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Tywin et al.

COVID-19 #13 or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Disease

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Crap. I feel like in light of the current Corona protest insanity I should create a lesson about Astroturfing. And yet I'm currently in the topic "conflicts and conflict solving" with my 11th graders and can't see a fluid way to switch towards that. Crap...

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4 hours ago, Triskele said:

ETA:  One potential problem with this piece that occurs to me is that shutdown proponents are not exactly ignorant of all of this but are saying that early re-opens will fuck a lot of things up and still lead to all of these economic pain results and that there's just no easy way out of this trap. 

This is true, but I think everyone who is thinking seriously about it is trying to determine what is the path that best balances all public health concerns in the long term.

The ideal method, according to a paper I saw (will try to dig it up), was that you basically ease restrictions to  what is a socially sustainable level that keeps R at 1 or under long term, and then you just hold steady. Cycling up and down at unexpected intervals doesn't really work economically or socially in the long term.

Then there's the question of whether holding tight for a bit longer to get in place infrastructure or technological innovations that in theory could reduce the need for social distancing and thus leading to more freedom sustainably is better than going ahead now with loosening restrictions even if it undermines those infrastructure/innovation efforts.

 

 

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I had a bit of insomnia so I got up and turned on the television and caught an update on South Korea and China.

China reported 17 new cases today. 10 cases were brought in by people returning from overseas. But. There were 5 new cases in Wuhan, the first cases since early April. If those cases were brought in by people who travelled outside of Wuhan, that's one thing, but if the people have no links to travellers, where the heck did the virus come from?

Meanwhile, Disneyland in Shanghai opened up at less than 30% capacity and tickets sold out within minutes.

The business channel I was watching reported 86 new cases in South Korea, which I don't see on Worldometer, so I'm not sure if it was an absolutely up-to-date report or the total of a couple of days. The cases relate to nightclubs in Seoul. I was very surprised when I heard about the nightclubs being opened. Korean health officials are tracking the movements of 1 man, who visited 3 nightclubs on May 2, and have tracked 5,500 people, all of whom they will test. So far they have tested 3,000 people and 86 have tested positive.

Texas has allowed restaurants to open in stages, starting at allowing 25% capacity. There is so much pent-up demand there are stories of line-ups of more than an hour at many places. You have to wonder what next week's new cases will look like.

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17 hours ago, Paladin of Ice said:

Are far right parties like AFD involved in protests and working against lockdowns and such? I saw some online comments where people who aren’t far right were talking about the right trying to adopt any position to undermine the government or get into power and generally stoking resentment.

The AfD or parts of it  are trying to capitalise on discontent with the lockdown, as does the FDP. Opinion polls show a decline of these parties, however. Same with the Greens, who have a lot of anti-vaxxers in heir voter base. Media coverage of the anti-lockdown protests has been rather slow. The gist of it is essentially that the protesters are a haphazard coalition of the discontent. 

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2 hours ago, Fragile Bird said:

Texas has allowed restaurants to open in stages, starting at allowing 25% capacity. There is so much pent-up demand there are stories of line-ups of more than an hour at many places. You have to wonder what next week's new cases will look like.

I think it's going to be a slow burn. I know there's been talk of the incubation period being around 5 days, but I have a theory that the serious cases happen a couple of weeks into it. My hypothesis is that the first people who get it could be the healthy, mobile people who are out and about. These are the people who will catch it from events, eating out at restaurants, being out in protest groups. The deaths only come in the next link or two in the chain when these relatively healthy people pass it onto the vulnerable, elderly people who have stayed at home, either through family or aged care workers etc.

If that line of thinking is correct (and I admit it's just speculation), I think we will see a couple more weeks of relatively "ok" numbers before they start rising again in the USA.

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6 hours ago, Toth said:

Crap. I feel like in light of the current Corona protest insanity I should create a lesson about Astroturfing. And yet I'm currently in the topic "conflicts and conflict solving" with my 11th graders and can't see a fluid way to switch towards that. Crap...

Actually, that seems like it could be a great way to get these young minds to THINK.  Not in the way of pushing a particular idea or viewpoint, but getting them to come up with their own ways of resolving that conflict between getting people back to work vs. slowing the spread of disease.  IOW, rather than teaching them WHAT to think, teach them HOW to think.

 

TTYL.  I'm on my way to my husband's first chemo treatment.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Tears of Lys said:

TTYL.  I'm on my way to my husband's first chemo treatment.

Keeping my fingers crossed for you guys. 
:grouphug:

Edited by Fragile Bird

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7 hours ago, Ran said:

 

This is true, but I think everyone who is thinking seriously about it is trying to determine what is the path that best balances all public health concerns in the long term.

The ideal method, according to a paper I saw (will try to dig it up), was that you basically ease restrictions to  what is a socially sustainable level that keeps R at 1 or under long term, and then you just hold steady. Cycling up and down at unexpected intervals doesn't really work economically or socially in the long term.

 

Interesting, that seems to be what is done in Germany now that R was below 1. Restrictions are reduced, but with the failsafe that regions have to go into lockdown again if there are more than 50 new covid19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. That was reached immediately in a rural area where more than 100 workers in a meat processing plant were infected. So they didn't get out of lockdown at all in that area.

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2 hours ago, Tears of Lys said:

TTYL.  I'm on my way to my husband's first chemo treatment.

What a thing to have to go through during the pandemic. Good luck to you and your family, Tears.

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I too hope everything goes well, Tears. 

Thankfully your hubby has a good wife to help him through this. 

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13 hours ago, Toth said:

Crap. I feel like in light of the current Corona protest insanity I should create a lesson about Astroturfing. And yet I'm currently in the topic "conflicts and conflict solving" with my 11th graders and can't see a fluid way to switch towards that. Crap...

Isn't astroturfing essentially manufacturing an artificial conflict, which has unique considerations for solving compared to other types of conflict? It applies on a one-to-one level too; a student could easily get into a conflict with a victim of astroturfing, and needs to be able to recognise and handle that situation. And if the student has themself been taken in by astroturfing, a discussion of the topic might help them recognise it, even if that possibility isn't directly addressed.

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11 hours ago, Fragile Bird said:

I had a bit of insomnia so I got up and turned on the television and caught an update on South Korea and China.

China reported 17 new cases today. 10 cases were brought in by people returning from overseas. But. There were 5 new cases in Wuhan, the first cases since early April. If those cases were brought in by people who travelled outside of Wuhan, that's one thing, but if the people have no links to travellers, where the heck did the virus come from?

With so many people infected in the past it was probably inevitable some mild or asymptomatic cases would slip through the net and eventually infect others. I saw in one of the news stories that the Chinese have been finding asymptomatic people with the virus but they don't count those as a 'case' in the statistics so it's maybe misleading to look at how long it's been since the last 'case'.

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Speaking of Asian outbreaks, I found this piece regarding South Korea eye-opening. Hadn't realized there was so much stigma against LGBTQ people there. Google tells me some regions have no or few anti-discrimination laws and so on. This will be a challenge for place that have any sort of stigmatized groups.

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14 hours ago, Prue said:

Interesting, that seems to be what is done in Germany now that R was below 1. Restrictions are reduced, but with the failsafe that regions have to go into lockdown again if there are more than 50 new covid19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. That was reached immediately in a rural area where more than 100 workers in a meat processing plant were infected. So they didn't get out of lockdown at all in that area.

What is up with slaughterhouses and meat processing plants? There are reports from the US that a large number of workers are also infected. As far as I understand they always wear PPE during their work shifts.

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1 hour ago, rotting sea cow said:

What is up with slaughterhouses and meat processing plants? There are reports from the US that a large number of workers are also infected. As far as I understand they always wear PPE during their work shifts.

PPE needs competent handling or it won't do any good. The problem with viruses and bacteria is that the gear gets contaminated. You need to be careful when you take it off and it shouldn't be reused unless there is a way to safely sanitise it. When even hospitals struggle with their hygiene, my faith in slaughterhouses is limited. 

As far as the German slaughterhouses are concerned, they hire a lot of migrant workers from eastern Europe and the Balkans, who live in rather poor housing conditions. 

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4 minutes ago, Loge said:

PPE needs competent handling or it won't do any good. The problem with viruses and bacteria is that the gear gets contaminated. You need to be careful when you take it off and it shouldn't be reused unless there is a way to safely sanitise it. When even hospitals struggle with their hygiene, my faith in slaughterhouses is limited. 

As far as the German slaughterhouses are concerned, they hire a lot of migrant workers from eastern Europe and the Balkans, who live in rather poor housing conditions. 

Ok. This explains a lot the issue. What about the meat? Is it getting contaminated?

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3 minutes ago, rotting sea cow said:

Ok. This explains a lot the issue. What about the meat? Is it getting contaminated?

Probably yes. Fortunately, the virus doesn't survive cooking. You have to be careful handling it, though.

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19 hours ago, Tears of Lys said:

Actually, that seems like it could be a great way to get these young minds to THINK.  Not in the way of pushing a particular idea or viewpoint, but getting them to come up with their own ways of resolving that conflict between getting people back to work vs. slowing the spread of disease.  IOW, rather than teaching them WHAT to think, teach them HOW to think.

TTYL.  I'm on my way to my husband's first chemo treatment.

Yeah, thinking... given the students I have right now, I was thinking that it would be better to start by introducing them to the concept that such a thing like astroturfing exists as a standalone lesson. The trouble with having them try to come up with arguments is that I have been training that for the last few weeks with rather low success due to the fact that most of them are barely literate. I'm just doing the bare basics.

Also: Having crossed my fingers that everything goes alright. You guys can power through this!

13 hours ago, felice said:

Isn't astroturfing essentially manufacturing an artificial conflict, which has unique considerations for solving compared to other types of conflict? It applies on a one-to-one level too; a student could easily get into a conflict with a victim of astroturfing, and needs to be able to recognise and handle that situation. And if the student has themself been taken in by astroturfing, a discussion of the topic might help them recognise it, even if that possibility isn't directly addressed.

Yeah, I agree that it does kinda fits the overall topic. Unfortunately last week I had them research about "Coronabonds" and what that whole hassle was about, so dropping that for such a drastic swerve would have been bad. Therefore I focused on finishing the Coronabonds stuff with a lesson there so that I can go can go to fake grassroots campaigns afterwards. I guess the tinfoil army won't go away till next week anyway...

Also with that specific class I must admit that I suspect the latter. There are at least two students who keep throwing around conspiracy theories in their class What's App group and just before the school closing I had to sacrifice a whole lesson just to discuss and debunk those. At least one of these students I judge that if she gets out of that lesson that in her endeavour to engage with conspiracy theories she got tricked by an actual one, she will become more critical in her thinking. Unfortunately the other one already boldly stated that he doesn't care if his sources have an agenda because all sources do.

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On 5/11/2020 at 6:06 AM, Loge said:

The AfD or parts of it  are trying to capitalise on discontent with the lockdown, as does the FDP. Opinion polls show a decline of these parties, however. Same with the Greens, who have a lot of anti-vaxxers in heir voter base. Media coverage of the anti-lockdown protests has been rather slow. The gist of it is essentially that the protesters are a haphazard coalition of the discontent. 

Thanks for the response, I really hope those groups are running into a wall in their attempts to exploit this and continue dwindling.

21 hours ago, Tears of Lys said:

TTYL.  I'm on my way to my husband's first chemo treatment.

Best of luck with the chemo, Tears. As said, this is a heck of a time to be starting it, and it'll be a trial, but I'll be wishing th best for you and hubby that you pull through it.

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