China owes the world a monetary penalty for allowing expansion of Covid-19

Author: fauxlaw ,

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  • fauxlaw
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    While this argument could be placed in a health, or political category, it is placed in economics because a meaningful penalty for a health crisis or political crisis cannot be adequately assessed, nor forced to pay to the world for the worldwide effect Covid-19 has had on the world in the frighteningly short period of three to four months.

    Within the first week of outbreak, every affected patient in that short period could be traced to a potential patient zero, and there could potentially be a number of patient zeroes, but all were Chinese, and, are specifically, from Wuhan. That's not racism; that's science. It could have originated from anywhere. That's a recognized potential. But reality is that Wuhan, China was the source of Covid-19.

    So, let's stop with the racist claim, as if that is the alleged root cause of every social issue we face. IT is a cop-out argument that has no relation to logic.

    What's the value of a human life? I don't think that has a calculated number, and, there is more to the effect of Covid-19 than human life. It has caused health, economic, political, religious, and education consequences, and probably more. 
    The WTO [World Trade Org] names 140 nations in its membership, and all 140 are granted Most Favored Nation [NFN] status. China is currently listed. At the very least, China should be removed from WTO and MFN status. Now.
  • Discipulus_Didicit
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    What measures has China taken to contain the outbreak?

    What measures can we reasonably expect China to have taken?

    If the first is significantly less than the second then it is reasonable to assign blame to China.

    I have my own opinions on the second. I genuinely don't have much info on the first.
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @fauxlaw
    A virus is a virus.

    And blame is big business.
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @Discipulus_Didicit
    I have 25 years of business dealing with the Chinese. My experience is an overwhelming degree of observing that a nod of the the head as if saying, "I hear and understand you, and agree," is often just the heard, but none of the other. It took almost ten years of that before I really understood the lack. And when my suspicions were often fulfilled by subsequent action, or more, the lack of it, as well, was enough to convince me I'll never know about your first question, and, therefore, the second is open-ended. However, I have also learned that although Communist in ideology, the Chinese understand money very, very well and are avarists in its regard. What I suggest will have them understand in no uncertain terms that the world is pissed.
  • Discipulus_Didicit
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    --> @fauxlaw
    I'll never know about your first question

    I don't care enough about the topic but if I did then my first question could very easily be answered with 15 minutes or so of searching the internet. If you care more about the topic than I do then you could do the same.
  • oromagi
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    --> @fauxlaw
    Generally speaking, when penalties are imposed or nations are expelled from international organizations some finding of fault precedes the sanctions.  I am certain that some degree of fault can be found within any nation's response to pandemic but I wonder what crimes/oversights/failures in China's response merit penalty?  OP seems confident that China could have done more or should have done better at containment, to a criminal degree so severe that expulsion from the international community is justified.  What are those crimes?

    I observe that the US is now 2-3 days away from overtaking China in terms of total # of cases although China has a larger, denser population and was unaware of the new disease for the first six weeks of spread.  The US had a 3 week head's up and the finest disease research facilities in the world but now we are surpassing China...doesn't that suggest that whatever China's failures in this pandemic, the US has done worse with better data and resources (and therefore has done more to spread the virus internationally than China)?


  • Discipulus_Didicit
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    --> @oromagi
    Some look for reasons to blame someone.

    Others look for someone to blame for reasons.
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @oromagi
    I observe that the US is now 2-3 days away from overtaking China in terms of total # of cases

    What evidence is there to suggest China is telling us the truth in regard to their number of cases, particularly in light of

    China has a larger, denser population and was unaware of the new disease for the first six weeks of spread.  

    That tells me that China has no idea of the numbers of their affected citizens. What we do know is that if they were caught unaware, it was compounded by holding a festival in Wuhan where conditions put thousands, and tens of thousands together in a frenzy of passage of the virus one to another to ten, to a thousand, to... China has yet to identify patient zero. 

    There's your crime: Indifference. Yeah, a collective indifference, compounded by laying blame on someone else; namely, the U.S.

    the US has done worse with better data and resources (and therefore has done more to spread the virus internationally than China)?

    How did we do more to spread the virus internationally when we imposed the first travel restrictions in the world? That was for outbound travel, as well. Yes, we allowed inbound travel of US citizens, but they were immediately quarantined.
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @fauxlaw
    hmmm I'm not sure about all of that, on the other hand we could owe them a debt of gratitude by showing our mistake for being so dependant on their drug manufacturing etc.  If the U.S. wakes up and decides it would be better to be self sufficient instead of potential blackmail of things like antibiotics then we owe them a thank you.
    learning hard or difficult lessons isn't pleasant at all, but if you learn from them and use them to your benefit then I think a thank you would be appropriate.
    We've never been an overly proactive or forward thinking society, if that were true we would have had reinforced airplane cockpits and 9-11 probably wouldn't have happened.  I believe Israel had been reinforcing theirs since the 70's but we needed to learn that lesson the hard way.   This is kind of a similar situation imo.
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @TheDredPriateRoberts
    then we owe them a thank you.
    Thank them? For our letting them have such a huge piece of our demand pie of pharma? Thank them for our stupidity? That was how stupid NAFTA was. You do NOT allow any one source of anything to dominate your purchasing.
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @fauxlaw
    right, we should thank them for making us see the stupidity in allowing all of those things imo, difficult to blame them really when we did it or allowed it to happen to ourselves.  That's kind of how I see it.  At what point and who decided we could trust China and be dependant on them with such important things?  Almost smells of treason.
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @TheDredPriateRoberts
    The U.S. did not "see" the folly of NAFTA only after the pharma problem was identified due to Covid-19. Plenty of us knew the folly of demand of product, any product, from a singular source in excess of 50% of our demand, before engaging it. We knew NAFTA was a short stick, becoming no stick in the case of pharma, to retain the negotiation rights we should have demanded instead of giving them away. No, NAFTA did not include China, but the philosophy of NAFTA certain did influence our trade negotiations with China, and the whole of our trade policy went into the tank. This is why we have such a negative export ratio against import, the one factor that denies our GDP from soaring, as it has for 40+ years. 
  • Discipulus_Didicit
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    --> @TheDredPriateRoberts
    We've never been an overly proactive or forward thinking society, if that were true then ___________.

    Wow, we could make a whole thread about ways to fill in that blank lmao.
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @fauxlaw
    The benefit of hindsight hey!

    Wouldn't it be fantastic if we could see into the future... We could sue for compensation before the event actually occurred.

    Or better still, just kill the fucking Bat and the Pangolin.
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Discipulus_Didicit
    I find it sad rather than something to laugh about, but that's just me I guess.  People complain (occasionally) about the human rights abuses of the Chinese government and still give them power over themselves by being dependant on them.  Does that seem logical to you?
    who is really to blame, the one taking advantage or the one allowing to be taken advantage of, over and over.
    Is the lion to blame for killing the zebra or is it just what they do?
  • oromagi
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    --> @fauxlaw
    What evidence is there to suggest China is telling us the truth in regard to their number of cases, particularly in light of
    "China has a larger, denser population and was unaware of the new disease for the first six weeks of spread.  "  That tells me that China has no idea of the numbers of their affected citizens.
    • Let's agree that all govts lie, autocracies more than most, and that China is an autocracy. 
    • Let's agree that no nation has any sense of the true scale of infection because
      • there hasn't been time for wide-scale testing for antibodies and
      •  an epidemiological model of the beginning of the outbreak in China suggested that "pre-symptomatic shedding may be typical among documented infections" and that subclinical infections may have been the source of a majority of infections.
    • The evidence that we have comes from various organizations set up to improve international confidence during a pandemic. 
      • The World Health Organization and other UN teams are on the ground in China
      • A variety of international medical NGOs, too- Doctors Without Borders, etc
      • Satellites can offer a lot of data.  For example, the CIA advised the world that Iran was under-reporting deaths because they were counting graves by satellite.
      • China's only biosafety level 4 lab was built in Wuhan because that is where the original SARS showed up and biologists expected new variations of the virus to break out sooner or later.  The Wuhan Institute of Virology is well-known and it is relatively open compared with other Chinese institutes: It has strong ties to the Galveston National Laboratory at the University of Texas Medical Branch and was developed with the aid of French engineers.  The WIV was built to serve as the tripwire alarm for SARS2 which purpose the lab has served:  the WIV was sending samples to the US and sounding the alarm for two weeks before the regional government admitted it had an outbreak.

    What we do know is that if they were caught unaware,
    • The WIV was built to serve as the tripwire alarm for the next SARS which purpose the lab has now served and will likely serve again.  The WIV was sending samples to the US and sounding the alarm for two weeks before the regional government admitted it had an outbreak.  I'm not saying we must therefore believe all WIV reports but there seems to be a certain degree of international scientific cooperation meant to improve international trust during this emergency
    it was compounded by holding a festival in Wuhan where conditions put thousands, and tens of thousands together in a frenzy of passage of the virus one to another to ten, to a thousand, to... China has yet to identify patient zero. 
    There's your crime: Indifference. Yeah, a collective indifference, compounded by laying blame on someone else; namely, the U.S.
    Well, indifference is a pretty low bar.  If a govt should be tossed from the WTO and lose MFN for the crime of indifference, I suggest that there are no legitimate members in either organization- all govt. are indifferent sometimes. 

    Take, for example, Ronald Reagan's response to the global AIDS pandemic which could be fairly summarized as quite indifferent for the first four years until Rock Hudson's death forced the issue.  The first 30,000 US citizens died with little to no Federal oversight or inquiry because Haitians, heroin shooters, and homos don't vote Republican.  Most virologists blame those years of inactivity and indifference for the present death toll of 36 million.  The primary document recording those early years of AIDS is "And the Band Played On," the title of which is direct criticism of Reagan's non-response. 

    Wouldn't your argument suggest that the US should have lost its MFN and WTO membership decades ago?

    How did we do more to spread the virus internationally when we imposed the first travel restrictions in the world? That was for outbound travel, as well. Yes, we allowed inbound travel of US citizens, but they were immediately quarantined.
    North Korea closed its borders and banned all foreigners on Jan 22

    Hubei Province shut down all planes, trains, and automobiles on Jan 23

    Singapore shut down all flights to/from China on Jan 23

    Russia closed the Chinese border on Jan 24

    Mongolia, Vietnam, Pakistan closed the Chinese border on Jan 27

    Mexico cancels all flights to/from China on Jan 27

    The US issues "reconsider travel to China" warning on Jan 27

    Phillipines and Sri Lanka ban all Chinese travelers on Jan 28

    British Airways & Lufthansa cancel all Chinese flights on Jan 29

    New Guinea bans all flights from Asia on Jan 29

    Canada shut down all flights to/from  China on Jan 29

    Italy cancels all flights to/from China on Jan 30

    US warns citizens in China to "consider departing" on Jan 30

    Jamaica, Turkey, Poland ban all flights to/from China 31

    US announces that it will restrict travel from China starting Feb 2nd on Jan 31
    (In other words, "leave now if you don't want a quarantine")

    Two weeks later, US citizens could still flights available to/from China.

    Let's note that unlike most countries, US quarantines were not particularly enforced.  Most quarantines were orders over the phone to remain at home for 14 days with a phone call to mark the beginning and the end.

    China banned flights from the US starting yesterday, since the epidemic in China is coming to an end and the US is now the epicenter of coronavirus.

  • Dr.Franklin
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    yeah
  • Dr.Franklin
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    North Korea closed its borders and banned all foreigners on Jan 22

    North Korea is amazing
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @Dr.Franklin
    Kim has an amazing hairdo.
  • Dr.Franklin
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    Kim is nice

16 days later

  • blamonkey
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    For interested parties, I just did a debate with fauxlaw on this.

  • User_2006
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    China did its best at keeping the virus in and cure it, and you should blame the ones that went out of the country with no permission. 
  • Singularity
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    China was literally welding people into their houses and disappearing then to control the pandemic. They did more than any other nation could to control it. Their fault is in being too cowardly to face the truth. Disappearing doctors who warned of the pandemic as well as arresting anyone who acknowledged it's existence. 

  • Singularity
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    Italy would be good to blame to start. Italy was flying in people from Wuhan while knowing it was a hotbed and then staging anti racist events such as "hug a china man" day. We had liberals in New York doing a similar thing. We can also blame the response of boomers on cruise ships with a little too much political influence. Common sense is if somebody on a cruise ship had corona, then nobody should have been let off until there was no possible carriers. United states citizens over seas should have not been allowed back into the country, but we have this issue where liberals don't even want to get rid of illegal aliens so not allowing citizens back in would have cause a liberal uproar, but honestly this thing did not have to come to America. We could have shut America down to outsiders while not shutting it down to insiders. We did the opposite