Sadly, the science of epidemiology is about as well understood as science itself. In the case of the current COVID-19 pandemic, many are grasping at straws to find comfort in some quick “cure” or other. Unfortunately, life is not that simple.
Science and Medical Treatment
Scientists estimate the efficacy of a drug based on the study design and results, which together allow the researchers to determine the probability that the findings are accurate and potentially valuable—or whether they just do not know enough yet. The statistical significance of the findings of the research refers only to that probability. It does NOT imply that the results were “very important” or “insignificant,” in the sense of being either earth shaking or trivial.
In the case of all that recent buzz around hexochloroquine, sufficient research to clearly determine the clinical value of this drug for suppressing the COVID-19 virus, has yet to be done. However, its use for other purposes has exposed certain risks. I suspect that the FDA approved its use on the chance that it MAY do some good in this pandemic emergency. Political pressure to DO SOMETHING most likely had an effect too.
Narcissistic Politics and the Science of Survival
Trump, of course, has “hyped” an illusory idea of a quick fix, a “treatment” to just make it all go away, without any sense of the science, so he can juice up the economy and get re-elected. It is so obvious that he is grasping at straws in attempting to get past this and make himself look like some kind of hero after messing up horribly in failing to heed the early scientific warnings about this pandemic.
It would have been nice had Trump actually made a suggestion based on fact rather than ego. Science is real, just like COVID-19, whatever you might CHOOSE to believe. I have not yet discounted the possibility of this particular drug having value. Instead, I look for whatever evidence may emerge. I hope it will be able to help reduce the damage of this disease, but we will have to look at the data to see. Making blind claims like Trump does will not make it so. Trump cultist hostile rhetoric rages against the expectation that decisions should be based in fact, as they deny any facts to sustain their counter-factual beliefs. That, of course fits Einstien’s classic definition of insanity. I fear an emerging epidemic of insanity.
Initially, I had no idea that Trump could do so much damage to humanity and the Earth as he has already done. His psyche is a classic case of narcissistic sociopathy. His “base” will never believe that because their “faith” overrides obvious facts. Pandemics have KNOWN patterns that we can respond to as some countries have, more or less, instead of playing politics with our people’s lives.
Dehumanization of Political Opposition
Trump cultists readily categorize people, locking them into their hateful ‘types’ such as “snowflakes” or “lefties,” just because they oppose the reckless Trump party line of starting back the corporate economy no matter what. Of course, the point is not that some unfairly characterize the hexochloroquine study as “wrong” because they hate Trump. Instead, the fact is that we do not have enough evidence yet of how right such a “treatment” might become.
I would be happy with just a little rightness for it or any other potential treatment right now. Relax, and look around. Biochemistry is not a matter of political choice. It is a matter of physical fact. All sorts of people are doing good things to help each other through this pestilence and death. And they don’t need a false ‘leader’ to activate their compassion.