Coronavirus vs. Alien Invasion

Coronavirus vs. Alien Invasion

When it started we ignored it.
Then we just diminished it.
Then we handled economics.
Then turned it to politics.
Then we dealt with social aspects.
Then we published memes, hooray!
We did EVERYTHING, except
what’s NEEDED to be done, oy vey.


(Small favor: this comic was inspired by a tweet that I saw the other day about how, judging by the way the US reacted to the Coronavirus, America’s first reaction to an alien invasion would be to lower interest rates. This sparked a whole set of ideas about what humanity’s reaction to an alien invasion would be like, based on our reaction to the Coronavirus. However, I couldn’t find the original tweet. So if by chance any of you encountered it and have the link to it, please let me know in the comments so I could credit the author here. Thanks!)


My previous comic which mentioned the Coronavirus was published about a month and a half ago. Back then, COVID-19 was a distant disease that was spreading in Eastern Asia, something you read about in the news and moved on. Who would have thought that just a few weeks later, I would sit in my home with my wife and kids in “isolation” (which is just a nicer word for quarantine), defending myself from the virus? Who would have thought there’d be tens of thousands of dead in Italy and Spain? And thousands in the U.S? (and it’s just the beginning). Who would have thought that so many people would become instantly unemployed, and more people uncertain whether they’ll have a job to return to once the storm passes?


As I’ve been obsessed with the virus lately, especially with the numbers, I had to do something to get it out of my system. I decided to put my programming skills to use and created this simple web site, which contains some graphs that illustrate the current status of COVID-19 in various countries that interest me. You can find it here:
It’s somewhat buggy (as it’s been a long time since I last used JavaScript) so you may need to refresh a few times before it loads. And it looks kinda crappy on your smartphone (looks better on tablets/laptops/desktops). But I update the data almost every day. Again, it’s more about my obsession with the data than anything else, but if you find the data interesting or would like some different data on it, let me know in the comments and I just might add it.


Finally, my rate of publishing comics will naturally decrease in the next few weeks as I’m focusing on taking care of my family. But I will keep drawing, and I’m sure we’ll get through this dark period and enjoy better days. It will take time, but we’ll get there. In the meantime – stay healthy, and stay at home.


While you isolate yourself at home, check my older comics on Instagram and Twitter.


Nutrition Research

Nutrition Research - by C-Section Comics

Gather ’round and hear me, buddies,
talk about nutrition studies.
How come one day they all say
“Red wine’s good for you”, but hey,
next day they’ll say: “Don’t drink, quit,
red wine’s bad!” It’s strange, ain’t it?

It is not intentional,
they’re mostly observational,
which means their truthfulness relies
on people never telling lies.
Subjects fill in some reports
on eating, drinking and all sorts
of things which they are asked about.
This is where I have a doubt:
People often lie (don’t we?)
or report mistakenly
’bout things that they all drank or ate.
Scientist – don’t bite this bait!

Therefore we should all take heed,
be wary of the things we read
in such researches, mainly when
they’re quoted on BuzzFeed. Amen!


Here’s some interesting reading on that topic:

From Harvard Medical School’s blog – “Is red wine actually good for your heart”

The French Paradox refers to the notion that drinking wine may explain the relatively low rates of heart disease among the French, despite their fondness for cheese and other rich, fatty foods.
…However, the evidence that drinking red wine in particular (or alcohol in general…) can help you avoid heart disease is pretty weak… All of the research showing that people who drink moderate amounts of alcohol have lower rates of heart disease is observational. Such studies can’t prove cause and effect, only associations.

From VOX.COM – “I asked 8 researchers why the science of nutrition is so messy. Here’s what they said.”

Many observational studies — and other nutritional research — rely on surveys. After all, the scientists can’t hover over every single person and watch what they eat for decades. So they have subjects report on their diets.

This poses an obvious challenge. Do you remember what you ate for lunch yesterday? Did you sprinkle nuts or dressing on your salad? Did you snack afterward? Exactly how many potato chips did you eat?

Chances are you probably can’t answer these questions with any certainty. And yet, a lot of nutrition research today rests on just that kind of information: people’s self-reporting from memory of what they ate.


Here’s another comic about flawed methods in some scientific studies.

More comics on Instagram and Twitter

The Art of Faking

Fake News - by C-Section Comics

Believe it or not, I drew this cartoon way before the latest public discussion about “fake news” and “alternative facts” came to surface.

The recent debate about the authenticity of major news sources follows President Trump’s latest clash with CNN. Trump claimed that CNN, as well as other news networks, intentionally published distorted figures regarding the crowd size during Trump’s inauguration ceremony. Trump went further and accused CNN of spreading “fake news”. With your kind permission, I’ll steer away from this discussion. I’ll do this since, much like most of you, I have no way of finding out who is right and who is wrong in this argument. Also, I really have no interest in participating, or knowing the results of, this stupid argument inauguration-crowd-size-comparison-slash-presidential-dick-measuring-contest between Barack Obama and Donald Trump. Instead, I would like to take a few moments to discuss the the media’s role in this discussion. I’ll also try to find out whether or not the growing suspicion some people have with regards to the credibility of their news sources is justified.

Anyone who was ever first-hand witness to a story which was later published in the news, knows that reported news are not, and can never be, 100% accurate. 100% accuracy is impossible even if we’re talking about the most professional and ethical reporters. There’s a really good explanation for this: A good news reporter gets the story from several sources, cross-checks the facts, and filters what he sees as important. The story he or she writes then get through additional filters (usually by an editor). The final, cross-checked, filtered result turns to a story that you read in the paper or hear in a newscast. Since each source gives his subjective view on what happened, and since each reporter and editor applies different filters according to what he/she sees as important, two reporters covering the same story could provide different perspectives on the same story.

Most intelligent people understand the process of reporting news. Therefore, most intelligent people will accept the fact that a story can have different angles, and that it can be told in different ways.

However, most people expect their news reporters to be:

  • Professional – the reporter should try to get as many facts from as many reliable sources as possible.
  • Neutral – the reporter should leave personal beliefs and prejudice aside when reporting the story.
  • Authentic – the reporter should provide as many angles to the story as possible, leaving no important detail unheard. For example, at the end of an investigative story, it’s customary to publish the responses of the investigated persons, to hear their side of the story.

When a media source doesn’t comply with one or more of the above, it creates a a breach of trust between itself and its consumers. As it turns out, many news organizations are becoming less compliant the above terms.

When news organizations publish stories that contain numerous unchecked facts, or have misleading titles, just so they could get sell more papers, or get more clicks, it harms the professionalism.
When a news organization officially endorses a presidential candidate, it loses any shred of neutrality that was left in it. When news organizations omit from their reports the religious beliefs and/or ideology of terrorists, even though those terrorists say loud and clear that they are committing their acts in the name of that religion or ideology, they are omitting a very important part of the story, thus harming their authenticity.

When you add the close ties that many media moguls have with leading political and business figures, and the potential pressures the latter put on getting positive coverage, you get yet another possible reason to question the integrity of some news organizations.

Trust is the key element here. Once we start losing trust in our news sources, it’s harder for us to “believe” the news we hear, especially those news that contradict our system of beliefs or our ideology. Every new story, every piece of evidence,  we start wondering: “Is this true? What is the hidden agenda behind publishing the story?”. Once we go this path, even important stories, which are based on reliable sources, start to sounds like fake news.

So in one thing Donald Trump is right: as media bias continues to become more common, major news sources continue to lose their credibility and their rating. And this should alarm us all, because a strong, independent media is a crucial part of a healthy, functioning Democracy. And if we let go our watchdogs of democracy, we’ll end up with coyotes and wolves roaming freely in our back yard.

In the mood for some more cartoons about the media and journalism? Here’s one about how news anchors are chosen, and here’s one depicting a prehistoric newscast full of fake news.

If Prehistoric Man Had Modern Day Journalism

Prehistoric Newscast - by C-Section Comics

This prehistoric newscast follows the known formula of modern journalism – start with stories that inspire fear, and continue with silly gossip/lifestyle articles. Never report on any of the amazing technological breakthroughs that are made on an almost daily basis in the world, because that would require you and your viewers/readers to use their minds and imagination.

Also, notice the anchorwoman has great looking hair.