The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

The Emotional Logic Of Covid Denial

There is much moaning and wailing about how people in many Western countries, and in the US in particular, are not taking Covid seriously. Not wearing masks, not giving up Thanksgiving, not staying home, and so on.

This is to be expected. Part of it is that our elites are not taking it seriously. We are regularly told of important people going out to a restaurant to eat, or whatever.

Others, like Trump and many Republicans have downplayed Covid.

But the simpler explanation is based on one of the firm rules of human nature:

Whatever it is that we must do, must be good, because we must believe we are good.

People have no choice but to play Covid-roulette. The choice is to work, and take a chance on getting Covid, or not work and wind up homeless when you can’t pay the rent. Since Covid is only a chance, and homelessness is sure, you go work.

Since you must work, and since anything you do must be good, because you must believe you are a good person, therefore Covid is no big deal, because if it is a big deal, by working you may be putting other people as well as yourself at risk.

But you’re good, so therefore that can’t be so, therefore Covid is no big deal.


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This mechanic is one of the greatest sources of evil in human history and society. The correct response would be to shrug and simply note the calculus: “If I don’t work, I’m homeless, so I work and yeah, some people may die because of that, but the people who could easily afford to pay me not to work (the government/central banks) won’t, so, so be it.”

When choosing a lesser evil, admit “I am choosing a lesser evil.” Admit “I am still doing something bad, but I do not see a third option.”

If you don’t do this, you can’t move towards creating that third option, and by denying reality you make things far, far worse, as well as being a dishonest fool.

Anyway, the actual responsibility is on elites who don’t do the blindingly obvious: cancel rent and mortgages and pay small businesses to close, while providing actual essential workers with serious protecting. Get the pandemic down to zero, track and trace and outbreaks, quarantine and so on. Since it has been done, it can be done.

All of this Covid denialism, combined with vaccine fears, is going to cause a great deal of trouble as the vaccines come out and a lot of people refuse them. Vaccines provide herd immunity only if enough people take them.

Welcome to dystopia, courtesy of fucked up elites and the human need to feel that we’re good, whatever our objective actions are. (This need may be a human need that is somewhat culture bound, however. We can hope it isn’t invariable.)





The Rise of the Guillotine


Open Thread & Fundraising Update


  1. atcooper

    You’ve described the calculus I’ve had to walk since the summer. I work in a place where people come down with this sickness with some regularity, and once I got past the anger at folks disregard, I accepted I would be a super carrier no matter what I do. So when despair in isolation hits a critical point, I go out regardless of the danger I represent to my fellow man.

  2. Plague Species

    People have no choice but to play Covid-roulette. The choice is to work, and take a chance on getting Covid, or not work and wind up homeless when you can’t pay the rent. Since Covid is only a chance, and homelessness is sure, you go work.

    This is a rational, logical decision that a conscientious person makes. If in turn, in their private non-work life they do everything in their power to avoid contracting the virus and spreading it, meaning wearing a mask and social distancing and avoiding large gatherings or even small gatherings, then they are a model citizen, all else being equal.

    But many are not doing that. They go to work and abide by the workplace COVFEFE-45 rules in place if any because they must or they’ll be kicked to the curb and when they punch out, they drop their COVFEFE-45 guard and succumb to immediate gratification throwing caution and conscientiousness to the wind.

  3. Plague Species

    All of this Covid denialism, combined with vaccine fears, is going to cause a great deal of trouble as the vaccines come out and a lot of people refuse them. Vaccines provide herd immunity only if enough people take them.

    No. This is inappropriate conflation. The problem, what’s already causing the trouble and has been for quite some time, is already present before the vaccine was ever created. The problem is intelligent people, or otherwise, do not trust the corporations and they do not trust the government that is effectively a division of the corporations. That’s why many intelligent people don’t trust this rushed vaccine. Not to mention but I will because it is vitally important, the efficacy of the vaccines in question has not been independently verified by the scientific community. Are you suggesting we return to the days of caveat emptor — let the buyer beware?

    This commentator at Naked Capitalism said it best.

    All of us in our household get all our immunizations and are fine with requirements to wear masks, but we are quite wary of requirements to get any of these rushed COVID-19 vaccines that Trump has been clearly pushing with political pressure and financial pressure from his crony capitalist buddies–we get all our shots because the vaccines we take now have real long-term safety and efficacy data from nearly a decade of testing to establish that they work through a rigorous process. The Trump-rushed COVID vaccines DO NOT have anything approaching this, with no long-term safety or efficacy data, and it would be outrageous and wholly unethical to make such weakly tested vaccines (using almost wholly untested mRNA technology) a requirement for work or anything else, without having much more solid data on large population sets with diverse recipients.

    Neither Pfizer nor Moderna has provided anything in the form of scientific publications with peer review, just press releases with rosy claims that have not undergone serious scrutiny. They used vague measurement points to make their efficacy claims, basically self-reported reduction in symptoms but without anything like rigorous testing of actual viral nucleic acid levels to demonstrate their vaccines actually do anything to reduce spreading. Even the placebo group had very low infection levels so it’s questionable that they were even modelling COVID-19 in the community in any form..

    But even worse is that we have no data available, at all, on mRNA vaccines previously in human testing. These things can be dangerous–the early animal testing showed they killed most of the mice over time, and while they’ve been adjusted we know nothing about long-term effects in humans. We know even less about how they’d work in subsets of people with ex. previous COVID infection, or different minority groups or those with autoimmune or other conditions who might react different. Way too little data to take drastic steps with.

    I’m not saying will will never take a vaccine for COVFEFE-45. We will, however, wait and see on this first go around. We want assurances. That’s reasonable. It’s rational. This is from people who take this pandemic very seriously and who have been vigilant in taking precautions to not contract the virus or spread it.

  4. Hugh

    Yes, but often it isn’t even this rational. I was always told, and maybe this was from people who had lived through WWII, that people need to believe in something. If they don’t have something good to believe in, they will believe in something bad, but they will believe in something. If given the choice between reality and a conspiracy, even a really cockamamie one, they will believe the conspiracy. And I get the feeling more and more, that people will believe a lie, even a lie that can hurt them, as a way of giving the finger to reality and anyone accepting that reality, as if reality cared what they did or didn’t believe, or as if two plus two isn’t four if you don’t like the person saying it is. That is increasingly our world. Don’t try to understand, just deny.

  5. kråke

    They’re not conspiracy theorists because Gavin Newsome went out. They’re rot-brained because American religion is paranoid millenarianism.

  6. GlassHammer

    Or….. we successfully created Transactional Humans whose modus operandi is “What is in it for me?”

    And before someone says “Well clearly making an effort to stop COVID is in their interest.” I can tell you that many don’t think they are/will-be getting anything from making an effort.

  7. Hugh

    OT from the real world.

    The BLS jobs report covering November 2020 came out today. Looking at Employment from the A-1 table of the smaller Current Population Survey, in November 230,000 fewer people (seasonally unadjusted as in what really happened) were employed compared to October, decreasing to 150.203 million. This loss is somewhat more than expected. Last year in 2019, employment January to November increased 3.981 million. If we applied the same increase Jan.-Nov. to 2020, employment would currently be 160.975 million. In fact, with the pandemic, employment is 150.203 million, a deficit of 10.772 million employed from where we would expect it to be without the coronavirus.

    Turning to the larger business or establishment survey, from the B-1 table, Total Nonfarm jobs (that is public and private sectors) (seasonally unadjusted) increased 517,000 in November from October to 144.005 million. Last year Jan.-Nov. 2019 jobs created were 5.298 million. Applying this growth to this year 2020, we would expect Total Nonfarm jobs to be 155.451 million. This yields a 11.446 million cornavirus jobs deficit.

    Looking at just the private sector in this survey, 520,000 jobs (seasonally unadjusted) were added in November to 122.071 million. In 2019, Jan.-Nov. jobs growth was 4.552 million. Applying this to 2020, we would expect rhe Total Private jobs number to be 132.078 million, giving a virus defict of 10.007 million jobs.

  8. NR

    Ian, you’re right that a lot of people have no choice but to work in the face of COVID. But this doesn’t explain or excuse all the people who refuse to wear masks because “muh freedoms” and say that they cut off your oxygen and make you unable to breathe. That’s just sheer stupidity and there’s no sugar-coating that.

  9. So, uhhmmm … Truman faked getting the polio vaccine?

    Not that I necessarily disagree. There’s actually a bone of contention in my house right now: the spousal unit is all het up to get that shot as soon as possible, but I just don’t think it’s a magic bean. Setting aside my near life-long policy of avoiding vaccines along with chemicals, drugs, estrogens, insecticides et al, we’re not taking one rushed to market under these conditions. I have a thirteen year old autistic grandson, I watched it happen; we can wait a bit, see if it doesn’t turn folks into zombies. Or kill ’em more painfully than the trump-flu.

    Doesn’t change the fact if a bunch of exceptionalized, snot-nosed middle-school yard petulant bitches had just put a foking mask on we probably could have nipped it in the bud.

    (too many tabs open: posted upstream but meant for here)

  10. Plague Species

    “If I don’t work, I’m homeless, so I work and yeah, some people may die because of that, but the people who could easily afford to pay me not to work (the government/central banks) won’t, so, so be it.”

    When choosing a lesser evil, admit “I am choosing a lesser evil.” Admit “I am still doing something bad, but I do not see a third option.”

    If you don’t do this, you can’t move towards creating that third option, and by denying reality you make things far, far worse, as well as being a dishonest fool.

    This begs the question. What is the third option? Obviously, many don’t see it and to be honest, I don’t either. Sure, I can in the abstract say this is not the way it should be and instead should be this way, but that’s a far cry from outlining a viable, highly-detailed, effective workable plan to get from Point A to Point B.

  11. GlassHammer


    “Muh freedoms” vs. “We kinda need a society” is an unresolved American conflict that dates back to the Jacksonian Democrats vs. The Whigs. (See “What Hath God Wrought” by Daniel Howe if you’re interested.)

    Now once you add Transactional Man/Woman (homo economicus) on top of that old conflict and pepper in some Protestant Theology with a bit of Hoplessness you get the modern American plague bearer.

  12. anon y'mouse

    i want to propose fatalism.

    some of the retail clerks i see are behind their newly installed barriers, but if they have a mask it is on their chin. likewise with half of the people “wearing” masks out and about.

    i think the logic might go thus, like supposedly criminals have about getting caught eventually for their crimes: “it is going to happen to me eventually anyway, so what is the use taking overmuch precaution to prevent the inevitable?”

    in this way, even the person who knows that they can take steps realizes on some level that the most pressing issue is societal: if we do not all act to curb it (high and low), then it is not going to be curbed.

  13. Plague Species

    So, let me ask those who are advocating to receive the vaccine as though there is no risk and we should just trust Big Pharma and its poodle The Gubmint, are black people by and large anti-immunization peeps? Because the majority of black people, and non-white people actually, don’t trust this vaccine. Tuskegee, anyone? Black folks have good reason not to trust. So too do the indigenous Americans. Smallpox blankets, anyone? The same folks who proffered the smallpox blankets are the same folks who are proffering this vaccine. They do nothing out of the kindness of their dark hearts. Everything they do is out of self-interest. A million peeps a year from various poor countries around the planet die of AIDs per year. AIDS hasn’t disappeared, it’s just disappeared from the headlines because those in wealthier countries can get treatment. No vaccine yet, though. After all these years. AIDS, in fact, is set to elevate into a second wave of a pandemic. Yet no vaccine. Is America now Tuskegee writ large where all are considered black for experimental purposes? It’s clearly a white thing to be smug about this vaccine and label people as anti-immunization if they are hesitant and skeptical about receiving it and do not trust the malevolent crooks in charge.

  14. kråke

    Check out the Forbes take-down of the vaccine trials. Yes, Forbes. But, it is well written.

  15. Plague Species

    According to the most recent Gallup poll, the share of U.S. adults who say they would get a COVID-19 vaccine rose to 58 percent this month from 50 percent in September, with non-white Americans and those ages 45-65 even less willing to be vaccinated. While there is still much we don’t understand about COVID-19, we do know that without high levels of immunity in the population, a return to some semblance of normalcy is wishful thinking.

    The answer to this predicament. Never address the root, that’s the motto. Always the symptom and the symptom here is distrust. Mitigate the distrust rather than what causes the distrust. And how do you mitigate the distrust. Propaganda. Shaming is part of that propaganda. Calling people conspiracy theorists and anti-vaxers is part of that shaming even if the people you’re shaming are no such thing.

    Research from prior vaccination campaigns such as H1N1, HPV, and the annual flu points us in the right direction. Key components of successful vaccination efforts require 1) Identifying the concerns of particular segments of the population; 2) Tailoring messages and incentives to address those concerns, and 3) Reaching out through trusted sources – health care providers, public health departments, and others in the community.

  16. GlassHammer

    “So, let me ask those who are advocating to receive the vaccine as though there is no risk ”
    -Plague Species

    Oh there is 100% a risk in taking the vaccine.
    But what of your available options (because you have so few) is more deadly and/or long term debilitating? That is the question each of us will ask ourselves.

    I should mention that if you ever want to move from the U.S. (as is frequently advocated here) you probably won’t be able to without a COVID-19 vaccine.

  17. Hugh

    All medicines have side effects. With vaccines anti-vaxers either put forward side effects that don’t exist or decide to freeload off the herd immunity that the vaccinated may have created for them or their children.

    This is exacerbated with the covid vaccines because of the push to get them out quickly and because the national doofus Trump was within a million miles of them.

  18. js

    GlassHammer is right, for you most people: you take your chances with the vaccine or you take your chances with covid. Yea no real choice.

    Even those lucky enough to work from home in the pandemic, won’t be allowed to indefinitely when a vaccine is readily available to all, so there is little hiding out indefinitely on offer. If there was not much covid spread, that is if one lived in a well-run country, it might make sense to wait the vaccine out a bit. But in the U.S. there is massive covid spread, so you take your chances with a vaccine or you take your chances with covid. And how many really want to argue that covid is the safer bet?

  19. Plague Species

    So the science is in, is it? It’s not, but the assumption is that it is. That this vaccine, any will do at this point because what options do we have just as the Jews were cajoled into the gas chambers because what options did they have, will help develop herd immunity to COVFEFE-45 and the world can get back to business as usual growing religiously and exponentially until the planet is as good as dead. Do you really believe that about this vaccine or any COVFEFE-45 vaccine? What is your evidence, other than your faith, to support this assumption?

    For the record, I’ve been fully immunized as have my wife and kids. We’re not anti-immunization but we are skeptical of designer immunizations and the companies that profit from them.

    Hugh, yes, all drugs have side effects, some worse than others. Certain diabetes drugs cause flesh eating bacteria to devour your genitalia, for example. Sweet. That’s why we should limit our drug use to whatever is ABSOLUTELY necessary. This is aside from the discussion of this vaccine, fyi. The entire planet isn’t going to be coerced into taking that diabetes medication, thanks be to god.

    People with type 2 diabetes who take a certain class of drugs have a very troubling side effect to worry about: The drugs may increase the risk of the genitals becoming infected with “flesh-eating” bacteria.

  20. Hugh

    Currently nearly a 9/11 of people are dying from covid a day in the US. For me, that works for absolutely necessary.

  21. js

    People’s obsession on what the elite do seems a misunderstanding of everything. Does the average person really believe they are going to get Gavin Newsom’s never mind Trump’s healthcare when they get sick? They would short cut all thinking of what is actually likely to transpire if they get sick by imagining they will get a governors or a Presidents treatment?

  22. GlassHammer

    Worth mentioning that in all likelihood the kids will need the vaccine to return to school and most parents need them to go back to school.

    Also worth mentioning that poverty kills and the prolonged economic depression caused by COVID will kill plenty.

    The rushed vaccine is probably going to be taken by most people.

  23. Joan

    If the first round of the vaccine is a clunker and affects people enough that they have to take time off work, wouldn’t that be a huge problem if we mass-vaccinate all the medical professionals and other critical workers first? Is that really being proposed or are they just being allowed access to it first, to opt in?

  24. NR

    Joan: I don’t believe vaccines can be made mandatory if they’re approved under Emergency Use Authorization, which is what the FDA is considering for these vaccines.

  25. BlizzardOfOzzz

    Why do people not support this? Can’t think of a good reason, they must have psych problems.

  26. Hugh

    BOO, Scott Greer worked at the Daily Caller. From its wiki:

    “The Daily Caller is a right-wing news and opinion website based in Washington, D.C. It was founded by now Fox News host Tucker Carlson and political pundit Neil Patel in 2010. Launched as a “conservative answer to The Huffington Post”, The Daily Caller quadrupled its audience and became profitable by 2012, surpassing several rival websites by 2013. The Daily Caller is a member of the White House press pool.[2]

    The Daily Caller has frequently published false stories. The website publishes articles that dispute the scientific consensus on climate change. The website has published articles by white supremacists such as Jason Kessler and Peter Brimelow. Scott Greer was deputy editor at The Daily Caller. After his departure, it was revealed that he published articles espousing white nationalist, racist anti-black and antisemitic views under a pseudonym in white supremacist publications.”

  27. NL

    And how many really want to argue that covid is the safer bet?

    Depends on your age and underlying conditions profile.

    Third option – wait/hide out long enough until conventional vaccines (whole virus inactivated) are offered . I would take those — little to none long term risk there (provided there are no toxic additives and preservatives). Take a Chinese one (they work on 3). Adenoviral vector and mRNA vaccines risk being either ineffective or causing autoimmune disorders. I don’t understand how mRNA is delivered into cells. mRNA is one of the least stable molecule in the world and human body (hence the cold storage conditions). Someone said that mRNA will be injected naked into muscle cells, but the needle will inflict enough damage on the cell to ‘spill’ RNA degrading enzymes all over the cell. Also, I don’t understand how the proponents of adenovirus/mRNA vaccine think the human body will distinguish between its own protein and the viral protein that is made by its own cells. I need to update my knowledge of immunology, but my guess right now is that the body will have hard time doing this and in some cases will make a mistake and recognize its own protein as foreign leading to autoimmune disorder (most likely myositis).

    Fourth possibility – taking AD/mRNA vaccine becomes mute because immunity lasts for a limited amount of time (say 6-12 months). Adenoviral vaccine can not be taken more than 1-2 times, because these are essentially adenoviral proteins containing coronavirus DNA. The body will develop immune response to the adenoviral proteins — that’s why the Russians use two adenoviruses, one for the first and the other for the second injection. Taking mRNA every year will make an autoimmune disorder inevitable. Conventional would be the only vaccine usefully in this case, could be taken every year like flu vaccines.

    End result of all of this will be a realization that the only way to go is irradiate the virus through isolation of the infected.

  28. Hugh

    NL, covid is a single strand positive sense RNA virus. No DNA.

  29. NL

    December 5, 2020
    NL, covid is a single strand positive sense RNA virus. No DNA.

    The fact that COVID is an RNA virus has nothing to do with how the vaccines are made. The choice of vaccine preparation/delivery method is dictated by the expeditiousness issue –> warp speed adenoviral particles containing the DNA vectors encoding COVID-19 spike protein. The AV vectors/particles that are made as COVID-19 vaccine are similar to the AV vector/particles that James Wilson tried to use in gene therapy and in the process caused death of a patient ( AV particles are hugely immunogenic, which is why the patient died and why the Russians want to use two different types of AV for two subsequent injections. There is also significant pre-existing immunity to AV. AV occurs naturally. If a person has been exposed to Ad26 and Ad5 (the Russian AV types), then a strong immune response will clear all the AV particles before any significant expression of the spike protein will take place.

    Another, even bigger issue – note that Dr. Wilson used an AV vector to deliver a functional gene into the liver to repair an inherited disease caused by defective endogenous gene, that is -> the new gene/protein delivered by the AV vector is not identical to the native defective gene/protein (in the 3-D protein structure, the difference may be very large), and yet the expectation was that the new/functional protein will be recognized by the organism as its own. The AV vaccine makers expect that the COVID-19 spike protein will be recognized as a foreign protein — why? The cell does not have an catalog of native proteins. In fact, on occasion native proteins are mistakenly recognized as foreign –> autoimmune disease. My guess is that the makers of AV vaccine hope for the best but do not really know for sure. But I need to read up more on this.

    Now, the reason some companies went with mRNA is likely because it is much cheaper and quicker to generate RNA than package AV vectors. Only the largest research universities have AV packaging facilities. I can set a small lab for RNA synthesis (in vitro transcription) at home (although I would need to get non-bacterial RNA transcriptase). The downside is very low RNA stability and difficulty of delivery.

  30. NL

    A part of the e-mail disappeared. Luckily I copies it before hitting submit. The missing part.

    … dictated by the expeditiousness issue — warp speed — and cost.

    Hugh, I know. But adenovirus (AV) is a DNA virus and carries DNA, so AV DNA is manipulated (portions are tossed, new stuff is added) t0 contain a region that encodes whole or a portion of the COVID-19 spike protein and some promoter (a special DNA needed to make sure that DNA becomes mRNA), then a complicated, laborious and costly packaging process using cell culture takes place, end product — adenoviral particles containing the DNA vectors encoding COVID-19 spike protein. …

  31. Ten Bears

    US reported 2,804 COVID-related deaths on Wednesday alone and another 2,879 on Thursday. We have 328 million people and 277,000 dead, and counting. Japan, on-the-other-hand, with 126 million people, about a third of the US population, has a total of just 2,208 dead. Total. Greece, with a population of ten million, just three percent (3%) of the US, total2,706 dead. Total. Less than the US just today.

    As ever, I’m laughing … at the “superiority”

  32. Willy


    Where I live small businesses survive because everybody follows the covid protocols. I’ve never seen an rebellious anti-masker. As a result, the hospitals haven’t gotten full, resulting in lockdowns.

    I do feel sorry for small business owners living in idiot country. Maybe that includes the owner of the Pineapple Hill Bar located in Sherman Oaks. If she gets enough exposure I’m hopeful she’ll be getting results. After I read her KTLA article, I then noticed another article right below hers, about the covid death of comedian “Joe el Cholo” at age 38. I wonder what his family (assuming) are gonna do for money.

    This isn’t as easy as your racist friend makes it out to be.

  33. Ten Bears

    To clarify a bit on “I just don’t think it” – the vaccine – “is a magic bean … ”

    For most of us, willing or no, the vaccine is at least a year out.

    This just in: American Bankers Association is petitioning to designate Wall St finance workers as essential workers so they can get COVID19 vaccines before most Americans.

    For most of us, if not the vast majority, willing or no, the vaccine is at least a year out. After front-line medical personnel, Joan airs a valid concern; after captive populations quite possibly considered a laboratory rodents and those whose underlying medical conditions put them high enough on the list, my spouse is somewhere in the 666,000 range; after the cops and the politicians and the firefighters (I’m a certified and an experienced wildlands firefighter but I doubt we’ll be up there with the city-slickers) and … the bankers and insurers and …

    Put a mask on. Get used to it. Vaccine for the rest of us, willing or no, is a year out.

  34. Speaking of covid denial, it seems like vitamin D denial may become a thing of the past, in the UK. Let us hope it spreads. From “Millions of elderly and vulnerable will get free Vitamin D from government as evidence grows that it helps in battle against Covid-19” @

    Millions of vulnerable people will be sent supplies of Vitamin D by the Government as evidence grows that it helps in the battle against Covid-19 infection.

    Care-home residents and people shielding because they suffer from conditions such as cancer will be sent enough supplies of the vitamin to last four months, with the first packages due to arrive early next month.

    The move comes after Health Secretary Matt Hancock decided he had to act fast in light of the emerging evidence about the benefits of Vitamin D.

    One recent study found that more than 80 per cent of Covid-19 victims admitted to hospital were Vitamin D deficient, compared with a UK average of 25 per cent.

    A senior Government source said that direct delivery to people’s doorsteps in England would ‘help prevent Vitamin D deficiency and maintain normal calcium levels in the blood and keep bones and muscles healthy’.

    My cousin is an optometrist, and has been asking patients about whether or not they take vitamin D. He says about 60% say “yes”. I’m going to guess that even 90% of the “yes” people have sub-optimal levels of vitamin D, as per cutting edge research you can peruse at And I’ll further guess that 20%+ don’t even meet the government’s low level of vitamin D sufficiency, as can only be measured by blood test. One of his offices serves primarily African Americans, whose vitamin D status is generally pathetic.

    Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I was correct when I predicted that a large and high quality Danish study of mask wearing would point to their LACK of effectiveness. . It’s now been published….

    Gee, how ever did I guess that? Am I psychic? One of the journals that rejected it turned out to be the Lancet, which also first published, then retracted, a garbage study on hydroxychloroquine. Gee, Virginia, is it possible that the Lancet is yet another part of the establishment that is corrupted? Yet another puppet, ultimately, of elite and plutocratic forces?

    I wonder: if Vitamin D starts getting pushed by the Canadian government, will Ian start mentioning the previous failure to push it as part of the dysfunction of its elite-aligned medical bureaucracy? Will it then become OK to complain about? That would be a good thing. And could lead to another good thing, viz., comparisons between various anti-covid strategies to figure out which are most cost effective. With references to credible scientific literature, hopefully.

    Another somewhat encouraging sign. For about a week or two, breitbart ran adds promoting vitamin D, and was requesting readers to sign some sort of petition requesting that US lawmakers get on the ball. Those ads have disappeared, but one can still hope… I’m sure Bill Gates would never fund such ads, though it’d be chump change, for him. He’s got bigger $fish$ to fry. Maybe some other billionaires will step up. Not that we need them. There is crowdfunding, after all.

  35. Plague Species

    Put a mask on. Get used to it. Vaccine for the rest of us, willing or no, is a year out.

    That’s a great point. It makes this discussion about waiting and seeing about the vaccine, moot. I’m all for Wall Streeters getting the vaccine first. Have at it. How glorious would it be if the vaccine, whichever one they choose, is a petard and they’re hoisted by it? I’d call that divine justice even if there is no divine.

    They had the governor of New Jersey (dude looks like a drunk thug) on yesterday for an interview. He said NJ is ready to receive and administer millions of doses of the vaccine. I’m assuming he means the Pfizer vaccine. When asked if NJ had the money to do this he said it didn’t. Well, numb nuts, then you’re not ready to receive and administer the vaccine, are you? He’s just assuming the federal government will come to the rescue and foot the bill. That’s a dubious assumption.

    I asked this question before and no one bothered to respond I guess because most peeps believe in Santa Claus and Unicorns. Money doesn’t grow on trees and it’s never printed or created electronically in order to do anything magnanimous for the unwashed dopes. Who is going to foot this bill? I assure you the wealthy elite won’t and if states borrow even more, the bill is ultimately borne by the unwashed dopes in the form of less services.

    There are three hurdles (four actually) to this vaccine campaign if you can call it a campaign at this point.

    1.) The true efficacy of any vaccine and the not-yet-known side effects.

    2.) The reluctance to receive the vaccine by a substantial swath of the population because of lack of trust in American institutions and corporations with many of that swath being non-whites.

    3.) The financing of the project. It won’t just pay for itself and more debt means the unwashed will ultimately have to foot the bill in future cuts to governmental services in order to service the debt.

    There is a fourth, actually.

    4.) The complexity involved in administering the vaccine to so many people effectively and successfully. If it’s Pfizer, the refrigeration is a monumental ordeal since America does not have the ultra low cold chain logistical and storage capacity to service such a prodigious undertaking. It will have to be built out. By who? Who foots the bill for it?

  36. Stirling S Newberry

    It worked for the elite – many of which are pushing 100.

  37. Stirling S Newberry

    “Have at it. How glorious would it be if the vaccine, whichever one they choose, is a petard and they’re hoisted by it? I’d call that divine justice even if there is no divine.”

    Do you get trained at Trump University or are you just an AI?

  38. NL

    “Put a mask on. ”

    There are different types of mask. There are masquerade masks, carnival masks, cowboy masks, cloth masks and medical/surgical non woven 3 ply masks. When people discuss masks, they do not clarify which masks they are talking about. Only the latter gives meaningful benefits to the wearer and the people around the wearer. If I cared for the whole of humanity, I would probably say something like: “Don’t be a dumbf*** and wear one”, but maybe I am growing to care more for this to be a major evolutionary selection event that would sort out the pretenders from the contenders on both the level of individuals and whole societies (if we would allow for an existence of such a thing). Everyone has picked a survival strategy in the face of this evolutionary event, some of these strategies will be validated and other will not. Just the way things are.

  39. Ten Bears

    I’ve been wearing a red, orange or (yes) pink bandana “cowboy” style since mid-Febuary, though I do occasionally don a Templar battle-flag, a skull and crossed bones, folded to fold layers not unlike the hell raising harley riding helicopter logging days when we kept the volcanic ash out of our lungs, back when I had teeth keeping the bugs out of ’em. Rabbit for dinner?

    Don’t be a drumpf uck, wear something. For now, there is no vaccine. No magic bean.

  40. Plague Species

    Do you get trained at Trump University or are you just an AI?

    Is Trump U. still operating? I’m merely one of hoi polloi. Thanks for that lesson by the way, Professor Dingleberry. About hoi polloi. You’re a smart cookie.

    I doubt they teach “kill the rich” at Trump U. Instead, they teach worship the rich. Why would you dare to defend the Wall Streeters? My wish is that they go first on the untested vaccine and the untested vaccine is effectively a guillotine. Of course, I don’t and would never wish that on the healthcare workers. Wall Streeters are murderers. They deserve what they get and if it was by their own unwitting Frankist hand, all the better.

    As for AI, perhaps we’re all part of an AI system so in effect we’re all AI. It makes as much sense, and much more sense in fact, as any of the major religions as an explanation of this clusterf*ck called consciousness.

  41. Hugh

    It’s about viral exposure and load. Here’s what the CDC says about masks:

    Wear masks to help protect yourself from getting or spreading COVID-19
    Wear masks with two or more layers to stop the spread of COVID-19
    Wear the mask over your nose and mouth and secure it under your chin.

    I would add: Avoid crowds, prolonged exposure to other people when you can, smaller enclosed spaces, and distance. It’s common sense. It is difficult to eliminate all exposure but you can limit the number and severity of exposures. It’s a numbers game, and you can improve your chances.

  42. Plague Species

    Hugh, I would add to that, if you can, you need to improve the air displacement turnover rate in your home and avoid places where the air displacement is lousy. We open our windows and air the place out no matter how cold it is. They even say it’s preferable to leave the windows open an inch or so all the time if you can even if your heater is on or your air conditioner. This helps displace the air quicker. A carbon dioxide monitor will help you determine how well your place is displacing air. If carbon dioxide is greater than 1,000, you’re entering the danger zone for COVFEFE-45 load. Holiday parties where 20, 30 and even 40 people are gathered in a home, the carbon dioxide will explode through the roof meaning your home cannot displace air quick enough if the windows are not opened all the way or at least cracked an inch. The COVFEFE-45 load directly parallels the carbon dioxide levels.

  43. BlizzardOfOzzz

    Everyone has picked a survival strategy in the face of this evolutionary event, some of these strategies will be validated and other will not. Just the way things are.

    Yes, think of all those octogenarians with heart disease, cut down in the prime of life all because they wouldn’t wear a mask. Meanwhile the octogenarians with heart disease who *do* wear a mask will go on to live a rich life and propagate their genes with a big family. Truly this forebodes a massive fork in evolutionary history.

    You are not sane.

  44. NL

    “You are not sane.”

    That’s my view, and I can argue for it. Your logic is faulty, but I am not in business of convincing anyone of anything. In fact, I am very curious to see whether someone with your survival strategy (assuming you are being honest and not just trying to egg on others to go out there and get infected) will survive. Let’s all stop arguing and screaming at each other, live your convictions.

  45. NL

    Herd immunity — that means that those who manage to get their neighbors and friends out there to get infected while themselves staying back and not getting infected until herd immunity will never be infected — they will preserve their health completely intact – no loss of smell, no loss of mental abilities, no loss of reproductive ability (, no premature deterioration of physical abilities and premature aging – any disease takes a toll. The final 10-15% of the population who never had COVID-19 will be protected by the herd immunity. I wonder to what extent the ‘it’s just a flu’ crowd is of that kind. Many a time, good-wishing friends of mine have been nice to me in that way.

    Well, there will be no herd immunity, but that it is a different discussion.

  46. Ten Bears

    ~ octogenarians with heart disease propagating their genes ~

    Everyone should have a good belly laugh early in the morning.

    Though I am sorry you fell off the wagon lizzard, booze is poison.

    We all know it. You can do it, rep, hang in there.

  47. bruce wilder

    The logic of COVID denial is one thing.

    What about the logic of the various tendencies that try to save the bosses from their own incompetence? This has always been a personal weakness of mine, no doubt rooted in a childhood spent with parents who often fell short of competent.

    I have been watching the California / Los Angeles authorities try to act responsibly in response to the surge of hospitalizations associated with the exponential growth of the third wave. Things here are not actually as bad as in the midwest or in the worst hit countries of Europe. But, the natives are restless. This native can barely understand what is entailed by the “increasingly stringent” measures being imposed. It comes across as diffuse, fear-generating propaganda with no real action item for citizens.

    Wear a mask. I do — indoors always when speaking or interacting or on the bus or in a car or in a store or public space, outdoors when I forget to take it down. I have seen very few rebels out and about. Probably some see me as a rebel because I am not always wearing a mask outdoors.

    Mask-wearing is clearly not slowing the third wave. Hello!? Are the authorities attributing the surge to outdoor patio dining? Because prohibiting that is about all they have done here recently.

    Telling people to stay home and avoid large gatherings is fine. But, isn’t that cruise ship model for spreading the virus, for people living in dense settings (many family or roommates together and shared kitchen and bath)?

    Closing parks? Is that sensible after months of ineffectualness?

    Closing barbershops again, ok, but any evidence for that as a vector after mitigating measures were taken?

    No word I have seen on factories. In LA, we pretend we do not have them I guess. Or, offices either.

    I hear the hoi polloi on the street talking paranoid theories of how elites are benefitting from public health measures. (I know how the rich have benefitted from the inadequacy of economic compensation; that is not what I overhear on the street where people are mad.)

    I cannot judge vaccines, though I appreciate what NL is explaining, to a point. Also, I watch the Vitamin D thing as an indicator of elite malfeasance: something cheap and effective ignored because no one profits enough.

    There is real potential for vaccines to be a badly muffed response. The same professional incompetence that screwed up early testing on multiple dimensions seems determined to repeat and will have multiple opportunities. You don’t have to drumf to be a Biden and the outcome may be worse.

  48. Willy

    Speaking of flat-earth moon-hoaxing microchip-vaxxing climate-denialism, based on the One True God who always tells me the good stuff but never you:

    US Covid-19 Recent Deaths Per Capita (Coronavirus) (

    If it isn’t possessed farm animals, then could it be those demonic gophers? They’re everywhere it seems. So I look to world stats for answers. I was hopeful that with all those overcrowded favela and slums that Brazil and India (godless) would easily top the Greatest Nation On Earth in the number of cases. Or deaths. But the USA is now racing away again with the prize. Is nothing sacred anymore?

    Coronavirus Update (Live): 67,225,296 Cases and 1,539,806 Deaths from COVID-19 Virus Pandemic – Worldometer (

    It must be fakery! Fake stats news. Yeah, that’s the ticket. If you can find the missing votes, then you’ll also find a guy behind a curtain coding in all the fake stats as well. Now here’s Jesus to explain more. Take it away Jesus. Jesus…

    Just give me a sec. He’s busy with more important stuff right now.

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