Lockdown!

Share your experience, tips, advice, questions…

As it seems most communities world-wide are going into voluntary or enforced quarantine that involves staying at home and avoiding physical contact as much as possible, I thought we could have a thread where we could try a bit of mutual support by cheering each other up over the next few days, weeks, months… Who knows?

I don’t know: suggestions on films to watch, books to read, gardening tips, exercise ideas

Usual rules apply plus a guideline. Let’s be kind and supportive to each other.

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817 thoughts on “Lockdown!

  1. Allan Miller: This anosmia seems unrelated to nasal congestion, unlike that often experienced with the common cold (suggesting that that anosmia itself may be unrelated to the associated catarrh).

    Maybe this cohort should be prioritized for testing. I still feel without hard data from random testing (antibodies aspecially) a sample of the population at large, we’re still speculating.

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  2. Alan Fox: Doesn’t that only apply assuming current measures won’t work and everyone has to catch it? You’re probably right.

    Depends how we measure ‘working’. There are two basic futures, analogous to allele extinction and fixation. The genie’s out of the bottle, so the early possibility of driving it extinct is probably passed, and we will have to go through the pain of getting to herd immunity (fixation, albeit not 100%). All the current measures are trying to do is slow it down to enable healthcare and post-mortem services to cope. Getting there with significant asymptomatic spread is good in that context. But, it’s a bit of a grim lottery.

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  3. Alan Fox: Maybe this cohort should be prioritized for testing. I still feel without hard data from random testing (antibodies aspecially)a sample of the population at large, we’re still speculating.

    The app is specifically asking for people to declare a test, so that forms a (as yet small but growing) means to associate symptoms with positive tests. But yes, you can never have enough data.

    Worldometer has added columns for tests, total and per million population, which helps us see which figures have more or less confidence.

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  4. Allan Miller,

    This is rather interesting to me. You are saying that if you get exposed to just a small amount of the virus, you will catch the illness, but it will be less severe. Almost like a natural vaccine?

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  5. phoodoo:
    Allan Miller,
    This is rather interesting to me.You are saying that if you get exposed to just a small amount of the virus, you will catch the illness, but it will be less severe.Almost like a natural vaccine?

    I’m not at all qualified, so take it with a pinch of salt, but yes (although it’s the other way round: vaccines are an artificial infection). You need a threshold dose to get ill at all, which varies by pathogen. And there does seem to be a correlation between the load you receive and the severity of the illness. It’s much more a lottery than the controlled and attenuated doses provided by vaccines, though. Given the choice of hanging around with the asymptomatic or a vaccine, I’d pick the latter.

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  6. Allan Miller: And there does seem to be a correlation between the load you receive and the severity of the illness.

    How do we know this? Is there a way to measure the load someone has received?

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  7. phoodoo: How do we know this?Is there a way to measure the load someone has received?

    Not readily, at this stage. But it would be consistent with known correlations for other respiratory coronaviruses such as flu, SARS and MERS

    (I’ve using ‘load’ incorrectly, incidentally. I meant infectious dose).

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  8. Allan Miller,

    At least it would make sense why some seemingly healthy health care workers got hit so hard.

    Does seem likely at some point virtually everyone on the planet will have been exposed to at least some small amount of virus.

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  9. phoodoo: How do we know this? Is there a way to measure the load someone has received?

    There has been experiments done in the past with other and similar viruses(on animals such as mice), which apparently show a connection between initial dosage and the severity of the following infection.

    Which does make sense, since if you only get a small initial dosage of virus, the immune system has a bit more time to adapt before the virus spreads throughout the body. Whereas if you get a large dosage containing many more individual viral particles, they can infect a larger proportion of the body’s cells before the immune system has even adapted.

    And no, it is not at all like a “natural vaccine”, since with an actual vaccine your cells don’t get infected and killed by viruses at all.

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  10. Rumraket: And no, it is not at all like a “natural vaccine”, since with an actual vaccine your cells don’t get infected and killed by viruses at all.

    Oh brother. At least Allan got it.

    If many people are getting the virus, and are asymptomatic, but their immune system is exposed to the virus and later able to defend against it, then indeed the result is much like haven gotten a vaccine.

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  11. So America has twice as many cases as the next highest country (Italy) , 7000 deaths and climbing, US will almost certainly lead the world in deaths from this. They had at least two months warning about his. How is the orange infant doing a good job exactly?

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  12. phoodoo:
    So America has twice as many cases as the next highest country (Italy) , 7000 deaths and climbing, US will almost certainly lead the world in deaths from this.They had at least two months warning about his.How is the orange infant doing a good job exactly?

    Jared says so.

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  13. newton,

    Its the Faustian bargain republicans knew they were making from the very beginning. They knew he was a pinhead, with no knowledge of the world, no knowledge about proper management, no ideas about how to lead the country, but he was going to do two things for them. He was going to give them the big business tax cuts they wanted, and he was going to install right wing ideologue judges. And for good measure he was going to cause subtle race wars, which 30% of the country loves.

    The trade off was that everyone knew there is no way this is the guy you want leading you if any thing bad happened. But they all, including the evangelicals who knew that he was an immoral ass, thought ah never mind, we will worry about that if it ever happens. N Korea probably won’t attack, and so what if Russia starts taking over eastern Europe-at least they are not Mexican.

    And now they got quite possibly the worst american citizen you could possibly have in charge of an American crisis. A guy who not only doesn’t have a clue what to do, but worse, instead of doing nothing, he is going to make it worse. he is going to call it fake news. Call it a democratic witch hunt. He is going to listen to the doctors and then do the opposite of what they recommend. He is going to worry only about how this is going to affect him. He is going to try to steal money for his own businesses. He is going to insult Governors he doesn’t like, he is going to whine if the press ask him tough questions, he is going to say he is doing great while the ship is sinking. Who could one name who would be a worse person to lead the country right now? George Zimmerman? The youtube girl who licks toilets? I seriously have to rack my brain to think of anyone who would be worse. Its mindblowing.

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  14. Alan Fox: Doesn’t that only apply assuming current measures won’t work and everyone has to catch it?

    Even if current measures work, everyone is going to catch it. Current measures just slow down the rate of spread.

    If we slow it down enough so that there is a vaccine, that changes things. Otherwise, we shall eventually all pick it up.

    Or, at least, that’s my current guessing.

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  15. Neil Rickert: If we slow it down enough so that there is a vaccine, that changes things. Otherwise, we shall eventually all pick it up.

    also a reduction in the rate of spread will buy tme for therapeutics to be vetted. Monoclonal antibodies were a game changer in the ebola fight and a company is approaching the point of safety trials for their antibody formulation. Drug combos are also being tested quite furiously around the world and something may, or may not, pan out from their efforts.

    Without a vaccine it is inevitable that everyone will have their turn at fighting the beast.

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  16. phoodoo: Oh brother. At least Allan got it.

    There was nothing to “get”, you made a stupid comment that was factually incorrect.

    phoodoo:If many people are getting the virus, and are asymptomatic

    … then it’s usually because their immune-system is already, just by chance, able to effectively fight off the virus.

    phoodoo:but their immune system is exposed to the virus and later able to defend against it, then indeed the result is much like haven gotten a vaccine.

    Only in the narrow sense that they have eventually developed immunity. But then getting sick, very sick, nearly dying, and then recovering by having developed immunity, is also “sort of” like having gotten a vaccine. The end “result is the same”.

    The chief difference is that even if your immune system is initially very bad at dealing with the virus, if you get a vaccine instead of a genuine infection, it normally won’t kill you because actual viral particles won’t be infecting and killing cells in your body. A vaccine will always be preferable.

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  17. phoodoo: How is the orange infant doing a good job exactly?

    Well if there’s one thing we agree on it’s that the sour citrus is terminally out of his depth. And his sycophant fans are impossible to communicate this point to.

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  18. phoodoo: Its the Faustian bargain republicans knew they were making from the very beginning. They knew he was a pinhead, with no knowledge of the world, no knowledge about proper management, no ideas about how to lead the country, but he was going to do two things for them. He was going to give them the big business tax cuts they wanted, and he was going to install right wing ideologue judges. And for good measure he was going to cause subtle race wars, which 30% of the country loves.

    The trade off was that everyone knew there is no way this is the guy you want leading you if any thing bad happened. But they all, including the evangelicals who knew that he was an immoral ass, thought ah never mind, we will worry about that if it ever happens. N Korea probably won’t attack, and so what if Russia starts taking over eastern Europe-at least they are not Mexican.

    And now they got quite possibly the worst american citizen you could possibly have in charge of an American crisis. A guy who not only doesn’t have a clue what to do, but worse, instead of doing nothing, he is going to make it worse. he is going to call it fake news. Call it a democratic witch hunt. He is going to listen to the doctors and then do the opposite of what they recommend. He is going to worry only about how this is going to affect him. He is going to try to steal money for his own businesses. He is going to insult Governors he doesn’t like, he is going to whine if the press ask him tough questions, he is going to say he is doing great while the ship is sinking. Who could one name who would be a worse person to lead the country right now? George Zimmerman? The youtube girl who licks toilets? I seriously have to rack my brain to think of anyone who would be worse. Its mindblowing.

    Well said.

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  19. phoodoo: How is the orange infant doing a good job exactly?

    He is doing a good job by refusing to accept responsibility. That way, it is everyone else except him who is to blame.

    (Did I need a sarcasm tag?)

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  20. phoodoo: How is the orange infant doing a good job exactly?

    The administration’s response is FUBAR directly as a result of incompetancy from the top.

    What incensed me (one of many instances) about the response was hearing from the Navy admiral, at Thursday’s pressor, that the military is making flights to pick up PPE and other needed supplies from wherever they can get it in the world The supplies are then turned over to private businesses for sale to the highest bidder. WTF is up with that? Which businesses are getting the supplies for resale? Cuomo said the other day that a 0.70 cent mask now costs him $7.00. Somebody is making a tidy profit off of a taxpayer-funded shipping enterprise.

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  21. Now, here’s an exercise in being cynical. Imagine you are president, and it’s January. So far, the only known cases are in China (maybe there’s one or two in Seattle). According to the epidemiologists, this is the ideal time to do the national lockdown. The virus can’t get a foot in the door, won’t spread here, and it’s entirely likely that a vaccine will be developed before we see exponential spread. Great.

    Problem is, there is no visible reason to take such a drastic step! There’s no problem, nobody can see a problem, it will look to the voting public like premature panic – a way-overkill response to nothing apparent. You will look like a fool.

    Next, let’s say that this early lockdown actually works, the virus doesn’t get a foothold, the vaccine is developed in time, and no visible problem ever results. NOW it will look like there never was a problem, and that economy-killing lockdown damaged millions of lives and businesses for nothing. Your political future is kaput.

    HOWEVER, it you wait until the problem is clear and widespread and THEN do the national lockdown, yeah, maybe hundreds of thousands will die unnecessarily, but you will LOOK like someone who recognized a real problem and took painful but necessary and immediate steps. Your re-election is assured!

    If you are a politician, which course of action do you choose?

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  22. Flint: If you are a politician, which course of action do you choose?

    Whichever course looks best to keep you in power.

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  23. For instance, you might want to tweak the judicial system and any other structures that are supposed to have oversight.

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  24. Flint: Problem is, there is no visible reason to take such a drastic step! There’s no problem, nobody can see a problem, it will look to the voting public like premature panic – a way-overkill response to nothing apparent. You will look like a fool.

    No, this is not right.

    Yes, we could see a potential problem. We were seeing what was happening in China.

    I don’t fault the decision to wait and see. That was reasonable. Trump’s statements about it being a hoax were not reasonable.

    The government should have been preparing for possible worst case scenarios. This would involve planning and stocking up on needed supplies. Delaying any shutdown was reasonable at that time. The failure to properly plan was not reasonable.

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  25. Neil Rickert:

    The government should have been preparing for possible worst case scenarios.This would involve planning and stocking up on needed supplies.Delaying any shutdown was reasonable at that time.The failure to properly plan was not reasonable.

    This is ambiguous. Delaying any shutdown SEEMS reasonable since there were no tests, and nobody knew that people could be contagious weeks before they had symptoms, and that there were in fact lots of spreaders in the US at that time. But this is clear only in hindsight.

    A national lockdown at that time would have isolated these people and short-circuited the explosive spread. So what’s “reasonable” depends on whether our action is based on what actually obtained at the time, or whether it depends on what we KNEW at the time, which turns out to have been uninformed.

    I certainly agree that substituting fox news political lies for prudent preparation was a bit too political, everything considered.

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  26. Flint,

    What about the second week of February, the third week of February, where Europe started getting hit hard? What about the first week of March, the second week of March? What about two weeks ago? How long can excuses last?

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  27. Flint: and nobody knew that people could be contagious weeks before they had symptoms

    I think this was already known from China. Perhaps it was early February rather than January that we knew that, but we did have plenty of advanced notice of it.

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  28. phoodoo:
    Flint,

    What about the second week of February, the third week of February, where Europe started getting hit hard?What about the first week of March, the second week of March?What about two weeks ago?How long can excuses last?

    I suppose excuses can last as long as polls indicate rising support for current policies and handling. Certainly poll results indicate significant public approval of things so far. And those polled usually also vote.

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  29. Neil Rickert: I think this was already known from China.Perhaps it was early February rather than January that we knew that, but we did have plenty of advanced notice of it.

    Oh for sure, there was plenty of advanced notice. But politicians don’t do what’s best for the public, especially if the public remains unaware. Face it, a lockdown is going to be unpopular and unenforceable if very few can look out their window and see any compelling current rationale. My point was that public support trails the ideal lockdown time by weeks and lots of deaths.

    I finished stockpiling food and supplies three weeks ago. I was the only person in any store wearing a mask. The conditions in NYC were already scary grim, but here in “we’re not California” Alabama, I got snickers and funny looks. STILL nobody here is wearing a mask. We don’ see no steenkin’ problem yet, no dam gummint is tellin’ US to stay home!

    Declaring a lockdown is one thing, getting people to DO it is something entirely else.

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  30. Flint: Declaring a lockdown is one thing, getting people to DO it is something entirely else.

    You USAians, you’re so lawless! In my adopted country, everyone grumbles about politicians and the current restrictions but there’s very little flouting.

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  31. Alan Fox: You USAians, you’re so lawless! In my adopted country, everyone grumbles about politicians and the current restrictions but there’s very little flouting.

    In the land of the gilets jaunes, that is quite surprising.

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  32. Our unesteemed Health Minister, Matt Hancock, has threatened that if people use the present sunshine as an excuse to sunbathe, he will ban all exercise. He’s saying that sunbathing will cost lives – and the finger-pointers agree. Despite the many benefits of exercise for physical and mental health, the dubious wisdom of perpetually corralling the sick and the well together, and the limited risk of outdoor spread.

    As someone with no political ambition, I can’t fathom how you get from “I think I’ll stand for Parliament, dear” to (dalek voice) You … Will … Obey.

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  33. Allan Miller,

    Even during the most serious part of the lockdown here in China, people were still allowed to go out and walk around if they like, as long as they wore a face mask. There were people in the parks, they just kept some distance from each other.

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  34. phoodoo,

    Yes, seems sensible. There is growing hysteria, and ignorance of what the virus is and isn’t capable of. Distance is key, and people are flouting those rules sadly, but banning everyone from exercise because of it would be a misstep.

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  35. Here’s a visual representation that you would think and infant, even an orange one, would be able to grasp.

    Left-hand plot shows what the USA is doing. Piecemeal implementation of shelter in place orders which extend the time for cases to drop and increase the number of cases and fatalities.

    Right-hand plot shows the effect of simultaneous implementation of shelter in place orders and the subsewuent reduction in time to return to ‘normalcy’ and the reduced (area under the curves) numbers of infections and associated fatalities.

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  36. well shit that didnt work out too well. clicked one of my wifes screenshots for jewlery inspiration let me try that again.

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  37. Schizophora: There are 10 apples.

    WTF “apples” are you pulling from your behind? You know, I don’t even want to know.

    Allan Miller: If the frequency of one variant is 60%, it is a simple matter to show that the frequency of alternative variants must be 40%. If the first goes up, the other quantity must inevitably decrease.

    Assuming you know all variants. Which you don’t. With stupid assumptions like this, no wonder “evolution” makes sense to you.

    Allan Miller: I’m wondering what you’re calling this phenomenon that isn’t evolution whereby a genetic change in a pathogen enhances its ability to spread.

    There is no “genetic change in a pathogen” that automatically “enhances its ability to spread”. It’s retarded to watch the end of a movie and then “predict” how that movie will end.

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  38. Allan Miller,

    I think he is ramping up the threat level to try and knock some sense into the minority who still don’t stick to the social distancing rules. You can’t send police into every park all the time to check on distancing, the only thing that might work is for the public to start taking a more active role and police themselves. Perhaps he is hoping that the threat of not being allowed to go out at all will mobilise public opinion against the rule-breakers so that they will be told off by their fellow citizens, and hopefully comply.

    Not a very British thing to do, so I don’t know if it will actually work.

    I live right next to a park, with a gate into it from my garden. The number of people around has dropped significantly, and those who still walk there do generally keep to the distancing rules quite well. Even so, from time to time you see a few youngsters congregating, more often than not to smoke some cannabis.

    What do you do about idiots like that?

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  39. Nonlin.org: There is no “genetic change in a pathogen” that automatically “enhances its ability to spread”.

    Why have you added “automatically”? Mutations happen at a steady rate per generation. Where organisms have short generation times (hint – bacteria and viruses) mutations accumulate more quickly. Where organisms use RNA rather than DNA as genetic stores (hint – coronaviruses) mutations accumulate more quickly. Some of those mutations result in the virus being resistant to the immune system.

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  40. Nonlin.org: Assuming you know all variants. Which you don’t. With stupid assumptions like this, no wonder “evolution” makes sense to you.

    You don’t need to know all variants to know that if one allele is at 60%, the remaining fraction is 40%, however it breaks down.

    There is no “genetic change in a pathogen” that automatically “enhances its ability to spread”. It’s retarded to watch the end of a movie and then “predict” how that movie will end.

    There’s nothing automatic nor predictive about it. But it is still a simple fact that the genetic change has resulted in enhanced virulence (strictly, a mutation prior to the jump from another species found an adaptive niche in humans. It wasn’t adaptive on day 1). I know, we’re talking genetics, hardly your specialist subject.

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  41. faded_Glory:
    Allan Miller,
    I think he is ramping up the threat level to try and knock some sense into the minority who still don’t stick to the social distancing rules.

    Sunbathing does not, of itself, breach a distancing rule. If they want better compliance, they need better education and better rules. In my view, forcing people into perpetual indoor environments will have the very opposite effect to that intended.

    Perhaps he is hoping that the threat of not being allowed to go out at all will mobilise public opinion against the rule-breakers so that they will be told off by their fellow citizens, and hopefully comply.

    Possibly. For my part I’m sick to death of the self righteous finger pointers.

    What do you do about idiots like that?

    Yes, there always will be ‘a few’. And that few gets amplified by the self-righteous crowing on Facebook, amplified further by a few long-lens shots in the Daily Mail. But does anyone have any stats on the additional community spread by that route? Or how much closer to zero it needs to get to justify the negative consequences of ‘no exercise’?

    My kids are front line. My daughter’s a doctor in respiratory ICU, who described last week as like a field hospital, the hardest week of her career. Yet she hates this ‘protect the NHS’ stuff with a passion. After an emotionally draining shift, she’d quite like to go for a walk, or a picnic, or sunbathe, and doesn’t believe that in itself will increase her caseload one jot – even though she has a higher than average chance of shedding. A friend with emotional difficulties has confessed that after 2 weeks of this she is ‘unravelling’. Hancock’s threat has upset her; getting out was a lifeline. She’s a medical graduate, not working.

    Hancock is getting set to blame a few, on a hunch that they might be spreading significantly, to divert attention from his own failings on testing and PPE, a far greater help to my kids than riding a police horse through a picnic.

    Other medical opinions are available. But the point always comes back to distancing – not exercise, not sunbathing. The simplistic ‘stay the fuck at home’ brigade have no solutions to offer beyond that slogan. No support for burnout, for mental health in the community, for replacing the immune benefit of exercise and uv, the effect on vascular health, or trading off inter-household outside spread against intra-household indoor spread. It isn’t as simple as people would have it.

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  42. Brendan O’Neill can be a dick, but this is interesting. Citizens of some countries might laugh at the outrage, but we really aren’t used to being treated this way!

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