TRANSCRIPT

Someday, the Chinese Communist Party will fall. Will it be a slow domino effect? Or a sudden crash?

The Party has staked everything on defeating COVID-19, while other countries are opening up, China is doubling down on their zero COVID policy.

You might think it was a mistake for the Communist Party to tie their political legitimacy to eradicating a highly transmissible respiratory virus but the Party is never wrong.

According to the Party.

I’ve talked before about some of the practical reasons the Chinese regime is sticking with lockdowns. Like the fact that Chinese vaccines aren’t that good, many elderly people aren’t vaccinated and China has much lower herd immunity than other countries.

Many parts of China also have a very poor healthcare system. But this isn’t just about practicality. It’s about ideology. From the beginning of the pandemic, the Chinese Communist Party has been using the coronavirus as propaganda: “Only China is fighting the virus, only China is shielding the vulnerable.”

China isn’t going to “live with the virus” like other countries have done, because no one cares more about saving lives than the Chinese Communist Party.

Because zero Covid is now about proving that the Party knows best, they can’t back down, even when harsh, extended lockdowns are leading to this.

So since the Communist Party has tied their leadership to defeating Covid, will not defeating COVID lead to their downfall?

Of course not! Because Shanghai is reaching a turning point today. Right now, on Wednesday.

According to the Party.

“Shanghai’s new target of ‘zero-COVID at the community level’ by April 20 was communicated in recent days to the city’s Communist Party cadres.

“The State Council Working Group, the municipal party committee and municipal government have asked that the turning point of the epidemic should appear on the 17th and that zero-COVID status should be reached on the 20th.”

Yeah, be sure to let the virus know that it has to stop spreading today. That’s it. No more Covid. At the community level.

What is zero Covid at the community level?

“No new cases outside quarantined areas.”

This might sound familiar. Because the city of Xi’an did something similar during their lockdown back in January, announcing they had achieved zero Covid on a societal level!

How did they do that?

By removing residents who had Covid from the city. Hey, then technically there aren’t any cases in Xi’an. Problem solved.

Zero Covid is impossible to achieve. So the Chinese regime will just move the goalposts, and achieve the new goal, instead.

Unless they need to move the goalposts again.

For example, did you think that zero Covid means zero Covid cases? Oh no, no, no.

That’s a common misconception.

According to China’s CDC, the “Dynamic zero-COVID policy does not mean having no infected cases.”

Yes, zero does not mean zero.

You can have tons of Covid cases, as long as they are quarantined from society. This isn’t the first time Chinese authorities have fudged definitions like this. In fact, Shanghai’s Covid numbers are incredibly weird, even for China.

They have a huge number of asymptomatic cases. And it could be because they’re counting mild cases of Covid as asymptomatic.

In Shanghai, “the asymptomatic rate has stood at around 97%, far higher than anywhere else in the world, where it has been closer to 50%.”

Epidemiologists say this makes no sense. But according to Reuters, adding mild cases to asymptomatic cases in other areas of China would give similar numbers to Shanghai.

Why would Shanghai count mild cases as asymptomatic?

Well, unlike other countries, China doesn’t count asymptomatic cases in their official Covid case count. They count asymptomatic cases separately.

Don’t get me wrong, asymptomatic people get sent to quarantine camps. But they just don’t make China’s official numbers look bad. And that’s what’s important.

So to recap, because zero Covid is impossible, the Chinese Communist Party has redefined what zero Covid, or “dynamic” zero Covid, means. And their new definition means that they’re going to need to do even more mass testing and then rush any positive cases off to the quarantine camps.

People are more afraid of going to the camps than getting sick. People are packed together, with no privacy, no showers, not enough toilets. This is not somewhere you go to recover from an illness. It’s somewhere you’re sent because you’re diseased.

“The conditions of some [quarantine camps] are so appalling that they’re called ‘refugee camps’ and ‘concentration camps’ on social media.”

No one wants to go to the camps. But now they’re going to shove as many people as they can into the camps in order to get those cases out of the community. Even if it was ok for them to be in the community before.

Here’s what happened when a Shanghai neighborhood committee worker tried to tell a German expat that he had to go to a quarantine camp…12 days after he tested positive.

“I tested first positive on [expletive] April the 3rd. April 3. They left us here for 12 days, then they decided to take us, then they sent us back home after leaving us there in the cold for five hours. This is [expletive] ridiculous. This is insane. So, sorry that you are in the middle but this is ridiculous.”

So it seems like the quarantine camp wouldn’t take him, then suddenly after this new policy, they wanted him to go back. And he probably didn’t even have Covid anymore. I’d be swearing a lot too.

This phone call went hugely viral on the Chinese internet. At least before it was censored for violating regulations. But what’s really telling is that before the Shanghai lockdown, plenty of Chinese people would have been incredibly offended at this foreigner for insulting China. Now, they’re cheering him on. This went viral because the German expat was saying things that Chinese citizens want to say but can’t: that the system is insane and ridiculous and a disgrace.

That’s not good for the Chinese Communist Party.

More signs that people in Shanghai are reaching their breaking point, after the break.

Welcome back.

Things are unraveling in Shanghai.

Even before the new stricter quarantine policies, so many people were resisting going to quarantine camps that these notices were sent out.

It says that if you refuse to go to a quarantine camp, your health code would turn red permanently.

That means your movements will be restricted indefinitely.

Meanwhile, desperate people are asking for help on social media, like a pregnant woman who said that she had been stuck quarantining in her car for six days after testing positive.

Her husband was sent to a quarantine camp, but they wouldn’t take her. And she had run out of food, and her baby wasn’t moving.

After her story attracted a lot of attention, she was able to get to the hospital in an ambulance.

Others weren’t so lucky.

People in Shanghai have started keeping a crowdsourced list of people who died during the lockdown.

Shanghai’s official Covid death count is 10 people. Which is too low to be true.

One reason for this could be China’s narrow definition of deaths from infectious diseases.

“Chinese hospitals tended to focus on chronic illnesses such as cancer, heart disease or diabetes as the cause of death even when people had contracted the virus.”

So say someone had heart disease, and then got Covid and died. In the US, they would be counted as a Covid death. In China, they would have died of heart disease.

Which has the bonus of making China’s Covid death rate look low and China’s political system look superior.

But it doesn’t look superior to the relatives of people who died during the Shanghai lockdown, because they couldn’t get medical treatment. Not because they had Covid, but because of the lockdown.

This is the crowdsourced list of lockdown deaths. As of this recording, there are 163 entries, although some of them cover multiple people. Like one that documented more than 19 people who died at a nursing home. Chinese censors deleted the original list.

Then when internet users saved it on a blockchain-based website, they blocked the URL in China. But they can’t block people’s frustration.

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