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Thread: The COVID-19 Discussion Thread (OTB)

  1. #541
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Obviously, I know nothing about the individuals involved in this specific incident, but often these events have very little to do with a person having strong feelings about the apparent precipitating event. There's a whole bunch of people who not only have difficulty modelling other people as being like themselves, but who also struggle to imagine their future self as being in any way related to their present self.
    I was thinking the same thing. It's really hard to say, but in this case there was a report that they had "a bipolar disorder." I'm not really sure why they used the "a" article, but my suspicion was that perhaps one of them really did have some type of psychosis and maybe the other sister was in a kind of "Stockholm syndrome" situation. But as you say, people blow up for a variety of reasons and engage in behaviors that will clearly have a bad impact that people would be expected to understand, and in the present situation the mask requirement is probably just a trigger that is focused on because everyone understands it. In the US (I'm sure in other places as well) there are people who end up killing someone (and facing severe consequences) because the other person cut them off in a traffic lane or took the parking space they were intending to use.
    As above, so below

  2. #542
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    And we should bear in mind that people have been subjected to vicious attacks for not wearing a mask.
    There's a danger in this sort of "themed reporting" that each side of an argument finds it easy to say: "Look at the sort of selfish/oppressive crazies who disagree with me."

    Grant Hutchison

  3. #543
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    Oh, good, another "but they were mentally ill really" report. As though the stigma against mentally ill people isn't bad enough already.
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  4. #544
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    My state (Va) isn't in too bad of a shape but like so many others our covid numbers are also on the increase. Wearing a mask outside one's own home should be considered a civic duty IMO. If we turned a corner it looks like we ran a stop sign first and then went in the wrong direction...
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  5. #545
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spacedude View Post
    My state (Va) isn't in too bad of a shape but like so many others our covid numbers are also on the increase. Wearing a mask outside one's own home should be considered a civic duty IMO. If we turned a corner it looks like we ran a stop sign first and then went in the wrong direction...
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    I've been wondering/concerned about this a lot. Almost without exception, things are getting bad, and by several measures, are worse than at any point during the pandemic (that is certainly true in Ohio, and Ohio isn't the worst state by any measure).

    Yet I don't see any moves to reimpose the precautions we had in the spring, even though things are worse than in the spring. All our actions, both government mandated ones and self-imposed ones, seem to be going in the opposite direction.

    A minor example - I was watching a local TV news program today and the two anchors were celebrating the fact that they were back in the studio together, six feet apart, but not wearing masks, instead of reporting from home or alone on the set, as they have done for months.

    Another example - I've been working from home almost constantly since this started, physically going in only a couple of times a months. Yet every time I go in, there seems to be more and more people in, and even my boss is now going in several days a week, even though he admits there is really no reason to do so.

    I absolutely don't get this. I know everyone is tired of the pandemic, but I still have a desire to avoid death. The virus doesn't care at all that you are tired of the restrictions.
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  6. #546
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    A hospital orderly succinctly summarized the prime considerations for transmission in four words for me yesterday: People, space, time, place.
    Your risk of catching or transmitting this virus scales with:
    - The number of people you encounter in a day
    - Inversely with the amount of space you maintain around yourself
    - The length of time you spend in the vicinity of people
    - The location in which you meet them, from outdoors (good) to poorly ventilated indoors (bad).

    Everything else is commentary, and it seems that as this pandemic has gone on, people have started to ignore these basics while becoming obsessed with more minor aspects.

    Grant Hutchison

  7. #547
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    A hospital orderly succinctly summarized the prime considerations for transmission in four words for me yesterday: People, space, time, place.
    Your risk of catching or transmitting this virus scales with:
    - The number of people you encounter in a day
    - Inversely with the amount of space you maintain around yourself
    - The length of time you spend in the vicinity of people
    - The location in which you meet them, from outdoors (good) to poorly ventilated indoors (bad).

    Everything else is commentary, and it seems that as this pandemic has gone on, people have started to ignore these basics while becoming obsessed with more minor aspects.

    Grant Hutchison

    Oh, pretty much like other infectious Corona diseases then�� I notice people seem to think masks relieve us of distance precautions, but it is more the other way around.
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  8. #548
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I absolutely don't get this. I know everyone is tired of the pandemic, but I still have a desire to avoid death. The virus doesn't care at all that you are tired of the restrictions.
    I would love to feel safe again. But I didn't even invite my own sister into my house yesterday, because we hadn't agreed in advance that she was going to be accepted into our bubble. (I'll admit the kids and I don't wear masks when we're meeting friends on the patio, but I make sure the kids stay at least six feet away from everyone, and I do, too. Usually more. And it's outside.) I'm not going to feel fully safe in large groups until the After Time, which is going to be after there's a vaccine. I keep an eye on our numbers, and I certainly won't feel safe any time soon, the way they're going. We had ten deaths one day this week, which is five times the highest number we've had in any other day in our county.
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    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

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  9. #549
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    Victoria, the one state in Australia that was having major problems with Covid-19 has now come out of its lockdown, mask usage in public is still required, and has certainly appeared to have broken the back of the pandemic - so far at least. Today it recorded its 6th day in a row with no new cases and no deaths. There are now just 20 active cases in the state with 2 persons hospitalised.

    Initial reports that the outbreak there was due to security guards having sex with persons in quarantine has been comprehensively disproved by genomic tracing.

  10. #550
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I've been wondering/concerned about this a lot. Almost without exception, things are getting bad, and by several measures, are worse than at any point during the pandemic (that is certainly true in Ohio, and Ohio isn't the worst state by any measure).

    Yet I don't see any moves to reimpose the precautions we had in the spring, even though things are worse than in the spring. All our actions, both government mandated ones and self-imposed ones, seem to be going in the opposite direction.

    A minor example - I was watching a local TV news program today and the two anchors were celebrating the fact that they were back in the studio together, six feet apart, but not wearing masks, instead of reporting from home or alone on the set, as they have done for months.

    Another example - I've been working from home almost constantly since this started, physically going in only a couple of times a months. Yet every time I go in, there seems to be more and more people in, and even my boss is now going in several days a week, even though he admits there is really no reason to do so.

    I absolutely don't get this. I know everyone is tired of the pandemic, but I still have a desire to avoid death. The virus doesn't care at all that you are tired of the restrictions.
    I agree 100%. Do you think perhaps there is a component to people's general behavior rooted in a perceived increased knowledge of the virus? What I mean is, we know a lot more about how the virus is transmitted so maybe folks are loosening their behavior thinking they are safer than what was thought back in the spring.

    I noticed yesterday that the local grocery store I favor has loosened its protocols despite the state and the city having the worst virus case numbers so far during the pandemic. They had instituted one-way ingress/egress through the two sets of double doors located at opposite sides of the building. That's gone. They had put down one-way decals on the floors to regulate aisle traffic. Also gone. Why?

  11. #551
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    My state is currently having a debate about whether it's safe to send our kids back to school; this is based on studies that suggest that children in elementary schools, at least, may not drive transmission. I'd much rather we wait, given how high our county's numbers are getting.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  12. #552
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    With over 108,000 new cases in the USA yesterday, it doesn't seem like the time to be opening up. That said, I was quite pleased to see one of the supermarkets here had removed the arrows from the floor.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  13. #553
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I absolutely don't get this. I know everyone is tired of the pandemic, but I still have a desire to avoid death. The virus doesn't care at all that you are tired of the restrictions.
    The WHO call this pandemic fatigue--it's happening all over the world. They identify a number of causes.
    1) People recalibrate their risk perception. At first, there was a general high level of fear because of the appearance of a new, poorly understood threat, but people have now become acclimatized to its existence, and may even have a perception of lower risk despite living in a riskier environment.
    2) The longer we're subject to restrictions on our livelihood and liberty, the more the perceived cost grows. So the risk/benefit calculation shifts.
    3) As part of 2) above, people become resentful of the restrictions, so become more likely to breach rules.
    4) It's impossible to stay fearful forever--people adapt to the most outrageous situations and become complacent about things that previously terrified them. My aunt lived in London during the Blitz, and described how she made the transition from shaking under the table during the first bombing raids to going out in the streets to watch the later ones.
    5) Once a lot of people in society are behaving in this way, it encourages others to do likewise.

    The WHO document I linked to contains a list of fairly airy suggestions on how to turn such a situation around without resorting to terrifying people again. I'm not really seeing much effort in that direction going on in my neck of the woods.

    In discussion with medical colleagues during the course of the Current Unpleasantness, we find that we've all had a very similar experience. We spent the first few months trying to calm our non-medical friends down and reassure them that we weren't All Doomed; now we're spending our time trying to get the same people to take things seriously enough to check the current restrictions and, you know, adhere to them. My own observation (I have no epidemiology to support it) is that people who are used to following safety protocols in their work--engineers, pilots, laboratory workers, etc--have done better at maintaining a knowledge of, and adherence to, the public health advice. They don't need to be frightened to maintain good risk-management behaviour, in other words.

    Grant Hutchison
    Last edited by grant hutchison; 2020-Nov-05 at 09:26 PM.

  14. #554
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    Yes, I was almost always having food and items delivered to my house with no contact procedures (delivered to the front door or mailbox) but I got tired of the extreme isolation and have been going to the stores and getting takeout sometimes. I still keep my distance and always wash my hands when I get home. I stopped going to one store because they aren’t as well set up as others and I’ve had a couple of idiots crowd me in the checkout aisle there.

    I don’t feel worried, but I do remain careful. I’ve had a couple medical issues that carried significant risk (one was a genetically related heart condition that eventually left me unable to do any heavy exertion and ultimately required a heart procedure) so I’m used to the idea of health risk. You just try to reasonably minimize adding to risk and go on with your life as far as possible.

    Locally, the infections have gone up a little, but not too much so far. California generally is more stable than most states. But I am thinking of going back to home delivery for awhile.

    I am really tired of this, and often think about what I’ll do when the disease is tamped down, like travel to various places, yet I naturally am someone who likes a fair amount of time alone. I can see where others with different personalities could have much more trouble.
    Last edited by Van Rijn; 2020-Nov-06 at 12:25 AM.

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  15. #555
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    I've certainly been feeling the pandemic fatigue, but we're still trying to be safe. It's tough. One unfortunate side effect for me is that I've been drinking too much wine. Got get a handle on that.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  16. #556
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    Ours have been skyrocketing. We as a county were careful for the first few months--well, a lot of the early cases in the US, at least the diagnosed ones, were not far north of me. And then starting about mid-summer, we just . . . stopped. And in the last month or so, after it started to look like we were looking better, we had more cases than we ever have. It's really frustrating.
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    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  17. #557
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    One of my customers at work who I know only by email said he had Covid-19 for five days and it wasn't so bad, but he hated the long isolation that followed. He's also concerned about long term effects and said he's going to keep an eye on his physical and mental states. But if he's watching out for problems, minor occurrences of clumsiness or forgetfulness that would normally be ignored might become more noticeable, making him think he has impairments that don't exist. I thought about saying something, but then I don't want him ignoring problems based on what I say. I should probably refrain from giving medical advice.

  18. #558
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    Ours have been skyrocketing. We as a county were careful for the first few months--well, a lot of the early cases in the US, at least the diagnosed ones, were not far north of me. And then starting about mid-summer, we just . . . stopped. And in the last month or so, after it started to look like we were looking better, we had more cases than we ever have. It's really frustrating.
    It’s really obvious it doesn’t take long for this disease to get ahead of control measures when they get rolled back. I think that’s one of the biggest issues - most people just don’t expect or plan for how fast conditions can change. We had a heavy lockdown and stay at home order, then in June it was loosened up a bit and numbers quickly climbed. Statewide, we moved back to tougher restrictions again, but no longer had a full lockdown. My county stayed fairly steady for months though recently numbers have gone up a bit, but not enough to take us to the tougher control tier, at least not yet. Some counties did improve and shift to a lighter control tier, even recently. We’ll see if that lasts.

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  19. #559
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    Whenever things get better somewhere they start to reopen and things get worse. It looks like every time something works they put a stop to it.

  20. #560
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    Whenever things get better somewhere they start to reopen and things get worse. It looks like every time something works they put a stop to it.
    Covid gets better, economy and mental health get worse. Then economy and mental health get better, but Covid gets worse. Poverty and poor mental health kill people too, but in ways that are harder to quantify. Risks and benefits, swings and roundabouts, and all with imperfect knowledge. It'll be remarkable if any country in the world manages to hit the balance that saves most lives, and we'll only know in retrospect.

    Grant Hutchison

  21. #561
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    The poor folks in the Stanford “prison” experiment were probably at lower risk of getting easily transmissible diseases as well. And what did the kids get out of that but a lifetime of therapy...last I heard, they listened to experts as well. And that lockdown lasted for only how long?

  22. #562
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    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    The poor folks in the Stanford “prison” experiment were probably at lower risk of getting easily transmissible diseases as well. And what did the kids get out of that but a lifetime of therapy...last I heard, they listened to experts as well. And that lockdown lasted for only how long?
    I don't think it's reasonable to compare the Stanford prison experiment (where the "guards" ended up actively trying to degrade the "prisoners", and the researchers called off the experiment once they realized how quickly the situation devolved) with people being asked to self-isolate in their own homes. I won't argue that isolation can bring it's own issues, but there's a world of difference between those two. I don't think anyone is suggesting that mass incarceration would be a good solution to the spreading virus. Indeed, prisons and other places where many people are housed in close quarters (nursing homes, for example), are at pretty high risk of becoming outbreak hot spots.
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  23. #563
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    In the Stanford experiment, participants consciously adopted roles under the direction of the experimenters. Some have been quite frank about doing what they did so as to produce a good "experimental result".
    Participants were followed up, to some extent, and the usual narrative is that there were no long-term adverse psychological effects, though I doubt if that's a particularly robust claim. Where does the "lifetime of therapy" story come from?
    But in any case, the experimental design and subsequent conduct means that the SPE has no real relevance to Covid-19 lockdowns.

    Grant Hutchison

  24. #564
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    Pretty sure the people in the SPE didn't have internet. Weren't able to wear their own clothes. Couldn't make and eat their own food. Frankly, lockdown is luxury compared to actual prison.
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    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  25. #565
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    Pretty sure the people in the SPE didn't have internet. Weren't able to wear their own clothes. Couldn't make and eat their own food. Frankly, lockdown is luxury compared to actual prison.
    The SPE folks weren't even in a good simulation of a normal prison environment in western society. Because of the "guards" determination to deliver what they thought the experimenters wanted, the "prisoners" were being subjected to sleep deprivation, ritual humiliation and sensory deprivation.

    Grant Hutchison

  26. #566
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    Stupid question, if a local college campus decides to test all 9-10,000 students in a week, could that push up numbers for a whole county by virtue of just the quantity of test being more than what you were doing?

    My wife says, "no" but I don't want to believe it. Her rational is the number of sick would be every present and vaguely known, while the number of healthy people is what the test is actually detecting. Sick people might not be able to say it's one thing or another, but they might get a test even if not require to. That sort of makes sense, but I still have doubts.

    (Edit: This is more OTB than science because this college is down the street from my school and we are getting the hint that some sort of restriction is coming soon. I'm merely concerned rather than voicing an opinion. I just don't know how concerned to be because it's not my workplace that is contributing to this situation. My work place is 50 people, so that's not a good population size to formulate ideas from.)
    Solfe

  27. #567
    Well the test detects the virus so if there is a positive it will add to the national numbers, but some might not show symptoms but they still have the virus and are infected.
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  28. #568
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    Impossible to say. What's the population of the county, what's the incidence of positive tests, what's the best guess for prevalence in the college? And what numbers are you concerned about? No-one makes decisions about social restrictions based purely on the number of cases identified in a single week.

    Grant Hutchison

  29. #569
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Impossible to say. What's the population of the county, what's the incidence of positive tests, what's the best guess for prevalence in the college? And what numbers are you concerned about? No-one makes decisions about social restrictions based purely on the number of cases identified in a single week.

    Grant Hutchison
    It's been rising slowly for weeks. But lately, those numbers are far too high. At least for this area. It's actually just one zip code, so its several city blocks or maybe a mile or so, not the whole of Western New York.
    Solfe

  30. #570
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    It's been rising slowly for weeks. But lately, those numbers are far too high. At least for this area. It's actually just one zip code, so its several city blocks or maybe a mile or so, not the whole of Western New York.
    Just a question, but how are figures counted in the US? In Japan (which is a bit strange), an infection is counted as being in the hospital where the test was done. So areas that have big hospitals automatically get more cases than places without big hospitals.
    As above, so below

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