FEAR, HYPE & SENSATIONALISM


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As we noted in our 28 January Trends Journal, when the outbreak of the coronavirus hit China, the mainstream media immediately promoted the virus as a deadly pandemic that would devastate the world.
The cover story of the issue was: “CORONAVIRUS: 109 DEAD IN CHINA – 1.4 BILLION STILL ALIVE. BLACK PLAGUE 2020?
Now, some two and a half months later, the total dead in China is 3,329 out of its population of 1.4 billion, which equals 0.00024 percent.
TRENDPOST: Since that time, geopolitical current events forming future trends, such as “New World Disorder,” one of our 2020 Top Trends detailing the scores of riots, demonstrations, protests, and strikes raging across the globe as millions took to the streets fighting against government corruption, loss of civil rights, violence, income inequality, poverty – are out of the news.
The Hong Kong protests that broke out a year ago, which the Chinese government could not contain and which we covered extensively in the Trends Journal, have now ended, as have the protests in all other countries.
Instead, COVID-19 news, filled with fearful, anxiety-ridden headlines, is blasted 24/7 by global mainstream media, followed by government actions that now have put over four billion people in lockdown, shutting down industry and businesses, putting hundreds of millions of people out of work, and launching the “Greatest Depression.”
Unlike the 1930’s Great Depression, when Americans were told by their President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, “The only thing we have to fear… is fear itself…” in 2020, we are constantly brainwashed by the media and government to only fear “fear itself.”
Hyperventilating PR
Last Thursday, the Trends Journal was sent the following from a U.S. public relations firm:
“As Americans debate the deadliness of Coronavirus and how we must respond, a new study shows Coronavirus is expected to become the No. 1 leading cause of death in America in April.”
The study comes from a group called “Assisted Living Facilities.” It based its analysis on White House data released on 31 March, as well as updated information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Included in their press release are these statistics:
Deadliest Events in U.S. History:

  1. Civil War: 750,000 deaths (1861-1865)
  2. HIV/AIDS: 700,000 (1981 to present)
  3. H1N1/Spanish Flu: 675,000 (1918)
  4. Heart Disease: 647,457 (2017)
  5. Cancer: 599,108 (2017)
  6. World War II: 405,000 (1941-1945)
  7. COVID-19: 240,000 (Upper White House estimate from March 31)

These numbers, like most of the data published in the mainstream media, are presented to make coronavirus appear significantly more lethal than the facts on the ground indicate.
These facts are virtually ignored by the mainstream media, which instead hype in its front-page headlines, “Virus Deaths Soar in New York” (Wall Street Journal, 4 April 2020).
Despite some of the highest levels of hospitalization, as of Monday, 2,475 people have died in New York City, a city of 8.6 million (0.029 percent).
And to date, there are some 11,000 deaths from COVID-19 reported in the U.S., while absent in the mainstream coverage is that already in the U.S. this year, the CDC estimates at least 24,000 have people died from the flu, and there have been 39 million flu illnesses and 400,000 hospitalizations.
In fact, according to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS):
“[From] mortality surveillance data available on March 26, 2020, 8.2 percent of the deaths occurring during the week ending 21 March… were due to Pneumonia and Influenza. This percentage is above the epidemic threshold of 7.2 percent for week 12.”
As for the 31 March forecast that “240,000 will die from COVID-19” in the U.S., the number is hardly above the 200,000 that the Journal of the American Medical Association said will die this year from air pollution.
And, it should be noted that “up to 240,000 American could die” is based on an estimate by Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who, according to the mainstream media, is the “most trusted voice” on the impact of the virus.
Adding to the confusion and projections based on conflicting metrics and models, at the same press conference wherein the “most trusted voice” said up to 240,000 could die, Dr. Deborah Birx, White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator, said that according to the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, up 82,000 could be killed by COVID-19.
It should also be noted that on 11 March, Dr. Fauci declared the coronavirus is ten times more lethal than seasonal flu, which would, according to his estimates, kill up to eight million Americans.
On 13 March, the CDC predicted that “as many as 200,000 to 1.7 million people could die.”
In keeping COVID-19 on a war footing front, this past Saturday, America’s Surgeon General warned this week will be “our Pearl Harbor moment.”
 
TRENDPOST: In the space of just two weeks, the COVID-19 death toll estimates in the U.S. ranged from 1.7 million to 82,000. All of these “pick your model” numbers were considered worst-case scenarios.
Clearly, 82,000 is a lot of deaths, and we’re not implying this isn’t significant.  And, if it rises to the highest level of the estimate, then it would be a terrible loss for those that died of the virus.
But since the motto of the Trends Journal is “Think for Yourself,” it’s worth noting that, according to the CDC, in the 2017-2018 season, 80,000 Americans died from seasonal flu. 
So, even if Ms. Birx’s estimate of 82,000 COVID-19 deaths is reached, it will not be significantly more deadly than the 2017-2018 seasonal flu… and could end up to be less deadly.

Totally unreported by the mainstream media, and of no concern to the politicians and the general public that follows their orders, is the fact that already this season, the CDC estimates there have already been 24,000 to 63,000 flu deaths.

Yet, the country wasn’t in lockdown and 25 percent of the economy did not go idle, as it is today.

Forgotten Facts
Another key fact underplayed by mainstream media is that based on CDC data, 73 percent of Americans who needed hospitalization after contracting COVID-19 already were suffering from significant health issues.
For example, an estimated 97 percent of those killed by COVID-19 in Louisiana had pre-existing conditions: 40 percent had diabetes, 25 percent were obese, 23 percent had chronic kidney disease, and 21 percent had cardiac problems.
And, the New Orleans area, which has the worst coronavirus death rate in U.S., ranks 47thout of 50 states in obesity, and Louisiana ranks 49t out of 50 for “unhealthiest” U.S. states.
The China Syndrome
On 28 February, a report was released by the World Health Organization (WHO) stating the rate of death from COVID-19 in the Wuhan region of China, where the virus originated, was 5.8 percent.
Considering the seasonal flu has a mortality rate of 0.1 percent, a death rate percentage of 5.8 for COVID was huge, and it sent shock waves across the globe.
Yet, on 19 March, a study published in the journal Nature Medicine, a peer-reviewed medical journal, revealed that after more detailed analysis, the actual rate of death from the coronavirus was not the 5.8 percent originally estimated by WHO, but 1.4 percent! The medical journal Lancet came in with an estimate of 1.7 percent.
Both medical journals pointed out that estimates of death rates are almost always much higher in the early stages of an outbreak, due to public health reports reflecting the sickest of those who contract the virus while not having data on those with mild symptoms or who are asymptomatic.
Even the revised, much lower estimated death rates of 1.4 and 1.7 percent do not reflect what is likely even a considerably lower reality, as explained in a study led by Dr. Jeffrey Shaman, Professor of Epidemiology at Columbia University and published in the journal Science on 16 March.
Using statistical models, the evidence showed that some 86 percent of all those infected in China were “undocumented”: having either no symptoms or mild symptoms assumed were not caused by COVID-19. Even if this estimate is high, well over 50 percent of those contracting COVID-19 are not counted, which would reduce the death rate percentage by at least half.
In the U.S., on 3 April, the CDC reported that 78 percent of the people requiring ICU treatment from COVID-19 had serious pre-existing health issues, most notably heart disease, diabetes, and chronic lung disease.
Healthy People Unite: Breaking New Data on NYC COVID-19 Deaths
Of the 4,758 in New York City who have died of coronavirus since 14 March, a new report released on Monday shows that:

  • 61 percent were men, 39 percent were women,
  • 63 percent were age 70 or older, 7 percent were aged 49 and younger.

Records also show that 88 percent had at least one other chronic illness:

  • The leading underlying disease was hypertension, which showed up in 55 percent of the deaths,
  • Diabetes was found in about 37 percent of the cases,
  • Other top illnesses found among those who died were hyperlipidemia (abnormally high concentration of fat in the blood), coronary artery disease, renal disease, and dementia.

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