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  #9441  
Old Posted Feb 8, 2022, 5:38 PM
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Did somebody say B1 and B2? Are you thinking what I'm thinking?

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  #9442  
Old Posted Feb 8, 2022, 5:56 PM
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Originally Posted by biguc View Post
What is this monolithic Europe with a policy of restrictions?

In Bulgaria they've basically acted like Covid never existed. Denmark recently ended all restrictions (while experiencing the biggest spike in registered cases on the continent).

Again, the high and fast spikes in cases in European countries don't correspond to the effects of "flattening the curve" you claim exist, nor do they correspond to the differing, country-by-country realities of restrictions.

At this point, I'd suggest looking at the spread of this virus like the weather: it's a chaotic system; we can point to proximate causes of local events, but broader predictability eludes us.

Blaming late European omicron waves on pan-European policy--even if that's actually what the data tell us--is like blaming a late European spring on European climate change initiatives.
Most European countries, especially the ones that anyone gives a shit about, have generally had Covid policies that, while varied, have been and are stricter than the US or current UK measures.

Let’s not try to educate me about Covid rules in Europe. I have, since March 2020, spent at least 4 months in EU countries (mostly Italy, Spain and France) at different points in time with different rules in place, so I’ve had a firsthand view of the ridiculousness and uselessness of it all.
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  #9443  
Old Posted Feb 8, 2022, 5:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biguc View Post
Denmark recently ended all restrictions (while experiencing the biggest spike in registered cases on the continent).
Didn't they drop the restrictions around the peak?

If the restrictions were suppressing transmission a lot, and they were dropped around the peak, there would be a big resurgence in transmission.
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  #9444  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 2:58 PM
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It’s always good news when this thread gets less action, can we all agree on that?

Gov Newsom calling Covid “endemic”

Illinois’ Gov Pritzker lost his court bid to reinstate his school mask mandate. So now it’s optional, and my kids’ schools opted for “mask optional”
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  #9445  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 3:04 PM
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I'm intrigued to see what level Omicron peters along at now that the wave is over.

It seems clear it's going to be lower than 20 per 100,000. Will it be 10? 5?
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  #9446  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 3:21 PM
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good news for long covid and kids:


https://www.statnews.com/2022/02/14/...ng-covid-kids/
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  #9447  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 3:30 PM
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The last two paragraphs of that article sum it up well.

Quote:
Fear has had a strong hold on Americans for more than two years, and it is a hard thing to let go of. But we owe it to children to follow the science: Children are more likely to suffer from pandemic-associated symptoms than from infection-associated symptoms. School policies should reflect this reality.

Families and school staff need to be given factual, reassuring messaging about the actual risks of Covid-19 to children, put away the masks in most school settings — at least for now — and restore a sense of normalcy to their day-to-day lives.
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  #9448  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 3:46 PM
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I’ve never heard of STAT News, but ain’t that the truth!
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  #9449  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 3:48 PM
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We attended parent teacher conferences for my younger kid last night. He is a 5th grader.

It was a weird hybrid. Some parents wore masks, some didn’t. I didn’t but my wife did.

We are in a transitional phase right now.
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  #9450  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 4:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 10023 View Post
Most European countries, especially the ones that anyone gives a shit about, have generally had Covid policies that, while varied, have been and are stricter than the US or current UK measures.

Let’s not try to educate me about Covid rules in Europe. I have, since March 2020, spent at least 4 months in EU countries (mostly Italy, Spain and France) at different points in time with different rules in place, so I’ve had a firsthand view of the ridiculousness and uselessness of it all.
Cool story. I actually live here. For the duration of the pandemic I've had a firsthand view of a mix of ridiculous uselessness and extremely useful policy.

Your reductive arguments are wrong. Their premises don't account for the nuance of reality and your conclusions, therefore, don't match the data.

And maybe you should try giving a shit about countries that don't fit your narrative. You might still look like a dick but it can only help.
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  #9451  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 5:10 PM
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Didn't they drop the restrictions around the peak?

If the restrictions were suppressing transmission a lot, and they were dropped around the peak, there would be a big resurgence in transmission.
Yeah, it looked like they were coming off the peak. Opening seems to have bumped them back up and prolonged the peak. Daily case counts have since apparently declined.

Denmark's case count looks like a huge outlier. That's a testament to their testing--they seem to have run the best testing program on earth.

Since ending restrictions, their testing rates have evidently dropped. This makes sense. Rapid antigen testing there--like it remains here in Germany--was a routine practice to get around some restrictions. If you tested positive, you'd take a PCR test for confirmation, and isolate until you got your results. Without restrictions, there's no reason to take a test besides curiosity, minding your own health, or your greater sense of personal responsibility. And even if you do test positive on a rapid antigen, you don't have to take a PCR test--that positive result will never show up in official stats.

So testing has declined. But positivity rates have actually increased. Here's another a testament to the efficacy of Danish testing: their positivity rates are increasing, Berlin's are declining, and yet Berlin's positivity rates are still higher. Our measured case counts, by the way, never touched Denmark's, and are actually declining.

So what is really going on with Danish case counts? Who knows. Positivity rates are a pretty reliable indicator of where things are going, but with fewer people testing, those who do test may be biased for actually being sick.

Different testing regimes, country to country, are just one reason not to make gross generalizations about the causes and effects of different policies. If the UK isn't testing at the same rate as Germany, and if they've introduced policies that changed testing rates, and if there are meaningful cultural difference around personal space, and if, if, if. Pile on the hypotheticals and good luck finding any comparable causal relationship between policy and case counts.

Of course, that only matters if the case counts even bear out the hypothesis. Here we've got people saying the low, flat curves of US and UK case counts are the result of openness, and the high, spikey curves of France, Germany, and Denmark are the result of curve flattening. It makes no goddamn sense on the face of it.
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  #9452  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 5:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrnyc View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
The last two paragraphs of that article sum it up well.
Wow so the conspiracy theorists are right again. Who would have thought? Lol. It's like everything I was hearing in 2020 on what we shouldn't be doing/what will happen next is just now being proven correct after being essentially silenced for two years. Better late than never I guess.
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  #9453  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 7:13 PM
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I'm still in a "wear a mask whenever I go indoors" at the moment - though of course I take it off when I eat/drink. In part this is due to force of habit, and in part due to it being winter and often just having a mask on already to keep my face warm. Plus so many stores in the area still have masking rules at the moment - and I ride the bus and need to mask up for that. I'm trying to decide a threshold where I'll try and wean myself off the mask. Cases are down to 26 per 100,000 here, so probably when they are down around 10? Unless the decline slows down, that's gonna be within 2 weeks or so, meaning just the time the temperature would start rising and my face wouldn't be so frigid anyway.

My wife is unfortunately one of those people who's irrationally frightened of COVID. Like last weekend, my daughter asked me at the spur of the moment if her friend could have a sleepover. Her and her friend are both vaxxed of course, and her friend already had Omicron around a month ago. Thus she has antibodies, and she's no risk whatsoever. But my wife was pissed at me for agreeing to a "risk" without talking to her, and wore her mask indoors the entire time my daughter's friend was over. I figure I just have to give it time until whatever news sites she reads stop being so alarmist.
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  #9454  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 8:20 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is offline
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^ I was right when I said that Covid has largely turned into a society-wide mental illness

I’m so glad I’m not susceptible to that kind of stuff, and to group-think in general. It’s the blessing (and curse) of being a natural skeptic and....well....just being intelligent
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  #9455  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2022, 8:48 PM
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^^
I cant believe there are still people like that now. But then again, I still see people wearing face shields and masks while being alone in their cars. I havent worn a mask since probably last May when it was still required here (except for at doctors offices still or they wont let you in). I dont even bother wearing one when a sign states that they must be worn, screw them and nobody ever says anything. But there's hardly a place left in Pittsburgh other than in the most liberal of neighborhoods that still requires masks. Was even at a restaurant last week and the servers werent wearing masks, made it much easier to hear them and it was nice to see their faces finally again.
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  #9456  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2022, 5:49 PM
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At Northstar Ski Resort yesterday we were packed in like sardines on the bus. I didn't wear a mask nor did I see anybody wear a mask other than the bus driver. It was a little bit of an adjustment with the bus being so crowded, especially when you hear somebody cough or sneeze, but we were not meant to go thru life wearing masks.

I am a little curious what will come form BA-2 since first studies are saying it probably is more serious than BA-1 (gets back into the lungs) and is certainly more contagious. I guess it will just make the unvaccinated more likely to get serious illness and/or die.

The vaccinated population (those who haven't already done so) should get used to getting back to life without a mask. It will be easier for some than others.
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  #9457  
Old Posted Feb 19, 2022, 7:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by photoLith View Post
^^
I cant believe there are still people like that now. But then again, I still see people wearing face shields and masks while being alone in their cars. I havent worn a mask since probably last May when it was still required here (except for at doctors offices still or they wont let you in). I dont even bother wearing one when a sign states that they must be worn, screw them and nobody ever says anything. But there's hardly a place left in Pittsburgh other than in the most liberal of neighborhoods that still requires masks. Was even at a restaurant last week and the servers werent wearing masks, made it much easier to hear them and it was nice to see their faces finally again.
Their body, their choice (to wear a mask). I have stopped since the mandate was lifted, but it's nice to see people who thought I was an antivaxxer/antimasker look at me with contempt at local establishments.
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  #9458  
Old Posted Feb 20, 2022, 2:52 PM
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It appears as if Texas is going to court to end mask mandates on airplanes and public-transit. For many, the only time they wear a mask is on public-transit or when flying. If they are successful, that could be the end of masking for many of us. For a while, it seemed as if it would never end. I actually heard a public health official in North Carolina, when delta was declining, say he wouldn't recommend ending mask mandates due to cold and flu season.
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  #9459  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2022, 4:24 AM
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It appears as if Texas is going to court to end mask mandates on airplanes and public-transit. For many, the only time they wear a mask is on public-transit or when flying. If they are successful, that could be the end of masking for many of us. For a while, it seemed as if it would never end. I actually heard a public health official in North Carolina, when delta was declining, say he wouldn't recommend ending mask mandates due to cold and flu season.
On a similar note, Covid measures may have driven one of the Flu strains into extinction. 1 of the 4 strains of the Flu has not been seen since masking began.

https://www.webmd.com/lung/news/2021...o-extinction#1

Quote:
No B/Yamagata strains have been isolated or genetically sequenced in flu case tracking since March 2020, when COVID lockdowns essentially ended the 2019-2020 flu season, the researchers said.
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  #9460  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2022, 1:19 PM
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2 points:

1. What part about "Mask advisory" is so hard for a certain group of elected leaders to understand? I don't get the need for top-down, authoritarian-style decrees that we all know creates WAY more backlash and instability than it is worth. What are we achieving here other than settling scores? Next time Flu season arrives, or next time the next COVID wave hits, they should instead issue "mask advisories". I bet you that it will lead to plenty of compliance without all of the outrage. Heck, I'll probably wear one more often--it's nice to know that I am making my own decisions.

2. Making a Flu variant extinct: believe it or not, this may not be a good thing. What we know about nature is that every niche gets filled by some new species/subspecies. Now that a niche has opened up, something else will eventually fill its place, and it could potentially be something we don't have a lot of immunity do. It's better to let the viruses that we have dealt with for millennia continue to circulate through the population.
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