Once again, the raw mathematical stupidity and scientific ignorance of Fox News, conservative media and independent media has emerged to push totally fake news about covid-19 fatalities, wildly misreporting the CDC’s latest data on covid-19.
A few days ago, the CDC released new data along with “Infection Fatality Ratio” data as follows:
0-19 years: 0.00003
20-49 years: 0.0002
50-69 years: 0.005
70+ years: 0.054
(See Scenario 5, “Current Best Estimate” in Table 1)
I accurately covered the news in this article, correctly reporting what the numbers mean. As any person competent in mathematics or science would readily know, an Infection Fatality Ratio of 0.054 means that there’s one death out of every 18.5 people. In other words, it’s a 5.4% death rate in that age group (70+) among those who were infected. (To get the 18.5 number, calculate 100 / 5.4)
In other words, covid-19 is killing 5.4% of the people it infects who are over the age of 70. That’s much, much higher than fatality rates from the flu.
But Fox News, which is staffed by functionally illiterate “journalists,” reported the death rate for the 70+ age group as 0.054%. In other words, they just slapped a “%” sign onto the end of the fatality ratio numbers, with no understanding of the CDC’s reported numbers. A death rate of 0.054% means it only kills 1 in every 1,850 people, and that’s off by two orders of magnitude.
Here’s the fake news graphic they produced and broadcast:
From here, numerous conservative and independent media outlets took this bad math Fox News graphic and used it in their own reporting, claiming that covid-19 only kills 0.0002% of people in the 20-49 age group, for example, or only 0.054% of people in the 70+ age group.
They’re all off by two orders of magnitude. (A factor of 100.)
This is the same magnitude of error as reporting that “2 + 2 = 400.”
But no one in conservative media seemed to notice.
I’m not even going to name all the publishers who are doing this, because they’re too mathematically illiterate to argue with. Even when you explain the error to them, they still don’t get it. It’s like trying to teach pigeons to play chess.
But this underscores the importance of getting your pandemic information from people who are mathematically literate and have some sort of science background. In previous articles, I’ve named numerous people across independent media who are absolutely clueless when it comes to reporting numbers or math. Nothing has changed. They’re still the same clueless fools who happily repeat utterly false information (and fake graphs, I’ve noticed, too) as long as it fits their narrative that covid-19 is a “hoax.”
A skeptic might say, “So what?” But this matters for a very important reason: Conservatives claim that progressives can’t to math when it comes to the subject of climate change. Thus, conservatives are claiming they have a better grasp on math and science than Leftists, because those Leftists misinterpret ocean level data or global temperature data, they say.
But when conservatives can’t even do the basic math of a simple ratio, their entire argument falls flat. I would say to conservatives: If you’re so good at math, why can’t you run a simple ratio that’s equivalent to perhaps 6th grade mathematics?
If you’re going to argue against climate change with any sense of effectiveness, you can’t be mathematically illiterate and have any credibility in your arguments, in other words.
And when you have dozens of conservative and indy media talking heads suddenly declaring themselves “virology experts” this year, claiming they alone have a monopoly on truth about the pandemic, it doesn’t help your case if you can’t handle simple data with a proper understanding of what it means. Adding to the ridiculousness of the situation, there are now a growing number of alt media outlets who claim there’s no such thing as a virus, and that no coronavirus even exists. I’ve dubbed this the “Flat Earth theory of epidemiology.” Why do I call it that? Because it turns out many of these very same people literally believe the Earth is flat, too. The bizarre theory is actually making huge gains across indy media under the “question everything” banner which also leads people to absurdly believe viruses and bacteria are fictions, too.
In America, we are now living in a society that is increasingly dominated by people who are hopelessly ignorant on subjects like science, math and even geography. And thanks to the new phenomenon of “factual relativism,” everybody thinks they are entitled to their own “reality,” even if it conflicts with actual reality. In this way, surprisingly, alt-right media has something in common with LGBT transgenderism indoctrination: They both believe your “reality” is whatever you claim it to be.
So when conservative or alt-right media are saying there’s no such thing as a virus, that’s equivalent to Leftists claiming biological men can have babies. It’s just as delusional and insane, yet both parties believe their own lies because they are backed by a circle of “consensus” in their own thought bubbles.
But fairy tales aren’t real, and the hallucinations of LGBT pushers as well as covid denialists are all false. Facts are stubborn things, as John Adams once said, and you can weave your fairy tales in your protected Wonderland, but you can’t change the laws of physics, chemistry or mathematics just because you feel like doing so.
Flatly stated, some of the most popular alt media networks, podcasts and talking heads are run by people who can’t do basic math and are living in a land of self-delusion. I’ve had numerous private conversations with many of these people, and they refuse to listen to reason. They aren’t interested in being accurate; only in being sensational in their fake news broadcasts. “See? No one is dying from covid! The CDC numbers prove it!”
It’s beyond pathetic. It’s dangerous.
It’s made even more frustrating by the fact that the mainstream media is lying, too, but in the other direction. They’re claiming the pandemic is far worse than it actually is, mostly to hype up mail-in voting while destroying the Trump economy as best they can.
So encountering honest, accurate, scientifically-literate reporting on the coronavirus pandemic is nearly impossible. Almost everyone puts their political agenda ahead of scientific integrity.
I don’t do that. Which is why I am not liked in certain circles of the indy media, where propaganda is far more important than accuracy.
I’ll give it to you straight, whatever the current data show. When the coronavirus was killing 1 in 10 people it infected in New York, I reported that (first half of April). As the virus became less lethal due to host adaptation, I reported that, too. Now, I’m reporting the CDC data which show that covid-19 is extremely deadly to elderly people while not at all deadly to young people. But what I hear from the indy media now is that the CDC “admitted” covid-19 isn’t deadly to anyone, and that’s blatantly false. The CDC’s data show covid-19 is a very serious threat to people 50 and over, and it’s extremely dangerous to those over 70.
As I’ve said over and over again in covering this, it’s critical to get this right. And as much as I’ve tried to correct other publishers, pundits and talking heads across the independent media, I’ve given up on that after learning that, frankly, they don’t give a sh#t about being accurate.
This is why I’ve stopped listening to all of them. If they don’t give a crap about being accurate on covid, how can you trust their accuracy on anything? I’ve literally heard, live on air, prominent alt media hosts saying, “Hundreds of thousands of Americans die every day in America,” and using that argument to claim 1,000 daily deaths from covid is no big deal. But of course the statement is wildly false. It’s almost a Joe Biden kind of claim, yet nobody corrects it, nobody questions it, and sheeple listeners just soak it up as if it were fact. (Guess how many people actually die per day in America? It’s somewhere around 8,000 on a normal day, from all causes combined.)
And when the CDC reported a few weeks ago that 94% of covid death victims also had underlying health conditions such as stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes and so on, virtually the entire independent media falsely reported that “only 6% actually died from covid,” claiming the CDC just admitted that 94% of people “died from something else,” which is not at all what the CDC said. In truth, almost everybody who dies has underlying health conditions at the moment of death, for the simple reason that perfectly healthy people rarely die at all. Yet this logic escapes the indy media pundits.
Sadly, what I’ve come to discover about the alt media in all my years of being one of its most prominent voices is that scientific illiteracy is a huge problem across the industry. And when it comes to discussing technical issues like epidemiology, virology and statistics, you flat-out can’t trust them at all. They are totally clueless. But they exude extreme confidence in their reporting, even while they refuse to correct anything they say, so to the feeble minded, it all seems rather convincing.
So we’ve arrived at a scary moment in history where people “believe” whatever they choose to believe, regardless of what the data show, because nobody can analyze data anyway (and in many cases, the data are faked by snake-like corporations such as Monsanto or Bayer). We have arrived at what’s called a “post-truth era” where each individual “decides” their personal “truth” based entirely on emotions, not information.
And the voices of reason are all censored, because rationality has been outlawed, and reason is treason. The average person is now mentally whiplashed between the lies of the mainstream media and the lies of the alt media, and there’s little truth to be found in either one when it comes to a highly politicized subject like covid.
No wonder people are so damn confused all the time. There’s almost nowhere you can go that’s reporting honest, accurate, good faith information.
My goal has always been to make Natural News that source for you. I haven’t always gotten it right, but I’ve always reported in good faith, with the intent to inform our readers with actionable information. Since 2013, I’ve been steeped in science, and that has made my science-based reporting far more informed and accurate over the years. It’s no exaggeration to state that I’m one of the few published scientists that exists today in the independent media, who runs an active, ISO-accredited mass spec laboratory and has a bestselling book on food science (“Food Forensics”). That doesn’t make me an expert virologist, but it does give me the foundation from which I can accurately understand and report statistical data on a wide array of subjects.
It also means I’m not a “denialist” when it comes to the existence of viruses. Viruses are real, as are bacteria, and we cannot make them go away merely by pretending they don’t exist, as many prominent alt media personalities now claim.
In my reporting, I will always cover the story in good faith, and I will never twist the science to cover for a political agenda. In fact, I strongly criticized Trump in March and April of this year when he was in denial mode. Thankfully, he later began to take the virus seriously, and now we’ve got it mostly under control in the USA. However, it still remains a dangerous threat to people over the age of 50, and we cannot simply deny that threat and hope it goes away. We must be reasonable and cautious if we hope to get through with our lives (and sanity) intact.