Why is vaccinated Israel reinstating COVID restrictions?

Israel has the highest full vaccination rate in the world and the fourth highest overall vaccination rate:

Vaccination rates

Israel is a vaccination leader.

Yet its government is reinstating COVID restrictions due to a surge in infections after reopening last month:

Israel COVID infections

Israel COVID infections have rebounded after opening.

From the Jerusalem Post:

Starting August 20, the full green pass system will be in place again, and starting Sunday, masks will be mandatory in all outdoor gatherings….

The coronavirus cabinet approved new restrictions on Tuesday night, as senior government members admitted a lockdown in September is not a remote possibility anymore…

In addition, government offices will work with only 50% of their workforce in person, and the private sector will be encouraged to do the same.

Moreover, more stringent criteria to place countries under travel ban or travel warning will be formulated, leaving a very limited group of nations to be visited freely by Israelis without the need to quarantine upon their return regardless of their immunization status…
“The Delta epidemic is extremely contagious, and is spreading all over the world,” Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said…
“We need to prepare the public and public opinion for a lockdown in September”…
COVID hospitalisations have been increasing in Israel; albeit remain way below prior peaks:
Israel COVID hospitalisations

Israel COVID hospitalisations rising.

However, COVID deaths remain very low:

Israel COVID deaths

Israel COVID deaths remains very low.

At some point, nations will have to learn to live with the virus. There needs to be a proper trade-off between maintaining economic and social freedoms and minimising deaths. The balance in Israel seems to be skewed too far towards the latter.

Unconventional Economist
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Comments

  1. Its funny, the UK loses 34k people a year to the flu season per annum, and no one blinks! Some estimates from the cancer council suggest that 40k fatal cancer cases in the UK have not been diagnosed, because no one sees a doctor, etc., etc.

    That decision above makes no sense? None of this is making any sense, and I am not sure it ever did?

    • If we focused on every single virus and disease death we have to the granular level like covid, we would go mad.
      Australia has had 3,824 Respiratory Disease deaths this year from JAN to APRIL 2021 latest figures; NOT including covid deaths. By years end it could be about 11,000.
      Pneumonia ( a sub category) usually has 2000 death a year (556 in the first 4 months this year ) and this is during strict hygiene and social distancing measures. Children and the elderly are given 2 different vaccines to try and reduce the severity and deaths but does not prevent them.

    • This.

      Unless CV-19 specific deaths are escalating rapidly, put it in the bucket of seasonal vaccinated diseases and move on with life. Don’t let the hypochondriacs clog the hospital system. Develop strong treatment at home protocols for those with mild/medium symptoms.

      https://www.covid19treatmentguidelines.nih.gov/management/clinical-management/nonhospitalized-patients–general-management/
      https://www.covid19treatmentguidelines.nih.gov/management/clinical-management/nonhospitalized-adults–therapeutic-management/

      And yes, some people will die from this disease, the same way they do from the flu or cold induced pneumonia or seasonal allergies.

      Nature doesn’t care about a persons feelings so do what you can to look after yourself.

    • Right – and they have lost 130,000 people in two outbreaks that lasted about 6 months with hard lock downs – WITHOUT WHICH it would have most likely been well in excess of 250,000 people – most likely far more.

      That number is MORE than the British Army lost in the second world war over 6 years.

      God some people – looking straight at you – are incomprehensibly moronic – you really are.

      • Those people gave their life for freedom from tyranny. The irony.

        Guess what, everyone is going to die no matter what you do. Do we suggest we live in lockdown forever with the police arresting old men for not wearing a mask or not having their papers with them? No one who says “we have to keep lockdowns going because” ever has any sort of long term plan that doesn’t involve these continuing forever because unless they continue forever there is no point doing them at all.

      • Did you just compare a virus to WW2?

        What your ilk dont seem to get is that there is no going back on this disease. We either accept its now part of the global viral pool and move on with life or we hide ourselves away from each other ad nauseum. Treat as best as possible, but face the facts. PEOPLE WILL DIE. It sucks. Welcome to life.

        When people are going broke because their workplace keeps getting shut down and they cannot feed their families, people like you will be taken out the back and beaten to a pulp because your cries to constantly lock us down to save life obviously doesn’t affect you the same way it does others.

        You show a complete lack of empathy for other peoples situations whose outcomes are worse in a lockdown than they would be if affected by CV-19 directly. In your head, the view you present is the only view and is one of save life at all costs and fu%k anyone who doesn’t agree by calling them a moron.

        • NoodlesRomanovMEMBER

          Keen to have insight to your situation Gareth. I am not financially affected by lockdown too much (employee of large company, long range job where what I don’t do today won’t affect anyone for at least 3 months), and have family members for which Covid would not have good long range outcomes, so I’m OK with vaccination and lockdowns dance.

          • 40yrs old full time WFH. Good income, on acreage and about to get the vaccine. CV19 has not affected me at all apart from MELB lockdowns. Just cannot stand absolute views on what is right and wrong knowing full well context is so important and different views should be welcomed rather than abused.

            Most of my friends/family are also fine through this epidemic but I do feel for those who have had their personal or business lives utterly destroyed by ongoing lockdowns.

            I am a big advocate for individual rights and responsibilities. For example, choosing to be unhealthy is generally a choice. Choosing not to have a vaccine is generally a choice, as are the consequences. Locking people down ad nauseum is not a choice and impacts on the individuals rights for self determination.

            I’ve said it in other posts. Give free and unfettered access to vaccines for a few months and then let it rip. The chips will fall and we will all have to deal with it.

        • Anders Andersen

          Gareth, it’s been show more times than you can poke a stick at, that the let it go theory doesn’t work, it has just as bad an economic effect as lockdowns.

      • Drivel, lockdowns have been shown to have any effect on the amount of people dying apart from in a few countries where the virus was eradicated. All they do is slow the spread down a little, everyone still gets it. Additionally Britain has had higher deaths per capita than every country in the world that chose not to lockdown.

    • Mate, the UK has had ~130K deaths from Covid so far – and that was locked down.

      The flu isn’t locked down.

      You’re not comparing apples with apples, lockdown vs lockdown, non-lockdown vs non-lockdown. But you have to.

      With respect, people have been pointing out this major, major flaw in comparisons since the pandemic first began…why are people still comparing lockdown vs non-lockdown data? It’s logically invalid. Please stop.

      • Anders Andersen

        Burb, this is in the ‘Manual on Anti-Whatever’ book; keep repeating previously discredited claims as the public in general isn’t paying the level of attention you are.

        Edit: Rusty’s at it below, again quoting figures that have been shown to be incorrect.

    • Mr SquiggleMEMBER

      Maybe this will be another aspect of life that is changed forever by covid. Just like WFH will always be on the agenda, so maybe now we will keep some of the lockdown lifestyle

      Who wants the flu let back in? I haven’t had a cold in roughly 18 months.

      We need to re-purpose and re-point some of our scientific endevours away from vaccines and onto more efficient ways to test and control viruses. Safety through vaccines is starting to look like a less than perfect solution

      • You are free to lock yourself in your house forever if you don’t want a cold or flu.
        Id like the option to take the risk and actually be able to do stuff.

    • “the UK loses 34k people a year to the flu season per annum”

      Really? The UK government has it at around 1500 in both 2018 and 2019.

      https://www.ons.gov.uk/aboutus/transparencyandgovernance/freedomofinformationfoi/influenzadeathsin20182019and2020

      Looking at top 10 causes of death going back to 2001, the worst year for Influenza and Pneumonia combined was 16k in 2002, but usually below that:

      https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/healthandsocialcare/causesofdeath/articles/leadingcausesofdeathuk/2001to2018

      To put that in perspective, the current 7-day average of daily covid deaths in the UK is 83, which translates to 30k per annum if maintained, so double the Influenza and Pneumonia combined.

      • Agree, but as Burbwatcher says above, it’s pointless comparing Covid deaths to flu/pneumonia deaths as the Covid deaths occurred in lock down – how many would there have been with no restrictions as with the flu/pneumonia??

        The comparison is completely irrelevant – trotted out by trolls and anti vaxers to muddy the waters.

        (Wonder if what ultimately dooms civilisation will be social media)

        • Yes – I agree with your point too.
          It just sh*ts me to tears when people say ‘covid is barely more deadly than the flu’ – and then massively overstate how deadly the flu is to begin with.

          • Totally agree.

            There seems to be a growing cohort of trolls, gaslighters, anti vaxxers and covid deniers on MB lately, resulting in a dwindling of rational discourse, sadly.

          • Sorry, quoted US numbers, The Center for Disease Control estimates that the average ~36k deaths pa as a result of the flu in the United States. The highest amount of people ever killed during a single flu season in the US was 61k. In the UK, the average deaths from flu ranges from 10-25k pa. The excess 40k UK deaths from cancers is a statistical projection.

            Moreover, it is true to say (statistically) that you are more likely to die from the annual flue than from Covid if you are vaccinated.

            The point I was trying to make, is that Covid is number 26 is the cause of deaths in the UK. Total numbers, they now believe, have been overstated by as much as 25-30%. Given the rise of other diseases, and the lack of care in other areas, excess deaths from Covid may well be significantly less than from other causes over that same period.

            For an endemic disease (I think we all agree its no longer a pandemic), it doesn’t kill many people. Maybe we are better of ignoring it?


          • . In the UK, the average deaths from flu ranges from 10-25k pa.

            That just isn’t true – the highest combined flu and influenza in 15 years prior to 2020 was only 16k – but flu deaths were less than half of that. That was the point of the links I provided.
            At 85 deaths per day in the UK currently (despite the high vaccination and previous infection rate) compared to 38 for flu and pneumonia combined, and less than 20 for flu, covid is shaping up to be a major source of mortality for an endemic illness.
            Even in the US, assuming 34k is the correct figure, and it’s not for influenza and pneumonia combined, that’s 93 per day compared with a current 7 day average of 414 per day, again in a country with high vaccination rates and high previous infections. Even in vaccinated populations, it leads to high population mortality compared to other communicable diseases.

          • Hang-on, I think you are seriously confused here; it appears more than half of Covid hospitalisations in the UK are patients who only tested positive after admission (i.e. official hospital infections are over-stated by 50% – https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/26/exclusive-half-covid-hospitalisations-tested-positive-admission/). Why is this important?

            People typically die from several causes. So in the UK, In a bad flu year, on average, around 30k people in the UK die from flu and pneumonia (the above figure I quoted is flu only, but actually most people die from combinations, which ws my first number), to put that in perspective, on average 34k pa people in the UK dies from sepsis (from all kinds of causes). So yes, looking at England and Wales, women older than 75 lost around four-times more years of life than for a bad flu season; for men it was five times higher as a result of Covid.

            But critically, that was before (i) vaccinations, or (ii) general population infections. And consider my example above, UK Covid deaths definition is arbitrary; for instance deaths are recorded if you die within 28 days of being tested positive!!! It may have had nothing to do with it killing you. Note from above, half of hospital infections occur after admission, which means you were in there for some other reason in the first place! In Germany with far less deaths, Covid deaths are only recorded if you had no other symptoms of anything else. So in the UKs case they have over-estimated Covid death numbers by a quarter to a third, and in Germany, they have under-estimated numbers by up to a half (especially earlier in the pandemic). Remember, Covid typically kills in combination with some underlying medical condition (e.g. people rarely just die of old age).

            The above point is that Covid is now less dangerous than the common flu for most who are vaccinated, I must admit, I have had my second AZ shot.

            So I reiterate, 30k people die in the flu season every year in the UK. Two seasons, that’s 60k people. Add in 40k people from cancer that would have otherwise been saved, that’s 100k. Take into account that UK numbers are massively over recorded, and there is a very real argument that Covid hasn’t killed as many people as any normal period, given a lot of those cancer deaths will occur over the next two or threee years.

  2. Data is wrong. Israel is 9th in Fully Vaccinated, 17th in at least 1 dose, and 107th in current doses per day per capita. Source: Our World In Data spreadsheet (the graph on their website that is shown above hides most countries).

    Good to see they’re implementing restrictions on the unvaccinated again, big free rider/tragedy of commons problem with these antivaxxers. Need more carrot and stick to bump that rate up to 80%.

    • Frank DrebinMEMBER

      As previously noted, Israel was he first to start vaccinating in an aggressive fashion. Yet 12 months on they are only at sub70%.

      No way Australia will get to 70% in the next 12 months, let alone the mythical 80%.

      Another 12 months of limbo.

      • That’s the whole point set a target not achievable. Then if 80% reached just make it 90% based on new medical advice.

        There’s no going back to an open society if we report every death breathlessly in the news

        • Young, fit soccer player, non drinker, non-smoker 27 year old dies in Sydney. From the Guardian:

          Kerry Chant: “We are aware that with Covid you can get sudden deaths and I think that is important to understand that your health status can deteriorate and you can have sudden death with Covid…..“about two-thirds of all of our cases are currently under 40 years old”.

          https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2021/aug/04/covid-death-of-sydney-man-in-his-20s-prompts-calls-for-young-people-to-get-vaccinated

          Getting on with our lives (treating Covid as just another cold/flu/pneumonia) isn’t going to happen as more such cases will mean people simply won’t go out, spend, mix travel etc as before, whatever the economic policy wonks decree or fudge with selected statistics.

          • Arthur Schopenhauer

            That’s exactly what happened in Sweden last year. The government didn’t lock down, but businesses and citizens did.

            In the US, if you could work from home, you did. Many still are.

            If they open up recklessly, the same will happen here.

          • Hermit Kingdom

            Africa have all kinds of nasties lurking that can kill but young people just get on with their lives despite the threat.

            I get it that COVID can kill.

            So?

          • Cool, then there is no need at all to have laws requiring this or police enforcing it.

          • Arthur. In your examples it shows people will choose what works for them when given the choice. Choice is key and basic support for those which choose to isolate ongoing should be govt policy. Those who choose to take the risk get the upside and downside of those decisions.

            Our lockdowns have been state mandated rendering personal choice and accountability null and void.

          • FUDINTHENUDMEMBER

            Gareth that is exactly how it should be once everyone has been offered a vaccine. Not there yet in Oz. State mandated restrictions should end at that point unless health systems get seriously verwhelmed.

          • As everyone knows the problem was the lack of a properly implemented quarantine system for overseas travelers. MB has shown many times that the best functioning economies are the ones without Covid19 and are also the societies that offer the most freedom to individuals whether self or state imposed. Scotty and Gladys really let the cat out of the bag this time and the paradox is that before this latest Delta outbreak we had more freedoms than we will have by letting the virus rip.

      • Anders Andersen

        I think Israeli numbers are for total pop, where as Morrison is arguing for 80% of eligible people, which will end up at around 55% of total pop.

    • Arthur Schopenhauer

      From what I have heard, it’s the ultra-orthodox communities not getting vaccinated.

    • Thanks for pointing that out.

      There’s lies, damned lies and statistics. MB outdoes itself at the latter in this matter of the virus.

    • The unvaccinated are dying because in many cases they are the most frail and elderly patients who were not even vaccinated for influenza and are basically on the verge of death.

      Imagine, if you are in a terminal state with a few weeks or months to live, what is the point of a COVID or any vaccine? Its probable that the side effects of the vaccine (fatigue etc.) are going to be as serious as the virus itself. If you get knocked off a few days earlier who really cares?

      Already in the UK the average age of a COVID death was older than the average life expectancy!

      I hope this whole Israel thing makes people wake up and realise that vaccines are good but they’re not going to result in freedom. That needs to be physically reclaimed and street protests or just ignoring the restrictions are the correct way to do it.

  3. Maybe it comes back to the same old issue of clogging hospitals, which eventually impacts all other medical procedures – don’t fall off ur renovating ladder when the hospitals r more overwhelmed!

  4. 62% fully vaccinated, 67% partially and hospitalisations going near on vertical. This is terrible news. It’s obvious now that there is no trade-off, at least for the foreseeable future – it’s metronomic oscillation between easing restrictions and the inevitable spike and then a return to lock-downs. Q4 right, Bcnich?

    • run to the hillsMEMBER

      I thought about buying a load of WES today based on Gladys’ “next question” response to the journo’s question as to why Bunnings is still open, it looks like WES is running the Government.

      • chuckmuscleMEMBER

        I’m starting to grow fond of skynews… Punted from YouTube and now asking sensible questions about Bunnings enough to p!ssoff the gold standard tyrant

        • Perhaps what Gladys is missing is a measure of ‘draconian-ism’

          – anybody count the number of times ‘draconian’ was unleashed in these pages in 2020?

          Hmmmn the general consensus now among TPTB is that draconian seems to work after all. Not that certain ‘reporters’ will ever be able to bring themselves to acknowledge it.

  5. When you spend 18 months spreading fear about a killer virus, the inevitable end point is enough of the people believe you that unless you completely eradicate it they will never feel safe again.
    We are reaching the probable outcome of choosing the path we have. It is too late to change it easily. If we wanted to live with the virus, that was something that had to be decided 12+ months ago.

    • Yep. It’s become a political problem for all governments. As soon as the deaths mount up post some sort of reopening, it will act like a scoreboard against the state and Federal government.

      The buck passing is going to be immense. Happily, if you like the LNP, Morrison is a master at it.

    • Jumping jack flash

      Agree completely.

      Now, the litigation? I have a father that had 2 strokes after taking his first vaccine dose. Nobody seems to know which one he was given but I’m assuming it was AZ.

      How could anyone expect to make a rational choice regarding vaccination programmes using vaccines that were not properly tested while everyone was and still is in a state of panic about the virus?

      It takes level heads in these times to make measured and rational decisions free of politics and agenda, and unfortunately our leaders are not leaders, they’re imposters pretending to be leaders.

      That entire wheeling and dealing episode around the AZ vaccine is proof enough to throw our chief buffoon out on his ear!

      • Good management & government is impossible without good media.
        Look at the Resource Super Profits Tax.
        It doesn’t matter how intelligently a person will try to lead – the media would have them out if they did not obey the media’s hysteria.

        And in Australia apart from very small outlets like MacroBusiness (which I’ll count as media for this purpose), there are no non-captured media. We only have agenda driven media, and virtually none of them are well informed, or have the true interests of the people and the nation at heart – most of their staff totally incapable of working out what that would even be. And yes that absolutely includes outlets like the ABC.
        Look at how many outlets take a nationalist stand on immigration (none), one of the most critical aspects of impact on the wellbeing of the nation and our people long-term. Zero with a position that consistently backs the interests of existing Australians.
        There can be no good governance without good media, it is why the ship is so hard to turn around.

    • The long term answer is better remote quarantine systems. It isn’t vaccines as much as people and in particular governments with a vested interest seem to think so. Even with a complicit population (which is a huge assumption) and we all get vaccinated there will be variants and going through this massive vaccine exercise every single year seems hard to work. Having constant appointments to get boosters and the sheer effort and large consequences if we get it wrong every year the potential effects of getting boosters for some of the population. Its also much easier to give it to a small section of remote front facing staff logistically. It isn’t the flu vac where if we get the variant wrong we get sick and move on – COVID seems to be a much more potent virus. You pick the wrong variant to vaccine that year – suddenly the hospitals are flooded again and can’t cope. Its a real risk. You vaccine against too many variants; the likelihood that there is reactions to the vaccine increases and people become more hesitant.

      There’s only one freedom which needs to be given up that’s IMO highly discretionary and doesn’t affect most average people – international travel at a whim (some will still be possible if you are willing to remote quarantine). Of course giving this up helps to ensure every other freedom we did enjoy – some not so discretionary and required to keep our families fed. If that means we can avoid the tail risks to our local businesses and jobs over the longer term I think most Australians will be willing to make that trade – especially the silent non-extroverted ones. I’m looking at WA with a little envy at the moment.

      • Diogenes the CynicMEMBER

        +1 This is definitely better than yo yo lockdowns and messy vaccination schedules chasing the mutating virus. Working from home has been a huge success for productivity, don’t have to travel for business meetings, Telehealth. Effectively 99% normal lifestyle in WA. And less international travel is better for the planet.

      • Great comment. Unfortunately it’s looking increasingly like all Australia’s efforts last year will be for naught as NSW looses control of Delta, and the LNP and their mates have no interest in maintaining ‘fortress Australia’. It’s looking like China has also lost control of Delta with half its provinces now infected, although their weaker vaccines contribute to this but even they are saying Delta and other variants will be impossible to control long term.

        RIP Straya

    • So Australia’s lockdown has saved lives in absolute terms over and above the Covid deaths avoided?

    • On a planet being choked by overpopulation , and with an ecosystem about to collapse, this is surely the best news we could have hoped for

      • People have a right and a duty to replace themselves.
        If we don’t do it the people who did will be imported in our stead, to make the same environmental impact we would have had.
        So I think your idea requires qualification.
        Nations where population and consumption growth are out of control have a duty to curtail it.
        Nations with below replacement birthrates have a duty to stabilise their rates at replacement and work on their consumption.

        • why are you drawing a line in the sand at 8 billion?

          Why didn’t you say the same thing at 4 billion

    • Just a note on that data, note in makes a big case of there being a large amount of excess deaths, and because humans aren’t used to conceptualising big numbers it sounds like there were, the way it is presented, but lets unpick their text and what it really means…

      “We found that in several worst-affected countries (Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Mexico) the excess mortality was above 50% of the expected annual mortality (Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Mexico) or above 400 excess deaths per 100,000 population (Peru, Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Serbia).”

      Note they are talking about the “worst affected nations”, and “50% above expected mortality” – sounds horrendous, something to really panic about. But what is the reality of the numbers they gave.. 400 excess deaths per 100,000 people.
      That is, a 0.4% increase above the expected number of deaths.

      So give or take, even in the worst affected places (their words), you only had an additional 0.4% chance of dying compared to pre-covid. Around a 99.6% chance of not dying of covid, inclusive of people of all health types.
      So if healthy, with no co-morbidities – so few excess deaths from covid, even in the worst case examples, for it not to be a serious concern.

      • That’s deaths per 100k living people. Annual deaths would be 1.2-1.5%. Covid deaths 0.4% hence the 40% increase estimate based on excess mortality. The real issue is a 5-10% hospitalisation rate, where not having access to Oxygen pushes mortality up 10fold. Of course 30% of the population is mildly immunocompromised due to vit D and zinc deficiency. 90% reduction in serious disease if you give people supplements. Crickets fron those in charge despite consistent peer reviewed literature on the subject.

  6. I think it’s too soon to say whether Israel is over-prioritising deaths vs freedoms – nothing affects freedom like the threat of death, which is worse than the threat of lockdown.

    Delta is still new-ish, and societies are only just starting to open up into it – they need time to gradually learn what they’re dealing with; hence, I don’t think calling any government out for locking down is quite legitimate; sure, we need to learn to live with the virus, but framing it that way is setting up a straw man, with little to none of the above (important) nuance.

    My 2c

    • PolarBearMEMBER

      Yep agree. I think the problem with Israel is they haven’t had widespread transmission of the virus like the UK has had. So if the UK has reached herd immunity it is actually compromised of 60% fully vaccinated people plus those unvaccinated people who have already caught the real virus, possibly another 20% of their population. So the UK population is currently at about 80% immunity. Israel’s immunity is much closer to its full vaccination rate.

    • macrofishMEMBER

      Maybe a country that’s had it’s neighbours throw explosives at it as a different view on life and freedoms over countries who haven’t

  7. Arthur Schopenhauer

    Israel is a country that puts the betterment of Israelis and the existence of the State first.

    They would have a much better judgement of what’s best for people than you, Leith.

  8. it wont end until everyone is strip mined. then they blame the havenotnicks. the deeply underwater all agree, it’s not their fault. continued ignorance. cycle starts again.

  9. Jumping jack flash

    Yes, yes indeed.

    The obvious answer is to use a smarter system to determine whether lockdowns/restrictions are required, and this would involve using the metric of hospitalisations rather than raw number of “new cases”.

    Surely the ratio of infections to hospitalisations is known, and probably known by demographic at this point in time.

    • The problem is once it gets beyond a certain point it is likely to get out of control but no one knows where that point is.
      We may have already reached that point with delta.
      Given the previous success at elimination and the fact it is so scary we have had to shut the country down for months at a time a full on outbreak is poison to the government that lets it happen.

  10. “At some point, nations will have to learn to live with the virus. There needs to be a proper trade-off between maintaining economic and social freedoms and minimising deaths. The balance in Israel seems to be skewed too far towards the latter.”

    Said Von Newman, Nash [pre diagnosis], and McNamara or anyone else encumbered with some rank ideological fundamentalism that could not square with reality …

    Here I will quote someone that cut their teeth in the Aids era and has been a Educator and Practitioner for over 30 years with deep networks:

    Just FYI – the IDSA has now moved the goalposts once again – it seems we now have to vaccinate 90% of the population to reach herd immunity. How many of the members of the IDSA (Infectious Disease Society of America) have actually read the foundational textbook in Infectious Disease – Mandell? That is the accumulated wisdom and knowledge of the specialty. In the very first section of the coronavirus chapter and again in the respiratory virus chapter, it is explicitly stated that herd immunity does not exist in these viruses. If it does, it is only very transitory and the viruses are back again in the next season. I would argue that the evidence we already have is very supportive of what the textbook is stating. Things are much more severe with COVID because it is novel to us – we are still trying to figure each other out. So why are they pushing this so hard? I have no idea. But it seems in our climate today – that mandating vaccination programs to reach a 90% threshold that the foundational textbook says is pixie dust is the height of hubris.

    So now I’m to “believe” a offered prospective from anyone that has zero knowledge or experience in this discipline of science in suggesting a agenda that both servers a greater social good and negates the short and long term outcomes of a once in a century event – ??????

    • ‘Eric Feigl-Ding
      @DrEricDing
      7) Dr Mark Kline Physician-in-Chief at Children’s Hospital New Orleans: “#DeltaVariant is every infectious disease specialist’s worst nightmare. There was a myth—that children were somehow immune—It has become very clear that children are heavily impacted” ‘ – (1:19 min video)

      https://twitter.com/DrEricDing/status/1422574734399754243

    • You realize that what you are quoting says there is nothing we can do about it, we are fighting a losing battle and we may as well accept we have to live with it because there is LITERALLY nothing we can do about it.

      • I don’t share your perspective, but deal with the best approximation of facts and use that as forward guidance irrespective of previous views. Oh BTW there is in fact lots that can be done to deal with covid and AGW but that might make some rank ideological fundamentalists mad … sorta like rapture is a good thing is some mobs thinking …

      • There is something we can do about it. But it does require some sort of sacrifice, some once off, some ongoing. We as a nation have to agree to what risks we collectively want to tolerate and which we want to eliminate. Any decision should pass the cost/benefit analysis.

        i.e. IMO looking at what we can do vs what it will cost out of all the options it seems remote quarantine of all international arrivals a one off lockdown vaccines to cleanse this variant is the answer. It gives up very little long term, but keeps the local pub, small business, and battler in a job able to feed their families and live mostly on a day to day basis a normal life.

        To me letting it rip and living with the virus with boosters has a greater long term cost in terms of “semi-unofficial” lock down occurring with panic lock downs when variants come. To think that we will always be ahead of the virus is typical hubris that I’ve seen coming from NSW in its management of COVID. The problem is failure is binary – either you get it right and it works out, or you guess wrong and its chaos. In the end people will prioritize their own health, and that has its own cost. It also creates uncertainty which makes long term planning especially for local businesses/workers difficult. Unfortunately I think this is the likely road we will take due to political capture by lobby groups (education, big business cheap labour, airlines, etc) at the expense of the average person in the community.

  11. RanganutsMEMBER

    I’m not getting jabbed. I am worried about Anitbody Dependant Enhancement. Every previous attempt at a coronavirus vaccine caused this in animal testing, (most if not all died).

    Go to the US CDC website. Look at Covid mortality since it started. For me, I am under the 45 year old category. Less than 17,000 people have died with covid since it started in my age bracket. Take out the fatties and those with pre existing conditions. Then take into account the US population is 330 million… yep, I’m going to take my chances with the virus.

    Honestly I don’t know why we get worked up about our positions on getting jabbed. If you are vaccinated, why are you worried about me? With covid vaccines they do nothing to stop transmission, so why get worked up about it? I am genuinely worried for those who have been vaccinated about the potential for future ramifications. There is a lot that could go wrong.

    • Even StevenMEMBER

      I’m not worried about you Ranganuts. My only concern is that all people have been given reasonable opportunity to get the vaccine AND that reasonable efforts have been made to educate people on benefits and risks so they can make an informed decision. My community obligations are at that point met and I say fully open up regardless of % vaccinated.

      Let the consequences then fall on each individual. Unvaccinated COVID sufferers should rank behind other people requiring medical attention. This is individual accountability.

      • RanganutsMEMBER

        I’m all for individual accountability Even, but if you want the unvaccinated to, ‘rank behind other people requiring medical attention,’ then I think you should apply that mantra evenly throughout society. What about those who take drugs, drink alcohol, are overweight or smoke? A fair chunk of those individuals take up the medical system and use up valuable tax payers money.
        I don’t do any of those things and I am fit, work out regularly and never go to the doctor. I am not a strain on any of those systems and even ay for my private health insurance every year. But if you want to discrimate against my choice then that’s fine, (and it seems society is going to make things quite difficult for me).

        You also talk about benefits and risks. These benefits and risks are still yet to be played out and the goal posts look to be changing. for example the CDC have come out last week and stated that the viral load of those vaccinated looks to be similar to those who are unvaccinated.

        I am worried about the great unknown so I am going to wait and see. What I do know though is that if I do get the virus then I have a very very high likliehood of surviving it.

      • Unvaccinated COVID sufferers should rank behind other people requiring medical attention.

        Interesting concept.
        How would you rank someone who chooses to take a dangerous experimental drug and then suffers a stroke because it it? Surely that person should rank behind an Unvaccinated COVID sufferer. Wouldn’t you agree?

        • If the authorities running the hospital system have tried to warn people off taking the dangerous drug then sure.
          If the authorities running the hospital system have been trying to encourage people to take the dangerous drug they ought to make sure anyone who has any adverse effect from it are at the front of the queue for everything.

          • And how many “say no to drugs” campaigns have you seen in the last 30 years? The ads about some dude coming into hospital scratching his arm off and attacking nurses?
            The cancer ads with the lady talking in robot voice because she has throat cancer due to smoking?
            The don’t speed ads with the surgeon talking about how he tried to save the driver or the father who argues with another to slow down because he has his son in the back seat.
            The obesity ads and the calls to speak to your doctor about weight issues?
            Alcoholics!!! I’m sure there was a tonne of money spent on raising awareness for that. Domestic violence… a wife beater can’t be ahead in the queue from someone who refuses to inject themselves with a barely tested chemical.
            We need to draw up an order system where every smoker, drug taker, every driver that is speeding, obese people get a ordered list that states what order the medical system will be used to look after them.
            It is a conversation long overdue on why people can make these choices without considering what a drain to societys medical infrastructure they are being. You will find our hospitals will be far less choked and maybe can even deal a bit with a pandemic.

          • Jumping jack flash

            It seems some people need to make a choice. Are we setting up for “Animal Farm” socialism, or actual socialism?

            Because in actual socialism everyone is equal and deserves the same access to resources as anyone else.

      • I’m all for that, but we should also rank people on potential benefits and costs, for instance older people requiring treatments should be placed behind younger people as the benefits to society are much less in the case of older people and the outcomes worse..

        • Even StevenMEMBER

          We already do (and have). Younger patients were prioritised over older patients for ICU beds and oxygen in the early COVID days. Would you prioritise a 10 yo child or an 80 yo person? I know what I would do.

          Does that mean I would prioritise a person with a paper cut over an unvaccinated COVID sufferer? No. That is too extreme.

          Obviously I’m talking conceptually because administratively / practically it is difficult to implement. But it does happen under stressed circumstances (refer my first point).

          I would apply this principle to a great many things if I could, smokers vs. non-smokers etc. Perhaps an extreme extension of this is a social credit score. But is that much worse than the person who currently has the most wealth getting the best medical treatment? Too many concepts and complications. Too many slippery slopes.

          Put simply: act contrary to the advice of health authorities and accept the responsibility of your actions. Don’t expect others to do you a favour.

      • RanganutsMEMBER

        I am not referring to animal vaccines. I am referring to vaccines that were developed for humans but failed when they tested them on animals. Specifically the ones that were developed for MERS and the original SARS.

        https://www.nature.com/articles/s41564-020-00789-5

        We have never effectively vaccinated against a human coronavirus previously. Respiratory coronaviruses are notoriously difficult to vaccinate for and they simply mutate too fast. That is another issue by the way, vaccinating for this is simply going to alter the virus through natural selection. These vaccines are imperfect and regarded as, ‘leaky vaccines.’

    • That’s exactly my point of view. Glad I’m not the only one feeling cautious about these drugs.

  12. Here is an issue that I have not seen discussed anywhere:

    It now seems likely that the Chinese created the COVID virus in a lab and then accidentally released it. (People from other countries were also involved in the research and funding it, etc)

    So if I get COVID then the Chinese govt and by extension the Chinese people are responsible for what happened to me, and I can morally and perhaps legally claim compensation from them.

    However if I choose to take a particular “vaccine”, or if my employer or govt forces me to take a “vaccine”, and I suffer an injury from the vaccine, then the blame for this injury lies with myself, employer or my govt (and by extension the Australian population), and it is hard to blame the Chinese and seek compensation from them.

    Surely taking these experimental jabs undermines our case for seeking reparations from the Chinese. If we going to take these dangerous jabs, we should first make a deal with the Chinese about reparations.
    For example: Instead of owing us $1000 trillion in compensation for COVID later, you can pay us $100 trillion now (or its equivalent in gold) and we will take the experimental jabs, and use the $100 trillion to compensation those injured by the jabs as well as those injured by COVID.

    • You are delusional if you think reparations are obtainable from china. Last time that was tried was post ww1, and it got us the nazi party and ww2.

    • Jumping jack flash

      Its a nice thought and good luck with it.
      The leatest theory is the Chinese were researching corona on request of Fauci… its an interesting theory but i dont know if there’s much proof yet.

  13. C'est de la folieMEMBER

    At the risk of sounding like an idiot (and one who has friends/relatives who have strong opinions – ranging from ‘I am not going near any vaccine’ through to ‘we all need to be vaccinated today’) I have some questions – if anyone has answers.….

    Disclaimer, I have had the first shot of AZ vaccine (and will get the 2nd in circa 3 weeks).

    My understanding of the rough consensus of information in the public domain (and please tell me I am wrong if this is the case) is that……

    1. The only certain preventative measure against the advent of Covid 19 in Australia is hard quarantine.

    2. There is no scope of avoiding lockdowns (once the virus is into Australia) unless enough people get a vaccine which prevents the spread of the virus

    3. The main reason we don’t want the virus spreading actively within the human population is because we are concerned about hospitals (and general healthcare per se) becoming clogged with people requiring breathing support, major potential complications over the longer term because of Covid, and potentially significant deaths amongst the elderly.

    4. It is unlikely there will be international travel for people without a vaccine

    5. It is already known that many people who are vaccinated are still going to get and carry and pass on the virus – that is, that many people will be prevented from getting the virus by the vaccine, but many vaccinated people will still get the virus but not get as ill from the virus as they would have been if unvaccinated.

    6. It is anticipated that there will be further variants of the virus evolve. There seems to be some consensus that the effects of these variants would likely moderate over generations of the virus, but there are no guarantees something more harmful will not evolve.

    7. It is almost certain/highly likely the human race will be taking booster shots to address variants of the virus, probably at least annually, for some time to come.

    8. There has never been a mass vaccine of a generation newer than Astra Zeneca approved for widespread public use which has not been tested for a period less than 2-3 years (or even longer).

    9. There has never been a mRNA vaccine of any sort developed for widespread use, and the potential side effects have never been studied over long periods.

    If the above is anything like right then I find myself thinking that there will continue to be widespread resistance to taking vaccines, and continued need to use lockdowns, for a number of years to come.

    From there though, there are more factors in the mix…..

    10. Large numbers of Australians are being negatively affected by lockdowns, and subsequently experiencing major anxiety and depression issues.

    11. Large numbers of Australians are currently affected by the economic impacts of the lockdowns we have had and are still having.

    12. Financial stress amongst Australians generally is already very significant. Financial stress amongst Australians (and Australian families) dependant for their employment on tourists, foreign students, the hospitality or restaurant sectors, sporting events, mass live entertainment, face to face retail or services, is likely to be more pronounced.

    In the face of the above we seem to have a government which has failed at quarantine, and failed at aged care, is encouraging everybody to get vaccinated (after signing a waiver for the vaccine in my case), and has issued a range of advices about which people should be taking which vaccine. They do seem concerned about Covid, but I tend to agree they are doing sweet FA about the implications of the entire Covid experience and their own role in Australia’s experience – notably the anxiety, depression and mental health angles. I also tend to agree that the great ‘services’ economy Australia has crafted for itself in the NeoLiberal era is at particular risk from an event just like Covid.

    At this stage I find myself thinking that for the now, Australia should tighten even further on access to Australia (vis holders, foreign actors, tourists should be simply told ‘No’ – but Stranded Australians should be told to get on a government provided plane and flown home to handle 3 weeks quarantine somewhere remote). Australians should be told there ‘will be no immigration to Australia except in the most exceptional of circumstances for at least 3 years. Those in Australia who want to depart should be allowed to do so, but only after they have it made perfectly clear to them that there will be no government support to come back, and no timeframe over which they will be able to do so.

    Then I think all Australian families should have:-

    Mortgage payments on mortgages up to 500k for a first family residence made tax deductible.
    All Australian businesses in sectors (tourists, foreign students, the hospitality or restaurant sectors, sporting events, mass live entertainment, face to face retail or services) affected by the advent of Covid should be allowed to write off all plant and equipment deployed for business purposes against business or personal earnings dated back as far as last tax year and as far forward as the Covid experience continues.
    All Australian households should be made a one off grant equal to one half of the taxable income declared in the 2019-2020 tax year.
    All Australians should have access to a one off course of tertiary or vocational study at Commonwealth expense (to be completed within 5 years) with additional incentives for Australians to take up strategic economic skills (IT, green energy, water management, advanced food processing and production, STEM etc).

    From there the corporate sector should be told….
    Australian businesses – particularly retail, banking, telecoms and services should be told ‘population growth has ended for the time being and they will need to come to terms with a fairly stable population and grow profits by doing something original, economically viable, plugged into global demand remotely, or which Australians want to buy.
    Tax concession should be made available to investors wanting to produce or service in Australia (a Covid Free Environment) which is exporting or import competing.

    …….And finally there should be a half yearly review of the progress of the Australian economy in transitioning away from being an inward facing bubble economy fuelled by the proceeds of commodity sales, towards a diverse Economy deploying the skills of Australians to earn an income in a global market – with housing speculation being financially punished (maybe except where it is leading to an increase in housing supply).

    And every year the budget should be announced with the words ‘ the budget deficit due to the Australian economy being structured in the NeoLiberal era to be a fraud brought down by Covid will be -5,6,7,8,9, 10% etc’

    My tuppence

    • 1 and what I’ve been stating for awhile. Its the easy answer but too many vested interests would be against it. Hence the media and many vested interests presenting people with a simple but highly misleading choice. That being between vaccines and opening up, or lock down and depression. They’ve controlled the narrative extremely well seeing it as a one or another choice and given this narrative people aren’t framed to see the option you have detailed.

      One correction – the budget will be healthier than you think. International travel/tourism is a net importer to our economy in the tunes of billions of dollars so only allowing domestic tourism is a big net stimulus. Restricting borders has seen immense wage pressure in my industry, and others talking to some recruiters and others. Given current settings Australia all else being equal is probably better off given our resource wealth and abundant environment being isolated than connected to the world as a whole economically. I would argue our openness has been a net economic negative for quite some time in terms of wealth per capita and our current account.

    • My understanding of the rough consensus of information in the public domain (and please tell me I am wrong if this is the case) is that……

      1. The only certain preventative measure against the advent of Covid 19 in Australia is hard quarantine.
      We will never have a hard enough quarantine to keep it out long term, unless we end virtually all imports and travel in and out of the country. The current NSW outbreak was from aircrew not arrivals.

      2. There is no scope of avoiding lockdowns (once the virus is into Australia) unless enough people get a vaccine which prevents the spread of the virus
      We don’t have a vaccine that prevents the spread of the virus, it merely reduces it. Claims that 80% or 100&% vax will stop spread are bs.
      Lockdowns are a choice and could be avoided if acceptance that covid isn’t going away is reached.

      3. The main reason we don’t want the virus spreading actively within the human population is because we are concerned about hospitals (and general healthcare per se) becoming clogged with people requiring breathing support, major potential complications over the longer term because of Covid, and potentially significant deaths amongst the elderly.
      Possibly, the government is just concerned about “appearances” and eradication or lockdowns without increasing hospital infrastructure does nothing other than alter the time this becomes a problem, it doesn’t prevent it.

      4. It is unlikely there will be international travel for people without a vaccine
      Maybe, depends on many things.

      5. It is already known that many people who are vaccinated are still going to get and carry and pass on the virus – that is, that many people will be prevented from getting the virus by the vaccine, but many vaccinated people will still get the virus but not get as ill from the virus as they would have been if unvaccinated.
      That’s the story, but the reality is probably much less protection than they want you to believe.

      6. It is anticipated that there will be further variants of the virus evolve. There seems to be some consensus that the effects of these variants would likely moderate over generations of the virus, but there are no guarantees something more harmful will not evolve.

      7. It is almost certain/highly likely the human race will be taking booster shots to address variants of the virus, probably at least annually, for some time to come.
      This is again a choice, and may provide little to no benefit long term.

      8. There has never been a mass vaccine of a generation newer than Astra Zeneca approved for widespread public use which has not been tested for a period less than 2-3 years (or even longer).
      Not for a half century, no.

      9. There has never been a mRNA vaccine of any sort developed for widespread use, and the potential side effects have never been studied over long periods.
      They’ve been developed, that’s how they were ready so quickly. They have just failed the accreditation process on previous incarnations. An emergency was great for circumventing the approvals process and obtaining legal waiver for any liability for problems as well.

      If the above is anything like right then I find myself thinking that there will continue to be widespread resistance to taking vaccines, and continued need to use lockdowns, for a number of years to come.
      That depends on what is an acceptable outcome, but lockdowns are just delaying the inevitable.
      .

  14. I’m desperate to be proven wrong by history, but here’s how I see the implementation of the Australian version of the CCP Social Credit score system unfolding. This will likely apply to other countries too.

    Doubtless our politicians have been looking at China and salivating at their level of control so, never one to waste a crisis, QR codes are here to stay – The Party doesn’t need to track your location, you will self report comrade! The vaccine passport (or whatever they end up calling it) will rapidly evolve. It’ll start out for travel, air and international at first, attending sporting events, pubs etc then at some point it’ll morph ever so slightly and a points system will be applied. Now you’ll need it to patronise certain shops, supermarkets at first, but eventually all shops, then banking, public transport and so forth.

    Then the removal of cash. Trot out the usual – tax avoidance, criminals etc etc. Besides, its use was in decline before the rona, now everyone is deathly afraid of catching it from money it’s an anomaly. Cashless society marries up perfectly with a Social Credit score system.

    All this will be cheered on by the useful idiots. Imagine their glee – The Party will be able to cancel Bad People in real life! With just the click of a mouse! A shiver of guilty pleasure will run down their spines as they imagine being the one to do it. “I don’t have anything to hide!” they’ll bleat. Eventually the screws will turn a little more. Using your phone while driving? Whoops, that’s -50 points, hope you can still catch public transport. Like a drink? We think you’re drinking a little too much – scanning in at Dan Murphy’s a bit too often there old son, -20 points. What you posted on your socials doesn’t align with The Party, -40 points, now you’re below the threshold where you can access your money. Whoopsie!

    In order to ride the wave of fear I give it from as little as 18 months to a maximum of 5 years. Never happen here but.

    • Oh, and if anyone dares to protest someone will edit up Peppa Pig videos with bogan voiceovers and we’ll all laugh and laugh and laugh.

    • reusachtigeMEMBER

      That’s what everyone is begging for! People want this. They need to be part of the collective, all safe and sh1t.

    • Even StevenMEMBER

      I think the problem you outline can be illustrated most easily by two extremes:
      1. No laws whatsoever. No policing. Complete freedom from government control.
      2. Micro-laws and consequences to everything. Every aspect of your life is monitored and/or controlled.

      Everyone sits somewhere on that spectrum. Most debates devolve to arguing the other is proposing one of those extremes. In reality, people simply sit somewhere on the spectrum and they’re not at either extreme.

      I don’t think there is evidence that the world will tend towards one extreme or another. I think a healthy tension should and will exist on both those extremes.

      If China cracks down too hard and does not permit sufficient personal freedoms perhaps they’ll find discontent reigns and their empire starts to fragment. People can see a ‘better life’.

      • I haven’t described anything there that doesn’t already happen in China’s social credit score system, combined with the “great firewall of China” and state controlled media that’s why there’s little to no dissent. They don’t see a better life because they can’t find out what it looks like. They can’t even look up Tiananmen Square FFS. When it gets rowdy, cast your mind back to Hong Kong (RIP democracy).

        Wanna see how effective a social credit score system is?

        https://china-journal.org/2019/05/27/chinese-mma-fighter-xu-xiaodong-has-social-credit-score-lowered-to-d-is-barred-from-buying-plane-tickets-and-real-estate/

        “A credit score “D” means that Xu will no longer be allowed to buy plane tickets or train tickets, purchase real estate. He also will be banned from star-rated hotels, restaurants and nightclubs, and his children will not be able to study in private schools.”

        That’s only *one* dude.

    • Jumping jack flash

      Giving the option to link vaccine passport to social media accounts would do it

      Who doesnt want to brag about their vaccination status. People already are.