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Sweden’s No-Lockdown COVID Numbers are Even Better Than They Look

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https://www.redstate.com/michael_thau/2020/08/01/swedens-covid-numbers-are-even-better-than-they-look/

 

Quote

 

Sweden’s No-Lockdown COVID Numbers are Even Better Than They Look


by Michael Thau

 

In case you hadn’t heard, Sweden is one of the very few western nations that didn’t respond to COVID-19 by imposing any lockdowns.


Given the obvious hardship, misery, and death lockdowns bring, Sweden’s leaders decided it made more sense to just isolate the sick and elderly. They let the infection burn through the strong and healthy members of their population at its normal rate instead of trying to slow it down and thereby delaying herd immunity.


Way back in May, I pointed out that, if lockdowns were effective, Sweden’s neighbors would see a dramatic increase in cases after opening back up.


Lockdowns, at best, only slow down the rate of infection. They don’t reduce the number required to reach herd immunity and, hence, only serve to increase the amount of time the virus lingers.


The point of locking down is to make sure hospitals don’t get overrun by a surge of new cases on any given day, not to decrease the number of people ultimately infected.


(Since neither Sweden nor U.S hospitals were ever in danger of being overrun, we know lockdowns accomplished nothing without even looking at the numbers. But the amount of misinformation about Sweden being bandied about makes it worth doing anyway.)


In fact, if a nation that went into lockdown doesn’t experience a dramatic increase in cases after opening back up, that means shutting down failed to do what it was supposed to and the virus continued to spread at its normal rate.


The upshot is that it made no sense to compare Sweden’s numbers to their neighbors’ until the virus ran its course.


As my colleague Brandon Morse reported Friday, it looks like bothering to read what the experts proposing lockdowns actually said they were supposed to accomplish may have paid off.

 

Quote

 

Sweden’s Herd Immunity Pays Off, Sees Sharp Decline In COVID Cases While the Rest of Us Cower


Europe is seeing another surge in Coronavirus cases with the exception of Sweden who is still seeing a marked decline since June.

 


But a Twitter researcher who goes by the name El Gato Malo (The Bad Cat) did a thread that’s essential reading for anyone who wants to understand whether Sweden made the right choice.


It turns out their COVID numbers are incredibly good even independently of the fact that they seem to be avoiding the recent spike in cases that lockdown nations are experiencing.


Moreover, there are differences in the criteria for counting COVID-19 deaths which cast a very different light on some of the comparisons being made.


To start by considering Sweden’s numbers in isolation, their COVID fatalities were almost entirely restricted to the elderly. 88% were over 70 and 75% were in nursing homes or elder care. Only 4.5% of fatalities were under 60.

 

 


Sweden had less than 500 reported COVID fatalities under 70, just 12% of the total.


Before the “even one death is too many” crowd starts accusing me of being a heartless monster, they might want to take a look in the mirror.


A recent report from the British government estimates that in just a single year lockdowns may cause 200,000 deaths from depriving people of medical care for ailments other than COVID-19 alone.


Britain has around 6 times Sweden’s population. But even dividing the British number by 20 gives you 10,000 deaths.


That’s 20 times those 500 people under the age of 70 that Sweden reported as succumbing to COVID-19 and almost twice their total for all ages.

 


Moreover, it’s very unlikely that the real death toll in Sweden is anywhere close to the number they’re reporting. Like the U.S., Sweden’s criteria for counting COVID-19 deaths are so loose that they’re bound to be including a lot of people who would’ve died regardless of the virus.


As Johan Norberg pointed out way back in April,

 

Quote

Sweden systematically checks the list of people who have tested positive for the virus against the population register. Every time the government discovers that someone who had the virus has died, that person is registered as a COVID-19 death if it happened within 30 days of the diagnosis.


It doesn’t matter what they died of — could be a heart attack, cancer or even a car accident.

 

 

 

People keep contrasting Sweden’s COVID fatality numbers with Norway’s.


Given that Sweden’s reported deaths from the virus likely dwarf the number of citizens they would have killed with a lockdown, such comparisons are just scary-sounding panic-porn that have no bearing on the wisdom of Sweden’s decision.


But as Norberg also pointed out to the apparently deaf ears of all those pushing the Norway comparison anyway:

 

Quote

Even in a culturally and geographically similar country like Norway—celebrated for its low death rate—they do things differently. The Norwegians only count something as a COVID-19 death if a doctor concludes that someone was killed by the disease and decides to report it to the country’s public health authority.


There’s a general lesson here. The data we’re getting is pretty much all garbage considered on its own and is worse than garbage when used for comparative purposes. The only thing that matters in evaluating whether lockdowns are worth their tremendous death toll is how many people would still be alive if not for contracting COVID-19.


And absolutely no one seems to have any interest in even figuring that out, let alone in telling us.


But, speaking of Norway, instead of comparing stats compiled using completely different criteria, maybe we should listen to what the Norwegians are saying. The head of their version of America’s CDC has made a startling admission:

 

Quote

“Our assessment now….is that we could possibly have achieved the same effects and avoided some of the unfortunate impacts by not locking down, but by instead keeping open but with infection control measures,”

 

 

 

Hearing a director of some government agency defend one of their policies doesn’t mean a whole lot. Neither bureaucrats nor anyone else for that matter are likely to admit they’ve made a terrible mistake. But when that’s exactly what they’re doing, people ought to listen. And Camille Stoltenberg deserves to be commended in the highest possible terms for doing so.


Finally, it’s kind of hard to argue that COVID-19 has been some kind of a disaster for the Swedes given that they’ve actually had fewer overall fatalities than normal.

 


So all those Covidian Cult members celebrating the deadly plague their god brought down on Sweden for not heeding cult rituals by killing thousands of Swedes with a sacrificial lockdown couldn’t be more off base.


Might be time to start looking for a new religion.


Or better yet, they could start following the science.

 

Quote

 

that sounds like magical thinking.


their systems was never even stressed, much less overwhelmed.


yet those of lockdown countries were.


it has nothing to do with policy.


everyone got the same R curve no matter what they did.


flatten the curve does not work. pic.twitter.com/FbX9bxK9Qp


— el gato malo (@boriquagato) July 22, 2020

 

 

 

Just saying ... I told you ...  

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HERD IMMUNITY, virus won't end until the majority of the herd gets it.

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Just now, Wallco1 said:

HERD IMMUNITY, virus won't end until the majority of the herd gets it.

 

Three minutes to find, read and digest that article.   Pretty good!

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But even after an hour, not one leftist here has apparently been able to work their way through the article.  Too much data and logic.    Just saying ...

  • Haha 1

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Obviously the severe shut down didn’t work so why are we now doing a watered down one? 
 

And for what? Deaths have decreased overall for how many weeks? 

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5 minutes ago, Str8tEdge said:

Obviously the severe shut down didn’t work so why are we now doing a watered down one? 
 

And for what? Deaths have decreased overall for how many weeks? 

actually deaths have increased in the last few weeks. It's a virus that takes a few weeks. But you knew that.

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8 minutes ago, TheOldBarn said:

actually deaths have increased in the last few weeks. It's a virus that takes a few weeks. But you knew that.

I also know the original shut down was a huge failure so why are you retards hellbent on complete destruction of our economy for something that won’t work, again? 
 

There’s also a huge lag in reported testing and death results.....

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46 minutes ago, Str8tEdge said:

I also know the original shut down was a huge failure so why are you retards hellbent on complete destruction of our economy for something that won’t work, again? 
 

There’s also a huge lag in reported testing and death results.....

the shutdown in the US was actually only 50% at best. And then, many of the states shut down too late, and then most of them started up too soon. Go take a look at France and Spain and Italy, three countries that shut down 95 % and then only restarted after the spread was < 2%. Where are they now?

Another little fact, some people have no symptoms. Community spread can happen with people who have no symptoms, that's the problem with this virus my friend.

Why is that? Scientist don't know for sure. Covid viruses are endemic, the common cold. It could be some folks have a minimal immunity wherein their T cells can create an antibody that 

cross reacts with CoV-2-virus. 

The problem is this, the virus is not going to just go away, not ever, because it is highly contagious. The only sure fire way to reduce its spread is to stop its method of spread.

That means social distancing, and yes, if you wear a mask the chance of you spreading the virus if you have it becomes minimal.

If everyone wore a mask, and they avoided large crowds, most especially in doors, that would in affect be similar to completely shutting down. 

And it is worth a big time effort for all people to try together. I only wish we had some true leadership on that very score.

 

Trump however is a moron!!!

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28 minutes ago, TheOldBarn said:

the shutdown in the US was actually only 50% at best. And then, many of the states shut down too late, and then most of them started up too soon. Go take a look at France and Spain and Italy, three countries that shut down 95 % and then only restarted after the spread was < 2%. Where are they now?

Another little fact, some people have no symptoms. Community spread can happen with people who have no symptoms, that's the problem with this virus my friend.

Why is that? Scientist don't know for sure. Covid viruses are endemic, the common cold. It could be some folks have a minimal immunity wherein their T cells can create an antibody that 

cross reacts with CoV-2-virus. 

The problem is this, the virus is not going to just go away, not ever, because it is highly contagious. The only sure fire way to reduce its spread is to stop its method of spread.

That means social distancing, and yes, if you wear a mask the chance of you spreading the virus if you have it becomes minimal.

If everyone wore a mask, and they avoided large crowds, most especially in doors, that would in affect be similar to completely shutting down. 

And it is worth a big time effort for all people to try together. I only wish we had some true leadership on that very score.

 

Trump however is a moron!!!

Where are they? Higher positive tests and deaths per capita. 

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21 hours ago, TheOldBarn said:

 

Several observations regarding your linked article.  First, the statement 

 

Quote

the stated goal of the Swedish authorities was always not to minimize the epidemic but rather slow it down, so that the health care system wouldn’t be overwhelmed.


is not entirely accurate.   The architect of Sweden’s approach, Anders Tegnell, said early on that the goal was to keep the economy running and take a long term approach.   The feeling was that if they could build herd immunity more quickly, then when the second wave arrived, Sweden would be in better shape to weather it than other countries.  The population embraced this idea and whether it worked cannot be judged by just looking at the total death toll because other factors come into play.    

 

For example, it’s not the lack of a US/EU style lockdown in the general society that created Sweden’s high death toll, but the failure early on to sufficient protect their aged population where most of the deaths occurred … just like what happened in certain democRAT (socialist) run US states which were actively putting Covid positive people in nursing homes.   In fact, Tegnell has acknowledged this mistake, noting that 88 percent of deaths have been in people over 70 with most of those being people in aged care facilities.  Had they acted early and more effectively isolated seniors, the death toll would now be significantly less.   So a universal lockdown was not needed to accomplish this ... just some common sense.


Another possible factor in the high death rate is that Swedish socialized medicine (which you leftists are trying to put in place in the US) seems to have chosen to let some older people die outside ICU, even thought there were available ICU beds.   This was one of the discoveries of this study: https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/doi/10.1093/cid/ciaa864/5866094 .  The researchers wrote … “analyzed by categorical age group, older Swedish patients with confirmed COVID-19 were more likely to die than to be admitted to the ICU, suggesting that predicted prognosis may have been a factor in ICU admission.”  In other words, they triaged them and decided to let them die.   Historically, socialists (and democRATS) have supported the notion of euthanasia to help reduce the costs of medical care to the society so maybe this was that in action?  Just saying ...

 

In any case, in the general population the death rate has been remarkably low in Sweden, as pointed out in the OP article.   And when all is said and done, Sweden doesn’t now appear to be in any worse shape than the US or EU in it’s ability to weather any seoond and third wave of the virus.   They aren’t even seeing the current bump in cases.    Perhaps that’s because this statement in your link that …

 

Quote

The proportion of Swedes carrying antibodies is estimated to be less than 10%, thus nowhere near herd immunity.


is problematic.    The truth is that virologists are not sure what percentage is needed for herd immunity and antibodies tests don’t seem to be a good measure of that.    A recent study by the Karolinska Institute and Karolinska University Hospital ( https://news.ki.se/immunity-to-covid-19-is-probably-higher-than-tests-have-shown) in Sweden found that about 30% of people with mild or asymptomatic COVID showed T-cell-mediated immunity to the virus, even though they tested negative for antibodies.   “Our results indicate that public immunity to COVID-19 is probably significantly higher than antibody tests have suggested,” says Professor Hans-Gustaf Ljunggren at the Center for Infectious Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, and co-senior author.    

 

One thing is certain, as the OP article notes, Sweden is not seeing a resurgence of the virus … while we and many EU countries are, OB.   Here is Sweden’s data over the last month …

 

https://covid.ourworldindata.org/data/owid-covid-data.csv

 

Date         New Case     New Deaths
7/1                784                 23
7/2              1241                 37
7/3                947                 41
7/4                780                  9
7/5                0                      0
7/6                0                      0
7/7              1642                13  
7/8                283                14
7/9                514                35
7/10              475                18
7/11              565                26
7/12               0                     0
7/13               0                     0
7/14              928                10 
7/15              175                  9
7/16              491                27
7/17              385                21
7/18              404                26
7/19               0                     0
7/20               0                     0
7/21              767                20 
7/22              118                  7
7/23              338                21
7/24              259                  9
7/25              234                21
7/26               0                     0
7/27               0                     0
7/28              398                  3 
7/29              99                    2
7/30              288                28
7/31              318                  9
8/1                322                  4

 

Even an eyeball examination of that data shows the time averaged numbers continuing to trend downward.    No surge.


And as the OP article notes, the total number of deaths that have occurred in Sweden is no worse than a typical bad flu year.   At the height of the pandemic in early April, about 2500 people died in a single week.   But back in 2000, adjusted for population, even more people died in a single week due to flu.  In fact, in all of January 2000, 110.8 people died per 100,000 of the population, which was higher than the 101.1 per 100,000 people who died in all of April this year.   So why should Sweden mimic your hysteria concerning Covid-19, OB?  Are you afraid we might do what they did and then Biden would have no excuse for not coming out of his basement before November?  Just saying ...


Also note that the OP article indicates that Sweden, unlike the Nordic countries they are being compared to, is reporting ANY death where the deceased had Covid as a Covid death.    I did indeed find corroborating statements that Sweden cross references the death registry with positive COVID-19 tests and if someone tests positive for COVID-19 and is later found in the death registry, then that person is considered dead from COVID-19.   There is therefore no determination necessary for the cause of death. Conversely, Norway counts deaths based on a determination of cause of death.   If this is indeed the case, then Covid death comparison of Norway with Sweden are almost meaningless.


And you may not know it, OB, but Tegnell is highly thought of in Sweden because they, unlike people like you apparently, value free will.  

 

Apparently they are willing to pay a price to keep it.  That’s why the Swedes have been enjoying life …


12396778-16x9-xlarge.jpg?v=2


12396810-3x2-xlarge.jpg?v=2


while the US and other EU populations have been forced to go stir crazy in their homes, getting angrier and angrier.


Note also that while we have democRATS refusing to reopen public schools throughout the country, “public health officials in Norway and Denmark have come to agree with Sweden's open-door approach to schools, saying that may not have been necessary to close them for children under the age of 14 because of limited evidence that they contribute to the spread of the disease.” ( https://www.chron.com/news/article/Scientist-behind-Sweden-s-covid-19-strategy-15315384.php ).  Just saying …   B)

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20 hours ago, BeAChooser said:

 

They are obviously not embroiled in a Seditious Democrat National Socialist Coup Attempt...

 

832adb66fd99e8746d8bcc89e58c53ac

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20 hours ago, Wallco1 said:

HERD IMMUNITY, virus won't end until the majority of the herd gets it.

Yep, I tell my kids that..."It gonna run its course thru everyone"...

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17 hours ago, TheOldBarn said:

the shutdown in the US was actually only 50% at best. And then, many of the states shut down too late, and then most of them started up too soon. Go take a look at France and Spain and Italy, three countries that shut down 95 % and then only restarted after the spread was < 2%. Where are they now?

Another little fact, some people have no symptoms. Community spread can happen with people who have no symptoms, that's the problem with this virus my friend.

Why is that? Scientist don't know for sure. Covid viruses are endemic, the common cold. It could be some folks have a minimal immunity wherein their T cells can create an antibody that 

cross reacts with CoV-2-virus. 

The problem is this, the virus is not going to just go away, not ever, because it is highly contagious. The only sure fire way to reduce its spread is to stop its method of spread.

That means social distancing, and yes, if you wear a mask the chance of you spreading the virus if you have it becomes minimal.

If everyone wore a mask, and they avoided large crowds, most especially in doors, that would in affect be similar to completely shutting down. 

And it is worth a big time effort for all people to try together. I only wish we had some true leadership on that very score.

 

Trump however is a moron!!!

Europe battles to contain new coronavirus surge...

Spain is one of the worst-affected countries. It recorded nearly 14,000 new cases in the week to July 26, with regional hotspots in Aragón, Catalonia and Navarra...

https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2020-07-29/europe-battles-contain-surge-coronavirus-cases

 

On capital hill this week, your godman superhero Fauci was grilled about decisions made by the Trump administration, trying to trick him into throwing Trump under the bus...Every question regarding whether Fauci either agreed with or was part of the recommendation was good strategy and did they save lives? Fauci stated everything was done correctly and saved countless lives...
 

IOW, you're full of shit...

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2 hours ago, BeAChooser said:

 

Several observations regarding your linked article.  First, the statement 

 


is not entirely accurate.   The architect of Sweden’s approach, Anders Tegnell, said early on that the goal was to keep the economy running and take a long term approach.   The feeling was that if they could build herd immunity more quickly, then when the second wave arrived, Sweden would be in better shape to weather it than other countries.  The population embraced this idea and whether it worked cannot be judged by just look looking at the total death toll because other factors come into play.    

 

For example, it’s not the lack of a US/EU style lockdown in the general society that created Sweden’s high death toll, but the failure early on to sufficient protect their aged population where most of the deaths occurred … just like what happened in certain democRAT (socialist) run US states which were actively putting Covid positive people in nursing homes.   In fact, Tegnell has acknowledged this mistake, noting that 88 percent of deaths have been in people over 70 with most of those being people in aged care facilities.  Had they acted early and more effectively isolated seniors, the death toll would now be significantly less.   So a universal lockdown was not needed to accomplish this ... just some common sense.


Another possible factor in the high death rate is that Swedish socialized medicine (which you leftists are trying to put in place in the US) seems to have chosen to let some older people die outside ICU, even thought there were available ICU beds.   This was one of the discoveries of this study: https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/doi/10.1093/cid/ciaa864/5866094 .  The researchers wrote … “analyzed by categorical age group, older Swedish patients with confirmed COVID-19 were more likely to die than to be admitted to the ICU, suggesting that predicted prognosis may have been a factor in ICU admission.”  In other words, they triaged them and decided to let them die.   Historically, socialists (and democRATS) have supported the notion of euthanasia to help reduce the costs of medical care to the society so maybe this was that in action?  Just saying ...

 

In any case, in the general population the death rate has been remarkably low in Sweden, as pointed out in the OP article.   And when all is said and done, Sweden doesn’t now appear to be in any worse shape than the US or EU in it’s ability to weather any seoond and third wave of the virus.   They aren’t even seeing the current bump in cases.    Perhaps that’s because this statement in your link that …

 


is problematic.    The truth is that virologists are not sure what percentage is needed for herd immunity and antibodies tests don’t seem to be a good measure of that.    A recent study by the Karolinska Institute and Karolinska University Hospital ( https://news.ki.se/immunity-to-covid-19-is-probably-higher-than-tests-have-shown) in Sweden found that about 30% of people with mild or asymptomatic COVID showed T-cell-mediated immunity to the virus, even though they tested negative for antibodies.   “Our results indicate that public immunity to COVID-19 is probably significantly higher than antibody tests have suggested,” says Professor Hans-Gustaf Ljunggren at the Center for Infectious Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, and co-senior author.    

 

One thing is certain, as the OP article notes, Sweden is not seeing a resurgence of the virus … while we and many EU countries are, OB.   Here is Sweden’s data over the last month …

 

https://covid.ourworldindata.org/data/owid-covid-data.csv

 

Date         New Case     New Deaths
7/1                784                 23
7/2              1241                 37
7/3                947                 41
7/4                780                  9
7/5                0                      0
7/6                0                      0
7/7              1642                13  
7/8                283                14
7/9                514                35
7/10              475                18
7/11              565                26
7/12               0                     0
7/13               0                     0
7/14              928                10 
7/15              175                  9
7/16              491                27
7/17              385                21
7/18              404                26
7/19               0                     0
7/20               0                     0
7/21              767                20 
7/22              118                  7
7/23              338                21
7/24              259                  9
7/25              234                21
7/26               0                     0
7/27               0                     0
7/28              398                  3 
7/29              99                    2
7/30              288                28
7/31              318                  9
8/1                322                  4

 

Even an eyeball examination of that data shows the time averaged numbers continuing to trend downward.    No surge.


And as the OP article notes, the total number of deaths that have occurred in Sweden is no worse than a typical bad flu year.   At the height of the pandemic in early April, about 2500 people died in a single week.   But back in 2000, adjusted for population, even more people died in a single week due to flu.  In fact, in all of January 2000, 110.8 people died per 100,000 of the population, which was higher than the 101.1 per 100,000 people who died in all of April this year.   So why should Sweden mimic your hysteria concerning Covid-19, OB?  Are you afraid we might do what they did and then Biden would have no excuse for not coming out of his basement before November?  Just saying ...


Also note that the OP article indicates that Sweden, unlike the Nordic countries they are being compared to, is reporting ANY death where the deceased had Covid as a Covid death.    I did indeed find corroborating statements that Sweden cross references the death registry with positive COVID-19 tests and if someone tests positive for COVID-19 and is later found in the death registry, then that person is considered dead from COVID-19.   There is therefore no determination necessary for the cause of death. Conversely, Norway counts deaths based on a determination of cause of death.   If this is indeed the case, then Covid death comparison of Norway with Sweden are almost meaningless.


And you may not know it, OB, but Tegnell is highly thought of in Sweden because they, unlike people like you apparently, value free will.  

 

Apparently they are willing to pay a price to keep it.  That’s why the Swedes have been enjoying life …


12396778-16x9-xlarge.jpg?v=2


12396810-3x2-xlarge.jpg?v=2


while the US and other EU populations have been forced to go stir crazy in their homes, getting angrier and angrier.


Note also that while we have democRATS refusing to reopen public schools throughout the country, “public health officials in Norway and Denmark have come to agree with Sweden's open-door approach to schools, saying that may not have been necessary to close them for children under the age of 14 because of limited evidence that they contribute to the spread of the disease.” ( https://www.chron.com/news/article/Scientist-behind-Sweden-s-covid-19-strategy-15315384.php ).  Just saying …   B)

Science doesn't lie...sheeple are the worst...

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On 8/1/2020 at 9:41 PM, BeAChooser said:

We said they did the right thing during the shutdown and the left said we were lying. Now I guess the science and the data are lying.  

 

They will push that science is now racist and fascist  

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On 8/2/2020 at 12:45 AM, TheOldBarn said:

the shutdown in the US was actually only 50% at best. And then, many of the states shut down too late, and then most of them started up too soon. Go take a look at France and Spain and Italy, three countries that shut down 95 % and then only restarted after the spread was < 2%. Where are they now?

Another little fact, some people have no symptoms. Community spread can happen with people who have no symptoms, that's the problem with this virus my friend.

Why is that? Scientist don't know for sure. Covid viruses are endemic, the common cold. It could be some folks have a minimal immunity wherein their T cells can create an antibody that 

cross reacts with CoV-2-virus. 

The problem is this, the virus is not going to just go away, not ever, because it is highly contagious. The only sure fire way to reduce its spread is to stop its method of spread.

That means social distancing, and yes, if you wear a mask the chance of you spreading the virus if you have it becomes minimal.

If everyone wore a mask, and they avoided large crowds, most especially in doors, that would in affect be similar to completely shutting down. 

And it is worth a big time effort for all people to try together. I only wish we had some true leadership on that very score.

 

Trump however is a moron!!!

we should never have shutdown. 

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