Wednesday , October 27 2021
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Tag Archives: pandemic

Held to ransom by the unvaccinated

It is not a pleasant calculus.New Zealand apparently really only has 186 fully staffed ICU beds. The rest is potential surge capacity with staff who've had only short bootcamp training. Vaccinated people can still catch Covid, but they're very unlikely to wind up in ICU. Alberta's population is a bit smaller than New Zealand's: 4.4m to our 5.1m. They put up all their vaccine outcome stats, from their very large ongoing outbreak.Just look at the numbers here. Let's imagine everyone were fully...

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Morning roundup

 The morning's worthies:Dileepa Fonseca still on target on Covid testing. Supply shortages in construction as far as the eye can see (Newsroom, $). All of the Covid messes are running up against a sector that geared up for the amount of construction that had been allowed (not much) and that has to expand as Auckland allows more growth and as the NPS-UD starts kicking in (though there is much yet to do in enabling growth - see the last bullet). Employer vaccine mandates remain a legal mess...

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No accountability in Covid-land

Dileepa Fonseca has more on the latest installment of the Rako saga.I know I've been going on about this since last December. But it really matters. If you can't get accurate test results quickly back to people in a pandemic, you're always going to be well behind the curve. Contact tracing is a mess of too-little capacity. Pinning down cases quickly makes that job easier. Fast results, and especially if collection is unobtrusive, reduces test hesitancy. If you have to self-isolate for days...

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Morning roundup

 Ok. It's down to one Chrome sheet. The worthies!Wokeness as Saddam statues. Great story on how Saddam Hussein might not have even wanted all those statues of him, but lower-level officials would ramp themselves up in demonstrating allegiance. The mechanism does go back a distance; Mark Twain described a similar one back in Connecticut Yankee.Months ago, we'd called for just giving residence to everyone who's been here since the March 2020 lockdown. The government's alternative misses a few...

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Sellotape IT systems and covid testing

I'd struggled to understand why the government would be blocking Rako's access to the Covid test tracking system. Surely, even if they hated Rako, they'd want to get results reported in for their own tracking purposes. Dileepa Fonseka has a potential explanation. The IT systems, like most government IT systems, are a disaster.The Government is struggling to meet its existing border worker testing obligations, allegedly thanks to IT systems “held together by sellotape”.There have been growing...

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Morning roundup

There are 5 different Chrome windows, each chocka. I can't do every bit justice. So, a roundup while I try closing maybe 2 of them.Superb news. Finally. The government is starting to be a bit more flexible about safe alternatives to MIQ. I like how Australia still thinks big. Here's Stephen Kirchner making the case for a large increase in immigration.There's a claim that carbon farming, via forest sequestration, starts being costly after a century. I'm still not convinced. If carbon prices...

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Contact details

It seemed really obvious, really early, that robust privacy protections were needed around Covid sign-ins. If even some people expect, entirely unreasonably, that there's any chance that police could subpoena that data, then it needs to be bright-line illegal for anyone to hand that data over to police. The government can insist all it wants that the police wouldn't do that, but people who don't inherently trust police to do the right thing would rightly insist on stronger protection than...

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Further, on taking tests

On Monday, I managed to get a submission in on the Government's awful proposal to give itself the power to requisition tests and testing materials. Was a bit of a rush job, but it's a bit of a rushed legislative process. I hadn't known about it much before a hasty blog post on it on Friday. The submission alludes to a few problems in giving the Ministry of Health authority to set quality standards for testing, which the legislation also does, in addition to letting the Ministry take Rako's...

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Taking tests

The least-bad potential explanation for what the government is up to, in its rushed legislation that would give it the power to expropriate Rako Science's testing setup, runs as follows.Suppose that, as Director General of Health, or the Minister of Health (who knows where this came from), you finally FINALLY figured out that most of your advisors on saliva-based testing are, in fact, utter idiots. They have led you astray for almost a year. All that stuff about saliva PCR testing not being...

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Boosters

I was going to write about the FDA's idiotic booster recommendations, and then I found the perfect answer on Marginal Revolution, which I will quote in its entirety for the few readers who don't read MR every dayMy first reaction upon hearing that boosters were rejected was to ask the same thing: would these same “experts” say that, because the vaccines are still effective without boosters, vaccinated persons don’t need to wear masks and can resume normal life? Of course not. They use the...

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