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For WHOm the Bell Tolls - Covid-19 #11

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23 minutes ago, williamjm said:

I noticed on the Worldometers site that Mauritania is claiming to be the first country to become free of coronavirus. I'm very sceptical they've done enough testing to be confident of this, but it's not impossible since the cases they reported seem to have been in quarantined travellers and if they locked down their borders early enough maybe they managed to stop it getting into the community. There are advantages to being a country that probably doesn't get many visitors.

I had mentioned last week that Greenland seemed to be the first to reach that status...

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Posted (edited)

Greenland is not a country though right? Just sayin’...having a cool/weird flag makes not a nation state.

Go Mauritania!

Edited by Paxter

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25 minutes ago, Paxter said:

.having a cool/weird flag makes not a nation state.

Eeerrmm.... pretty sure this is the opposite of true

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Looks like that reopen bs going on in the US is some gigantic astroturf campaign going on. 
https://www.reddit.com/r/maryland/comments/g3niq3/i_simply_cannot_believe_that_people_are/fnstpyl/

 

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Some Israeli doctor says that the virus follows the same pattern regardless of social distancing measures in all countries ergo distancing is pointless.  This seems to be making the rounds in the US in Trumpworld.  

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19 minutes ago, Triskele said:

Some Israeli doctor says that the virus follows the same pattern regardless of social distancing measures in all countries ergo distancing is pointless.  This seems to be making the rounds in the US in Trumpworld.  

Uh huh. But Israel has 19 deaths per million and the US has 118,

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21 minutes ago, Fragile Bird said:

Uh huh. But Israel has 19 deaths per million and the US has 118,

Chosen people loophole. Helps to fear the plague during the time of year you annually celebrate defeating the plague. 

Also, the Egyptians clearly had more game than the Nazis. 

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, williamjm said:

I was intending to sound more sceptical than maybe I came across in that post

Yeah, sorry. I quoted you but I was speaking more of the general tone of the posts in the thread regarding the drug and that article. Your post contained the warranted skepticism! My bad.

7 hours ago, Aemon Stark said:

 it will be more like Tamiflu - modest improvement on disease course.

Honestly, I'm waiting for the rest of the world to catch up to the absolute shit show that led to national governments spending billions of dollars stockpiling tamiflu. If one ever needs an illustration of big pharma & drug trials, and why we should be wary, Tamiflu would be the perfect example.

Edited by Raja

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Posted (edited)

There's a reason all these asinine protests in the US popped up almost at once.

There's an imperial ton of astroturfing going on, and it's quite visible in how those groups popped up literally overnight (hint-hint). The thing is that they targeted groups who were... how does one say... more receptive to the message who wouldn't be inclined to look any deeper into what they were joining.

As an example, right now, this is happening in Los Angeles.

Now, here's a screenshot of the description of the "Operation Gridlock Los Angeles" group when it was first spotted by Buzzfeed News.

Concurrently, here's a screenshot of the description of the "Operation Gridlock Tennessee" group.

But, hey... it's Buzzfeed News right? Cool-cool-cool-cool-cool...

Here's a link to the group "Pennsylvanians Against Excessive Quarantine" - sitting 55,281 members deep at the time of this post.

Okay...

Now here's a link to the group "Minnesotans Against Excessive Quarantine" - presently with 18,938 members.

Why do these groups have the exact same description?

Let's not stop there. Following their own links: one is from the "Pennsylvania Firearms Association", and the other is from the group "Minnesota Gun Rights" - both with the exact same layout.

Both of these domains are registered with the same registrar and were registered on the exact same day at the same time.

[ ~]$ whois reopenmn.com [Querying whois.verisign-grs.com] [Redirected to whois.godaddy.com] [Querying whois.godaddy.com] [whois.godaddy.com] Domain Name: reopenmn.com Registry Domain ID: 2512322197_DOMAIN_COM-VRSN Registrar WHOIS Server: whois.godaddy.com Registrar URL: http://www.godaddy.com Updated Date: 2020-04-08T14:39:18Z Creation Date: 2020-04-08T14:39:17Z Registrar Registration Expiration Date: 2021-04-08T14:39:17Z [ ~]$ whois reopenpa.com [Querying whois.verisign-grs.com] [Redirected to whois.godaddy.com] [Querying whois.godaddy.com] [whois.godaddy.com] Domain Name: reopenpa.com Registry Domain ID: 2512322050_DOMAIN_COM-VRSN Registrar WHOIS Server: whois.godaddy.com Registrar URL: http://www.godaddy.com Updated Date: 2020-04-08T14:37:30Z Creation Date: 2020-04-08T14:37:29Z Registrar Registration Expiration Date: 2021-04-08T14:37:29Z

The rest of the whois information is obscured by a proxy organization that provides privacy for whois records (I even use them myself as do many others for privacy reasons), so I cannot tell who owns these domains.

Following the pattern of their sites, I checked for "reopenmd.com", but it never resolved to anything. That said, the DNS lookup itself didn't result in a NXDOMAIN error which tells me the domain does exist.

[ ~]$ whois reopenmd.com [Querying whois.verisign-grs.com] [Redirected to whois.godaddy.com] [Querying whois.godaddy.com] [whois.godaddy.com] Domain Name: reopenmd.com Registry Domain ID: 2515645280_DOMAIN_COM-VRSN Registrar WHOIS Server: whois.godaddy.com Registrar URL: http://www.godaddy.com Updated Date: 2020-04-17T04:19:17Z Creation Date: 2020-04-17T04:19:16Z Registrar Registration Expiration Date: 2021-04-17T04:19:16Z Registrant Organization: Registrant State/Province: Florida Registrant Country: US Registrant Email: Select Contact Domain Holder link at https://www.godaddy.com/whois/results.aspx?domain=reopenmd.com Admin Email: Select Contact Domain Holder link at https://www.godaddy.com/whois/results.aspx?domain=reopenmd.com Tech Email: Select Contact Domain Holder link at https://www.godaddy.com/whois/results.aspx?domain=reopenmd.com

Registered a little more than week later with the same registrar. The thing is, they didn't actually complete their whois information this time, and whoever set it up cheaped out or forgot to pay for the Domains by Proxy service. Although whois information is literally a public record, I'm not inclined to place my account at risk by opening myself up to accusations of doxxing. That said, anyone who feels inclined to can go to https://whois.godaddy.com and search for reopenmd.com. I myself would be personally curious as to why someone in Florida is registering domains claiming to be gun rights organizations in other states.

Seriously, even without that information - who or whomever is responsible for this astroturfing couldn't make this more obvious if they tried. It honestly took me longer to type all of this up to present here than it did for me to find this all. Yet people have taken the bait hook-line-and-sinker.

Meanwhile, the President then starts tweeting "LIBERATE MINNESOTA", "LIBERATE VIRGINIA...", and "LIBERATE MICHIGAN"; and one of the major forces behind the group in Michigan was a political group that has direct ties to and has historically been heavily funded by the family of the Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos (though said family denies direct involvement in last weeks protest)?

In that regard, I'm not alleging some major conspiracy here, but l-o-fucking-l.

Edit: for the record, reopenva.com also exists and has the exact same registry info as reopenmd.com.

[ ~]$ whois reopenva.com [Querying whois.verisign-grs.com] [Redirected to whois.godaddy.com] [Querying whois.godaddy.com] [whois.godaddy.com] Domain Name: reopenva.com Registry Domain ID: 2515650132_DOMAIN_COM-VRSN Registrar WHOIS Server: whois.godaddy.com Registrar URL: http://www.godaddy.com Updated Date: 2020-04-17T04:43:47Z Creation Date: 2020-04-17T04:43:46Z Registrar Registration Expiration Date: 2021-04-17T04:43:46Z Registrant Organization: Registrant State/Province: Florida Registrant Country: US Registrant Email: Select Contact Domain Holder link at https://www.godaddy.com/whois/results.aspx?domain=reopenva.com Admin Email: Select Contact Domain Holder link at https://www.godaddy.com/whois/results.aspx?domain=reopenva.com Tech Email: Select Contact Domain Holder link at https://www.godaddy.com/whois/results.aspx?domain=reopenva.com
 

Billionaires funding protests to serve some sort of idea that people want to just get back to work even during a pandemic, something that serves the billionaires interests over the workers they piss on and put in harms way. 


The Michigan group was funded by either the Devos family or those linked to that pos. 

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/salvadorhernandez/coronavirus-quarantine-protests-facebook-groups

Edited by Bonnot OG

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3 hours ago, Triskele said:

Some Israeli doctor says that the virus follows the same pattern regardless of social distancing measures in all countries ergo distancing is pointless.  This seems to be making the rounds in the US in Trumpworld.  

It's a pity when doctors priorities political and economic interests over public health to the point of lying. Whatever measure a govt takes is a balance between public health and economy, but for a medical doctor to say that there is no effective public health measure is straight up unethical.

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9 hours ago, williamjm said:

I noticed on the Worldometers site that Mauritania is claiming to be the first country to become free of coronavirus. I'm very sceptical they've done enough testing to be confident of this, but it's not impossible since the cases they reported seem to have been in quarantined travellers and if they locked down their borders early enough maybe they managed to stop it getting into the community. There are advantages to being a country that probably doesn't get many visitors.

Mauritania couldn't lock down their borders even if they wanted to, and the significant numbers of nomads (and jihadis) in their population wouldn't take any notice anyway. 

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The situation in Sweden is bad, and now we know how the situation in care homes there is impacting the situation.

10 hours ago, williamjm said:

I noticed on the Worldometers site that Mauritania is claiming to be the first country to become free of coronavirus. I'm very sceptical they've done enough testing to be confident of this, but it's not impossible since the cases they reported seem to have been in quarantined travellers and if they locked down their borders early enough maybe they managed to stop it getting into the community. There are advantages to being a country that probably doesn't get many visitors.

I was wondering if they'd made a mistake and had meant to say Mauritius, which is at least semi-plausible (small island nation relatively easy to cut off from the rest of the world). But apparently not.

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11 hours ago, Paxter said:

Greenland is not a country though right? Just sayin’...having a cool/weird flag makes not a nation state.

Go Mauritania!

I was also going for the 'UN Member State' definition of country, and not trying to take anything away from Greenland's (more plausible) achievement.

1 hour ago, Hereward said:

Mauritania couldn't lock down their borders even if they wanted to, and the significant numbers of nomads (and jihadis) in their population wouldn't take any notice anyway. 

I was wondering whether borders in the Sahara desert might be more theoretical than practical.

They might have a temporary benefit for them due to their being more degrees of separation between them and the initial virus hotspots since I doubt many of those nomads and jihadis were skiing in the Alps or shopping in New York, but that's just going to delay the inevitable.

46 minutes ago, Werthead said:

I was wondering if they'd made a mistake and had meant to say Mauritius, which is at least semi-plausible (small island nation relatively easy to cut off from the rest of the world). But apparently not.

I would also guess that the Mauritanian government may not be a model of transparency.

Small island nations are probably the best bet for eliminating the virus in the short term if they've only had cases in travellers and they managed to quarantine them, the Worldometers stats don't tell us whether any of the nations with small case counts are in that situation. There are still a few countries claiming to have never had a case of the virus and I think the only plausible claims are from island nations like Samoa or Tonga.

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, Bonnot OG said:

Looks like that reopen bs going on in the US is some gigantic astroturf campaign going on. 
https://www.reddit.com/r/maryland/comments/g3niq3/i_simply_cannot_believe_that_people_are/fnstpyl/

 

How 100 death cultists take control of the entire news cycle.  They are doing exactly the same thing in Brasil, including pulling up trucks to block access to hospitals, which, of course, really does get everybody's attention.

Edited by Zorral

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7 hours ago, Werthead said:

The situation in Sweden is bad, and now we know how the situation in care homes there is impacting the situation.

I was wondering if they'd made a mistake and had meant to say Mauritius, which is at least semi-plausible (small island nation relatively easy to cut off from the rest of the world). But apparently not.

The situation at the care homes is probably more down to general neoliberal policies than the corona response. But im sure a lot of people think that the elderly would magically be saved if we just closed the schools..

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Posted (edited)
38 minutes ago, Mikael said:

The situation at the care homes is probably more down to general neoliberal policies than the corona response.

I don't know if I'd call them neoliberal policies, per se, since a lot of it just has to do with how elder care is generally structured; Sweden has extremely generous in-home assistance for the elderly, so for the most part what you get in these institutions are those so ill or frail that they can no longer live alone at their homes (20% of these die within the first couple of months of entering a home, just to show how frail we're talking) and those who have advanced Alzheimer's or dementia that leaves them relatively hale but not able to be taken care of at home any longer (my mother-in-law, sadly; we helped care for her as she deteriorated over a few years, but the point came that the family felt it was beyond us; and yes, we're worried about what will happen if this gets into her facility, but we know they're doing the best they can).

 

But yes, no one has denied that a major driver of mortality in Sweden, as it has been elsewhere (including Norway, Denmark, Finland, etc., simply at a smaller scale) are group homes for the elderly. I suppose the neoliberal part would be that in at least some of the Nordic countries, these have been increasingly privatized (in Sweden, it began to happen under the Moderate party) and that lax regulation combined with profit-seeking has led to various cost-cutting choices that are now coming home to roost.

The Guardian article doesn't mention the fact that many workers at elder care facilities are not well-trained and many of them come from lower economic backgrounds (especially immigrants, who have also been disproportionately affected in the Stockholm region by covid-19) which can mean that they are less likely to take the fairly generous sick leave (80% income while out ill) because their income is already tightly constrained and they can't afford to miss days. This likely did lead to some workers with early symptoms wavering over whether it was "just" a minor cold or not. Indeed, one of the arguments against wider adoption of masks in Sweden is that we don't want people with any symptoms being out and about, and there's a concern that people will trust a mask to be enough even if they "just" have a runny nose or occasional cough.

Personally, were I the government, I would have proposed some kind of increase in pay or 100% income coverage while out sick as a measure to help with some of this.

The other issues, re: PPE and so on, are an issue many other countries are dealing with as well. You can only work with the resources you have. Should Sweden have had more? Yes, and some years ago it did have more stocks of supplies for just such a crisis... but much of it has been sold off over time, and I suppose it's fair to say that that, too, is a bit of the fault of neoliberal policies. 

Finally, it should be noted that just as the majority of deaths are in Stockholm, the majority of elder care deaths are in Stockholm as well. The relevant agencies have been working hard to get ahead of this in areas like my own Västra Götaland and Skåne, where so far the rate of infection, hospitalization, and deaths are dramatically lower.

 

(A digression: this points to something I've mentioned earlier: the time when the various regions/nations had their winter sportlov seems to be a major determiner of when and where this thing blew up.  Oslo and Gothenburg are very comparable in terms of city sizes and overall populations -- 50 dead per million in Oslo, 47 dead per million in Västra Götaland (where Gothenburg is) -- and they had their winter holiday on week 8 and week 7 respectively. Then you look at Uppsala, next-door neighbor to Stockholm, and they had theirs on week 8 and are much less impacted. Same for Helsinki and Copenhagen -- week 7 or week 8 for their holidays. Stockholm's the only Nordic capital that had their vacation  week on week 9, right when the epidemic was becoming full blown in Northern Italy. 

Something like 10,000 to 15,000 Swedes were in Northern Italy during that period, and all of these came flooding back at about the same time. It's when the Stockholmers all came back that they had to give up contact tracing because it was no longer feasible. It's why Stockholm is so much worse off than any other city, including Gothenburg and Malmö, the third largest city.

Whether they should have tried a stricter lockdown on just Stockholm, I don't know. The Swedish constitution doesn't allow general freedom of movement to be constrained at all except under specific circumstances (pandemics not (yet) one of them), but certainly they could have tried to close down all restaurants, bars, etc. much earlier and maybe see if they could push R down hard from so many vectors. This in turn may well have saved many of the elderly. OTOH, it could have led to a flight of some of the more well-heeled Stockholmers who had been in Italy to other parts of Sweden, and the spread in those areas might even be greater... so, who knows?)

 

Quote

But im sure a lot of people think that the elderly would magically be saved if we just closed the schools..

Sadly, I've seen some of these. It's mostly because some fixate on the idea that the only substantial difference has been school closure, when it's not really it. Another thing I've learned about Norwegian elder care is that the institutions tend to have fewer people in them, so less of the eggs all in one basket, so to speak.

Edited by Ran

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Something similar happened in Canada @Ran. British Columbia had a later spring break and has far fewer cases than Quebec and Ontario. Luck of the draw really.

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Posted (edited)

We are at 1916 cases, 250 recoveries and 187 deaths. 


This past week allegedly 30000 beds were freed nationwide in hospitals. The step proved rather controversial as there’s little explanation on how it was possible to free so many beds in so little time, what happened to the previous occupants of these beds and why are we preparing to have 60-70 thousand cases in the upcoming weeks (allegedly, 40% need hospital treatment). We are allegedly purchasing ventilators from... someone and there was allegedly a deal made with engineering universities to develop and produce even more ventilators here. Allegedly we are aiming to 15 thousand. Again, there’s no explanation that I have heard of why we are preparing for such drastic rise in cases. It was stated in a press conference that we are still on the upward side of the curve, but the number of new cases per day seems hardly exponential.


According to worldometer data our number of total case per million population is under regional average and our tests per million population is improving as well and slowly but surely climbing toward a regional average. of course I am aware that all countries have their own specific way of publishing their numbers so it’s difficult to make comparisons. Still it would be helpful to see statistics in the news or at least get a glimpse of the maths that makes the government expect such drastic rise in cases.

All this is my opinion, for the record, scraped together from potentially unreliable sources of information and thus holds no factual or scientific weight. 

which brings me to my next point. Some time this week, I have reached the conclusion that I have absolutely no idea what is going on in my country or in the world in terms of this pandemic. There are fifty versions of every pieces of news in the media and ten contradicting report on each of them. I have completely lost track of what’s true and what isn’t, I don’t know more about the virus than I did on week 1 and I don’t know more about the phase of the epidemic in my country (or any other country, or the world collectively) than I did on week 1. The lack of understanding and the amount of false, misleading, contradicting information have a worse effect on me than being stuck at home (or being out of a job, for that matter). Somehow, at this point,  this makes me feel angry rather than scared, helpless and vulnerable like it did previously. 

Edited by RhaenysBee

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5 hours ago, Ran said:

for the most part what you get in these institutions are those so ill or frail that they can no longer live alone at their homes (20% of these die within the first couple of months of entering a home, just to show how frail we're talking) 

High mortality in the first months in nursing homes isn't just because people are frail. If I look at both my grandfather and my boss's mother, they weren't deadly ill when they went there, they were just well into their 90s, couldn't live alone anymore, and the burden of taking care of them was becoming too high for their children, who couldn't be with them as personal nurses but still had their lifes and their jobs. Having lived an independent life until then and not wanting to be put into such homes, they were morally, psychically, crushed beyond any hope and just let go of their will to live.

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5 hours ago, Clueless Northman said:

High mortality in the first months in nursing homes isn't just because people are frail. If I look at both my grandfather and my boss's mother, they weren't deadly ill when they went there, they were just well into their 90s, couldn't live alone anymore, and the burden of taking care of them was becoming too high for their children, who couldn't be with them as personal nurses but still had their lifes and their jobs. Having lived an independent life until then and not wanting to be put into such homes, they were morally, psychically, crushed beyond any hope and just let go of their will to live.

Common story I'm afraid.

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