Things to Know and See

In the famous words of Emil Faber, “knowledge is good.”

That’s because it helps us to live successfully and happily.

It’s no guarantee. And it’s not always what we want to hear. But in general, it’s better to know the truth than not to know it.

Things to know

So here are some truths that it’s good to know:

  • We’re all going to die someday, of something.
  • It probably won’t be today, and it probably won’t be of Covid-19.
  • For healthy people under 60, it very probably won’t be of Covid-19.

The Christian Saint Augustine said that “we live by faith, not by sight.” And in many ways, that’s true. We need to take a lot of things on faith: that the world will be here tomorrow, that we deserve to live, and that eventually justice will be done. That last one keeps a lot of politicians awake at night.

Something to see

But sometimes, it can help to see things. Like this:

Notice that Covid-19 deaths peaked in the middle of April and have been declining ever since. That’s much the same graph you’d see in any epidemic, with or without lockdowns.

Notice also that even at the peak, people under 45 were at relatively low risk. And now, the death count has dropped so much that it almost vanishes into statistical noise.

The noise is louder because of over-counting. Did you know that according to the official autopsy report, the famous George Floyd had Covid-19? If not for a video, he might have been counted as a Covid-19 death, though he was also suffering from a fentanyl overdose and severe heart disease. (The official autopsy report is a public record and was available on the website of the Hennepin County Medical Examiner, but has now been removed.)

So those are things I think you should know and see.

How you choose to apply that knowledge is up to you.


Check out my book Why Sane People Believe Crazy Things: How Belief Can Help or Hurt Social Peace. Foreword Reviews called it “intriguing and vital for living.”

About N.S. Palmer

N.S. Palmer is an American mathematician.
This entry was posted in Life, Political Science, Psychology, Science and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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