1. As a 75 year old taking chemotherapy, my immune system is severely compromised. I seldom leave my yard because I fear Covid-19. Should I be wearing a mask when interacting with others?

    1. Dear Ray,
      First, I am not an MD.

      Second, I think any MD including Dr. Victory would recommend you wear a mask; when interacting with others because you are in a high-risk category.

      1. A doctor is also aware that the Covid-19 virus is airborne, and is too small to be stopped by a mask (0.12 microns), especially masks that are not perfectly fitted to the curves of the face (that is, they leak). Stopping sneeze splatter, or cough splatter, does not prevent constant inhalation and exhalation of the virus, regardless of the type of mask you wear, unless you are wearing a respirator which actually filters to that level (and that would take either enormous size, or enormous muscle strength).

        1. The reason for wearing masks in public is to protect others from the wearer – the presumption being that the wearer carries the virus. Only full PPE will provide any protection for the wearer.

  2. Dr Victory isn’t 100% correct. Firstly, she says that wearing masks is not effective but goes on to say that wearing masks reduces immunity. Those statements are contradictory. Immunity is built up by exposure, so for the second point to be true the masks must be reducing exposure.

    Social distancing is actually commonsense for diseases spread by droplets (coughs and sneezes). Distance means that the particles might not reach you but fall on the floor, the pavement or the ground.

    “Herd immunity” isn’t immunity at all but it’s (a) a reduction in the probability of catching a disease and then, if lucky, (b) the eradication of the disease from the community we’re considering. Think of it this way … consider one person with a disease is definitely going to spread it to one of the 10 people who surround them. If none of the 10 have immunity then someone will catch it. If five have immunity and it lands on one of those five people, it will be killed t because that person’s antibodies will defeat it, and it must land on one of the other five people if it’s going to make anyone sick. If eight people have immunity then the disease has an 8/10 chance of dying and only a 2/10 chance of infecting anyone. If the disease finishes in the original carrier before it’s passed to someone else then the disease will die out. (Don’t assume that for every disease anything better than a 50% chance of spreading means immunity. Some diseases are typically spread to more than one other person.)

    Dr Victory also says the government action wasn’t based on science and data. Yes it was. The early modelling was based on Chinese data, because that was all that was available at the time, but then it seemed to be confirmed by what happened in Italy, Spain, France and Belgium. The first paper on modelling, from Imperial College, London UK, says very clearly the data basis for about 17 different parameters in that model.

    1. I agree with you and besides if a mask work is it not a costly way to prevent COVID-19. But understand the argument against wearing it too, but as always pro and cons with most thing in life. Only one thing is sure, none of us will live forever 😊.

    2. “Not effective” and “reduces immunity” are not necessarily contradictory terms. Masks can’t stop a virus smaller than its pore size, but wearing a mask can greatly reduce inhalation the other pathogens that the mask CAN stop. Those daily, constant attacks are what keeps the immune system active. Why would you want to “bubble” yourself away from all the other threats — using the false promise of stopping a virus you can’t stop — so that when you DO finally remove the mask, you get bombarded by all the pathogens you had been avoiding, all at once?

        1. That study only examined symptomatic people, and it refers mainly to sneezing and coughing. It has nothing to say about non-symptomatic or asymptomatic people wearing masks.

        2. Charles Cherry: The samples were 30 continuous minutes per subject, and consequently included mostly regular exhalation without coughing or sneezing. Contagiousness of people with COVID-19 is GREATER in the two days before they become symptomatic, than after they become symptomatic. Therefore this evidence that masks reduce escape of exhaled coronavirus when people are LESS contagious, most certainly is evidence that masks reduce escape of exhaled coronavirus when people are MORE contagious.

          Asymptomatic transmission evidence is described and referenced in the following May 28 article. You can find and read those individual studies referenced. For more recent studies than those referenced, see the “Citing Articles” section. https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMe2009758

  3. I noticed in her presentation that she said an Ebola vaccine has not been developed. The is not true, My son is a chemical engineer who works for a major pharmaceutical manufacturer, The effective Ebola vaccine went into production last summer. The development process started in early 2015 and the final mass production process was approved in July of 2019. He was a member of the QA team for the production process. They are already looking at processes for a COVID-19 vaccine. The lengthy process is due to the regulatory morass in the FDA.

  4. I survived the 2017-18 epidemic that no one ever heard of that infected over 48.8 million Americans, hospitalized over 959,134 Americans and resulted in over 79,000 deaths without wearing a mask or witnessing school or business closings………..I’m certain that I can refuse to wear the fear mask and still survive this media. created panic and live my life as I have always done for every pandemic that I have experienced since 1950…………….

  5. Here is an easy to understand explanation of a recent meta analysis of distance, masks, and eye protection to reduce spread of the novel coronavirus. It has a link to the meta analysis itself, so you need not trust this lay explanation.

    “And, yes, we need to wear our masks but, as Steve put it, continue to behave as though they don’t work very well. Eventually science will settle the issue, but until it does the balance of evidence supports routine wearing of masks. It’s also important to remember that masks are not the be-all and end-all. Social distancing, masks, and face protection all work together to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission as low as feasible.”


  6. Of course it is pointless to reduce contact among people NONE of whom is contagious. The problem is that we don’t know who’s contagious.

    New summary (July) about transmission of novel coronavirus from asymptomatic and presymptomatic people. “Transmission while asymptomatic reinforces the value of community interventions to slow the transmission of COVID-19. Knowing that asymptomatic transmission was a possibility, CDC recommended key interventions including physical distancing (36), use of cloth face coverings in public (37), and universal masking in healthcare facilities (38) to prevent SARS-CoV-2 transmission by asymptomatic and symptomatic persons with SARS-CoV-2 infection.”

  7. Victory’s claim that COVID-19 is, “outside of New York City,” “essentially a nursing home problem” is outrageously, obviously, dangerously false. Here is the CDC’s provisional death count for COVID-19, by age group: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid_weekly/index.htm

    You can mine that site, and others, for data to make more useful comparisons. As just one example, see the graph “Whose Risk Goes Up Most in the Covid-19 Pandemic” in this other article. It was written in May, but you can use that example to guide you in creating your own graph from up-to-date data from the CDC or from any other reliable source. https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2020-05-07/comparing-coronavirus-deaths-by-age-with-flu-driving-fatalities

    And that’s only deaths! Hospitalizations and admissions to intensive care units also are not at all restricted to older people. See, for example, http://www.ecie.com.ar/images/paginas/COVID-19/4MMWR-Severe_Outcomes_Among_Patients_with_Coronavirus_Disease_2019_COVID-19-United_States_February_12-March_16_2020.pdf

    That’s not counting any of the other symptoms–not even the permanent, debilitating consequences after the novel coronavirus infection is gone, let alone the economic consequences of large numbers of people being out of work due to illness, even if they do eventually totally recover.

    Infected young people, even if asymptomatic, are just as likely as older people to transmit the virus. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0163445320301171

  8. Victory’s claim about “masks” causing dangerously increased breathing of CO2 is patently false, which obviously she knows, if she really is a doctor, because as a doctor she has spent many consecutive hours, day after day, wearing surgical masks. CO2 and oxygen freely go through surgical masks, and at least as importantly AROUND surgical masks, which unlike N95 masks are designed to allow air to flow around their edges. The general public should not be using even surgical masks, let alone N95 masks, because those still are in short supply for health care professionals and other workers in high risk environments. The general public should be using less effective cloth face coverings–masks, bandanas, whatever–which are dramatically more porous for oxygen and carbon dioxide both through their cloth and around their edges, than even surgical masks. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/factcheck/2020/05/30/fact-check-wearing-face-mask-not-cause-hypoxia-hypercapnia/5260106002/

  9. The effectiveness of surgical masks can be approximated by handkerchief-type cloth in SIX LAYERS. Such a six-layer face covering is about as good as a surgical mask, IF properly fitted including a proper metal or plastic moldable clip to snug it around the top of the nose, AND covering the chin, AND other attributes of surgical masks to reduce the air flowing around the edges, and to ensure such edge-escaping air is directed to the sides. (Redirection of air to the sides is a benefit of surgical masks, by diluting the exhaled air with outside air before it has time to travel to the person in front of the mask wearer.)

    Such a six-layer mask IS harder to breathe through than a surgical mask is, because a surgical mask is made not of regular cloth, but of special material that electrostatically attracts and traps the particles that the virus rides on, and I believe virus particles themselves. But hardly anybody wears a six-layer cloth mask. There is no need for such a mask for the general public, for the same reasons that surgical masks are not needed for the general public. Even single-layer cloth face coverings help enough to be crucial additions to distancing, hand washing, and refraining from touching your own face.

  10. Any who cites CNN as a reliable source for ANY information is, by definition, a biased and naïve liberal.

    I appreciate Mr. Dayton’s efforts to promote his own site to build hysteria that fuels the current weaponized politics of the left – but discount him because his rhetorical approach so well echoes the current leadership of the House of representative. No question who he aligns with.

    1. I don’t have “my own site.” And I’m not relying on CNN; you can get from the CNN article to the academic paper it is reporting on, as I have, and read that for yourself.

    2. DB Zimmer: In case you trust the Wall Street Journal more than CNN, here is an article about mortality of COVID-19 being much larger than that of the seasonal flu. But you really really really should not trust anything other than the original, peer reviewed, scientific papers. Use reports about those, regardless of whether those reports are by CNN, WSJ, some random blogger, or me, only as gateways for you to find and actually read the original scientific papers. https://www.wsj.com/articles/how-deadly-is-covid-19-researchers-are-getting-closer-to-an-answer-11595323801

  11. Thank you all for your comments.

    Here’s my take on wearing a mask. I don’t mind if you criticize my unprofessional opinion.

    The reason for wearing an appropriate mask is to protect the wearer. So, I opt for freedom of choice. Let those who want such protection wear a mask. Let those who do not want such protection not wear a mask.

    If we allow but don’t force people to wear a mask, everyone should be happy.

    1. No. Except for N95 masks, masks are to protect people other than the wearer, because masks other than N95s do not do much to protect the wearer. This is like drunk driving, not like wearing seat belts.

      1. Oh, good. So, people wear masks that catch sneeze goo, and coughing goo. But the virus, by itself, is small enough to exit through the pores in the mask, so as goo dries, virus flies. Not to mention the virus copies that simply ride out on their own, through any mis-fit leak, and through the mask pores. Bottom line: the heavy dispersal just stays in the mask instead of falling to the floor, and the airborne, light, small virus copies float away. NO MASK available will PREVENT virus escape, or inhalation. Playing Russian Roulette with one bullet, or 6, still has the same result.

        The GOAL here is to protect the frail and treat the ill, until there aren’t enough active carriers to spread it any further. I read somewhere that here in Oregon there have been more deaths from suicide than from Covid-19. Well, let’s see: so far, the state has had 244 deaths from Covid. In 2018, CDC says Oregon had 844 suicides, and by that number, it would be about 439 deaths by suicide so far this year — except the suicide rate has risen because of the financial hardship imposed on the state by a completely unthinking and heartless governor. Sounds like the virus is less lethal than depression and despair.

        So, screw the masks and get everyone back to work.

        1. Tom in Oregon City: Your claim that “Playing Russian Roulette with one bullet, or 6, still has the same result” is inapt. The probability of infection depends strongly on the number of virus particles that make it into a person’s body. That is called the “minimum infectious dose” or “minimum infective dose”; it is easy to learn about that from online resources. The existence of a minimum infectious dose is why spread of infections can be reduced and even eliminated by reducing the number of virus particles in people’s environment. Sufficient reduction can be accomplished by even smaller reductions in emissions from a large number of people. That’s why face coverings that only slightly reduce emission of SARS-Cov-2 virus by each person, when totaled across multiple people add up to a reduction in the total environmental load that is sufficient to substantially reduce the infection in that population.

        2. Tom in Oregon City wrote “NO MASK available will PREVENT virus escape, or inhalation. Playing Russian Roulette with one bullet, or 6, still has the same result.”

          If “prevent” you mean 100% prevent, you are correct, but your statement is irrelevant. Properly fitted N95 masks prevent 95% of particles, including viruses, from being inhaled and exhaled. That’s why they are labeled “95,” and why that label’s use is strictly regulated by the FDA. Something to keep in mind is that the ~125 nm size of the SARS-Cov-2 virus itself is not the relevant size, because viruses don’t float around by themselves, instead being attached to droplets and particles much larger than themselves–even aerosol particles are larger than that. And pore size of the mask material is not nearly the only relevant characteristic, because electrochemical interactions are major contributors to mask effectiveness–sometimes THE major contributors–not just for N95s but also for surgical masks and even for other face coverings.

          Surgical masks filter less well than N95s, both because of the material they are made from and more importantly because of their intentional lack of tight fit to the face. Nonetheless they filter a significant, substantial, and useful amount of the novel coronavirus from the exhalation of the wearer, and redirect the other exhalation around the edges so it never reaches the person in front of the wearer, or is diluted by other air before getting to that person. These masks mostly protect people other than the wearer (which is highly valuable), so don’t overgeneralize information about protection of the wearer, to conclude that same low protection exists for the non-wearers near the wearer. Excellent lab study demonstrating surgical masks substantially reduce emission of coronavirus: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0843-2

          Here is an easy to understand explanation of a recent meta analysis of distance, masks, and eye protection to reduce spread of the novel coronavirus. It has a link to the meta analysis itself, so you need not trust this lay explanation.

          “And, yes, we need to wear our masks but, as Steve put it, continue to behave as though they don’t work very well. Eventually science will settle the issue, but until it does the balance of evidence supports routine wearing of masks. It’s also important to remember that masks are not the be-all and end-all. Social distancing, masks, and face protection all work together to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission as low as feasible.”


        3. Tom in Oregon City: Your comment “Playing Russian Roulette with one bullet, or 6, still has the same result” is inapplicable to face coverings reducing transmission of SARS-Cov-2. Infection by the virus is not simply a matter of getting one virus particle in you. Instead, as for ALL viruses, there is a continuum of probability of becoming infected, where “infected” means experiencing any damage at all, or having a non-zero risk of spreading the virus to other people.

          The probability of becoming infected depends largely on the “minimum infectious dose” of virus, also called “minimal” infectious dose or “infective” dose. Having a quantity of virus in your body below the minimum infectious dose does not make you infected. Instead the virus particles never replicate for any of many reasons (e.g., not in the right location, or immune system disables them first), or replicate only a little bit before all of them are disabled by the immune system so quickly that they never cause any damage nor can be exhaled.

          Face coverings of ALL kinds reduce the amount of virus that makes it into the vicinity of, and therefore into the bodies of, other people. That means those other people get a lower dose of the virus, and the lower their dose, the lower their probability of getting infected, in other words the lower the probability of spreading the virus to other people.

          Even what naively appears to be a small reduction in the amount of virus from a contagious person, reduces the probability of other people becoming infected. Even more important is the fact that the probabilities from encounters with individuals accumulate to make a greater total probability than the probability in any individual encounter. If you are contagious and in the vicinity of 10 people simultaneously, the probability of at least one of those people becoming infected from you is much larger than the probability of any one of those individuals becoming infected. The total probability increases also if you are in the vicinity of only one of those people at a time; the probability just increases more slowly, incrementally as you encounter each person.

    2. If you do get infected, you will be contagious long before you have symptoms (actually more contagious than after you have symptoms), so the don’t-drive-drunk solution is to wear a face covering in addition to distancing, even when you think you are not infected.

  12. Thank you Dr Ed for the YouTube from Dr Kelly Victory. She is the voice of common sense.
    On the internet is so much garbage about Covid-19 that you can find the opposit of what she tells us on many sites. I will leave that to the garbage collector. I don’t think its healthy to look for every possibility or impossibility, but try to live your life as normal as is possible in these times.

  13. Total destruction of the unethical, immoral, and plain stupid argument that we should just let the novel coronavirus run its course until we get natural herd immunity. And this is using the optimistic assumption that immunity actually is achieved and maintained for a useful time after infection, which is not at all certain. This is a series of tweets by the Republican governor of Mississippi!

  14. Today, I added two science reports in the form of PDFs that you can both read and download. I included a summary of each report.

    These reports contradict some of the comments above.

    1. You should read the scientific articles that are cited by those documents you added to your original post. The actual, original, scientific articles. And actually read them.

      As just one example, the Rapaport 2019 article is about influenza virus, not coronavirus, which is a crucial distinction per the lab study I already linked: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0843-2. That Rapaport article does not even dispute that masks filter influenza virus! Instead, that Rapaport article noted that health care professionals’ adherence to mask wearing and other safety protocols in clinical settings was poor–10% to 84%! The Rapaport study asked the question of, GIVEN that those health care professionals do not wear masks, or wear them properly, most of the time, does it matter whether they are told to wear N95s or surgical masks. That says nothing whatsoever about whether masks work when worn properly.

      Read the original scientific articles.

      1. Also, that Rapaport study did not ask whether masks reduced transmission from the wearers. It asked whether, in clinical health care settings in which health care workers do a poor job of wearing N95 masks at all, or a poor job of wearing N95 masks properly AND of following other protocols to prevent infecting THEMSELVES, does it matter whether you suggest that they wear N95s instead of surgical masks, for preventing the health care workers themselves from contracting influenza? There was no investigation of wearing surgical masks versus no masks, and no investigation of whether masks reduced infection of other people.

      2. Dear Tom,

        Thank you for your comment.

        As this is not my field of expertise, I show the reports and leave it to the MD’s or other professionals to debate any conflicts in the reports.

        Did you intend to type “Rancourt” rather than “Rapaport”?

        1. But Rancourt is not an MD, nor any sort of professional in the field he makes strong conclusions about, in his “review.” Yet you trust his judgment, and refuse to read the actual scientific articles he cites, to see if they actually say what he claims they say.

        2. Dear Tom,
          Your personal attack on Rancourt is not a valid argument. Focus on the message rather than on the messenger.

          Several disciplines can address this subject. It is not necessary to be an MD in this subject. In fact, the transmission subject is closer to physics.

    2. Randomly picking another of the scientific articles that Rancourt cited: Offedu et al. 2017. Rancourt cherry picked a short quote from the middle of that article, to support Rancourt’s claim. But if you even read the freakin’ abstract of that article for the authors’ conclusions summed across all the evidence they reviewed, you easily see that (a) this was about masks worn by health care workers protecting them from patients, not about masks protecting people from the mask wearers, and (b) even that question is answered contrary to Rancourt’s false conclusion. Again, you need only read the abstract to see that: “This systematic review and meta-analysis supports the use of respiratory protection.” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29140516/

      Rancourt’s cited articles do not support Rancourt’s conclusions. He’s just written his personal opinion and pasted a bunch of references in hopes that nobody who reads his opinion piece will bother to go read those actual cited articles.

      So please, please read the actual cited articles. OTHER people’s health depends on YOUR behavior.

        1. Ed – It seems your blog has been infected by trolls. More evidence that real science has to be censored to keep this fraud going. No need to name it, it is obvious. How did a worthless article supposedly “debunking” Rancourt show up on your blog above Rancourt’s info? The supposed debunking done, is itself, total nonsense. The obviously left wing radical, America hating, self declared “Elite” shows he has no understanding of physics. I was done believing his nonsense when he accused Rancourt of being a “Climate Change Denier.” What does this have to do with the debate at hand? This is a typical psyop technique. No one is a climate change denier. Climate change is a natural process that humans, at our present level of advancement, will never control. However, intelligent people who look at real science know that Man Made Global Warming is a globalist political fraud used, as one of now many tools, to destroy capitalism and the US itself.

          He also obviously does not understand that the intended function of an N95 mask and a surgical mask are exact opposites. The N95 is designed to protect you from particulates in contaminated environments (but not down to 100 nM) It is not concerned with what you exhale into that environment. A surgical mask is intended to be used in an operating room that is cleansed, as much as possible of all particulates, bacteria and germs. It serves to keep any bad microbes in a surgeons breath or spittle from ending up in an open incision in a patient. Again, it does not work for 100nM particles. And if you wear it in an environment filled with particulates – outside, in a store, in your house, it quickly becomes clogged and more of the air you breath comes into your lungs around the mask instead of through it. Obviously no healthy person should ever wear one outside of an operating room if they think they are in a contaminated environment.

          Actually, if an N95 mask is not totally sealed around your face – if it has gaps on each side of your nose, then most of the air your breath follows that route, past the fluid area of your eyes. So it is totally ineffective for both protection of yourself and others, if you really think there is some deadly particle out there.

          Cloth masks are a joke. The space between threads is huge enough, on a “virus” scale, to allow millions of them in or out unimpeded with every breath. And of course all of us have billions of them, of all types, in our bodies right now. And when our damp breath stays in the mask, it will quickly breed mold, that you will inhale with every breath.

          But there is yet more psyop on top of all this. There has been NO REAL scientific proof that the little particle everyone in the world is testing for has ever made anyone sick! Both of the new articles you have posted make the totally unsubstantiated assumption that some partially identified RNA segment is the cause of all this panic.

          What is “THE TEST” really looking at? The inventor of the PCR test (now conveniently dead) has said it should NEVER BE USED to identify a disease. It is not a binary “test”. It is a manufacturing technique. It doubles a sample until there are millions or billions of it by cycles of exponential reproduction. As abused in this psyop, if you don’t do “enough” the result is negative. Do “too much” and 100% of results will be positive. So there is really no test at all – just a method to manipulate statistics.

          Epidemiologists have now claimed there are over 200 “mutations” of the “original” “virus.” Please note all the quote marks. An RNA segment has no energy production, no cellular structure, and is, by all accepted definitions, not “living.” No epidemiologist can rationally claim that “it” can mutate.

          To understand the full scope of this current fake epidemic you have to understand that the concept of an infectious “Virus” was invented for profit. Banned information on tests to determine the transmission of the “Spanish Flu” proved that it was not a contagious disease. Similar tests done today could prove that this supposed “Virus” is also not a contagious disease. But in the 100 years since that fake epidemic, we are now all assaulted by exponentially larger levels of environmental toxins, deadly vaccines, rat poison in toothpaste and municipal water supplies, Mercury in our mouth from dentists, electromagnetic assault at a cellular level, Glyphosate in almost everything we eat, Aluminum and Barium falling out the sky from chem trails, and the immune system depleting constant fear mongering of the main stream media.

          With all of those deadly operations underway, how could anyone think that “The Government” wants to “protect” us by forcing everyone to wear a slave mask and putting us in LOCKDOWN?

        2. Dear BA,
          Thank you for your comment.

          The C19 subject has nothing to do with climate change. Anyone who attempts to make a C19 argument based upon anyone’s opinion of climate change makes an invalid argument.

          I have no dog in the C19 fight because I have not studied the subject. I did this post because my subscribers do have an interest in this subject. Consider this post as an open sounding board where everyone can make their case.

          Regarding Rancourt’s paper, Johnson showed its lack of logic. Therefore, I cannot consider Rancourt’s testimony to be reliable. So, in my opinion, we do not have a basis to conclude that masks do not help.

          However, showing that Rancourt’s case fails does not prove masks DO slow the transmission of C19 in real life. That case still needs to be made.

  15. It must be hard to type with a surgical mask in front of your eyes, especialy when your vision is already blurred.

    1. In the above article in Psychology Today Dr. Johnson says “Since it’s easy for people to have COVID-19 and not know it, making sure everyone is wearing a mask helps prevent accidental contamination.”

      I’d like to see a randomized clinical trial or retrospective study that shows there is any significant transmission of C-19 from asymptomatic or pre-symptomatics to others. Unless there is actual science rather than just assumption of potential for asymptomatic transmission, then the mask debate is meaningless and the “wear it to protect others” doesn’t hold water. Maybe Mr. Dayton is aware of such a study? Otherwise I am not convinced.

      I believe the real danger is: step 1, make masks mandatory; step 2, make C-19 vaccine mandatory; step 3, stay tuned…..

  16. David Capital Partners appears to have invented, out of whole cloth, the term and concept “disease break point.” Does anybody have a legitimate reference for that term or concept?

      1. I did search the internet for “disease breakpoint.” I got nothing except for multiple hits on the David Capital Partners mention. “Breakpoint” is a completely legitimate statistical analysis term and concept in trend analysis, but I can find nothing corresponding to the specific and strong claims for the term “disease breakpoint” that David Capital Partners is using. They seem to have invented it as a generally applicable fact, with no actual basis in fact. I am happy to read any actual scientific literature that backs them up, if anybody can point me to it.

  17. David Capital Partners is completely wrong about Sweden having a per capita death rate no worse than its neighbors that did lock down. There are many sources of actual data about this, but here is a summary. If you don’t trust this post, then click the link “See the sources for this fact-check” in the “If your time is short” box, then click the revealed sources. Or do your own research, as I have, and please do post here actual data supporting the contention of David Capital Partners. https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2020/apr/28/facebook-posts/sweden-mostly-open-has-higher-covid-19-death-rate-/#sources

    1. How about everyone who comments on the David Capital Partners paper please note the section or page that includes the subject of your comment.


    1. Again, please read the actual scientific studies that are cited. The very first reference in that post actually concludes “Based on observational evidence from the previous SARS epidemic included in the previous version of our Cochrane review we RECOMMEND the use of masks combined with other measures.” [my emphasis added] That conclusion stated in that scientific article flatly contradicts the cherry picked tidbit that the internet post’s author quoted, thereby misrepresenting the conclusion of the authors of that study. That is one of the same incorrect (to put it politely) approaches used by Rancourt.

    2. The second reference in that post actually says “We did not find evidence that surgical-type face masks are effective in reducing laboratory-confirmed INFLUENZA transmission, either when worn by infected persons (source control) or by persons in the general community to reduce their susceptibility (Figure 2). However, as with hand hygiene, face masks might be able to reduce the transmission of OTHER INFECTIONS and therefore have value in an influenza pandemic when healthcare resources are stretched.”

      To that exact point, the lab study I linked to earlier found greater effectiveness of surgical masks for filtering coronavirus than influenza virus, from exhalation: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0843-2

      Likewise the more recent and much more complete meta-analysis I linked earlier, evaluated probable-COVID-19, SARS, and MERS rather than influenza, and found strong evidence for the protective effects of masks: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)31142-9/fulltext

  18. Are there any randomized clinical trials or retrospective studies that show any significant transmission of C-19 from asymptomatic people to others? It appears to me that “wearing a mask to protect others” because of the potential for asymptomatic transmission is just an assumption. However, without solid data from a scientific study to back it up, the mask debate is meaningless. Has Mr. Dayton read such a study?

  19. It looks like Dayton is of the view only his opinion is correct. Its quite rich a psychological analysis debunking others who don’t agree with their view.

  20. Just like my moma, her moma and I told my children, “cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze”. A mask will keep your mouth covered. According to RT I have worked with, the average cough can travel 12 feet. Common sense would mandate the recognition that this spread would be greatly reduced with wearing a mask. Just because you a symptom free doesn’t mean you aren’t infected. Any sneeze or cough can spread it.

  21. Ed Berry, it seems you missed seeing this study that provides the positive evidence that masks work.

    Here is an easy to understand explanation of a recent meta analysis of distance, masks, and eye protection to reduce spread of the novel coronavirus. This lay post contains a LINK TO THE PEER REVIEWED SCIENTIFIC ARTICLE ITSELF, so you can click through to read that original article and ignore everything that this lay post says, if you’d like.

    “And, yes, we need to wear our masks but, as Steve put it, continue to behave as though they don’t work very well. Eventually science will settle the issue, but until it does the balance of evidence supports routine wearing of masks. It’s also important to remember that masks are not the be-all and end-all. Social distancing, masks, and face protection all work together to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission as low as feasible.”


    1. Dear Tom,
      Thank you for your many comments. You did them professionally and well.

      I think the whole discussion about the effectiveness of wearing masks is complete enough for this post. The general conclusion seems to be that there exist no valid argument that masks do not slow the spread of the disease. At the same time the scientific arguments that masks do slow the spread of the disease are not overwhelming.

      In my next comment, I will offer my opinion on where I stand on the big picture of C19.

  22. Now, I am going to stand back and look at the bigger picture of COVID-19. What should be our priorities?

    I don’t expect that we will all agree but here is my view.

    C19 is maybe a little worse than the flu. Worldwide, the deaths have been in decline since April. There is no evidence that the government-imposed lockdowns have significantly changed the spread of C19 or the deaths from C19.

    For example, Sweden and Michigan each have about 10 million people. Sweden had no lockdown while Michigan closed its businesses perhaps more than any other US state. In Sweden, 5545 died from C19. In Michigan, 6075 died from C19. We have to call that a draw on the disease and a distinct win for Sweden on the economy.

    Meanwhile, the shutdowns have cost the US economy trillions of dollars. For what?

    Mostly to satisfy some people’s political agendas and to give government employees like Fauci the grandstand. Those suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome have used C19 to further their political agenda at America’s expense.

    There is nothing to be gained by “blaming” anyone for whatever “mistakes” people claim have been made. C19 was a surprise and surprise causes some incorrect actions. But playing Monday-morning quarterback brings no benefit.

    The only relevant thing worth discussing now is what is the best road for America to take starting now.

    Those who have died from C19 are mostly those who have very low immunity to anything. If they did not die from C19, they would likely have died from the next round of the flue. In general, those who died had very little Vitamin D or sunlight exposure and were too fat. As a country, we should put more effort into making our people be more healthy than to wear masks.

    Personally, I have not yet worn a mask and I don’t intend to start wearing a mask. But that is just personal.

    I am on the side of getting America back in business again. Many people have suffered and died because of the shutdowns. We should not let that happen.

    Let those who wish to wear masks, wear masks and those who do not want to wear them, not wear them. Any difference that masks will make going forward will be insignificant in the future of the disease. If we are so concerned about masks, then we should also be wearing them for the flu.

    Finally, who stopped America from using Hydroxychloroquine, zinc sulfate, plus Z Pak antibiotic (HCQ)?

    HCQ is a proven remedy but some people have worked to stop America from using it. Yes, I am aware that some have claimed HCQ does no good and causes medical problems. But they were wrong. There is now sufficient data to show HCQ is beneficial if started in a few days after first symptoms occur.

    It is inconsistent to claim we should all wear masks and also claim the government should prevent the use HCQ if we happen to get C19?

    If people are truly interested in lowering the deaths and suffering from C19, they should promote rather than prevent the medical use of HCQ.

    1. Ed Berry, your statement that “C19 is maybe a little worse than the flu” is very, very incorrect. The U.S. case fatality rate for the seasonal flu is between 0.1 and 0.2 percent (https://ourworldindata.org/mortality-risk-covid#case-fatality-rate-of-covid-19-compared-to-other-diseases). In stark and frightening contrast, the case fatality in the U.S. currently is about 4%, which is between 20 and 40 times the flu rate! (https://ourworldindata.org/grapher/coronavirus-cfr) That’s 2,000% to 4,000% the flu rate!

      The COVID-19 case fatality rate varies over time (https://ourworldindata.org/mortality-risk-covid#the-case-fatality-rate-isn-t-constant-it-changes-with-the-context). But even at its lowest in the U.S. (on March 1) it was 1%, which is 5 to 10 times the flu rate–500% to 1,000% the flu rate! (https://ourworldindata.org/grapher/coronavirus-cfr)

      What we really want to know is the rate of death by INFECTION rather than CASE (https://ourworldindata.org/mortality-risk-covid#what-we-want-to-know-isn-t-the-case-fatality-rate-it-s-the-infection-fatality-rate). But that is really hard to estimate so early in such a rapid and widespread pandemic. Until we get those estimates, case rate must guide policy, and even if the case rate estimates are very much higher than the eventually figured infection rates, COVID-19 certainly is far worse than flu.

      1. The above claim: Impressive, frightening, and FALSE.

        Serum testing has shown that the ‘actual’ cumulative infections of COVID-19 are 10-30 times greater than the subset of ‘confirmed’ infections. Accordingly, the actual mortality rate is in the neighborhood of only 0.2%. For influenza, the mortality rate is of order 0.1%.


        A more substantial difference may be the post-infection damage of COVID-19, which is still largely undocumented.

        1. No, Lou, that claim of 0.2% is false despite (or maybe because of) being spread widely through social media. https://www.capradio.org/articles/2020/06/16/widely-shared-facebook-posts-mislead-on-covid-19-mortality-rate/

          As I wrote, and which you ignored but in effect agreed with, what we really are interested in is the infection fatality rate rather than the case fatality rate. The infection fatality rate is much harder to estimate, so decent estimates have been slow to come. Some initial attempts at infection mortality estimates by both methods have started to appear, but still are very preliminary and so uncertain. But even if you assume huge bands of uncertainty, COVID-19 is looking to be far more fatal than the flu.

          As one, very preliminary, example, the CDC’s estimate of infection fatality rate (IFR) as of July 10 was 0.65% (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/planning-scenarios.html#box). For details see Meyerowitz-Katz and Merone, “‘A systematic review and meta-analysis of published research data on COVID-19 infection-fatality rates,” medRxiv, 2020: https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.05.03.20089854v4

          As I wrote in my comment you responded to, even if that estimate turns out to be correct and so much lower than the case fatality rate, it still is much worse than the flu: 3.25 to 6.5 times the flu IFR. That’s 325% to 650% the IFR of the flu!

        2. Tom Dayton #1: “In stark and frightening contrast… That’s 2,000% to 4,000% the flu rate!”

          Lou: “..the actual mortality rate is in the neighborhood of only 0.2%. For influenza, the mortality rate is of order 0.1%.”

          Tom Dayton #2: “That’s 325% to 650% the IFR of the flu!”

          FYI: ~0.2% is 200% of ~0.1% – greater, but comparable.

          Anybody see an Amplifier?

        3. Lou: The CDC’s actual though highly uncertain and preliminary estimate of COVID-19 infection fatality rate (IFR) on July 10 was 0.65%, not the 0.2% that you claimed based on your cited blog post.

          Unlike your cited blog post that was written on May 2, the formal, scientific meta-analysis the CDC mostly relied on, and which I linked for you, systematically and transparently combined many individual studies’ estimates (up through the end of May) while accounting for their differences in methods, to arrive at their best estimate from all the evidence, of 0.68%. Scientists use a formal meta-analysis instead of a random blog post, because any individual study is subject to error if only by the misfortune of being a non-representative sample despite best efforts, or due to recruiting through Facebook ads and your children’s school email list (really, that’s how Ioannidis recruited for his Santa Clara County study…seriously!).

          The IFR for flu is between 0.1% and 0.2% (https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden/index.html).
          0.65% COVID = 650% of 0.1% flu.
          0.65% COVID = 325% of 0.2% flu.

        4. As recent events have demonstrated,
          CDC = federal bureaucracy + big pharma interests
          # necessarily truthful or correct.

          A recent and wide survey of locations and well documented serum antibody testing determined as follows:

          “Across 32 different locations, the median Infection Fatality Rate was 0.27%.

          Median corrected IFR was 0.10% in locations with COVID-19 population mortality rate less than the global average (<73 deaths per million as of July 12, 2020), 0.27% in locations with 73-500 COVID-19 deaths per million, and 0.90% in locations exceeding 500 COVID-19 deaths per million.”


          Although based on a large population of independent tallies, one should not be surprised if this survey receives the same treatment as HCQ (by special interests).

        5. Lou: That paper by Ioannidis that you linked to in your most recent comment, was just one of many included in Meyerowitz-Katz and Merone’s meta-analysis paper that was the main basis for the CDC’s July 10 IFR estimate, and which I linked for your convenience, above. Neither of those authors works for the CDC nor any pharmaceutical company. Both work at universities in Australia. Regarding that Ioannidis paper and similar ones, Meyerowitz-Katz and Merone wrote (their reference “(61)” is to that Ioannidis paper):

          “Of note, there appears to be a divergence between estimates based on serosurveys and those that are modelled or inferred from other forms of testing, with the IFR based purely on serosurveillance being
          0 .60% (0.43-0. 77%). Some have argued that serological surveys are the only proper way to estimate IFR, which would lead to the acceptance of this slightly lower IFR as the most likely estimate (61). However, even these estimates are very heterogeneous in quality, with some extremely robust data such as that reported from the Spanish and Swedish health agencies (40, 62), and some that have clear and worrying flaws such as a study from Iran where death estimates are reportedly substantially lower than the true figure (45). However, when taking quality into account, and only analysing those serosurveys that had a low risk of bias, it is interesting to note that the inferred IFR rises substantially to 0.76% (0.37-1.15%). This may be due to the bias in lower-quality serosurveys being towards a higher prevalence (27), which in turn lowers the IFR substantially” (p. 20 of https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.05.03.20089854v4).

  23. If you actually read (not just skim) the actual contents (not just the titles or abstracts) of the actual peer-reviewed scientific papers (not just blog posts) that actually are relevant to the topic of whether wearing face coverings will substantially reduce the spread of SARS-Cov-2 infection from the face-covering wearer to other people (rather than protecting the wearer), inevitably you will conclude that there actually is overwhelming evidence that the answer is “yes.” I have done that reading.

    Here is a list of 70 such papers published up through July 5, 2020, with clickable links to all the actual papers. This list was compiled by actual medical doctors, public health professionals, and relevant researchers. But you need not take anybody else’s word even for this list. You can search Google Scholar yourself to find relevant studies: https://docs.google.com/document/u/1/d/1m-o_9N9Yq3cq7toP1-nZKtAHTIQ-Nqeqaj866sycl6w/mobilebasic

    1. Dear Tom,

      All the references you provide in links have no bearing on the discussion about the benefits of mask wearing BECAUSE you must first summarize each reference you intend to use as follows:

      “Date of publication, Title, Relevant conclusions, Source of funding, Any specific comments you wish to add, Link to source.”

      Otherwise, simply providing a reference is meaningless.

      The onus is not upon the readers to sort through all your references. The onus is upon you to make a clear statement about each and every reference you wish to use in these discussions. Then and only then can we have objective discussions hopefully based on valid science.

      Yes, you may have to do this for about 100 such references. But if you want to continue your claims, you really need to provide full backup in your comments. (I am not charging you for your use of space or number of comments.)

  24. Dear Tom,
    I looked through your several references. I found many that claimed to prove if everyone wears a mask when in public, the spread of C-19 is slowed down. Actually, that is rather logical because any barrier to the transmission of C-19 from one person to another should slow the spread.

    But, I could not find any study that compares these studies with the result if only those who want to wear masks do so and no one else is required to wear a mask.

    For example, I could not find any study that investigates the rate of transmission from an infected person to a non-infected person when only the non-infected person wears a mask (assumed to be a mask that filters the virus either as droplets of as a nucleus). All such studies seem to be for the cases where both parties wear a mask or when both parties do not wear a mask.

    Maybe you can provide information on such a study.

  25. The David Capital Partners’ statement that “distancing is not recommended” flies in the face of the empirical facts that the novel coronavirus is highly contagious in the absence of symptoms, that distance drastically reduces the number of virus particles transferred from an infected person to other people, and that the probability of becoming infected rises with the number of virus particles someone is exposed to. In earlier comments I linked to studies specifically on each of those topics.

    Here is a study that describes, quantitatively, how effective quarantining is. Quarantining is the separating of people who are known to have contacted infectious people or materials but who so far have not shown signs of being infected. So “social distancing” by people who are not known to be infected is a light version of quarantining. This study does not consider distancing, only full quarantining, so the calculations would need to be tweaked, but it’s point remains when applied to a disease with the characteristics of the novel coronavirus: Social distancing definitely is recommended. https://academic.oup.com/aje/article/163/5/479/61137

  26. Dr Berry, you Daton and David Kyle Johnson Ph.D. Have been blown into smithereens when Rancourt debated Johnson Digi-Debates. The Face Mask Debate. https://youtu.be/AQyLFdoeUNk . Another devastating article was released by The Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine – Masking lack of evidence with politics July 23. Note specifically “This abandonment of the scientific modus operandi and lack of foresight has left the field wide open for the play of opinions, radical views and political influence. “

    1. John: That article published by the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine merely laments the few number of the most rigorous types of randomized trials directly and narrowly on the specific topic of face coverings of lesser quality than surgical masks, worn by infected people to protect others, on spread of the novel coronavirus. It does not dispute, and instead acknowledges, that the existing other types of evidence support the practice, citing one of the same meta-analyses that I cited in an earlier comment: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7263814/

      It is important that you actually read the original scientific papers. Don’t just skim.

      By the way, here is another article published by that Centre, making many of the points I have been making, specifically on the topic of face coverings worn by the public to protect people other than the wearer, specifically against the novel coronavirus: https://www.cebm.net/covid-19/face-coverings-for-the-lay-public-an-alternative-view/

    1. Well if masks and social distancing and lock-downs have not prevented the spread of contrick19 then its quite obvious they don’t work whether in isolation or in tandem or in conjunction. The reduction in speed of transmission was used as an argument that would allow governments time to ensure their medical facilities to not be overwhelmed. That is all.
      It was again based on conjecture of computer models. It is irrelevant then to try and make them work according to a belief system. The evidence is they don’t work. Just one case like Sweden and then compared to New Zealand blows it out of the water. I link a video form Tony Heller – https://youtu.be/2OVLCsbZpak- No Lie Is Too Big For Scientists. Of course this is with respect to Dr Berry whom I respect.

  27. Starting hypothesis: it is the expansion of the water vapor of the breath that controls the distribution of the virus (see https://valedo.com/umidita-temperatura-e-sars-cov-2/ …italian text … use the Google translator…)

    The exhaled human air when it comes out of the mouth is approximately characterized by T = 35 ° C (temperature T in ° Celsius) and UR = 80% (UR=relative humidity). If the exhaled air finds an external environment with the same temperature and humidity conditions, the virus has a 1 “chance” of infecting a person.

    In fact 4.42-2.24-1.91+0.84 is about 1. See equation DX=4.42-T/15.6-Ur/41.9+(T*Ur)/3320 that you find in
    https://valedo.com/contagio-da-coronavirus-e-safety-distance/ (italian text … use the Google translator…).

    In a room with air conditioner we can to measure T=20°C and Ur=30%; applying the previous equation, DX=2.6, that is, t he possibility of infecting a person at a distance of 2.6 times greater. That’s why air conditioning increases the chance of getting infected.

    Also mask is important because mask interferes with the expansion of the water vapor of the exhaled air and reduces the dispersion of the virus.

  28. Dear Dr Berry

    Thank you for posting the video of the debate between Dr David Kyle Johnson and Denis Rancourt. Listening to them we cannot help taking in more than their words. The difference is striking and informative. Dr Johnson was zealous and somewhat fanatical in putting his point whereas Rancourt appeared rational and calm.

    The question of face masks in my layperson’s opinion will not be resolved as it has now become politicised. For science the opportunity of proving anything one way or the other is now lost. How easy it may have been to measure the volume and density of a Genie in a bottle.

    Once again we have to use our common sense and hence become vulnerable to propaganda. Dr Johnson has a valid point to suggest droplets will be prevented from being transmitted and Rancourt made a valid counter in saying the truth is not always what we imagined it to be and that a confined spaces hold trillions of aerosol particles.

    In cases like this I suspect the wise person takes a step or two back from the problem and considers the context. In the vague hierarchy with fuzzy boundaries, of cleverness, intelligence and wisdom I would say Rancourt struck a much higher level. In his opening words he alluded to the bigger picture and this is of course very important and, contrary to Dr Johnson’s opinion, very relevant. Unless the threat of Covid-19 is understood and evaluated then the debate is sterile and meaningless. We are not stricken by the Bubonic Plague but a disease that does not warrant the psychological and physical harm that the measures have created.

    We know this is not the first time the public have been left in this no-man’s land of scientific ignorance drawing subjective conclusions. AGW is such where the real pollutants are side tracked. You as well as others have given some firm ground for us to stand on. Another was the financial argument around Brexit, an unprovable scenario which missed the point of sovereignty and ownership.

    There are some pointers to look for, but we also see them subconsciously. When there is a plethora of contradicting reports which seldom hold water, when omissions are made, when lies are found out, and when personal and collective insults are made, these are always the clues. The most striking and pernicious signal is censorship, a marker on the road to Totalitarianism. Note Denis Rancourt’s work was censored.

    I have seen on a large campus Professors supported and protected by their secretaries who operate the simple office machines for them, and find their car keys. It has been said ‘wise men never fall in love’. We must look at the bigger picture.

    If you dismissed the link between AGW and C19 then I believe you are wrong just as I believe it right to give Dr Johnson the benefit of the doubt. Too many flags have gone up.

    I say to such people fall in love with nature, lift up your head, and open your mind’s eye. Oh yes…and take off your mask!

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