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Forums > Living in Kunming > New Coronavirus

A couple thoughts.

1) Herd immunity only works if the virus does not mutate, which is why flu shots are required every year and why there are no vaccines for the common cold.

2) SARS-CoV-2 is to Covid-19 as HIV is to AIDS. Being infected with a virus is not the same as having the disease. There could be a significant lag between getting infected and developing the disease (as is the case with HIV and AIDS) or getting infected and not developing the disease (as is the case in Hepatitis carriers). So depending on the specific nature of the virus/disease, you might only track one but not the other.

3) Its easier to be an armchair general than to be at the front lines making the tough decisions. Thus far, no country has been "perfect" in their response and it would seem Trump is guilty of the many things Pompeo is blaming China for.

4) There is always a cost associated with any government policy/decision that is rarely discussed. It is undisputed that whether it is forced quarantine, volunteer social distancing, or shelter-in-place orders, there is an economic cost for society to shoulder, actuarians can workout how many extra deaths will result from such burdens. In essence, saving X number of people will cost Y number to die from the measure. Quite an ethical conundrum even if X is vastly greater than Y.

Forums > Living in Kunming > New Coronavirus

I think we are talking about two different issues here, @JanJal. While you are more focused on governmental policies and their resulting circumstances, I am discussing the emotional responses to the unknown or the intangible.

I can see your points and I've articulated mine and so the rest is just a matter of preference and philosophy. To each their own.


Forums > Living in Kunming > New Coronavirus

But isn't that my point? The economic disruption and hardship is real because we can witness it but is the danger from Covid-19 really as bad as presented? To be clear, I am not discounting the dangers and the existence of Covid-19, only questioning the rationality of the response people have over the perceived ebb and flow of the disease.

For example, if some of my acquaintances or their acquaintances become ill from the virus, I will become concerned regardless of whether or not it's a national or international phenomenon. By the same token, even if there is a global epidemic going around but my community seems to be immune from it, I would be less concerned. But is it rational to become alarmed by reports without corresponding evidence? To make another point, people are sighing a sigh of relief because there have been 0 new cases in Yunnan for sometime, but yesterday, or there abouts, a new case was confirmed, so what does that mean? We go back to fear? Wasn't the risk the same today as it was before the new case of announced?

I do not need to know anybody that was injured in that fallen building because I can see the rubble of the building, in this scenario, the tangible aspect is the buildings themselves and not the people inside. If a thousand buildings collapsed in Beijing, should I be concerned about my building in Kunming? Probably not, unless there is factual evidence linking those buildings to my building. If a couple of buildings collapsed in my xiaoqu would I be concerned? Absolutlely! And I will not go back to living there until I can assured by factual evidence that is it safe to occupy.

So again I say, I am not advocating ignoring precautions and living life as normal and burying one's head in the sand, but to react emotionally to reports of something happening remotely is irrational.

Fear due to personal experience is rational, however illogical it might be. Fear due to unsubstantiated hearsay is both irrational and illogical.


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Let's hope the Chinese, both its people and the government, does not make the same mistake as Japan did in WWII, into thinking that Americans are too soft and lack the resolve to pursue its enemies. If nothing else, history has shown that the US have its share of vindictive, hate-filled people who love nothing more than a fight based on perceived slights, Any attack on America will not be easily forgotten or forgiven.

If you are not interested in their work or project, even 20 seconds is too long. If you are truly into what they are doing, you would love to hear every little nuance that would give you better insight.

From what I can gather, this event is meant to create a platform for people to showcase their work but because the audience might not be interested, you'd have to distill ideas into 20 second sound bites. So that begs the question, if they aren't interested in your project why would you bother pitching it to them? And as an audience member, why would you go to one of these presentations if you are not interested in what they are presenting? Anything worth doing is worth doing well, unless this is one of those "social" events where people can go and pretend they are more "cultured" than the rest of us. Then in that case, lets just go through the motions as quickly as possible so we can get to the drinking and socializing bit at the end.

We are now devolving into a culture of instant gratification, short attention spans and sound bites. Nothing is worth giving more than 20 seconds worth of discussion before moving on to the next topic. Ideas are now commoditized and pass around like fast food because we are no longer capable of in depth thought. Much like fast food, immediately after consumption it feel as if you are full, but in reality, nothing of real value was given. This is true of TED talks, it started well but soon became a money making scheme where anybody willing to pay the fee can give a "talk". Most talks given, however, are nothing more than filler that can be googled, nothing ground breaking. It has more value to the presenter for it adds a line to their list of "accomplishments" than the audience.

I'm sure this event is well meaning and has perceived value to those who participated but I wouldn't recommend patting yourself on the back for attending.

Please excuse the ramblings from this grumpy old geezer.

I wonder how that someone got to Chinainthe first place, certainly wasn't by walking or bicycling. nor by ship. And unless there is a secret trans-Atlantic or trans-Pacific railroad, not by train either.

And what kind of renewable, non-environment harming energy he is using to fire up all those electronic gadgets he uses to go online.

Ya know, my pa had a sayin, don't shit where you eat and most certainly don't complain about The smoke if you want a BBQ rib.


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