Lol, you’re telling me what my own question actually was?
Anyway, your post primarily links Italy’s comparatively severe outbreak to its early timing preventing an effective early response.
This makes zero sense since the outbreak in the US predates the outbreak in Italy by 11 days, which means Italy had more time to plan a response than the US.
No. In my first reply I am using ‘outbreak’ to mean ‘some critical mass of infections’ as you phrased it in your initial post. If we want to use ‘first confirmed case’ as the synonym for ‘outbreak’ instead, that’s fine.
What I am saying is that Italy reached ‘some critical mass of infections’ before the US despite having a later ‘outbreak’ for a number of reasons that I have listed previously. This is also despite Italy taking much stronger action more quickly than the US.
All of which proves — pretty clearly — that spread in Italy has little to do with the outbreak’s timing (compared to other major countries hit) and is likely being driven by Italy’s older population, its social customs (more smokers, more intimate social interactions, etc.), and population density.
If by ‘outbreak’ you mean ‘first confirmed case’, then we agree, and have agreed from the beginning. You will notice this if you read my initial reply to you. The delay in reaching ‘some critical mass of infections’ in the United States RELATIVE to Italy is likely due to the factors you have listed here. Maybe this disagreement is due to semantic error concerning ‘outbreak’ as ‘first confirmed case’ versus ‘critical mass of infections’.