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joined 2022 September 16 07:44:09 UTC
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User ID: 1228



0 followers   follows 0 users   joined 2022 September 16 07:44:09 UTC


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User ID: 1228

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During discussion about things where you had strong opinions and then changed your mind, someone mentioned EMH. Do you believe in EMH and if so is it strong or weak version?

I used to believe EMH but not strongly. The pandemic changed my view because I managed to invest some money when the stock market dived and was clearly influenced by overly pessimistic view of the impact of covid. Some might argue that the market reacted to the irrational government measures, so it is not that the case that the market was mistaken. I still think that investors were equally irrationally pessimistic. I reject the view that this is a hindsight and I was merely lucky. I am not big expert and I did not possess any proprietary information. I had the same information as everybody else, I just didn't let my emotions take over me. This is further confirmed that even today when all the events have passed exactly as predicted, majority of people still maintain their mistaken views that covid was very dangerous to young and non-risk population.

It is the only time when I saw the rest of the society to be so wrong in their views and clearly this was my once-a-lifetime chance. I haven't see any other opportunities for easy money so far but I think that people who are experts in their fields and investors might have been able to find more opportunities.

One of them was found by Michael Burry who definitely saw that the 2008 financial crisis was coming. He wasn't just lucky because he had read and analysed all the documents and had to create special investment instruments to profit for it. In this way, it wasn't easily accessible by laypersons like me who have no time or understanding about investment. Again, most professionals were blinded by collective frenzy.

What is your opinion about EMH?

This one is against rationalists because when Scott wrote his review that masks could be effective many of us trusted it.

I don't blame Scott for failing this one because doing review of hundreds of studies is hard and one person can hardly do it. But this clearly shows that rationalist way of thinking has no special formula, they can be easily mistaken and fall by accepting general consensus just like any other person.

I was impressed when Scott did his review about masks. I trusted it because there was no other clear evidence available. Cochrane hadn't done its review yet and NICE guidelines were silent on the issue. We vaguely knew from previous studies that masks are not effective, The WHO had said so. Suddenly everyone flipped and it was not because the evidence had changed. We simply wanted to believe that masks work and we mocked those who said “no evidence that masks help”.

Even with the belief that masks work, I never wanted mask mandates. I preferred recommendations only, so that no one was penalized or prohibited entry, travel etc if one doesn't want to wear mask. Scott unwillingly had been a catalyst for governments to introduce mask mandates and all this heavy handed approach has been for nothing.

Now we are back to square one, the evidence about masks is weak and it does not support their use even in hospital settings. We can all reflect now what happened in between during these 2 or 3 years. When I realized that Scott's review is clearly insufficient as evidence, I asked some doctors if they have any better evidence that masks work. Instead of getting answer I was told not to be silly, parachutes don't need RCTs and accused me of being covid denier for nor reason. Many so-called experts were making the same mistake as Scott by looking at the issue too emotionally. It is time to get back to reality and admit that it was a mistake and we should have judged the issue with more rational mind.

I am not a big fan of Alex Berenson. I don't like journalists because they don't understand population statistics. They are interested mostly in anecdotal cases and their duty is to write about them in an interesting and viral way. And yet, that is an important service to identify targets that are worth of deeper analysis.

In Alex case while he missed many times, he also hit some good targets.

  1. vaccine effectiveness against infection is lost withing 3-4 months

  2. prior infection provides stronger immunity than vaccination

The second was always suspected but the evidence was always lacking. Now it turns out that twitter supressed tweets that announced the first real evidence (even if not very strong) that it is the case. I believe that this suppression likely extended wider than just twitter and ultimately influenced the US policy to not recognise immunity from infection when vaccine mandates were put in place. In contrast, most European countries with mandates recognised immunity from prior infection in one way or another as inferior or equal to immunity from vaccination.

There might be some practical considerations – vaccination is easy to register and provide proof. Prior infection is more nebulous, requires expensive testing, some tests are less reliable. The whole idea casts shadow how reasonable vaccine mandates are in the first place. Some would worry that the recognition of immunity from prior infection could also encourage vaccine hesitant to seek getting infected.

Such policies however are very risky because they are conditional on us never finding out the truth. It was always more likely that prior infection confers stronger immunity than vaccination. It was stupid to try to supress the evidence at any time. Eventually it surfaced (as it was bound to) and made those attempts to control narrative look evil.