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America, Stop Listening to the WHO and Much of What the CDC Says

April 4, 2020

When the new coronavirus (COVID-19) became known to me in early January, I took interest in it since I am married to a woman from China and have family there. My wife and I would talk about it daily. I was tracking the infection rate and getting tips on how to avoid it.

All the while, I was absolutely dumbfounded that the WHO was recommending people not wear masks. Even as late as March 31, 2020, CNN was reporting that the "WHO stands by recommendation to not wear masks". That is absolutely stupid. The WHO was also reporting incorrect death rates. I was looking at the data China was publishing, and I kept seeing far higher death rates. Finally, the WHO reported that the death rate was 3.4%. That was a closer number, but still low. China was clearly tracking over 4% and some other countries are tracking even higher. Spain's death rate stands at over 9% as of this writing. The WHO simply cannot be trusted, so do not listen to them.

Yes, wear a mask! A mask isn't just to prevent you from spreading it to others. That seems to be the new claims from the US CDC, but even that’s misleading. It does help with that, but a mask also helps prevent getting it. The reality is that they are just concerned that you might buy the masks the medial teams need. In fact, they made that a bit clearer in a tweet. The reality is that a surgical mask or an N95 mask is absolutely your best defense if you must be out in public, but any good mask is better than no mask. The best defense, of course, is to not be out in public.

I think everyone has heard many of the recommendations about washing your hands, keeping distance between yourself and others, cleaning anything that enters your home, etc. I have also heard claims that drinking hot liquids will help. I have no evidence to support the claim, but I have seen "fact checking" sites say it does not help. At this point, I do not trust any site that claims anything does or does not work. What I can tell you is that pretty much everyone in China is required to wear a mask in public and at work. Many businesses require employees to drink hot liquids before shifts start. It is either that or gargling hot salt water. Given China's success rate at combating this virus, I put more stock in the common practices there than I do in what "experts" are telling us in the west.

By all means, do not listen to people like this:

The bottom line is this: if it makes sense, even if remotely helpful, do it. Help protect yourself and your loved ones.

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Paul E. Jones

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