Friday Reads: The War on Vaccines and Masks (i.e Health)Posted: August 6, 2021
Good Morning Sky Dancers!
I’ve spent the early morning basically hearing one colleague after another at LSU beg their President and Board to take this 4th surge of Covid-19 seriously. They were interrupted because the Board just had to listen to a sportscaster. They are not going to test students, staff, and faculty. They are not even taking the State’s order of indoor masking seriously. We’ve done all of this before and politics and idiots are making things unsafe.
I remember getting in the station wagon, Daddy drove us to the gymnasium of Herbert Hoover Elementary school where everyone from my toddler sister and kindergartner me waved and smiled at all our friends and neighbors and got shots. I had the measles, the chickenpox, and enough of those diseases that Me–the mother–took both my kids to get what vaccines were available. While Dr. Daughter had about as bad of chickenpox experience as I did, Baby daughter got into the trials for the chickenpox vaccine and had exactly one of the crusty little things show up near the injection site and no misery. I had a wallet-sized record of vaccines that I had to show whenever I went to a new school or university. No big deal. I’m pretty sure that was a nearly universal experience. Anyone who lived through any pandemic or massively deadly outbreak of something just did what they should do. Roll up your sleeve and be thankful you’re not going to be the next person sick.
WTF has happened?
I’m watching this thread of Robert Mann who has basically said that he’s resigned himself to getting covid-19 even though he’s vaccinated because there will be massive numbers of unmasked, unvaccinated people on campus all crammed into rooms with inadequate ventilation. The only ones the President and the board seem concerned about are the damn football players.
UNO–no longer part of the LSU system but the LU system–still plans to open up too. I’m not teaching there this fall and frankly, I see that as a good thing for me. I can’t believe that everything will not be shut down again by September because of deliberately stupid people’s politics. Meanwhile, the private sector is stepping up.
Michael M. Grynbaum / New York Times: CNN fires three employees who went into the office unvaccinated.
Christa Emmer / Our Community Now: Disney to Reinstate Mask Requirements at US Parks
Meanwhile, President Biden is getting more creative about ways to get the country vaccinated. This is from WaPo: “Biden administration considers withholding funds and other measures to spur vaccinations.”
The Biden administration is considering using federal regulatory powers and the threat of withholding federal funds from institutions to push more Americans to get vaccinated — a huge potential shift in the fight against the virus and a far more muscular approach to getting shots into arms, according to four people familiar with the deliberations.
The effort could apply to institutions as varied as long-term-care facilities, cruise ships and universities, potentially impacting millions of Americans, according to the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive conversations.
The conversations are in the early phases and no firm decisions have been made, the people said. One outside lawyer in touch with the Biden administration on the issue is recommending that the president use federal powers sparingly.
There is a particular focus in the discussions on whether restrictions on Medicare dollars or other federal funds could be used to persuade nursing homes and other long-term-care facilities to require employees to be vaccinated, according to one of the people familiar with the talks.
If the Biden administration goes forward with the plans, it would amount to a dramatic escalation in the effort to vaccinate the roughly 90 million Americans who are eligible for shots but who have refused or have been unable to get them.
The discussion at the highest level of government also signals a new phase of potential federal intervention as the White House struggles to control the delta variant of the virus, which is spreading more rapidly than even some of the more dire models predicted.
Headlines on the Delta surge from Republicans are beyond ridiculous including DeSantos blaming the Delta surge on Biden and refugees at the Southern Border while totally ignoring his mismanagement of Florida’s Public Health. This is from the Miami Herald: “Incredibly, DeSantis blames Florida COVID surge on Biden, immigrants. Scapegoat much?” This is an Op Ed by Fabiola Santiago.
Florida Gov. Ron
DeSantis has failed to protect Floridians from COVID-19.
That fact alone is grounds for condemnation, but this week he’s throwing into the mix a little xenophobia for political effect.
Instead of supporting common-sense, expert-guided public health measures to deal with highly transmissible variants in Florida, the governor bet on GOP-branded rhetorical rubbish about “freedom of choice” on life-saving masks and vaccines.
And we lost.
Florida continues to lead the nation in COVID cases and hospitalizations, breaking most of the coronavirus statistical records that chronicle the sickness and suffering residents were, and still are, enduring. It doesn’t get any more gut-wrenching and infuriating than to see cases of children infected with the deadly delta variant soaring in Florida hospitals, more so than in any other state.
These lying bags of conspiracy shit are killing people. It’s insane because it’s mostly their voters that listen to the nonsense but it drags innocent people along for the ride to the cemetery. Los Angeles is looking for ways to mandate vaccines.
Here’s our crazy republican Attorney General shaming the Bishop of Layfette Diocese’s Catholic Churches
Texas and Louisiana are now facing the Lambda variant and it’s uglier than the Delta,
I’m beginning to feel like we’re a group of Cassandras here.
The new COVID Lambda variant has been detected in Louisiana, doctors told WBRZ Thursday.
It was first reported in the U.S. in Houston and health care officials believe since Texas and Louisiana share a border, the virus variant was easily spread.
“I do know that with the proximity with Texas, there have been a few cases detected in North Louisiana with the Lamda variant. But we don’t know whether this is going to be a more aggressive or less aggressive virus,” Dr. Aldo Russo, the medical director at Ochsner said.
Dr. Russo said the Lambda variant has not been detected in the capital region yet, but health care professionals are testing for it.
“We are monitoring this very closely. Our teams are sequencing the different variants,” Dr. Russo said.
The Lambda variant was first reported in Peru in December and has become the dominant strain of the virus there. It’s concerning for the country because the vaccine used in Peru is not effective against this new variant.
“They have stated that there may be some resistance to the vaccine, but that it was a different vaccine that they were using. They were using the Chinese vaccine,” Dr. Russo said.
Meanwhile, the unemployment rate was down in July with big gains in employment for Black and Latinx workers. This is via the AP. The entire economy rests on getting through this Delta variant. Maybe that’s why Employers are getting a lot more serious about testing and vaccines than Republican stooges.
U.S employers added 943,000 jobs in July and drove the unemployment rate down to 5.4% in another sign the economy is bouncing back with surprising vigor from COVID-19. But there is growing fear the fast-spreading delta variant will set back the recovery.
The worry is that the resurgent virus could discourage people from going out and spending and trigger another round of shutdowns or other restrictions.
“That is a definite downside risk,” said Rubeela Farooqi, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics. “The risk is from a more cautious consumer, if they don’t want to engage in outside activities. … You’re also hearing about big companies that are delaying a return to work. That might be something that slows things down.’’
The Labor Department collected its data for the report in mid-July before the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week reversed course and recommended that even vaccinated people resume wearing masks indoors in places where the variant is pushing infections up.
Still, the July numbers looked good. They exceeded economists’ forecast of more than 860,000 new jobs. Encouraged by their prospects, 261,000 Americans returned to the job market in July. And the unemployment rate fell from 5.9% in June.
I think most people prefer mitigation and vaccinated neighbors and workers to another potential shutdown. However, I’m staying put here in Lousyana where our Republican Stooges like everyone miserable but themselves. Here’s so more on the struggle to get folks vaccinated.
So, have you made any lifestyle changes yet? More open or back to staying mostly home?
What’s on your reading and blogging list today?