Conspiracy Theories, falsehoods & Social Media
Just had a discussion on Twitter with someone who denied covid was a problem because 1 in 4 infections were inside the hospital, I asked for some supporting docs and she came back with 2 reports that were trash and another that said 1 in 10 infections were in hospital but as cases rose it went up to nearly 1 in 5. The frustrating part of all this is that she had all of the information but couldn't join the dots - more people in hospital with covid, virus spreads more in the area it is located. Logic would tell anyone that you need to keep people out of hospital by reducing spread in the general public, her logic was that the figures are not as bad because 20% came from inside the hospital - They're still fucking cases and ones bad enough to keep in hospital.

Good fullfact article here:
Another line that is being used at the moment is what they call Excess Winter Deaths. You will know that I use the term excess deaths a lot as a direct comparison between the same time period, for example I will compare week 52 2020 to week 52 in other years or against the 5YA for week 52. 

Excess Winter Deaths compares the deaths in the summer against the deaths in the winter and the 'covid deniers'. 'lockdown skeptics' etc are using it to show that there were 60k excess winter deaths in 2017-18 winter period which was / is the same as this year. The problem is that they are comparing the deaths in the summer period of 2017 with those in the winter, so if, as in this case, we have a low death summer and a bad winter the 'excess winter deaths' will be high. So effectively they are using a good news story (summer 2017 deaths were low) to make a point that this winter the situation isn't as bad as is being painted - it's bullshit.

The data is actually this for winter deaths (Nov - Feb):
          Nov-Dec     Jan-Feb      Total      
20-21  98,183
19-20  84,650         95,541       180,191
18-19  79,418         93,240       172,658
17-18  84,782        106,132      190,914
16-17  83,458        100,385      183,843
I've included 2020-21 even though we obviously haven't had Jan / Feb yet to show how bad the numbers are for Nov / Dec in case you see one of these nutjobs spouting their smoke and mirrors.
Brilliant post Derek. Just read it to my wife and daughter.
I work with hundreds of journalists in a professional capacity and most are in despair at the state of misinformation and the state of the general public’s thinking.
(12-09-2020, 11:46 AM)Derek Hardballs Wrote:
(12-09-2020, 09:21 AM)Protheroe Wrote:
(12-08-2020, 05:13 PM)Derek Hardballs Wrote:
(12-08-2020, 04:39 PM)Protheroe Wrote:
(12-08-2020, 02:38 PM)Derek Hardballs Wrote: WTF happened to people's critical thinking?

Oh my days Big Grin

This from someone whose critical thinking is akin to...

Coming from someone who's never had an opinion that wouldn't be at safely home on the uber-coventional straitjacket groupthink of the Guardian letters page I'll take that as a compliment. 

Free your mind, and your ass will follow - as Bill Clinton once said.

I’m intrigued what crazy lefty opinions have I got? These are my main opinions on this board..
  • Austerity created more problems than it solved in Health, Education, Communities and Law and Order
  • Brexit was a shit idea with no tangible benefits for most of the population
  • I can see little or no improvements in society since 2010 
  • The latest incarnation of the Tory Party has made the distortion of fact an industrial operation. As they have the avoidance of accountability. 
  • Cronyism is rife within the government (strangely at that level you’re comfortable with this, but at a local level say Sandwell you’re very vociferously against it). 
Hardly controversial or particularly left of centre opinions.
Only need Willie Johnstone and Peter Barnes to make it a perfect left wing on here....

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