Managing Our Bubbles

2020-04-07 07.56.17

Axel getting creative to keep his BJJ skills up during lockdown

+++

Our stay-at-home order has been extended to April 26th (end of Week Six for us). Social distancing appears to be working and we are bending the curve.

I’m locked down with my family => it’s never boring and we are a good mix of personalities. Aside from the lack of cardio, I’m having a pretty good time and getting stuff done.

Some of the quarantine-exit discussion, centers around locking down at-risk populations. I understand the rationale but it doesn’t feel right to me.

Here’s why.

My grandparents were pretty much done living by ~85 years old.

If I was 80 and you were trying to “help” me by asking me to self-isolate until a vaccine was deployed then you would be taking the rest of my life away from me.

Here’s another thought… You don’t need to be 80 for this one… my family tree has addiction and mental illness running through it => both conditions are made more difficult by self-isolation.

I spent decades making my addictions positive and creating a mental health team around me. My mental health team is called my wife and kids. 🙂

Solitary confinement is a tactic used to break people down.

I imagine there is tremendous silent suffering happening in all of our communities => seniors, confined to their rooms, for their own “protection”.

They deserve better.

How about something like this…

2020-04-07 16.16.55

Small-group isolation => five people with a single person supporting, while maintaining social distancing. Seems tighter than (top left) single nodes trying to figure it out on their own.

In the Bill Gates interview with CBS, he mentioned people he didn’t see dropping food.

That comment got me thinking about a small group, working together to limit the risk of infection entering their bubble. Using precautions inside their bubble, while maintaining their humanity with each other.

Seems much more viable, and healthy, than 18-months (best case?) self-imposed solitary confinement.

We need a viable strategies until the vaccine is deployed.

+++

One other thought was to avoid places that are burning with new infections.

I track my home county (325,000 peeps) as well as my state (5,800,000). Our neighbor has an app that lets her see data on positives by postal code.

We are going to have widely available testing at some stage. With that information, we can make informed choices about where we go, and where we shop.

Home School Ideas & National Tracking Link

2020-04-03 14.32.32My key recommendations for home school:

declare victory

tell your kids they are promoted to their next grade

focus on minimizing what they are going to forget

It’s highly risky for us to have ANY activity go past 5pm. My emotional control is tapped! I can barely watch a Disney movie without tearing up. Kids are in a similar place, especially at the end of the day.

We enjoyed these two zucchini bread recipes => ONE and TWO

Here’s the week two link from our district’s Home School Bingo

Big picture from our home => I’ve let go of my academic goals. Mornings are school-focused and afternoons are specials. In my mind, school is “done” by lunch. We do a light day Saturday to catch up, if required on anything (the kids feel they) missed during the week.

Specials include: PE, music, art, cooking, science, training with parents, walks, lego and games.

With the science, we’ve been growing mold for a week. Kids love checking each day after school.

Our kids’ BJJ coach lives two blocks away so he runs PE. We drop the kids at a huge field near us (Chautauqua) and he does the session (with social distancing). Kids walk home afterwards and it ends up being ~90 minutes alone in an empty house. Heaven!

We used to use the school playing fields but the superintendent asked everyone to stop during April.

Our youngest does two or three short reading sessions each day. In terms of stuff that matters, getting our seven-year old to read is probably the only thing we need to achieve this year!

Just like regular school, our Grade Three (8) and Grade Five (11) kids read to self for 20-30 minutes each morning. This reading habit is a huge help for getting the day going, fixing breakfast and interacting with our youngest.

If the home school schedule gets tight, or the kids feel stressed, I drop their “in-school” reading assignments to free-up time.

Our district has been great. We have triple the content we need to run home school. Early last week, I tried to track/schedule everything and made everyone miserable! The family is doing better by doing less.

The last two summers, I have run home school across the summer. We are 19 weeks out from the start of the 2020/2021 academic year.

As I wrote yesterday, I have no idea if we are going to have any activities open across the summer. I figure my little-bit-a-day strategy has more staying power than trying to do “full” school for the six weeks left in the 2019/2020 academic year.

Remember you can hire favorite teachers for online tutoring. We’ve been using district teachers for tutoring for years. They will shortly be experts in online education and could use our support.

Virtual playdates. As I type this, our carefree seven-year old is happily chatting away with a buddy on FaceTime. They are planning a sleepover for when “this settles down.”

We got our first shipment from NetBricks.Biz. Worked great. Plus the kids have to spend time taking each project apart when they are done.

I received the Boy Scout Handbook and managed to get the kids to sit still for a short civics class over the weekend.

2020-04-03 13.00.22

Virus Tracker

A friend sent along a national tracker for COVID-19 data. You can see the break down by state and forecast peak by state.

+++

Finance

I’m very bearish but if I sold out of equities then I’d have to figure out when to buy.

I don’t back myself to make timing calls.

Due to recent appreciation, this morning I sold a bit of equities to rebalance.

Chalk that up to another thing I would not have expected.

The Year Ahead on 6 April 2020

2020-04-03 16.10.39How did you use your weekend?

Late Friday afternoon, I watched the Bill Gates interview with Trevor Noah. I noticed:

What to expect? If we get it right then… one month to plateau, one month to decline.

When back to normal? When a vaccine has been successfully deployed across the nation, the Developed World and the Globe. I had missed “deployed.”

Where to focus? Rapid test results for front-line workers and sick people. Don’t get tested if you’re simply worried. We need that capacity for others.

Chinese Data? The exact numbers don’t matter. What matters is we saw them close their field hospitals.

Balkanize the USA? Bill G says it doesn’t make sense because we are so interconnected. I’m not sure about this for non-essential services/travel. However, I am sure that Bill G is more believable than me. So I’ll defer to his point of view and watch Western Europe’s internal border control.

What to open? Gatherings with large social benefits. Bill G cited education. Naval tweeted about unmixed daycare.

International Borders & Travel? Bill G said something that fits with the agenda of Trump’s Base. The developing world is likely to have the virus run through their countries. Which implies the “West” (and China/East Asia) will close borders or put strict quarantine measures in place.

Made me realize that I should… forget about international travel for a year => relates back to “deploy the vaccine”. Note Bill G used “years” when talking about this issue.

I doubt Olympics happening in 2021 => Japanese won’t tolerate global, non-vaccinated arrivals. Write it off and get your economy working again. Corona is a very bad deal (slide down on link).

2020-04-06 08.01.52

Late Saturday, I borrowed my son’s iPad (my devices, keyboard and mouse were in a drawer!) to watch the extended Bill G interview on CBS.

Businesses with international guests and customers. How do you run an international business, which draws heavily from countries that may be burning with Corona? I have no idea. I don’t need to have an idea. What I need to do is manage, and likely reduce, financial commitments in these areas.

I have friends in Eagle County and with Vail Resorts. Does your life still work if the US seals its border for next winter season? What if there’s a month-long lockdown mid-season? What if you can only receive guests from in-state, or in-country? Lots of scenarios to consider. I would want back-up employment to cover my core cost of living.

Our success with stopping the current surge of infection, leaves us vulnerable to reinfection. Bill G talks about a very low infection rate in the Developed World’s population. He talks about how to address => testing, contact tracing.

I am hearing about secondary lockdowns in Singapore (pop 5.7 million) and Taiwan (pop 24 Million), already.

Trade-off between health and business => Bill G thinks its a false choice. He used one of my favorite phrases => There Is No Alternative (T.I.N.A.).

Here in the US, we are getting a case study of different approaches (by State). Europe can watch something similar (Denmark compared to Sweden).

Colorado’s “early” lockdown approach might have us at a plateau by the end of this week (Day 28). Time will tell.

2020-04-06 07.01.07

Rest of the week topics:

  1. Our new goals for home school, gearing up to teach through August.
  2. How would I define cheap, today? For asset values.
  3. Body image in lockdown.
  4. Managing your bubble. At-risk people and those in the developing world should expect much longer lockdowns than the rest of us. Your brain will present two options: (a) screw it, I gotta live, if I die then I die; and (b) holy crap, I gotta lock down tight! I’ll consider the middle way.
  5. Friday update on our local situation. Is soft lockdown working?

2020-04-05 16.05.35

Schedule your 48-hour unplug this week. It was a huge help to me.

Why? Because I need to be thinking clearly about the next year, not tracking the 24-hour news cycle.

Secret Life of Pets 2 had me laughing hard. Good medicine!

What Seems Likely on 3 April 2020

2020-04-02 11.14.29

Day 21 for our lockdown.

Lots of ups and downs this week. Two good days of workouts has me feeling like I’m making progress.

Home School – I’m going to keep what’s useful (a daily schedule) and let go of the rest.

Our seven-year LOVES seeing daily videos from her friends on Flipgrid. If you’re isolated then create a group and share short daily videos. It will make you happy.

All our kids love their morning meeting on Zoom. You could create something similar with your pals. A quick check in.

People are writing our kids back => so great. Thank you for your letters.

I’m going to pull the plug for the weekend, again. How often are you reseting your mind?

2020-04-02 19.33.47

Thanks to the friends who reached out in the last 24 hours. Lots of good ideas were shared. Here’s a mash-up of the best stuff I came across.

Consider a three-stage progression:

Phase One / Current – we’ll move towards widespread lockdown to get the first wave under control. This is going to create a massive economic contraction, far worse than anyone is expecting.

We will see contractions in counterintuitive ways. It is going to be surprising.

For example, my medical mentor is seeing layoffs in his field. To me, this is really surprising.

Isn’t there a shortage? Yes, in hotspots but…

…think what happens when a local government mandates every medical facility cease elective and non-urgent surgeries in advance of an outbreak. Your state’s “success” with the virus punches a huge hole in the finances of your hospitals. Hospitals are huge fixed cost businesses, with a lot of operational leverage.

Go the next step, what happens when the highest paid people in your community see their peers getting laid off? Massive contraction in luxury and discretionary spending.

I think high-end real estate, hotels and services are toast, for a while.

“Don’t fire me” => I’ll take a pay cut.

The protected class are going to be asking for massive paycuts, rather than getting fired (and losing their family’s health insurance). The American healthcare system works great for the elite, until it doesn’t.

Phase Two / Transition – Frontline clinicians develop effective, rapid treatment protocols.

Combine with widespread testing and contact tracing (made easier by the global unemployed being ready for government work, and health insurance coverage).

Testing focuses on those in contact with risk-populations and those with potential to be super-spreaders.

Who are potential super-spreaders and where are the super-spreading events?

  1. People who interact with at-risk populations
  2. Kids => school is not coming back any time soon
  3. Team sports, particularly those with contact
  4. Large gatherings => religious services, sports events, concerts, schools, universities
  5. Politicians => Colorado’s mail in ballot system goes nationwide
  6. First responders
  7. The jet-set and any entity with a private jet
  8. What am I missing? Share back to me.

We are seeing states establishing in-bound quarantine rules => 14-days right now.

This is going to spread because the economic harm from a handful of positives arriving (in this period) far outweighs the benefits from freedom of movement.

What seemed like an unreasonable constraint on liberty in March, will be demanded by many in the near future => even radical libertarians will want to get their factories open.

In this phase we will learn about reinfection, if antibodies convey immunity, if gradual herd immunity is a viable strategy, what COVID-19 infection does to the body/organs/brain.

To selectively quarantine, we will need to break into smaller entities. The US is set up for this with county/state government and health authorities.

I think this period will be a lousy time to be living in a mega-city => maybe that’s why smart pals immediately left NYC?

Inter-state commerce already has a port-of-entry system for the highways. Most of the US has the ability to self-quarantine into 5-10 million population city-states.

Smart local authorities will set circuit breakers for future lockdowns. See what Singapore is doing in April. Singapore’s follow-on lockdown implies a circuit breaker at 1 daily infection per 100,000 citizens. Yesterday, Colorado was ~7x that rate and locked down.

https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/health/most-workplaces-to-close-schools-will-move-to-full-home-based-learning-from-next

If the above happens then we will have wasted the financial support to the airline corporations. The corporations are toast because we are going to need to put them out of business for a while. We will need to support, then redirect, their employees (and many other employees). Note, the planes will get going, with different owners, in Phase Three.

Open borders are toast in this phase.

At-risk populations are probably going to want some sort of lockdown for the duration of Phase One & Two. Individual 12-18 month hard lockdown is misery.

What’s the optimal size of the bubble? What’s the optimal strength of the lockdown?

Becoming robust for Phase Two:

  1. Expect you will be unemployed at least once
  2. Create a plan for cash flow through Christmas 2021
  3. Have supplies on hand for a surprise 28-day hard quarantine
  4. What am I missing? Share back to me

Phase Three / Exit – vaccine, herd immunity or some other development gets us back to an unknowable new-normal.

There’s going to be a strong argument for getting rid of many aspect of globalization going forward. Here’s John Gray on a post-COVID world.

2020-04-03 09.36.20

Let’s end with some good news => The Brits built a 4,000 bed hospital in 9 days, Nightingale. Truly impressive.

Corona Diary 2 April 2020

2020-04-02 07.52.17

Thursday is when we give the kids a nudge physically. The girls train with Monica and Axel trains with me.

The girls… Five rounds of:

  • 3 minutes treadmill jog/run
  • 10 squats
  • 14 mountain climbers
  • 7 push ups
  • 20 bicycle sit ups

Once you break through the inertia, they love it.

2020-04-02 08.54.03

It’s a highlight of my week as well. Axel did the whole workout below. Kid-sized goblet squat is 8 pounds.

2020-04-02 07.12.21

A favorite home school activity is “read to cat” => Bella loves it.

2020-04-02 09.01.35

We are making progress! Even with a morning workout, our oldest had her daily agenda printed and scheduled by 8:30am. I came down from my post workout shower and she was working on her own, relaxed!

Today’s schedule.

We’re still going through our homemade pizza. I had a personal “victory” by avoiding it.

2020-03-31 18.18.44

Unfortunately, that’s it for good news.

+++

Virus Economics

Second wave of infections in China getting press this morning. I expect the official Chinese data will be discredited. It’s a nation with a large downside for honesty. Truth leaking out via social media.

Friends, this seems obvious. If a handful of arrivals can shut Colorado in a month then there’s no way we can eradicate this virus via lockdown. We each need to prepare for rolling lockdowns until a vaccine is available.

14-day increase of American unemployed is ten million => true number way higher. This matters because it is the bottom up shock that starts the downward economic spiral.

Here’s a vivid example of the top down shock

Vail Resorts will cut loose its hourly workers in hotspots at the end of this week. The reasons are understandable, the resorts are going to have no visitors for months.  The CEO is demonstrating leadership and personal accountability => taking a major personal financial hit.

Article linked below: consider the mention of deferred capex and cancelled dividend payments. This is going to happen, globally.

There is a clear public interest for the state of Colorado to pay (former) hotspot employees to quarantine in place and exit test. This is an example of something “we” could get for the payments we are (collectively) making to the dislocated.

Vail Resorts announces paycuts, furloughs for employees, pause in payouts for CEO, board, shareholders | VailDaily.com

Note the linked article places virus arrival in Colorado on Feb 29th. If that was patient zero then I’m impressed with the speed of our reaction. Very hard to change mindset quickly. Boulder schools closed March 13th.

Think about that for a minute.

If true then.. patient zero arrives Feb 29th, the state is shut a month a later.

The locations without problems today should assume they are fooling themselves.

++

Hedging The Downside

If this week was going to be your new reality through next summer then what steps could you take to help yourself, family and firm?

Vail Resorts shows what makes sense for you, your family and your firm => immediate actions to conserve cash.

This is why governments need to step in => we will send ourselves straight down the drain if we act in our individual self interest.

Now… if “we” are going to pay people to stay at home then “we” should figure out a way to make ourselves more productive.

This is relevant for the successor bailouts that will inevitably follow this first round of support ($2T from the Feds).

Millions of unemployed (10 million applications in the US in 14-days) are going to want something to do.

Globally, there is going to be a huge pool of reserve labor.

+++

Thinking Beyond April

Life is likely to be very different until a vaccine is widely available. I’m starting to manage my expectations in that regard.

We bought a peloton bike to prepare for rolling, ongoing, strict quarantine. A quick review of prior pandemics shows Colorado’s level of quarantine is a loose one.

Florida locked down yesterday / better late than never // given their demographics I expect it will be awful down there – very unfortunate. The economic impact of their delay will be a multiple of what they earned by staying open for Spring Break.

Same deal in Cabo by the way. Just like BoCo peeps getting upset with college kids having St Paddy’s parties, people continue to blame kids for being kids – NYT article on Texas Theta. Frat kids make a convenient scapegoat in a time of heightened fear.

These stories are simply the ones we know about. The virus has been, and is, everywhere. Easy to have guessed the virus would be partying at spring break.

Governor Polis shut our schools through the end of April. In May, my expectation is we will return by appointment and clear out our desks. We are scheduled to end on 5/21.

Yesterday, the district school superintendent shut access to fields, tracks and playgrounds. City has left the parks open, for now. Our quarantine bubble is shrinking. Yours will too.

As at today, I don’t see how we run summer swim league, or any gatherings until there’s a vaccine.

It makes far more sense for us to gradually open the economy before allowing social groups for recreation. I realize this is bad news for individuals but it makes sense for the collective. This new reality is likely to continue for some time.

WSJ reporting the Feds are thinking about grounding flights to/from hotspots. I’d thought that would happen last week (and I was wrong). Governors should immediately restrict ground travel in/out of hotspots.

Colorado running a marketing campaign to get people to avoid traveling into known hotspots => you’d think this would be obvious. Don’t drive into the virus zone, people.

I don’t know if state governors’ emergency power enable them to use the Highway Patrol to turn around vacationers. NPR reporting the Feds have limited powers in this regard.

It is unfortunate, and understandable, that we will have to wait for things to get really, really bad before the public will accept (and demand) strict quarantine.

Why The President Likely Can’t Issue A National Stay-Home Order : NPR

+++

Local Update

Last night (18 days after we closed schools, 32 days after presumptive patient zero landed in Denver), BoCo reported virus positives in four long-term care facilities. This includes our largest senior living complex.

This might put an end to our declining rate of virus positives. Collectively, we should assume the virus is already everywhere.

Coming up on April 6th – routine emergency siren testing in BoCo – give your kids a heads up and mark your calendars. I remember how this made me feel during the floods of 2013… eerie!

Market up 2% as I post this.

Go figure.

Corona Diary 1 April 2020

2020-04-01 09.56.05

I had a tough day yesterday.

From 4pm onwards, I started the mantra… “tomorrow will be better” => I was right.

Amazon appears three-weeks backlogged on non-essential shipments for my zipcode. Give thought to what you need for your May lockdown and order this week.

Government assistance => please take it! A global depression is within our range of possible outcomes. Take the money and direct to people who need it.

Here’s a link from Howard Marks that explains the Bull and Bear cases. I see no way through to the bull case, too complex a situation for everything to run according to plan. Bear case makes way more sense to me, especially as I read news about the virus within the US Navy (our ultimate backstop).

Friends considering “hard assets” for safety => an extra month of food supplies strikes me as a hard asset that could prove useful.

2020-04-01 08.44.17

Home School

Teacher, parents and students => we need to LOWER THE STAKES.

If my kids are tripping then all kids are tripping!

Cut your assigned work in half and focus on what is essential.

I think we’re finding our way through => schedule for today. I wrote that last night and it had numerous modifications by 10am.

Four planning meetings for our oldest today: with herself, with me, with her class and with her teacher. Her anxiety is greatly reduced by having a written plan, with times.

Pizza dough was back yesterday afternoon, along with homemade pesto.

We watched all three Descendants movies over the last three nights => Disney+, I think.

When it comes to writing assignments for elementary school kids, my policy is no wrong answers. Write lots => edit later!

2020-03-31 13.43.52.jpg

Above is our youngest’s poem from yesterday.

2020-04-01 06.36.41

Recent financial questions:

What tools do you use for an overall financial plan (e.g., Quicken)?

I built a few spreadsheets/documents: (1) to rebalance across entities; (2) a monthly cash flow tracker by entity; (3) P&L projections so I get tax installments correct; (4) net asset statements for fee-paying entities and to track return on equity over time; (5) a statement of tax IDs/bank accounts/registered addresses/officers; and (6) a single sheet of paper showing every trust, LLC, company and person that touches me.

I have my stuff linked to Mint but that’s more detail than I need. I find that making everything visible is a distraction => my job is to control spending/aspirations, not be a bookkeeper. My watch gets pinged each time money leaves my life as a fraud-prevention measure.

Ideally, you only want to check net assets once a quarter. With recent volatility, that’s not an option. Taleb explains why checking less gives better signal in his first book. => Fooled by Randomness.

Are you aware of any good tools that can include real estate as an asset class?

I built a spreadsheet that takes a gross value through to net realizable cash after all fees, taxes and expenses. The spreadsheet assumes an immediate sale. I make the deferred taxes and fees/expenses very clear to create a bias against selling real estate assets.

The best time to sell quality real estate is never => Buffett, I think.

What are your thoughts of the services offered by Wealth-front, such as:

I use specific ID for all holdings and use tax loss harvesting, occasionally. I don’t use risk parity or smart beta. I could be a lot more aggressive with tax/portfolio strategies but I prefer simplicity.

I have a goal of handing off my work by my 60th. Even keeping it simple, there’s a surprising amount going on.

“You want a system so easy an idiot could run it because, someday, one will.” => not sure who said it first, probably Buffett

Do you think those services are worth 0.25% fees?

In terms of spending money, I think the best money people can spend is an hourly fee relationship with a world class financial advisor, who has nothing to sell you other than sound financial advice.

In terms of making money, stick with the basics, don’t adopt the preferences of others, rarely borrow and fear ruin.

Other things => cultivate inexpensive passions, focus on relationships, get the family thinking about Human Capital (rather than financial capital).

Is your personal strategy as simple as holding ONLY three different ETF’s?

That’s the Vanguard portfolio, yes.

I don’t back my ability to pick stocks, time markets or pick winners as an Angel Investor.

I do a real estate deal every 5 years or so. I like local real estate as it’s a market where I can have superior information and, when I buy, there is limited competition with other players.

Personally, the goal of my portfolio is to support my desire to spend time in nature with my wife and kids. It’s easy to lose track of the larger goal and get wrapped up with small details. I want a strategy that can be largely ignored.

What are your thoughts on Dimensional Funds?  They seem to offer higher returns vs similar index funds, based on (as I understand it) different allocation metrics

I don’t do specialty products as “the house” always skims the excess profit for itself and, as a class, these assets do worse than low-cost index funds, especially when you adjust for blowups and leverage.

I used to work for a world-class private equity firm. The right partnership can make a lot of money for everyone involved. Those sorts of investments are not open to me anymore.

+++

Virus Stuff

 

Gates wrote an op-ed for Washington Post (link above).

  • Not too late
  • Our open state borders don’t mix well with national virus control
  • Calls for Federal help with shutdown, equipment organization and virus manufacturing
  • Over the weekend, “six-to-ten weeks” has become “ten weeks”

Mexico shut down for April // starting 18 days later than BoCo.

Iceland positives chart paints a picture that makes sense for rate of spread – you’ll need to click to see the chart.

By the time the chart is confirmed, it will be too late for action. Close your schools early, I’m glad we did.

Lexi will be making a mask for Mom to use on her weekly shop. There is near-nil downside from wearing a homemade mask. Click for the graphic.

Stay strong, people!

2020-04-01 05.33.03

Ax looking forward to hitting it with me tomorrow morning.

BJJ black belt coming over to teach PE in two hours!

Corona Virus 31 March 2020

2020-03-30 13.14.38

Key thing to remember… you really don’t want an overuse injury with more than a month to go in your lockdown!

Build in orthopedic recovery => especially if you’ve cranked run volume in the last two weeks.

I’ve been taking weekends off from training => just walking, easy hiking with the kids and a few pull ups.

+++

Home School

This week we are adding online learning from the district. Bit of a mess with me running between three iPads running simultaneously.

One thing I noticed with our oldest, she feel extremely anxious getting a stack of “to do’s” without a corresponding schedule of how she going to complete them. As a result, the first two days were an anxious, nonstop, bleary-eyed sprint to lunch (after which she went back to normal).

I’m going to build in a 15-minute planning meeting with her to start each day and help her create her own schedule.

2020-03-31 09.10.41

Make your own playdough was a hit! We mixed primary colors and discussed secondary colors, which they created themselves.

We will have the kids’ BJJ coach coming over to run PE tomorrow. They’re pretty excited, even with the six-foot rule.

2020-03-30 13.47.42

Yesterday was fitness bingo for warmup then football. Our oldest throws everything like a waterpolo ball – makes it kinda tough to play catch with her.

We signed up for netbricks.biz => a lego sharing biz. I’ll be washing down the bricks before the kids get rolling.

Top of the blog is Bella acting out her short story. The kids love reciting, and acting, every single thing they write.

+++

Virus Stuff

I came across a reference to testing data becoming like a Cargo Cult (slide down this twitter feed).

It reminded me of the original commencement address by Feynman. Pure gold! I’ve printed it out so I can re-read it slowly.

  • What are we measuring with the testing data? Test results.
  • How reliable are the results?
  • Have you had any experience with Chinese data?
  • How about the reporting of the results? There are countries in the world where people are killed for reporting bad news.
  • Why are we measuring the global testing metric? Simply because we can?
  • Might there be a better place for us to focus?

The list of potential questions goes on and on. See the twitter feed.

The best tip I saw was… “if you want to have a look at what the virus is doing to a community then have a look at year-on-year all-cause mortality.” Focus on who’s dying, rather than who’s testing positive.

To their credit our state health department is seeking to do just that by breaking out their COVID data by age and county.

I’ve been tracking Colorado and Boulder County – here is my spreadsheet.

We closed our schools two days before the first positive was allocated to Boulder County. I think we will be very glad we were proactive.

China, Hong Kong, Denmark, South Korea and Taiwan => watch these places to see how long your best case lockdown is likely to be.