The Widdershins

Are We There Yet?

Posted on: January 16, 2022

Howdy Widdershins!

Well, 2022 is off to a banger of a start. We’ve lost multiple beloved celebrities, Manchinema are tanking Biden’s agenda, an underwater volcano has gone off in Tonga, and Trump holds a rally where he explicitly says white people are being denied the Covid vaccine. Oh, and then there’s the Insurrection. More and more details are coming into view: a full blown conspiracy at the highest level of government that included sending fraudulent electoral certificates, which the John Eastman memo said could be used to declare Trump winner. Jeffrey Clark, who Trump wanted to install as AG, also sent memos to states that sent the fake electoral certificates that their elections may have been fraudulent – but he meant it like “hey, your election was fake, so we’ll just these alternate electors.” Clark has refused to testify before the 1/6 House Committee and has been referred to DOJ for obstruction. People like Chief of Staff Meadows were behind this plot. An actual conspiracy to stage a coup. Forget the violence at the Capitol – Trump had additional plans to stay in the White House. And Republicans are all “Oh well, let’s just move on!” The 1/6 Committee will be holding live hearings this year and Jaime Raskin says it’s going to be blow the roof off the House. Well, we know all the Republicans will be holding that roof down, but we’ll see how it plays out.

This is an open thread!

132 Responses to "Are We There Yet?"

Great post, DYB!

2022 is going to be a whirlwind of good and bad news. Yesterday, white supremacists took hostages at a synagogue in Texas: today, they are safe after the FBI intervened.

Also, here is the thread from Tim Kaine about the Voting Rights debate the Senate will be engaging on Tuesday.

Djokovich is being deported from Australia after losing his appeal. It also means he is banned from entering Australia for 3 years. Which also means he won’t be chasing that grand slam. LOL

Yes, D – what a jackass. If only he played football, like gross anti-vaxxer Aaron Rodgers, he could have gotten away with paying a tiny fine.

@3, DYB, Glad to see this. It was infuriating to see that at first he was going to be allowed in.

Loved your round up of news for mid January.

I guess one more problem Biden will be inaccurately responsible for is N.Korea lobbing missiles toward the West Coast of the US and keeping Putin from stealing another country.

I was so glad to see the hostages alive! Really worried it was not going to turn out well.

Nice to see the T-cell activation. I have a lot of patients on immunomodulating meds, which usually results in a subdued antibody response to the Covid vaccines. However we’ve seen a normal T-cell response in the earlier small studies. Good to see that finding duplicated in these international studies.

The evil Cowboys lost to the San Francisco 49ers. I’m so happy. California > Texas.

Luna, that sounds hopeful!

Luna, do you have any info on how much protection someone that was never vaccinated nor boosted gets when they survive Omicron?

My older sister who refused the vaccinations got Covid and was really sick but wasn’t admitted into the hospital because she wasn’t critical. She is being taken care of by my niece and she is doing a great job. My sister still has Covid but is doing much, much better. She has lost her sense of taste and smell. Just wondering how much immunity this might give her.

My son and his girlfriend are now over Covid and feeling well, they were fully vaxxed and boosted before getting it.

I’m like a bear, hiding in my cave…

(PJ, from the last post, yes, after 2016 I got serious about moving. 😦 that it seemed necessary. But yes, excellent bolthole. )

@11, Shadowfax, what’s surprising is that so far the level of antibodies produced after a Covid infection is less than the level of antibodies produced after the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine series. In short, the vaccines help you make more antibodies and thus have more protection, than does getting the disease.

We’re not quite sure yet what level of T-cells (which are another element of the immune system) translates into as far as protection. T-cells haven’t been studied as much. I haven’t seen medical articles on the levels of T-cells produced after infection, but haven’t looked for them. I’ll do some rooting around in PubMed over the next couple of days and see.

This is also interesting:

Overall, we estimated 38 excess cases of Guillain–Barré syndrome per 10 million people receiving ChAdOx1nCoV-19 [Oxford vaccine, used in the U.K. but not in the U.S.] and 145 excess cases per 10 million people after a positive SARS-CoV-2 test [indicating infection]. In summary, although we find an increased risk of neurological complications in those who received COVID-19 vaccines, the risk of these complications is greater following a positive SARS-CoV-2 test.

Patone, Martina et al. “Neurological complications after first dose of COVID-19 vaccines and SARS-CoV-2 infection.” Nature medicine vol. 27,12 (2021): 2144-2153. doi:10.1038/s41591-021-01556-7

Guillain–Barré syndrome is quite rare. It causes widespread muscle weakness which is usually but not always temporary. Risk of G-B is often used by anti-vaxxers as a reason to not get vaccinated. But your chance of getting G-B from a covid infection is nearly 5 x the chances of getting it from a covid vaccine. Sigh. Unfortunately the anti-vaxxers aren’t influenced by facts.

Luna, thanks so much for sharing this medical info with all of us. ❤

You’re welcome, Shadowfax. Let me know if I talk shop and need to translate. Q is better than me on the microbiology stuff.

16 Luna
No translation needed. I pieced together the things I wasn’t that familiar with by looking at the big picture first and then the details. If I still don’t understand a part, I do a google.

I did not know this:

You smart, smart girl, quixote.

DYB, great post!

@19 OMG, I love that.

California > Texas! (like there was ever any question) Still, fun to rub it in! 😁

That dog and cat! 🙂

Cool story about King and Roberts!

And as for the dog in @19, I think I’d just slowly scoot away from there. You know. Nonchalantly. Possibly humming a little tune. Not looking back at the-one-who-shall-not-be-named at all.

Never cower at a cat’s intense stare. 🙂

Is there any way we could teach critical thinking to kids and make it stick? We’re in desperate need of it.

Seattle is one of the most vaccinated major metro areas in the nation. More than 90% of the 18-and-older population in King, Pierce and Snohomish Counties have received at least one dose of the vaccine. Even so, that leaves a fairly large number of people in the three counties who are unvaccinated.

According to new survey data, that number stood at around 216,000 in early December — and that number’s probably not coming down more much at this point. Most of the unvaccinated plan to stay that way, according to the survey.

“Reasons” for not getting vaxxed (could choose multiple options):

60.% Worried about side effects
55% Don’t trust the government [weird — the vax was out in Trump’s admin and Trump’s had the vaccine]
45% Don’t believe I need a vaccine
41% Wait to see if it’s safe
36% Don’t trust vaccine
33% Other (not specified)
30% Covid-19 isn’t a serious threat
29% Not sure if vaccine will be protective
9% Doctor didn’t recommend [WTH?]

DYB, great post! I’m so glad the hostages are safe, and that that tennis asshole didn’t get his way.

Love the story about Julia Roberts and Coretta Scott King.
@19, I hope that poor little pup is okay.

@27 – head scratcher on that one…

Cats were the originators of “fuck your feelings”.

You’ve seen that perfect description of libertarians? (Maybe I saw it here.)

Libertarians are house cats. They are convinced of their fierce independence while utterly dependent on a system they don’t appreciate or understand. (John Spaulding 2021-11-18)

That’s so perfect! OMG. I had not heard that before. My older brother and younger sister are exactly like that. (they are both fans of the Pauls – with my sister, it was Ron and with my brother, it’s Randy. Isn’t that lovely…)

I really don’t like to see doggies in distress (you all know I’m a dog LOVER), but I just think cats are hysterical. They are so full of themselves.

That behavior in humans? Not so funny.

You want an animal that’s full of itself, try birds. (I had a little flock of cockatiels for twenty years. Loved them to bits, but no illusions 😆 ) I believe it’s Bigglehaber’s Law of Proportionality: the less brain, the more self-importance 😆 😆

Anyway, I came back to carp about Gorsuch. So he explicitly ignored Roberts’ request to wear masks. Then why is Roberts such a weenie he doesn’t have a rule saying “No mask? You work remotely” ?? It shouldn’t be up to Sotomayor to avoid the plague vector!

What’s behind the Hillary Clinton ’24 talk

Cute photo of our girl’s face on this piece of political red meat.

Poor Hillary has to be reminded that the election was really stolen from her while the media just gave El Grande Dump a free pass.

In a similar thought , the continued media downplaying of repug bat shit craziness. It burns.

Quixote, I agree 100% on Kavanaugh and on how weak Roberts is on not placing the pressure on Kavanaugh to work remotely. Just evil scumbags.

Shadowfax, on Hillary 2024 – it’s silly, she’s not running. Just media wanting clicks and some “Democratic strategist” wanting attention at her expense.

I think it’s Gorsuch this time who wins the Biggest Dick award (there are so many total dicks on this court I can’t keep them straight). It is now the Supreme Court of MAGAts and they don’t need Roberts anymore. But Roberts can still feel good about himself even though he’s lost all power. He has made enormous contributions on behalf of the MAGAt agenda. Too bad he’s now being tossed aside like yesterday’s trash… 😦

@36, MsMass, agree. I thought this was the take-home from Rubin’s essay:

The media’s predilection for portraying Republicans as tactically brilliant is indicative of their preference for treating politics as a game. They denude their coverage of any qualitative judgment that would inform voters that the party’s “cleverness” is lying, plain and simple.

Didn’t Rubin used to be that near-extinct species, a moderate Republican, until the party went with Trump?

@39 Luna, Rubin was a Republican; I’m not sure how moderate. But she has been of the few never-Trump Republicans who has been very consistent on opposing all things Trump. Many of the others were awfully quiet when Trump was nominating right-wing MAGAts to SCOTUS and things of that nature. Rubin was not having any of it.

Takes about 1 minute to order. Now to see how long it takes for the order to be processed mailed, and delivered. Anyhow, very good move by the admin. It’s nearly impossible to find a test locally.

Yup, I ordered my tests as soon as I woke up this morning. Easy.

They said on the news that it would probably take about 11 days to process, but how many people have to process this and take it to the post office is another question.

Already a correction on when the tests will be mailed out. I just got this email, (part of it), a few minutes ago:

“At-home COVID-19 tests will ship free starting in late January. USPS will only send one set of 4 free tests to valid residential addresses.”

@43, Late January. Not to surprising — this is a huge project.

A visual reprieve from current events.

I’ve seen info on this in the medical press for a while. Looks like the mailed-out tests we can request will be the more accurate Roche test. Rapid tests use a different process and is less sensitive than the PCR tests which take longer to get results.

Abbott’s BinaxNOW rapid test [as opposed to other tests] performed about as well in detecting infections caused by the omicron variant as it had for those caused by other variants, especially among people with symptoms. But the tests failed to detect about 10 percent of lab-confirmed positive cases among asymptomatic people, who may have been tested very early in their infections.
The good news, researchers say, is that two newly authorized rapid tests [by Roche and Siemens Healthineers] coming to market as soon as this month work well in detecting omicron.

Consumers will be able to get Roche tests from the federal government beginning in late January

Luna @46
Woohoo, that sounds great.

Quixote @32, Great quote!

Luna @45, gorgeous. Also, thanks for posting the free tests link!

Does anyone know what Bio essentialism means? I saw a thread on it at twitter and didn’t understand it.

DYB @30, Aww, poor pup. Dogs and cats have the most expressive faces, I love these pix. My kid showed me a pic of a kitten in the center of a king size bed with a smug-happy look on its face.

One thing to keep in mind on free Covid tests shipping late January is that it’s January 19th already!


Almost a year ago, still resonates.

To mark Joe and Kamala’s inaugural year, the NY AG has subpoenaed Drumpf, Don Jr. and Vanky over significant evidence of bank and tax fraud through their Org.

Thanks, mb, that’s it. Corporate America is the answer to the “how”.

Annie, to me the easiest way to understand some of the jargon, like bio-essentialism, is to see it as thinking that _biology_ is _essential_. I.e. it’s the undeerstanding that when it comes to sex, biology is the determining factor.

The term is used by people who believe that male or female are properties of the soul (in effect, they almost never call it that). And the gender of your soul is more significant for which sex you should be seen as than any mere organs.

As a biologist since forever, I’m obviously in Group 1. As a human being, I’m in the group that thinks your biology should have nothing to do with which rights you have. They should be the same as everyone else’s!

Where I (and lots of others, including plenty of trans people) part company with trans activists is when they demand special treatment that reduces other people’s rights. Those people being almost always (always?) women, which tells you something all by itself. Example: saying male-bodied trans prisoners should be housed with women. Result: sexual attacks on women. Trans activist reaction: it’s just a few women. You can’t let that halt progress (their word) for transwomen. I am not making any of this up.

Jeeeebus. Anyone seen anything about this in US news? Bernie Sanders hints at support for primary challengers to Manchin and Sinema

:boggle: What is *wrong* with the old dweeb? He needs therapy.

Ah, thanks Quixote. I agree with you. Another issue I saw bought up recently is that a lot of trans girls or women want to compete in athletics (like the Olympics) as women, and this is causing an uproar as many of them have male muscles which gives them an advantage.

MB @52, I saw that. Will the dump’s be prosecuted?

@58, DYB, that is a one ugly dog with an equally ugly sock monkey! I’ve never been attracted to bulldoggy types or the ones with squashed-in faces. Nor to the cats with squashed faces, either, lol!

Trump must be on the floor kicking and howling right now!

@59, just re-read the tweet more slowly and that “fail” jumped out at me. LOLOL! Trump claim = Fail!

Good thread. Alarming, but it’s about Putin so what can we expect.

Luna, that’s great news! Of course the media says Biden is defensive. That’s the big story today. It’s just amazing how hard they are trying to tank him.

More on the Drumpf suit in NY:

I was referring to the news @60l!!

So exciting…

@65, Whaaat? The homeowner must put fish in the bird “feeder.” Hope they keep the cats and small dogs inside! The closest eagle on the right looks like a juvenile; can’t see a white head.

Oh yes, re the male-bodied people in women’s sports. That’s a direct result of believing that some kind of internal essence is more important for determining your sex than, well, your actual sex.

A surprising (not) number of middling male athletes suddenly then discovered they were women and have been scooping prizes, scholarships, etc.

The only requirement is to bring down testosterone levels to approximately 10x that of women. (Women with that level would be disqualified.) Yes, transwomen retain the various musculoskeletal characteristics from male puberty.

As a fairness issue, it would be much like me at 30 deciding I’m really a middle schooler and want to play 8th grade sports. Or some damn thing. It’s a complete absurdity on its face, but since it’s only women losing fame and money, plenty of people don’t see what the problem is. To me, it’s mindboggling.

Where is the pic in @65 taken? They’re clearly demonstrating Ben Franklin’s opinion of them (birds of low moral character) since they’re obviously waiting for a handout! 😆

As soon as next week, the White House is planning to distribute 400 million N95 masks to thousands of pharmacies and other locations that will be free.

WaPo’s scolding article about the US being so far behind other countries’ response buries this explanation in the middle of the piece.

The United States’ decentralized political system and lack of universal health-care coverage contrasts sharply with other nations.

@67, yes, I think about the years of hard work that these young women put in, training every day after school and weekends and summers. And the sacrifice of the Moms & Dads that drive them to these workouts and sit there waiting, and all the money it takes. And in the end they’re supposed to compete with a bio male who can beat them all with ease. There’s something really fucked up about that.

@70 & @67, Agree!

@69, I forgot to blockquote that 3rd paragraph on lack of universal health care, the quote from the article.

Oooops! Seriously, it is too bad, and she’d have had a milder case if vaccinated. Her husband and son were vaccinated, tested positive, and appear to have been asymptomatic.

A popular Czech folk singer has died after deliberately getting infected with the coronavirus, in an apparent move to skirt restrictions limiting access to some venues to people who have been immunized or recently recovered from infection, her family said.

Two days before she died, 57-year-old Hanka Horká, who was reportedly unvaccinated, wrote on social media that she had “survived” the virus and was looking forward to trips to the theater, the sauna, concerts and the sea. “I’ll tell you my secret, yes, I endured, and I survived … however, it was very colorful,” she said. “Life is here for me and for you too.”

@73, Wow! My cats need to up their game!

@75 Luna, I think they scared him. WTF

Luna @ 75

A black lab given yellow tennis balls galore, perfect.

My black labs both loved yellow tennis balls more than their favorite fetch sticks.

Yes, at first this pup was scared, but then when they came into his reach, he was thrilled.

@72, I read the article before seeing your tweet.

I can relate to that cat @73. I feel like ripping some shit up. The media needs to get off Biden’s ass. It’s not his fault. (although it does remind me that the Clintons are the only Democrats who know how to deal effectively with Republicans – even Republicans with a “D” by their name). Manchin and Sinema are old school Republicans – ruled by dark money (I don’t know that, I’m only guessing; trying to come up with a logical reason for them to do this horrible thing). Anyone with half a brain (and with Manchin, it’s questionable – DYB is right – the dude is just dumb – but is he *just* dumb or also corrupt?) knows that McConnell will gleefully torch the filibuster as soon as he’s back in power (as many others have noted). Watching McConnell yucking it up about state legislatures overturning elections (why, that’s absurd!) is like watching pure evil in action. Whoa. He just loves insulting our intelligence right to our face. It gives him a woody. He is having so much fun right now, he’s going to bust a nut.

Look at the beautiful horns on these critters!

On the Supreme Court of MAGAts (SCOM, that’s “scum” with a British accent) deciding against Dump… looks like Roberts isn’t the only one being thrown in the trash now that his usefulness is over… Sad!

PJ @79, well said. @81, love the (SCOM, that’s “scum” with a British accent), but what’s going on with them today?

It looks like Minema were working with Rethugs all along on a very narrow bipartisan bill to prevent Congress from overturning elections. The usual suspects are on board. This is why they didn’t vote for the rules changes.

Meanwhile, the blonde half of the duo is incredibly unpopular with Arizona Democrats, not to mention Rethugs and Indies. Great strategy, Kyrsten.

Socal, I was talking about the Supreme Court’s refusal to block the release of Trump White House documents to the House January 6 committee (yesterday).

Today, Neal Katyal was saying that he always thought the Court would decide that way because the consequences for a different decision would have been “insane”. It would have been “Soviet” (Thomas dissented – draw your own conclusions there…). I don’t trust this Court at all, so I was surprised. I think the six are all for tearing up the Constitution in service to MAGA/White Rule, but they don’t seem to like Trump being so obvious and obnoxious about it.

Wow, MB @84!

@83 Really? And Republicans are onboard with that? It kind of makes a liar out of Mitch who was up there poo pooing that anything like overturning elections was even possible. Why would we need a law against it?

And that’s pathetic on the part of Minema. It sucks that I have to be grateful for those two being in the Senate. It could have easily been McMorrisey and there would be zero talk about even a very narrow voting rights bill.

Hey, maybe Clarence Thomas can get one of those “Blacks for Trump” *white* t-shirts! Meh, he probably already has one…

Maybe it would have helped Germans feel better about themselves if they had only had “Jews for Hitler” t-shirts made (although I’m not sure they ever really felt bad about themselves at that time…) Question: Do Germans allow their history to be taught in schools? I mean, it might make the kids feel bad about being German. I honestly don’t know.

PJ @85, Thomas is the only one who dissented? God, he’s weird.

@79 PJ, yes I agree on all that. One really does wonder about the motivations of both Manchin adn Sinema. But Sinema – before becoming a Democrat – was Green Party. That’s how she started out. So maybe her “transformation” isn’t so much a transformation as a revelation. The mask is off. This is who she’s always been. I think Ruben Gallego, the AZ Representatives, tweeted something about knowing Sinema since they were in their 20s and he said this is who she’s always been. Problem, of course, she was running against McSally, a Trump Republican. So yes, Sinema was the smart vote. And she has voted to confirm every Biden judge, and voted to impeach Trump twice, etc.

On Manchin, it was “The Wire” creator (and former Baltimore journalist) David Simon who said he was once on a train from DC sitting next to Manchin and Ben Carson, who were engaged in a conversation. Simon says Carson was by far the smarter of the two.

@89 PJ> Germans are very open and honest about their history and Nazism. It is definitely taught there. And praising Hitler and Nazis is against the law there. (This is very different from how Japan covers its WWII role. Japan is kind of how Republicans want to talk about slavery in American schools.)

@90 annie, one of the most insane things about Clarence Thomas (and there is a lot to choose from) is that his wife paid for buses to take people to the insurrection on 1/6, and she is actively involved in attacks on Republicans who have spoken out against Trump. Also someone on twitter just pointed out that John Eastman, Trump’s lawyer who wrote the memo outlining how to overturn the election, was a Clarence Thomas clerk. How Thomas remains on SCOTUS is just insane. And how Roberts allows him to keep ruling on anything even remotely touching Trump is insane.

@91, that is not going to impress veterans at all. It’s insulting — he should be paying attention to what affects veterans’ health, not playing with his damn fetish.

Speaking of Clarence Thomas and Ginni Thomas. This is out this morning.

DYB, thank you for the information on Germany and Japan. That is so interesting to me. Very impressive about how the Germans handle their history. And Japan, well, at least they didn’t erect monstrous statues of their “heroes” on the wrong side like Hideki Tojo… and then in the 21st century mow people down with your car because you’re mad it’s being taken down. That would be CRAZY evil.

Great (but horrifying) comments and tweets about Clarence (and Ginni) Thomas, DYB. No he should not be on the Supreme Court (but then, Anita Hill tried to tell us that way back when).

@98 OMG, that is so awesome!! 🙂

Every time I go to type OMG, I type OMB and have to correct it. What is that about? Is God’s name Bob? Bob the Drag Queen would like for me to think so. 🙂

SNL used to do these segments called “Deep Thoughts”…

PJ – for you!

The Jan 6th committee has all the Drumpf documents…wow. That was very, very fast. Imagine what they are looking at – probably a whole arsenal of smoking guns.

DYB said:
The Jan 6th committee has all the Drumpf documents…wow. That was very, very fast. Imagine what they are looking at – probably a whole arsenal of smoking guns.
FINALLY some damn good news for once and some of El Dump’s crew he put on the Supremes gave him the middle finger. Awesome!

Let the Dems and their legal eagles have at it.

Odd that PJ and I were thinking of him while he was dying. Sad.

Meat Loaf, the larger-than-life singer whose bombastic rock opera “Bat Out of Hell” is one of the best-selling albums of all time, has died at age 74.


Sinnabon wants to run for President.

Sure, drop out as a Senator and run against Man-chin and Big Dump.


Deep Thoughts!! Thank you, MB! 🙂

I had not heard that about Meat Loaf, Shadow. I agree, that’s really sad. I adored him. He was one of a kind.

One thing about Meat Loaf is he was an anti-vaxxer. And he said if he got Covid and died he’d prefer that to being controlled… So a dumbass.

Also, comedian and actor Louie Anderson passed away from cancer.

On an unrelated note:

Well that’s a bummer about Meat Loaf… He seemed so likeable in “Fight Club”. 🙂 And I did like his music back in the day. You think you know someone…

I also really liked Louie Anderson. Hope there’s no dark side to him?

Thank you for the clip! LOL! I love Betty’s laugh. I need to go back and find the Betty White videos you posted before now that I can play twitter videos!

Informative and useful lay-language description of work which estimates chances of catching covid depending on the environment, ventilation, activity, and crowds.

Short version: Stay away from indoor restaurants, concert halls, and anyplace with poor ventilation and people talking, exercising, or singing, even with masks on. Air in most buildings is poorly ventilated or filtered unless the buildings are quite new.

Since this site puts comments with more than 1 link in the Spam room…

The extremely technical (sorry) article:
“Practical Indicators for Risk of Airborne Transmission in Shared Indoor Environments and Their Application to COVID-19 Outbreaks.” Z. Peng, et al., Environ. Sci. Technol. 2022, 56, 2, 1125–1137. Pub Date: January 5, 2022.

Ms Luna, do I have enough credit to ask another question about Omicron? 😉

My son tested negative on Jan 6th and his doctor said he only needed to quarantine for 5 days, even living with his girlfriend who tested positive on Jan 7th.

My older sister tested positive on Jan 7th, she never got vaccinated like Meat Loaf, got really sick but not critical and is improved a lot, but still coughing up stuff. Her doctor got Covid from one of her patients and had a Dr. video exam with my sister. She said that my sister would probably continue to test positive up to a month, and could go out of her house now with a N95 mask on.

Since my son and my sister’s doctors both seem to give much different advice, I am only going to see my son if I wear a KN95 mask.

Do you think I should worried to see him with a mask on, no hugs???
I won’t hold you to it if I get Covid.

Luna, thanks for the advice. I’m glad we got the booster. We rarely go anywhere.

Shadow, I hope your son stays negative and his girlfriend gets well quickly. How is she doing?

Sinema running for president?!?!? She’s really off her rocker.

DYB @98, love that!

Can’t the Thomas’ be arrested or charged with something? Or blackmailed into retiring?

Annie, those bird pics are phenomenal!!

All, I had a power outage this morning die to high winds. We’re back now and I will post later today.

Those birds! :wow:

Re protective measures against catching coved: Luna’s link to theconversation blog has a good color-coded table re situations and how careful to be.

Personally, I would ignore pollyanna doctors who pretend patients aren’t infectious after five days. I don’t remember what the actual outer limit is, but I’d give it 14 days, at least, after Day 1 of symptoms or testing positive if no symptoms. And yes, KN95 masks and no hugging and vast (6 feet) social distance, preferably outside and upwind. This is omicron. Sometimes it seems to spread by pure psychic energy!

Thanks for the advice Q. I don’t think anyone should be walking around others 5 days after testing positive. Everyone is getting mixed messages these days and lots of fully vaxxed people are getting Omicron.

Also because there are not enough tests, CA is having warmer weather in the day time and many of us are having…maybe allergy symptoms, off and on, it’s hard to tell when we are getting Covid unless we get really sick.

Annie, those birds are beautiful!!!

My son only had one test and was negative. He lives with his girlfriend and they are not socially distanced, she tested positive and feels fine after being sick for about 5 days. Both are fully vaxxed.

I really happy you were able to get your booster and didn’t have the bad side effects you did with J&J.

Shadowfax, if the tests were the rapid kind, I frankly wouldn’t trust them but would trust the PCR test results, though they take longer to get results. Agree with quixote on 14 days after 1st day of symptoms. That’s what I’ve seen in medical reports for longest duration of infectiousness (ability to spread disease). I can see adding a couple of days on since it may take a day or two to show symptoms, but 30 days seems excessive.

If you visit your son, since he lives with a person who is infectious, only do so with a quality mask on, stay at least 6 feet away, and keep a couple of windows open. Better yet, go for a walk or find a patio seat outside, masked, and stay at least 2 yards away. No hugs yet. Thank you for being conscientious about not becoming another infector!

Your sister – I’d avoid her for at least 14 days after she quits coughing. Mask on, 6 ft away, well-ventilated space, etc. She’ll make antibodies against covid, but less than if she had the vaccine.

I *am really happy….

annie, those bird pictures are fabulous! I love that account. Hah, ‘beauty of motherhood’ with those baby mouths wide open. ‘Feed me! Feed me! Feed me!”

Thanks Luna, my son is coming over my house and my sister lives up in Tacoma, so no chance of my getting Covid from her.

I have been in total lockdown since Dec 26th and really miss human hugs, but will stay 6’+ away with a KN95 on.

You and Q have always shared your medical knowledge and it’s much appreciated.

President Biden said Wednesday that he believes Russian President Vladimir Putin will invade Ukraine: “My guess is he will move in. He has to do something.” Now all eyes are on Volodymyr Zelensky, the 43-year-old president of Ukraine, a country menaced by 100,000 well-armed Russian troops. Recent U.S.-Russia-NATO talks failed to resolve this tense situation. Instead, Russia maintained its extreme demands, insisting that NATO cease its expansion and that Ukraine be barred from joining the alliance. Neither Washington nor NATO agreed to these terms, but Biden has ruled out sending U.S. forces to Ukraine. Washington had threatened sanctions over an invasion, but Wednesday, Biden wavered, saying a “minor incursion” might not lead to harsh sanctions after all. That means if Russia invades, Ukraine could be on its own. Biden, attempting to clarify the U.S. position, said Thursday that if “any assembled Russian units move across the Ukrainian border,” that would be an invasion, which would be met by a “severe and coordinated economic response.” Also Thursday, Zelensky tweeted: “We want to remind the great powers that there are no minor incursions

“Minor” effing incursion? Putin will be happy to hear that Biden thinks invading another country is considered “minor.” And what good are sanctions after an invasion?

Biden’s problem is he’s rather honest (and after all these years as a politician!). If you have an not-uniformed “freelancer” crossing the border and shooting up a barn, do you unleash the full might of NATO? What if he really is a freelancer?

Yes, people took what Biden said wrong, and it’s probably best not to mention fine points to the great unwashed mass of journalists, but the truth is a government does have to have threshold for sending in the army. I’d bet the entire farm that’s what Biden was saying.

Second point is that I think Putin is a lot less afraid of a military response than a well-targeted banking response aimed at him and his kleptocrats. Unfortunately, I’m pretty sure Biden said they wouldn’t be doing that. (Why? Why?? Let Putin worry! Let our Western kleptocrats worry too.) So I suspect economic responses are things like sending LPG ships to Germany so Russia loses lucrative gas sales. Putin doesn’t like that either, but it doesn’t strike at what he really cares about, like stopping the flow of international finance to him and his buddies.

I fear the worst since Putin has too much nationalist chest-thumping to gain from invading, and nothing he really cares about to lose, since it got taken off the table a few days ago.

Oh and one more thing: re Cucker Tarlson saying the US wouldn’t tolerate East Bloc treaties in, say, Mexico. Well, it’s true. I distinctly remember (I was a kid at the time) all the adults holding their breath during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

The difference is that the US and Europe are helping a de facto ally fend off invasion.

In the reverse case, the US was not invading Cuba and Cuba had not asked for help to stop them.

@129, Oh, one or two armed persons crossing the border would be minor, I agree. But I think some sanctions should be in place now, with the promise of more serious sanctions if Russia does invade.

Q. You have said publicly you have an interest in speaking with Presidents Putin and Biden about the current situation in Ukraine — not being left out of the talks, as you were last week.
A. (Zelensky) Let’s have a dialogue with Russia. I’m asking the United States to help us to find a format. We support dialogue; we are against war.

Q: Do you think SWIFT sanctions [which would cut Russia off from the international payment messaging system known as SWIFT] might actually have some effect if they were put on now? Germany has already come out against SWIFT sanctions.
A. I cannot see why the world should not be united regarding the introduction of sanctions. … I’m not one of those political leaders who discuss tiny details of military support because I think those should be confidential.

I don’t have a good feeling about a solution, though I hope Putin will realize if he does more than bluster he may be taking on too much and it’s better to bluster as he retreats.

Finally got the post up! Come upstairs!

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