Revisiting my coronaplague prediction from July

On July 28, 2021, while we were at Oshkosh, a friend (who is a pre-2020 “scientist” in that he formulates hypotheses and tests them rather than constructing retrospective explanations) sent me a chart showing that Massachusetts, which was earning Silver in the Vaccination Olympics, was suffering only minimally from coronaplague.

I wrote back “The peak of Covid in MA always seems to be winter… I am going to guess that MA will have a renewed plague starting November and peaking in January” and marked my calendar for today to see if this prediction turned out to be correct.

From state-sponsored NPR, 12/27/201, “Mass. hospitals welcome National Guard members, cancel non-urgent procedures as cases rise” (WBUR):

State health data show the seven-day average of hospitalizations due to the virus was nearly 1,600 patients statewide. That figure has more than doubled in the last month.

“Mass. on Pace to Hit 1M Confirmed COVID Cases This Week” (NBC, also 12/27):

Regardless of when Massachusetts reaches 1 million COVID cases, it’s likely that the number of infections will continue to rise for the foreseeable future. Wastewater data for the Boston area shows that the level of virus in local sewage has continued to rise since the start of December, reaching new heights since the start of the pandemic.

And the total number of confirmed COVID deaths stands at 19,604, meaning Massachusetts is approaching another sobering milestone: a confirmed death toll of 20,000.

Whether private or state-sponsored, American media never likes to provide comparisons. How does 20,000 compare to the population of 7 million? 1 out of every 350 residents of Maskachusetts has died with a COVID-19 tag. In Sweden, by contrast, roughly 15,300 people have died out of 10.2 million, 1 death for every 667 residents. In other words, those who followed the science, wore masks, closed schools, smoked plenty of healing marijuana from the always-open “essential” cannabis dispensaries, and otherwise did everything right ended up with 2X the death rate of a country that gave the finger to the virus.

January 10 NYT data show near-complete success with vaccination (injections if not efficacy) while cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are all increasing exponentially:

How are the Followers of Science following Science right now? Checking Facebook I found that a friend had attended a Boston Symphony Orchestra concert over the weekend. He wore a surgical mask over an N95 mask while his family members wore N95 masks. The players themselves were wearing cloth masks that have failed randomized controlled trials even against less contagious variants of SARS-CoV-2. As with Karen visits a Florida theme park and If at least 50 percent of us are Covid-righteous, how did hotels and flights fill up with leisure travelers? I wondered why he hadn’t stayed home. He considered the environment dangerous enough to warrant surgical mask+N95 mask. Why wasn’t it dangerous enough to avoid altogether? Why not stay home and listen to a recording?

An OR nurse from our old neighborhood had followed AOC down to Florida. A Chinese-American from Belmont, MA proudly posted photos of her teenagers getting “Boosted at the Third Base Concourse. Thank you, Red Sox!” (37% effective, say the Canadians) This echoes a New Year’s card that we got from someone who lives in a $5 million house in the Portland, Oregon suburbs. Three children were pictured with masks. Each had a Band-Aid on his/her/zir/their upper arm. A mom from Lincoln, MA who previously celebrated lockdowns and mask orders and demanded that the unvaccinated accept the Sacrament of Fauci (from December 21: “Please, hose your toughy-selves down and get vaccinated. If my 1st grader can do it, you can too”) posted pictures from an entire weekend spent in a public indoor setting (gymnastics meet, with participants and parents in cloth masks).


Only loosely related… literal “bad news” from Oshkosh:

8 thoughts on “Revisiting my coronaplague prediction from July

    • TS: Nobody will be more surprised than I if this prediction turns out to be true! (we still need to wait for the “peak in January” that I predicted)

  1. “Please, hose your toughy-selves down and get vaccinated. If my 1st grader can do it, you can too”

    Exactly who do people expressing this & similar sentiments expect to persuade? Mockery and baby-talk seem unlikely to achieve much, other than to signal the virtue of the speaker (writer) & further entrench the existing attitudes of the recipient.

    • That’s a good point, especially since folks who express this kind of sentiment on Facebook usually don’t have any friends who disagree with them on any political or social justice issue. It is like putting out a “Biden” sign on a lawn in a rich Massachusetts neighborhood.

    • Tom: When the current Covid wave recedes in February, people will be proud to say that they voted for Uncle Joe, the Vanquisher of Omicron! There is no way that an exponential plague would have gone away on its own, right? Therefore, if Covid in February is less severe than Covid in January we must credit a Science-guided government policy with superb implementation.

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