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Covid-19 #37: Mississippi Worming


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9 minutes ago, Kaligator said:

Sorry, fines are not the solution here. That's an interesting way to get around the GA no-requirement rules, but ultimately the virus doesn't care if someone pays more and gets sick and spreads it. The point is to stop the spread, not stop the financial bleeding. 

The financial bleeding is a side effect. The hope is that the fine will incentivize at least some people to finally get the damn shot. Just like the individual mandate with the ACA.

Though the cost probably should be hirer than $200/month, since I suspect too many of the anti-vaxxers will stomach the cost (assuming they don't just refuse to pay and dare Delta to send them to collections). I'd have done something truly unaffordable for nearly all of them, like $1000/month.

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7 hours ago, BigFatCoward said:

I fully agree, when you consider how many 'only aqaintences' will cover for a friend who has committed a heinous crime its a stretch to think someone would leave their life partner for being a bit conservative. However I don't think people just develop one belief. People in my experience are fucking morons most of the time, or not. 

Dealing with morons is your job though.

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A couple of things on my radar today.

Various members of Congress and the Senate, especially from US border states, made threats against Canada if Canada didn’t open it’s border to American travelers. The US also demanded the EU open it’s borders to Americans who wanted to travel.

Has the US opened it’s borders to fully vaccinated Canadians? F*** no. Has the US recognized the AZ vaccine, that millions have received? F*** no. Has the US recognized that people who have received two shots at intervals longer than 42 days are fully vaccinated? F*** no. Are EU citizens all able to enter the US? F*** no.

Americans are pouring into Canada. I say shut the bloody border until the US starts reciprocating.

Second, I see the Governor of Idaho is asking citizens to step up and volunteer in hospitals to help relieve the workload in those hospitals. Amazing.

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Grmfmgsoggmsgegtsdycx... I want compulsory vaccination. NOW! I really can't stand it anymore how aggressively obstinate my students become when I demand they should put their masks on properly. In one class I then went and just flatly asked who already got vaccinated. Turns out: Of course most of the ones who wore their masks wrong also had no intention to get vaccination. Screw you! If you don't care about getting a shot, the least you can do is put a tiny bit of tissue in front of your nose! I don't give a shit about your freedom! Your freedom to travel around and not take the shot is the reason we still have to wear masks!

Sorry for the rant, but damn... having this conversation twice in three lessons was really grating on me because these idiots pull their masks below the nose every time I turn my back towards them and I'm so tired of it. I already started to threateningly put a roll of duct tape on the table "for the next one who needs help keeping it on!"

Edited by Toth
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8 minutes ago, L'oiseau français said:

A couple of things on my radar today.

Various members of Congress and the Senate, especially from US border states, made threats against Canada if Canada didn’t open it’s border to American travelers. The US also demanded the EU open it’s borders to Americans who wanted to travel.

Has the US opened it’s borders to fully vaccinated Canadians? F*** no. Has the US recognized the AZ vaccine, that millions have received? F*** no. Has the US recognized that people who have received two shots at intervals longer than 42 days are fully vaccinated? F*** no. Are EU citizens all able to enter the US? F*** no.

Americans are pouring into Canada. I say shut the bloody border until the US starts reciprocating.

Second, I see the Governor of Idaho is asking citizens to step up and volunteer in hospitals to help relieve the workload in those hospitals. Amazing.

I’m firmly of the view that the US has been this country’s greatest enemy since its inception, so I feel your pain, but beware the lesson of Brexit: don’t start fights you cannot win!

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3 hours ago, HoodedCrow said:

There are some very flawed studies on cholesterol and health. When I was “ diagnosed”with high cholesterol at a thin 25 and I was put on a diet with no eggs, etc. and I was told to eat hydrogenated margarine instead of butter and to avoid olive oil and any mono saturated fats as well as saturated fats. It didn’t work. You heard me. Then we we were told that there was good and bad cholesterol.

The Mediterranean diet was then praised. ( now we like olive oil) Curiously, French people have lower heart disease rates. It was said that wine is protective, maybe, but many eat cream, butter, cheese, eggs, pork, various organ meats, among lots of other things. I would be happy to be “put on” a Mediterranean/French Japanese diet! One doctor said that “ I should have been dead at 30” and I’m now old. I didn’t take cholesterol medication, not because I’m against any medication. One of my doctors said that it affects mitochondrial function ( side effects)and that I was not a man who has just had a heart attack. I looked into my particular case and studies that were not U.S. based. Years later, I have a very low score for plaque formation. My immediate relatives suffer from longevity. 

 

Please consult a qualified professional:)

You should read this article

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/13/well/eat/how-the-sugar-industry-shifted-blame-to-fat.html

Quote

The sugar industry paid scientists in the 1960s to play down the link between sugar and heart disease and promote saturated fat as the culprit instead, newly released historical documents show.

This should be one of the largest scientific scandals of all times (even more than hormone replacement therapy) and unfortunately there is no mechanisms nor accountability to prevent similar things to happen again, except the skepticism of fellow scientists.

On a related topic, statins (used to combat high cholesterol) might help to protect against severe COVID

https://www.webmd.com/lung/news/20210720/statin-users-may-have-added-protection-against-severe-covid-19#1

 

 

Edited by rotting sea cow
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8 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

It's only going to go from pandemic to endemic in the world. If a disease is endemic everywhere but here then when it gets here it will still cause an epidemic. The only question is whether the protection afforded by vaccination will largely eliminate the worst acute consequences of the disease and can significantly reduce the occurrence of the chronic forms. It is clear that until the maximum possible number of people are vaccinated we should maintain the current border policies. But elimination is not viable in the long term, I think. The dilemma we face is next year, when we have reached peak vaccination rate, what are we going to do? We will be at maximum vaccine induced immunity (with the almost certain need for 6 monthly or yearly boosters), immense public and political pressure to loosen the screws, and no capacity to substantially increase arrivals while maintaining any sort of quarantine system. I think if we want a chance to keep the monster at bay, long term, what we need is immunity passports for entry (not vaccine passports), which is to say a negative PCR test within 3 or 4 days of departure and an antibody test with a minimum circulating antibody titre taken within 14 days of departure, and a negative PCR test 3 days after arrival. Infection doesn't guarantee immunity and vaccination doesn't guarantee immunity. But a high titre of antibodies assures a strong current immune response to either vaccination or past infection, and it doesn't really matter which, immunity is immunity. But even then it will get in. Personally I would not object to a permanent state of being effectively free of the disease (controlling the border sufficiently to achieve that) with outbreak lockdowns happening no more than once per year, and only for a couple of weeks. But I think the appetite for COVID lockdowns indefinitely, even if less than once a year on average will be very low. Though I would like to see a survey of the population to see how people would feel about such a concept, while we are in the middle of this current lockdown.

Realistically, I think we will either allow the disease to establish here some time within the next year, because the govt won't be able to politically sustain elimination far into 2022, or the current govt will doggedly retain the policy and lose the next election and the new, right-wing govt will let it in because it ideologically does not support the measures needed to maintain an elimination policy.

The thing is there is still large uncertainties regarding the direction of the pandemic and when/how will become endemic. So far and despite serious efforts during the last half a year, things still look pretty grim. I agree the strategy is not sustainable, given you are standing alone among a wild sea of infection waves but until things aren't more clear, you shouldn't loosen the screws. If you had vaccinated at high rates and open now, you might be in a similar situation as Israel is now. A far cry of optimal.

Of course I understand that you are going to face a huge pressure, both internal and external. From citizens, politicians and businesses.

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Interesting article:

https://www.kltv.com/2021/08/25/fitness-coach-oxygen-using-wheelchair-after-2-month-covid-19-battle/

Quote

Bill Phillips says he made a mistake when he decided not to get the vaccine. He first caught COVID-19 in January 2020 and thought he was immune. A test found he had antibodies against the virus.

But then, he caught COVID again in June – and ended up spending two months in the hospital. He was intubated for 47 days and didn’t wake up for 18 days.

Post-infection immunity is real, but it's not going to last a long time or prevent severe illness in everyone. If you've had COVID recently there is probably no urgency to get vaccinated. But getting vaccinated 6 or so months after your infection would seem to be a good idea. Though with this guy it was 18 months between infections, I would guess the risk of re-infection probably starts to ramp up at about the 6 month mark.

Edited by The Anti-Targ
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@rotting sea cow. Yes, I went to a long retreat where they didn’t have sugar. My cholesterol went from sky high to merely high. But to date, I have no problem with heart disease, unless my doc wants to freak out. Not so much now after they gave me dose dense chemo( cholesterol functions as a transporter in the repair or cells) I looked it up and there were  at least 6 kinds of high cholesterol, so testing and family history should be important. 
But even cynical old me thinks there is enough confidence in the vaccines for me to take the jabs, considering all the deaths and long term effects.

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On 8/24/2021 at 8:54 AM, Caligula_K3 said:

I followed your advice. When I went for my bike ride last night I chose not to wear my helmet or bike lights. I also ignored all traffic laws. I chose life, not fear. Now I'm in the hospital - but it was worth it!

You have taken your first step into a larger world.

Though i would recommend riding in the day time, both for the lower collision risk, and the extra vitamin D.  If you are riding at night, then some reflectors or lights are recommended.

But in general, getting out in the sunlight helps prime your immune system.  Cardio helps improve body composition.  They both help improve your mindset.  And a positive attitude seems the best way to make luck break your way.  ("I call it lucky"  "In my experience, there's no such thing")

If I inspired you to get more active, and take more action, then I'm glad.  At some point, hunkering down causes more problems than it solves.  

Since I learned more about co-morbidities of covid, I dropped 25 pounds, while improving my strength.  Also got more vitamin D via solar, and lowered my iron levels via blood donations.  Glad to hear you're taking steps to improve your outcomes, even if you're a little off in some areas.

But more physical activity, and more out side time is definitely a virtuous cycle.  Keep up the good work!

 

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Opposition politicians: We need to end lockdowns!

Reporter: How many deaths is an acceptable number for lockdowns to come to an end?

Opposition politicians: err, umm we need to get as many people vaccinated as possible.

At least our right wing is not trying to flirt with anti-vaxx, anti-lockdown, anti-mask extremists.

News report tonight: out of 277 cases so far, 40 people were fully vaccinated, none are unwell. Vaccinated people who get breakthrough infections can carry viral loads as high as unvaccinated people.

Edited by The Anti-Targ
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2 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Vaccinated people who get breakthrough infections can carry viral loads as high as unvaccinated people.

The good side of this is that although this seems to be true, there's been at least one study suggesting that in the vaccinated it has a higher propensity to be confined to an upper respiratory infection and is generally cleared more quickly. There was also a pre-print I was reading the other day comparing the viability of virus isolated, and the vaccinated cohort had less viable (by cell culture) virus than the unvaccinated at the same viral load, indicating that they may not have the same transmission risk. However there's a few shortcomings in that study (was comparing D614G last year to delta this year), so we'll see if it bears out.

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21 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Realistically, I think we will either allow the disease to establish here some time within the next year, because the govt won't be able to politically sustain elimination far into 2022, or the current govt will doggedly retain the policy and lose the next election and the new, right-wing govt will let it in because it ideologically does not support the measures needed to maintain an elimination policy.

I think you're vastly underestimating the popular support for current policy - it's just that the opponents get more media airtime. Hell, Ashley Bloomfield has been turned into a secular saint.

The future of the Elimination Strategy really depends on what Covid is doing in six months time - even with a fully vaccinated population, one does not want Israel's situation. Even a partial re-opening would basically mean localised lockdowns, nationwide Level 2, and actual deaths... I can't see that as more popular than the status quo. A decent number of people would be pretty happy with the current situation indefinitely.

(More hypothetically, if only one could remotely trust Beijing, and New Zealand were prepared to opt-out of the geopolitical West, a Bubble consisting of New Zealand, China, Covid-free Polynesia, and Western Australia would actually be pretty viable. A shame that Gladys has screwed up New South Wales so badly). 

Edited by The Marquis de Leech
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To put it another way, the sort of politically acceptable death rate one sees overseas (even with vaccines) would not be acceptable in New Zealand.

New Zealand might put up with 2% of all annual deaths being Covid deaths. We aren't putting up with 7%, much less 10%.

Edited by The Marquis de Leech
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2 hours ago, The Marquis de Leech said:

I think you're vastly underestimating the popular support for current policy - it's just that the opponents get more media airtime. Hell, Ashley Bloomfield has been turned into a secular saint.

The future of the Elimination Strategy really depends on what Covid is doing in six months time - even with a fully vaccinated population, one does not want Israel's situation. Even a partial re-opening would basically mean localised lockdowns, nationwide Level 2, and actual deaths... I can't see that as more popular than the status quo. A decent number of people would be pretty happy with the current situation indefinitely.

(More hypothetically, if only one could remotely trust Beijing, and New Zealand were prepared to opt-out of the geopolitical West, a Bubble consisting of New Zealand, China, Covid-free Polynesia, and Western Australia would actually be pretty viable. A shame that Gladys has screwed up New South Wales so badly). 

The problem is, you don't need all that much of a drop in popular support to make ongoing lockdowns extremely hard to control. The more people who hate lockdowns and are willing to defy the rules, the more lockdowns are likely to fail to keep an outbreak under control, much less re-eliminate the disease. And with every lockdown there is an erosion of tolerance for more lockdowns. Lockdown support is like vaccination, you need "herd immunity" in lockdown support and compliance for it to work. While we have low vaccination numbers elimination and lockdown support will remain high. Once we have high vaccination numbers (and the opposition is already setting a bar for "high" far too low to achieve herd immunity, while the govt is not countering with a higher bar, choosing to go with "as many as we can" which is too vague to de-legitimise for the hard number the opposition is promoting), support for elimination and lockdowns will drop.

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Comirnaty.

Remember that name.

Now that it’s been approved, it’s the name of the Pfizer vaccine. A marketing person (team?) came up with a mash-up of Covid, mRNA and community. Apparently. Allegedly.

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