More Trump ignorance on Covid testing

Donald Trump has been again combined contradictory and ignorant claims about Covid testing with an attack on media.

The US has done more testing than any other country, but Israel, Russia, Singapore, UK, Denmark and a bunch of small countries have done more testing per head of population (US is 19th on the WorldInfo list).

Testing is a critical means of controlling Covid, but the raw number of tests doesn’t say much anyway. Here’s some percentages of other numbers

USA has:

  • 4.26% of the world population
  • 17.28% of Covid tests
  • 22.93% of Covid deaths
  • 26.45% of total cases
  • 28.48% of serious/critical cases
  • 37.63% of active cases

Those are numbers are only based on recorded statistics so won’t be 100%, but give an obvious indication that the US is struggling with Covid.

Testing matters, but the quality of testing, the timing of testing and the use of the results of the testing are more important than raw numbers.

Testing in the US showed that Covid was still widespread in the US when Trump and some states pushed for relaxing lockdowns. Covid got worse – deaths have been trending back upwards there through July, and this week were the highest since May.

Tests are important but it’s how you use the tests that matter.

Note that New Zealand is included and rates very well on these charts.


New Zealand’s testing rate of 93,574 per million is much less than the US rate of 177,883 per million, but we have 4 deaths per million compared to the US rate of 475 so we don’t need to do as much testing.

Our testing peaked at over 10,000 per day in June – when we came out of lockdown and wanted to make sure Covid was under control – and is now peaking at 3,000 per day. We need to make sure we don’t have community transmission, but because fewer people have symptoms or concerns, fewer get tested.

Reuters: U.S. records over 25,000 coronavirus deaths in July

U.S. coronavirus deaths rose by over 25,000 in July and cases doubled in 19 states during the month, according to a Reuters tally, dealing a crushing blow to hopes of quickly reopening the economy.

The United States recorded 1.87 million new cases in July, bringing total infections to 4.5 million, for an increase of 69%. Deaths in July rose 20% to nearly 154,000 total.

The biggest increases in July were in Florida, with over 310,000 new cases, followed by California and Texas with about 260,000 each. All three states saw cases double in June.

Cases also more than doubled in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia, according to the tally.

The United States shattered single-day global records when it reported over 77,000 new cases on July 16. During July, 33 out of the 50 U.S. states had one-day record increases in cases and 19 set records for their rise in deaths in 24 hours, according to a Reuters tally.

We have virtually no restrictions because we have Covid under control here.

And Covid isn’t the only worrying statistic in the US.

The news that more states could be hard hit by the virus comes a day after the U.S. reported that gross domestic product collapsed at a 32.9% annualized rate in the second quarter, the nation’s worst economic performance since the Great Depression.

We may be able to keep Covid out of New Zealand, but it will be difficult to avoid the economic impact.

Odd tweets about testing doesn’t address the problems the US still face.

Vaccines are being fast tracked but at best it will be some time before they limit the Covid damage.

Reuters: U.S. makes deal for 100 million doses of coronavirus vaccine, deaths expected to rise

Two major drug companies will supply the U.S. government with 100 million doses of an experimental coronavirus vaccine, the Trump administration said on Friday, as the nation’s top health agency predicted that fatalities would rise in the coming weeks.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control on Friday forecast between 168,000 and 182,000 total fatalities by August 22, predicting that deaths will rise fastest in Alabama, Kentucky, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, Tennessee and Washington state.

The CDC also released a study that said COVID-19 had spread to nearly half the staff and campers at a sleep-away camp in Georgia over a week and a half ago.

The investigation demonstrated “that children of all ages are susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection and, contrary to early reports, might play an important role in transmission.”

Coronavirus deaths in the United States are rising at their fastest rate since early June. Roughly one American died about every minute from COVID-19 on Wednesday.

Wisconsin joined 21 other states that have seen a surge in new cases.

The COVID-19 outbreak “is not in good control” in Wisconsin said Allison Arwady, commissioner of the Chicago Department of Public Health.

This isn’t fake news. Many US states are having very real problems with Covid.

While the president keeps fiddling with twitter his country burns.

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  1. Pink David

     /  2nd August 2020

    Put your face mask on. Wear googles. Then equip a helmet. Then you will be safe.

    “Theoretically you should protect all of the mucosal surfaces, so if you have goggles or an eye shield, you should use it,”

    • Patzcuaro

       /  2nd August 2020

      It must be frustrating for you that just about everybody recommends wearing face mask now, it might not solve the problem but is “just another brick in the wall” of our defence.

      • Harry

         /  2nd August 2020

        Who is “everybody”?

        Face masks: like using chicken wire to keep out mosquitos.

      • Pink David

         /  3rd August 2020

        If a mask makes you feel better, go ahead and wear one. For people over 65, slips and falls are deadly. 650,000 die from them every year and they are an ever present risk.

        You should ware a helmet as well.

  2. MaureenW

     /  2nd August 2020

    Coronavirus is a political battering ram. Masks, googles, social distancing, elbow sneezing, hand sanitizer and large uncontrolled protests are all apparently ok depending on who you vote for and, irrespective of the garbled recommendations spewed forth daily, …. BLAME TRUMP!

    It was Fauci who said masks weren’t necessary .. now they’re trying to make them mandatory.. even inside homes .. yes pop on your goggles and your mask and wait for your next stupid instruction, so long as your not attending a protest then none of the rules and recommendations count.

    The vaccine companies are lining up to be exempt from corovirus vaccine liability claims .. I’m guessing vaccination will be mandatory too.

    • Pink David

       /  2nd August 2020

      “The vaccine companies are lining up to be exempt from corovirus vaccine liability claims”

      All vaccines cause harm. That is the purpose of a vaccine. The balance is between the harm of the disease and the harm of the vaccine. For those under 65, there is unlikely to be any significant difference between the two.

  3. Reply
    • Pink David

       /  2nd August 2020

      Fauci is wildly ignorant here. No economy can shut down 95% of activity short of complete self destruction. GDP falls in Europe are the order of 25-30%, not 95%.

      He is just making stuff up.

      • duperez

         /  2nd August 2020

        Yes Fauci is just making stuff up. In January or February he should have got himself and all his sciencey mates and come to New Zealand for a holiday and left everything to Trump because he personally knew what was best and still knows what is best.

        You want wildly ignorant? You want just making stuff up? I believe that’s what they have Presidents for.

        Trump’s handling of things was and is a big crapping in their nest. Now he has apologists running around saying that someone else did it. Fauci is a good one to blame.

  4. ‘Nobody likes me’: Trump complains about popularity as allies slip away

    “Nobody likes me,” he said, confounded at how his administration’s health experts could be receiving accolades while he is accused of ignoring and denying the raging public health crisis.

    “It can only be my personality,” Trump said, “that’s all.”

    That’s one answer.

    In a week that saw a devastating global pandemic worsen, a record economic meltdown confirmed and an all-out bid to stoke racial tensions for political gain deepen, Trump is finding himself more and more the odd man out: absent and detached from the leadership of either party, locked in antique cultural battles and increasingly unpopular among voters.

    By Friday, the President’s blunt assessment of his own popularity seemed to have manifested in a litany of other ways:

    – Even his staunchest Republican allies flatly rejected his suggestion that November’s voting be delayed, some actually laughing at what, by most accounts, was a serious (if toothless) proposal from the President to undermine the election.

    – The nation’s civic leadership, including three of Trump’s four living predecessors, gathered without him in Atlanta to honour the late Rep. John Lewis, making the sitting president’s absence conspicuous if unsurprising.

    – Stimulus talks on Capitol Hill have proceeded almost entirely without his participation, and have been notable mainly for the disarray they have exposed among Republicans, many of whom were unpleasantly surprised to learn the President’s demand for a new FBI building was included in the final proposal.
    I- n a closed-door hearing on Friday, intelligence officials working in Trump’s own administration discounted the possibility of foreign countries mass-producing fake ballots to interfere in the November elections — a claim Trump seemed to be making simultaneously from the Cabinet Room.
    – And the concerted push by Trump to delegitimize mail-in ballots is raising alarm bells among Republican operatives, who are worried the President’s demand for in-person voting will mainly serve to dampen turnout among his own supporters.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  2nd August 2020

      CNN, enough said.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  2nd August 2020

        A factual commentary on the vote by mail issues:

        • Patzcuaro

           /  3rd August 2020

          The best bit is where Pelosi gets to take over as President if the result is still in doubt by January 20th 2021

          “But if the outcome of the election is still in doubt by Jan. 20, 2021 — the day the Constitution says the winner of the presidential election is supposed to be sworn into office — due to litigation and/or the long delays in counting mailed ballots, the 20th Amendment to the Constitution provides that Congress “may by law provide…who shall then act as President.”

          Under 3 U.S.C. § 19, Congress has provided that the speaker of the House shall upon his or her “resignation as Speaker and Representative” act as president until a president or vice president has been determined.”

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  3rd August 2020

            Could well happen if mail voting is the shambles predicted. And if Trump is finally the winner it would be a hell of an administrative mess given Pelosi’s partisanship.


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