Jump to content
Gordo

Just curious, anyone have a plan, or preps for global pandemic?

Covid-19 Vaccine Survey  

25 members have voted

  1. 1. Your Vaccine Status is:

    • Fully vaccinated
      20
    • Partially vaccinated
      0
    • Not Vaccinated
      5
  2. 2. If not (fully) vaccinated, your reason(s) for your decision (check all that apply):

    • Not Applicable - I'm vaccinated
      19
    • The rapid vaccine development process makes me distrust them
      3
    • I'm worried about vaccine side effects
      4
    • I don't think I'm at much risk of getting a covid infection
      3
    • I don't believe a covid infection is a serious risk for someone like me
      4
    • I'm waiting until the vaccines receive final approval
      0
    • Fear of needles
      0
    • A medical condition prevents me from getting vaccines
      0
    • Bad reaction to the first dose of the covid vaccine
      0
    • I already had COVID-19 and don't think I need the vaccine for protection
      2
    • Vaccine not available where I live
      0
  3. 3. Are you OK with having your CR forum name included on a list of members who have/haven't chosen to be vaccinated?

    • Yes
      22
    • No
      3


Recommended Posts

On 8/4/2021 at 6:27 AM, Gordo said:

Wow, indeed.

Top, my bottom.

'as the sixteenth-largest circulation worldwide.[3] Bild has been described as "notorious for its mix of gossip, inflammatory language, and sensationalism"' -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bild

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Der_Spiegel_(online) "is the most frequently quoted online media product in Germany."

Leave it to the tabloid to need to say '"sorry for telling children “that they were going to murder their grandma.”"

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, AlPater said:

'as the sixteenth-largest circulation worldwide.[3] Bild has been described as "notorious for its mix of gossip, inflammatory language, and sensationalism"' -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bild

Al, again, attacking the source is not an argument. Bild is the largest news source in Germany and thus the most influential.

As to Der Spiegel, it's a magazine. It leans heavily to the left and a few years ago had on its cover Trump beheading the Statue of Liberty. And its most recent claim to fame is a major scandal involving numerous fabricated stories.

And since you keep referring to Wikipedia to back up your attacks, here is something to ponder:

Wikipedia co-founder: I no longer trust the website I created:
 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, Ron Put said:
19 hours ago, AlPater said:

'as the sixteenth-largest circulation worldwide.[3] Bild has been described as "notorious for its mix of gossip, inflammatory language, and sensationalism"' -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bild

Al, again, attacking the source is not an argument. Bild is the largest news source in Germany and thus the most influential.

As to Der Spiegel, it's a magazine. It leans heavily to the left and a few years ago had on its cover Trump beheading the Statue of Liberty. And its most recent claim to fame is a major scandal involving numerous fabricated stories.

Again, and double entendre, "Top, my bottom".

Keep politics out of it.  And you mistook the magazine, https://www.spiegel.de/ for the news website,  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Der_Spiegel_(online) or https://www.spiegel.de/international/

And the Statue of Liberty cartoon was humerous.

The fabricated stories were a crime against Der Spiegel (Online) and its readers, that their investigation found nobody else working independently for them were involved with or knew the stories were fabricated.

But really, what do you think about the tabloid "telling children “that they were going to murder their grandma”"?  That is "Fear-Driven COVID Coverage"?  Not your typical "vaccines contain microchips" type of nonesense, and I could see it harms children's psyche, whether re COVID-19 or not.

 

 

Edited by AlPater

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, KHashmi317 said:
18 hours ago, Ron Put said:

Al, again, attacking the source is not an argument.

Something like what Eckhart Tolle describes here may be at work ....

You crazy. 

No, you crazy.

No, you crazy.

No, every other one not like our group crazy.

PS: By the way, have you read what https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bild#Reception had to say about your "Top" newspaper?  Sorry for Wiki, but something has to come through as valid.

I enjoyed reading: '"Bild is not a harmless guilty pleasure", she wrote, but a "dangerous political instrument—not only a high-magnification telescope into the abyss but an evil creature".[21]'

Edited by AlPater

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey CR Folks,

I've created a poll to survey our members Covid-19 vaccine status and for those who've declined the vaccine, their reason for doing so. If you'd be OK with including your ID on a list of members who have/haven't been vaccinated, please answer "yes" to the third question. I'm hoping the results of the survey and the list may help people who may be on the fence about whether to get the vaccine or not.

The poll is at the top of the first page of this thread. Here is a link to get there.

--Dean

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Dean Pomerleau said:

Hey CR Folks,

I've created a poll to survey our members Covid-19 vaccine status and for those who've declined the vaccine, their reason for doing so. If you'd be OK with including your ID on a list of members who have/haven't been vaccinated, please answer "yes" to the third question. I'm hoping the results of the survey and the list may help people who may be on the fence about whether to get the vaccine or not.

The poll is at the top of the first page of this thread. Here is a link to get there.

Just some suggestions ...

For the 2., first question, it is not needed in lieu of the 1. questions.

For 1., you might include: "Are you partially or fully vaccinated?"

For 2., people may have had a bad reaction to the first COVID shot, or had a bad previous reaction to vaccination for some other disease, leading them to forgo vaccination for COVID.

It is said 10% of all people, a large fraction of the currently unvaccinated, have https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear_of_needles . So it could be another reason people may not get the vaccine.

Edited by AlPater

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Al, Thanks for the suggestions.

1 hour ago, AlPater said:

For the 2., first question, it is not needed in lieu of the 1. questions.

The forum polling feature is pretty crude. I discovered it makes you provide an answer to every question in order to submit, so I had to add the "No Applicable - I'm vaccinated" option to question 2.

1 hour ago, AlPater said:

For 1., you might include: "Are you partially or fully vaccinated?"

For 2. people may have had a bad reaction the the first COVID shot, or a previous reaction to vaccination for some other disease, leading them to forgo vaccination for COVID.

It is said 10% of all people, a large fraction of the currently unvaccinated, have https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear_of_needles . So it could be another reason people may not get the vaccine.

I added these options.

--Dean

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, AlPater said:

Keep politics out of it.  And you mistook the magazine, https://www.spiegel.de/ for the news website, 

Al. you really don't get the point. On numerous occasions, you don't address the subject (in this case, an admission and an apology by the largest publication in Germany), but instead, attack the source. The story was the apology, not what you think of Bild.

And I don't even understand your argument about the Der Spiegel's site. It's the same property, just in a digital form. -- like the NYTimes.com is the digital form of the printed paper. I know a little about the German online market and Bild has not only the largest print circulation, but it's also by far the most visited site in Germany -- it has two-thirds as many visits as nytimes.com, which is rather impressive for a non-English news site. The second most popular source is T-Online, followed by Der Spiegel.

And you are the one bringing politics into it. Der Spiegel has the right to publish a cover with the American President beheading the Statue of Liberty, of course, but it is generally considered to be in bad taste. If it had featured President Obama instead, it is less likely that you find it "humorous." And your silence on the Wikipedia video is noted -- it does point to why not everything that comes through from Wikipedia is valid, and why an argument should deal with the subject, not with the source.

This brings me back to my point. If you disagree with a post, address the subject and make an argument why its thesis is wrong. Attacking the source is not reasoned discourse.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
57 minutes ago, Ron Put said:

Al. you really don't get the point. 

A whole nation -- one of the most advanced in its time (still is) -- "got it" ... "fell for it" .... the just replace "unvaccinated" or with "Jews" and you're back to only 8 decades ago ... as Eckhart Tolle suggests ... it makes sense from an evolutionary-psychology perspective, I suppose.

Even hard, evidence- and data-rich science (latest CDC) -- which was reported in the vaccines thread and many other posts in this forum  -- is unlikely to persuade. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Khurram,

Now we've come to the point of making analogies with the holocaust I have to ask you something.

Forgive me but I don't even know what you are claiming regarding the virus and vaccines these days. You post lots of videos over on the vaccine risk thread, usually with a cryptic / cynical comments but without elaboration. I watched a couple "Unherd" videos a while back and wasn't very impressed. I used to be a regular listener to Bret Weinstein's Dark Horse podcast and respect the guy until he went off rails with his belief that the sky would fall if Biden was elected and how he had the perfect solution a few months before the election with his Unity 2020 ticket of Andrew Yang and Jocko Willink (or something like that)...

I'll grant you and Ron that the media on both sides has milked the pandemic and efforts to combat it for ratings, like they do everything else. I think its a toss up which side of the political spectrum in the US is worse in terms of exploiting public sentiment regarding the virus vs. freedom for political gains - obviously both are doing it.

And I can certainly see the potential that Todd pointed out that having the virus continuing to circulate widely while a good fraction of the population has been vaccinated could produce evolutionary pressure for the virus to find mutations that escape the immune response to the vaccine, which would obviously be very unfortunate.

And I'm happy to entertain the possibility that the virus may have accidentally escaped from a Chinese lab doing coronavirus research (probably with reasonably intentions, but possibly and foolishly in retrospect involving gain-of-function), and that the US government under several administrations may have even blithely and indirectly helped fund it.

But given all that, from what I can see people are still dying in significant numbers from covid, and while dramatically lower than the winter peak those numbers appear to be increasing (although less so than case # increases) around the world largely due to the delta variant, especially in countries with low vaccination rates. Should we panic? No. Especially since, despite some breakthrough infections, vaccinated people appear largely protected from infection and especially from hospitalization/death despite the extra transmissibility of the delta variant.

So what is it you are trying to convince us of exactly?

Do you think the vaccines are seriously harming (killing?!) lots of people? Do you think the new mRNA vaccines are going to harm people in the longer term? Do you think covid infections aren't that serious in general, or that people who have been practicing a healthy diet and lifestyle (thereby avoiding comorbidities) have nothing to worry about even if they get infected, so vaccines aren't worth it? Do you think ivermectin is a sure-fire cure so nobody need worry about catching covid? Do you think we should just let the virus rip through societies, weeding out the weak and infirm, without vaccines or masks?

I've long considered you to be a kindred spirit if not a friend, and I've respected your opinions, although sometimes your dietary choices have had me scratching my head :-). But lately I've been having trouble following what you're thinking and the evidence it is based on. Can you clarify your perspective either here or on the vaccine thread via a clearly articulated argument with evidence to support it that doesn't require me to watch another YouTube video?

Thanks,

--Dean

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had COVID-19 towards the end of last year and that's why I haven't bothered getting the vaccine (this isn't listed on the survey).

Previous COVID infection seems to be comparable (or better) than 2 vaccine doses. Although, perhaps there is some data showing that previous infection + vaccine might boost immunity in the short term. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Matt said:

I had COVID-19 towards the end of last year and that's why I haven't bothered getting the vaccine (this isn't listed on the survey).

Good point Matt I added that option. 

--Dean 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Matt said:

Previous COVID infection seems to be comparable (or better) than 2 vaccine doses. Although, perhaps there is some data showing that previous infection + vaccine might boost immunity in the short term. 

From today's NYTs:

Unvaccinated people who have had Covid-19 may be more than twice as likely to get infected again than those who tested positive and bolstered their natural immunity with a vaccine, according to a small study that assessed the likelihood of reinfection.

The study, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, examined the risk of reinfection during May and June among hundreds of Kentucky residents who tested positive for the virus in 2020.

Those who did not get vaccinated this year faced a risk of reinfection that was 2.34 higher than those who did get their shots. Released on Friday, the study suggests that for those who had overcome an infection, the addition of a vaccine offered better protection than the natural immunity generated by their original bout with the virus alone.

Here is a link to the study.

--Dean 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, Dean! I read through it fairly quickly earlier today. It's basically confirming what was found in other studies showing that natural immunity + a vaccine dose raises antibody levels much higher and therefor likely better at protecting from reinfection. The study didn't look at vaccinated vs previously infected, though (other studies have like the Cleveland study, but it was before delta variant and they found previous infection was as good as vaccine). In the paper you linked to, they do mention 5 limitations of the study. And the numbers are fairly small with no mention of reinfected having any serious illness (vaccinated or non vaccinated).

Here is the problem as I see it: whether you are getting 2 vaccine doses, previously infected, or infected and vaccinated, the level of antibodies are going to decrease rapidly in the first few months and you end up with the same issue over and over — decreasing protection over time. There is no silver bullet unless everyone is expected to be vaccinated every 6-12 months?

A paper published in Nature shows that COVID-19 infection induces long-lived immunity and bone marrow plasma cells are persistent over time, so once you come into contact with the antigen again, you'll see a rapid increase in antibodies and therefore (hopefully) a reduction in symptoms and damage. So the vaccine after an infection is just doing what a booster shot would do or if you were to be exposed in the wild to the virus.

Another recent study

"We also compared the affinities of pairs of antibodies obtained from conserved clones between 2 and 5 months after vaccination. Conserved clones obtained at 2 and 5 months from vaccinated individuals showed an average 1.9-fold increase in affinity (p=0.03, Fig. 4c). In contrast, a comparable group of conserved clonal antibodies obtained from convalescent individuals 1.3 and 6.2 months after infection showed an average 24-fold increase in affinity (p=0.002, Fig. 4c)."

"We conclude that memory antibodies selected over time by natural infection have greater potency and breadth than antibodies elicited by vaccination."

I could easily change my mind on this as more data comes in. And I'll probably end up getting vaccinated anyway (Novavax looks good) because of restrictions being put in place (which are a bit ridiculous in my mind given that people infected with delta can spread the virus just as easily as unvaccinated).

We desperately need better vaccines that are sterilizing otherwise we may end up in a situation were enough selective pressure is put on the virus to escape vaccine induced immunity, especially now given that both vaccinated and unvaccinated are able to transmit the virus, we could end up in an even worse situation due to antigenic shift, drift; but also cause a problem with antigenic sin and make what we have useless and be in a much worse situation.

I do think vaccination is completely necessary and we don't really have much of a choice right now. But the direction we're going in does worry me, especially with the relaxation of social distancing and masks (if anything we should be going hard on that now). I may be misunderstanding the research but one particular scenario is scary, and it's highlighted by this study: Imperfect Vaccination Can Enhance the Transmission of Highly Virulent Pathogens:

"Anti-disease vaccines that do not prevent transmission can create conditions that promote the emergence of pathogen strains that cause more severe disease in unvaccinated hosts"

Most of the world is still unvaccinated, and we might be in a situation where this virus will evolve and make vaccines ineffective and be more virulent because of selective pressure and therefor have an even higher mortality rate in unvaccinated. That's the disaster scenario I fear. If you're interested in doomsday scenarios, feel free to read a recently published UK government report.

There's other variants out there besides Delta which are concerning but not yet widespread. See Gamma variant study on CDC website. It's only a small sample size but the attack rate:

Attack rate of new variant:

15/25 (60.0%) fully vaccinated miners

6/15 (40.0%) partially vaccinated

0/6 (0%) persons with previous history of COVID-19 got reinfected

63.2% persons with no previous history

---

So yeah, I'm not very optimistic and concerned about where this is going.

Fortunately, my experience with COVID-19 last time was like a very mild flu and I recovered in less than 2 days with no symptoms after that. 

 

Edited by Matt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Matt said:

we might be in a situation where this virus will evolve and make vaccines ineffective and be more virulent because of selective pressure and therefor have an even higher mortality rate in unvaccinated

Its possible but isn't it more common that less deadly variants proliferate or it fizzles out entirely? This is what has happened in all past pandemics that I've read about. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/6/2021 at 2:37 PM, Dean Pomerleau said:

I think its a toss up which side of the political spectrum in the US is worse in terms of exploiting public sentiment regarding the virus vs. freedom for political gains - obviously both are doing it.

I think there is a huge difference between "the virus" and "freedom."

The virus, even if the prevailing narrative is entirely true (which I deem unlikely), is a short-term natural disaster, similar to the pandemics of 1969 and 1957 (neither remembered today by most who lived through them, due to the scant coverage at the time). It is certainly deadly to some, but overall a minor blip in our health history. The "freedom" bit, which includes the hijacking and weaponizing of the pandemic by the Left, and the impact on the social, political, and geopolitical landscape, is far, far more significant in the long run.

In a way, Khurram's comparison to Germany in the 1920s and 1930s is apt -- the National Socialists grew out of the small, fringe-left German Workers Party. The early idealism and zeal to change society attracted some of the best and the brightest in Germany. Just like the rest of the socialist Left, their enemy was classical liberalism, individualism, and capitalism. And the turmoil left in the wake of the Great War provided them with opportunities to exploit, not unlike the election of Trump and SARS-Cov-2 provided the Left in the West with opportunities to exploit. It's notable that teachers were the most represented profession among the idealistic National Socialists and the impact was that the movement was driven by the very young and idealistic, the under-25s. Physical health was deemed a "social good" and was an important talking point for the party (I believe the first widespread smoke bans were introduced by them).

Of course, the major point of difference with the other socialists was the National Socialists' focus on ethnic identity and rejection of internationalism. But that's not all so different than the current focus on identity among the new Left. And the brown shirts and insignia worn by idealistic students in German universities are not so different than the signs scribbled everywhere after the riots of 2020, and the masking mandates that divided society to those who are "good citizens" and those who are the "enemies."

The media frenzy and the focused radicalization of leftist Twitter mobs ushered in an unprecedented in the US suppression of divergent opinions, in the political and social arena, but also in the scientific realm. Just like in Germany then, the public was conditioned that censorship was necessary for the good of society and it has now become perfectly acceptable and even "good" for large swaths of the population. People lost their jobs, their positions in society, and their reputations for disagreeing with the prevailing narrative, just like they did in Germany in the 1930s.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/7/2021 at 7:11 AM, Gordo said:

Its possible but isn't it more common that less deadly variants proliferate or it fizzles out entirely? This is what has happened in all past pandemics that I've read about. 

You are absolutely right, this is the normal course, and despite the fearmongering, this virus is not fundamentally different than other coronaviruses. Again, as I posted above, the Delta variant has a mortality rate of 0.1% which is the same as that occurring during an average flu season. And the vaccines work way better than the current flu shots, which can drop below 50% some years. And coronaviruses, including this one, simply mutate much slower, and immunity lasts longer than influenza immunity generally does. The fearmongering must stop, although I am not holding my breath, as it has worked so well for the Left.

One may disagree with any of the claims about the benefits or harm of the vaccines, or of alternative treatments, but suppression of debate is incompatible with what we call science, as well as with liberal values and personal freedom.

Just like religion, the Left attempts to imprint its values on science, corrupting it in the process. With little notice, they have implemented a form of Lysenkoism, where "the scientists" are only those who support the Left's narrative and the heretics are attacked, silenced and their careers destroyed. It starts with views on the pandemic and responses to it, but ultimately the goals are far greater -- for example, they have been attacking objective quantification of individual ability for decades, and the pandemic gave them the opening to abolish standardized testing in major educational institutions. This is where the new leaders of society are shaped, and removing ability and merit allows for ideology to determine who succeeds. The same is happening in America's large corporations.

The mask and vaccine mandates, and the lockdowns beforehand, are political tools to achieve political aims. It's why the goalposts are constantly moved, and they will continue to be moved so long as it benefits the Left. It destabilized society, defined "enemies" of society, and fear and outrage were used to energize the young, and restructure elections in ways that would have been impossible and unthinkable without the pandemic. And now that the elections of 2022 are in sight, they will use the variants, perpetual masking and booster shots to define the "good" and the "bad" with the help of the tech and media giants, and further expand the voting by mail. It is absurd that in NYC one is now required to show identifying proof of vaccination to enter a gym or a restaurant, but one can vote to elect our political leaders without an ID.

I have chosen to be vaccinated by a vaccine I thought was arguably the best, and based on proven technology. And while personally, I am reasonably comfortable, based on what I know with the mRNA vaccines, there is also the fact that we don't have long-term experience with the technology, and the process has been politicized to an extent where trust is bound to be lost. Other perfectly reasonable people may not be comfortable, and they should have the right to say so and make their own choices.

Final vaccine approvals take normally a decade or so. Rushing final approval of Pfizer (especially Pfizer, given its political connections to the Biden Administration) is at best, unwise. And forcing everyone to be vaccinated or denying them basic rights to live within society is another dangerous encroachment on personal freedom, and another step towards the abyss described above. It brings to mind slowly boiling the proverbial frog.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's called Movin' The Goal Post...

07/21/2021: Lab Alert: Changes to CDC RT-PCR for SARS-CoV-2 Testing

https://www.cdc.gov/csels/dls/locs/2021/07-21-2021-lab-alert-Changes_CDC_RT-PCR_SARS-CoV-2_Testing_1.html

Explainer video highly recommended:

THE PCR TESTS ARE ENDING- WEBINAR FROM AUGUST 6TH, 2021

https://www.bitchute.com/video/fSeTfVghIAtc

[You can cut to the chase by fwding to about 11:30 into the above video]

Edited by KHashmi317

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/7/2021 at 3:11 PM, Gordo said:

Its possible but isn't it more common that less deadly variants proliferate or it fizzles out entirely? This is what has happened in all past pandemics that I've read about. 

Yes, especially if they kill their hosts quickly and the virus don't transmit well. However, COVID is fairly deadly to enough people to be a problem and it's very transmissible. Of course, there is random mutations that are always occurring but we've never (from my knowledge) engaged in a mass vaccination program in the middle of a pandemic -- which could in theory help select for or keep more virulent variants circulating in a population. 

In the study below, they demonstrate that non-sterilizing vaccines (the ones we have right now) lead to vaccine failure and spreading of more severe variants. The unvaccinated birds spread the least virulent variants.

"Our data show that anti-disease vaccines that do not prevent transmission can create conditions that promote the emergence of pathogen strains that cause more severe disease in unvaccinated hosts."

Again, it's worth reading the whole study: https://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=10.1371/journal.pbio.1002198

The issue is the narrowness of the vaccine and the ability of vaccinated people to also spread the virus just as easily even if they aren't seriously ill.

This combined with a lot of infections among unvaccinated can lead to selective pressure to keep more virulent strains going around.  Many of the previous vaccines we've used are sterilizing vaccines, the ones we have right now are NOT that. 

Another study which used a model to look at the problem of resistance: https://www.nature.com/articles/414751a

"Vaccines rarely provide full protection from disease. Nevertheless, partially effective (imperfect) vaccines may be used to protect both individuals and whole populations1,2,3. We studied the potential impact of different types of imperfect vaccines on the evolution of pathogen virulence (induced host mortality) and the consequences for public health. Here we show that vaccines designed to reduce pathogen growth rate and/or toxicity diminish selection against virulent pathogens. The subsequent evolution leads to higher levels of intrinsic virulence and hence to more severe disease in unvaccinated individuals. This evolution can erode any population-wide benefits such that overall mortality rates are unaffected, or even increase, with the level of vaccination coverage. "

Another more recent study: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-021-95025-3

"As expected, we found that a fast rate of vaccination decreases the probability of emergence of a resistant strain. Counterintuitively, when a relaxation of non-pharmaceutical interventions happened at a time when most individuals of the population have already been vaccinated the probability of emergence of a resistant strain was greatly increased.

So if anything, as we have the virus suppressed somewhat with vaccines, we should be taking the chance to go even harder with masks and lockdowns to eradicate it. Counter to what is going on right now.

It feels as if we're being backed into a corner here and we've not fully understood the consequences of mass vaccination during a pandemic like this. This is a pretty unique situation we're in, in many respects. What if a variant emerges and all the rich countries are vaccinated, provides selective pressure to make the virus worse, and now it inadvertently kills a lot more people in poor countries who have almost no access to these vaccines? 

All that being said, it doesn't feel like we have much of a choice but to vaccinate. And I'm glad my family and friends had them. I just worry that this is nowhere near over and it could get a lot worse and inconsistent public policy and uncoordinated efforts eradicate this thing will make things worse for some time to come.

Edited by Matt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another view,  FWIW:

Quote

Prof Francois Balloux is director of the University College London Genetics Institute. His work focuses on the reconstruction of disease outbreaks and epidemics. With his colleague Dr Lucy van Dorp, he led the first large-scale sequencing project of the Sars-CoV2 genome. During the pandemic, he has become a prominent scientist on Twitter, where he describes himself as a “militant corona centrist”.

Would you say a new variant of concern is still the major threat to our way out of this pandemic?

We haven’t had one in a while. The four variants of concern all emerged in the second half of 2020, and it’s important to keep in mind that viruses evolve all the time at a fairly regular pace.

However, with Alpha, something unexpected happened: there was a sudden accumulation of mutations. One reasonable hypothesis is that Alpha emerged from an infection of an immunocompromised person or someone who was infected for a very long period. The other three variants of concern (Beta, Gamma, Delta) emerged through gradual accumulation of mutations.

So it’s not always predictable?

It’s extraordinarily difficult to predict a shock like the Alpha variant. What is easy to predict is that mutations will continue to appear and the virus will progressively drift, with the vaccines becoming less effective over time.

There was a suggestion in a Sage paper that a very lethal variant could emerge, while other scientists suggest that the virus has reached its “maximum fit”, that if it evolves further it will lose the ability to coexist with its human hosts.

It’s important to balance the scariness of predictions with their likelihood. The likelihood of a lineage emerging that is 50 times more lethal is extraordinarily implausible. I say that because we have 200 respiratory viruses in circulation and most of us get infected on a regular basis. We’ve never seen that kind of sudden change in mortality. I’m not saying it’s impossible, but you may have a better chance of winning the lottery jackpot many times over.

Where does the emergence of the alpha and delta variants sit on your jackpot-winning measure?

That’s such a difficult question. It is somewhat comparable to asking what the chances of someone winning the jackpot are, without having any idea about how many numbers there are on the lottery ticket.

The Alpha and Delta variants emerged, and they obviously were winning combinations of mutations for the virus – though we also know that no other comparably transmissible viral lineage has emerged so far, despite millions of infections and a constant influx of mutations.

Another concern is a mutation that enables the virus to “escape” the vaccines…

Over two million viral samples have been sequenced, and we’ve probably already seen all the mutations that are technically possible. From our observations, we know that vaccine escape will not appear after one or two mutations – it will require an accumulation giving rise to the right combination. We will not go from one day everyone being protected to everyone being vulnerable the next. We will have time to update the vaccines.

Also, while a vaccine-escape variant would indeed be able to infect vaccinated people far more easily, it would not nullify the protection against severe disease and death provided by the vaccine and prior infection.

ETC.

 

Quote

Can you explain what you mean by “scientific populism”?

As the pandemic has advanced the mood of the public has become darker and more fearful and this has created a market for gloom and doom. It’s as bad as the effects of the super-optimism at the beginning – stay at home for two weeks, it’s a mild disease or wear a mask and it will be gone. So I kind of captured the market for corona centrism – not to be systematically optimistic or pessimistic and to make it clear there are major uncertainties. And this is empowering, because understanding things is.

You’ve often stated that the pandemic will be over by mid to late 2021. Do you stand by this?

Depends on how you quantify it. I would say the pandemic is over when Covid-19 doesn’t cause significantly more mortality than other respiratory viruses in circulation. This will happen first in places such as the UK that have been privileged to get vaccine coverage – I expect at the latest early next year.

 

"The pandemic is over when Covid-19 doesn’t cause significantly more mortality than other respiratory viruses in circulation."     That's an important point:  ending the Covid-19 pandemic, whenever it occurs,  will most likely mean the virus  will remain in circulation but with reduced severity/ mortality,   and re-vaccination  will be constant, year in and year out, indefinitely. 

Edited by Sibiriak

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Sibiriak said:

Over two million viral samples have been sequenced, and we’ve probably already seen all the mutations that are technically possible.

That seems very unlikely. Here is another perspective from an article in today's Washington Post :

“Nobody knows what tricks the virus has left,” said Jeremy Luban, a virologist at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. “It’s possible we’ve seen all of its chess moves, or its poker tricks, but it’s got a very big complicated genome and it probably still has some space to explore.”

--Dean 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

New Sci. 2021 Feb 27;249(3323):10-11. doi: 10.1016/S0262-4079(21)00303-1. Epub 2021 Mar 3.
Children with long covid
Helen Thomson
PMID: 33686318 PMCID: PMC7927578 DOI: 10.1016/S0262-4079(21)00303-1
Free PMC article
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7927578/

Abstract
Almost half of children who contract covid-19 may have lasting symptoms, which should factor into decisions on reopening schools, reports Helen Thomson.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Delta variant is pretty much comparable to the common flu in terms of mortality and transmissibility.

Yet we see another politically motivated goalpost shifting -- if the Left can condition enough people to accept "sterilization" as the goal, their aim of stretching this to the 2022 elections will be achieved.

The tried and true fear-mongering (like Al's post immediately above, and the reintroduced infection ticker-tapes on the news) are aimed at getting enough people to accept the offer of state salvation, in exchange for continued state coercion, censorship, and modified election rules.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×