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Gov. Abbott opens TX. MS, CT, WV, AZ & KS join. Now GOP opens Georgia!


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36 minutes ago, Gatorman said:

Wearing a condom isn't 100% effective,

you don't wear a condom to stop the couple down the street from getting pregnant though 

and

that very article says yes, the stats are this and this BUT its also not 100% conclusive - and yes, it matters the source

I can find you in 2 minutes a biased anti-mask article - that doesn't make it valid

 

motorcyclists for a long time have argued their own right to their own safety - same right that people who smoke invoke

if I want to take the chance on getting covid isn't that my right ? 

and I'm not going to go into your home or invade your personal work space if a person is scared to get it - but for the less than 1% of the population that covid has affected, the huge burden placed on the 99% rest of us is extreme and with the facts showing massive surges in covid during the time mask mandates were invoked .... I just again question the validity of it

 

if I don't want smoke blown in my face, I'm not going to a bar that has smokers in it

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The fact that well over a year later masks wearing is still political is mind numbingly stupid.

I get what you're saying, but CT is way ahead of most on this, is a small state that tracked and traced pretty effectively, and is indeed keeping restrictions and requirements intact. I have a ha

It is absolutely amazing to me how the American narrative on covid, opening up, masks and other safety precautions is the exact opposite of most every other western democratic society.  It is not surp

6 minutes ago, timschochet said:

Within 6 months, probably less, we’re going to be done with this. I don’t understand why people are arguing that the masks need to stop RIGHT NOW. I’m not hearing a compelling argument here. 

do you think it was going to run its course and go away anyway ?

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1 minute ago, Stealthycat said:

you don't wear a condom to stop the couple down the street from getting pregnant though 

and

that very article says yes, the stats are this and this BUT its also not 100% conclusive - and yes, it matters the source

I can find you in 2 minutes a biased anti-mask article - that doesn't make it valid

 

 

True, but at least if you offered that up we would have something concrete to debate over, rather than your blanket assertion that places with a mask mandate had the worst of it

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14 minutes ago, Rich Conway said:

How is that different from seat belts, motorcycle helmets, stop signs, or any number of other things that people might irrationally believe don't do any good?

Well presumably the difference between those things and a plunger on your head is that they have a benefit.  It's a long running argument for sure on when to coerce and when to educate.  Pennsylvania, in fact, allows you to ride a motorcycle without a helmet if you are an experienced rider and take a class, and I can't imagine even the people who go around riding without a helmet would argue that helmets are a hoax.

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3 minutes ago, Stealthycat said:

but for the less than 1% of the population that covid has affected, the huge burden placed on the 99% rest of us is extreme

There are almost 29 million confrimed cases in the US, which is about 9% of the population. Now, not every case affected someone besides themselves, but a good chunk did. Whether it was them having to quarantine and miss work, or someone in their family had to quarantine and miss work, or something as simple as them having to take a couple hours off of work to go get tested. And that is only for people who didn't get sick and have to miss a couple weeks, or had to go into the hospital, and how that affected health care workers, and others. Or the family and friends of the more than 1/2 million who have died. Or the tens or hundreds of thousands who will suffer long term health consequences.

Covid has affected nearly 100% of our population in some fashion

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5 minutes ago, Dr_Zaius said:

Well presumably the difference between those things and a plunger on your head is that they have a benefit.  It's a long running argument for sure on when to coerce and when to educate.  Pennsylvania, in fact, allows you to ride a motorcycle without a helmet if you are an experienced rider and take a class, and I can't imagine even the people who go around riding without a helmet would argue that helmets are a hoax.

I was assuming in your hypothetical that we had actual evidence that the plunger hat was effective at mitigation.  We know masks are effective at mitigation.  Because a bunch of deniers refuse to acknowledge facts doesn't mean we should take their views into account.

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29 minutes ago, Rich Conway said:

How is that different from seat belts, motorcycle helmets, stop signs, or any number of other things that people might irrationally believe don't do any good?

The main difference is that "seat belts don't do any good" isn't rational.  "Vaccinated people don't need to wear masks" is completely rational.

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2 minutes ago, Rich Conway said:

I was assuming in your hypothetical that we had actual evidence that the plunger hat was effective at mitigation.  We know masks are effective at mitigation.  Because a bunch of deniers refuse to acknowledge facts doesn't mean we should take their views into account.

Got it.  Sorry, I misinterpreted your post.  The point of my hypothetical was a situation where the efficacy of the intervention was very much in the air, just to try to demonstrate the headspace of the anti-mask people.  Obviously the more "settled" the science is, the more general support there will be for acting on that science.

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2 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

The main difference is that "seat belts don't do any good" isn't rational.  "Vaccinated people don't need to wear masks" is completely rational.

A. We don't know that.  Studies so far seem to indicate that vaccinated people can still spread the virus.

B. That's not what is being implemented.  What is being implemented in TX is "No one needs to wear a mask."

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2 minutes ago, Dr_Zaius said:

Got it.  Sorry, I misinterpreted your post.  The point of my hypothetical was a situation where the efficacy of the intervention was very much in the air, just to try to demonstrate the headspace of the anti-mask people.  Obviously the more "settled" the science is, the more general support there will be for acting on that science.

I think "masks work" is settled science.

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9 minutes ago, Stealthycat said:

you don't wear a condom to stop the couple down the street from getting pregnant though 

and

that very article says yes, the stats are this and this BUT its also not 100% conclusive - and yes, it matters the source

I can find you in 2 minutes a biased anti-mask article - that doesn't make it valid

 

motorcyclists for a long time have argued their own right to their own safety - same right that people who smoke invoke

if I want to take the chance on getting covid isn't that my right ? 

and I'm not going to go into your home or invade your personal work space if a person is scared to get it - but for the less than 1% of the population that covid has affected, the huge burden placed on the 99% rest of us is extreme and with the facts showing massive surges in covid during the time mask mandates were invoked .... I just again question the validity of it

 

if I don't want smoke blown in my face, I'm not going to a bar that has smokers in it

The difference between science and belief is that there is always doubt in any scientific claim.  If you choose to take that doubt and make it "the thing" then you really aren't interested in science you are just interested in your belief.  Even gravity is considered a theory.

Now, I'm not sure what you want to see that addresses the mask mandate and its importance in slowing or stopping the Spread.  Japan perhaps?  where they had covid under control for the most part until the reopened bars and people couldn't be maskless there? New Zealand?  South Korea?  

Now, you used smoking and motorcycles as an argument.  Well, Smokers do not get to smoke indoors or in restaurants anymore because of second hand smoke, and yes, bars that have smoking become a personal choice.  (as an aside, Vegas had to make poker rooms non smoking bc California poker rooms went there and people preferred that).  Also, I personally feel if you don't wear a helmet you are an idiot and I shouldn't be responsible if we get into an accident for your injuries (but again, that's not the point).

If masks were intended to protect YOU from getting COVID, then I'd agree with you, HOWEVER, masks exist for you to PREVENT giving covid to others, so from a civic duty perspective, if you are a patriotic American it should be your duty to protect your fellow citizens (if you want to carry a gun to protect others besides yourself, you should be willing to wear a mask).

Finally, its just a mask. It is not a political statement (and if you think that is a HUGE BURDEN then perhaps you should not wrap yourself in the flag about any other American sacrifice).  I wear one all day as an Optometrist seeing patients.  yeah, sometimes it is annoying (and I'm vaccinated), but my office hasn't had an issue with covid.  The people in my staff who got COVID were maskless with their family or friends when they got exposed.

I have plenty of questions about all of this and would love to see more data on a myriad of COVID issues, but that doesn't mean I'm going to scrap all we think we know so far for your Belief in something else.

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There's probably not going to be a clear, bright line where one day we all need to wear masks and the next day we all don't.  It's a continuum and reasonable people might draw the line in different spots.

When 0% of the population is immune -- which was basically the case this time last year -- we absolutely positively needed to be wearing masks.  I know there are some folks who will dispute this point, but those aren't really the people I'm talking to here.  

When 100% of the population is immune -- which may or may not ever happen -- we definitely don't need to be wearing masks.  If you want to keep wearing one, great, knock yourself out.  If the CDC wants to recommend that we keep on wearing masks, most of us will just ignore them just like we've always ignored their advice about obsessive hand-washing.  The rest of you will just have to cope with that.

There exists a gamma somewhere between 0 and 100 where masking is optimal if the immunity rate is below gamma and no longer optimal if the immunity rate exceeds gamma.  Because we don't know all the relevant parameters and can't actually solve this optimization problem for real, we're going to have to intuit where that gamma is.  And different people are going to arrive at different intuited solutions based on non-scientific stuff like their risk tolerance, second-order considerations about how masking drives other behaviors, and things like that. 

The important thing is that while Texas is probably jumping the gun a bit, we are going to be having this conversation a lot in the next couple of months.  It's probably for the best if we don't just assume that people are being irresponsible or irrational if they feel like we've crossed that threshold while you'd prefer to wait a few more weeks.   

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9 minutes ago, Rich Conway said:

A. We don't know that.  Studies so far seem to indicate that vaccinated people can still spread the virus.

 

Quote

As Paul Sax, an infectious-disease doctor at Boston’s Brigham & Women’s Hospital, put it in early December, it would be enormously surprising “if these highly effective vaccines didn’t also make people less likely to transmit.” From multiple studies, we already knew that asymptomatic individuals—those who never developed COVID-19 despite being infected—were much less likely to transmit the virus. The vaccine trials were reporting 95 percent reductions in any form of symptomatic disease. In December, we learned that Moderna had swabbed some portion of trial participants to detect asymptomatic, silent infections, and found an almost two-thirds reduction even in such cases. The good news kept pouring in. Multiple studies found that, even in those few cases where breakthrough disease occurred in vaccinated people, their viral loads were lower—which correlates with lower rates of transmission. Data from vaccinated populations further confirmed what many experts expected all along: Of course these vaccines reduce transmission.

And yet, from the beginning, a good chunk of the public-facing messaging and news articles implied or claimed that vaccines won’t protect you against infecting other people or that we didn’t know if they would, when both were false. I found myself trying to convince people in my own social network that vaccines weren’t useless against transmission, and being bombarded on social media with claims that they were.

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/02/how-public-health-messaging-backfired/618147/

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8 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

The main difference is that "seat belts don't do any good" isn't rational.  "Vaccinated people don't need to wear masks" is completely rational.

Ivan, I agree with you.  However, 1) we don't actually know that with full certainty (infectious disease docs do believe this so I am inclined to take their word for it) and 2) there is no "vaccination passport" system in place yet to identify who has and hasn't gotten the vaccine.

If mask wearing didn;t become the political crap show it became (and people acted as civic minded adults) then the honor system for "de-masking" would fly.  We both know that right now it would be an excuse for the anti maskers to burn their bras without getting the vaccine.

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2 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

The important thing is that while Texas is probably jumping the gun a bit, we are going to be having this conversation a lot in the next couple of months.  It's probably for the best if we don't just assume that people are being irresponsible or irrational if they feel like we've crossed that threshold while you'd prefer to wait a few more weeks.   

Can we assume that certain people are being irresponsible or irrational if the majority of their behavior throughout the pandemic has been irresponsible or irrational?  At the moment, I'm thinking of the governor of TX.

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2 minutes ago, Rich Conway said:

Can we assume that certain people are being irresponsible or irrational if the majority of their behavior throughout the pandemic has been irresponsible or irrational?  At the moment, I'm thinking of the governor of TX.

What's your solution, then?

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1 minute ago, IvanKaramazov said:

There's probably not going to be a clear, bright line where one day we all need to wear masks and the next day we all don't.  It's a continuum and reasonable people might draw the line in different spots.

When 0% of the population is immune -- which was basically the case this time last year -- we absolutely positively needed to be wearing masks.  I know there are some folks who will dispute this point, but those aren't really the people I'm talking to here.  

When 100% of the population is immune -- which may or may not ever happen -- we definitely don't need to be wearing masks.  If you want to keep wearing one, great, knock yourself out.  If the CDC wants to recommend that we keep on wearing masks, most of us will just ignore them just like we've always ignored their advice about obsessive hand-washing.  The rest of you will just have to cope with that.

There exists a gamma somewhere between 0 and 100 where masking is optimal if the immunity rate is below gamma and no longer optimal if the immunity rate exceeds gamma.  Because we don't know all the relevant parameters and can't actually solve this optimization problem for real, we're going to have to intuit where that gamma is.  And different people are going to arrive at different intuited solutions based on non-scientific stuff like their risk tolerance, second-order considerations about how masking drives other behaviors, and things like that. 

The important thing is that while Texas is probably jumping the gun a bit, we are going to be having this conversation a lot in the next couple of months.  It's probably for the best if we don't just assume that people are being irresponsible or irrational if they feel like we've crossed that threshold while you'd prefer to wait a few more weeks.   

Texas is more than probably judging the gun a bit.

If you make a mistake and wear masks too long, people will have their mouths covered. If you make a mistake and stop too soon, people die.

I think it is a pretty easy call to be conservative when deciding how long to keep mask mandates.

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Just now, IvanKaramazov said:

What's your solution, then?

We could continue wearing masks until most adults have been vaccinated?  We could continue wearing masks until our medical experts advise otherwise?  I understand you have disdain for the medical experts, but I'm more inclined to believe Dr. Fauci than Governor Abbott.

The reality is wearing masks is not a very big imposition.  I'm sorry, it's just not, and I honestly lose a ton of respect for anyone who argues otherwise.

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18 minutes ago, Dr_Zaius said:

Got it.  Sorry, I misinterpreted your post.  The point of my hypothetical was a situation where the efficacy of the intervention was very much in the air, just to try to demonstrate the headspace of the anti-mask people.  Obviously the more "settled" the science is, the more general support there will be for acting on that science.

Yeah, I'm not sure that's obvious at all.  If I'm being honest, given what witness here and IRL, I'd be surprised if that happens :shrug: 

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2 minutes ago, Rich Conway said:

We could continue wearing masks until most adults have been vaccinated? 

You and I don't really disagree much, then.  

People who haven't been vaccinated should be wearing masks until they get their shot.  We definitely agree on that.

When a "small proportion" (imprecise, but okay for this discussion) of people have been vaccinated, we should all keep wearing masks just as a general social norm.  We agree on that.

At some point, everyone will not be vaccinated but enough folks will have been that the vaccinated people can drop the mask.  We agree on that.

We just disagree to some unknown degree on when we hit that particular threshold.

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7 minutes ago, Drunken Cowboy said:

Texas is more than probably judging the gun a bit.

If you make a mistake and wear masks too long, people will have their mouths covered. If you make a mistake and stop too soon, people die.

I think it is a pretty easy call to be conservative when deciding how long to keep mask mandates.

Sure.  But "lets be kind of conservative about this since the costs are so low" doesn't mean "mask mandates until every last person has been vaccinated."  At some point, we should and will ditch the mandates even though some people still aren't vaccinated.  We shouldn't be waiting around for 100% vaccination for the rest of us to get back to enjoying pre-covid life.

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1 minute ago, IvanKaramazov said:

You and I don't really disagree much, then.  

People who haven't been vaccinated should be wearing masks until they get their shot.  We definitely agree on that.

When a "small proportion" (imprecise, but okay for this discussion) of people have been vaccinated, we should all keep wearing masks just as a general social norm.  We agree on that.

At some point, everyone will not be vaccinated but enough folks will have been that the vaccinated people can drop the mask.  We agree on that.

We just disagree to some unknown degree on when we hit that particular threshold.

Well, It's likely not today and will probably occur before 2022. So there's our wheelhouse.  Most "experts" think somewhere in the summer would be about right (bc the availability of the vaccine will apex at that point). this seems very familiar (in an odd way) to the abortion debate.

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1 minute ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Sure.  But "lets be kind of conservative about this since the costs are so low" doesn't mean "mask mandates until every last person has been vaccinated."  At some point, we should and will ditch the mandates even though some people still aren't vaccinated.  We shouldn't be waiting around for 100% vaccination for the rest of us to get back to enjoying pre-covid life.

yeah, but 7%?  No one is calling for 100% coverage at any stretch, but certainly more than 7.  

Just to stick a pin in an idea: I'd say when 75% of the elderly and 40-50 percent of the general population have gotten it, that would be the minimum.  I'd also say a preponderance of those in the 50% group should be teachers, waitstaff and front line workers, and medical professionals.

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2 minutes ago, Gatorman said:

yeah, but 7%?  No one is calling for 100% coverage at any stretch, but certainly more than 7. 

Well, I agree with that.

Quote

Just to stick a pin in an idea: I'd say when 75% of the elderly and 40-50 percent of the general population have gotten it, that would be the minimum.  I'd also say a preponderance of those in the 50% group should be teachers, waitstaff and front line workers, and medical professionals.

That's fair.  I'll be disappointed if aren't in that neighborhood by Memorial Day.

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20 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

Sure.  But "lets be kind of conservative about this since the costs are so low" doesn't mean "mask mandates until every last person has been vaccinated."  At some point, we should and will ditch the mandates even though some people still aren't vaccinated.  We shouldn't be waiting around for 100% vaccination for the rest of us to get back to enjoying pre-covid life.

No, we will never get anywhere near 100%.

 

I agree we should be having this discussion. It may help with getting people vaccinated to have a goal that removes masks.

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38 minutes ago, IvanKaramazov said:

You and I don't really disagree much, then.  

People who haven't been vaccinated should be wearing masks until they get their shot.  We definitely agree on that.

When a "small proportion" (imprecise, but okay for this discussion) of people have been vaccinated, we should all keep wearing masks just as a general social norm.  We agree on that.

At some point, everyone will not be vaccinated but enough folks will have been that the vaccinated people can drop the mask.  We agree on that.

We just disagree to some unknown degree on when we hit that particular threshold.

I'll quibble slightly and say "until ~2 weeks after they get their final shot".  And yes, you and I don't really disagree all that much on the actual appropriate timing.  We seem to disagree on the degree of irresponsibility exhibited in jumping the gun by a significant margin (in terms of % of people vaccinated).

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2 hours ago, Rich Conway said:

We have plenty of evidence that masks reduce spread, do we not?

To Ivan's point, it might be one thing to remove the mandate for vaccinated people (I'm not in favor, but for sake of argument), but that's not what's happening here.  The mandate is being removed for everyone, vaccinated or not.

I would love to see a rule that removed the mask mandate for vaccinated people, if only because it would incentivize more people to get vaccinated. 

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Just now, bigbottom said:

I would love to see a rule that removed the mask mandate for vaccinated people, if only because it would incentivize more people to get vaccinated. 

I wouldn't be opposed to that, either, although I suspect enforcement could become tricky.

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3 minutes ago, Rich Conway said:

I wouldn't be opposed to that, either, although I suspect enforcement could become tricky.

“Ve vould like to see your papers!”

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6 minutes ago, bigbottom said:

I would love to see a rule that removed the mask mandate for vaccinated people, if only because it would incentivize more people to get vaccinated. 

Ive been saying this for weeks now. Just give them some type of official card.

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On 3/2/2021 at 2:55 PM, FairWarning said:

I didn’t see that poll.  It’s those darn Youppers and very southern people in the state.  All I know is she better open this soon, losing a LOT of business to Indiana.  It’s 100% open next to me.

Just curious - what do you mean by losing a lot of business to IN?   What can you do there that you can't in MI?

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On 3/2/2021 at 3:01 PM, supermike80 said:

As long as the vulnerable stay at home.   The elderly, those with preesixting conditions etc stay at home it should be fine.

Also the lack of a mandate doesn;t mean you can't wear a mask as your own choice.  Again, those with pre existing conditions and the elderly etc shoudl wear them

We are 1 year into this - the mask doesn't protect you as much as it protects others if you have it, right?

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23 minutes ago, KarmaPolice said:

Just curious - what do you mean by losing a lot of business to IN?   What can you do there that you can't in MI?

Book 200 person weddings, Restaurants 25% and close at 10pm in Mich, totally open in Indianaare a couple that really affect me.

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2 minutes ago, FairWarning said:

Book 200 person weddings, Restaurants 25% and close at 10pm in Mich, totally open in Indianaare a couple that really affect me.

That's what I was curious about.  We are at 25% here at the store too (just got the green light for 50% I believe, but 6' apart becomes a bit of an issue then too).  But I guess we are far from the border that it's not like people are hopping to IL to go to a different restaurant because of that.   I could see some businesses on the border being effected even more than some in the middle of the state.  

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1 hour ago, IvanKaramazov said:

People who haven't been vaccinated should be wearing masks until they get their shot.  We definitely agree on that.

What is the % of people in Texas that are unvaccinated and don't have COVID antibodies?  Of those, what % are going to go around maskless?  Would that at-risk, maskless % be different with a statewide mask mandate in place?

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4 minutes ago, KarmaPolice said:

That's what I was curious about.  We are at 25% here at the store too (just got the green light for 50% I believe, but 6' apart becomes a bit of an issue then too).  But I guess we are far from the border that it's not like people are hopping to IL to go to a different restaurant because of that.   I could see some businesses on the border being effected even more than some in the middle of the state.  

I also work for bartending business on the side.  We also supply all of the liquor, soft drinks, everything basically for receptions.  The majority are destination weddings.   We cannot promise whet the restrictions are, especially when the Indiana part of Lake Mich is totally open.  They just take their business there.  On top of it, we can’t take booze across the state line.  Two years ago, we had over 700 events, last year maybe 100.

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37 minutes ago, The Z Machine said:

What is the % of people in Texas that are unvaccinated and don't have COVID antibodies?  Of those, what % are going to go around maskless?  Would that at-risk, maskless % be different with a statewide mask mandate in place?

My overall disposition on the issue of mask mandates (and mandates in general) is probably colored by the fact that I think the answer to this question is "no, probably not by much."

I wear a mask now when I go out in public, even though my state doesn't have a mandate and nobody really enforces our local ordinance.  On the other hand, I break my university's mask requirement literally every day -- I'm supposed to wear a mask whenever I pass through the hallway on my way to my office, but I get to the office around 6:30 or so each morning, and there's literally nobody around so I don't bother with my mask.  In other words, the existence of a mandate or lack thereof makes no difference at all in my own personal behavior.  I wear a mask when I think it makes sense to do so, and I don't when I think it doesn't.

I kind of doubt that I'm alone here.  There are a lot of people out there like me.  And there are also a lot of anti-maskers who aren't going to comply to mandates anyway.  We don't have a lot in common except for the fact that our behavior is almost completely inelastic with regard to local mandates.  

Edit: Also, we have a fairly large "wear a mask all the time even when you're not required to" contingent as well.  These are the folks walking across campus outdoors wearing a mask, and the people I see at our local park wearing masks.  They don't have to do that, but they do anyway either out of convenience or an abundance of caution.  Presumably those folks would still be masking even if we dropped our local rules on the matter.    

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54 minutes ago, The Z Machine said:

What is the % of people in Texas that are unvaccinated and don't have COVID antibodies?  Of those, what % are going to go around maskless?  Would that at-risk, maskless % be different with a statewide mask mandate in place?

Meh.   If covid was so bad why are covid positives being released into the country.   

If it was that bad Biden wouldn't do it.   The science  must say. "Na. It'll be fine"

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4 hours ago, Dr_Zaius said:

This isn't the first state that has lifted restrictions to predictions of impending doom (Florida and Iowa come to mind).  It hasn't born out in the past, hopefully the same is true this time. 

But it has been true in the past.  From the local CBS affiliate KHOU.

Quote

CORONAVIRUS

A closer look at what happened every time Texas relaxed the rules and reopened

Houston Health Authority Dr. David Persse says this virus thrives on opportunities to spread, and by rolling back COVID-19 restrictions, he expects cases to climb.

Author: Marcelino Benito (KHOU)

Published: 6:22 PM CST March 3, 2021

Updated: 6:51 PM CST March 3, 2021

 

HOUSTON — If history is any indication we likely know what will happen with COVID-19 in Texas in the next few weeks. And health experts fear it's not good at all. 

To understand what might happen, it's important to go back over how we got here. 

Through March and April of last year, Texas was nearly locked down. Stay home orders were working. The state was averaging less than 2,000 new daily cases. Statewide hospitalizations never hovered above 1,800. 

On April 17, Gov. Greg Abbott decided it was time to open Texas up in phases. Bars, salons, restaurants, and gyms opened again with capacity limits throughout the month of May. 

"The worst of COVID-19 may soon be behind us," said Abbott in April. 

He was wrong. From June to July, Texas COVID hospitalizations spiked from an average of 2,000 to nearly 11,000. Texas saw more than 10,000 new COVID cases per day. 265 people were dying daily. 

"This virus is taking advantage of opportunities we give it, and we keep giving it opportunities, that's a problem," said Houston Health Authority Dr. David Persse. 

Abbott opted for a statewide mask mandate on July 2. And it worked. Weeks later Texas started to improve. Hospitalizations dipped back down and Abbott opened Texas up again at 75% capacity in September. 

By October, bars could reopen too. 

"It is time to open them up," said Abbott in October.

You know what happened next. Texas second wave came quickly. By January 2021 we'd hit a record high more than 14,000 hospitalizations. More than 300 people were dying daily. And Texas saw nearly 20,000 new cases every single day.

'Now is not the time to release all restrictions,' CDC says after Texas announces reopening plans

"We have seen this several times now," said Persse. "Now every time we relax, a wave ensues and we these waves, people die, the situation gets worse."

And now as things are just starting to get better.

"It's time to open Texas up 100%," said Abbott on Tuesday. 

As a result, law enforcement already bracing for another spike in infections. 

"I would challenge the people of Houston, to come back and see our numbers, probably in the next six weeks, to see six weeks from now what our numbers look like, and I’ll bet anyone that wants to take the bet that our numbers will go high, will go up, significantly and I just pray to God that we don’t lose any police officers, any firefighters, or any of our friends or neighbors or family members," said HPD Chief Art Acevedo. 

What's most concerning to doctors is we're reopening at a time when hospitalizations are better, but still too high. If things do worsen, Houston's third wave could be the worst one yet.

 

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17 minutes ago, quick-hands said:

Meh.   If covid was so bad why are covid positives being released into the country.   

If it was that bad Biden wouldn't do it.   The science  must say. "Na. It'll be fine"

What are you walking about?

Are you suggesting that the state governments use their public health police powers to forcibly quarantine those that are confirmed COVID positive?  Like China does?

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2 hours ago, IvanKaramazov said:
2 hours ago, Rich Conway said:

Can we assume that certain people are being irresponsible or irrational if the majority of their behavior throughout the pandemic has been irresponsible or irrational?  At the moment, I'm thinking of the governor of TX.

What's your solution, then?

I don't know about his solution, but wearing a mask like a grown-up would be very nice.  I have no idea why this concept is so difficult for some people.

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19 minutes ago, quick-hands said:

Meh.   If covid was so bad why are covid positives being released into the country.   

If it was that bad Biden wouldn't do it.   The science  must say. "Na. It'll be fine"

The science says that Abbott is making this stuff up.

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1 hour ago, Mrs. Rannous said:

I don't know about his solution, but wearing a mask like a grown-up would be very nice.  I have no idea why this concept is so difficult for some people.

I didn't wear a mask before covid, and I'm not going to wear a mask after covid.  If that makes me not a grown-up, sorry.  

The discussion right now is at what point we as a society transition from "everybody must wear a mask" to "most people should wear a mask but use your own judgement" to "you can throw your mask away now."  That's a somewhat difficult issue because it involves trading off a bunch of various personal preferences against public safety, all with an eye toward encouraging good behavior.  For example, requiring vaccinated people to wear masks obviously entrenches the "wear a mask" norm, but it also discourages vaccination.  If you think this is an easy issue with an obvious answer, I submit that you probably haven't thought about it very carefully.

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1 minute ago, IvanKaramazov said:

I didn't wear a mask before covid, and I'm not going to wear a mask after covid.  If that makes me not a grown-up, sorry.  

The discussion right now is at what point we as a society transition from "everybody must wear a mask" to "most people should wear a mask but use your own judgement" to "you can throw your mask away now."  That's a somewhat difficult issue because it involves trading off a bunch of various personal preferences against public safety, all with an eye toward encouraging good behavior.  For example, requiring vaccinated people to wear masks obviously entrenches the "wear a mask" norm, but it also discourages vaccination.  If you think this is an easy issue with an obvious answer, I submit that you probably haven't thought about it very carefully.

Then you'd be wrong.  Wearing a mask costs nothing and is just not that inconvenient.  Doing that until we reach the point where a substantial portion of the population has been vaccinated is not that high a bar to meet.  We should get there sometime this summer.  

I fail to see what your mask preference was before all this started is relevant unless you celebrate Mardi Gras year-round.

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1 hour ago, Mrs. Rannous said:

But it has been true in the past.  From the local CBS affiliate KHOU.

I was more referring to things in the fall and winter, where Florida lifted all statewide restrictions in late September and Iowa did so at the beginning of February and it did not result in case curves remarkably different than their neighbors.

I will defer to your knowledge of Texas, but didn't the whole south see a summer surge?  Was Texas uniquely bad?  I ask because if I just walk across the southern portion of the US and look at the deaths/million (from Worldometers), I get:

CA    1342
AZ    2224
NM    1790
TX    1551
MS    2273
AL    2059
FL    1462

Obviously all of those numbers are bad, but they all seem fairly similar to me.  California who arguably has had more restrictions than any other state in the country is the lowest, but not by a whole lot.

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3 hours ago, bigbottom said:

I would love to see a rule that removed the mask mandate for vaccinated people, if only because it would incentivize more people to get vaccinated. 

Problem is we aren't aware if you are vaccinated if you can or can not spread the disease.  Given this I think we need to have mask mandates until anyone who wants to get a shot can get a shot with ease.  That way if it is worse case scenerio where vaccinated people can spread the disease then we aren't spreading it to people that want a vaccine but can't get it.  When we are in the world where if you are some idiot that doesn't want the vaccine and you get sick I could give two ####s about you.  However, if you can't get a vaccine then we should be protecting everyone with mask mandates.     

We are no where near that place where anyone who wants a shot can get one but hopefully we will be in the summer.  

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  • NorvilleBarnes changed the title to Gov. Abbott opens TX. MS, CT, WV, AZ & KS join. Now GOP opens Georgia!

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