There are many, many factors involved in how seriously some places are being hit with the Coronavirus*, including many that perhaps we aren’t really thinking about, which this article seems to indicate.
This is why it is useless from a rational point of view to point out a single difference between two areas that are impacted differently and then declare that that one difference is the only one just because it would suite one’s preferred narrative. Not only are there factors that can each affect the impact of Coronavirus (e.g. healthcare system, social distancing, ICU availability, medical drugs, &c.), but also other variables such as differences in: Testing rates, whether and how other complicating factors affect if one is listed as having died of Coronavirus, lack of testing on those who died without having been tested, &c.
Yes, predictive models were not spot-one crystal balls, but that is because they are estimates using the best data available, and the People’s Republic of China ensured that that data wasn’t very good or useful. Though even then the models weren’t lies because they didn’t deliver what they “promised”. As more data comes in, and as the other variables change (e.g. effects of social distancing), predictive models are changed. As these change, it is all right to change how we are dealing with this pandemic.
The U.K. initially was going with the “herd immunity” route with no social distancing, but had to switch over because it that wasn’t working. Sweden has loose limits and low death rate… or did, though it also is tightening things up a bit, but not as low as Norway. Norway, though has a higher rate of intubation, which is consistent with there being many unknowns and variables.
When it comes to comparing differences in the impact of the Coronavirus between areas, it isn’t a matter of “apples to apples” vs. “apples to oranges”; it is like comparing a plethora different fruit salads with both many different differing and similar ingredients. However, one of the variables we do know is that people act as vectors for this disease when interacting with other people, and limiting interactions reduce the number of vectors, which can slow the disease. This is only of variables that is easiest to control.
We also know that we have limited capacity to treat people with serious complications from the Coronavirus. This is why social distancing to limit vector transmission is important for keeping hospitals and ICUs below maximum capacity. The exact degree of social distancing necessary to keep hospitals and ICUs below maximum capacity is something we’ll only know once this is all over, if ever. That is the prime driver for most discussions in how to handle this problem.
Due to the long asymptotic incubation period of the Coronavirus, coupled with reports that recovered patients could relapse or be reinfected, also drove social distancing measures, even though there’d be a negative economic effect.
After all, you can revive an economy, but you can’t bring back the dead.
And no, necromancy is not an alternative healthcare plan.
We do know that congregating in large groups can result in an exponential increase of vectors for disease, as we’ve seen with the Florida Spring breakers amongst numerous other examples, with people dead and dying because of it.
Perhaps we all could have had better plans to tackle this pandemic, to both minimize deaths & the negative economic impact if we had early and accurate information from the People’s Republic of China. Much of the death and economic damage is China’s fault because they lied.
So yes, the Coronavirus pandemic is China’s fault.
As bad as overreacting to the Coronavirus may be, underreaction can be far, far worse.
As a note, one reason why I am disinclined towards the “economic impact of social distancing is worse than the disease” argument is because far too many idjits have been proven to consistently understate how bad Coronavirus is.
For those complaining that “the cure is worse than the disease”, you should realize that that isn’t the situation we face. A better question is if the cure for the disease is worse than the disease sans any cure?
* AKA Xinnie the Flu’s Wuhan Bat Soup Death Plague ChiCom Bio-Weapon of DOOM (with Sprinkles**).
** The sprinkles are also cursed.