A science editor for the Süddeutsche Zeitung can't work out what we're even doing here, but he wants us to keep doing it.
Once restriction are in place, they become normalized, and once they are normalized, it is very hard to get rid of them again. After a few months, people cannot even remember that it was ever different.
By now, many people will be very afraid if they had to take the same "risks" of everyday life as they took in 2019 without thinking about it.
I am old enough to remember when you could take a bottle of water on the airplane, and also when it stopped being allowed. Even if it doesn't make any sense at all, the restriction stays in place for ever.
(At least I assume it is that way: I haven't boarded an airplane since January of 2020, and I probably never will fly again, with those vaccine and testing restrictions in place).
I remember I once attended a class on working processes, and the professor brought up this example he witnessed a few years back: US soldiers were trained on the usage of some kind of big mortar weapon, and they needed always a group of five people to use it. One to arm it, one to put in the mortar, one to do this, one to do the other. (Details elude me).
He noticed that one of the five was always just standing around.
He witnessed several of these groups of five, and he asked the training officers why they needed the one guy doing nothing.
No one really knew, but such was the protocol, so they kept on doing it like this.
The professor, being a professor of working processes, digged around and after some research he found: that fifth guy was the one who held the horses.
The process was from the civil war, when they wheeled up a cannon, and when the explosion came, the horses would shy, so they needed a guy to hold them.
The horses were gone, the process stayed in place.
Here in England mask and other mandates expired last Thursday. Yesterday I asked a shop assistant wearing a mask if it were a requirement by management she said no. In answer to why are you still wearing one she replied so people in the store ‘felt’ protected, not ‘are’ protected I note - so just theatre. So I asked how much longer did she intend to wear a mask when was the end point, how would she know. She couldn’t say. So I asked if she didn’t know how/when to stop would she wear a mask for the rest of her life. This startled her: she hadn’t thought about that.
Many people are still wearing masks and I expect none of them know why or when they will stop - maybe there will be a sign in the heavens.
I feel trapped in a lunatic asylum.
I moved to Germany as a young student a decade ago to avoid exactly these type of restrictions on freedom of expression, thought and movement. Throughout my school-going years, I lived under a dictatorship. I was born during a terrible dictatorship. As a religious minority in my country, I learned to hide the beliefs of my family and community. Targeted killings were at a peak during the 90s and early 2000s and I remember that fear and oppression. Ten years later here I am in Germany watching people go entirely mad over a virus that isn't as deadly or dangerous as it was initially claimed. And I increasingly feel that I'm living in yet another oppressive regime. I have to censor my thoughts even from my friends, I have to be careful of what I say online lest me or my business gets targeted, I can't ask "why" anymore because asking "why" has been villainised, which is exactly what oppressive, religious regimes do. COVID-19 has become a religion and we have been divided into believers and non-believers.
science editor (n.): Someone who edits the science
"and these aren’t honest mistakes either. They all go in the same risk-magnifying direction"
This reminds me of all the FISA mistakes during the "investigations" of Donald Trump here in the US. There were beaucoup "mistakes" made...and literally (not Joe Biden "literally"; definitional literally) EVERY ONE OF THEM went in the same direction: against Trump.
So yeah, they're not honest mistakes. They're not mistakes. They're malfeasance, and their perpetrators *ought* to pay a stiff price. "Stiff", if you catch my drift.
I am finding current situation very confusing and I have hard time seeing through the fog. On one hand, you have countries like Denmark (and soon Spain, Norway, etc.) who have announced to drop all COVID restrictions. In Denmark the cases are at record levels and hospitalizations are at about the same level as at their peak in January 2021. So, in from March 2020 until January 2022, this was the most dangerous virus that warranted closing society down. And all of a sudden, the virus is not dangerous anymore and they tell us we should go back to life we knew before.
I am glad they are doing it, but is really going on? Is this finally a silent and not-so-subtle admission that measures do nothing and vaccines are really not working that great? Are they hoping that everybody just quickly forgets what happened in the past two years? (And, yes, in a couple of years we will all forget this -- human brain is wired to push unpleasant things aside).
On the other hand, you have countries like Austria, Italy and France who are doubling down on restrictions for unvaccinated, although of course they can change all this on a whim tomorrow.
So, what is really going on? How do we cut through the fog of these decisions?
It seems to me that Germany has much bigger problems than COVID. The virus is a minor nuisance at present. Maybe your politicians are using the virus as a distraction from your real problems. In a tremendous strategic error, Germany dismantled all its nuclear plants so that it is totally dependent on Russia for energy. Now Putin sees the current US President as the senile stupid corrupt old fool that Biden actually is, and Putin is salivating at putting the Empire back together again. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity for him. Will Germany surrender when Russian forces start moving through Ukraine and the Baltics and west into Europe? Or will they still be obsessing over COVID?
As Brett Weinstein repeatedly states, I can no longer assign the pandemic and the utterly destructive response to incompetence.
Incompetent people occasionally get things right. These people are consistently utterly, hopelessly wrong and, as our host says, it's always in the same direction.
"Will Omicron bring in the endemic phase?" How is it that we knew it already brought it two months ago by looking at the SA data but "experts" working for the largest economies on the planet are still asking this question? They are either stupid, incompetent or criminal. "Show me the difference and I'll have my brother-in-law arrested."
...proving once again the best form of government is always, no government at all.
Austria will end 2G mandates and go back to 3G now. I guess it‘s because of the external pressure by the European countries that keep lifting all mandates. And by the pressure of the lawyers from the Netherlands who want to exclude Austria from the EU. And by the pressure of our Constitutional Court, who sent a letter with a lot of questions to our health minister. And maybe by the pressure of the people in the streets, who knows. And as there are more and more questions about the authorization papers of Pfizer (and rumors that hedge fonds are coming after Pfizer), the EMA authorization under von der Leyen and evident pharma lobbying in Austria and elsewhere, I guess our „elite“ is getting cold feet. I am sure that Germany will follow and lift the 2G mandates soon.
This „mitigation“ step is ridiculously small but it‘s a step forward in the right direction. It‘s way more than the dictator Mückstein … aahhhm… health secretary Mückstein wanted for us. Only some days ago he has told us that the lockdown for unvaxxed will not end in 2022 at all. Well, that escalated quickly, then 😉.
As long as we keep doing what we are doing, we haven't done anything wrong since what we are doing can't be evaluated until we stop doing it or start doing something else instead.
Yeh this mask thing has taken a superstitious life force of its own. This thing that 'we don't know what will happen so let's stay under the bed' is the height of fear, hysterics, cowardice, stupidity and pseudo-science. I've just about had it with infectious disease experts. Clearly they're mentally ill on some level because they talk the same here in Canada. OF COURSE, the virus will always be around and OF COURSE it will pose some kind of threat and OF COURSE it will be seasonal always potentially straining our second-rate public health system (at here in Canada) but they can't seem to take their heads of their Covid asses and apply basic COMMON SENSE. All they got behind all their nonsense now is: Mask up, lockdown and cross your fingers'. That goes for epidemiologists too. There's another bunch. I'd rather watch a 90 Day Fiance marathon then ever have to listen to these assholes ever again.
I have (scratch that - HAD a paed. friend because I had to cut him out of my life he was so absurd) a paediatrician friend. By April of 2020 he revealed himself to be a scared, authoritarian nut job. Screaming about how we needed passport to protect him from unvaccinated murderers (he called Trump the greatest peace time killer in history) at a hockey game, masks for as long as it takes while saying the only way this ends if ALL DEATHS in ALL COUNTRIES are next to zero. One day he contacted me about how he and his wife may have contracted Covid. His dramatic hysterics about 'what would he do?' without his wife if she died was the final straw from me. The next day he informed me they were negative as if nothing. Total loony tunes.
I have been mapping, measuring and forecasting the damage the lockdowns and corona did for 2 years. Economically trillions of dollars, it crippled the entire logistics and industry of the world, it will cause famines never seen before, it literally affected climate. And we had scientific papers showing mathematically lockdowns actually make the spread of diseases bigger. This whole thing is either complete stupidity or complete malice. Undecided yet.
son and roomate at the local university .. both sick, both positive, according to the tests given .. both jabbed, because, you know, we have to be to stop this thing .. sarc .. delivered vit c/d/zinc today .. applying for nobel prize this evening.
Omicron continues to shatter all narratives and accelerate the pandemic. And now BA2, even more transmissible! Pretty soon this thing will hop into the water supply, or open its own airline.
All these commentators can do nothing more than that - commentate. What will be will be.
In Australia, health officials have admitted that their contact tracing and qr checkin system is totally useless at the moment. But, they intend to keep this "infrastructure" in place indefinitely because "you never know in the future, plus what's the big deal it takes 2 seconds"
The decision of what happens in societies seems to fall more on the particular personal traits of public health officials; and where their personal risk calculus goes, so does the country. Never have so few controlled so much.
The best marketing gimmick is sex or new to sell a washed up product. New and improved virus which is part of nature, a particle that gets weaker with each mutation as it would kill the host if it got stronger. They have unlimited names of fear to peddle but it all comes to the common cold. What is not addressed is the destroyed immune system of the willing guinea pigs in this horrific genocide experiment executed by subhumans who do not deserve the air they breathe.
I was shocked by the hubris of ABC world news memorializing the Holocaust on Thursday-as they the nefarious players repeating the same crime! never again will we be silent again!