Lockdown is our Vietnam War so it will end gradually?

A Facebook user posted “Canadian expert’s research finds lockdown harms are 10 times greater than benefits” (Toronto Sun) regarding an academic paper by Dr. Ari Joffe, a specialist in pediatric infectious diseases at the Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton and a Clinical Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at University of Alberta (i.e., a colleague of Dr. Jill Biden, MD).

I’m not that interested in the paper because, even in March I expected that the shutdowns would kill far more people than they might save, What was interesting to me was the gloss added by the Facebooker:

Of course, we can’t actually do this reassessment because doing so would admit that the last year was madness. The lockdowns are like Vietnam, the political and media establishment have so much invested in them, only a gradual drawdown will be permitted, regardless of the “science.”

Readers: What do you think of this analogy? We decided that the Vietnam War was unwinnable in 1968, but we didn’t get out until 1975 (timeline).

MLK Memorial:

MLK’s thoughts from 1967:

I oppose the war in Viet Nam because I love America. I speak out against it not in anger but with anxiety and sorrow in my heart, and above all with a passionate desire to see our beloved country stand as a moral example of the world. I speak out against this war because I am disappointed with America. There can be no great disappointment where there is no great love … Those of us who love peace must organize as effectively as the war hawks. As they spread the propaganda of war we must spread the propaganda of peace.


10 thoughts on “Lockdown is our Vietnam War so it will end gradually?

  1. Biden announced that we can’t change the trajectory of the pandemic in the next several months. 100 Million Doses or not, we’re not changing the trajectory. Now that the government is in complete control of the economy, people movements, their basic civil rights — all of which measures were implemented to alter the trajectory of the pandermic — now we learn that we cannot alter the trajectory of the pandemic. But the measures will remain in place. This is #Science!


    • This talk of the trajectory? What about movie Armageddon (1998)? Artists’ renditions of coronavirus does look like an asteroid. I thought that hip team of Joe and Kamala will destroy it by executive orders or something. So far they orders are not helping the trajectory

  2. That article in the Toronto Sun is marvel and a shining testament to the world of credentialed expert opinion:

    Our Initial Assumptions Were Wrong:
    “First, initial data falsely suggested that the infection fatality rate was up to 2-3%…”

    But I Cannot Speak About Things Outside My Area of Expertise:
    “Second, I am an infectious diseases and critical care physician, and am not trained to make public policy decisions…”

    So I Ignore Them:
    ” I was not considering the immense effects of the response to COVID-19 (that is, lockdowns) on public health and wellbeing….”

    Anyone With Half A Brain Should Have Known About All These Things:
    “..[long paragraph listing all the terrible things]…

    But We Never Spent the Money to Do A Formal Cost-Benefit Analysis:
    “Third, a formal cost-benefit analysis of different responses to the pandemic was not done by government or public health experts.”

    So We Just Winged It
    ” I simply assumed that lockdowns to suppress the pandemic were the best approach. ”

    And My God, Look At What We’ve Done!
    “Once I became more informed, I realized that lockdowns cause far more harm than they prevent.”

    And then a long exegesis of cost-benefit analysis, calibrating response, true risk, groupthink, etc., etc., etc.

  3. > didn’t get out until 1975

    Not to quibble but don’t you mean 1973? To the larger point, while there are parallels there is also a vital difference. The war lacked public support and aroused vocal opposition. Today’s shutdown-lockdown-mask war effort, by contrast, has much public support. The idea of a terrifying pandemic that requires massive restrictions enforced by government power is an idea that appears to be ardently desired by a large proportion of the population. Why is this?

    Something novel in recent history, at least in the western world, is how childhood and youth have become extended at the expense of adulthood. It’s been featured in this blog once or twice. In previous centuries someone aged 15 would be on the verge of adulthood, while today you can add ten years to that or even more.

    Isn’t Coronapanic an exceptionally intense instance of that phenomenon? People of any age can believe they’re facing a terrible danger, a danger that their Big Parent, the State, can avert for them. The State will save them, provided they submit to its authority by wearing masks, etc. For about a century, people have increasingly wanted the state to supervise their lives – their education, housing, employment, health, transportation, etc.

    Today, the state can tell them whether they may leave home, travel, go shopping or go to work, and the rules change from week to week. The submission is total. Isn’t it plausible that this submission, to what they perceive as a vast benevolent power, brings comfort, that it meets some deep-seated need in millions of people, something akin to what religion would have brought them 200 years ago? I don’t think they’ll want to let it go.

  4. I get that lonely, sinking feeling that Coronavirus isn’t our Vietnam War. It’s Oceania vs. Eurasia vs. Eastasia.

    “On the sixth day of Hate Week, after the processions, the speeches, the shouting, the singing, the banners, the posters, the films, the waxworks, the rolling of drums and squealing of trumpets, the tramp of marching feet, the grinding of the caterpillars of tanks, the roar of massed planes, the booming of guns—after six days of this, when the great orgasm was quivering to its climax and the general hatred of Eurasia had boiled up into such delirium that if the crowd could have got their hands on the 2,000 Eurasian war-criminals who were to be publicly hanged on the last day of the proceedings, they would unquestionably have torn them to pieces—at just this moment it had been announced that Oceania was not after all at war with Eurasia. Oceania was at war with Eastasia. Eurasia was an ally.”

  5. Whenever I read ‘only X% of people under 45 died of coronaplague’, I’d love ask the person stating said number ‘who cares’? For all means and purposes the only number that matters is ‘admissions to hospital’. First of all the X% dead does not say whether a much larger number of under 45 required hospitalisation to actually survive, secondly people still get a whole host of other diseases and accidents, and if hospitals are so full of patients that for all practical purposes they not working, that is *the* problem (family and friends who are physicians in Italy have been ‘drafted’ in looking after coronaplague patients — their own normal patients had to be placed on a waiting list). So, the reasonable discussion seems to be ‘can we let this virus rip without causing so many hospitalisations that the hospital system falls apart?’ I do not claim I can answer that.

    Also, even if mortality were 0%, how many people of working age can be at home sick all at once before stuff stops functioning (no transport, no police, no emergency services, etc.)?

  6. Well, the initial narrative was that of to ‘flatten the curve’.
    It would take some 2/3 weeks to flatten it.
    And if a developed place like Lombardy – with one of the best healthcare systems in Italy could get overwhelmed, imagine what corono-plague would do to a country like India.

    Well, it seems not only India, but even USA folks were sold on for it.

  7. From DNYUZ today: Student suicides are pushing school districts to reopen.


    As I read this article, several things are noteworthy:

    1) The idea that keeping tens of millions of kids out of school all across the country, and particularly in big school districts like Clark County, NV (~300,000 kids) would lead to a big increase in mental health problems and suicides was predictable.
    2) The problem is nationwide.
    3) Trump Administration attempts to re-open schools during the summer are referred to as “Strong-Arming” the school districts (and obviously wrong!)
    4) Because they were viewed as “Strong Arming” people also decided to view the risk of increased suicides and other mental health problems as “taboo to report” as being a result of school closures (because the important thing was that Trump was obviously wrong!)
    5) Now that the Biden Administration in office, pushing to reopen schools isn’t “strong arming” – it’s just common sense and part of the new Administration’s expertise.
    6) With the usual caveats that adolescent suicides cannot be “conclusively linked” to school closures so that everyone who wanted to keep the schools closed is off the hook.

    They way I read the following is: “There was absolutely no way anyone was going to let the Orange Madman force us to reopen schools. Yeah, we knew a lot of kids were going to off themselves, but that’s the price that had to be paid, because the Orange Madman said it, not Joe Biden.”

    “Over the summer, as President Donald J. Trump was trying to strong-arm schools into reopening, Dr. Robert R. Redfield, then the C.D.C. director, warned that a rise in adolescent suicides would be one of the “substantial public health negative consequences” of school closings. Mental health groups and researchers released reports and resources to help schools, which provide counseling and other intervention services, reach students virtually. Mental health advocacy groups warned that the student demographics at the most risk for mental health declines before the pandemic — such as Black children and L.G.B.T.Q. students — were among those most marginalized by the school closures.

    But given the politically charged atmosphere this summer, many of those warnings were dismissed as scare tactics. Parents of students who have taken their lives say connecting suicide to school closings became almost taboo.”

    • And I wonder: what is the meaning of their informal description, “Taboo To Report?” Does this mean that mental health professionals engaged in “benign neglect” to avoid linking suicides and other mental health problems to school closures, because Orange Man Bad? It sure sounds plausible to me. Why aren’t all these people being sued?

  8. I concur that the science make zero difference. Lockdown isn’t the only thing wrong with the whole covid 19 circus.

    Some fun thing for you to read. Naturally I recommend you determine how trustworthy the source it and any financial or conflict of interest first. Also verified any information you read there and be like Alice, diving down the rabbit hole.




    Just don’t hold me responsible for any rage and hopelessness you might feel.

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