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Coronavirus (4): In New York State ... and Beyond

Yesterday, I reported on Notablog at 4 pm, that New York State led the United States in positive identifications of Coronavirus cases, at over 15,000. Today, with New York conducting 16,000 tests per day, the number of cases has risen to 20,875.

What folks really need to understand is that, at least here in New York State, there is not mass testing of people whether or not they have symptoms. Tests are typically being administered to people who are symptomatic; the vast majority of those being tested are negative. They are typically suffering from cold or flu-like symptoms that have nothing to do with CORVID-19. But among those who are indeed symptomatic, the numbers of identified positive cases is increasing, something which is bound to happen when medical authorities continue to expand the rate of testing.

Moreover, we need to put a few statistics in context. A state like California has conducted approximately 20,000 tests---in contrast to the over 70,000 tests conducted in New York, which has far denser population centers (like New York City)---identifying only 1,802 positive cases. I suspect that even though denser population centers, such as NYC, are far more at-risk, this doesn't explain the fact that the state of New York has numbers that are ten-fold more than a state like California, which has double the population of New York. Clearly, there are many more cases than those being identified at the current time.

This is not a particularly fatal virus, though among the nearly 500 people who have died from the virus in the United States, most have had pre-existing conditions, in which their health and/or immuno-response was already compromised. This means, of course, that many folks who are asymptomatic are carrying the virus and infecting those who subsequently become ill.

Are politicians and the media making the most of this situation to either expand the powers of government or to take advantage of panicking the population? Given the history of these things, this sure sounds like a familiar pattern.

But make no mistake about it. This is a real virus affecting real people. And those of us who are in higher at-risk groups and of an older age, need to take the necessary precautions of social distancing, etc. I'm not among those carrying this virus, and I have no intention of putting myself or my loved ones in the position of getting it. Commonsense would go a long way toward lessening the expansion of this virus---and any potential fatalities emergent from it.

I have been following the blog of my very dear friend, Irfan Khawaja, "Policy of Truth," and have been generally impressed with the level of commonsense that he is bringing to his own analysis of the current situation. I recommend it to your attention.