Yesterday evening (Saturday) I went to my first concert since the start of the virus. The concert hall was requiring all attendees to be vaccinated and to show ID. I noticed some people had very tattered vaccination cards, obviously having been carried and shown many times. I showed the checkers the Clear app version of my vaccination certificate on my phone – it requires me to unlock it with my face, then shows a stored picture of my face, a barcode that can be scanned, and a text version of my vaccination history too.
The checker ignored the big green “fully vaccinated” check mark and looked at the text version of my history and pounced. “You’ve only had one shot!”. I patiently explained to him that, as it clearly said, it was the single version Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
He conceded that, then asked to see my ID. I said “it is right in front of you – there’s my photo on the vaccination certificate”. That unnerved him, because his obvious association was “driver’s license” as ID, and the concept of having ID in the same document as the vaccination certificate – a very much more secure concept – was a bit too much to handle all at once.
To help him expand his mind, I refused to produce my driver’s license. The line behind me was growing, and so he said he’d make a special exception this time. If I was Dr Fauci, that was probably the point that I’d have called him a moron, but being much more gracious, I merely smiled enigmatically and moved on.
Somewhere between a third and a half of people wearing masks (as was mandatory) had them below their noses. Dr Fauci’s term applies to them, too, and doubly so to the officials who after demanding we all wear masks don’t then enforce their demand.
It seemed a bit surreal. Here we are, with the highest ever Covid case counts in the US, and whereas before, with case counts barely one tenth the level they are now, we had social distancing, lines on the floor showing how far apart 6 ft is, and only partially filled facilities, now everyone was crushing and crowding into each other at choke points in and out of the hall, and the hall was filled as best the Seattle Symphony Orchestra could manage for yet another of their underwhelming lack-luster performances. Astonishingly, the audience leapt to their feet to give a standing ovation at the end of the first half of the concert, as well as at the end of the second too; I guess the politest thing to say about that is to admire the audience’s positivity.
The point I’m finally getting around to making is that clearly we’re all giving up on the various “control” measures that had earlier been enacted. I’ve noticed all the one way arrows and spacing marks for lining up in supermarkets have disappeared, and there’s no longer a rush to clean the self-checkout area between each person’s use.
Generally life is returning to normal, but with masks. Is that a good thing? Some experts of course worry that it is not. But increasingly I feel it is a necessary thing, as clearly do most other people, either instinctively or as a result of careful thought and risk analysis.
Even the fools at the CDC have clearly given up at any pretense of living up to the noble objectives of controlling and preventing disease that is implied in the name of their institution. The latest guidelines for self-isolation are a laughable joke and bear no relation whatsoever to the reality of the period of time a person is infectious, as the linked article points out.
The CDC has to know this, and clearly has just decided to try and compromise between medical and social/economic issues, a decision signaled all the more clearly by their refusal to require people to test negative/safe before they end their shorter-than-ideal periods of isolation.
Another example, should you wish one – my daughter was tested for Covid last Sunday. It took five days for the results to be sent to her. That is utterly, completely, totally, useless. As per the CDC official claim, it only takes five days to go from infected to safe. What is a person who thinks maybe they have Covid supposed to do for the five long days while waiting to know?
Oh, and the new Pfizer anti-Covid medication? It needs to be started within a couple of days of an infection appearing. But if you can’t get an official (PCR) proof of being infected, there’s no way you’ll get access to the precious, in very short short supply and very high demand (and also very expensive), Pfizer drug. Clearly the laboratories no longer even bother to process samples with any sort of time-criticality.
Ireland has now entered the minor country list at tenth place, displacing Lithuania.
In the major list, France has shot up from fifth to third, and is pressuring the UK for second position. There were no changes in the death list.
The most active countries for new cases last week list continues to change greatly from week to week. It is surprising both how quickly a country can suddenly have an explosion of new cases, and then a contraction, both without notice or explanation.
I’d love to hear an explanation from the advocates of vaccine “boosters” as to how it is that super-boostered (some people even having had fourth shots) Israel is now the third highest on the list of countries with high levels of new Covid cases (and even higher boostered Gibraltar is showing a similar number).
In Europe, Moldova had a rise of 135%. But no other countries exceeded 100% this week. Austria reached 93%, Ukraine 86% and Serbia 80%. At the other end of the scale, the UK had a great 38% fall in cases, the same as Greece. Switzerland had a 34% drop, Sweden a 29% drop, and Ireland a 16% drop. France rose 11% and Germany is up 42%. Europe as a whole has calmed down, with only a 2% overall rise.
In North America, Canada had another 16% fall in new cases. Mexico had an 89% rise, and the US had a smaller rise than last week.
South Africa, the first country to suffer the Omicron onslaught, continues to have falling cases, with another 38% drop, based on a level of new cases of only 549 per million in the last week. Compare that to the worst affected countries in the list below. Overall, essentially unvaxxed Africa enjoyed a 17% drop in cases for the week.
Cases are still rising world-wide, with a 14% growth, week on week.
Top Case Rates Minor (population under 10 million) Countries (cases per million)
|Rank||One Week Ago||Today|
|1||Andorra (340,955)||Andorra (385,876)|
|2||Montenegro (302,902)||Montenegro (324,339)|
|3||Gibraltar (293,711)||Gibraltar (321,693)|
|5||San Marino||San Marino|
|10||Lithuania (203,532)||Ireland (219,699)|
Top Case Rates Major (population over 10 million) Countries (cases per million)
|Rank||One Week Ago||Today|
|1||Czech Republic (235,413)||Czech Republic (241,763)|
|2||UK (211,537)||UK (222,360)|
|3||Netherlands (194,453)||France (216,385)|
|4||Belgium (191,292)||Netherlands (207,581)|
|5||France (184,923)||Belgium (206,622)|
|6||USA (183,446 – or much more)||USA (approx 203,000)|
|12||Italy (123,278)||Italy (144,334)|
Top Death Rate Major Countries (deaths per million)
|Rank||One Week Ago||Today|
|1||Peru (6,030)||Peru (6,039)|
|2||Czech Republic (3,407)||Czech Republic (3,432)|
|3||Romania (3,099)||Romania (3,111)|
|4||Brazil (2,886)||Brazil (2,890)|
|5||Poland (2,640)||Poland (2,708)|
|6||USA (2,573)||USA (2,616)|
|7||Argentina (2,564)||Argentina (2,575)|
|8||Colombia (2,521)||Colombia (2,533)|
|10||Italy (2,305)||Italy (2,339)|
Top Rates in New Cases Reported in the Last Week (new cases per million) for Countries over one million population
|Rank||One Week Ago||Today|
|1||Ireland 29,710||France 31,470|
|2||France 28,413||Australia 28,889|
|12||USA 11,000+||Spain 15,672|
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Items below include is Omicron seasonal (and if so, which is the bad season?), do ivermectin advocates need psychiatric evaluations, two types of electronic vaccination record in the US, the history of mandatory vaccinating in the US goes further back than you’d think, the importance of counting new Covid cases, has China under-counted its deaths by 17,000%, and a new website to get free Covid tests, but will it run out of tests almost immediately?
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