Coronavirus

Increases in Coronavirus Cases Are Happening Mainly in States With Stricter COVID-19 Rules

The Washington Post nevertheless blames "a broad loosening of public health measures."

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When Texas Gov. Greg Abbott lifted most of his state's remaining COVID-19 restrictions at the beginning of March, critics warned that he was inviting a public health disaster. President Joe Biden said Abbott's changes, which among other things ended the state's face mask mandate and allowed businesses to serve customers at full capacity, reflected "Neanderthal thinking." Gilberto Hinojosa, chairman of the Texas Democratic Party, said the shift was "extraordinarily dangerous" and "will kill Texans."

A month after Abbott made those decisions, newly identified infections and daily deaths continue to decline in Texas. According to Worldometer's numbers, the seven-day average of daily new cases in Texas fell by 56 percent from March 1 to yesterday. Daily deaths fell by 64 percent during the same period.

New cases are on the rise in some states, prompting warnings that we are about to see a "fourth wave" as prematurely relaxed precautions allow the coronavirus to run wild in places where the population remains largely unvaccinated. Yet the states where cases are rising generally have stricter COVID-19 policies than Texas does.

"In the Midwest and Plains, Nebraska, Minnesota and Pennsylvania are among the states that have reported large increases," The Washington Post reports. "In the Northeast, states such as Delaware, Vermont and Maine have witnessed a similar incline."

The Post's inclusion of Nebraska, the one state with relatively loose policies, is rather puzzling, since cases there have been falling or essentially flat since early January. Yesterday the seven-day average of daily new cases in Nebraska, per Worldometer, was actually a bit lower than it was at the beginning of March.

Except for Nebraska, all of the states mentioned by the Post still legally require people to cover their faces in public. And except for Nebraska, all of these states continue to restrict indoor dining in restaurants. Minnesota allows restaurants to operate at 75 percent of their capacities. The same rule took effect yesterday in Pennsylvania, which previously had a 50 percent occupancy cap, a limit that still applies in Delaware, Maine, and Vermont.

The Post nevertheless says "experts…agree" that rising infection numbers are largely due to "a broad loosening of public health measures, such as mask mandates and limits on indoor dining," along with "increased spread of the more transmissible [virus] variants." The evidence so far does not seem to support that theory.

Mask mandates and stricter restaurant rules manifestly did not prevent daily cases from rising in five of the six states that the Post mentions. Other states that still require masks, including Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, and Washington, likewise have seen increases in new cases, some of them sizable, since March 1. In the 18 states that do not require face masks, cases are falling or flat everywhere except Florida, which has seen an uptick since mid-March.

None of this means that face masks are useless in reducing virus transmission. But it may mean that the difference between recommending face coverings (as Abbott, for example, continues to do) and legally requiring them is not as important as mask-mandate supporters tend to think—perhaps because most people are inclined to wear them anyway, perhaps because many businesses still require them after state mandates are lifted, or perhaps because of both. For what it's worth, the businesses I visit in Dallas still require face masks, and customers generally comply with that rule.

Likewise with restaurant restrictions. Perhaps there is a crucial public-health difference between banning and allowing indoor dining but not much of a difference between a 50 percent rule and a 75 percent rule, or between a 75 percent rule and no occupancy limit. Or perhaps restaurants are not a major source of virus transmission, as contact tracing data from New York and Minnesota suggest.

If you believe that government-imposed restrictions play a crucial role in reducing the spread of COVID-19, you will be inclined to blame relaxed restrictions for case increases, as the Post does. But when that assumption does not match what is happening, maybe it should be reconsidered.

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  1. The world health organization had to find the Corona virus vaccine by now. I think it does not fulfill its duties, it needs restructuring again.

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    2. The mask pussies like sullum will never admit that the coof hysteria was overblown.

      Georgia is an example of nonlockdown states that had similar inflated death rate to lockdown states like commifornia. Or lower.

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      2. Georgia and California are radically different states, with different population densities, land mass, and weather. The comparison is apples and oranges.

        1. Then just maybe each state should get to make its own rules based on its individual situation.

          Notwithstanding that California can fuck anything up.

          1. Then just maybe each state should get to make its own rules based on its individual situation.

            Oh sure… Next, you’ll suggest that states should have their own borders and police forces and voting laws! Why not just let every state have their own independent government too!?!

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  2. “The Post’s inclusion of Nebraska, the one state with relatively loose policies, is rather puzzling, since cases there have been falling or essentially flat since early January.”

    How is it puzzling at all that the Washington Post is lying?
    That is what they do.
    Their full motto is “Democracy must die in the darkness of ignored news”.

    1. if Sullum bags on WaPo his amazon deliveries will be blacklisted

    2. Democracy Dies in Darkness

      That’s their mission statement.

      1. And journalism slowly commits suicide in broad daylight.

    3. It’s cold in Nebraska and the population is not as urbanized as other states. People don’t go out as much when there are freezing temperatures and snow in their yard. They wear different masks – they call them scarves. The state can be ‘loose’ when there are only 2 restaurants within driving distance and it doesn’t typically rise above 40F outside Dec-February.

    4. Yeah – he assumes they are a news outlet instead of a propaganda outlet under Bezos’ control, who has a huge data hosting contract with the CIA.

      Connect the fucking dots…

  3. The Washington Post nevertheless blames “a broad loosening of public health measures.”

    Narratives, like customers, must be served.

    Even if it’s more virtue than virus.

    1. Everything that is not mandatory is not permitted.

  4. It’s population density. Populous states with urban density get more cases, Less populous and rural states get fewer cases. Do a county map of infection rates in Texas it it will not be uniform, the higher rates will be in D/FW, Houston, and Austin.

    Likewise the lower rates in California will be in the north and east. Ironically, those areas had the more severe lockdowns, but only because the state metrics are about the number of hospital beds. No hospitals in the county means no hospital beds, so the state locks you down. Which everyone in those counties pretty much ignore.

    1. [M]ore “cases.” [F]ewer “cases.”

      I see you are using the enemy’s nomenclature.

      1. People who disagree with you are not the enemy. There are many variables for each and every demographic. Age/race of the majority of the population, urban or rural, climate, principle occupations of the residents, numbers of transient residents/visitors through the area…etc.

        1. And the one metric that nobody mentions anymore is the overall fatality rate for this virus is less than 1%. Obviously higher in some demographics than others, but hardly worth torching over a third of the economy as a matter of policy. Can you imagine what will be when another one comes that is even 5% lethal?

    2. “It’s population density. Populous states with urban density get more cases, Less populous and rural states get fewer cases. Do a county map of infection rates in Texas it it will not be uniform, the higher rates will be in D/FW, Houston, and Austin.”

      To prove that proposition you need to compare Dallas, Houston and Austin, not just to more rural areas in Texas but other cities with similar population densities in states with tighter lockdowns.

      1. You also need to correct for widely different access to testing in rural versus urban areas.

        1. This too – wide variety of causal factors, not to mention POLITICS and those who suppress facts, data and data collection, and change the numbers.

    3. If you think that northern and eastern California had severe lockdowns, you are just wrong. The Bay Area was completely locked down. All you had to do was drive an hour and change north or east and restaurants, bars, etc. were open. County sheriffs refused to enforce the Governor’s lockdown order. Hell, I went to a completely packed axe-throwing bar in the Sierra foothills in the middle of November. I ate indoors at a diner in the Sierras in the middle of December. All of this while outdoor bars in the Bay were closed.

      1. Oh, sorry. Just saw the part about everyone ignoring them. This is 100% correct. Outside the Bay Area and LA County, the reaction is very much “fuck the Governor.”

        1. Sounds like a vast right-wing conspiracy.

          1. A REAAAALLLLYYYYY vast right wing conspiracy. Who would have thought all those right wingers would

        2. And yet they vote straight D for statewide offices and mostly strait D for congresscritters.

          1. I’m not a CA fan, and would welcome most of it to go into the ocean but the north and east don’t necessarily vote D. They are just outnumbered by the rest of the state. Remember no state is purely D or R.

      2. I’m talking about official lockdown, as in the stupid color codes. Yes the bars were still open, yes the sheriffs publicly stated they would ignore the “orders” from His Majesty. But it was those color codes that the karens and the media used to “prove” the reddish counties were a bunch of ignorant hicks.

        And yes, I dined indoors in December in one of those counties that was in Double Secret Purple Category Lockdown Panic.

      3. Hell, I went to a completely packed axe-throwing bar in the Sierra foothills in the middle of November.

        That sounds fucking awesome. Did they feature anything like an “Old 96er” steak special?

      4. Georgia places were never locked down by government.

        We have a steady influx of commifornians and other locked down staters for over a year.

      5. i refuse to go to any bar with axe-throwing unless people are wearing masks because it’s unsafe /s

        1. It’s the blindfolds that really keep you safe!

        2. I prefer “hard liquor and handgun night” at the cowboy bar. Get those rednecks liquored up, pass out the firearms, and let the fun begin!

          But only if everyone has a mask on.

      6. And this: rampant disregard for preventative practices. People who simply refuse to wear masks, stay home when possible, and congregate with friends and family anyway, vaccinated or not.

        1. Just go hide under your bed – we’ll give you the all-clear when it’s safe to come out.

    4. Do a county map of infection rates in Texas it it will not be uniform, the higher rates will be in D/FW, Houston, and Austin.

      Will you do so?

      1. Will you compare it to a county infection map in, say, New York – where the higher rates will be in the NYC region compared to upstate?

        1. Even if you are correct, it does illustrate why this sort of thing should never be mandated at the Federal level.

          Its obvious that the public health needs of Texas can not be met with a policy designed for New York – or vice versa.

          And no one is served by a ‘compromise’.

          1. Nor can the public health needs of, for example, Deaf Smith County, TX, be met by a policy designed for Dallas – or vice versa.

    5. Wrong. See Utah. Average density sizes as compared to many blue states. Stop repeating the latest leftist excuse dummy.

    6. Where I’m at in Ca, EDCO, we pretty much ignore the masks. I was in Shasta last weekend, also rural, and those people were in line with the mask mandates. But I still did wear mine and was left alone. I was surprised, I though the dopers would be more relaxed but it could have been bay people also? They are like Jews being lead to showers by the nazi’s

  5. ther states that still require masks, including Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, and Washington,

    If you’ve ever seen the women of North Jersey, you might think the mask mandate isn’t such a bad idea…

    1. Turns out masks are a great place for the virus to multiply.

      1. Uhm, that’s not how viruses work.

        1. Bacterial infections, on the other hand….

        2. This is, as I have been told, not an ordinary virus. It has many magical properties.

          1. Everybody knows the virus doesn’t multiply in masks – or in BLM riots.

            Only at Trump rallies.

        3. Fuck you. There has been zero cases of flu or any bacterial infections since march 2020. Its all kungflu.

          According to commies trying ti run the show anyway. The commies call if americoronavirus now. Were racists and killers.

          Not sure what “race” americans are but the commies are either right or dangerously wrong.

    2. Ouch! That was pretty harsh, Unicorn.

    3. I’m having my face shaved. It’s a Jersey thing.
      – Caroline

  6. I dunno what the big deal is, Indiana and Wisconsin’s lax gun laws have been exacerbating Chicago’s gun crime problem for decades. This is gun crime-as-pandemics 101 people. Anybody who thinks nonsense-lockdowns are just a socio-political tool to wield power needs to wake up. Follow the science!

    1. Its pretty obvious that the rising cases in New York, etc, are from criminals bringing in the infected from lax states like Texas and Arizona.

  7. The Post has this story about Biden’s administration saying they can’t do anything about an Egyptian government official torturing a man, due to diplomatic immunity, and doesn’t include any criticism. Strange, considering the excoriated Trump for using the same rationale about the killing by the Saudis.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/egypt-torture-lawsuit-immunity/2021/04/05/31d74746-93d9-11eb-a74e-1f4cf89fd948_story.html

    1. That was then (Trump), this is now (Biden).

    2. He was a journalist for gods sake! Totes different!

      1. Now now, I know we dislike journalists but saying they deserve torture is wee bit much.

        1. There are actual journalists? I thought we only had the pantomime kind.

      2. It’s not even that. The leftist media was just as mum about this as it was when Obama ordered the murder of an American journalist. Granted, that guy was a journalist for a terrorist propaganda outlet, but so was the guy that the Saudis killed.

    3. They didn’t do shit in the news about the Saudis – reported it because they had to, and pushed it off the front page ASAP. Now Biden has issued some sanctions so he can grandstand against Trump.

      Can you imagine if it happened in Russia? Maddow would be on 24/7/52 going on about it. And this dumb fuck president calls him a “killer” (which he may or may not be – but show some fucking evidence) while we prostrate ourselves before the Saudis because of the petrodollar. We don’t need Russia economically like we do China and Saudi Arabia, hence the difference.

      Trump and Biden both suck. A lot. Of course, neither one of them get to run the country anyway.

  8. Of course, that’s the point: exacerbate the crisis to damage the economy and public health for profit and political power. However I don’t blame politicians. I blame the people for letting this happen. They should have fought and not made cowardly excuses for running away. The war today is online, not in the streets or at the capitol.

    1. Still waiting on an answer as to how many people’s minds you’ve changed, and about what. Doesn’t need to be an exact number, just an estimate.

      1. A lot more than you. Plus you don’t have to change minds, just demoralize them so that they can’t change minds. If the people whose businesses were closed spent some of their free time joining the battle, we could have prevented a lot of the damage of these policies.

        And since you run from the fight online, you have no excuse for violence, insurrection or intimidating judges.

        1. You haven’t changed any minds and you’re a sad fucking joke.

          You spend your days pissing into the wind then attacking people for pointing out your arrogance and the futility of something you use as a cudgel but that does has done no good at all.

          When you post on Twitter you legitimize a tyrannical and censorious company.

          Attacking people for pointing this out just makes you look worse, and like you support tyranny and censorship.

          May be if your posts were an admonishment to boycott Twitter, you wouldn’t look like you’re cool woth their tyranny and censorship. Instead you attack people because you know you don’t have the guts or skill to do anything really effective, so you go on Twitter and they win because you’re legitimizing their battteground and the policies said battleground implemented.

          You’re not fighting on Twitter, you’re doing the modern equivalent of helping the SS find and round up Jews.

          NOW you’ll make lame excuses and pretend your back patting and self-congratulatory dick waving is something other than you being fully supportive of an evil company for your own petty reasons, and that attacking evil people like you is somehow a bad thing.

          1. I have a feeling the handle already suggests a lack of connection to reality; addiction is biologically real, even if it can be beat.

            1. It can be beat by believing in a higher power? Religion can cure disease? That suggests a lack of connection to reality.

              1. You miss the point of the whole “believing in a higher power” bit. That “higher power” can be anything you chose, including nothing at all. The point is to get recovering addicts to accept that they are not in control so that they don’t do the whole “I’ve got this” after being clean and/or sober for a few weeks.

                If the person choses to believe that they’re not in control because some higher power is, that’s their choice. But many addicts do just fine by merely accepting that they aren’t in control and that’s that.

          2. Of course we must fight on Twitter and facebook and all the other social media companies. And we must continue fighting until we win. You are just making cowardly excuses for running from the fight because you tried and got your ass handed to you. So now you attack me for exposing your perfidy.

            Eventually the socialists will come here and you’ll have no defense. And you’ll demand that Reason censor them. But there will be too many. And you’ll start analyzing my twitter feed to figure out how I won.

          3. He’s buying ad space in Pravda.

        2. Still haven’t answered my question.

          1. I’m sure I changed minds. People can read my tweets and see I won the argument and that changes minds too. And if more of us fought, we could change more minds. And we could distract the covidiots from influencing politicians and policy makers.

            Do you think propaganda changes minds? If so then why can’t truth?

            1. I’m sure I changed minds. People can read my tweets and see I won the argument and that changes minds too.

              LOL, no one changes minds on social media. It’s nothing more than a giant slapfighting contest.

              1. He changed my mind. I thought he was an asshole, now I think he is a retarded asshole.

  9. when is the It Was All A Giant Bunch of Baloney piece?

    1. Racist!

  10. This is where I start to flirt around with the press being “the enemy of the people”. What is it about the journalism class that has so much contempt for freedom of movement and thought?

    1. Envy is root of their contempt.

      1. Yeah, if a know-nothing like Trump can shoot from the hip with HCQ and hit the mark, then what do we need all these journalists and lab-coat fillers for?

    2. I think it’s enough that it’s true, with the why not really mattering in the grand scheme.

    3. They’re the propagandists of the progressive religion. It’s really that simple now.

      1. True but on many platforms you can freely respond to them and everyone can see. Why is their propaganda more effective than your ‘truth’? Or did you never even try? (Or are you back to insisting there’s no point in fighting.)

        1. There you go again suggesting that people should legitimize censorious and tyrannical companies because you cant do anything actually effective.

          1. I’ve been censored on Twitter and got back into the fight. I’ve also been censored on Reason. That’s just the nature of the beast. You are just looking for cowardly excuses to run from battle because you tried and got your ass handed to you.

            And when the socialists come here, you will hypocritically demand they be censored. And when that fails you will beg me to tell you how to fight them.

            1. WHen does Reason censor anyone?

              Or did you call someone a Kochsucker?

        2. True but on many platforms you can freely respond to them and everyone can see. Why is their propaganda more effective than your ‘truth’? Or did you never even try? (Or are you back to insisting there’s no point in fighting.)

          Perhaps someone hasn’t been paying attention to how said platforms limit your responses to the establishment media through banning, bogus ‘fact-check’ disclaimers and de-ranking.

          1. Cowardly excuses.

            I’ve been fighting on twitter for years. I’ve been censored and banned yet I got back up and fought. There are many other platforms you can fight on.

            And I’ve been banned right here on Reason. That’s just the nature of social media. You tried to fight and lost and now are just making cowardly excuses to hide here in your safe space.

            1. When you come back from a ban, how many people do you convince? You’ve been dodging this simple question for weeks now. I’m about to start thinking you’re full of shit, and treat you accordingly.

              1. Did you ever even try to fight?

                Every person I argue with learns something. And there have been hundreds of them. If you didn’t believe that, then why are you fighting me?

                The point is, as long as you run from the fight you have no excuse to resort to violence, insurrection or intimidating judges.

    4. They are comforted by a strong leader giving orders. They like the idea of dictatorship. What they object to is the wrong sort of person being dictator. They love a pol like Biden as Big Brother.

  11. I wonder if so called journalists ever feel bad about themselves acting as state sponsored propoganda tools who have no freedom of action regarding the truth. I suppose it’s like working for the actual government where you sell your soul everyday knowing that your bosses are nothing by bureaucratic Little Eichmanns.

    Also, yes this does prove that cloth masks were basically useless.

    1. they think they’re Winning Side

    2. Only useless from a medical perspective.
      They were useful as hell from a political perspective. Still are.

        1. (sorry, meant that for buckleup)

    3. Masks are worse than useless. They are bad for the wearer’s respiratory system, skin, and oral health. The politicians keep pushing them to make the sheeple think they are doing something about a virus that can’t be controlled, and those politicians are part of an Axis of Dishonesty along with the media and the medical establishment. For anyone who thinks the CDC doesn’t play politics, remember how it warned against large gatherings last year–unless the gatherings were for the purpose of protesting in support of the black lives matter Marxists.

  12. The fact that we’re still using “cases” as a metric is mind-boggling.

    1. Oh, it’s beyond that. When “cases” won’t suffice they go straight for the “excess deaths”.

      1. In my opinion, excess mortality data is the best indicator of what is truly happening. Excess mortality fell below the 95% PI the week of Feb 27 and has continued to dramatically fall ever since. Essentially signaling the end of this pandemic (at least in the US). https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/covid19/excess_deaths.htm

  13. Fuck you Sullum, you’re the enemy and you did this.

  14. WOW! It would almost make you think fresh air, sunshine and moderate exercise is good for you and could increase your immune system. Maybe someone should tell Dr. Fake-uci!

    1. “Dr. Fake-uci”

      Sorry, but fail.

      1. Faux-ci is too easy.

        1. Dr. Faust-i

  15. “None of this means that face masks are useless in reducing virus transmission.”

    Actually, the evidence Sullum described is consistent with exactly that: face masks are useless in reducing virus transmission. It is also consistent with the 100 years of mask studies: from the Spanish flu to 2019. You, Sullum, have nothing to justify your filthy mask wearing.

    1. It is also consistent with the 100 years of mask studies: from the Spanish flu to 2019

      Or, more precisely, April of 2020 when they began pretending like masks worked 100 years ago and we needed to do MOAR MASKING.

    2. You should follow the CDC guidelines; the real ones for everything BUT the Communist Chinese Virus.
      https://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/infectioncontrol/maskguidance.htm

      For the link-clicking averse:

      Unvaccinated Asymptomatic Persons, Including Those at High Risk for Influenza Complications:
      No recommendation can be made at this time for mask use in the community by asymptomatic persons, including those at high risk for complications, to prevent exposure to influenza viruses.

  16. In other breaking news, water usually appears when things have become wet.

  17. Is it really just so hard to state the obvious that masks really don’t do anything?

    It’s like an Emperor’s New Clothes situation. People are afraid to admit the obvious, because they will face being cancelled.

  18. So today in Reason, we have an article about 60 Minutes lying on behalf of Democrats, and a story about WaPo lying on behalf of Democrats.

    Maybe soon Reason will see some sort of pattern.

  19. Increases in Coronavirus Cases Are Happening Mainly in States With Stricter COVID-19 Rules
    The Washington Post nevertheless blames “a broad loosening of public health measures.”

    They have a narrative to push and by God, they’re going to push it. Facts be damned.

  20. “The Washington Post nevertheless blames “a broad loosening of public health measures.””

    Probably Trump’s fault, also.

  21. During the past year, left wing Democrat’s totalitarian business lockdowns and mask mandates (whose chief goal was to defeat Trump) have delayed, but not prevented, transmission of covid, and have delayed the attainment of herd immunity.

    Most red states have very low rates of new covid cases, and some states with recent case increases had many counties with very low rates in the past (e.g. Nebraska, Minnesota, Michigan).

    But the key reason why most red states are now experiencing very low case rates is because they are attaining HERD IMMUNITY.

    Since 9.5% of Americans have tested positive for covid, and since CDC estimates 4.6 times more Americans were infected than tested positive, about 44% of Americans have been previously infected, and virtually all of them remain immune (as only 11 cases of reinfection are known in the US, and just 66 worldwide).

    While 32% of Americans have received a 1st covid vaccine dose, about 44% of them were already immune (due to past infection). And since the 1st vaccine dose appears 90% effective, 1st doses of vaccine have conferred immunity to an additional 16% of Americans (.32 x .56 x .9 = .161).

    And while 18.5% of Americans have received a 2nd covid vaccine dose, since about 44% of them were already immune (due to past infection), since 90% of the rest were already immune (due to 1st vaccine dose), the 2nd vaccine doses have only conferred immunity to about 1% of Americans (.185 x .56 x .1 = .01).

    In sum, according to CDC data and infection rate estimate, 44% of Americans are now immune from covid (due to past infection), 16% of Americans are now immune from covid (due to 1st vaccine dose), and 1% of Americans are immune (due to 2nd vaccine dose), for a total of 61% of Americans who are now immune from covid.

    The good news is that dozens of states (nearly all red states) are very close to achieving herd immunity.

    1. Not a single mean tweet in your calculus. We got norms to protect here at Reason.

    2. But we need to keep wearing masks and social distancing and no restaurants…for at *least* another year or two…

  22. Don’t worry. When COVID follows the pattern of last year Texas cases increase in May, the “experts,” will be happy to tell us that they told us so she that the increase is due to lifting government mandates. No explanation will be offered for why it will take 8 weeks for an increase to show up with a virus presumed to have an <10 day incubation period.

  23. Maybe people who are out in public are making an effort to protect themselves and others from spreading infection, while people who are regularly socializing in their homes may not be taking adequate precautions.

    1. Or, the “precautions “ do nothing.

    2. In-home gatherings are not a significant source of community spread. That bullshit talking point has been debunked by the data ever since Fauci and the rest of the lying-ass media started pushing it.

  24. Stop trying to do science. Science and dumb political dogmas don’t mesh well.

    The virus is likely evolving in ways nobody can predict. The causes of outbreaks in certain times and places are not fully known. It’s a complex evolving system. You don’t know what’s going on. So we have to apply basic reasoning skills.

    For the sake of argument, let’s say we both know an equal amount about why outbreaks happen differently in different places, which is to say not much.

    One approach is the precautionary approach. Expose less people to the virus. We do know how to do that much.

    Yours is the “spread the virus at maximum rates” approach, which, in this specific instance, and in all other instances, is the dumbest gamble among any available options you could dream up.

    Stop encouraging the virus to become a super-virus that’s immune to the vaccine I just got. Please. Stop trying to kill us all.

    You don’t have to worry about the fucking economy as long as Democrats have control of the US government. Take it directly to the bank. I don’t say that because I love Democrats, but because there is only one alternative, and we know what that is, so shut the fuck up and do your basic civic duty of not killing thousands of people.

    1. There’s science. And then there’s Tony’s “Science”.

      Don’t be like Tony kids.

    2. Yours is the “spread the virus at maximum rates” approach, which, in this specific instance, and in all other instances, is the dumbest gamble among any available options you could dream up.

      Which we did during the swine flu pandemic.

      I know you were already born back then, so do not deny it.

    3. Stop encouraging the virus to become a super-virus that’s immune to the vaccine I just got. Please. Stop trying to kill us all.

      For someone who likes to appeal to “science,” you sure don’t know jack shit about how evolution works. This is a fucking coronavirus and there isn’t jack shit that “scientists” or anyone else can do to stop it from adapting.

      You got suckered into believing that a shot would protect you forever, but that’s par for the course for people who believe whatever the news tells them.

    4. If you feel like you’re in an at-risk group, then by all means take whatever measures you feel are reasonable for yourself. You can politely ask me to help you protect yourself, but don’t expect me to make any effort to help you though and if you try to force me to do so, there is going to be backlash.

      If your kid is deathly allergic to peanuts, I expect you to teach your kid to not eat peanuts, to carry an epipen in case he accidentally does so, and to politely ask me if the cookies I’m serving might possibly have peanuts in them. If you inform me before hand, I’ll probably even make an extra effort to avoid creating an issue for your kid.

      But if you say “No one who sends a kid to this school can be permitted to have any peanut products in their home because they could be uncaring assholes and let their kids eat peanut butter toast and wipe their hands on their jacket before coming to school and killing my kid.” I’ll probably say “Fuck you” and slick my kid’s hair back with peanut oil and send them to school with a PB&J for lunch. Good thing I don’t have kids, I guess.

    5. Stop trying to do science. Science and dumb political dogmas don’t mesh well.

      Take your own advice Tony.

    6. You better worry about the economy…this MMT bullshit is going to blow up and hurt us badly.

      Democrats can’t do basic math, and republicans only pretend they can when a democrat is in office.

    7. Some of us here are actual scientists.

    8. Stay home Tony. Let the serious people move on.

  25. Fauci
    verb
    Faucied; Faucing
    Definition of Fauci
    intransitive verb

    1: to make an untrue statement with intent to deceive for the purpose of influencing opinion

    2: to create a false or misleading impression for the purpose of influencing opinion

    3: to control or play upon by unfair, or insidious means for the purpose of influencing opinion

    1. Could have added
      Faucism and Faucistic

  26. As if anyone believes anything reported by the media mob. Everyone except the sheep knows you are lying.

  27. So close to seeing the forest for the trees, but not quite.

    Correlation does not equal causation. Mask wearing and restrictions are obviously not causing outbreaks. That would be the dumbest theory ever.

    What you are missing (and what explains Nebraska) is the most blatantly obvious factor. PREVIOUS INFECTIONS.

    Virtually all of the states experiencing a 4th wave had kept their recorded infections below 8% of the population. While all the states that are doing great are around 10-13% of the population having positive cases. If you take the most recent CDC estimate that the actual cases are around 4.6x the amount that test positive, you will see that all the states that are doing just fine without masks have had 50% to 75% of their damn population infected. Those folks are mostly immune to all but a few variants.

    Add in vaccinations and of course they aren’t having outbreaks while states with much lower immunity rates still are.

    This almost means the opposite, that strict rules and masks and social distancing did seemingly keep those states to much lower infection rates. But at the same time it also proves that masks and social distancing CAN’T be sustained long term and is not a viable solution.

    It is obvious when looking at human nature that people were not going to be diligent in following rules once the vaccine was on the decline nationally, the vaccines were becoming available to all, and most importantly Spring has arrived and people are feeling a little frisky and want to get out.

    So did mask and social distancing policies work to keep those states with lower infections? Sure for a while. This is what the tyrant’s will quote going forward (the first year) . But now that lockdown fatigue is strong and spring is here, those states were forced to lighten restrictions or have a full rebellion. Now they are catching up quickly and may end up with nearly as many infected as North Carolina of they don’t vaccinate extremely rapidly.

    1. Not true. This virus acts in magical and mysterious ways. There has never been anything like it.
      It is known.

    2. “Correlation does not equal causation. Mask wearing and restrictions are obviously not causing outbreaks. That would be the dumbest theory ever.”

      I don’t think anyone was making that argument. Instead they were making the contrapositive argument that masks and restrictions are not significant at preventing outbreaks. Because if they did, then the places with the most restrictive rules and mandatory masks would have significantly lower counts than places that don’t have those restrictions.

    3. Sorry. My first reading maybe missed some detail in your posting, so my other response may be off a bit.

  28. New estimate for IFR of ~0.15%…that is flu territory.

    onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/eci.13554

  29. Anybody remember “15 days to SLOW the spread.”? The virus isn’t going to go away. Sooner or later you ARE going to get exposed. There’s no “fourth wave”, it’s still the first wave. The politicians just spread it out longer by their regulations and shut downs. We could have had this all over with last May.

  30. It is good to see an article in reason that actually supports mask wear. It is even better to see an article that articulates the issue that mask mandates and mask wear are not the same thing – that without mandates, people will often wear masks and, not stated, that with mandates, they will not.

    One bone to pick: evidence from countries with good contact tracing, such as South Korea, shows that indoor dining is about the best way to spread Coronavirus, second only to singing in a crowded venue – such as a church choir.

    US public health folks dodge around this because they don’t want to admit that they don’t have the data. But here’s the key: if there is spread in a US restaurant, how would you know? The only people you can contact for contact tracing are those who are known to someone who got sick there – not strangers. But in South Korea, they know who was there and when, and can trace them.

    And, an early study showed both that this is an issue and why – it was an elegant contact tracing study from China (before the CCP started censoring and lying). They showed aerosol spread in a restaurant, that went with the ventilation pattern. The index case was by a vent, so air was blowing across that person and on into the restaurant. People downwind got sick. People at the same table but not downwind did not.

    1. Communist data totally believable and should guide policy here.

    2. Noted…always ask for the table right under the HVAC supply?

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  32. Great article except for….

    “None of this means that face masks are useless in reducing virus transmission. But it may mean that the difference between recommending face coverings (as Abbott, for example, continues to do) and legally requiring them is not as important as mask-mandate supporters tend to think.”

    Nah. Masks don’t work. Period. And its greatest assault is ruining people’s psyche and fooling them into thinking they work. ‘The flu is gone!’

    Also, end the tyranny of the infections disease doctors and epidemiologists. Up here, I’ve learned to loathe this bunch. Why they’re dictating public policy I have no idea. All they want is to lockdown harder.

  33. I have been saying for several weeks that most of the increase that is happening is in the states that have had the strictest isolation requirement. I am glade that other have seen this also. For a little while I have entertained the idea that I must have been incorrect. But now it has been affirmed.

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