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Old 12th July 2020, 07:01 PM   #561
xjx388
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Is Cuba not a capitalist system?

Cuba is a “Communist” State in the same way that my son is an “electronic musician.” The whole thing would fall apart without support from China/his parents.
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Old 5th October 2020, 01:30 AM   #562
dann
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Capitalism has failed in the pandemic

Of course, that's nothing new. The only thing that's new is who says so:

Quote:
Pope Francis disparaged so-called trickle-down economic theory, saying the pandemic has shown that free-market policies cannot solve all of humanity's most dire needs.
In a 70-page encyclical, the highest form of papal teaching, Pope Francis outlined his vision for a post-pandemic world.
"The marketplace by itself cannot resolve every problem, however much we are asked to believe this dogma of neoliberal faith," the pope wrote.
He added that free-market capitalism "reproduces itself" by resorting to the magic theories of "spillover" or "trickle" as the only solution to societal problems.
Pope Francis says capitalism has failed in the pandemic (CNN, Oct. 4, 2020)

If only he would criticize the magic theories of the Christian faith, I might consider returning to the church that my birth certificate claims I belong to.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 1st November 2020, 03:18 AM   #563
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Quote:
KANSAS. Saltvattenpool, klassrum, skjutbana – och matförråd som räcker i flera år.
På en hemlig plats i Kansas har Larry Hall byggt en överlevnadsbunker för USA:s rikaste. Hit kan överklassen fly om apokalypsen slår till. Eller en pandemi.
– Allt är ”crème de la crème” här. De som har råd att köpa här är vana vid den nivån, säger Larry Hall.
Bland betesmarker och majsfält nånstans bortanför Minneapolis county ligger komplexet.
Att inte avslöja exakt plats var ett av villkoren för att Expressen skulle få besöka ”The survival condos”, överlevarlägenheterna.
Hemliga lysbunkern som ska rädda de superrika (Expressen.se, Nov. 1, 2020)
KANSAS. Saltwater pool, classroom, shooting range – and food supplies for several years.
At a secret site in Kansas, Larry Hall has built a survival bunker for the richest people in the USA. The upper classes can escape to this place if the apocalypse strikes. Or a pandemic.
– Everything is ”crème de la crème”. Those who can afford it are used to this level, says Larry Hall.
The complex is situated among pastures and cornfields somewhere outside of Minneapolis county.
One of the conditions for being allowed to visit ”The survival condos” was that we wouldn’t disclose the exact location.
The secret luxury bunker meant to save the super rich

Quote:
My mother was discharged hastily, just as the Covid-19 pandemic began to tendril into the US. As we lifted her from the wheelchair to the car, tents were being erected behind us in the car park of Torrance Memorial hospital for the expected patient overflow. The three of us ended up holed up in our own Los Angeles bunker of sorts for months. As the virus spread, supply lines, international travel and trade routes, economic systems and social norms collapsed over a matter of weeks. The pandemic was precisely the kind of breakdown preppers were preparing for.
Weapons rooms, fake windows and a $3m price tag: inside a luxury doomsday bunker (Guardian, Aug. 1, 2020)

The Survival Condo (CNet, July 8, 2020)
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 2nd November 2020, 06:46 AM   #564
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Of course, that's nothing new. The only thing that's new is who says so:
It's not new to me. Pope Francis has been like this since before he was Pope Francis.
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Old 26th November 2020, 11:33 PM   #565
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Two from Sweden:
Quote:
Society is rigged in a way so poor people die. Going to the job should not be a death trap.

Quote:
Östermalm är omskrivet för sin höga smittspridning under den andra vågen av covid-19.
Men i Stockholms rikaste stadsdel är det få som avlider av det farliga viruset, enligt färska siffror från smittskyddet i Stockholm.
Det är i fattigare områden med lägre genomsnittlig medelålder som risken är störst att dö av covid-19, enligt en ny rapport.
Hög smitta men färre döda bland rika: ”Inkomst avgör” (Expressen.se, Nov. 26, 2020)
The media wrote about Östermalm’s high spread of infection during the second wave of covid-19. But in Stockholm's richest district, few people die from the dangerous virus, according to recent numbers from the infection control agency in Stockholm. It is in poorer areas with lower average age that the risk of dying from covid-19 is greatest, according to a new report.
High infection but fewer deaths among rich people: "Income decides"

And two from the USA:
Quote:
The risk factors for infection and mortality are different. Our analysis shows that counties with more diverse demographics, higher population, education, income levels, and lower disability rates were at a higher risk of COVID-19 infection. However, counties with higher proportion with disability and poverty rates had a higher death rate. African Americans were more vulnerable to COVID-19 than other ethnic groups (1981 African American infected cases versus 658 Whites per million). Data on mobility changes corroborate the impact of social distancing.
Racial, Economic, and Health Inequality and COVID-19 Infection in the United States (Springer, Sep. 1, 2020)

YouTube Video This video is not hosted by the ISF. The ISF can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website.
I AGREE

Why COVID-19 Is Worse For Poor People (and How to Fix It), Nov. 13, 2020
(I don't give much for the appeals to 'persons in power'. I don't think they have any interest in getting rid of the conditions that are the cause of this.)
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx

Last edited by dann; 26th November 2020 at 11:38 PM.
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Old 11th December 2020, 02:28 PM   #566
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Poverty, Old Age and Immigrant Background Increase Likelihood of Dying from Covid-19

Two Swedish articles:

Quote:
det är framförallt socioekonomiska faktorer så som inkomst, yrke och utbildning som är anledningen till att vissa grupper och områden har högre dödsantal än andra.
(…)
Den tydligaste skillnaden bland de som har dött av covid-19 utanför äldreboende är inkomst. När man har delat in befolkningen efter inkomstnivå så visar det sig att 442 personer som fanns i katergorin med lägst inkomst har dött – dödssiffran för de med högst inkomst är 83 personer.
Inkomst är mest avgörande för dödlighet i corona (SVT.se, Nov. 19, 2020)
Primarily socio-economic factors like income, profession and education are the reason why certain segments and areas have a higher death toll than others.
(…)
The most obvious difference between people outhside of nursing homes who died from Covid-19 is income. When you distinguish between levels of income in a population, it shows that 442 in the low-income category have died – for those at the highest income level, the number is 83.
Income is most important for mortality from corona

Quote:
Covid-19 har skördat över 7 300 dödsoffer i Sverige. Och det är mot svenskar över 64 år med utländsk bakgrund som pandemin slagit hårdast. Men även låg inkomst är en riskfaktor. Det visar Socialstyrelsens nya siffror som SVT Nyheter har granskat.
Äldre svenskar med utländsk bakgrund hårdast drabbade av covid-19 (SVT.se, Dec. 11, 2020)
Covid-19 has claimed more than 7,300 lives in Sweden. And the pandemic has hit Swedes older than 64 with immigrant backgrounds the hardest. But even low income is a risk factor, according to new numbers from Sweden’s National Board of Health and Welfare analyzed by SVT News.
Elderly Swedes with immigrant backgrounds hardest hit by Covid-19
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 20th January 2021, 12:27 PM   #567
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Quote:
The facts are now clear: the Swedish strategy has failed. With 87.83 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, Sweden has fared significantly worse than countries with more restrictive measures, and comparable healthcare, such as Denmark (23.66), Finland (10.24), and Norway (8.43). All the lofty promises of the politicians and their officials have proved to be completely wrong. With a vaccine around the corner, it is clear that many of these deaths could have been avoided.
The price has been paid by the nearly 10,000 dead and their relatives, as well as those who toil in elderly care facilities, at health clinics and hospitals. Workers there are poorly paid, work hard enough for two and have been forced to go to work without personal protective equipment.
Sweden: COVID-19 policy shift reveals failure of capitalism (Marxist, Jan. 13, 2021)

Two recent articles have made clear that people in impoverished neighborhoods also aren't tested nearly as much as those in the affluent neighborhoods:
Quote:
Expressen har fått ut uppgifter om fler än 100 000 hemtester i Stockholmsregionen och kan nu avslöja:
I fattigare områden har testningen ännu inte kommit i gång.
Men det är där folk blir allvarligt sjuka – och dör.
Klyftan: Rika testar sig för corona – fattiga dör (Expressen.se, Dec. 25, 2020)
Expressen has received information about more than 100,000 home tests in the Stockholm region and can now reveal:
In poor areas, testing has not yet begun.
But this is where people get seriously ill - and die.
The rich get tested for corona - the poor die

Quote:
I flera månader har Region Stockholm känt till att covid-testningen i utsatta områden inte har fungerat.
Trots det har åtgärderna uteblivit.
Läkare är nu starkt kritiska till att regionen inte prioriterar dem som löper stor risk att bli allvarligt sjuka.
– Vi fick till svar att det inte var aktuellt, säger en läkare till Expressen.
Testproblemen i förorterna kända – i flera månader (Expressen.se, Jan. 20, 2021)
For several months, the Stockholm Region has known that covid testing in vulnerable areas did not work.
And yet, the measures have not materialized.
Doctors are now very critical of the fact that the region does not prioritize those who are at high risk of becoming seriously ill.
– We received the answer that it was not relevant, says a doctor to Expressen.
Testing problems in the suburbs are well-known - and have been for several months
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 17th February 2021, 10:25 AM   #568
dann
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In hindsigt:
Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Uh, yes.Iceland, at this moment in time, is more open than Texas. Sure they are...
(...)
And let’s be real, Denmark locked down early and has now allowed restaurants and such to open, so it’s not like there’s a need for much talk of that kind where you live. You are more open than Texas and most other States in the US.
Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
You can put whatever veneer on it that you like. The fact remains that Denmark is most certainly not doing better than Texas and it is more open than Texas. There is no doubt that Texas is opening way too early; it therefore follows that Denmark has opened way too early. So before you try and remove the splinter from our eye, perhaps you should focus on the plank in your Capitalist country's eye.
Covid-19 deaths:
Iceland 29 (85 per mill.) Iceland news (not only) about the pandemic.
Denmark 2,316 (399 per mill.)
Texas (1,430 per mill.)
Coronavirus has killed more than 40,000 Texans (Texas Tribune Star, Feb. 16, 2021)
“We’re in it alone”: Power outages leave millions of Texans desperate for heat and safety (Texas Tribune Star, Feb. 16, 2021)

I almost forgot another country that's been mentioned a couple of times in the thread:
Cuba 277 (24 per. mill.)

Do you understand that opening (too) "early" is not a question of time as such? It is a question of a capacity of a country or a community for keeping the spread of the virus down after opening, i.e. 1) What is the level of contagion? 2) Are TeTrIs, masks and other measures in place to keep the spread of the virus down once you open up?


ETA: And this has nothing at all to do with the pandemic, but in Texas, for some obscure reason, windmills are blamed for the power outtakes. That never seems to be a problem in Denmark:
Quote:
De danske vindmøller har aldrig tidligere produceret så meget strøm, som de gjorde mandag morgen.
Midt i vintervejret: Vindmøller sætter rekord (DR.dk, March 18, 2013)
Danish windmills never produced as much power as they did this Monday morning.
In the middle of the winter weather: Windmills set a record
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx

Last edited by dann; 17th February 2021 at 10:29 AM.
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Old 17th February 2021, 04:34 PM   #569
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
In hindsigt:




Covid-19 deaths:
Iceland 29 (85 per mill.) Iceland news (not only) about the pandemic.
Denmark 2,316 (399 per mill.)
Texas (1,430 per mill.)
Coronavirus has killed more than 40,000 Texans (Texas Tribune Star, Feb. 16, 2021)
“We’re in it alone”: Power outages leave millions of Texans desperate for heat and safety (Texas Tribune Star, Feb. 16, 2021)

I almost forgot another country that's been mentioned a couple of times in the thread:
Cuba 277 (24 per. mill.)

Do you understand that opening (too) "early" is not a question of time as such? It is a question of a capacity of a country or a community for keeping the spread of the virus down after opening, i.e. 1) What is the level of contagion? 2) Are TeTrIs, masks and other measures in place to keep the spread of the virus down once you open up?


ETA: And this has nothing at all to do with the pandemic, but in Texas, for some obscure reason, windmills are blamed for the power outtakes. That never seems to be a problem in Denmark:

Danish windmills never produced as much power as they did this Monday morning.
In the middle of the winter weather: Windmills set a record

The situation unfolded exactly as I thought it would: Texas opened too early and paid the price. I do understand that “too early” isn’t really about time but about preparedness and containment. There is no doubt that Denmark was better prepared and contained than Texas.

The larger point is that this isn’t really about Capitalism. It’s about how seriously a population takes the problem. Texas took it a lot less seriously than Denmark. Denmark and other countries that have handled the pandemic relatively well are still Capitalist countries. Capitalism created the vaccine. It’s not perfect but it’s also not the cause of the pandemic.
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Old 17th February 2021, 04:55 PM   #570
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
It’s not perfect but it’s also not the cause of the pandemic.
Unless capitalistic urges in Wuhan province caused people to cut corners and create exposure where they shouldn't have.
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Old 18th February 2021, 12:18 AM   #571
dann
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
The situation unfolded exactly as I thought it would: Texas opened too early and paid the price. I do understand that “too early” isn’t really about time but about preparedness and containment. There is no doubt that Denmark was better prepared and contained than Texas.

The larger point is that this isn’t really about Capitalism. It’s about how seriously a population takes the problem. Texas took it a lot less seriously than Denmark. Denmark and other countries that have handled the pandemic relatively well are still Capitalist countries. Capitalism created the vaccine. It’s not perfect but it’s also not the cause of the pandemic.

Populations don't make lockdowns and restrictions. Populations don't open up. But populations do pay the price. It's the reason why xjx388 writes that Texas and not Texans opened up too early.

How seriously populations take the problem usually depends on the information those populations receive from authorities. If they are told that face masks are dangerous or at best useless (like in Sweden), you won't see many people wear them.

And no, only some "other countries that have handled the pandemic relatively well are still Capitalist countries." And the capitalist countries that do tend not to be liberalist laissez-faire capitalist countries or states.

It is not a big surprise that countries that value business above the health of their populations attempt to accommodate the interests of the former at the cost of the latter. So this really is about capitalism, which doesn't make it impossible for some capitalist countries with intelligent leaders to consider the overall interests of their nations, which include public health, above (extremely) short-term business interests: Singapore, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, for instance.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 12:22 AM   #572
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Unless capitalistic urges in Wuhan province caused people to cut corners and create exposure where they shouldn't have.

The outbreak seems to have started at a wet market, not in a group of hobby spelunkers.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 12:32 AM   #573
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Pandemic cut U.S. life expectancy by a year during the first half of 2020 (WP, Feb. 18, 2021)
Black Americans 2.7 years, Latinos 1.9, whites 0.8.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 12:47 AM   #574
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Quote:
Risken för att smittas av covid-19 är inte samma för oss alla. Även under en nedstängning måste några människor hålla igång samhället. Det är där infektionerna hamnar, säger folkhälsoforskaren Stefan Baral som vill se mer riktade åtgärder mot smittspridningen.
”Det här viruset livnär sig på orättvisor i samhället” (DagensNyheter.se, Feb. 14, 2021)
The risk of contracting covid-19 is not the same for all of us. Even during a lockdown, some people have to keep society going. This is where the infections end up, says public health researcher Stefan Baral, who wants to see more targeted measures against the spread of infection.
”This virus feeds on social injustice”
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 06:36 AM   #575
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Populations don't make lockdowns and restrictions. Populations don't open up. But populations do pay the price. It's the reason why xjx388 writes that Texas and not Texans opened up too early.

How seriously populations take the problem usually depends on the information those populations receive from authorities. If they are told that face masks are dangerous or at best useless (like in Sweden), you won't see many people wear them.

And no, only some "other countries that have handled the pandemic relatively well are still Capitalist countries." And the capitalist countries that do tend not to be liberalist laissez-faire capitalist countries or states.

It is not a big surprise that countries that value business above the health of their populations attempt to accommodate the interests of the former at the cost of the latter. So this really is about capitalism, which doesn't make it impossible for some capitalist countries with intelligent leaders to consider the overall interests of their nations, which include public health, above (extremely) short-term business interests: Singapore, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, for instance.

A distinction without a difference. The government of Texas is made up of Texans. The government reflects the people. The Governor created a shutdown plan, half-heartedly, and the People of Texas only listened half-heartedly. The Governor sped up the reopening timetable because that what the People wanted.

Denmark wanted different things and this was reflected both in the Government and the People.

Both are Capitalist countries; each had different outcomes.
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Old 18th February 2021, 06:38 AM   #576
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
The risk of contracting covid-19 is not the same for all of us. Even during a lockdown, some people have to keep society going. This is where the infections end up, says public health researcher Stefan Baral, who wants to see more targeted measures against the spread of infection.
”This virus feeds on social injustice”

And social injustice exists only because of Capitalism?

You cite Cuba as having handled the pandemic well. Maybe, if you trust their numbers. But how are they handling their society as a whole? I guess we can ask the people who escape to America, huh?
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Old 18th February 2021, 07:15 AM   #577
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
A distinction without a difference. The government of Texas is made up of Texans. The government reflects the people.
...
given the level of gerrymandering, that isn't quite true.
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Old 18th February 2021, 08:28 AM   #578
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
And social injustice exists only because of Capitalism?

You cite Cuba as having handled the pandemic well. Maybe, if you trust their numbers. But how are they handling their society as a whole? I guess we can ask the people who escape to America, huh?

I know, I know. Cubans escape to America because they want Obamacare.
All other Latin Americans live in capitalist paradises, so their reasons for wanting to escape are very suspicious indeed:
"They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 08:33 AM   #579
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
I know, I know. Cubans escape to America because they want Obamacare.
All other Latin Americans live in capitalist paradises, so their reasons for wanting to escape are very suspicious indeed:
"They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

No, you still don’t get it. There is not now and never will be a perfect system of government and economics. No matter what system you run, there will still be injustice, racism, inequality, pandemics, etc. You can’t cure the human condition.
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Old 18th February 2021, 08:33 AM   #580
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
A distinction without a difference. The government of Texas is made up of Texans. The government reflects the people. The Governor created a shutdown plan, half-heartedly, and the People of Texas only listened half-heartedly. The Governor sped up the reopening timetable because that what the People wanted.

Denmark wanted different things and this was reflected both in the Government and the People.

Both are Capitalist countries; each had different outcomes.

Right now, the people of Texas seem to want power, heat and water. And some of the local leaders blame them for that. And they don't do it half-heartedly. So I guess that must be what the People wanted.
And no, 'Denmark' didn't want "different things." If they had asked me, we would have gone for something like Zero Covid, but they didn't.
Your fairy-tale version of the relationship between government and people may be what you give school children to read in Texas, but it has nothing whatsoever in common with reality.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx

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Old 18th February 2021, 08:35 AM   #581
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Texas is basically a petrostate. The government serves to enrich the oil companies there. This is tampered somewhat by Texas not being a sovereign nation, but rather a state that is somewhat restrained by federal law.

The misery we are seeing there now is the direct consequence of unrestrained capitalism.
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Old 18th February 2021, 08:36 AM   #582
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
No, you still don’t get it. There is not now and never will be a perfect system of government and economics. No matter what system you run, there will still be injustice, racism, inequality, pandemics, etc. You can’t cure the human condition.

I thought you just said that Texas had solved the problem: The People got exactly what they wanted! What more can you ask for?
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 08:42 AM   #583
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Texas is basically a petrostate. The government serves to enrich the oil companies there. This is tampered somewhat by Texas not being a sovereign nation, but rather a state that is somewhat restrained by federal law.

The misery we are seeing there now is the direct consequence of unrestrained capitalism.

I noticed! Texas leaders failed to heed warnings that left the state's power grid vulnerable to winter extremes, experts say (Texas Tribune, Feb. 17, 2021) But that is the theme of another thread. I tried to find the most recent Covid-19 death toll in Texas yesterday, but that appeared to have been affected by the weather, too. I hope that the freezers for keeping the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines cold run on generators. Even the outdoor temperatures in Texas won't keep them cold enough.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 08:59 AM   #584
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Right now, the people of Texas seem to want power, heat and water. And some of the local leaders blame them for that. And they don't do it half-heartedly. So I guess that must be what the People wanted.
And no, 'Denmark' didn't want "different things." If they had asked me, we would have gone for something like Zero Covid, but they didn't.
Your fairy-tale version of the relationship between government and people may be what you give school children to read, but it has nothing whatsoever in common with reality.

I totally disagree with you. I think you are looking at things the way you’d like them to be instead of how they actually are and what is realistically feasible.

What’s happening in Texas right now is unprecedented. The whole State was frozen at the same time. That hasn’t happened before to this degree. The power grid was overwhelmed. We don’t have district heating in Texas; most homes have individual electric (and natural gas) heaters/air conditioning systems. Winter is usually pretty mild; electric companies use that time to take some generation off-line for maintenance to get ready for summer. Yeah, people are angry and looking to blame other people; it’s human nature to do that. But it’s not really anyone’s fault; it’s simply unprecedented stress on the power and water systems. Most of us understand that, but it doesn’t make this situation any easier.

Denmark lives frozen. You are built for frozen. Texas lives in heat; we are built to support high energy use for a/c in summer. You simply can’t compare the two in this respect.

That’s reality.
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Old 18th February 2021, 09:02 AM   #585
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
I totally disagree with you. I think you are looking at things the way you’d like them to be instead of how they actually are and what is realistically feasible.

What’s happening in Texas right now is unprecedented. The whole State was frozen at the same time. That hasn’t happened before to this degree. The power grid was overwhelmed. We don’t have district heating in Texas; most homes have individual electric (and natural gas) heaters/air conditioning systems. Winter is usually pretty mild; electric companies use that time to take some generation off-line for maintenance to get ready for summer. Yeah, people are angry and looking to blame other people; it’s human nature to do that. But it’s not really anyone’s fault; it’s simply unprecedented stress on the power and water systems. Most of us understand that, but it doesn’t make this situation any easier.

Denmark lives frozen. You are built for frozen. Texas lives in heat; we are built to support high energy use for a/c in summer. You simply can’t compare the two in this respect.

That’s reality.
Texas is not connected to the national grid because they didn't want to comply with federal regs, including regs that require the infrastructure to be properly winterized.

The Texas grid is down because they decided that unrestrained, free-market solutions was better than federal regulations.
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Old 18th February 2021, 09:07 AM   #586
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Texas is basically a petrostate. The government serves to enrich the oil companies there. This is tampered somewhat by Texas not being a sovereign nation, but rather a state that is somewhat restrained by federal law.

The misery we are seeing there now is the direct consequence of unrestrained capitalism.

No it’s not. It’s the direct consequence of not being ready for the whole State to be frozen at the same time. We don’t do well when the temps are much below 40F for an extended time.

Let’s see some of the Northern climates be ready for an extended heat wave of over 100F -hell over 90F- they’d have the same problems as we are right now. And they do, all the time!
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Old 18th February 2021, 09:17 AM   #587
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Texas is not connected to the national grid because they didn't want to comply with federal regs, including regs that require the infrastructure to be properly winterized.

The Texas grid is down because they decided that unrestrained, free-market solutions was better than federal regulations.

Doesn’t matter. Texas has never had this problem before. In every other instance before, Texas does indeed do better with what you characterize as “unrestrained, free-market solutions.” Energy prices are relatively low here. We can handle high summer loads very well. We can’t handle an unusually high winter load like this. Luckily, it’s extremely rare.
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Old 18th February 2021, 10:26 AM   #588
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Denmark lives frozen. You are built for frozen. Texas lives in heat; we are built to support high energy use for a/c in summer. You simply can’t compare the two in this respect.

That’s reality.

Reality is that you can compare the two, and reality is that Texas prepared for neither the winter nor the pandemic. The latter also hadn't happened before. It was obvious that it was coming, but it was cheaper not to prepare for it. But this is not the thread for the discussion of the power outtake. This one is, so let's move it there.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 18th February 2021, 07:45 PM   #589
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Reality is that you can compare the two, and reality is that Texas prepared for neither the winter nor the pandemic. The latter also hadn't happened before. It was obvious that it was coming, but it was cheaper not to prepare for it. But this is not the thread for the discussion of the power outtake. This one is, so let's move it there.

Is Denmark prepared for heatwaves? Does everyone have home a/c now, just in case? I’m genuinely curious; I have no idea but I do know that unseasonable heat causes a lot of excess death, wildfires and other problems you may not be used to.

Look, it’s not a competition. We each have our own unique issues and none of us is perfect.

Nobody was prepared for the pandemic but some reacted much better than others. Make no mistake; I’m extremely disappointed in the way Texans and Texas has reacted to the pandemic. I commend Denmark and Danes on their reaction. But it has little to do with the economic system and more to do with society and culture.
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Old 19th February 2021, 03:01 AM   #590
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Is Denmark prepared for heatwaves? Does everyone have home a/c now, just in case? I’m genuinely curious; I have no idea but I do know that unseasonable heat causes a lot of excess death, wildfires and other problems you may not be used to.

No, you are definitely not genuinely curious, and nobody believes that you are genuinely curious. If you were, you would have looked it up.
But no, not everyone has home a/c, and we don't need it. But we do have both water and electricity. I remember one power outage in my part of town, Frederiksberg. It was in late spring or early summer of 2007 and lasted for an hour or two.
We do have heatwaves, and we do have wildfires. The latter not due to heatwaves as much as to draughts, which are pretty rare, and those years are usually remembered as the good summers by the vast majority of us, the exception being farmers without irrigation.

Quote:
Look, it’s not a competition. We each have our own unique issues and none of us is perfect.

No, it's not a competition. You already told us that it's genuine curiosity, which I guess is also the reason why you made the unfounded claim that Denmark opened up too soon after the first wave. (Denmark locked down a little too late in both the first and the second wave.) I already know about your issues. However, I am genuinely concerned about the lives of Texans, but there's nothing I can do about it other than tell them that they have a ****** political system and infrastructure, which may help some them realize what needs to be done. Not you. You are a businessman, and I guess you are one of those Texans who still have access to drinking water and electricity, one of those Texans the politicians are actually working for.

Quote:
Nobody was prepared for the pandemic but some reacted much better than others. Make no mistake; I’m extremely disappointed in the way Texans and Texas has reacted to the pandemic. I commend Denmark and Danes on their reaction. But it has little to do with the economic system and more to do with society and culture.

I don't think you have any reason to be disappointed about the way Texas has reacted to the pandemic. Yesterday, you thought that "Texas does indeed do better with what you (SuburbanTurkey) characterize as “unrestrained, free-market solutions,”" which is probably true for some Texans but obviously not for all of them.

As for your idea that
Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
The government of Texas is made up of Texans. The government reflects the people.
I wish all Texans a pleasant weekend in Cancun!
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 20th February 2021, 04:45 AM   #591
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Capitalism created the vaccine.

I've been waiting for the translation of this article:

Quote:
Industrial production has begun of Cuba’s candidate vaccines Soberana 02 and Abdala (CIGB-66), two of the four developed on the island to combat COVID-19, with progress advancing at BioCubaFarma facilities.
(...)
Cuban television reported that, during in a meeting with the President of the Republic, Dr. Vicente Vérez Bencomo, director of the Finlay Vaccine Institute, stated, "We are scaling up the process of conjugation of Soberana 02, and have been able to produce a batch of 150,000 doses that came out very well, an important scientific-technical milestone."
(..)
Cuba has extensive experience in the development and production of vaccines. At present, the national biopharmaceutical industry manufactures eight of the 11 vaccines used in the national expanded immunization program, which ensures a vaccination level in the country close to 100%, with a significant impact on the elimination of several infectious diseases and the reduction of the incidence rate of others.
Cuba scales up industrial production of candidate vaccines (Granma.cu, Feb. 18, 2021)
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 20th February 2021, 05:12 AM   #592
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Long Covid-19 in children:
Quote:
Sixty-nine percent of reported cases have affected Latino or Black young people, which experts believe stems from socioeconomic and other factors that have disproportionately exposed those communities to the virus. But Omaha’s hospital, where early cases were largely among children of Latino parents working in the meatpacking industry, is now “seeing a much more broad spectrum and every ethnicity,” Dr. Ballweg said.
Covid-Linked Syndrome in Children Is Growing, and Cases Are More Severe (NYT, Feb. 16-17, 2021)
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 21st February 2021, 04:26 AM   #593
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Texas does indeed do better with what you characterize as “unrestrained, free-market solutions.” Energy prices are relatively low here.
Not anymore.
Texas officials are investigating outrageous energy bills in storm price surge (CNN, Feb. 22, 2021)
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Visits Houston Food Bank After Raising $3 Million For Texas Winter Storm Relief (HoustonPublicMedia, Feb. 20, 2021)
Considering the pandemic, I think she should have stayed away, but at least she is wearing a face mask, which may teach Texans that it's a good idea to do so.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 21st February 2021, 04:43 PM   #594
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There are some consumers on what they call an index plan. Their rate is based on the wholesale price of energy. This usually works great. The electric bill is super low in winter and spikes a little in summer. That’s a small part of the market.

Most of us are on a fixed rate plan. We end up paying a little more, on average, than an index plan but are insulated from price spikes.

This system works great and has been smooth since it was instituted. This was the first major hiccup in the system and exposed it’s weaknesses. Nobody really foresaw this weakness.

You want to judge a system based on the absolute worst that can possibly happen. Pandemics and unprecedented freezes don’t happen all that often. We could have done better and I’m confident that we will going forward. I’m confident that government will do a better job of being the safety net. And if it doesn’t, I’m confident that the current politicians in office that failed us will be ousted. In any case, we will move to a still-free-market-but-protects-the-little-guy-better system sooner, rather than

I notice that you still don’t have a replacement system. You have nothing but complaints, not solutions.
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Old 21st February 2021, 11:51 PM   #595
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I'm not complaining!
The solution is to plan ahead, but planning ahead costs, and libertarian-run countries seem to think that optimism is the best plan because securing people's lives and health is bad for business: 'Nobody (Are you sure? Nobody? Really?) foresaw this weakness, and pandemics and unprecedented freezes don't happen all that often, so let's assume that not all that often means never.'

ETA from the thread Texas Governor and FOX News Blames Liberals for Power Outages:
Originally Posted by Bob001 View Post
An account of the mess:
Quote:
One example of how Texas has gone it alone is its refusal to enforce a “reserve margin” of extra power available above expected demand, unlike all other power systems around North America. With no mandate, there is little incentive to invest in precautions for events, such as a Southern snowstorm, that are rare. Any company that took such precautions would put itself at a competitive disadvantage.
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/te...out&li=BBnb7Kz
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx

Last edited by dann; 22nd February 2021 at 12:01 AM.
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Old 22nd February 2021, 02:01 AM   #596
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PS

Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Pandemics and unprecedented freezes don’t happen all that often. We could have done better and I’m confident that we will going forward. I’m confident that government will do a better job of being the safety net.

Do you remember when you wrote this?
Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Ah, and you have a big LED scoreboard with the R0 in real time in the center of Copenhagen or something? You can put whatever veneer on it that you like. The fact remains that Denmark is most certainly not doing better than Texas and it is more open than Texas.
Pretending that Texas was just taken aback is dishonest. And as for the scoreboard, we appear to have something better: Verdensberømt corona-overvågning: »Alles øjne er rettet mod Danmark« (Videnskab.dk, Feb. 10, 2021) And I am not even particularly impressed by that. Some countries with more efficient restrictions in place have fared much better than Denmark without the need for high-tech virus surveillance.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 22nd February 2021, 09:12 AM   #597
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Rebecca Watson, Nov. 13, 2020:
Why COVID-19 Is Worse For Poor People (and How to Fix It)
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Mobility network models of COVID-19 explain inequities and inform reopening (Nature, Nov. 10, 2020)

And if anybody has been wondering why workers at meatpacking plants tend to get Covid-19 and die more often than others:
Quote:
The pandemic has thrown into high relief some of the longstanding issues surrounding working conditions in meatpacking facilities. John Oliver explains why greater oversight is needed, and how we can go about getting it.
Meatpacking: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (Feb. 22, 2021)
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 22nd February 2021, 09:54 AM   #598
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I’m all for greater regulation and taking care of lower income people. That doesn’t require replacing Capitalism. It’s a balance, which is something that other countries have done well and the US can learn from.

Which really, when you boil it down, is my core argument. Especially when there is no ready, proven substitute for Capitalism.
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Old 22nd February 2021, 11:38 AM   #599
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
I’m all for greater regulation and taking care of lower income people. That doesn’t require replacing Capitalism. It’s a balance, which is something that other countries have done well and the US can learn from.

But doesn't.

Quote:
Which really, when you boil it down, is my core argument. Especially when there is no ready, proven substitute for Capitalism.

Of course, there are substitutes for capitalism! That you don't like them doesn't mean that they don't exist. There are even capitalist substitutes for neo-liberal versions of capitalism, but I guess people who suggest this in Texas will probably be considered to be communists or Antifa.
There are also alternatives to neo-liberal pandemic response, like TeTrIs or face masks, for instance.
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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Old 22nd February 2021, 11:52 AM   #600
Caroline13
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Well if the Rich created it then we thank the Rockefellers, Gates and all those in bed with them.
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