Racial disparities in Covid-19 outcomes

This note seeks the socioeconomic roots of racial disparities in COVID-19 mortality, using county-level mortality, economic, and demographic data from 3,140 counties. For all minorities, the minority’s population share is strongly correlated with total COVID-19 deaths. For Hispanic/Latino and Asian minorities those correlations are fragile, and largely disappear when we control for education, occupation, and commuting patterns. For African Americans and First Nations populations, the correlations are very robust. Surprisingly, for these two groups the racial disparity does not seem to be due to differences in income, poverty rates, education, occupational mix, or even access to healthcare insurance. A significant portion of the disparity can, however, be sourced to the use of public transit.

That is from a new NBER working paper by John McLaren.

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>sourced to the use of public transit.

So not only do Dem policies kill, they kill in a racist way.

smells like narrative propaganda radio just fraughted
they dishonestly mischaracterized "50" mostly innocent people in cars attacked by leftist wingnuts as "right wing extremists" attacking
mostly peaceful protestors
wingnuts

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Public transit is racist and kills with the virus?! Somebody tell Taiwan and South Korea.

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Amerikans kill and more often than not in a racist way.

Don't sweat it. On a per capita basis, America will never catch up with the Germans. Your #1 spot will remain intact for the foreseeable future.

The gender disparity is worse than they racial disparity. Clearly a result of systemic sexism aimed at men. "Men's lives matter".

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The difference is that one country stopped and is repentant and the other continues its wanton racist killing at home and abroad with abandon.

"The difference is that one country stopped"

Stopped? Germany didn't voluntarily stop. Germany was conquered by an alliance of the rest of the world. That's what put a halt to its despicable behavior. It wasn't as if Germany suddenly realized that the wholesale killing was abhorrent and quit doing it on its own. Your countrymen were literally killing innocent people right up until the Allies overran the camps and put a halt to it.

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Use of public transit also correlates with living in densely populated urban areas with crowded, high rise housing, where residents have frequent and close contact. Duh. I get it: white folks, especially rich white folks who don't use public transit, don't like funding public transit. Without public transit, cities die.

Sounds like they die with public transport too.

...during once-in-a-lifetime global pandemics...

How is what you're saying a coherent rebuttal? Or is your pithy "owning the libs" rhetoric aimed primarily at retarded people?

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rich white folks fund much /possibly most public transport

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DC's subway system was criticized for decades as catering too heavily to the commuting patterns of white government workers. The parts of the system serving predominantly black parts of town were the last to be built.

On the other hand METRO drivers and operators are (literally) 97 percent black.

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"however, be sourced to the use of public transit."

Well this would seem to be pretty obvious. And it was pointed out at the time, but was denied as a cause by several experts. Any public health officials who were proclaiming that subways and buses weren't a high risk area ought to be condemned for it. Frankly, they should be fired for it. If you are pushing such a position then you should damn well know it to be absolutely true. Because people trusted you and some of those people got sick and a few died.

"The New York Subway Got Caught in the Coronavirus Culture War
A paper claims that the nation’s largest transit system made NYC a Covid-19 hot spot. But experts say there are too many unknowns to link ridership to infection rates."

The author tries to make common sense about politics. People weren't pointing out that the subways were a da danger zone because they were mindless partisan zealots, they were pointing it out because it makes obvious sense. Subways are high contact and high density areas. Furthermore, few subway systems made mask mandatory in a prompt manner.

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'Any public health officials who were proclaiming that subways and buses weren't a high risk area ought to be condemned for it.'

Seoul shut down its extensive subway system? Tokyo? How about Berlin? No public health official has ever said being in crowded indoor spaces was a good idea with a contagious respiratory spread disease.

No city shutdown their system completely, but Paris (which was impacted far more than Covid19 than the cities you cherry picked) did introduce severe restrictions on usage.

"On the Paris metro, every other seat was blocked off, and large stickers on the floor showed people where to stand to remain a safe distance apart. Commuters risked fines for not wearing masks, which were handed out at station entrances, and transit workers wearing protective gear sprayed sanitizing gel on riders’ hands."

In addition, work permits were required for both the subway and the RER.

But it is interesting that Seoul, Tokyo and Berlin didn't see any major outbreaks. There's confounding variables at play of course, but especially a city like Tokyo, that I know reasonably well, you'd think would have been effected considering the vast number of people riding the train every day. I don't live there but people who do were sending pictures of fairly packed subway stations right at the height of the crisis.

Yes, it's clear that the subways actually required a certain positive population to act a vector. Tokyo had something like 6K cases total. It's possible that they were below a critical threshold, or perhaps they cleaned their subways more thoroughly and wore masks to a greater extent.

Different SARSCoV2 clades have different per capita fatality rate. Most research papers utilized the public accessible GISAID dataset which genetically group the submitted full SARSCoV2 sequences into 5 clades, i.e. 19A (APECFlu), 19B (WuFLu), 20A (LombardFlu), 20B (NATOFlu) and 20C (SwedeFlu). Those in brackets are my easier identification lables, the labels for Clades 19A and 19B are swap from my previous labelling as I did not want to be labelled as cherry picking while Clade 19A is the dominant clade in China even when signs are that WuFlu should be clade 19B. However GISAID has now explicitly stated that clade 19B was derivied from the GISAID May classification of clade B so now I just follow suit.

From the time sequence clade distribution profiles for CA and NY, it can be seen that for CA, like many other Pacific rim regions like Korea, Japan, Singapore, China, etc, the APECFlu and WuFlu have been there for quite some time withoug much fatality. The fatality for CA and NY only started sometime after the introduction of clades 20A (LombardFlu) and 20C (SwedeFlu). In fact clades 20s can be shown to be the killer clades while the clade 19s seems to have some immunizing effectes, i.e. the higher the clade 19s the lower the per capita fatality rate, as can be seen from that between CA and NY, or between those from the Atlantic regions with those from the Pacific regions. The slopes for the clades 19s are all NEGATIVE.

https://i.ibb.co/TgYDnkp/dseqny.png

https://i.ibb.co/jh1DdQs/dsequsca.png

LogFatalPMC = +0.025*Pct20A+2.22; #n=73; Rsq=0.0946; p=0.008111 ** (VSig)
LogFatalPMC = +0.027*Pct20B+2.43; #n=73; Rsq=0.0912; p=0.009425 ** (VSig)

LogFatalPMC = -0.026*Pct19A+3.77; #n=73; Rsq=0.147; p=0.0008315 *** (VVSig)
LogFatalPMC = -0.035*Pct19B+3.35; #n=73; Rsq=0.0745; p=0.01949 * (Sig)

+1, informative

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Public transport is really big in the urbanized Eastern cities, especially the Accella corridor. NYC has by far and its not even close the most public transport.

It's also the case that most blacks live East of the Missippi and concentrate in urban areas including along the Accella Corridor.

Hispanics and Asians are mostly out west where they don't have as much public transport.

Agreed, and I don't think NYC could have easily shutdown the Subway. But it clearly could have enforced seating rules and mask wearing much earlier.

April 17th was way to late to start the mask enforcement. Hell, the peak was April 6th. They basically closed the barn door after the horse had left.

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-data.page

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As far as I can tell, Tokyo, Taipei, Seoul, Hong Kong and Singapore did not stop public transit and all fared well over the past few months. Widespread work from home combined with sensible guidelines to ensure distancing on vehicles are enough.

"with sensible guidelines to ensure distancing on vehicles are enough."

I think you have to add to that requirements for masks and intensive cleaning. I saw several articles on Seoul in particular sending complete sanitizing teams through their cars multiple times per day, from early in the outbreak.

NYC didn't even require masks until late in the process.

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Odd: The people on the TV tell me the virus is racist. But now it seems like behaviors are the real culprit.

It's the same story with every ill covered on TV: Behaviors are 99% of the reason people are in a tough spot and not racism. Racism is for sure a problem, but it's not the what is tripping up most people in life.

Lol, yes, what could have caused black people to use public transit, when they could have just driven their Tesla to their free parking spot at work?

Black people don't drive Teslas?

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Ah, yes, the soft bigotry of low expectations. Here's Seattle's oppressed and downtrodden "warlord" unloading AR15's from his Tesla just a week ago. See him handing out AR15's to the kids drinking beer?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hc9ok34Gvag

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The answer to the public transit problem? Air taxis. No crowds of black folks there. What air taxis? There are in development. Cowen has a few posts about them. Of course, air taxis aren't for everybody. Neither are homes in the Hamptons. Another alternative to public transit is better public transit, transit that isn't so crowded, transit that is built in the 21st century not the 19th. I know, rich white folks don't want it because they have air taxis. Come fly with me.

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It is kind of an unexpected win for the personal motorcar.

But obvs public transport is not there for charity. It is to get the underclass to their low paying jobs. Without it, what do janitorial companies do, pay enough for their help to buy motorcars?

'It is to get the underclass to their low paying jobs.'

Seoul and its extensive subway system? Tokyo? How about Berlin?

I bet you that you could find quotes from people with fine coaches saying that "we don't need mass transportation."

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Of course some of those people with fine coaches were doing property development schemes that needed streetcars, and later subways, to make them work.

You do know that subways predate mass automobile driving by at least two generations, or more than a half century.

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I can say that the folks I was shoulder to shoulder during rush hour in the Manhattan subways certainly did NOT seem underclass.

It would be really interesting to see ridership demographics x borough x time of day.

NYC is an interesting example of how a city can develop, but it's hardly representative of the American model. Here's a site that is supposed to give us income of riders in various cities:

https://www.governing.com/gov-data/transportation-infrastructure/public-transportation-demographics-ridership-data-for-cities.html

It's hung up right now for me, maybe it will work for you.

It hangs up for me too, right at the cliff-hanging moment. As Hazel points out, McLaren's study implies that Blacks (I typically don't capitalize the word but AP revised their style guidelines a couple of days ago) for a given income and education level are more likely to take public transit than Whites are (AP is still deciding whether to start capitalizing that word).

The link shows NYC stats; not surprisingly it shows that commuters who use public transportation are lower income and more likely to be Black, compared to commuters using private transportation. But it doesn't show the interaction of those two variables: for a given income are the public commuters more likely to be Black, as McLaren implies? Or is it the case that Blacks are just plain lower income?

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How prevalent was mask usage the last time you were on the train?

I was surprised at the low mask usage in airports last week (the first time I had flown since February). Even though masks were technically required on the flights, Midway Chicago was under 50% usage by passengers walking through the terminal.

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Depends on the country and transport system. In the UK, rail is for the rich, buses for the poodle, cars for the middle - https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2002/jan/14/politics.transport. The tube meets a broad swath of needs.

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This is a really great article. Thank you for posting. Really elucidates *if* health equity and/or disparity issues have actually emerged from this pandemic. But it’s not just about race, it’s about unequal access to resources and unequal distribution and lack of standardization in healthcare. While institutional racism could be a driving force, it’s compounded by the vast undertaking of healthcare by corporate America and the blatant underfunding of state and federal entitlements. I appreciate this critical analysis and outside-the-box thinking. One last thought: help-seeking behavior and utilization of services is highly dependent on the psychology of the patient as well, as patients are perceived as consumers in the context of “choice theory”.

> it’s about unequal access to resources and unequal distribution and lack of standardization in healthcare

No, the disparity of outcomes with covid are overwhelmingly do to choices people have made. The paper notes:

A final observation about public transit is that it accounts for much of the difference
between mortality in New York City and Los Angeles. Both of these coastal mega-cities have had a large volume of travel with the most COVID-19-afflicted countries, but their experience of the pandemic has been strikingly different. To take Kings County as an example, the county that comprises Brooklyn, COVID-19 deaths per million were 1, 628 and 810 in April and May respectively, while for Los Angeles the figures were 72 and 117, an order of magnitude smaller. The fraction who use public transit to get to work was 61% for Brooklyn and 6% for Los Angeles, which by the regression estimates would account for 59% and 78% of the differential mortality between the two cities in the two months respectively

In other words, one place has an order of magnitude more public transportation, and they have an order of magnitude worse outcomes for a given race.

The paper goes through a range of theories, many of which are straight out of the SJW playback. Including the notion of "weathering", where a body's immune system is destroyed by constant racial discrimination. Or, that doctors and nurses are very racist.

Ok, but here’s a thought. If the private insurance holders with a commercial plan had built-in transportation services to get to/from doctors appointments as a feature of their policy. This *could* reduce the need for public transit. I’m not saying that majority of public transit is used for healthcare management but the disparity is there between the aforementioned and folks on government-sponsored entitlements. I understand that Uber and Lyft are now partnering with medical transport and insurance companies, but I don’t think they will with Medicare or medi-caid folks.

I think, if anything, Covid has exposed some of the realities in “vulnerable communities”. This subsumes race but extends to the general disparities in modern society among those folks who lack advocacy, representation or personal accountability, the latter of which simply makes one more fragile due to personal choice. While social justice is one thing, pragmatic, standardized and inclusive healthcare policy could have informed more expedient public health interventions and reduce some of the financial bleed.

Oh wait, you'r a Trump supporter? OK, then never mind, you probably wouldn't understand anyway.

If, after 50 years of buckets of money being spent, blue cities were showing improvements over red cities for PoC, you might have a point.

But every single thing your instincts tell you about helping people are wrong. That is why your black family living in NYC in the early 1970's lived among rats, with plaster falling off the walls, mold everywhere and crime rampant. You've had trillions of dollars to fix this. But the living environment is the exact same today.

Your instincts on how to help people are wrong. We should listen to you and your kind's recommendations and then do the exact opposite. Blue cites are show the greatest gap between rich and poor.They are playgrounds for the rich, with the very poor living among them in order to provide services.

Shame on you for wanting this, shame on you for skimming all the money off the top for your own selfish doings.

Dont' you wonder why places like Alaska and Utah have so much better outcomes for their PoC residents? You haven't a shred of curiosity?

"But every single thing your instincts tell you about helping people are wrong".
Yes, if you only knew...

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The worst outcomes for blacks are found in the red states of the South and Lower Midwest. Blacks, and even non-black poor people, do much better in New York City than Alabama or Mississippi. See the data: https://www.opportunityatlas.org/

The fact that the red states you point to with good outcomes are Alaska and Utah which are small states that have hardly any minorities to begin with says it all.

+1 "non-black poor people, do much better in New York City than Alabama or Mississippi"...
thank you for extending the issue beyond race!

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That's probably just a function of comorbities. Essentially it probably boils down to being overweight and all the health problems that come with it.

Obesity for Blacks in MS is 46.8%. That's very high. It's also high for Whites of course 32.4%.

https://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/_static/resources/6164.pdf

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Zaua, the metric to look at is the gap between white and black. If you look at outcomes overall (birth weight, 4th grade reading, 8th grade math, delaying child birth, etc--see the study "RACE FOR RESULTS building a path to opportunity for all children") then you will get a clearer picture.

Places like NY do very, very well for white kids, but black kids score much more poorly. In places like AR, white kids don't do as well, but black kids don't either. The ratio between white and black in both places is very high: 2.13X (AR) versus 2.2X (NY).

Are you better being poor in AR or NY? No question: NY regardless of color. But you are better still being poor and black in Utah.

In Utah, the white kids do almost as well as NY (and considerably better than AR), but the gap between white and black is much smaller--just 1.4X.

"Blacks per capita". You can't compare a small population of african-americans to a larger population elsewhere and try to make inferences from that.

Is your argument that when black people are lightly sprinkled among the white population that they do really well because of all the racism, but when they are high concentrated and living among few white people they do poorly?

That is seriously your argument?

How do you explain black kids growing up in a black school in Atlanta, with black teachers, black principals, black cops, black mayor, black city council, black store owners....those kids all have horrid life outcoems, but the 4% of black kids in Utah high schools have great outcomes.

No my argument is that you need to control for disparate comparisons among raw numbers by looking at population per capita.

+1

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oh yes, as a seasoning, we go really well on cornbread, black-eyed peas and chitlins.

+1 for really funny but kinda inappropriate

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""Blacks per capita". You can't compare a small population of african-americans to a larger population elsewhere and try to make inferences from that."

Why not?

OK, go ahead and make your inferences, but they would be skewed by disproportionate population sampling rather than using a ratio that captures "phenomena" at population per density, which can be converted to a something like a z-score. Perhaps, "per capita" is not the best descriptor, although this is an econ blog.

"they would be skewed by disproportionate population sampling"

Sure, but skews can be minimized with significant populations sizes. It's not as if we are talking about a handful of cases here. There are tens of thousands of blacks living in Utah. They aren't all just lucky.

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I really do not get what the dickens is happening here. We put a fricking man on the goddamned Moon! We are the richest nation in the world. Yet, Brazil is outperforming us spending a measly fraction of what we spend. I think Trump should resign efffectively now!

It would be a lot worse if Trump weren't in office. It took Obama 130 days to get to 1M tests for H1N1. Trump will hit 50M tests in that time. Your normal dem would NOT have brought in the private sector as quickly as Trump did.

Landing astronauts on the moon cost $300B in modern dollars. We've spent 10X that on Covid easily. Going to the moon is a very clear, narrowly defined tasks, readily controlled, that can be broken down into chunks and each solved by engineers.

Pandemics require you to deal with a human component. Our population and half our leaders felt no need to protest for BLM in January, nor could they wait until August. No, those protests and riots and looting had to happen in the middle of the pandemic. With the blessings of govs and mayors.

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Trump resigning would change a fat lot of nothing. When comparing the US to the rest of the world it is solidly middle of the pack. When places like the UK, France, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Belgium, and the rest all come in right around the US for most performance metrics it is not a question of one elected official.

I could buy that some common cultural forces have resulted in bureaucracies and societies uniquely unsuited for fighting a pandemic, but there are few Trump failures that I have not seen the socialist leaders of the west also hit.

The US is in the middle of the pack now but the US outbreak is still growing while the Western European ones are not. There’s a good chance the US comes out looking the worst at the end of all this.

china lied
African Americans died

nice haiku

ありがとう

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Can you cite an actual statement made by a Chinese official that was a lie, and explain what you think we could have done to prevent COVID without said lie?

Here you go:
https://www.nationalreview.com/the-morning-jolt/chinas-devastating-lies/
Taiwan warned the WHO in late December.
Until mid-January, WHO was still parroting China's lies.
Six weeks would have been a lot of time to prevent the spread.

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https://gazette.com/opinion/editorial-chinas-coronavirus-lies-continue-piling-up/article_bfa3f250-8f33-11ea-ad8c-d39f275d2040.html

https://nypost.com/2020/05/06/finally-the-world-is-catching-on-to-chinas-coronavirus-lies/

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"There’s a good chance the US comes out looking the worst at the end of all this."

Or phrase another way, Western Europe currently looks like it came out worst compared to the US. Western Europe still has a higher total death rate, though the US has a larger death rate per day currently.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/17/briefing/dexamethasone-india-china-john-bolton-your-wednesday-briefing.html

It's noteworthy that the NY Times, left Scandinavia, the UK, Ireland, etc out of the list, so consider it more of a cherry picked list to reach a particular conclusion rather than following the data.

I usually look at Worldometers. The US is #9 in deaths per capita on Worldometers now and all of the countries above the US (France, UK, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Belgium, Andorra, and San Marino) are now down to very low new case/new death counts while the US has not managed to defeat the first wave to the same degree.

Yes, that's the same data set I routinely look at.

Assuming the current 7 day rolling average the US is around 627 deaths per day, which would take 6 weeks to become 8th place. But the numbers have been steadily declining.

The US had 267 new deaths yesterday, those 9 countries had around 75 new deaths listed. It would take the US 5 months to pass France and become 8th place at that rate.

At the end of the day, unless something changes, the US death rate is going go be very close to Western Europe's rate. It might be a little better, it might be a little worse. Despite the political rhetoric, the US overall response effectively mirrors the Western European response.

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Daily deaths per million (confirmed Covid19, not excess mortality) is about the same between US and UK now for a rolling 7 day average - https://ourworldindata.org/grapher/new-covid-deaths-per-million. 1.8/million US, 1.9/million UK. Italy and France is about down to 0.5/million. So on rates, at the moment the US is worse.

But at the same time, there is the question of how much its really worth to the US to try and do a bit more hard suppression to get down from 1.8/million to 0/million, faster? How much of your economy is that worth? Assuming that you would need to trade off any of the economy to get there.

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Both are still growing, but the US one is growing faster for now. As the CFR drops it looks like the US will end up being around the Western European average. The real data will, of course, be the excess mortality when viewed from 18 months post, but from what I see right now, it seems unlikely that the US will move terribly far from the average.

And remember, the most vulnerable populations with the highest risks of deaths have already been hit. We only have so many nursing homes for Cuomo to negligently infect and once you burn through the weakest populations, the death count is going to be much lower. Couple that with dexamethasone, remsidivir, and whatever else we find in the coming months, it would take a highly unusual set of outcomes to move the US far up or down the charts. We may well have far more cases, but in terms of morbidity and mortality, it seems unlikely that we will be an outlier in either direction.

And beyond that, what exactly were the unique failings of Trump? We are far from the only country to have a slow initial ramp up in testing. Contact tracing basically failed everywhere except islands and South Korea. And many countries failed to protect clusters of the aged and experienced outbreaks among their most vulnerable. Even hydroxychloroquine started off as a Covid response in France.

Firing Trump would not change the response. We had failures at this sort of thing with previous outbreaks like Ebola. I suspect, if anything, we are dealing with cultural forces where the bureaucracies get side tracked by games of status, bias phobia, and social engineering. But that took generations to build and even Trump can only fire so many people.

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It is not that simple. I refuse to believe America could not have done more. We won WW I and WW II! We defeated the Soviet Union. We defeated Saddam. Yet, thanks to Trump, we are #1 in COVID-19 deaths!

Don't worry, Brazil is catching up!

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Related, interesting claims about US covid spread -

https://mobile.twitter.com/lymanstoneky/status/1274914294111461378

https://mobile.twitter.com/lymanstoneky/status/1274913753306296320

Looks like R0 really did spike in Minnesota, and one of the most spiky, at the end of May, beginning of June.

Oops. Ok

Inevitable fallout from people ignoring the lockdown orders particularly with respect to the protests.

Minnesota's numbers took off around mid-April, way before George Floyd. Through April 16, next door and similar-sized Wisconsin had registered 197 COVID-19 deaths and was bracing for the fall-out from the recently-held and widely condemned election. At the time, Minnesota had seen just 94 deaths, less than half as many.

Then, something happened. Wisconsin got its shit together far better than any neighboring Midwestern state, while Minnesota's numbers took off. Mind-boggling, no excuse given their geography and timing.

Through yesterday, the Wisconsin death total was 744, Minnesota 1,412, almost twice as many.

George Floyd protest fallout, if it materializes, will be on top of these numbers.

"George Floyd protest fallout, if it materializes, will be on top of these numbers."

It only takes a few days for the virus to have a significant impact. The protests started almost 30 days ago. Those numbers have already shown up.

"Through yesterday, the Wisconsin death total was 744, Minnesota 1,412, almost twice as many."

I don't really expect the protests were a huge percentage of those numbers. It seems likely that being outside seems to denigrate virus infection rate. It did put a quick stop to the talk about how irrational the Lockdown protestors were being though.

And to your point, it's not the Case per population numbers that are bad, it's the Deaths per population number that is the worst in the Upper Midwest:

https://www.mprnews.org/story/2020/03/17/comparing-covid19-in-minnesota-and-its-neighbors-in-upper-midwest

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I suspect you'll see some flare up from the protests themselves, though there will be some. (Unfortunately; for all that I don't like the ideology of the protesters, and the idea that they should just be dictating changes to civic life and law enforcement without democratic process, both of which have spilt over the rest of the world, people being able to do mass gathering outside even in areas were CV's in general circulation *without* risking people dying would be nice, right?).

The bigger effect will be seen in the US through the fact that the protests diluted the media message and have taken the public's eye off the ball. I'm skeptical that lockdowns (mandatory closures and stay-at-home orders) do too much more than what is achieved by consistent advice and messaging from the government and science, through the media, to a public that's free to then choose. But the US media basically seemed to have stopped trying to do that messaging, in favour of reporting the protests as basically OK and risk-free. Along with declaring that Europe and New York has already beat the pandemic, this has probably led a lot of Americans to figure it's over and relax their behaviour!

"Along with declaring that ... New York has already beat the pandemic"

This seems to be the most bizarre media message that you currently see. There's all these warnings that Covid is spiking in the South, without pointing out that New York still has far more active cases than anywhere else. New York has more active cases than the entire South East combined. It was still the 11th worst state for new cases in the US yesterday.

Now granted California is surging ahead and it's possible the outbreak there could become significant. However, even though CA has the second highest count for active cases in the US, it's still less than half the NY case count.

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The terms 'obesity', 'diabetes', 'body mass index', and 'BMI' do not appear in the text. It's a reasonable inference they're trying to avoid looking.

Studies on racial disparities nearly always leave out obvious, highly relevant things like this.

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Experts NOT paying attention to highly relevant data?

Gosh, golly, and gee whiz, say it ain't so!

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yes, this is a focus in "population health management"

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I believe that public transit is a source of spread events--I mean, how could it not be, with the close quarters, lots of people, sealed cars, etc.--but this paper pings my BS-o'meter. It's too cute by half.

Sometimes papers like that turn out to contain really interesting, novel insights about the world. But usually they just turn out to have been flawed in various ways that made them click-baity at the expense of utility or accuracy.

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Surprisingly, for these two groups the racial disparity does not seem to be due to differences in income, poverty rates, education, occupational mix, or even access to healthcare insurance. A significant portion of the disparity can, however, be sourced to the use of public transit.

I think I can infer from this that black people are more likely to use public transit independently of their income level, education level, or occupation. That is an interesting fact in itself, if true. I wonder why that would be the case. Why would African Americans like riding public transit more than whites, independently of income ?

Maybe the density of neighborhoods they live in?

+1
it is beaucoup more expensive to own a car in a high density city
than it is to own a car in a less dense city/suburb

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One thing I have always wondered about is how much of the race disparities, in general, more reflects an urban/suburban divide than a strictly racial one. From my view of the people who live at the bottom, being urban poor is far more debilitating than being suburban or even rural poor and is only offset by massively higher transfer payments that some urban areas offer.

I could be wrong, but it seems that urban cores are increasing becoming places that work for the wealthy and are increasingly hostile to the flourishing of the lower classes.

Eligibility criteria for transfer payments don't vary according to whether you live in a core city, suburb, small town, or in a country homestead. SNAP cards is SNAP cards. (They do vary some from state to state, and some states are more rural than others).

By far the largest transfers are (1) Social Security, (2) Medicare, and (3) Medicaid. The census of those drawing Social Security old age benefits has a smaller black share than the general population because they have lower life expectancies. The ratio of blacks to others on the Disability rolls is about 20% higher than the ratio of blacks to others in the working population, but that's not terribly surprising given that blacks are more likely to have manual jobs and tend to be less healthy in late middle age. Blacks are about 2x as likely as others to be on the SSI rolls or the Medicaid rolls, but that doesn't have much to do with blacks living in core cities. They're over represented on the SSI rolls in large measure because they're much more likely to be defined as disabled as a consequence of psychometric test scores. They're on the Medicaid rolls in large numbers in part because they are about 10% less likely to be working than others and in part because they tend to be thick on the ground in the realm of low paid service jobs which do not include fringes.

The problem with slums is that they're crime ridden, beset with disorderly schools, and beset with trash and deteriorating real property. Things can be done to ameliorate those situations, but the media, the Democratic Party, and others are clamoring to do just the opposite of what you should be doing.

The point is not what are the legal requirements, the point is how much is expended. Urban areas are more likely to have high enough volumes of applicants to assist with doing up the paperwork and, possibly, being more lenient with fudging the data if not committing rank fraud. This in addition to the local budget line items for services that amount to (possibly grossly inefficient) transfers via services.

Frankly, most urban cores are comer ever closer to some feudal system. The rich urbanites pay taxes and few justified due to the social stances to make decisions for everyone else. The underclass require the patronage of these wealthy folks to make a go of it in the city. And the clerical/guild class administers the welfare state to make it work.

All of which is distinctly worse outcome for most social outcomes measures than settling down to a 1950s style set of cultural choices: get married, join a church or other religious organization, take a job (any job), and save a bit more than you spend.

Certainly it is my experience that immigrants tend to either leave the city within a generation or risk getting swept up into the cultural black holes that dominate the poorer regions of cities (be they black, Hispanic, or even something odd like Pacific Islanders).

I suppose you might try a regression analysis to demonstrate this proposition. I do not think you're going to get there.

https://fns-prod.azureedge.net/sites/default/files/resource-files/31SNAPcurrBEN$-6.pdf

Here's per capita expenditure on SNAP for those states most demographically dominated by dense tract development and for those states least so:

nevada 15.71428571
california $12.55
new jersey $8.73
new york $18.61
illinois $17.38
arizona $12.72
rhode island $19.11
florida $15.14
massachusetts $13.46
texas $13.27

maine $12.50
west virginia $18.27
mississippi $16.58
vermont $13.51
south dakota $11.52
north carolina $14.14

Expenditures for the month of March 2019

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There’s lots of research on this; Raj Chetty is famous for it. You can see here: https://www.opportunityatlas.org/

The worst places for poor blacks to grow up in terms of the adult individual income they ultimately end up making are rural parts of the South and Lower Midwest. The largest metro areas are better by comparison, especially New York.

You have to adjust for the Cost of Living. California has the worst poverty rate in the nation when looking at the PPP numbers. IE it's worse than Mississippi, which would have been unbelievable a generation ago. It really doesn't matter if you make an extra $10K per year in CA, if your rent is an extra $1K per month.

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These days, net migration of African Americans is away from the northeast and northern Midwest toward the south, Southwest, and west. There’s obviously a huge selection problem when comparing outcomes (as opposed to changes in outcomes) between regions: you pretty much have to have relatively good outcomes to be able to afford to live in NYC or SF. But the fact that there is net migration out of many ‘good outcome’ places into ‘worse outcome’ places suggests it’s not so much that the places themselves are conducive to good outcomes but that they price out poor people.

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It has been well-known for centuries (yes, really) that for whatever reason, people of African descent tend to have worse outcomes from respiratory infection than those not of African descent. In fact this is why African slavery never became "a thing" in New England, despite efforts to try it. It's well-documented in medical literature. But you geniuses in academia can't stop stepping on your own dicks. We deserve better so-called elites.

Anyone with a passing familiarity with the colonial history of North America should be well aware of this. But y'all please continue chasing your tails, it's what you do best.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/272520785_African_ancestry_lung_function_and_the_effect_of_genetics
https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1365-2222.2011.03873.x
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0091674912005404
https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0026807

Thank you for sharing. I support Black Lives Matter, and also support science. I truly believe that you cannot help a disadvantaged group if not willing to acknowledge the related context of factual science that applies. How else is it possible to ever create better targeted policies if not willing to acknowledge that a group is at higher risk, as here with COVID-19, for example? Wish people were more willing to engage with these realities, as it would encourage greater progress to be made on improving outcomes for Black Americans.

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The destruction of history is proceeding nicely. We have always been at war with Eurasia.

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Hadn't heard that. Have heard that European indentured servants did not acclimate well for work south of Virginia. In fact, in some times of the year, whites had low survivability outside Charleston due to malaria and other prevalent diseases. Still it is estimated that one half to two thirds of whites who came to what is now the US south of New England, came as indentured servants. The economics flipped in the 1680s making African slaves cheaper than indentured servants and then cotton blew up in the 1790s reviving demand for African slaves in what became the Cotton Belt in the first decades of the 19th century.

It is possible that Africans did not fair well in the colder climes with European diseases prevalent. But it should be noted that even white indentured servants weren't prevalent in New England. Likely due to the religious "commune" format of governance and policies such as with Puritans in Boston of no single male in habitants, everyone had to be part of a male-led family. Others either moved on, or were taken into a family as an apprentice.

http://www.medfordhistorical.org/medford-history/africa-to-medford/slaves-in-new-england/

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It's also worth noting that the racial justification for slavery used by southern plantation owners was a post-hoc rationalization from the ministerial class. In the run-up to the Civil War, these same plantation owners were discussing way to legalize slavery of poor white tenant farmers. This is likely the reason the Union gained support in parts of Appalachia.

Would like to read more about your last 2 sentences.

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Tyler, you have missed the most important NBER wp in the past 1,000 years. Just released today

https://www.nber.org/papers/w27408

This is the abstract:

"Sparked by the killing of George Floyd in police custody, the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests have brought a new wave of attention to the issue of inequality within criminal justice. However, many public health officials have warned that mass protests could lead to a reduction in social distancing behavior, spurring a resurgence of COVID-19. This study uses newly collected data on protests in 315 of the largest U.S. cities to estimate the impacts of mass protests on social distancing and COVID-19 case growth. Event-study analyses provide strong evidence that net stay-at-home behavior increased following protest onset, consistent with the hypothesis that non-protesters’ behavior was substantially affected by urban protests. This effect was not fully explained by the imposition of city curfews. Estimated effects were generally larger for persistent protests and those accompanied by media reports of violence. Furthermore, we find no evidence that urban protests reignited COVID-19 case growth during the more than two and a half weeks following protest onset. We conclude that predictions of broad negative public health consequences of Black Lives Matter protests were far too narrowly conceived."

And the most interesting wp is already in the oven. The anonymous authors are promoting it:

https://www.newsweek.com/oklahoma-reports-highest-ever-daily-covid-19-cases-after-trump-tulsa-rally-1512486

Yes, the virus spreading is exponentially accelerating. It will take less than 48 hours for OK to be totally infected.

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+1, for an interesting take.

It never occurred to me that the protests, rioting, etc would scare more people into staying at home than were actually involved in the events. But it does make a lot of sense.

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Sorry, but the paper doesn't fit the facts. There were far more warnings issued that the earlier lockdown protests were going to be a mass spreading event. Those protests weren't large enough to have sparked stay-at-home counter-effects, but they still produced no identified spike in cases.

These incorrect predictions are basically just ignored and forgotten these days.

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How do we know this isn’t partly caused by the curfews? Or is that included as a factor?

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another dozen bold claims & some very bold causality pimping
from a field where most studies don't reproduce.

the last sentence could mean virtually anything

"We conclude that predictions of broad negative public health consequences of Black Lives Matter protests were far too narrowly conceived."

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While Berkeley has been regarded as "a haven for communist sympathizers, protesters, and sex deviants" by elite, academic intellectuals like *Ronald Reagan* (???), they are offering a live webcast about Covid and People of Color:
news.berkeley.edu/2020/06/18/structural-racism-and-covid19-the-political-divide-re-opening-the-society-and-health-impacts-on-people-of-color/

Berkeley is overrated and too eclipsed by SJW agendas to have accurate statistical modeling. They will skew any numbers to support their liberal agenda.

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Correlate for diet and exercise.

+1

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It's a shame to see MR stoop to the level of signal boosting vapid research that is only of any public interest at all because of the current racism moral hysteria pandering times we find ourselves in.

that's the most run-oniest sentence I've never read. I suggest throwing in some commas to separate your descriptors.

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Like any brave academic, Tyler is attempting to stake out a position based not on principles but rather on the hopes it will save him from the mob and cancel culture. Narrator: it won't.

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Did they adjust for differences in vitamin D levels?

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No vitamin d problem I guess. Can I go back to saying almost no one in the developed countries without a serious underlying condition is suffering for vitamin deficiencies?

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Blacks choose poverty over wealth by choosing to live on the Democratic Party's welfare plantation.

About 40% of food stamps go to white households.

Aaaannd, about 22% are African-American, despite being 13% of the population.

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