Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.


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The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. August 7-16. 250,000 people gathering for a week of music, motorcycles, dancing, sex, and sharing Covid-19. The mind, formerly boggled, reels uncontrollably. See previous post about large segments of the population still not understanding that Covid-19 has changed everything. They do have a link to a Covid tracker on their page, but that seems like the only concession they made. Understandably a lot of people are concerned, this is going to be the largest public gathering anywhere in the country since the pandemic arrived. Only about half as many people as usual are expected, so not every biker etc is living in fantasy land. Safe bet though that the ones that are attending are the people least likely to practice proper social distancing when they get home. Or to put it it in simple terms:

In the same vein, the cruise line industry started re-opening. What could possibly go wrong with cramming a huge bunch of people in an enclosed ship where they all breathe the same air? As almost any epidemiologist (excluding any that Trump suggests) could have predicted: A Covid-19 outbreak. I could say “What were they thinking?” I won’t because I don’t think they were thinking at all. Go to a huge concert or what not, get a terrible disease to go with your T-shirt. The new normal for those still in denial about Covid-19.

But wait, aren’t vaccines being rushed out? Won’t that just fix everything? Yes, and almost certainly no. There are two problems. First, at this point vaccines are being rushed into use without adequate trials. Russia claims to be in the lead, but experts have doubts. The Russians haven’t released any data about their trials for example. It’s basically a Hail Mary pass. They are hoping it doesn’t turn out to have negative side effects. They are hoping it works. Both assumptions are questionable. If the Covid-19 pandemic was a Hollywood movie, sure, at the last minute brilliant scientists would develop a vaccine and millions of lives would be saved. Life isn’t a Hollywood movie, a point that shouldn’t have to be repeated. Hell, shouldn’t have to be made in the first place.

Just off the top of my head I can think of three other reasons not to get too excited about a Covid-19 vaccine yet. First off, if any problems do result, the anti-vaxxers and other conspiracy folks will go nuts. People like these are already causing enough problems in the fight against Covid-19, giving them more ammunition won’t help. Secondly, it will make people think everything is under control and thus neglect other anti-Covid-19 measures; we need more compliance with masking and social distancing, not less. Thirdly, related to that, a vaccine is only part of the strategy to fight a dangerous infectious disease. Rigorous testing/tracking and quarantine programs are still needed to stay on top of the disease. A step that the US especially is failing.

Sigh. Moving right along. Just occurred to me that this election is the first wartime election since the 1960s. Granted a pandemic and a war are two different things, but the base comparison is valid. In both cases an ongoing event is killing Americans, and the situation on the ground so to speak can change rapidly. Another reason not to get too worked up about the election, or make predictions. At this point either candidate could win. Trump’s base tends to vote in large numbers for their demographic, and Biden’s “vote for me because I’m not Trump” is hardly inspiring.

Which reminds me, I just had a long talk with my uncle in Canada. Always good to keep in touch with family. One of the things he said was a  heartfelt “How the hell did one of the great nations on Earth end up with an election between two doorknobs?” A lot of us are wondering that too Uncle L. And he mentioned that Americans are not welcome in Canada right now. They’ve had too many incidents where Americans said they would self-quarantine, then been spotting noshing at a local bar. On the plus side the Americans then find out what it’s like being in a country that expects people to act like adults. $1500 fine, kicked out of the country, and likely banned from entering again.

Someone left a comment on my last post. I only hastily reviewed it. Something about Trump will save us all when he gets reelected. I’ll take a closer look and deconstruct it tomorrow if it’s worth deconstructing. What a year. What an election. “I’m not Trump” vs “I’ll fix all the problems I caused!” You can’t make this shit up. You’re right Uncle L, doorknob vs doorknob. Hope everyone had a good Monday (it is Monday, right?) Stay safe; likes, shares, comments, and anatomically possible suggestions welcome. #StaytheFHome #WearaDamnMask

PS: The movie in the top meme; Arrival, 2016. Great intellectual scifi movie, as opposed to the usual monster and alien invasion fare.

Copyright © 2020 Doug Stych. All rights reserved.

(Images publicly posted on Facebook of unknown genesis, used without permission. Claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law.)


Written by unitedcats

August 3, 2020 at 7:29 pm

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