an idiot, I said fine. Half a year later, blood in the blood vessels of my ankles started pooling — I would scratch an itch there, which created a wound, which didn’t “heal” for another half year. When I finally figured out that this ankle-phenomenon was a side effect of the second high blood pressure medication, I immediately stopped the drug, and within a month, my legs were back to normal. This episode meant that I needed a refresher course on the fact that the American medical system is royally f#cked up.

    ACUPUNCTURE, HOMEOPATHICS, FLOWER ESSENCES

    Since 1995, my philosophy is three-fold: acupuncture, homeopathics, and flower essences, to far better advantage than “traditional medicine.” I do the occasional chiropractor. I have never had a surgery. I have minor things go mildly wrong (aging), but handle it discretely by myself.

    Acupuncture is primarily what keeps my body in balance. What really riles me is that acupuncture and flower essences are expensive. I now get homeopathics mail-order from India, so these are not nearly as expensive as a few years ago.

    I am forced to pay out-of-pocket. Being almost no insurance organization (corporation or government, including Medicare) covers acupuncture, I logically conclude that the “traditional medical community” prefers that I (and others) forever be sick, suffer, and when they perceive they can’t make money off me/us, would I/we be so kind as to die. My reaction:🖕🏼them all — they should be the ones to get sick and stay sick, suffer, and die. And for their bad karma coming back to them, suffer tenfold.

    Do I have permanent animosity towards “traditional medical community”? You can bet on it. My rejection will never go away — their abuse has gone on far too long and they cannot make it better, except by “would they be so kind as to die.” I have nothing good to say about the whole lot of them😤. They are a bunch of crooks.

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA
    age 70

  58. Here’s my Modest Proposal. Medical licenses are abolished. Anyone who wants to give practicing medicine a shot, here’s what they have to do:

    – register on a public list, who they are and what they can treat.
    – if it’s not something they can treat, they have the right to refuse service. otherwise they must take the customer, if the customer can pay. you’ll see why this is important in a minute.
    – post what their hourly rate is

    and this one is the most important
    – must maintain a 90% (4.5/5 stars) customer satisfaction rate

    If you can maintain a 90% satisfaction rate doing herbal homeopathy? Great. If you’re a Harvard Medical School surgeon doing heart transplants? Knock yourself out. 90% or go do something else.

  59. @JMG – one reason doctors insist they need to make more than plumbers is because of the high cost of a medical education. College. Grad School. Medical School. A usually brutal internship during which they’re not paid much, if anything, IIRC. If they had to take out student loans, you can double and triple the cost. I know. My daughter is an MD. Lucky her dad comes from money.

  60. JMG said: “Now admittedly our modern clerisy has two strikes against it that most of the clerisies of past civilizations haven’t had. To begin with, most clerisies in history have been religious in nature, not secular…”

    Ah, but you’ve pointed out before that our current leftist woke intellectuals’ so-called secular beliefs pretty much functions like religious beliefs, especially those descended from the religion of Marxism.

    I look forward to being able to legally visit a doctor of alternative/complimentary medicine soon along with clinics and hospitals specializing in such care—and if any type of insurance survives the coming shake up, I hope they will cover the new medical choices; whether that insurance comes from traditional companies, benevolent societies, private groups and co-ops (religious, fraternal, union sponsored, etc.) who form cost sharing associations, etc.

    Joy Marie

  61. Over a year ago me and my wife were traveling to a family wedding in the Midwest, and we listened to book on tape about the Chernobyl incident. I clearly remember thinking then that our response to Covid and the vaccines was going to be the Chernobyl of the American empire. Since then, I’ve seen no reason to think differently.

  62. Several days ago, my phone rang, and it was a taped message from Nancy Pelosi, who in addition to being the Squeaker of the House is also our congresscreature. I’m in San Francisco. The message was an invite to a telephone “town hall” discussion the next day about Monkeypox. Normally, I would just have blown this off, but, wanting to hear the line being pushed, I dialed the number provided in the taped message and listened. This was in a format where people were able to call in and ask questions.

    It started with the introductions and an introductory speech by four or five of the big-shots in the local institutional medical crowd; the City health department, the AIDS Foundation, etc. Among generic platitudes, there was a liberal encouragement to get the “vaccine” for Monkeypox, how (according to Pelosi herself) there had been 600 cases of Monkeypox discovered in San Francisco, and how, if we failed to act promptly, the Monkeypox would run rampant through the general population. People were encouraged to call in with suggestions to overcome “misinformation” about the “vaccines”, and how to combat “vaccine hesitancy.”

    I was tempted to call in and denounce the whole thing as Big Pharma fear mongering, but realizing that I would likely have to be holding the phone for hours, listening to absolute rot before my call would be taken, I rang off.

    Antoinetta III

  63. Benn #24

    > architecture being an expression of PTSD which is then reflected back into you

    Hmm. Maybe this is why I experience Colonial America (roughly 1620-1780) a comforting architecture to be in the midst of: it is pre-PTSD.

    I wish Wisconsin would “do Colonial.” Colonial buildings is the main thing I miss not living on the Eastern Seaboard. As a kid, I did love our family driving around (hmm… the good old days) the New England countryside in the 1960s, particularly in the autumn. A rare good memory of my childhood.

    Sorry… I regress… bad grandma…

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  64. datapoint: I got two moderna shots last summer. I had a reaction to both. The second reaction was somewhat worse than any vaccine reaction I’ve had before – lots of muscle pain (probably partly due to interaction with my fibromyalgia) and what felt like a low grade fever, all noticeable effects gone by noon the following day. To the best of my knowledge I have not had long-term health impacts. I have had bit more exema-type issues this year, but I have no way of knowing if that is related or not.

    I did not get a booster.

    A couple of weeks ago, I got covid. It was about as bad as a moderate flu. I have had much worse experiences with the flu, and a few milder.

    I am now completely back to normal, except for a mild lingering cough that is already much diminished and I barely notice.

    For myself, the restrictions were much worse than my experience of the disease, not least because the isolation aggravated my recurrent depression. I am NOT happy with my government’s handling of covid (Canada), and I am angrier with Trudeau than I have ever been with a Canadian prime minister in my life.

    The last federal election saw me vote conservative for the first time in my life, because the NDP and liberals were all for vaccine passports and mandates, and the Greens were having one of the worst rounds of circular firing squad I’d ever seen.

  65. Speaking of Priest classes, an unrelated thought and question.

    I’ve always got the impression that in history, Priest-Kings were often a more violent type of ruler than other kinds.

    If this is true, then why are the Priest-Kings so dang mean or harsh?

  66. JMG #31

    > cell salts

    I think what you call “cell salts,” I include in with “homeopathics” — two such homeopathic remedies is “Biochemic Phosphates“ and “Bioplasma®.” They help balance me.

    How does one define cell salts?

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  67. JMG #31

    > fond of the suggestion that in the word “monkeypox,” the K is silent.

    Moneypox just happened — at the right minute for someone to grab it out of the thin air and yell, “Disease! Disease! Everyone pay $$$$$ to take a vaccine (the vaccine we invented three days ago).” (instead of “Fire! Fire! Everyone out of the theater!”)

    If it weren’t moneypox, it would have been something else. And what is the next disease on the list of dire announcements of some on-coming, random disease?

    I wonder what the disease-of-the-month will be for the Month-of-September — I am waiting on the edge of my chair, tongue hanging out, panting.

    It is interesting that people are so afraid of disease. To me, “disease” is as important as — my naval. As Saturday Night Live’s character Roseanne Roseannadanna (Gilda Radner) famously said, “If it isn’t one thing, it’s another.” (or something like it.)

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  68. The New Zealand experience with covid is interesting. I know because I, and others lurking on this blog, have lived it. Leaving aside the question of the vaccines and their effectiveness, it’s been a rollercoaster of lockdowns, fear, false certainty (certainly from the first lockdown), and cumulative impact on the nation’s mental health. Hindsight is 100% however – those that made decisions for our small island nation, at the end of the longest supply routes in the world, made their decisions on their values. Certainly for the first lockdown

    I’m cognisant of the Japanese experience too – their vaccination rates are basically the same as NZ, and they are still in rolling waves of Omicron. No doubt about that. But there’s a big difference, Japan’s excess mortality is way up (about 66,000 extra deaths since the pandemic began). NZ’s is well down (840 deaths lower than expected). My thoughts are either that the data is fudged (highly unlikely in a small nation and given the way the health system works – you can’t fudge a death, you can fudge a cause), or that the first lockdown and elimination of the original strain of Covid in NZ still is showing its effects in the data (albeit waning now). Japan didn’t achieve elimination.

    So it may be that the true picture of Covid in NZ is yet to show in the mortality data – given the 1 1/2 year headstart NZ had. The weekly excess mortality rates tell you a bit more – these are similar to Japan, but still low – about 2 excess deaths per week.

    Australia, with a slightly lower vaccination rate, whilst never eliminating the first strain of covid on a country wide level (it did achieve elimination in certain states) has a similar negative excess death rate.

    It’s hard to find data on Haiti. It may not even collect it beyond . But the Lancet put out a study (note some funding from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation). https://www.thelancet.com/article/S0140-6736(21)02796-3/fulltext

    The Lancet estimated Haiti’s deaths at 118 per 100,000 people. That’s way higher than NZ, Japan, or Australia. The US (overall) is higher still (179), with substantial variance state by state.

    I look at the sub Saharan African nations – they have low vaccination rates, but also low death rates, with some outliers. What’s causing that – we simply don’t know.

    My own lived experience in NZ confirms this – people aren’t dropping dead (and the people that are had serious health issues and/or were old), but people are most definitely sicker than normal. What I’m still watching for is the signal that it might be related to the vaccines – it’s equally plausible that due to the lockdowns here, that immunity has been lost to common colds and flus, because everyone was inside and away from social contact for at least a year.

    That’s part of it. The interesting developments will be if vaccinated people get covid multiple times, and what their health outcomes are. The first time is not fun (sickest I’ve ever been), and people say that the second and subsequent times are worse. That’ll be the kicker for determining if it’s the vaccines or not. I’m vaccinated, and watching myself, my family, and my friends closely.

    My personal take is that the vaccines are less effective than promised. They are far harsher on the body than we were told. The side effects in some are serious, and real, and doctors don’t know what to do with some of them. But given that the negative and low excess mortality rates in nations almost always correspond to higher vaccination rates, I don’t think we can yet say it’s them. We might be able to say that, and confirm your theory, with a few more years of data, particularly in the highly vaccinated nations.

    I think it might be one additional factor to add to all the stresses of the long descent – basically, something people worry about and have an intuition on but can’t ever quite point to the signal amongst the noise.

  69. Great post and thanks for condensing all the convoluted information that’s out there.

    Question: Isn’t it more a question of how much risk society and/or the individual is willing to accept? According to the CDC website, 606 million doses were administered from December 2020 through August 2021 with approximately 16,000 deaths were reported. That’s .0026%! Seems fairly low risk to me especially considering the CDC requires healthcare providers to report any and all deaths that immediately follow vaccine administration no matter the circumstances.

    Of course that is all according to the CDC and we all know their track record has been suspect to say the least.

  70. The parts about “throw the populists some red meat” and “If liars actually did have their pants catch fire” bring to mind a particularly Roman deterrent to arson. Watching the pseudo-scientist shills for the pharma industry running out of the CDC and NAID in pitch-soaked pants won’t bring back the dead, but it might go a long way toward cleaning up our drug testing procedures.

  71. Sardaukar, well, we’ll see. You know I tend to be averse to premature triumphalism.

    Bird, that’s not a bad analysis, since the Tsar’s bureaucracy circa 1915 was in fact largely drawn from the same social classes that also produced the radical intelligentsia.

    Pygmycory, I ain’t arguing. Higher education in the US at this point is nothing more than a scheme to sell predatory loans to people who don’t know any better, on the pretext of giving them credentials that will get them a job.

    Chris, I’d be amazed if anybody in DC lost faith in the clerisy. The DC region is mostly inhabited by the clerisy.

    Lydia, I use homeopathic cell salts, so you’ll get no argument from me!

    Blue Sun, I’m pretty sure that the actual point of the “Inflation Reduction Act” was to give the current Democrat congresscritters one last serving of graft before things get ugly.

    Peter, I heartily agree. Plumbers are also much less arrogant than doctors, and I think good attitude deserves higher pay.

    Grant, I think you’re missing the point. Since NZ has such a high level of vaccination, the fact that it has a robust Covid pandemic right now proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that the vaccines don’t work. If your experience follows what’s gone on elsewhere, you’ll start seeing repeated Covid cases in the vaccinated, and that’s when the deaths will start piling up.

    Owen, we don’t expect plumbers to abide by such standards, and I see no reason why doctors should be subject to them either. Let the market sort it out.

    Patricia M, granted — and that’s another very good reason to crack down on price-gouging on the part of universities, so that people who want to study medicine can do so at a reasonable price.

    Joy Marie, granted, but it’s a secular faith — it expects to achieve some simulacrum of salvation here and now — so it’s much more vulnerable to disproof.

    John, that strikes me as a very cogent analysis.

    Antoinetta, you have a stronger stomach than I do!

    Carlos, fascinating. I hadn’t heard of that.

    Pygmycory, many thanks for the data points.

    Lain, that’s a fascinating question; I’ll have to look into it as time permits.

    Northwind, cell salts aka tissue salts are an idiosyncratic subset of homeopathy. The system uses the twelve mineral salts that are found in macroscopic doses in the human body, and uses them at relatively mild dilutions — 6x (one part per million) is the usual potency. I use them because they were picked up by the occult community in the very early 20th century and a lot of interesting work was done with them. As for the Disease-of-the-Month Club, I really think they’re running out of ideas — when one gimmick fails, all they can do is try to rehash it using a different pretext.

    Rod, the Bee as usual has a very sharp sting!

    Peter, we’ll have to see how the longterm effects play out. Other countries have had odd dips in all cause mortality, followed by spikes well above average, in the course of this game.

    MonkeyBear, every researcher I know who’s looked into the VAERS system argues that it’s incorrect to say that all vaccine-caused deaths are reported to it; best estimates, according to articles published in medical journals, is that the actual toll is more than an order of magnitude higher. Since the vaccines don’t prevent infection or transmission, and people who take the vaccines seem to be abnormally vulnerable to reinfection, exactly what justifies those 16,000 deaths (and many hundreds of thousands of serious injuries)?

    Dr. Coyote, interesting. I commented a while back on my Dreamwidth journal about aporhaphanidosis, another classical punishment; maybe it’s a trend… 😉

  72. @Peter Wilson,

    Thanks for your detailed explanation of what is going on in NZ. I could definitely relate to it, though from a different country (never went Zero Covid like NZ, but still had harsh lockdowns). After the lockdowns I noticed my immune system wasn’t up to par. I caught a cold from an outdoor market that hung onto me for a while. People sequestered and weren’t exposed to stuff! Wish you and the NZers all the best.

  73. Bei Dawai #44

    > Michael Jacksonian; Janet Jacksonian

    … had me rolling around laughing.😁😂☺️

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  74. JMG, do you have any plans on hypothesizing what happens to society post quax if current trends of 20%+ surplus all cause mortality continue for the next few years? It is speculated that VAERS only reflects one percent of real vaccine casualties. Anecdotally, I have observed the creation of a vast underclass of formerly PMC people who are now too sick to work or dead because they quaxxed. Plus there are many in that underclass spending every penny on the dwindling health of a quaxxed loved one and ending up homeless anyways. Channels such as t.me/covidbc are full to the brim with MRNA vaccine tragedy. There is also a great deal of suppressed evidence that the quax kills fetuses in the womb at an alarming rate, and since the spike protein sits in the ovaries and testes, a huge population of children and young adults who took it may be rendered infertile.

  75. Hi JMG,
    Thanks as always for your thought-provoking posts. I had one quick question: might you have the source for the image titled above “VAERS Covid Vaccine Mortality Reports” handy?

    Basically, I know that you can query the VAERS database in many ways, and then slice and dice the data in different ways, and I’d like to have a better idea of what the creator of that graph was working from.

    For starters, if it’s “all cause mortality”, those huge spikes *might* indicate “ineffective” rather than “unsafe” (a possible scenario that could theoretically fit only the data shown in that graphy: lots of people died *with* the Covid vaccine, but not necessarily *of* it, because the disease really was super deadly, but the vaccines utterly ineffective, but not harmful itself). Either way, at first glance, it looks pretty obviously not good, but whenever I see a graph with an “obvious” conclusion, I try to be extra-cautious, so any pointers to follow up on beyond “run some VAERS queries yourself” would be most welcome.

    Thanks much,
    Jeff

  76. But given that the negative and low excess mortality rates in nations almost always correspond to higher vaccination rates

    @Peter Wilson #73

    Everything I’ve seen shows higher excess mortality correlating to higher vaccination rates, with overall rates everywhere ramping up notably since the release of the vaccines… exactly when you’d expect the opposite to occur. Now that 9+ months have passed we’re also seeing notable declines in birthrate across highly vaccinated countries as well.

    Chris Martenson @ Peak Prosperity has been documenting these phenomena regularly.

  77. Well I have to say as someone who has repeatedly struggled against both the medical and educational industrial complex, your article struck me as very hopeful (even if others might have the opposite reaction). I find it particularly interesting that the Republican front runner DeSantis has staked his political career on challenging those two branches of the elite, which infers that the winds are changing. With all that said I have to ask do you think Trump’s support for the vaccines have taken him out of serious consideration? I thought it had until the recent raid brought him back into the spotlight.

  78. Here is another straw in the wind.

    A “disaffected leftist” and a homosexual man, Josh Slocum, has a Substack and a video channel “Disaffected.”

    https://disaffectedpod.substack.com/

    https://www.youtube.com/c/DisaffectedPodcast

    Slocum was abused by a Borderline Personality Disordered mother, and he sees the same dynamics playing out on a macro-social level.

    What is significant to me is not so much what he says (I already knew this stuff!) but the fact that people like him are saying it. This is further evidence that the “clerisy’s” power base is shifting and starting to turn against them.

  79. JMG, you wrote “There’s no good reason, after all, why a doctor should make more than a plumber.”

    Speaking as a doctor, allow me to present a few good reasons: Off the bat, a doctor has the significant opportunity cost of spending a minimum of 8 years of post-high school education; 4 years for an undergraduate degree then 4 years of medical school. Only with the following 4 years (minimum) of internship/residency, is there any parallel with the apprenticeship plumbers undertake.

    Then there is the cost of that education. I spent my life savings on medical school tuition and living costs (I began medical school at age 40), and I still had to borrow, graduating in 2002 with $115,000 in debt. There is risk in this, as you have no guarantee of passing, and if you don’t, you are financially in the hole with your savings gone, you’re saddled with non-dischargeable debt, and you have no livelihood. So of course future income has to recover that cost, which to this day, I have not recovered. I’m 63. And do you think it’s unreasonable to obtain some additional risk compensation?

    There is a level of stress doctors experience that few others encounter: We have to be vigilant that we don’t harm or kill our patients, which is appallingly easy to do. In the first month of my medical career, I prescribed a muscle relaxant for back spams, it made my patient woozy, and she stumbled and broke her foot. Something as simple as prescribing a short course of, say, ibuprofen can be catastrophic. I once prescribed such a course to an injured, otherwise healthy 45 year old woman, and she developed a catastrophic stomach bleed that nearly killed her. Granted that’s rare, but doctors see A LOT of patients, so rare stuff is going to happen. Can you even begin to fathom the agony of how it feels to kill, or nearly kill, or disable someone because of a mistake you made, or wonder if someone died because it was just a bad outcome, or was it a mistake you haven’t figured out? Am I in denial?

    Ordinary people do not stress out that their everyday decisions could kill someone.

    You not only have to make sure you don’t do the wrong stuff, you have to recognize subtle, potentially crippling or deadly situations. You have to know to ask the right questions. I was admitting a 65 year old man to my inpatient physical medicine rehab unit. He had cerebral palsy, and had injured himself in one of his many falls. I asked him if he was able to urinate normally, and he said “You’re the first doctor [out of 6] to ask me that, and you know, ever since that last fall I took, I just have the dickens of a time being able to pee.” So I looked at the MRI of his cervical spine (neck), noted a compression of his spinal cord, and I called the neurosurgeon; who wisked him off pronto to operate and decompress his spinal cord, saving him from threatened quadraplegia.

    I was once asked by an orthopedic surgeon to do electrical nerve testing for compression of the nerve at the elbow of a 24 year old woman (her hand was tingling and weak); he wanted to decompress that nerve, and surgically transpose it out of the elbow. I did the nerve testing as requested, and sure enough, I found a lesion of her ulnar nerve right in the elbow as he had expected. But for some reason, my heart was pounding, and I was beginning to sweat. I did not want to let that woman just walk out my clinic. Alarm bells were clanging in my head, but I had no rational reason to not send her on her way. So I asked her if she’d been having any other nerve problems. She: “What do you mean?”. Me: “Well, are there any body parts that have lost feeling, or are tingling, or that you can no longer move?” (apart from the hand symptoms for which I had just tested her). She: “Why yes! The outside of my left foot feels dead! This happened 3 months ago, right after I got this weird ulcer on my ankle out of nowhere! The ulcer healed, but my foot’s still dead.” I had her remove her shoes, and saw a scar on her ankle smack over where the sural nerve runs. The outside of her foot and the outside 3 toes couldn’t feel a thing. I wired her back up and began testing more nerves. I found 3 or 4 more injured nerves, including of course that sural nerve which was gone, and several others that had milder damage, but showed clear electrical evidence of ongoing pathology. I realized this woman had autoimmune disease attacking her nerves. I called the orthopedist up and explained this, and that she needed to get to a rheumatologist ASAP. She did, and her disease was controlled, and her nerves (except for that sural nerve) recovered. If I had simply let her go when testing was nominally done, the disease would have destroyed her ulnar nerve, just as it had her sural nerve, and she would have permanently lost the use of her hand. (She had an autoimmune multi-focal polyneuropathy) My stress and anxiety alerted me and saved her hand.

    If a doctor overlooks the wrong little or subtle stuff, he can hurt or kill someone. That is stressful.

    There is another kind of stress: Regulatory surveillance. We doctors are monitored by regulatory bodies. That introduces some risk to our practices. So, from a retiring colleague, I assume care of a chronic pain patient who was on high dose methadone. My colleague tried and failed repeatedly to wean his dose down (IIRC, he was on the equivalent of 320 or 360 mg of morphine a day!). So I took this guy on, and continued him on this regimen. I saw him every month, for maybe 2 years, and then one day, out of the blue, my gut said “Get this guy off!”. I had a heart-to-heart talk with him, and said it’s time to get him off his methadone. Amazingly, he said “Whatever you say doc.” So I began a slow taper, and was anticipating a year process. Five months in or so, his dosing is down by 60%, and we’re both feeling pretty happy. Then I get a phone call from an attorney friend who has contacts within the state insurance agency that is paying the medical bills. My opioid prescribing pattern for this ONE PATIENT had caught the attention of the payor, and the payor was convinced my prescribing pattern was outrageously abusive. I was to be investigated, and there was at least one person in that organization who wanted my license revoked! By some miracle, the organization had a senior nurse who happened to know me well, whom they appointed to the investigative committee! She pointed out to the committee that I had already decreased his methadone dosing by 60%, and couldn’t safely wean him much faster than I was doing. I was following a documented plan to get him off totally. So why sanction me? So the committee passed, I got my patient off the methadone, and I still have my license.

    I can multiply these anecdotes into a book. Properly done, medicine is damned hard work and stressful. Few people can do it at all, much less well.

    Now JMG, I have never made much more than a successful plumber, most often less. My specialty remunerates poorly. I think it would be appropriate and fair were I to be remunerated about 2 1/2 times the rate of a successful plumber. I found your remark cavalier and ill considered.

    —Lunar Apprentice

  80. The following two are not necessarily connected, but seem related to your analysis of the lack of credibilty of science in increasing segments.

    Simone Weil wrote: “There is nothing about modern science which can be popularized, save perhaps the results, and they too only in a manner which promotes credulity.” To me this relates to social proof, which in turn relates to a potential dark triad of corrupting influence, pro-forma research, and social-proof for the masses.

    In the eye-on-the-horizon department, imagine the blow to the public confidence in “settled” (and sold as absolute) science if the *Big Bang Hypothesis* were to prove quite assailable! The occasional cosmologist will sometimes wonder in unguarded writing whether the whole physics stack (stack of assumptions and parameters) supporting inflationary cosmology needs to be rethought as-a-whole. Well, there appear to be claims that a non-big-bang universe could explain unexpected-but-observed large-scale structure, etc, based upon plasma physics of filamentary currents. Even the cosmic microwave background apparently could result from a universe which is “foggy” at microwave frequencies. Again, this is dot-on-the-radar stuff, far far from certain, but I’ve just looked at three pdfs here — https://www.lppfusion.com/censored-papers-that-refute-the-big-bang-hypothesis/ — and it does seem there might be 20-odd discrepencies with Big Bang modeling even after using 20 or more parameters and assumptions. … The papers appear quite professional, but that web page notes: “These papers were refused publication even on the arXiv pre-print website that supposedly allows all researchers to publish without peer review.” Imagine the circling of the wagons which could emerge, if only on “behalf” of scientists; I’m not one to wear message T-shirts, but this could become trendy-rationalist popular: “Big-bang denier”.

  81. Late night correspondence. This is my personal journey from “maiden” to “scapped childbearing” to “crone.”

    Commenters here have been telling what they experienced after having at least one COVID vaccination. I have debated if I want to share my story. I will say how, after I got a COVID vaccination, I felt better. A lot better. But here is the context.

    I came down with a COVID-like syndrome in 1983 (age 31), the main symptoms being extreme fatigue, fibromyalgia, and brain-fog. It was labeled Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). I had it bad. Anyone and everyone who has had a long-term “condition” like this gets the same rigamarole from medics and plain-old people — at best, a blank stare. My case, the symptoms stayed for forty-odd years — it did not get better.

    “People in good health” are what makes the world go ‘round. There have always been people who are unwell. Traditionally, they were cared for privately by their families. The fortunate receive a backroom in a relative’s home. The sick person had/has to figure out, on one’s own “how to make a life ‘while sitting.’”

    Long-COVID people are new at this. They haven’t been around the block. They feel indignant when plain-old people don’t show the correct amount of deference. But plain-old people don’t care and never will. We all react like our ancestors reacted.

    Anyone who has such a limiting condition, think back to when THEY were able-bodied. Not one of them can say that they paid much mind to disabled or ill people. That is the way it was, is, and will always be.

    It goes back to caveman days. The able-bodied were the ones who procreated. Occasionally relatives got sick for no reason or got wounded. The vast majority either got well or died. Not many people lingered between life and death. People in good health had to focus on keeping their clan going — when someone fell by the wayside, oh well, that was life. There was no accumulated knowledge-base where people can go to find out how to behave around sick people — it is not that they are being mean, it is just that they don’t know WHAT to say or do. Really, what is there to say other than? “Gee, your life, as you knew, is kaput — bye.”

    Human communities had very little surplus to deal with luxuries like caring for the sick for a lifetime. Parents were fortunate if two or three kids survived to adulthood, which is still true today. Since roughly the year 1700, during the centuries of petroleum glut, a small proportion of humans had “surplus,” but that surplus is coming to an end: sick and wounded will get LESS attention over time than they get now. That is the way it is. It is the natural way of things.

    Anyway, how did I get on this? Oh yeah. I have had the equivalent of long-COVID for forty years.

    I received the Pfizer vaccination when it came out, when was that? Early- or mid-2021.

    After the injection, after a few days of feeling like s#1t, I felt markedly better than at any point during the preceding forty years. My disabling fatigue and fibromyalgia symptoms did not go away completely, but I felt a quantum leap better. (The brain-fog had lifted long ago.) Figure that one out. I felt better than I had in forty years‼️And still feel better. It has been a year. That one shot did something to my body where my health got better, what looks like permanently (I know, I have ten good years, at most). I am able to do things that I did in my 20s (1970s), except fast-forward forty years, in an old body. I can go out and dig the equivalent of a grave, come inside, and NOT collapse into a coma for two days.

    What the f is this about? How did this happen? I “caught” an idiosyncratic illness in 1983 (maybe a virus, maybe a vaccination reaction — no-one knows). The illness ruined my what-would-have-been-my-childbearing-years. I have been through the wringer. Then in 2021 (age 69), I got by-all-accounts a strange injection — where, idiosyncratically — I feel better and keep feeling better. WTF? (I joke and say I needed a really good excuse for not having kids.)

    I don’t understand. I will never understand. There are things I am not meant to understand. I could not change it. No-one could change it. It was irretrievably “the was” and is irretrievably “the is.” Some things remain mysteries. This is one.

    One reason why I loathe M.D.s to the extent that I do is that I got the same reaction from them in the 1980s (age 30s) what others have voiced here: the M.D.s laughed at me, gaslighted me, told me I was a hypochondriac, the whole shebang. In their “superior” pettiness, they showed their true selves, which is that they care only about their hefty paychecks so they can send their “superior” kids to Ivy League colleges, and carry on their “superiority” to infinity.

    If M.D.s’ (and the whole rotten system they represent) comeuppances arrive before I die, I will be happy. They deserve to be loathed by those on whom they have piled additional suffering, and by extension, after we tell our first-person stories, M.Ds deserve loathing by the general public. M.D.s will never change. All one M.D. needed to say to me was, “I acknowledge your suffering, but don’t how to help you because I haven’t the foggiest idea what happened to your body. It is beyond my understanding and abilities.”

    Basically, I needed an “I don’t know.” They cannot say that still.

    Several months after vaccination, I believe I caught COVID. I did not get tested because I don’t believe testing is a good practice (just say “no”). I had what was a medium case, like a medium case of the flu. Not a mere cold, but not hospitalized on a ventilator. It lasted about ten days.

    If I have a piece of advise for people facing CFS, long-COVID, or other long-term debilitating limitation, it is that you either develop a sense of humor, or you will not survive. Also, depression is a “rest-stop”: close the eyes, snooze, wake, feel the bottom; then bounce. And laugh. When you laugh, your biochemistry changes, where you create your own reality.

    I call our kind “walkers between worlds” — not fully alive but not fully dead. There is no romancing that this is an easy path.

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA
    age 70

  82. @JMG and commentariat

    Just Fauci being Fauci: https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/medical/what-is-covaxin-the-covid-vaccine-not-approved-in-the-us/ar-AASpZ6w.

    They don’t want people to know about Covaxin because it makes Big Pharma’s profit margins vulnerable. Imagine what would happen if people found out that a traditional vaccine does a much better job than an mRNA vaccine, how horrible would that be!

    My brother and I took the two mandated shots of the vaccine. There were three options available – Covaxin, Sputnik and Covishield (Indian version of the AstraZeneca vaccine), and we chose Covaxin. Actually, we didn’t want to take the vaccine at all, but the government had basically made it impossible for unvaccinated people to use buses, trains and air travel. Also, restaurants demanded proof of vaccination in the form of a vaccine certificate. So we chose the lesser evil…

    I don’t know what the vaccination scene was like in the US, but here in India, the government did it far more smoothly than I expected it to. There was some decent Centre-States coordination on the matter, even in states ruled by Opposition parties. Plus, the Central government created an online portal called COWIN, on which everyone could create an account. The details shared there would be automatically included in the vaccine certificate, which was prepared after the second shot. The vaccine certificate was shared on the registered mobile number.

    Many places were charging hefty fees even for a single shot (4-digit figure in INR), but as luck would have it, the municipal authorities in my city had set up walk-in vaccination centres. All you needed was a registered COWIN account, and an ID proof. The vaccination was done free of cost (for both shots) by trained medical personnel, and the necessary paperwork was kept to a minimum, with the vaccine certificate being generated with all the necessary details being uploaded to the central database. I guess some ‘socialist’ schemes are quite helpful at times…

  83. The “Trust me, I’m an expert” caption under your featured icon of the dread Saint Fauci left me wondering how regularly that term “expert” is getting employed as a more palatable euphemism for the more accurate term “shill”. I know that “expert” is supposed to have a different meaning, all its own, but it seems to have fallen out of common usage of late. At this point, the only people I would reliably trust to possess any real expertise are those not claiming to be any kind of expert — people with a huge amount of life experience who remain fully cognizant of just how much they don’t know. It would be so refreshing if those kind of self-aware non-experts could be given an opportunity to clean up the ridiculous mess all the clueless “experts” have left us in.

  84. Owen (no. 60), your system might find it hard to distinguish between medical and religious practitioners. Suppose I’m available to treat demonic possession–do I have to register? (Maybe what I call “demonic possession,” the psychiatrist would call “schizophrenia.”) Do Christian Science practitioners count as doctors? What about HerbaLife representatives?

  85. Fra’ Lupo @ 37:

    What you’re describing may well reflect the early variant that was making the rounds in early 2020. The covid vaccines didn’t get under way until Jan/Feb 2021. By then, the worst of the covid crisis was already well in the rear-view mirror. I certainly don’t recall any of the dire accounts you described as being current by Autumn, 2020. I recall a peer-reviewed paper (I can’t dig it up at the moment) published in Feb 2021 outlining how the covid virus had lost 95% of its virulence between Jan/Feb 2020 and Dec 2020. This was all pre-vax.

    Then you describe things “getting dicey late last year” (2021). That would correspond to 6-9 months after most people got vax’d, and what I suspect reflects a wave of complications from those shots.

    —Lunar Apprentice

  86. Dear JMG and all,

    I’m not an American so no doubt missing some of the subtleties, but given the Dem’s lack of leaders and Liz Cheney’s lack of party… could she do well by switching side to the Dems?

  87. Reggie @39:

    Your account is painful to read. I see similar situations in many of my patients. I’m a rehab doc, and some patients come to me as a last resort.

    One situation I often see are surgical patients who didn’t obtain the result their surgeons expected. After the last post-surgery follow-up, and the patient still hasn’t recovered, the surgeon says “you’re recovery is a bit slow, but everything is fine”, and then discharges the patient! And 2-4 months later, the patient still hasn’t recovered, but the surgeon won’t see her again, and the patient is stuck, not being able to use her hand or shoulder or whatever.

    So she’s facing me in my exam room, and I’m going over her records. The surgeon’s records interest me hugely. What’s the diagnosis? What did the surgeon plan? What did the surgeon expect the outcome to be and when? What happened in the surgery? What happened in recovery? Did the outcome of the surgery-and-recovery match what the surgeon expected? If not, did he investigate and explain the discrepancy? Did he come up with a new plan? Did he blow it off? Then I examine her and see firsthand what’s going on. Isn’t failure feedback that you ignore at your peril?

    So it’s easy to ascertain if a surgeon fails to follow-up a failed recovery just by reading the chart and listening to and examining the patient. The surgeons who do this do it habitually. Others are scrupulously conscientious that recovery proceeds according to plan, and intervene if it doesn’t, or at least monitor the patient. The former have no interest in seeing the patient again even if I refer her back. So I’ve learned to get consults or second opinions from those surgeons who are conscientious about their failed recoveries.

    I have no idea why so many doctors blow off their failed cases. Mine obsess me.

    As a rehab doc, I see a lot of irreversible conditions, and I’m experienced in laying it out on the line for my patients.

    I wish medical school admissions committees would assess for traits in candidates that might predict conscientiousness. I wish residency programs would drive this value home with a branding iron, and flag and fail those who don’t get it.

    Also Reggie, a lot of what you describe is institutionally promoted denial. There is a ready-made excuse for failure that doctors are encouraged to adopt to excuse their own failure. The big new one is SADS; Sudden Adult Death Syndrome which happens to afflict those who’ve had the covid vaccines, but of course that’s just coincidence. As some brilliant wag observed: “Coincidence is the leading cause of death of the covid vaccinated”.

    But anyway, what do I know? I predicted 99% of doctors would never submit to an experimental vaccine for a generally mild illness from a relatively benign, mutable virus family, let alone risk submitting their patients to it. Little did I dream that 99% would crump, join the other side, and I’d be in the 1% camp refusing. I swear I live in the Twilight Zone.

    —Lunar Apprentice

  88. I had already posted this in the other blog, but it seems appropriate here as well. Interestingly, the people involved are very much a mixed bag regarding their opinion on the Covid vaccinations. But I see that as a good thing: rather than having dogma’s, the openness to critique and willingness to engage in an honest discussion and search for truth is a very healthy sign in any group.

    I remember John Michael Greer saying something among the lines of: “Alternative medicine is great, but I wish we would become really good at it”. And he is right, so much of what passes for alternative medicine is basically Industrial Medicine with other means. Herbs and supplements that are used as stand-ins for pharmaceuticals, or black-box electronics instead of high-powered machines in hospitals, or going deep, deep into the territory of consciousness and emotions. But what do they do, how does it work, can we critically appraise these methods without committing the fallacy that everything should be judged as a systematic review of large-scale placebo controlled double blinded clinical trials? It is hard to do without a firm philosophy to give the medicine context.

    There is at least one group of people that is working on really different models of medicine, based on an ecological view of the body, detailed anatomy, physiology and ancient texts. Oddly enough, our findings are congruent with recent models of the body that see it as a complex dynamic system, even though much of the language that we use is very, very old, and often misunderstood as being mystical or worse.
    We really take the utmost care to be practicing a nature-based medicine, rooted in the physical reality, but taking the interplay of all components along, but it is as different from Industrial Medicine as permaculture is from mainstream agrarical businesses. Permaculture has its critics, but to illustrate the point: where a lot of what passes for “organic agrariculture” just uses chemicals that are “less bad”, permaculture at least has the vision to be radically different, and to work with, rather than against, nature. The same thing we are trying to achieve in medicine. It is possible, even though we still have a lot of work to do.

    This is a physician-level medicine, meaning not that all practitioners need to be trained as modern doctors, but it does take years of training and dedicated study. One day, we may be able to derive from it some things that lay people can do themselves at home, which are easy and safe enough for that, but still encompass the same deep philosophical principles. But no crystals, no enchantments, no magic, no exotic ingredients. Just the doctor being a really, really skilled farmer, making it possible for nature to express itself in the human being.

    Developing this is the project that I wish to carry through the bottleneck of civilization.

    – P.D.

  89. MonkeyBear @ 74, there are not 606 million people in the US. Between 170 and 200 million got the shots, with most getting multiple doses. You need to put the number of PEOPLE who received the injections in the denominator, not the number of doses.

    The CDC has been reported to have deleted some entries of vax—associated deaths, especially of children, by those who submitted the entries. No one knows how many deletions there are. Many employers of physicians strongly discourage reporting of vax associated deaths. The VAERS website itself is very difficult to use, and repeatedly admonishes users with pop-up warnings of the risk of prison for “fraudulent” reporting. It takes about 30 minutes to submit a VAERS entry. Before covid, the CDC estimated under-reporting in VAERS of between a factor of 10 and 100. Given how nearly all primary care docs insist that deaths and complications following the vax are coincidences, how many of them will report to VAERS? And as JMG points out, the number of injuries and complications dwarfs the death count.

    And the above refers only to immediate or short term outcomes. Longterm outcomes are generally not reported at all, not recognized as such, or haven’t happened yet…

    –Lunar Apprentice

  90. JMG,

    Thank you for this.

    Peter@73 – your thoughtful consideration of data from different countries, with variable covid exposures and medical/mandates is appreciated. Since most journals dropped paywalls for Covid articles, an overwhelming amount of research is available – subject to bias. Comparison of countries or states with different approaches to data collection and mandates, with a hard look at mortality (minimizing potential bias) may be our best information.

    I agree that the long term effects of Covid, the vaccines, and living with arbitrary Covid rules and “supply chain issues” may become apparent over time. The low uptake of boosters suggests widespread understanding of the poor and short term effectiveness, and maybe softening of mandates.

    The minimal uptake of vaccines for young children is also noted. More outspoken articles suggest more have read the fine print of research articles, or are comfortable speaking up. (For the geeks: https://www.fda.gov/media/159195/download 6mo – 4 yo details, Pfizer (actual application), and https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2022.02.25.22271454v1.full-text Ped vaccine effectiveness drops to 12 % for 5-11 yo by 28-34 days. Danish and Finnish authorities no longer recommend any pediatric vaccines except for high risk kids.

    For the detail oriented: IMO, British data, which includes all deaths and hospitalization data by age group, Covid and vax status is particularly informative. Danish has more on variants. Israel has numbers with aggressive Pfizer vax program, but dropped unvax comparisons. US data is largely based on inconsistently defined and monitored state data, often or mostly missing those who took home tests only. Skew of high medical or exposure risk, inadequately measured, having greater vax uptake is a consideration.

    Some African countries prophylactically treat the bulk of their populations with Ivermectin (for parasites), which has been suggested (along with their relative youth) to explain low death rates.

  91. >Owen, we don’t expect plumbers to abide by such standards

    There is a small difference between the two – and that’s a doctor can kill or maim you if they screw it up. The 90% is intended to keep the quacks away for good. Or at least weed them out or make it hard for them to survive. I’d be happy to hear about unintended consequences though. There usually is when writing rules.

    In general, I’d more liken doctors to car mechanics than plumbers though – and cynically, most mechanics do a very lazy superficial diagnosis and then start replacing parts, doctors do a substantially similar very lazy diag and then start writing out drug prescriptions. Except with a mechanic, you’re just stuck at home, with a doctor you could be in a world of literal hurt.

    I’d also be in favor of (in addition to abolishing licenses) letting ordinary people skip that lazy diag part and go straight to guessing which drug will cure them, by letting them buy the drugs themselves without a prescription. Will people do derpy things? Sure. But as we’ve seen, the doctors don’t seem to be willing or able to do their jobs anymore.

    I’d put one restriction on that though – if you want to buy drugs for yourself, that’s fine, but if you’re telling other people to go take drugs, then you need to be registered on the list as a medical provider. Again, as a way or cutting down on quackery.

  92. My mother used to tell me that pendulums swing. We were talking about when she grew up during the roaring twenties and how one generation is conservative and religious and their children reject that and move to cities and visit speakeasies and become lewd and promiscuous. Eventually they grow up and have kids. Their children are annoyed by their parents’ in-your-face liberalism and become conservatives. It reminds me of an old joke about the daughters of feminists who gossip and dress in pink and ribbons and giggle for the boys. It annoys their mums.

    I’m afraid that the backlash against the obvious cult of personalities we have now, such as Dear Healer ‘And the Science was made flesh’ Fauci, will create a backlash making the Cultural Revolution in 1950’s China look like a high school debate (back when debating was a thing.) Donald Trump is no Andrew Jackson, who was at least a war hero, but his very likely election in 2024, barring a book depository incident, might be a flash in a very big pan filled with very potent gun powder. The results might be unforeseen, unimaginable, and unendurable. We might want to start hiding those swords.

  93. We were talking here last night about how doctors are trained in the most abusive way through schooling – kept up for 24 hours straight repeatedly, forced to memorize and test on an ever escalating series of data, doing internships in competitive environments where they are ranked and rated. It’s no wonder we as patients are left with doctors who have little empathy, conform to rules pushed on them without question, and are unable to think in systems.

    And you all are right about plumbers – mine was trained in the basics in normal human way, hands on and interactive. When he comes to fix a problem, he knows all homes are similarly designed, but not exact copies, and he has to think through the problem from many possible causes and solutions. He’s an actual full-person who cracks jokes and is relaxing to be around. I enjoy the plumber, while every doctor’s office is like some sort of trip through purgatory for my sins. Truly the worst places.

  94. I got tears in my eyes imagining the alternative history you presented. Of course, I’m the ghost of the unvaccinated person who died a death of horrible agony wished on me by my president last winter. When the FDA threw out the flu vaccine database they had used for decades to track who got doses by batch number and date (so they could determine if there were side effects from the vaccine they needed to warn people about – you know, basically the job of the FDA), I knew we were in an evil place. Chalking up what was done to the people was due to cluelessness or greed is being very generous. I’ll need all three of the bones you mentioned to feel like the evil has been challenged. Hundreds of people are dying each week by suicide, drug overdoses, and lack of medical care and it I believe its because they feel that there is nothing to live for and no one to help them. We are at a definite turning point in history.

    Oh, and if someone ever managed to have the liars charred for the waist down, please let it be on live TV so there is video.

  95. Dear Mr Greer

    I am a bit of a liberal and a believer in state regulation and when you said that doctors may no longer be strictly licensed by the state, I was horrified and full of righteous indignation. I decided to send you a furious post filled to the brim with self-righteous anger and condemnation saying, how you dare propose a policy that would result in unlicensed quake doctors selling snake oil that would harm people. I could then tell you that you were the most evilest evil that ever eviled on this planet.

    Then I suddenly remembered what has happened with the Covid 19 vaccines and that the medical system and Big pharma have been jabbing us with snake oil that has caused death and serious injury to thousands. I also remembered that the state regulators who are meant to regulate big pharma and protect us from snake oil used everything in their power to force us to take the snake oil, including mandatory jabs and passports. I then I realized that the opportunity I thought I had to virtue signal, and rage and feel how morally superior I am, had been flushed down the lavatory of reality.

    Is there anything left out there that I can virtue signal about?

    Hope you don’t mind a little joke

    Yours sincerely

    Jasmine

  96. @Mister Nobody says:
    “it will be some first-class entertainment observing the reaction of the Very Online Left on the morning of November 9, won’t it?”

    I hope you are right but I wouldn’t count your chickens before they’re hatched. The elite are not going to slink away quietly into the night. I fully expect them to do all the same things they did in the last election to “fortify” this one too.

  97. Hi JMG –

    Thanks for this. Very interesting as always. I’m in total agreement with you on the clerisy, but I’m a bit confused by your analysis of the mRNA vaccines.

    I read the Thai study you cited (not the summary you linked to) and these two quotes stuck out at me:

    “By contrast, the incidence of COVID-19-associated cardiac injury or myocarditis is much higher, estimated to be 100 times higher than mRNA COVID-19-related myocarditis” (p 12)

    “0verall, COVID-19 mRNA vaccination has an extremely favorable outcome and should be recommended for adolescents.” (p. 12)

    I guess I’m wondering if the heart side effects are so bad, why would the authors still be recommending the jabs? And, if myocarditis is bad and the incidence of it is “estimated to be 100 times higher” with COVID-19 than with the mRNA vaccines…seems like taking the vaccines might be a safer option (if your main concern is not getting myocarditis)?

    I’d also be interested to know where that VAERS data in the chart came from. I’ve looked at the data set myself and can’t figure out where those numbers are coming from. I think it’s also important to note that VAERS data isn’t “official” government data. This is directly from the VAERS website:

    “VAERS reports may contain information that is incomplete, inaccurate, coincidental, or unverifiable. Reports to VAERS can also be biased. As a result, there are limitations on how the data can be used scientifically. Data from VAERS reports should always be interpreted with these limitations in mind.”

    And there are clearly some data issues: According to the VAERS dataset I looked at 1 person died in 1921 from COVID mRNA vaccines and a handful died in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. Seems a bit inaccurate (and these are just the most obvious issues).

    I’m not writing this as a fan of the medical industry, my doctor’s been trying to get me to take blood pressure meds (that I don’t need) for years. But I think addressing some of these issues in your analysis would greatly strengthen it.

    Thanks,
    JM

  98. Interesting article in the morning NYT about the CDC admitting they blew it, and the entire US “health care” industry is a total Charlie Fox

  99. @ Owen #60 – I really like your proposal. It has a great deal going for it. So the following is just to maybe open up a conversation around the ideas you presented.

    I practice acupuncture, and the hardest question I am ever asked, and I still have no good answer for it, is: “Can you treat X?” The reason being is that acupuncture doesn’t treat any “X”, it treats people. What I usually say, is, “well, some people with X have found benefit in my treatments. If you would like to try a treatment or two, I undertake to apply the best of my skills and knowledge to helping you find your balance, and then YOU will be able to tell ME whether the treatment is improving X. And YOU will tell ME whether you think it is worth continuing.”

    So, I would have a hard time listing the things that acupuncture treats. On the other hand, I might have an easier time spelling out the things it can and cannot do. Just for example, acupuncture cannot set bones. Acupuncture cannot supply nutrients. Acupuncture can help every homeostatic regulation process – eg. temperature, bowel consistency and regularity, menstrual cycles, and suchlike. Acupuncture can relieve pain, reduce tension, bring body and mind into a more harmonious relationship. Things like that.

    Anyway, constructing my ad is going to take some work, I think… 😉 Thanks for the suggestion!

  100. If you’ll forgive a slightly off topic comment, Teresa from Hershey has a delightful new book out, titled “The Lost Pearls of Orlov”. It’s the 3rd volume of her Steppes of Mars series under the pen name Odessa Moon. It’s not actually far off topic, but saying why would be a spoiler…

    Jon from Virginia

  101. Like other professions, there are good and bad doctors. IMO, there is no simple solution for our system. Attempts to measure quality often fail miserably. If you measure actual outcomes, then doctors who refuse to deal with sick or high risk patients, look great. If you measure satisfaction, those who were told what they want to hear skew the numbers – competent doctors often tell patients what they do not want to hear, like a reasonable diet and exercise cannot be replaced by a wonder pill. (I once had a parent ask for a pill so their 10 year old kid could skip rehab for a minor injury, and plenty others threatened me when their child with a fracture was not cleared to play ball).

    Surveys are typically given at the time of care – with answers given at the heat of the moment that do not reflect more reasoned responses after the test of time. Insurers like to measure things like vaccination levels and screening tests done, while leaving out or excluding expensive care for the truly sick. Measuring futile care versus over treatment is often subjective. Expectations vary dramatically – some patients expect miracles without any personal effort, while others system distrust and fear is so bad they are in desperate shape on arrival.

    As the system cracks, there will be problems. Mechanical problems sometimes warrant surgery – like crooked fractures (although pediatric ones often correct with growth). Training and practice do matter. Sick institutions and biased available research make practitioners struggle.

    Currently US doctors work in a very sick system. When doctors work directly for patients, incentives are better aligned. Now, they face gag orders, backed by legal, employment and financial threats, from many different PMC’s. Doctors typically carry the bulk of litigation risk, as they are expected to fight the system (at their own expense) for their patients. Unlike lawyers, doctors do not charge extra when they need to research a problem, or beg for timely care approvals. Yet, doctors are also in a position to question authority successfully – as many are doing effectively with Covid.

    I personally know colleagues who have brought plumbing bills with them to negotiate with insurers – asking for equivalent pay. Once insurers are involved, MD expenses rise dramatically while control of their practice. Uneven & inappropriate payments are used effectively by insurers to “manage” care. Overpayment for some care helps to balance underpayment for other care.

  102. First off, a confession: I am a full time family physician and therefore part of the evil Medical Establishment which so many readers have railed about. I was a bit hesitant to stick my head above the parapet, but here goes anyway:

    I’m pretty neutral about the whole Covid vaccine debate. I have had three shots now, and I have not died of Covid, blood clots, heart disease or anything else, in fact I really haven’t noticed much of anything at all, so having the shots has worked for me. My main issue is the question which nobody is asking: “What would you like to die of?”. I don’t mean that in any sinister, Mafia-like way, I mean literally, given that everyone has to do it at some point, how would you like to die? Covid doesn’t seem a bad way to go, relative to some of the alternatives (war, starvation, the creeping decline of Alzheimers, and so on). If the planet is overpopulated and we are in overshoot (which we probably are) then most of the people who are “saved” from Covid by being vaccinated will have to die of something else, and some of the alternatives look a lot less palatable.

  103. @Lunar Apprentice #90

    That’s entirely possible.

    By “getting dicey,” I am relying once again on my mother’s firsthand account, working hands-on with COVID patients. Her experience was that at that time (November) the ICU ward had to be sectioned off for another round of those afflicted with the virus.

    Again, according to her: 9 out of 10 of those were unvaccinated. Make of that what you will.

    Respectfully, sometimes the messiness and uncertainty of reality here on the physical plane confounds even the most alluring stories we like to tell ourselves.

  104. @JMG

    My wife and I got vaccinated (2 shot Pfizer) in 2021. I got spooked and didn’t vaccinate my kids because of myocarditis stories. In 2022, we finally all got Covid. It wasn’t fun for sure. Predictably, it was mildest in the kids and worst for me (I’m 50 and to be honest, out of shape). Apparently, the vaccines didn’t do jack for me. I’m sure skeptics would say, well, I got the new strain and I just need a booster. And by the way, what a horrible parent you are! Needless to say, I’m not getting my kids vaccinated.

    Several of my co-workers, some of whom have had 2 boosters, got Covid multiple times, causing them to miss work. You would think they would begin to doubt the efficacy of the vaccines, but they’re like “Thank god I’m vaccinated. It could’ve been much worse, even deadly.” In other words, they’re doubling down. In terms of side effects, they just don’t hear about them. If they do, it’s “fake news” from a dubious (i.e. conservative) source. They have a plethora of articles from prestigious publications to back their views up.

    So no, I don’t think we’re entering a new dawn where people will “wake up”. Side effects would have to be much more obvious. So no, I don’t think it’s Covid that will bring down the clerisy but it was another nail, another straw. Bottom line, we’re an ADD nation, addicted to Big Pharma, addicted to screens, and easily manipulated. It’s gonna take something more directly existential, like food shortages, war, etc.

  105. @ JMG re “Rod, I’m fond of the suggestion that in the word “monkeypox,” the K is silent. 😉”

    We may soon look forward to catching:
    kachingles
    scriptheria
    pneumoney-a
    lootanus
    moolaria

    not to speak of the traditional:
    affluenza

    and not to leave one of the next big superpowers out of it:
    ruble-ella

    The potential memes are endless… 😉

  106. @ MonkeyBear – regarding risk. Have you given any consideration to the idea that for the person whose death was caused by a vaccination, *their* risk was 100%? …or that a person cannot suffer 0.0026% of a death?

    This is as much as to say that to make a risk assessment is not interchangeable with having an experience. To make a risk assessment is not the same as to undergo an event.

    A risk assessment is a wholly abstract and theoretical exercise. A death is an event that happens in practice.

  107. @ Lunar Apprentice – “Can you even begin to fathom the agony of how it feels to kill, or nearly kill, or disable someone because of a mistake you made, or wonder if someone died because it was just a bad outcome, or was it a mistake you haven’t figured out?”

    That you DO fathom this agony is what makes you a GOOD doctor, and I really hope your financial investment is recuperated soon!

    What I also think is that it is all too common for doctors to steel themselves off against this type of self-knowledge. In fact, a certain degree of this may be necessary. That you have not done so speaks enormously to your professionalism, and I offer you my deepest respect!

  108. @Owen, #60

    This is lore I received verbally, so I cannot offer citation, but according to my teachers…

    In ancient China, mandarins would keep a public record of how many of the patients each doctor successfully treated. Back then, it was recognized that some people just healed on their own, so in order to be allowed to practice the doctor must have at least a 50% “batting rate”, famous (and more often than not expensive) doctors usually had 90% or higher rates.

    Also, every doctor was required to keep a vase on display in their office, and to put a stick in the vase for every patient that had died under their care. Every doctor will loose some patient at some point, but if you walked into a clinic and looked at this big bunch of sticks that did not match with the doctor’s long white beard and wrinkled face, you’d imediatelly knew what you were getting into.

  109. One change that would substantially ease medical costs and distortions, is to allow drugs from any developed country to be purchased by individuals, preferably covered by insurance. This is not practical unless/until the bigpharm elites get overruled by others. I had not thought that possible previously, but Covid aftermath might turn the tide. Of course, FDA approval of pediatric vaccines was influenced by bigpharma.

    In India, where I was told by a local tour guide that individuals can purchase many antibiotics at will (including one or two pills), there are increasing problems with antibiotic resistance. Spread of these problematic resistant bugs are raising serious issues. This is particularly common in diseases that require prolonged antibiotics for cure, like TB (tuberculosis). Resistance is also related to widespread antibiotic use in livestock (in US this accounts for 80% or more of antibiotics used).

    My understanding is that substantial numbers of hospitals/others, to avoid staff shortages, were quite generous in allowing medical professionals to use religious exemptions to avoid vaccines. In other cases, lawsuits are working through the courts, including workers who had natural immunity, or were pregnant or trying to become pregnant.

    With my history of having worked with Covid public health, and in medicine, I get many questions and comments from acquaintances. The fertility concerns are real, with substantial menstral issues post-vaccine. These are now confirmed with short term research. The CDC quoted questionable studies to recommend the vax for pregnant women – better research will take a while. A major problem with vaccine and other research is the use of surrogate markers instead of clinical data with follow up (https://www.bmj.com/content/374/bmj.n2268 Discussion and comparison of research of surrogate markers versus clinical outcomes.)

  110. A few thoughts on some of the datapoints shared here.

    The “genetic vaccines” (Moderna, Pfizer, J&J, AstraZeneca, Sputnik, maybe a few others but not Covaxin or the Chinese options) are not vaccines in any conventional sense of the term. They contain no virus or pieces of virus. They are best described as genetic transfections that deliver instructions – in the form of mRNA or DNA – for production of the viral spike protein.

    Following injection our own cells make this protein and our immune system responds. Neutralizing antibodies are produced but levels wane after a few months, and new viral variants rapidly emerge that evade those antibodies. That part of the story is well known.

    The important thing to recognize though is that this situation – a new protein suddenly appearing *only on healthy cells* – sends a confusing signal to the extraordinarily complex and delicately balanced set of immune mechanisms that distinguish self from non-self. These tolerance mechanisms are already known to fail in seemingly random ways: generating autoimmune illness after encounters with a virus or allergies to peanuts or bee stings in some people.

    Some immune systems will respond to this confusing signal by generating autoimmune (anti-self) reactions. The Real Not Rare stories are full of harrowing accounts. It seems probable to me that this sort of outcome would be made more likely if the immune system had already been primed to attack the spike protein by way of previous infection. As in “that thing showed up on that nasty virus last year and there it is again, so those cells must be up to no good!” This presents a reasonable hypothesis for why reports of vaccine deaths and injuries are lower in Australia and New Zealand, where very few people had been infected with the virus at the time of vaccination. Of course the clinical trial participants had also not been previously infected (to avoid the effect of natural immunity), so this serious safety concern would have been missed prior to approval.

    Some other – perhaps most – immune systems will be likely to respond to repeated spike protein exposure in this manner by developing a tolerance to it – something that has long been part of our discussions over on JMG’s weekly covid forum but that has only recently started to appear in the data (e.g. https://unglossed.substack.com/p/boosting-tolerance-igg4). Spike tolerance might provide protection against the sort of severe illness triggered by an immune overreaction (e.g. cytokine storms), but it would also manifest as negative efficacy – multi-boosted people being more susceptible to covid infection and taking longer to clear the virus – and indeed there seem to be signals in this direction.

    It is also reasonable to hypothesize that some immune systems already in a state of tolerance disequilibrium will respond to this disruptive signal by shifting closer to an equilibrium state. This was reported among some long covid sufferers noting improvement after injection. Northwind Grandma, yours is the first story I’ve seen of someone with longer-term immune disequilibrium showing improvement, but I’m not surprised. Unfortunately, it appears that on the whole a worsening of symptoms has been a more common response than an improvement, as would be expected for any crude and uncalibrated perturbation of a delicate balance.

  111. Just pondering out loud (and not advocating anything, mind you), but I wonder to what extent religious practices treating possession and influence of malicious energies might serve as a regulatory cloak for alternative health modalities, under the protection of freedom of religion?

  112. @Monkeybear, #74

    0.0026% is deceptively low. Just 26 in a million, but compared to what?

    26 in a million chances of dying in each ride of the subway? I’d argue people would be falling to the rails and dying in NYC on an hourly basis. I’d brave those odds if I had to move around and go to work to feed my family… but if the government mandated that I had to board the subway every day because it is my civil duty to go and fetch other, more frail people, from falling to their deaths, I’d argue that it is their duty to fix the damned subway in the first place.

  113. Thank you JMG I’ve been missing your comment on the covid-vaxx, how leathal do you estimate the vaxxx to be in the long run…?

  114. @Carlos M #67 – I find that amazing, and am only sorry I left my old Latin grammar book behind in my last move/massive downsizing. But — Western classics? Can you spell “psuedomorphosis?”

  115. @Toxic Plants

    > “What would you like to die of?”

    I was planning to be too engrossed in a book to notice the charging herd of elephants. Unlikely in England, so I’ll be very old indeed.

  116. @JMM #103

    I would say there is tremendous pressure to avoid concluding that the vaccines are a net negative. Many papers looking at their negative effects include a paragraph that says roughly: “Of course the vaccines are great and good and everyone should get them, we’ve just noticed a tiny little problem that we want to point out. Please don’t banish us.”

    It has long been an argument that since COVID causes more heart problems than the vaccines, you should get the vaccines. That argument doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me since you’ll likely get COVID even if you are vaccinated, so its not an either/or choice.

    Add to that the massive confusion around what is causing what, and how much. For example this study: https://www.mdpi.com/2077-0383/11/8/2219/htm

    It found there was no connection between COVID and myocarditis. There are plenty of other papers saying that there is a connection. Just yesterday I saw a headline claiming long COVID causes impotence. Elsewhere it is claimed that the vaccines do the same thing. Is it true? I don’t know. The information environment is extremely polluted, .

  117. Re: doctor pay

    The huge financial barrier to entry is real, but it is also one of the things that needs to change. Breaking the stranglehold of accreditation and licensing is a necessary first step. Ultimately devising some sort of public or community funding for medical education and training – or allowing trainees to pay for their education by providing intern/apprenticeship labor – would help to ensure that the people who make it through are the most skilled/talented rather than those with the deepest pockets or the greatest tolerance for high-stakes financial gambling.

    I’m not sure why, but I’ve settled on a factor of ten as a reasonable level of income inequality: if I’m a field laborer I’m willing to offer ten hours of my service to society in return for one hour of service from a surgeon or an attorney. Plumbers would be somewhere in the middle. I’m not a fan of the sort of authoritarian socialism that would impose such a scheme though, so it would need to arise from a free market (e.g. what people are willing to pay in an environment where the supply of doctors is not artificially limited by barriers to entry) and the exact numbers would vary a bit from place to place and with the reputation and specialty of each doctor.

    It is also true that doctor pay is not as high as many of us might imagine. Doctors are well compensated but they are also getting squeezed by metastatic bureaucracy of the medical system that siphons most of the money to overpriced pharmaceuticals and medical equipment, insurance (both on the consumer side and malpractice insurance on the provider side), facilities, and layer upon layer of well-paid administrative jobs. So the needed upheaval to the system might actually result in good doctors earning more than they presently do while everyone pays far less and receives better care.

  118. Kimberly, I’ve begun to research that, using other prolonged mass death situations as a model. I’m not far enough along to offer any predictions yet.

    Jeff, if I recall correctly, I got it off Steve Kirsch’s Covid newsletter.

    Stephen, good question. I don’t know how that’ll play out.

    Michael, that doesn’t surprise me at all. When gay and lesbian people set out to get the right to marry, they violated the central rule of the mainstream Left: you’re not allowed to solve your problems, you have to wait for the people in power to solve them, which they never will. Once the same sex marriage fight was won, it was inevitable that there would be blowback from the mainstream Left, and that duly followed: gay men started being lambasted for their “male privilege,” and then the transgender movement got front-and-centered by the corporate media and used to attack gay and lesbian culture, especially the latter. So a great many gay and lesbian people have responded by turning on the Left. I can’t say I blame them.

    Lunar Apprentice, yes, I figured that would get pushback from the physicians who comment here. Would you be any happier if I compared doctors to long-haul truck drivers, who also have high-stress jobs that involve split-second decisions that can kill people? No, I didn’t think so. My point remains, which is that by and large physicians are given money and status which is disproportionate to the value they provide — not in the abstract, but in actual practice, with all the iatrogenic illnesses, nosocomial infections, bad drug reactions, and simple incompetence on the part of a sizeable fraction of physicians factored in. (Having lost family members, including my only child, to these causes, I’m a little edgy about the hero worship too many physicians expect.) Mind you, if physicians’ salaries were capped at 2.5 times the income of a capable plumber, I’d probably accept that…

    JVP, if it turns out that the Big Bang is an illusion I’ll chortle; I included that as a minor plot element in my SF novel Star’s Reach. More generally, I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if the Big Bang turns out to be imaginary and our physics turns out to be just as flawed as the account it replaced; that’s how science works, after all.

    Northwind, fascinating! The human immune system is extremely complicated, and it doesn’t surprise me unduly to hear that some people, you among them, had highly idiosyncratic reactions to Covid vaccinations. I hope the good health continues!

    Viduraawakened, I’ll be interested to hear about the long term results of Covaxin, but since it’s a classic vaccine rather than an experimental genetic therapy it should be less likely to cause drastic problems.

    Christophe, oddly enough, I’ll be talking about that two weeks from now…

    SMC, hmm! You know, I could see that.

    P.D., I know. A lot of alternative medicine has unthinkingly adopted the industrial medicine model, and a lot has deliberately adopted it in order to try to break into the clerisy and get the money and status that comes to officially acknowledge experts. I know of several alternative modalities that haven’t done that, and move in the direction you’ve outlined here — traditional Chinese medicine, ayurveda, some branches of homeopathy, and Western alchemical medicine among them — but there’s ample room for more.

    Char, I did indeed suggest that, and in fact my novel Twilight’s Last Gleaming centers on exactly that hypothesis, with supersonic cruise missiles as the weapon of choice. Hypersonic missiles do an even better job.

    Owen, so noted. I’m still far from sure it’s a good idea.

    Jon, that’s a very good point. The violence with which the pendulum swings is determined by how far it gets hauled to one side — and the corporate-mainstream Left has pulled it very, very far in recent years. I suspect the swing back the other way may get drastic.

    Denis, a good point! As for the alternative history, yeah, I know. I wish.

    Jasmine, ha! No, I don’t mind at all.

    JM, so noted. Of course the Thai study and the VAERS data are both flawed; all data is flawed, and studies inevitably struggle to corral meaning out of the confusion. Since the medical industry and the regulatory state are both eagerly censoring alternative viewpoints, I get by with what data I can find. If you’re interested in flaws in studies, by the way, I trust you’re also reviewing the studies that support the vaccines; the Pfizer study that got their vaccine approved, for example, has some truly fascinating failings.

    Marlena13, gosh. They noticed! 😉

    Jon, thanks for the heads up!

    Gardener, thanks for the view from inside.

    Toxic Plants, and that’s a valid point. Everyone is going to die of something. Since I don’t use mainstream medicine, I came to terms with that a long time ago, but I know a lot of people aren’t so comfortable with that basic reality of human existence.

    Brian, do you work in a profession that’s part of the clerisy — university educated, priding itself on some kind of expertise? If so, well, those will be the last people in the world to admit that the clerisy has failed, because their own status and income depend on its survival.

    Scotlyn, okay, these are genuinely funny. Thank you.

    Lazy Gardener, thanks for this. Some way to cut pharma profits down to size needs to be part of the response, certainly.

    Mark, thanks for this cogent summary.

    David BTL, it’s been tried, with mixed results. If you do anything that can plausibly be identified with medical treatment, such as administering herbs, you get busted. Freedom of religion counts for nothing when it comes to protecting the medical industry’s profits.

    Martin, nobody knows. That’s just it — nobody knows. It takes ten years, more or less, to do an adequate job of long term testing and figure out what the consequence of a drug will be. When that isn’t done — and in this case, of course, it wasn’t — the results are a total crapshoot. It may be that a burst of nasty short term side effects, including sudden heart attacks, will be the only downside. It may be that everyone who took the vaccines will die of immune system failure over the next decade. Nobody knows.

  119. @JMM #103

    You’ve discovered the phenomenon wherein scientists almost always validate the dominant narrative *even when their own data disproves it*. Whether they do this to placate their peers and funding bodies or whether they themselves believe it is unclear to me.

    They found that three out of 301 teenagers prospectively followed through vaccination developed diagnosable myocarditis or pericarditis, and another four had subclinical manifestations. That’s 1% or 2.3%.

    Then they cite another analysis which found that the rate of *reported* myocarditis is 100x higher following infection vs. following vaccination, without noting that such a difference is effectively impossible in light of their results and must therefore reflect significant reporting bias (because, you know, the vaccines are safe and effective, and that serious chest pain your child has could not possibly have been caused by the vaccine…).

  120. @JMG

    Thank you for your reply. That was exactly the reason behind my decision to take Covaxin. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see as regards the long-term effects of the same; interestingly, I did not feel any noticeable difference after each shot.

    BTW, I saw that Covaxin has been a trend of sorts on Twitter for a few days now. Maybe this is an indicator of things to come…

    Also, lastly, I was sorry to hear about the loss of your loved ones, especially your child. My prayers and condolences to you as well as Mrs. Greer. Om Shanti.

  121. As it turned out, Covid-19 wasn’t a serious threat to most people. It has a 99.6% survival rate, around that of an average bad flu, and nearly everyone who died of it was either very old or immunosuppressed—the classes of people who are usually most at risk from a novel respiratory virus. If you’re younger than 60 and in reasonably good health, in other words, your chances of dying of Covid were not much worse than your chances of being struck by lightning.

    I would like to retract my earlier comment “Trump is a boob” to expand it to, Trump did not have the political will or the political capital to “cull the herd” as originally planned, and for a variety of reasons, no doubt. One can speculate that the 99.6% survival rate was not evenly distributed and that the groups hardest hit were, and are, critical to both political and civil governance. The powerful voting bloc of the elderly are part of this. The fact that the poor and ethnic minorities were hardest hit really hit home in my ethnic family in the form of the death of a forty-year-old. Then there are the health care workers like myself who had to deal with quite a bit of risk, illness, extra tasks, job burnout, people leaving in droves, overtime to the point of sheer exhaustion, sleeping in the car, and all that death, sometimes our own with wave after wave of infection. And what about the “work hard/play hard” tech workers who often end up immunosuppressed as part of the regular social scene? Try taking out 15% of Intel and see what happens to your life. There is the lavish presentation of a pile of celebrity funerals. Where is Colin Powell now? The gushing and lugubrious news coverage rivaling that of your local school shooting? When will anyone DO something? In the end, the sis-boom-pah! of the vaccines is more healing than all of those statistics that still grace the newspapers. Science and technology tried. Will ordinary people watching Fox News be able to distinguish between this hastily prepared and perhaps suspect vaccine and the normal variety that should be endorsed? I have two friends who had polio as children. It is not as much fun if you can’t walk. Yet we are starting to behave like folks at the end of the ancient world when book larnin’ was dumb and why have a plough when you can handle wheat with a stick? So on with the show! I, too, survived Covid with a handy jab and wouldn’t have it any other way.

  122. @JMG #124 re: Vaccine Death Graph Source

    Thanks very much, I was able to find his article featuring the graph and find the original source, which is here, if anyone else is interested: https://openvaers.com/covid-data/mortality

    From a brief look around the rest of the site, it looks as if all VAERS reports (not just for COVID vaccines, death or otherwise) went way-way up starting in 2021. It seems like some combination of the following factors would be needed to make that happen: 1) more vaccines administered than previous years, 2) higher compliance in entering reports into VAERS (in other words, doctors/administrators fill out a form they previously wouldn’t have bothered with), 3) more actual adverse effects to report.

    1) is obviously true and not contested by anyone, but what weights to give 2) and 3) and how they relate to each other seems harder to untangle without some other sources, and so far, I have not seen discussion on that – have health care providers been pushed by the CDC or others to file more reports to VAERS? Has insurance required it? Has some kind of automated system been widely adopted that now automatically submits reports where before it was manual?

    None of this is at all inconsistent with the main point of this article and might be going too far into the weeds on the particular example you used, so I’ll leave off there.

    Thanks,
    Jeff

  123. @ Northwind Grandma #86 –

    Thanks a million for telling your story. Which illustrates to me the fact that each person is different, and that that difference is as important to the story of health and illness as any specific substance or nutrient or other “additive” we might like to turn into a fetish of either health or disease. I am exceedingly happy that what you found in your post-vaccination experience was respite. Some surprises are pleasant ones, and if nothing else, it is a good reminder to take nothing for granted, and to be wary of too much certainty!

  124. @ Toxic Plants #108 – you ask a very interesting question.

    At some point we will all die. How would we like this to happen? (Presuming we get a choice, maybe most of us will not get that choice).

    Certainly, there is a reason why pneumonia has been called “old [wo]man’s friend”…

    I have spoken to my grown children about this, especially during the time when each of them had succumbed to the fear that they might unwittingly BE the cause of our (my husband’s and my) deaths by bringing a case of Covid home to us.

    I have reassured them that I know I will die, and that, when my time comes, I will be content to be let go of quietly, with no heroics by them, or by any medics they might try to delegate to this task.

    I have reassured them that if I should die of an infectious disease, I will not want any search for a culprit who “gave” me the disease, because I live in a biological world, and the whole world is full of agents of health and disease, and I will meet all of the ones coming to me, in its proper time.

    Personally, I would much prefer to simply “drop dead” of a heart attack or stroke to a long drawn out illness like cancer. However, I realise that such deaths, while easiest upon the die-er, may be most difficult for the die-ee’s. Therefore, I would agree with you that dying of Covid (or, more likely, one of its short-term complications, like pneumonia) would be a happy medium between a sudden and a lingering death. One might have time to say one’s good-byes, without having it drawn out for too long.

    And, for those left behind, it would be better for *their* peace of mind, to have been able to have said those goodbyes, than to be left with unsaid words, unfinished business.

    From among the people I know, the best deaths have been those where this kind of “final words” “final touch” scenarios were possible.

    Thanks for raising this. People do not talk nearly enough about death, as a natural part of life.

  125. >If you measure satisfaction, those who were told what they want to hear skew the numbers

    In general, the customer is the one paying for the service, for better or worse. How dare s/he be happy with what they’re paying for?

    I’m not claiming it would be a perfect system, just somewhat better than what we have now. Perhaps instead of making it a requirement of being able to practice medicine, you just make it a mandatory posting, like with health department grades on restaurants. A,B,C,D,F and let the market decide what to do.

    Although my thinking with “90% or out”, was in my experience with seller ratings in general, anything less than 90% was a real red flag and people tended to shun the seller pretty hard. Sometimes it was anything less than 95%. But sure, let them stay on the rolls or let them leave on their own.

  126. >I practice acupuncture, and the hardest question I am ever asked, and I still have no good answer for it, is: “Can you treat X?”

    You very likely would not want to handle a motorcycle accident victim straight from the ambulance, I’m guessing? Amputations are something you’d tell people you don’t do? You probably would absolutely not want to handle a heart transplant? You would probably balk at setting a broken bone? Maybe you might suture someone’s wound? That’s sticking needles in someone although in a different sort of way.

    Someone with a headache, double vision or unexplained fatigue, you’d probably book them for an appointment and give them a shot at fixing it? If someone’s going to be unhappy over what you do, it’s reasonable they have some idea of what it is you do before getting happy or unhappy over it.

  127. >Then there is the cost of that education. I spent my life savings on medical school tuition and living costs (I began medical school at age 40), and I still had to borrow, graduating in 2002 with $115,000 in debt.

    There’s a newly minted flight instructor from one of the big prestigious flight schools I met briefly a few weeks ago, his debt levels were substantially the same and I can almost guarantee you he doesn’t make anywhere near the hourly rate a doctor does. It’s probably close to half that of a doctor and that’s probably being generous.

    And his liabilities and regulatory risks are substantially similar in profile too. Although he probably does significantly less paperwork.

    I get it, the doctor job is hard but I’m going to side with JMG on this one about the pay rate and plumbers.

    BTW, thanks for caring about doing your diag right, but looking behind you at those other doctors you mentioned offhand, you also seem to be in the distinct minority, IMHO. The rule is lazy quick diag and get them back out the door as fast as you can, as I see it.

  128. @Fra’ Lupo #37. The explanation of the high initial death rate your mother observed may be the ‘dry tinder’ theory. 2019 was a mild flu year, leaving alive many elderly who might have died in a normal flu year. They supplied the excess deaths in 2020, the first year of Covid, before the mass vaccine rollout.

    In those days we used to study the Swedish numbers minutely. 2020 was a bad year for deaths, but add it to 2019 and divide by two to get an average, it turns out they were average death years.

    @Peter Wilson #73. The low death rate in some sub-Saharan African nations may be due to the regular use of ivermectin to prevent malaria transmission (it kills the mosquitoes that suck the blood of an infected person).

  129. I always appreciate your historical, big picture perspective.
    I do worry though about a selection bias that we all share here because we read the same fringe sites and talk to the same “old normal” people.

    I think you are optimistic in expecting changes soon due to the collapse of the clerisy.

    On the contrary, I think that 2020 marked a beginning and a strengthening of the clerisy. After decades of trying to both make all the decisions and keep the majority of the people happy, they have given up on the second part and the results are amazing!

    It turns out most people (majority in US, vast majority in Europe) are more than happy to suffer and die for their “betters” if they are motivated with a militant, totalitarian, bloodthirsty religion (in this case woke progressivism).

    I am not talking just about media (which lives in a fantasy world) but even most city-dwellers and suburbanites are treu believers – see how they are lining up for foxes and support any and all attacks on free speech and the “public enemies” (be they Trump or parents of schoolchildren).

    So, while I agree with your description of the larger historical ark, I don’t think clerisy is quite out yet – maybe in a generation or two. I sure hope I am wrong though!

  130. Fra’ Lupo @ 109:
    You wrote “9 out of 10 of those [ICU patients] were unvaccinated. Make of that what you will.”

    Hospitals, under CDC guidance, use a restrictive, janky definition of “vaccinated”: You are vaccinated only if you are least 2 weeks out from the second covid shot, not past the due date for a booster, and even then only if you received the shots through a clinic affiliated with the hospital you’re admitted to, and it shows up on the electronic records in the hospital. So a larger fraction, possibly an overwhelming majority, of those “unvaccinated” ICU patients would have had covid shots.

    To the extent there is uncertainly, it is uncertainty manufactured by the health/pharma industry and its captive regulators to obfuscate what is going on.

    —Lunar Apprentice

  131. Hi JMG,

    happy to have this forum, where the whole width of opinions on the virus and the vaccines can be expressed! Thanks to Fra’ Lupo and the New Zealanders for some dissent. I do personally know about young, healthy Brazilians who died with Covid in 2020, before any vaccines were administrated.

    FWIW, I have come to believe that the vaccines are rather ineffective (the initial tests being mostly fudged) and their effects rapidly fade out, not too different from seasonal flu vaccines in this respect. I also think there have been more side effects than currently acknowledged. I haven’t had time to look at any number of the 1500 side effect studies collected. However, I do note that the Thailand study mentioned above had no control group.

    All sources of data I have been able to find show low excess mortality in the USA as a whole since March 2022, and no unusually high mortality since 2021 in the European countries that participate in EuroMOMO. So I do not share your and some other commenters’ expectation of a huge increase in mortality among the vaccinated. I would appreciate any data on a different excess mortality.

  132. Hey jmg

    All this talk of the Pfizer vaccines reminds me of a topic which has bugged me, but I’ve never really discussed it with before.

    Are you familiar with the AstraZeneca vaccine? It not only is made by a different manufacturer with a different technique, but it is openly admitted that is has the possibility to cause blood clots by mainstream doctors and the media, in Australia at least.

    https://amp.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/aug/02/astrazenecas-australia-boss-surprised-and-disappointed-with-debate-over-covid-vaccine

    I decided to get this vaccine since it seemed better than Pfizer, and I had to read a form warning me about its possible side-effects before I could get it.
    I felt abit off for about a month, but I’m 90% sure I’m ok now.
    I mentioned this to you since it seems to prove that it is Pfizer in particular that is fueling the censorship.

    Btw, in your essay there is a typo where you wrote “German world” instead of “word.”

  133. @Lunar Apprentice, #95

    Good point! The number of people should be a consideration in conjunction with the number of shots administered. However, (I could be completely wrong on this), the 16,000 death figure is, according to the CDC, preliminary. In other words any person that just happened to have dropped dead from a heart attack a day after the shot is reported to the VAERS data pool. That suggests the actual number of deaths that could possibly be related to the vaccine is SUBSTANTIALLY lower. Like as in near zero. If you take a population of 150-200 million on any give day, a certain percentage of those people are going to die from heart attack, stroke, etc. Again, my thinking might be entirely incorrect.

    @ Scotlyn, #112

    True, but the same logic can be applied to the people who have died from the virus.

    @ CR Patiño, #118

    Compare the relative risk of death from the vaccine to relative risk of dying from the virus. According to the CDC’s numbers .0026% vs. .4%. So based on those numbers alone, (obviously its more nuanced) a person is on average 150x more likely to die from the virus than the vaccine. Again, that’s a simplistic direct comparison not takIing into consideration age, health, exposure, ect. So not comparing it to getting on a subway.

  134. ” Invest in funeral homes; they’ll be the center of attention soon enough.”
    Michael Burry has reportedly moved his entire portfolio in a somewhat similar direction!

  135. Mark L, regarding this comment “It is also true that doctor pay is not as high as many of us might imagine. Doctors are well compensated but they are also getting squeezed by metastatic bureaucracy of the medical system that siphons most of the money to overpriced pharmaceuticals and medical equipment, insurance (both on the consumer side and malpractice insurance on the provider side), facilities, and layer upon layer of well-paid administrative jobs”

    – as a low-level administrative assistant (with nobody below me, I was that low-level) at SF General Hospital many years ago, I was mordantly amused to find out that the doctors in my department made my annual salary every six weeks. Several of them were pompous jerks in the meantime, which made it all prickle a bit more. I wouldn’t argue that admin bloat was a problem even then, though.

  136. #60 Owen picks up the theme “Here’s my Modest Proposal. Medical licenses are abolished. Anyone who wants to give practicing medicine a shot, here’s what they have to do…” and what had been itching me is too much not to dig out the reference which I *think* is Life’s Best Medicine podcast episode 107 with Ben Azadi where they talk about this “free-market medine” idea. The podcast theme is low-carb diets but don’t be put off it’s all pretty easy going stuff.

  137. #73 Peter “Sub-Saharan African nations – they have low vaccination rates, but also low death rates, with some outliers. What’s causing that – we simply don’t know.”
    I think we do ;-|
    #53 & #96 “Some African countries prophylactically treat the bulk of their populations with Ivermectin (for parasites), which has been suggested (along with their relative youth) to explain low death rates.” My hunch is it would have been all over by Christmas 2020 with rapid adoption of early treatments.

  138. Owen @131

    I understand your point about satisfaction. The problem is that the vast majority of US doctors work for third parties, not patients. Almost all current surveys are written by insurers or for-profit corporations, whose interests are not at all aligned with patients. As long as PMC or MBA types write the surveys, reliable results are not likely. Personally, I would be tickled to work for patients, and accept patient-oriented satisfaction surveys, given after a reasonable time for healing and follow up.

    I agree that patients should be informed about known or estimated effectiveness of care, or of further evaluation to look for a diagnosis, with pros and cons for each option. For example, someone with an atypical headache may benefit from a scan for a mass or cyst, and/or an EEG for potential seizures, before trying supportive care for symptoms. Knowledge that an insurer will not cover a scan, when neurologically intact, until the patient has failed three different medications, often skews recommendations.

    Regarding myositis, we have minimal knowledge of long term effects from subclinical cases, even for young adults. Less is known about young children. Despite unknown long term effects, most current studies only evaluate those who with specific and significant symptoms. Wide variation of myositis rates is described with the virus, with use of different interpretation of data sets. It appears higher with the virus than the vaccine, yet data is soft. It could be related to the spike protein.

    For the pediatric 6-48 month old Pfizer vaccine EUA, studies to look for subclinical myositis were not mentioned, though some toddlers/infants had fevers and fatigue. Many 6-48 month olds are not yet capable of describing chest pain, and those with myositis would be expected to be irritable, febrile and/or fatigued. Bad science, but the FDA did not require more. FDA allowed the use of data of surrogate markers for 16 yo to young adults to be used as the control group, yes, for the toddlers. More bad science. Many pediatricians do not recommend its use.

    JMG is right that pay rates for doctors vary. Many, especially primary care, struggle to make ends meet and pay off loans. Surgeons and internists are pushed to encourage pricey care, and can struggle when they don’t comply. A generation ago, doctors supported and paid an average of 2 employees – receptionist and assistant or nurse. Now it is more than seven for my field, and that doesn’t include the insurance company employees, monthly EHR fees, and IT/malpractice contractors. Cut out all the middlemen, and sanity might return.

  139. Ah – the much awaited post about the “five-letter-word-that-begins-with-‘C’”! I am surprised that you have reported the relative absence of trolls, JMG. Odd…

    It’s sad, really, how the modern allopathic system of medicine – which had so many amazing developments over the past century or so – became so thoroughly corrupted and has ended up visiting so many horrors on certain segments of the Western population (for example, Thalidomide for pregnant women and various treatments of American Blacks and our armed forces)… until the most recent horror on the entire population (excepting those who have refused to submit to the “vixen” regardless of the consequences). I am one of those who are well aware that had I been born a century earlier (1860s instead of the 1960s), I would not likely have survived past my 5th birthday. So, I must give the “Devil” his due.

    It was bad enough that in North America, allopathy muscled out all competing modes of healing and declared them anathema. But the blind insatiable greed of big pharma to the point that they captured the medical associations who are happy to revoke the medical licences of doctors who “believe their lying eyes” and raise concerns about the “vixen” is breathtaking. I never thought I would live to see such a day. But this day has come.

    Even if the clerisy did not bungle things up so badly (which, I guess, was inevitable), the collapse of the current system of medicine is imminent. In Canada, which has had socialized medicine since the 1960s, the collapse has been going on, slowly, for decades now as the diagnostic equipment has become insanely expensive while the proportion of the working-age population which funds the system declines and the post-retirement-age population proportionately increases. It’s hard to believe that back in the early ‘90s, I could go into any hospital’s emergency department and within one mere hour see a doctor, while now one is lucky to see a doctor within 8 hours (that is, if one’s local hospital’s emergency department is even open!). I suspect that within a decade the system in Canada will be so dysfunctional that socialized medicine will have to be abandoned… that is, if Canadians as a whole have not lost all faith in the current medical system by then.

    Interesting that you mention that our current clerisy is secular. However, they are religious – it’s just the secular religion of Progress (and more recently the Cult of the Holy Jab). I recall a comment made by Mattias Desmet (father of the term ‘Mass Formation’ in reference to the world-gone-mad for the past 2.5 years) in which he disagrees with many peoples’ assessment of Western governments, or their leaders, as psychopathic; rather, Mattias calls them ‘fanatics’. The rationale is that the psychopath’s behaviour is to simply disregard all the rules, while the fanatic likes to create more and more rules in a bludgeon-like manner to apply to everyone. Perhaps some kind of hybrid (psycho-fanatic) is possible because Supreme Leader Justin Turdeau seems to disregard every rule imaginable when it comes to his person, while he tries everything in his power to force every Canadian to obey whatever nonsensical “health/travel” dictates that he and his band of empty-headed cabinet members and bureaucrats dream up. And, certainly, regarding the science-free dictat regarding reducing agricultural-source nitrogen that our Supreme Leader has just doubled-down on has justified the accusation that he’s a “climate change activist pretending to be a Prime Minister”.

    What interesting times we live in! I shall certainly not mourn the downfall of the clerisy of our age. I sure hope that whoever replaces them have “dirt under their fingernails”, because other than the occasional Archdruid Emeritus, they are about the only people whom I trust these days! Honk honk!

  140. I’m not sure if this has been mentioned as I haven’t read all of the comments, but one reason that Haiti may have a lower covid rate than New Zealand is that there is some evidence that malarial antibodies offer some protection against the SARS family of viruses. This would go some way to explaining why much of the equitorial region is not seeing much covid. Another theory is that TB antibodies also offer some protection, and developing countries generally vaccinate against TB. Early in the pandemic, before the covid vaccine, UK health workers were given TB vaccinations as it appeared to be helpful.
    Whatever the reasons, I am glad that the poorer nations of the world have escaped the worst of this particular plague, as that’s generally not how these things go..

  141. Vidura, thank you for this.

    Jeff, and thanks for this bit of analysis.

    Rod, ah, but the media’s working overtime coming up with excuses to explain why young people are suddenly dropping dead from heart disease…

    Discwrites, hmm! Okay, if they’re having shills posting this kind of propaganda, the rising tide of hostility toward the WEF and the clerisy generally must be further along than I thought.

    NomadicBeer, if that’s the case, how come childhood vaccination for Covid in the US has been such a total flop? Around 15% of older kids and 3% of under 5s have been given the jab, despite a full court press by the media. Our local slaughterhouse, er, vaccination center here in East Providence has closed due to lack of customers, and very large numbers of doses of vaccines are now being thrown away in the US and elsewhere. I think that suggests a little more pushback than you’ve indicated…

    TJ, I saw that. Ouch.

    Aldarion, I’ll pass that question to my biomedically trained readers.

    J.L.Mc12, Pfizer is mostly concerned with getting market share, of course. I see no reason to think that the AstraZeneca jab is any more dangerous.

    Skintnick, if I were into speculative investments, that’s where my money would be.

    Ron, oh, there have been a few of them, but they’ve all either been anonymous rent-a-trolls running standard gimmicks out of the troll farm manual or they’ve been the kind of heavy snark or heavy profanity I delete out of hand no matter what the subject. With regard to allopathic medicine, no argument there; I had a serious case of scarlet fever in 1969, when I was seven — the kind of thing that routinely killed children a few decades earlier — and I still remember the taste of the banana-flavored pennicilin that kept me alive. It’s a bitter thing to see just how fantastically corrupt, arrogant, and dysfunctional it’s become; I hope at least some of its knowledge and practice are preserved.

    Blueday Jo, there’s also the fact that ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine are sold over the counter in most equatorial countries, and seem to be very effective prophylactics against Covid-19. That said, the correlation between high vaccination rates and recurring Covid epidemics seems to be very strong.

  142. Fantastic essay this week, JMG! I went ahead and quoted you to my on-line family altercation group. I note that I had in fact suggested that we totally abandon any talk of politics with those among us who are clearly upset by it, but those people indicated that they wished to continue the discussion. This is one very blue American, one elitist European liberal, one middle-of-the-road conservative, one old-time conservative who scoffs at everything, one gung-ho Trump supporter and me–I guess I am a Confucianist.
    I had to warn them that you discuss the, uh, failure of the controversial medical procedure that two of them (you can easily guess which) still ardently support. The old-time conservative was conned into vaccination, too, but is now really really angry about it.
    I think it is so very important to note that “populism” does not have to mean violent revolution, but we all fear that is where this is going to lead this time, and I suspect is one thing you intend to address in two weeks. I sincerely look forward to that.

  143. Regarding the vaccines in Japan, each time the government encourages mass vaccination (currently 2nd booster), they experience a new spike in cases that dwarfs the preceding ones. The current talk among people here is that oh well, it at least prevents serious cases. However, they are starting to see serious cases among the young. The vaccines have been approved for ages five and up as of February this year, but no word on vaccine status versus COVID morbidity.

  144. Thanks for another fine article. Finally, I understand why with every fiber of their being that class despises Orange Julius.

  145. #140 Aldarion “I would appreciate any data on a different excess mortality.”
    Ed Dowd on Twitter would be a good source (mostly using US insurance data) but his account was suspended!! You could probably find him on substack or somewhere.
    @StatsJamie on Twitter reports (high) excess deaths this year in the England/Wales from official data, he tweets often.
    @outsideallan similarly presents official data in a very matter-of-fact way. Some of the excess death data coming out of Scotland (which reports independently) is very troubling.
    I could find many more for other regions if you like.

  146. JMG @ 124:

    You wrote [responding to me] “… Would you be any happier if I compared doctors to long-haul truck drivers, who also have high-stress jobs that involve split-second decisions that can kill people? No, I didn’t think so. ….”

    Fair enough. Long haul truckers (or any takers) are free to belly up to the bar and compete with me for, say, only double truckers’ remuneration. We’ll see what the patients think.

    I could easily earn my commercial driver’s license and become a long-haul trucker in 3-6 months. I contemplated it at one point. How soon would my [medical] replacement be ready?

    —Lunar Apprentice

  147. JMG, thank you very much for your response- [As for “any real progress of civilization,” er, do you actually believe in that?]

    JMG, this is extremely thought provoking. Thank you so much for this blog outlet and your amazing attention to readership.

    Yes, I do believe in that, after much work and consideration following my escape from America and abandoning my own K Street law firm to develop an alternative on a small Pacific island.
    You posed a critical question, regarding can we look forward to any “real progress in civilization” in view of the dark ages often discussed here and by other smart guys such as Mr. Kunstler.

    This is important. Are we merely spending/biding our time trying to stay alive during The Collapse or is there something more optimistic and positive going on here? I am convinced that the demise of the oil age and the rise of locally produced energy is a step forward away from sociopaths and towards human freedom. I explain my reasons in my book Take Back The Power! by Marvin Motsenbocker on amazon. Because I am not making money on my Quixotic journey (book writing and hands on teaching for local energy generation are money losing ventures) I hope you dont mind my mentioning this book yet again. Basically, up until now, all energy sources have been under control of centralized authority but finally now, (in large part due to the vast and deep technology provided to the world from Western civilization and particularly America) we can create real communities that can be self sufficient in everything, including energy. The sociopath organized cultures that are dying are based on global or at least national central control of resources, starting with energy. My book starts with a review of how development and control of new energy sources have spawned a monster sociopath class of parasites to harvest and distribute those energy sources, but now we can look forward to a post collapse future wherein local resources produced by good people locally are much more free and represents a step forward in our cultural revolution. The crass materialism created by exponential growth in America can return to a more gentle, natural and (can I say it?) loving environment where actions of individuals are valued and effect their neighbors for the PURPOSE of suppling their needs, and not the monetary needs of a far off sociopath globalist.

    The bigger picture is that we are leaving exponential growth (managed and exploited by sociopath monsters) and are re-entering stationary growth (edo period of Japan from 1625-1850 is a prime example) but with the benefit of being able to interact with our environment and harvest tons of energy locally. In fact Arch Druidry seems to provide a framework with a focus on mastering local science such as local biology, in order to advance in the religion. I would love to see and expect a flowering of Druidry because I see that as a serious and optimistic answer to the new dark age. We need to turn off the TV, escape from Facebook etc, turn off the computer and deal with the real needs and wants of our local communities. Greater freedom and greater joy are in store for us. Our Dunbar number sized sub-communities can actually outcompete the globalist hegemons and beat them.

    Much more can be said here and space is limited. I understand and accept the fact that most people will not make it. But for most rational minded people (such as your readers) willing to accept the challenge of building self resilient communities, I think that this is a golden age that leads to real progress in human civilization.

  148. Thank you to our host and the comments in response to my comments on the NZ covid experience. I will keep monitoring it and reporting back occasionally when appropriate on here and maybe on the other blog.

    My take all along has been that NZ, and perhaps Australia, are the best we can have as control groups, as they started their mass vaccinations in environments of low or no covid. NZ hit 80% plus, well, over 90% if you exclude kids before the lockdowns ended and covid let rip. I don’t see a pattern of high vaccinations producing high mortality in the data (others do). I do see rolling covid epidemics in most countries, but most countries have some level of vaccination above zero.

    What I can agree is that to see a signal in the NZ data that shows an issue in the vaccines is at least another year off, given how low the excess mortality is at present, and also now we are coming out of winter.

    I’m opting for the ternary here, I think the vaccines are just nowhere near as effective in the long term as originally claimed, and work similar to seasonal flu vaccines.

    In a year or so, I think the NZ data will tell that story, but I could be wrong and our host right. Hopefully I’m still alive by then, given I took the shots.

  149. “The vaccine is very safe.” How often have we heard that in regard to the mRNA vaccines.

    For example: our local equivalent of VAERS recently announced the first death due to the vaccine that they could not blame on anything else, no matter how hard they tried. The lady who announced it sounded very distressed (no doubt because her bosses were displeased at the news), and concluded her announcement by saying, “…but the vaccine is very, very, very safe.”

    The problem is, “safe” is a value judgement. There is no absolute standard, you have to compare the risk with something that has a known risk profile. For instance, the airline industry is fond of comparing their fatalities per passenger mile with that of motor vehicles’ fatalities per passenger mile, so they can smugly announce as you get off the plane that the most dangerous part of your journey is just beginning.

    But is “fatalities per passenger mile” a good metric? Most people die in bed. Most beds move very little. So “fatalities per passenger mile” for a bed is nearly infinite. A bed is the most dangerous place in the world by that metric!

    “Fatalities per passenger hour” would be a better metric. People are willing to accept a high risk for a brief period of time, for instance when crossing a busy street, but for an extended period they demand a much lower level of risk.

    Also, when sitting in a plane you have no control. The risk should be compared with other transport modes where you have no control, for instance rail passengers or bus passengers. As always, compare apples with apples.

    Back to the mRNA vaccine (vax). Compared to other vaccines it is very dangerous. I’ve seen a figure of 40 times more dangerous. Don’t know if that is accurate.

    But, apples to apples. Most vaccines are given to children, most vax jabs are given to adults, many quite elderly. Their immune systems are different, so the risks might not be comparable.

    The only comparable vaccine I can think of is the flu vaccine, which is given to adults, many quite elderly. It has a lot of the same minor symptoms — soreness, etc — but the only major side effect I could find is Guillain-Barre syndrome, no myocarditis, cancer, clotting, brain fog etc. So the vax is much more dangerous than the flu vaccine, and we don’t know the long-term effects yet.

  150. @ Scotlyn

    “when my time comes, I will be content to be let go of quietly, with no heroics by them, or by any medics they might try to delegate to this task”

    Oh how I agree! Pneumonia most certainly WAS my father’s friend, and saved him from the longer term ravages of Altzheimers, incontinence and failing organ systems, which were growing by the day. My mother a compromise perhaps between sudden and prolonged – a mini stroke, three years or increasingly upsetting vascular dementia and finally a shockingly catastrophic blood clot to the brain that literally dropped her dead in my arms. Which is better? Damned if I know – just as well we don’t get to choose, perhaps?

    “the best deaths have been those where this kind of “final words” “final touch” scenarios were possible”

    Amen to that! I don’t know how things were in your part of the world during all the Covid (massive over-)response, but here in the UK, far too many were denied that simple dignity in our efforts to flatten the curve, stay safe and save the NHS (why?).

    2020, the year the world went collectively mad! Anyway – and I hope it’s OK to say this in the forum – thanks for your observations on life, death and (not quite) the universe. One thing’s for certain, none of us are getting out of this one alive.

  151. Back in the day I enjoyed watching Michael Jordan play above the rim and score at will. Now I enjoy these articles. Well played sir. It’s a wry source of wonder but people still think it’s all basically fine. I hope it is for most waxed. They cannot see all the carnage yet… its invisible. Two coworkers stented last year post wax. Episode of atrial tachycardia for another. Multiple coof returns and tinnitus for two more. Irregular periods and panic attack. Chest pain episodes for 2 more. Called “side effects” by a few more honest or clear sighted but those stop when you stop taking it, at least traditionally. Lo these may be with you always. I hope it will be the whole iceberg not the tip. Yet I see them boosting. Many or some. I knew it was a scam when I read about mrna vax way back when. When they assure you it wont change DNA…and then tell you what they will make your messenger change to to get the phenotype they want…I was done.

  152. @Lothar von Hakelheber re:28 meds. My father was in a home on a similar huge number of meds. He basically decided that he was going to die and stopped taking all his meds and went to bed to die. He slept 25 hours, woke up and felt much better. He went on to live for quite a while after that.

  153. Hi John Michael,

    Mate, you know my thoughts in this matter, but you have to understand that there is no freedom of speech down here, and I could be sued merely for agreeing with you. Other readers down under should be wary of these risks in this particular circumstance. The deep pockets can potentially be misused in such a situation, and have been in the recent past.

    I cannot find it in myself to forgive them. And it is worth recalling that things were stranger, and for longer here than pretty much anywhere else on the planet.

    A few months back, I ended up getting it. Big deal. It was like a prolonged cold, and I worked from home or on the farm every single day. Forgive my bitterness, but the response wasn’t worth it you know.

    Chris

  154. If there’s a shift here in Canada with regards to the jab, it’s happening slowly and very much under the radar. I think people here have become rather closed off with regards to voicing any opinion contra the dominant narrative. There are penalties for ‘spreading misinformation’, ‘hate speech’, etc.

    Plus, the government here is still throwing bags of money around to control the narrative, so the traditional and popular online media are very much marching in step.

    OTH, even people who echo official vaccine propaganda are losing faith in the healthcare system.

    Our single-payer healthcare system is slowly collapsing under the weight of demographics, and if you have a doctor? You’re not likely to get one like Lunar Apprentice, who can care. Here in Ontario, a _good_ doctor would be paid much less than a plumber, because they’re paid per-visit on a wage scale set at an assumed 15 minutes per patient. To the medics here: how often can you really figure out the real roots of a medical problem in 15 minutes with a patient? Especially if you don’t know them! (Most healthcare around here is done by walk-in clinics or emergency rooms, not family doctors.) It’s not 15 minutes with the patient either, because that includes the time to review their chart and make notes in it afterwards. Doctors visits have become “Hello, it says here you have [symptom]? OK, here’s pills for that. Come back if they make you worse and I’ll give you other ones for the side effects. Goodbye.”

    (They always make it worse, in my experience.)

    The doctor wants to see as many patients as possible: that doctor has debt to pay! Not just student loans*, but the loans on the BMW and cottage in Muskoka they bought to keep up appearances.

    This, more than the vax, is wearing away people’s faith in medicine up here IMO. We’re too heavily propagandized by paid shills to admit the evidence of our own lying eyes about the jab. It’s to ignore an eight hour wait at emerge.

    *They can skip the loans if they’re willing to submit to internal exile for a few years. I’ve heard of multiple small communities with standing offers to take over med school debt and toss in a free house to any medico willing to make the move, so residents don’t have to drive hours to refill prescriptions. I haven’t much sympathy for the medical debt sob story.

  155. In my alternative history (and would vote for anyone who said this regardless of their other beliefs), an important person would say “Americans are more concerned with looking good and comfort and refuse to do what is necessary to take care of their own bodies. You eat garbage, dress like slobs, and can’t walk up stairs or more than 25 feet without complaining. Step away from the screens and go get a life.”

    But since the clerisy literally keeps their positions by giving people *very good reasons* for why they look and feel like doo-doo, people return to the clerisy and not the commonsense of their grandparents.

    And this is the only place I can say that because everywhere else starts in on systemic issues as the reason never realizing the clerisy created and uphold the systemic issues, i.e. the self-licking ice cream cone. Every time the press showed Biden licking an ice cream cone, it was like, they know we know they know.

  156. JMG,

    Oh, for sure, we’re definitely going to find out! All I’m saying is that, for the vast majority of people, a billion articles about the failure of the vaccines and the severe malpractice involved is not going to make a dent in their worldviews. As my triple-jabbed friend put it, “I just figure that, in the grand scheme of things, I’m not all that likely to die from a vaccine, and I never really cared that much about it.” Sometimes denial that it’s a big deal really is just denial that it’s a big deal, and not part of any grieving process. Of course the sizeable number of people who have been directly affected by adverse vaccine reactions may come to reconsider, in varying degrees, their faith in progress or in the powers-that-be, but this is because they were personally affected by these failures.

    At the end of the day, people by and large only care about those things that affect them personally. VAERS data and a daily trickle of “died suddenly” articles are only abstractions. There’s a reason that most of the discourse around the Biden administration’s failures hews closer to “gas prices are high” than the authoritarian rollout of poisonous drugs. Not to say the regime’s legitimacy isn’t in danger (after all, a precipitous drop in standards of living has a way of touching lives across a broad spectrum of society) but I suspect the vaccine issues themselves will be swept under the rug quite effectively as covidmania disappears into the past. People – not all people, but most – will continue to avail themselves of industrial medicine and dubiously-safe pharmaceuticals until our supply chains break so badly that those treatments are no longer available. It brings me no joy to say this.

    All this is to say, I suppose, that I remain unconvinced that the vaccine failures herald any kind of sea change in popular sentiments. Nevertheless, I really do appreciate all you’ve done to facilitate us dissenters on the subject. It can feel like a lonely world out there for someone who sees the harm being done, and this blog always feels like an oasis of sanity in a desert of delusion.

    Keep fighting the good fight,
    Amos

  157. One of the things that makes our current clerisy so dangerous, fragile and incompetent compared to those from past empires and civilizations is it’s disconnect from the real world. In past era’s the clerisy was often drawn from the ranks of. landowners, captains of industry, military leaders, or the Church. The current bunch at the helm seems to come from one of these four realms; The higher education industrial complex, the healthcare industrial complex, the financial industrial complex and the government/ state department racket. So as things get worse they have the tendency to prop up those segments of the empire that most need to be jettisoned. At least the robber barons of old knew that steel and mines were important and would be more likely to throw the “fluff” of society under the bus. But this current bunch is so clueless they would honestly pull out all the stops to keep universities afloat while allowing food production to crater.

  158. @JMG

    A question I had about Covid which has more to do with the modeling of Covid spread –

    I remember you saying some months back that part of the blame for the Covid-19 fiasco can be attributed to bad modeling, with elaborate but ultimately useless models being taken seriously by governments and being used to formulate on-ground policies (I don’t remember the exact post or comment section in which you said this, but I clearly remember that it was something of this sort). Incidentally, I have seen a lot of differential equation-based Covid models, all of which are improved versions of the classic SIR (short for ‘Susceptible, Infected, Recovered’) model. I personally know two people who wrote a paper in which they proposed a model which combined an improved version of the SIR model combined with terms familiar to those who have studied, at least at a basic level, the theory of complex networks. Ultimately, their model wasn’t successful in accurately predicting the spread of Covid over a long timeframe even in their own city; the sad fact is that they were part of a committee set up by the municipal commissioner of their city to advise the government. I don’t think these two are incompetent – far from it, they’re quite talented; it’s just that their model couldn’t really capture the behaviour of the system in sufficient detail.

    Reading this essay got me thinking of their model, along with other models, and I wondered as to what could be the reason behind the failed models (I’m not talking here about data-driven models of any sort, as I’m simply not competent enough to comment on the same). Then, I remembered, while working on a reaction kinetics problem, that the problem I was working on involved the use of exponents other than 1.0; and that a similar case could hold true in the case of epidemiology, especially given that compartmental modeling, which is what the SIR model and all its variants are essentially examples of, was originally developed for reaction kinetics but was then used deriving models in sociology, political science and epidemiology, to name a few. I will explain my point below (those who are not familiar with differential equations can ignore this part:

    The basic diagram explaining the SIR model compartments is: S ——>I——–>R

    Now, to the models:

    Basic SIR model:

    dS/dt = (-beta*S*I)
    dI/dt = (beta*S*I) – (gamma*I)
    dR/dt = (gamma*I) (Here, beta and gamma are constants used as parameters)

    (Proposed)SIR model with exponents that are real numbers and =/= 1.0:
    dS/dt = (-beta*(S^a)*(I^b))
    dI/dt = (beta*(S^a)*(I^b)) – (gamma*(I^b))
    dR/dt = (gamma*(I^b)) (Here, beta and gamma are the same as above, while a and b are constants used as exponents)

    Now, I am well aware that more elaborate versions of the SIR model (in both cases) can be created, like the SEIR and SEIRD model. My point is, can including non-zero, non-unity exponents enable the SIR model to display a much richer and more realistic behaviour? Perhaps, if the effect of exponents is included, the model size in terms of number of compartments can also be shrunk without sacrificing too much realism? Certainly worth exploring IMO.

    Now, I’m aware that there are a number of pitfalls that one encounters while modeling complex systems, and it is worth noting that modeling works best when dealing with problems with physics, chemistry and engineering; in the case of life sciences or the social sciences, the situation is far murkier. Thus, even if the above idea is implemented while building, say, an SEIRD model, it is possible that we may still get a model that ultimately fails; after all, a large number of data-driven models that employed deep learning also flopped, even though the very fact that they were data-driven ensured that they captured system complexity to a degree that was likely larger than the differential equation-based models. There is also the issue of model complexity being subject to the law of diminishing returns. Quite a few challenges…

    That brings me to my last question – should models be entirely done away with, as many have suggested, after having seen the abysmal prediction record of the said models, especially in the life sciences and social sciences? Or is it wiser to adopt the approach of Dr. Ralph Abraham who said that models should be used for educational and knowledge-building purposes, but not for making important decisions? In his book Chaos, Creativity and Cosmic Consciouness, he said, and I quote, “Models are no good for prediction, but they’re good for the growth of understanding”. I think that this seems to be a sensible approach, but I’d like to see other points of view as well.

    Sorry for this rather long comment.

  159. @ Monkeybear

    “True, but the same logic can be applied to the people who have died from the virus.”

    The same logic would apply, IF the situations were not so distinctly different. Viral infections arise in the course of one’s interaction with this living world of which we are a living part. They are ALREADY part of the real world of events, of happenings. And it simply does not lie within a person’s power of choice to avoid a viral infection. What lies within one’s power of choice are various available measures and styles of protection which one can decide, to implement, or not to implement. At present, there are none with the power to prevent a viral infection from occurring.

    ie- a person cannot *choose* to refuse a viral infection in the same way one can choose to refuse a vaccination. A vaccination death, in other words, is entirely preventable.

  160. The Canadian Covid Care Alliance did a good 15-20 min. presentation on the Pfizer clinical trial and what it actually showed. It appeared at least six months ago, but it was quite well done and not sensational, unlike a lot of material on both sides.

    That’s a tiny fraction of what I’ve read and listened to in the past 2.5 years.

    Pfizer has been forced by a US judge to publish all its trial data over 8 months. It and the FDA had wanted to release it over a timespan of 75 years (yes, 75 years, i.e. by which time almost anyone reading this will be dead!)

  161. @Toxic Plants:
    Reminds me of the tagline for the site ZeroHedge: On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero. I’ve often thought if there were a nuclear war I’d rather die in the initial exchange then of the deprivation to follow.
    The mandates took that choice out of my hands, though. And now that we know the vaccines don’t stop transmission, or even reduce it by more than a few percent, the justification for mandates doesn’t exist. If you want to reply that we have to mandate it to keep the hospitals from getting overwhelmed, well, ignoring for the moment that it seems the vaxxed are getting it worse now, forcing a medical treatment on me to cover for mismanagement by hospital owners (who have reduced capacity in recent decades to save cost) is unconscionable.
    And Fauci is still out there saying we need more mandates. Since when is shoving it down people’s throats the way to “overcome hesitancy”. Oh and by the way I am FAR past hesitancy now, I am in “hell no not ever” territory.
    One of the things I have read lately that makes the most sense is to look at the world from the point of a business transaction… which is to say, it’s just business, people looking to make the most money they can, and engaging in fraud, scamming, regulatory capture, whatever it takes to make the most $$$. Cui bono… who benefits… follow the money. There’s your answer.

  162. @viduraawakened re: models

    The biggest problem with SIR models, from my perspective, was not a defect in the mathematics but a vast overestimation of the S parameter.

    Most models started out by asserting, without evidence, that anyone who was neither Infected nor Recovered was Susceptible. This ignores the entire history of epidemiology, in which most waves of disease passed through populations without infecting a majority of people – i.e. they peaked and began to recede before any SIR model would have predicted and with a lower total case and death count.

    It seems to me that the household secondary attack rate – the percent of household members who contract the illness when a family member is sick – should set a reasonable upper bound for S. Few people exposed to the virus out in the world will be exposed to a larger dose than those who are sharing a home with an infected person.

    For the delta strain, the secondary attack rate was 25%, for omicron it has been 40%. Thus omicron was able to overcome the innate resistance to infection in more people, and therefore the wave was bigger with at least 2x more infections.

  163. Apples-to-apples comparisons: Many proponents of the vax will say “It’s much better than getting Covid.”

    They are comparing a good experience of the vax with a bad experience of Covid. Not apples-to-apples.

    You should compare ‘good vax-good Covid’ and ‘bad vax-bad Covid’

    ‘Good vax-good Covid’
    The majority of people who got Covid never realized they had it.
    The majority of people who got jabbed would get a slight pain, plus they would have the time and inconvenience of getting to a vax center.
    Verdict: Slight win for Covid

    ‘Bad vax-bad Covid’
    A horrible death in both cases.
    Verdict: A draw.

    Conclusion: A slight win for not vaxxing and risking Covid. But don’t be an idiot — if you a vulnerable to Covid i.e. diabetic, obese, frail, or many comorbidities, probably better to get the vax. Unless you have one of the known side effects like autoimmune disease, heart problems, or cancer, then possibly the vax will make it worse. Who knows? The statistics are so manipulated that an unbiased judgement will probably never be possible.

  164. Perhaps it would help people to do their own data collection on our current state of affairs. We can’t trust any large data sets these days. It can be argued about endlessly.

    Make a chart listing 25-50 people that you know personally – work, church, neighborhood, social groups, etc. Think back to January 2020 and in column one rate their vitality (physical + mental + spiritual health) on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being practically dead and 1 being olympic athlete. (There’s a reason I’m reversing the scale.)

    In column 2 put a number for the number of times they’ve had confirmed covid. (Yes I know the tests aren’t accurate, but just play with me here.)

    In column 3 put the number of vaccine doses they have received.

    In column 4 rate their vitality today using the same scale of 10 being terrible and 1 being fantastic.

    Now add up across the columns for each person.

    What do the totals show of the effect of covid & vaccines on the people that you personally know?

  165. REGARDING THE STATE OF GEORGIA’S GUIDESTONES

    Ooh ooh. In real life, the Elberton Granite Association (EGA) (gravestone/headstone $$$$$ industry) accepted the donation of what remains of the Guidestones. Let us see the EGA transform the largest intact piece of the Guidestones into a gravestone for “The American Dream.”

    We report that many residents of the USA are unaware that The American Dream is good and dead, having been on its last legs for the last decade. The dead American Dream has shamefully been without a headstone, and deserves a colossal gravestone befitting the grandiose nature of The American Dream. From this time forward, the American Dream’s remains will be removed collectively to Georgia, at least in spirit. Feel free to ship tangible remnants of the American Dream to Georgia.

    Anyone found attempting to raise The American Dream from the dead will be considered mentally ill. Feel free to ostracize such delusional people. People have reported that they see the ghost of The American Dream along roadsides at night, particularly on moonlit nights, but when they slow down to get a better look, the ghost vanishes.

    What is unknown is the year of birth of The American Dream, and its official year of death. 1945 to 2022? If you have direct knowledge of these two vital statistics, and can provide documentation, forward them to the EGA.

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

    Reference

    DESTRUCTION OF THE GEORGE GUIDESTONES, A MONUMENT PUZZLING FROM THE START, ONLY HAS HEIGHTENED THE MYSTERY

    https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2022/08/19/what-happened-georgia-guidestones/7834707001/

    “the Elbert County Board of Commissioners voted to give the remains of the monument to the Elberton Granite Association.”

    EGA: “We agreed to take the stones in an effort to preserve them, mostly because the monument was really a testament to the type of work that we do here in Elberton in manufacturing granite monuments and memorials.”

  166. Martin Back #177

    I think it is even more apples to bees than apples to oranges as you suggest.

    There really is no comparison between something you cannot avoid (Covid infection) and something you can avoid (Covid vaccination).

    The only possible comparison is between
    1) Covid without vaccination, and:
    2) Covid with vaccination.

    To have or not have Covid is not a choice subject to anyone’s control.

    To have or not have a Covid vaccination is subject to every person’s control.

    How to weigh up the risks of:
    1) Covid (which is not volitionally avoidable) WITHOUT a vaccination (which is volitionally avoidable)
    vs:
    2) Covid (which is not volitionally avoidable) WITH a vaccination (which is volitionally avoidable)

    is, of course, up to each person.

    But a person should be clear what the options actually are.

    To spin it as if one could reasonably choose between contracting Covid and accepting a vaccination is, not to put too fine a point on it, to lie, because these two are not equally “choosable”.

  167. “One of the things that’s been true since right after the Second World War is that whatever age the Boomers are at defines the concerns of the country. In the 80s and 90s, they weren’t young any more and middle age was starting to settle in, thus the frantic fixation on youth and health at all costs.”

    This would seem to imply that the weirdness of the 1980s was a result of a collective midlife crisis. Hmm

  168. #59 @Northwind Grandma.
    Love your attitude. I am trying to get off some BP meds myself, have a really bad family history of hypertension. Can you email me offline where in India you get your homeopathics?

    Thanks, and continued good health and high spirits to you.
    Eek

  169. The data is out there… here’s just a taste of what’s come out recently:

    EXCESS DEATHS IN EUROPE FOR JUNE OFF THE CHARTS, ESPECIALLY SPAIN AND PORTUGAL

    Excess Deaths Continue to Rise in Scotland

    Silent crisis of soaring excess deaths gripping Britain is only tip of the iceberg

    DMED DATA Reveals Spikes in Vaccine Injuries

    Ethical Skeptic on Twitter is a great source:

    CDC Reclassification of Death Codes

    A reminder – 331,000 younger persons died between 4 Apr 2021 and 23 Jul 2022

    From that last link:

    • From a factor – we won’t or can’t say what
    • Covid is now at 1,700 deaths per week
    • This factor is killing 4,870 per week (6.2 sigma high)
    • Cancer is at an 8.9 sigma high

    Elsewhere…

    Alberta Canada 🇨🇦🍁 This is absolutely astounding 💣…The leading cause of death in 2021 was “𝙐𝙣𝙠𝙣𝙤𝙬𝙣 𝘾𝙖𝙪𝙨𝙚”…It has jumped from 522 in 2019 to 3622 in 2021, a staggering 593.87% increase…𝙄 𝙬𝙤𝙣𝙙𝙚𝙧 𝙬𝙝𝙖𝙩 𝙞𝙩 𝙘𝙤𝙪𝙡𝙙 𝙗𝙚….

    And more…

    What is happening with the birthrates?

    Norway🇳🇴: Down 6%
    Stockholm🇸🇪: Down 14%
    Germany🇩🇪: Down 12%
    Taiwan🇹🇼: Down 27%
    Britain🇬🇧: Down 9%
    Netherlands🇳🇱: Down 11%

  170. Patricia O, I’m delighted to hear that they wanted to continue the discussion. That’s a very good sign.

    Bradley, he really is a useful litmus test.

    Brian, you’re most welcome.

    Lunar Apprentice, the process of becoming a physician has been made far more expensive and elaborate than it has to be, in order to boost physician’s incomes by restricting the supply. That’s why I suggest giving nurses and physician’s assistants the right to hang out their own shingles and provide ordinary health care on their own, without a doctor’s notional supervision; a two year LPN course is quite adequate to take care of ordinary illnesses (especially the “nonspecific psychogenic syndromes” that make up 90+% of doctor visits), and to sort out those few cases that really do need to go to someone with specialized training. As someone who used to work in health care, I can tell you that most people would much rather deal with a sympathetic LPN than a doctor who treats them the way most MDs treat most patients.

    Miow, oof! The narrative just took one in the gut.

    Mots, so noted. I disagree, of course, that the only options are “just trying to stay alive” on the one hand and trying to find some silver lining in the dark cloud of collapse on the other. That said, your mileage may vary, and my views are rooted in my spiritual beliefs, which iirc you don’t share.

    Peter, er, when you say “most most countries have some level of vaccination above zero,” er, aren’t you begging the point? Some countries have vaccination rates less than 10%, while others have vaccination rates higher than 90%. Both groups are “above zero,” but it seems to me that a signal that differentiates them — for example, which class is having recurring Covid epidemics now, and which isn’t — deserves to be noticed, not erased.

    Celadon, thank you. I’ll keep shooting at the basket and see how many more shots hit.

    Chris, I know. I consider myself very fortunate to have the limited freedom of speech I’ve got here in the US — and I know that could be eliminated easily enough.

    Doomer, thanks for the data points!

    Chris, ouch. That’s way up — and they broke out the Covid deaths, too, so it’s easy to see that the excess isn’t just that.

    Denis, that’s a crucial point. The systemic issues didn’t happen by themselves, after all.

    Amos, so noted, but a lot of people are getting sick or having family members get sick at this point. For them, it’s absolutely personal — and if that accelerates, I think you’ll find the climate of opinion changing fast. Consider how your friend’s opinion might change if he starts getting sick and several people he knows drop dead…

    Clay, a good point.

    Viduraawakened, this is way over my head. I’ll let my mathematically literate readers assess it.

    Chuaquin, I’ve been hearing about that for a couple of weeks now. If it builds further, it could be very big.

    Northwind, hmm! Thanks for this.

    Anonymous, why, yes, it would, wouldn’t it? 😉

  171. @skintnick #156:

    Thank you for the suggestions! Like our host, I don’t much like videos (nor tweets), so I have tried to dig for the data.

    Ed Dowd seems to base his affirmations on insurance data, to which however I don’t have access, and on CDC data. When I myself look at the CDC data by age, I see some excess mortality (peak ~5000 instead of ~3000) for the 25-44 years old age group in 2021. This peak is present in states like Texas, Tennessee, Alabama and Texas and absent from states like Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York or Vermont. Mortality in that age group has been continuously falling in 2022: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid19/excess_deaths.htm#dashboard. All of this does not seem to suggest vaccination side effects as an important reason.

    Jamie Jenkins has published a lot of written material on his blog, but I don’t find anything written on excess mortality: https://www.statsjamie.co.uk/blog/. Skipping through the legends on his latest video, he seems to blame deferred prevention for a certain excess mortality, though again, without seeing the data, I don’t really know what to think about this.

    The Scottish data do indeed look worrying: https://twitter.com/scojw/status/1560673524812918785/photo/1. I have no idea why these numbers don’t agree with those on EuroMOMO: https://www.euromomo.eu/graphs-and-maps/.

    Overall, I find it very troubling that this kind of debate on benefits vs. drawbacks is not being held out in the open, in scientific journals, like it was for Vioxx, menopausal hormone replacement therapy or statins. It is very easy to fool oneself when analyzing observational data, and different analysts should debate eye-to-eye using the same data sets.

    PS @JMG: You taught me a “new” German word, “Klerisei”!

  172. “they think they’re too wise to bother learning the obvious lessons of history” -JMG

    When I see this I often find an underlying incentive structure that rewards and reinforces it.

    And that incentive structure is basically sayinng, “You are only paid to create novel ideas which allow us to escape the constraining history we already know.” Dig one layer deeper and the constraining history is “We made a long series of bad bets and we don’t want to pay for them now or ever.”

    JMG, how does one make the argument that novelty won’t provide escape and you have to pay history what it’s owed?

  173. Regarding the “doctor” debate…

    … you can’t cite the system to defend the system as it’s a circular argument.

    IOW, you cannot state high salaries are justified due to education, licensing, etc when the problems themselves stem from education, licensing, etc.. If there were no education and/or licensing requirements — just liability insurance — then service providers (in any field) would survive on their merits. Not saying education itself is bad, just that we’re approaching it all wrong.

  174. @NomadicBeer #137. I am currently struggling through “The Mass Psychology of Fascism” by Wilhelm Reich. It’s heavy going. Woke progressivism and Marxism have in common a huge overburden of fatuous moralizing obscuring any substantive argument. Anyway, from what I can gather so far Reich believes that fascism is a middle-class phenomenon. Middle class children are brought up with love for the family, respect for the father, and sexually repressed. From there it’s an easy segue to love for the country, respect for the leader, and valuing honor and duty.

    The working class on the other hand are more concerned about their jobs.

    Given that the US is still predominantly middle class, it looks like the current trends towards a more fascist state are likely to continue.

    McLuhan said the medium is the message. The message from the raid on Mar-a-Lago is, “It doesn’t matter who you are, it doesn’t matter how many guns you’ve got, if we want you we’ll come and get you.” Typical fascist.

  175. Eek #182

    r x h   o   m   e   o   d   o   t   c   o   m

    They have a site for North Americans. During the pandemic, I got homeopathics from their website in I  n  d  i  a. They are competent and cheap, but sometimes it takes six weeks before I get the product (s). I have been buying stuff from them for years. They also sell on A  m  a  z  o  n.

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  176. Just to add one more story: for most of 2020 I was at an isolated rural community in CA. Whenever I left, I was fairly careful, though less so than anyone else at the community. I spent some of that time in Sacramento. I grew very tired of the self righteous expressions and receiving stink eye from masked drivers in cars with rolled up windows as I rode my bike unmasked. In Jan/Feb 2021 I got the two Pfizer shots, on the advice of a couple of doctors I trusted and because I felt it facilitated my return to Mexico. I took very few precautions there. or in CA later that year, or in CA later that year.I got a booster in Oct 2021. In Feb 2022 in Mexico I got covid, probably omicron. I didn’t test because the health authorities, quite wisely, said don’t come in unless you are really sick because the clinic is where you will probably catch it. I was unpleasantly sick for two days, during which time I stayed in bed and drank lots of water. I felt kind of yukky for another four days. A lot of people I knew in town had it at the same time, some better than i did, some worse. Some had been vaxinated, some hadn’t. If there was any correlation between vax status and severity, i didn’t bother to pursue it. Maybe the vaxx helped me, maybe it harmed me. Very likely it did nothing at all. I will probably be dead anyhow before enough time passes to draw a conclusion, being 82 now. I am not going to get another booster.
    I have always been amused by the panic with which people would tell me: in your age group, there is a 5% chance of your dying. I thought there was that or more anyhow. once upon a time in a place called Dong Xoai, we went in with 400 men and came out with 90. Somehow my odds of dying from covid in my 80s don’t impress me that much.

  177. Hi JMG many thanks for the post!

    One of the scariest aspects of the Covid pandemic was the prosecution of the unvaxxed (like me) all over “The Free World”, and for the first time in my life I began to understand Treblinka….

    Apart from the mandates, it was a pitiful sight to see the “journalists”, famous people, politicians and all kind of fanatics calling to isolate and mistreat the unvaxxed because they were: “grandma killers”, “science deniers”, “far right extremists”, “anti-social egoists”, etc…who deserve to be taken off transplant waiting lists, taking out of ICU (use the vaxx status as the first triage factor), fire them, negate them to enter bars, restaurants, theater, cinemas, concerts, travels, sport competitions, etc…make our lives miserable and if we do not “rectify”, may be the relocation in “re-education camps” could be the “final solution”.

    All of this seems impossible or crazy to think some years ago but this has happened all over the “Free World” for many months and if not for Omicron that show clearly to everyone how poor the vaccines really are, I am affraid of further escalation.

    All of this reminds me the declarations of Göering in Nüremberg trials about how easily manipulated a society is when the media is in the hands of a powerful mafia (private or in the government), and this is the case right know, where you can track that the same corporation that control Pfizer or Moderna or AZ at the same time control NYT, Wapo, and most MSM in the “Free World”; the escale of concetration of power today is scandalous, so you can hear the same arguments, the same explanations with the same phrases in the mouth of “journalists” all around the “Free World” whether regarding the vaxx or the Ukraine war or any other relevant issue (Covid early treatments, Trump, 2020 elections, Hunter Biden, Monkeypox, China, Russia, etc….) because the owner of the MSM are in fact the same.

    After all that is how Empire in decadence evolves with a growing concentration of power which is in turn one of the main causes of its end.

    Cheers
    David

  178. @TJandtheBear #183:
    That’s why I don’t like Twitter. If you go to the Eurostats site, from where the twitter image was taken, they show that same image in context with the development over time. Excess mortality is now lower overall than at most points since early 2020. Certainly deserves to be investigated yet, but nothing new or particularly apocalyptic. https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php?title=Excess_mortality_-_statistics#Excess_mortality_in_the_EU_between_January_2020_and_June_2022

  179. Hmm, I’m not disagreeing with you. My focus is on trying to explain the NZ and Australian anomaly, and maybe a few others. I think Mark L’s comment above offers some insight into the differences in populations that received the vaccine before infection, versus after infection or during it. There does seem to be fine equilibrium that the vaccines throw out of balance, and the equilibrium applies at individual and population scales.

    That may explain the NZ and Australian scenarios, certainly the negative deaths, but it’ll need another year or so of data to confirm either way.

    I think I said something similar on this blog when the pandemic began, but Mark L has explained it more effectively than I can.

  180. Upon consideration, it seems I might have been a bit flippant in my previous comment. I was just thinking about myself. It doesn’t take much to trigger my hatred of the, particularly US, medical system and their morbid obsession with keeping old people alive , even against their wishes
    I do think the rise in excess deaths amongst otherwise healthy young people is a serious worry.I have a friend who has seen this first hand in the small town where she lives. I think vaxxing young children is criminal.
    As to some earlier comments people made about a good way to die and facilitate closure with loved ones: my only advice would be to try to live each day so that their memory of you is good, like “oh yesterday with so &so was a great day.” I have never been much into farewells. I try to see it like the line in “The Parting Glass”: Ah, but since it falls unto my lot that I should ride and you should not, I’ll gently rise and I’ll softly call goodnight and joy be to you all.

  181. >Doctors visits have become “Hello, it says here you have [symptom]? OK, here’s pills for that. Come back if they make you worse and I’ll give you other ones for the side effects. Goodbye.”

    Even when doctors aren’t incentivized to do that – they still do that. But I’m not picking on just doctors, car mechanics do the analogue of that too. Often times a car will bounce from shop to shop until it lands in that one garage where the mechanic takes the time to figure out what is really wrong with it. And cars have gotten frightfully complicated, although it’s nothing compared to how complicated the human body is.

    I’d say people in general are good enough at fixing and solving 80% of the problems out there, whether it’s cars or humans. It’s that last 20% though that separates the true masters from the journeymen. And it seems to be a feature of human nature to breeze through it instead of doing the hard work, which is why I’m not too annoyed by it these days. People are people, shrug.

    My Modest Proposal is to let the lay people take charge of solving that 80% themselves and leave that last 20% to people who have been verified by reputation to be able to handle it.

    If you wanted Ivermectin? You should’ve been allowed to get it without anyone finger wagging at you. If you wanted abortion pills? Same. No questions, you are responsible and in charge of your own health.

  182. Excess mortality is now lower overall than at most points since early 2020

    @ Aldarion #193

    Yes, it’s lower but it’s still averaging well over 5% above normal ever since which was the point of the tweet. I fail to find any solace in that number, especially in light of the fact that a large number of these deaths are not officially attributed to the virus.

  183. I’ve been studying corruption and malpractice in the medical system for a long time. In my vew most things assoiated with the Pharma side of medicine are likely dangerous and to be avoided wherever you are.

    Here in Australia the injury treatment side of medicine is still effective and the national and free medical system has much to admire.

    I’m as rabid as they come in my opposition to the COVID jabs. However there is a excess of hyperbole in the anti commentariat that isn’t backed up by hard data YET.

    Steve Kirsch does great work, but the Thai study that he quotes and you refer to is not a good one. One of the commenters in his blog summarises the problems with it:

    Steve,

    With respect you may want to learn how to peer review a scientific article before posting it on your blog.

    Some important points:

    1. This is a study of 314 teenagers (no adults) – this is very small compared to large drug surveillance study which has demonstrated the rate of myocarditis in teens to be be ~1/5000 – 1/10,000.

    2. This is not a peer-reviewed publication. The article was posted on a pre-print server before being submitted to a journal for peer review. It hasn’t been evaluated by anyone else, and the raw data is not available for review.

    3. “Cardiovascular outcomes” include a tachycardia, palpitations, and other minor effects. There is no control group, so you don’t know how many normal teens would have the same effects.

    4. For example, look at the 7.9% risk of tachycardia. The normal heart rate range is derived from the range in which 95% of normal people fall. That means by definition, at least 5% of people will fall above that range (it’s a bell curve). 7.9% is not statistically higher than 5% in such a small sample size, and is therefore neither statistically nor clinically significant.

    5. The rise in ‘cardiac enzymes’ is quoted as 2.33% There are two points here:

    a. Again, as with heart rate range, the normal range of lab markers is defined as the range in which 95% of the healthy population falls. You would therefore expect 5% of healthy individuals to fall outside the normal range.

    b. The ‘cardiac enzymes’ they included in this study included troponin and CK-MB (which are specific to the heart), CRP and ESR. These latter two enzymes are completely non-specific. They rise in everything from minor infections, to abscesses, to inflammatory diseases. These do not indicate cardiac disease (cardiologists don’t use them as standard of care in pediatrics).

    6. Three patients in 318 had myocarditis (1%) – while higher than expected, all resolved without treatment. This 1% is likely statistically not different from the 1/5000 seen in larger studies because the sample size is so small.

    7. The students were informed this study was happening before they were enrolled, and to look out for cardiac symptoms. That means the families would be more likely to report cardiac symptoms (if someone knows they should look for chest pain, they are more likely to experience chest pain) – that’s called surveillance bias, and is a huge red-flag for study design.

    Suffice it to say that I’m certain this study won’t be published in a high-impact peer-reviewed journal. It’s very poorly designed with many, many flaws.

  184. @viduraawakened, I tried my own modeling throughout 2020, before the voxes came along to complicate things. I had no success at all. One thing kept happening over and over with each wave and in each region (of any chosen size): the case rate would rise exponentially to a certain level (usually, either just below or just at the local “health care resources could be overwhelmed” level) and seem poised to take off, but instead, the increase would slow down, for no reason that any factor in any model could account for. Explaining it seemed to require either:

    – A much larger number of asymptomatic undetected and/or unreported cases than detected/reported ones, by a factor of between five and twenty. Though this hypothesis was frequently speculated upon around mid 2020, probably for this very reason, large-scale antibody testing later in 2020 in many places appeared to disprove it.

    – Compliance with preventive measures (masking, shutdowns, distancing) becoming locally much higher as cases increased, assuming they were effective at all, even though the same measures had been in effect earlier in the same wave and if anything people became less rather than more compliant over time. In later waves where few such measures were followed at any time, the same “premature” peaking still happened, appearing to disprove that hypothesis for good.

    – A much smaller population of susceptibles (relative to the total population) than any model assumed, meaning most people were less susceptible than the numbers early in a wave make it appear, or not susceptible at all, perhaps for social/behavioral or immunological reasons. In your presentation of the basic model, raise beta significantly but decrease S in the same proportion. This hypothesis (or really, category of hypotheses) is still in play but the passage of two years hasn’t clarified anything. The Omicron wave being much larger in many places than earlier waves implies that, if differing sub-population susceptibility explains the pattern, susceptibility of an individual must be able to change, either with time or with the viral variant.

    Adding your exponent a to the model might be of value, if a < 1.0. That could model a scenario where infected people tend to clump together instead of randomly interact throughout the whole population, so that from the viewpoint of an uninfected susceptible person, they're only, say, about 1.4 times as likely to be infected by any of 200 infected people than to be infected by any of 100 infected people (setting a = 0.5). Rather than twice as likely. That seems plausible. I can't think of a comparable justification for exponent b, though. That would be modeling each infected person being less (b 1.0) likely to recover per unit of time, the more other people are infected. Why would that happen? (Perhaps in a scenario with effective treatments, longer illness if untreated, and an overwhelmed medical system, with b < 1.0, but that's not what we saw.)

    As 2020 went on I gave up using any math model for prediction, but I was able to make surprisingly accurate predictions by assuming future "waves" would follow the same globally typical shape as past ones. So for instance just when the media were panicking about India (things were bad there for a while) I knew it was about to slow down there. Also, I could usually tell which governments were under-reporting cases. I stopped paying attention after 2020, though. Omicron and/or voxes appear to have changed the typical "wave" shape by then anyhow.

  185. Editing glitch in the above: “…less (b 1.0) likely…” should be “…less (b 1.0) likely…”

  186. That’s strange, the “(b 1.0)” seems to be the result of a transformation that the forum software is performing on a string of text I’m trying to submit that reads “…(b is less than 1.0) or more (b is greater than 1.0)…” Oh, I see, it read my greater-than and less-than symbols as an attempted html formatting tag, my bad.

  187. TJandTheBear (no. 183) “What is happening with the birthrates?”

    Taiwan’s population decline has been going on for decades. Young people are marrying later, or not at all, perhaps for social reasons (uninterested in marriage, difficulty meeting potential partners), and certainly for economic reasons (salaries low, home prices high). Parental leave policies and government support are generally regarded as inadequate. The total population shrank for the first time in 2020, but this was just a function of population structure, and had been expected. (Japan and South Korea are aging similarly.) Although the pandemic has certainly exacerbated the situation, we got through the first two years with minimal cases, and earlier this year got hit by Omicron in a major way (to the point that the authorities abandoned a number of prophylactic measures, like contact-tracing).

  188. Thank you, and the kommentariat, for your kind words😢.

    JMG #184

    > nurses and physician’s assistants the right to hang out their own shingles and provide ordinary health care on their own, without a doctor’s notional supervision

    My mother, born in 1926, trained as a nurse during World War II beginning in 1942, was a 4-year B.S. registered nurse, and a supervising nurse. She ended her nursing career as director of a visiting nurse service. She had been in the nursing business from 1942 to 1987 (45 years). Around 1977, I spent quite a bit of time with her, where she told nursing stories.

    One story she was particularly upset about was because she saw what was going on firsthand in a creepy-crawly manner. She talked at length about “it,” because the biggest changes were happening right then.

    The story was that the medical world, during her watch, used to be controlled by female nurses, and this was disappearing for the worst. Female nurses were similar to mothers being the de facto heads of household, whereas medical doctors, largely male, were bosses “in-name-only.” That female nurses were the true bosses. M.D.s ten-thousand times *ALWAYS* consulted the nurses on the case because nurses knew best, and when there was an argument between M.D.s and nurses (and there were), unless the male M.D. was a real arsehole, it was nurses who won.

    Why my mother was telling this story was that administrative males where taking over the health industry, a lot, during the mid-1970s, and when the transition from female-nurses to male-administrators was a done-deal, plain-old people’s health was done-for. She had watched it happening, little by little. The decline started in the 1970s. Male-domination of the medical field happened so slowly that almost no-one noticed, except for people like her, because she remembered “what once was — when people cared.”

    She saw the changes as it was occurring. She reacted with rage🤬. She felt rage because she could do nothing about what she saw as males’ future domination of a formerly-female industry, and the logical deterioration of patient care. Patient care would wither without the personal touch of female nurses which, indeed, has happened. The issue upset her so much that I believe it affected her health negatively. The rage ate out her insides and hastened her physical decline and death.

    Until sometime in the 1970s, the medical field had been the refuge of females (aka nurses). Medical administrators worked their way up through the ranks in the nursing field. Administrators had been active-duty nurses, and were largely female. She saw the proportionate decline of female nurses as a female-male power thing, where males were nosing in where they did not belong. She saw males’ lording it over the entire medical industry but, of course, back around 1980, males, as a group, denied it.

    She was right: when males took over as medical administrators, they ruined the medical field for everyone. In the olden days, when the medical field was 95% dominated by women, society was different — and better🌱.

    It has been forty-five years since she and I had these conversations. She didn’t live long enough to see the complete ruination of the medical industry, but I am here to speak for her. I raise my hand, saying I am in with others who can attest to the fact, in the medical industry in general, that male-administrators have proved themselves to be prime f_ck-ups. Males have brought “death” to “health.” What we have now is “the death industry in full-on putrid, gangrene🏴‍☠️status.”

    We need to return to the olden days when female nurses had power to call the shots.

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  189. I don’t remember if I posted this in the old ADR or not, but I think it is relevant to this discussion:

    “How Doctors Die”

    https://www.zocalopublicsquare.org/2011/11/30/how-doctors-die/ideas/nexus/

    Quote:
    “Of course, doctors don’t want to die; they want to live. But they know enough about modern medicine to know its limits. And they know enough about death to know what all people fear most: dying in pain, and dying alone. They’ve talked about this with their families. They want to be sure, when the time comes, that no heroic measures will happen–that they will never experience, during their last moments on earth, someone breaking their ribs in an attempt to resuscitate them with CPR (that’s what happens if CPR is done right).

    Almost all medical professionals have seen what we call ‘futile care’ being performed on people. That’s when doctors bring the cutting edge of technology to bear on a grievously ill person near the end of life. The patient will get cut open, perforated with tubes, hooked up to machines, and assaulted with drugs. All of this occurs in the Intensive Care Unit at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars a day. What it buys is misery we would not inflict on a terrorist. I cannot count the number of times fellow physicians have told me, in words that vary only slightly, ‘Promise me if you find me like this that you’ll kill me.’ They mean it. Some medical personnel wear medallions stamped ‘NO CODE’ to tell physicians not to perform CPR on them. I have even seen it as a tattoo.”

    More ….

    “But doctors still don’t over-treat themselves. They see the consequences of this constantly. Almost anyone can find a way to die in peace at home, and pain can be managed better than ever. Hospice care, which focuses on providing terminally ill patients with comfort and dignity rather than on futile cures, provides most people with much better final days. Amazingly, studies have found that people placed in hospice care often live longer than people with the same disease who are seeking active cures. I was struck to hear on the radio recently that the famous reporter Tom Wicker had ‘died peacefully at home, surrounded by his family.’ Such stories are, thankfully, increasingly common. …

    If there is a state of the art of end-of-life care, it is this: death with dignity. As for me, my physician has my choices. They were easy to make, as they are for most physicians. There will be no heroics, and I will go gentle into that good night. Like my mentor Charlie. Like my cousin Torch. Like my fellow doctors.”

  190. @Peter Wilson.

    Aus and Nz may have other factors weighing in too, particularly vitamin D. Although some people in our countries have low vitamin D because of fear of the sun, overall levels are pretty high due to that fact that it’s mostly white people living in a high UV environment. Vitamin D may have a similiarly beneficial effect against the vaccine side effects as against other disease. I would like to see data on white South Africans for a comparison. Note that covid itself seemed to hit darker skinned people living in higher latitudes harder.

    There is also a very low levels of atmospheric pollution here compared to a lot of places.

    So many factors that it’s hard to pinpoint.

  191. GlassHammer, if I knew how to craft that argument in a way that would reach true believers in progress, trust me, I’d be using that relentlessly!

    Anonymous, yep. Within the scientific community, a lot of people realize that something is very, very rotten in science as currently practiced. The crisis of the clerisy is happening because people outside the scientific community are becoming aware of it, too.

    Stephen, thanks for the data points.

    DFC, I know. I managed to avoid most of that but the concentration-camp mentality of the pro-vaccine camp was painfully clear.

    Peter, hmm. It still seems to me that you’re missing the point I’ve tried to make.

    Fred, it’s a pilot study, the kind of thing that’s used to get a first approximation of what’s happening. Of course it needs to be followed up with a larger, more comprehensive, more tightly controlled study — but as a pilot study it points up data that should not just be swept under the rug.

    Northwind, yep. One of the things that happened in the mid-20th century is that physicians seized control of the health care system, and then lost that control to administrators, leaving the people who actually cared for patients at the bottom of an ever-expanding pyramid of overpaid corporate flacks.

    Michael, thanks for this.

  192. Apologies for the tangential post, but look what was published on Nature Physics this month (unfortunately just the first page is freely avaiable):

    Limits to economic growth
    Across the world, decisions on investment and policy are made under the assumption of continuous economic expansion. Fundamental physical limits may soon put an end to this phase of development, as foreshadowed by the 1972 report The Limits to Growth.

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41567-022-01652-6.epdf

  193. This is a really good article today by James Howard Kunstler titled: “The Meaning of Incredible”. It talks about how the head of the CDC described the great men and women of the medical community by describing their efforts as incredible.

    Then James goes off to define what the word actually means and it is hilarious as only JHK can do with his wit.

    Excerpts: “The CDC capped the week’s walk-back campaign by announcing a major overhaul of how the agency works. (The FDA and other public health entities made no such promises.) CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, fronting for other little-known federal bigwigs actually called in to clean-up after her, made the hilarious statement: “I look forward to working with the incredible people at CDC and our partners to realize the agency’s fullest potential to benefit the health and well-being of all Americans.” What a dim bulb. Does she know the definition of the word incredible? (Here it is: impossible to believe.)

    Former Wall Street analyst Edward Dowd said yesterday (Aug 18) that a Society of Actuaries report just made public shows that a 20 percent uptick in excess deaths among working age people, which began with vaxx mandates in the fall of 2021, continued into the second quarter of 2022. Actuaries are the people who compile and analyze statistics for insurance companies.”

  194. @Northwind Grandma #203

    I agree entirely. I have become something of an activist here in NZ pushing for nurses to be paid properly and empowered. I am also pushing for an end to vaccine mandates for health workers (yes, they are still here – grrrr).

    Furthermore, I have put my money where my mouth is (and, as a pensioner, I am not rich man!). I just had knee-replacement surgery, and I have hired a nurse who was “mandated out” of the system, to give me aftercare. You will not be surprised to know that she has done an outstanding job, and has headed off a potential post-surgery infection “at the pass” so to speak.

    Walking the talk, and leading by example …..

  195. More thoughts on disease modeling (@Walt @viduraawakened)

    I’m still appalled by the degree to which the human health side of the equation was almost completely ignored. It is as if science is entirely wedded to a germ theory mentality, with an apparent disregard for the host-side factors that make infection more or less likely for particular people and therefore need to be included in the model. Pure “terrain theory” is equally silly, but I don’t understand why it should be an either-or fight.

    We know that there exists an “infectious dose”, i.e. that exposure below some threshold is typically destroyed by the innate immune system before it can initiate an infection. The key point is that that threshold is different in different people, and it changes over time for individuals with health, vitamin D levels, stress levels, adequate/inadequate sleep, etc.

    Susceptibility is a varying probability on an individual level, which can presumably be modeled as an “effective susceptible population” S at any given time, which will typically be substantially lower than the population of people not-yet-infected.

    So a model that wants to have any hope of approximating reality will need to model S as a function of – at the least:

    –variation in innate resistance to infection (as estimated by household secondary attack rates and case studies of the proportion of people infected in situations where everyone was likely to have received a potentially infectious dose).

    –seasonal variation, mostly likely generated by patterns of vitamin D levels and indoor/outdoor division of activity.

    –I (the number of infected people at any given time), in the sense that the probability of receiving an infectious dose increases when more people in a community are infected. Partial dependence of S on I is probably sufficient to generate a repeating wave pattern in response to small changes in other variables.

    –behavior/level of interactions.

    –any known stratification of susceptibility by age, sex, BMI, blood type, or any relevant individual-level information for which population-level statistics are collected.

    Concern and uncertainty was definitely warranted in the earliest days of the pandemic. But by May-June of 2020 it should have been possible to create a pretty good model with reasonable guesses for inputs to a susceptibility function and empirical calibration against previous waves in countries and states with variable approaches to lockdowns/behavior modification. This would of course have revealed that said “non-pharmaceutical interventions” had a much smaller impact than public health authorities wanted us to believe, and also that complete overwhelm of hospitals and health systems was unlikely. It really felt like the authorities wanted models to justify their conclusions rather than wanting their conclusions to be justified by the best available models.

    The unsafe and ineffective vaccines are just one component of the entire “security theater” aspect of the past 2.5 years during which the political cart seemed to be ahead of the science horse more often than not, which was exceedingly frustrating as someone who wanted to follow the *actual* science rather than the proclamations of the self-declared priests of Science.

  196. Just remembered a story of medical care in the old days. A friend of mine’s mother was dying of terminal cancer in Australia in the late 60s or 70s. her doctor gave her a big bottle of pain pills and told her “You have to be careful with these Mrs. Ure. If you take more than 3, it could kill you’ What a kind, dignified way to give her that option ( which she took). I guess such things were more common in those days when medical personnel actually cared more about their patients, and not just their finances and liability.

  197. P.S.: I have thought for some time, that hospitals should be run by nurses, and that they would hire and fire doctors, specialists and administrators much like syndicalist workers co-operatives hire and fire their managers and CEO’s. Has that ever been done before?

  198. “Why my mother was telling this story was that administrative males where taking over the health industry, a lot, during the mid-1970s, and when the transition from female-nurses to male-administrators was a done-deal, plain-old people’s health was done-for. She had watched it happening, little by little. The decline started in the 1970s. Male-domination of the medical field happened so slowly that almost no-one noticed, except for people like her, because she remembered “what once was — when people cared.”

    Sounds like what happens when we don’t respect the boundaries of masculinity and femininity. And what is best for male and female in their respective roles subsequently.

  199. @Scotlyn #180, comparing vaxxed vs. un-vaxxed;

    There is a recent and interesting data study from the Washington State Health Dept which seems to indicate that hospitalization and death is more likely among the un-vaxxed than among the vaxxed. Here’s a link:

    https://doh.wa.gov/sites/default/files/2022-02/421-010-CasesInNotFullyVaccinated.pdf

    However, its interesting that in highly populated areas, the proportions seem to reverse. This makes me wonder if population density has something to do with bad outcomes–

  200. Hi John Michael,

    Oh man, you are very lucky to enjoy such freedoms. Of course we did begin life as a penal settlement down here, and so rights are I dunno, for other people. Don’t laugh, but I believe that we are still in a state of emergency in the state where I reside. Somehow during the craziness, the premier (Governor equivalent) seized some sort of additional power which now operates out of his office, and at his whim, and can be extended in three month periods with minimal over sight, which he appears to be taking, but is not widely reported upon. What could possibly go wrong? There have been a few times over the past two and a bit years my wife and I have discussed moving elsewhere.

    I have to be super careful with what I say here (as it is a public forum) about the subject which you’ve written about this week. It’s their baby, you know. A true monster of a thing. Burn it, burn it with fire! 🙂

    Cheers

    Chris

  201. Thank you for another straight forward article JMG!

    I will delegate your linked data to my friend the molecular biologist for review.

    Here is my contribution of what I heard about or experienced in connection with this matter:

    – The molecular biologist:
    In one instance recently as an example, I showed him a linked article where it said that corona vaccines reduce the number of antibodies produced when
    contracting corona. The linking article presented it as an example of adverse event; my friend said the body produces less antibodies when possible to save energy, is therefore
    helped by the vaccine to have an easier job.
    In general, he is of the opinion that not only alternative media shows great incompetence in the assessment of corona and vaccines, also mass media does.
    The difference of the c vaccines to others seems to be that a vector injects an rna piece straightforward into cells, instead of injecting the actual virus which does that
    job itself.

    On Shanghai and the lockdown however, I cannot agree with him; locking down a metropolis and carving out a bigger piece of one’s own economy in order to save the nation from shedding retired people – it seems implausible. A military measure against the populace, political enemies or other adversaries seems more likely to me.

    China seems to have diminishing coal returns and energy generation gap problems. Apart from generation gap problems due to its demography. Disorder and authoritarian measure is, I think, indicated.

    – My own vaccine experience:
    I was vaccinated between August 2021 and Dec 2021. I only experienced a day or too of fatigue. Not much else in the way of what we are speaking either. Might be inversely true that I contracted corona before the vaccine, I could not say. People I know had high levels of c antibodies in their blood before having been vaccinated, without having felt sick or experienced symptoms.

    – Other’s experiences:
    Not everyone takes the vaccine well in my experience. A very health compromised work colleague (due to immense stress and broad gaps in the health of her life rhytm)
    had severe and very threatening symptoms directly after the vaccine. It’s true here, the doctor did not forward report because she didn’t report again after a week,
    and her complication ended before.
    Many friends(in stable health condition) have no apparent vaccine side effects.

    The sample of work colleagues in my department is low with <30 people and about two unvaccinated, but it so happens the unvaccinated are also the most vital people in body and mind among the lot aged 23-40. The two very vital people had corona but with minimal effect. The vaccinated people, who are also in many cases unvital, had stronger effects like hard core fatigue for a week and other things. Two women aged 34,36 have contracted auto immune diseases, one apparently since last fall.

    One of the two women seems mentally rather prospering, but is not too sportive certainly. Has many allergies and other things also. The other is quite apparently somewhat depressed and nervous, and said stress with here responsibilities in her family coincided with the attesting of the sickness. Many of the vaccinated had strong response to corona, one two weeks of hardcore fatigue in cases.

    One young colleague surprisingly originates from that place in the highlands I always go to and meet the wise and capable old hippie (of course also unvaccinated). The young man is rather friendly and seems to have his marbles together, his father is a strong old steel worker. All had corona, none of them had an issue.

    Not saying the highlands around Linz are without problems (alcoholism, boredom, typical after-effects of an entire loss of spiritual connection), but these lands CAN have a healing energy,
    and quite a few folks there seem to respond to it.

    All in all I am not sure about the veracity of many claims about the c vaccines and the competence of their emissaries, I don't entrust the medical system either.
    I have no hard time believing however that such an untested vaccine can harm a populace that is already compromised. What I hear from a nurse in training, the ordinary flu vaccines isn't so harmless either.
    Untested vaccines have historical precedent for harm, that is for sure.

    My very own experience with the medical system as a very sickly adolescent and young adult was catastrophic. Long before I dealed with any ideas of alternative medicine or spirituality, I resented that system and tried to rely on myself as much as possible.

  202. *I forgot to add:

    – If there’s more vaccinated people dying from covid, it may also be the old age group where most are vaccinated, therfore most dead will be vaccinated.

    – On adolescent mortality and ill condition: may also be a straightforward after effect of the lockdowns and the conditions they laid out – *especially* for young people and children, coming from an already increasingly compromised society.

  203. @ Anonymous #187 – It would be nice to think so. Just to point out, though that that article is over a year old, and several medical journal editors are on record saying the same thing – Marcia Angell, former NEJM editor, wrote a whole book, published in 2004, entitled “The Truth about the Drug Companies.”

    Several good quotes appear in this PLOS Medicine article from 2005 – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1140949/ – “Medical Journals Are an Extension of the Marketing Arm of Pharmaceutical Companies”.

    Eg: “Journals have devolved into information laundering operations for the pharmaceutical industry”, said by Richard Horton, editor of the Lancet….

    This has all been said, and in all of the prominent medical journals… and is still not heard, any more than poor Cassandra’s warnings…

  204. I lost my faith in modern medicine at the age of 17. I helped my stepfather clean out the medicine cabinet after my mother died. Hundreds of pills — red, white, orange, green, pink. All shapes and sizes — round, heart-shaped, lozenges, capsules.

    She had colon cancer. She went into remission for a while, then slowly deteriorated, turning into a human skeleton like those sad people you saw behind the barbed wire at Belsen and Auschwitz with ribs showing and knees bigger that their thighs, her mind gone, only a shot of morphine that would fell a horse would keep the pain away.

    And I thought, what was the point? Not only did she suffer, the whole family suffered (no hospice in our small town. She was nursed at home.). This was not mercy, nor humanity. This was treating the patient like a guinea pig, unfeelingly trying another drug to see what would happen.

    I do visit doctors from time to time, reluctantly, but make up my own mind as to whether to follow their suggested treatment or not.

  205. About six years ago I got into model railways. This lead to reading about railway history, which lead to the history of the Industrial Revolution, which lead to the history of mining. I have as a result come to believe that industrial civilisation is best understood as a giant mining operation.

    If you want to know how Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla sees the world, think of him as a Victorian coal mine owner. A lot of dead bodies, ruined lives and wreckage are just the cost of doing business.

    It is no surprise that the proposed high tech, renewable powered, all electric future we are being promised, is basically just a massive mining fantasy. Mining out the earth, mining our heath, hollowing out society, it is all the same to miners (and I don’t mean working class miners). Once there is a profit to be made, mine it out and move on, the environmental and human costs are irrelevant.

    In the age of Roosevelt the mining instincts of the elites were some what curtailed and they was of course still a lot of good stuff left to mine. In the age of Thatcher and Regan the miners were let loose and they have been amazingly successful at mining out everything, including our society, our health, our economy and our media.

  206. @Lunar Apprentice,

    You asked in post 157 “how soon would my [medical] replacement be ready?”

    Counter-question: how soon do you think they should be ready? We know how long The System takes to produce doctors. IMO the system we have is broken in many respects. I suspect you do, too, because you admit it creates many poor physicians.

    Try and ignore the sword of medical debt hanging over your head for a moment and ask yourself: how should this be done? What would it cost? How long would it take? Genuinely curious. Anyone else in the medical field can chime in here too, please.

    @Northwinds Grandma,
    I can agree with admins vs nurses being a historical problem, BUT here medical administrators are also mostly female and it hasn’t helped. Also if you reversed the process, I don’t think we could go back to your ideal– modern nurses have no caring left in them. Part of that is the kind of people currently drawn to the career (it’s the last refuge of the mean girls from high school) and part of that is the working conditions. Empathy burns out quickly on double shifts. I don’t know that it would come back, but maybe self-determination is part of what would do it. I would 100% be willing to give it a shot.

  207. @Mark L

    Thank you for your reply. Both your replies were very interesting, especially the second one. I agree with your observations about stratifying populations by age, sex, and other variables – incidentally, there’s a class of models which do just that; they’re called ‘structured population models’. They’re basically made up of partial differential equations, and the independent variables are time, age, BMI. One can add other variables as well, but the analysis of the resulting model would be a nightmare even for someone like Prof. Terence Tao. I think the best solution would be to build the said PDE model and then find an ODE model that approximates it, with the loss of some realism, of course.

    Also, the natural environment does play a role in disease spread – a fact not taken into account by an overwhelming majority of studies.

    @Walt F

    Thank you for your reply. Those were interesting points, and I plan to incorporate them into a detailed model for my own reference.

    Also, I built a toy SIR model with the exponents as laid out in my comment. The model is in the form of a Jupyter notebook, and has widgets, so anybody interested can play around and explore the behaviour of the curves to his/her heart’s content. If anyone wants the code, please use the following link:

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1UA3rlVlQ8czRnTXlbvJ48EJBaKlt-0Ev/view?usp=sharing

    Please feel free to modify the code as per your wish. Best wishes, and happy playing! 🙂

  208. @ Stephen Pearson #195
    “…my only advice would be to try to live each day so that their memory of you is good, like “oh yesterday with so &so was a great day.” I have never been much into farewells. I try to see it like the line in “The Parting Glass”: Ah, but since it falls unto my lot that I should ride and you should not, I’ll gently rise and I’ll softly call goodnight and joy be to you all.”

    Stephen, that is sound advice. And here is an a capella version of that song that I am quite fond of.

    Thank you!

  209. I’ve been thinking about this alot the past few days, and I have my own proposal, based on Owen’s, for the ideal health system.

    For primary care, we copy Owen’s “Modest Proposal” of replacing medical licensing with posted rates, reviews, and competencies exactly. (And yes, Bei Dawei, I see no reason a practitioner offering exorcisms should not have to disclose his or her success rate. It might well be higher than the local psychiatrist!) (JMG, point noted that this is more than we expect from plumbers– but a bad plumber floods my basement and a bad doctor kills me, so I’d say there’s greater public interest in getting bad doctors off the market quickly.)

    For urgent/emergency care, I don’t think that works. You’re not going to look at reviews in a situation when you’re calling 911. You’re not going to look at rates. Need care and you need it now. You don’t have time to debate “acupuncture or herbalist?” with yourself. Fortunately this kind of urgent/emergency care is something allopathic medicine excels at. So my proposal is a second, public system for urgent care only. Just like your county/town/city maintains a police force and a fire department with tax money for the public good, I propose an Emergency Hospital run along the same lines. Paramedics, nurses and doctors only. Like at some police departments, admins have risen through the ranks based on administrative talent. Bias towards former nurses over doctors, with a nod to Northwind Grandma. MBAs need not apply!

    Now I figure it’s only fair if these public-servant emergency providers are remunerated along the same lines as other emergency workers. Given the problems with debt Lunar Apprentice points out, their education and training (for paramedics, nurses and doctors all) however that is best provided, really ought to be paid for by the community as a public good. (With a pay-us-back-if-you-leave rider in the contract.)

    This leaves market forces to dominate where they can do some good, and keep them out of a situation where they really cannot function. (As a Canadian conservative, I do want to conserve what’s best of our single-payer system!)

    What says the commentariat? Does this sound like a workable system?

  210. @ Emanuel #216 – Thank you for engaging with this topic.

    And I appreciate that people DO increasingly understand themselves as bundles of risk which it is their own responsibility to manage, instead of knowing themselves to be people who undergo experiences and who can happen to others, as other happen to them. One can certainly read and be exceedingly familiar with the odds, and even be well versed as to whose account of the odds is likely to be the most reliable, as my husband does when constructing his daily small multiplier bet at the horse races.

    However, unlike the straightforward “gambler beware” caveats his bookie displays, no one wants to accept that in medicine, when one discusses risk, one is discussing how to place a bet. However educated one is on the statistics of the past wins of the different horses, and the success rates of the trainers, and of the jockeys, and the weather variables as they apply to the different courses, or, as the case may be, the statistics of disease incidence and severity and the success rates for different medications and procedures, and nutrients and behaviours, one is still discussing how to place a bet.

    So none of the discussions of the odds can alter the fact that it is NOT possible to *refuse” a Covid infection in the way that it IS possible to *refuse* a Covid vaccination. The first is a simple consequence of being alive in this world at this time – the only alternative to which is to NOT be alive in this world at this time. The second is to study the odds and place your bet. OR to understand that NOT placing a bet at all is also an option.

    Obviously gambling is entertaining, or we would not do it. But it is worth being honest enough with ourselves to know that even though it can be fun to take a punt, and we might even win something once in a while, the house is ALWAYS the final overall winner. And not gambling is always an option.

  211. Anonymous, good heavens. Okay, the wind is definitely changing. Thanks for this!

    Rod, ha! Yeah, Jim’s very, very good at that.

    Stephen, gracefully handled — and in a way that left autonomy in the hands of the patient.

    Michael, I like that suggestion. A nurses’ cooperative could very easily manage a hospital that way; I may see if I can give that suggestion a signal boost.

    Rod, not that I’m aware of. Of course it’s only a small minority of nations that are doing so, and it’s occurred to me more than once that they’re simply watching their economies collapse and saying, “We’re doing this! And for a good reason!”

    Chris, yep — you can understand most of the differences between your country and mine if you remember that Australia was settled by convicts and their guards while the United States was founded by religious fanatics and gullible folks fondly convinced that they could get rich quick.

    Curt, many thanks for the data points and comments!

    Martin, thanks for this; I appreciate hearing your story.

    Kevin, you know, that’s a very very useful metaphor.

  212. @ Bei Dawei #202

    Birthrates have been slowly declining in most so-called first & second world countries for some time. It’s the sudden, significant rate of change occurring 9+ months after the jab intro that’s the issue.

    Did you happen to see that 44% of the pregnant women in the Pfizer trials lost their children?

  213. Wer here
    Ladies and gentlemen I have to make a confesion I don’t know for how long I can keep this conversation and for how long I can remain on this forum because things are getting crazy here in Poland. More and more farmers are getting ready to go “Dutch” as they are fond of saying here
    https://motofakty.pl/beda-blokady-drog-w-calej-polsce-rolnicy-zapowiadaja-protesty-pierwszy-juz-17-sierpnia/ar/c4-16287401
    Meanwhile people are saying with increased desperation and anger that the coal distribution centers are empty and there are no ideas what to do.
    But something far worse had happened a mounth ago (the MSM was of course silent on this matter) the second largest river in my nation and the most important midland river transport area
    ( am i spelling this correctly?) river Odra turned into a dead zone
    https://naszemiasto.pl/tag/odra-umarla
    I don’t know about conspiracies but the fact that we don’t know who or what or when is adding into anger and fear here. Farmers in the local area are being told to destroy their livestock if it was dribking water fro the river ( why didn’t they say it weeks before) fishermen who were talking about this were aprehended by the police. We still don’t know exactly what was happening here. JMG I gree with you about COVID, myself I would never stumbled onto this blog if it weren’t for the disillusionment with the EU after I was told from the MSM that I am a wrong thinking person by not taking a vaccine.
    https://wiadomosci.radiozet.pl/Polska/Odra.-Polacy-przerazeni-minister-chce-sie-kapac.-To-polski-Czarnobyl
    And now this some more conspiracy minded people are saying that everything is suspicious about this latest claim that the goverment want’s to start martial law because of the lack of fossil fuels in the nation so the can make emergency rationing here.
    I recently spoke to a 80 year old man in kruszewo during a local market (they have great potatoes there) and he said that even durring the Communist goverment things were not as bad during that time regarding lack of coal and stuff I am not joking.
    A lot of people are stacking things here, we are making our own supplies for winter in cooked jars as always something tells me we would need more than last year…

  214. @JMG re: Rod #217

    That makes sense. It’s the “be seen to be doing something” situation.

    In the mainstream, agricultural collapses aren’t supposed to happen anymore; we’re “beyond that.” If it happens, it would shake the faith in Progress at a time when Progress really can’t afford its faith to be shaken anymore, so it has to be a managed control for a good reason.

    In the conspiracy-theory world, similarly, such a collapse can’t happen because “TPTB would never let that ‘just happen'” (and I see this mentality all over the place on the Internet, the idea that “it would inconvenience the super-rich if it happened ergo it cannot happen, it just can’t,” as if physics can be bribed or bought). Therefore, if it is happening, it must be by design, because everything of significant import that happens in the world is definitionally by design.

  215. JMG, when I wrote my last comment to you @157, I was in a really bad place, and after I posted it, I forcefully recalled that old saw, in regards to myself: “Oh would that your ears could hear what your mouth is saying!”.

    BTW, the perfect synchronicity of your essay with events in my life is spooky.

    Earlier that very afternoon, my Ex texted me from the doctor’s office where she had taken our 12-year old daughter for a “check-up”. She enquired about my family medical history for the forms she was filling out. (BTW, there is background here: Ex and I negotiated a divorce agreement where she agreed to not authorize our daughter getting the covid vax without my consent).

    Ex: “I’m at the doc with Lindsay for a checkup. Question about your family history. Your dad died of a stroke?”
    Me: “No. He died of…”
    Me: “And remember our agreement about no covid vax for Lindsay”
    Ex: [no answer]
    Me: “Don’t let them inject her. They may well push you.”
    Ex: [no answer]
    Me: “If you can’t be definitive now and say no, please reschedule the visit”
    Ex: [no answer]

    Now I’m panicking. Why is she not replying? Is she getting our daughter injected with the c-vax?

    I phone her immediately.
    Me: “What’s going on? Why aren’t replying? Are you getting Lindsay THAT shot?”
    Ex: “We’re in the exam room with the doctor. We can all hear you, including Lindsay”
    Me: “Well?”
    Ex: “Since the doctor is right here, go ahead and talk to her.”
    Dr.: “Hi there Dad! I’m really interested to hear your concerns. What are they?”
    Me: “I’ll start with the first three. One: Lack of long term safety data. Two: Lack of safety monitoring by the CDC. Three: Lack of risk stratification”.

    What happens next is that that “doctor” tries to convince me I’m wrong, and I’m so aghast at not only her ignorance, but at how deeply she has drank the Kool-aide. She not only has the standard talking points down, she armed with falsehoods [details to come in my follow-up comment]. I infer that Ex is going along with getting our daughter that shot. I break off the dialog with the doctor, and start shouting helplessly: “Karen, you agreed not to give her that shot. You promised in writing, d**n it! How dare you do this!!! How dare you!! Doc! Hear this: I DO NOT CONSENT FOR MY DAUGHTER TO RECEIVE THE COVID VACCINE!! [repeated X 2]. Is that clear?!?!? So help me G-d if you do, there will be. F***ing. H***. to. pay!”

    I hung up at that point and wept. There was nothing I could really do, and I commended my daughter to God. I was even afraid to ask my Ex later that evening what she finally did.

    I was devastated, and tried to absorb myself in some other train of thought. Of course getting my own medical practice back off the ground occupies me hugely. And your column was as pertinent to that as anything could be, but I blocked my mind from reflecting on how pertinent it was to my daughter’s situation.

    My reply then (157) was rather snarky. Only later did I recall and register that you lost your only child due to criminal negligence on the part of a doctor. I had no business being even the tiniest bit snarky to someone in your shoes. And there I was desperately praying that I not wind up in your shoes at the hands of:

    Another doctor.

    I apologize for that.

    —Lunar Apprentice

  216. JMG and all,

    It feels appropriate that I relate the aftermath of the story from my last comment as a separate entry.

    The next morning, I emailed my Ex:

    “Karen, You previously agreed to not let Lindsay get the covid vax.

    Yesterday, you made no effort to assure me you wouldn’t. And you let the doctor argue with me when I never agreed to negotiate. I became alarmed when this happened.

    I hope to G-d you did not let her get the covid vax.”

    She wrote back:
    “I can understand your concern.  

    Lindsay did not receive the covid vaccine. Nor were we contemplating having her receive it at yesterday’s appointment.  I plan on continuing to uphold our agreement.  When you called me, the doctor’s goal was simply to understand your thinking, not to pressure you.   I would have been fine with you choosing to refrain from talking with the doctor.”

    Me: “Karen, Thank you, thank you, thank you.  My prayers were (literally) answered.

    I didn’t mind sharing my concerns with that doctor (ARNP?). But then it seemed she was trying to persuade me that my concerns were not valid, and proceeded to respond with invalid arguments of her own. If her goal was to understand me, why was she arguing with me?

    The “long term safety data” she said existed doesn’t meet the CDC’s own a priori criteria for long term safety data, which among other things, involves a control group which is not injected; Pfizer injected the control group over a year ago, so the gathering of kosher safety data was quashed. She also said, in so many words, that the 2 year history of mass injections itself constituted a body of safety data. This might have some validity if there were actual ongoing safety monitoring, which ties in to my second “concern”: 

    Safety monitoring is a CDC-defined protocol that involves, among other things, the post-injection regular surveillance of an adequate sample of patients with the gathering of stipulated data elements, and the CDC publishing monthly or quarterly analysis of said monitoring. That is not happening regardless of what that doc/ARNP says she personally experienced, and I’ve never heard anyone claim such except her.

    Then we got off on a tangent in which she obviously confused the VAERS data with safety data (it’s not, strictly speaking, though it yields safety signals), and then she stated, falsely, that i) the CDC has been analyzing the VAERS data for safety and ii) logically concluded that the vax’s are safe. Both false. She might have confused the legal mandate that the CDC perform such analysis for actual performance, and the CDC proclamations of safety as the outcome of this putative analysis. The CDC has publicly admitted they have not been analyzing this data (as of a week or two ago), but that they have just begun doing so. They have yet to publish any analysis.

    My third “concern” was the absence of risk stratification, i.e. which patients, on the basis of relative risk from the disease versus benefit and risk of the vaccine, should NOT receive the vaccine. She didn’t answer that, and by that time I became upset as I was convinced that you had changed your mind and bailed on your promise. I didn’t pursue that question further because I was upset and because I know for a fact that there is no risk-stratification, and I was done listening to her BS.

    Sorry for the long-windedness, but the above was what was going through my head during that phone call.

    Are you sure she’s a doctor? (Perhaps I’m naive in thinking only an ARNP could be that ignorant…) Regardless, she made a thoroughly bad impression on me.

    But again, thank you.”

    Then I followed up sending my Ex this:

    “I wasn’t exaggerating when I wrote the above. The CDC really wasn’t monitoring VAERS. Check out-

    ‘CDC Admits It Never Monitored VAERS for COVID Vaccine Safety Signals’

    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/cdc-vaers-covid-vaccine-safety/

    They really didn’t admit this, it was obtained under the Freedom of Information Act IIRC.

    Of course Lindsay’s doctor swallows all the CDC’s talking points like a stenographer, and doesn’t read the real news.”

    —Lunar Apprentice

  217. @Owen and all discussing a ratings/reviews-based medical system:

    This might create a better system than we have now, but something about it doesn’t feel right to me.

    Ratings and reviews are a poor substitute for relationships and personal connections, and they are far less reliable as an indicator of quality. I suspect this is especially true in particular areas of medicine, like oncology, where terminal cases are common and doctors often have to choose between focusing on patient comfort (at the probable expense of shorter lifespan) or focusing on aggressive treatment (at the probable expense of patient comfort).

    I would much rather go to a doctor that my family, friends, and coworkers recommend than to a doctor with a five-star rating. And to be honest, I don’t think that a doctor who has to be focused on maintaining a five-star rating is going to do their best work. They are going to be afraid at all times of doing anything that could give them a bad review, which means they are going to prioritize saying what their patients want to hear over offering their best assessment based on their medical knowledge and experience.

    As an analogy, I spent 22 years from kindergarten through grad school trying to get A’s to maintain my identity as a “good student”. And I got plenty of A’s but that didn’t provide me with anywhere near as much motivation and support as those teachers and professors who connected with me *personally* and valued my ideas and wanted to help me to grow as a person and a scientist. A ratings-based medical system is going to select for a certain type of people who feel rewarded by ratings, who want to keep their score high until they retire wealthy. A relationship-based medical system is going to select for people who truly care about contributing to their community and supporting the health of everyone within it, and who will be likely to offer discounts and sliding scales and offers of barter to those who are unable to pay.

    So…I really want to see a re-localization of medical care and a restoration of community ties and relationships, in parallel to what is happening with the revitalization of small-scale local farming.

  218. stephen pearson #213

    All I can say is, “Wow, way to go.”

    💨Northwind Grandma
    Dane County, Wisconsin, USA

  219. >I see no reason a practitioner offering exorcisms should not have to disclose his or her success rate

    As far as I’m concerned, if the people paying for it give him or her a 4.5/5 stars, s/he has the right to keep doing exorcisms all day (or night) long. If people feel like her belly dancing music heals them and they give her 4.5/5 stars? Dance on. For me, it’s not so much about outcomes or batting averages, as it is about whether or not the person paying for the work was happy enough about it to give it a high rating.

    >For urgent/emergency care, I don’t think that works. You’re not going to look at reviews in a situation when you’re calling 911.

    And you are right about that. Here’s my stab at it. Nothing perfect though.

    1.) Set something up beforehand. You designate one of those medical providers on that registry to handle emergencies for you if you are incapacitated. If you want DNR etc, you had better communicate all of that in writing and file it away somewhere safe. And the medical provider has to offer emergency services too. If they don’t, you need to keep looking down the list to find someone who does. If there’s nobody on the list willing to do that kind of work, well, Houston, we have a problem. Or, see #3.

    2.) Closest relative gets asked to make decisions for you, if they agree, they get off the hook for all decisions made on your behalf. Hope you treated your kids or wife well. Pray they don’t ask your ex.

    3.) Default to some state-run entity. The buck stops here, although you will probably be very sorry it does. I’d just go ahead and get to the cynical logical conclusion and write the rules so that only bureaucratic butt-covering gets done and not much more than that. Typical state-run attitude would be “wait and let’s see if s/he dies so we can close out his file” and that’s about what you should expect out of this default option.

  220. JMG et al. what do you think about the possibility of US exchanging the currency?
    “IEarlGrey” channel on youtube (sorry no text version in english) mentions that Russian politicians are worried about US printing new dollars and forcing exchange of the old ones under arbitrary “rules” in order to punish Russian USD savers.

    It is possible that this will be a last ditch effort to stave inflation AND punish dissenting nations but at the same time it will rush the collapse of USD as world currency.

    My guess is that yes it will happen (like in Germany in the 1920s) but not yet – they are desperate but they still control the narrative and fool a lot of the people some of the time.

    Disclaimer: it is entirely possible that the above news is just a clever way for Russians to encourage people to save rubles not dollars but I don’t think they would need that – given the way the ruble appreciates!

  221. My final link on this matter…

    Houston, We Have A Problem (Part 1)

    Prologue: Seven of the major eleven International Classification of Diseases codes tracked by the US National Center for Health Statistics exhibit stark increase trends beginning in the first week of April 2021 – featuring exceptional growth more robust than during even the Covid-19 pandemic time frame. This date of inception is no coincidence, in that it also happens to coincide with a key inflection point regarding a specific body-system intervention in most of the US population. These seven pronounced increases in mortality alarmingly persist even now.

    The following work is the result of thousands of hours of dynamic data tracking and research on the part of its author. The reader should anticipate herein, a journey which will take them through the methods and metrics which serve to identify this problem, along with a deductive assessment of the candidate causal mechanisms behind it. Alternatives as to cause which include one mechanism in particular, that is embargoed from being allowed as an explanation, nor even mere mention in some forums.

    At the end of this process, we will be left with one inescapable conclusion. One which threatens the very fabric and future of health policy in the US for decades to come.

  222. Hi JMG

    Apart from the excess mortality data, mainly in young people, such as my hypervaccinated country (Spain), which together with the hypervaccinated Portugal are the “leaders” in excess mortality in Europe in recent months, there are people who are making very careful statistical analysis of the health situation in some countries, such as “Ethical Skeptic”:

    https://theethicalskeptic.com/2022/08/20/houston-we-have-a-problem-part-1-of-3/

    Using public data he found:
    + Excess non-Covid natural cause, 5+ sigma
    + Cancer and lymphomas, 9+ sigma
    + Other respiratory conditions, 2 sigma
    + Nephritis/Nephrotic syndrome, 4 sigma
    + Septicemia, 2 sigma
    + Heart diseases and ailments, 2 sigma
    + All other ICD-10 tracked natural cause deaths, 4 sigma

    Values like 9 sigma are situations that need many millennia to happen “by chance”, so forget about “chance”, there are strong underlying causes that need to be investigated, this situation was guessed by many “rogue” scientists like Luc Montaginer and many other “lunatics” (as MSM called them) even before the vaxx rollout.

    Now the “health” authorities are investigating whether the terrible increase in mortality is related to the lockdowns and other measures taken to contain the virus, but of course they will never look at what they should be looking at:

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/08/18/lockdown-effects-feared-killing-people-covid/

    They will try to hide what they have done, but it won’t work forever, people are beginning to notice that something is rotten and not only in Denmark.

    Cheers
    David

  223. Wer, I head about the river — ouch. (It made the alternative news here in the US.) What a ghastly thing to have happen. As for Poland going Dutch, I suspect that’s going to happen in a lot of places as things proceed.

    Brendhelm, that’s my big issue with conspiracy theorists — they’re convinced that nothing just happens, and that the elites can never trip over their own, er, feet. No, no, it’s all got to be a sinister plan! It can’t be that the people in power are a bunch of utterly clueless overgrown children who’ve never in their lives had to wipe their own buttocks and couldn’t figure out how to do so with a training video and a coach, who think they know how to run the world because they’ve absorbed a truckton of fashionable abstractions and not the least tiny scrap of practical experience, and are pushing a set of policies that I won’t call moronic because that would be an insult to honest inoffensive morons. Progress is over because the “progressives” are convinced the real world follows the laws of Star Trek episodes, and they can’t understand why no matter how often they yell into their toy communicators, nobody beams them up!

    Lunar Apprentice, good heavens, no need to apologize. What a ghastly situation to be in! I refer both to the situation with your daughter — thank the gods she got through it without getting the clot shot — and the broader issue: that the once-honorable profession to which you’ve committed your life has become, on the average, so gaudily corrupt and so destructive. I suspect there are a lot of physicians like you who are horrified at what’s happened to medicine; once the the rubble stops bouncing, I hope you and they can piece something together in the ruins.

    NomadicBeer, I think the Russians are wise to be concerned. The US has spun the printing presses like a bunch of maniacs for more than a decade now, and once the dollar finishes losing its reserve currency status, it won’t be worth much of anything. Replacing the currency and making it very difficult for foreign holders of dollars to get new dollars in exchange would be one effective way to shed a lot of the burden. If I were Russian, I’d save rubles, but I’d also make sure my portfolio included a good share of yuan, Indian rupees, and Iranian rials.

    DFC, thanks for this. I wonder how many people realize just how insanely improbable a nine-sigma deviation is…

  224. Scotlyn
    Thanks for the video. It is a great song.
    Wer
    Good luck. My best wishes go with you and to Poland. Actually to all of you here who have shared the challenging paths you are and have been on. It begins to feel like you are my personal friends.
    Stephen

  225. “that’s my big issue with conspiracy theorists — they’re convinced that nothing just happens, and that the elites can never trip over their own, er, feet. No, no, it’s all got to be a sinister plan! It can’t be that the people in power are a bunch of utterly clueless overgrown children who’ve never in their lives had to wipe their own buttocks and couldn’t figure out how to do so with a training video and a coach, who think they know how to run the world because they’ve absorbed a truckton of fashionable abstractions and not the least tiny scrap of practical experience, and are pushing a set of policies that I won’t call moronic because that would be an insult to honest inoffensive morons. Progress is over because the “progressives” are convinced the real world follows the laws of Star Trek episodes, and they can’t understand why no matter how often they yell into their toy communicators, nobody beams them up!”

    I both have to laugh at the thought about Star Trek and applaud that comment. Cheers! Quite frankly, I am a big fan of forecaster and economist extraordinaire, Martin Armstrong who has advised heads of State including Margret Thatcher, John Majors, Bush family and the Chinese government for the last 40 yrs. Whenever there’s a currency or economic crisis it never fails he gets a call from Washington for advice.

    His quote: “we are probably witnessing the dumbest and most stupid collection of world leaders in human history”. He said the sanest of the bunch are probably Putin and Xi.

  226. Upstream of medicine, is nutrition, and “expert” advice on nutrition is no better than the bad examples of medical care discussed here. Now, researchers at Tufts University have come out with a nutrition rating system for foods common to the American diet: the Food Compass. You can read all about it at the university’s web site, and you can read the academic article discussing the scope and methodology supporting their conclusions. If you scan down to the very end, you’ll see a vision for the future:

    “…while the Food Compass was tested and validated against two major NPS and NOVA, next steps include testing against health outcomes, application to other product datasets and testing in other world regions with widely differing available food products.”

    Emphasis added. All this effort, and not a hint of “health outcomes” results yet? Without health outcomes, this is just more “common sense”, assumptions, and prejudices. I do hope they call us back when they’ve done some science.

  227. re: recent birth rates… I’m seeing pregnant women around at church, at work, and at the Farmer’s Market. Actually, four have recently given birth, all apparently health, and all to (likely) vaccinated mothers. So, if vaccination is impairing fertility, it’s not to an in-your-face tragic degree. It looks to me as though these young couples got through the scary, uncertain first year of the pandemic, were reassured by the vaccines, and decided that the time was right to expand their families.

  228. @Scotlyn re #229
    Yes, freedom of choice to get, or refuse to get, any vaccine would have been a better way to go about this, and is likely a key driver of a lot of the rage these days. I think that evaluating risks and benefits of any medical treatment is a good way to look at it. When I was in school, we were told to provide patients with the risks and benefits of any medical treatment, and then let the patient make an informed decision about what to do, or not do.
    It was a significant departure to make a vaccine compulsory without providing the usual religious or conscientious objector options to refuse vaccines, especially experimental ones.

    I think JMG has provided a good overview, that the Covid Vax debacle is perhaps the imperial overreach that breaks the empire’s back. For me, COVID discussions have a surreal, fog-of-war feel to them, or again like the rumbling you feel under your feet at the shore that is caused by the tidal wave you can’t yet see, coming towards you. It is about the vaccines, but it is also not about the vaccines, but something more.

    Sometimes I imagine that I see Anthony Fauci playing the role of Hypatia in Alexandria–
    Hypatia’s stable of full-time scholars was as good as(or better than!) those of Fauci; As dedicated, as convinced that their labours served to enlighten the world. How quickly things can change!

    I hope we can avoid burning the libraries this time around,..

  229. Bird,
    I am a pessimist like you when it comes to justice for the criminals in the highest echelons of the PMC. The historians of the far future will draw the line where they see it, but if I were them I would draw it on the day that Bill Barr resigned in December of 2020. That was the day I think all hope of ever bringing the bureaucratic criminals to justice was lost.

    And as for the so-called “red wave” in November (sorry Sardaukar), I am not optimistic about that either. I thought that was going to happen in 2020, and, although it did happen with the downticket offices, it mysteriously didn’t happen with the office of president.

    Seeing how the clerisy’s brownshirts are willing to raid a former president’s home and political allies, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a shock and awe campaign in late October to scare the beejeezus out of American voters. Maybe even something to justify vesting the executive branch with unlimited “emergency powers.” It’s something China would be more than happy to help finance.

    I really hope I’m wrong, but I am dumbfounded to see much of the PMC cheering on the creation of a police state, and most everyone else standing by saying nothing.

  230. Rod, hmm! That was certainly my impression, but it’s good to hear it confirmed by someone who has more direct experience of world leaders.

    Lathechuck, most physicians graduate from medical school with one class on nutrition. They literally know less about it than your average bodybuilder or dieter. Thus this doesn’t surprise me at all.

  231. RE: fixing healthcare

    Sunlight is the best disinfectant.

    I have a suggestion to add to any and all changes. Full financial discloser and reporting for the people involved. The degree and duration should scale with the risk and magnitude for self interest to cause harm to others.

    For example a nurse at a hospital should have no reporting requirements but the executive and board of directors for a local hospital should have to report all income for their terms plus five years. The CEO and board for a major hospital chain, pharmaceutical company, or a US senator should have to report all income, gifts, and financial interests for life with mandatory audits each year.

    It won’t fix everything but it will certainly help with the corruption.

  232. “if vaccination is impairing fertility, it’s not to an in-your-face tragic degree.”

    No it’s not. Given that the miscarriage rate is very low, even a 20% increase in that would not be a large increase in actual numbers.

    The same applies to fertility, A 15% drop in male fertility really doesn’t do much. Instead of 2 million determined swimmers there are “only” 1,700,000. The comparatively rare man who was already border-line might cross the line into nonfunctional.

    On the women’s side I’m not sure how that would work out. Are 1/7 of the available eggs now duds? Or do 1 in 7 women stop being fertile altogether? And do the effects wear off like the so-called “protection” of the vexes?

    As a population control regimen the virus/vaccine combo was useless.

    Unless; there was a Sci-Fi story long ago about a contraceptive that worked as advertised on the women who took it, but lingering traces of it prevented egg formation in their girls (which happens before birth). So that effect didn’t show up at all until 20 years later, and wasn’t identified for five years after that. So the only fertile women were those in fundamentalist religious sects, and second born daughters IF their mothers had not gone back on the contraceptive between kids. Social chaos ensued of course.

  233. @Lathechuck
    “It looks to me as though these young couples got through the scary, uncertain first year of the pandemic, were reassured by the vaccines, and decided that the time was right to expand their families.”

    I don’t think they are necessarily conscious of that as you think. Maybe their sex drive rose because of let’s say more mortality salience.

  234. @ Mark L – thank you for thinking through the difference between “ratings based” and “relationship based.” For myself, I would say that I was conflating these two concepts together.

    Since all of my own patients self-refer on the basis of what they have heard from friends and family members, you could say I am “relationship based” – although, also I tend to continually review and seek results, because I do not want people wasting time or money on my treatments if they are not having a positive, healing impact on them. (This includes people who are very ill, and who are not going to survive their illness, healing has many dimensions, and not all of them add up to more *quantity* of life.)

    I am happy to be able to recognise that what people locally are saying about me must be good enough, because even in this rural area, where people do talk about each other, A LOT, I do not tend to have too many people coming to me from further than about 30 kms. If I was getting a bad reputation, I would see no one at all from CLOSER than 30 kms away, and would see only people who had not been in a position to check out my reputation with others who have been here.

    I suppose what I want to say here is that “relationship” and “reputation” and “rapport” are all very important considerations in the matter of healing and of doctoring (in the most general sense of doctoring). “Evidence-based medicine” which is essentially a system for determining which sales claims can be legitimately made in respect of pharmaceutical products, has had the side effect of making people conceive of both patients and doctors as inert components of a treatment with the only important thing to know is whether the treatment can be statistically said to “work” or “not work”. Whereas what the patient brings and what the practitioner brings to the treatment have every bit as much to do with what will happen, despite the specific constellation bringing all of them together being absolutely non-reproducible.

    What I would not like to see is a person’s credentials ever being enough to nullify their need to stay responsive and effective in their encounters with patients, again and again and again, because that doctor patient encounter IS the beating heart where medicine HAPPENS.

  235. A very good friend offered me to visit the Krishna temple two days ago on friday, because it was the highest celebration of the year.

    The temple is situated in Traiskirchen south of Vienna. About two thirds or more of the devotional visitors were indian families. Hilariously enough, the clerisy of the temple are all Austrians and many of the iniated monks are from around Europe ie. Czech, Croatia, Slovakia…
    The colorful ceremony was nice, despite great fatigue and a heavy darker mind I got a bit of the uplifting energy. Singing and dancing is liberating, but I do not know most songs, so I could only participate in the universal mantra of Krishna. With great excitement, I read the translations of Sanskrit in the song book of Krishna, while most indians were singing along with the Austrian priests.

    The town of Traiskirchen itself is downtrodden in a fashion I haven’t seen in Austria before. Since decades a refugee camp is situated there. Coincidentially, my friend who invited me to the devotional ceremony lived a year in this camp in the late 70s at age 3, coming from Uruguay with his parents. There are some big industrial structures in the town, some apparently in use for offices. Litter and Waste material is scattered in the sorrounding yards.

    Sorrounding are many single family houses, some with weed overgrown yards and trash in them, with yugoslavian gypsies living in them. Some garden fences are bent, some once proud houses in rustic manor style loom abandoned. The center of the town is a mix of older, a bit more quaint buildings and some of the more acceptale low storey modern structures.
    Young men from Afghanistan and other related countries are loitering in the streets, with no obvious fortune or perspective. Young men with no hope, purpose, task and social connection in a dismal setting – whatever anyone tries to sugar coat, that hasn’t ever been a nice atmosphere.

    The rails of the “Badner Bahn” cross this town – that’s one tram that actually leaves Vienna
    and passes Traiskirchen to its end-point, noble Baden. The railway station cafe/turk diner is gloomy, the turkish youths rather sinister.

    The Krishna temple is situated at the end of town towards Baden yet not all to far from both the industrial structures and the town center. Despite what I just described, this area esp around the temple is really beautiful. In the distance about 15 miles away, you see a low steep hill with relatively natural forests on top, at its foot where lower hills roll on into the plain of the Vienna basin, there are wine gardens.

    along the Badener Bahn tram rails passing the Krishna temple, there are growing walnutnut trees spread by the birds from the gardens, along with other tree and scrub typical for Austria’s rather dry and warm pannonian plains. The Temple is bordered by some acres and the tree hedges that often border the acres. The dead industrial agricultural land is still often bounded by rather natural hedges around here, which is nice.

    The mixture of cracked and torn roads and side walks, Gotham city like industrial flair and lots of lush and friendly green is appealing. Not far from the Temple, there is an alluvial forest around the small Schwechat stream with pathways.

    @JMG I wonder if one of your commenters would be skilled in downloading all ecosophia comments into a database – I don’t even know if that is feasible, but in case if one could “mine” the comments querying for User names, contained words, articles…that may be enjoyable by many of the commentariat I think.

  236. Northwind Grandma #179:
    The term American Dream was conceived in 1930. It died thereabouts 2006 at the thoroughly average age of 76, with the rather entangled estate being settled over the course of the following 20-30 years.

    Curt #220: I suspect that many of the strong initial reactions to the injection components stem from the variability and lack of quality control when manufacturing a new product. I’m not sure how other industrial cultures handle this, but American industrial culture as I knew it tends to have QC all over the place for the first couple of months of production of a new product, resulting in huge amounts of waste and unsellable product. This is true of the firearms industry as well as the cotton products industry, and according to Vaers reporting, based on batch numbers, so has the pharmaceutical industry. So for a given batch, the amount of correctly made product within could vary from containing essentially saline, to a stew of half raw ingredients, to being double charged with properly made product.

    As time went on with actual feedback, quality control improves, and a more uniform and consistent product emerges from the chaos, possibly diluted or reformulated as adverse effects feedback started to come in around April 2021. In the case of Moderna, the xxxK20A through xxxM20A to xxxH21A batches which correspond to production from September 2020 to December 2020 to August 2021 production showed diminishing levels of prompt reactions as QC processes developed, and more appropriate ingredient dosing developed. All of crapshoot product already made was shipped out anyways just to avoid carrying useless inventory and to fill out contracted orders asap.

    In my own case, this knowledge of how manufacturing actually unfolds led me to adopt a wait and see approach when the injections got their EUA, “never buy Gen 1 of an American product”, until QC calmed down and settled down. As time went on, the long term problems with the mRNA approach led me to disavow any interest these injections. I’m on the wait and see fence with the dead virus approach of covaxin and sinovac, but Omicron has made the whole thing moot.

  237. I’ve had a spare moment and in the light of the essay here and comments here and elsewhere on social media I looked for, and found, one of the UK’s excess death reports. As well as commentary this one includes a graphing tool that lets you see how the data varies across groups and causes.

    https://app.powerbi.com/view?r=eyJrIjoiYmUwNmFhMjYtNGZhYS00NDk2LWFlMTAtOTg0OGNhNmFiNGM0IiwidCI6ImVlNGUxNDk5LTRhMzUtNGIyZS1hZDQ3LTVmM2NmOWRlODY2NiIsImMiOjh9

    The bottom line here is that there is a long tail of excess death and it’s not covid-19. I’ve noted with interest that one of the least impacted ethnic groups was frequently called out over the last few years for not taking up the vax.

    I’ve been vaxxed 3 times, all Pfizer so technically I’m a genetically modified organism at this point. Also at the moment I feel in rather better health than I have for some time. I await the future with mild curiosity.

  238. Well, I probably should comment on this post, although I’ve been busy busy busy. I wouldn’t be a contrarian if I didn’t offer some scepticism on a point or two.

    There are any number of items in the discussion that I agree with – for instance, I do wish that I knew more about “herbs” and natural medicines and so forth, and in fact I may end up taking a course on these things.

    Likewise I agree that the end of regulated medicine as we know it is probably in sight – not next year, but maybe ten years from now, and I am taking steps to deal with this, including Collapsing Now, as well as re-arranging my life so that practicing medicine essentially becomes a side job or at least not a sole income stream.

    I do think sometimes these predictions are exaggerated. I know many people have felt burned by mainstream medicine over the past two years, and me too, but at the end of the day modern medicine really does do a number some things that shouldn’t be trivialized. Like not to sound like a dork here but I really can save your life pretty quickly in any number of ways depending on the circumstances.

    So, I am not sure how extensively the baby will in fact get thrown out with the bathwater, if you follow this mangled metaphor. As much as Big Medicine sometimes screws up royally, it still offers enough that it’s not going to go away as quickly as some people might think.

    As for me, in a couple of weeks I will be attending my [X] year medical school reunion. I will be happy to try and feel out what “the crowd” thinks after a bottle of wine, about anything, if anyone can suggest any topics they’d like me to try and feel out.

  239. In fact, it looks like I posted that comment before reading the other replies. Just to take one example, I agree with Lunar Apprentice’s first response.

    You know, my province has screwed my local ER because, by disallowing me to work there (over the You Know What), I’ve become part of the Great Resignation and I might never go back even if they let me – because I’ve seen how much less stressful life is.

    In other words, Lunar is right; I really do get baffled by the people who glibly appear to think that “anyone” can do this job. They can’t; I’m not trying to be a jerk when I say this, it’s just the truth.

    I remember waaay back when I was an undergrad, my friends and I used to get frustrated with the process of getting admitted into medical school, “why do they make it so hard, it’s not fair”, etc. Well, now I understand and agree with it.

  240. A final point on this for now, and it has do with the money comment: look, I’m not all about the money, I said this already, I’m already trying to collapse, chop my own firewood, etc. and so forth. I think that medicine will decline along with the general economy.

    But reality is this: if you don’t pay doctors enough, you’re not going to have many. I always react dumbfoundedly whenever I see anyone who tries to argue against the concept of the “Laffer Curve”.

    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/l/laffercurve.asp

    You can quibble about where the optimal points are on the curve for whatever outcome you’re trying to achieve, but the basic concept is unassailable, and it’s applicable in other contexts. If you don’t believe me, I’m just telling you from experience: there comes a point where it’s not worth it to do Work X for Amount Of Money Y.

  241. Here is a written interview from the spring of 2014 with Dari, the daughter of Alexander Dugin. The title is “We live in the Age of The End”. René Guenón, Julius Evola, Jean Parvulesco, and Henri Corbin are name dropped. “Studying in the faculty of philosophy and working with Plato and Neoplatonism, I can realize that politics is nothing but the manifestation of basic metaphysical principles that rest on the foundation of being.
    By making political warfare by the Fourth Political Theory, we are also establishing the metaphysical order – manifesting it in the material world.”
    This week, i believe, the material world has manifested itself in a universe of confusion and grief for her dear father.
    Black Tuna and Hand–

  242. @ Emanuel – Thank you.

    I, too, hope we can avoid library-burning, as well as roaming gangs of zealots…

    Still, I’m sure that Anthony of Fauci would be delighted if history names him one of Hypatia’s successors.

    I, for my part, cannot unsee my knowledge of his role in the unconsenting AZT experiments carried out in the 1980’s on children in orphanage and in foster care, who had tested positive for HIV.

    So, I will not be writing his story in that way. Still, history will be written, and not likely by me. It will say what it says, and that will be what is remembered when those HIV positive children and what was done to them – in the name of evaluating drug efficacy and safety – are long forgotten.

  243. @Owen#60 –

    “must maintain a 90% (4.5/5 stars) customer satisfaction rate”

    NOPE NOPE NOPE, and nope again. This strikes at the heart of what it means to be a “self-regulated profession”, because the reality is, in some professions only another member can judge whether the quality was appropriate. This is one reason why I don’t think licensing is going away as fast as some might like.

    See: RateMDs.com for this. Never, ever trust a doctor-rating website to determine whether a doctor is any good. As often as not, having a “good” rating just means that the doctor is obsequious and does whatever the patients want irrespective of whether it’s correct.

  244. Sorry to submit so many comments, but the topic is near to my heart, as one may imagine.

    @Lunar:

    “I wish medical school admissions committees would assess for traits in candidates that might predict conscientiousness”

    Wat? Bro, they do, that’s what the grades and extracurriculars and so forth are for. Not just looking for raw mental horsepower (the calibre of which, among MDs, is often overstated). I was once told that they are also looking for a track record that shows stress resilience.

    If you mean that it would be nice to include a literal battery of personality testing, well, I am pretty sure schools have done this, but more for research purposes, I don’t know that it is actionable in any way.

    Since we’re on the topic, I agree that I’ve often thought it would be useful for schools to filter for personality traits, but in my case I feel strongly about the introversion/extraversion axis. One of the reasons I am ill-suited to be a doctor (and thus one of the reasons I haven’t minded joining the Great Resignation) is that I’m far too introverted, and it would be nice to know about this before you invest a significant portion of your life into something that’s irreversible.

  245. Here’s a good example of the Clerisy. This NJ CONgresswoman hits a cyclist and flees the scene aka hit-n-run which would land anyone of us in Jail. Residents have “demanded her resignation” and she says NO i’m not leaving. On another occasion she was parked illegally along with expired tags, pleading with the cop “I’ll have you know i’m part of the Clerisy” don’t tow my car. ‘RULES FOR THEE AND NOT FOR ME”.

    Her quote: “I’m not resigning. For those who call for my resignation, you are heard and I understand that you have concerns and questions that I respect and would enjoy any type of dialogue or discussion with you after I go to court,” she said, according to Fox News and the Washington Examiner.

    She continued: “I’m appreciative of everyone who came out and had to stay tonight. I’m appreciative and so grateful for the people who have reached out to support me or just want to wait until that court process goes on to ask me any further questions [or] to pry anymore. I cannot make it through these days without you.”

    Who would have thought the TV Show “America’s Dumbest Criminals” would become a reality show about politicians?

  246. Hi all

    I recommend reading this article by Fabio Vighi on the pandemic, it may be a bit conspiratorial, but I think his assessment of the current situation of the economy, particularly the financial part, is correct and explains some of the actions of our elite.

    https://thephilosophicalsalon.com/a-self-fulfilling-prophecy-systemic-collapse-and-pandemic-simulation/

    But you can’t keep a patient in a coma forever, it deteriorates quickly, so you need other means to “solve” the explosive financial derivative problem without touch the fundamental hierarchical nature of the debt “contracts”, so maintaining or increasing the share of the über-richs in the global economy/power.
    China still seems to be following this template.

    In the old civilizations in the Middle East or Asia, there were institutions to manage the unsolvable problem of the exponential nature of the compound interest, that always, always grows quicker than the real economy in the mid/longterm, so the tradition of the “jubilees” and other forms of “clean of the slates” to end the destructive nature of the accumulation of power/assets, debt slavery and immiseration bring by the debt defaults; but our civilization, following the Roman example, lack those institutions (Michael Hudson), and for us, as for the Romans, the contract are “sacred” and the only way out of the debts is by the revolutions and/or wars, big wars, bloody wars, where you get rid of excess of material and humans, and after the rivers of blood, then, yes, some debt cancellation are possible.

    So following the nature of our culture, there is a huge risk that the way out of the check-mate in the financial sphere is through war, where you can apply the harsh economic measures you need to de-inflate the debt buble and impòse an authoritarian iron fist on a impoverished population, and this seems to be the way our elites are taking after the pandemic: the way of war…
    In a declining Empire the people in power can only made “crisis management”, that’s only what is left in the midst of escalating crisis.

    You know: “Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia” (1984)

    Cheers
    David

  247. So, as someone who was an athletic, healthy person who had a presumed mild case of Covid in mid-March 2020, followed by more concerning Long Covid issues (& had to take 3 months of medical leave from work), I’m active in an online Long Covid group. What I find very interesting is there is lots of concerns about Covid vaccines expressed in this group. I think this is very telling, because this is a group of people all who have dealt with longer-term post-Covid issues, not a group whose experience of Covid was like yours, JMG.

    Some observations:

    –There is a vaccines channel, where I’ve read thousands of people’s experiences with the Covid vaccines. Many of us noted unusually strong reactions being reported (not just in days but in many cases for weeks afterwards), with a few hospitalizations. One story among many: There was one person in the group who was particularly annoying, who was 110% in favor of vaccines and who would dismiss any vaccine concerns expressed on comment threads. After a year and a half of Long Covid issues, he finally posted on the victory channel that he had mostly recovered. Weeks later, he got the booster shot, and had a severe reaction and was hospitalized. In the weeks after, he had a very rough time, with a return of his chronic issues. He eventually left the group, and when he did he was still not better, and who knows how he is now. Unfortunately, his own experience with hospitalization was what it took to make him a little more humble and open-minded about Covid vaccine concerns.

    –Unlike in some other circles in my life, I find a lot more respect towards people’s individual’s decisions on Covid vaccination within this Long Covid group. There are quite a few in the group that never got Covid shots and their decision is fully respected.

    –In spring of 2021, there was a ton of media reporting as Covid vaccines being a cure for Long Covid. It’s true in some cases it did resolve people’s issues, and there were a few in my online group who say that the vaccine was the #1 thing that helped them recover. However, based on preliminary surveys I’ve seen, there seem to be more instances of them making people’s Long Covid issues worse than better. There are some people in the group who had mostly recovered from Long Covid, then got shots, and haven’t recovered from them yet. There are some who after months finally recovered from Covid and then were injured by the vaccine and haven’t been able to work since. There have been a few people who’ve been allowed to join the group who are vax-injured and experiencing Long Covid issues like POTS from them. All this has created an interesting solidarity and overlap between the Long Covid and Vax-Injured groups. Unsurprisingly, in mainstream media, there’s been almost no coverage about the negative impacts of Covid vaccines on people experiencing post-Covid issues.

    –I’m finding a lot of parallels between the gaslighting by medical professional of those with Long Covid and the gaslighting of those with vax injuries. In summer of 2020, I went to various specialists, such as 2 cardiologists and a pulmonologist, for my concerning issues (chest pain and exercise intolerance being the main issues) — and when their tests for me all came back normal, I was told I was overanalyzing things. The medical system is not great at treating people with complex chronic issues, nor exploring more deeply what might be going on when standard tests come back normal. I’ve had tons of medical appointments and I never got a diagnosis in the past two years for my issues. What has helped me were things I experimented on my own, shared tips from others in my Long Covid group, and some suggestions from more holistic health practitioners. It wasn’t until I started seeing a functional medicine MD in an integrative practice that I found a doctor that was somewhat helpful and have gotten some partial answers of what might be going on.

    –Some people in the group have proposed that as part of Long Covid advocacy, it should include advocacy against vaccine mandates, considering how many Long Covid patients have had their issues worsen from the vaccines. Both for myself and others, having a job with vaccine/booster mandates and the stress of having to decide what to do in response to them, added unnecessary additional stress our health journeys.

    –The vast majority of people in the group have explored some kind of non-FDA approved alternative medicine. Many of us, having gotten little help from conventional doctors, have explored other modalities for the first time in our lives.

    –It seems the most of the people in the online group I’m in got the original Wuhan strain in 2020. While there have been a few people trickling in during the Omicron waves, my hunch is that earlier on the virus was more lethal and caused more serious Long Covid issues relative to now. By now lots of people in my Long Covid group have been re-infected, and by and large, based on what I’m seeing, having Omicron for them was much easier to recover from than the original strain in 2020.

    Although have been uncertain of the actual risk-benefit analysis of Covid vaccines for different individuals, at minimum I have been adamantly opposed to vaccine mandates from the start, especially since they were not preventing transmission. I think having dealt personally with presumed-Long Covid chronic health issues actually makes me all the more a believer of having agency over one’s body and health decisions without government intrusion. I feel more empathy towards others who have chronic health issues, whether from a virus or vaccine injury or something else, not acknowledged nor taken seriously by medical professionals.

    Here is something I once wrote:

    “Based on the countless adverse reactions being reporting (especially in the Long Covid group), I have serious concerns about Covid vaccines as a one-size-fits-all recommendation (or mandate in many cases). At best, it was one tool of many to use in response to the situation, and this tool should have been employed with caution and full honesty about potential risks, known and not yet known. Our society often confused predicaments (where there is no one solution, only a wide variety of ways of mitigating it) with problems that have definitive solutions. As often in our hi-tech-oriented society, we have treated Covid as a problem to be solved with a hi-tech solution (i.e. vaccines), but they do not prevent Covid transmission and have now caused many more problems without clear solutions. I think Covid was/is a predicament [maybe a much smaller predicament compared to the much larger ecological predicament] and there’s not one solution out of it, but lots of ways of mitigating and better muddling through it.”

  248. Last comment for today; I really have stuff to do including tending my nascent farm.

    I have had this discussion before, online and offline, which is about the question of physician remuneration, and I make the argument that the word “should” really has no place in the discussion. As in, what “should” doctors be paid; what do they “deserve” to be paid. You hear this a lot, “I think doctos are overpaid”, relative to whatever the speaker thinks they “should” be paid.

    I sidestep the question and argue that it doesn’t matter what they “should” be paid – for any practical purpose, the only thing that matters is *what they can get*. People do move for money, and if you’re not going to pay them what they can get elsewhere – then you won’t have many anymore. Doesn’t everybody know about the Cuban doctors who drove taxis because the money was better?

    I just think there’s an awful flippant glibness, and dismissiveness, in some of these discussions, as if we don’t offer anything more useful than they did in the 1700s.

    @Lunar #157 –

    “I could easily earn my commercial driver’s license and become a long-haul trucker in 3-6 months. I contemplated it at one point.”

    Baha, I knew you wuz my spiritual brother from another mother! I have also contemplated this, and all the more so in the wake of the Freedom Convoy earlier this year. Presumably it would be a great job for an introvert who likes podcasts and audiobooks.

    On a final note, I also want to say that I can see the discussion getting (understandably) a bit heated, and I would like to offer sympathies/condolences/best wishes to whomever has had a bad experience with the medical system. We’re just human, after all. Somebody alluded to this earlier, and my opinion is that so many doctors are jerks because the pressure of the job makes them that way. In my experience going to school with a hundred of them, most of them started as pretty nice folks.

  249. Another thing just starting to shake people’s faith in the medical system here in Canada is its newfound propensity for _deliberately_ killing people. The new euphemism for euthanasia (itself something of a euphamism) is “MAID”, and it’s the new hotness in Canada.
    Now, I’m not opposed to euthanasia on principle. I myself hope to go out with dignity. I am heartily opposed to medical professionals presenting it as an option for disability treatment unasked. As in “you cost the system $1500 per day, but we could just kill you”. Or the story making waves right now, from Veteran’s Affairs: “Oh, you have PTSD? That’s annoying to treat. Have you considered MAID?” Search the phrase “too poor to live” and you’ll hear about multiple people who go seeking social assistance and find the old MAID waiting for them.

    Here’s a review that tries to avoid swerving into hysterics: https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/why-is-canada-euthanising-the-poor-

    There’s a world of difference between what we wanted– which was a reasonable end-of-life option for terminal cases, and what we got, which is a cost-saving measure apparently being pushed by bureaucrats.

    The running commentary from Americans about our wait times being “socialist death panels” has nothing on this. Right now, MAID is about the 5th leading cause of death, and climbing. I don’t understand how anyone who signed off on the Hippocratic oath can look a patient in the eye and tell them how much their care is costing the taxpayer, while presenting death as an option. How does that not harm?

    On the other hand, it is so mismanaged the metastatic bureaucracy and exploitative of its medical professionals (including doctors!) Canada’s socialized medical system might collapse under its own weight before we ever get to a point of demand destruction.

  250. Kevin, JMG and all: mining really appeals to me as being one appropriate metaphor of the way industrial civilization continues to operate. This morning, while plucking apples and leaves off recently fallen apple tree limbs (for my ever-hungry compost pile), a couple of other metaphors popped into my mind.

    The first one is Vikings. Not the soft, kind, friendly sort that historians have been imagining lately; rather, the real ones – you know, the ones who exterminated the native Celtic male population of the Orkney Islands and mated with the Celtic female population (as revealed by genetic testing of the current inhabitants of the islands) and had a jolly good time raping, pillaging and burning their way through Western Europe (and beyond). I have wondered if the Viking “spirit” of discovery/destruction/domination was the seed of Faustian culture, as the two have a lot in common. And the announcements of Build Back Better by Biden, Trudeau and others since 2020 is ominous: one builds back only after something has been destroyed (like a house after it’s been levelled by a tornado). What destruction is required for this building back? Nobody seems to say it explicitly, but I wonder if it may be the Western economy itself.

    This leads me to the second metaphor: the highland clearances in Scotland, whereby the “unproductive” subsistence farmers were removed from the land so that it can be used more “productively” – i.e., sheep farming to better enrich the lairds. Could the uber-rich and the abstraction-obsessed clerisy think that its time for a similar strategy, this time deliberately trashing the European and North American economies (including agriculture) in order grab whatever they want from the masses? Of course, back in the mid-18th to mid-19th centuries, there were many places in the British empire to ship off the “excess” population (Canada, USA, Australia, New Zealand, and plantations in the West Indies); but how about now? Well, I guess there’s always the graveyard, hence the ever-increasing popularity of the saying “WE are the carbon that they want to reduce”. I certainly hope that I am wrong in this but given the degree of inhumanity with which the clerisy has treated the masses since early 2020, I do not put anything past them. I also think that if they are stupid enough to try to deliberately crash the Western economy, then they are stupid enough to utterly fail in trying to resurrect it in the way they expect to (Frankenstein’s monster-like)… which may sound like a good thing (i.e., the clerisy failed) until one realizes that the result could be a 30-year economic depression. I’m not sure which is the better of two really bad options: I’d say the best option is to get the clerisy out of the picture before they sabotage what’s left of our rickety dysfunctional economy.

    Cheery thoughts, eh?

  251. @ Bofur #259 – if you are mixing with other doctors in a social setting, perhaps you might be able to find out what doctors think of the proposal that “evidence-based medicine” is increasingly relegating them to the role of technicians dispensing a set of “standard of care” protocols devised by bureaucrats?

    Obviously things are always full of various feedback loops, and so I doubt that any trend ever gets all the way to its logical conclusion. But if, for the sake of argument alone, there were no countermanding feedback loops, does it not look like the logical conclusion of these trends would be for doctors to be replaced, at least in some instances, by AI’s which can reliably (and I’m told with less vulnerability to human error… 😉 😉 ) dispense these “evidence-based” “standard of care” protocols?

    I suppose what I really wonder is whether many doctors actually notice their own professional judgments running headfirst into bureaucratic obstacles that directly impede their care for THIS patient whose history they know, in accordance with their own clinical training and clinical experience, or does it become habit to practice a sort of “self-censoring” operation before such a conflict can occur?

    I really hope that doctors who do not want to be treated as product-placement technicians, will begin to find one another and push back. The rest of us need you. 🙂

    Anyway, have fun at your reunion! (I know I’ve made an “ask” here, but it is *not* more important than the having fun part)… 🙂

  252. Team10tim, it would be a start.

    Curt, I have no idea whether that’s an option, and I also have no idea whether the rest of my commentariat would want that.

    Andy, thanks for this.

    Bofur, no question, modern medicine can save lives. It can also kill people. It’s a little casual to talk about people feeling “burned” when many of us, myself included, have lost family members to incompetent and careless doctors, who faced zero consequences for choices that, again, killed people. I’d be interested to see good statistics about how many lives get saved vs. how many get ended by medical care, but given the sky-high rates of iatrogenic illness, nosocomial infections (poor Ignatz Semmelweis must be spinning in his grave now), and drug side effects, the balance may not be in favor of modern medicine as currently practiced.

    Black Tuna, thanks for this.

    Bofur (if I may), er, the fact that physicians are a self-regulating profession is part of the problem. It guarantees, among other things, that physicians will reliably cover for one another even if human lives are involved. Shall I give you an example? The physician whose malpractice killed my only child did the same thing to at least eight other infants who died as a direct result of his actions. (The issue in question was prescribing, and bullying pregnant women into taking, a blood pressure drug which was well known to cause fatal malformations in fetal lungs.) It finally made a media stink, and then — only then — did the local medical association deal out…a slap on the wrist. The doctor wasn’t even barred from treating and prescribing for pregnant women. This kind of thing happens all the time in modern American medicine. If you want to defend the status quo, fine, but please be a little more aware of what you’re defending.

    Rod, that’s a great example. Thank you.

    DFC, er, there are other ways to clear away debt. Have you looked into the recent history of national debt defaults?

    Beneaththesurface, many thanks for the data points!

    Bofur, as for the income currently earned by doctors, um, has it occurred to you that the flurry of laws meant to keep nurses, physicians’ assistants, and alternative health care practitioners from providing treatments that they are perfectly capable of doing safely on their own has had the effect of driving up the incomes of physicians? It’s certainly occurred to the rest of us.

    Doomer, dear gods. I knew it was bad but I didn’t know it was that bad.

    Ron, yeah, that also works.

  253. Also @ Bofur #259 – “at the end of the day modern medicine really does do a number some things that shouldn’t be trivialized. Like not to sound like a dork here but I really can save your life pretty quickly in any number of ways depending on the circumstances…”

    So, to provide a bit of balance, I would like to present one or two genuine appreciations. When something got stuck in my front bike wheel and I ended up lying unconscious on the road, I was very very happy to find out (as I did afterwards) that good people rang ambulances, ambulances turned up, I was taken to A&E scanned up down and sideways and watched carefully for a few days in hospital. Fortunately I had no life-threatening injuries, but they did not know that, and carefully exhausted all of the right efforts finding that out. I did have a broken rib and bruises everywhere else, and my drop in hb made them cautious. My rib had nicked my spleen and my kidney, but after 5 days my hb rose again and they let me home. I still have a memory hole for the whole day of the accident, even though I was certainly conscious during most of it, and even texting and having surreal conversations with people which I do not remember. Anyway, that experience of emergency medical care was all positive. Every bit of it.

    Then, there was the time that an anaesthesiologist saved my sister’s life – early 1980’s. She was having orthopaedic surgery to correct congenital arthrogryposis malformations of her wrists, and had a reaction to the anaesthesia known as “malignant hyperpyrexia”. The anaesthesiologist, who was very experienced, had seen this reaction exactly once, but had prepared for it in the event of it happening again. So when her temperature began to soar, he followed the drill he had rehearsed himself in and saved her life. My mother, who is a nurse, has often said (and not only because of that situation) “if you ever collapse in a public place, and they call for a doctor in the house, you may hope that it will be an anaesthesiologist that turns up. Bringing people back from death’s door is what they do every single day, and they get good at it!”

    This is to say, that, I absolutely agree that modern medicine has some quintessential features (especially in emergency medicine) that we will all be poorer if we lose. Personally, though, I think that it is doctors themselves who are best placed to sift through what is essential to keep and pass on to future generations, and what can be jettisoned as serving only the bureaucratic and drug marketing superstructures that have built themselves over your heads, and that maintain themselves at the expense of your reputations. I do entertain high hopes that maybe some of ye will put your heads to this task and carry it out!

  254. I thought this to be appropriate and on topic: a few days ago the Canadian intellectual/former academic Jordan Peterson published an opinion piece in The Telegraph: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/08/15/peddlers-environmental-doom-have-shown-true-totalitarian-colours/ (for those who prefer to hear him reading it with as much restraint as he can muster, go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=–QS_UyW2SY)

    In brief, Peterson goes on a tear against consulting behemoth Deloitte and its delusional prescription for achieving a prosperous green future for the world. Peterson certainly nails Deloitte’s flaws as the paragon of clerisy-ness, although many of us in this forum may not agree with Peterson’s Conservative Cornucopian solution. Still, it is good to see that Peterson – who has a pretty strong following among independent thinking intellectuals – is giving the clerisy a good bashing. Enjoy!

    Oh, and as an extra, I would like to share a little gem that I found on social media this week on the subject of electric tractors:

    For those of you that think electric vehicles are the answer- this is a true story from a farmer in the Midwest:

    A close friend farms over 10,000 acres of corn in the mid-west. The property is spread out over 3 counties. His operation is a “partnership farm” with John Deere. They use the larger farm operations as demonstration projects for promotion and development of new equipment. He recently received a phone call from his John Deere representative, and they want the farm to go to electric tractors and combines in 2023. He currently has 5 diesel combines that cost $900,000 each that are traded in every 3 years. Also, over 10 really BIG tractors.

    JD wants him to go all electric soon.

    He said: “Ok, I have some questions. How do I charge these combines when they are 3 counties away from the shop in the middle of a cornfield, in the middle of nowhere?” “How do I run them 24 hours a day for 10 or 12 days straight when the harvest is ready, and the weather is coming in?” “How do I get a 50,000+ lb. combine that takes up the width of an entire road back to the shop 20 miles away when the battery goes dead?”

    There was dead silence on the other end of the phone.

    When the corn is ready to harvest, it has to have the proper sugar and moisture content. If it is too wet, it has to be put in giant dryers that burn natural or propane gas, and lots of it. Harvest time is critical because if it degrades in sugar content or quality, it can drop the value of his crop by half a million dollars or more. It is analyzed at time of sale. It is standard procedure to run these machines 10 to 12 days straight, 24 hours a day at peak harvest time. When they need fuel, a tanker truck delivers it, and the machines keep going. John Deere’s only answer is “we’re working on it.” They are being pushed by the lefty Dems in the government to force these electric machines on the American farmer. These people are out of control. They are messing with the production of food crops that feed people and livestock… all in the name of their “green dream.”

    Look for the cost of your box of cornflakes to triple in the next 24 months…

  255. @ JMG
    “DFC, er, there are other ways to clear away debt. Have you looked into the recent history of national debt defaults?”

    OK, I am spaniard, we know a lot about debt problems/default, last time we were intervened by the BCE they oblied our former president Zapatero to modify our constitution, and as is still written in the infamous article 135 of our constitution:

    “The credits to satisfy the interest and the capital of the public debt of the Administrations will always be understood to be included in the statement of expenses of their budgets and their payment will enjoy absolute priority.”

    So forget ANY internal priority of our nation, the FIRST priority of our government, as clearly estated in our “sacred” constitution, is the payment of the interest and the capital of the public debt.

    So you can ask the greeks or better any other country literally plunded and ravaged by the IMF “debt release” measures; what is supposed to be a debt “relief” is, in fact, a privatisation of public assets by foreign banks and corporations, even “rogue” states that “seems” to have made a succesful default at the end has to answer the demands of the bond holders in US tribunals if they want to access again to the international markets (as Argentina).

    In any case I am not talking about some debt problems in some small part of the world, I am talking about the Mother Of All Bubbles of the financial system in the center of the Empire, without significant collateral means to cover the costs and with the risk to take down all the world economic system (much much worse than in 2008).

    Cheers
    David

  256. @JGM #245 – wasn’t there a novel back in the day based on just that premise? And a Denver Realtor (and her cat), a gay accountant, and a professor of history blew the lid off the most inept would-be Rulers Of The World?

  257. Doomer #272 –

    That sounds suspiciously like a form of eugenics to me. Instead of weeding out “morons” and “imbeciles” through various forms of coercion, we have “poor people” (after all, isn’t it much the same thing?) by whose numbers to decrease the excess population – if I may paraphrase the well known philanthropist Ebenezer Scrooge – leaving more room and resources for the Good People.

  258. In a previous post of the Great Rehash series, there was a comment on how much the younger generations know about Grand Poohbah George Soros. When I looked it up, I thought it was interesting that, while not as many Millennials knew about Soros as Boomers, more Millennials than Boomers had a favorable opinion of Soros. I wonder what’s up with that. I’d like to think that it’s the wisdom you gain as you age, but I don’t know.

    https://today.yougov.com/topics/politics/explore/public_figure/George_Soros

    Joy Marie

  259. @Epileptic Doomer #272
    Thanks for the article link! MAID is making the rounds here in BC too–
    The bean-counters are well aware that something like 10% of a person’s lifetime healthcare expenses are incurred in the last 3 years of life, and are apparently taking steps to make sure death happens sooner, when possible.
    I know that in US Pharmacy at the time I left the country, we had mostly or completely lost the right to refuse to participate in medical activities that violate our consciences. I presume it is the same in Canada too.
    I remember that in Hospice care, adequate pain relief at the very end of a terminal disease could mean that a person died 12 to 24 hours sooner than they otherwise might, if you kept them adequately comfortable, but MAID goes way beyond that. I was not aware that MAID is the 5th leading cause of death in Canada.

  260. Has anybody else received the following error message:

    A potentially unsafe operation has been detected in your request to this site
    Your access to this service has been limited. (HTTP response code 403)

    If you think you have been blocked in error, contact the owner of this site for assistance.

    Block Technical Data
    Block Reason: A potentially unsafe operation has been detected in your request to this site

    I would appreciate knowing if I tripped over some wire,

  261. I have been trying to post this comment since yesterday and have now redacted it like our Australian commenters to see if the keywords I used had triggered some surveillance system.

    (Part 1)
    Thanks for the several people who have referred me to the “Houston, we have a problem” series. I have read the first part with great attention and considerable respect for his data analysis capacities.

  262. @Andy

    “I’ve been vaxxed 3 times, all Pfizer so technically I’m a genetically modified organism at this point. Also at the moment I feel in rather better health than I have for some time. I await the future with mild curiosity.”

    If you still remain alive for the forseeable future. I suspect there is a Eugenics angle to this.

    Or you got saline.

  263. Ron, thanks for this. Agreed, Peterson’s better at criticizing other people’s beliefs than he is at assessing the downsides of his own, but it’s a good rant.

    DFC, I’m thinking of how Russia cleared its decks of debt twice in the 20th century — once in 1918, freeing up the resources to allow for its Soviet-era industrialization, and once in 1998, freeing up the resources to allow for its post-Soviet reindustrialization. It can be done.

    Aldarion, I tossed that to my IT person. Here’s what he said:

    “Yes, Wordfence blocked him. By design Wordfence will interpret unescaped characters in a comment as a cross-site scripting attack. If not intentional, it could happen if you first type your comment in a rich text editor (Word, LibreOffice Writer, etc.) and then paste it into your web browser.

    “From the logs he seems to be using both an iPhone and an iMac desktop. I’d suggest pasting the text into a plain text editor (on a Mac, maybe TextEdit, or even vi or nano), removing any odd characters like HTML encoding (“%20”, “%0D”), and then copy-pasting it again into the comment form.”

    As you see, your redacted text got through just fine.

    Alifelongme, talk about chowblowing…

  264. JMG – I am so sorry for your experience. As much as I hate our network of policies, some are worthwhile. Pharmacists double-checking scripts prevent many inappropriate prescriptions, though they also face many stresses. Repeat offenders definitely are tracked more, and have more trouble getting malpractice insurance (so quit early). State licensing boards and others talk to each other more, so bad docs who get in trouble can’t just move to another state so easily. Some don’t keep up, can’t pass recertification, or quit rather than try. These things are generally better managed in other developed and developing countries, best I can tell. CDC and FDA do not inspire much faith in public health oversight, and it seems BIGmed has negligible accountability.

    Scotlyn @274- you nailed this. Most doctors start out with great intentions and high hopes, in my experience. Yet soon we learn that, in addition to the patients and families, we have to answer to risk management, who will not let us apologize or even discuss much about errors (and good research about them are nearly absent). We have to follow management protocols, or justify alterations in medically defensible writing, or risk losing hospital privileges, insurer contracts or board certification. For care, it may be more begging an insurance subcontractor with their algorithm, for approval. In some cases, the algo is the same for all ages, infants through elderly.

    Anytime we have to find a way around inappropriate insurer, employer and/or hospital requirements, in order to provide care, or provide it in a timely manner, we balance the potential harm to the patient for delay, whether to exaggerate a diagnosis (in a non-fraudulent manner) to possibly get approval faster, or put off the other waiting patients in order to beg approval. Oftentimes it fails no matter what we do, and we just write the order, wait for care if it becomes available, and hope for the best. Shortages and Covid made this worse. We call it moral hazard – “no good deed goes unpunished”. This is a key factor in burn out.

    With “old school” medicine, a doctor or a small group followed patients for years – knew them and their preferences, so care could be shaped to suit the individual. It is a really satisfying way to practice. There is stress and sleepless nights, but also thrills and extremely grateful families who never, ever forget. Satisfaction from a job well done, touches your soul. Complications teach hard lessons, and it is not always just the patient who suffers. This kind of relationship still exists for many alternatives today, but is hard for doctors to retain with our system. Of course there are some bad actors in small practices, but as they rely on personal referrals, most do not last so long.

    Long term patients understand when you tell them we do not know much about Long Covid, or the vaccine. We don’t even know that much about post-viral syndromes, except that we’ve known about them for decades and they vary for different viruses. We do know that isolation and poverty is really hard on your health – yet many Covid studies use 2019 numbers for comparison as the control group.

    Long term patients will believe you when you point out we really do not know much about Long Covid, or the vaccine. We don’t even know that much about post-viral syndromes, except we’ve known about them for decades.

    Bofur – we NEED introverted doctors. Listening is such an important skill, where introverts shine. Thank you for your efforts.

  265. JMG,
    I am curious on the psychology of the blaming the lockdowns for the excess deaths (Miow and DFC linked it above).

    Why would it matter if they admit it’s the foxes or blame it on the lockdowns? How could this blame shifting help them?

    To unpack this a bit, both lockdowns and foxes were pushed and mandated by the same people, so the blame is the same.
    It seems to me there is no uprising against the governments that admitted lockdowns caused a huge increase in deaths. So they might as well come forward and admit the truth, the population will accept it just as easily.

    So it seems that they have no problem with admitting guilt in a style encountered during communism: “mistakes were made”.
    But obviously they want to keep the gravy train going for the pharma industry.

    After the last couple of years I think I am getting an inkling of their thinking: they got away with so much for so long, they believe they can do whatever they want, admit it and laugh in our faces.

    Just like you, I know from history that at some point there is an explosion but just like the stock market, the insanity can continue longer than we can possibly expect. Until one day…

  266. In re: MAID

    New Zealand recently legalized euthanasia as well. I have always opposed it, because I always knew that the “right to die” would swiftly become “the duty to die.” You know, “Leben umwertes leben” and all of that. The Nazi’d did this for the sake of “racial purity” (Rassenwissen). The plutocracy does it for the sake of money.

  267. Part 2

    In 2020, many people were complaining about the categorization of deaths as caused by Covid, and I think in many cases (high PCR cycles) rightly so. At that time, total number of deaths, from any cause, was seen as the outcome least likely to be influenced by the views of the health bureaucracy.

    As vaccination started in the USA, several commenters on our host’s sites complained that vaccinated people were not tested anymore for Covid under the assumption that they were immune, and that the asymmetry in Covid testing between vaccinated and unvaccinated people distorted the statistics on the protection afforded by the vaccine. By the same token, the number of nominally non-Covid related deaths would have started to rise with vaccination.

    I think what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. If we cannot entirely believe the classification of Covid-related deaths (and especially trends over time in Covid-related deaths), then we cannot entirely believe the classification of non-Covid-related deaths either, and most especially not trends over time in non-Covid-related deaths. The first number to look at should be total deaths, and it is in total deaths that I (with much less data sleuthing abilities than the Ethical Skeptic) don’t see any particular trend in 2022 for the USA. It is a pity that he doesn’t plot this most basic number using the same data processing techniques as he uses for the subgroups.

    So what we have is a ~5% higher mortality in 2022 than in the years preceding 2020, but lower than in 2021 and 2020, and there is no lack of explanations: the continuing breakdown of the health system, the depression, obesity and diabetes caused by isolation and school closures, unemployment and so on. While isolation has been reduced, the economic shock hasn’t abated, is still ongoing and likely to worsen, as this blog keeps reminding us.

    To sum it up, I still see nothing suggesting an increasing mortality in the USA since 2021, though there is indeed a high and growing excess mortality in Spain (and possibly Scotland), which needs to be investigated.

  268. @NomadicBeer

    I think it is the permanency of the Vax’s – there’s a big difference between telling someone we forced you to inject something into your body that permanently changed you in ways that is killing others and may kill you. To, the lockdowns killed a few people – mostly the already unhealthy – but we are out of lockdown now so you’ll be fine.

    I think there is also a psychological defense going on in the elite as well – nobody wants to admit that they, their family etc have been injected with something unhealthy – so they refuse to even look at it as a possibility.

  269. It may be late to bring this up, but another notable example of failed research has been revealed recently. Most of us are aware of the serotonin reuptake theory of chronic depression and of the uptake inhibiting drugs that have been developed to treat it. Prozac and its relatives are among the most prescribed drugs in the West. Almost 10% of the US population are on antidepressants. However a recent study has concluded that the serotonin reuptake theory is unproven.
    . https://www.verywellmind.com/the-evidence-is-in-depression-probably-isn-t-linked-to-serotonin-levels-at-all-6260137
    I haven’t seen much discussion of this study despite the hundreds of thousands of people who would be affected by changes in the ways depression is perceived and treated.

    Rita

  270. Pygmycory–re higher education. A famous art school in San Francisco just announced it is closing its degree programs. An article about the closure bemoaned lack of support for the arts on the part of the new rich in the city but also noted that the school’s tuition was so high that students could not expect to earn back the cost of their education.

    Northwind Grandma–about those who have lifelong low energy and ill health. My grandmother had a male relative, uncle I think, who fit that category. She described him as “poorly”. Frank was just poorly all his life according to her account. I got the impression he lived with relatives and did what he could, but never much. I remember in the 70s and 80s when Chronic Fatigue Syndrome was much discussed in the media. If I recall correctly there was a belief for some time that it was due to the Epstein-Barr virus. But when I googled it just now there is a long list of viral infections that may cause what they are now labeling “post viral fatigue”.

  271. I spend 15 years being absolutely abused by the medical system. Developed chronic pain when I was 12 and had countless drugs and procedures forced on me, with nobody listening to me and most of those procedures making things worse. I lost count of the amount of times I was gaslighted and told that the drugs couldn’t possibly have the side effects I was having.

    It was only when I got old enough to be able to ditch the entire system and the ‘human body as a machine’ medical model that I found a solution – I had to clear out my childhood trauma (and medical trauma), process all those emotions, and recalibrate my nervous system. Yes, the ‘sum’ is far more than the parts!

    Industrial medicine is great for acute issues, but absolutely s****y for keeping us well. How many people do you know who are crippled over with chronic, apparently intractable, issues that are made worse by medicine?

    I, for one, wouldn’t be disappointed to see the system replaced with a more wholistic worldview.

  272. @ Alifelongme –

    BARF! Where is R. Crumb when we need him? This should be one of his darker subjects.

  273. Wer here
    Things are going crazy over here. Conspiracy theorists in my nation have a field day now.
    I must admit that I am not sure what is happening right now. Poland is in deep trouble now, PKO Bank Polski just announced that the economy shrank 2 procent in second quater and that was before we send billions of złoty to ukraine, before double digit inflation (the official one that is), before the most economically important river and waterway turned into a dead zone and gotshut down. reports are comming in on social media. Fishermen had been warnning without end since july 26 about this but the media was silent and the police was taking down photos and screaming about fake news. Why wait for 3 weeks with this until it becomes a crisis so bad that millions of Poles are affected including some relatives I have in gorzów Wielkopolski.
    They called yesterday people are confused and angry restaurants and inns and fish markets are closed local economy is falling apart and the MSM in Poland is silent like a grave (Screaming about evil Putin is all they do nowadays and publishing adrets about how rich foreginers should come visit our nation) Where exactly the river shores and motels that you all closed now in the area because of the polution. MSM coverage about situation in Poland is like Flash gordon nowadays with Putin the merciless ploting with his evil minios how he will destroy “social justice and euro democracy” While this is happening pooorer and poorer people wonder will they freeze or starve in the winter, folks in large cities are the least concerned and most valuable. I swear to god If thoose idiots in pro EU cities in the West of the country demand that we have to sacrifice our meager supplies because they are running low in the winter there will be a revolt.
    There are so many bad news that I could send a library of links but for now:
    https://wydarzenia.interia.pl/kraj/news-jak-dzis-mieszka-sie-nad-odra-rozpacz-smrod-i-lek-o-wode-w-k,nId,6228624

  274. >NOPE NOPE NOPE, and nope again. This strikes at the heart of what it means to be a “self-regulated profession”, because the reality is, in some professions only another member can judge whether the quality was appropriate.

    “How dare the people paying for the work be happy with it. They have no idea what good or bad work is (sniff).” Perhaps to a degree, a layperson will never fully know, but I guarantee you they know enough to tell whether their problem was solved/fixed or whether they were just given the runaround and then punted back out the door.

    I think I’d add that the rating system would need to have an “after 6 months” section to it, just to make sure things that were broken were indeed getting fixed.

  275. > I caught Covid in April of 2020 …

    How do you know? Did you take the o so reliable PCR “test”?

  276. I misspoke when I said MAID is the 5th leading cause of death– it appears that it is in fact #6, beating out diabetes (6,838 deaths) but squeaking in under “Chronic Lower Respiratory Diseases” (12,293 unrelated to COVID, this is 2019).
    https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/201126/t001b-eng.htm

    Note that MAID does not appear on the official ’cause of death’ lists!

    In 2021 the Canadian healthcare system deliberately killed off 10,064 of us.
    https://dailyhive.com/vancouver/medically-assisted-deaths-canada-maid-law

    (for apples-to-apples MAID would have been the 7th most likely cause of death in 2019.)

    I apologize for my slightly alarmist error. The fact that this is in the top 10 at all is pretty alarming!

    Now if we combine the 10,064 MAID deaths with an estimated 24,000 iatogenic deaths (though that figure is from 2004 as I cannot find a more recent one)– that bumps a more generic “killed by your doctor” right up into 3rd place. Not first, as JMG was wondering, but close! (Your mileage may differ in the USA.)

    What is getting me worried is when we consider the euthanasia campaign (which is how the Reich got started, after all) alongside the ruling classes’ language towards non-rich white people — which would be labeled “pre-genocidal” by all the various NGOs if it was aimed at any other demographic. I really ought to think about emigration. Pity I’m disabled and no country would take me.

    @Kevin,
    Another thing some people point out smacks of eugenics is just how many autistic (and otherwise mentally abnormal) humans end up sterilized as a result of gender transition surgeries. I don’t know if there’s any conspiracy there but is happening at a rate many times higher than it was than just a few years ago.

    Conspiracy time : the idiots in charge *did* read LTG, and want to cull the herd however they can to hold onto their lifestyles as long as possible. (Also explains the lackluster inital response to COVID where it was essentially let into North America and the draconian 180 that followed: they wanted *us* to sicken and die and panicked when they realized it was getting some of *them*.)

  277. Beneaththesurface @ 270 Natural immunity from prior infection gives better protection from the virus than the vaccine. This was known relatively early on, but CDC ignored for a long time. This undermined many professionals faith in our public health organizations. Many large studies, even before Delta, showed rapid waning of vaccine infection prevention. This triggered the media/public health shift from vaccine induced immunity, to protection from severe disease. Lacking immunity effectiveness, the logic and math supporting vaccine mandates fall apart.

    Emmanuel@282 Large corporates have entered the hospice area, which has become another profit center. Pharmacy cost limits have been imposed by payers, so hospice groups may require that patients change to cheaper drugs or quit them before they will accept them. I personally saw this when my father would have been required to stop his breathing medicine – as if that would help his endoflife comfort – in order to join hospice.

    Nordicbear@289 Lockdowns made more sense very early, at least in theory. We had a new virus that looked quite lethal for the elderly and weak, with potential to prevent or substantially limit spread. In the US, they were slow to start, leaky from day1, and largely unenforcible. Repercussions are hard to study, to figure out what problems came from the virus, vaccine, isolation, secondary shortages or medical system changes. Declining system syndrome, maybe? The more skeptical or analytical medical professionals were gaslit, when they questioned public health pronouncements. Fortunately, brave ones spoke up early, and more are joining as data comes out.

  278. @info

    Eugenics? I must say it seems unlikely for it to be a deliberate policy. I base that simply on the view that it’s quite hard to keep a secret when it’s shared between people and a deliberate plot would need quite a few people. Placebo vaccines might be an easier thing to conceal but motivation seems unclear as well.

    There’s no doubt that there is a level of non covid excess deaths ongoing here. It currently amounts to around 1% of the population per year, it’s not a statistical artefact. There’s very little mainstream acknowledgement of the situation outside some fairly obscure government stats and commentary from one or two individuals with a background in medicine and a good track record for plain speaking.

  279. Regarding the comments about MAID and euthanasia, it’s seemed ironic to me that the upper classes have, it seems, always sneered about the lower classes “overbreeding” and using up resources when those lower classes use resources at a fantastically lower rate than their “betters.” I propose that in order to reduce humanity’s burden on the planet while minimizing loss of human life any person owning a private jet should immediately volunteer for euthanasia.

  280. Straws in the wind from today’s news, in order of relevance:
    A. “A polio outburst reveals rare case risk of oral vaccine.” The vaccine is causing more deaths than the latest wild strain of polio.
    B. In May the Ohio State cosmetology and Barber Board passed a law requiring instruments with natural bristles to be discarded after each use for sanitary reasons, and further limited what types of nail brushes and hair brushes could be used. This in the face of serious shortages and supply problems for all salon things.
    C. Which is OT: but – The bluest newspaper in North Florida, the Gainesville Sun, had a long 3-page headline article openly questioning the utility of NASA’s new, massively expensive moon rocket, and outright called it a boondoggle and “an effort to keep aerospace giants (with examples cited) working. i.e. Lockheed, Boeing, and Northrup Grumman.

  281. You are onto a hugely important topic, but I suspect your take on the vaccine will prove to be misguided. Your confusion about the vaccine is a symptom of the huge problem we face with the dysfunctional clerisy in our age. People confuse the reliability of expert assessments of medical and scientific questions with the reliability of policies to manage people on issues with scientific content. The truth about the vaccine is something like: “We have a new virus that often has serious health consequences and sometimes kills people. Vaccines were developed that greatly decrease the average severity of COVID. Vaccines are complicated and we don’t fully understand who will have negative reactions to them. Many options to handle COVID would all work out tolerably well for the majority of the population. The current recommendations by the CDC are among the good options. But it isn’t scientific certainty and it isn’t the only way.” The real problem is that when politically polarized groups see terrible outcomes for some, they weaponize the issue to push their agenda. Then no one can distinguish the subtle differences between areas of knowledge and areas of uncertainty.

    As I see it, the core problem is that most people can’t distinguish between subjects which humans don’t understand (and so we need to rely on tradition and trial and error), and subjects that some do understand (and so we need to rely on well trained experts). A major toxic side effect of the obsession with progress has been dramatically overly optimistic assessment about how much understanding any humans have of many subjects. Huge swaths of humanity assume that since science developed such a strong reductionist understanding of matter, chemistry, and the history of planet earth, we must be on the verge of understanding ecosystems, immune systems, and neuroscience. But we are not close to understanding these complex systems. We have only trial and error based vaccines that seem to work for most people.

  282. @ganv: You accuse our host of “confusion about the vaccines”, but as you do not cite any sources, credible or not, to back up any of your claims, I might suggest that, perhaps, you are projecting your own confusion outward.

  283. For those who do video, comedian Tim Dillon delivers an entertaining rant about American decline on the Joe Rogan podcast: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqeuS43-69E

    It finishes on a rather defeatist note, as I don’t think either of them are fully conscious of the energy situation, but this quote is particularly relevant. It’s certainly a barometer of something gradually seeping into mainstream awareness if a technophile like Rogan can admit to this kind of thing:

    Tim: “we’re living in a time now where we all know everything’s f***ed, but we’re mostly powerless to change it and that’s when society start to decay past a point and everybody just kind of sits back and watches it like a show and it just [eventually] descends into something that becomes more and more unmanageable, and then either a strong man dictator type comes in or there’s some massive war that resets things or there’s some natural disaster but it feels like we’re kind of at that point you know. That’s why i’m glad we lived in the era that we lived and that’s we really should just be happy. We should be really up we should go ‘it’s nice that we got the run we did’, because it’s not getting better.”

    Joe: “When I was a kid, I remember reading about like the fall of the roman empire and the fall of the greek empire and then I was thinking about America, and I was like: ‘is
    this thing gonna go away someday? is that possible?’… I mean we want to think it’s f***in’ permanent but I bet the people of rome felt the same way.”

  284. Ganv,
    when I read something like:
    “The truth about the vaccine is something like:…”
    my first reaction is awe at the mount of arrogance displayed therein.

    Surprisingly the part of your post criticizing what we know or can know sounds about right.
    Are you saying that there are limits to human knowledge EXCEPT yours?

    Just curious.

    “and subjects that some do understand (and so we need to rely on well trained experts)”
    This is correct as far as it goes, as long as we take into account human nature. That means the experts have to be responsible for their advice and tight, direct feedback loops have to be established.
    When an “expert” like Michurin starves millions of people, why did he get to eat?
    Of course the famines could have been avoided if the feedback loop would have been immediate.

    To come back to the present, I will trust the experts when they apply what their preach to themselves and test it for 10 years (normal duration for previous vax testing). So let all the CDC and NIH lock themselves in a basement (lockdown) for 10 years, quadruple masked and testing all the jabs on themselves. When (if) they come out, I am ready and eager to listen.

  285. Andy about conspiracies being impossible because people would “find out”.

    This is surprisingly naive given recent history. I suggest looking further back at the Nazi holocaust. It turns out that yes, a lot of information leaked to the allies but it was not believed:

    “On December 17, 1942, the Allies issued a proclamation condemning the extermination of the Jewish people in Europe and declared that they would punish the perpetrators. Notwithstanding this, it remains unclear to what extent Allied and neutral leaders understood the full import of their information. The utter shock of senior Allied commanders who liberated camps at the end of the war may indicate that this understanding was not complete.”
    https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/when-did-the-world-find-out-about-the-holocaust

    Can I point out that most normal people have a weakness which is ruthlessly exploited by sociopaths and psychopaths: we expect people to be nice and good.

    The reality is that what we call reason, civilization, humanity is a thin veneer over million year old instincts that we should do well to understand – especially since all of us have them.

    There are many books about regular German soldiers that were trained to torture and kill innocent women and children using horrific methods. What always gets me is how EASY it was.
    So I tend to dismiss any argument that is based on an unrealistically naive view of humans.

  286. It appears that Scott Adams (of Dilbert fame) has caught wind of the rise in excess mortality.

    That means the Overton Window is finally shifting. Should get very interesting from here on out as the general populace awakens to the fraud perpetrated on them the past few 2+ years.

  287. As another commenter has rised the issue, yes, the live attenuated virus of the polio vaccine is reversing to virulence all around the world:

    https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS1473-3099(22)00548-5/fulltext

    https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7049a1.htm?s_cid=mm7049a1_w

    https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2022/04/26/1092867458/vaccine-derived-polio-is-on-the-rise-a-new-vaccine-aims-to-stop-the-spread?t=1657214759516

    As some people think, there is a kind of “memory” in the constitution of the virus that we should call instead “swarm of mutant quasiespecies”, there are lot of things we don’t know on how life really works, but we are tinkering anyway and always upping the ante.

    There are people that think Covid-19 is, in fact, a LAV (Live Attenuated Vaccine) that is reversing to virulence but in much shorter time than polio virus:

    https://harvard2thebighouse.substack.com/p/understanding-covid-19-and-seasonal

    It is an interesting hypothesis, but I do not see many clear evidences.

    Cheers
    David

  288. >A few weeks ago I noticed they were sensing that they were in physical damage, and some of them are fighting amongst themselves. I suspect a few will make the decision soon to rat out others to save themselves.

    Funny you should mention that. Fauci quit today. Squeak, paddle paddle paddle…

  289. Can anyone provide links to the Red Cross Home Nursing pdfs for both 1942 and 1951? I am having a devil of a time finding them. My search skills not being very good.

  290. One thing for us to remember as we talk about “excess deaths:”

    The statistics to measure Excess Deaths take into account the five previous years. So with 2020 we have 2015-2019 as the base, with 2022 we’ll have 2017-2021 for the base.

    Meaning that whatever Excess Death happening this is above an already increased level thanks to the last couple of years. Were things returning to normal we’d have a slight-but-measurable lack of deaths as the numbers started returning to normal.

    Just a reminder that the Normal has likely changed…or has died off, as noted by Our August Host’s lack of predictions for the year in progress.

  291. @MarkL #211, @viduraawakened #226 re models

    While a more detailed model that takes into account every relevant factor might have advantages, simplified models should also be useful, especially when not all relevant factors are known yet. That’s how we tried to use the models early in 2020: observe the growth in cases over the first few weeks of a “wave” in a region, and derive the key coefficients from that (especially beta, the R factor(s) that everyone was talking about back then). Then the model should tell you what to expect in subsequent weeks. That’s where the SIR models kept failing, predicting much larger case numbers than actually occurred, which might be why some officials were setting up field hospitals or bringing in hospital ships that were never used.

    What I found disturbing was that the wrong predictions were repeatedly disregarded afterward. Sure, we were happy that (most) hospitals weren’t besieged and civil order didn’t collapse, but understanding why the waves didn’t behave the way the models had predicted seemed like it might be important. Yet no one was even asking the question, and when I asked the question no one could answer it. That foreshadowed a lot of other unanswered questions later, about variants, vaccines, policies, origins, effects of climate or seasons, pretty much everything about C-19. And I had the same frustration you described about why better models weren’t forthcoming as real-world data accumulated.

    (The error was not, by the way, the kind of naive assumption of continued exponential growth without diminishing returns that our host has often criticized in other milieux. The SIR model builds the diminishing returns right in, which is why it predicts waves rather than endless runaway growth. But the predicted waves didn’t match the actual ones enough to be useful, and in 2020 seemed instead to be actively misleading. If the S parameter was significantly overestimated, that would also cause the R/beta parameter to have been significantly underestimated based on the early growth rate of a wave.)

    Viduraawakened, thanks for the toy SIR model. I don’t think there’s any way to get my (Mac-based) system to directly run it, but I can easily read and duplicate the code in the file, so I can still have some fun with it, such as testing some of my speculations above.

  292. @ Northwind #203: Your mother’s tale reminds me of my mother. My mother was a pediatrician, born in 1911, raised and educated in the Netherlands. She spent the war years in private practice in the Netherlands, and was occasionally able to smuggle eggs from the farms where she had patients to her urban patients who were badly malnourished. She immigrated to the US in 1954, and set herself up in solo practice. She had no receptionist or nurse, just herself, and so her work included a lot of what the Doctor might assign to the nurse in most offices. She retired in 1984.
    She expressed to me that she was so glad to be retiring because of the creeping influence of all those other entities over her practice of medicine. She was mad at her sister, who mad married a Swiss, when her sister defended Nestle over the practice of giving infant formula in poor countries when the mother’s milk was inadequate. She pointed out that feeding the mother was a lot better than selling the government imported formula from Europe. I think the final straw was when she was sued, after the death of a patient. She had not made any errors, but nevertheless, she should pay. This was also in the period where insurance companies began inserting themselves into all medical transactions. I can still remember the first of each month when she sent the bills to each family for their visit, and in the following weeks the checks would come in. It was not just the direct administration of health services that changed, it was the addition of external layers of the PMC that discouraged her.

    I grew up trusting the medical system, and maintained that trust until the past few years. In my case, I had a bad reaction to Ciproflaxin, resulting in a sudden leg weakness which persists 18 months later. Of course, the Cipro did not cure the prostate infection, which I solved with green tea and time. In my most recent medical visit, my long time internist (who prescribed the Cipro) accepted without comment my refusal of Covid boosters, shingles vaccine, and my self prescription of Ivermectin bi weekly. I think he accepts my implicit criticism of the system, but can’t bring himself to cut himself off from the money pipe. He’s about my age, (mid 60s), so he isn’t burdened with massive student loan debt.

  293. @Scotlyn #227: The Parting Glass: Thank you for a lovely song. I still remember the bottle of Redbreast 15 you sent to one of the Ecosophia Midsummer Potlucks, which we drank in toast to several comrades who had died in the previous year. Redbreast 15 is now my preferred high end tipple, thanks to you.

  294. @ganv #307 You wrote:”The truth about the vaccine is something like: “We have a new virus that often has serious health consequences and sometimes kills people. Vaccines were developed that greatly decrease the average severity of COVID. Vaccines are complicated and we don’t fully understand who will have negative reactions to them. Many options to handle COVID would all work out tolerably well for the majority of the population. The current recommendations by the CDC are among the good options. But it isn’t scientific certainty and it isn’t the only way.” “.
    Lacking in your post was recognition that the vaxxes were sent into the public with a complete abandonment of the traditional system of testing: first limited tests on animals, then tests on small groups of people, then double blind tests on large groups of people. The animal testing was done quickly, and the double blind system was abandoned after 6 months, so there was no control group to determine negative reactions after 6 months.

  295. The vaxx is your problem.

    The gas shortage is our problem.
    They said Russian gas is not important.
    Now the pipes are exploding.
    THIS will be the turning point.

    But not in Germany. Germans…lack common sense.

  296. The problem with the government response to Covid was they defined success too narrowly, and most of the population were brainwashed into accepted their definition.

    They accepted the view of a portion of the medical industry that success was keeping people infected with Covid out of hospital in the short term, and the only way to do it was masks, isolation, and vaccination.

    From that limited point of view the lockdown and vax rollout might be called a success.

    But considering society as a whole, over time, a disaster. As Lieutenant-colonel Redman, ex-Canadian military, maintains, That’s because a pandemic is a whole-of-society emergency. Health care shouldn’t be the only voice at the table. He is one of the few people who seems to have a good grasp of “big-picture” planning for a pandemic.
    https://torontosun.com/opinion/columnists/furey-a-former-military-leader-breaks-down-what-ontario-must-do-now

  297. Margaret Thatcher said, “Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren’t.”
    Almost every Western government said, the vaccine is “safe and effective.”

  298. @ganv #307

    When someone writes a sentence that contains so *many* ways to skate right over points of *evidentiary* contention (not to speak of any other kind), a person’s internal sub-editor can get grumpy. Apologies for the grumps… but they feel called for, I’m afraid.

    ”The truth about the vaccine is something like: “We have a new virus that often has serious health consequences and sometimes kills people [that we are about to exploit for marketing purposes]. [Genetic transfection therapies we think it might be useful to use this opportunity to market as] Vaccines were [hastily re-purposed and hastily] ****deve[DELETE]loped*** [thrown together] that [we hope to persuade potential buyers will] greatly decrease the average severity of COVID, [although our own trials using severity as a proxy endpoint for measuring vaccine efficacy (VE), show that when compared to placebo, our product will have negative VE for around two weeks, then will give a mildly positive VE for several weeks/months, after which our product’s EV, compared to placebo, becomes negative again. We intend to draw attention away from first two week negative VE by saying it takes time for your dose to become effective. We intend to have boosters ready for market by the time the later fall in VE becomes apparent]. Vaccines [or any product we decide to use that name for] are complicated and we don’t fully understand who will have negative reactions to them [and cannot be bothered to do the research required to find this out]. Many options to handle COVID would all work out tolerably well for the majority of the population [and most of them are inexpensive and easy to put in place with relatively little effort by individuals, families and communities, and the medical practices that serve them]. The current recommendations by the CDC are among the [most expensive and least] good options. But it isn’t scientific certainty [because it is mostly marketing] and it isn’t the only way [but we hope you never figure this out].”

  299. There was never going to be ten years of testing for a covid vox. Rush development of a jab was in the blueprint from the start.

    That blueprint was made public in March 2020 in “The Hammer and the Dance,” where I first encountered phrases like “flatten the curve,” “test and trace,” and “R value.” The plan it laid out was to use lockdowns to quickly reduce the number of cases to a minimum (“the hammer”), which would prevent the medical system from being overwhelmed, but would also leave most of the population in the never-infected “susceptible” category. So testing and contact tracing would then be used to prevent local outbreaks and warn when further local lockdowns were needed (“the dance”). All this to buy time to ramp up the capabilities of the medical system (including rehiring recent retirees and inventing 3D-printable ventilators), develop and test clinical treatments (Chloroquine was one promising candidate mentioned in THatD), and ultimately develop and deploy a vaccine.

    It reads like a fictional alt-history scenario today. Effective test-and-trace never happened in the West regardless of how much money some countries threw at it (tests weren’t available at all for a while in the US, except apparently to pro sports teams), the curve flattened in its own sweet time regardless of standing six feet apart in the checkout line, clinical treatments were never investigated thoroughly enough to rule anything definitively in or out, the opposite of hiring back medical retirees happened, ventilators proved useless anyhow, and large numbers of people who had already recovered understandably disagreed with basing policies on the assumption that the entire population was still susceptible. By early 2021 there was clearly no hammer and no dance, and at least one entirely un-hammered wave had passed through most parts of the world including the US. But somehow the idea persisted that we were still “holding off” the virus until the vox arrived.

    That was the One Story, and the question that fit with it at the time was not “How well tested is it? but rather, “What’s taking so long?”

  300. From Scotland (Edinburgh)

    “https://www.antipope.org/charlie/blog-static/2022/08/the-gathering-crisis.html#more

  301. Hope I’m not repeating another commenter, but I’d like to note that our esteemed host was referenced yesterday in Mr. Kunstler’s piece, Crazyland.

    https://kunstler.com/clusterfuck-nation/crazyland-2/

    I’ve noticed that when I’ve brought up the Fourth Turning, especially since 2008, I get blank stares. People just don’t believe we can go…. backwards. The Cult of Progress doesn’t allow that.

  302. FYI: The story about John Deere promoting electric farm equipment has been denied by the company, as described by Snopes.com. (The fact that the story was described as “a true story”, “found on social media”, should have been a tip-off, as well as the incredibly short time-line of 2023 for implementation.)

  303. Good catch Lathechuck. I agree the story as related is probably, at best, wildly exaggerated. I like Snopes; though it clearly has biases and limitations, it is a useful source. But like any news source, it should also be looked at with a skeptical eye.

    The original Snopes investigation is here:

    https://www.snopes.com/news/2022/08/16/john-deere-electric-tractors/

    And it says ” Perhaps most important, the spokesperson said that the company has no plans for battery operated/electric large tractors and combines.”

    But I also found this story, about 680 hp electric John Deere tractors, capable of working all day long without recharging, so perhaps Deere is not being completely truthful either.

    https://siamagazin.com/john-deere-new-all-electric-battery-electric-tractor/

  304. @Siliconguy #314: thanks for that! Glad I don’t have any 10th century Orkney Vikings for nextdoor neighbours!

    @Lathechuck #334 & Phil #336: thanks. I’ve been too busy following a whole bunch of craziness in Canada lately to be following up on the tractor story. With such stories, I do take the details with a grain of salt; still, I like to give folks a heads-up because I have noticed that even though much of the details may be fabricated there is a kernel of truth (often the central fact) that is true. And certainly in Canada and the US, the governments are trying their level best to “decarbonize” our economies and given the governments’ fanatical obsession with totally abstract nonsense it would not surprise me at all if they are incentivizing (bribing) manufacturers of all fossil fuel-burning machinery to go electric ASAP.

Courteous, concise comments relevant to the topic of the current post are welcome, whether or not they agree with the views expressed here, and I try to respond to each comment as time permits. Long screeds proclaiming the infallibility of some ideology or other, however, will be deleted; so will repeated attempts to hammer on a point already addressed; so will comments containing profanity, abusive language, flamebaiting and the like -- I filled up my supply of Troll Bingo cards years ago and have no interest in adding any more to my collection; and so will sales spam and offers of "guest posts" pitching products. I'm quite aware that the concept of polite discourse is hopelessly dowdy and out of date, but then some people would say the same thing about the traditions this blog is meant to discuss. Thank you for reading Ecosophia! -- JMG

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