His Most Illustrious, Noble, August, Benevolent, and Legendary Celestial Majesty, the God-Emperor of Mankind, Donaldus Triumphus Magnus Astra, the First of His Name, announced yesterday that the USA would shut down all travel from Europe for a month and enact stringent quarantine measures for anyone coming from a COVID-19 hotspot:
There is no question that Corona-chan’s greatest victory is over truth and rationality. Let’s be clear: COVID-19 is nowhere near as lethal as we are being told. Its current overall mortality rate is about 2.3% – not the WHO’s originally estimated 3.4% – and in fact that mortality rate actually ranges between 0.7% and 4%, or thereabouts, depending on a number of factors.
But there is also no question that COVID-19 poses a real threat to Ye Olde Phartes – those who are considerably Older and Phartier than me.
People in their mid-thirties or younger with strong immune systems and solid cardiovascular systems are very unlikely to get particularly sick – in fact, most of us will not even realise that we have a bug, because we won’t show any symptoms.
People in their seventies, eighties, and nineties, though… they are about 50% more likely to experience the Grim Reaper’s knock on their doors. And even then, Corona-chan has a mortality rate of only about 8% for the elderly.
The God-Emperor’s advice is solid here. Don’t panic. Remain calm. Wash your hands, with soap, frequently. If you are sick, stay home.
Turning to the global stage, it is clear that the initial Chinese outbreak is slowing down, while the European outbreak is accelerating fast, and that there are some very harsh lessons to be learned here about what constitutes an effective response, and what does not.
South Korea, Singapore, Russia, and Mongolia all acted with extreme swiftness to shut down their borders. Russia in particular closed one of the longest land borders in the world with China – all 2,600-odd miles of it – back in January. Up until now, in the ENTIRE COUNTRY of Russia, they’ve had 20 confirmed cases out of a population of 140 million, and three of those are confirmed to have recovered – and zero fatalities.
That’s the biggest country in the entire world by landmass, and COVID-19 hasn’t even registered there as a public health problem.
South Korea and Singapore have shown infection rates for new cases trending down for three days at least. As of this writing, Singapore has 96 out of 178 reported cases that have fully recovered – and zero deaths. This, in one of the most open and trade-dependent economies in the world.
Mongolia has one active case in the entire country, despite the fact that China IS its southern border.
In China itself, home to so many of these horrible little killer bugs that keep breaking loose and spreading around the world, they’re already getting back to work. Assuming that things hold more or less steady, the Chinese are looking to resume fully normal (more or less) economic activity by some point in April.
In Eastern Europe, Poland, Hungary, Czechia, Slovakia, Romania, Latvia, Estonia, Belarus, and Ukraine have less than 400 cases between them all. The Czechs, Hungarians, and Poles moved very fast to shut down flights coming in from China. Hungary just declared a state of emergency and banned flights from Italy – thereby putting paid to the entire myth of the EU’s supposed “complete freedom of movement”.
In the USA, one of the world’s most popular travel destinations, there are 1,312 confirmed cases with 38 deaths. But those are tiny numbers compared to the population of the country and the impact of seasonal flu. The situation would have been far worse if the God-Emperor had not shut down the borders early on.
The data and evidence from the countries that took direct and severe action early on, indicates that we’ve got about one month of misery to get through before things stabilise. Once we ride through the month of March, we can look forward to spring and summer in the northern hemisphere with hope and optimism.
For those of you living in countries that have taken a sensibly draconian approach to dealing with the spread of a highly transmissible but not actually particularly deadly disease – hold your heads up high, keep calm, carry on, wash your hands, and simply be careful.
And, in the immortal words of Douglas Adams in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, always make sure you have a towel with you. If you do, everything will be OK in the end.
That’s the good news. Now on to the bad.
Over in Western Europe, home of the globalist open-borders crowd, the situation is dire.
Italy has essentially shut itself down. If you look at the top 20 countries or regions with COVID-19, more than HALF are European, and France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands, and even hygiene-obsessed Switzerland are all nations with over 500 active known cases. At this precise moment, there are some 22,000 cases of COVID-19 in Europe, and that number is set to rise in the coming days and weeks.
There could not be a more damning indictment of open borders and globalism than the fact that a developed, first-world nation like Italy has more cases than a backwards Mohammedan catastrophe like Iran.
The people who advocated the hardest for global freedom of movement, for zero restrictions on moving and living within countries with radically different cultures, and for erasing national boundaries, are now facing a crisis caused by their own idiocy. And they are panicking over it.
When Germany’s lame-duck Chancellor who might have some sort of neurological issue says that two-thirds of Germany’s population, or roughly 55 million people, could potentially contract the COVID-19 virus, that isn’t a policy based on anything rational, sensible, or serious. That is running up the white flag of surrender and refusing to face harsh reality.
The fact is that COVID-19 can be contained and is not actually particularly lethal. The fact is that if you are below the age of 70 and in reasonably good health, you are fairly safe. The fact is that auto accidents and drug overdoses kill roughly 5 times more Americans in ONE DAY than have died from COVID-19 in the past 3 months.
As for those of you keeping an eye on the stock markets, wondering nervously about your retirement funds, I have a simple message for you:
Do. Not. Panic.
This is a temporary and extreme correction, and actually one that was badly needed. Stocks around the world are trading at valuations that make absolutely no sense relative to their fundamentals. There is no good reason for many of these modern “tech-related” companies to trade at the levels that they do. Yet the companies that are really getting hammered are in the manufacturing, tourism, and export-import sectors. And those companies are cash-rich, by and large.
Those cash-rich companies will be in a good position to resume production when, not if, COVID-19 stalls out. I predict that this will happen by mid-spring at the latest. And then you’re going to see a market rally like nothing you’ve ever witnessed in twenty years.
There is more good news behind the bad headlines in other areas too. In the oil markets, there is a major price war happening right now between Russia and Saudi Arabia. The Russians have refused to abide by an OPEC supply level pact that kept the price of oil artificially high for several years, and now the Sauds have decided to punish them for increasing production by simply turning on the spigots of their own wells. The result has been an absolute crash in oil prices.
That is extremely bad news for a large number of American shale and hydrofracking companies, which are under significant pressure from their capital lenders to turn a profit. Many of them will go bankrupt because they overextended themselves during the boom years of expensive oil. But the US oil and gas industry is much more nimble and resilient than it used to be 15 years ago.
The Russians and Saudis want to shut down American hydrofracking and shale production because it is a huge threat to their power – the Neo-Tsar Vladimir Putin is on the record as saying that he thinks hydrofracking is nonsensical and dangerous, when it is neither.
The fact that oil prices are crashing is very, very good news for the American and European economies in the medium term. Cheap energy means fast growth, and fast growth means a rapid return to full employment.
There will absolutely be considerable short-term pain in the American oil and gas sector, the manufacturing sector, the healthcare sector, and especially the financial sector. It is inevitable and unavoidable. But all of these short-term negative signals point to long-term positive ones.
So, don’t panic. Stay cool. Stay at home if you feel that you need to. Keep perhaps 2-4 weeks’ worth of long-lasting food supplies in your home, along with plenty of soap – not hand sanitiser, just soap, because the latter is cheap and plentiful – and ensure that you wash your hands, observe basic hygiene, and limit your public exposure if you leave near a COVID-19 outbreak area.
Gentlemen, we’re going to get through this just fine. There is no reason to be overly worried or concerned. The God-Emperor understood this in his message yesterday, and you should understand it too. There will be far worse crises than this one to come – this is merely a test to see what we can do in the face of adversity.