Commentary: Public Against Re-Opening So Soon

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The Trump administration cheered on Monday as a slew of states like Texas, Indiana, Colorado and Florida have pushed forward with easing stay-at-home and even social distancing guidelines.

Just last month, the White House released recommendations “to wait to see a decline in cases over a two-week period” in addition to more robust testing in place for front-line workers before heading into re-opening.

This comes even as experts and indeed the administration itself was projecting a resumption in the rise in both infections and deaths over the next several weeks, with the expectation that by June 1, the number of daily deaths would reach 3000—nearly double the current level.

Reported the NY Times: “The more dire assessments reflect the decisions of governors across the country to ease social-distancing measures even as the number of new cases holds steady and, in some cases, is even rising.”

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington has increased its projections from 60,000 total deaths to 134,000 total deaths—a figure that partly reflects “changes in mobility and social distancing policies.”

Reports the NY Times: “While the United States has been hunkered down for the past seven weeks, the prognosis has not markedly improved.”

This, the Washington Post says, “underscores how an eagerness by Trump and several state governors to begin restarting normal activities after a weeks-long economic slowdown has clashed with a stubbornly high national caseload that has defied the president’s predictions of a swift and safe reopening.”

The president has been overly optimistic on this from the start.  He said over the weekend, “There’s not too many states that I know of that are going up. Almost everybody is headed in the right direction…  We’re on the right side of it, but we want to keep it that way, but we also want to get back to work.”

But even a partial re-opening may not do much to help the economy.  The Penn Wharton Budget Model for example found the best case scenario in terms of loss of life was not re-opening until June 30.

In that scenario, deaths would nearly double to about 117,000—right around where the estimates had them a month ago.

The bad news in that scenario is US GDP would plummet.  By the end of June another 18 million jobs would be lost and the GDP would fall to 11.6 million.  Already, since mid-March, nearly 30 million Americans have filed for unemployment.

Reopen the economy now—that would be the best case scenario for the economy.  About a half million additional jobs would be lost by June 30 and the economy would be down 10 percent.

The bad news in that is there would be 233,000 ADDITIONAL deaths by the end of June (that means deaths over and above the most restrictive scenario).  That doesn’t even speak to the rest of the year.

But there is a softer middle ground—residents practice social distancing, states partially reopen but maintain some restrictions, like the prohibition of in-house dining at bars and restaurants.  Under that scenario it would save about 4.4 million jobs but still lose 14 million between May and June 30.

Still, that would leave the death total by June 30 at 162,000.

Meanwhile, as places like Sutter and Yuba County rush to re-open against medical advice, most Americans remain opposed to the reopening of restaurants, retail stores and other businesses.

Despite the mixed messages by the president, a Washington Post-University of Maryland Poll found sizable opposition to re-opening.

Of the eight categories, only the opening of golf courses had 40 percent support—59 percent opposed.

Retail stores were 34 percent, barber and hair salons 31 percent, it then dipped into the 20s for nail salons (25 percent), dine-in restaurants (26) and gun stores (29).  At the bottom was movie theaters at 18 percent.

The number of people worried about becoming infected and seriously ill jumped from 57 percent two weeks ago to 63 percent now.

President Trump’s approval remained steady at 44 percent with 56 percent negative.  That compared to 75 percent approval in the polls for respondents’ state governors.

On the other hand, Americans continue to overwhelming approve of the way federal public health scientists, including Anthony S. Fauci, have dealt with the challenges from the coronavirus.  Dr. Fauci not only continues to have strong positives, but he maintains bipartisan support with two-thirds approval from Republicans and 90 percent approval from Democrats.  Public health scientists also have a strong 71 percent positive rating.

As we have seen large protests, it is important therefore to recognize that not only are these people in the small minority of citizens, they seem to be extremists—either on the far right or in some cases, far left, anti-vaxxers.

The New York Times noted that anti-vaccination activists are a growing force in these protests.

They write, “But the organizers were not militia members, restaurant owners or prominent conservative operatives. They were some of the loudest antivaccination activists in the country.”

The Times adds that “their growing presence at the protests worries public health experts who fear that their messaging could harm the United States’ ability to turn a corner following the pandemic if Americans do not accept a future vaccine.”

A vaccine is likely the best hope for the country to return to a semblance of normal.  More likely, as states re-open and their infections and deaths rise, there will be a second wave of closures.

—David M. Greenwald reporting


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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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127 thoughts on “Commentary: Public Against Re-Opening So Soon”

  1. Robb Davis

    Missing from this article is an analysis of the consensus recommendations about how to go about re-opening, contained in even the President’s recommendations: testing, tracing, and isolating cases. Many countries are doing this and perhaps states are preparing (it appears MD is close).

    I cannot understand why this is not moving more quickly however.  But make no mistake, while even the American Conservative has columnists writing in favor of these approaches, they will, inevitably lead to pushback from those who will argue that the government cannot require people to isolate.

    And this points to another missing analysis: the way that culture shapes our responses to this crisis.  I would point readers to Hofstede’s cultural dimensions or Myer’s “culture map” to analyze the cultural domains that seem to be conditioning our behavior: consensus versus top-down decision making, individualistic versus collectivist thinking, results versus nurturance. These cultural domains tell a story about who we are and I think leadership should start talking about how the reactions to COVID-19 are, to perhaps a large extent, driven by unquestioned cultural values.

    1. Jeff Boone

      I am not familiar with Hofstede, but am with Myer’s book.  I saw it as a project attempting to deal with the globalist conundrum for bridging cultural (aka tribal) difference, but then brilliantly marketing it as a business leadership resource.  There are some good bits there, but the progressive view of collaborative egalitarian opportunity is forever made futile by simply human psychology: specifically the natural tendency for every community of human animals to filter into a hierarchy.  Well-managed organizations – both private and public – strive to improve stakeholder involvement in decision-making.  But there is always some natural hierarchical structure of influence and authority.  It happens because people are all different… truly diverse… not superficially so.

      American culture has traditionally derived from its founding design – the great idea – of individualism, freedom, individual opportunity and self-determination.  And our hierarchy has generally be based on the individual ability to produce and deliver value to society based on our innate capabilities and capacities and what we master in our lifetimes.  But this virus has unleashed the top-down power of a hierarchy that is anathema to our founding values that have served us so well to date  – the media-backed administrative state.  It now runs roughshod over those base cultural norms.  It is a “daddy and mommy leaders know what is best for you” and so you will comply.  You will give up your cultural norms of individual freedom to better serve the collective.

      So yes, there will be push-back.  And even if the the push-back is wrong in consideration of the long-term calculable outcomes,  you and me and everyone else will be well-served by it to challenge the awesome corruptible and potentially tyrannical power of the all powerful administrative state that has no superior overseer other than we the people.

      1. Robb Davis

        Read Hofstede, the research into the different dimensions is much more developed in his book. The value in examining these cultural dimensions is to give us a language to talk about what makes us uncomfortable in the face of proposed policies (be they distancing or isolation in the case of illness).  While we must be careful not to use the dimensions to stereo-type, they can help us make generalizations about what makes recommended practices “feel wrong.”

        An attendant model for intercultural growth lists four steps (so-called competencies) that might be useful to think about.  Intercultural learning goes through these processes:

        I. Increasing awareness and understanding of our own characteristic ways of making meaning and acting in familiar and unfamiliar contexts;

        II. Increasing awareness and understanding of others’ ways of making meaning and acting in familiar and unfamiliar contexts;

        III. Engaging mindfully in contexts that disorient or challenge us;

        IV. Bridging cultural gaps in those contexts: Shifting perspective, attuning emotions, and adapting our behavior in effective and appropriate ways.

        The point here is that different nations and different cultures are approaching their response to this crisis in different ways.  To Americans some of these may seem heavy handed or top down. However, to people in those cultures with a more collectivist way of understanding social good, they may seem not only normal but also expected.  Intercultural learning begins with the recognition that we don’t all share the same way of making meaning and that our discomfort stems from the differences.  It should also challenge us to see if there is value in viewing the world through a different lens.

        1. Jeff Boone

          Thanks.  I will read Hofstede.

          I believe that some cultures are inferior to others based on the contribution to the overall human condition.   I believe western style democratic capitalism… especially the US version… provides the closest match to the human needs psychology.  I agree with Peterson on this.  Hence I see it as superior… although significantly flawed.

          Understanding any culture makes great sense to me… this seems to be what Hofstede is advocating based on your post above.  Communication is imperfect always, so understanding the basis for how another thinks, believes, feels, etc… is always beneficial in improving the outcomes from communication.  However, adopting a foreign culture only makes sense to me if it derives superior outcomes benefiting the overall human condition.

          Cultural tribalism seems very difficult to break.  Try to tell a Mets fan that the Yankees are a good team to support and a fight will ensue.  The two team represent different micro-cultures and different competing hierarchies.  And then there are our political tribes.  I agree with Haidt that we don’t argue politics to learn… we argue politics to win… for our political tribe… which supports our individual pursuit of human hierarchy attainment.  And I see this commonality transcending politics and permeating all systems, structures and cultures… micro and macro.  Most of us seek validation from our tribal peers that we are respected and well-thought of (high on the hierarchy)… and we naturally want to filter out those that pose a risk to that need for validation.

          This is the reason why I think the pursuit of a liberal global new world order is a fools errand.  The best we can do is learn to understand our differences, but collectivism will always fail because human nature is to compete for status.

        2. John Hobbs

          “I believe that some cultures are inferior to others based on the contribution to the overall human condition.”

          Which cultures are those, specifically?

        3. Jeff Boone

          Which cultures are those, specifically?

          Not playing that game.  The US culture is superior…. even today as it is being destroyed from within by the professional looter class.

        4. Jeff Boone

          Sorry.

          I think the connection to the topic is the over-aching discussion related to top-down administrative orders to ban activity in consideration of the risk-benefit to the collective vs bottom-up individual freedom.   It is frankly a common conflict.  Gun bans vs gun rights come to mind.

  2. Keith Olsen

    As we have seen large protests, it is important therefore to recognize that not only are these people in the small minority of citizens, they seem to be extremists—either on the far right or in some cases, far left, anti-vaxxers.

    I’ve watched videos of a couple of these protests.  It was more like average everyday people who were out and wanted the economy to reopen.  There might have been a few anti-vaxxers or far right extremists but they were a very small minority.   But leave it to the press and bloggers to portray them as anti-vaxxers, far right extremists, Nazis and racists.  No surprise there.

      1. Keith Olsen

        Look at your pic accompanied with this article.  Do they look all like far right wingers and anti-vaxxers?

        Quit with the fake finger pointing just because you’re against what they’re protesting for.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I don’t know what everyday people are, but if you looking at the polling numbers, you are talking about people in the 18 to 30 percent of the population. By definition, those are extremes.

        1. Alan Miller

          I don’t know what everyday people are,

          Everyday People
          Sly & The Family Stone

          Sometimes I’m right and I can be wrong
          My own beliefs are in my song
          The butcher, the banker, the drummer and then
          Makes no difference what group I’m in
          I am everyday people, yeah yeah
          There is a blue one who can’t accept the green one
          For living with a fat one trying to be a skinny one
          And different strokes for different folks
          And so on and so on and scooby dooby doo
          Oh sha sha we got to live together
          I am no better and neither are you
          We are the same whatever we do
          You love me you hate me you know me and then
          You can’t figure out the bag I’m in
          I am everyday people, yeah yeah

          There is a long hair that doesn’t like the short hair
          For bein’ such a rich one that will not help the poor one
          And different strokes for different folks
          And so on and so on and scooby dooby doo
          Oh sha sha we got to live together
          There is a yellow one that won’t accept the black one
          That won’t accept the red one that won’t accept the white one
          And different strokes for different folks
          And so on and so on and scooby dooby doo
          I am everyday people

    1. Bill Marshall

      Actually, Keith, about half the anti-vaxers I’ve encountered are far-right… anti-vaxers seem to occupy the second deviation on BOTH ends of the bell curve, with some ignorant/paranoid folk in between…

      There are some who should not be vaccinated… for medical, not other, reasons… to ‘protect’ some, mandatory vaccinations could maim/kill a very small part of the population… why I have strong objections to both anti-vaxers, and those who would make it mandatory, for everyone… the perfect person to hate… somebody who opposes both ends of the bell curve…

  3. Robb Davis

    “Collectivism will always fail…” I know, it has failed for centuries in China, Japan, large parts of Africa, and most of the Middle East.  Failures all…

    Just TRY a little cultural relativism… it can actually be liberating.

    1. Jeff Boone

      LOL.  Collectivist nations only survive and thrive if they can loot from productive free nations like the US.

      I love the old Russian saying:  workers pretend to work while their bosses pretend to pay them.

      I guess I would need your definition of success before I can understand your point of reference.  Collectivism fails because it cannot, by its design, harness the benefits derived from individual freedom to pursue self interest.  That is its fatal flaw.  Vanderbilt, Rockefeller, Ford, Carnregie, Edison, Westinghouse, Wright Brothers, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Elon Musk, etc., etc., etc.,   Yes, there are immigrants in that mix, but they succeeded in the US because of the US system.  They would never have made that level of contribution to the human condition in a collectivist system.

      The USSR only thrived as it did with a strong investment in spying and espionage… basically intellectual theft from its ideological foes to the west.

      China and Japan would be nothing like they are today without the US.  About 50% of the products made in, and the production processes used in, China were invented in and originally produced in the US.  China knows this and the end of the gravy train from the new trade agreements is putting them in a world of trouble to retain their collectivist ways.   A global pandemic is convenient in that it stopped the Hong Kong and Wuhan protests, and it hobbled the global economy just as the trade agreement and related tariffs were causing China its due pain.

  4. John Hobbs

    ” even today as it is being destroyed from within by the professional looter class.”

    Hey moderator: Boone gets away with this? I guess I shouldn’t be surprised since you let all his disinformation and outright lies stand.

    1. Jeff Boone

      I missed you Hobbs.  Well not really.

      Please control you emotions, stick to the topics and stop with the personal attacks.

      And I have a survey for you.

      Which do you find more triggering:

      “professional looter class”

      or

      “Anti-Vaxxer loons”

      Your answer might win you a prize.

      1. Bill Marshall

        There are a number of “professional looter class”  folk… particularly those in the financial industry who make profits/fortunes, particularly with home-owners, or small businesses, and directly/indirectly getting subsidies from State/Fed government in doing so… and, of course public employees who risk health/safety in responding to fires, crime, broken water or sewer mains, maintaining streets, all at the expense of “producing class” taxpayers… we could add those who provide education, medical/mental health treatment to the “producing class” and their families… all subsidized, directly or indirectly, by the “producing class”…

        And, folk on Social Security (which is paying out benefits beyond the contributions of the those receiving benefits), Medicare (same), SSI (same), SDI (same)… all “looters”…

        If I wanted to find more, probably could…

        Yes, Jeff, the “professional looter class” is a ‘clear and present danger’… I’d start correcting with the financial folk to correct the insidious malignancy… that industry got a whole lot of bailout $$$ during the last (and probably this) recession, paid for by the “producing class”!

        1. Jeff Boone

          You have complete freedom and choice to get a loan from a financial industry producer or not get a loan.   Also, the financial industry producer has to comply with reams of regulations and pay high fees to the professional looter class.

          You have no choice but to comply with the administrative state looters and given them as much of your hard earned money as they can demand… or you can spend time in prison.

          Understand the difference?

          However, I will absolutely agree that there are plenty of private sector business folk that fall under the looter class.  These are businesses that connect with and rely on the political establishment to block the path of upstarts to secure their big-business business revenues.  The media is front and center in this immoral gig.

  5. Robb Davis

    My last contribution on this topic.  I brought up cultural difference to propose looking at different dimensions of cultural difference and how they influence our reaction to both the crisis and how we respond to it. I leave the conversation convinced that much of the discomfort we feel about things like masks, or orders to distance ourselves result from cultural values about the role of the individual, questions of who decides, and obtaining results versus nurturing inclusion.

    Different nations are facing COVID-19 differently.  All are most certainly guided in their response by what is culturally appropriate or the cultural values available to them.  It appears that there has been wide acceptance of what Americans would consider coercive government requirements in places like Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong (democracies all).  The acceptance of these things is not based on political ideology but values that many people may not question.

    There is a reason why we feel discomfort about rest in place and masks—especially when those in authority mandate them.  Our unstated values tell us that individuals should be free to make such decisions for themselves and their immediate family.  Other cultures do not respond this way.

    It is useless, in my view, to discuss cultural difference in terms of inferior/superior cultures.  They simply are what they are but they do represent long historical and location-specific adaptations that enable us to move forward collectively.  They are not, however, sacrosanct and having the tools of cultural analysis should provide us with a way to discuss how we can best face COVID-19 given our values.  I find it telling that “tracing” is a huge topic of conversation in Europe and the US but less controversial elsewhere.  We are not really asking “why” tracing is objectionable—we just “know” it is problematic. That is culture.

    1. Doby Fleeman

      Don’t intend to “last word” on you with this post.  Just an observation, and a generalization at that.

      It is my view that, in these countries, there still exist strong traditions based around family values, where respect for family elders, combined with an inter-generational compact, plays a major role in the willingness of its citizens to accept trusted guidance – particularly if being issued, encouraged and endorsed by elders within a family.

      This is a very different dynamic and manifestation of trust and acceptance versus a model based on trust in the state and their team of experts.

    2. Jeff Boone

      I brought up cultural difference to propose looking at different dimensions of cultural difference and how they influence our reaction to both the crisis and how we respond to it.

      I understood that.  And that is why I responded that we have two competing ideological subcultures in this country and the people subscribing to each are responding differently.   I absolutely agree with you that there is a need and benefit to look at these different dimensions and understand them.

    3. Doby Fleeman

      I might also add that during a 1988 business trip to Taiwan, shortly after their lifting of martial law, I was fascinated with their history under the rule of Chiang Kai-Shek.   Getting off the plane in Taipei, walking out of customs, there was a ten foot tall sign which read “Possession of Drugs is Punishable by Death”.

      Point being, their country’s very recent history with a centralized, command and control form of government is very much a part of their culture.

      1. Alan Hirsch

        I think Doby’s observations are interesting.

        I might refer people to concept of “Moral Capital” (a shared sense of right and wrong that are guardrails on any civil society more than any legal system).

        This is discussed in Chapter 12 of Johnathan Haidt’s book “The Righteous Mind: why good people are divided by politics and religion”.   https://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/25/books/review/the-righteous-mind-by-jonathan-haidt.html

        Esp see pg 336.  “the Left’s blind spot”.

        I also find it extremely scary the GOP, and its “based” the religious right seems to be OK with breaking traditional behavioral/democratic norms, more vividly acted out passive acceptance armed protest at state houses in Michigan and elsewherre in rejection of  shutdown…and their silence when Trump have called “Good People” that should be negotiated with.  GOP reacted after Charlottesville events and Trumps comments, But no longer.

        Right is typically the guardian’s of tradition and authority.    A Ying to the left’s Yang interrogating norms for fairness, asking for reform and innovation.

        But right is no longer serving this role.

        “may you live in interesting times”

        1. Doby Fleeman

          Alan,

          I find it sad that we are left with a he said/she said bifurcation of an otherwise national emergency.

          In my view, this isn’t one of those occasions or conversations best served by declaring one side wrong and one side right.  What do we gain from such division – except, perhaps to further the goals of some foreign enemy who would seem to benefit from a further shredding of our flag.

          If I am to be characterized as the Right’s guardian of tradition and authority – it would be to support the rights of liberty and freedom, with authority accorded in proportion.  Economic disaster, and every that accompanies, is every bit as devastating to a way of life and personal human tragedy – in context of an entire nation – as are the deaths of innocent victims.

          So, who is to decide where one draws that line – both in consideration of our country, our families and ourselves – in a country and a culture founded upon freedom and liberty?

          I would argue that the very fabric of this country beginning to unravel as we attempt to please, appease and protect every request from every quarter.   It’s simply not possible.

          Informed consent must prevail.  And, yes, common sense must also prevail.

          In an increasingly competitive and connected world, one cannot avoid discussions of the larger, longer lasting economic and financial consequences of a given decision.  Unfortunately, our government institutions are not well equipped to assess this trade-off – insulated as we have been and having skipped most of the world’s economic lessons.

          Today’s decisions, today’s policy decisions, will cast our fates for decades to come – affecting the lives of tens of millions of people both here and abroad.   I trouble understanding how we can have “essential business” continuing daily to serve our citizens and not  completely succumbing and literally falling apart as the result of this unseen enemy?

          Maybe it’s foolish and too soon to open bars, casinos and massage parlors – but how different is the risk for a properly distanced hair or nail salon, a drycleaner, a shoe store, or socially distanced restaurant seating from a trip to the local grocery store and check-out clerk?

          Somebody needs to explain that.  What’s the science?

          Here’s hoping we can muddle through, without too much loss of life, to a better future for our following generations.

          Happy Cinco de Mayo!

      2. Alan Hirsch

        I think Doby’s observations are interesting.

        I might refer people to concept of “Moral Capital” (a shared sense of right and wrong that are guardrails on any civil society more than any legal system).

        This is discussed in Chapter 12 of Johnathan Haidt’s book “The Righteous Mind: why good people are divided by politics and religion”.   https://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/25/books/review/the-righteous-mind-by-jonathan-haidt.html

        Esp see pg 336.  “the Left’s blind spot”.

        I also find it extremely scary the GOP, and its “based” the religious right seems to be OK with breaking traditional behavioral/democratic norms, more vividly acted out passive acceptance armed protest at state houses in Michigan and elsewhere in rejection of  shutdown…and their silence when Trump have called “Good People” that should be negotiated with.  GOP reacted after Charlottesville events and Trumps comments, But no longer.

        Right is typically the guardian’s of tradition and authority.    A Ying to the left’s Yang interrogating norms for fairness, asking for reform and innovation.

        But right is no longer serving this role.

        “may you live in interesting times”

        1. Doby Fleeman

          Somewhat repetitive, repetitive.

          Bottom line, if California wants to retain its title as the 5 largest nation state – following only the US, China, Japan and Germany – it needs to begin acting like one.

          If we were to chronicle the activities occuring in Germany, one would find an immensely more prepared, better organized, more responsive and more responsive model of public governance.    Much of that responsiveness devolves to the individual states within the German republic – Bavaria, in particular, during this particular event.  Drawing the analogy to the country of California – that would be a county only slightly larger than Los Angeles County.   By comparison, Bavaria shown itself to be particularly responsive, effective, adept and self reliant in responding to an early outbrake – adopting intensive testing regimens, aggressively procuring of PPE, rapid tracing, mandatory mask wearing, and limits on gathering.

          That’s what I refer to a common sense – effectively deployed – in this case through a collaboration of local government, supported by private partnerships.

          That’s also what how I see our “competition” on the global stage.

          We live in a wonderful state, but we have a ways to go if we expect to retain our ranking a the 5th largest economy in the world.

          This point may be lost on most readers, but in the end it is this competitiveness that allows us to enjoy the standard of living we have come to take largely for granted.

          Maybe we still have a thing or two to learn from our brothers across the ponds.

        2. Jeff Boone

          In “Righteous Mind” Haidt is clear in his descriptions of conservative moral filters.  I think the problem with your ying vs yang criticism is that you are not considering the hierarchy of those moral filters.  You seem to expect the old Republicans to trash Trump for his unChristian words and deeds years ago before he was in office, but conservatives note the double political and media standards and the related hypocrisy and have woke to the game of their stronger moral compass being exploited by their political foes.  They also note higher level moral degradation… especially related to sanctity, and have concluded that a tarnished warrior is justified for the cause.   Lastly, they see people for who they really are and not the image they project on the stage… and they have concluded that Trump is more moral in his transparency of character than are the standard political actors and charlatans we have grown to expect.

          My take.

  6. Bill Marshall

    I think the vast majority of the people are on the extremes. The polling also bears that out.

    Interesting… an inverted bell curve.

    What polling to justify an assertion of such an anomaly? Please cite/provide link…

  7. Alan Miller

    Of the eight categories, only the opening of golf courses had 40 percent support—59 percent opposed.  Retail stores were 34 percent, barber and hair salons 31 percent, it then dipped into the 20s for nail salons (25 percent), dine-in restaurants (26) and gun stores (29).  At the bottom was movie theaters at 18 percent.

    Do I give a flying f*ck what public opinion is on a live & death medical issue?

    1. Bill Marshall

      Given the relative risk to any given individual, that’s a bit over-dramatic…

      Yolo County is a small county, compared to the US population… total US deaths is barely over the population of Davis.

      Life and death?  Certainly for some… a very small %-age…

      Worthy of simple precautions, definitely…

      1. Alan Miller

        Given the relative risk to any given individual, that’s a bit over-dramatic…

        You also think mandatory masks is just ‘health theater’ ?  That social distancing is overdramtic?  Why don’t you tell the individuals that have it that their risk was low?  Or my several friends/relatives who have health conditions that will almost certainly die if they get it?

        What of this – overdramatic?

        DrFauci says coronavirus has ‘phenomenal’ ability to spread ‘like wildfire‘ as lockdowns are lifted.”

        Srsly?

  8. Alan Miller

    “their growing presence at the protests worries public health experts who fear that their messaging could harm the United States’ ability to turn a corner following the pandemic if Americans do not accept a future vaccine.”

    I’m a bit of a small a anit-vaxxer, but for this? — bring on the vaxxine!  I think the Anti-Vaxxer loons are just making themselves look like loons, so public health officials can ‘stop worrying’.

    1. Bill Marshall

      Balance, Keith… I agree with the consideration, with a lean towards re-opening, normalcy…  but in many aspects of life, too fast might be too soon… one ex.:   dating/sex.  might have unintended consequences, collateral damages, ‘bad outcomes’… health and/or financially…

      1. Alan Miller

        one ex.:   dating/sex

        yeah, WM, that ain’t happening during the lockdown.  I live with a college-age housemate.  Maybe you assume everyone is literally ‘locked down’ because that’s your perspective in a single-family-home in suburban Davis.  Let me tell you, young people, even ones being somewhat careful, are hardly wearing chastity belts and sitting in their rooms.

        That’s why I called this a ‘panzy’ lockdown.  The point being – compared to Wuhan where they just welded the gate the the apartment complex shut and passed food in.  Now THAT is a lockdown!

        1. Bill Marshall

          because that’s your perspective in a single-family-home in suburban Davis.

          Interesting… I can see you would have a different perspective, not being “in a single-family-home in suburban Davis.” 

          My bad… fully realize I grossly misspoke… I apologize for my post…

          My memory isn’t what it was… forgot about the big blackout in New England many years ago (cascading grid failure) and the resultant birth-rates about 9 months later… folk were ‘hunkered down’, no lights, no TV… again, my bad, my apologies…

           

        1. Alan Miller

          Way over the top, David… way over… hyperbole to the second power… not realistic by current data…

          Again with your claims of over-the-top.  And again:  “DrFauci says coronavirus has ‘phenomenal’ ability to spread ‘like wildfire‘ as lockdowns are lifted.”

          Yeah, it’s all a big F-ing conspiracy ;-0

    1. Don Shor

      Texas hair salon owner gets 7 days jail time and fine for opening hair salon

      Even the most cursory understanding of the spread of this disease should have made it clear to her that her actions were potentially very dangerous. Refusing to comply with health orders can be a life-threatening hazard to all of her workers and customers and their friends and families. It is very disturbing that the far right has decided to make a heroine out of her.

      1. David Greenwald Post author

        That’s my thought as well – it’s akin to arguing that a misdemeanor DUI is not a serious crime. That said, I would probably prefer a fine to incarceration.

      2. Keith Olsen

        Texas Governor Greg Abbott ordered for the “immediate release” of a woman who was sentenced to jail for seven days for refusing to apologize for reopening her salon business in defiance of county lockdown orders.
        Abbot released a statement Wednesday denouncing the judge who sentenced Shelley Luther to jail, saying there better ways of protecting public safety than jailing a mom wanting to feed her kids.

        https://yournews.com/2020/05/06/1609804/shelley-luther-released-from-jail-after-texas-pushes-back-against/

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            It is if she gets sick because of it. It is if someone else gets sick because of it. It really is if someone dies. I would argue this is not much different than DUIs.

        1. Keith Olsen

          She could just as easily die driving into work,  Should the whole nation fold up and crawl into a corner?  If she was to get sick she’s young and will get over it like almost every other young person that got the virus.  I’m sure she’s partaking in safety precautions at her salon.  By the way, Texas is letting all hair salons open on Friday.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            Far more people died last month from COVID. You can’t partake in enough precautions in a salon. You come into close contact with people. She’s putting herself and others at risk.

  9. Robb Davis

    A note for Doby on the science of spread.  What is becoming increasingly clear across studies is that prolonged (more than a few minutes or passing) in confined spaces increases transmission.  Larger, open areas, well ventilated, with people moving through quickly, with masks, does not eliminate possibility of transmission but it greatly reduces it.

    Businesses that require direct (more intimate) contact over a period of time are riskier.  Businesses that can offer services at minimal contact, preferably with “delivery of service” outdoors are less risky.

    Reopening the economy is not a government decision (alone).  It is a decision of every consumer.  Consumers will not return until test/trace/isolate/protect regimens are in place.  These approaches, while difficult, are the pathway forward to giving consumers some level of confidence about using services.

    Just as with masks and SIP orders, there will be immediate questions about personal privacy and freedom wen TTIP comes into play.  It will not be easy but I think it is the way forward.

    1. Alan Miller

      Until there is a vaccine, or at least a treatment that prevents the Covid-19 body overreaction in some people that kills them, I will not enter a store that does not require mandatory mask — no matter what the government says.  And any MF-er who goes into a store without a mask is going to get a big fat piece of my mind.

      1. Don Shor

        any MF-er who goes into a store without a mask is going to get a big fat piece of my mind.

        Please do not confront other customers in a retail setting. Just politely bring it to the attention of the manager or owner.

        1. Bill Marshall

          Good advice, Don… courteous, factual reminders should suffice, and ARE appropriate…

          Ironic… 4 months ago if you entered a place of business, particularly a bank/credit union, wearing a mask, employees would probably ‘call security’… we are now @ 180 degrees away from that…

          Trivia question for folk… what was the name of the music (reportedly) played by the British troops @ the surrender of Yorktown, basically ending the Revolutionary War ?

          I gave a hint…

        2. Alan Miller

          Please do not confront other customers in a retail setting. Just politely bring it to the attention of the manager or owner.

          Yeah, right. These people are threatening everyone by being selfish *ssholes.

      2. Ron Oertel

        And any MF-er who goes into a store without a mask is going to get a big fat piece of my mind.

        That’s a good way to get shot, if you’re in Flint at least.  (See article, from yesterday.)

        Seems to me that businesses (which don’t have a great deal of “unmasked” traffic) might keep a small supply of complementary masks on hand, for those customers who somehow fail to bring one.  Might be a way to generate goodwill.

        1. Ron Oertel

           

          We’re not an “open carry state”, Ron, and concealed weapons permits are hard to come by in most jurisdictions…

          Yeah.  That’s been a very “effective” deterrent, for those prone to shoot others regarding an argument over masks.

          Think!

          But, I didn’t necessarily mean that this particular outcome would literally occur.

          In any case, telling a “MF-er” (as Alan put it) to put a mask on may not “work out so well”, though.  Even if you’re the store owner (ask Don, about that).  But yeah, it’s definitely better to let the owner/manager handle it, as Don suggests.

          And where would they get one-time masks to do that?  

          Are shortages “permanent”?  Last I heard, they were selling them at a local business, for those who didn’t bring them.  (Not sure if that’s still occurring.)

          But sure – if you can’t get them, you can’t get them.  It was just a suggestion, if they’re available.  And would probably go over a lot better than simply “telling” others what to do, without offering any help.

          Regarding the home-made masks your spouse makes, who exactly is wearing those?  Police, fire, EMT’s, emergency room personnel, etc.?  Is that an approved/allowed use, as far as their employers are concerned?  Are they encouraging that? (Just wondering.)

           

        2. Don Shor

          might keep a small supply of complementary masks on hand, for those customers who somehow fail to bring one.

          We’re doing that. We get customers from other counties who weren’t aware of the Yolo County ordinance.

        3. Ron Oertel

          We’re doing that.

          Cool!  (And, it’s probably “not-so-motivating” to do so for customers who have a bad attitude, to begin with.  But sometimes a little kindness goes a long way – especially during stressful times.)

          I think folks/customers tend to remember such acts (for a long time thereafter).

          And hell, I’ll acknowledge it – Bill and his family seem to do “more than their share”, as well.

        4. Bill Marshall

          Ron… am tiring of your trolling… but, in the interest of fairness…

          Last I heard, they were selling them at a local business, for those who didn’t bring them.  (Not sure if that’s still occurring.)

          So, local businesses can buy them, an give them to customers on a “complementary”(sic) basis… great way to do business in these times… feeds the bulldog…

          as to,

          Regarding the home-made masks your spouse makes, who exactly is wearing those?  Police, fire, EMT’s, emergency room personnel, etc.?  Is that an approved/allowed use, as far as their employers are concerned?  Are they encouraging that?

          Yes, as to the last 3 questions… as to the first we don’t know… donations… can you stop trolling?

          “(Just wondering.)”

           

        5. Ron Oertel

          You make it exceedingly difficult to “complement” you regarding your (self-promoted) efforts.  (Not the first time.)

          Would you also like to “crow” about your efforts with the homeless, again? (The folks that Alan M. has some “other” names for, by the way. Which you seem to be willing to “overlook”, for some reason. If I made comments like that, I’m pretty sure I’d get a different reaction, from you.)

          Seems like you go “out-of-your-way” to respond with hostility toward me, to begin with (including in this thread). You initiate this with me, repeatedly, and have done so for a long time now.

          Also, it appears that you are “wrong”, regarding supply (since Don has them, at least).

           

        6. Ron Oertel

          I suspect that your hostility is due to your negative view of “slow-growthers”, by the way.  Since you do this with others with similar views, as well.

          Now, if you want to “reboot” our online communications, you can do so.  It’s up to you.

          If not, you can expect more of the same.

          My guess (based upon history) is that you’ll continue choosing the “latter”, which ultimately serves no purpose.

  10. Robert Canning

    An excellent treatise on “viral” spreading is The Rules of Contagion: Why Things Spread – and Why They Stop by Adam Kucharski. Available from the UK and out in the U.S. in September. Not just about viruses (although they play a major role) but also how ideas spread and how things go viral on the internet. There are some underlying rules.

  11. Keith Olsen

    Gov.Newsom said today that we will not go back to normal until there is a vaccine.

    To date there has never been a vaccine invented for any coronavirus.

    1. David Greenwald

      He’s probably correct and we may not get a vaccine any time soon.  I don’t think you would survive COVID any better than I would.  So what’s the alternative here?

      1. Keith Olsen

        David, you act like getting COVID is an automatic death sentence.  Studies have shown the death rate is likely well below 1% of people who contact it and I heard the other day the average age is @ 80 of everyone that has died from it.  To date Yolo County has 16 COVID deaths and 11 came from one Woodland nursing home.  So the Yolo County death rate per population for COVID is .007% and if one didn’t live in that nursing home the percentage is .002%.

        1. Keith Olsen

          Correct, my numbers were from a few days ago, there’s now 19 total Yolo County deaths, 14 from the Woodland nursing home and 5 for the rest of the county.

          So, if you didn’t live in that nursing home the death rate per Yolo County’s population is still .002%.

        2. Doby Fleeman

          Keith,

          In many respects, it seems clear that individual attitudes are driven and determined by personal experience – as one might expect.

          With respect to the science, that’s often a different matter entirely.

          New York’s Governor today announced that 67% of their new cases were attributable to Households who have been “Sheltering in Place”.  Apparently, that came as a great surprise.

          During the press release, there was no additional information offered to help contextualize the characteristics of these households.  It seems like the most important question should be how do we protect our most vulnerable subpopulations (and it does appear there are some very specific denominators) while allowing the remainder of the 80% of America to get back to work – safely – but as soon as possible.

          Sadly, it does not appear the country has the appetite to discuss a coherent, logical, data-driven approach to addressing this challenge – i.e. getting America back to work.

          1. Don Shor

            it does not appear the country has the appetite to discuss a coherent, logical, data-driven approach to addressing this challenge

            The governor and the president’s health advisers have proposed a coherent, logical, data-driven approach.

        3. Doby Fleeman

          Don,

          Proposing is fine.  I’m talking about execution.

          How useful was Governor Cuomo’s announcement yesterday.

          What does it tell us about what is being done of its effectiveness – when these surprise results are not accompanied by any further elaboration?

        4. Alan Miller

          67% of their new cases were attributable to Households who have been “Sheltering in Place”.  Apparently, that came as a great surprise.

          Well, the thing has rules.  So maybe they got their hair done illegally, or got it from someone else who went out, or got it from an infected door-dash person, or got too close to a neighbor.  I am amazed how nearly everyone I interact with just comes and stands way too close to me, and that’s in Davis.  Someone in San Joaquin county told me at grocery stores people are just walking next to others, in groups, no masks.  People are F-ing stupid.  Americans are stupid.  And the virus is gonna win the war.

        5. Jeff Boone

          How useful was Governor Cuomo’s announcement yesterday.

          I understand that he was surprised that 62% of New York’s case are from people that were sheltering in place.  Maybe the number would have been lower had they been allowed to be out and about.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I did a quick search and don’t see that stat or a comment by Cuomo about it.

            I haven’t looked at NY, but I know nationally a huge percentage of people have gotten the virus either early before people were sheltered or from kind of predictable locations with lots of contact – prisons, nursing homes, churches, and especially first responders.

        6. Keith Olsen

          This is from the Blaze, so before you scoff at it there’s a video included with Cuomo’s actual words:

          New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) disclosed Wednesday that a recent survey found a “shocking” 66% of the coronavirus patients recently admitted to hospitals in the state are people who became infected despite largely remaining in their homes during the ongoing outbreak.

          https://www.theblaze.com/news/gov-cuomo-shocking-66-of-new-covid-19-hospitalizations-in-ny-are-people-who-had-been-staying-home

          Is this the reason why?

          Researchers analyzed patient data from 10 countries. The team found a correlation between low vitamin D levels and hyperactive immune systems. Vitamin D strengths innate immunity and prevents overactive immune responses. The finding could explain several mysteries, including why children are unlikely to die from COVID-19.

          https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/05/200507121353.htm

          So maybe going to the beach and getting out to parks and other such activities are helping where staying cooped up in one’s home and not going outside is hurting.

           

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I shouldn’t have searched on the 62% figure. But Cuomo is practicing really bad math here. I don’t have time to explain why, but think about the percent of the total population in nursing homes compared to the percent of COVID cases and you can see the problem with doing it that way.

        7. Keith Olsen

          If you look at the chart 66% of new cases came from stay at home and an additional 18% came from nursing homes.  So the two were analyzed separately.

          So I don’t get your point.

           

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            You clearly don’t and neither does Cuomo. Those numbers don’t mean anything because they are not weighted to establish relative risk and yet presented as if they do.

        8. Keith Olsen

          It was surveys from the NY hospitals that showed the actual count and activities of new patients getting COVID.

          Sorry, I guess Cuomo and I aren’t as smart as you.

           

        1. Robb Davis

          Sadly, it does not appear the country has the appetite to discuss a coherent, logical, data-driven approach to addressing this challenge – i.e. getting America back to work.

          This is absolutely wrong.  I shared information on the dynamics of transmission and that data is being used to provide answers to what and when to “re-open”.  Last week the CDC was scheduled to release the detailed kind of guidance that you have been calling for—providing specific guidance to different businesses.  That guidance was not, however, released.  I don’t know why. But I DO know the public health community was prepared to release it.

          In the meantime, in places where new cases are becoming rarer, testing, tracing, isolating, and protecting protocols will work as has been demonstrated elsewhere in the world.

          All of this points to a tremendous amount of energy and thought being put into “getting America back to work.”  You assertion is inaccurate and denigrates the work of many who are trying find a path forward.

        2. Robb Davis

          How useful was Governor Cuomo’s announcement yesterday.

          It was not useful.  Source of hospitalizations says NOTHING about effectiveness of any one strategy.  Given that these are new hospitalizations (don’t have time horizon), we are talking about a point in time AFTER COVID-19 has burned through some of the more vulnerable groups listed.  I don’t think his statement changes anything—it is a cross sectional observation at a time when cases are declining due to distancing and, ironically, extra precautions in skilled care facilities, etc.  These results are not unexpected at all but he bungled the message.

  12. Ron Oertel

    Sadly, it does not appear the country has the appetite to discuss a coherent, logical, data-driven approach to addressing this challenge – i.e. getting America back to work.

    Seems like there’s large gaps in knowledge, at this point (e.g., regarding the disease itself, the infection rate, etc.).

    They’re going to “wing it” on a piecemeal basis, and see what happens – regardless of any arguments put forth on here.

  13. Ron Oertel

    The governor and the president’s health advisers have proposed a coherent, logical, data-driven approach.

    Well, maybe.  But, even they acknowledge that their approach will result in “some” new cases and deaths.  And will likely require adjustment “on the fly”, as I understand it.

    And regardless of what they propose, it’s not actually unfolding that way (even within California, let alone the rest of the country). Including counties just north of Sacramento.

    I assume you’ve seen photos of beaches, protests, etc.

    It doesn’t much matter if those on the Vanguard “agree” or “disagree”, regarding this. Pretty sure the vast majority have never even heard of this blog.

     

  14. Robb Davis

    There are large gaps in knowledge and, NO, people are not going to get that guidance from local news organizations.  This is why we have a CDC.  The lack of coherent approaches and consistent messaging is the fault of the federal government.  There was a time when the CDC was THE go-to organization not just for citizens of this country but for the world (hate the WHO?  CDC’s had your back).

    This is no longer the case for reasons that I cannot understand but I am disturbed and puzzled.  Yes, in our federal system states (and counties) are responsible for disseminating guidance and orders but never in recent history have they been expected to do so without the strong support and centralized guidance from the CDC.

    Clearly, today, that is not happening.  The lack of coherence is a failure of the current administration in Washington.  We have apparently convinced ourselves over the last generation or so that “government is the problem.”  Now we live with the consequences.

  15. Robb Davis

    They’re going to “wing it” on a piecemeal basis, and see what happens – regardless of any arguments put forth on here.

    Despite the fact that there are many things we do not yet know about this virus, the picture is clear enough to provide answers.  The approaches (even in states that claim to have “re-opened”) are not that different.  The include (with a few stranger exceptions) distancing and avoiding prolonged contact in confined areas.

    In addition, testing, tracing, and isolating, once transmission is sufficiently reduced (or even now starting with most recent cases), holds out a solid solution.  It only takes political will.

    I will say what I said above: people’s ignorance of how the science is proceeding to provide answers, and their subsequent suggestion that “we can only wing it” or “no one knows what to do” is inaccurate and denigrates the tireless work of many in the broad public health field.

    1. Ron Oertel

      To be clear, I said that this is what is “going” to happen, regardless of what’s written on this blog.

      From my understanding, even the “best approach” will result in some risk, as restrictions are relaxed.  And, those restrictions may have to be re-implemented, if outbreaks occur.  (That’s what I’m referring to as “winging it”.)

      For those who see nothing but negative things from Washington, I’d point out that at least they’re willing to “prop up” the economy, and are allowing people like Fauci to suggest policy.  And frankly, Trump himself deserves some credit for that.  I don’t think that many (other than die-hard supporters) pay much attention to his ramblings. (On the other hand, some go “overboard” when they hear that type of thing, though it’s certainly “surprising” to hear at times.)

        1. Ron Oertel

          I wrote one, once.  (Though it wasn’t a particularly “thorough” one.)

          However, since I (sometimes) view this blog (not you, personally) as “the enemy”, I’d probably submit articles to the “other” blog, instead.  (If I were to write one.)

  16. Jeff Boone

    We were told that we were to shelter in place and social distance to help flatten the curve so that hospitals would not be overrun.

    The nation of individual and private business heroes did so.  And it worked… the nation’s hospitals were not overrun.

    But then a soft pivot to something else.  Something unheard of.  A top-down administrative state order to perpetuate the shelter in place and social distancing rules beyond the risk of overrun hospitals.  And the orders were largely accompanied with tone-deafness of the resulting human harm that would result from shutting down almost half of the nation’s economy.   It would be disingenuous to ignore the political alignment and the political opportunism that is, at the very least, a transparent political conflict of interest with all of those administrators giving the orders.

    But a recent study by the Society of Human Resource Management reported the following:

    12% of businesses surveys would only last another month even with the government relief.  40% of businesses say the government relief is too little too late.   26% say that it will take 3-6 months to return to normal and another 30% say that it will take more than 6 months.

    Note that this survey is already a few weeks old (done 4/15 – 4/21) and likely skewed by the expectation of earlier opening orders than are being allowed by the administrators.

    From my perspective we flattened the curve from the virus and in return we are being treated to a giant growing financial trough that the administrators are either ignorant of, or else are milking it for political opportunism.   They are using “FOV” to justify their continued fiscal ignorance and/or their political malice.

    1. Keith Olsen

      That’s just it Jeff, how many of the politicians and so-called health experts who are now making the economic decisions have a clue what they’re doing?

    2. Don Shor

      The nation of individual and private business heroes did so. And it worked… the nation’s hospitals were not overrun.

      “The nation” is not uniform with respect to where we/they are on the curve. It is likely that many states are just beginning their ascent.

      From my perspective we flattened the curve from the virus

      Areas that implemented strict conditions appear to have done so. Many places have not.
      https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/us/coronavirus-us-cases.html

      The White House guidelines for reopening:
      “The first is to see the number of new cases decline for at least two weeks, and some states have met that criteria. But there are three other criteria and we suggest they should all be met,” Rivers said.
      Those include having “enough public health capacity to conduct contact tracing on all new cases, enough diagnostic testing to test everybody with Covid-like symptoms” and “enough health care system capacity to treat everyone safely.”
      https://www.cnn.com/2020/05/06/health/us-coronavirus-wednesday/index.html
      None of the states have met these guidelines. Governors may begin to allow some counties to reopen if they do. Reopening without these conditions being met is simply a recipe for further spikes in infection and death rate later in the summer, and for further restrictions on activities and commerce.

  17. Robb Davis

    But then a soft pivot to something else…

    Ridiculous.  Flattening the curve with a highly infectious virus is not a “once and done” activity.  As we learn more about the virus we will be able to develop appropriate (and I believe more flexible) ways of allowing economic activities to ramp up.  But without clear guidance (blocked by the White House we now know) to businesses, people will not have confidence to go out.

    In addition, without appropriate spacing guidelines the curve will re-mount.

    Latest estimates of IFR .5% to 1.1% (meta analysis, not yet peer reviewed).  Herd immunity at 70%, population of 350 million.  Do the math.

    There has been no pivot.  Rather, from the earliest days the public health community has developed and provided a pathway forward: test, trace, isolate, that neither the federal or state government has yet found a way to implement.

    Your narrative does not correspond to reality—NO ONE is prolonging shelter in place except, perhaps, leaders who refuse to implement the steps necessary to help us move forward.  The public health community (virologists, epidemiologists, ethicists, policy analysts, etc.) have been working tirelessly to define the parameters necessary to move forward.  It has been our goal to enable “re-opening” as quickly as possible.

  18. Jim Frame

    Curve-flattening may be the primary motivation for the health orders, but don’t kid yourself that this is just another virus.  While most won’t die from it, and many don’t show any effects at all, others get slammed good, at great personal and economic cost.

    My cousin’s husband — they live in Berkeley — is an active and otherwise healthy guy in his early 60s.  He’s been down with the virus for over 50 days now.  The shortness of breath is over with, but every evening his fever jumps up around 102°F, and he struggles to get any work done (from home) during the day.

    You don’t want this virus.

    1. Keith Olsen

      Yes it’s terrible for many who get the virus, but it’s also terrible for the 33 million who have lost their jobs and the economic destruction taking place.

      1. Robb Davis

        Okay, I have offered a way forward.  It has been written about extensively and the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health has had it on offer for over a month.  We have a way forward.  Do you have an alternative.  I hear you decrying the loss of jobs and I share your deepest concern about this but we need practical ways to move beyond this.

        JHU reported today:

        White House officials have reportedly rejected proposed guidancedeveloped by the US CDC that aims to assist states in implementing appropriate protective measures as they relax social distancing measures. According to severalmedia reports, first reported by the Associated Press, the CDC presented the White House with a series of recommendations for various sectors—including schools and child care, faith-based organizations, restaurants and bars, public transit, and businesses employing vulnerable individuals—to facilitate a phased process of resuming operations. Anunofficial draftof the recommendations were published by various media outlets in late April. Reportedly, White House officials viewed the draft guidance as “overly prescriptive,” particularly for parts of the country currently experiencing low levels of transmission, desiring instead to allow state governments to develop and implement their own requirements.

        What plan will you accept to move forward?

        1. Don Shor

          In my opinion, people are not going to resume anything close to their prior economic activity until
          — the threat from the virus seems to be receding, which means a lower rate of infection
          — there are precautionary measures in place to prevent a resurgence
          — they trust the information they are getting and have confidence in those making the recommendations.
          So the economic harm will continue. The economic harm will be GREATER if there is a resurgence in the infection and death rates. That will be due to the retreat from purchasing by consumers, and the likely reimposition of restrictions.
          The way to prevent further economic harm is to manage the infection rate. The way to restore public confidence and economic activity is for political leaders to be honest, and to make it clear they are relying on sound advice.
          https://www.voterstudygroup.org/covid-19-updates#

  19. Alan Miller

    Masks are not going away in any scenario.

    How do you figure?  They are already “gone”.  They only are somewhat effective if almost everyone wears them, thus “mandatory” indoors in public or where no SD-ing.  The CDC “recommendation” strikes me as ludicrous, except maybe in a rural area with few cases.

    By “already gone” I mean Yolo County is pretty unique in that it is the only small county to adopt a mandatory mask ordinance.  Many large counties have not, and it creates the illusion that the mask is there to protect the wearer, when in actuality, it is to protect everyone else.

    I just heard from a friend in San Joaquin County that he went to the grocery store, and almost no one is wearing masks, large families are walking through the stores together, and social distancing is out the window.

    So, how you figure, “Masks are not going away in any scenario.”  What people do elsewhere effects us in Yolo, because there is no ban on inter-regional travel.  One spark, phoom!

    There are way too many people who aren’t taking this seriously or bothering to learn about how to protect themselves and others, or just not giving a f*ck.

  20. Alan Miller

    I repeat my call that everyone stock up for five weeks, we lockdown COMPLETELY for five weeks, then we open up and track flare ups.

    And I repeat that this is about as likely to happen in the USA as asking a bar full or drunks to be totally silent at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve.

    [Note:  I actaully saw a band do this:  “count down:  five-four-three-two-one – everybody be totally silent – “WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” – No, silent!  Again, count down:  five-four-three-two-one – everybody be totally silent – “WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!”.  They repeated this for several minutes until finally announcing it was actually three minutes after midnight and everyone missed New Years, then broke into their next song.  Sort of an Andy Kaufman-esque prank.]

  21. Robb Davis

    The CDC is not going to back away from its recommendation.  It was with fits and starts but they will not change it.  We are hearing examples of people protesting but many people are voluntarily using them. When I say “not going away in any scenario” I mean that health officials are not going to back away and I believe more will take them on the coming weeks as cases and deaths increase in previously untouched areas.  That’s what I meant: health recommendations are not going to go back to “masks are not necessary.”

    What people do with that…

    1. Alan Miller

      RD, that is not the point I was making.  What irks me about the CDC “recommendation” is that it “recommends” people where masks.  Yet everything I have read shows that masks are minimally effective for the wearer, but quite effective (not totally of course) when everyone wears one in enclosed public spaces along with other basic strategies.  Therefore, “many people are voluntarily using them” doesn’t mean sh*t.  What is important is everyone using them.  That’s why I avoid going out.  I become extremely angry when I see people not wearing masks inside stores, and I want to poke them hard with a seven foot pole.

      One of the tenants of  ‘opening up’ is mask-wearing, but if other people inside aren’t doing it, there’s no point — that’s why it has to be mandatory.  Yet except for some of the urban counties plus Yolo, that isn’t happening.  How can we open up with mandatory masks, if Newsome hasn’t even made that a statewide requirement today during lockdown?  [Note:  counties in the State of Jefferson are excluded.]

      You say “health recommendations are not going to go back to “masks are not necessary.””, but in many places in California, they aren’t necessary now. Doesn’t that seem insane to you? It sure seems insane to me.

       

      1. Robb Davis

        I think it is an appropriate public health directive to have people where face coverings in public encounters unless they have clear medical reasons not to.  Wearing face masks cannot replace careful physical distancing (and I DO worry about that).  Wearing masks has been demonstrated to protect people other than the wearer (as I wrote to volunteers I was supervising for food distribution at the Food Bank—think of a mask as a convenient and permanent sleeve into which you cough or sneeze).

        I think it is a reasonable thing to require them and cannot understand why people resist or refuse—from a medical/health position. Obviously, it is deep within our culture to resist mandates and mistrust of the government has grown.  However, the knee jerk response “I won’t do it because I am free not too” strikes me as dangerous, ill-informed, and selfish.

        And that’s what I think about masks. I support local, state and would support a federal mandate.

  22. Robb Davis

    Correcting misinformation re: Cuomo

    When people are admitted to hospital information is collected on where they are coming from.  This is to assure that things are not burning out of control in institutional settings.  As those settings become more secure (vis-a-vis the virus), it is perfectly natural that a greater proportion of cases are people coming directly from home.  HOWEVER, the hospital is not doing contact tracing on those people,  and it is not surveying them about their behaviors.  The data says absolutely nothing about whether these people (or their contacts) are abiding by SIP.  The whole thing is an unnecessary distraction.

    1. David Greenwald Post author

      That’s the other problem – given the time between infection and hospitalization, I wonder how many were actually sheltering when they were infected.

  23. Robb Davis

    Well, this data is not designed to explore that at all so, who knows.  In fact no one is collecting data on compliance with orders as far as I know.

  24. Alan Miller

    Have you noticed . . . everyone from radio talk show hosts to bloggers to milk men are now amateur statisticians/epidemiologists . . .  WTF!

    1. David Greenwald Post author

      If you are referring to me in there, I am trained in statistical analysis – regression, advanced econometrics, etc.

      1. John Hobbs

        Well, it obviously wasn’t in journalism, but we knew that, old son. I keep reminding my close family that there is no reason tho stop our current practices until the crisis passes. I am happy for the deniers to get out and glad hand, kiss each other on the cheek, infect others, be prosecuted civilly if they can be directly linked to spreading the infection and/or die of the virus if that tickles their fancy. I am anxiously hoping that the infected folks close to Trump and Pence have done their parts to impress upon the president and VP how the virus can spread in enclosed environments and if the healthiest 73 year-old President ever gets infected, it’s not an automatic death sentence, right? So far, I have used the Johns Hopkins and IHME Covid19 Projections to track and calculate the curve pretty accurately. My best guess is that we will see a second spike in the next few weeks and maybe really show progress in August or September. Meantime, show up at my door unmasked and ungloved, I have a big pump bottle of bleach to welcome you. Fortunately, at least in Foothill Farms, people have been pretty good about respecting the rights of others.

    2. Keith Olsen

      Have you noticed . . . everyone from radio talk show hosts to bloggers to milk men are now amateur statisticians/epidemiologists . . .  WTF!

      And they think they’re expert economists too.

  25. Keith Olsen

    This would be a huge blow to the California economy:

    “Tesla is filing a lawsuit against Alameda County immediately,” the chief executive said on Twitter Saturday morning. “The unelected & ignorant ‘Interim Health Officer’ of Alameda is acting contrary to the Governor, the President, our Constitutional freedoms & just plain common sense!”
    That was followed up with a threat to move Tesla’s headquarters outside the state.
    “Frankly, this is the final straw,” he replied. “Tesla will now move its HQ and future programs to Texas/Nevada immediately. If we even retain Fremont manufacturing activity at all, it will be dependent on how Tesla is treated in the future. Tesla is the last carmaker left in CA.”

    https://www.yahoo.com/news/elon-musk-says-tesla-immediately-173400044.html

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