Saturday, September 18, 2021


Idaho is now in Crisis Standard of Care because of Covid. This means that depending on each individual hospital's resources, if you code, you might not get CPR.

You might not get CPR. You wanted to "wait and see" about getting vaccinated?  This is the "see" part.

Surgeries and other care will be postponed. Something similar is up in Maine, which had been one of the safest states with the lowest covid rates until a couple of weeks ago. We had a relative tell us today about a friend who can't get a hip replacement for some indefinite period of time. So care is being postponed. I suppose you can call those "not real covid deaths" if you like. Or gee, it's not even death, really, just people sitting at home not able to get care. What could possibly go wrong?

You don't see this, because you don't work in a hospital or other care facility or know those who do.

91% of their admissions are unvaccinated. Further proof that the unvaccinated pose no danger to the rest of us.

Of course, a deep-blue state like Idaho must be fudging its numbers, because it's in on the covid conspiracy.  Wink, wink, nod, nod. We intelligent people know how that works. It's all a ruse.

I do not support mandatory vaccination - yet.  But the push for it isn't coming out of nowhere. I support the harsh numbers of figuring out what will help more people get vaccinated, and doing that.  I think this whole covid vaccination thing is new to people, and I get that some folks have questions, or feel nervous or afraid, or just don't understand it very well.  Also, there are loud voices telling them crap, which muddles things. So I still think that persuasion is the better way to go, even though some will not be persuaded. But it's not because I am wringing my hands and saying  "I just don't like telling other people what to do," it's because I think the numbers still lean that way.

The US is back up to 2000 deaths/day. I was as relieved as everyone else this spring when it looked like "Hey, the risk is going way down. It looks like we have this thing mostly licked, down to a level where we can open everything up and just endure the low level of disease circulation and death going forward."  Then the data changed.

“When the facts change, I change my mind - what do you do, sir? John Maynard Keynes


Texan99 said...

Hospitalizations are down in Texas in the last four weeks and, on average (per the CDC), all over the country. These things come in waves in any particular location.

We should be working harder all over the country to reduce hospitalizations by taking full advantage of monoclonal antibodies. Florida reports that roughly half of its hospitalizations are vaccinated patients, so it's not as though the only use for the antibodies is to encourage people to wait and see. Nor does it make sense to restrict access to antibodies in order to push vaccine hesitators toward a decision. I suppose the vaccines, but they're not the only tool we have.

In response to this week's abrupt 50% decrease in its allotment of Regeneron monoclonal antibodies from the feds, who bought up all that company's supply, Florida is looking to secure a supply of a similar medication from GlaxoSmithKline. I hope that's what Texas will do as well. We should never give a political administration a monopoly on life-saving medication. The temptation to use a monopoly to mold our behavior for our own good is too great.

Texan99 said...

"Support" not "suppose."

Mike Guenther said...

Here's the thing with these "vaccines." In the year that they have been available, they have killed or maimed more people than all other vaccines in recorded history.

And then there's the exemptions. The Biden administration wants mandatory vaccinations, but exempts members of Congress, their staffs and families. Illegal immigrants swarming across our southern border are exempt or at least not being forced to take a vaccine as a precondition for entry.

Forcing a vaccine is unconstitutional, so this administration is using Corporate America to force compliance by threatening people's livelihood with unemployment and no benefits.

Soon enough, SSN and Medicare recipients will be forced to get vaccinated or lose benefits. Veterans like me may lose benefits.

I'm not antivax by any means. I received a bunch as part of my military service. (Although I did contract Hepatitis C from one of those vaccine doses before I went overseas back in the late 70's.)

If you want the vaccine, by all means, take the vaccine, but don't harangue or force people that don't want it.

I had a family member die with COVID, but he was grossly obese, had underlying heart and lung issues and was in very poor health before contracting the disease. And one of the treatments, Remdisiver, blew out his kidneys, such that if he had survived, he would have been on dialysis the rest of his life, according to his doctor.

waca waca said... are shouting into the wind, unfortunately. Many of your regular readers will not and cannot conceive that they were wrong/are wrong. They are too invested in the hoax ideology they espouse and what they think it tells them about their political opponents and the world

It's depressing to see you write multiple posts and put out information and links and then see everyone respond with the same tired, cultivated talking points that ignore almost all of what you have written.

You have my sympathies.

Donna B. said...

Mike Guenther wrote: Here's the thing with these "vaccines." In the year that they have been available, they have killed or maimed more people than all other vaccines in recorded history.

I respond: That's utter BS. Prove me wrong.

Grim said...

Let’s not go around on this again. Here’s a link to both the claim and the “fact check” about the claim.

Much of my family is in Idaho. They’re all vaccinated, except my niece who is too young. My mother hopefully will not require care before this wave breaks, but you never know.

David Foster said...

Mike Guenther..."Here's the thing with these "vaccines." In the year that they have been available, they have killed or maimed more people than all other vaccines in recorded history."


David Foster said...

I know two people who have gotten Covid. One guy is a retired airline pilot, mid-60s, not obese. He was in the hospital for two weeks, much of that in the ICU. Says his survival was in question. Still suffering from some serious after-effects.

Another guy is about 30. Very good shape, works construction and other physical job. Didn't require hospitalization, but was one sick puppy for a couple of weeks.

There is also some evidence of serious and persistent effects amount people who have gotten the disease and recovered...cognitive problems two and six months later:

Texan99 said...

The statistics are more convincing than the anecdotal evidence, and they clearly show that the highest risk is for the elderly and those with co-morbidities, obesity being a striking one.

But on the subject of anecdotes, my late-60s neighbor, who's diabetic and carrying some extra pounds, sailed through his largely unsymptomatic infection, while his daughter, young, slender, and quite healthy, had an awful time of it for many weeks. You never know when someone's immune system will go wacky; you can only play the odds.

Because anecdotes don't work for me, I go with the most trustworthy large-scale statistical evidence I can find. It tells me I'm better off with the minuscule risk of vaccine side-effects than the still small but somewhat larger risk of a very bad COVID case. That's just me; I'm not about to bully someone else about it, though I am willing to repeat publicly my own experience and the basis for my approach in case it convinces anyone.

Mike Guenther said...

Video of FDA conference. The vaccines are driving the variants.

Why get vaccinated if you can still catch COVID. Vaccinated people can still pass COVID to other people.

The survival rate for someone in fair health, under 80, is over 99%. I'll take those odds all day long.

David Foster said...

Interesting covid personalized risk assessor, from The Economist:

Note that the analysis is based on conditions as of 12/20.

Donna B. said...

David Foster - only two? I know (IRL, not just on the internet) at least seven people who have had it, one of them 'probably' dying from an after-effect. Four of those had it before a vaccine was available or they were eligible for one (including the one who died). One of them was 11 years old -- two days of mild headache and low-grade fever. (Her response to 10 days quarantine was "10 days in my room with my computers? I'll try... hahaha!)

I still use Facebook, but mostly because 75% of my Facebook friends are relatives. Most of the rest are friends of those relatives or were in my high school graduating class, or otherwise known to me IRL. If I counted those along with the other seven, I'd say I've known 25+ people who have had it. The problem is, I don't quite believe some of them, so I'm counting only those that I know have had positive tests.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

@ Mike, quickly, because I can see it's just not worth it.
That's not what that video says. The free circulation of the virus is a hugely greater driver of the evolution of escape-variants of any virus. Anti-vaxxers have been trying this one on for years.

Vaccinated people get much less covid, and they pass on much less covid. Those are good things, especially when multiplied over millions of people.

As is usual, people are looking only at their own survival when they come to your last conclusion. Millions of more people with covid means thousands of more deaths. That is a proportionally small number, but they're still dead. You personally are contributing very little to that - unless you get the disease and pass it to even one other person.

Tom Bridgeland said...

To my view, something odd is going on:
'...83.3% for combined infection- and vaccine-induced antibodies in May 2021...'
'...120.2 Million Estimated Total Infections...'

So, according to the CDC there were 120,000,000 infections as of May 2021, and also in May 83% of the population had antibodies against COVID. There have been nearly 200,000,000 people vaccinated. Some people fall into both groups, having been vaccinated and having had the disease, either before or after vaccination.

But, where is the pool of unvaccinated and previously uninfected coming from? There should be almost no one still available to get sick, certainly not enough to sustain a surge like we saw this last month. The numbers don't make sense to me. My suspicion is that re-infection is a lot more common than we had thought.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Off the top of my head, another possibility is that there was an earlier, less=deadly version or more than one, also escaping from the lab, and producing enough antibodies to show on the test, but not enough to provide more than a little immunity.

Tom Bridgeland said...

That may explain why the course of the disease is so variable and unpredictable. We had a 90-something person who never got sick enough to be bedbound, and his 90-something spouse who was a bit sicker. Both left the hospital in good condition, pre-vaccine. And we had a 20-something person with no pre-existing conditions except being a bit overweight. Took that patient 2 weeks to get enough better to leave.

We have no test that can predict the severity of COVID in a newly-infected person. I can only suspect some pre-existing immunity, perhaps a recent cold from one of the many corona-viruses that commonly attack people.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

Yes, perhaps I am too conspirazoid, assuming that any coronavirus immunity would have to be a similar enough version that could only come from Wuhan. There might be other possibilities, as you suggest. I also happened upon the idea because it would explain why the sewage testing showed that people were getting SARS-2 a few months before it supposedly existed, and farther afield, as in Italy. That could just be faulty method, or it could entirely upend how we view all of this. I haven't heard much about that lately.

I am not declaring this is what I think happened, just to be clear, only that I think something like this might have happened.

Texan99 said...

The markers we use for a pathogen are always a tiny fraction of the whole pathogen, so there's a real risk that we're getting red flags for merely similar organisms. Luckily that also means our immune systems are not always completely naive about a new pathogen.

Cranberry said...

There's an impressive website that tracks Covid R0 rates:

It's a joint project of Yale School of Public Health, Harvard's School of Public Health, and Stanford Medicine.

Likely due to the resistance of the population to lockdowns and masking, the south and states like Florida (0.51)and Texas (0.65) have R0s significantly lower than New England.

The states with R0s higher than 1, today, are: Alaska(1.1), D.C. (1.75!!), Delaware (1.22), Iowa (1.25), Maine (1.12), Massachusetts (1.12), Michigan (1.14), Minnesota (1.35), Montana (1.29), New Hampshire (1.28!), New York (1.04), North Dakota (1.02), Ohio (1.19), Pennsylvania (1.06), and Wisconsin (1.18).

Idaho's R0 is .8.

Zachriel said...

Texan99: Florida reports that roughly half of its hospitalizations are vaccinated patients

That is incorrect. "About 92% of Florida inpatients are unvaccinated and 8% are vaccinated." — Justin Senior, CEO of the Safety Net Hospital Alliance of Florida

Using Regeneron after the fact is not an effective strategy, and not an efficient use of limited resources. Vaccination is essential.

Mike Guenther: The Biden administration wants mandatory vaccinations, but exempts members of Congress, their staffs and families.

The executive branch does not have authority over the legislative or judicial branches.

Mike Guenther: Illegal immigrants swarming across our southern border

• All new immigrants are offered the vaccine.
• Undocumented workers are covered by the new OSHA rules.
• Vaccination is required for anyone applying to stay in the U.S.

Mike Guenther: Forcing a vaccine is unconstitutional

The Supreme Court has already rulee that states can mandate a vaccine. The limit of federal power is not certain, but federal employees can almost certainly be mandated, and the new work rules are likely lawful under OSHA. Notably, members of the military have been under vaccine mandates since George Washington.

Zachriel said...

Z: the new work rules are likely lawful under OSHA

Qualification: They may not survive under emergency authorization, but probably could survive under the normal rule-making procedure.

Texan99 said...

Cranberry, thanks, that's an interesting site.

David Foster said...

Interesting site, indeed...Cranberry, can you provide any insight as to how R0 for a state is actually calculated? I guess you could derive it from the rate of change in infections, but to do so accurately, you'd have to come up with some estimate of # infected people moving to or traveling in the state, because these represent a source of exogenous infections.

Cranberry said...

At the landing page,, the site lays out: ovidestim tries to paint a complete, current, and granular picture of the U.S. COVID-19 epidemic. We use an in-house statistical model that combines evidence on COVID-19 transmission, natural history and diagnosis with reported cases and deaths for nearly every state and county in the US. Our methodology can be found on medRxiv, with regular updates to our model documented here. You can run our model with your own data, using the covidestim R package. State- and county-level data are sourced from Johns Hopkins CSSE. We fit counties using the BFGS optimization algorithm, and state models using the slower HMC algorithm, which yields uncertainty intervals. When a state run takes too long, we rerun it with BFGS and use a method to estimate the uncertainty.

Links to the details are active in that paragraph on the actual page.

If you're interested, there seems to be even more information on their blog. The latest entry:

Reziac said...

Couple weeks ago I saw some news article about how the world was ending in Montana due to overflowing hospitals and the usual panic porn. So I went off and found this for our largest city:


[note: Billings Clinic is a full-service hospital with various specialty satellites; it's functionally an arm of Mayo Clinic. St.Vincent is literally right next door.]

Having plenty of professional experience with epidemiology and vaccines, I went forth and got jabbed at the earliest opportunity.

Zachriel said...


"Data accurate to August 16, 2021"
ICU beds available, 10
293 cases (7-day moving average)

Since then, COVID cases have increase 2½ times.