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Did Trump start the oil price war?

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(edited)

1 hour ago, wrs said:

Wasn't that like 5 years ago?

The oilfield has room for all to work and as it had been perfectly well with OPEC, didn’t bother the USA that 80% of the wells being drilled were by Americans both Opetators and contractors. Also where do you think all of West Coast Africa’s oil was heading? All of it to ports like Galveston to give oil addicted USA its fix, while all the time sitting on its own reserves for a later date, sounds almost like it was planned.

It didn’t have to come to this but you guys are reaping what you planted a time bomb.

Good Luck LTO you will get your nuts tickled no doubt again by bailouts to your so called free market ladened  in dirty money.

Edited by James Regan
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16 minutes ago, James Regan said:

The oilfield has room for all to work and as it had been perfectly well with OPEC, didn’t bother the USA that 80% of the wells being drilled were by Americans both Opetators and contractors. Also where do you think all of West Coast Africa’s oil was heading? All of it to ports like Galveston to give oil addicted USA its fix, while all the time sitting on its own reserves for a later date, sounds almost like it was planned.

It didn’t have to come to this but you guys are reaping what you planted a time bomb.

Good Luck LTO you will get your nuts tickled no doubt again by bailouts to your so called free market ladened  in dirty money.

I used to spend a lot of time on oildrum.com which has since gone radio silent. Why is that? Because for years and against all relevant data, they were playing the drumbeat that oil production was guaranteed to fall, forever. I was arguing that technology was bound to come along to change that outcome and eventually one of the moderators got sick of me always being right and banned me. One of the founders of the oildrum site came to my defense and the moderator banned him.  Because liberals hate to lose, and denying you the right to speak (they believe) denies you the ability to be right. The site quickly fell apart after that. 

Yes America is oil addicted, as is the rest of the world. Not only that, there are nations who would love to be even more addicted, they just can't afford the stuff. Furthermore as I've already proven, the lie that the US was consuming 20 million bbls per day was just that, false. We were shipping out 4 million bbls per day of refined goods, and that doesn't even include the plastics, fertilizers and pharma products made here and shipped abroad. We were "consuming" 25% of the world's petroleum and "producing" 25% of the world's GDP. Coincidence? I don't think so. The world's economy floats on a sea of oil. We only think we've seen a depression. Take away oil and we're in Mad Max land. 

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30 minutes ago, James Regan said:

The oilfield has room for all to work and as it had been perfectly well with OPEC, didn’t bother the USA that 80% of the wells being drilled were by Americans both Opetators and contractors. Also where do you think all of West Coast Africa’s oil was heading? All of it to ports like Galveston to give oil addicted USA its fix, while all the time sitting on its own reserves for a later date, sounds almost like it was planned.

It didn’t have to come to this but you guys are reaping what you planted a time bomb.

Good Luck LTO you will get your nuts tickled no doubt again by bailouts to your so called free market ladened  in dirty money.

Do you have a lime drip stuck in your mouth or something?  What a sour person.

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1 hour ago, wrs said:

Do you have a lime drip stuck in your mouth or something?  What a sour person.

Of course I do I’m a limey who worked his whole career with Rednecks. Don’t know what happened as they were all family. But we were actually working and not sitting flat on our asses.

Bitter definitely - little depends what your on about and why!

In reality I’m very reasonable with reciprocation based on whom I’m talking with. 
 

Too much time spent in this industry with sweat and watching people getting hurt, committing suicide after being dumped by this great industry of ours.

so bitter and disappointed most definitely 

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What a load of crap.  The US imported 15mm bbls/day for decades.  That was when demand was 60-70-80mm bbls/d.   With demand approaching 100mm bbls/d the US asks the world to take 4mm bbls/d and the response is Global Depression.  And you idiots support that.  It must be exhausting being a liberal.  

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IS the US exporting more than it imports? --> No. 

So, Title of this absurd dog and pony show of a thread is dead on arrival. 

--> Blame the exporters if you wish to be self righteous ascribing blame in the first place

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2 hours ago, Bob D said:

What a load of crap.  The US imported 15mm bbls/day for decades.  That was when demand was 60-70-80mm bbls/d.   With demand approaching 100mm bbls/d the US asks the world to take 4mm bbls/d and the response is Global Depression.  And you idiots support that.  It must be exhausting being a liberal.  

Exactly!!  Don't remember anyone feelin sorry for the US when we had a line of tankers half way around the globe lined up headed this way every day to keep us up & runnin...

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8 hours ago, wrs said:

Wasn't that like 5 years ago?

Yes it was....a long time to be out of work.

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17 hours ago, Enthalpic said:

By your logic trump does no harm, and isn't responsible for any of these problems despite being leader of the most powerful nation?

Other leaders dealt with diseases and there wasn't global collapse (HIV, SARS, H1N1, Ebola). 

Trump destabilizes the world -which during the trade war you guys thought was a good thing - now accept that stability had its advantages.

Question: Can you answer a post without using a direct insult?

Trump didn't destabilize. He merely continued the trend of the US diminishing its global engagement, as Peter Zeihan keeps pointing out. Quite the contrary, he is offering an alternative to the current trend of the US leaving the world to its own devices to scramble for control resources and go steal each other's shipments as they did since the dawn of the colonial age as English Sir pirate stole Spanish ships for Queen and Country. He is offering trade deals that (1) provide an advantage to US exports and investments, (2) Remove subsidies and currency manipulation to promote exports into the US, (3) exclude China. All in return for continued US Navy protection of the shipping lanes for those who sign on. 

The alternative was not that the US continues being the dumping ground for everyone's excess production capacity while the US protects everyone's trade. The alternative was that the US continues to disengage and leaves the old order behind. 

This collapse had nothing to do with Trump, and everything to do with China and its hiding of the facts and lying about it. Nobody had verifiable information. Trump acted on weak intelligence to close the flow of Chinese into the US. It was a smart decision. But China continued denying human transmission till they suddenly quarantined Wuhan. This may not be that deadly a pandemic, but it is enormously more contagious, thus can overwhelm the medical treatment capacity of any country and cause thousands of otherwise avoidable deaths.  

You need to turn off the anti-Trump night goggles and look at reality. The sun is out and you can actually see it.

 

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5 hours ago, footeab@yahoo.com said:

IS the US exporting more than it imports? --> No. 

So, Title of this absurd dog and pony show of a thread is dead on arrival. 

--> Blame the exporters if you wish to be self righteous ascribing blame in the first place

Yes, the US exports more refined product and has resumed producing 40% of the world's plastics resins. You net those exports out and the US is indeed exporting about 4-5 Mob/d more than it imports. Just that most of that is oil products, not crude. 

But the main point of the OP was indeed asinine. 

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4 minutes ago, 0R0 said:

Yes, the US exports more refined product and has resumed producing 40% of the world's plastics resins. You net those exports out and the US is indeed exporting about 4-5 Mob/d more than it imports. Just that most of that is oil products, not crude. 

But the main point of the OP was indeed asinine. 

You seem confused as you are counting Canada as the USA.  Take away Canada and the USA is still importing more oil than it is exporting in crude + refined.  https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.php?id=727&t=6 Then basic 1 barrel of oil = ~~ 1.5 barrels of refined products, so no, the USA is not exporting more than importing.  In fact, USA is still massively importing oil. 

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On 3/19/2020 at 12:16 PM, 0R0 said:

Yes, I keep saying to people that trickle down lifts those at the bottom - it has worked phenomenally well. Just that Americans and Europeans were not at the bottom, they were in the middle and it just went through them to the bottom which was in Asia. 

But it is far from being neoliberalism, it was just a form of partially managed free trade where a lot of the participants, worst of them China, cheated heavily and stole. 

 

I used to mainly work for Western multinational companies in regional roles covering the Asia Pacific.  Things were going well up until 2008.  After the financial crisis, the company I worked for started to retrench and close offices in Asia and then finally collapsed (got acquired) in 2010.  After that I worked for an Indian IT company and so did my European CEO.  The financial crisis was the turning point when Asia really started to pick up and catch up with the West.   

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14 hours ago, footeab@yahoo.com said:

You seem confused as you are counting Canada as the USA.  Take away Canada and the USA is still importing more oil than it is exporting in crude + refined.  https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.php?id=727&t=6 Then basic 1 barrel of oil = ~~ 1.5 barrels of refined products, so no, the USA is not exporting more than importing.  In fact, USA is still massively importing oil. 

This line from your link

Quote
9.10 8.57 0.53

Heading:

total import, total export, net

So 0.53 million bbls per day is "massively importing oil"?

What was 16 million bbls per day, "infinity plus one"? ;)

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By the way, if it weren't for California alone, the US would be importing far less oil than we are. That's because Kalifornistan refuses to allow East West pipelines into the state, so the vast majority of their oil comes by tanker as they continue to produce less and less. That also means they never get to pay WTI prices, but are always paying Brent rates. Wouldn't it have been nice to have all that excess LTO going to the biggest market in the 50 states instead of China, India and Europe? 

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6 hours ago, Hotone said:

I used to mainly work for Western multinational companies in regional roles covering the Asia Pacific.  Things were going well up until 2008.  After the financial crisis, the company I worked for started to retrench and close offices in Asia and then finally collapsed (got acquired) in 2010.  After that I worked for an Indian IT company and so did my European CEO.  The financial crisis was the turning point when Asia really started to pick up and catch up with the West.   

The general problem was a drop in demand vs. incomes, and thus an increase in saving rates. It was driven by demographic shifts, and coincided with the Chinese growth and commodity bubble and then its straight out credit bubble, The commodity bubble squashed margins so that hardly anyone on the planet could make a profit of any substance away from commodity production. It started in 1999. But the main component of it was during the 2002-2008 period when Europe had already peaked and the US was scrambling to build housing for families while China had transitioned to super high savings as its boomers aged, and its Millennials came to work during 2000-2008. 

The big break in the growth cycle was when China had managed to break the margins of the global economy just in time for the US to join the demand decline of boomers moving into the savings cohort dominating the demographic structure. It was in 2007. What that means is that the natural real rates of return on business were negative during the commodity bubble. It meant that real interest rates had to be averaging  negative globally (1) due to elevated savings vs. consumption, (2) and thus due to lower final product costs vs. commodity input costs. 

In the financial world, there was much leverage compensating for the decline in returns. The sources were the low interest countries, first Japan, then Europe post 2002, then China post 2005. The Eurodollar system was growing rapidly with the help of the volatility and correlation statistics powered asset pricing models derived from Rubenstein and Merriweather's work. That made a number of incorrect market assumptions, including continuity and lack of correlation between markets and individual securities (e.g. mortgages having different default risks from each other at a given credit rating - rather than all of their default rates being correlated in time). That model allowed banks and other financial players to build credit default swaps that would make bank's obligations to each other count as high grade (AAA) assets, and allowed packages of assets to be rated according to the statistics of the portfolio and then hedged. What happened on the way to 2008 is that AIG was turned into a trash can of CDS issues such that risk was transferred to it. It was the largest unused balance sheet on earth at the start of the bubble, they tried pressing Buffet into using Berkshire's enormous asset base to issue some of them too. But he figured out that they were far underpriced and called them "weapons of mass destruction". 

To go by Jeff Snider, the pre Bear Stearns and post Bear Stearns Eurodollar systems were a clear 180 degree turn in risk perspectives inside it. In his words it went from a world of risk free returns allowing infinite balance sheet leverage to returnless risk prohibiting any leverage at all. The models applied in all financial institutions and embedded within Basel III regulations for mark to market practices turned out to have no validity in real markets. 

Europe's consumer to saver+retiree  demographic ratio peaked in 2002, and in 2008 for the US. But the US has a large millennial generation to drive consumption forward The rest of the world doesn't. China may have had one, but the one child policy prevented that from happening, so rather than a broad rise in the consumer demographic group, they have a sharp short rise that moves into the saving demographic in just the space of 5 years, and has already started doing so. The older and larger China boomer demographic is moving from savings to retirement so their savings are not going to be there to support continued stimulus by credit expansion. The Millennial  bump will just barely fill in the missing savings lost to retirements up to 2024, after which the financial system would be cash flow negative with more flowing out to retirees than coming in from savers. All that coupled with a very rapidly declining consumer demographic, Same as in future Europe, current Japan, future ASEAN, only the US and NAFTA group and India will have a growing consumer demographic.  

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3 hours ago, Ward Smith said:

This line from your link

Heading:

total import, total export, net

So 0.53 million bbls per day is "massively importing oil"?

What was 16 million bbls per day, "infinity plus one"? ;)

Yes, 16Million bbls per day was infinity plus one.  ;)  After all those "16Million bbls per day was infinity plus one", got us into playing middle east policeman

And the Net 0.53 net negative is not true as majority of US exports are refined products, mostly gasoline.  1 barrel of oil =~ 1.5 barrels of gasoline(or is it 1.3?  I forget) then add in all the refined oils, etc.  So in effect, USA is net negative by ~2-->3 Million barrels per day.  Now it is also true that USA is also a giant exporter of plastics and more and more of the plastics(paint, cosmetics, glues, PE) are made from NG ;), so depending on how you wish to count..... ;););)

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(edited)

On 3/19/2020 at 1:38 PM, Ward Smith said:

You'll note my post was not directed at you, but you must feel so guilty about that puzzle and your inability to solve it that you felt personally offended? You've been on my sht list since you made @Jan van Eck give up on this site. He's worth 10,000 of you and has belly button lint that's smarter than you. 

As for the rest of your diatribe, placing the blame on Trump for the Wuhan virus is rich, even for a person of your obviously limited intellect. Because Trump is the leader of the most powerful nation he should have, what dropped nukes on China? I'm interested in what your vast intellect comes up with. 

[It comes up with nothing.]

Well, thank you for your kind words, Ward; that is most gracious of you.  I dropped by to see how you fellows were making out.  I have been busy developing an interesting hard coating to be placed on touch surfaces, that kills off the viral matter of COVID-19.  That has now been tested against the virus and the coating prevents colonization of the materail and kills it off in under an hour.  The problem, as you can imagine, is that some 80% of infected persons are asymptomatic.  Those folks feel fine and go into hospitals to visit the sick, and unwittingly everything they touch gets comtaminated with deposits of viral matter.  And they do that everywhere, at the supermarket check-out counter, at the ATM keyboard, you name it.  Now, if those sufraces are coated with this destruction material, then each overnight whatever viral matter is on there (as well as bacterial matter) is killed off.  It is not perfect, but every little bit helps!

I started working on this in an effort to find a solution to that terror of hospitals, the "hospital-acquired infection," where surfaces such as bed rails, door plates, knobs, faucets, whatever, end up with bacterial matter that gets spread into a post-surgical patient. And in the worst case, you have these super-bugs that are not quelled by the strongest of antibiotics  (the most of which are mfgd in China, incidentally, so be aware that Big Pharma has shifted its critical production lines to deep inside China, rather unfriendly when the place shuts down).  Yet this coating will kill off those resistant strains.  So it is an interesting product.

On a parallel note, I was thinking in terms of setting up a mfg plant to build hyperbaric chambers, basically big tubes that can handle internal overpressures of 83 psi  (equal to 165 ft underwater, where divers start on their decompression ascents).  I found a nice one but that is mfgd in Chennai, India.  Their lead time is six months.  The idea is that, if the viral matter is "burned up" by exposure to a mostly-pure oxygen environment, then you could through-put infected persons in a six-hour rotation which is scads better than having one person struggle in an ICU bed for two weeks on some respirator, which might not keep him alive anyway. Nobody seems to be working on placing patients into a pressurized chamber and using straight oxygen, and I suspect that it has simply not occurred to the medical establishment to do so.  Yet, using a recompression chamber is old news to deep-sea divers. 

Here is a sample of an 11-person chamber, plus one attendant:

image.png.7e69f3c417ab889c4ff5e87744b6eae5.png

I figure these can be built for about $1.5 million each.  There are some 9,000 hospital in the USA, so that represents a sales market of $15 billion.  Nice piece of business, and for society, a whole lot cheaper than building masses of new ICU beds. You put the severely-infected patient on a gurney and slide it in there, and for the ambulatory, you get them a nice comfy soft chair to sit in and relax.  And you bring in food and attendants through a parallel air-lock.  Neat set-up. 

PS: the best way to protect yourself as you do minimal out of house errands is to wear a pair of those plastic mechanics' gloves, the blue ones that you pull off and throw away.   but remember to pull them off at the wrist, don't go touching the finger-tip end with your bare skin, that part is contaminated!  Cheers. 

Edited by Jan van Eck
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1 hour ago, Jan van Eck said:

I started working on this in an effort to find a solution to that terror of hospitals, the "hospital-acquired infection," where surfaces such as bed rails, door plates, knobs, faucets, whatever, end up with bacterial matter that gets spread into a post-surgical patient. And in the worst case, you have these super-bugs that are not quelled by the strongest of antibiotics  (the most of which are mfgd in China, incidentally, so be aware that Big Pharma has shifted its critical production lines to deep inside China, rather unfriendly when the place shuts down).  Yet this coating will kill off those resistant strains.  So it is an interesting product.

 

Have you looked at more bio active materials like nanoparticle copper, silver and silver oxides embedded into the top layer? Should do better than 1 hour to kill pathogens. 

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“ 1 barrel of oil =~ 1.5 barrels of gasoline(or is it 1.3? “

Let me get this straight. Are you saying that you get, volumetrically, more gasoline out of a barrel of oil than was in the barrel in the first place? This is after you take out volume for asphaltenes, diesel, jet fuel, petrochemicals, etc...

You must be adding alot of ethynol!!!

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(edited)

3 hours ago, 0R0 said:

Have you looked at more bio active materials like nanoparticle copper, silver and silver oxides embedded into the top layer? Should do better than 1 hour to kill pathogens. 

There is a correlation between "viral load" and the timeline to kill off the material from a surface and also how symptomatic a casualty becomes after exposure.  The problem with light viral loads with this specific viral strand is that the disease itself is highly communicable even with light loads, and those so exposed then become walking transmitters without realizing it.  When you add these two factors together you have the makings of a pandemic  (and I shudder to think of the total number of deaths that will result, a lot higher than @ronwagnhas concluded, I anticipate at least a 5% fatality rate, so with a 60% infection rate, that is over 9 million US dead). 

To illustrate, there was this social party in Westport, Connecticut, a medium town of 28,000 in lower Connecticut, quite wealthy, where lots of folks work in NY city and commute on the train.  the party was the celebration of the host's 40th birthday.  Some 50 people were there, including one fellow from South Africa.  It turns out he was infected, but asymptomatic.  38 were infected.  One of those then attended a gathering of 450.  See how fast this goes?  It cannot be contained when the light infected persons are up and about, which is why hard lock-downs are needed.  https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/23/us/coronavirus-westport-connecticut-party-zero.html     Where these new carriers symptomatic?  Nope, but as infected persons, they became carriers to others. 

And that is why this particular disease is so dangerous.  In previous flus, the casualties were in weak condition (from the war) and kept in halls close together - the perfect environment for contagion and death.  If you have a situation, as is now developing, where some 80% of the population becomes carriers, then without total lockdown it will tear through the world population.  And you will totally overwhelm the number of ICU beds and resiirators that are out there.  If the typical availability is 210 respirators for 335,000 people (as is the case in Vermont, USA), then you can see just how hopeless that is if the disease gets loose in the general population.  And that is before the medical staff itself starts to fall ill, which is inevitable.   The metals you suggest should do nicely for light viral loads.  Cheers. 

Edited by Jan van Eck
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8 minutes ago, Jan van Eck said:

There is a correlation between "viral load" and the timeline to kill off the material from a surface and also how symptomatic a casualty becomes after exposure.  The problem with light viral loads with this specific viral srand is that the disese itself is highly communicable even with light loads, and those so exposed then become walking transmitters without realizing it.  When you add these two factors together you have the makings of a pandemic  (and I shudder to think of the total number of deaths that will result, a lot higher than @ronwagnhas concluded, I anticipate at least a 5% fatality rate, so with a 60% infection rate, that is over 9 million US dead). 

To illustrate, there was this social party in Westport, Connecticut, a medium town of 28,000 in lower Connecticut, quite wealthy, where lots of folks work in NY city and commute on the train.  the party was the celebration of the host's 40th birthday.  Some 50 people were there, including one fellow from South Africa.  It turns out he was infected, but asymptomatic.  38 were infected.  One of those then attended a gathering of 450.  See how fast this goes?  It cannot be contained when the light infected persons are up and about, which is why hard lock-downs are needed.  https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/23/us/coronavirus-westport-connecticut-party-zero.html     Where these new carriers symptomatic?  Nope, but as infected persons, they became carriers to others. 

And that is why this particular disease is so dangerous.  In previous flus, the casualties were in weak condition (from the war) and kept in halls close together - the perfect environment for contagion and death.  If you have a situation, as is now developing, where some 80% of the population becomes carriers, then without total lockdown it will tear through the world population.  And you will totally overwhelm the number of ICU beds and resiirators that are out there.  If the typical availability is 210 respirators for 335,000 people (as is the case in Vermont, USA), then you can see just how hopeless that is if the disease gets loose in the general population.  And that is before the medical staff itself starts to fall ill, which is inevitable.   The metals you suggest should do nicely for light viral loads.  Cheers. 

The mortality for symptomatic patients appears to be 1%. Without treatment it is higher. Italy reports 5%, however, as the average age of victims is 80 and they don't ask if the cause of death was CV19 but rather whether they were positive, the rate is overstated. 

However, your point of the gatherings resulting in 38 getting infected from one person and that in dense central metro areas you have an enormous number of contacts with public surfaces, that would imply that virtually all of the city but for shutins are likely positive already, though they may not have a sufficient viral load to obtain a positive PCR test result. But they may have detectable antibodies within a few days of infection. Which was a point I was making earlier. in another thread here. That the time for lockdown was 2 weeks ago when there were just a handful of patients. The spread would be limited. and hospitals not overwhelmed. But 2 weeks ago kids were at school, nobody had fled the city and parties bars and restaurants were busy, students were all over the beaches and Bourbon street. While sports events were already conducted without the audience. With this super contagious bug and its passage via surfaces up to 14 days after they were contaminated, then (besides your coating coming in real handy in taking that down to 1 day) essentially you see the surge because the entire population was infected in short order. By now they all have it. Further lockdown is useless. For suburbs and low density areas you need physical distancing, eliminate crowded events and constantly sanitize contact spots (door knobs, water fountains, bathrooms) in public places and at work. That should slow the spread sufficiently. No need to lock down the entire population but to let life go on with those precautions.

People travel by car and live in single family housing. They just don't have that many public contact surfaces as central urban areas with high rise apartments and offices, and densely packed public transport. You have touched an elevator button and door handle at your apartment and office buildings at least 2 times each, rode the subway both ways holding on to a rail or handle and pushed the turnstile so you had at least 12 contacts that had each come in contact with upwards of 400 people during the day, not to speak of over the 7 day average survival time of the virus on a hard cold surface, so you had exposure to 12 X 400 X 7 people with just those public surfaces so had 34,000 opportunities per day to get infected. And if you were infected, then you provided an opportunity for 34k people per day to pick up your infection from those same contact surfaces. Of course, after a few touches, whatever residue you had left behind were wiped off to other people, so it isn't really that many you can infect or that can infect you. more like about a dozen or two per day, and vice versa - so that is say 15 contacts. Then the surface contact exposures would be like being in a crowd of 15^2 all of whom touch each other, 225. Using the Diamond Princess with 20% infections and your two parties with 10% infections, lets say for ease of recall if nothing else, that 15% of those contacts would be infectious, then your crowded city propagation would be 15% X 225, or R0 of 34 for your propagation. Meaning that everyone using the public transport system and opening doors on their own would have been infected within 5 days. That is before you actually stood within spitting distance of someone else. So other than germaphobes  and shutins and those that wear gloves throughout the season, it was too late for NYC last week,

I am well aware that the numbers are severely exaggerated, but should give us a ballpark figure for the highest infection rate we can expect. Obviously, some people will never get infected at all. Then most of the young may just not develop any symptoms and a few middle aged, the old and the elderly would develop symptoms at increasing rates as you go up in age.  The statistics start showing up after you are symptomatic and you are at the doctor's or the hospital and get tested. Later, suspected exposures start getting tested (except for medical staff that would get tested more often), but the main thing we have showing up in the statistics is the limited number of tests (capacity is 22k/d as of last Friday) not the number of new cases. The vast majority of NYC deaths we will observe will have already been infected by the end of last week. 

The lockdowns are simply too late to make a difference in the big cities, and unnecessary for rationally acting physical distancing at work and at the shop with active sanitization following each contact or two - for the suburbanites. You just need to stop crowded circumstances (schools, restaurants bars parties religious services). Cuomo's warning to suburbanites that they will see their curve shoot up in a couple of weeks "just like NYC" is not exactly what you should expect, it would have a much flatter curve and less likely to overwhelm the medical system if schools and crowded events and locations were shut down  before last week. 

I believe what prompted China to drop the quarantine, other than the economic imperative and the risk of starvation and severe vitamin and protein deficiencies, was that (1) once the antibody tests they licensed were available they discovered that pretty much everyone had exposure to the virus, (2) they had a list of widely confirmed available treatments effective enough to lower mortality to flu levels. 

Going by Levitt's calculations, this will be cresting within 2 weeks and Italy has already crested. 

The entire hard lockdown was a waste because it came too late. Practically all the people who will die of the disease will have already gotten the infection by last week. 

It came too late because the CDC blocked the testing (1) by Chinese test kits (they were indeed terrible), (2) didn't allow individual private labs or hospitals to conduct tests, (3) botched its test that it had developed. Then the FDA blocked tests from hospitals and commertcial labs with insurmountable requirements that would have taken weeks to months to get through. Direct intervention and pressure from the White House brought them to rational requirements that could be met in time for tests to make some difference.

Cuomo Newsom etc. are hysterical hand wavers who didn't act when it mattered and are inflicting unnecessary pain on their people in order to look like the are in charge and they did something. They might be in charge, but didn't do a  thing in  time. They just locked people up at home after they got the virus. 

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1 hour ago, 0R0 said:

The vast majority of NYC deaths we will observe will have already been infected by the end of last week. 

I'm not sure that's accurate. Last night, just last night, I saw on TV a line of people waiting for testing in NYC. They were standing about one foot apart, so eager to get in that they were in bodily contact. Standing there in cold weather, they were blowing their noses, touching their faces, doing all the things that spread the thing. 

This virus hasn't mutated much--it is getting such a ride it doesn't have to. When viruses mutate after causing epidemics, they usually mutate weaker. This thing is still very strong. There's a possibility that Cuomo is right: NYC may need 130,000 ventilators. Washington state and California may be next. 

The early killing off of this virus hinges on validating hydroxychloroquine and Z-Pack. If that works, Mylan, Teva and Bayer can produce millions of doses quickly. So can other pharmaceutical labs--it'll be Rosie the medicator. If that combo turns out to be a dud and summer does little to stop viral replication or enhance mutation to weaker forms, then we're in for the sort of mortality rates Jan iterated. Nine million deaths in the US will throw us into a depression. Seldom has the economy been held in the balance between two such heavy ends of the spectrum--probably not since the Spanish flu, certainly not during Polio. 

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1 hour ago, 0R0 said:

The mortality for symptomatic patients appears to be 1%. Without treatment it is higher. Italy reports 5%, however, as the average age of victims is 80 and they don't ask if the cause of death was CV19 but rather whether they were positive, the rate is overstated. 

So far here in Vermont USA we have had 7 deaths and 49 confirmed infections, some of which are in self-isolation at home.  That does not look promising, so far at about 15% fatality rate.  That said, you only have 49 confirmed because only some 350 have3 been tested.  My guess is that a lot more have mild infections due to low viral load exposure. 

It should be kept in mind by readers that just because someone is infected does not make them a transmitter.  To transmit the disease, the carrier has to cough or sneeze, which aerosols the viral matter into the air and propels it outward.  The real problem, as pointed out by ORO above, is touch.  the carrier touches his face and nose, the fingertips are loaded up, then either touches you  (handshake, etc) or touches some surface which you then touch  (see ORO's examples above).  Now you avoid that by dropping by a NAPA auto parts store and picking up a box or two of simple mechanic's gloves, the thin blue plastic ones that auto mechanics use to keep the grease out from underneath their fingernails.  Slip those on before going out and you have a perfect barrier between you and everything else, including your credit card and money.  The COVID-19 will last for up to 3 days on cloth and leather, so wearing a regular pair of gloves merely brings the disease home with you.  I suspect the folks at the Westport gathering got so infected because they were hugging and kissing each other, common enough at those parties. 

Vermont is now in a "soft lock-down," with the Governor telling people to stay home.  This is a rural State, so transmission will take place more with the New Yorkers fleeing up here to their second homes at the ski hills, then infecting the locals in the valley towns where they go to get supplies.  From there it will work its way into the larger towns and get embedded. With isolation, it should be greatly attenuated. Meanwhiule, schools, churches, hockey games, the courts, all closed down.  You can still get gas, but you have to treat the dispenser pumps as infected surfaces, hence the rubber disposable gloves.  Oh, well. 

These rural States have limited ICU beds and very limited respirator ventilators, so if you get infected at the crest, you will likely die if you develop pneumonia.  That is sobering.  This is a very nasty disease, for sue.

Meanwhile Boeing stock has dropped by 78% in five weeks and the top 20 companies that did big buybacks over the last two years have lost some 1.5 trillion with a T off their market cap.  With all that capital incinerated, you can forget the idea that fresh capital is available for the shale oil fields, outside of the majors, and even there it is going to be in dribbles.  The economic impact will be huge, and the cities with the greatest real estate appreciation will see the gigantic drops. I predict the average house in the USa will drop in market value by over $100,000 in the next 18 months, and the drop is likely to be permanent, as rebuilding all that lost capital is likely beyond the capacity of the economic system. 

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