A Thought Experiment about COVID-19

Posted by: NW Ponderer

A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 05/22/20 10:58 PM

As some of you know, I tried this on another forum. But, I think that our membership here is a bit more erudite, so I thought I'd run it by y'all, too.

The Experiment:

You are in a 12x12 room. In the room is a table. On the table are four revolvers. In a rocking chair, next to the table is your mother, knitting, or reading, or watching TV. Whatever her favorite activity is. You can have a different loved one if your mother is not available.

A voice comes over an intercom: “We've reviewed your medical records, and conducted some tests. We have discovered some pre-existing conditions, which you may or may not have been aware of...”
Click to reveal..
One of the revolvers is removed from the table.


“We know you love your mother. If you wish, you may give her a hug, or you may remain where you are and simply wave.” (Please choose.)
Click to reveal..
If you give your mother a hug, one of the revolvers is removed.


The voice continues, “On the wall behind you is a sink. You may, if you wish, wash your hands.” (Please choose.)

Click to reveal..
If you wash your hands, a revolver is added to the table.


“In a container on the counter by the sink, is a mask. You may, if you wish, put the mask on.” (Please choose.)
Click to reveal..
If you do not put on the mask, a revolver is removed from the table.


A voice comes over the intercom: “Your final decision is: you or your mother?” (Please choose).

Click to reveal..
If you choose yourself, conditions remain the same. If you choose your mother, one of the revolvers is removed.


“Now, before you are the remaining revolvers. Only one is loaded, with one round. The others are weighted to feel exactly the same. Please retrieve a revolver, and point it at the head of your selected target.”

“Now, pull the trigger, and the experiment will be complete. Have a nice day.”

Click to reveal..
This scenario is based upon actual probabilities and approximate percentages of likelihood of dying of COVID-19. In Russian Roulette, given a 6-round revolver, there is a .17 chance of firing a live round. Four revolvers represent the approximate likelihood of dying of COVID-19 by an American citizen, under current conditions. (.17x.17x.17x.17) Some of them, of course, should only have 5 chambers (.20) to be more accurate.

Collectively, though, they represent the our current experience under the Compartmental models in epidemiology - Susceptibility, Exposure, Infection, Recovery (including being hospitalized, being in an ICU, or succumbing to the virus). Adding or removing revolvers demonstrates the approximate effectiveness of each of the conditions represented by the choices: Social distancing, handwashing, and wearing a mask. There are, of course, other conditions that may affect the experiment. For example: If you are a health care professional treating COVID patients, an additional round would be added to one of the pistols. If you are regularly employed where social distancing is not practiced (e.g., at a meat-packing plant) one of the pistols will be removed, etc. But, you get the point. Feel free to check and challenge the math.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 05/23/20 12:02 AM

I think it's a brilliant thought experiment but I can't imagine most people wanting to increase the odds of killing their mother.
Posted by: GreatNewsTonight

Re: A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 05/23/20 12:37 AM

Originally Posted By: Jeffery J. Haas
I think it's a brilliant thought experiment but I can't imagine most people wanting to increase the odds of killing their mother.


That's exactly what the covidiots are doing. They are greatly increasing the odds of killing their parents, when they go to those protests, unmasked.
Posted by: Greger

Re: A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 05/23/20 03:32 AM

Quote:
They are greatly increasing the odds of killing their parents


I'm perfectly okay with that.
Posted by: NW Ponderer

Re: A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 05/23/20 05:21 PM

Would that someone had undertaken that task before they were born...

But, I don't wish ill on anyone, I just wish they weren't around to do ill.
Posted by: Greger

Re: A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 05/25/20 04:17 AM

I unabashedly wish ill will on at least half the planet, maybe more.
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 05/26/20 01:45 AM

The problem with this model is that most of the benefit of wearing a mask goes to the people near you, not to yourself unless you have one of those n95 masks and it's properly fitted.

Another useful model we could think about is that people refusing to wear masks in public are trying to make other people afraid by threatening them with a deadly weapon for a political reason. Is that not the definition of a terrorist? If they were all Muslims, police would be shooting them on sight.
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: A Thought Experiment about COVID-19 - 06/04/20 05:48 AM

The more I think about it, people refusing to wear masks in public are like trolls pooping in the community well. It's NOT a political issue. It's a public health issue and in fact an economic issue. Just look at Taiwan, Vietnam, and New Zealand. All have done a stunning job of using simple public health science and have just about wiped out the virus. New Zealand has ONE active case!

They are going to be restarting their economies full blast now. We are doing such a poor job in terms of public health that our reopenings are going to be disasters, with closings to follow. The simple answer is that we CAN reopen a lot of things (not restaurants or large group events yet) but we have to do the extremely simple things Taiwan, Vietnam, and New Zealand have done. EVERYBODY (including Trump) has to wear a mask in public or when meeting with outsiders and not touch their face. EVERYBODY has to maintain distance from non-residents of their home. EVERYBODY has to wash their hands often. EVERYBODY has to stay away from large crowds.

No more tolerating people pooping in the well. Those morons need to be forcibly quarantined in state-run secure facilities. We've tried doing it the laisez-faire voluntary way AND IT DOESN'T WORK. A lot more people are going to die if we keep this up.