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Since many want to ... here is a new thread for just talking about COVID - this is where you can vent about those who refuse to wear masks, or about the 'restriction' on your freedom by requiring you to wear one (do you fight the same about needing to wear pants?)

A few links...
  • Florida's COVID situation thanks to Scottt for the link
  • Canada's COVID situation via the official government site
  • Ontario now in stage 3 (in areas outside of the GTA & Windsor) of reopening. This includes allowing for things like indoor dining in restaurants, live performing arts shows and the reopening of movie theatres and playgrounds. Limit of 50 people indoors and 100 outdoors for gatherings. Sport facilities and gyms can reopen. Team sports can happen again (as a parent this is very exciting as my daughter loves hockey, baseball, basketball, you name it). 21 of 34 health units reported no new cases yesterday.
  • The US continues to set records with 3 of the past 4 days having over 60k cases, 40k a day since June 30th, 10k+ a day since March 23rd. 200+ dead a day since March 25th.
COVID thread | 163 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
bpoz - Monday, July 13 2020 @ 01:35 PM EDT (#387972) #
Thanks John N.

Bauxites have helped me deal with understanding this threat. Also understanding that online grocery buying is not too hard. I have not done that because my family is not showing any symptoms.

I am enjoying the summer. I expect to worry or at least adjust to fall and flu season. Whatever it brings.
scottt - Monday, July 13 2020 @ 02:50 PM EDT (#387977) #
Hitting stage 3 on Friday.
I imagine the Blue Jays could be cleared to play if Toronto goes to stage 3 in time.

Now I'll have to think about going back to the gym.
I don' t think I can run with a mask.

Mike Green - Monday, July 13 2020 @ 03:39 PM EDT (#387978) #
The Ontario government has made a disastrous error, all too reminiscent of what happened south of the border.  Stage 3 is coming to a number of counties in the Golden Horseshoe (such as Guelph) and cottage company where there is a lot of regional travel and intermingling, especially in the summer.  Counting on a bar owner in these places enforcing no dancing and physical distancing rules for people outside a social circle who've had a few drinks or more is ridiculous.

If the rates in Toronto , Peel and Windsor are too high to justify re-opening further (and they are), the decision to allow commercial enterprises to re-open nearby can only be based on commerce needs not the public health first philosophy which is necessary in a pandemic. 
Mylegacy - Monday, July 13 2020 @ 07:05 PM EDT (#387991) #
Covid-19 is nearly one year old since it was known to have moved into humans. It is causing our species a lot of bother.

Almost every week at least one new fact about it's transmission, its effects, its lack of effects, etc., etc., is reported by one group of scientists in one county and or another.

ALL of what is being reported by doctors and scientists around the world is true. They are reporting what they've seen, how they responded and how that all worked out. While all the medical information is true - not all of it will turn out to be of massive importance. Time will sort the wheat from the chaff and eventually, god willin' an' the river don't rise, our species will find a way to stop this unwelcome visitor from killing so many of us.

Most countries are trying their best to find the facts, respond to the facts, and make the best decisions they can having imperfect and constantly changing information.

America is an exception. The US has a malignancy, a corruption of its soul, that began with its two original sins, Slavery and First Nations Genocide and has literally reduced the IQ of A SIGNIFICANT MINORITY of White Christian Americans as these mentally, emotionally and rationally damaged individuals have spent the last 200+ year digging deeper into the Rabbit Hole of racism and religious bigotry.

Every human, of every race, on this tiny blue marble in space, share 98% of our DNA with Chimpanzees. That's fact not conjecture. Those who believe that a god made them special should just consider that their god basically made them Chimps with a 2% upgrade. Deal with it.

The WHO is now reporting that "14% to 40% of infected individuals" show NO symptoms and are basically just walking, talking, breathing spreaders.

If you are fortunate enough to live in a rational country, follow their rational guidance. If you are unlucky enough to live in America - Wear a Mask! Massive numbers of your fellow citizens are "fact and science deniers" who are gleefully getting killed and killing due to their mental, social and historical impairment.

Leastwise, that's this Canadian's opinion.

When does the bloody baseball season get started!

scottt - Monday, July 13 2020 @ 08:26 PM EDT (#387992) #
Just saw that the NHL is using only Americans to broadcast the games.
I hope those guys will do jail time as well if caught outside their bubble.

John Northey - Monday, July 13 2020 @ 10:23 PM EDT (#387995) #
Disgusting and bizarre. Why the heck would those people get passes into Canada when we have no shortage of people who can broadcast hockey? Completely wrong in every respect.
Manhattan Mike - Monday, July 13 2020 @ 10:44 PM EDT (#387996) #
Mylegacy's legacy sure seems to be one of bigotry, given the hate speech above.

Oh and... Mask usage is more common in the US than it is in Canada.
Mylegacy - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 01:53 AM EDT (#387998) #
MM regarding my "hate speech" above. I stand by every word of it. As to my use of the word "malignancy" I well understand it. I have an incurable malignancy which I've fought for 4 years so far. I've had the chemicals which were needed to suppress it attack my organs and my brain (and trust me my brain was quite feeble even before they began their attack). Malignancy is not an insult it is a real thing. If you have it you need to recognize it and fight it.

I fight mine. If only the American's who hate democracy, hate "others," Gerrymander and appoint a child rapist to their supreme court and elect a Russian owned career money launderer to be their President could climb out of their 200 year old rabbit hole and fight their malignancy - then America might be more to the world than a disgrace and a disappointment.

I love Jesus, when I was in my late teens I wanted to become a priest, family circumstances saw me have to get a regular job to contribute to my family.

Even now as an atheist I recognize that Jesus is a superstar. Go read the Sermon on the Mount, read the Lord's Prayer. Jesus did not chase the colored from the temple, nor the gays, nor the halt of the lame. He drove the money lenders.

Jesus ask humans to pray to his father and ask him to forgive them - in the same measure that they have forgiven others. That is universal truth, universal love, universally good advice for humans everywhere.

I know my time is finite, my influence meager and my intellect only average at best but I don't want you to needlessly go to your hell here on earth. I want America to become what Jesus was - not what Trump is. I want America to understand that we humans badly need to use our cognitive brains to reach above our 98% and show the empathy Jesus preached for.

Seriously, I apologize to you if you feel offended. I apologize to others that I was not able to help you elevate closer to what Jesus taught, and which I love!

Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.
scottt - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 07:30 AM EDT (#387999) #
Confinement vs deconfinement has made a huge difference.
I'm a lot less confident masks can replace confinement.

Manhattan Mike - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 07:58 AM EDT (#388002) #
I’m truly sorry for your health struggles.

I’m also sorry you have a racist, hateful heart that you felt the need to respond for doubling down on your hate speech (in what’s now a repeated violation of such laws in Canada) and blatant lies about a country and its people.

The former doesn’t excuse the latter. But I’ll assume it explains it.

And yes, you are most certainly culpable.

PS - you keep referring to 200 years ago, which was an era when there was also slavery in Canada. And ask a member of a First Nations tribe in Canada how the past 200 years have gone for ‘em. To be sure, these last two points don’t excuse any wrongdoings by either nation on any front... but it does make your sad-to-read, hateful bigotry also hypocritical.

uglyone - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 08:54 AM EDT (#388005) #

Reverse racism! Hitting all the breitbart talking points now.
mathesond - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 09:51 AM EDT (#388007) #
Paging Blake Neff, Blake Neff to the white courtesy phone please.
rtcaino - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 02:44 PM EDT (#388011) #
"PS - you keep referring to 200 years ago, which was an era when there was also slavery in Canada."

Jim Crow Laws. Tulsa Race Massacre. MLK would be 91 today.

It's hard to characterize the overall trendline of racism towards, and the disenfranchisement of, African Americans as something that ended 200 years ago.
hypobole - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 03:41 PM EDT (#388012) #
Quebec has made facemasks mandatory in closed public spaces.
From CTV news

"Just a day after the Quebec government announced the measure will be in force across the province as of Saturday, petitions opposing the rule have begun to circulate online. One of them – that has amassed nearly 40,000 of its desired 50,000 signatures – is calling on the government to reverse the rule altogether."

Manhattan Mike - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 07:46 PM EDT (#388015) #

"It's hard to characterize the overall trendline of racism towards, and the disenfranchisement of, African Americans as something that ended 200 years ago."

I (obviously) never suggested this to be the case. One would have to be a total maniac not to recognize that racism has always existed in Western societies - today not being any different. The magnitude by which race-based issues have improved (in both countries) over the past 200 years (or, more critically, in the post-WW2 era) - as its ugliness no doubt remains today - can be fairly debated.

To stay on topic, I was directly responding to a statement about the society in place 200 years ago. I noted the supercilious hypocrisy given that, 200 years ago (the bigot above's repeated point of reference), the environment was sub-optimal in both locations.
uglyone - Tuesday, July 14 2020 @ 08:27 PM EDT (#388016) #
There of course is nothing bigoted about disliking those who vote against the rule of law and for the sabotage of the greatest government the world has ever seen.

And only an actual bigot - one likely embarassed at his covid and science and facts denial in the recent past - would try to undermine the severity of actual bigotry by using the word so ridiculously.
John Northey - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 12:35 AM EDT (#388019) #
Mylegacy - very sad to hear of your struggles. Last thing anyone wants to see is you getting to join Richard SS posting in the eternal Batter's Box. As a poster here you are a very valued contributor and I'm sure you have many in your life who care deeply about you. Hopefully you'll be able to post at some point that the malignancy is in remission. If I was the religious type I'd pray for you, but instead I will just hope for the best.

Agreed with you on the bible - that what Jesus talks about has zero to do with modern Republican thinking in the USA. Read recently that the stuff about gays in the bible, which some literal readers claim means they need punishing, only became about gays since 1946. Before that translation of the bible became accepted it was seen to mean not to lie with young boys, not that is was bad to be gay. Sigh. Wonder how many of those who take the bible as the word of God know just how much man has changed it over the centuries to suit their purposes.
scottt - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 09:05 AM EDT (#388027) #
There are many translations for each bible verse and not every verse is in every bible.
Whatever is there is usually an amalgam of several versions of the same story to begin with.

In the original story, Moses broke the tablets and that was it for the 10 commandments.
In another he kept them. A bit of creative editing and he goes back the mountain so we can have both.

If you bring Jesus' message to 2 things it's basically love thy neighbor and wealth is evil.
Nothing to do with what is being preached down there.
Trump, who never goes to church, doesn't read anything and doesn't pray, is their chosen leader.

It's too bad there's no official list of religious leaders who have died from Covid.
I've heard of over 30 just in April. Gerald Glenn, Landon Spradlin...

Fox is great for comedy, although the Simpsons have been stale for a while now.
The next republican candidate could be a Fox announcer.

electric carrot - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 09:28 AM EDT (#388028) #
Hey Manhattan Mike,

I don't think anyone has a problem with people disagreeing on this site. But name calling and condescension is a downer. Mylegacy's name is not "the bigot" and yes I'm quite sure John Northey has heard of Google Translate.
Mike Green - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 09:31 AM EDT (#388029) #
Africa has, as a whole, done a lot better than Europe or North America with the pandemic.  This article on the beginnings in the EU is fascinating and disturbing.  The optimist in me (hi Chuck!) hopes that this might help counter racist ideas, but the realist knows that facts such as this are too far from people's everyday reality to make that much of a difference.

John Northey - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 09:54 AM EDT (#388030) #
Manhattan Mike - FYI: I'm sick of your name calling and rudeness as are many others. Either grow up or leave. And no gaslighting please - if you don't understand then please use Google - I'm sure you can figure out how. As to Google Translate - I've been using it since the early days of Google in fact I've been writing web based applications since before Google existed.

Note: I provided this funny thing called a link to where my information came from - the Bible in English WAS changed in 1946, as it has been often over the years. Translation isn't a perfect science. Different languages have bibles that say different things - that link shows that the German version still says not to have sex with minors, not to avoid sex with the same gender. If you feel that is wrong, then please go out and find me a link that shows otherwise. That is called 'debate' - where one party gets facts to prove a point, the other then needs to get facts to prove theirs, not just opinion. Going based on pure opinion is what has led the USA to being the sad laughingstock of the world at the moment.
Mike Green - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 09:54 AM EDT (#388031) #
We've talked about some of the problems with the Blue Jays proposal to play in Toronto.  Here are some others we have not talked about:

  • stadium staff will have a temperature check and fill out a questionnaire; it's a start but being restricted to the stadium area is nothing like a quarantine
  • flights into Toronto will be public flights and Ontario doesn't keep records of cases that have origin on flights
It's going to be easy for a visiting player to catch the virus from a nearby passenger on a flight from Florida. 

Incidentally, do we know whether visiting players and coaching staff will be staying at the hotel at the RC? If so, that amounts to one awfully large bubble for 3 days between the Blue Jays, visiting players, coaches and stadium and hotel staff who may at one time or another be in fairly close contact.
Manhattan Mike - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 09:56 AM EDT (#388032) #

Read Mylegacy comments above. He repeatedly and explicitly engaged in derogatory speech, full of hate and animosity, against a group he deemed worthy of such targeted, vile slurs. That's pretty much a textbook definition of a bigot. It's prob also in violation of hate speech laws in Canada. Period, end of story.

I, too, am sure Northey has heard of Google. It was a sarcastic response to his sophomoric sharing of a link (in a non-sequitur unrelated to the topic thread) containing general idiocy that could have been easily avoidable with Google Translate. (Last I checked, the Old Testament verse he cites was first written in Hebrew, not Greek. So the Greek-to-German or Greek-to-English translation of a Hebrew word is not relevant.)

If Northey's not sticking to baseball (something he finally realized he should do in the other thread), at least he ought to #sticktocoronavirus in this thread. Bc, once again, he's off-topic and dead wrong.
Manhattan Mike - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 10:17 AM EDT (#388035) #
Mike Green - exactly. There's seemingly no way the Rogers Centre and its attached hotel can be a true "bubble" for the Jays and their opponents such that Canadians are not exposed. Even if the players are confined to this location.

There's staff (likely) numbering in the hundreds (team management/staff, hotel, catering, security, travel, media, etc...) that are not going to be confined to this "bubble" during the course of the season. They're going to be going in and out of the hotel/stadium to their homes and families throughout the GTA.

If the Feds determine there's a health need for Canadians returning to Canada to complete a 14-day quarantine, it's hard to see how the same body can, with consistency, determine that (non-Canadian) professional athletes should be allowed to travel back-and-forth over the border, putting the rest of the country at risk to a threat the government claims to be otherwise taking seriously.

I see the logic behind exemptions for health professionals, truckers keeping the supply line moving, and others doing "essential" work going back and forth without being subject to the QA. Non-Canadian baseball players do not meet this "essential" criteria, in my opinion. Not when there's perfectly adequate facilities in the States for them to do the same thing; mainly, play baseball without a paying crowd present.
bpoz - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 10:48 AM EDT (#388036) #
Great article on the EU. Thanks for providing.
Manhattan Mike - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 11:05 AM EDT (#388037) #
Re: Africa. I certainly hope it's true that they're handling the virus far better than Europe and North America! It would be an ironic blessing if one of the ancient pioneers in disease inoculation taught other nations how to handle the latest pandemic.

But I'm not sure I fully trust the data coming from developing-world governments that don't have the resources to handle all aspects of disease management and identification as do more economically well-off governments. Countries with less developed healthcare systems are far more likely to under-report cases/deaths than are countries blessed with more modern healthcare resources. And the data being presented by G7 countries has been rife with issues, so even the most advanced systems are imperfect on the data-gathering and dissemination front.

This (admittedly dated, at this point) article from mid-May notes that testing rates in Africa's most populous nations are very low:
Mike Green - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 01:06 PM EDT (#388044) #
That's still true about the low testing rates in Africa.  Worldometers has that information.  Mortality rates (2020 vs. 2019)  will tell the tale in Africa, Europe and North America.
Gerry - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 02:01 PM EDT (#388048) #
I am going to ask everyone to tone it down a bit. We are not a political site and while we have allowed COVID talk its not the core of what we do.

We are a Canadian site and we do have opinions of what is happening south of the border but now that we have made those points, lets leave them be. We don't need to make points off our southern neighbour, there are plenty of points that could be made but they are best made elsewhere.

I have no idea where you live Manhattan Mike, but you certainly are representing the stereotype of your name. You have made your points repeatedly and the one thing you have not done is #sticktobaseball. The US is facing a lot of challenges these days and you are trying to take on a lot of Canadians and you will not change their minds. So please drop it.

If the conversation does not calm down, this thread will be closed and bans are possible, if not likely. Baseball is almost back and this name calling is not setting the mood for the season.

Serenity now!
uglyone - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 02:15 PM EDT (#388050) #
Citing a verse from Leviticus as proof that homosexuality should be a central concern of modern day Christians is laughable on its surface, of course, as Leviticus and other old testament books cite severe punishment for many things that modern day Christians waste no time worrying about at all.

Somehow homosexuality and abortion are the only thing modern day Christians care about, despite Jesus never uttering a word on either.

And there's actually only one time abortion is discussed in the Bible at all - and it is discussed as a literally god-approved priestly duty. Weird.

And yet this cult that can't even follow the basics of its own scriptures and messiah are actively trying to establish a religious state that discredits science and the rule of law. Hilarious.

Gerry - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 02:18 PM EDT (#388051) #
ugly, did you read the previous post? Your post did not "tone it down".
scottt - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 02:38 PM EDT (#388056) #
Hospital data will now be sent to the White House rather than the Centre for Disease Control.
For doctoring, presumably.

I have a board game called pandemic. It's a coop game because in a pandemic, either everybody wins or everybody loses. The base of operation in the game is in Atlanta. Washington is not in the game.  It's no more important than Timmins.

uglyone - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 02:46 PM EDT (#388057) #
Sorry gerry. Just wanted to even up the tone before we stopped.
mathesond - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 03:27 PM EDT (#388059) #
I remember playing Pandemic a few years ago, and really enjoying it because of its co-operative nature. Wonder how popular it has been the past few months.

The game I ordered pre-Covid, and which arrived at the store last month, is Wingspan. No diseases with those birds!
Manhattan Mike - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 03:40 PM EDT (#388060) #
gerry - deal with the bigotry towards others being openly spread on this site. to be sure, i don't fall into the demographic of the targeted bigotry. but it doesnt make it any less distasteful (or legally dubious in canada). and being physically ill isn't an excuse to share bigoted opinions towards others.

if responding to someone's post that's unrelated to the topic thread and asking them to stick to the thread bc theyre wrong in what they wrote with their non-sequitur is an offense, it's one ill plead guilty to. but i refuse to stand idly by while others spread hateful lies about their fellow man.

finally, lol, take a look at voting records in manhattan. i assure you that i do not fit into that stereotype. northey would feel more at home among a randomly selected group of manhattan voters than manhattan mike. so what exactly were you getting at?
uglyone - you'll notice that until now, ive been ignoring you bc every time i read something from you, i am left shaking my head that you seem to have some form of a reading comprehension issue. you'll notice, too, that i do not believe this to be the case for others to whom i've responded directly. your last posts were no different.

i wonder... who (bizarrely) brought up and cited a (completely unrelated) biblical verse - for no apparent reason? oh, right... not me. rather, it was raised by someone with a clear political agenda who felt the need to continually bring up unrelated topics to the thread. the only thing I pointed out re: this inappropriately brought up verse was expressing my abhorrence towards any kind of hate or discrimination, acknowledging that a centuries old text is antiquated in todays world, and also noting that a translation of a word in one language unrelated to the original source to a third unrelated language is essentially a game of broken telephone.

in other words, if one is going to bring up unrelated topics, the least one can do is be accurate in detailing the non-sequitur they're introducing into the dialogue.
Gerry - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 03:47 PM EDT (#388061) #
Final warning, if everyone wants the last word we will never finish.
rtcaino - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 06:08 PM EDT (#388068) #
Hospital data will now be sent to the White House rather than the Centre for Disease Control. For doctoring, presumably.

It's hard to imagine a plausible non-nefarious motivation for this.

Manhattan Mike - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 06:40 PM EDT (#388070) #
I assumed the original comment was sarcasm. Then I looked into it. Yikes!

If the White House doesn’t execute nearly immediately on the claimed reason - to cut down the flow of key info down to a single day from the (apparent) 7 days - with no change in transparency, hard to imagine this is gonna sit well with US voters.

CDC hasn’t exactly stood out for its exemplary work since this crisis started (to be kind). With today’s announcement, methinks it got back a lot of the sympathy and good feelings which it traditionally has held with the public..
raptorsaddict - Wednesday, July 15 2020 @ 10:34 PM EDT (#388073) #
"Hospital data will now be sent to the White House rather than the Centre for Disease Control. For doctoring, presumably.

It's hard to imagine a plausible non-nefarious motivation for this."

I wonder if all those labs in Florida will actually start to report their negative tests to the White House, or keep having 100% positive test rates?

I also wonder if it would be possible for any of the bright minds here at Da Box to think of a "plausible non-nefarious motivation" for why dozens and dozens (I stopped counting after 35) of different independent testing centres made the exact same mistake of having 100% of their tests come back positive (to say nothing of the dozens more in the high 90's)?

If you’re a lab that’s getting 98% positive rates in a state that had around a 6% positive rate before that, wouldn’t you start to suspect that maybe your testing materials are contaminated or something else is amiss? You don’t need to be a statistical genius to understand the improbability of that happening.

Moreover, what is the statistical probability of so many places making the exact same mistake? It sure is one heck of a coincidence. Am I to give them the benefit of the doubt, or presume the results were doctored in order to skew the total COVID prevalence upwards and create the impression that it's more widespread than it actually is? Or does the concern over manipulation of information and data for partisan political purposes only run in one direction?

Now, do I actually think it's the case that these labs intentionally reported only positives to further their Orange Man Bad narrative? No, because I apply Hanlon's Razor, and don't ascribe to malice that which can adequately be explained by mere stupidity (of which we are all aware there is an ever-abundant supply). Rather, I bring it up to point out that we remain in the fog of war in relation to many aspects of this thing, and finding arguments to support either side of ones priors is easy to do.

Alas, as the heated discussion on this thread (and everywhere else you look) makes apparent, we as a society seem to be experiencing what Peter Turchin would call “unprecedented collapse of social norms governing civilized discourse”. We are quickly devolving back to our inherently tribalistic nature, and it seems likely to me that we're headed for a "Fourth Turning", as moderators like Gerry don't exist in the real world.
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 12:13 AM EDT (#388075) #
Heroic experts who have dedicated their lives to health sciences are literally doing everything they can to test and record positive tests and deaths during this pandemic

And, horrifically, an entire segment of the population is actively pretending that they are doing this for political reasons, and are deliberately misinterpreting normal test results as nefarious conspiracies.

I am embarrassed for the human race.
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 12:26 AM EDT (#388076) #
Do the lemmings even know that these (overwhelmed) testing sites have never been required to tabulate negative tests prior to Florida inventing (politically motovated) new regulations to distract from the flood of new cases?

Do they know that excess death numbers demonstrably prove that newly-invented (politically motivated) reporting criteria are drastically underreporting covid deaths in states like Florida and Texas?

Maybe yes, maybe no. Doesn't really matter tho, does it?
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 12:33 AM EDT (#388077) #
An entire segment of the population - the same segment that has been embarrassingly wrong about covid at every stage - actually present the argument that the entire globe and all doctors and hospitals are engaged in a massive conspiracy merely to discredit one single politician......and that the only person telling the truth about covid in the world is a lifelong conman who has been successfully sued for fraud countless times, and who blatantly lies in every sentence he attempts to complete.

And they present this argument with righteous anger, as if both sides have equally valid basis.

It is hilarious and embarrassing.
rtcaino - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 12:43 AM EDT (#388078) #
I also wonder if it would be possible for any of the bright minds here at Da Box to think of a "plausible non-nefarious motivation" for why dozens and dozens (I stopped counting after 35) of different independent testing centres made the exact same mistake of having 100% of their tests come back positive (to say nothing of the dozens more in the high 90's)?

I suspect this is incompetence, as it doesn't seem to benefit the administration. Including the negative results would keep the positivity rate lower and lead to higher overall testing #'s, which Trump has been bragging about.

I had not heard of Fourth Turning before. Seems interesting, will read up on it!

StephenT - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 01:23 AM EDT (#388080) #
The hotel has 348 guest rooms (plenty).

I've heard that the ~60 Jays right now are using all 4 stadium clubhouses (2 MLB, 2 CFL).

During the season I think it's just ~33 Jays + ~33 visitors (so they should be almost as spread out as now).

(They wouldn't have as much nice clubhouse space in Dunedin or Buffalo.)

I heard Mike Wilner on the radio broadcast say the Jays radio announcers would continue to use the visitors TV booth all season if the games are at the dome (the TV booth has more room to spread out than their normal radio booth).
I assume then they aren't expecting visiting announcers to show up (I assume they would call the games off a monitor from home, which can be fine).
(Likewise I assume the Jays announcers will call road games from a monitor at home, but I haven't heard them say that.)

The players aren't using public flights (private charters I've heard).  (Not sure about callups, but one reason for the 3-man taxi squad is to reduce the need to fly in players.)

The government has already allowed multiple flights of Jays to arrive here.

Apparently they're allowing 18 NHL teams to come in from the U.S. later this month.

So I'm optimistic that they will allow 3 MLB teams in every 2-week period (Jays + 2 scheduled opponents).

The players are tested multiple times a week and are quarantined in the hotel/ballpark.  The facility workers know to keep their distance, etc.  The risk to the public seems reasonably low.
John Northey - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 01:58 AM EDT (#388081) #
With strong testing and being careful about flights/transportation, with a requirement all players for both teams stay at the dome hotel this could work. But it has to be strong and we need tests regularly especially for teams from hotspots (Miami and Tampa I'm looking at you).
raptorsaddict - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 02:02 AM EDT (#388082) #
"Do the lemmings even know that these (overwhelmed) testing sites have never been required to tabulate negative tests prior to Florida inventing (politically motovated) new regulations to distract from the flood of new cases?"

I know I've often seen the total number of test reported throughout the media in Canada and the US, and here in PEI we've gotten the total number of tests throughout the pandemic, and I have no reason to believe the provision of this information was to distract from the previous flood new cases.

Of course this doesn't necessarily apply to Florida, so Ugly, I am genuinely open to being persuaded that is true if you, say, provided a similar report from the Florida Department of Health from several weeks or months ago wherein that information was not posted.

I find the ad hominem attacks and insults to be significantly less persuasive. They do, however, support my assertion that Turchin was correct when he observed that we're in an “unprecedented collapse of social norms governing civilized discourse”.

"And, horrifically, an entire segment of the population is actively pretending that they are doing this for political reasons, and are deliberately misinterpreting normal test results as nefarious conspiracies. I am embarrassed for the human race......all doctors and hospitals are engaged in a massive conspiracy merely to discredit one single politician.......And they present this argument with righteous anger, as if both sides have equally valid basis."

Ugly, I shall presume your outrage and embarrassment overtook you prior to finishing reading my post, otherwise you would have seen, "Now, do I actually think it's the case that these labs intentionally reported only positives to further their Orange Man Bad narrative? No...."

As for "righteous anger", I'll let the esteemed cohort of silent observers here at Da Box conclude for themselves which one of us has demonstrated that, while taking a gander over at the wiki entry for "psychological projection", and adding another mental tick beside "Turchin was right".

rtcaino wrote:

"I suspect this is incompetence, as it doesn't seem to benefit the administration. Including the negative results would keep the positivity rate lower and lead to higher overall testing #'s, which Trump has been bragging about."

As I mentioned in my post, I agree that incompetence is the most likely reason. But I based this on Hanlon's razor, not the partisan lens of "doesn't seem to benefit the administration -> therefore incompetence not malice".

"I had not heard of Fourth Turning before. Seems interesting, will read up on it!"

It's by no means a scientific theory, but the more time passes, the more evidence I see of Strauss and Howe being astute observers of the forces at play throughout US history. Despite having read it so long ago, from the beginning it has shaped my view on Trump (not the individual, but the phenomenon). More specifically, I think the fundamental mistake observers have made is to view Trump as the cause of the social malaise, rather than a symptom of something far deeper lurking beneath the surface of US (and Western) culture.

raptorsaddict - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 02:20 AM EDT (#388083) #
One additional thing I forgot to add: while Strauss and Howe have been generally correct on the meta level, of you want a more micro analysis of our current cultural moment, go watch the videos of Yuri Bezmenov, particularly as they relate to ideological demoralization. He has proven to be painfully prophetic.
scottt - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 07:36 AM EDT (#388086) #
I don't think you can look at testing numbers in a vacuum.

Once the situation is under control, you only need to test those exposed to the virus and those showing symptoms. If that's a huge number, than the situation is not good. Earlier on, people with colds were getting tested. There's a lot fewer of those in July.

Also there are barriers to testing. Over here it could be a 5 hour wait in Montreal. In the US it can cost anything between $20 and $850. You need people to want to get tested if they should be tested.

Finally, the results of those tests have to be returned within 1 day or 2. There's 2 CNN reporters who have been waiting for 12 days. That doesn't look good.

uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 08:34 AM EDT (#388088) #

Rtcaino, I would suggest you stop getting your news from internet videos.

I would also suggest you stop trusting the Florida government's numbers, where governor DeSantis - a man who has embarrassed himself badly with his naked politicization of Covid resulting in his disastrous response to it - has repeatedly changed reporting guidelines in order to minimize numbers. He has also fired officials who have reported numbers correctly.

In this case, unsurprisingly, it is the Florida department of health under desantis' continued manipulations which is at fault for poor reporting. I personally know someone who runs a lab in Florida and he (a trump voter) is enraged at how the government has made it impossible for them to do their jobs - and now the majority of these labs are absolutely overwhelmed with tests without the resources to process them efficiently. And then they have to deal with a governor who keeps changing the rules to make their lives harder.

The sad thing here continues to be that so many are willing to believe that the majority of doctors, hospitals, and labs around the world who have spent their entire existence saving lives are now engaged in a massi e blatant conspiracy simply to make Donald Trump look bad. It is an asinine belief that doesn't make even superficial sense, and if your news sources continue to post misleading headlines that insinuate this i would strongly suggest you find non-assinine news sources to follow.


"News 6 reached out to the facilities across Central Florida with high positivity rates in the state report.

A spokesperson with Advent Health said they were told by FDOH to only report positive cases. The hospital said it would make any changes to their reporting if requested by the state.

The FDOH did not return News 6's messages asking how labs are required to report their results.

AdventHealth said CentraCare rapid tests were coming back with a 15% positivity rate, not 100% like the state report shows.

Health First, a Brevard County health care provider, has seven labs with only positive test results, per the state numbers. A spokesperson for Health First disputed the DOH’s account saying the hospital system is reporting all of its test results to the state every day.

“Health First reports all of its COVID-19 testing numbers to the Agency for Health Care Administration’s (AHCA) Emergency Status System database every day. This includes positive, negative and total tests administered. As has been reported by other hospitals recently, Health First is also finding the numbers we have reported into the system are not reflective of—or consistent with—those that are currently publicly reported. Our actual positivity rates are significantly lower than the data reflected on the AHCA website. We have asked for clarification and are awaiting the agency’s response,” a Health First spokesperson said in an email.

According to Health First, the healthcare system has a 7.1% rate of positive cases.

Orlando Health responded sharing its testing numbers for all 12 of its laboratories. The hospital chains said its laboratories across 12 facilities are reporting an average of 9.4% positive tests.

A review of the state report found that the hospital’s testing data shared with News 6 does not match for St. Cloud Hospital. The state report shows St. Cloud Hospital has 20 positive cases and zero negative. The numbers released by Orlando Health shows the exact opposite.

While some Orlando Health facilities have 100% positive cases, according to the state and Orlando Health numbers, it’s because only a few tests have been conducted at those facilities. For example Arnold Palmer Hospital Laboratory has one positive case out of one test, showing 100% positive cases but the Arnold Palmer Medical Center Clinical Lab has 4,164 negative tests and 84 positive, showing 2% of its tests came back positive.

The CEO of Nona Scientific Laboratory, another private lab running coroanvirus tests that showed only positive cases on the state report, said the DOH report was incorrect due to a communication errors.

“All of our testing data, including negatives, have been reported to the DOH, there were communication errors that have been resolved and our positivity rate is approximately 6.5%,” Nona Scientific Lab CEO Mike Palmer said in an email.

Seminole County Emergency Manager Alan Harris said the labs could be reporting the positive and negative cases on different days as they try to get test results back as quickly as possible.

“All labs are reporting numbers. Some of the (labs) are obviously reporting positives very, very quickly and then they put the negatives in the next day so what does that mean? That means for that one day it shows 100%, but the next day it may show 0.5% because they’ve got to catch up,” Harris said.

More than 2.7 million COVID-19 tests have been administered in Florida since March and as the demand for testing increases with the rising number of virus cases laboratories have struggled to keep up.

“As the testing increases unfortunately staffing has not increased at each lab so the priority is always going to be positive cases,” Harris said.

Later on Wednesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis addressed the discrepancies in the numbers between what labs say they are reporting and what the state shows.

Prior to the coronavirus, hospitals and laboratories were required to report illnesses under Florida law. DeSantis said during the pandemic, the state asked labs to also report negatives.

“We then said, I think (in) one of my executive orders, report the negatives too,” DeSantis said. “A number of labs who were just simply doing kind of what the default is, which is sending the positives only without sending the negatives and so I don’t think they were trying to be underhanded, those labs, I think that’s kind of what they were doing before this started.”

The governor said all laboratories will start reporting negatives as well, even though multiple laboratories and hospitals told News 6 they have been reporting those numbers to the state.

The data released daily from the Florida Department of Health remains the only way to monitor the outbreak in Florida as all county health departments report to the state.

Again, rtcaino, if your news sources' first instinct is to report on a numbers discrepancy with the insinuation that it is part of a worldwide conspiracy to make one politician look bad, i strongly suggest you find other news sources. And quickly. And retroactively. For all your learned bemoaning of the apparent societal ills that explain our moment, you yourself are part of the problem.

uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 08:45 AM EDT (#388089) #
So rtcaino its neither faked results nor your more benign description of "incompetence" (a description which of course is still designed to cast doubt on the numbers and pretend that we cannot trust them).

It is simply more bad conspiracy theory reporting designed to cast doubt on science for purely political reasons.

Stop engaging in it.
Manhattan Mike - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 09:39 AM EDT (#388090) #
"It is simply more bad conspiracy theory reporting designed to cast doubt on science for purely political reasons."

Bottom line: if you think the data and advice being disseminated since the start of this crisis has been without problems, you have reading comprehension issues.

If you think "your side" isn't playing politics with the pandemic, you're blind. And I don't need to know which "side" you're on. Bc, sadly, both sides of the aisle in pretty much every country are guilty on this front.
scottt - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 09:56 AM EDT (#388091) #
Early on, it was apparent that the Chinese numbers were fake because there was no variability in them.
Stable infection rate, stable mortality rate. Real numbers are in flux.

Manhattan Mike - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 10:21 AM EDT (#388094) #
So let me get this straight:

You think it's appropriate to deny healthcare services to those who go out in public to the beach... but you're cool with:

- a group of foreign nationals being granted waivers to enter, leave, and re-enter this country repeatedly over the next few months to provide a non-essential service... after spending time, without quarantining, in some of the US's pandemic hotspots

- while being given an exemption from the Quarantine Act that most definitely and most onerously applies to the rest of us mere mortal Canadians

- while also being in regular contact with Canadians (and/or non-canadian team employees based in Toronto) who work in the stadium/hotel and aren't being restricted to stay in the "bubble", such that these employees will also be in even more regular (and potentially dangerous) contact with everyone else in the Toronto area?

Hmmm.... and y'all wonder why many ordinary folk - or Joe Ballpark to quote the derisive term you used - doesn't fully trust everything the government has to say on this particular life-threatening matter?

If the QA is important enough that Canadians returning from abroad are being locked up for two weeks, its important enough for non-Canadian baseball players that will certainly be in touch with Canadian hotel/stadium workers (and others needed to provide services to these non-Canadians) to be subjected to the same rules.

Equality now!
Manhattan Mike - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 10:23 AM EDT (#388095) #
My last comment was a response to Northey's comment.
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 10:32 AM EDT (#388097) #
Not only is that not the "bottom line", it is a laughable attempt to bothsides a purely one sided self-inflicted and totally predictable result of denying science in some twisted attempt to fit a political paradigm.

The actual bottom line is that the science has been right about the pandemic from the start. Not perfect, but right. Even with extremely hard to model projections - the official american projection of 100k-250k deaths if most protocols were enacted has been incredibly accurate. Everyone understands that testing and measuring a new worldwide pandemic is extremely tough to do, and that mistakes and ommissions would occur. Only one particular political bloc has at every turn attempted to turn any mistake into political anti-science screed - and every single time have ended up embarassing themselves and plunging whichever area they had control over into a pandemic hotspot. Over, and over, and over again.

There has only been one consistent and significant flaw with the numbers all along - and that has been the underreporting of cases (both alive and dead), which has occurred for many reasons - lack of tests, ineffective tests, or simply not bothering to test or report numbers. This is why every single non-test analysis has shown a significant undercounting of covid deaths (on average about 30% undercounted), when they analyze the numbers on things such as Excess Deaths, which are impossible to fudge and don't rely on tests at all.

There was never any political upside to "playing up" the pandemic. There was no reason to play it up, for any "side". Many governments, however, have found it politically the convenient to downplay the severity of the pandemic, and most have paid the price for that cynical political calculation.

That's the irony - there was no reason for politicians like Trump to downplay the pandemic and ignore the science. Many conservative governments (like Doug Ford here in ontario) chose to follow the science and deal with the pandemic seriously, and have improved their political standing, not hurt it.

No matter how much you want it to be true, there is no political "both sides" here. There is only Science vs. one particular brand of politics heavily invested in denying science on every issue, but whose science denial has finally come up against a massive and immediate threat where their politics-based denial has cost them severely in real time.
rtcaino - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 11:02 AM EDT (#388098) #
Again, rtcaino, if your news sources' first instinct is to report on a numbers discrepancy with the insinuation that it is part of a worldwide conspiracy to make one politician look bad, i strongly suggest you find other news sources. And quickly. And retroactively. For all your learned bemoaning of the apparent societal ills that explain our moment, you yourself are part of the problem.

Perhaps I didn't express myself clearly. I certainly do not believe this is a deep state conspiracy against Trump or something like that.

With regards to Florida sitting on their hospitalization #'s for a few weeks; this is more likely to be politically motivated because for a moment it helped their case.

With regards to them underreporting negative test results; this is less likely to be, as it hurts their case. Which is why I suspected some sort of administrative incompetence.

I would say that implementing changing policies and reporting requirements, without having the proper systems and controls in place to ensure reasonable accuracy, qualifies as administrative incompetence.

Manhattan Mike - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 11:05 AM EDT (#388099) #
"The actual bottom line is that the science has been right about the pandemic from the start."

Wow. Reading comprehension issue - again. The science itself has been correct. But the scientists and the politicians commenting on the science most certainly have not. Bc the virus didn't care what politically-appointed experts and politicians had to say on the matter in January through March (when the worst of the bad data "science" was being shared). The virus proliferated bc... ya know, both countries in North America (under leadership with very different political stances) left borders wide open when they most definitely should have been shuttered.

The partisan drivel... its just... ouch!

I consume media from both sides in Canada and the US as part of my paying gig and general interest. I find it noteworthy that stuff that the minority party criticizes the majority party in power in one country is identical to what the minority in the other country is noting - just with different ideological-bents leading the respective governments.

As a dual citizen, I ask my fellow Canadian citizens with the far-left, anti-American views:

- When (not if) the US develops a vaccine, do you believe the US should share said biotech with Canadians? If so, at what cost?

- Do you believe US-haters should morally eschew taking a US-funded vaccine so as to remain ideologically consistent?

Would taking a potentially life-saving US-funded-and-developed vaccine change your perspective on the evils of the greatest and most benevolent superpower in human history?
Gerry - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 11:47 AM EDT (#388101) #

Can you check your email that is linked to your account, or

Can you send an email from a different address to roster at batters box dot ca.

uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 11:53 AM EDT (#388102) #
it's amazing.

one "side" has done nothing but defer to the experts, and have gained control over their pandemic outbreaks.

the other "side" has ignored and attacked the experts, and have lost control over their outbreaks.

and yet we still see this laughable attempt to "both sides" the issue, instead of simply calling out obvious and dangerous stupidity for what it is.
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 11:56 AM EDT (#388103) #
Deacon Blues @DeaconBlues0

"You can't plan for something that hasn't happened yet" - Betsy Devos, when asked what she would do if there is an outbreak of Covid in schools.

Instead of simply calling out this insane stupidity for what it obviously is, we get shameless attempts to say "both sides are the same!" when it obviously isn't true.
rtcaino - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 12:07 PM EDT (#388104) #
Probably been mentioned many times before, but to undermine the 'both sides' argument, Doug Ford actually acquitted himself quite well.

At least in terms of listening to facts and using the facts to inform policy and strategy. As opposed to the opposite.

scottt - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 12:26 PM EDT (#388105) #
Yeah, Ford has been a lot better than I expected.
Maybe Legault would have done better if he wasn't so popular.

hypobole - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 02:12 PM EDT (#388107) #
Republican governor Larry Hogan of Maryland has won praise from Republicans and Democrats alike for his handling of the situation.
grjas - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 02:33 PM EDT (#388108) #
Hmm. Think we've all been cooped up too long and nerves are frayed. Seeing it on the roads these days too. Hopefully the tone of this site returns to normal soon.

Anyway aside from the crazy politicization of everything in the US these days, what's really frustrating me is the large number of Americans with an anti-science bias, a concern raised by a number of medical professionals in the States.

I find it striking that this is happening in a country that has had unparalleled success in scientific research and dvelopment, one whose economic strength is based so much on its phenomenal advancements in scientific research and technology. Honestly, I find this bizarre.

While we can rage about American politicians, like all of us, Americans are free to make there own decisions about distancing, masks, COVID parties and the like and far too many are turning their noses up at what the medical professionals are telling them. While other countries face this challenge as well - Canada included - it seems much more prevalent in the US. Is this an issue relating to schooling, social media, ill informed celebrities, over fixation on religion? No idea.

Hopefully as their hospitals overload, more Americans will get the message and take the necessary precautions. Time will tell. But if and when we get a COVID vaccine, I hope it has a high efficacy. With the strength of the crazy anti-vaccinator movement, chances are a new vaccine won't enable herd immunity: it may well be up to individuals to protect themselves.
Mike Green - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 02:34 PM EDT (#388109) #
There have been relatively few American politicians of either party who have done a good job.  Kate Brown in Oregon has done a good job.  The other politicians I know of who have done a good job are Jacinda Ardern in New Zealand, Zuzana Kaputova in Slovakia, Angela Merkel in Germany and K.K. Shailaja in Kerala state in India.  In Canada, Adrian Dix in BC has done a good job basically letting Dr. Bonnie Henry take the lead. There are, I am sure, quite a few others, but the general willingness of women to understand, accept and apply what the scientists tell them stands out in contrast to the arrogance and egotism that we see from all too many men in power dealing with the pandemic.  In the United States, that includes the President and to a lesser degree, governors from both political parties. 

I don't know what the governor of Maryland has done particularly, but a death rate of 554 per million can't be good.  It might be understandable in the circumstances, but others with much less to work with have done much, much better. 
rtcaino - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 02:34 PM EDT (#388110) #
All of which is to say, I do not believe this whole post-truth movement is a feature of modern conservatism per se. But rather, something that is impacting a particular subset of right-wing parties in western democracies.

I'm all for being fiscally conservative. But when there is a global pandemic, it is helpful to have *some* connection to objective reality.

That is encouraging to hear about Maryland's Governer. And it is nice to see a growing chorus of Republicans/Conservatives south of the border rejecting Trumpian tactics.

I think I can speak for pretty much all Canadians when I say we really hope the US can figure out its stuff and do a more effective job flattening the curve. It just doesn't seem that a change is imminent.
John Northey - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 02:39 PM EDT (#388111) #
There is a scary thought - what will the anti-vaccine crowd do about this? Given it is vaccine or everything stays closed down more or less. The idea that any sane person gives a damn about who develops a vaccine beyond how affordable it will be. Sadly if a US company makes it we can expect insane fees to get it given past actions by US drug companies (and to be fair most drug companies will overcharge for it, but nations outside of the US would demand a fair price for this vaccine, Trump I can't imagine standing up to companies over anything as long as they donate to his campaign).
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 03:03 PM EDT (#388113) #
The White House Press Secretary on Trump's push to reopen schools: "The science should not stand in the way of this."
3:01 PM · Jul 16, 2020
scottt - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 03:14 PM EDT (#388114) #
Maryland? I've heard of some huge unemployment fraud.

The governor in Mississippi has figured out that to reach herd immunity he'd need to have 6 times the number of cases his state can handle and maintain that for 2 whole years.

"Unless you're willing to go without hospitals after a car crash or a heart attack, we need a different approach."

He's a Republican.

So, the Russians are trying to hack the virus researchers?

Michael - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 03:32 PM EDT (#388115) #
In the US it is hit and miss how good of a job people have done. My local leaders have been good, even if our situation is not as good.

Sara Cody is the public health officer in Santa Clara county and she led the first in the US lockdown over corona virus and has consistently been one of the more cautious about reopening despite massive pressure to move more quickly.

Gov Newsom has been pretty good through out this with respect to organizing resources, supporting shutdowns, placating and avoiding angering in the President, supporting science, holding regular press conferences with good details, etc.

In general, it is pretty clear that covid has polarized things (or been polarized by things) in the US politically with republican leaders and populations generally doing less well than democratic ones - but it certainly isn't universal. You can see some of the explanations and data for this at places like and

But for examples of Republicans doing better: In California there was an add supporting mask wearing which had the last 4 governors all support it (which includes 2 democrats and 2 republicans, one of whom is better known for his acting/bodybuilding, all fully supporting mask wearing and the science). Republican governors DeWine (Ohio), Hogan (Maryland), and Baker (Massachusetts) have all gotten fairly high marks for their overall Covid handling.

You still hear some non-trivial number of people in the US claiming some of the things we argued about on the Box in March like "it's mostly a hoax" or "it's no worse than the flu" or "people are overreacting/panicking unreasonably". Hard to imagine still, but that is a huge cause of the problems. Even when political leaders stress the important of social distancing, mask wearing, shutting down places when swaths of the population ignore that and show up together for covid parties or huge beach gatherings it is hard to eliminate the disease.
Mike Green - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 04:27 PM EDT (#388118) #
They re-opened too soon in California.  That's on Newsom.  They didn't shut down fast enough in New York.  That's on Cuomo.  Anyways, enough American politics. 

I'm preferring right now to focus on those who have done a good job and are reaping the reward of (relative) good health of their citizens.  Here's the story of K.K. Shailaja.  According to the latest data, there have been 35 deaths in Kerala state, with a population of 35 million, about the same as Canada.
rtcaino - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 04:32 PM EDT (#388120) #
one of whom is better known for his acting/bodybuilding



hypobole - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 04:48 PM EDT (#388121) #
Simply going by rates is a poor way to judge response. Hogan has been praised by both the previous Democrat governor and the Democrat Baltimore mayor. There was also a poll conducted a while back and he received the highest approval rating within his state of any governor, with even a majority of Democrats approving of his handling of the crisis. Kemp in Georgia finished dead last, even though Georgia has/had a lower death rate than Maryland.
hypobole - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 04:54 PM EDT (#388122) #
Here's a CNN article on Hogan with a link to the Washington Post poll.

Mike Green - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 05:03 PM EDT (#388124) #
Hypobole, I know that the rate in Georgia is lower than in Maryland but it's going to end up at close to the same place- the cases arrived later in the South for a variety of reasons including tendencies to be indoors and outdoors at different times of the year in different places.  554 is still a bad number on a worldwide scale and I don't care if other governors think that relative to other Americans he did a good job.  The same could be said of Gretchen Whitmer, the Democratic governor of Michigan.  She undoubtedly did her best in a tough situation (armed opposition in the legislature) but in the end, she wasn't able to achieve good results.  It isn't easy.
hypobole - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 05:16 PM EDT (#388125) #
"I don't care if other governors think that relative to other Americans he did a good job."

Mike, it wasn't other governors polled, it was the residents of each state.
Mike Green - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 05:25 PM EDT (#388126) #
Or the residents.  All that says to me is that they look around at the alternatives nearby and figure that their governor did pretty well by that standard.  It reminds me of the poster I have in my office of a Manhattanite's vision of the world with Brooklyn and Jersey noticeable and the Midwest just one amorphous area and LA a dot off in the West near Japan. 
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 05:25 PM EDT (#388127) #
Newsom definitely opened up way too fast against all the expert advice.

I'm not as critical of the early-hit states in the northeast who got overrun without much warning. Just like UK AND Sweden's responses are much more egregious than Italy's or Spain's.
Michael - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 05:28 PM EDT (#388128) #
I agree that California reopened too soon. I think that is only partially on Newsom. There is a balancing act between staying closed and dealing with insurrection and violations of orders. Police, sheriffs, and local leaders (particularly in southern California) openly defied Newsom's orders and were reopening against orders.

The total cases / case rate (in California around 900 per 100,000 people) is dependent on many variables: population actions, local leadership, state leadership, national leadership, international leadership, demographics, luck, geography, number of tests, etc. State leadership is one variable, but there are a lot of other ones.
hypobole - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 05:39 PM EDT (#388129) #
One last point. The black community has been disproportionately devastated by covid. Oregon is 3% black. Maryland 31% black.
uglyone - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 07:59 PM EDT (#388135) #

ATLANTA (AP) -- Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp sues Atlanta over the city's requirement to wear masks in public, other COVID-19 restrictions.

— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) July 16, 2020
John Northey - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 08:29 PM EDT (#388136) #
Being caught off guard at the start is one thing - most were - but to keep making stupid mistakes like the cheater in Georgia screams incompetence. There is always a choice to make - here in Ontario I detest Mr. Ford with a passion but he did the right stuff after COVID hit, now he is starting to mess up (opening bars, idiotic school plans or more like a non-plan). Both Liberals and Conservatives (depending on level and who has power) grabbing more power if they can get away with it. Those things annoy me (to put it mildly). The old rule to never let a crisis go to waste seems to be getting followed strongly at the moment.
scottt - Thursday, July 16 2020 @ 09:05 PM EDT (#388138) #
Cases are rising in Quebec, maybe mostly due to bars which have reopened.
They are reopening tomorrow in Ontario.

In Quebec, bars are estimated to employ 200K people.
Difficult choices ahead.  Probably need to be flexible, regional rules, testing and tracking, etc...

Mike Green - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 10:44 AM EDT (#388143) #
One last point. The black community has been disproportionately devastated by covid. Oregon is 3% black. Maryland 31% black.

I realize that there are a number of factors.  In addition to the demographic differences, the model of development and density is different in the West from the East (that's true in Canada, too).  But, if you're going to compare Maryland with another state, you might choose a place like North Carolina which is in the same region, has a similar urban/rural split, and whose population is 22% Black.  North Carolina has a death rate of 155/1M rather than 556.  I find it very difficult to characterize Maryland's performance as "good" in that context. 
Mike Green - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 10:47 AM EDT (#388144) #
And, incidentally, Maryland has 67,000 active cases and North Carolina has 25,000 despite North Carolina's larger population.  The difference in rates is going to get larger in the near future rather than smaller. 
hypobole - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 12:34 PM EDT (#388147) #
I didn't characterize Maryland's performance as good. I stated Hogan has seemingly done a good job and if you read the link I posted and the WP survey, the people in his state felt the same. A Republican governor achieving a 90% approval rating among Democratic leaning voters is somewhat telling.

And Death rates - Compare Florida and New York. A week ago New York had more active cases than Florida. That certainly doesn't mean that until a week ago DeSantis was doing a better job than Cuomo.

grjas - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 12:39 PM EDT (#388148) #
So Russia has an access deal with AstraZeneca and Oxford for the vaccine which is furthest along, as well as US, Europe and Britain. Meanwhile our co- development with China on a vaccine is on the skids because the Chinese have delayed approval of shipping the drug to Canada.

I sure hope we’re not over relying on the Chinese, especially as yet another appeasement ploy. You’d think our federal government would be all over the AstraZeneca opportunity as well but....
Mike Green - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 01:03 PM EDT (#388149) #
Hypobole, what I am really saying is that most governors haven't done a good job, and some have been terrible.  It's a hard situation when the President has been such a negative influence, but a truly good governor would do better than 556/M (which obviously disqualifies Cuomo as well).   
hypobole - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 01:11 PM EDT (#388150) #
Mike, I'm not convincing you and you're not convincing me, so I'm dropping it.
scottt - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#388151) #
A lot of asymptomatics are just pre-symptomatics.
I saw a report that a random testing in a retirement home had yielded a large number of asymptomatic positives but when they followed up 2 weeks later, 20 of those were in hospitals and 7 had already died.
Mylegacy - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 03:56 PM EDT (#388153) #
Scottt - you say: "A lot of asymptomatics are just pre-symptomatics." To me, that is the correct road to be thinking about.

As you continue, you talk about asymptomatic positives who 2 weeks later are hospitalized and some are dead.

To what you said I add...

The WHO is saying that "14% to 40% present as asymptomatics. Obviously, they only know that because they've been tested positive while not having symptoms.

14,095,096 cases world wide (12.27 PM today) of these 14% to 40% were asymptomatics. For the sake of my comments lets call this 20% (the math is easier) this means (in my hypothetical example) that 2,819,014 people world wide were "spreaders" - For how long? Some at least for up to a couple of weeks.

While clearly some of these spreaders get sick and some die. The question I have is: How many of these asymptomatics never get infected and are spreaders for - how long? Because the general public is not tested (generally speaking) if they do not have symptoms how many spreaders are walking around? I haven't seen anything addressing this in detail. Have any of you?

Until this is fully understood I think wearing a mask is prudent to protect ourselves (to some degree) and prudent, if you happen to be an unknowing spreader, to protect everyone whose path you cross pending the arrival of effective vaccines, over 100 of which are being developed worldwide, with a few even in Stage 3 testing as I write this. We can protect our families, our friends, our neighbours and even that annoying lady in Suite 404 with the high pitched squeaky voice that so grates on my ears.
Magpie - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 05:09 PM EDT (#388155) #
what will the anti-vaccine crowd do about this?

Oh, have a guess.
raptorsaddict - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 06:58 PM EDT (#388158) #
"what will the anti-vaccine crowd do about this?"

I'm guessing they will keep going to work for google, Oracle, IBM, Cisco, Yahoo, Gilead and Genentech.

"The Sickeningly Low Vaccination Rates at Silicon Valley Day Cares"

We selected more than 20 large technology and health companies in the Bay Area and researched their day care offerings. Of 12 day care facilities affiliated with tech companies, six—that's half—have below-average vaccination rates, according to the state’s data......Six out of 12 facilities WIRED surveyed have a level of measles vaccination too low to provide herd immunity."

I guess it's not only deplorable Trump supporters that aren't vaccinating their kids.

To be clear, I am not anti-vaxx, so I don't have a horse in this race.

vw_fan17 - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 08:37 PM EDT (#388159) #
raptorsaddict, try looking at the last few years - California strengthened the  "MUST be vaccinated to attend public school" law and removed the religious exemption AND is cracking down on doctors writing medical exemptions (one in particular who was caught doing a lot of it).

Vaccination rates are back above 96%, IIRC, in the last couple of years.

Yeah, we have a lot of people, so we have a lot of loud voices saying stuff, but we also do try to get the science stuff right. It just doesn't always happen overnight.

In this case, a 5-year-old article is very inaccurate and out of date.
raptorsaddict - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 09:25 PM EDT (#388160) #

While I'm happy to hear that the rules have been tightened, this wasn't really about overall vaccination rates (as there are many, many states who were much lower than California even at it's lowest). It was to point out that the presumption that those who are "anti-science" are all on one side of the political aisle is incorrect.

My comment was sparked in part by what grjas said up the thread:

"what's really frustrating me is the large number of Americans with an anti-science bias... I find it striking that this is happening in a country that has had unparalleled success in scientific research and dvelopment, one whose economic strength is based so much on its phenomenal advancements in scientific research and technology. Honestly, I find this bizarre......Is this an issue relating to schooling, social media, ill informed celebrities, over fixation on religion? No idea."

As someone with a science degree, I can relate to this frustration in some ways. It makes sense that schooling and religion would apply in certain under-vaccinated groups (Orthodox Jews, Somalis in Minnesota). But the fact that Silicon Valley employees, who as a group form probably the most educated/highest IQ geographic area on planet earth (and where I highly doubt religion has much sway) were not vaccinating their kids is completely the opposite of the general stereotype of an anti-vaxxer. Ultimately, that is the point I was making.
John Northey - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 11:43 PM EDT (#388161) #
Sometimes you hit the over-educated issue. I know me and my wife hit that a few times (she had crazy high intelligence which led to all kinds of problems at times). At some point, the smarter you are the more you look for things and the easier it is to decide you know more than others thus buy into conspiracy theories which the anti-vaxxers are buried in. You get caught up in 'well, this is possible' (as you can put a plan on paper to do it) and 'people with power do anything to keep it'. You hit both in low intelligent and extreme intelligent areas which is kind of funny in some respects. Mid-level (and I have a wide range for that covering probably 60%-80%+ of society) intelligence tends to have some of that but also has a high trust level due to the world generally working for them (middle of the road pay, never too worried about life falling apart, but also never at the total relaxed level). Thus explaining how the anti-vaxx and mega conspiracy crowds can be both in backwaters and Silicone Valley.

I might be over thinking this though. That is a problem I have at times - either over think it or under think it.
hypobole - Friday, July 17 2020 @ 11:54 PM EDT (#388162) #
Here's this:

"The anti-vaccine movement has never been limited to one political party. Left-leaning vaccine critics — such as Children’s Health Defense, led by Robert F. Kennedy Jr. — include environmentalists who are suspicious of chemical pollutants, corporations and ‘Big Pharma.’ The Kennedy group’s website attacks Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, for rushing “risky and uncertain coronavirus vaccines” into development as part of a “sweetheart deal” for drug companies.

On the other side of the political spectrum, many anti-vaccine conservatives oppose state immunization requirements because they distrust ‘big government.’"

Chuck - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 07:16 AM EDT (#388163) #
the smarter you are the more you look for things and the easier it is to decide you know more than others thus buy into conspiracy theories

Portland, Oregon is often held up as an example of this. The city is in Multnomah county which voted 73% for Clinton in 2016. The level of education attainment is higher than the national average. And yet, MMR vaccination rates are so low that the city has experienced measles outbreaks.

I can't cite a source, but I believe I once read that vaccination rates in Portland were lower than they were in the developing world.

Mike Green - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 10:15 AM EDT (#388166) #
The skepticism about science does in part cross ideological divides now in the US. We are lucky that it is much less so here across the political spectrum, although all segments do have anti-vaxxers.

COVID rates in BC and Alberta are rising, and it looks to me like they are going to have to be a lot more restricted again shortly. It will be interesting how we react. Our leaders might want to start talking about the grit that is required. I am not generally a fan of sports analogies but you have to pull out all the stops in this situation. We are probably just early in the second period and this one might go into OT.
Chuck - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 10:37 AM EDT (#388167) #
This morning, I am reading numerous tributes to John Lewis. I think about the strength, mental and physical, that he exhibited so prominently in his younger life, getting into "good trouble" fighting for civil rights.

And then I think about people whining they can't get a haircut, or go into a bar, or are subject to the government overreach of mandated mask-wearing.

And the incredible contrast saddens me. When did we all get so god damned selfish?

hypobole - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 10:57 AM EDT (#388168) #
A ray of hope for the US and covid vaccination is that Trump, despite his fecklessness over most everything science-based, has been touting development of a vaccine. One can be understandably cynical, since a vaccine before the November election may be his only deus ex machina for re-election.

On the other hand, immunity for other coronaviruses seems to last only months, not years. The more re-vaccinations required, the less likely people will actually do it of their own accord.
Chuck - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 11:15 AM EDT (#388169) #
Given the sway of the anti-vaxx movement in the US, there is a decent chance that herd immunity will not be achieved because a large percentage will forego the vaccine. So while we are right to cheer on the development of vaccines, the therapeutic side of the equation will be crucial as well.

If annual vaccinations are required, will it just be the 40% of us who get flu shots who also get COVID shots? Or will the fear of COVID indirectly force a higher intake rate of both?

Remember back in March and April when the world seemed suddenly pro-science? Those were the golden days. The con side just needed a chance to consolidate its response. Bill Gates. Microchips. 5G. Yeah, that should do it. Now go, Facebook, do your thing.

Mike Green - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 01:15 PM EDT (#388172) #
Ontario recorded 166 new cases today, an increase of 50% over the previous 2 days. Health Minister Christine Elliott described it as a "slight uptick". Minimization is not a good quality right now. There's no need for drama, but there is a need for a calm assessment about how the re-opening is going.

In other news, the OMA called on the government to rethink its indoor bar reopening.
Mike Green - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 01:30 PM EDT (#388173) #
People are people, Chuck. A wondrous and frustrating mix of selfishness and altruism. What changes are public rules and practices. So, in the US, for instance, the NRA moved from being an organization promoting responsible gun ownership to one that promotes open carry and similar "freedom-loving" policies. Taxation policies changed at about the same time in response to monetarist programs and ideology; the arguments in support were framed as "lower taxes means more personal freedom". In Canada, we have different traditions, rules and practices but we are invariably influenced by American changes to some degree.

Is Mike Trout doing a PSA for mask-wearing in California? I hope so.

vw_fan17 - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 02:17 PM EDT (#388174) #
As someone with a science degree, I can relate to this frustration in some ways. It makes sense that schooling and religion would apply in certain under-vaccinated groups (Orthodox Jews, Somalis in Minnesota). But the fact that Silicon Valley employees, who as a group form probably the most educated/highest IQ geographic area on planet earth (and where I highly doubt religion has much sway) were not vaccinating their kids is completely the opposite of the general stereotype of an anti-vaxxer. Ultimately, that is the point I was making.

(sorry for rambling - I just kinda started thinking, it started making sense, so I'm kind of developing a whole new idea (to me) about this whole thing)
Fair enough. I think John's assessment covers SOME portion of them. Apparently, roughly 1/4 of the world is born authoritarian - maybe, despite one's intelligence, one looks for bad actors causing misery, rather than "random chance". Also, some people have a good "pattern detection" neural net (brain) for detecting/designing patterns (i.e. writing software) - even if they ALSO have a high level of false positives - we tend to correct for the false positives (see below). And aren't IQ tests mostly pattern recognition anyway? What comes next in this sequence type stuff? People who do well on IQ tests and join MENSA, famously, may be good at finding patterns in complicated math, but also often totally misfire on their pattern recognition when interacting with people. We've seen it happen with famous scientists as well.

Facebook's famous "move fast, break stuff" also comes to mind - in software, a misfire on a pattern results in a bug fix, a new release of code, and a "sorry - we fixed it now". In life, what if you misfire on the whole conspiracy theory stuff and your brain tells you there's something there? In software, there's always a "gold" test (at least for most things) - does it produce the right (or close enough) output? And there is a clear "nope, this is wrong" result for most things and when they trigger, you really have to check your code. That is, if the numbers you produce would end up requiring Pi to be 4.1 instead of 3.1415..., then either your algorithm is flawed, or not enough iterations, or bad input, or whatever - there's an objective, verified by thousands of mathematicians/scientists, answer that you can compare to - or at least, in most cases, you know a reasonable answer when you see it. With a conspiracy theory? Who is the authority? How do you know if it's 1%, 15%, 73% or 99% accurate? That's the whole problem - there *IS* no perfect authority for all of life - but people crave one anyway. Most have rejected God as that answer (not trying to opine one way or the other on this here)  - so they end up listening to the first person/argument that sounds like they *REALLY* know what they're talking about and/or has all kinds of exciting new information that you didn't even know existed. Often, that ends up someone sounding like people they met early on in life who were authority figures for a time and they were told to trust (parents, clergy, etc). (Aside: I don't think it's an accident that, in my limited experience, people like Limbaugh, Hannity, etc use similar patterns of speech and mannerisms as used by televangelists/preachers... The "kindly father/uncle" setting things straight for their naiive kid who just doesn't quite understand the world yet). Once you're at the point of believing in Q-anon and flat-earth and pizzagate - WHO would you trust to "bring you back"? Certainly not ANYONE from the "deep state" (i.e. almost anyone outside your small circle) - and those on your "side" don't want to look bad and/or stop making money off you..

I also do wonder what fraction of those "geeks" are being pushed by their "Housespouse of Silicon Valley" significant others, who may not always have been chosen for their intelligence, but have plenty of free time to research Goop, Jenny McCarthy, etc...
Mylegacy - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 03:53 PM EDT (#388178) #
Canada says no!!!
Magpie - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 04:11 PM EDT (#388180) #
When did we all get so god damned selfish?

I think we've all been encouraged to be that way, for the last 40 years or so. The 1980s elevated Looking Out for Number One into the ethos of the day. I'm all right Jack and you're on your own. Any sense of being part of a community has greatly receded over the course of my lifetime. Even listening to music, which was a fairly communal experience in my (mostly misspent) youth, has become mostly a private pleasure, with everyone walking around with their own personal soundtrack. Myself included.

As always, I blame Ronald Reagan and all who sailed with him and in his wake.
Mike Green - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 05:02 PM EDT (#388182) #
Good for the feds.

Now if Ford closes the bars, it will be a good and hopeful weekend. I learned this week that there is new software which allows musicians to play together live as long as they are no more than 50 miles apart. I am looking forward to live performances from Toronto bands using the software. BYOB to your screen.
scottt - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 05:46 PM EDT (#388184) #
I still thinks NHL is worse.
That's 12 teams in Toronto+a large American TV crew+the families of all those players.
That's a huge bubble and the families will be moving in and out of it.

Nigel - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 06:53 PM EDT (#388187) #
Healthy societies achieve the appropriate balance between independence/personal freedoms and collective good. As Magpie says, the past 40 years has seen the pendulum swing far to much away from understanding the need for and appropriateness of giving up some personal freedom for the collective good. Funnily enough, one of the causes in Canada has been the Charter, or more succinctly, the Canadian public’s (pack of) understanding of the Charter. The Charter is obviously a wonderful thing and a key part of what makes Canada, well, Canada. However, most Canadians only understand that document (to the extent they understand it at all) as protecting individual rights. What they fail to understand is the override written into the document to allow for the collective good where appropriate. Discourse in Canada would be improved by a greater understanding of that concept.
Nigel - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 06:54 PM EDT (#388188) #
*lack of
Nigel - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 07:07 PM EDT (#388189) #
One last comment on this - as Mike noted, there is invariably some influence from our neighbours to the South on these matters. However, study after study over the past 25 years show Canada moving closer and closer to Western Europe and farther from the US, culturally and on matters of social policy. The move is so striking that on issues like the role of religion, the role of government and the role of women in society there is very limited commonality North and South of the border.
grjas - Saturday, July 18 2020 @ 07:57 PM EDT (#388191) #
The move is so striking that on issues like the role of religion, the role of government and the role of women in society there is very limited commonality North and South of the border.

I think it depends on the state. There are a lot of cultural differences in the US from area to area. The people I’ve worked and traveled with from NY, Boston, Chicago, San Fran etc don’t seem that culturally different than us, at least versus Torontonians.

There are still differences but not any more than with people I’ve worked and visited in Britain, at least from my experience.
rtcaino - Sunday, July 19 2020 @ 12:50 AM EDT (#388193) #
I still thinks NHL is worse. That's 12 teams in Toronto+a large American TV crew+the families of all those players. That's a huge bubble and the families will be moving in and out of it.

I think what makes MLB's plan worse is the constant moving in and out of cities all around the continent.

For the NHL at least you can quarantine them and test them for the first couple of weeks, and after that, the risk should be reduced. (As long as the auxiliary staff and families are following the same protocols and not able to enter and exit the bubble as they please.)

hypobole - Sunday, July 19 2020 @ 01:37 AM EDT (#388194) #
NHL players families won't be allowed in until there are only 4 teams left. That means at least the 1st 5 weeks without families there. Then they stay in the bubble.
christaylor - Sunday, July 19 2020 @ 06:26 PM EDT (#388207) #
Yes. Canada's constitution contains a "just kidding" clause, otherwise known as a notwithstanding clause.

More generally, I'd warn folks who talk in stereotypes about the US. You're not even wrong, just ignorant of the variance across the US. I've lived in Cambridge, MA for nearly ten years, with a two-year break just outside of Oxford in the UK. The England (particularly Southern England to stick with the region I know) has plenty of racism (hence Brexit). It was a near daily experience for my Indian and Pakistani colleagues. My accent even kicked some English into prejudice mode, until I would drop the fact I was born in Canada and I somehow I became more "acceptable".

More controversially to some on the board, Cambridge, MA is easily the most liberal environment I've lived. Massachusetts' gun laws are stricter than Canada. The health care in the Greater Boston area has been better than anything I experienced in Toronto, Hamilton. The health care is better than than the NHS. My wife has had procedures here that would not have been covered by either OHIP or the NHS. This isn't to say my experience is representative of the US, but to hopefully give some here pause before they make blanket statements about Canada v. US v. The UK. Canadians tend to receive a biased media diet about the US. They also tend to define themselves against a concept of the US (see a great chapter of Doug Coupland's book A Souvenir of Canada entitled "Them"). Of course, my broad brush of Canadian ignorance doesn't apply to everyone, but even those with experience visiting the US probably don't know enough to judge. That's it, I've written similar things on this board before, but I really wish Canadians would drop the smugness that they often display toward the US. Also question any affinity one might have for the UK. Canada is a special place. It is rightly lauded for its cultural mosaic. Quebec is a truly district society. Toronto is still home in my heart. Nationalism is a disease that all individuals in countries would do well to question. Nothing good comes from it.
ISLAND BOY - Monday, July 20 2020 @ 08:19 AM EDT (#388219) #
I think when you have an ignorant blowhard for a president plus the media showing anti-mask protesters and instances of unwarranted police brutality, it taints the image of the U.S., not just in Canada, but all around the world. The majority of Americans are good, sensible people but they don't make the news, just the idiots are visible.

I don't consider myself smug to be proud to be a Canadian. I know there is racism and anti-mask protesters in this country,too. I don't think it's a misconception that the attitude of a minority of Americans, a healthy minority of them, is " We are the best! Nobody is going to tell me what to do. It's my constitutional right to bear arms or not wear a mask so get out of my face !"

I have many relatives in the States and they aren't like that at all but the vocal minority is what is seen the most. I think the pandemic has shown the difference between Canada and the U.S. Canada has had better leadership from government and it's citizens tend to follow health directives. There's no denying that the U.S. response has been a shitshow, with a leader who says," some day it will all just go away." Sadly, that's not a misconception, it's just fact.
scottt - Monday, July 20 2020 @ 08:29 AM EDT (#388220) #
The number of new cases keep trending up in Quebec, Ontario and Alberta.
Wearing masks in low risk areas, like grocery stores, does not compensate for high risks activities like drinking in  bars and meeting relatives.

Chuck - Tuesday, July 21 2020 @ 07:57 AM EDT (#388238) #
British Columbia is seeing its R rate consistently above 1.0 and is rightfully on high alert to address this. Meanwhile, Florida is seeing 10,000 cases a day and its governor is suggesting that there is nothing to see here folks, just a partisan media skewing the truth.

The Boy Prince gives back all his gains earned from play acting the role of leader in a crisis with yet another tone deaf ethics fiasco. The Orange King relents to internal pressure to at least pretend he is in charge by sort of advocating mask usage just before attending a fund raiser not wearing a mask.

Interesting times, these. Sad, but interesting.

Mike Green - Tuesday, July 21 2020 @ 03:48 PM EDT (#388251) #
I had read the COVID test produced 30% false negatives.  The latest I am seeing is seemingly a little worse than that. 

These are the numbers I like to see for any kind of test.  You do not have reasonable assurance that someone who tests negative Monday and Thursday is not in fact infectious on Friday. 
Mike Green - Tuesday, July 21 2020 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#388252) #
Ack.  These are not numbers I like to see for any kind of test.  I'm not evil.
John Northey - Wednesday, July 22 2020 @ 06:33 PM EDT (#388298) #
COVID deaths over 1000 yesterday in the USA. So in one day they had about 1/3rd of the people dead on 9/11. Hopefully a massive blip but if it keeps up then imagine a 9/11 every 3 days. 145k dead in the US so far.

Up here things are better but starting to slide. I'm glad to see mandatory mask orders showing up regularly now - here in London I am seeing them all the time now that the city has made them mandatory. I'm even seeing people wearing them while walking on the street now. 29 dead on July 8th was the highest of this month in Canada (less than 1/3rd of the US rate factoring in population) with just 4 yesterday. Sadly cases starting to rise again with 685 on the 19th and 575 yesterday. May 25th was the last 1,000 day. We need people to put the bloody masks on more often - lets kill this thing.
John Northey - Thursday, July 23 2020 @ 07:42 PM EDT (#388339) #
For the places the Jays are talking about going to...

Ontario: population 14.5 million, cases yesterday 103, 38,210 total, 2,755 dead
Connecticut: population 3.5 million, cases yesterday 83, 48,232 total, 4,410 dead
Maryland: population 6 million, cases yesterday 664, 80,836 total, 3,281 dead
Pennsylvania: population 12.8 million, cases yesterday 792, 104,358 total, 7,079 dead

Yeah, I'd say those states have nothing to brag about vs Ontario.
christaylor - Friday, July 24 2020 @ 08:59 AM EDT (#388348) #
There's more that goes into this number, the false-negative rate from the data could be inflated with people who are getting tested via known contact too early for the virus to be detectable via the test. The number is probably much lower for those showing symptoms. Barring going back to a total lock-down scenario we're going to see flare-ups and re-emergence of the disease even in places where the numbers currently look good. The key will be getting the news out locally and folks voluntarily behaving responsibly when the inevitable flare-ups occur.

I'm an optimist, we're learning, we keep learning, both behaviorally and on the medical treatment side with a few promising drugs showing clinical evidence for reducing lethality and hospital stays. Polling shows a greater acceptance of masks even in states that were previously mask-skeptical.
Mike Green - Friday, July 24 2020 @ 10:01 AM EDT (#388350) #
It's a really slow learning curve- which is why Alberta and BC are now having new problems despite the well-publicized disasters in the southern (and western) US.

In other COVID news, a recent study of blood donors in Canada has about 1% of the population having antibodies in the blood.  It's probably a modest undercount because people with symptoms don't usually give blood.  Still the number is lower than anticipated and may indicate that a significant number of people who had the virus and were asymptomatic no longer have measurable antibodies. 
scottt - Saturday, July 25 2020 @ 11:57 AM EDT (#388391) #
Just watched an airline advocate on the news who can't wait until the borders are open, hopefully in August and who want the 14-day self-quarantine requirement to be dropped in Canada ASAP.
scottt - Monday, July 27 2020 @ 01:54 PM EDT (#388501) #
The Phillies were the first team to have an outbreak, with 12 players testing positive at intake.
They haven't had a positive case since.

Also consider that Trump is trying to reopen the schools with some having classes in as little as 2 weeks from now.

scottt - Thursday, July 30 2020 @ 08:47 AM EDT (#388619) #
There are no plan to force the players to quarantine while on the road.
Instead the league is encouraging the players to socially distance.
Also, each team will now have a compliance officer while on the road whose job will be to make sure the team follow the protocols and don't sit together on the buses.
Also, cloth masks are apparently banned in favour of surgical masks.
I guess they don't trust the players to wash their masks.

hypobole - Thursday, July 30 2020 @ 11:42 AM EDT (#388624) #
Another Marlin has tested positive. Don't know if contact tracing will find the original source, but rumour has it at least one Marlins player went to an Atlanta strip joint during their last exhibition series.

The big positive with the expanded playoffs is that with most every team thinking they have a chance, players should think twice before doing something reckless. And the Marlins situation is a big wake-up call for anyone who didn't realize or believe the gravity of the pandemic.
scottt - Friday, July 31 2020 @ 12:22 PM EDT (#388655) #
Two Cardinal pitchers have tested positive.
It's interesting that the pitchers are the least exposed but the first to pick up the virus.
Too much free time?

The Marlins are up to 18 players and 2 staff members.

I find it amusing that Markakis is opting back in.
So, things are better than he expected?

scottt - Friday, July 31 2020 @ 06:46 PM EDT (#388659) #
Ottawa has become the hottest zone in Ontario.
It's mostly because the other zones, like Toronto, weren't in phase 3.

Today we got another 25 cases.
We got 10 active outbreaks, 4 in day cares, 3 in retirement homes, 3 in nursing homes.

AWeb - Saturday, August 01 2020 @ 10:27 AM EDT (#388665) #
Cardinals with more than 5 positive tests for players now. Exactly how many game cancellations is mlb going to plow through? Also, remember when Shaw complained about a hypothetical bubble in Toronto? That was, and continues to be, the only possible way to make this work. It has already failed, but apparently that isn't going to stop mlb yet...
scottt - Monday, August 03 2020 @ 06:56 PM EDT (#388687) #
Cardinals have a total of 13 positives including 7 players.

Technically, the Cardinals are in a different *bubble* than the Marlins, so as long as they don't have more missed games than the Marlins, it doesn't really change anything. It's all from visiting a casino, so use replacement players and let the players feel bad for not being competitive. Or let them play a pile of double headers. It's all on them.

Buffalo has already announced that the players will not be allowed anywhere but in the hotel rooms and the stadium.

StephenT - Monday, August 03 2020 @ 08:06 PM EDT (#388689) #
It's not supposed to be the case that the whole club gets it if one player gets it.

The players aren't supposed to be hanging around with each other indoors.

This '1000 particles' article is the best I've read on which situations are risky:
scottt - Tuesday, August 04 2020 @ 10:48 AM EDT (#388699) #
You are absolutely right. They are not distancing in the clubhouses and benches.
Mike Green - Tuesday, August 04 2020 @ 12:16 PM EDT (#388703) #
Warning. The article StephenT  linked to was a good one, but it is 2 months old, an awfully long time for this virus. We now know that surfaces present much less risk than feared, for instance. And there's nothing about masks!
StephenT - Wednesday, August 05 2020 @ 01:14 AM EDT (#388715) #
Thanks Mike.  The same author did both earlier and later posts on masks, which you can find at the site home page (though I'd recommend reading the linked article first).

My main takeaway is that cloth masks may catch ~50% of the viral particles you breathe out, but could range from 10% to 90% depending on the mask, the fit, etc.
Mike Green - Wednesday, August 05 2020 @ 08:36 AM EDT (#388716) #
For baseball purposes, it's shocking that the protocols wouldn't provide for training on masks and require mask usage in the dugout during games and at other appropriate times. There's no reason baseball couldn't get mask effectiveness at the 85-90 per cent range with top quality masks well-fitted and with players trained to use them.
StephenT - Wednesday, August 05 2020 @ 11:53 PM EDT (#388728) #
Reportedly Mike is getting his wish on masks in the dugouts:

On airplanes, they're even upgrading to surgical masks, thinking that's where some of the Marlins' spread occurred.

I was surprised when the schedule came out that it still averaged just 3 games per series.
They could easily have made every series 5 games (road and home with the 4 division opponents, road or home with 4 of 5 interleague opponents (miss 1 interleague team)).
That would have reduced the number of plane trips.
scottt - Thursday, August 06 2020 @ 06:07 AM EDT (#388730) #
What's more puzzling is that there are uneven series 7-3 when they could have gone 6-4. (home-away)

The primary concern is always to have all teams playing Friday to Sunday. That's where the money is.
If you make those 5 game series, that only leaves 2 days in the week. You need some off-day and there can't be 1 day series, so that's mostly why it is what it is. 

Mike Green - Thursday, August 06 2020 @ 09:03 AM EDT (#388731) #
In a pandemic, late is better than never, but much worse than on time. MLB failed to implement the necessary rules at the outset; in that, they are hardly alone. Most countries/provinces/states have botched school reopening.

We haven't had an outbreak yet in the West in baseball, and conditions generally are probably better now than they are likely to be in October. My glass might be half full, but it ain't water in there.
hypobole - Friday, August 07 2020 @ 01:37 PM EDT (#388764) #
Cards with another positive test and another postponed game.
scottt - Friday, August 07 2020 @ 02:03 PM EDT (#388765) #
Perhaps, MLB is given us a preview of the schools reopening.
We'll have outbreak here and there and the majority will try to press on.

The saving grace is that you can only get Covid once, so a second outbreak in the same team because less likely.
Impacted teams will miss some games and impacted players will be replaced temporarily.

Mike Green - Friday, August 07 2020 @ 02:25 PM EDT (#388766) #
There is a dispute in the medical community about whether reinfection can occur as a regular matter.  David Naylor tweeted that it is likely that some partial immunity lasts for months but that it is unlikely that infection will provide full immunity in most cases. 
scottt - Saturday, August 08 2020 @ 07:27 AM EDT (#388777) #
There isn't enough data here to reach a conclusion.
Not scientifically, anyway.
But I can still do some basic math.
The US has over 5 million confirmed cases, so probably between 20 and 50 millions actual cases and a very large portion of those have been re-exposed to the virus. Any person who gets covid twice would make a lot of noise and be on the news.

So, I'm pretty confident that, if I get Covid-19 a second time in a 6 month period, I'd probably be asymptomatic, at worst, the second time.

We don't know beyond 6 months. That is true.

My own guess is that  we're getting at least a couple years of immunity and that a reinfection works mostly like a vaccine booster shot.

StephenT - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 02:46 AM EDT (#388803) #
The Z Plesac story gives me the impression, though I've never seen it stated, that every team is essentially in quarantine on its road trips (just hotel and ballpark), whether there's a local government imposed rule or not.
scottt - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 08:31 AM EDT (#388805) #
So far, I don't think there's been any team-to-team transmission and I'm not aware of any baseball player infecting the home town.
Mike Green - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 09:35 AM EDT (#388806) #
It's unlikely that there would be reporting that citizen A in some major league town got COVID-19 from a ballplayer in that town in a bar (say).  Given typical reproduction rates in the southern US, it's likely that did happen already.  For instance, we know that Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau and Idris Elba both contracted COVID at a WE conference in March, but there's no publicity about who they got it from.
scottt - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 03:29 PM EDT (#388810) #
Not sure. The Cards have stayed put, but the Marlins with symptoms were returned to Florida.

High profile people breaking quarantine do make the news. See Cummings in the UK.

Mike Green - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 03:41 PM EDT (#388811) #
Ballplayers are not in quarantine.  It was only 4 days ago that they were prohibited from going to bars under MLB protocols.
hypobole - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 03:55 PM EDT (#388812) #
Neither NHL or NBA has had a positive test since the players entered their respective bubbles.
scottt - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 04:33 PM EDT (#388817) #
Despite being under quarantine, Marlins players are being represented in the stands

Each state has their own health regulations.

scottt - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 04:35 PM EDT (#388818) #
Too bad that, unlike in baseball, there's no advantage to playing in the home town.
Both host teams are already out.

hypobole - Monday, August 10 2020 @ 08:22 PM EDT (#388821) #
Clevinger sent home by the Indians. He was with Plesac on the night out in Chicago.
scottt - Thursday, August 13 2020 @ 02:54 PM EDT (#388885) #
Another Cardinals coach has tested positive.

I wonder what these guys are doing. The incubation period shouldn't be this long.

scottt - Thursday, August 13 2020 @ 04:06 PM EDT (#388888) #
Plesac says they were social distancing and no more than 8 people and that the media is terrible and doing evil things to create stories.
scottt - Wednesday, November 18 2020 @ 10:33 AM EST (#392279) #
Maybe we could use a wave 2 Covid thread.

El Paso is one of the worse affected cities with 1/6 of the cases of Texas and no lockdown.

Over 1100 patients in hospital in the city.
Ten mobile morgues have been brought in.
Inmates are paid $2 an hour to move the bodies of the deceased.
One woman tells of burying both parents, 2 aunts and one cousin.

bpoz - Thursday, November 19 2020 @ 09:20 AM EST (#392291) #
USA is still unimproved in their strategy to contain Covid. The whole world is experiencing big increases.
Mike Green - Thursday, November 19 2020 @ 02:30 PM EST (#392297) #
Hypobole and I months had a discussion about COVID rates and governance.  There is one state with a death rate below 100 per million- Vermont.  And it has a Republican governor, Phil Scott.  The state has managed an infection rate of less than 1% among the homeless, as compared with a 25% rate nationwide.  Here's an article about what they did to control the virus. 

A white, male Republican doing the right thing is as rare as a white moose.  So, a tip of the cap to Mr. Scott.
greenfrog - Thursday, November 19 2020 @ 06:33 PM EST (#392299) #
Excerpt from a USA Today editorial today:

"Even so, in the past couple of weeks, unable to face reality and unwilling to concede his election loss to Joe Biden, Trump has sunk to new levels of depravity and narcissism.

"Rather than making the best of the situation, Trump spends his days golfing, concocting plots to overturn the election results, firing top officials who question him, planning how he might remain a kingmaker, and tweeting with the emotional clarity of a toddler left alone in his shopping cart."

. . . . .

"By refusing to allow President-elect Biden to begin his transition, Trump is ensuring that America’s grossly ineffective pandemic response continues into the first part of next year as the Biden team struggles to get its footing.

"Such spite and malice, on top of months of incompetence, is unheard of in American history."

No argument here.
scottt - Thursday, November 19 2020 @ 08:16 PM EST (#392302) #
Vermont has a population of 600K.
The largest town is Essex with a population below 20K.
This is kinda like comparing the maritime provinces with Ontario.

Mike Green - Thursday, November 19 2020 @ 08:24 PM EST (#392303) #
The Dakotas both have population of about the same number, and they have death rates of 797 and 1043 per million. Vermont  undoubtedly has some advantages but has done well with them, by not relying on them and by delivering services to those who need them. Almost every other state fell short on that.
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