Former Bay Area Lockdown Guru: "OK Everybody Please Stop Locking Down Now"

"It's time to start living again," says Zero Covid thinkfluencer Tomas Pueyo

Erstwhile Zero Covidian Tomas Pueyo, whose viral Medium essays drove lockdown policies across the world, wants everyone to stop locking down now.

This is because “Between Omicron, vaccines, and treatments, the risk of COVID is down by 10x to 1000x.” We should still be “cautious” over the course of the next wave, but now “The biggest risk” is that nobody “internalize[s]” Pueyo’s all-clear and our governments continue to restrict social and economic life.

Pueyo thinks that the Omicron death rate is down 90% compared to Delta, and 75% compared to the wild-type, “making Omicron just about 2x as virulent as normal flu.” For proof of this we go to the bizarrely wrong Footnote 2:

Alpha was ~60% more virulent than the original variant, and Delta was yet again ~60% more virulent than Alpha. A reduction of virulence of ~90% of Omicron vs. Delta broadly puts it at ~75% less virulent than the original variant, which is huge. It would go from an average fatality rate of ~1% in mature economies to ~0.25%, just about twice the virulence of a normal flu.

Clownworld is when the random Medium writer and Stars Wars narratologist who condemned you to two years of house arrest, social isolation, and movement restrictions, decides on the strength of some casual envelope math that it’s fine to go outside again. It’s just amazing, after all this time, that there are still Corona pundits – even in Zero Covidistan – who assign SARS-2 a 1% fatality rate.

Anyway, because Omicron is milder and the vaccines have saved us, everybody needs to start relaxing now. Also too, Pueyo explains, “shutdowns” have accomplished all the goals set out for them:

In Coronavirus: Why You Must Act Now, I sounded the alarm on COVID.
In Coronavirus: The Hammer and the Dance, I explained what we had to do about it.
Today, in Coronavirus: Game Over, I’d like to explain why this means the end of the pandemic phase, and the beginning of the end(emic) phase.

On the 10th of March 2020, the world had not realized what was coming. It was important to share how what had happened to Italy and Iran was going to happen everywhere else if they didn’t shut down their countries. That proved to be true.

One week later, when I published The Hammer and the Dance, I explained why we needed to apply shutdowns: to buy ourselves time, so we could

  • Prepare the healthcare system
  • Learn to do testing and tracing
  • Produce masks we needed at scale (and other things, like ventilators)
  • Understand the virus
  • Understand the cost-benefits of tackling it
  • Find treatments
  • Get vaccines

Check, check, check, check, check, check, check.

Thank you, Pueyo, for those shutdowns, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to “get vaccines” and we wouldn’t “understand the virus” and we wouldn’t have “learn[ed] to do testing and tracing.”

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