We now have mortality data for the first few months of 2020 for many countries, and, as you might expect, there were steep increases associated with the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in each one.
Surprisingly, however, these increases did not begin before the lockdowns were imposed, but after. Moreover, in almost every case, they began immediately after. Often, mortality numbers were on a downward trend before suddenly reversing course after lockdowns were decreed.
This is an astonishing finding. But before I discuss its full import, and pose some questions to those who still defend the utility of lockdowns, I want to present the data that proves it.
Here’s a series of charts by the Financial Times showing overall mortality and “deaths in excess of normal levels” in 2020 for a number of countries:
As you can see, in every country there were significant increases in overall mortality beginning some time in February or March.
You will notice that only after each country (or city) was locked down did the increases begin. Moreover, they began immediately, and in nearly every case, precipitously.
The Economist has published its own series of charts showing excess deaths in several countries.
- Note: The Economist’s charts are interactive in the source.
As with all the other cases we’ve examined here — and as with all the countries and cities for which we have good mortality data — only after the lockdown began was there a significant increase in deaths.
All this leads us to the following questions, which we pose to all those who continue to defend the use of lockdowns as an effective means to prevent excess deaths.
Q: Why was there no significant increase in overall mortality, in any country we have good data for, before the start of lockdowns?
Q: Why does a precise and exact correlation exist between the start of lockdowns and significant rises in overall mortality?
Q: How is it that governments in every country imposed lockdowns at precisely the same time relative to the future precipitous rise in their populations’ overall mortality rate?
Q: How is it, moreover, that this moment in time happened to fall immediately before that precipitous rise?
Most attempts to answer these questions would probably involve the assertion that the authorities in every country had some notion of the true prevalence of the virus at the beginning of the pandemic. But we know now that that was not really the case. In the early weeks and months of 2020, testing was extremely limited. This was based, partly, on the assumption that the virus was not yet widespread. As testing was systematically expanded, the number of positive results increased, and this increase was generally believed to correspond to the actual spread of the virus.
Now, posthumous testing has shown that the virus was circulating — and killing — weeks, or even months before it was initially detected in many countries. Other researchers are coming to the same conclusion; the prevalence of the virus was vastly underestimated at the beginning of the pandemic.
Which leads us to our final question:
Q: If health authorities vastly underestimated the prevalence of the virus at the beginning of the pandemic, why did the virus nevertheless wait until lockdowns were imposed to suddenly start killing at levels which exceeded normal deaths?
Source: John Pospichal – medium.com
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