But as a professional trendwatcher, it’s also my job to help you better navigate treacherous waters ahead. I don’t need to tell you that our lives have changed dramatically in the past few weeks. I know that many of you are still in shock watching this slow-motion train wreck crash into our future.
I also know our authorities are incapable of providing the visionary leadership necessary to avoid a crisis. If you are interested in the unvarnished truth, keep watching. If you’re not, leave this video with this old Dutch saying — een gewaarschuwde man telt voor twee, a forewarned person counts for two.
In order to understand what we’re up against, you need to have a firm grasp of key trends. As you know, the Coronavirus disease, or COVID-19, as it’s officially called, started in China’s Hubei province.
According to a March 14 South China Morning Post report, a 55-year-old may have been the first person to contract COVID-19 on November 17. From that date onwards, one to five new cases were reported each day. By December 15, the total number of infections stood at 27.
On December 30, Li Wenliang, a 34-year-old doctor posted a story on WeChat about a mysterious new acute respiratory syndrome disease. In early January, Li was reprimanded by the Chinese police for rumor-mongering. On February 6, he died from the Coronavirus.
BTW, a book called published in 2008 contained this prescient passage, “In around 2020 a severe pneumonia-like illness will spread throughout the globe, attacking lungs and the bronchial tubes and resisting all known treatments.”
This book, entitled “End of Days,” was written by psychic Sylvia Browne who died in 2013. The book surfaced last Thursday when Kim Kardashian tweeted about it. See? It does pay to follow the Kardashians.
Here’s a chart that shows how the Coronavirus took off in China. Notice how China managed to stem the tide by locking down Hubei’s 50 million population on January 23.
Now compare the spread of the virus in the U.S. where 57 days have elapsed since the first COVID-19 infection surfaced on January 21.
In comparison, Italy reported its first infection 10 days later on January 31. Its government locked down northern Italy on March 8, which was 38 days after the first infection. Two days later, on March 10, it locked down the entire nation, but as you can see infections are still surging.
Why am I providing you with all these minutiae? Last evening, I watched a 2011 movie starring Matt Damon, Kate Winslett, and Gwyneth Paltrow, called “Contagion.” Watching that 10-year-old film was nothing short of ethereal, down to the coining of the term, “social distancing.”
Now you’re probably wondering, do we need a complete lockdown in North America? Yes, we do and here’s why. On March 2, Italy wrote an open letter to the international scientific community. One stat immediately jumped out, and I quote: “The virus is spreading at maximum speed, doubling the number of infected people in just 2.4 days.”
The U.S. has no nationwide lockdown. In fact, just this past weekend, some bars in New York were reportedly packed with St. Patrick’s Day revelers.
As of today, the number of U.S. Coronavirus cases stands at 5,702, a number that jumped by 1,000 in the timespan of just a few hours this morning. Johns Hopkins University offers a well-designed resource that lets you track confirmed cases and deaths by country and state. I will provide a link, as well as all sources used in this video in the description below.
Since only about 32,000 people have been tested in a nation of 329 million, we know 5,702 significantly understates the real total. Using the CovidSIM infection simulation model, the real number of U.S. Coronavirus cases is closer to 32,000 based on population size and date of the first infection.
Now take that Italian doubling rate, and we could have 64,000 infections by Wednesday and 128,000 by Sunday. Rachel Saluti, a Stanford Medicine virologist, believes that without drastic measures, we could be looking at about 40 million global deaths. Again, source data links provided below.
More importantly, you need to avoid catching the virus no matter your age. As Saluti tells it, even a mild case of Coronavirus is like getting “the worst flu of your life.”
Why is that? Because some patients suffer from what experts call a “cytokine storm,” in which the immune system’s reaction to a new virus engulfs the lungs with white blood cells and fluid.
And this fluid damage has led to a permanent drop in lung capacity of 20% to 30% in two out of three recovered patients. Worse, on February 27, Japan reported that a woman in her 40s who worked as a tour bus guide tested positive for coronavirus for a second time after developing a sore throat and chest pain. So reinfection is a distinct possibility.
Now, sore throat is not a typical symptom, but clearly can be part of an infection. Here is a chart of the most mentioned symptoms of Coronavirus, according to the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
As I suggested earlier, don’t believe because you’re young you’re immune from Coronavirus. Right now in The Netherlands, 16-year-old Sehraz is on a ventilator in a medically-induced coma.
Speaking of ventilators, we only have 100,000 ventilators in the U.S. but we may end up with millions of sick Americans.
Now, some of you are probably thinking I’m off my rocker when I say “millions of sick Americans.” Here are some estimates from reputable sources, again linked below to fight disinformation online.
Goldman Sachs told 1,500 of its top clients this past Sunday evening that 50% of Americans, or 150 million people, will contract the virus. The investment banker also estimates that 70% of Germany or 58 million Germans will contract it.
The Guardian reported this weekend that a public health document it viewed suggests that the COVID-19 outbreak could last until spring 2021 and could infect up to 80% of the U.K., or 53 million Britons.
Despite these headwinds, I believe we can make inroads by kicking off a major healthcare innovation crusade. If you’re a startup, please pivot tomorrow and tackle one of the following opportunities.
We need more equipment and visibility in the healthcare sector. The U.K. Department for Health and Social Care has sent a blueprint for making a ventilator to 60 manufacturers. That blueprint should be available online for everyone to download.
If you are the founder of one of those 100-plus look-alike CRM applications, pivot and make it a Patient Relationship Manager, or PRM. Doctors now need all the help they can get.
We need to ramp up research on viruses. Dennis Carroll, a leading virologist who heads up the Global Virome Project estimates that there are between 631,000 and 827,000 viruses with the capacity to infect people. He also predicts that we’re going to be on a three-year cycle of infection.
Carroll says that at least $100 million is needed to fund zoonotic disease research, which studies the threat of the transmission of animal pathogens to humans.
The Trump administration reportedly offered a “large sum” of money to a German company, called CureVac, for access to their Coronavirus vaccine research.
Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet and all you other billionaires out there, your stock is set to crater even more min upcoming months. Here’s why.
Most analysts agree that his crash is more severe than the Great Recession, which caused the Dow Jones to lose 54% of its 2007 value in two years. We have already lost 30% in two weeks. If we lose 54% this time around, the Dow will plummet to around 13,000 before this bear market is done.
A few weeks ago, Forbes reported that 10 billionaires had lost $83 billion. And that’s before the stock market totally crashed this week. What do a billion dollars mean to you, Jeff Bezos?
It means a lot to desperate healthcare workers who face a nationwide shortage of N-95 protective masks. Do you know that the government is asking the construction industry to donate their masks to healthcare providers?
Larry Page and Sergey Brin, why don’t you use your paper billions to more forcefully help mitigate this massive human disaster? The U.S. government is clearly incapable of producing the 100-million test kits that are urgently needed, let alone set up a good distribution system. How about actually putting 1,700 Google engineers to work on this project?
Warren Buffet, your Berkshire Hathaway realtors are going to be sitting with much time on their hands unable to sell homes. How about pumping some money into fintech startups that can up come up with much-needed transparency solutions for the healthcare market?
And Mark Zuckerberg, you should put up that $100 million the Global Virome Project needs for zoonotic disease research. After all, if we face a future of three-year infection cycles, you’re not going to be selling many ads.
Here is my email address, please let me know how you can help save this planet. Keep in mind that your vast net worth is dependent on consumption. When there are no more customers, there will be no consumption.
In 2013, the World Bank estimated that a global pandemic could shave $3 trillion, or nearly 5%, off global GDP – then estimated at $60 trillion. The impact would be equivalent to a World War. Today, global GDP hovers around $85 trillion, suggesting a $4 trillion haircut.
Let’s a look at what’s about to happen. The $3 trillion international foodservice market, 60% of which is restaurants, is being threatened by a global lockdown. The $872 billion global airline industry is already pretty much grounded.
That means little or no business for the $570 billion global hotel industry. The $400 billion global conference industry is already pretty much dead, especially after those 70 people got infected at a Boston Biogen conference.
I’m sorry to be a bearer of bad tidings but I take my task to prepare you for the future seriously.
We can kick life into our world with desperately needed, disruptive healthcare innovation. The goal of these ideas is to delay epidemic spread while buying valuable time for other areas to mobilize and respond.
Again, here’s my email address, let me be your catalyst. Thank you very much for watching. Please subscribe to keep updates flowing.