Should the COVID-19 injections be renamed to something other than “vaccine”?

When coronapanic hit and various public health prophets went on television calling themselves “scientists,” friends who are medical school professors said that, when the predictions of these physicians and public health bureaucrats inevitably failed the public’s confidence in medicine would be reduced. They cringed every time Anthony Fauci was in the spotlight, for example.

I wonder if the same thing could be happening with the shots that are currently marketed as “vaccines”. People who’ve had 3 or 4 shots are regularly getting sick with COVID-19. Some are being hospitalized and, in the long run, nearly all of the COVID-19 deaths will be among this heavily-jabbed population. By contrast, the childhood vaccines that we desperately want people to apply to their kids, e.g., the measles vaccine, actually stop humans from getting sick with measles.

Now that we know that COVID-19 vaccines don’t work like “regular vaccines” is it time to rename them so that their ineffectiveness doesn’t tarnish the reputation of the “real vaccines”?

Ignoring any serious harm that the COVID-19 vaccines might cause, the closest analogy that I can think of to the situation is what we call “the flu shot”. Americans don’t usually say “I am vaccinated against influenza.” We say “I had all of my childhood vaccinations and this year I got a flu shot.” The flu shot is put in a “can’t hurt; might help” category. When a person who had the flu shot gets the flu anyway, that doesn’t result in him/her/zir/them or his/her/zir/their social network to lose confidence in “vaccine vaccines.”

Readers: What do you think of the idea? Half of the hardest core Mask and Vaccine Karens whom I know seem to have gotten COVID-19 within the past few months. Wouldn’t the overall image of vaccines be improved if we said “They had a COVID-19 shot, which was good prep for their COVID-19 infection” rather than “They were vaccinated against COVID-19 three times and then got COVID-19 anyway”?

Related:

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Sitting at home for 18 months results in long COVID (at least for unionized schoolteachers)

Does closing schools for 18 months protect teachers from COVID-19? Apparently not. “1 in 5 Educators Say They’ve Experienced Long COVID” (EducationWeek):

Two years into the pandemic, many Americans are eager to leave COVID behind. But that won’t be so easy for as many as 1 in 5 educators who, according to a recent EdWeek survey, have experienced the emerging, mysterious illness known as long COVID.

In a workforce that tops 6 million people, that percentage suggests hundreds of thousands of people who serve the nation’s K-12 students have suffered long-lasting symptoms after contracting COVID.

Working full-time has been impossible for Kathleen Law, an elementary school teacher in Oregon, since she contracted COVID in August. She’s had foggy thinking ever since, and she gets bone-tired easily.

Chimére Smith, 39, was a middle school teacher for Baltimore City Public Schools—until March 2020, when she contracted a severe case of COVID that has hardly abated since. She experienced everything from sharp spinal pain and migraines to overwhelming exhaustion, memory lapses, gastrointestinal issues, hallucinations, and suicidal ideation.

For months, doctor after doctor told Smith that her symptoms were nothing to worry about. Smith, who is Black, says she encountered racist skepticism at every turn.

What’s the biggest challenge after racism?

The first challenge for long COVID sufferers: recognizing you’re one of them

Sarah Bilotti, superintendent of the North Warren schools in New Jersey, said numerous students and several staff members in her district have disclosed that they have long COVID—or they’ve confessed that they have concerning symptoms that won’t go away, without knowing why.

“I think people are so unaccustomed to that diagnosis and this language that people aren’t sure what’s going on,” she said.

The federal government last summer officially designated long COVID as a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act. That means school employees are entitled to accommodations from their employer if they can offer documentation of their condition.

If you gave me unlimited paid sick leave and union job protection so that I could go back to work whenever I wished to, I am confident that I could develop long COVID!

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Twitter’s Ministry of Medical Truth fact-checked by a medical school professor

If you love Internet and love medical school, what’s not to love about this page in which a med school professor fact checks the folks at Twitter who suspended a user for posting “misinformation”:

(Note that I think the most harmful misinformation ever distributed regarding COVID-19 came from the CDC and similar enterprises, i.e., that cloth masks protected humans from an aerosol virus. I have been ridiculing that advice here since March 2020, e.g., by reference to “saliva-soaked face rag” or “use a bandana as PPE” but I never questioned whether the Covidcrats had the right to say what they said.)

Speaking of misinformation, the headline writers at Politico deserve a Pulitzer for this one:

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Report on some masketology in Washington, D.C. and Bethesda, Maryland

This is a report on the coronapanic level during a late April trip to Washington, D.C. and Bethesda, Maryland (see previous post regarding the flight itself).

First, if coronapanic ever does end, the government invites you to think about all of the other bad things that could happen and “Make an Emergency Plan”:

But coronapanic hasn’t ended. In Northeast D.C., where shootings are a daily occurrence, faith in masks remains strong (nobody has read “Correlation Between Mask Compliance and COVID-19 Outcomes in Europe”?):

Here’s an establishment serving healthful beer, wine, and mixed drinks in an environment that is perfect for spreading SARS-CoV-2 variants. They explain that they enjoyed checking vaccine papers so much that they’re going to continue doing it (“Gotta give the Freedom Fighting Anti Vaxxers Something to Whine About”) even though it is no longer required by mayoral order.

Folks in DC and suburban Maryland have so many masks that they had trouble keeping track of them. Masks were some of the most common street litter in various locales.

What about in Northwest D.C.? Here are some photos from the Mt. Pleasant neighborhood (houses: $1-3 million). First, a street dining venue that is technically “outdoors” but also reminded customers that masks are required (between bites?):

The typical shop front door had signs in both English and Spanish, often referring to a government order from July 31, 2021. Here a worker cleaning the front door wears a mask in the outdoor heat (over 80 degrees):

Some miscellaneous images from the same neighborhood.

Despite the love of mask-wearing, COVID-19 seems to be raging among the Followers of Science right now. A cousin who is a clinical psychologist in D.C. restricted her practice to Zoom more than two years ago and has barely left her house. She explained that she couldn’t meet us because… she has COVID-19 right now. Her symptoms are similar in nature and severity to what unvaccinated friends suffered in 2020, but she attributes her survival to having been vaccinated. She would share the mystification of the following tweet:

https://twitter.com/SamPogono/status/1517986960786309122

My mom (nearly 88) and I attended what was supposed to be a 100-person Bat Mitzvah celebration. The hostesses put “vaccination required” prominently on the invitation. Nonetheless, multiple D.C.-area people guests failed to show up at the last minute because they were sick with COVID. Masks were not required at the gathering, but roughly half of the invulnerable teenagers attending wore masks (for four hours straight, while dancing, etc.) while only one or two of the older people, all enthusiastic Democrats (and therefore voters for politicians who order mask-wearing), wore masks. For privacy’s sake, I don’t want to show the kids, but here’s an adult with a rainbow mask:

My favorite photo from the trip is this Toyota Sienna with a “MINIVAN” vanity plate:

Related:

  • now that everyone in D.C. has COVID-19, the public health experts who live there are willing to think the unthinkable: “What Sweden Got Right About COVID” (Washington Monthly, 4/19/2022)
  • from the same date, “Correlation Between Mask Compliance and COVID-19 Outcomes in Europe”: Surprisingly, weak positive correlations were observed when mask compliance was plotted against morbidity (cases/million) or mortality (deaths/million) in each country (Figure 3). … While no cause-effect conclusions could be inferred from this observational analysis, the lack of negative correlations between mask usage and COVID-19 cases and deaths suggest that the widespread use of masks at a time when an effective intervention was most needed, i.e., during the strong 2020-2021 autumn-winter peak, was not able to reduce COVID-19 transmission. Moreover, the moderate positive correlation between mask usage and deaths in Western Europe also suggests that the universal use of masks may have had harmful unintended consequences.

D.C.’s most powerful politician says “everyone encouraged to wear a mask all the time”:

#MissionAccomplished! (at least in D.C./MD)

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Karen gets COVID-19 and asks “What about the kids?”

Poking around within Twitter, I found this gem:

The text:

Rage crying this morning. Two years of isolating and keeping my toddlers safe, and I get infected with #COVID19 at a mandatory team offsite, even while wearing a KN95 mask myself. Now my toddlers are exposed. 🤬 This isn’t over. @US_FDA we need to #ImmunizeUnder5s now!

Think of the children!

His/her/zir/their fellow Karens also got sick, despite practicing the protocol that Science dictated for airline travel:

So far one other team member has tested positive, out of eight of us. Most of us were wearing masks except for when drinking coffee or eating lunch/dinner.

Where does Mx. Nelson work? His/her/zir/their profile:

Program Manager with @Microsoft Philanthropies, leading a $1.15B tech grant program for @msftnonprofits, helping nonprofits leverage technology to do more good.

He/she/ze/they is based in Seattle. In case this tweet is deleted, a screen capture:

Here’s something else fun, the U.S. Ministry of Truth:

Text from the above tweet:

You are welcome to follow us, but rest assured—we are already following you.

I’m surprised that Twitter doesn’t down-rate content from anonymous accounts like this and even more surprised that Twitter has held together given how apparently easy it is to set up an anonymous account. I think that one reason Facebook is so successful is that they authenticate most accounts.

Related:

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Report from Shanghai

An American friend lives in locked-down Shanghai and I recently checked in with her. Below are some of her text messages.

We were locked in apartment for somewhere between two and three weeks (forgot exact dates) and now we are allowed to roam inside the compound courtyard area (which is actually quite nice, and now, with this lockdown, rather social outdoors).

The Western press we read about the Shanghai lockdown seems completely wrong. The lockdown (and management of it) are in some ways rather better than it says, and in some ways worse. But that’s not really the axis…the whole tone of the US and Euro press we see just seems like it is talking about some completely different planet that has nothing to do with the good and bad things we hear/see/think as lived experience here.

[in response to my question about whether you can just get food delivered] At first, no regular delivery services. Those are just starting to be allowed back in very limited ways. The first few days just some government rations (cabbage), but [husband] and I had some food around and also, it’s really not that bad to eat less for a while…the main thing is a lot of people got justifiably worried because the private businesses in the supply and delivery chain weren’t allowed to really do enough, the transport blocks made the supply chain somewhat concerning, and the government rations were completely random and quite unequal in different districts.

After a few days this huge phenomenon called “group buying” came whooshing in, and a lot of people were able to distribute the food through that and the large majority of people supplement the government food with that. Now some individual buying is happening as more business owners get permission…

We were very lucky because our compound is actually more commercial buildings than residential. The analogy in US terms seems to be “commercially zoned”. This makes it vastly more complicated and ambiguous for the building management to figure out how to manage us as residences (lockdown rules, level of lockdown, placement of the testing lines, etc.) but it did allow them to give permission for the proprietor of the office building’s cafeteria to live in the cafeteria with a few employees, and within a few days they got some supply chain and started up a meal service. They made an agreement with the management that the health volunteers (the ones who are allowed to wear hazmat suits and get tested twice a day instead of once and walk around to deliver rations and essentials), that those volunteers were allowed to drop off a hot cooked lunch or dinner outside the apartment doors. At first, the cafeteria didn’t know how much it could source and supply, so it was word of mouth but I heard of it when it was producing for about 70-ish meals and ordered one meal some of the days. They successfully ramped up and since they expose their spreadsheet every day, they now supply meals to about 400 or 500 a day which is as much as 30% of the apartments here. So that’s been really luxurious when we don’t feel like cooking the too-much rice and cabbage supplied by the gummint.

[In response to my question about censorship and suppression of dissent] The culture of China is to have vastly more local protesting than I had understood. So there is a ton of that. It helps keep local officials accountable.

Many interesting and rapid local developments happen here to try and deal with this situation. Once we were allowed to roam (courtyard and the three building lobbies, also I think people in one building can visit each other. Not visit apartments in the other buildings, although I have no interest in visiting anyone inside a building at all. I meet people outside. Government gave out some flour, and I traded a lemon (outdoors) to a colleague for a little packet of yeast she had.

[She also described an apartment building lobby swap table where people put out food that they don’t want, including government-supplied canned fish, oranges, etc.]


My gastronomic experience in Shanghai, November 2019, was a little different. Here are some examples:

Top left: a restaurant for locals, about 14 floors up in an office building. Bottom: the breakfast buffet at the Four Seasons.

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A masked afternoon at the theater

My general rule is that if an activity is dangerous enough to require wearing a mask then it is dangerous enough to avoid altogether. I wouldn’t go to a Broadway show, for example, because they’re telling me that it isn’t safe (masks are required as well as vaccine paper checks) and nothing stops me from staying home to watch Hamilton over and over and over and over again.

On April 23, 2022, however, my general policy was superseded by a directive from Extremely Senior Management (Mom, almost 88 years old). Off to the Round House Theater in Bethesda, Maryland, for a vaccine-and-mask-resistant SARS-CoV-2 variant spreading event. The show was “We declare you a terrorist…” concerning the Second Chechen War and jihadi takeover of a theater in Moscow. (In the best American tradition, the playwright Tim J. Lord who tackles this complex subject seems to have no background in Russian language, Russian culture, Islamic religion, history of Chechnya, etc.)

Anyone in Bethesda can tell you that checking photo ID for voters is racist. According to the Righteous, People of Color are too stupid to obtain photo IDs. Tending to confirm this theory, the Bethesda theater experience begins with an ID and vaccine paper check and there were no People of Color in the audience (unless Asians count).

Throughout the theater, there are numerous signs demanding mask-wearing:

As with the airlines in the Science-following pre-Mizelle era, COVID-19-suppression is enhanced by filling the lobby with unmasked people who are eating and drinking.

We acknowledge that we’re on land stolen from Native Americans, but we will neither give it back nor pay them rent:

No matter a person’s gender ID, he/she/ze/they will will find bathroom to suit him/her/zir/theirself:

Remember to fight COVID-19 by washing your hands:

This was made more challenging by the fact that the theater staff were too busy checking vaccine papers, photo IDs, and mask compliance to refill the soap dispensers.

I still can’t figure out why the people who printed up all of these signs and designed these protocols didn’t ask “Wouldn’t it make more epidemiological sense if we shut down our COVID-spreading theater altogether?”

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Results of a mask experiment in Germany

Germany has had strict requirements for people to use N95-style masks and… a raging coronaplague to go with those masks (but the failure of two-way N95 masking should not shake our faith in one-way N95 masking! Don’t stay home to avoid COVID-19, get on a plane with an N95 mask, eat in restaurants, stay in hotels, etc.). There was a natural experiment done recently in which Hamburg maintained its mask order while the rest of Germany dropped it. Here are the curves:

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Commercial air travel in the Mizelle Age

This is a report on a trip from PBI-DCA-PBI, April 21-24. Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle struck down the Biden Administration’s mask order on April 18. (Friends on Facebook have been continuously posting reminders that Judge Mizelle is “not qualified.” In other words, a confused 80-year-old is well qualified to be President of the U.S., but a sharp-minded 35-year-old cannot be a judge.)

The PBI airport still had a few “masks required signs”:

Most of the advertising at PBI was geared toward selling real estate to those fleeing the Lands of Lockdown:

I estimate that 15 percent of the waiting passengers were masked here in majority-Democrat Palm Beach County. Contrast to a friend who was simultaneously flying SFO to EWR (he’s been a righteous supporter of masks, Biden, lockdowns, etc., but somehow is still participating in COVID-19-spreading activities such as travel) who reported 85-90 percent voluntary mask compliance at SFO and only 10 percent masked in Newark. Being in the airport was, despite the lack of audio announcements and signs regarding masks, not as relaxing as it might have been. The PA system was freed up for frequent reminders regarding unattended baggage and TSA liquid policies.

We were welcomed onto the plane by an unmasked flight attendant. The Followers of Science row was directly behind me, but even though were going from mostly-Democrat Palm Beach County to all-Democrat Washington, D.C., only a small minority of passengers chose to wear masks. (In other words, they voted for politicians promising to impose mask orders, but when given the choice won’t wear a mask themselves.)

The flight was on time and passengers, except maybe for the two behind me and their brothers, sisters, and binary-resisters in Science, cheered when the flight attendant announced that masks were optional. I witnessed no air rage.

I don’t remember any real estate ads in the D.C. airport. Here’s one for the central planners, though. All that they have to do to beat inflation is picture themselves winning:

The percentage of masked passengers and workers at DCA was no higher than at PBI, despite DCA being located right next to the twin hearts of Science (Anthony Fauci’s office at NIH and Dr. Jill Biden’s office).

On the return trip, I noticed a legacy “face coverings required” sign at DCA as well as a depressing Chick-fil-A (closed due to it being a Sunday):

Once again, JetBlue was on time and everyone was in a good mood. The lady sitting next to me had moved from Bethesda to Florida two months ago “for the freedom”. She and her husband (in “wealth management”) had returned for a wedding. They were not wearing masks.

We’re still left with a big question regarding each masked traveler. If he/she/ze/they is concerned enough about COVID-19 to wear a mask voluntarily, why isn’t he/she/ze/they concerned enough to stay home? Nobody held a gun to his/her/zir/their head and forced him/her/zir/them to travel by commercial airline or, indeed, to travel at all. The answer can’t be “an N95 mask protects against all viral attacks” because (1) not all of the masked travelers are wearing N95 masks, and (2) countries that imposed forced N95 masking, e.g., Germany, still had exponential plagues (i.e., two-way N95 masking failed to stop COVID-19 so what hope is there for one-way masking?).

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NYT: Mask Science is perfect, but will be more perfect in another few years

Two years into the forced masking of the general public (except in Florida!), the Science experts at the New York Times give us “Maskless Flying: What might a more effective mask mandate look like?”

On Sunday, I spent nearly five hours on an airplane, flying home from the West Coast. For long stretches of the flight, whenever the crew was serving food and drinks, many passengers were not wearing masks. Even when people did have their masks on, many wore them below their noses.

My flight was the day before a federal judge threw out the C.D.C.’s transportation mask mandate, but my experience was typical, as any recent flier can attest. The mandate was already more of an aspiration than a reality, which indicates that the ruling may be less important than the furor over it suggests. The Covid-19 virus, after all, doesn’t take a break from spreading so that you can enjoy the in-flight beverage service.

As Michael Osterholm, a University of Minnesota epidemiologist, puts it, a mask mandate with as many exceptions as the airline mandate is like a submarine that closes three of its five doors.

The trouble with the transportation mask mandate was that it was both too broad and too lenient.

Its breadth required people to muzzle their faces for long periods of time, and most people don’t enjoy doing so. (If you doubt that, check out the gleeful responses of airline passengers and school children when told they didn’t have to wear masks anymore.)

The transportation mandate had so many exceptions that many Americans understandably questioned its worth. Travelers took off their masks to eat and drink. Some flight attendants removed their masks to make announcements. Some passengers wore their masks on their chins. The mandate also did not require N95 and KN95 masks, which are more effective against the virus than cloth masks or standard medical masks.

Rigorous laboratory tests show that masks reduce Covid transmission, but supporting real-world evidence tends to be much weaker.

The most glaring example in the U.S. is that liberal communities, where masks are a cherished symbol of solidarity, have experienced nearly as much Covid spread as conservative communities, where masks are a hated symbol of oppression. Another example is school mask mandates, which don’t seem to have had much effect. A third example is Hong Kong, where mask wearing is very popular (although often not with N95 or KN95 masks, Osterholm notes); Hong Kong has just endured a horrific Covid wave, among the world’s worst since the pandemic began.

So the Science was perfect and should be #Followed (according to previous NYT articles), but the American public let down the Scientists. Regarding schools, see Face mask mandates in schools were not associated with lower SARS-CoV-2 incidence or transmission for data from 600,000 Spanish schoolchildren. On the righteous versus unrighteous community data, see the following chart (I can’t find a source for it, unfortunately):

Following the Science accelerated COVID-19 plagues by encouraging people to leave the safety of their homes:

Osterholm, who spent 15 years as Minnesota’s state epidemiologist and has advised both Democratic and Republican administrations in Washington, argues that much of the U.S. public health community has exaggerated the value of broad mask mandates. KN95 and N95 masks reduce the virus’s spread, he believes, but mandates like the one on airlines do little good.

“Public health advice has been way off the mark, all along, about mask protection,” he told me. “We have given the public a sense of a level of protection that is just not warranted.”

Note that this is exactly what the Swedish MD/PhDs (i.e., anti-Science heretics) said in March 2020. Ordering masks would give people a false sense of safety when what people actually needed to do was stay at home (if vulnerable) or maintain physical separation. Could it be that America’s public health officials are responsible for more COVID-19 deaths than anyone else? What could be worse than encouraging people to leave the safety of their houses and rely on a saliva-soaked face rag for protection from an aerosol virus?

The rest of the article speculates on what the Great Minds of Science might yet accomplish with redesigned mask mandates to keep us all safe from future COVID variants.

On a related note, “Judge’s Ruling on the CDC Mask Mandate Highlights the Limits of the Agency’s Power” (KHN) is about a CDC that still has the power to order landlords to continue providing apartments to tenants who don’t pay rent:

“If CDC can’t impose an unintrusive requirement to wear a mask to prevent a virus from going state to state, then it literally has no power to do anything,” said public health law expert Lawrence Gostin, faculty director of the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University.

For the public health technocrats, it is “unintrusive” to force a 2-year-old to wear a mask for 16 hours straight (Uber, airport, flight 1, airport 2, flight 2, airport 3, Uber).

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