“Alex Berenson (@AlexBerenson)
Per @cdcgov: Since Feb,1 45 American kids under fifteen have died of #Covid.
13,088 have died of all other causes.
Since Feb 1, 11,371 Americans under 55 have died of #Covid (most with serious comorbidities).
189,592 have died of all other causes.
What on earth are we doing?” – Tweet from Alex Berenson
I saw this tweet on my Facebook newsfeed (someone I very much enjoy following there had shared it) and had to re-share it. I made some comments on what was initially put out there, and realized that this was basically the subject for a post on my little blog.
Part of what you see here, will be my (edited) Facebook comments; part will be original to this post. The main purpose of this entry (other than to give what’s said a “broader distribution”), is to tie some things together that will benefit from being so combined.
To begin with, you can find confirmation of Mr Berenson’s numbers here. The information used to come to the conclusions he did can be found in Table 1 (which I had to expand to see). His numbers match perfectly what I found there; granted, I had to do some addition to get there.
The post itself speaks volumes. Mr Berenson has managed to jam a good deal of (apparently accurate) data into a small space.
When I initially shared the post, I added my own thoughts. Here they are (with minor edits for this article):
I’d love to see arguments against this. If this is true—and I would almost bet it is, what I’ve been arguing this whole time is absolutely valid.
Locking down an entire country for this virus is not warranted.
Even if it’s not the case, per CDC (U.S. Centers for Disease Control), our worst week since the 18th of April has been less than a third in the number of deaths than was that week.
Yes, the “vulnerable” need to protect themselves (or be protected, if they cannot do so themselves). Otherwise, as the meme (as you should know, something I don’t even like) says, what on earth are we doing?
I made some comments when I re-shared the post.
The first was this (again edited for this article):
And by the way, again per CDC, 160,220 have died from this “pandemic.”
Obviously, we would prefer nobody did.
That being said, the number looks huge, right?
Now let’s express it as a “rough percentage” of the general populous. Doing so, we would come up with approximately 0.1% (and that’s rounding up). This is the equivalent of saying, “Approximately 1 in a thousand.”
Being slightly more accurate, the number is closer to 1 in five thousand, though it’s actually a tiny bit higher (expressed as a percentage, just over 0.05%).
Considering the majority were over 55 if this is correct (and the person is using the CDCs numbers), the number below that age having died is exceptionally small.
For reference, per WebMD, around 600,000 (six hundred thousand) die from cancer in the U.S. each year. On average, that’s 50,000 (fifty thousand) a month. That means just four months of cancer deaths, exceeds the total U.S. death count from COVID-19 to this point (at somewhere around 200,000).
True, we’re not able to tell what causes cancer for the most part, even so, that should help you to gain perspective as to what we’re currently doing, and for what.
I thought I had said my bit, but I decided more needed to be said. The result was that I added a second comment.
The second comment (again, mildly edited):
One more point. We’ve been keeping track of the deaths happening since February. Looking at the CDC’s Provisional Death Counts (https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid19/index.htm), the number of “All deaths involving COVD-19″ shows there as 144,073. We’ll use the larger number (the one from this CDC page https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/cases-updates/cases-in-us.html). That’s 160,220. We’ve been tracking for just over 6 months. That means the average month has a death toll of 26,703. That number is just over half the count for cancer.
That makes the monthly average COVID-19 percentage on the whole population less than .01% (one in ten thousand)
Considering (as I’ve said), that the number of deaths had its highest peak in April, the next highest peak being a couple of weeks ago, and less than a third the size of the high peak, seems like we’re doing pretty good overall, re-openings aside.
If we add to this, the above, the numbers become far smaller for folks under 55. How small? If the tweet is correct roughly 1896 a month. That would be somewhere around 0.001% (one in a hundred thousand), and again, that’s rounding up.
For the entire period, the number amounts to 0.01% (one in ten thousand of the population at large), under the age of 55 dying of COVID-19—and we can assume that’s involved (meaning it wasn’t necessarily COVID-19 that killed the person). That’s rounding up again (and pretty heavily).
You can check my math. I welcome corrections.
Can’t resist, one more thing. Where have most of the deaths occurred? New York City (which the CDC breaks out from New York state). Next up is New Jersey, then New York state. The three combined have 45,834 deaths per the Provisional Death Counts page. No state other than these three has a number over 10,000 by itself.
In my home state, the count (admittedly slightly low at this point)? 509. State Population? 3 million. Death toll for the entire state for the entire period as a percentage of the population? 0.02% (two in ten thousand). That again, is “rounding high.” Remember, that’s not per month. That’s for the whole period. For a month, avergage of 84 deaths. You can do the math where the percentage is concerned. You can be sure it’s exceptionally low.
Remember, the Arkansas numbers are unadjusted for over 55 deaths.
DISCLAIMER: I didn’t try to determine the number of folks under 55 in the U.S. As such, their percentages are based on the whole population of the country instead of that number. The percentages would obviously be higher if only those folks were considered. Even so, they would be quite low.
Considering the data cited, I really have to question the current responses to COVID-19. Am I truly alone in having a reaction like this, or is it far more common than typically gets reported?
Thanks for reading, and may your time be good.