Renowned statistician and humorist Dr. William Briggs, who is a consultant and adjunct Professor of Statistics at Cornell University with specialties in medicine and philosophy of science, gives us the answer:
We, too, have not examined Mr Trump, but since the Times has set the standard of allowing uninformed commentary on the course of the President’s illness, we’ll do them same.
Starting with this opinion on masks from Dr Fauci himself.
In the United States, people should not be walking around with masks….There’s no reason to be walking around with a mask. When you’re in the middle of an outbreak, wearing a mask might make people feel a little bit better, and it might even block a droplet. But it’s not providing the perfect protection that people think that it is.
Well, masks have become our new national religion, an obvious outward display of faith. How dare Fauci speak against them.
Anyway, Mr Trump is 74. The CDC says that 1.2% people in his age bracket, 65-74, have died this year from causes other than COVID-19. It also says 0.13% of these people—ten times fewer—have died at least with, and not necessarily of, the coronavirus.
As long as we’re speculating, we might as well do so about Joe Biden, who is 77. In his age bracket, 75-84 years old, 2.9% of Americans this age have died so far this year of causes other than COVID-19. And 0.32% have died at least with the coronavirus.
In both age brackets, then, Americans have about a ten times greater risk of dying from something other than COVID-19. But those in the older bucket are dying at rates about twice those in the younger bucket (from any cause).
Which means what we always knew it means: Older people die more often than younger.
The difference here is that the President has tested positive for the coronavirus, and has been said to be experiencing “mild” symptoms.
The President’s weight is likely a strike against him. Based on an item from the Drudge tabloid, the Times speculated the President may also have other unreported comorbidities. We are thus free to speculate that his health before the infection is as reported, which is fine.
Having comorbidities is never good. Of those those who died with the coronadoom, about four times as many had other illnesses, 22% versus 6% with no comorbidities, according to the CDC.
But these aren’t the right numbers to use to judge the President’s prognosis. What we want to know is the infection fatality rate for people like him. Nobody really knows this number yet, since all the data is not in. Some estimate it as high as 4.2% for the President’s sex and age bracket.
Meaning a 95.8% chance of recovery.
Some estimate women do about twice as well as men. Thus, according to Gender Theory, if Trump changed his Mr to Mrs, she’d have a better chance for survival. (I dare you to find a professor who will openly and on-the-record disagree with this.)
A better guess is to use reports from Mr Trump’s actual doctors. Chief of Staff Mark Meadows at Walter Reed said “The president is doing very well”. He said he was “cautiously optimistic” about Trump’s progress, and that his symptoms were already “resolving and improving”.
Or we could take a look at the man himself, who looks like he’s doing okay.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 3, 2020
Trumps is going to disappoint a lot of people if he lives—which the vast majority of people infected with this virus do. You can read all about that in The Price of Panic: How the Tyranny of Experts Turned a Pandemic into a Catastrophe.
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Pray an Our Father now for the restoration of the Mass and the Church as well as for the Triumph of the Kingdom of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.