Creative Accounting

COVID deaths are added to the COVID daily counts not on the day they happen but on the day they are coded as COVID. Go to state records and you’ll see. I verified it for NY, MD, MI, and IL.

So how does this work in practice? A daily death count goes down. The state government finds some deaths from March or April that could have been COVID and adds them to today’s count. It doesn’t matter right now if those deaths were really COVID. What matters is that they are used to show that mortality doesn’t decrease.

This happened in Illinois this week. The death count was down. When it got to 76 (per the entire gigantic state), the governor’s office found a bunch of old deaths and added them in, creating “the deadliest day” of the pandemic.

Given that the Governor says he won’t let us out until there’s a week with zero deaths, this matters.

This is not a conspiracy of any sorts. It’s all done completely openly because the public is so incredibly gullible that it hears “the deadliest day” and it doesn’t verify. It simply gets terrified and sits there, busily resharing the “deadliest day” links.

This isn’t anything new because this is the same public that bought into the Russia collusion hoax, Ukraine hoax, fishtank Wanda hoax, etc.

16 thoughts on “Creative Accounting”

  1. Most places release a report that redistributes the deaths into the days that they actually happened, and this is public. For example New York city does it. The state of Ohio does it it is on their website. Basically you dont get a picture of how many deaths really happened on which day until 7-14 days after they are redistributed. but sometimes they need to redistribute deaths from even longer ago when they retest flu swabs for coronavirus.

    Anyway realclear politics has an interesting count of deaths. They have the death count by state and also like the flu deaths. You can see in states where antibody tests show low rates of infection the deaths from covid are below the flu. In places where the virus went wall to wall say NY 27% infection, the death rate is about 7-8 times the flu. That gives a better picture of how bad thing could get if the the thin went wall to wall in the entire US. If we were going for heard immunity we would need at least twice the infection rate of NYCs current 27% so probably 14-16 times the number of deaths from flu. I don’t see how this strategy that could be morally justified even with 7-8 times the number of deaths of flu. The only states that have been successful in protecting the vulnerable have either done testing-tracing containment or lockdown before there were a large number of infections now that we have a large number seeded we better hope we can track and trace.

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    1. I’m sorry but this makes no sense at all. The lockdowns aren’t working precisely because they were done too early. And “track and trace” is an absolutely ridiculous, dangerous idea.

      And the “death rates lower / higher than the flu” – are you aware that the CDC stopped counting flu deaths at all starting in early April? 6 weeks earlier than usual.

      This entire comment reeks of propaganda, unfortunately.

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      1. The CDC reports has weekly rates of death from coronavirus, flu, pneumonia, all 3 and the combination of pneumonia and coronavirus as separate categories. They also tabulate overall mortality and weekly mortality over expected mortality.
        https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/COVID19/
        You can compare coronavirus to flu and pneumonia week by week, this doesnt look like an attempt to obfuscate flu data at all.

        Completely as expected, the weekly mortality doesnt shoot up until the end of march when coronavirus overtakes flu and pneumonia. Because the data goes back and refills deaths on the day the actually occured rather than when they were reported, therefore the last 2 weeks are incomplete. The weekly overall fatality rate in april is about 20 percent higher than normal. You can see that it is driven by new york and new jersey- which is the mortality rate we can all eventually expect when 27 percent of people get the virus.

        There is evidence that strict lockdowns work(china, the falling rates in major western european countries), there is evidence that very early lockdowns work(countries with low initial infection rates like in norway,or new zealand). In the US the lockdown was both too late and not strict. Now we have to think of another way out. There is evidence that testing surveilence works, (Germany Taiwan, South Korea Iceland). It is also clear that a policy like sweden’s will produce a flat rate of contagion and a high but flat rate of death. The virus will slowly burn through everyone and continue to kill people t a high rate without overloading the hospitals. I am personally not OK with that protocol because it will yield an unacceptable number of deaths so I opt for trace and track.

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        1. “There is evidence that strict lockdowns work(china, the falling rates in major western european countries)”

          OK, where’s the evidence? “Work” to do what?

          Correlation is not causation. Running numbers side by side, one can just as easily argue that the lock-downs lead to higher rates of death. Sweden with a mostly voluntary social distancing regime has a death rate of 316 per million. The comparable figure for jurisdictions with strict lock-downs are UK – 475; France – 392; Spain – 567; Italy – 503; Belgium – 751; Netherlands – 315; New York – 1375; Massachusetts – 677; Michigan -440; etc. etc.

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          1. By work I mean decelerating the infection rate and number of deaths. For example Italy was a country with a very high rate of initial infections before they detected the virus at all let alone took drastic action. After 10 days of lockdown the positive test rate began to drop, now the death rate is dropping- so it worked although it was too late to save many people. This is the same for Spain and France, Switzerland. In Finland there was a very strict lockdown but it happened before the infection rate was high, the outbreak was contained and the number of deaths was kept very low. In that sense it worked-it decelerated deaths and infections pretty fast. In the same sense you can say South Korea’s policy worked.

            The US, Canada, the UK, and Mexico are pretty similar in that there were lots of undetected cases before a reaction took place, there has been a lockdown that has still allowed lots of people to circulate in a way they didnt in Europe and we are seeing similar curves of infection, exponential growth it stopped, there is a high plateau, then a pretty slow fall.

            I think that policy is important. I also think that initial conditions are important-how many dense cities are there, what was the initial infection rate before the government noticed the problem(this is probably the most important initial condition). The same policy with different initial conditions will yield different results, but both effect the outcome.

            Lastly, I estimate the infection fatality rate from NYC data because, they have some of the most thorough antibody studies. 13k deaths abut close to 30% infection rate gives about 0.5 percent as the infection fatality rate. I can extrapolate for other data and get the same result. Iceland tested 20 percent of its population, so we can assume this is a good sample of total people infected. The sample is so large that the case fatality rate and the infection fatality rate should be the same. They have a case fatality rate of .55 percent. That agrees with the antibody data from New York, so that is probably a good guess of what kind of total death toll we can expect. For example if 60 percent of the US gets the virus to the virus lots of people will be asymptomatic and 0.3 percent of the total population will die.

            If the question is what do now, I think we can test and trace contacts with interviewers(not with apps), take reasonable precautions with respect to workplace safety in crowded environments, keep then ban on and mass gatherings, and wear masks (old studies from the flu and new calculations say that 80 percent compliance can bring r0 under 1).

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            1. Put simply, what you have is a narrative based on guesses and what-ifs, not actual evidence that carefully assigns weights to the scores of variables – social and biological – involved. What you’re doing isn’t science, it’s nothing more than telling a story.

              Public Health bureaucrats who rely on this story have been full of it from the get-go. Locking down the healthy and leaving the vulnerable to die (in long term care homes) might have suffocated the Wuhan flu in one city in authoritarian China (it didn’t) but it was never going to be a good solution when projected on entire countries in the west (and it sure wasn’t).

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              1. You extrapolate from the data that you have, you just dont seem to like my conclusion. We have a variety of countries who have taken a variety of strategies and who had a variety of initial conditions, there are a variety of outcomes. You try to systematize and see if there are correlation between outcomes and the strategies/initial conditions. You can hate a strategy like lockdown, but it seems clear that you cant claim there is no correlation between lockdown and the stoppage of exponential growth.
                In the end we will see which strategy was the best, the US is looking at over 100k deaths in an optimistic scenario, there is a lot at stake.

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    2. “so probably 14-16 times the number of deaths from flu… even with 7-8 times the number of deaths of flu’s”

      Are you suggesting that NYC’s numbers are the killing norm of the Wuhan flu and that other jurisdictions will mirror NYC if they lift the lock-down? If so, I’m confused because New York has been on lock-down since March 20 and still has 1336 deaths per million while Sweden, without a strict lock-down, has a fatality rate of 316 deaths per million. Seems clear that the lock-down is not the only variable to be considered. Public policy may not even be the most important variable here as the disease is a virus that absolutely does not fear the coercive power of the state.

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      1. That’s a great way of putting it about the power of the state.

        I also get the feeling that the measures that are taken – which vary widely from place to place globally – aren’t doing much one way or the other.

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  2. OH! Thank you so much for posting this! It had been puzzling me for WEEKS looking at the data, that there is consistently a big dip in the death numbers… on weekends. Like WTF?? People don’t die on weekends? I thought it must be an artifact of reporting… like maybe 1/3 of the country’s coroners’ offices are closed on Sunday and they’re not catching up on reporting until Tuesday (the dip is more often Sunday and Monday, than Saturday and Sunday). But I wasn’t seeing any confirmation or explanatory notes for it. Hooray for (maybe) not being crazy!

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    1. That’s exactly how I first noticed it. I follow the local death counts religiously. And I noticed that from Friday to Monday there are no deaths. Then every Tuesday there’s a spike. In the exact number as we’d have if each day were recorded. (We have one death per day steadily since March). And it’s been like that for weeks. I also thought I was going nuts at first. Finally I checked and experienced great relief.

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  3. “fish tank Wanda hoax”

    hoax/homicide?

    “…friends of the deceased man were skeptical that he would knowingly consume fish-tank cleaner. “What bothers me about this is that Gary was a very intelligent man, a retired [mechanical] engineer who designed systems for John Deere in Waterloo, Iowa, and I really can’t see the scenario where Gary would say, ‘Yes, please, I would love to drink some of that Koi fish tank cleaner,’”

    https://www.nationalreview.com/news/woman-who-blamed-trump-after-giving-her-husband-fish-tank-cleaner-now-under-investigation-for-murder/

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      1. It was such a good (Orange Man bad) story (until it wasn’t) and then it completely disappeared. Sorry for re-posting old news but I just learned of the investigation this morning when my memory was jogged by your post. I already suspected that there might have been some dirty-work-at-the-crossroads when it was revealed that the survivor was a Democratic party activist.

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