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Tag Archives: Pandemic

Officials Double Down on “Let ‘Er Rip” Strategy, Placing Undue Faith in Vaccines as Regions With High Vaccinations Suffer Infection Spikes

Again and again, all over the world, we’ve seen public health officials all too willing to relax Covid restrictions too early, resulting in an eventual spike in infections and hospitalizations. As we’ll explain, regulators are repeating the same experiment and expecting different outcomes, The classic example was the May CDC “Mission Accomplished” policy change of telling the fully vaccinated they could go about unmasked, even as Delta had become the dominant strain, had viral loads 1000x...

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The John Deere Strike: Organized Labor’s Turning Point?

There’s a lot of excitement, at least among those of the pro-worker persuasion, about employees rejecting poorly paid jobs and oppressive bosses via not taking up open positions or demanding change via strikes. A partial list: Volvo. Kellogg’s. Frito-Lay. Nabisco. Alabama coal miners. Health care staffers in New York and Massachusetts, along with bus drivers and telecom workers. Even though they are highly visible signs that the serfs are rebelling, these labor actions are still a strong of...

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Insurance Focused on Virtual Visits? The Pros and Cons of a New Twist in Health Plans

Jerri-Lynn here. During the pandemic, I’ve done some telemedicine sessions, but only with doctors I’ve seen in person before. So I don’t know exactly how I view this trend, especially as so many medical ‘innovations’ are more focused on making profits, at the expense of patient care. So what may seem to be a good thing in theory, on reflection turns out to be just another vehicle for profit extraction. Because that’s what our neo-liberal health care system is designed to do. Readers? What’s...

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Swimming With Sharks in the Maldives

By Jerri-Lynn Scofield, who has worked as a securities lawyer and a derivatives trader. She is currently writing a book about textile artisans. I’m currently holed up in our place in Brooklyn and missing my former pre-Covid peripatetic life very much. Yet I’m far from unique in this regard. A piece in Friday’s Guardian made me feel very wistful, These Maldives islanders once saw sharks as the threat. Now they fear the plasti. I learned to dive in the Maldives, earning my PADI certificates:...

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Sleep and the Covid-19 Pandemic

“Sleep that knits up the ravell’d sleave of care” –William Shakespeare By Lambert Strether of Corrente For many months I’ve been able to recall my dreams on waking, which is new for me. I remembered that strange dreams were in the second tier of some symptoms lists circulated[1] for the original Wuhan, pre-Alpha strain of Covid-19, and it crossed my mind — though not concernedly enough for me to get a test to see if I am seropositive — that at some point I’d had an asymptomatic case...

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Did Labor Action Over Vaccine Mandates Compel Southwest to Cancel Thousands of Flights?

By Lambert Strether of Corrente. Betteridge would be pleased; from the evidence we have, the answer is no. Let’s start with what we know. From The Points Guy, “Southwest suffers operational meltdown as hundreds upon hundreds of flights canceled or delayed“: Southwest Airlines is suffering an operational meltdown this weekend as hundreds upon hundreds of flights have been delayed or canceled outright. The airline is blaming weather and an air traffic control issue from Friday for the domino...

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Just Keeps Getting Worse: Services Trade Surplus, the American Dream-Not-Come-True, Worst in 10 Years. Imports Worst Ever. Trade Deficit Worst Ever

Yves here. Admittedly I have a warped sample from here in Alabama, but our aides, who tell stories of the messes in their lives and those of family members (like how catastrophic a car breakdown or emergency root canal can be for finances) are giving me a far more graphic picture of the life of the just-above-poverty class is like. For instance, the mother of one aide’s boyfriend is dying slowly of gangrene. They keep cutting more pieces off her but the end point seems inevitable. The point...

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Vaccine-Only Mandates as a Manifestation of the Bizarre Civil War-Stoking Impulses of the Professional-Managerial Class in the US

Never in my worst nightmares did I imagine I would ever want Bernanke and Geithner back in charge. Yes, vast swathes of the public at least dimly recognized that the financial crisis bailouts were designed to preserve the banking system at their expense. Yes, no executives went to jail or even had their feathers ruffled. Yes, the Fed, the Treasury, and central bankers all over the world refused to believe that the derivatives-leveraged debt bomb was aimed at the heart of the financial system,...

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Patent Buyouts Can Help Win the Race Against Coronavirus Mutations

Lambert here: Too bad that’s not what Bill Gates wanted. Oh well, nevertheless… By Michael Stolpe, Senior Economist at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy. Originally published at VoxEU. To win the critical race between vaccines and mutations, the worldwide Covid-19 vaccination campaign must mobilise economies of scale. The most effective way to do so, this column argues, is to convert the existing Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access initiative into a more generously endowed global fund....

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Public Health Experts ‘Flabbergasted’ That Biden Still Hasn’t Picked an FDA Chief

Lambert here: Meanwhile, Scott Gottlieb is swanning around, making TV appearances, writing a book, and making policy recommendations. By Rachana Pradhan, KHN Correspondent, reports on a broad array of national health policy decisions and their effect on everyday Americans. Originally published at Kaiser Health News. President Joe Biden’s failure to name someone to lead the Food and Drug Administration, more than 10 months after the election, has flummoxed public health experts who say it’s...

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