Sunday, May 17, 2020


According to Sacha Lobo, the "craving for everyday life" is a syndrome that people are developing in the Corona crisis during long isolation. When suffering from Alltagssucht, even rational-thinking persons fall for conspiracy theories.

Our "new normal" requires a new vocabulary. Already Goethe knew,

"Just where terms are missing,
A word comes up at the right time.
Words are a fine tool for arguments,
And are useful to create a system … "
"Denn eben wo Begriffe fehlen,
Da ſtellt ein Wort zur rechten Zeit ſich ein.
Mit Worten läßt ſich trefflich ſtreiten,
Mit Worten ein Syſtem bereiten ..."

The German language is known for its possibility to create new words. So be prepared to learn a couple of them.

Corona-Skeptiker, Corona-Kritiker, Corona-Gegner

Alltagssucht paired with Todessehnsucht (longing for death) (©Der Spiegel)
Corona skeptics, critics, and opponents are people who reject the measures taken to contain the pandemic. All these people could be condensed into corona resisters, but there are differences. So the above words are used in German texts.

In French, it sounds less offensive (©Der Spiegel)
Corona resisters need no masks, only their faithful cardboard shields, fighting Covid-19 with all the force of their anti-stance.

Spahn (Federal minister of health), Merkel, and Drosten (Germany's chief virologist)
sind nicht ganz bei Trost (are out of their minds) (©Name on the photo)
Corona-Skeptiker are ambivalent, for they could be either skeptical about the measures (okay) or belong to those questioning the existence of the virus (not okay).

All basic articles of our Grundgesetz (constitution) are mentioned,
although some of them Corona does not touch at all (©Name on the photo)
Corona-Kritiker either always vituperate about everything, or they keep harping on a specific anti-pandemic measure.

In front of the Brandenburg Gate: For fundamental rights (articles 1 to 19 of our constitution)
and a republic under the rule of law (©Name on the photo)
Finally, Corona-Gegner should not be confused with Corona deniers even though there may be some overlap. Deniers question, analogous to the equally misleading word "climate deniers", the existence of the virus itself.

Corona protest in front of the Reichstag building showing the UK, the US,
and the Imperial War Flag (1871 to 1918). Crazy.  (©Name on the photo)

Misconceived Terms

Writing in Der Spiegel, Samira El Ouassil went to court with the Corona vocabulary. Germany never practiced a Corona lockdown. The word adopted from the English is poorly understood, for it actually describes a lockdown of buildings and areas in the context of a rampage or a terrorist attack.

There was no Ausgangssperre (curfew) in Germany, either. They had it in Italy, Spain, and France, where you had to prove with certificates that you had a valid reason to leave the house.

In Germany, neither the federal government nor the states forbade that we leave the house for a walk, alone and even with another person keeping a distance of 1.5 meters.

We had Ausgangsbeschränkungen alright, and there are still some limitations of movement. We were just not allowed to go to places like restaurants, schools, theaters, playgrounds*.
*In Freiburg playgrounds are already open and restaurants will open tomorrow.

There is a big difference between Ausgangssperre and Ausgangsbeschränkung in legal ethics regarding mobility and freedom.

Red Baron has already criticized the notion of social distance. What is really meant is the physical distance, i.e., a ban on physical and not on social contacts.


Another great new German word. While the wave of infection is running out, a "wave of anger" is on the rise in Germany. Protesters frequently disobey the distance rule. In shouting their slogans, they spread their aerosols. So when things go really bad, we will end up with both: a wave of anger and a new, i.e., second wave of infection.


Keep the distance to compulsory vaccination  (©Sachelle Babbar/ ddp/ZUMA)
That the German government will make vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 compulsory is the latest hoax. Although a vaccine is months if not years away, anti-vaxxers protest already against something most people would jump on if it existed. Forget about those naysayers. Don't worry, vaccinated humanity will reach immunity without those anti-vaxxers.

Minister for Health Jens Spahn modifying the infamous statement by Walter Ulbricht,
"No one intends to build a wall" (©Der Spiegel)


Keeping distance in protesting in Freiburg yesterday (©Benjamin Heim) the short form for Corona resisters (see above) protesting in public places. T-Online editor-in-chief Florian Harms imagined what is going on in the heads of many of those people, "Maybe you didn't know it yet. Well, now, you know. You've been lied to. Systematically. For weeks. You shouldn't put up with that any longer. Wake up! Open your eyes and take a look at the Internet, the truth is everywhere: the Coronavirus was deliberately released, most likely by several governments who agreed at a Bilderberg conference. They are using it as an excuse to restrict our civil rights. This worked frighteningly well, although Covid-19 is actually no more dangerous than the flu."

Without translation  (©Der Spiegel)
"Billionaire Bill Gates also has his fingers in the pie. What he used to do with his Windows, he is now doing again: he is establishing a global monopoly, this time in the pharmaceutical industry. In this way, he is taking over the billion-dollar vaccine market and will make even more money. He has bought the World Health Organization (WHO) that has put pressure on governments to force everybody be vaccinated. You know, to make more money and..."

Producing Panic

This alliteration describes the situation of the German public perfectly when on May 9, the reproduction rate R increased above one, i.e., one infected girl or guy would statistically transmit Covid-19 to more than one other person. Were we on the rise again?

Development of Rold and Rnew over time.
Note that the value averaged over seven days (in red) has
a smaller uncertainty than the value averaged over four days (in gray), as it should be (©ntv)
The way the reproduction rate is calculated leads to fluctuations, which become even greater as the number of new Covid-19 cases decreases. This is why the RKI will introduce a new, "smoothed" R to avoid panic-inducing fluctuations but at the same time adding more confusion for the layperson.

Multi-Organ Virus

A study by the University Medical Center at Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE) confirms that the new Coronavirus attacks not only the lungs but numerous other organs, too. "Sars-CoV-2 is a multi-organ virus," said Tobias Huber, head of the study. This was shown in studies of 27 patients who died from Covid-19. The second most frequently affected organ in this study was the kidneys, "often leading to total organ failure". Moreover, the pathogen was detected in the heart, liver, brain, and blood. However, the highest concentrations were still found in the cells of the respiratory tract.

And infectiologist Babak Javid from Cambridge University Hospital observed, "Someone falling seriously ill with Covid-19 can get problems with blood clots, which seem to occur more frequently than with other viruses. Compared to the flu, it is more likely that you will become very ill and die."


When entering a school in Hamburg, a pullover for the mouth is required written in the Lower German dialect. Togang is the equivalent of the High German word Zugang (access).

Although frequently seen in public, covering the mouth is not sufficient, as we all know. Here is Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Germany's federal president, setting a good example.

Seen at the Berlin demonstration:
Fearing that 5G radiation is causing the Coronavirus (©Christian Mang/Reuters)
During his visit to a new Corona emergency clinic in Berlin, Steinmeier admitted that he is a medical layman, "Nevertheless, I dare say that regarding virus protection, the sometimes uncomfortable and annoying mouth-nose-cover is more recommendable than the aluminum hat".

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