Coming to terms with death

From Lion’s blog April 27 Coronavirus update: No light at the end of the tunnel

I generally agree with Lion on most things, including even the virus. I agree that things are going get worse in terms of more cases and deaths, yet I remain optimistic about the stock market, especially tech stocks such as Amazon and Google, that stand to benefit from the continued decline of ‘brick and mortar’ retail. As I said a few days ago, due to the high contagiousness of this disease, the number of cases and deaths is not going to just fall off cliff like it did in China, but will persist for months.

You look at the daily chart of US deaths and cases, in spite of these drastic measures being taken, there has been no appreciable decline in daily deaths or cases. I have never been one to try to sugarcoat this. We’re gonna see a lot more deaths…at rate of 2k deaths/day for another 100 days gives a possible total of 200k-400k deaths by the time this is over. So that is pretty bad, way worse than a typical flu season.

Some say that due to a high incidence of asymptomatic carriers that the virus is less lethal than previously thought, and this is true, but the virus is still quite bad though in terms of complications and other problems, and such complications are not just limited to the frail and elderly. Look at it like this: why did this virus attract attention in the first place , such as from China in January and in the Seattle nursing home, if the number of asymptomatic cases is supposed to be high enough as to make this no worse than the flu? Obviously, given that the Chinese govt. put all these measures in place, shows that in spite of a high incidence of asymptomatic carriers, that enough people were getting badly sick (such as a cluster of middle-aged otherwise healthy people suddenly developing pneumonia at a rate that far exceeds what would be expected of the seasonal flu) as to necessitate such measures, but this obvious logic escapes so many people.

But I disagree with Lion about the shutdowns and quarantines. We, as in individuals, governments, and policy makers, need to accept the reality that a lot of people are going to die from this and there is nothing that can be done–and or–it’s not worth imposing this great inconvenience on the healthy, in what amounts to a soft form of house arrest and false imprisonment, to save lives. The question is, what is an acceptable number of deaths? My answer, possibly as many as 3 million, or about 1% of the US population, which is also the same as the annual US population growth rate, meaning after just a year, any losses due to the virus will be replenished even under the hypothetical worse-case scenario.

Death is a part of life, of existence, of being. The same liberals who preach Darwinism and disparage Christianity and creationism, suddenly the concept of ‘survival of the fittest’ does not apply to this virus. This virus is culling the weak, those who have underlying conditions (such as chronic lung disease due to smoking) that impose a burden on the healthcare system, and having such individuals die sooner and not be able to propagate their genes (such as genes that give rise to obesity, hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular irregularities, low lung capacity, and other risk factors) is a cleansing process that will payoff in the long run anyway.