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Discussion in 'The Counter' started by iamscottasus, Mar 7, 2020.
Very glad you're both well again.
Not having co-morbidities... priceless.
We do what we can. I would rather do more than I need than regret not having taken all precautions.
Science should inform our actions. If we abandon science and either do as we're told or do what we think might help, we'll waste a lot of time, effort and expense, thinking we're doing good while we're not. Some pseudoscience is more than merely wasting resources on a pointless feel-good behavior. Some pseudoscience is actually harmful. Doing something because it makes you feel safe when it doesn't actually make you any safer provides a false sense of security that puts you at greater risk of contracting COVID-19. Understanding the science and acting accordingly is what keeps us safer.
There is much we don't know, particularly with a new phenomenon, but we should strive to learn whatever we can, and change our behavior to reflect what we learn.
I have an amulet that protects me from rhinoceros attacks. So far, it's been 100% effective. It may also protect me from COVID-19, and I don't want to regret not having taken every precaution.
Yes, it's an extremely silly example, but abandoning science leads to all sorts of silliness.
I normally wouldn't mind people ignoring science and embracing pseudoscience, as we're all free to do as we choose, but it really bugs me that politicians and the media use their positions as information gatekeepers to promote pseudoscience by calling it science. The debasement of science is very dangerous. We're embarking on The Age of Anti-Enlightenment.
While the great mask debate goes on, I will add this little observation. If being told to wear a mask, and keep away from others, helps people be conscious there is a killer among us, I am all for it. Go ahead and don't wear a mask, just stay away from me while you don't. Go run around on the beach, go bar hopping, go hang out in a crowded place and breath deep while you are there. Go ahead and cough your head off if you are sick and don't care about making others sick. Cry to the moon about your civil or constitutional rights, just don't do it near me or my wife. I have no desire to get sick, be sick or make others sick because I want to claim my "right" to run around with no regard for the well being of others.
Do I know this thing has been politicized? Of course I know it. Every disaster in the last 50 years has been used by politicians somewhere to play people for fools. Look at the hurricanes, floods, wild fires, riots, useless military actions overseas, stock market crashes, terrorist attacks, you name it........all have been used, manipulated, capitalized on, by politicians for the sole purpose of controlling people's reactions, and therefore their minds. Where has the outrage been for 50 years? This is the first time I have seen so much outrage in my lifetime and I am 70. Even the anti war protests in the 70's don't compare to the outrage over wearing masks and being responsible in personal interactions. I am disappointed.
Thanks Oldy, I was trying to phrase my post & you did it so much better than I was going to. I don't have anything to add.
These two memes come to mind;
In Oldy's & my case, parents.
And here we are...
Later guys I'm off to straighten out a supply chain snafu. You know, cat litter can become an emergency if you let it run out.
Jim, who hopes he is being paranoid enough but really believes there is no such thing as enough when it comes to his family's lives.
Agreed Oldy... masks are not a panacea, but aside from distance and hygiene, they are what we have and they certainly help. There are scientific studies proving their relative effectiveness. Several are quite recent and others are ongoing. If you don`t think they work, tell your surgeon, surgical nurse, anesthesiologist and all others in the room to just do your open heart surgery with bare faces. It is said that they have been made political, and that is true and sad. The folks advising the use of masks are the scientists. The ones opposing are the politicians, and lately a few have gotten sick and/or died. Karma is a b!tch.
And then forcing everyone else to buy and wear the amulet. That ****es me off more.
Peace favor your sword,
So how do you respond to the exceptionally recent study that @Liberty4Ever just posted indicating that masks worn by the general public do little to nothing to mitigate viral spread? Most of the virologists I've heard from privately seem to think that they're mostly just Safety Theater and, at best, only prevent "spit talking."
The Operating Theater is vastly different from anywhere else, certainly different from Kroger or the Post Office. That said, there are still some doubts even in that environment.
I'm sorry, but that's not true at all. There are a great many scientists and physicians who are publicly and privately questioning the effectiveness of public face mask policy. Likewise, there are also a great many lay people heavily emotionally invested in advocating for the public face mask policy because "it's just common sense."
Here is just one example. Others are not that hard to find.
Peace favor your sword,
I am happy that there are very smart folks here to contribute to the discussion with credible facts, data and science.
I don't recall reading here that anyone had stated to not follow CDC recommendations (mask donning, social distancing, hand washing etc.). I have commented about being aware of the fear and panic campaign. Unfortunately this will be an issue for the next general election.
I don't read a lot of science articles, I will admit. That doesn't mean I not well informed by other sources. For one, the co-workers I must suffer have spouses working in medical and public services. I hear about real live events. I know that if you have a group of folks wirh one positive, active COVID in a small space, the chances of someone getting infected are very high if the only PPE used is the minimum. And after that, the chances of that person infecting their immediate family is very high. The facts show that infection is more of an eventuality than a possibility. The urine example is one way to put it. I like to think of it more like pepper spray. Suppose that at a gun show, as an example we all should relate to, a can of pepper spray mist was dispersed around the room then allowed to settle for an hour. Do you think you could go in there and come out without any trace of it? You might be able shop around, do everything normally, drive home, etc. Until you take a shower. The OC in your hair and what comes off your hands will run into your eyes and mist up with the shower spray and get into your lungs and burn the bleep out of you or give some level of discomfort, everyone reacts differently. I give this example to illustrate that avoiding the microscopic is nearly impossible without taking extensive abatement methods. For the majority, its much easier to deal with an infection early, get treated, isolate and recover than living a life trying to avoid the stuff. That's not saying to just throw all caution to the wind. The elderly, infirm, and the complications are the most vulnerable. For them, staying home and limiting exposure is the be best thing to do.
But if you're 90 and can still swing it,
go out and live life the best you can. Something will take you. No point in being a lock up now. Just my opinion.
Thanks to everyone for contributing.
Pie hole closed.
Heck, I wear a mask in public for the same reason that I generally CC instead of OC. I just ain't gots the tyme to argue with someone about it. I gots stuff ta do! If I didn't, why would I be out at the store? I'd be sitting at home, watching TV, out in my man-cave making ammo, at the range, or off teaching martial arts.
Most of the time, I'd rather be just a little bit gray man than having to spend my time telling some Karen or Chad, "stop bothering me or I'll cough on you."
Peace favor your sword,
On most issues, scientific or otherwise, if you search, you can find opposing views. That's hardly a novel concept. In the end, you make up your own mind based upon a preponderance of evidence. From what I have read, and I have studied the issue pretty extensively, the preponderance of evidence indicates that wearing a mask beats not wearing a mask, hands down. Since none of us can truly "know" an exact truth, I would advise, where life and death are in play, to err on the side of caution, as people's risk varies. Therefore, you won`t find me posting anything I've seen that might discourage anyone from following health and safety guidelines. I find that irresponsible, and disappointing.
Here is a sample of what I have seen, but I have been reading reports for months. Some of these are simply reports that cite or reference the studies. Others are links to the studies themselves. Some of the studies are older and many are very recent.
EDITED TO ADD...There were 5 other articles I linked but for some reason, the forum doesn`t seem to like that many links. I had to delete them before this would post.
Again, I have read a few contradictory articles and studies as well and my conclusion is that masks are better than nothing. It is similar to carrying a gun. It can be an inconvenient bother, and you may never need it. But it is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. For almost everyone but the severely infirmed and barely alive, a mask isn't going to hurt you and it can save lives. Like concealed carry, the inconvienece of wearing one pales compared to loss of life.
This isn't rocket science, but it is science. You can reduce it "spit talk" if you like. When you cough, sneeze, laugh, shout, sing, talk, or even breath, droplets and vapor leave your mouth/nose. Most succumb to gravity and/or air currents and land somewhere. Some are vaporized and hang in the air for a while. The extent to which you can contain these droplets matters and a mask does that, even if to varying degree. It may also stop droplets from others from hitting your mouth/nose. It is not a perfect system but it is better than no system. Think of it as a 22, not as good as a 45 but better than nothing. We can't wear a hazmat suit. You can say the setting is different but the same principles apply in a surgical suite. This is why your surgical team masks up. This is why my dentist last week wore a N95 respirator covered by a surgical mask.
If you want perfect, quarantine yourself. Social distancing is a compromise, quarantine-light, if you will. I have done absolutely as much of that as possible. However, folks have to eat and work, so we do the best we can. For me, that doesn`t include going to bars, restaraunts, or anywhere I don`t need to go. The bottom line is that although there is likely some personal protection in masking, most of the benefit is for the others around you. Therefore unlike seatbelts, my mask protects you and yours protects me. If you don't want to wear one that's fine, but stay the hell away from me. And have some respect for folks out there that have to deal with the public like cashiers, salespeople, the cable guy, etc.
This virus isn`t going away. We will be living with it for a long time, at least a year, probably more, maybe much longer at a lesser degree of occurance. Hopefully, some good therapeutics will be developed to help those infected. We are unlikely to vaccinate our way out of this very soon. My advice is to do the best you can to stay healthy and safe, and advise others to do the same.
A lot of us have. Like you, we've not really be posting every last thing that comes by. There's pretty much no point to it.
If you use clean masks, or wash yours regularly, yeah.
That's the part which is in contention.
We, as a species, have been trying quarantines for thousands of years; since well before the various bubonic outbreaks (it's where the term actually comes from). They don't actually work to stop the spread. Never really have. A perfect quarantine requires hospital level quarantine rooms and protocols, with air locks, air scrubbers, etc. Those are impossible on any scale larger than a few dozen in any given area, never mind something as large as a small town.
It's like the flu. It's going to be with us, literally, forever given foreseeable technology. Quite literally, our only hope is, again like the flu, immunization shots and herd immunity. It's not going away. Ever. With a bit of luck, maybe it will mutate to be less deadly, but frequently that also means that it becomes more infections.
Anti-virals like "Tamiflu" exist but (just like masks) there is no consensus on how well it works (if at all) for the flu. Anti-virals for COVID will be developed. Almost certainly with the same non-consensus.
Ever. Either we develop Herd Immunity or we die as a species.
We keep comparing this to the Spanish Flu pandemic (for good reason). Even with quarantines in place world-wide it eventually killed pretty much everyone who could be killed by it. Same thing happened with the last pandemic known as The China Flu in '68. It killed 100,000 Americans and our population was only 200 million. About 20% more than even the current (arguably inflated) COVID death toll.
No. We're stuck with COVID19.
Peace favor your sword,
It seems the only thing large about COVID 19, when compared to other pandemics, is the media hype.
The only people left will be the N. Koreans.
I realize I'm tilting at windmills, and I don't want to be overbearing or pedantic, but the debasement of science is a huge problem for humanity. Science has helped us separate fact from fiction. Science doesn't care about politics. Science cares about truth in the observable world. Unfortunately, the truth is very inconvenient to some people in power, so science is under attack and has been losing ground in the public sphere for decades.
I hoped that the internet would democratize information and it would be easier to bypass information gatekeepers so more people could see the truth, but that hasn't happened. We now suffer from a credibility crisis. Facts and truth are so obscured that it's difficult to know what to believe. Someone posts a link to some science that should be persuasive but someone else can supply five links supporting the opposite position, which are countered by 20 links, etc. There is no objective truth amidst so much noise. Most people give up on finding the truth.
It's becoming more difficult to know who to trust. Government grants are given to researchers who produce the desired results. There aren't mustache twirling villains. All that is required is for the incentives to determine an outcome, and nobody realizes they're subverting science to produce propaganda.
Once venerated scientific journals have been co-opted for non-scientific purposes, often motivated by politics or ideology. The Lancet was once a well respected medical journal but they were caught publishing politically motivated pseudoscience and were forced to retract that journal article.
Government agencies, government funded organizations or corporate funded researchers generate studies that most people assume have as much credibility as a randomized controlled trial.
This isn't a randomized controlled trial, in which a hypothesis is tested by constructing an experiment where variables are controlled and the effects of the variables are measured. Controlled experiments are the best way to conduct science. If a randomized controlled trial can be conducted, it should be. Studies that review data retrospectively are sloppy science at best. There are uncontrolled variables, and it's far too easy to skew the data to produce a desired result, even if it's a subconsciously desired result.
We have plenty of COVID-19 models that weren't worth a can of beans. One randomized controlled trial is worth 8,796 models. When you hear "model", think "computer generated fiction." A model could justify an experiment, but it can't replace an experiment.
"A review of observational studies" - Your BS detector should be pegged by that. I'll wait for the retraction, just as The Lancet was forced to retract their hydroxychloroquine pseudoscience article.
There is a lot of p hacking these days. The p value is a measurement of probability. A p value under .05 is often used as the cutoff by scientific journals when selecting research to be published. A p value < .05 is generally accepted to indicate that a result was caused by controlling a variable and is not the result of chance. In the CDC link I provided, 14 randomized controlled trials on the efficacy of masks were reviewed and the p value was .25, essentially proving that masks do not stop the spread of influenza, and presumably COVID-19.
In p hacking, researchers select the data that supports their preconceived conclusion and reject the other data. Obviously, this is not science, but it's become epidemic in university research.
We can guard against pseudoscience, but it requires a cautious approach. Reject arguments based on analogy and prevailing opinions. When you hear "it's like...", "it seems reasonable to assume...", "it stands to reason that..." or "everyone knows...", discard that as a nonscientific appeal and ask for the randomized controlled trial that supports a belief.
Similarly, discard authoritarian claims. Agencies such as the CDC and FDA have scientists doing good work but sadly the policy is set by the politically appointed bureaucrats who manage these agencies. To such people, science isn't a tool to divine the truth. It's a marketing ploy.
When someone tells me they're going to trust the CDC, Surgeon General or the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, I'd ask, "Which time?" They originally said not to wear masks because they do no good. Now, a few months later, they've reversed policy. Once again, politics supplant science.
Note that the CDC justified their 180 degree change to suddenly wear masks in public based on some new evidence (I never saw a citation) of asymptomatic spread. In other words, they assume that a mask will help with no new science to refute their own May 2020 review of 14 randomized controlled trials that indicates that masks don't help. #NotScience
For those averse to science who prefer unscientific anecdotal evidence:
(short funny video)
I heard someone recently say, "All scientific research is flawed; Some is useful." I read that one of the factors causing the CDC to change their minds on folks wearing masks was that they were, at the time, unaware of asymptomatic spread. When they learned of that, minds were changed about the general public wearing masks. Honestly, I figured it was because PPE was already in critically short supply and they didn`t want the general public to panic buy (remember toilet paper) what was desperately needed by the medical community and already scarce.
Lots of mistakes have been made. It is a novel virus and doesn`t necessarily behave like other coronaviruses. They are learning as we go. Some skeptics have a problem with the CDC changing their minds. Others see it as a badge of honor to admit mistakes and move forward, especially for trusted leadership. Ultimately, one has to make their best judgement and act accordingly. There is a lot of new research on the topic and it mostly points to masking as beneficial. Unfortunately, certain research techniques would be unethical. For example, do you force one group to wear masks and force another to not wear them, then have the covid positive cough in their faces and see how many die in each group? There are challenges. I do know that a face covering will absolutely at least block and contain some of what comes out of my mouth and nose. Yours too.
My tactic here is not only listen to what the medical and scientific community say, but watch what they do. Are they masking up when in proximity to others? Absolutely they are, everyone I know and have seen, at least. You can`t get into to any medical office without a mask and I don`t see them saying, that's BS, just come on in because I read where masks don`t work.
I needed a dental implant. At my endodonics office, you call when you get their, wait in the car until they call you back, put on your mask and go inside. He and his staff are wearing an N95 under a surgical mask. My dentist does the same and my physician as well. They are smart people and excellent practitioners. Without regard to anything on the internet, I trust their example. Without regard to the CDC or WHO, or John's Hopkins, the Mayo Clinic or anyone else, I trust the people I know to be smart and capable practitioners and I will follow their example. ymmv...
And on the lighter side...
And, we got lucky. If you play the what-if game, what if this thing killed 75% of the people that caught it? Learning as you go does not cut it if we get something that is very serious instead of less interesting than even the mild stuff that hit in the early 1900s.
They can change their minds, but what needs to change is our preparedness and policy and response: we look like no one is in charge and no one knows what to do (and, that is not far off the truth!).
I would like to think we learned something and the next bug will be contained and the population relatively safe, but I don't believe for a second we learned a thing and that when it happens again it will be a repeat performance, with only a change in cast to differentiate it.
A properly fitted N95 respirator provides some protection for your dentist. The mask over the N95's unfiltered exhalation port is there to make you feel safe.
Most people have heard of the The Global Health Security and Biodefense Unit, the pandemic plan, and the people we had stationed in China, etc, but I don`t want to drag politics into this any more than already has occurred. For a tiny fraction of what this pandemic will end up costing in dollars, let alone lives, we should put some serious resources to work to study for, plan, cope with, and prevent, as best we can, future occurrences. All the experts will tell you, as they have for years, it is not a matter if but when the next one will occur. We have been relatively lucky until now and being lucky is not a good plan.
My mother was born in 1918. I'm sure as a child, that flu pandemic was a frequent and unpleasant topic of conversation and it stuck with her. All of her life, she took the flu a lot more seriously than I ever did. Until now, pandemics in our lifetime have been relatively mild in comparison. Kids and young adults today may have a bit more respect for pandemics in the future, and may demand a more proactive stance on the part of government.
Cheap shot and very disappointing. I'm sure you are well enough informed to know the woman is Faucci's wife and the man his very close friend. They are in his inner circle and likely get tested fairly often, possibly the day of the game. Hell, testing negative should have been an entry ticket, if it wasn't.They are outdoors, not in a crowd, and he had just drank from the water bottle seen and the mask was off very briefly. But as I said, you know all that and chose to post it anyway. That speaks volumes.
And yea, my doctor, dentist, and endodontist probably think wearing a mask is a stupid waste of time, just like the 2 surgical, one ER and one management nurse that are close personal friends. The one works ER in an LA hospital. He has seen a lot of death and has worked himself to pieces over these months. He begs everyone he knows to wear a mask. And yea, everyone at the Mayo Clinic, John's Hokins, hell, all the rest, they are all idiots. In fact, the entire scientific and medical communities are involved in a giant conspiracy to get you to wear a mask. Hell, they probably all own stock in PPE companies. Man do I feel stoopid...