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Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Empty Stadium Sports Will Be Really Weird

So, with the very likely possibility that baseball and basketball — at minimum — will be played to empty stadiums, it begs the question: Will it be as fun?

And before you answer, think about it for a second. No crowd noise. No intensity that builds for the home team or against the away team. Yes, the scoreboard will tell the tale, but the pressure is cranked up when you have a building full of crazy fans screaming their lungs out.

I get that it’s a business and that the money’s at the ML level, but considering crowds, distance from population centers, and the pleasures of relaxed fandom, I’ve been thinking that we might just run some mLs instead.

Mayor Blomberg Posted: April 28, 2020 at 10:17 AM | 12245 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: business, fans, stadiums

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   12101. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Fred Posted: February 21, 2021 at 12:04 PM (#6006083)
I’ve been wondering how much the decline in COVID cases has been due to various factors. The decline began in early January, so before Biden became President. But it was shortly after the assault on the Capitol and the subsequent clamp down on misinformation online. There was probably some combination of the end of the holiday season, more restrictions in place, some weak herd immunity factor, people behaving better as the headline numbers got worse, etc. But maybe the filtering out of some of the crazy people online has helped the situation too.

You're welcome to articulate how clamping down on online misinformation reduced virus spread in real life. But I think you're overthinking it. Using the 7-day average to smooth out noise, there was a spike in new cases shortly after T-day, and another after Xmas, boosted by NYE. Since then, in the absence of any social occasions that would encourage widespread travel or for risk-averse and non-risk-averse people to mingle, it's been steadily down. To paraphrase the Clinton campaign (sorry, I know, no politics), "It's the holidays, stupid."
   12102. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 21, 2021 at 01:12 PM (#6006091)
Yesterday, hospitalizations in the United States fell below 60,000 for the first time since November 9, according to data from the COVID Tracking Project at The Atlantic. This milestone is not just another round number. In the spring and summer waves, hospitalizations peaked at just fewer than 60,000 both times.

In other words, for the first time in three months, the spread of COVID-19 has receded enough that it now matches the worst of the early pandemic. As welcome as this change might be—it’s a relatively rapid decline from the peak of 132,474 hospitalizations on January 6—it also indicates how far we have to go.
   12103. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 21, 2021 at 01:17 PM (#6006094)
This from Makary is completely made up:


Covid-19 deaths in the U.S. would also suggest much broader immunity than recognized. About 1 in 600 Americans has died of Covid-19, which translates to a population fatality rate of about 0.15%. The Covid-19 infection fatality rate is about 0.23%. These numbers indicate that roughly two-thirds of the U.S. population has had the infection.


First of all, we're pushing 0.2% by excess deaths as a nation now (and that doesn't include people who died of the virus who would have died anyway over the last year, so the first number is certainly higher than 0.15%. It could be higher than 0.2%.

More importantly, nobody responsible thinks the IFR for the US population distribution is 0.23%. We have states that had very few deaths last Spring already pushing that number in reported deaths, are much higher by excess deaths (Arizona and Mississippi, for example). These states would have to have over 100% infected.

No one knows for sure how many people have been infected so far, but it's a favorite game of those claiming herd immunity to claim the multiplier of know cases is something way higher than it could possibly be. This game is an easy one to play because the multiplier keeps dropping as testing has gotten more widespread over time, so all you have to do is apply some past average to the current total tests and voila. We saw this earlier when people were saying 10x/12x was the true number of infections. Now this guy is saying 6.5x. The real number over the last few months is probably much lower, in the 2x to 3x range. with the average over time higher than that but not at 6.5 anymore.

Covid-19 projections' high and low estimate for cases as of January 13 (about the time someone would have to get infected to be reported buy now, on average) was 17.2% to 38.7%. using that range, the IFR for recorded deaths alone is 0.4% to 0.9%, with a best guess at 0.6%. Adding in excess deaths and it comes to 0.5% to 1.1%, with a best guess of 0.75%. Other estimates of cases are in a similar range.
   12104. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 21, 2021 at 01:54 PM (#6006101)
The CDC's estimates through the end of December are here. They show a best guess for cases at 83 million through December 31 (25%), with a range of 72 million to 97 million. This is similar but slightly higher than covid19-projections, which shows 46 to 103, with a best guess of 69 million. Reported deaths through January 21 (three-week delay from reported cases) were about 415,000 (JHU), so an IFR (reported) of between 0.45% and 0.6%. Or with excess deaths, between 0.60% and 0.80%. That also doesn't include a pull-forward effect, so the actual rate is probably higher.

CDC uses a multiplier of 4.6 through the end of December, which would certainly be less now, average to this point probably under 4x. Covid19-projections uses something a little over 3x (for the entire period, which means something like 2x for new cases).
   12105. puck Posted: February 21, 2021 at 02:08 PM (#6006104)
Thanks everyone for the discussion. It was so widely reported and the guys' premises seemed so far off based on data folks like AuntBea have been following for months.
   12106. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 21, 2021 at 02:33 PM (#6006109)
Also, as evidence from Manaus suggests, and some scientists have been saying all along, there's a very good chance natural herd immunity is impossible, which only leaves getting a high percentage of the country vaccinated (and re-vaccinated, periodically) with vaccines that are highly successful at preventing infection. We likely will get there, but it won't be in the next month, and might not even be this year.

I expect people to be mostly back to normal this summer even without herd immunity, because lots of people will remain cautious, as a group we will have partial immunity, and the virus doesn't propagate as well in the summer anyway. It won't be herd immunity though, and if we don't get almost everyone who is able to be vaccinated, vaccinated by late fall we are likely to have a significant resurgence.
   12107. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 21, 2021 at 02:52 PM (#6006111)
Using the 7-day average to smooth out noise, there was a spike in new cases shortly after T-day, and another after Xmas, boosted by NYE. Since then, in the absence of any social occasions that would encourage widespread travel or for risk-averse and non-risk-averse people to mingle, it's been steadily down. To paraphrase the Clinton campaign (sorry, I know, no politics), "It's the holidays, stupid."

Cases rose steadily from around mid-September through early January. There wasn’t any noticeable upward spike for the holidays; there was a dip in positive tests around each of the major holiday weeks due to a reduction in testing, followed by a rapid return to the trendline thereafter.

The surprising thing has been how quickly cases have been declining since early Jan. Prior waves did not have such a steep downward slope on the back end, but they were also starting from a lower level.
   12108. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 21, 2021 at 03:53 PM (#6006117)
I am a bit skeptical of the early infection rates reported in Manaus. The articles I’ve seen only cite one or two anecdotal cases of people getting infected a second time. You’d think there would be a lot of such examples if it was such a prevalent thing. Maybe there are and journalists simply aren’t talking to those people. But like I said, I’m a bit skeptical.
   12109. base ball chick Posted: February 21, 2021 at 07:24 PM (#6006133)
i need some help here - if there are a number of people who have no symptoms and/or minor cold symptoms, and they don't get tested, how could we POSSIBLY have any idea how many people there are like that?

i am also confused about the herd immunity - if only 7 of 10 people in a huge area like the US have had covid, how can the other 3 be immune? i mean, in the Bad Old Days, measles went around all the time and all the adults were already immune so who passed it to the babies and children?

i also don't why we are assuming that either an infection gives you life long immunity or that a vaccine does
   12110. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 21, 2021 at 08:03 PM (#6006138)
i also don't why we are assuming that either an infection gives you life long immunity or that a vaccine does

I don't think we are

herd immunity - if only 7 of 10 people in a huge area like the US have had covid, how can the other 3 be immune?

herd immunity means that enough of the population (the "herd) is immune that there won't be an outbreak on the scale we've been living through, but there will be cases just as there are with any communicable disease where there is less than 100 percent immunity.

First one is beyond my pay grade.
   12111. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 21, 2021 at 08:06 PM (#6006140)
i need some help here - if there are a number of people who have no symptoms and/or minor cold symptoms, and they don't get tested, how could we POSSIBLY have any idea how many people there are like that
Mostly through testing of random samples of people. For example, if an antibody survey is truly random and representative of the population, and sufficiently large, you can determine what percentage of the population had the virus by the time the survey was conducted. There are probably other ways as well.

i am also confused about the herd immunity - if only 7 of 10 people in a huge area like the US have had covid, how can the other 3 be immune? i mean, in the Bad Old Days, measles went around all the time and all the adults were already immune so who passed it to the babies and children?
Right, they aren't immune. The idea is that if 70+% of the people are currently immune, an outbreak of the virus won't be able to spread because the people that have it won't come into contact with enough susceptible people, and as a result it will peter out quickly before reaching many of the last 30%.
   12112. base ball chick Posted: February 21, 2021 at 08:19 PM (#6006142)
aunt bea

so how can you get "random" when there is so much USA and different numbers of people who had it and who got vaccinated etc

aren't the numbers of the MAGA people who got dick different than the numbers of White non-MAGA people? or am i not understanding how this virus works

- do you know if they are doing testing to see how long after getting the vaccine people styill got antibodies?
   12113. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 21, 2021 at 08:20 PM (#6006143)
Think about herd immunity this way.

Let’s assume the average person spreads COVID to 3 others. Now let’s assume that 70% of people are immune. That means that only 30% of people are susceptible to the infection.

So now the patient who would have spread it to 3 people is only spreading it to 0.3 x 3 = 0.9 people

If each person is only spreading it to 0.9 people, any outbreak should eventually fizzle out on its own instead of growing exponentially.

But you might still have a localized outbreak in a sub-population if that group all avoids vaccination.
   12114. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Fred Posted: February 21, 2021 at 08:26 PM (#6006144)
Cases rose steadily from around mid-September through early January. There wasn’t any noticeable upward spike for the holidays; there was a dip in positive tests around each of the major holiday weeks due to a reduction in testing, followed by a rapid return to the trendline thereafter.
Using worldometers and the 7-day average, that's simply not true. There is a gradual increase from September, a plateau ahead of T-day, and a dip ahead of Xmas. There is a near vertical spike after T-day, similar after Xmas.

EDIT: Apologies — I was looking at the Massachusetts page. We are parochial.

More specifically, the MA case load increased gradually from the low hundreds in September; held steady at ~2500 from mid-November til the end of the month, then doubled to 5k by Dec 10; dipped back to 4k at Xmas, before jumping right back up the week after, and then up above 6k in the first week of Jan. Steady decline since.
   12115. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 21, 2021 at 08:36 PM (#6006145)

so how can you get "random" when there is so much USA and different numbers of people who had it and who got vaccinated etc
It usually requires a well-designed study with random people willing to participate. Spain famously did a good one back near the beginning of the outbreak. You can also infer a lot from studies that are less random or representative, but then there is more guesswork involved.

Nobody knows how many people have actually been infected, in part because we don't have good, up-to-date surveys. We do have some idea though.

do you know if they are doing testing to see how long after getting the vaccine people still got antibodies
I'm sure they are doing this, but I don't know what the results are. There have been a lot of studies showing antibodies fading over time for people we have been infected. Antibodies seem to fade though even before immunity is gone, at least for people who were infected, so checking for immunity is not as simple as checking for antibodies. Ultimately the way we may end up determining how long the vaccine lasts is just by taking note of those people who get infected after getting the vaccine--how many get infected and how soon after. Not everyone who gets vaccinated right now will get another vaccine before X months or years, and with this many people being vaccinated, we should eventually have a pretty good idea how long protection lasts on average.
   12116. Snowboy Posted: February 22, 2021 at 01:25 AM (#6006172)
From January to November 2020, there were an estimated 259,836 deaths in Canada, representing an excess of 12,067 deaths above and beyond what would have been expected if there was no pandemic. This implies that there have been about 5% more deaths than expected in that period, after accounting for changes in the population such as aging. In comparison, for the same period, there were 244,375 deaths in 2018 and 243,551 in 2019.


The Daily - Provisional death counts and excess mortality, January to November 2020
Released: 2021-02-08
   12117. Snowboy Posted: February 22, 2021 at 03:15 AM (#6006177)
-12099 BLB
That said, all the numbers have been trending in the right direction for a while now. All looking good.
Thank goodness we have adults in charge of the country again.


Canada'a numbers are trending the same. Without any change in leadership. Could it just be the disease doing what it wants? I'm with you, not willing to call "herd immunity is here" yet, but numbers are going in right direction, and that's with some places easing restrictions, or never really having them in the first place.

I can see this guy's case, even if Aunt Bea is correctly questioning his math, that things will be settled down by April. For me, it's the death rate. I haven't looked at any other country's numbers, but (where I live) in Canada, deaths due to covid are nearly 90% over age 70.
TOTAL n=21,234
80+ n=14,777 (69.6%)
70-79 n=4,023 (18.9%)
60-69 n=1,610 (7.6%)
50-59 n=555 (2.6%)
40-49 n=162 (0.8%)
30-39 n=70 (0.3%)
20-29 n=33 (0.2%)
0-19 n=4 (0.0%)

Canada - COVID-19 Situational Awareness Dashboard
Updated February 21, 2021, 7 pm EDT

(There's an interactive chart on the left, first one, if you scroll. "Age and gender distribution of ..... COVID-19 cases in Canada" Pull down the menu, change the default of _ALL_ to _deceased_ {I know, it's morbid, call me morbid. Snowmorbid.})

Canada'a vaccine rollout has been primarily to long-term care homes, workers at those homes, and other critical health care workers. And they're reportedly pretty much done there. The provinces ultimately control vaccine distribution, but with guidance from the feds it appears like elderly people in private residences will be the next phase, along with others who are younger but have documented high-risk health conditions. They've been bringing the vaccines door-to-door at many of these institutions, but many provinces are now setting up new vaccine centers in co-opted community centers, rinks, etc. so people will set an appointment, and come to them. My favorite niece is a public health nurse, and has been chosen to coordinate one of the vaccination locations, kicking off this week.

There's already some jockeying about who might be prioritized in phase three and four, etc, but the truth for me, is that 90% of the deaths are over age 70 in Canada, and if they can vaccinate and protect them, the death rate should plummet, and that's what I want. After that, I say open it up. That's why Makary might be right, this thing might disappear in April. If people are no longer dying from corona, it's gonna be hard to keep everyone locked up.
   12118. bunyon Posted: February 22, 2021 at 06:58 AM (#6006181)
Covid disappearing and opening up are two different things. I think we may well open up in April (or even March - hell some places are already open for all intents and purposes) because that’s always where the political pressure is and where we all want to go. But I think that will get us one last small wave. Having the old folks vaccinated will likely reduce the death wave substantially and the hospital wave a bit. It will also buy us a mutation or two, which is a crapshoot.
   12119. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: February 22, 2021 at 09:03 AM (#6006188)
Cases seem like they are maybe going back up again in Europe? Not going to pretend I know the who/why/what-next there but either way :( :( :(
   12120. Lassus Posted: February 22, 2021 at 09:20 AM (#6006191)
Cases seem like they are maybe going back up again in Europe?

Going to need more than this.
   12121. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 22, 2021 at 09:27 AM (#6006192)
"things being settled down" is not at all the same thing as herd immunity. My guess is things will be settled down this summer, though probably not by April 1. I don't think we'll have herd immunity until we have a high uptake level of highly effective, long-lasting vaccines.
   12122. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: February 22, 2021 at 09:31 AM (#6006195)
Going to need more than this.


https://ourworldindata.org/grapher/weekly-growth-covid-cases?stackMode=absolute&time=latest&country=CAN~FRA~DEU~IND~GBR~USA®ion=Europe

A lot of red again on that map. Again, I don't know what it means but it was mostly blue for central/eastern Europe leading up to recently and now it isn't.
   12123. Ron J Posted: February 22, 2021 at 09:33 AM (#6006196)
Incidentally I saw a reason why Oxford/Astra is going to take some time getting something effective against the South African variant. Seems they're being ambitious and aiming for something that (attempts to) deals with any future mutation.
   12124. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: February 22, 2021 at 09:56 AM (#6006198)
Sorry for the link that messed up the page width!
   12125. Lassus Posted: February 22, 2021 at 10:00 AM (#6006199)
New Zealand up in that map, too.
   12126. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 22, 2021 at 10:13 AM (#6006201)

New Zealand may be increasing but they're still reporting single-digit number of cases per day. They've had one reported COVID death since September 2020.
   12127. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 22, 2021 at 10:36 AM (#6006206)
Canada'a numbers are trending the same. Without any change in leadership. Could it just be the disease doing what it wants?

I didn't mean to infer that the last month was due to the new admin. You're correct, that is the disease doing what it wants. But the vaccine rollout is ramping up, and the new admin is pushing it a lot harder than the last one.

   12128. Snowboy Posted: February 22, 2021 at 11:42 AM (#6006211)
Want to clarify myself, as others have picked up on. When I said "this thing might disappear by April" I didn't mean the virus, or that we'll have herd immunity by then. I meant the constant sense of emergency and panic, the lockdowns, the shuttering of schools, and churches, and bans on social gatherings, and so-called non-essential travel, and kids sports.
If we can stop deaths by targeting the vaccines, we should be able to open up again.
   12129. Ron J Posted: February 22, 2021 at 12:12 PM (#6006215)
#12128 Deaths is the wrong metric. Hospitalizations are what you want to look at.

Fortunately the vaccines work very well here too.
   12130. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 22, 2021 at 02:15 PM (#6006225)
As the journalist Brian Kahn noted on Twitter, when California was struggling with much smaller blackouts in late 2020, ambitious Texas Republicans were sneering at the state on social media. Texas Lieutenant Governor [the other] Dan Patrick said, “This is what happens when the Democrats are left in charge,” while Texas Attorney General [and federally indicted criminal defendant] Ken Paxton announced, “California’s politicians did this, not the heat.” U.S. Representative [and failed insurrectionist] Dan Crenshaw joked, “Alexa, show me what happens when you let Democrats control energy policy.” And U.S. Senator [and ted cruz lookalike] Ted Cruz said that California “is now unable to perform even basic functions of civilization, like having reliable electricity.” Last week, Cruz jetted off to Cancún with his family while his constituents were burning their children’s toys for warmth.

   12131. Hot Wheeling American Posted: February 22, 2021 at 02:39 PM (#6006229)
Thanks, steagles
   12132. Snowboy Posted: February 23, 2021 at 12:31 AM (#6006307)
12127 You're right there, your vaccine rollout is going well. USA is at 19% vaccinated, 63M
(Canada, not so well. 3.7% vaccinated, 1.4M)
   12133. SoSH U at work Posted: February 23, 2021 at 01:00 AM (#6006309)
12127 You're right there, your vaccine rollout is going well. USA is at 19% vaccinated, 63M


So I have a few questions.

Let's say vaccination continues apace through everyone who is willing to get vaccinated, and we're just left with the anti-vax crowd. What degree of harm to all of us will they do (is the danger restricted to the otherwise willing who can't get vaccinated or is it a threat to everyone given mutations)? If they can cause harm to the rest of us, what would the percentage of the population refusing to get vaccinated need to reach to really do damage to the U.S. as a whole? If necessary, where can vaccinations be mandated to bump up the percentage?
   12134. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 23, 2021 at 02:07 AM (#6006313)
SoSH, perhaps someone will post a piece I was reading the other day -- I forget where -- that addressed most of your questions. The vaccinated will be mostly well protected as your surmise, but the virus will stay around and will mutate, and immunity will wane; we don't yet know how soon. So boosters and keeping an eye out for resistant strains will be a thing. The other thing is that once you are vaccinated you remain a transmission vector.

As for mandating vaccination, meet protections for religious liberty, which are one way that parents get around vaccination.
   12135. Snowboy Posted: February 23, 2021 at 02:51 AM (#6006315)
In another thread here today (Fauci/MLB fans?) someone said 44M US vaccinated.
I'd better cite my source of 63M.
I don't want to be caught in the middle of a debate about who has one shot, two shot, red shot, blue shot.

Our data on COVID-19 vaccinations is updated each morning (London time), with the most recent official numbers up to the previous day.

In our Data Explorer you can see our data on the cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccination doses administered. This is counted as a single dose, and may not equal the total number of people vaccinated, depending on the specific dose regime (e.g. people receive multiple doses). You can find charts with the number of people with at least 1 dose, and the number of people fully vaccinated, further down this page.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Vaccinations
   12136. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 03:43 AM (#6006317)
The other thing is that once you are vaccinated you remain a transmission vector.


I haven't seen anything about this. As far as I can tell, the best scientific guess is "you'll probably not be a vector, but we won't come out and say that as we could be wrong and we don't want to give anyone misinformation that could compromise public health initiatives."

   12137. Ron J Posted: February 23, 2021 at 06:45 AM (#6006320)
#12136 The very preliminary studies appear to show that vaccination at least moderates transmission.
   12138. SoSH U at work Posted: February 23, 2021 at 08:38 AM (#6006322)
As for mandating vaccination, meet protections for religious liberty, which are one way that parents get around vaccination.


I understand that. I was curious if there were any areas of life that can get around that (for instance, healthcare itself)?
   12139. catomi01 Posted: February 23, 2021 at 08:51 AM (#6006325)
I haven't seen anything about this. As far as I can tell, the best scientific guess is "you'll probably not be a vector, but we won't come out and say that as we could be wrong and we don't want to give anyone misinformation that could compromise public health initiatives."


Its also to prevent use of the "I'm vaccinated the rest of the rules don't apply to me any more," by those actually vaccinated and (probably just as importantly) people who are going to start claiming their vaccinated to get around those same rules.
   12140. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: February 23, 2021 at 09:10 AM (#6006326)
A lot of red again on that map. Again, I don't know what it means but it was mostly blue for central/eastern Europe leading up to recently and now it isn't.


The impression I have is that some countries entered into a lockdown post-holiday season, but many didn't see the lockdown as being more than few weeks to compensate for the expected impact of family visits. Other possibilities: The 'UK variant' has higher transmissibility, though not necessarily higher mortality, and is probably circulating in quite a few countries. Some countries are battling hard to keep ski season going in at least a partial sense. And it has been a particularly cold few weeks in some countries; NW Germany last week had its coldest week since I moved over.
   12141. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 09:33 AM (#6006327)
I use this NPR site for US vaccination data. This says 13.3% have received one dose — that roughly matches the 44M number.
   12142. bunyon Posted: February 23, 2021 at 09:49 AM (#6006329)
I haven't seen anything about this. As far as I can tell, the best scientific guess is "you'll probably not be a vector, but we won't come out and say that as we could be wrong and we don't want to give anyone misinformation that could compromise public health initiatives."


Its also to prevent use of the "I'm vaccinated the rest of the rules don't apply to me any more," by those actually vaccinated and (probably just as importantly) people who are going to start claiming their vaccinated to get around those same rules.


Right. This is the trouble with "believe the science". Scientific certainty takes time and careful, deliberate study. Science can't tell you for sure that COVID vaccinated people won't be carriers or, if they are, that they'll be much less efficient at transmitting SARS-CoV-2. It's a new vaccine for a new virus and we just don't know.

The data we have on viruses and vaccines strongly suggests that, no, vaccinated people will not be significant carriers of the virus and that, practically, they can go about their lives as if there is no pandemic. Early data on COVID is consistent with that but a long way from proof. So, if we use data on past vaccines as a guide, there is a really good chance vaccinated people have no need to mask or glove or keep distant.

But from a policy perspective, holy hell. If you're wrong about that, if this is the exception, a lot of people die and good luck continuing a vaccine program. So without scientific certainty, no one is willing to go out on that limb. There is also the population catomi points to who will lie about being vaccinated to go back to normal.


I think, in the reality of the United States, we're done with covid precautions. There is too much political pressure to open up and I expect we will open up soon after the weather gets warm. While I understand the urge to hedge predictions on the vaccine, the vaccine is our only shot at opening up without a lot of death. So I'd err on the side of convincing people to take the damned shots. Stop hedging and let people think that the vaccine will return them to normal. If it doesn't, they were going to open up anyway. Telling people to hurry up and get vaccinated but then also telling them that, even if they do, it's 2022 before life is normal again is not going to convince anyone.

We need shots in arms and to be setting up a robust and sustainable testing and sequencing program so we can catch vaccine resistant mutations early (and start building better vaccines). But, look around, the US is opening up one way or the other.

ETA: I'm 17 days past my second shot (Pfizer). I took my also vaccinated mother to a steak dinner Saturday and we both felt safe and secure in doing so. There may have been tears. At work and around town (store, etc), I continue to mask and distance. I don't mind the mask that much and it's been a year since I had so much as a cold, which I like.
   12143. Lassus Posted: February 23, 2021 at 10:02 AM (#6006330)
Well-written and even-handed, thank you.


ETA: I'm 17 days past my second shot (Pfizer). I took my also vaccinated mother to a steak dinner Saturday and we both felt safe and secure in doing so. There may have been tears. At work and around town (store, etc), I continue to mask and distance. I don't mind the mask that much and it's been a year since I had so much as a cold, which I like.

My wife is literally counting the days, on a calendar, until two weeks past her second shot (which she hasn't taken yet) so we can go out to dinner.
   12144. bunyon Posted: February 23, 2021 at 10:28 AM (#6006336)
I did the same.

How was your (and hers) day after second shot. It was surreal to feel as bad as I did when I went to bed (101F fever, chills, shakes, aches, dizzy) and wake up feeling absolute fine. Usually when I've been that sick it's taken a week to get back to feeling normal. This was a switch.

   12145. Lassus Posted: February 23, 2021 at 10:34 AM (#6006338)
How was your (and hers) day after second shot. It was surreal to feel as bad as I did when I went to bed (101F fever, chills, shakes, aches, dizzy) and wake up feeling absolute fine. Usually when I've been that sick it's taken a week to get back to feeling normal. This was a switch.

Myself and her 83-year-old father have both had Pfizer, both shots. Zero side effects, literally nothing.

She's had one Moderna shot so far, and her arm hurt a little longer than she thought it would, that's it. She feels like she's heard the 2nd shot is worse for Moderna.

Her mother's a wacko and refuses to get anything other than Johnson & Johnson. My Mom and stepfather are waiting on their second Moderna shots in FL, my dad is also in FL but has had no real luck in the lottery.
   12146. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 23, 2021 at 10:49 AM (#6006341)
https://www.thegazette.com/subject/news/health/like-the-hunger-games-many-older-iowa-residents-unsuccessful-in-finding-covid-19-vaccine-feel-pitted-against-each-other-for-survival-20210222

'Like the Hunger Games': Older Iowans seeking COVID vaccine feel pitted against each other for survival

Iowans describe vaccine search frustrations


They are among the tens of thousands of Iowans trying — and mostly failing — to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine in recent weeks after eligibility under the state’s vaccine distribution plan opened to those aged 65 and older.

Demand for the vaccine far outweighs the supply of doses in Iowa at this time, leaving no clear answers on how long residents may have to wait for a shot.

Many older Iowans do not have internet access or lack the technical skills needed to track down and schedule a vaccine appointment in their area — challenges that have raised anxiety for those eager for protection against the novel coronavirus.

State and local officials continue to ask for patience from residents eager for a vaccine. But for some such as Beran, the request is beginning “to feel patronizing.”

“We’ve been patient, we’ve been careful,” Beran said. “We’ve been sacrificing for a long time.”

More than one individual described the vaccine rollout as the Hunger Games, with Iowans pitted against each other.

---

Many Iowans are scheduling appointments for parents and grandparents and friends who aren’t tech-savvy enough to find a vaccine, including Renee Dietrich of Cedar Rapids, who has scheduled 13 vaccine appointments as of Thursday morning.

After successfully scheduling an appointment for her 85-year-old mother, Lucy Dietrich, friends began reaching out to ask for help finding appointments for their older parents.

Dietrich said many of her friends began the process of tracking down a shot, but ran out of time because of their jobs and families or lost their patience with the complicated steps required by some scheduling systems.

“Even computer savvy older Iowans are struggling,” said Dietrich, 52, who has been living with her mother and working remotely for about a year.

Her process? Every morning at 6 a.m., Dietrich turns on the computer and refreshes the CVS and Walgreens websites every 15 seconds for an hour, waiting for the appointments to pop up.

In total, Dietrich estimates she’s spent somewhere between 20 to 30 hours over the past three weeks tracking down appointments.

“They wouldn’t have got them otherwise, and they need to be vaccinated,” she said. “If we’re going to get a handle of this pandemic at all, it’s not just my mom’s vaccine that matters. My friend’s mom matters, too.”

   12147. bunyon Posted: February 23, 2021 at 10:54 AM (#6006343)
I got my shot in NC as a fluke. A, perhaps, unethical fluke. Mom (76F) moved here in August. We lost my both my father (86M) and stepfather (78M, Mom's current husband) in May to non-Covid causes and she found herself both in bad financial and mental state (she also lost a nephew (47M) a few days before her husband; my Dad was last, a month to the day after my cousin). She moved into a nice senior apartment complex but it has been locked down harder than most of NC. We took her to an outdoor restaurant in August for her birthday and she was really uncomfortable. But, over time, she has more and more wanted to do something normal.

So, when vaccine appointments started popping up, I told her I'd get her one. I called our county health board half an hour after they started taking appointments. But they had a single phone number and no web presence. I was number 406 and got disconnected. Then I found the county to our south had a really nice website set up and I was able to get her an appointment there. It was only a 30 minute drive.

I thought no more about it, Mom was set. We weren't eligible. Only a week or so later, a colleague emailed our department saying that our county had recorded the numbers of those who called and were calling them back. This colleague, very far from eligible, younger than me, way healthier, got an appointment simply by answering, "Do you want a vaccine?" with "Yes." It turned out the county enlisted all their employees to call people and they weren't health professionals. Some asked hard questions and refused anyone not qualified (at the time you had to be 75 or health care worker). Others just made appointments for whoever they got. My lady, bless her, asked follow-ups when I gave her my age. Diabetes, overweight, on meds for blood pressure, just at 50, and "teacher" got me in.

I mentioned ethical qualms to a senior colleague who was eligible and he laughed, saying, "It's the wild west now. If you can get a shot, get it." So I did.

Both counties on site distribution was outstanding. Very smooth, very professional. My county's system for making appointments is still pretty bad and easy to game. The county to our south is really a leader in the state. It's wild to see how different systems are over very short distances and, seemingly, with most everything else very similar. My MIL (81F) and FIL (82M) refuse to take an appointment that is an hour's drive in upstate NY (Corning/Binghamton area). They basically seem to expect someone to come to their house with it. I suspect they like an excuse to stay in.

Your Mom is the first I've heard to cut the line between J&J and the mRNA candidates but, reading that, I can see it and would guess there are more like her. In keeping with "certainty", I think the mRNA vaccines will be fine but we don't know from a scientific perspective. It certainly won't re-write your genome but biology is weird.

Anyway, I hope everyone gets their shots as soon as they can/wish. I'm also eager to see if Pfizer and Moderna can put the advantage of synthetic RNA to work in addressing new variants. That could pay off big time for a host of other viruses, too.
   12148. Lassus Posted: February 23, 2021 at 11:23 AM (#6006351)
Your Mom is the first I've heard to cut the line between J&J and the mRNA candidates but, reading that, I can see it and would guess there are more like her.

MOTHER-IN-LAW! My mom isn't a Dr. Mercola Trumper-via-Bernie lunatic, like Jules' mom. She wouldn't know WTF an mRNA was, she just doesn't want to be stuck twice, and needs a (barely) viable excuse that won't cause her daughter to drag her like a screaming child to a vaccination site.
   12149. bunyon Posted: February 23, 2021 at 11:29 AM (#6006354)
Oh, hadn't considered the one vs. two shots thing. I bet she (your MIL, sorry) isn't alone there, either.
   12150. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 11:44 AM (#6006356)

I understand that. I was curious if there were any areas of life that can get around that (for instance, healthcare itself)?


Some school districts enforce vaccinations for students, religion be damned (I think Mass just required them statewide? Or maybe VT?) Obv can't really do that without a child vaccine, but I'd imagine that's the easiest way forward to getting anti-vaxxers to vaccinate. "It's for the kids" hold a lot of weight, moreso than "but my religion".
   12151. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 23, 2021 at 11:55 AM (#6006359)
"It's for the kids" hold a lot of weight, moreso than "but my religion".

would be nice, but I don't hold my breath on that one; it's the kids' religion, too. I'm surprised MA hasn't been taken to court.
& thanks for the further info on post-vaccination transmission. 62+asthma hasn't been enough to get me in anywhere.
   12152. bunyon Posted: February 23, 2021 at 12:01 PM (#6006361)
62+asthma hasn't been enough to get me in anywhere.

I suspect it's about to steamroll. We'll go pretty quickly from no one can get a shot to we can't talk people into taking it. I'm ready to be at that place.
   12153. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 23, 2021 at 12:06 PM (#6006363)
inshallah!
   12154. SoSH U at work Posted: February 23, 2021 at 12:16 PM (#6006364)
I certainly understand and support a vaccination hierarchy, but I just can't get worked up over the people cutting in line. Just getting it in as many arms as quickly as possible is all I care about.

Granted, I'm going to treat it like I would a Southwest flight. I'm going to hang back and get on board after the overhead bin fighters have duked it out. I guess it helps to be someone who is relatively healthy and works from home, and who tested positive for the antibodies on both occasions I gave blood (not a guarantee I had it, but a good possibility). I'm giving again on St. Patrick's Day, and it's been awhile since my last complete donation, so I'm interested to see if they're still hanging around.
   12155. Eudoxus Posted: February 23, 2021 at 01:10 PM (#6006383)
If you're in the mood for a COVID good news story, maybe the best one right now is Gibraltar. On January 8, Gibraltar peaked with 1317 active COVID cases. After an intensive vaccination campaign, they're now at 90% vaccinated. As of today, there are 30 active COVID cases in Gibraltar. On December 30, Gibraltar had 180 new COVID cases. Since February 15, they've had no day with more than 2 new cases. Small sample size, of course, but maybe a hint at what might lie ahead.
   12156. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 23, 2021 at 02:00 PM (#6006394)
In another thread here today (Fauci/MLB fans?) someone said 44M US vaccinated. I'd better cite my source of 63M.
I believe I was the one that offered the lower number, which came from the Washington Post website, and seemed to be citing CDC numbers. However, I see that while the WaPo is today reporting “at least 44.5 million people have received one or both doses of the vaccine in the U.S.”, the CDC puts the number at 65,032,083. Not sure why the discrepancy, but the larger number does reinforce my point that we are rapidly ramping up vaccine administration.
   12157. bunyon Posted: February 23, 2021 at 02:05 PM (#6006395)
The larger number and wildly divergent number is because US vaccine rollout is decentralized and poorly organized. Some report vials shipped, some doses estimated from shipped, some actual shots, etc.

Doesn't detract from your larger point. It's picking up speed.
   12158. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 23, 2021 at 02:07 PM (#6006396)
I suspect it's about to steamroll. We'll go pretty quickly from no one can get a shot to we can't talk people into taking it. I'm ready to be at that place.

I think you're right. If/when that third vaccine starts hitting the market soon, this could happen. What a glorious thing that would be.
   12159. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 23, 2021 at 02:30 PM (#6006401)
There is no discrepancy between the 44 million and 63 (now 65) million figures.

Look below the top line and both report the same thing: 13 nopw 65M vaccines given to 44M (now more) people. 19M (as of yesterday) had received two shots. 44+19=63.
   12160. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 23, 2021 at 03:39 PM (#6006414)
Thanks Mayor. Makes sense.
   12161. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 23, 2021 at 04:53 PM (#6006427)
Jane Mayer @JaneMayerNYer
Trump Hotel, DC - Looks like they drained the swamp
   12162. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 23, 2021 at 05:03 PM (#6006429)
I certainly understand and support a vaccination hierarchy, but I just can't get worked up over the people cutting in line. Just getting it in as many arms as quickly as possible is all I care about.

Granted, I'm going to treat it like I would a Southwest flight. I'm going to hang back and get on board after the overhead bin fighters have duked it out. I guess it helps to be someone who is relatively healthy and works from home, and who tested positive for the antibodies on both occasions I gave blood (not a guarantee I had it, but a good possibility). I'm giving again on St. Patrick's Day, and it's been awhile since my last complete donation, so I'm interested to see if they're still hanging around
same. it's been a year; i can eat another 6-8 weeks of this while things ramp up.
   12163. base ball chick Posted: February 23, 2021 at 08:44 PM (#6006448)
bad news all yall - new worser california variant

they gonna hafta give everyone booster shots

here in yewstin, the demand for shots is still a LOT greater than the number of shots available. Husband was supposed to get his shot the week of the freeze. jeezus what a clusteryouknowwhat that still is. have not heard the new schedule. and as for me, well, i'm not rich enough to shove to the head of the line so god knows when/if i'll get vaccinated in time. unless, of course, the california strain overwhelms us
   12164. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 23, 2021 at 09:31 PM (#6006453)
bad news all yall - new worser california variant

see what happens when you have a governor who believes in science?

   12165. Greg Pope Posted: February 24, 2021 at 09:01 AM (#6006473)
I certainly understand and support a vaccination hierarchy, but I just can't get worked up over the people cutting in line. Just getting it in as many arms as quickly as possible is all I care about.

Kind of depends on how the line-cutting goes, though, right? I have one co-worker who got his vaccine because some pharmacy had a refrigeration problem and the doses were going to go to waste if they weren't used. So the pharmacist called whoever he could think of and got people vaccinated. No problem. My daughter works in a home for disabled, so in Illinois she was eligible a month ago. She did get the shot but had to provide no proof of employment. It was just her word saying that she was in Phase 1B based on her job. So I could do that even though I'm not eligible. But since they're using up all of the shots every day at our local county site, it would mean taking a shot away from someone who is actually in the hierarchy. That would not be cool.
   12166. SoSH U at work Posted: February 24, 2021 at 09:07 AM (#6006474)
Kind of depends on how the line-cutting goes, though, right? I have one co-worker who got his vaccine because some pharmacy had a refrigeration problem and the doses were going to go to waste if they weren't used. So the pharmacist called whoever he could think of and got people vaccinated. No problem. My daughter works in a home for disabled, so in Illinois she was eligible a month ago. She did get the shot but had to provide no proof of employment. It was just her word saying that she was in Phase 1B based on her job. So I could do that even though I'm not eligible. But since they're using up all of the shots every day at our local county site, it would mean taking a shot away from someone who is actually in the hierarchy. That would not be cool.


I don't think it's cool; it's obviously selfish. But given nothing really changes until we hit a certain number of vaccinations, I simply can't get worked up over the order.
   12167. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 24, 2021 at 11:40 AM (#6006503)
bad news all yall - new worser california variant

yes, that is bad news. and things had been improving.

we'll be getting annual corona shots for the rest of our lives.
   12168. bunyon Posted: February 24, 2021 at 12:18 PM (#6006523)
That CA variant story is really bad. I'm not saying new variants aren't a worry but that one a) isn't new, b) is the dominant strain in a location seeing steep drops in cases and c) appears to respond fine to the vaccine.

The likely story is that that variant is behind the huge CA spike in the past few months. But it's not a "nightmare" scenario on it's own. The "nightmare" scenario of a mutant virus being both more transmissible, more lethal and untouched by the vaccine definitely is a nightmare. And it's possible, but not likely, and this variant ain't it.

Yes, we'll likely get multiple covid vaccines in our lives just like most of us have had multiple flu vaccines in our lives. That isn't fun but it isn't a nightmare.

While there are a lot of people who have never taken this seriously, there are a lot of others hellbent on this never ending and being Black Death level plague. It isn't. It will end and our lives will go on much as they did before. Those of us who've gone through it will know pandemic is always lurking and, hopefully, respond better the next time it pops up. But every new covid strain that comes down the pike is not going to throw us back to square one.
   12169. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 24, 2021 at 06:16 PM (#6006617)
Latest CDC numbers show, so far already counted, 500,000 more deaths in 2020 than there were in 2019. That doesn't include 1) another 15,000 expected(so far. which they have been adjusting up slightly every week) by the CDC due to normal reporting delays, and 2) another 20,000 or so mostly due to North Carolina being ridiculously far behind in reporting. So best guess is about 540,000 or so more in 2020 than 2019, or maybe 460,000 to 520,000 more excess deaths over 10 months, and almost all of that since April 1. If you say best guess if 480,000 in 9 months, that's a more than 20% increase. Probably another 160,000 or so in January/February, for best guess of around 640,000 in 11 months, so maybe a 22.5% increase over a year.
   12170. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 24, 2021 at 06:53 PM (#6006632)
While there are a lot of people who have never taken this seriously, there are a lot of others hellbent on this never ending and being Black Death level plague.

and they're probably more alike than different
   12171. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 24, 2021 at 08:08 PM (#6006645)
“The question is not when do we eliminate the virus in the country,” said Paul Offit, the director of the Vaccine Education Center and an expert in virology and immunology at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Rather, it’s when do we have the virus sufficiently under control? “We’ll have a much, much lower case count, hospitalization count, death count,” Offit said. “What is that number that people are comfortable with?” In his view, “the doors will open” when the country gets to fewer than 5,000 new cases a day, and fewer than 100 deaths.
Some experts were even more conservative. Crystal Watson, a health-security scholar at Johns Hopkins University, suggested a threshold of 0.5 newly diagnosed cases per 100,000 people every day, and a test-positivity rate of less than 1 percent. That would translate to fewer than 2,000 cases a day in the U.S., compared with the current 60,000 or more. We’d also want to log at least one month of normal hospital operations without staff or equipment shortages, she said.




the last time the US had fewer than 100 covid-attributed deaths in a day, according to worldometers, was march 21, 2020; the last time there were fewer than 5000 new cases was march 19.

for an additional frame of reference, over the summer when covid "died down", there were still more than 700 deaths and 40000 new cases per day.
   12172. Snowboy Posted: February 25, 2021 at 01:58 AM (#6006669)
The trial balloon floating very high up here is that the governments will strongly and sternly recommend the vaccines, but leave it to other entities to enforce, namely businesses and employers. Thus side-stepping the challenges based on Charter of Rights and Freedoms, objections based on religion, science, denialists, etc.

Want to shop at Fabric Land? Show me your vaccine passport.
Want to buy concert ticket? Scan the QR code from your passport to proceed to Captcha.
Want to continue employment at Simcoe County Board of Education? Show me your proof of vaccination.
   12173. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 25, 2021 at 02:40 AM (#6006670)
It’s a bit concerning that cases seem to be leveling off now, rather than continuing to decline. I’m guessing this is because places are starting to reduce restrictions again, and people are starting to act as though the pandemic is over. The daily case numbers and hospitalization numbers are basically back at the peak levels from the first two waves, so it feels like we still have a ways to go to beat this thing. We are moving in the right direction but it would really suck if we plateaued at this level for a while rather than continuing the recent downward trend. At least with so many older people having been vaccinated you would hope that the average age of the new cases would be coming down and the death rate would reduce. Although I was looking at the Florida case numbers earlier and the average case age hasn’t changed very much — it’s still in the 38-40 area depending on the day, which I believe is where it has been pretty consistently since August. Their overall case numbers are coming down, but I’ll feel better when that average age starts declining as well.

On a positive personal note, my parents got their second dose of the vaccine recently and have had no side effects other than some fatigue the next day.
   12174. bunyon Posted: February 25, 2021 at 07:42 AM (#6006673)
I’m not surprised at the plateau. The vaccine is, so far, reaching people who don’t engage in risky behavior and with numbers falling, vaccines close younger folks are opening up. The US never really locked down and even folks who took it fairly seriously are done. I’d be shocked if numbers just fell to nothing rather than descend in stages with occasional flare ups. There will be enough anti vaxxers to keep a low level of cases through the summer and maybe into the fall. But the worry over deaths and waves will abate.
   12175. Snowboy Posted: February 25, 2021 at 03:35 PM (#6006786)
Talked to friends in Seattle. They felt very ill after receiving second dose of Moderna vaccine last week. So it's not an isolated incident or a bad local batch. {12144-bunyon} But it happens to some people, and they felt all better again within a day or two.
   12176. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 25, 2021 at 05:34 PM (#6006801)
TX gov is talking about dropping the mask mandate. Well, that's one way, in Tx, to recover from the self-inflicted most expensive disaster in the state's history. It may even help boost the idea that we're better off without electricity than with governments that believe masks work.
   12177. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: March 01, 2021 at 05:31 PM (#6007176)
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/feb/28/clean-break-the-risk-of-catching-covid-from-surfaces-overblown-experts-say

Clean break: the risk of catching Covid from surfaces overblown, experts say

Prioritising eye protection and face masks will prevent the spread of coronavirus more than disinfecting surfaces, research shows


“I want to be clear that nothing should change in terms of washing our hands and personal hygiene,” Vally said. “We can, however, be less anxious about washing every surface 20 times a day, and just concentrate on good hand hygiene and social distancing, and staying home when sick, which should be more than enough to stop us from spreading the virus.”

“This isn’t to say surface transmission isn’t possible and that it doesn’t pose a risk in certain situations, or that we should disregard it completely. But, we should acknowledge the threat surface transmission poses is relatively small.”

“In my opinion, the chance of transmission through inanimate surfaces is very small, and only in instances where an infected person coughs or sneezes on the surface, and someone else touches that surface soon after the cough or sneeze (within 1–2 hours),” Goldman said.

“I do not disagree with erring on the side of caution, but this can go to extremes not justified by the data.” Periodically disinfecting surfaces and use of gloves may be reasonable precautions in settings like hospitals, he said, but is probably overkill for less risky environments.

“I think we’ve underappreciated how important the eyes are and overemphasised surfaces,” Collignon said.

   12178. Mayor Blomberg Posted: March 01, 2021 at 06:30 PM (#6007184)
Will Texas reach herd immunity?

A solid majority (61%) agree that “in general ... vaccines are safe.” That includes majorities of both Democrats (74%) and Republicans (54%). Asked whether vaccines are generally effective, 63% said yes, including 78% of Democrats and 56% of Republicans. More than half (56%) said that vaccines are both safe and effective, including 71% of Democrats and 48% of Republicans.

Even so, 36% said they’ll get vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as it’s available to them, 28% said they will not, and 16% said they’re not sure. Another 15% said they’ve already been vaccinated, meaning just over half have either been vaccinated or are planning to be when they can. In a poll last June, 59% said they would get a COVID-19 vaccine if it was available at low cost; in the October 2020 UT/TT Poll, that number fell to 42%.

Texas Tribune
   12179. bunyon Posted: March 01, 2021 at 09:13 PM (#6007202)
   12180. Mayor Blomberg Posted: March 01, 2021 at 09:39 PM (#6007203)
I like Zeynep Hoca's work across many fields quite a lot, but this take seems too broad-brush and one-dimensional., or at least not cognizant enough of the media environment it would play in.
   12181. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: March 01, 2021 at 10:27 PM (#6007206)
Clean break: the risk of catching Covid from surfaces overblown, experts say
Isn't this news from like June 2020?
   12182. greenback used to say live and let live Posted: March 02, 2021 at 09:36 AM (#6007227)
I like Zeynep Hoca's work across many fields quite a lot, but this take seems too broad-brush and one-dimensional., or at least not cognizant enough of the media environment it would play in.

The media environment is her target here. I mean, the vaccines really should be celebrated every ####### day like a gift from the heavens.
   12183. Mayor Blomberg Posted: March 02, 2021 at 01:07 PM (#6007259)
The media environment is her target here. I mean, the vaccines really should be celebrated every ####### day like a gift from the heavens.


I get that, but the media environment is also such that any celebration is immediately going to be the subject of pushback that taps into existing conspiracy tendencies and leads to distrust. My issue is that she's treating the media audience as rational, and it is not.
   12184. bunyon Posted: March 02, 2021 at 02:18 PM (#6007275)
My issue is that she's treating the media audience as rational, and it is not.

I'm not saying you're wrong, necessarily, but that's a cogent argument that an authoritarian response is required. If you can't tell people the truth and have them make judgements, you can't have a free society.

Again, maybe you're not wrong. Certainly, the media acts this way.
   12185. Mayor Blomberg Posted: March 02, 2021 at 08:39 PM (#6007324)
I'm not saying you're wrong, necessarily, but that's a cogent argument that an authoritarian response is required. If you can't tell people the truth and have them make judgements, you can't have a free society.


Sure you can. It's just not pretty; Locke's line between liberty and license. Meanwhile, on this day that a student emails to tell me her persistent high fever has been diagnosed as COVID, Gov. Abbott goes the full miracle, drops the mask ordinance and declares everything 100 percent open. (Would he have done so without the electric and water outages? Good question.)
   12186. base ball chick Posted: March 02, 2021 at 09:32 PM (#6007331)
abbott is just trying to kill off as many Black and non-White people as he can. legally.

his gang are all against govt and interference with Libbberty and they refuse to have regulations and then expensive shttt happens and then they all whiny and running to the govment

harris county has 5 something million people in it. not even 10% have been fully vaccinated and dammmm few Black and other non-White people. and case numbers are going back up

it's gonna be forever until those of us not in the privileged groups get that vaccine and with umpty zillion people now refusing to wear masks, my chance of dying just went wayyyy up just like my blood pressure

i'm not taking that mask off from the time i leave my car until the minute i get back in it. and ima start going back to shopping at the kroger at like 5 AM on saturday so as to not be around people. and the kid is NOT goin nowhers neither. not until he's out of the house and gone

oh yeah

i know the numbers after vaccination about how many people don't have to get admitted to the hospital - and you have to be dying to get admitted - but i don't have numbers about how many people get really sick but not enough to meet the qualifications to get admitted. i mean like sick for weeks with high fever and/or long covid syndrome. all that is not considered "severe" - and i know of quite a few people who were sick as a dog for weeks and and some who still are not healthy

- and there are a lot of people who don't go to the hospital anyway because of no health ins. texas has the highest % of uninsured citizens in the USA. really.

   12187. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: March 02, 2021 at 10:33 PM (#6007339)
Bad news from Texas.

Good news from Biden that we should have enough vaccine supplies for every adult to get one by the end of May.

   12188. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 02, 2021 at 10:56 PM (#6007343)
harris county has 5 something million people in it. not even 10% have been fully vaccinated and dammmm few Black and other non-White people. and case numbers are going back up
Which political party runs Houston & Harris County, Texas, and is distributing vaccines in such a racist manner? Maybe the Governor can remove those officials? Or is the reported higher vaccine skepticism among blacks, including health care workers, the problem?
   12189. base ball chick Posted: March 02, 2021 at 10:57 PM (#6007345)
those of us still alive
   12190. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: March 02, 2021 at 11:09 PM (#6007349)

Which political party runs Houston & Harris County, Texas, and is distributing vaccines in such a racist manner? Maybe the Governor can remove those officials?

Vaccine distribution in Texas, like every other state I'm aware of, is being managed by the state DSHS and not local officials. FEMA has also set up 3 additional sites to help underserved communities in Dallas and Houston.
   12191. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 03, 2021 at 12:00 AM (#6007353)
The states may be ‘managing’ vaccine distribution - basically allocating vaccine to the localities - in most states, but city & county health departments, along with hospitals & other providers, are administering vaccinations. That seems to be the case in Harris County, Texas, so if it is being done in a a discriminatory fashion, the locals would have to be complicit. Of course, we only have an unsupported assertion as to any discrimination. Maybe there should be an investigation?
   12192. Mayor Blomberg Posted: March 03, 2021 at 12:24 AM (#6007355)
And if Texas could be governed by the Harris County Judge, this part of the world would be a far better place.
   12193. base ball chick Posted: March 03, 2021 at 12:28 AM (#6007356)
in harris county, which is separate from the City of Houston - meaning 2 different lists - there are 2 different websites which are both tricky to use. this is separate from the FEMA sites. which is separate from the sites and lists set up by memorial herman and by methodist - the last 2 you have to be part of their medical system to get on their lists.

you also have to have a car to drive through a site - this is a big problem for a lot of poor folks. that is if you can figure out how to get on the list. it is impossible to get through on the phone. i know plenty of folks who have tried

believe me the mayor and county executive would take truckloads of vaccines to the local clinics in the poor neighborhoods if they could, but they can't

and people like me are going to be the last to get vaccinated. somehow, rich White people under 65 are managing to somehow get vaccines. amazing ain't it

and yes there are plenty of Black people who don't trust the govmint. for very good reasons. but if you got no insurance or connections and you WANT the shot, and are not over 65, or can't get it at work, forget it. we could get the shot if they would send it to the local kroger or even better to the local health clinic, but nooooo. the biggest shot refusers are gonna be the White republicans under 65. seeing as how White people can't get it i guess

i would get it tomorrow if i could but nope, nothing available.

if i am still alive or able to do things like breathe and walk at the same time when we are supposed to be able to get it in may, it will prolly be at the kroger and then i will. i am just gonna hafta be even more obsessive than i already am until i can get protection

i mean this pretending you can't get the virus or if you do it is just like a cold or something, because you are under 65 is so stupid. all 3 Black people i know who died are under 65. the White person i know who died was healthy and under 30. running around without a mask and pretending there is no virus is like having sex without making him wear a condom and figuring you can't get pregnant ever because you haven't got pregnant so far

Mayor Blomberg Posted: March 03, 2021 at 12:24 AM (#6007355)
And if Texas could be governed by the Harris County Judge, this part of the world would be a far better place.


lina hidalgo is so incredibly good it is amazing. she has done a beyond awesome job and she isn't even 30 yet (i think she's like 29)
i never even knew the name of a county judge before, but she's done more for us and our city than any politician like i have ever seen. i wish she was governor. but she's of hispanic descent and she looks it, so you know the bigots won't stand for that because it would prove that hispanics aren't Teh Evullll and good for nothin besides pickin fruit, packin meat and running gangs/sex rings
   12194. Mayor Blomberg Posted: March 03, 2021 at 12:32 AM (#6007358)
rich White people under 65 are managing to somehow get vaccines.

It's like taking the SAT. If you're rich and white enough you have a special-care disability.
   12195. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: March 03, 2021 at 10:05 AM (#6007379)
I have a non-white friend in Texas who was able to get the vaccine just by calling around to a few pharmacies and seeing if any of them had appointments available. This is basically the same way my parents were able to get it in NY, although I believe they would have been able to get appointments at one of the state sites as well — just a month later. I don’t know if they had shots that were going to expire if not used, but if you know people who are unable to get the vaccine I wouldn’t just rely on the state/county websites.
   12196. bunyon Posted: March 03, 2021 at 10:56 AM (#6007389)
Distribution so far has been really random, though it's definitely favored certain zip codes and those comfortable with the internet. My understanding from everyone is that distribution in Texas has been below average.

As to "what party" is responsible, it's a mixed bag. It appears to me that GOP led states have left it most to counties and cities and the quality of city and county boards of health varies tremendously and very few are set up to handle large populations, even those with large populations.

But hang in there, bbc and others. It'll be soon.
   12197. SoSH U at work Posted: March 03, 2021 at 11:01 AM (#6007391)
I have a non-white friend in Texas who was able to get the vaccine just by calling around to a few pharmacies and seeing if any of them had appointments available.


I have a friend who did the same thing in Connecticut, though I think he did it at end the business day for the pharmacy.
   12198. OPS+ Posted: March 03, 2021 at 11:14 AM (#6007393)
I have a friend who did the same thing in Connecticut, though I think he did it at end the business day for the pharmacy.


That's how it is in Rhode Island. Pharmacies have no shows or don't fill appointments, so they need to get rid of them at the end of the day. At that point they'll basically give it to anyone.
   12199. Lassus Posted: March 03, 2021 at 01:03 PM (#6007423)
Literal conversation with co-worker, 10 seconds ago:

ME: I hope you'll be getting your vaccine?

THEM: I won't be getting the vaccine.

ME: Why, may I ask?

THEM: I don't trust the government.

ME: Good luck, I guess.
   12200. Lassus Posted: March 03, 2021 at 01:05 PM (#6007425)
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