2019-2020 coronavirus pandemic

Agema

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There are some ugly, selfish people with dubious motives for sure but I think most just want to meet up with friends, laugh, have fun etc. without worrying about this virus.
I suspect a great deal of it goes into core societal attitudes. The Swedes got away relatively lightly with their soft touch approach - but that's surely in large part because Sweden has relatively highly developed social support systems, and a population that broadly takes social responsibilities seriously and were more inclined to observe good practice. Contrast that with the relatively narcissistic "me me me" attitude likely more prevalent in the individualist USA and UK.

After that, the governments of both the UK and USA thoroughly fucked up their responses. No point mincing our words: they had to get a clear and consistent message out there, and what both of them did was dither to the max, try to do nothing, and then suddenly slam down the gates whilst undercutting their own safety procedures. Trump bred complacency to start with, and then sabotaged trust in basic infection control measures because he wanted to look tough. Johnson has spent a non-stop ten months destroying the credibility of the British government (more like three years if we include when he wasn't PM.) They can't have personal responsibility any more, because they've blown the crisis control management they needed to accomplish it. They've already effectively caused the deaths of tens of thousands of their own citizens, and the kindest thing I can say is they've wrecked everything so badly there's probably no good answer left to them any more. Economic pain or deaths - take your pick.
 

lil devils x

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If they're like my wife, because they believe in making people better. In other words, they have an easily exploited desire to do good. There's also a sense of camaraderie in the NHS though, and the fact that private work can be looked down on: a lot of the worse practitioners go private: because they're the sort of people keener on an easier life for more money than doing a good job.



Not untrue.

The tension here is that the country as a whole likes the NHS, but doesn't really want to pay for it. Compared to other EU nations, public healthcare expenditure is quite low - per capita it's about 10-20% less than most equivalent countries like Germany, France, Sweden, Netherlands, etc. The government responds with a mantra of "efficiency", backed up with ferocious right-wing media accusations that public sector workers are lazy. If Marx ever got anything right, it's that profits (or in this case government savings) are made by exploitation of the workers, so NHS workers are squeezed and squeezed for more output. They're reasonably paid, but the work is both very heavy and often very stressful because of under-resourcing.

And that's the sad thing. You can get all these wankers out there to clap for NHS workers, but you can't get enough of them into a voting booth to back a party that will give them better working conditions.

On the other hand, all of that is part of why the British system does healthcare cheaper than the USA.
I would like to think that most go into healthcare because they want to help improve people's lives and they genuinely care and want to make difference. Just about anyone working in healthcare as it is risks their own lives to save others, but what people have to remember is that we are just human like everyone else. We need a healthy work/ home environment and are just as susceptible to stress as the next person. When designing a healthcare system they have to start with taking care of those who they expect to put their lives on the line here so that they can continue to provide quality care or they are going to burn out and make mistakes.

There is no reason why you can't reduce costs and improve quality of care while focusing scheduling around the health and safety of those working to make this happen. It is just the ignorant rigid mindset that unnecessarily puts additional stress on those working in this system by treating them poorly making everyone's job harder when if they focused on a compassionate and understanding support structure for the healthcare workers themselves instead it would improve their performance and reduce their stress so they improve the quality of their care and also have less burnout. If they keep in mind that healthcare providers are just people with one lifespan like everyone else who also work to live, not just live to work, so they have to have a good work/ home/ recreation balance or you are going to run off people who want to be able to spend time with their own family and loved ones as well.

In the US, the best Physicians are in private practice, in addition to having their hospital affiliations, but that is also part of the private healthcare setup here. Physicians who are not very good do not gain enough reputation to build up enough repeat patients to sustain their practice, so they wind up going to work for social security or some insurance company instead. Here, your reputation is everything as people choose which physicians and facilities they will even go to by your online reviews, ratings or through word of mouth. That is part of why when we design a public system for the US, I want to make sure we still can provide that level of care rather than having people appointed to see a specific physician or facility so that we can maintain quality of care, and patients being able to control that directly. I also want to make sure that it is still easy for patients to get second or even third opinions if they are concerned about the recommend treatment options or diagnosis by their initial physician.

I am curious though about:

Can they see any physician they want at will?
How do second and third opinions work in the UK, can they just do that easily there when they are unsure about their treatment?
Can they just go see a second Physician and make sure that physician does not know about the other Physicians diagnosis? That is vital to being able to get a second opinion that is not impacted by the other physician's opinion.
Here, we also can make same day appointments at private practice offices, and options to have " first available" appointments and they can see whatever physician we have available at the private practice office on that day regardless of who is their Primary Care Physician, if their PCP is too busy/ out of office ect, does that work the same there?
 

Gethsemani

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I suspect a great deal of it goes into core societal attitudes. The Swedes got away relatively lightly with their soft touch approach - but that's surely in large part because Sweden has relatively highly developed social support systems, and a population that broadly takes social responsibilities seriously and were more inclined to observe good practice. Contrast that with the relatively narcissistic "me me me" attitude likely more prevalent in the individualist USA and UK.
Two observations I find pertinent:
1. Our social support systems, despite having been hollowed out for the better part of three decades are still expansive and their infrastructure well developed. As such it was a relatively easy task to set them up to support both individual citizens and businesses. We didn't need to pay out checks to individuals and deliver them by mail, because we already had systems in place to try that on a case to case basis.

2. No one in Sweden is surprised that Stockholm is the hardest hit area by far. People in Stockholm are generally noted for their individualistic attitudes compared to the rest of Sweden (and also the worst healthcare due to utterly incompetent politicians but that's another issue) and have been the worst when it comes to ignoring restrictions and recommendations.
 

Phoenixmgs

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It sure is, by virtue of telling the elderly and at risk people to keep stringent self-isolation procedures so that the rest of us can do whatever we like. It is similarly asking the Nursing staff that hasn't had Covid-19 yet to do nothing but eat, sleep and work because they need to self-isolate as to not bring Covid-19 to the nursing homes they work in. These guys are basically saying that the elderly, sick and nursing staff should be suffering extreme lockdown so that the rest of us can stop bothering with minimizing contagion and start spreading the sickness again.

It is good that I've never been a lockdown proponent then. I fully support the Swedish strategy of measured restrictions and carefully balancing how open society can be with how to best minimize contagion. Full lockdown was bad from the start and I think everyone is seeing that now. But the idea of Focused Protection is to stop enforcing all quarantine and contagion mitigation efforts for everyone not at risk and increase the quarantine for those at risk (and those working with those at risk, in extension). The solution is not either/or, it is not full lockdown or no restrictions. The solution is to keep as much infrastructure as possible running (schools, workplaces etc.) while minimizing social contacts were people tend to get very close to one another (restaurants, bars, sport events etc.).

I love your certainty. Especially since epidemiologists all are wary to give a prediction for how long the virus can be around. Without a vaccine it can be bouncing around for years, especially if it turns out that immunity to it is only temporary or partial. Worst case predictions has Covid-19 being around for half a decade. Which means that any responsible plan for how to deal with the pandemic has to assume that all measures put in place has to be continued for years to come.
The vulnerable are already self-isolating for the most part. Tons of nonvulnerable are isolating as well because the media doesn't tell you the actual risks. For the vast majority of people, driving is more dangerous yet they don't have a problem with that. I'm sure medical staff that work with the vulnerable just normally feel guilty doing something "risky" because they could potentially transmit it possibly causing a death. I don't see how this really changes much with regards to the groups you mentioned honestly. The virus spreading faster through the nonvulnerable means it becomes safe faster for those vulnerable.

It's based off SARS-COV-1 granting immunity for at least 17 years (as it's still going) and it conferring immunity to SARS-COV-2 so both viruses are similar enough that the same anti-bodies kill Covid. The virus is also very slow to mutate so that shouldn't be an issue. Plus, vaccines are close to being ready it seems. Most signs point to the virus not hanging around long. Not that it's 100% or anything. I'd expect no restrictions whatsoever by next summer.

It's not what they got wrong, it's what they omitted. This is what think tanks have done from the year dot. They start with ideology, data mine other people's research to select out only what they want other people to see, and bundle it together as a package to market it.

It always look like it makes sense, and it's written up to seem very appealing. But in reality the first and only consideration for all these think tanks is whether the policies they create serve their paymasters: basically, corporations and their shareholders. Literally anyone and everyone else can be thrown under the bus.
It's more so an idea vs an full-fledged optimal plan. It's basically like "hey, we've learned this virus is not very deadly at all to most people, the hardships from the lockdowns are producing more harm than the virus so we shouldn't be doing that." That's the general message, what did they omit? The one guy I know somewhat is Dr. Jay (not looking up his last name right now), and he from the start wanted to know the actual infection fatality rate (IFR) and was one of the 1st people doing anti-body surveys. If you don't know how deadly or undeadly something is, you can't really make proper policies/guidelines/restrictions/etc. Now that we know the numbers, the lockdowns just don't make sense. I don't personally think going 100% back to normal (while protecting the vulnerable) is the best solution, but a bunch of policies don't make sense. The UK recently/still has? the "rule of 6" in place meaning you can't be with 7+ people EVEN OUTSIDE, that makes no sense. I work IT for hospitals and if you need to go to a clinic for something, they're making you go to the actual hospital if you have like any symptom (like a headache) and costing people way more money in medical costs just for basic care. I heard this one nurse wanting to super thoroughly clean something (I forget what it was) because the person had covid 2 MONTHS ago and the other nurse wiped it down normally. A doctor today didn't realize she borrowed my pen to sign an agreement for the new laptop I gave and said I should wiped down the pen, and I said "Nah, I'm good". Hotels shrink wrap the TV remotes when house keeping could just set it on the window-sill in the sun for a couple minutes while they clean the room if they're so concerned about it. Chances are very slim you transmit the virus from surfaces but everybody is so fucking paranoid. I'm for policies that make sense with the data/numbers we have, and that's currently not what's happening.

Exactly, you want to be right. You're not willing to listen to dissenting opinions. You have actual scientists telling you where you are mistaken and assume that you know better than them anyway because you read an article. It's a perfect example of Dunning-Krueger. You're unaware of exactly how complicated this shit is and as a result you mistake just how thorough your own knowledge of the topic is or isn't. I'm not saying this to be That Guy, we all do it. You're very certain of the correctness of your opinions, but your certainty is that of a fool. You're over-estimating your own understanding of medicine, biology and epidemiology.
You don't get what either Dunning-Krueger is and/or not understanding what I'm saying. I'm not saying based on my research and knowledge on the subject, this is my opinion. I'm saying these doctors/experts based on their knowledge and the data we have are saying this and that. The guy, Michael Osterholm, that literally wrote the book on a hypothetical pandemic from China literally said at the beginning of it was that closing schools is probably not a good idea. Dr. Peter Hotez said a SARS vaccine would work and he was right, it wasn't my knowledge that came to that hypothesis. He also said seeing friends and stuff was fine way back in March so I wasn't one of the "stay home at all costs" people because I listened to actual doctors instead watching the horrible media that can't get any facts right. Look at this video and the media saying "look all these lawmakers not wearing masks and hugging", they're fucking outside, you don't need masks. Everything in the media has some stupid agenda to it instead of the facts. So if I say you shouldn't close schools, it's not my opinion, it's Osterholm's opinion and I'm trusting the expert's opinion. I listen to both opinions on any subject and the side the produces the stronger argument and has more evidence, I'm going to go with. Being for hydroxy is very dissenting in US for example and the fact that Trump boasted it would make me be highly skeptical since I hate Trump. But I'm going where the data leads, not what I want. It has literally nothing to do with my understanding of medicine but what doctors and experts are saying. I understand some basics but not nearly enough to have a legit opinion just based on that.
 
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Shadyside

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How do you guys deal with people who are always saying that they don't believe that many people have died, because they don't see dead bodies and funerals on social media? "Where are all the corpses and where exactly are they burying them?" They are also yelling why didn't more people die during the BLM riots and protests?
 

lil devils x

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Thank you, Fox Mulder.
At least Fox Mulder at least had some knowledge and understanding of what he speaks, this guy does not even understand the data he espouses as " Truth". The data is out there, and it isn't what he believes.. like at all.
 
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Buyetyen

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At least Fox Mulder at least had some knowledge and understanding of what he speaks, this guy does not even understand the data he espouses as " Truth". The data is out there, and it isn't what he believes.. like at all.
It's kind of interesting how he thinks his lack of expertise would NOT influence how he perceives and interprets the data.
 
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Phoenixmgs

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At least Fox Mulder at least had some knowledge and understanding of what he speaks, this guy does not even understand the data he espouses as " Truth". The data is out there, and it isn't what he believes.. like at all.
And you post low-quality articles about things constantly. You've yet to post a single study or data saying hydroxy either doesn't work or is unsafe as early treatment.
 
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Gethsemani

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The vulnerable are already self-isolating for the most part. Tons of nonvulnerable are isolating as well because the media doesn't tell you the actual risks. For the vast majority of people, driving is more dangerous yet they don't have a problem with that. I'm sure medical staff that work with the vulnerable just normally feel guilty doing something "risky" because they could potentially transmit it possibly causing a death. I don't see how this really changes much with regards to the groups you mentioned honestly. The virus spreading faster through the nonvulnerable means it becomes safe faster for those vulnerable.
Can we stop with the tired, inapplicable driving analogy? Yes, driving is more dangerous but, as I've repeated multiple times through this thread, the real danger of Covid-19 is not the risk of the individual dying but of a societal collapse, partial or otherwise, if too many individuals get sick at the wrong time (and if they do, driving will decidedly be less dangerous as more people will die due to lack of healthcare). If everyone stops doing contagion mitigation more people will get sick in a short time, this will cause a higher strain on not only healthcare but the economy and all parts of civic society, as workers are home sick instead of working. Worst case scenario is that too many people are sick at the same time and the economy suffers a nose dive as goods can't be manufactured, transported or sold and people are home for a long time as healthcare can't provide the necessary (even if limited) aid for a quick recovery.

You also do realize that the at risk and healthcare staff we are talking about isolating until some undecided time in the future numbers in millions of people, right? You, literally, want them to suffer more and longer so that you can go to a party again. I can't emphasize enough how callous and cruel I think this is. So let me quote former vice president Herbert Humphrey, because he gets it: “The moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped.” . Apply that and ask yourself what the Great Barrington Declaration says about US society, if it was to be adopted as doctrine. It is nothing nice.

It's based off SARS-COV-1 granting immunity for at least 17 years (as it's still going) and it conferring immunity to SARS-COV-2 so both viruses are similar enough that the same anti-bodies kill Covid. The virus is also very slow to mutate so that shouldn't be an issue. Plus, vaccines are close to being ready it seems. Most signs point to the virus not hanging around long. Not that it's 100% or anything. I'd expect no restrictions whatsoever by next summer.
Once again I am impressed by your certainty. Especially since we just got news yesterday of the first Covid-19 related death of someone who had been infected twice. Granted there were very special circumstances there, but we still don't know if SARS-CoV-1 is the same in terms of immunity. There are theories about other Corona virus antibodies conferring full or partial protection but the scientists are still out on that one. Best case scenario is that SARS-CoV-2 will burn itself out sometime next year whether we vaccinate or not. Worst case scenario, it keeps doing what its' done so far and come in waves for years to come with no vaccine in sight.

The old adage of "hope for the best and prepare for the worst" holds very much true right now. You explicitly want us to not prepare for the worst because it means uncomfortable compromises for you in order to mitigate risk for others. Once again, I can not express fully just how utterly immoral and cruel I find that kind of reasoning.
 

Agema

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It's more so an idea vs an full-fledged optimal plan.
Yes, it's a political idea.

Any policy that needs to be enacted has to be a political issue, obviously. But I don't like this because it's politics masquerading as science.

When we talk about politicised science, this is what politicised science is. It is a play for attention to win over voters and policymakers that bypasses full and proper scientific discussion. It's not an open, balanced and honest presentation of scientific facts: it misses out a lot of science to present a one-sided view, and the wider scientific and medical community have not put their heads together and subjected this to scrutiny, nor have other opinions and options from science and medicine been given equal hearing (or even a voice at all).

Part of the dishonesty here is to pass it off as if it is coming from science. This is what I mean by the think tank hiding its involvement, and that it's getting scientists and healthcare professionals to sign up to the declaration. The effect of the latter is not to reason through scientific argument but to influence via argumentum ad populum / appeal to authority: There's no verification these signatories are who they say they are, or that even those that are genuine have appropriate in-depth understanding - just having a doctorate in biomedical sciences or something healthcare-related is not enough.
 

Buyetyen

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You've yet to post a single study or data saying hydroxy either doesn't work or is unsafe as early treatment.
Because there isn't enough data for the medical community to make an official statement one way or the other yet. They play it close to the vest as best they can until a treatment is ready for prime time. This isn't a binary, dude. There is a process at work here, one that you keep trying to skip to the end of based on a couple of data points in isolation.
 

lil devils x

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After CDC started speaking up about trump's interference with the CDC, Trump has now installed his goons directly at CDC to watch over the CDC to control what they are allowed to say.
 

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Trumps new OSHA guidelines also will make it more difficult to detect COVID-19 Cluster outbreaks at workplaces.

"If your workplace is the site of a major coronavirus outbreak, don’t expect your employer to tell the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Employers are legally required to notify OSHA promptly whenever a worker ends up hospitalized due to a work-related injury or illness. But the way the Trump administration is choosing to read the rules, there is almost no scenario in which a COVID-19 hospitalization must be reported to the agency.
Workplace safety experts are concerned the lack of employer reporting will leave the federal government unable to track large workplace outbreaks and intervene to stop the spread. Some of the worst COVID-19 clusters in the country have revolved around workplaces like meatpacking plants and nursing homes.

“This is going to lead to the further spread of COVID-19 at work and out into the public,” said Debbie Berkowitz, a former OSHA official now with the nonprofit National Employment Law Project. “It means the agency will never find out where there are serious outbreaks, and will never be able to hold employers accountable.”
In 2014, the Obama-era OSHA issued a regulation stating that whenever a worker is hospitalized, suffers an amputation or loses an eye, the employer has to report the incident to OSHA within 24 hours by phone or email. When an employer learns of a work-related death, OSHA must be notified within eight hours.
But in updated guidance issued on Sept. 30, the Trump administration made clear the rule wouldn’t apply to most COVID-19 cases. It pointed to a line in the regulation that says “you must only report the event to OSHA if it occurs within twenty-four hours of the work-related incident.”

Under the administration’s interpretation, “work-related incident” means “an exposure to [coronavirus] in the workplace.” So for the employer to be required to notify OSHA, a worker would have to be exposed to COVID-19, get sick and end up hospitalized all within 24 hours. That’s not how this virus works, and the change all but ensures far less reporting.

The new policy appears to be a reversal of the agency’s guidance in July, when it said employers had to report hospitalizations regardless of when the exposure might have happened. "

 

Phoenixmgs

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The driving analogy is apt in a couple ways to where people are fine with its risk yet many have overreacted to covid risks (that are much lower) and also the fact that driving risks the lives/health of people around you too. You can have the same collapses from the lockdowns too. There have been estimates that 10s of millions of Americans will get evicted from their houses. I have said numerous times that we should be as "open" to where that doesn't overwhelm healthcare, I've never said otherwise. Aren't a decent amount of healthcare staff already isolating during even when the most extreme lockdowns were happening in the US? I have a friend that works at an elderly health facility and she was very skiddish about doing things for months. The current system her facility has in place to protect against covid spread internally has her going out and doing things more. It has nothing to do with I want to have fun while forcing others to not have fun. I haven't really changed my level of "fun" much the whole time because I'm not one to go to bars/clubs/massive gatherings much, and the vast majority of my public interactions (outside of my normal group of friends) happen at work and that went away as I was furloughed for months and my groups of have been meeting like normal pretty much the entire time. I missed going to GenCon in the summer but I'm also not advocating for Cons to return either.

You can look at other countries that haven't done lockdowns and show better deaths/capita rates than the US. Super recent data points to Tokyo having over 50% of its population being exposed to the virus already and Japan as an entire country has less than 2,000 deaths. And, Japan has a high elderly population and never locked down. Nobody in Japan was like "Fuck the old people, I wanna have FUN!" You have this Time article stating how bad the Great Barrington Declaration is citing the Sweden Experiment as a "catastrophic failure" yet Sweden has less deaths per capita than the US. This recent NY Times article states how pretty much every European country now "are quietly adopting the Swedish approach" because the economic fallout from lockdowns isn't viable long-term. What everybody should be looking at is Japan because the reasons they have such low numbers pretty much correlate directly to what we think works and Japan checks all the boxes like the population isn't vitamin d deficient, everyone wears masks (less initial viral load when you do get infected), etc. Funny how everyone wearing masks directly allows for more freedoms. And that's all the cheap simple things any country can do, Japan has no elaborate testing/tracing system in place that would be hard to replicate elsewhere for example nor do they have a low density population.

Pretty much what I posted in the 2nd paragraph right above this as far as the science and politics. Sure, if you forced everyone to stay home, there'd be objectively less deaths. But you can only do that for so long, it's not a viable long-term. It's why a lot of countries are basically transitioning to the Swedish approach more or less. More harm can come from the lockdowns than from covid itself. I personally don't feel Dr. Jay (as I've seen him talk on a few videos all the way back in March/April to now) cares much about the politics but weighing the harms of the virus to the economic harms and being against the higher number. Where's the science that says lockdowns produce less total harm?

How much more data do you need? There's probably more studies for hydroxy than anything else at this point. Also, it's very safe to take so even if it doesn't work, it's producing no harm and it's super cheap. Remdesivir is over $3,000 for a 5-day dosage and it has less data supporting it and the data that is there is less convincing than hydroxy. It's the politics in the medical field that are against hydroxy, not the data.
 

Gethsemani

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Aren't a decent amount of healthcare staff already isolating during even when the most extreme lockdowns were happening in the US? I have a friend that works at an elderly health facility and she was very skiddish about doing things for months.
I have a few colleagues who worked in the IMU for Covid-19 cases in Gothenburg. They went back to normal care in late summer and have been seeing a steady and increasingly drastic increase in long term sick leaves due to exhaustion or psychological issues ever since. The toll taken on healthcare personnel is already great and these people have the nerve to suggest that nursing staff should keep paying the price in overtime, ethical stress and unsustainable working conditions, because it is more important that ordinary people get to go to restaurants and parties.

Once again, since you never address the moral issues at hand: This is callous and cruel. Not just to the elderly and sick who are sacrificed so the rest of the population can pretend as if nothing is wrong, but to all the healthcare staff (predominantly nursing staff like me) that gets to work harder because infection rates will go up when people stop even trying.

Nobody in Japan was like "Fuck the old people, I wanna have FUN!"
You mean that the society that highly values conformity and obedience to superiors and collective good over individuals fell in line and did as demanded? Color me shocked. The USA (nor any European nation) is anywhere near Japan in that regard.

You have this Time article stating how bad the Great Barrington Declaration is citing the Sweden Experiment as a "catastrophic failure" yet Sweden has less deaths per capita than the US.
This is not about Sweden. Sweden failed catastrophically in keeping its elderly safe, which is why we have among the highest deaths per capita in Europe. The USA is on a whole other level due to a wide, systemic failure on the federal level. This has been discussed more thoroughly in other threads.

This recent NY Times article states how pretty much every European country now "are quietly adopting the Swedish approach" because the economic fallout from lockdowns isn't viable long-term.
You do realize that Sweden's approach isn't the Great Barrington approach, but rather a "soft lockdown" that is meant to prevent people from gathering as normal in places like bars, restaurants, theaters and squares? That we have restrictions like 50 people max in one location, 1,5 meters between people in public places and are considering re-introducing a restriction on how far from home you can travel?
 
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