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  • Dagny

3 March 2020 - Lunch News

Propaganda War: Trump, Chin, and Financial Titans of the World (saying don't panic) versus the Democrats and Deep State (do panic).

6 weeks of invisible spread in Washington State:

Researchers who studied two cases in the state say that the virus may have been spreading there for weeks, suggesting the possibility that up

to 1,500 people in the state may have been infected. Specifically, the researchers compared two cases to learn more about how the coronavirus spreads. The viral mutations suggest that it has been spreading in the state for close to six weeks, according to one of the scientists who compared the sequences, Trevor Bedford, an associate professor at the University of Washington.

If that is true, it could mean that 150 to 1,500 people “have either been infected and recovered or currently are infected now,” said Mike Famulare, a researcher at the Institute for Disease Modeling in Bellevue, Wash., who performed the analysis. Those cases, if they exist, have thus far been undetected.

And most problematic of all, many of those people might not yet have symptoms even if they are contagious. Dr, Famulare characterized his estimate of community cases as a “best guess, with broad uncertainty.” Another method, based on census data and estimated sampling, produced similar results, he said.

Through Sunday, there were only 71 confirmed cases in the United States, although that is mostly a function of testing limitations; over the weekend the Food and Drug Administration announced that testing for the coronavirus would be greatly expanded in the country, a move that is expected to improve the pace of detecting infections and help identify patterns of suspected or confirmed cases. It may also result in hundreds if not thousands of new confirmed cases, and has already prompted a furious hoarding of provisions in what may be a harbinger of the panicked response that could descend upon the nation once the CDC admits there are thousands of domestic cases.

Differences between Flu and Covid-19: Currently one of the biggest differences between seasonal influenza and COVID-19 is the incubation period—that is, the time from exposure to development of signs and symptoms. For seasonal influenza, the incubation period ranges from one to four days, but in some instances, people may be contagious a day before symptoms appear and as long as five to seven days after symptoms start. COVID-19's incubation period ranges from 2-14 days, which is up to three times longer than influenza.

Also, COVID-19 is more contagious than seasonal influenza. The average person, even with mild symptoms, is likely to spread the disease to more than two people. By contrast, the seasonal flu's rate is roughly half.Another significant challenge with influenza and COVID-19 is that they both can have mild infections. People with more mild disease are less likely to seek diagnosis and care, but are still considered infectious and able to transmit the disease person to person.The death rate of the seasonal flu varies year to year but is about 0.1%, compared to about 2% for COVID-19. The disastrous 1918 influenza epidemic, known as the "Spanish flu," had a death rate of about 2.5%.

Finally, one of the biggest concerns for COVID-19 is asymptomatic infections. People who are infected with the virus may be able to transmit the infection, and yet they themselves don't have any signs or symptoms of disease. This represents a challenge because it would be difficult to identify persons that need to be tested for the disease since they have no signs or symptoms, but their ability to transmit the disease would allow for amplification in a naive, or uninfected, population. South Korea is expected to not hide any information, so they may be useful in predicting the course of the epidemic (unlike totalitarian China).  South Korea was also first in being infected on a large scale.  Hotspots in other places may follow a similar course: China is spending a lot of money trying to make the coronavirus seem like no big deal. It is reasonable to expect there is a lot of money flowing to stop the financial hit they are taking. (See below)

With the financial market drop there are massive international financial interests also pushing the idea that the coronavirus is nothing more than the common cold.

What numbers are they using for their arguments? The Chinese numbers. Suddenly multiple opinion makers are trusting the Chinese numbers.

Granted that the Democrats are not letting a "crisis go to waste". They are amping up the panic to hurt Trump while the massive financial interests and China are tamping down the crisis to save their stock portfolios etc.. Where is the truth? We need more data from reliable non-Chinese sources. The reality is that the data independent of China is not in yet.Excerpt from ZeroHedge regarding the efforts the Chinese are taking to control the narrative:"The propaganda department in virus-stricken Hubei Province has engaged over 1,600 censors to scrub the internet of “sensitive” information relating to the coronavirus outbreak, according to an internal document obtained by The Epoch Times.

The internal report, dated Feb. 15, detailed the agency’s efforts to ramp up censorship measures. It was drafted after a speech given by Chinese leader Xi Jinping via video link on Feb. 10 to “frontline responders” of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei, where the virus first broke out.The revelations come as the Chinese regime tightens information controls over the worsening outbreak, as netizens have increasingly turned to the internet to vent their frustrations about the authorities’ response, or document what is happening on the ground.The illness has seen a steadily growing official list of infections and deaths on a daily basis. Experts and commentators, however, believe the actual number of infections to be far greater, due to underreporting and shortages in testing kits and hospital beds—meaning many people are left undiagnosed.1,600 Trolls Deployed

According to the document, the department has hired more than 1,600 trolls, known as the 50-cent army in China, to regulate internet speech continuously, 24/7.

The trolls, through technological and manual screening, had identified as many as 606,800 posts online with “sensitive or harmful information,” it said. Their approach, it said, was to “timely dispel the online rumors” and “strike powerful blows offline.”

As of Feb. 14, the online censors had deleted as many as 54,000 such “rumors,” and had social media influencers write nearly 400 commentary articles to shape the narrative.The regime’s propaganda efforts, the report said, should be directed toward promoting the effects of officials’ outbreak control measures and the “moving deeds” of volunteers, community workers, and the police.Some professional “internet commentators” had also made 400,000 comments to “counter the negative public opinions,” according to the document.

Posts mourning whistleblower doctor Li Wenliang, who died of the virus he was warning about in December, quickly disappeared from the internet in the hours after the news of his passing was first announced. “I want free speech,” a phrase that became trending on Chinese social media following his death, was also swiftly erased.Wuhan citizen journalists Fang Bin and Chen Qiushi also recently disappeared after posting regular videos online highlighting the severity of the outbreak.As of Feb. 11, over 2,500 people had signed a joint online petition expressing anger over Li’s death and criticizing the government for suppressing free speech during the outbreak.

Several co-signees were subsequently summoned by local police. At least one was detained.The department has also set up 11 work groups for the purpose of “wartime propaganda” work. The groups were communicating daily with propaganda officials from the central government to “coordinate public opinion” in real time on issues “online and offline,” “inside the country and overseas,” it stated." This is why you can’t believe the numbers from China: Authorities in the city of Shiyan, for example, listed their working targets as: “monitor closely petitioners and people whose benefits have been severely damaged”—in other words, people most likely to dissent against the authorities;

“strictly prevent key people and groups from assembling and making trouble;”

and “punish heavily the people who spread improper speech or rumors related to the epidemic.” The Political and Legal Affairs Commission (PLAC) is a Communist Party agency that oversees the country’s security apparatus, including police, courts, and prisons. In the wake of the outbreak, local branches of the PLAC in Xiaogan, Shiyan, Xiantao, and other cities within Hubei, have recently written up “working reports on how to control society.”

The local PLACs described difficult living conditions after authorities suspended transportation, public gatherings, and economic activities in order to prevent the virus from spreading.

Because the epidemic is getting worse and worse, the control methods must be upgraded. People have experienced lots of difficulties due to the comprehensive suspension of business operations, transportation, schools, and so on,” the Shiyan city PLAC wrote in its report to the Hubei PLAC on Feb. 16. “After the city was locked down, the majority of residents lost their income,” the Shiyan PLAC said. “Overall, people have strong negative emotions, such as grief, panic, anxiety, and suspicion. The feeling of anger among society has increased. The Bureau described life in Hubei thusly on Feb. 21: “In general, residents lack basic life necessities. For example, some families used up all their gas for cooking; some families need baby formula and diapers… A large number of residents want to leave the city and go out to make a living… They become extreme in behavior. According to the Bureau’s report, 970 police officers and 882 security guards were dispatched to 20 of such facilities across the province. “Their main tasks are controlling patients who make trouble, patients who don’t want to stay there, and patients who refuse treatment,” it said. The Bureau listed future goals, such as tightening security at government offices, hospitals, and quarantine centers; preparing for activities that could “damage social stability;” and locking down “all possible sources of infections.” Authorities also emphasized the importance of spreading positive propaganda about the virus response efforts. The provincial “disease control” agency listed among its “achievements” in its “propaganda work report” on Feb. 20:

215 positive stories on the app of Hubei Daily, a government-run newspaper;

25 positive stories on WeChat, a popular Facebook-like social media platform;

39 positive videos on the Tiktok app;

72 positive stories on the Toutiao news app;

and 42 posts on Weibo, a Twitter-like platform.

“Total page views reached 50 million,” according to the report.

Another priority is censoring social media posts that portray the authorities in a negative light.

In a Feb. 7 document, the Hubei provincial government gave orders to the provincial “disease control” agency: “Organizing a 24-hour internet monitoring team to surveil online posts from all websites… Remove all negative and harmful information.”

The document also noted that authorities removed “4,431 posts which severely damaged public opinion” and censored 3,066 types of negative comments from Feb. 1 to Feb. 8. Such documents reflect Chinese bureaucrats’ mentality, “which has existed since the Party controlled China in 1949,” said Tang Jingyuan, U.S.-based China affairs commentator in a Feb. 27 interview with The Epoch Times. “Officials from different levels want to keep their positions. In order to do so, Party members try their best to maintain social stability, which is treated as an achievement,” Tang added.

“As for people’s lives, that is not important in the officials’ eyes.” a "Wenzhou-based factory owner tells how district officials are telling him his closed factory (he has no workers) must turn on the machines and consume electricity or he’ll get “a visit”. "

China can't hold out hope to pretend that February was the kitchen sink month as the level of economic activity simply will not rise for months... unless of course Beijing orders the local population to simply consume for the sake of giving the outside world it is consuming as if things were back to normal.

Only they aren't, and instead of Chinese ghost towns, we now have Chinese ghost factories whose only purpose is to try to fool its population and the world that the coronavirus pandemic, which is still raging in China, is under control and the Chinese economy is back on solid footing. Of course, neither is actually happening.

And in further proof that China is now openly manipulating those same "alternative", high-frequency data, we get another account according to which a factory manager was told he must consume 3000 kWh electricity by midnight, as authorities use electricity usage as a criterion of re-open rate. Even the factory has not re-opened for lack of supply and manpower due to #COVID2019, the manager had to switch on all the air conditioners and other equipment to ensure they achieve the quota. The start of the new year normally sees higher pollution across China due to higher coal/fuel consumption for heating and resumption of industrial production after Chinese New Year.

Guangzhou, Shanghai and Chengdu see a clear pattern – air pollution is only 20-50% of the historical average. This could imply that human activities such as traffic and industrial production within/close to those cities are running 50-80% below their potential capacity. And now, thanks to satellite images published by NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA), we have further confirmation that nothing is back in China.

As The Epoch Times' Katabella Roberts writes, the images show a dramatic drop in levels of air pollution over China following the outbreak of the new coronavirus, which forced the shutdown of industry and transport.

Images taken by pollution monitoring satellites compare air quality between Jan. 1 and Jan. 20 with air quality between Feb. 10 and Feb. 25, and show a significant decrease in nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a toxic gas that gets into the air from the burning of fuel from vehicles, power plants and factories.

According to NASA scientists, the reduction in NO2 pollution was first apparent near Wuhan, which shut down transportation going into and out of the city, as well as local businesses by Jan. 23, in order to reduce the spread of the disease.

NASA said there is evidence that the change in air pollution is “at least partly related to the economic slowdown following the outbreak of coronavirus.”

Goldman points out, while the bank has found increased orders from cable and wires fabricators while, operating rate of copper rod producers remained as low as 50% for big companies and 30% for medium-sized producers. What’s more, some small producers have not restarted yet at all, according to a Goldman survey with onshore contacts.

It’s definitely the case that the older you are, the more at risk of getting infected you are and, if you get symptomatic infection, the more at risk of dying you are.Men also seem to be overrepresented among those getting severe illness. The reasons why are a really important research question. One thing that also needs to be looked at is the impact on health-care workers because they are at high risk of getting infected, and I would like to know whether they’re at higher risk of getting severe infection. Some of the anecdotal cases of young physicians dying make me wonder whether they’re exposed to a higher dose and that’s making them sicker. We just don’t understand whether children are getting infected at low rates or just not showing very strong symptoms.

One of the most important unanswered questions is what role do children play in transmission? The go-to intervention in flu pandemic planning is closing schools, and that may be very effective or it may be totally ineffective. It’s a costly and disruptive thing to do, especially in the United States, because many people rely on school breakfast and lunch for nutrition. So we really need evidence that closing schools would help. We need detailed studies in households of children who are exposed to an infected person. We need to find out if the children get infected, if they shed virus, and if that virus is infectious. We know that the cases of children sick enough to get tested is much lower per capita than those of adults. And we also know that, in China outside of Hubei province, the difference between children and adults is smaller. Children are still underrepresented, but they’re a larger part of the total than inside Hubei province. That would suggest that part of the equation is that they are getting infected but they’re not that sick — it’s easier to identify less-severe cases in a system that’s not overwhelmed as it is in Hubei. But we don’t know whether they’re infected and not as sick or whether there are a lot of kids that aren’t getting infected even when they’re exposed. I think we can slow transmission through social distancing in a way that would be acceptable to Americans. It happened, for example, in 1918 with the flu. And I think it can happen now. It’s possible that a vaccine could be rolled out without as much clinical-trial evidence as is usually the case, but I would be cautious about doing that because, while licensed vaccines are beneficial, untested experimental vaccines are sometimes not just ineffective, but harmful. That’s why you do the trials. So we need to move as fast as we can while being appropriately cautious. The phrase “all deliberate speed” is probably relevant here. I would not want to see a vaccine rolled out before we have pretty strong evidence that it’s going to be beneficial. First of all, very few tests have actually been performed in the United States. As of Feb. 26, 2020, the CDC reported that only 466 tests had been performed in the US and the criteria for being tested is so narrow as to render the statistics useless.

This was proven to be the case with the patient in California who was finally tested after four daysand found to have Covid19, even though she has not been to China or knowingly been in contact with anyone from China. Why wasn’t she tested sooner?

Because she didn’t fit “the criteria” laid out by the CDC for testing. Hospital administrators said they immediately requested diagnostic testing from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but the procedure was not carried out because the case did not qualify under strict federal criteria: She had not traveled to China and had not been in contact with anyone known to be infected. (source)

So this delay in testing was not the fault of physicians caring for her, but because the CDC decided from afar that only certain patients could be tested. If this sounds familiar, it’s because, in China, only certain patients were given tests while thousands of others were turned away from healthcare facilities without assessment. You’ve probably seen that thousands of peopleacross the country are being “monitored” by health departments. Unfortunately, that monitoring doesn’t mean that they’re being tested before they’re released from self-quarantine. It simply means the local health department is getting their temperatures and asking if they have symptoms.

So monitoring is mainly self-instituted and no testing is being done. Don’t be lulled into any sense of false security over “monitoring.” Actual monitoring would mean that the quarantined people would have to test negative to the virus before they were released from quarantine.

To be absolutely clear, those being “monitored” are basically staying home for a couple of weeks then going on their merry way, with no testing involved. And considering there have been instances of asymptomatic people spreading the virus, this is hardly comforting. Imagine if this happened in our Congress.  Not likely here due to better transparency and more testing, but it may change the way Iran behaves going into the future:

Though political and health officials are busy urging Iranians not to visit Qom, considered ground zero for Iran's outbreak, it appears the powerful clerical establishment has held sway, preventing total closure of some among key sites. In fact, Qom's Shia clerics are actually still positively encouraging travel to the city's shrines for "healing". The WSJ cites custodian of the holiest site in the city, the Fatima Masumeh Shrine, as announcing:

“We consider this holy shrine a house for cure. House for cure means people would come here to get cured from mental and physical diseases,” the custodian, Ayatollah Mohammad Saeedi, said in a video interview published Wednesday by Jamaran, an Iranian news site.

It should be open, and people should be encouraged to come here.Of course, we believe caution is required, and we follow hygienic issues.” "We have no plan to quarantine any district or any city. We only quarantine individuals. If an individual has early symptoms, that person must be quarantined," Rouhani said in a Wednesday speech. As The Daily Beast’s partner publication, IranWire, revealed in an exclusive report Thursday, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps has tried to address the epidemic by telling doctors to shut up about it, much as Chinese authorities in Wuhan did, disastrously, when the disease was just starting to spread last December. The “official figures” from Iran give the game away. At last count, 16 people have died from COVID-19, but only 95 cases had been confirmed. As Wired UK points out, that would be a death rate of about 17 percent, when the data available from China, where there are huge numbers to work with, suggests the death rate is closer to 2 percent. 

The statistics don’t add up. Canadian researchers cited by Wired suggest the Iran outbreak probably involves more than 18,000 people, and counting.

Iran’s repressive and opaque theocracy is not helping...

At least 210 people have died in Iran from the new coronavirus, BBC Persian reported Friday citing unnamed sources in the Islamic republic's health system, promoting an angry denial from a health ministry spokesman.

Most of the people died in the capital Tehran and the holy city of Qom in central Iran, where the country's first case was reported, the London-based global news network's Persian service said.Iran's official death toll stood at 34 on Friday afternoon, with eight new deaths reported over the previous 24 hours.Health ministry spokesman Kianush Jahanpur accused BBC Persian of joining the Islamic republic's regional enemies in a "race to spread lies" about Iran. "Iran's exemplary transparency in publishing information on the coronavirushas stunned many people," Jahanpur tweeted.

Health officials in California, Oregon and Washington state worried about the novel coronavirus spreading through West Coast communities after confirming three patients were infected by unknown means.

The patients—an older Northern California woman with chronic health conditions, a high school student in Everett, Washington and an employee at a Portland, Oregon-area school—hadn't recently traveled overseas or had any known close contact with a traveler or an infected person, authorities said. Is the virus the result of Deep State skullduggery?: Some folks are making that argument: Joe M: The #CaronaVirus was a deliberate biological terror attack by the globalist cabal which they are using as the pretext to make massive simultaneous stock sell-offs, to crash the economy in the run-up to the 2020 election to hurt Trump. Simple as that. JoanneWrightForCongress@JWrightforCA34 ∙ Feb 24 The Corona virus was man-made. Bill Gates is one of the financiers of the Wujan lab where it was being developed. I wouldn’t put it past them and by “them” I mean everyone from Adam Schiff to George Soros, Hillary Clinton and the Pope.… Feb 24, 2020 16:43:00 UTC This does fit a pattern for Soros: Soros made his initial fortune via shorting the pound in 1992, and nearly breaking The Bank of England.

Black Wednesday's Underlying Causes

When Britain joined the ERM, the rate was set to 2.95 Deutsche Marks per Pound Sterling with a 6 percent permissible move in either direction. The problem was that the country's inflation rate was three times that of Germany's, interest rates were at 15 percent, and the country's economic boom was far into a period of unsustainable growth, which set the stage for a bust period.Currency traders took note of these underlying problems and began shorting the Pound Sterling. More specifically, they bought one currency, such as the Deutsche Mark, using the Pound Sterling. This allowed them to profit as the Pound Sterling fell in value by comparison to the other currency. George Soros was one of these bearish currency traders, amassing a short position of more than $10 billion worth of Pound Sterling.Perhaps there is a similar setup going down as we speak.

((( Soros ))) is a large contributor as well.WuXi PharmaTech Inc.- opened a biological-chemical tech center in Wuhan.WuXi PharmaTech is listed here -

"If we do a great job with vaccines, we can get the (population) percentage numbers lowered."-Bill GatesYouTube (listen at the 2:40 mark)

discussing... or foreshadowing a virus outbreak.

And then of course there was Event 201, Bill Gates & World Economic Forum simulated Coronavirus outbreak 6 weeks before first case in Wuhan.

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