International Skeptics Forum

International Skeptics Forum (http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/forumindex.php)
-   Non-USA & General Politics (http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=98)
-   -   Covid-19 and Politics (http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=342577)

The Don 6th July 2020 02:01 PM

Good to see Boris Johnson blaming care home employees for the Coronavirus death toll rather than taking any responsibility on behalf of the government.

So much like his mentor :mad:

Captain_Swoop 6th July 2020 03:36 PM

BREAKING NEWS: President Jair Bolsonaro has Covid-19 symptoms

jimbob 6th July 2020 03:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rolfe (Post 13148563)
This is an interesting graph showing the constituent parts of the UK over the past three weeks. It's death data so less amenable to manipulation than infection rates (though of course there's a lag of about three weeks between infection and death) and it's expressed per million population so the figures are comparable.



The problems in Wales are likely to be related to the slaughterhouse clusters. NI is doing well but seems to have stalled a bit. Scotland continues to decline. Scotland's death rate is only 12.5% of the rate in England. It's against this background that people protesting at the border yesterday were called racists for wanting some restrictions placed on leisure travel between Scotland and England.

The way things were looking in England on Saturday, and with Scotland opening up indoor spaces next week, I think it will be a miracle if any of these downward trends continue much longer.

Agreed... I seem to be spending a significant time on Twitter arguing against dangerous idiots claiming that lockdowns don't work, and herd immunity has happened already.

Rolfe 6th July 2020 04:56 PM

As soon as it becomes clear they're zealots arguing from an entrenched position, I block them. Life's too short.

The Atheist 6th July 2020 07:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13148740)
BREAKING NEWS: President Jair Bolsonaro has Covid-19 symptoms

There's some sweet karma.

You know which other president has denied all the way through and is surrounded by people with positive tests?

My karma meter will explode if he comes down with it.

Puppycow 6th July 2020 09:28 PM

Meanwhile in the USA, anti-vaxxers are having "COVID parties" to intentionally infect their own children. Including, in at least one case, one who was immuno-compromised.

Carsyn Leigh Davis

Quote:

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement detailed the last two weeks of Carsyn’s life in a public Medical Examiner’s report.

On June 10, Carysn’s mom, Carole, took Carsyn, a 16-year-old girl who was immuno-compromised with a history of health issues (including cancer), to a “COVID party” at her church, where more than 100 children without masks were in attendance.

Her mom, who is not a doctor, then prescribed her daughter azithromycin, an anti-bacterial drug with no known benefits for fighting COVID-19, for several days. During that “treatment period,” Carsyn developed headaches, sinus pressure and a cough.

A few days later, without taking her to a doctor, her mother would later report that her daughter “looked gray” on June 19, so she put Carsyn on her grandfather’s oxygen machine.
Congratulations lady, you killed your daughter. Now she's using her daughter's death to raise money.

Quote:

Carole keeps a public facebook profile that is filled with conspiracy theories about underground governmental networks and mind-control. She’s a devout follower of the alt-right terrorist and conspiracy group QAnon, and frequently reposts stories from other alt-right websites like The Federalist.

She’s an anti-vaxxer, too.
Back in April, she posted this on Facebook:
https://floridacovidvictims.files.wo...igh-davis3.png

jimbob 6th July 2020 11:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rolfe (Post 13148823)
As soon as it becomes clear they're zealots arguing from an entrenched position, I block them. Life's too short.

That's what I used to do, but now, if I come across them, I do engage, not for them, but those who might see their exchanges.

Some have graphs that superficially look convincing, but are very dodgy, and the iffiness can be explained pretty simply.

The Don 7th July 2020 01:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 13148675)
Good to see Boris Johnson blaming care home employees for the Coronavirus death toll rather than taking any responsibility on behalf of the government.

So much like his mentor :mad:

It seems that his comments were "misunderstood" :rolleyes:

Quote:

UK Business Secretary Alok Sharma has defended Boris Johnson over his comments that some care homes "didn't follow procedures" during the early days of the pandemic.

Mr Sharma told BBC Breakfast that the prime minister had meant no-one knew the correct plan of action at the start of the crisis.

He said that was because "the extent of the asymptomatic cases was not known at the time".

"No-one is suggesting that care homes haven’t done a great job in really difficult circumstances," he added.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/worl...ost_type=share

Except that's not what Boris Johnson said at all. The next step will be to suggest that Boris Johnson was just joking.

The British Conservative Party really is indistinguishable from the Trumpist GOP.

Captain_Swoop 7th July 2020 03:00 AM

Before the middle of April, care homes which refused to take covid-19 patients in from hospitals were sent letters from government threatening them with removing their funding.

Boris Johnson has blamed them for the number of deaths.

Boris Johnson lies.

Captain_Swoop 7th July 2020 03:01 AM

‘Dominic Cummings did the right thing’

‘Care home workers did the wrong thing’

Blimey.

The Don 7th July 2020 03:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149152)
Before the middle of April, care homes which refused to take covid-19 patients in from hospitals were sent letters from government threatening them with removing their funding.

Boris Johnson has blamed them for the number of deaths.

Boris Johnson lies.

It's a shame that the UK media cannot summarise the situation as succinctly as this. Instead we either get apologist channels insisting that care homes were never threatened in this way or outlets which feel obliged to present both sides even if one side is a tissue of lies.

It certainly would make an interesting question in PMQ, except that it would be far too obvious and Boris Johnson would simply dodge it entirely by talking about the pubs being open (cheers from the Tory benches) and people being able to go on holiday (ecstasy from the Tory benches).

The Don 7th July 2020 03:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149153)
‘Dominic Cummings did the right thing’

‘Care home workers did the wrong thing’

Blimey.

If only the care home workers would contrive to develop a set of policies to keep him in office, then Boris Johnson wouldn't feel able to throw them under the bus. :rolleyes:

catsmate 7th July 2020 03:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Puppycow (Post 13148980)
Meanwhile in the USA, anti-vaxxers are having "COVID parties" to intentionally infect their own children. Including, in at least one case, one who was immuno-compromised.

Carsyn Leigh Davis



Congratulations lady, you killed your daughter. Now she's using her daughter's death to raise money.


Back in April, she posted this on Facebook:
https://floridacovidvictims.files.wo...igh-davis3.png

Pathogenic battery. Lock up the parents and extinguish their parental rights, have the children adopted by sane people.

The Don 7th July 2020 03:43 AM

More cold water being thrown on the plans of any country hoping that herd immunity will be a solution to the Coronavirus crisis:

Quote:

A Spanish study has cast doubt on the feasibility of herd immunity as a way of tackling the coronavirus pandemic.

The study of more than 60,000 people estimates that around just 5% of the Spanish population has developed antibodies, the medical journal the Lancet reported.

Herd immunity is achieved when enough people become infected with a virus to stop its spread.

Around 70% to 90% of a population needs to be immune to protect the uninfected.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-53315983

If it's taken 6 months for that few people to get infected (and presumably become immune to future infection for a period of time) then it's likely that people infected early will have their immunity running out well before enough people have have been infected.

I guess the good news is that Coronavirus seems to be a lot less infectious than we had first feared (although clearly lockdown has had a dramatic effect on infection rates).

Rolfe 7th July 2020 03:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jimbob (Post 13149068)
That's what I used to do, but now, if I come across them, I do engage, not for them, but those who might see their exchanges.

Some have graphs that superficially look convincing, but are very dodgy, and the iffiness can be explained pretty simply.


I try to get in a few tweets that will be seen by inquiring minds, but I won't engage for long.

Mind you, I actually came across one who wasn't a zealot and understood my explanations. We had quite a fruitful discussion and he thanked me for the information. Come to think of it, that was a "we'll probably never have a vaccine" one. Good news! We very probably will.

Darat 7th July 2020 03:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Puppycow (Post 13148980)
Meanwhile in the USA, anti-vaxxers are having "COVID parties" to intentionally infect their own children. Including, in at least one case, one who was immuno-compromised.

Carsyn Leigh Davis



Congratulations lady, you killed your daughter. Now she's using her daughter's death to raise money.


Back in April, she posted this on Facebook:
https://floridacovidvictims.files.wo...igh-davis3.png

This is somewhere government could make a real difference.

Assuming a vaccine is developed and its safety is in line with most other vaccines we use nationally the government should be preparing and organizing right now to ensure everyone gets vaccinated as quickly as possible. Plus they should be trying to disrupt "anti-vaccine" messages and help establish a mindset that everyone will vaccinate, by the time one is ready people should just be waiting for when they will get it, not thinking if they should get it.

Rolfe 7th July 2020 04:41 AM

Given that this vaccine, when it comes, will have of necessity been subject to less safety testing than usual, I'm a bit uncomfortable at the idea of making it compulsory. My bias is very much towards taking it but even I want to know a fair bit about it and about the testing that has taken place before I go for it.

My goddaughter was asked to take part in the clinical trial of the Oxford vaccine, but declined. Thinking about it, subject to being given sufficient information, I'd have done it. But we should all have the choice.

Rolfe 7th July 2020 04:53 AM

Before I retired one of the lecture topics I introduced into the animal health course was vaccine safety and adverse reactions. We have the non-specific reactions which are either very rare (anaphylaxis) or trivial (temporary malaise, soreness at the injection site), then we have specific adverse reactions. I could come up with very little in the veterinary field.
  • Reversion to virulence of the Chlamydophila abortus vaccine for sheep
  • Vaccine-site fibrosarcomas in cats related to FeLV and rabies vaccine
  • Bovine neonatal pancytopenia (bleeding calves) caused by the adjuvant in a BVD vaccine raising anti-bovine antibodies in cows
  • Canine parvovirus probably having been spread worldwide by a contaminated canine distemper/hepatitis vaccine in 1988
None of these things seems at all likely to affect a coronavirus vaccine, although it does depend on how the vaccine is produced. It's notable that the BVD vaccine that caused the bleeding calves was fully tested and licensed long before the problem emerged. Was there a change to the adjuvant? I suspect so. That adjuvant will never be used again in any vaccine.

The Oxford vaccine is a DNA (or RNA?) vaccine. These have been used in animals but never before in man as far as I know. The concept is seriously cool. Is it safe? There's been enough work in animals that I think someone would have noticed by now, but on the other hand the poster child for these vaccines is a rabies bait vaccine given to wildlife and how closely can you monitor wild foxes? There is at least one known case of accidental innoculation of a woman by that rabies vaccine and although the vector (vaccinia virus) gave her cowpox (because she was on immunosuppressive treatment) she seroconverted to rabies and had no longstanding ill effects.

If the trial results are made public and everything looks good, I'll certainly take a coronavirus vaccine.

Captain_Swoop 7th July 2020 06:13 AM

Gov’t today, “How were we to know about asymptomatic transmission back in March?”

Gov’t in March, “We know asymptomatic transmission occurs and that it’s a very significant challenge.”

catsmate 7th July 2020 06:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 13149176)
More cold water being thrown on the plans of any country hoping that herd immunity will be a solution to the Coronavirus crisis:



https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-53315983

If it's taken 6 months for that few people to get infected (and presumably become immune to future infection for a period of time) then it's likely that people infected early will have their immunity running out well before enough people have have been infected.

I guess the good news is that Coronavirus seems to be a lot less infectious than we had first feared (although clearly lockdown has had a dramatic effect on infection rates).

Herd immunity was an insane strategy.
Based on the New York numbers you'd be sacrificing, at best, 0.3% of the population or 150,000 people. Which requires the CMR not to increase, which is inevitable in large scale epidemics.

Captain_Swoop 7th July 2020 06:25 AM

Boris Johnson did more to protect Dominic Cummings from getting the sack than he did care home patients from getting Coronavirus

Captain_Swoop 7th July 2020 06:26 AM

Tory conference cancelled and replaced by virtual event due to coronavirus

Schools and pubs are safe though, the virus knows the difference.

Darat 7th July 2020 06:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149314)
Boris Johnson did more to protect Dominic Cummings from getting the sack than he did care home patients from getting Coronavirus

To paraphrase one of his fellow Americans:


"Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your Cummings"

Rolfe 7th July 2020 06:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149316)
Tory conference cancelled and replaced by virtual event due to coronavirus

Schools and pubs are safe though, the virus knows the difference.


There is a subtle point here. Epidemiologists aren't trying to achieve no cases next week, they're trying to achieve a reduction week on week. They recommend activities based not on the belief that they're safe, but that they'll get away with it in terms of not causing too many new infections.

Individuals who don't want to be one of these reducing numbers will make their own risk assessments and won't do things just because they're allowed.

ThatGuy11200 7th July 2020 07:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by catsmate (Post 13149308)
Herd immunity was an insane strategy.
Based on the New York numbers you'd be sacrificing, at best, 0.3% of the population or 150,000 people. Which requires the CMR not to increase, which is inevitable in large scale epidemics.

And that doesn't even take into account the possible long term effects that some may suffer. I've been reading more and more about chronic fatigue linked to infection by Covid-19. There is also the risk of blood clots leading to heart attacks and strokes, which apparently isn't connected to the severity of the initial infection.

This is an article from New Scientist:

https://www.sciencedirect.com/scienc...62407920311416

lomiller 7th July 2020 07:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rolfe (Post 13149238)
Before I retired one of the lecture topics I introduced into the animal health course was vaccine safety and adverse reactions. We have the non-specific reactions which are either very rare (anaphylaxis) or trivial (temporary malaise, soreness at the injection site), then we have specific adverse reactions. I could come up with very little in the veterinary field.
  • Reversion to virulence of the Chlamydophila abortus vaccine for sheep
  • Vaccine-site fibrosarcomas in cats related to FeLV and rabies vaccine
  • Bovine neonatal pancytopenia (bleeding calves) caused by the adjuvant in a BVD vaccine raising anti-bovine antibodies in cows
  • Canine parvovirus probably having been spread worldwide by a contaminated canine distemper/hepatitis vaccine in 1988
None of these things seems at all likely to affect a coronavirus vaccine, although it does depend on how the vaccine is produced. It's notable that the BVD vaccine that caused the bleeding calves was fully tested and licensed long before the problem emerged. Was there a change to the adjuvant? I suspect so. That adjuvant will never be used again in any vaccine.

The Oxford vaccine is a DNA (or RNA?) vaccine. These have been used in animals but never before in man as far as I know. The concept is seriously cool. Is it safe? There's been enough work in animals that I think someone would have noticed by now, but on the other hand the poster child for these vaccines is a rabies bait vaccine given to wildlife and how closely can you monitor wild foxes? There is at least one known case of accidental innoculation of a woman by that rabies vaccine and although the vector (vaccinia virus) gave her cowpox (because she was on immunosuppressive treatment) she seroconverted to rabies and had no longstanding ill effects.

If the trial results are made public and everything looks good, I'll certainly take a coronavirus vaccine.

The concern with a COVID-19 vaccine is Antibody Dependant Enhancement, something that has been an issue in both SARS and MERS vaccine candidates. ADE occurs when the presence of antibodies from a vaccine makes subsequent infection more serious/deadly.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antibo...nt_enhancement


It's possible ADE is why some cases of COVID-19 are very serious even though most are mild. In this scenario, the initial immune response and antibody production is insufficient to kill the infection, ADE sets in with the and the infection becomes much more serious.

The fact that they have studied this previously with SARS and MERS gives a head start in getting around the issue with COVID-19, but I'd want to see very thorough testing done before taking a vaccine. If not caught in testing ADE would not be immediately apparent when the vaccine is distributed and only show up when people start dying in much greater numbers.

Rolfe 7th July 2020 07:14 AM

Yes, I've read about that. It's one of the things I'd be looking for evidence had been addressed and was not likely to be a problem before I went for the vaccine.

The Don 7th July 2020 07:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149302)
Gov’t today, “How were we to know about asymptomatic transmission back in March?”

Gov’t in March, “We know asymptomatic transmission occurs and that it’s a very significant challenge.”

They lie, safe in the knowledge that the only people who will bother to check are those who are already opposed to the government. The newspapers are too busy posting pictures of people outside pubs or "fruity" girls enjoying a glass of champers to worry their readers about the government killing their mum/gran. :mad:

P.J. Denyer 7th July 2020 07:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149316)
Tory conference cancelled and replaced by virtual event due to coronavirus

Schools and pubs are safe though, the virus knows the difference.

Does that make this the first virus to demonstrate good taste?

ohms 7th July 2020 07:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lomiller (Post 13149367)
The concern with a COVID-19 vaccine is Antibody Dependant Enhancement, something that has been an issue in both SARS and MERS vaccine candidates. ADE occurs when the presence of antibodies from a vaccine makes subsequent infection more serious/deadly.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antibo...nt_enhancement


It's possible ADE is why some cases of COVID-19 are very serious even though most are mild. In this scenario, the initial immune response and antibody production is insufficient to kill the infection, ADE sets in with the and the infection becomes much more serious.

The fact that they have studied this previously with SARS and MERS gives a head start in getting around the issue with COVID-19, but I'd want to see very thorough testing done before taking a vaccine. If not caught in testing ADE would not be immediately apparent when the vaccine is distributed and only show up when people start dying in much greater numbers.

That came up at the recent House of Commons Committee meeting and was addressed by Prof. Gilbert:

Quote:

We also have a better understanding now of what type of vaccine is likely to produce that kind of response. The RSV vaccine in the 1960s was an inactivated RSV virus. You take a large amount of the virus itself, inactivate it with formalin so that it cannot cause an infection, and then use that with an alum adjuvant to strengthen the immune response. That is the type of vaccine that seems to be most associated with causing that type of enhanced disease after exposure to the virus. That was seen in some early development of SARS vaccines—the original SARS, not SARS‑CoV‑2—again with inactivated virus vaccines with an alum adjuvant, whereas it has not been seen with different types of vaccines, and we now understand better that they are inducing a different type of immune response.
Looks like it's something the scientists are aware of.

lomiller 7th July 2020 08:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ohms (Post 13149407)
That came up at the recent House of Commons Committee meeting and was addressed by Prof. Gilbert:



Looks like it's something the scientists are aware of.

Being aware of it and knowing how to get around it are 2 different things. ADE is part of the reason there has never been a successful vaccine for Dengue, AIDS, SARS or MERS.

The real risk, however, is political not scientific. A vaccine is being viewed as a magic bullet that will solve all the issues around COVID-19 and allow everything to return to the way it was. There will be enormous political pressure to fast track any vaccine that shows potential, but this invariably means lowering standards for testing. That would be bad at the best of times, but for a virus family already known to elicit ADE inadequate testing could be a disaster.

angrysoba 7th July 2020 08:15 AM

LOL! Hope he dies!

Quote:

The Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, has announced he has tested positive for coronavirus live on television.

“It came back positive,” a mask-wearing Bolsonaro told a hand-picked group of reporters on Tuesday lunchtime.

The Don 7th July 2020 08:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by angrysoba (Post 13149471)
LOL! Hope he dies!

If he doesn't, then I reckon he'll double down on his "it's nothing more than a bit of a sniffle" rhetoric.

Having a really pretty bad case of Coronavirus doesn't seem to have taught Boris Johnson much about the disease, how dangerous it could be for the UK or how important it is to have an effective plan to tackle it. :mad:

Captain_Swoop 7th July 2020 08:30 AM

Three pubs which reopened their doors for the first time on Saturday have had to close again after customers tested positive for coronavirus.

Quote:

There were scenes of celebration in England over the weekend as the country ended three months of coronavirus lockdown, on what was dubbed "Super Saturday".

But three establishments have alerted visitors that they have had to close again just days later after customers tested positive for Covid-19.
https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/p...-a4490576.html

The Don 7th July 2020 08:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149490)
Three pubs which reopened their doors for the first time on Saturday have had to close again after customers tested positive for coronavirus.



https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/p...-a4490576.html

Interestingly, it seems like it was the pubs' decision to close rather than being required to do so:

Quote:

Jess Green, manager of the Lighthouse Kitchen, told BBC Points West she decided to close to "put everyone's health and safety first".

"I felt I had to keep my customers and my staff safe which is why I chose to shut the pub. I'm gutted, but safety comes first.

"We could have opened today but chose not to as I think that's the right thing to do."
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-53315702

zooterkin 7th July 2020 08:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13149490)
Three pubs which reopened their doors for the first time on Saturday have had to close again after customers tested positive for coronavirus.



https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/p...-a4490576.html

Which is not unexpected.

Darat 7th July 2020 08:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zooterkin (Post 13149500)
Which is not unexpected.

Wow - must have been one of those 1:2000 chances.

Darat 7th July 2020 08:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 13149498)
Interestingly, it seems like it was the pubs' decision to close rather than being required to do so:



https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-53315702

Unpopular decisions being avoided by this government, I'm shocked I tell you!

Trebuchet 7th July 2020 08:58 AM

So, (rule of), is Farage facing any sanctions for his quarantine violation?

Nessie 7th July 2020 09:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rolfe (Post 13149347)
There is a subtle point here. Epidemiologists aren't trying to achieve no cases next week, they're trying to achieve a reduction week on week. They recommend activities based not on the belief that they're safe, but that they'll get away with it in terms of not causing too many new infections.

Individuals who don't want to be one of these reducing numbers will make their own risk assessments and won't do things just because they're allowed.

Hence, we have just told a relative we will only see him on good days when he can sit outside, as he has been socialising with multiple households.

He lives alone in a tiny flat and generally he has been very good, but, he has clearly had enough and is now prepared to take risks.


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:12 PM.

Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2015-20, TribeTech AB. All Rights Reserved.