Covid 11/4: The After Times

The hope is that the pandemic will be fully and truly over because case counts will be sufficiently low, and vaccination rates sufficiently high, that we can all agree to move on and resume our lives.

The fear is that this will never happen. Either cases will climb back up and be sufficiently high to justify a continued emergency state, or they won’t but people will react in a nonsensical and disproportionate way to a tiny risk, forever damaging or even destroying much of our way of life. 

At this point, that potential reaction is the true risk factor. Children as young as five can be vaccinated, and anyone who wants one can effectively get a booster shot. There’s no risk left in the room that is different from many other background risks we all take every day. 

Meanwhile, case counts stopped declining this week outside of the South, so the strategy of ‘wait until cases are much lower’ is looking like a less promising strategy than it did before.

For you, in your life, outside of official meddling, the pandemic is over for you, if and when you decide it is over. 

If you want them to, your After Times can start today.

As far as my personal life is concerned, the After Times started last week. Pandemic over. I’ll still have to flash my vaccination card and toggle my mask on and off as required, but that’s all for show. It’s over. If my building keeps requiring masks and keeps refusing to let delivery people go upstairs, that’s annoying, but so is it when one’s day sadly requires pants.

This past week I dove a bunch into the logistical situation at the Port of Long Beach, and the Tweetstorm that helped change the container stacking rule in the city. That first post was my most widely read post ever by a wide margin. I wrote a follow-up, and notice that the logistics issues seem urgent in a way that Covid issues increasingly do not seem urgent. Perhaps I can continue to work on transitioning away from a Covid focus towards a focus on things that now matter more, on a variety of fronts. The more of these posts I can keep short, the better. 

Executive Summary

  1. Child vaccinations for ages 5-11 good to go.
  2. Case counts may no longer be declining.
  3. Vaccine mandate compliance very high when mandates are actually enforced.

Let’s run the numbers.

The Numbers

Predictions

Prediction from last week: 400k cases (-9%) and 8,600 deaths (-10%).

Results: 442,620 cases (-1%) and 8,439 deaths (-11%).

Prediction for next week: 442k cases (no change) and 7500 deaths (-11%).

The death numbers are predictable. The case number is a major inflection point and will tell us a lot, given that cases stopped declining this week. It’s a very different story to see an increase versus no change versus a resumed decline, and all three are possible. For now I’m predicting no change, but it’s more likely that it meaningfully changes than that it stays essentially the same.

Deaths

Deaths continue to follow cases with several weeks of delay.

There was little uncertainty here, which may change in a few weeks if case counts have stopped declining, but it’s rare now that the death numbers tell us much that we didn’t already know.

Cases

Oh no.

Numbers in the South continue to decline, but the increases in the Midwest and Northeast are exactly what we’d expect to see if we’re headed for a winter wave. Positive test percentages tell the same story, so this is probably not a data artifact. I don’t want to draw too many conclusions from one week of data, and child vaccinations are about to start which could help a lot, but the chances of things fading away into the background that easily seem a lot lower than they did last week.

Vaccinations 

Vaccine Effectiveness

Vaccines are safe and effective, and boosters make them far more effective. You know what might be less effective than the vaccine? Homeopathic treatment, also known as nothing. So here we are, Green Bay Packers.

What’s great about this story is Rodgers petitioning to have his homeopathic treatments ‘count as vaccination‘ and also the NFL pretending it didn’t know what the situation was while Rodgers was going around ignoring the rules for unvaccinated players. Whoops. 

Vaccine Mandates

San Francisco wastes zero time, moves to impose vaccine requirements on five year old children after an eight week period to ensure that children have enough time to get vaccinated. How very generous of them. 

That which is not forbidden is mandatory. That which is not mandatory is forbidden. If you’re voting to make something not forbidden in such a context, you really do need to consider that this is definitely going to happen. 

As I’ve repeatedly noted, there’s a big difference between not getting vaccinated under normal circumstances, and not getting vaccinated even though it will get you fired. That’s a big difference.

It makes sense that the vast majority of the unvaccinated, when push comes to shove and their job is on the line, choose vaccination.

And that’s exactly what happens.

From 66% to 98% means that 94% of all unvaccinated employees agreed to get vaccinated. 

New York had a similar experience.

What’s funny about the NYPD situation is that the same people who would have cheered and laughed at the cops for quitting, are also cheering and laughing at the cops for not quitting. 

Air Canada suspends 800 more than employees without pay for not being fully vaccinated. That’s about 3% of their workforce, so right in line with other numbers.

Here’s an ethics professor who got fired for not getting vaccinated, willing to take a strong stand and pay the price. Yes, such people exist, but they’re rare. It’s unfortunate that the second half of her statement repeats a lot of what I believe to be misinformation, rather than sticking to her principled position that the danger level of Covid-19 simply doesn’t rise to the level that justifies violating bodily autonomy. 

This is in contrast to places where the alternative is weekly testing, especially when that weekly testing doesn’t actually happen. Those tactics are less effective. 

The Federal mandate isn’t going into effect until January 4, if it happens at all. Companies might find ways to not enforce it, but I expect similarly high compliance rates at any companies that do enforce it, and among federal employees, if and when it does go into effect. Republicans are trying to kill the mandate.

Does this mean that work requirements are effectively mostly involuntary? 

It could mean that, but it could also mean that switching jobs is annoying and expensive (and that for those where it wasn’t and they cared a lot about not being vaccinated, they simply already left), and it turns out that defiance of the vaccine mandate is shallow. In the face of actual costs, most fold like cheap tents. I’d expect the same if there was an (actually enforced) reasonably sized fine involved.

It also makes sense that many of the few who don’t do that are taking a stand for actual reasons, like allergic reactions.

There’s supposed to be medical exceptions available, but inevitably some people aren’t being given exemptions they need, because if you are sure to give out all the exemptions people need then lots of other people will get fake exemptions, so it’s very hard to not have this ruined for everyone. 

There’s also this approach. It’s not a great look, but the logic behind it makes sense. You often don’t get a death benefit in case of a suicide either (a comment suggests you sometimes do and I’m confused why that isn’t a very bad idea), and also I’m not sure why those who want it shouldn’t be buying their own life insurance, which charges different prices depending on a wide variety of risk factors.

These days, workers who refuse to get vaccinated against covid-19 may face financial repercussions, from higher health insurance premiums to loss of their jobs. Now, the financial fallout might follow workers beyond the grave. If they die of covid and weren’t vaccinated, their families may not get death benefits they would otherwise have received.

New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority no longer pays a $500,000 death benefit to the families of subway, bus and commuter rail workers who die of covid if the workers were unvaccinated at the time of death.

“It strikes me as needlessly cruel,” said Mark DeBofsky, a lawyer at DeBofsky Sherman Casciari Reynolds in Chicago who represents workers in benefit disputes.

Other employers have similar concerns about providing death or other benefits to employees who refuse to be vaccinated.

NPIs Including Mask and Testing Mandates 

This week’s investigation into our lack of reasonably priced or widely available rapid tests finds the same thing as every other investigation: The FDA dragged their feet sufficiently to drive most providers out of the market, so the few that are approved charge a lot.

Image

Think of the Children

The referenced article makes the obvious point that vaccinated five-year-old children have almost exactly as much reason to wear masks in 2021 as they did in 2019. The fully vaccinated colleges are in deeply similar situations. For whatever reasons, the lives of young people are expendable and their experiences are not important, but their safety even at probabilities very hard to distinguish from zero has been declared paramount.

Young children being vaccinated opens the latest front in the war. Make no mistake, there is a war. 

In Other News

Britain approves molnupiravir, Merck’s treatment pill for Covid-19 (WaPo). 

I’m shocked, shocked to find politics going on in this establishment. 

The things policy isn’t being driven by here seem right. The thing it is does not seem complete, as those in Public Health and who are Very Serious People or offer Elite Consensus clearly can compete with and sometimes overrule public opinion, often not for the better. But yeah, science? How many divisions does it have?

It’s easy to confuse cause and effect. Often the people approve of whatever restrictions such folks get put into place, and blindly follow ‘official guidelines,’ rather than the other way around. Politicians in many places think they’re following polls, and maybe they even are, but that doesn’t mean that regular people are meaningfully driving events. It does offer hope and a (difficult to implement) model of action, if one could convince the public directly. 

In honor of polls driving policy, here are some recent poll numbers from Wisconsin, to give some context of where the public is on these matters. 

Mask requirements for schools split parents down the middle, and are strongly supported by those without children. That’s before child vaccinations, which presumably will move the needle on that at least a little. The same people who support mask requirements are very concerned about children falling behind or having mental health problems (and also, in an unrelated note, inflation). 

New Fluvoxamine results are in, and they look good. This now seems clearly like it should be part of the standard of care in appropriate cases.

I fully endorse that this is too good to check, so not checking.

Image
Image
Image

Is it probably fake? Sure, as a very early comment points out, but that’s fine. Occasionally, in this world, there is justice.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

45 Responses to Covid 11/4: The After Times

  1. lunashields says:

    I have to note that life insurances do cover suicides after you have the policy for 2 years. Presumably most employees of metra worked there for longer as well, so suddenly adding exclusions one-sided isn’t a particularly great move.

    • TheZvi says:

      Wait, what? I’ve always heard this the other way. And they really shouldn’t cover it, right? To avoid the incentives?

      • Sebastian H says:

        It’s an admission that for the purposes of calculating life insurance statistics, someone willing to wait 2 years to commit suicide is about as unlikely to actually commit suicide as someone who just doesn’t want to commit suicide at all.

      • lunashields says:

        After 2(sometimes 3) years have passed, they pay out in any case. It may be due to laws and not their own volition, but that’s how it works.

      • TheZvi says:

        I mean the wait time certainly helps a lot – you can’t make the obvious play right away – but I’d still be pretty worried about this.

      • lunashields says:

        Now, this is the most hilarious part (of course it’s “typically”, so perhaps NY has it different, but still) – “Group Life Insurance
        Unlike most individual life insurance policies, many group life policies—the kind of life insurance people often get through their employers—do not have a suicide clause. If a covered person dies as a result of suicide, their beneficiaries will typically receive the death benefit.”

        So they WILL most likely pay out in case of suicide, but not in case of dying from covid unvaccinated. Which makes total sense, of course, only natural.

      • David W says:

        Insurance regulation is naturally more concerned with the incentive to collect premiums and then fail to pay out valid claims, than with the converse. Further, me falling into depression followed by suicide is a risk I want to protect my family against, and it’s not entirely a scenario I can avoid by choosing to avoid.

        Thus, screening for the most obvious bad faith by having the blackout period, and otherwise the insurance companies rely on the fact that most people want to live, just like they rely on deductables in other situations. 2 years out the risk is statistical enough that actuary science governs, not incentives.

      • John says:

        Agree with everything else that’s been written here. This has been the “rule” for decades. Employer-based group policies written on a “guaranteed issue” basis pay for death for any reason immediately. Individual policies have a two-year “contestability” period, meaning if you die within the first two years after the policy is issued, the insurer can cancel the policy and just refund the premiums paid if they learn that you lied about your health status on the application or you committed suicide. After two years, the policy becomes “incontestable” so even if you lied or commit suicide, your beneficiaries receive the full death benefit.

        The two-year rule is really a way of balancing the need to protect the insurance company against “adverse selection,” with the need to provide certainty for consumers. They don’t want people signing up right after their doctor told them they have no more than three months to live, nor the day before they decide to kill themselves. In principle I guess there is some “moral hazard” involved with life insurance just like any other insurnace. Maybe after two years you won’t take care of your health that well or you’ll even kill yourself because your family can get money. But I suspect this kind of “moral hazard” has only an extremely weak effect. Most people are going to decide whether or not to stay alive based on other considerations; the insurance benefit usually isn’t enough to change someone’s “live or die” decision. (And most people think suicide invalidates the policy entirely, so the moral hazard really only applies to the small number of people who know these details.)

        Many life insurance products like whole/universal life are intended as combination investment and life insurance products, and some owners of these policies might have used the policy as their primary savings vehicle. It would be quite cruel to treat the happenstance that someone died through suicide as a basis for forfeiture of their family’s interest in a policy like that. Obviously if you invest in the stock market or save in a bank, the money isn’t taken away from your family just because you committed suicide.

      • Doug S. says:

        State laws require that life insurance policies that you’ve had for either one or two years (depending on the state) have to pay out even if the death was a suicide. So far, there has not been an adverse selection death spiral because of this. (Which also leads to an unconventional way to talk someone out of suicide: tell them they can leave someone a lot of money if they buy life insurance and wait two years before killing themselves.)

      • Alsadius says:

        I used to sell life insurance in Canada. A two-year suicide clause is standard. Generally, you don’t have extra risk from waiting, and litigating whether certain deaths were suicide or accident is both cruel and expensive.

        I once heard a talk from an insurance actuary who mentioned that one red flag for them is a middle-aged family man who’s in financial trouble. They *have* had cases where those guys buy insurance policies, wait the two years, and then…provide for their families, shall we say. (This is a big part of why a life insurance policy application has financial questions, not just medical, and why they cap the amount of coverage you can buy.)

  2. Dave says:

    Lol, that Carl Beijer thing is @dadboner-level fake. That’s my vote anyway.

  3. Eye Beams are Cool says:

    You asked for more Wegovy updates. Here they are:
    1) The name is still stupid.
    2) The drug works. I started the second dose level, 0.5 mg/week. I’ve had signficant changes to satiety signaling. For the first time in my life I get full after eating a typically sized meal*. When I eat on autopilot and have the kind of meal I used to have all the time**, I get distractingly, painfully full. This is unprecidented for me.
    3) I ate semi-ad-libitum on Monday eating the same kind of low calorie density food as normal, and ended up eating about 1800 calories. My BRM is ~2600 according to a recent Body Gem test and my TDEE is 3770 according to MacroFactor. I felt like absolute shit Tuesday, and had to find some calorie dense food to feel normal. AKA I stole a bunch of haloween candy from my kids. I’ve found if I eat below my BRM I usally experience adaptive thermogenesis symptoms*** real hard and real fast, so no change on that front. But no reason to expect it either.
    4) The end result is that my script is flipped. I used to be “Eat no more than” and “live with the hunger” and now I’m “Eat at least” and “live with the bloat”. My new normal is way better because I can just measure out some trail mix and get hundreds of calories in a small handful of food.
    5) For someone who doest suffer from such strong and sudden AT symptoms and isn’t the kind of person who can log their food, I bet this stuff will still work.
    6) My “trend weight” in Macro Factor is sitting between -1 and -3 lbs a week, which hasn’t changed since starting this drug. But compliance with hitting my calorie targets is night-and-day easier.
    7) No changes in enjoyment of the food in front of me, or aversion to good-tasting food.

    COVID thoughts
    1) If you are a decision maker for an organization of any type, you need to decide what your covid endgame *NOW*, and get it documented *NOW* with a specific “When X happens, Y policy will end”. Then, you can say “Don’t look at me, I’m just following the rules.” Which has always been a bullshit excuse for any organization, but it is apparently also a mystical incantation that makes people nod and say “Ok”.
    2) My state has robust school choice laws, and I live in the biggest metro, so I have a number of choices for my family that are all no-out-of-pocket options. And than God. I won’t say “Competition solves all problems” but I will say “A limited amount of competition has, in this case, solved a very specific problem”, the problem being our local school is more concerned with placating the teacher union than it is with supporting the emotional health of its special education students.
    3) Both sides can be wrong, and in a lot of cases, I’m seeing both dominant tribes here in the US being wrong about lots of stuff. Fortunantly I’m an enlighted soul and above such petty squabling and am guided by a pure persuit of truth and love for my common man.

    *Example: A sandwich, applie, little bag of chips, and a glass of water, 750 cal
    **Example: Same as above + a protein shake and cup of yoghurt, 1200 cal
    ***Are they symptoms? Or just effect? I’m just a simple country lexicographer.

  4. Sniffnoy says:

    I’m a little confused as to whether vaccination of children 5-11 has actually started yet. It’s been approved, but my understanding is many places may be waiting to receive specially-packaged pediatric doses, and I don’t know to what extent those have actually hit pharmacies yet.

  5. Return to normal? Yeah, that mostly seems like a good idea. There’s one personal thing I’m still worried about though. Wondering if I could get your opinion.

    I am a young guy that for various reasons lives in a large apartment that usually only accepts seniors. I already have my booster, and I am sure that a very large percentage of the seniors are vaccinated, but still. I worry about exposing the most at risk population.

    There are a couple reasons I might want to hang around public places in the building. But these are moderate pleasures: it would make my life more enjoyable, but only marginally. That being the case, if I can avoid those places indefinitely, do you think it’s right for me to return to them?

    • TheZvi says:

      I would use those areas however it makes sense to use them. Others who go there are also choosing to be in the public areas and all seniors have full access to boosters.

      I can see an argument for avoiding them if (and only if) you are taking other relatively very large risks wrt infection.

  6. Jeff says:

    I don’t think life insurance should pay out for COVID. Being unvaccinated is a little like BASE jumping — you can go do dumb risky shit if you want [1], but I don’t want you in the same life insurance pool as me driving up my premiums. And if 95% of my coworkers are vaccinated, there’s no reason for our employer to offer “huge pay out if you die from BASE jumping” as a workplace benefit out of the same budget that might otherwise get me a pay hike or at least a team outing.

    [1] well, being unvaccinated means you can spread the virus, so it’s more like if you were BASE jumping over a crowded pedestrian plaza, but the general point still holds

    • John says:

      Being vaccinated means you can spread the virus, so everyone is BASE jumping.

      • Jeff says:

        Being vaccinated turns COVID into something not much worse common cold. You might get a little sick, you might make someone else who’s vaccinated a little sick, but nothing we didn’t all live with normally pre-pandemic.

        There’s a big caveat for severely immune compromised people… but they’re still way better off being around vaccinated people than unvaccinated people. Much lower risk of getting infected at all, and way lower viral load if you do get exposed.

    • jaed says:

      Does your workplace’s life insurance exclude employees who BASE jump on weekends?

      • Jeff says:

        Pretty much, yes. If you want supplemental coverage beyond the fairly meager automatic amount, you have to go through a risk-screening process. I don’t know if it asks about BASE jumping, but life insurance usually asks about smoking and other such activities.

    • Alsadius says:

      BASE jumping is covered under a standard insurance policy. You need to disclose at the time of application if you’re into any extreme sports, and if you are then you might get an exclusion. But if you pick one up afterwards, it’s typically covered just like any other death.

  7. Brett Bellmore says:

    “It makes sense that the vast majority of the unvaccinated, when push comes to shove and their job is on the line, choose vaccination.”

    The problem going forward is that being vaccinated against your will due to a serious threat doesn’t leave you vaccinated. It leaves you vaccinated *and pissed off*. The companies that compel this are going to lose a great deal of employee good will, and that anger is going to be looking for a target.

    Pissing off a huge number of people is not an insignificant cost.

    • Jeff says:

      At a normal job this doesn’t even crack the top 10 list of most annoying things the job makes you do during the week you get vaccinated [1]. So I doubt people would stay all that pissed off for long.

      [1] I have an extremely cushy job where I can work from home and set my own hours, and there’s still a whole mess of way more annoying stuff.

      • Matty Wacksen says:

        Who are you to rule on whether or not being forced to get vaccinated should piss someone else off. The point isn’t (just) the vaccine, it’s also the fact that you are being forced to get it against your will. I got vaccinated a few months ago, and I’m still kind of pissed off that I got pressured into it.

  8. Seb says:

    That quote from Jordan Peterson is one of those things that seems reasonably likely to be true until you actually look at what our provincial governments here in Canada have been doing.

    It’s been clear since at least April of 2020, for example, that the Ontario government (where I live) is basing its policies on some unfathomable mix of a) pretending you listen to scientists sometimes, and b) pretending to listen to public opinion sometimes. Also, with a side of c) making policies that have visible effects (like closing playgrounds) instead of policies that are actually going to control or end the pandemic.

    This week they decided not to mandate vaccinations for hospital staff despite the public health officials, the doctors, the hospital CEOs, public opinion, and their own government science table telling them to do it.

    So, this is my way of saying that Peterson is clearly wrong, at least as Ontario is concerned.

  9. myst_05 says:

    Perverse incentives: if you have that employee insurance policy and you’re unvaxxed and infected with COVID, it seems prudent to commit suicide if it looks like you’re headed for the worst at the hospital. I do hope they change their mind on that one before someone actually does this.

  10. Matty Wacksen says:

    > because if you are sure to give out all the exemptions people need then lots of other people will get fake exemptions, so it’s very hard to not have this ruined for everyone.

    One way of looking at this, is that the only stable equilibrium that preserves human dignity is the sub-optimal “ruins things for everyone”. What counts as a “fake” exemption anyways? Is someone who had an allergic reaction to a vaccine as a child and now is worried about getting a vaccine with an unusually high number of side effects a “fake exemption”? I’m pretty sure you could find a doctor who would rule re: the case of Polimath’s uncle. And how can you, or the government, presume to be in a place to judge here?

    I am continuously shocked by how suddenly certain suboptimal situations are no longer acceptable. Have we learnt nothing from the cold war? I’m still waiting for optimal central economic planning to make a comeback – after all, we have tolerated “free” individuals making suboptimal choices here in the west for long enough given that their choices directly harm the poor, minorities, and other disenfranchised people.

    Having a vaccine “mandate” that can be circumvented is suboptimal, but it takes a very twisted view of the humanity of the outgroup to assume that each of them will fake things if given the choice.

    • Matty Wacksen says:

      Apologies, I misread, you said “lots of people” which I guess doesn’t directly imply everyone. However, I struggle to see how things are ruined for “everyone” unless a sizeable majority fakes things. Even then, what exactly is ruined?

  11. Bobboccio says:

    I wish I lived in a jurisdiction where I could declare COVID over for me. I’m not sure how to start regaining my freedoms now, when everything (ok not everything, but a lot) remains illegal

  12. Nigella says:

    Any hope in a daily teaspoon of ground black cumin seeds? https://c19ns.com/meta.html

    • Im.Cumin says:

      Just wanted to signal-boost the question. FLCCC mentions 40 mg/kg of black cumin seeds daily in its protocol (as an alternative to questionable iv,ermec.tin, for prevention).

  13. bke says:

    The statement “the pandemic is over if you’re vaccinated” needs some more elaboration because it’s quite ambiguous what people mean when they say this.

    Vaccines “work” and that means, *given that you get covid* and vaccinated, the outcome is likely as if you got the flu. The flu is still pretty bad but we’ve learned to accept the risk.

    But if it is true, that transmission isn’t too much affected by vaccination, and given that covid is much more transmissible than the flu, you are much more likely to get it even when vaccinated.

    So continuing mask mandates even after the majority is vaccinated, possibly indefinitely, seems reasonable to me. There has been ~17 million covid deaths worldwide in almost 2 years, so let’s say vaccination is 95% effective at preventing death while not affecting transmission, that’s ~500k deaths per year, so *with* mask mandates and occasional lockdowns, we are down to the usual death toll of the flu.

    • Tom W says:

      Many of these numbers you’re working with here are… suspect, if not entirely incorrect.

      Getting vaccinated and then getting Covid is not as bad as getting the flu for most people (keep in mind the flu is pretty bad for a lot of people!) It’s much more likely that a vaccinated individual develops mild, if any, symptoms, and that’s assuming they get it at all–vaccines are also very protective against catching it in the first place!

      Transmission, also, requires catching the disease in the first place, so vaccination significantly reduces transmission. We have lots of very good data to back up both these points!

      Mask mandates, on the other hand … to the extent that they “work”, according to the CDC’s own studies, decrease the growth rate by about 0.5 to 2 percent: https://www.factcheck.org/2021/03/scicheck-posts-distort-cdc-study-supporting-masks-mandates-to-reduce-covid-19/

      Lockdowns do seem to work, for a time, when first implemented. But as with mask mandates, they decrease in effectiveness as people get annoyed or fatigued and stop complying.

      If you are really proposing that we keep these “temporary” massively inconvenient restrictions on human life forever, at least have the courtesy of using actual numbers to do so.

  14. myst_05 says:

    I’ve had an interesting experience today trying to get a booster in Washington. The local pharmacy had a sign about offering boosters for a couple of weeks so I just rolled in without an appointment on a quiet Saturday morning. Literally there was 1 person who was getting some meds, 1 person in the “15 minute post-vaccine waiting zone” and the rest were store employees. The following conversation occurred:

    – Do you have an appointment?
    – No, I’m here as a walk-in
    – Sorry, appointments only
    – Oh, do you guys not have enough shots for walk-ins?
    – No we have shots but we need to space people apart
    – Um… I’m literally the only person here, can I get a booster please?
    – Nope, maybe come back in the afternoon in case we have no shows, but we can’t promise
    – But… you have the vaccine, you don’t have other customers, can I just get it, it literally takes like 30 seconds?
    – Nope, get an appointment
    – (checking phone) The next available appointment is in… 10 days?
    – Yes, that’s right

    It seems like the combination of boosters and child vaccines “broke” the existing system and now we’re sorta back to the March/April situation of vaccines being hard to get – not because of short supply, but because the system is not designed to work efficiently. I do wonder how many people during the next month will finally gain the courage to get vaccinated, walk into a pharmacy and be told to “go get an appointment” by an irritated pharmacist… I suspect a lot of those people will never come back.

    • TheZvi says:

      That’s very different from me getting an appointment in about 45 minutes literally 1 block away. Sounds to me like this pharmacy noticed that vaccine boosters make it zero money and carry various annoyances and thus doesn’t actually want you there?

      • myst_05 says:

        I’ve tried booking a slot on CVS, Walgreens, Bartell Drugs and the city’s own vaccination site – all were booked out for at least a week as far as I could tell. I’ve then tried the vaccine appointment finders that were popular in March/April and turns out they’re all shutdown by now due to lack of demand.

        I also got a reply from customer support of that pharmacy as I’ve emailed them to let them know about the problem. They said pharmacists have other prescriptions to handle, so best they can do is 1 person getting a shot every 15 minutes – and even those 15 minute slots are not covering their full opening hours. So yeah – looks like vaccines are not making enough money for them to do more than the bare minimum, at least in Washington. Probably wasn’t an issue until the combo of boosters and 5-11 vaccinations hit them.

  15. Eigengrau says:

    Petition for Zvi to stop quoting dishonest idiots/trolls on twitter. Poli “Big Bird is Literally Evil” Math, Jordan “diversity means different and equality means the same and these are opposites, so isn’t diversity bad then?” Peterson, and Carl “just obviously trolling” Beijar are not sources I like to see cited on an otherwise sober discussion of covid data and politics.

    • Alsadius says:

      I don’t know Beijar, but Polimath and Peterson are both in the category of “weird, and I don’t like some of their hobbyhorses, but they often have a point”.

      So I’ll counter-petition to keep quoting them when and where appropriate. Especially Polimath, who’s done a ton of quality covid data collection and analysis over the last year-plus.

      • TheZvi says:

        Going to basically echo this. Polimath generates valuable analysis posts where he goes into numbers, and is sincerely expressing his points otherwise, and I’m not about to exclude. Peterson I don’t follow directly but here he’s reporting the contents of a conversation and making a factual claim about it, and I don’t see any reason to presume he’s *lying* about such a thing.

        The Beijar thing is literally a joke included because it put a smile on my face and I thought I indicated that – it’s not trying to prove a point and yes I did notice it (probably) wasn’t real.

  16. Pingback: Covid 11/11: Winter and Effective Treatments Are Coming | Don't Worry About the Vase

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s