Not a 21st century man

Posted On: Saturday - March 26th 2022 9:18PM MST
In Topics: 
  Music  Curmudgeonry  Artificial Stupidity  The Future

The previous post was a very small complaint, I suppose. It's a "1st World problem", in the midst of what I see are 3rd World problems coming as we transition* that way.

Yeah, I can text these people back with "STOP" or whatever they ask. It's just that there's more and more of this "TECH" stupidity than I don't want to have any part in. We are more and more forced to, though. We've got all kinds of software that we must deal with, much of it being "upgraded" frequently to force us to learn new things, such as how to use the same tools we used to be able to operate the new ways, the old ways having been "deprecated".

A major problem I have with the modern software-run world of the 21st Century is that it's getting pretty hard to keep up with how things work anymore. Yeah, it's not 1981 anymore. Most things are built too cheaply to make them worth fixing, so why understand them? The items that used to be called "durable goods" by economists, when they were, are now so sophisticated and full of electronics and sensors that it's pretty hard to really know what goes on inside.

Even for modern cars, I suppose (other than all the easily breakable plastic) more durable, milage-wise, than the old ones, have perhaps too many systems for a mechanic to know. How many mechanics can do real old-fashioned analog-thinking troubleshooting on new cars anymore? There are the on-board diagnostics, which can tell you all sorts of details. That's extremely helpful, of course. The fixes are very often the removal and replacement of electronic boxes, and the troubleshooting involves which to try first, knowing that some items can and some can't be returned. So we just use machines of all sorts that hopefully work but we don't understand why they do or don't so much anymore.

Along with this is the effect of all the software changing life such that we must satisfy the needs of the machines, rather than they just plain working when we need them. All the many things we have with batteries must be kept charged up, sometimes a whole rigamarole when you're low on chargers. Then "upgrade will happen tonight" is one of these things that makes me really hate this 21st century world of software. I just want to keep using the thing and not have to figure it out again, but if I keep putting it off, it WILL stop working for me. (And you thought union labor was hard to deal with.) Even the more mechanical devices are so "smart" that one must do things their way and spend extra time and effort get them back on track if they go off plan. (See our old post Coffee Machines and Jet Airplanes - machines taking control.)

Here's another example. Peak Stupidity has gone on and on about the electronics calculations programmed into the consoles of exercise machines (look through the Artificial Stupidity***. Well, this is not about the calculations but definitely about the artificial stupidity.

I get on one of the hotel treadmills, run like hell, and then check my pulse.**** I can't do both at the same time, as it's much easier exercise (for the same slope/speed combination) to hold onto the machine. They only go up to 15% slope, so I don't hold on.

When I've had enough, I jump off, with my feet onto the side rails, put my hands on the sensors, and wait. It takes 10 to 20 seconds, but I can see almost what my heart rate got up to, and then I can watch my heart rate go down properly, as it should (or damn well BETTER!). Yeah, but the machine now "thinks": "Oh, you're not on the machine." and tells me "no steps detected, mash resume" or it will quit in 30 seconds. I hit the resume, which takes one hand, hence the pulse reading is gone for 10 seconds. On the good ones with the paddle switches, at least I can use my chin! Well, I did a little playing around with this afterwards a couple of times. I tried banging one foot on the belt and then dragging a foot on it. I found that it's not the former, impact sensing, but the latter, torque sensing as in, it's likely surges in torque on the motor, hence current surges, that it uses to know when the user is actually running/walking.

OK, fine, so I've got to do that foot dragging thing so I can keep both hands on the sensors and watch my heart rate. Yes, this feature is made to save power/wear if a user forgets to turn the treadmill off. I! GET! THAT! If it were mine, hopefully I could find the way turn turn off this "great feature". That's hopefully, but not for sure. It's not at my house, and I haven't asked a salesman though, so I don't know . Therefore, I must stand there like an idiot making sure this "SMART" treadmill keeps going when I WANT it to. I have to work FOR the machine, rather than it working for me.

Yeah, I know, you've always had to change the oil in the car, sharpen your chain saw blade, drain water from the air compressor, take the lint of the dryer hose, etc, but we could do that on our own schedules. I don't like how the modern machines are bossing me around.

So, we can't keep up with how our devices work anymore, and they take charge of more and more of our lives. The younger generations seem to be just fine with that, as it's all they know. I am not just fine with that, as I remember. We are living in a world full of electronics and electromechanical devices that take care of important things in our lives and depending on them, but not knowing what they're all about. I don't like the feeling of not being in control of the things of this world, at least mine.

This is the 21st century, but I'm not a 21st Century Man. That is the name of a great Electric Light Orchestra song from 20 years before this century started. It's from my favorite concept album ever, ELO's Time, featured here on Peak Stupidity years ago. The story is about a man who travels forward in time well into the 21st Century (like now, but it was better), and missed the world he left in 1981. Funny thing is, the hit song from the album, Hold on Tight is about the only one that is not part of the story.

We didn't have a time machine, but we still got here.

Fly across the city.
Rise above the land.
You can do 'most anything.
Now you're a 21st century man.

Though you ride on the wheels of tomorrow,
you still wander the fields of your sorrow.
What will it bring?

Jeff Lynne – Lead and backing vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, piano, vocoder, synthesizers.
Bev Bevan – Drums, percussion.
Richard Tandy – Acoustic and electric pianos, synthesizers, vocoder, guitars.
Kelly Groucutt – Bass guitar, backing vocals.

At least I was OK with the 20th century, my portion of it anyway. These guys, The Kinks didn't like that one either, with some pretty legitimate complaints.

This is the age of machinery,
A mechanical nightmare.
The wonderful world of technology,
napalm, hydrogen bombs, biological warfare.

This is the twentieth century,
But too much aggravation.
It's the age of insanity.
What has become of the green pleasant fields of Jerusalem?

Ain't got no ambition, I'm just disillusioned.
I'm a twentieth century man, but I don't want to be here.

20th Century Man is from The Kink's 10th studio album, Muswell Hillbillies, released just over 50 years ago. This live version is from their 1980 One for the Road album, and this song was recorded at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ on March 3rd of 1979.

Hey, these guys were of a real Libertarian bent, especially surprising, their being Brits.** From the studio version:

I was born in a welfare state
Ruled by bureaucracy,
controlled by civil servants
and people dressed in grey.
Got no privacy, got no liberty,
'cause the twentieth century people
took it all away from me.

The Kinks, on the road, at least:

Ray Davies – guitar, harmonica, keyboards, vocals
Dave Davies – lead guitar, backing vocals
Ian Gibbons – keyboards, backing vocals
Mick Avory – drums
Jim Rodford – bass, backing vocals

Well, good night, Peakers. Thanks yet again for reading and commenting.

PS: As per commenting with Alarmist, let me reiterate. that, yes, one can tinker with the modern devices and understand some of it all. However, that's not the case for the large majority of the people. They don't care to understand, much less fix anything,

So, I'm living in a world where most people not only don't understand the machines that are taking more and more control of our lives, but have an attitude that says "why should I care? They just run things in the world. Nothing I can do about it. Go with the flow."

* Ewww! No, not that type of transition.

** ELO was a British band too. There were so many.

*** Term coined by John Derbyshire.

**** Believe me, I've tried the chest ones, but never found a reliable one yet.

[UPDATED. 04/27:]
Added the PS and added the example of the treadmill machine.

Tuesday - March 29th 2022 4:11AM MST
PS: Dieter, I am not sure what happened with your comments with the links. I'm very sorry if you lost anything. (Lately, on any site but UR, I'll copy my comment first, if it's significantly long. UR system is excellent, though occasionally slow ... However, here, as I think Mr. Ganderson told me long ago, if you do forget the PS, you should hit the browser BACK right away, and you'll still see your comment and can edit it.)

This site will strip out all HTML tags, including those that are links. However, I just tried to make sure there was no problem, and pasting in a link like

That works fine. The software is not fancy, it's a shame we can't insert REAL hypertext links (i.e., that one can click on) or pictures, it's not good for formatting, but I gotta say it's pretty simple. I don't know what happened with yours. Try again, if you want, and we'll see.
Dieter Kief
Tuesday - March 29th 2022 2:43AM MST

Mod. - I've deactivated all links in my post and gave it one more try: Then it worked.
Dieter Kief
Tuesday - March 29th 2022 2:41AM MST

Mod.- if you'd have a short look at these age-standardised US-death numbers and subtract a factor x for immigrants - than they look - reasonable to your informed eyes?

Michael Levitt's analysis of excess death and Covid-19 mortality is here via google:

heatherrenkel github io_excess_death_age_location

The numbers he gives for New York make it quite clear, that excess deaths in the US are including lockdown caused deathsand those are stuffed up so to speak by deaths that came from lockdown and maltreatment (which in the New York case are closely knit together in the spring of 2020, when the excess deaths number was highest).
Orwell 2024 excess deaths in the world (including the US)

via google: Age Standardised Mortality Rates (ASMR) using HMD 

I'd draw the old hermeneutic conclusion that by and large, the tendency is quite alike in your analysis of excess death numbers as well as in that of Michael Levitt and Orwell2024. Would you agree?
PSAdam's stories make it clear that CO-19 was no nothingburger. In our TV / Internet world every single news consumer is potentially close**** to each and every such single (!) story as Adam told us one. This is a huge chunk of our social reality. The coherence, the shared destiny so to speak, in the age of mass communication makes destiny a real time thing in an unprecedented way.

**** the identification process via such stories, multiplied up to billionfold, takes places in our private sphere - in our living-rooms (and bedrooms for many even...) - that's HOW close that is.


Btw. - I came across a Horaz-quote in Johann Gottfried Seume's classic example of travel-writing "A Stroll to Syracuse in the Year 1802" this morning, that speaks of men trying to come to grips with plagues not least but also with progress of all kinds (like sailing to distant coasts, Alarmist!) and which result altogether in:

 - Subject for further investigations.
Btw. II - Seume touches on all of that "ever so lightly" (Taki Theoderacopoulos) while approaching the Grand Saint Bernard pass in the Alps, walking up there in a tough two days march in a first rainy and foggy, then snowy and stormy early June - while - in a perfectly clear inner monologue - defending a rather nerdy (!) Russian General whom he happened to meet and make friends with on his way. He defends the Russian military not least by comparing the misdeeds everybody is bringing up against this Russian man of war - by comparing them, as I said,  - - - to the misdeeds of the English.Seume argues that the Russian misdeeds look harsher than they are not least because the English are much better at making people believe in their version of the big stories the social world IS (=consists of) for us story-dependent (!) humans.

Pages 334 - 338 in Stroll to Syracuse. 

(I cleaned up my garage yesterday and came across this Seume book**** and - then read in it and - - - -**** my library is still not set up properly since we moved here. But soon it will be!)
Dieter Kief
Tuesday - March 29th 2022 2:27AM MST

Mr. Moderator - my two lats posts with PS neatly in them disappeared. - The first had threee links in it. The second two. I've copied them before "posting". Is it me or i s it the PS system?
The Alarmist
Monday - March 28th 2022 12:33PM MST

To your PS, those are the people who starve first.

Today’s moment of zen:
Monday - March 28th 2022 10:40AM MST
PS: Funny story, Alarmist! (Well, I suppose, it was not at the time.) I've had no luck with the chest-strap ones, but usually those sensors are reasonably accurate. One time, my heart rate was not dropping very quickly - it got me a little worried until I realized that was a running average. If you can get (afford) your own machine, I guess you can know it well and not have any problems - I would know which one to buy. Only problem I see is having a heart attack moving the thing in - they are really HEAVY!

Mr. Smith, thank you for those stories, and I am sorry for your friend Larry. No doubt plenty of people with heart problems, impending cancer, or other serious health problems were hurt or killed due to lack of real care for that long period. How is that all accounted for in the numbers? Dieter Kief tried to get through to others on that thread with this point.

Dieter, if you need more info on those 3 posts, let me know. The data was very nice, even in .xls (spreadsheet) files already from one of them (CDC or Census Bureau, can't remember). I did have to combine 5-yr age groups into 10-yr ones to match up, but that's explained in there. At this point, the information for both '20 and '21 ought to be there, so I could run some more numbers. Those spreadsheets are on my computer - can check middle of the week.

For others here, what those posts were about is trying to make sense of why all those excess death curves (that Steve Sailer and his friend showed us) had a baseline that had a steady yearly up-and-down cycle, but no steady increase of said baseline. There's no way that's the real case. My spreadsheet was simple arithmetic, taking death rates of age groups from previous years, and multiplying them from the number of Americans in each group.

As I wrote afterwards (3rd post), that doesn't count illegal aliens, who may or may not be getting older in the same way, and a smaller factor, infant mortality. The illegal aliens still die though and must be counted in deaths. There are more and more of them, yet most of them won't be in the census-calculated numbers.
The Alarmist
Monday - March 28th 2022 7:11AM MST

Despite all standard advice for persons of my advanced, I crank the treadmill up to 9mph for 30-second sprints ... this gets my heart up to 150 very quickly and I tend to peak around 160 before slowing down. Most days it would peak and then fall reasonably quickly after I slow down. One day my chest-strap reading jumped from 130 to 180 and climbed through 200 bpm, so I broke off quickly and waited for the inevitable heart attack, even though I had no shortness of breath or pain. As I sat there, it continued to show something in the 180 bpm range.

Then my radio transmitter, which was broadcasting WSPR at what I thought was five watts turned off. But I double checked the power level on the 7300, and it turns out it was set at 80w from the SSB work I had done before. That was the culprit this time around.

I’ve started wearing a fitbit in addition to the strap to give confirmation, or at least a control, because the ches-strap also gives me strange readings depending on how much I sweat, or for other reasons I haven’t identified. The fitbit also gives the occasional odd reading, but I figure the two won’t likely give seriously wrong readings at the same time.
Dieter Kief
Sunday - March 27th 2022 2:47PM MST
Oha - thanks a lot gentlemen! - Wonderful responses.
So - after a day near the Alpstein/Säntis in perfectly nice springtime***** I'll look into all these numbers of yours Mr. Mod.
Mr. Hail, I am a bit of the désinvolture kind mentally (see Ernst Jünger and Carl Schmitt and Helmut Lethen: Verhaltenslehre der Kälte.../ Gottfried Benn (we have to look at our (physical & mental (!) STOCK (= be rather cool), ... when it comes to people like - Pincher Martin. I welcome everybody who is willing to be a sparring-partner. In order to develop a decent punch***, you better - fight...A simple approach on my side. And as a matter of fact, that question of excess deaths - I follow here not least Michael Levitt, is one of the important landmarks in these (I admit that right away, Mr. Hail) hard to overlook Covid-fields.

*** google: Warren Zevon - Boom Boom Mancini - 1995 South Station Boston - YouTube // - great performance of a great song in a great setting

("...if you can't take the punches, it ain't worth a thing...")

Adam, your stories are the right stuff, thanks a lot.

Alarmist, you are onto something according to the eugyppius Covid-blogger too in that it might be the case by now, that the vaccines in these Omicron days could indeed have an adverse effect. If (if...) that could be shown ( = proven to be right), that would be quite something too.

Now - as noted before: Scandinavia (and Switzerland and France...) were doing impressively well. See Orwell 2024. - About as good as the completely locked-down New Zealand in raw numbers. That came as a surprise, because for years now it has been said (by Claire Lehmann from Quillette, for example) that New Zealand would have done outstandingly well and saved thousands of lives.  But: Orwell2024's numbers   showed that No.  - Just No.  - New Zealand did not do badly at all but NOT better than Sweden / France/ Norway / Switzerland either. - Now look at the social (and economic) price they paid (that is something Ivor Cummins pointed out from the beginning: That strict measures are costly in lots of regards... (Many people loathed him for that argument in the beginning, because for many people that perspective seemed unethical.... But it is not.

Hahah: Once again: It is a cool clean & sober look (= a rational way of looking at things... - and thus obviously not up to date....but being not up to date is not unethical per se)... It seems now that Jacinda Ahern would have accomplished something by sacrificing too much for what she has accomplished. Her Covid-policy was overprotective and counterproductive in many (important) ways (not in all ways).    

***** perfectly nice spring day - but no photo-light - too much dust and moisture in the air already. There are days in which quasi anything looks attractive - and others, which look good, but don't make things look good. - Such days are ideal to spend them with friends because photography does not - distract me from them.
Adam Smith
Sunday - March 27th 2022 11:36AM MST
PS: Good afternoon, gentlemen,

About that off topic “COVID” numbers stuff...

I have a couple quick anecdotes about the so called “COVID” numbers, tainted data, unintended consequences and CoronaPanic induced deaths.

I never met Susie. I'm friends with her brother. I know for a fact that she was classified as a “COVID” case and a “COVID” death. While I'm glad to see that her obituary is honest about her dying from an extended illness it does not change the fact that the way they coded her death helped taint the data.

Larry's case is a bit different. He was a neighbor and a close friend. He was a truly wonderful person. Larry was also classified as a “COVID” case and a “COVID” death. However, it is my belief that Larry was unintentionally murdered by the hospital staff due to the improper care that he received at the hospital, most specifically by being put on the ventilator in accordance with CDC/NIH guidelines. (Once they put him on the ventilator he was dead within 24 hours.)

Larry had a health episode several months before he passed. He suffered a mild heart attack and spent a few days in the hospital. He was supposed to see a cardiologist to figure out what was going on, it seemed he had a blockage. But, he never saw a cardiologist, or anyone else, because so many health care providers were not seeing anyone due to the CoronaPanic craziness. He never received treatment or proper diagnosis after his heart attack.

Had Larry received proper care, he would likely be with us today.

I know these are just two examples, but they're the only two so called “COVID” deaths that have happened among the people that I know personally. As far as excess mortality data is concerned, I would guess that in normal times Susie would have passed while Larry would have received proper medical care allowing him to be with his family to this day. (Of course no one has anyway of knowing something like this definitely. I'm just calling it like I see it.)

I hope everyone has a great and happy Sunday!

Adam Smith
Sunday - March 27th 2022 11:26AM MST
PS: Good afternoon, everyone,

Cheers to another wonderful post, Mr. Moderator... Thank you.

About those cars and stuff...
I recently had an 2002 Cadillac in the shop.
It seemed like the blend door actuator needed to be replaced.
(All heat, anytime the blower was on, even on A/C.)
It's a pretty common problem easily solved with a new actuator.
But the new actuator worked just like the old one... Hmmm... ?

“Does it need a climate control module?” I wondered.
“Why won't the car recalibrate the blend door actuator?”

But before we get ahead of ourselves, let's spend a little time cleaning the old, dirty fuses.
So, I spent about an hour cleaning all the fuses and relays with a wire brush.
Tuns out, it just needed it's fuses/relays cleaned.
(Corrosion on the fuses = incorrect voltage to and from the sensors and control modules and such.)

20 year old cars are still worth fixing...
Newer cars, I'm not so sure...

The Alarmist
Sunday - March 27th 2022 9:39AM MST

@Moderator, I take your point. The expression “tearing down a tranny” has a whole other meaning nowadays.

To the others’ point, now that it seems the vaxxed get sick at four times the rate than the unvaxxed, I guess the unvaxxed can breathe a little easier, especially without the adverse side effects.

Pincher Martin is an idiot. He wouldn’t know science if it bit him in the posterior.
Sunday - March 27th 2022 7:40AM MST
PS: First of all, Dieter, here are the 3 posts, in chronological order:

"Hey, what's the deal with excess deaths, anyway?"

"Mortality addendum"

"Back to the excess death count - Could it be infants and illegal aliens?"

Yeah, that last title sounds goofy, but there is a death count from the CDC that doesn't care how you snuck into the US of A. You're at the morgue, dead, period. Then there are the numbers from the US Census, for the most part US Citizens, which I used to multiply (by age bracket) by the death rates (in age brackets) as the years '15 to '19 went by.

I got discrepancies between these and the CDC general mortality numbers per year. There was also small effect due to that the census data has a bracket of ages "1-5". I'd erroneously thought that included babies, but infant mortality is somewhat different. That's a difference of 20,000 or so.

This is disjointed, so I'll read over my posts again and see if you need more explanation. Suffice it to say right now, that Mr. Pincher's almost unchanging 2.8 million numbers (going by memory) from '15 to '19 don't represent the aging population, much less the additional aging into '20 and '21 and, just as importantly, the other confusing effects you and Mr. Hail mention (here, and you in that thread).
Sunday - March 27th 2022 7:25AM MST
PS: Dieter, I did read through that thread. For both you and Mr. Hail, let me preface this with what I think about this Martin fellow (Ron Unz terminology - "fellow", haha).

I gave up writing him in a thread (we may have been O/T) on financial matters. He had 3 more comments, and it was an old thread, but more than that, I just don't know what to say to an (otherwise) intelligent guy who says our economy is doing just great and we are richer than ever!

Now, I try not to attach my feelings about one form of stupidity, like that, to other matters. The guy, as almost everyone on iSteve and most of The Unz Review, is a race realist, anti-immigration-invasion, etc. However, and this is addressing Mr. Hail more, for Mr. Pincher to tell us that we are wrong for calling Australian and N.Z. lockdowns and masking orders and such tyranny is why the name calling from Achmed there. That one was not about the numbers, Mr. Hail. He had the gall to tell me I don't know how freedom works, as you need these tyrannical measures to ensure freedom, or something. (Not a direct quote, but you can read there.)

I also agree, Mr. Hail, that it's very hard to distinguish actual DIRECT effects of the COVID-19 virus on health from other healthcare problems brought on by the induced panic itself.

I will address your questions with the 3 links, Mr. Kief, but I want to better point out what I was doing there. This relates to my opinion of this Martin Pincher stated above, but I was too disgusted with the guy - not on this thread, but in general - to reply directly. I read your comments and would have chimed in otherwise. The thread is old, but let me take more time, hopefully in an hour or two to address this properly.

In short though, Mr. Pincher's total death numbers do not match what I got from CDC death rates/Census data. The big trend toward higher age brackets for Americans, and associated death rates was not properly taken into account in these excess death calculations.
Sunday - March 27th 2022 7:12AM MST
PS: New World Man, that sounds like this new world alright. I think most of the 1970s Sci-Fi writers that I read did pretty good regarding the technology but very poorly in imagining how the evil and stupid elites would screw up the future.

The biggest thing, as I mused on in "Effect of Automation on Future World society""

is that these writers didn't imagine the dysgenics that would occur due to:

1) The zero population grown push and feminism in the West
2) The medical technology allowing for high population growth in the worst of places/people
3) The huge Welfare States of the West.

One guy who DID get this was Mike Judge - see "Idiocracy" - the intro. does a nice job. (He had to go with the White trailer trash family rather than the REAL truth, of course, as that was not in the 1970s.)
Sunday - March 27th 2022 6:38AM MST
PS: I have nothing at all against O/T comments, but I'll address Alarmist first, since the others are more related together. Yeah, I am somewhat familiar with the arduino and Raspberry Pi, and they are a WHOLE LOT easier to deal with than A/D and D/A devices on the circuit boards that went into the old desktops and "towers". Anyone remember towers? By that I mean that I understand what they are for and the implications for their use all kinds of devices.

I do know that there are guys out there tinkering with this or that, even the phones and tablets to some degree. I wrote about this in "DIY and mechanical aptitude in Americans vs. Chinese - self rebuttal"

It was a self-rebuttal to my post "China vs. America and the local hardware store".

That's great, and if I'd get off my ass, I could do some neat projects that would indeed be lots easier with amazing new sensors and electronics. However, my point in the post, Alarmist, should have been that it's the fact that most people don't have what it takes to understand how our machines work, much less tinker with them. I don't think that was the case in the past.

So, I'm living in a world where most people not only don't understand the machines that are taking more and more control of our lives, but have an attitude that says "why should I care? They just run things in the world. Nothing I can do about it. Go with the flow."

BTW, just this morning, I ran into perfect example of having to baby, or work WITH a machine, rather than get it to do what I want. I'll put it in the post now.
The Alarmist
Sunday - March 27th 2022 4:32AM MST
PS : I’m glad you didn’t go with Disco-very. BTW, did you know that Elo is a race (as my Euro friends & family call such things) of dogs.

You’d be amazed what you can bang together with components rescued from bricked electronics using a SMD rework station, a toaster oven as a reflow solderer, a few tweezers and bits and bobs, magnifier-lit glasses, and programming software. I won’t be building a smartphone, but I can keep a number of basic electronics running or build basic things that help automate things in the garden and keep a local mesh network going for neighbourhood surveillance and commmunication.

Buy an Arduino or Raspberry Pi experimenters kit and give getting into the 21st century a go, even if it only gets you to 2006.

Sunday - March 27th 2022 4:18AM MST

(a final comment on Pincher Martin's angry defense of the Corona-Panic)

It seems Pincher Martin does not understand (or appreciate?) WHAT the Corona-Panic was.

Pincher Martin shows the Panic-supporters' and lockdownists' critical logical flaw, which is they think they can do something "ceteris parabis" (holding all else equal, look at something in isolation).

"We'll just lock down a little while and just press the 'pause' button, hold all else equal; everything can then go right back to normal, once we defeat the Wuhan-Apocalypse-Virus and crush the evil Covid-Deniers; it'll be no problem").

The exact same problem applies to Pincher Martin's numbers-analysis. He does not know he is not comparing apples to apple with 2014-19 vs. 2020-21?

I would ask him to consider the specific case of drug-overdoses in the USA. Confirmed, +50% more deaths in 2020-2021 than (the already-historically-high) late-2010s period. The number of drug-overdose deaths are now so high it looks to be now a 2.5% lifetime chance, pegged to the CoronaPanic-era numbers. That seem definitely a historical high. probably only exceeded among the communities of Chinese with lots of opium-addict layabouts in the 19th and early 20th centuries, I don't know.

But back to the Corona-numbers-problem. Apply the same principle to a dozen other things, some easier to see or quantify than others but the outlines of which we can guess. There is no reason to assume the ONLY side-effect of the Corona-Panic social shock was a +50% drug-overdose death rate, right? That would be very strange if so.

Does Pincher Martin (or any other Panic-loyalists) believe these numbers mean nothing? That we can "wave a magic wand" and say these other deaths do not apply? That the Big Scary Number which the Pincher Martins out there (Corona Cult true believers and bitter-end loyalists) want to attribute to the Wuhan-Terror-Virus, that that Big Scary Number is sacrosanct?

We can explain most of the excess deaths by the social-shocks of the Corona-Panic, including major recession and social disruptions and other indirect effects of shutdown especially related to disruptions to health care. Nothing close to those conditions happened during Pincher Martin's period of study (2014-19).

What we are left with is actual 'Covid' deaths similar to a usual severe flu wave.

The Panic was imposed on a US society much less healthy (literally and metaphorically) than it was a generation or two or more ago. The social capital is much lower.

Recently I've read a very good little book (publisher late 2020) on the Corona-Panic by a pair of Canadian academics. They have a section on Sweden and why Sweden seemed to have succeeded in avoiding the Panic with ideas I had not previously seen, but a one-sentence summary is their society is both self-confident and self-reliant in some important ways, which are surprising findings given some people's caricatured views of Sweden. The overall picture is one, anyway, of social health.
Sunday - March 27th 2022 3:05AM MST

I looked at Pincher Martin's claim in full.

I note here that Pincher Martin levelled several direct insults at one Achmed E. Newman. Pincher Martin called Newman a "dipshit," one who is "unable to imagine a competent response to a public health crisis." Pincher Martin believes Achmed E. Newsman is a callous person with no problem "wasting a million lives unnecessarily" under the pretext of a dangerously misguided sense of freedom.

Mr Newman replied by saying Pincher Martin has a "puny imagination."
Sunday - March 27th 2022 2:40AM MST

(Re: Pincher Martin declares the Corona-Panic was justified)

Mr Kief, the problem with all the "Covid" numbers is that the Panic phenomenon itself tainted the data in several important ways. The Panic also 'tainted' reality and life itself and clearly induced Panic-caused deaths, which feed again back into the tainted data.

It's a complicated matter requiring a 'syncretic' 'approach to make sense of. Pincher Martin doesn't seem "up to" the ask or willing to find the courage to do so.


We might ask the Pincher Martins out there to consider this case:

A relatively fat, unhealthy, older man feels unwell. He is at home. Coronapanicking rules the day. He decides it's too risky to go to the hospital. He feels fine but then again unwell. He ignores it again. Later that night he dies. He had had heart attacks and finally one killed him. The hospital tests his body; it comes back: "positive for the Wuhan-Apocalypse-Virus."

How is his death classified?

Answer honestly, do you expect he up in the Big Scary Number of 'Covid' deaths?

What do you say 'caused' his death?

What would have been more important to saving his life, no Corona-Virus or no Corona-Panic?


That may be an extreme example, but cases roughly like it were all over in 2020 and 2021. Cases where cause and effect were all mixed up. The "Deaths of Despair." It is a disservice to ignore these complications.

The true impact of the Panic and its after-effects will be felt for years, another serious complication not suited to Pincher Martin's "pinching" approach, to single-out small time periods. And this all applies before any impact of vaccine side-effects and whatever the true number of vaccine-induced deaths there have been so far. In other words, one can even ignore the Vaccine Question entirely and still win this argument.

I know I am not saying anything new here, but Pincher Martin apparently needs to hear it.

Corona-Panic data in most places only takes us up to a point. We need to intelligently look and evaluate it. The "taint" of the data means a lot of people are NOT measuring what they think they are, even well-meaning and normally-solid "numbers-people" get fall into one trap or another. Numbers-people will have to be unusually careful in making any judgments.
Dieter Kief
Sunday - March 27th 2022 12:46AM MST

Mr. Moderator, I have to admit, that I still discuss Covid with people. Now it's Pincher Martin at Steve's last Takimag article.

Could you give me a link to your excess mortality US data?

I guess you could agree with the findings of the Brownstone Institute:

Btw. - these look quite a bit like the numbers Orwell2024 came up with on his blog. There the US fares like not thatwell orgganized eastern European countries - and a bit worse than Central and northern Europe.
To my surprise,the excess death numbers for New Zealand and sweden look quite alike in Orwell2024's comparison.

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New World Man by Rush
Saturday - March 26th 2022 9:53PM MST
PS But muh Magic Soil?
We can discard everything that worked for millennia and have Wakanda, yes we can!
All are equal and the same as one size fits all in the hive of mediocrity.
Those hecho en China/India items don't fall apart immediately after you remove them from the packaging you wayciss bigot.
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Those suicide nets outside the Nike sweatshop are egalitarian and vegan.
Struggle session at the reeducation center for you wrongthinker deplorable thought criminal.
Forward! To the neo-feudal serf plantation, give me convenience or give me slave chains.
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