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LA has reimposed an indoor mask mandate starting tomorrow.
If I told you that because COVID cases are few but increasing, that you should continue to stand on one foot while eating pizza you would likely point out that such a gesture has no impact on the spread of COVID. Exactly right. In fact, none of the NPIs done by any government at any level anywhere in the world has had any significant or even measurable effect on the spread of COVID. We now know with statistical certainty that the lockdowns and closures had little or no effect other than economic, medical, and social injury, that school closures were scientifically ill-advised and harmed kids more than COVID and that general mask mandates had no measurable impact on any country or local jurisdiction that imposed them. COVID was always gonna COVID and the numbers went up and down on COVID’s own terms. Other than vaccines, we have no effective tools but we continue to pretend that we do.
The real problem is that thousands of elected officials and government employees have developed an addiction to “managing” the crisis. The fear porn surrounding the dreaded “delta variant” is irresponsible but entirely consistent with how the pandemic has been “managed.” The delta variant is proving to be more contagious but a lot less lethal than the others but you would never know that from the news or official pronouncements.
For example, unlike the US, Britain appears to be undergoing a horrific surge in COVID cases–over 40,000 per day:
And yet, almost nobody is dying from COVID. Thirty-seven COVID deaths yesterday in a country of 68 million:
The insanity is that (a) for whatever reasons, this pandemic is no longer anywhere near as deadly; (b) nothing we tried so far made any difference, and yet (c) we are told it is urgent to double down on the same futile policies despite the cost and the unambiguous reduction of danger. It is nuts that our “leaders” and “experts” refuse to acknowledge how much they got wrong. But the worst part is that that they have no exit strategy other than to double down on stupid until they can indulge self-congratulations when COVID decides to leave largely on its own like any other pandemic.
And back to the new LA mask mandate… Here is an exercise for the reader. Look at the new cases per 100,000 for LA County in the data below. Assume that 20% of those are false positives, that there are six times as many active cases as reported positives at any given time, that those who test positive are infectious for an average of three days or less and that really sick people are also out and about with the same frequency as healthy people. What are the chances of randomly encountering an infectious person in LA? (Put your answer in the comments.)
If you are unvaccinated in a closed space with that individual, the key risk metric is not masks but time and airflow rates. Non-lab-grade masks retard the bulk of sudden horizontal micro loogie projections but are pretty useless against a steady flow of airborne viruses in badly ventilated closed spaces. And any viruses initially trapped in those blocked sneeze/cough micro-loogies (now plastered across the mask wearer’s face) did not die and can then be released continuously instead of just falling to the floor as they would if sneezed or coughed out without mask absorption.
At what point does LA admit that it’s time to stop the nonsense. None of this worked so let’s just stop pretending. As with control addicts in other jurisdictions, even if we get down to zero cases, how long would we be ordered to wait until it’s officially over? Will we have to stay locked down and masked up so COVID does not come back? Put that mask back on and remove half those tables and chairs, do you want COVID to come back and kill Granny?!
Will Los Angelenos push back? Question the logic and “science” of their leaders?
I am not optimistic. I live on the opposite coast in an absurdly blue jurisdiction and the addiction to obeisance to The Science (i.e., the sensibilities of the Elect) appears to be as addictive among my neighbors as “crisis management” is for our rulers. God help us all. Stupid is winning. And masks don’t stop stupid. They may help spread it.Published in