Author Topic: Coronavirus Outbreak  (Read 28774 times)

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Offline theperfectdrugsk

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There are times where an issue has two opposing stances and it's valuable to see both sides. This is not one of them. Nor are many other critical issues of our times. I was just thinking about this earlier, actually—how people mistake the existence of two sides for the existence of a 'truth in the middle.' It's South Park logic, both-sides-ism. The fetishism of 'balance.' Create a reasonable position and a conspiracy theory and there's always someone who insists on Teaching the Controversy, because simply shutting one side down as nonsense is emotionally difficult and causes fights.

Some questions simply have a right answer.

Classy move calling folks whose lives are in danger and who don't want to see more deaths 'fragile.' Might want to rethink that one. When your local government has to make a decision between containing COVID and, well, not containing COVID, I hope your immune system isn't so fragile that it can't stomach someone disagreeing with it.

You're mistaking my intent here, so maybe I wasn't clear. It isn't to defend Goober's beliefs, nor is it to say "the truth is in the middle," because in this case it absolutely is not. You're correct, there are often such things as objective truths and right answers. My argument (belief, whatever) is simply that we're better off not just dismissing people with whom we disagree as "unreachable" and asking them to leave a community. In my mind, that's being fragile because it's far easier to just say "no, go away you're wrong" than to keep talking to them. I know it's been tried in this thread with limited success...that's good. Keep trying, is my point. Maybe this short aside will help illustrate what I'm trying to say: One of the biggest struggles in my field is how to shift attitudes and policies regarding climate change, particularly in conservative areas. And what we've found (studies have been done!) is that the answer isn't just to say "go away you're wrong," but rather to try and find areas where meaningful dialogue can take place (even though they are wrong). Common ground.

I have all the empathy in the world for those living in the hardest hit areas, and all the admiration in the world for those who are risking their lives to help (including, apparently, your partner, Battuta). You're in the worst place in the US for this, and that has got to be terrifying. I'm scared too...because it's ****ing scary.

 

Offline General Battuta

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I appreciate your elucidation, genuinely.

 

Offline theperfectdrugsk

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 :) Stay safe, friend.

 
this timeline accurately shows that trump took no measures to curb the spread of the disease throughout all of February

What surprises me the most about that list is:
1) The large amount of whitenoise. Like surely even the die-hardiest of Trump Supporter doesn't really care about if the President talked to Saudi Arabia about oil prices. It's almost as if it's using massive amounts of quantity to hide the amount of quality! Like...

Quote from: The Trump Campaign
April 6: President Trump had a “very friendly” phone call with former Vice President Joe Biden to discuss the coronavirus.

Quote from: The Rump Campaign
April 4: President Trump tweeted encouragement to American children unable to start their Little League baseball season on time due to coronavirus.

2) 
Quote from: Thrump Campaign
April 9: CMS temporarily suspended a number of regulations so that hospitals, clinics, and other health care providers can book the number of staff to confront the coronavirus

Why didn't they do this in February?

Quote from: theperfectdrugsk
My argument (belief, whatever) is simply that we're better off not just dismissing people with whom we disagree as "unreachable" and asking them to leave a community. In my mind, that's being fragile because it's far easier to just say "no, go away you're wrong" than to keep talking to them.

People are fragile right now. You're implying fragility is a negative where it isn't. If Battuta was completely unaffected by the current events, by seeing people die around him, something would be terribly wrong with him. But he is. We all are.

It's perfectly fair (in my mind) to come up and say "There's way too much **** going on for me to tolerate you adding to it". The alternative is to leave, to be driven out yourself by this display of inhumanity and simply never confront it. Off course, this would also be considered fragile and a "victory" by the people who possess said inhumanity.

 
Again this fixation on polls, statements, approval, disapproval, who thinks what about who: trying to construct a narrative out of what's happened. But all that is ultimately unimportant, because the inalterable Lacanian truth is the death count. It is large. It is bigger than it needed to be.

Something went wrong. I think it is fine to argue about what that is, and to disagree on who's to blame. I don't personally think Trump did a good job, but we have no hard indisputable evidence another President would have done better given the same circumstances. And the President is only one part of a large mechanism.

What I don't think is fine is denying or minimizing that something went wrong, and that thousands of people died as a result. You have to begin there to have any decency.

It's kind of hard to argue with the death count; it is what it is. It's also clear that something went wrong, because thousands of people died. The points of contention are where things went wrong, and what could have been done (and could be done) better.

In the case of, say, an earthquake, the main thing that went wrong was nature. The coronavirus should be viewed differently, because there was time to prepare. But I think that Americans who approve of the government's response are treating the coronavirus like an earthquake: saying that nature (or China) is mainly to blame, that America couldn't have done much better, and that deaths on this scale were more or less inevitable once the virus emerged. For example, I've heard people claim that earlier shutdowns would have been impossible or economically disastrous.

Once everybody agrees that something went wrong, it's crucially important to diagnose what went wrong. That's when the finger-pointing starts.

 

Offline General Battuta

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The point of contention is still, in fact, whether anything went wrong. That's been my point all along. It doesn't matter who's in power or who's ultimately to blame; first you have to acknowledge that this was not inevitable and that massive mistakes were made. If you can't acknowledge that, you are just blowing smoke. You care more about image than actuality.

We are 'blessed' with examples from all around the world of how this outbreak might have been handled better or worse. It's very, very easy to determine that we do not fall into the 'better' category.

What Americans think is true has no bearing on what is actually true. There are many totally wrong beliefs which are nonetheless widely held, because mass publics are dumb.

 
Quote
It's kind of hard to argue with the death count; it is what it is.

Actually, it could be much higher. Given the absurdly low rate of testing in the US during the early parts of the outbreak (a situation that still persists in many parts of the country), people may have died of Corona without anyone knowing they had it (esp. in January and February). The New York Times has an article on how New York City has far more deaths then usual. But not just more then usual, also far more then what could be expected if you counted Covid deaths alone. A part of this is a overwhelmed medical system, a part of it is simply that people died without knowing they had Covid-19.

Quote
In the case of, say, an earthquake, the main thing that went wrong was nature.

Yes and no. Because even though deaths in a heavy earthquake are inevitable, earthquake zones are known. You can build buildings to withstand earthquakes. It won't prevent all deaths, but it'll help. And after the earthquake happens, disaster relief is still important. If you're not able to get the infrastructure of getting people out from under buildings operational, if your government is for whatever reason unable to get help where it needs to be, more people are going to die.

When people talk about Hurricane Katrina or Maria today, they don't talk about how "nature" went wrong.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2020, 02:10:31 pm by -Joshua- »

 

Offline Dysko

Updates from Italy:
Lockdown should have ended today, but as expected it has been prolonged until 3rd May.

Quite surprisingly, very few people violated the lockdown during Easter holidays. Medias showed pictures of a huge traffic jam on Rome's freeway, but the Police stated they were mostly healthcare workers returning from hospitals stopped at a roadblock.

Still, Lombardy region has no idea on what to do. The field hospital built in Milan's fairground turned out to be mostly unusable. And while all other regions are starting to perform sierological analysis to discover people who caught asymptomatically the virus (one town reported that actual discovered cases were 5x than the ones officially reported, most of them with mild symptoms if any at all), Lombardy still has no clues on what to to.
Some towns are starting to organize by themselves... a nearby town is performing such tests at 50 € per person, but according to the lockdown decree I am not allowed to leave my town if not for job related reasons, urgent health issues and buying groceries if there are no supermarkets in my town.

A data analysis company cross-referenced several data (death reports, general pratictioners reports etc.) and discovered that the number of cases is much higher than officially reported, almost 1'000'000 cases in Lombardy alone as of 9th April (sorry, Italian only).
They estimated 33% contagion rate in the town where I live, with peaks as high as 80% in the towns where the first cases were reported (one of which is 20 km from where I live).

In the first days of lockdown I actually felt for 2 days as if my lungs were burning, but I had no other symptom (no coughing, no fever, no loss of taste or smell). Many colleagues reported having similar issues.
It would be interesting to know if we actually got infected asymptomatically.
My aircraft spotting website: GolfVictorSpotting.it

 
I do hope your lungs are okay. I really do appreciate these Italian updates too.

 

Offline Dysko

Thank you!
At first I didn't even think it could be the virus, I was just blaming that to being overly stressed by the outbreak. I did not even call the regional COVID hotline to ask for a swab (which would most probably have been denied anyway, as even healthcare workers who show mild symptoms are not being tested and are just told to self-quarantine). The first suspects came after chatting with some colleagues who reported similar symptoms at the same time (beginning of March).
Anyway, without sierological analysis I will not know whether it was COVID or not.

I forgot to tell that now facemasks are mandatory in Lombardy whenever you are not at home.
Too bad we do not have enough masks.
The region ordered 3'000'000 masks to be distributed to citizens, but Milan has 1'500'000 inhabitants alone, the whole region has 10'000'000.
Luckily an anonymous donor gave many masks to my local pharmacy, while my town was able to donate 2 masks per every family, and I still have some dust masks I usually use when airbrush painting scale models.
My aircraft spotting website: GolfVictorSpotting.it

 
 

Offline General Battuta

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CLEARLY the fakest of news

 
While the facemasks in Poland are supposed to be mandatory since tomorrow, many people (including me and my family) are wearing them outside for quite a bit now. In our case, in order to offset the government stockpiling millions of masks for the upcoming elections, every one of us has got a single personal mask that we sanitise with alcohol after every day of use. Plus like two or three fresh ones kept in case of an emergency (or if the ones we have start breaking up after about a month of use).

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation estimates that the peak of infections and casualties will take place in about two weeks, with a total of beyond 2500 people dead. That is, if nobody does anything idiotic.


In other news, Sweden seems to be taking a... very relaxed approach. Which seems to have resulted in a massive 9% mortality rate among confirmed cases.

Swedes.
What are you doing?
Mito [PL] - Today at 8:52 PM
I was supposed to make a short presentation about basics of optical fibers and here I am, listening to Eurobeat while reading about quantum cryptography.

 
sweden and the netherlands are the few european countries doing worse than the UK (and the dutch are still being enormous assholes about providing aid to other EU nations or their own dependent colonies without a hint of irony)
The good Christian should beware of mathematicians, and all those who make empty prophecies. The danger already exists that the mathematicians have made a covenant with the devil to darken the spirit and to confine man in the bonds of Hell.

 

Offline Kiloku

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Hey remember when I said that the New York death toll was likely higher?

It's higher.

In general the confirmations only come a while after the deaths themselves.

You can see this lag in this gif: https://i.redd.it/lsqyafo5qmr41.gif
(and since the gif was made in 2020 week 13, here's a still for what week 14 is looking like: https://i.redd.it/2c6d9sk6mas41.png)
Potato!

 
jesus ****ing christ

trying to defund the world health organisation IN THE MIDDLE OF THE PANDEMIC is just beyond any defence
The good Christian should beware of mathematicians, and all those who make empty prophecies. The danger already exists that the mathematicians have made a covenant with the devil to darken the spirit and to confine man in the bonds of Hell.

 

Offline karajorma

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How can anyone defend this kind of behaviour? Even if you don't think Trump made mistakes, surely this isn't the time for this? If he did it after the pandemic was dealt with it would still be petty and stupid but during the pandemic? How can anyone believe that this was the right thing to do?
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Offline Aesaar

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Trump is trying as hard as he can to shift blame away from himself.  As usual.  Avoiding responsibility for USA's ****ty response is his absolute #1 priority, and helping him do that is his cult's priority.

 

Offline Colonol Dekker

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What if he IS the virus  :nervous:

  

Offline The E

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Meanwhile, the delivery of checks for the promised 1200 USD for every US citizens is delayed.... because Trump or one of his toadies decided that it was essential that his name be written on those checks.

It's not a huge delay as these things go, a couple days at most, but ... seriously? Does Trump really need validation and recognition that much? (The question is rhetorical, the answer obviously yes; one needs only witness his and by extension, his supporter's actions to see that)
And why is he trying to take credit for a congress initiative?
« Last Edit: April 15, 2020, 02:55:23 am by The E »
Let there be light
Let there be moon
Let there be stars and let there be you
Let there be monsters and let there be pain
Let us begin to feel again
--Devin Townsend, Genesis