after peak covid season
comes peak "claim your NPI worked" season. but it's not true. it's just opportunistic rain dances.
as covid season ends, shenanigans season begins where every state health agency starts trying to claim that whatever dance they happened to be doing at the time is what made the rains come and that their brand of NPI (non-pharmaceutical interventions) saved the day.
and this is why we need to use control groups. it’s how you separate the effects of what you did from what was going to happen anyway. it’s how you can tell if you really made it rain or if you are just all wet.
here, from gatopal™ eric, we have a fine example of such a comparison:
both lines are the 7 day moving average of cases per 100k people.
one is for states with mask mandates.
the other is for states with no mandates.
seeing any difference you’d want to waste your time on? because i sure don’t.
alignment is extremely tight in terms of shape and of magnitude.
curve separation is minimal and as can be seen, “no mandate” outperformed slightly.
this pretty much puts paid to the “but it would have been worse!” nope. there’s just no difference to speak of and such difference as exists leans against mask mandate.
and nope, N-95’s would not have helped either. they work just the same as other masks, which is to say, not at all.
the same emerges from closed studies as longtime gatopal™ josh shows us here. the whole “N-95 will save us” narrative is and has always been bunk lacking in any clinical basis.
and because gatopal-emeritus™ ian miller’s charts are always so fun, here’s another of the southern hemisphere learning some lessons about picking the right time for your performance.
because you do not look super smart when you get this wrong.
this lesson has been starkly obvious since the very beginning. lockdowns were an obvious, instant failure. masks have been a total failure. everywhere. even vaccines and vaccine mandates have not helped.
all the travails and impositions and hectoring of the west has had no effect.
y’all got sold a bill of goods.
you can cherry pick some point and say “aha, look, masks saved the day!” but without a control group, you’re just drowning in the rain you think your dancing brought.
we could just as easily do this:
and it would be every bit as valid.
accept no claims of NPI efficacy without a control group.