How Panic Is Created

This is how panic is created:

You need to pore over the article carefully to discover that the child in question… did not have COVID. He tested negative.

This is one of five million stories like this. “Healthy young person dies with / after / in the vicinity of COVID-like symptoms.” The main symptom is high fever, so that can mean whatever but who cares. You have to sift through the articles forever to discover that the healthy young person in question died in a motorcycle accident, from a gunshot wound, from an overdose, from a fatal worksite accident, or even a suicide.

After seeing such a cynical, concerted effort to terrorize a population that already lacks mental resilience as a result of its opulence, you’ve got to ask why this is being done. Who benefits from the panic? You also need personal strategies of resistance because there’s going to be more of the same. COVID is only a small part of it.

7 thoughts on “How Panic Is Created”

  1. “The reality is that every flu season, many more children die from this common ailment than have from COVID-19. And unlike with COVID-19, where the rare pediatric deaths are among those who have serious conditions, many of the flu deaths occur in perfectly healthy children. According to the CDC, “influenza is dangerous to children,” and during the 2017-2018 flu season, which everyone forgets was considered a pandemic, the federal agency estimates that the actual number of pediatric deaths was closer to 600.

    A 2018 CDC study of six flu seasons concluded that half of flu-related deaths occurred in otherwise healthy children, 22% of whom were fully vaccinated. Thus, even with a vaccine, the flu is still much more deadly for children, especially perfectly healthy children.”


    1. I have no idea how we managed to cope with this terror every year. It feels like we should have all burrowed into a hole and sat there our whole lives to hide from the flu.


  2. They did this in an article about the dog in the US that tested positive, too. The headline was something like “Dog with COVID-19 Had to Be Put Down,” and then it turns out the reason was completely unrelated — the dog had cancer, and the owners made that decision when the dog was diagnosed.


  3. There’s vested interest here: sensationalism earns clicks and hence money. But worse, this is not merely how panic is created. This is also how a viscious cycle begins: other writers notice there’s money to be made using clickbait, more falsehoods emerge, more clickbaits are created, and so on.


  4. Clarissa,
    LOOK AT THE DATE! 2007.

    Clin Microbiol Rev. 2007 Oct; 20(4): 660–694.
    doi: 10.1128/CMR.00023-07
    PMCID: PMC2176051
    PMID: 17934078
    Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus as an Agent of Emerging and Reemerging Infection
    Vincent C. C. Cheng, Susanna K. P. Lau, Patrick C. Y. Woo, and Kwok Yung Yuen*
    Author information Copyright and License information Disclaimer
    This article has been cited by other articles in PMC.
    Go to:
    Before the emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronavirus (SARS-CoV) in 2003, only 12 other animal or human coronaviruses were known. The discovery of this virus was soon followed by the discovery of the civet and bat SARS-CoV and the human coronaviruses NL63 and HKU1. Surveillance of coronaviruses in many animal species has increased the number on the list of coronaviruses to at least 36. The explosive nature of the first SARS epidemic, the high mortality, its transient reemergence a year later, and economic disruptions led to a rush on research of the epidemiological, clinical, pathological, immunological, virological, and other basic scientific aspects of the virus and the disease. This research resulted in over 4,000 publications, only some of the most representative works of which could be reviewed in this article. The marked increase in the understanding of the virus and the disease within such a short time has allowed the development of diagnostic tests, animal models, antivirals, vaccines, and epidemiological and infection control measures, which could prove to be useful in randomized control trials if SARS should return. The findings that horseshoe bats are the natural reservoir for SARS-CoV-like virus and that civets are the amplification host highlight the importance of wildlife and biosecurity in farms and wet markets, which can serve as the source and amplification centers for emerging infections.



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