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COVID - Getting Past the Anger or Embrace it?


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2 hours ago, Pam in CT said:

I'm re-reading *this* a few times to figure out what I'm thinking on it.

We mandate that drivers stop at stop signs.

Compliance isn't perfect, because human behavior. People simply are not perfect; mistakes will happen. That's the fallibility of the real world... even before taking the existence of @$$holes into account.

Do you see a distinction (logically or morally) between mandating stopping at stop signs even though compliance is less than perfect, and even though stop signs do not perfectly reduce accidents at street junctions all the way to 0... vs mandating masks even though similar dynamics are at play?

 

(To my mind, in both cases: better is better. We need not wait until we can arrive all the way at "perfection" before we work toward "better."  But I'm wondering if you see a difference between the one case, vs the other.)

Death by Stop Sign | Psychology Today

This is an interesting theory:

What is the reason for the enormous disparity between U.S. traffic deaths and deaths in, say, Britain? The answer is that U.S. signs, signals, and road design ignore psychology. Traffic signs in the U.S. always control rather than inform. They tell you what you must do, rather than giving the information you need to make intelligent decisions.

 

 

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My parents visited us last week after their 2nd dose of the vaccine. It was the first we saw them in person since January of 2020. They had COVID in November and my dad was hospitalized for a few days

In my own life, the ones I'm most angry with are the ones that keep saying, "most people can fight it off" or "I can fight it off" and dismissing all hose that CAN'T as basically worthless. If they ar

I wanted to add -- in reference to a few posts in this thread -- that it does happen that you can do everything right (and I mean really, really go out of your way to do everything right), but the wro

1 hour ago, J-rap said:

To me, it's a little similar to the Ten Commandments.  I mean, it would have been nice if humans just did the right thing ~ acting in ways that were wise, unselfish, and compassionate toward their fellow humans.   But people being people, the actual Commandments became necessary.

To me, though, the Ten Commandments are different.  GOD gave the commandments to guide humans (who were not always wise, unselfish, and compassionate).  Mandates are made by humans (who are not always wise, unselfish, and compassionate) to control other humans because those humans many not always be wise, unselfish, and compassionate.  I see no logical reason to believe that those who make the mandates are more wise, less selfish, and more compassionate on average than the people who are deemed not to be wise enough, unselfish enough, or compassionate enough to make good decisions on their own. 

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And I think to some extent, mask mandates happened because certain people felt like they had to show they were "doing something."

I believe the use of masks would be more effective overall if, instead of making a mandate, the people in charge worked harder at explaining the factual logic behind mask use and its interaction with social distancing etc.  (At least in the USA, where we are not used to being ordered to follow arbitrary rules that haven't even gone through legislative debate.)  Yes, there would still be people who would not use them, just like there are people who don't use seatbelts.  But those who had any sense at all would apply it to try to make good decisions.  And I personally believe most humans in every country are not complete a$$holes.

I think I read that in the US where we effectively have vaccine mandates (pre-Covid), our vax rates are lower than those in other developed countries that don't use mandates but rather education / physician advice.  This should be a clue that mandates don't encourage the kind of thinking that promotes health.

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43 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

Death by Stop Sign | Psychology Today

This is an interesting theory:

What is the reason for the enormous disparity between U.S. traffic deaths and deaths in, say, Britain? The answer is that U.S. signs, signals, and road design ignore psychology. Traffic signs in the U.S. always control rather than inform. They tell you what you must do, rather than giving the information you need to make intelligent decisions.

 

 

It would be more interesting if he actually offered some evidence that it was directly related to signage rather than the number of high speed/windy/long distance roads, the local wildlife, the type of vehicles, cultural tendencies when driving etc etc.  

If we’re requiring decent studies on masks we should at least be consistent.

Also as a side thing, i note that he says there are 23,000 unnecessary traffic deaths per year.  It’s worth nothing that there have been 1/2 million COVID DEATHS.  
 

Even in Australia where Covid was quite minimal and we took massive mitigation measures we had nearly as many Covid as road deaths last year.

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5 minutes ago, SKL said:

I think I read that in the US where we effectively have vaccine mandates (pre-Covid), our vax rates are lower than those in other developed countries that don't use mandates but rather education / physician advice.  This should be a clue that mandates don't encourage the kind of thinking that promotes health.

France and Italy require 10-11 vaccines for school attendance, just like the US, and Germany requires the measles vaccine. The vaccination rate against measles in the US, where it is required for school attendance is 92%, compared to Switzerland (76%) and the UK (87%), where vaccines are not mandatory. Scandinavian countries do have high vaccination rates without mandates, but they are also significantly more community-minded in general compared to the everyone-for-himself ethos that pervades much of the US.

The idea that more Americans would vaccinate if vaccines were not mandatory wouldn't even have made sense a few years ago, as vaccination rates continued to fall despite the fact that many states allowed parents to evade mandates via "philosophical exemptions." And it makes even less sense now that we know what a frighteningly large percentage of the US population is unable to distinguish between actual science and easily refuted propaganda they see on social media.

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29 minutes ago, Ausmumof3 said:

It would be more interesting if he actually offered some evidence that it was directly related to signage rather than the number of high speed/windy/long distance roads, the local wildlife, the type of vehicles, cultural tendencies when driving etc etc.  

If we’re requiring decent studies on masks we should at least be consistent.

Also as a side thing, i note that he says there are 23,000 unnecessary traffic deaths per year.  It’s worth nothing that there have been 1/2 million COVID DEATHS.  
 

Even in Australia where Covid was quite minimal and we took massive mitigation measures we had nearly as many Covid as road deaths last year.

I would in no way suggest that we should do away with stop signs because of this one article--it is an interesting theory.  

But the decent study should be that stop signs do a significant amount of good relative to the costs that they impose (time, pollution, causing other types of accidents, etc.) before we mandate that people stop.  

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2 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

I would in no way suggest that we should do away with stop signs because of this one article--it is an interesting theory.  

But the decent study should be that stop signs do a significant amount of good relative to the costs that they impose (time, pollution, causing other types of accidents, etc.) before we mandate that people stop.  

Stop signs and speed limits are revenue generators in some locations, LOL.

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19 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

I would in no way suggest that we should do away with stop signs because of this one article--it is an interesting theory.  

But the decent study should be that stop signs do a significant amount of good relative to the costs that they impose (time, pollution, causing other types of accidents, etc.) before we mandate that people stop.  

I mean for one thing we have stop signs in Australia, plenty of them.  I just think he’s put forward a theory with literally zero evidence to support it.  I’m going to step away because this thread is making me angry.  Which is not helpful here at all.

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22 hours ago, kand said:

I have seen so, so much of this kind of information. There are mountains of resources at this point showing why and how masks work. I don’t actually know how those trying to get the message out could get it out any more than they have. At the very beginning, messaging was not effective, but once the initial chaos settled and the science started coming in, I saw tons of good explainers, ads, articles and other things educating about masks. 

I think that kind of information is just totally irrelevant to anti-maskers at this point. These are mostly the same people who were posting all over social media last year that covid was less dangerous than the flu, that HCQ could cure it, that only 5000 people would die, that estimates of 200K dead were nothing but politically motivated fear-mongering, etc. 

And after they turned out to be dead wrong about all those things, they were reposting the Great Barrington Declaration and articles claiming that Sweden had already reached herd immunity and the US was only 10% away so we should reopen everything immediately, that hospitals were hugely inflating death numbers to make more money, that Covid would "disappear the day after the election," etc.

And then they were proven dead wrong about those things, too, as the US (and Sweden, and many other countries) experienced a third wave that dwarfed the first two, US deaths hit half a million, RCTs on HCQ and ivermectin found no benefit, etc. So what do they have left to save face and keep from admitting that they were dead wrong about absolutely everything for the last 12 months?

Well they can keep mocking the "sheeple" for wearing masks, and they can keep pretending they're smarter and better informed (and even, bizarrely enough, more faithful) because they won't wear a small strip of cloth on their face that might keep them from getting, and spreading, a deadly disease. 

The idea that these people would be wearing masks if experts had just explained it better, is a joke. 

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2 hours ago, SKL said:

...

I believe the use of masks would be more effective overall if, instead of making a mandate, the people in charge worked harder at explaining the factual logic behind mask use and its interaction with social distancing etc.  (At least in the USA, where we are not used to being ordered to follow arbitrary rules that haven't even gone through legislative debate.)  Yes, there would still be people who would not use them, just like there are people who don't use seatbelts.  But those who had any sense at all would apply it to try to make good decisions.  And I personally believe most humans in every country are not complete a$$holes. ...

1 hour ago, kand said:

I have seen so, so much of this kind of information. There are mountains of resources at this point showing why and how masks work. I don’t actually know how those trying to get the message out could get it out any more than they have. At the very beginning, messaging was not effective, but once the initial chaos settled and the science started coming in, I saw tons of good explainers, ads, articles and other things educating about masks. 

And, this was NOT an either-or dichotomy: EITHER educate OR mandate. 

I mean, it's not like once a mandate is ordered, all of the information disappears. It's not like having a mandate means that people can't find this information, or that the people in charge stopped "working to explain the factual logic behind mask use and its interaction with social distancing etc." They still did this. And the information grew. It was everywhere. It IS everywhere. But we're still seeing arguments of "not enough" or "not the right information" or "fake" to the point where I don't know where the bar is. Thank goodness Newton isn't trying to get gravity accepted these days, he'd need a lot more than apples and math.

But back to the point, about mask mandates:

Okay, so we have all of this information available. Therefore, the sensical non-assholes will have, of their own volition, started using masks. We agree on that. These are Group A: people who have sense and aren't assholes, and who do not need a mask mandate.

Leaving us with Group B: people who for whatever reason will not mask based on the factual logic. So, Group A shouldn't be shrunk by a mandate, because they are by definition sensical non-assholes, while Group B may be now divided into Group B1 who now mask because of mandate and Group B2 who won't mask anyway.

So long as there are people in Group B1, isn't this a gain? The mandate will be more effective than just education alone. Unless everyone is a sensical non-asshole, or the overwhelming majority are at least, then the mandate will still serve a useful purpose. 

But, if you are saying that the mandate makes Group A people LESS likely to use a mask, despite all of this information available to them, then I'm not sure I agree they are sensical non-assholes. Because cutting off one's nose to spite one's face is really non-sensical, and trying to cut off other peoples' noses is asshole-ish. So I don't see why we think NOT having a mandate would have BETTER masking outcomes. This math is beyond my education.

eta: on the idea that in the USA we aren't used to following rules that didn't go through legislative debate, or that this "not used to" has effected our mask thing. We see these huge bills get passed where people aren't reading them, or even if the politician read it, the average Joe on the street didn't and doesn't even know it's happening. C-SPAN is not our most popular channel. Building codes about stair depth, electric wire rules, we assume are there for good reason even if we personally don't understand it. We expect ourselves and others to follow the sometimes-seemingly "arbitrary rules" in our society and give a lot of assumption that the rules were made for societal benefit, and do not ask for proof of debate, or need the rules re-debated every 40 years *just because* our generation didn't get to listen to the debates the first time. 

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8 hours ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

Mask mandates take the pressure off of individual businesses to keep their work place safe. Most businesses here in my state were vocally for the mask mandate. 

Definitely this!   Everyone I know that works in a public facing position is very glad for the mask mandates.  It's so much easier to tell someone they can't come in without a mask when you have the mandate to back it up.   

My brother works for Disney in a retail location that is in a non-Disney hotel.   Disney has a mask mandate, Florida for the most part doesn't.   He is constantly having to tell people they need to leave without a mask, which is to be somewhat expected even though there are signs everywhere.  But he has a ton of people argue with him about it.  

My daughter works for a retail store in a mall in NJ, where we've had a mask mandate almost since the beginning.    She has the occasional person she has to tell to put on/fix their mask, but nobody argues with her.  She has a state mandate to back her up.  

8 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

And there's decent evidence we DON'T have optimal road signs. For instance, there's good evidence rotaries are much more efficient than stoplights and stop signs, if I remember correctly.  

All the rotaries/circles we had around here were switched to lights and stop signs (triangles essentially).  They may be more efficient but at least around here, they weren't safer (because...people). 

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10 minutes ago, Wheres Toto said:

All the rotaries/circles we had around here were switched to lights and stop signs (triangles essentially).  They may be more efficient but at least around here, they weren't safer (because...people). 

Oh, weird. Were there a lot?

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10 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

Oh, weird. Were there a lot?

A few.  Biggest were the Livingston Circle (which is still basically a circle but they added a bunch of lights) and the Ledgewood Circle (now a triangle).  

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5 hours ago, Moonhawk said:

 

eta: on the idea that in the USA we aren't used to following rules that didn't go through legislative debate, or that this "not used to" has effected our mask thing. We see these huge bills get passed where people aren't reading them, or even if the politician read it, the average Joe on the street didn't and doesn't even know it's happening. C-SPAN is not our most popular channel. Building codes about stair depth, electric wire rules, we assume are there for good reason even if we personally don't understand it. We expect ourselves and others to follow the sometimes-seemingly "arbitrary rules" in our society and give a lot of assumption that the rules were made for societal benefit, and do not ask for proof of debate, or need the rules re-debated every 40 years *just because* our generation didn't get to listen to the debates the first time. 

I was about to respond to this too. I can't find a cite for this but I believe Americans are actually more likely to be arbitrary rule followers than in other cultures. For example, Americans generally abide by traffic laws and parking restrictions. 

I'm not buying the claim that Americans are too accustomed to freedom to abide by a mask mandate when we accept all kinds of restrictions on speech and behavior. 

 

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10 hours ago, happysmileylady said:

It's also true that stop signs have been studied at length.  Red colors and octagonal shapes didn't occur by accident.  The current manifestation of stop signs is a result of many years of testing on effectiveness of the "messaging" for lack of a better word.  We haven't had the luxury of studying covid at the same level because...........time.

We didn’t wait for perfect data with stop signs either.  The first ones were various shapes and colors, including black or blue.  We just started using them and tweaked them over time as more data came out, over about a hundred years.  
 

https://99percentinvisible.org/article/red-white-sometimes-blue-how-safety-shaped-the-octagonal-stop-sign/

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9 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

And there's decent evidence we DON'T have optimal road signs. For instance, there's good evidence rotaries are much more efficient than stoplights and stop signs, if I remember correctly.  

Dumb question - what's a rotary? Is that the circle where there isn't a stop sign or traffic lights and drivers merge in and out of the lanes? They are very common in Northern Arizona and I hate them, probably because I'm not used to them. 

I always think of this scene when I drive through a traffic circle. Is this what you mean by a rotary? 

 

 

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re process for navigating from starting point to Better policy measures around masking

10 hours ago, happysmileylady said:

I don't even want perfect.

I only want better than we have.  And by better, I don't mean more strict, I mean better targeted and more reasonable. 

And it would be fantastic to debate what "better targeted and more reasonable" means without accusations of "human rights infringment" OR "maskholes are evil murderers."

Fair enough. 

What would you see as a better / more appropriate / more persuasive-not-coercive / "legitimate" process to get from where we were a year ago, with this pandemic staring us down but with lousy data... to policies that were Better than where we actually are?

Who would do the better research, ask the better questions, compile the better designed studies, manage the messaging?  (Forex: a central government entity like CDC, or a non profit university or research entity like Johns Hopkins... or 50 public health departments across the 50 states... or a consortium of for-profit mask-makers or pharma companies or Purell manufacturers or whatever). 

How long would a reasonable interval be, to conduct such studies before trying to implement any policy measures at all?

Who would then take leadership in consolidating / integrating research results and transforming it into policy measures?  (Forex: the federal executive, or US Congress, or governors, or 50 state public health departments, or 50 state legislatures... bearing in mind that a number of states have very short legislative sessions).

I am genuinely interested.

 

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Wheres Toto said:

All the rotaries/circles we had around here were switched to lights and stop signs (triangles essentially).  They may be more efficient but at least around here, they weren't safer (because...people). 

We had some small ones put in over the last couple of years, and some are okay. The one I hate most has very limited visibility. Before it was there, I think the main road didn't have to stop, and the side roads did. It's on a little bit of an incline, and they created a grassy knoll in the middle, so you can't see around it. Now that they are used to it, people drive like they are the only vehicle in the circle, which means fast, so if you have to wait to enter the circle because a vehicle is close, you are then stuck utterly stopped until all the cars have gone through (if they don't just keep coming) because you're no longer going at a nice speed to merge. Additionally, NO ONE signals when they're leaving the circle, so you don't know if a car coming your way is about to leave the circle or stay in it--if they are leaving the circle, there goes your tiny spot to merge (it's small, so if you can see a car, it's too late to merge unless that car is leaving). Fun times.

The other three I encounter have significantly more visibility, so they are a little better. All of them went up without any signs indicating that the entire intersection changed (I think during months I was not taking the kids places, so I hadn't seen any construction), so it was quite a shock to come upon them in the wild (at least one I encountered the first time at night, and there are no lights in the areas where these are located). 

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Our governor educated people about masks and pleaded for them to wear them for months before he mandated it. He said over and over that the people of our state were people of goodwill who would do the right thing. Not so much--they wouldn't mask in significant numbers until he mandated it.

 

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3 hours ago, Wheres Toto said:

 

All the rotaries/circles we had around here were switched to lights and stop signs (triangles essentially).  They may be more efficient but at least around here, they weren't safer (because...people). 

There’s a lot of data on this one.  Traffic circles increase accidents in the first year but decrease major injuries and fatalities. Until people get used to them there will be more accidents but at lower speeds and at angles that cause less damage. They eliminate high speed T-bone crashes that kill people.

This is a good example of people using experiential data and “common sense” to come to poor conclusions. People see the increase in accidents at the local intersection and think the traffic circle is less safe. Then they lobby to get rid of them. The people whose job it is to study the numbers know that we’re fixing more bumpers but burying fewer bodies.

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13 hours ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

Mask mandates take the pressure off of individual businesses to keep their work place safe. Most businesses here in my state were vocally for the mask mandate. 

I haven't read many pages now because I don't care to argue about masks. It's a waste of time as people are pretty religious and absolutely sure their way is right.

 

But I will say this was true where I live too. I guess a certain segment of the population no longer believes in property rights.  Before the our mask mandate was put into place I had to nail something at a Fed Ex place that had printing. An older lady with a small business was in there trying to come up with a sign that would get people to listen. She was like "do you think adding older owner would help" "small business" "please". She couldn't figure it out. There is a word that describes a person who must have the right to barge into a small business and frighten this older woman and trespass and break her rules on her property but I won't mention it here. Truth is truth and if you are that person you need help.  That is why the mandates were started here. 

 

 They also have no qualms with putting low wage workers in the awkward position of not being able to do their job without arguing with grown ups throwing temper tantrums like two year olds. Since this segment of the population overlaps largely with the "do it legally crowd" the idea of making a legal mandate sounded promising. What they didn't realize is they only want other people to follow the law. 

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Speaking of people being angry.....my sister who lives in Houston is angry because she has to get a negative test to fly.  Her husband is training out of town and she is going to spend the long weekend with him.  She actually said, 'it pisses me off.'  I said, 'why does it make you mad?'  And she said, 'Because I just think the whole world has gone over board and its bulls***I'm just not freaked out.'

I said' I am not freaked out but I have a healthy respect for the damage it has done and can do.  I will be 56 this year and I have AFib.  I don't want Covid and I sure don't want to give it to anyone else.'

Her reply, 'Yea, everyone looks at it differently.'

I did not even reply because I don't want to fight with her.  But I wanted to say, 'Looking at what differently?  The facts?'  

But I know she doesn't even agree with the facts of 550,000 Covid deaths in the US.

It is just mind blowing.

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2 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

Speaking of people being angry.....my sister who lives in Houston is angry because she has to get a negative test to fly.  Her husband is training out of town and she is going to spend the long weekend with him.  She actually said, 'it pisses me off.'  I said, 'why does it make you mad?'  And she said, 'Because I just think the whole world has gone over board and its bulls***I'm just not freaked out.'

I said' I am not freaked out but I have a healthy respect for the damage it has done and can do.  I will be 56 this year and I have AFib.  I don't want Covid and I sure don't want to give it to anyone else.'

Her reply, 'Yea, everyone looks at it differently.'

I did not even reply because I don't want to fight with her.  But I wanted to say, 'Looking at what differently?  The facts?'  

But I know she doesn't even agree with the facts of 550,000 Covid deaths in the US.

It is just mind blowing.

agreeing with you.  This is another reason why not only mask mandates are good, but mandates for things like negative tests before flying - which now the government (FAA, I think) is backing the airlines up on. 

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16 hours ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

Mask mandates take the pressure off of individual businesses to keep their work place safe. Most businesses here in my state were vocally for the mask mandate. 

I haven't read further yet, but this is a really important point.   Small businesses, especially, are hurting.  To put the onus on a small business owner to say 'no you can't enter without a mask' is just passing the buck and really unethical, at least to me.  There are enough anti-maskers that small business owners will suffer financially if they, themselves, have to enforce something that the state should really be enforcing themselves (because it's a public health issue).    We should be looking for ways to help small bus owners, not hurt them.    
 

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3 hours ago, Scarlett said:

Speaking of people being angry.....my sister who lives in Houston is angry because she has to get a negative test to fly.  Her husband is training out of town and she is going to spend the long weekend with him.  She actually said, 'it pisses me off.'  I said, 'why does it make you mad?'  And she said, 'Because I just think the whole world has gone over board and its bulls***I'm just not freaked out.'

I said' I am not freaked out but I have a healthy respect for the damage it has done and can do.  I will be 56 this year and I have AFib.  I don't want Covid and I sure don't want to give it to anyone else.'

Her reply, 'Yea, everyone looks at it differently.'

I did not even reply because I don't want to fight with her.  But I wanted to say, 'Looking at what differently?  The facts?'  

But I know she doesn't even agree with the facts of 550,000 Covid deaths in the US.

It is just mind blowing.

Wow...wait inside the United States??? Our daughter is flying tomorrow. Does she need a negative Covid test???

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15 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

Wow...wait inside the United States??? Our daughter is flying tomorrow. Does she need a negative Covid test???

Depends on where she is flying to.

Nobody cares when you leave their location but rather if you bring it to their location. So you need to check where she is flying into.

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17 hours ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

Mask mandates take the pressure off of individual businesses to keep their work place safe. Most businesses here in my state were vocally for the mask mandate. 

Yes, not to mention, it takes the pressure off employees, who may have a boss who thinks the masks are stupid. If said employee can shrug and say, “Yeah, I know, but it’s mandatory, so here I am in a mask,” it’s all so much better and easier than having an argument point constantly. 

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39 minutes ago, WildflowerMom said:

I haven't read further yet, but this is a really important point.   Small businesses, especially, are hurting.  To put the onus on a small business owner to say 'no you can't enter without a mask' is just passing the buck and really unethical, at least to me.  There are enough anti-maskers that small business owners will suffer financially if they, themselves, have to enforce something that the state should really be enforcing themselves (because it's a public health issue).    We should be looking for ways to help small bus owners, not hurt them.    
 

Similarly, we should be looking for ways to *help* workers we've rhetorically designated as "essential," not hurt them or force *them* into the position of saying "no you can't enter without a mask.* 

It's pretty weak sauce, to OTOH designate workers as "essential," but then fail to support funding and/or public policy that enables their getting better ventilation / better spacing / customer masking. Yet we've gone the exact opposite direction, in indemnifying employers from liability. And don't get me going on raising the minimum wage for these so-called "essential" workers.  It's been revealing.

 

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10 minutes ago, Pam in CT said:

Similarly, we should be looking for ways to *help* workers we've rhetorically designated as "essential," not hurt them or force *them* into the position of saying "no you can't enter without a mask.* 

It's pretty weak sauce, to OTOH designate workers as "essential," but then fail to support funding and/or public policy that enables their getting better ventilation / better spacing / customer masking. Yet we've gone the exact opposite direction, in indemnifying employers from liability. And don't get me going on raising the minimum wage for these so-called "essential" workers.  It's been revealing.

 

Pam, you always deserve kudos for your thoughtful responses, but today I am awarding you **extra bonus points** for your very excellent use of the term “weak sauce”. 🙂. Thanks for the much needed giggle today. 

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15 hours ago, Bootsie said:

To me, though, the Ten Commandments are different.  GOD gave the commandments to guide humans (who were not always wise, unselfish, and compassionate).  Mandates are made by humans (who are not always wise, unselfish, and compassionate) to control other humans because those humans many not always be wise, unselfish, and compassionate.  I see no logical reason to believe that those who make the mandates are more wise, less selfish, and more compassionate on average than the people who are deemed not to be wise enough, unselfish enough, or compassionate enough to make good decisions on their own. 

Hmmm... Interesting perspective, and I'm open to being persuaded differently!  But I guess I still think of the goal as the same:  To think less of ourselves, and more about how our actions affect others.  

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45 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

Wow...wait inside the United States??? Our daughter is flying tomorrow. Does she need a negative Covid test???

Covid tests aren't required for the flight itself. (The CDC has considered that and just rejected that measure in February).  But some locations do require a 14 day quarantine after arrival in their area if you do not have a negative Covid test.  She should check local requirements and abide by them. 

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51 minutes ago, TexasProud said:

Wow...wait inside the United States??? Our daughter is flying tomorrow. Does she need a negative Covid test???

Agreeing with others that she needs to check specific locations.  We flew abroad in February, and were required to have a Covid test before boarding.  It wasn't the airline's policy, but the country's policy.  The airline wouldn't let us board without that test result, because they didn't want to be stuck having to immediately fly us home.  HOWEVER, I haven't heard of actual states that are requiring that??  I could be wrong.  Quarantining might be required though.

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13 minutes ago, J-rap said:

Agreeing with others that she needs to check specific locations.  We flew abroad in February, and were required to have a Covid test before boarding.  It wasn't the airline's policy, but the country's policy.  The airline wouldn't let us board without that test result, because they didn't want to be stuck having to immediately fly us home.  HOWEVER, I haven't heard of actual states that are requiring that??  I could be wrong.  Quarantining might be required though.

This is on Southwest Airline's site regarding flying to New York.  This reads as if a negative test within 72 hours of departure to NY (even for domestic flights) is required

image.thumb.png.da2efd99f44f1367b0d97a3192b697d3.png

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3 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

This is on Southwest Airline's site regarding flying to New York.  This reads as if a negative test within 72 hours of departure to NY (even for domestic flights) is required

image.thumb.png.da2efd99f44f1367b0d97a3192b697d3.png

Wow, I didn't realize some states were requiring this now!

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6 minutes ago, J-rap said:

Wow, I didn't realize some states were requiring this now!

Now? Maine has required either 14 (might have changed to 10 now, not sure) day quarantine or a negative test to enter the state since last spring. It really helped keep the number of visitors down last summer and I’m hoping against hope that the requirement stays the same this summer (I'd love to see a vaccination requirement, of course—that’s the best!). 
 

There are a few exceptions for other New England states now who follow similar protocols. 

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44 minutes ago, J-rap said:

Agreeing with others that she needs to check specific locations.  We flew abroad in February, and were required to have a Covid test before boarding.  It wasn't the airline's policy, but the country's policy.  The airline wouldn't let us board without that test result, because they didn't want to be stuck having to immediately fly us home.  HOWEVER, I haven't heard of actual states that are requiring that??  I could be wrong.  Quarantining might be required though.

https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/covid-19-testing.jsp?anchorLocation=DirectURL&title=covid19testing

I didn't see Hawaii on their list but I know that Hawaii also requires a 14 day quarantine and has been very strict about it. 

Nevermind.  I was looking for Hawaii under North America but it is listed separately. 

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14 minutes ago, MEmama said:

Now? Maine has required either 14 (might have changed to 10 now, not sure) day quarantine or a negative test to enter the state since last spring. It really helped keep the number of visitors down last summer and I’m hoping against hope that the requirement stays the same this summer (I'd love to see a vaccination requirement, of course—that’s the best!). 
 

There are a few exceptions for other New England states now who follow similar protocols. 

Yes, I know some have required quarantine for a long time now, but I didn't realize some states were requiring a negative Covid test before arrival.  Certainly makes sense though!

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5 minutes ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/covid-19-testing.jsp?anchorLocation=DirectURL&title=covid19testing

I didn't see Hawaii on their list but I know that Hawaii also requires a 14 day quarantine and has been very strict about it. 

Nevermind.  I was looking for Hawaii under North America but it is listed separately. 

Definitely makes sense, especially given it's an island.

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7 hours ago, Pam in CT said:

re process for navigating from starting point to Better policy measures around masking

Fair enough. 

What would you see as a better / more appropriate / more persuasive-not-coercive / "legitimate" process to get from where we were a year ago, with this pandemic staring us down but with lousy data... to policies that were Better than where we actually are?

Who would do the better research, ask the better questions, compile the better designed studies, manage the messaging?  (Forex: a central government entity like CDC, or a non profit university or research entity like Johns Hopkins... or 50 public health departments across the 50 states... or a consortium of for-profit mask-makers or pharma companies or Purell manufacturers or whatever). 

How long would a reasonable interval be, to conduct such studies before trying to implement any policy measures at all?

Who would then take leadership in consolidating / integrating research results and transforming it into policy measures?  (Forex: the federal executive, or US Congress, or governors, or 50 state public health departments, or 50 state legislatures... bearing in mind that a number of states have very short legislative sessions).

I am genuinely interested.

 

 

 

 

 

Well, I have said from the beginning, I genuinely want to know....just how much risk is reduced in general day to day situations.  How much risk is reduced when I wear a mask for the hour and a half I am in the grocery store.  How much less likely are the cashiers there to catch covid if all customers, most of whom are not carrying covid, wear masks?  50% less likely?  15% less likely?  ETC ETC.  So....I really genuinely want people to TRY to study these things. 

 

Second....require specific types of masks.  Mask mandates are "any mask is better than no mask" and I think we can all agree................that's simply not true.  It's not.  A mask mandate that includes standards that require that masks being sold meet XYZ standards....I mean that shouldn't be hard.

 

Third....start with high exposure situations and work the way down, as the data dictates.  So....hospitals...............................duh.  Start there, the people in hospitals are among the most likely to encounter covid positive individuals, AND the most likely to be among the most vulnurable.  Then, as we realized that those in nursing homes were so proportionally affected..............ok, it makes sense to impliment both masking requirements AND social distancing restrictions there.  Then we look at things like first responders, and then office work spaces.  Jobs that interact with the public might have more individual contacts, but those contacts are for less time than those working with the same people, 40hrs a week, in meetings, at desks 7ft apart, every day 8 hrs a day. 

 

Who would do the research?  Well you know, certainly we need checks and balances on private companies but I think it's important to recognize that it wasn't the CDC, or JH, or the state public health departments that developed vaccines in 6 months, it was big pharma.  Certainly that was with plenty of government oversight but really, if big pharma can produce a vaccine that most here trust and willingly allow our government to spend eleventy thousand billion dollars on each of those doses in the arms, surely we can trust them to do at least SOME of that data research?  I mean I am sure there are very few private dollars in such research but perhaps government dollars could provide proper incentive. 

 

 

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15 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

 

 

Second....require specific types of masks.  Mask mandates are "any mask is better than no mask" and I think we can all agree................that's simply not true.  It's not.  A mask mandate that includes standards that require that masks being sold meet XYZ standards....I mean that shouldn't be hard.

 

 

Truly, I keep hearing people say this...but I paid attention today when I was out, and I didn't see ANYTHING but the fashion 2 layer masks or surgical masks or N95 masks in public. I mean, I've seen two people in the past month or so in a bandanna pulled over their face, but even in "ignore it and it will go away" Florida, those wearing masks are wearing the right kind, almost always. Studies were on 2 layer masks, those are what are being sold, for the most part, so...I think this may be an overblown concern?

As for how much it reduces risk...if a cashier spends 5 minutes with say, 10 Covid positive people  in a day, day after day, that seems like a significant amount of exposure. More over  it only takes ONE covid positive person sneezing near the cashier to deliver way more virus than is needed to infect someone. Sure, most people won't sneeze, but some will. 

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35 minutes ago, MEmama said:

Now? Maine has required either 14 (might have changed to 10 now, not sure) day quarantine or a negative test to enter the state since last spring. It really helped keep the number of visitors down last summer and I’m hoping against hope that the requirement stays the same this summer (I'd love to see a vaccination requirement, of course—that’s the best!). 
 

There are a few exceptions for other New England states now who follow similar protocols. 

fully vaccinated people are exempt now from the quarantine or negative test requirement in Maine. I think that's true of all NE states--I'm following pretty closely since that's where we're supposed to be going this summer (well, not Maine, but NE/NY): https://www.maine.gov/covid19/keepmainehealthy/faqs

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6 minutes ago, kand said:

Maybe you will like this research-based risk calculator: https://covid-19.forhealth.org/covid-19-transmission-calculator/ You can get very granular by specifying ceiling height, type of masks being worn, etc., etc.

It was based on a study done before the new variants arrived, so it may underestimate the risk.

So, that was interesting.

 

I entered the typical information for my girl scout meetings.  Certainly, some of it was averaged or estimated, but I did the best I could.

 

I got a 1% risk.  Remove masks....I got 2%. 

 

I then put in my best (and honest best.....this was just quick calculations, I am sure that I could drill down with more effort) estimates for a typical grocery store visit.  I got 10% non masked, but 6% setting masks at average.  SO, making my best estimation for human behavior, the reduction was 4%.

 

I then put in my best estimates for DH's work.  A well ventilated place as it is a manufacturing facility.  By changing only the masking, I got 29% with the mask requirements in place, vs 74% with no masking. 

 

THAT.....that is what I call significant difference.

 

1% to 5% difference isn't what I call significant. 

 

I am super interested in what this all is based on because genuinely.............................it's exactly what I am looking for.  It's the kind of information I want mandates based on.  I will be playing with that for several hours.

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1 hour ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

Covid tests aren't required for the flight itself. (The CDC has considered that and just rejected that measure in February).  But some locations do require a 14 day quarantine after arrival in their area if you do not have a negative Covid test.  She should check local requirements and abide by them. 

Well she is flying from Indianapolis to Dallas. I don't think either have a requirement. She will only be here over the long weekend. All of us gathering this weekend are vaccinated except her. I've looked. I don't think her college has any requirement either. 

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20 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

So, that was interesting.

 

I entered the typical information for my girl scout meetings.  Certainly, some of it was averaged or estimated, but I did the best I could.

 

I got a 1% risk.  Remove masks....I got 2%. 

 

I then put in my best (and honest best.....this was just quick calculations, I am sure that I could drill down with more effort) estimates for a typical grocery store visit.  I got 10% non masked, but 6% setting masks at average.  SO, making my best estimation for human behavior, the reduction was 4%.

 

I then put in my best estimates for DH's work.  A well ventilated place as it is a manufacturing facility.  By changing only the masking, I got 29% with the mask requirements in place, vs 74% with no masking. 

 

THAT.....that is what I call significant difference.

 

1% to 5% difference isn't what I call significant. 

 

I am super interested in what this all is based on because genuinely.............................it's exactly what I am looking for.  It's the kind of information I want mandates based on.  I will be playing with that for several hours.

Yes, but you are in the grocery store for a short while, the clerk is there much much longer. 

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6 minutes ago, ktgrok said:

Yes, but you are in the grocery store for a short while, the clerk is there much much longer. 

As I said, I will be playing with this for quite a while.  Part time vs full time shifts, no masks vs very likely etc etc.  I think the evening will be interesting for me.

 

(presuming of course accuracy in such a calculator.  I am willing to fully trust results because of course....we are just debating on a message board, not making rules.)

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50 minutes ago, ktgrok said:

Truly, I keep hearing people say this...but I paid attention today when I was out, and I didn't see ANYTHING but the fashion 2 layer masks or surgical masks or N95 masks in public. I mean, I've seen two people in the past month or so in a bandanna pulled over their face, but even in "ignore it and it will go away" Florida, those wearing masks are wearing the right kind, almost always. Studies were on 2 layer masks, those are what are being sold, for the most part, so...I think this may be an overblown concern?

As for how much it reduces risk...if a cashier spends 5 minutes with say, 10 Covid positive people  in a day, day after day, that seems like a significant amount of exposure. More over  it only takes ONE covid positive person sneezing near the cashier to deliver way more virus than is needed to infect someone. Sure, most people won't sneeze, but some will. 

So, how many grocery stores are there in Florida?  1600?  If there were three cashiers in each of those stores who were checking out 10 customers who were presymptomatic or asymptomatic each day, there would have to be 48,000 presymptomatic/asymptomatic customers in the grocery stores day after day for there to be that much exposure.  With diagnosis running about 5000 per day, that would mean almost 10 times as many people as being diagnosed in a given day are infected with no symptoms and going to the grocery store day after day.  

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9 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

So, how many grocery stores are there in Florida?  1600?  If there were three cashiers in each of those stores who were checking out 10 customers who were presymptomatic or asymptomatic each day, there would have to be 48,000 presymptomatic/asymptomatic customers in the grocery stores day after day for there to be that much exposure.  With diagnosis running about 5000 per day, that would mean almost 10 times as many people as being diagnosed in a given day are infected with no symptoms and going to the grocery store day after day.  

Honestly, with what a PIA testing is, I wouldn't be surprised if there were 10 times as many. And having spoken with people, do not assume that those diagnosed are staying home. 

But even if we cut that in half, over a week it is a lot of potential exposure. And one person coughing on them or sneezing is enough. And even if the risk isn't super high, for most people to mask 1 hour or less in the grocery store is not a huge burden. I actually really dislike masking - I have trouble understanding people without lip reading and would struggle in say, a school environment or workplace to mask all day - but for an hour at the store, yeah, I manage. 

But I agree that workplaces and schools and such, with people sitting in a room together sharing air for 8 hours a day is the highest risk, outside of unmasked close interactions like parties, family events, etc. 

 

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18 minutes ago, kand said:

My understanding is they based it on in-depth analysis of the 3000 something people on the diamond cruise ship last year. They were able to look at all kinds of things to try to figure out what things increased and lowered risk, and by how much.

 

as far as what those numbers you got mean though, if they are accurate, then I think they are a lot more significant than you are saying. Going from a 1% risk to a 5% risk isn’t a 4% increase, it means your risk has increased by five times. That’s a huge increase. Stats people? @Not_a_Number?

The analyses of the cruise ships have been a huge basis for much of my thought processes for this whole thing.  So far, I haven't found much reason to change my stance based on initial analysis of that situation.  It isn't a perfect lab condition situation but it's probably the best representation of real world data that we could have asked for.

 

 

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2 hours ago, happysmileylady said:

So, that was interesting.

 

I entered the typical information for my girl scout meetings.  Certainly, some of it was averaged or estimated, but I did the best I could.

 

I got a 1% risk.  Remove masks....I got 2%. 

 

I then put in my best (and honest best.....this was just quick calculations, I am sure that I could drill down with more effort) estimates for a typical grocery store visit.  I got 10% non masked, but 6% setting masks at average.  SO, making my best estimation for human behavior, the reduction was 4%.

 

I then put in my best estimates for DH's work.  A well ventilated place as it is a manufacturing facility.  By changing only the masking, I got 29% with the mask requirements in place, vs 74% with no masking. 

 

THAT.....that is what I call significant difference.

 

1% to 5% difference isn't what I call significant. 

 

I am super interested in what this all is based on because genuinely.............................it's exactly what I am looking for.  It's the kind of information I want mandates based on.  I will be playing with that for several hours.

So, the absolute risk reduction from 2% to 1% seems small, but that's a relative risk reduction of 50% - which is huge.  On a population level, a 50% relative risk reduction is actually really meaningful, even when it seems like it's just reduced from small to slightly smaller.  Half as many cases and half as much stress on the health care system.   Reducing absolute risk from 10% to 6% represents a similarly significant reduction in relative risk.  These kinds of numbers would be totally acceptable (amazing, actually) for drug trials - we put people on drugs for life for worse numbers than that (Ie statins relative risk reduction for coronary death of 28%, absolute risk reduction from 9% to 6.7%,  only 2.3%.

 

ETA - all the drugs for cardiac primary and secondary prevention are in this neighbourhood for ARR - statins, beta-blockers, ACEI, NOACs.  Even aspirin, the superstar of cardiac prevention drugs,  only has an ARR of between 2 and 8%.  For each indivudual, the ARR is modest.  But on a population level, the effects are enormous.

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