Thoughts on economics and liberty

Category: Science

What about Israel? Does it show that vaccines don’t work? #1

This might be a multi-blog post discussion so I’ve numbered this 1.

Ted Steele has co-authored this piece which considers many countries including Israel.

My analysis of Israel:

It is hard to conclude from the charts in Ted’s article that, on average, the vaccines have done anything meaningful. But this macro-approach is probably not the best suited to identify any marginal effect of vaccines, the uptake of which has been increasing over time even as total deaths have been declining.

Further, in the case of Israel these are the facts (of course, what is a covid case/death is badly doctored, but one hopes that all countries have equally falsified their data):

  1. Its overall death rate/million is 800, far lower than Sweden’s (1446), and one of the lowest in the world (78th in the Worldometers list). This reminds me of Australia with its relatively low death rate (43) due to its extreme lockdowns. If lockdowns are sufficiently harsh and early enough, they do reduce some immediate covid deaths – even as they increase other deaths and harms – and misery, which are not shown in the Worldometers charts.
  2. Since Israel so aggressively crushed its pandemic, the theory that applies to most other countries does not apply to it. It has therefore been susceptible to repeated “outbreaks” even though these are very small, overall. Thus, while Sweden’s outbreaks seem to be largely over, Israel’s are not yet done – although even with its third “wave”, its overall death rate is around half that of Sweden.

3. The chart for Israel in Ted’s paper suggests (although due to different Y axes, this deduction could be seriously flawed) that during March-July 2021 those with vaccines might have experienced a lower death rate than those without vaccines.

The only meaningful approach to confirm whether the vaccines provide any protection at the margin is to identify the proportion of current deaths among the vaccinated vs. current deaths among the unvaccinated (ideally, age-wise). That’s the kind of information I’m trying to compile here in my spare moments.

While these vaccines do not eliminate deaths, even if they help reduce deaths they can be considered to be a meaningful contribution to science.

What about “jab in the arm” theory?

According to this theory the present ‘jab in the arm’ vaccines cannot protect against infection (“on textbook first principles grounds, as they do not stimulate dimeric secretory IgA mucosal antibodies which are very protective”). Flu shots are a jab in the arm and I’ve taken these for many decades regularly – and flu is a respiratory virus. While flu shots are known not to be entirely effective, they do seem to have some positive effect at the margin. Therefore someone promoting this theory would need to show also why a coronavirus is so radically different to flu that its vaccines are fundamentally unviable.

I’m aware that ADE is a genuine problem with these vaccines but also note that mass-scale deaths among the elderly are not happening as they should if ADE was a major issue. In India most (if not all) of my elderly relatives have taken the vaccine (at least one dose) and none have been adversely impacted.

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Emerging proofs from Australia, Canada, the UK and the USA that the vaccines may significantly reduce deaths in the elderly



Came across this study from India: [also reported here]

Between February 1 and May 14, 32,792 people received one dose of COVID-19 vaccine and 67,673 received both doses, while 17,059 were unvaccinated, according to the study that was published in the Indian Journal of Medical Research.

A total of 31 deaths due to COVID-19 were reported among these police personnel between April 13 and May 14. Of them, four were fully vaccinated, seven had received one dose of vaccine, and the rest 20 were unvaccinated. The incidence of deaths among the vaccinated with zero, one and two doses were 1.17, 0.21 and 0.06 per 1,000 police personnel respectively.

Another study from India

Nine policemen, among the 35,856 who had received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccines, had died because of the infectious disease, while the number of deaths trickled down to two among the 42,720 police personnel who had received both the doses of the vaccine. 15 persons of the 4,868 personnel of the Punjab Police who had not received any vaccine, had died due to Covid-19.

More on USA

The vast majority of people who have died from COVID-19 were unvaccinated. Fatal cases of COVID-19 among vaccinated people are either very low or virtually zero in 48 states. Over 96 percent of people who died in Montana and 99.91 percent in New Jersey were not fully vaccinated. If we look at the number of vaccinated people developing COVID-19, the District of Columbia is another good example to examine. Of 200 fully vaccinated people who acquired SARS-CoV-2, only 13 were hospitalized, and none died. [Source]

More on the UK

the vaccines don’t entirely reduce the risk of either catching the disease or being hospitalised or dying of it. They are not 100% effective. But they do, at least on the basis of tests from Pfizer and AstraZeneca, reduce the likelihood of both of these outcomes considerably.

Before getting vaccinated the chances of a 90-year-old catching and dying of COVID-19 were estimated to be roughly 2.8%. After getting the jabs, the chances of the same illustrative 90-year-old catching and dying the disease are reduced to around 0.14%.

Of the vaccinated people who had caught Delta, around 2% sadly died. Of the unvaccinated people who had caught delta, around 5.6% died. Deaths-per-case among the unvaccinated were almost three times higher than in the vaccinated group.


See this article.


This is still a preliminary finding – I’ve not yet come to a final conclusion.

This piece is a follow-up from this post.

Covid vaccines have strong side effects including death among the elderly (e.g. the Norway aged care report and some social media murmurings about similar outcomes in Australia’s aged care homes). So we need a better handle on these issues.

But by now fairly strong evidence is emerging that the vaccines do reduce the prospect of death from covid. (And yes, the vaccinated CAN, and do get covid).


See this (26 July 2021)

Of the 43 in ICU in NSW, 42 had not taken the vaccine. That’s pretty strong circumstantial evidence.







Three studies that drew data from different U.S. regions evaluated the protective power of the vaccines. One looked at more than 600,000 virus cases in 13 states, representing about one quarter of the U.S. population, between April and July, and concluded that individuals who were not fully vaccinated were far more susceptible to infection and death from the virus.

They were 4.5 times more likely than vaccinated individuals to become infected, 10 times more likely to be hospitalized, and 11 times more likely to die from the coronavirus, the study found.

Vaccine protection against hospitalization and death remained strong even when the Delta variant was the dominant form of infection. But the vaccines’ effectiveness in preventing infection dropped from 91 percent to 78 percent, the study found.

The studies underscore a series of similar findings in recent weeks. [Source]


This does not consider vaccine side effects, so there’s a customised, tailored calculation that needs to be made in each individual case.

Epidemiologists like Sunetra Gupta, Martin Kulldorff and Jay Bhattacharya, being among the few scientists I respect, have reached the conclusion quite some time ago that the vaccines can be beneficial for the elderly.

I was somewhat unclear (and remain so) given the contradictory evidence from other sources.

However, I’m willing to give the vaccines a benefit of doubt now – and those in the higher risk categories could potentially consider them (that’s a position I’ve had since my December 2020 article in The Australian, as well as my Times of India articles. I’m not making any recommendation and will probably never do so – that’s not my job. But I would hope people are keeping their eyes peeled for the facts and will objectively arrive at their informed choice.

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The IPCC’s six report is as worthless as its fifth. Ask questions, don’t accept the word of this corrupt organisation.

I haven’t had time to review it yet (too many other things on my plate) but will do so when I find the time.

As usual, IPCC is spouting a LOAD of rubbish. See my FB comments today – first, second.

See this.

IPCC-scientists themselves are beginning to doubt whether their models can be trusted as a policy instrument. “It’s become clear over the last year or so that we can’t avoid this admission”, Gavin Schmidt – director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies – told the renowned journal Science. Schmidt also said: “You end up with numbers for even the near-term that are insanely scary – and wrong.”

And see Rowan Dean’s analysis – this and below:



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