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March 24, 2020

Wuhan COVID-19 Virus Update

11:30 pm Pacific


Are We Doing The Right Thing?  

An increasing number of countries around the world are closing borders and locking down cities to stem the spread of the Wuhan COVID-19 coronavirus, but this approach simply isn’t sustainable and could send dozens of countries over the economic cliff.  The stakes are huge and power politics, nationally and globally, are at play like never before.

In Canada just last month, we had an excellent example of a situation that was allowed to get crazily out of control due to inept governments (federal and provincial), the power of social media and the cheerleading of an agenda-driven mainstream media.  A handful of anarchist “hereditary chiefs” – a bunch of bad actors who are also climate change extremists – and a relatively small contingent of anti-capitalist professional protestors (some of them foreign-funded) stirred up a frenzy and shut down large parts of our national rail system and other critical infrastructure over an already-approved $6 billion jobs-rich LNG Project.  These individuals were highly skilled at social media, and many members of the mainstream media eagerly helped pour gas on their fire.

The same federal government that tripped over its own feet and allowed significant economic damage to be inflicted upon Canada during those few weeks in February is now telling us what we need to do to win the war against an invisible enemy known (except among the politically correct left) as the Wuhan virus.  Our Prime Minister is so astute about these matters of standing up for Canada, and protecting Canadians’ health and the Canadian economy, he refused to impose a travel ban on China, the source of the virus, in late January/early February.  “There is no place in our country for discrimination driven by fear or misinformation,” Trudeau actually said, though his decision not to act in the best interests of Canadians was driven by fear of retaliation by communist China.

A growing chorus of people are coming to the conclusion that the current “remedy” for the Wuhan COVID-19 virus is actually worse than the “disease”, which for the vast majority of individuals resembles the common cold or flu. Ordinary people, medical experts, business and political leaders are starting to question the idea of a self-imposed shutdown of economies and unprecedented government spending (record deficits and debt) and intrusion into our daily lives.

Vancouver grocery store, March 23.

How much economic cost can we bear, how much government debt can we rack up, and how many people’s livelihoods are we prepared to destroy, all in a bid to save an unknowable number of lives infected by the Wuhan virus? The virus must be taken seriously but a more targeted approach – one that efficiently tests far more people, isolates those with the virus, and protects society’s most vulnerable – is the only sustainable path forward.

Latest developments:

  • Total number of confirmed Wuhan virus cases across Canada now stands at 2,792 while the death total has climbed to 26;
  • After hours of tense negotiations, the government and opposition parties in the House of Commons are nearing a deal on a massive $82 billion aid package for the tumbling Canadian economy.  Trudeau has faced stiff backlash over his incredible original proposal to grant cabinet extraordinary powers to borrow and spend without Parliamentary approval;
  • Non-essential businesses in Ontario have been ordered to close.  Ontario’s inept testing for the Wuhan virus is coming under increasing attack – people are waiting up to a week to receive results, and only 3,000 tests are being conducted each day;
  • The Wuhan virus is driving the natural instinct of British Columbia’s NDP socialist government to spend money it doesn’t have.  The NDP has announced $5 billion worth of initiatives ($2.8 billion on people and services, and $2.2 billion on businesses and “economic recovery in the future”) to combat the virus.  B.C. officially has more than 600 confirmed cases.  However, the limited number of people in ICU for the virus roughly approximates the number of people in ICU for the regular seasonal flu.  Health Minister Adrian Dix has said provincial health orders in response to the pandemic would remain in place until at least the end of April. Those orders include the closure of bars, restaurants and personal service businesses, as well as a ban on gatherings of more than 50 people.  People are required to keep 2 meters apart when out in public;
  • Around the globe, Singapore has announced more lockdown measures tonight – its most stringent so far. Bars, clubs, cinemas and other entertainment outlets will be shut from Thursday until April 30.  The government also ordered malls and restaurants to reduce crowds if they were to stay open.  All religious services have also been suspended.  Despite being one of the earliest countries to report the outbreak, Singapore has not imposed a full shutdown, with schools, offices and shops staying open.  The number of cases in the city-state started climbing last week.  There are now 558 cases in Singapore;
  • New Zealand has declared a state of emergency and prepared to go into complete lockdown starting at midnight for a month.  People are encouraged to self-isolate as all non-essential services close.  In neighboring Australia, officials have warned that the surging number of cases could start overwhelming the country’s intensive care units.  Australia has just announced new restrictions this evening which limit the number of people at weddings to 5 and capped funeral attendance at 10.  More non-essential businesses will also be shut;
  • The White House and Senate leaders reached a deal late tonight on a massive $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill to combat the economic impact of the outbreak;
  • In a Fox News virtual town hall this morning, President Trump expressed concern that the country could see an uptick in suicides should the coordinated economic slowdown aimed at preventing the spread of the virus continues much longer, citing Americans’ desire to get back to work.  “You’re going to lose a number of people to the flu, but you’re going to lose more people by putting a country into a massive recession or depression,” Trump said.  “You’re gonna lose people.  You’re gonna have suicides by the thousands.”  In the latest Gallup poll just released, Trump’s approval rating has hit 49%, matching his best performance ever in that poll;
  • Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is a breath of fresh air with a dissenting opinion on draconian government measures to combat the Wuhan virus.  In a televised address this evening, he took aim at the “hysteria” over the coronavirus and urged that life must continue and jobs be preserved.  “We must return to normality,” he said. “The few states and city halls should abandon their scorched-earth policies.” Coronavirus deaths in Brazil have climbed to 46 from 34 with the number of total cases at 2,201, up from 1,891.

Sona Nanotech (SONA, CSE) 

In the midst of a national and global pandemic, also creating economic upheaval, Sona Nanotech (SONA, CSE) and its partners including GE Healthcare Life Sciences (a subsidiary of GE Electric – GE, NYSE) are urgently taking a working prototype of the world’s most advanced lateral flow Rapid Response Test for the Wuhan COVID-19 virus to the manufacturing stage, with the first pre-orders expected any day now.

We are in a war against the Wuhan virus.  How we fight this war is critical.  SONA, GE and their partners have the weaponry to help us win this war in the smartest and most efficient ways possible.

The SONA-led consortium is a classic example of how entrepreneurship and the private sector are integral to pulling us out of a nightmare scenario that has become reality for North Americans and billions of people elsewhere in the world.

GE, of course, is the only company that has been part of the Dow since the 19th century.  The players involved in this mission – SONA, GE, Bond Digital Health, The Native Antigen Co., and individuals such as SONA CEO Darren Rowles and scientific advisers Fiona Marshall and Sandy Morrison – are the best at what they do, and their project is already being labelled a “major milestone” by health agencies across the world.  These agencies are scrambling to find creative ways to test for a highly infectious virus while reducing the severe stress on frontline healthcare systems.

SONA has been one of the best performing stocks in the world over the past 6 weeks, initially uncovered by BMR when it was trading at just 30 cents.  We’ll have a subscriber update pre-market tomorrow.

Note:  John and Jon hold share positions in SONA.


  1. We are over reacting to the Wuhan Virus in ways we didn’t with so many of the past flu outbreaks. Remember the Hong Kong flu and the Asian flu? Sars, Mers etc.
    Why is the Wuhan flu any different? It’s not. Are we going to shut down the world every time the next mutated corona virus pops up? I am currently in Thailand where the government has declared a national emergency and granted itself sweeping powers over peoples’ liberty by enacting a 30 day curfew and ONLY 4 PEOPLE HAVE DIED FROM COVOID 19 IN THAILAND SO FAR!
    For some perspective the World Health Organization estimates that 290,000 to 650,000 people die from the common flu worldwide every year. So far less than 16,000 people have died from covid 19 worldwide. The virus has also peaked in China and South Korea with relatively few deaths (single digit thousands) as compared to the common flu.
    And if we are not exposed to it how are we going to get immunity to it? We’ll just have to go through all this nonsense again next time it breaks out possibly this fall as i understand.
    Shutting down our economies is a cure that is worse than the disease.
    Thank goodness President Trump is clearly onside with the reasoning that the cure is worse than the illness. I know this is an election year and President Trump is aware that he needs to show sensitivity in this situation but I am also confident that the American people will support him as he moves to quickly open up the US economy and get people back to work. The rest of the world will follow quickly.
    We have to get back to practicing common sense and not caving into panic!

    Subscriber John

    Comment by John — March 25, 2020 @ 3:24 am

  2. Can all those folks who not worried about the flu please lend a hand at thier local hospital or other place that seems to be overwhelmed w this thing. Your assistance will be most welcome to those left to do the cleanup from this flu bug and will help us all get back to church this easter

    Comment by david — March 25, 2020 @ 6:17 am

  3. Can all those folks who not worried about the flu please lend a hand at thier local hospital or other place that seems to be overwhelmed w this thing. Your assistance will be most welcome to those left to do the cleanup from this flu bug and will help us all get back to church this easter

    Comment by david — March 25, 2020 @ 6:19 am

  4. Can SONA tech be adapted to the next virus easily ? This what does SONA do next ?

    Comment by david — March 25, 2020 @ 6:35 am

  5. Have a look at how Taiwan is dealing with this pandemic. In my opinion, they are handling it the best out of any country in the world.

    Comment by goose90 — March 25, 2020 @ 7:09 am

  6. I think common sense is that we take this thing seriously. It spreads easily, look at how many people were/are dying in Italy on a daily basis. New York is real bad right now. It’s some short term pain to control the spread.

    Comment by Danny — March 25, 2020 @ 7:32 am

  7. You listen way too much to Trump instead of the experts. This is way bigger than the common cold or flu just check out the images coming out of Italy with all the full coffins being stored in warehouses. This is a serious problem, health wise first and economically second. Sure there may be some over reaction but as the health experts say it is better to over react than under react. Also please stop with the blame game it does no good. Please stop writing all this negative stuff and get this letter back to great letter it was. Please get back to the great work and advice you guys provide and leave all this water cooler stuff to the talking heads.

    Comment by TWills55 — March 25, 2020 @ 7:41 am

  8. Absolutely, David, and that’s a very good point – another virus at some point is obviously inevitable…

    Comment by Jon - BMR — March 25, 2020 @ 8:20 am

  9. The comment about trump,, just really stop and think about this just for a minute,, could imagine if Hillary Clinton was the president!! The world should be glad trump is in charge.. again, think about it…

    Comment by Laddy — March 25, 2020 @ 9:55 am

  10. OK, I thought about it for a minute. It wasn’t that long ago Trump said everything is under control. NOT!! What’s Hillary got to do with this, she is ancient history.

    Comment by Danny — March 25, 2020 @ 10:57 am

  11. Oh I just think Obama Biden policy wouldn’t have changed under Clinton, that’s all. Never mind… looks like someone poked Ggi out of its sleep anyway, good sign..

    Comment by Laddy — March 25, 2020 @ 11:57 am

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