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Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Old Apr 8th 2021, 12:16 pm
  #4426  
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Watchpost View Post
Yes, and that in turn is partly due to the Guardian being one of the few outlets worthy of the term "newspaper" that isn't behind a paywall. If the FT, Telegraph or Economist were readily accessible, they'd be quoted much more often.
Sorry, I wasn't criticising, just observing. Guardian football section is second-to-none
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 12:23 pm
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Watchpost View Post
I thought we were talking about newspapers, not comics?

Good point well made.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 12:23 pm
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Watchpost View Post
Yes, and that in turn is partly due to the Guardian being one of the few outlets worthy of the term "newspaper" that isn't behind a paywall. If the FT, Telegraph or Economist were readily accessible, they'd be quoted much more often.

This too.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 12:46 pm
  #4429  
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Watchpost View Post
I thought we were talking about newspapers, not comics?
I didn't add 'The Sun' for the same reason.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 12:52 pm
  #4430  
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Lion in Winter View Post
Some people are still stuck in the early 80s, when The Guardian was actually somewhat, vaguely left-wing and was one of the few papers daring to routinely criticise the T woman. It's now one of the more well-rounded media outlets around, containing not only news but a lot of op ed and opinion pieces as well. It is these latter that some of our more, er, fervent BE friends most routinely object to. We used to have some posters, now 'on holiday', who used to respond to posts only with a laughter emoticon and the deathless phrase, "it's in The Guardian".

Agree on the Mail, but feel we should consider adding the Express.
Some of the opinion pieces are hilarious though aren't they....but that's what they're there for.

Express can go in as well. Both into Scamp's Room 101.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 1:08 pm
  #4431  
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Watchpost View Post
Yes, and that in turn is partly due to the Guardian being one of the few outlets worthy of the term "newspaper" that isn't behind a paywall. If the FT, Telegraph or Economist were readily accessible, they'd be quoted much more often.
Yes 'worthy' of the term "newspaper"--- however that does not mean that everything they report is beyond criticism!
Also pointing out that they tend to produce negative reports about a particular country does not mean 'total' disapproval or that 'all' such reports are biased.
This all came about when LIW posted-- 4732 --a link to a Guardian report on vaccine exports which was largely descriptive but had followed on some previous reports which were negative.

Not everything about Guardian newspaper is positive and I presume not everything about the 'Mail' and 'Sun' is negative.









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Old Apr 8th 2021, 9:00 pm
  #4432  
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

While perusing the numbers of 'cases' and 'deaths' over at the 'worldometers' site (a site I generally don't pay much attention to these days, since what happened a year ago is largely irrelevant today in terms of measuring 'effectiveness'), I noticed that the countries experiencing the most cases and deaths would seem to be decidedly wealthy countries - or at least, not poor countries. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries ... sort by either 'Total Cases/1M pop' or 'Deaths / 1M pop', and the countries at the top seem to be largely 'first world' countries - Slovenia, Luxembourg, USA, Israel, Sweden, Panama, Portugal, Belgium, etc (ignoring also the very small states like Gibraltar, San Marino, etc).

Looking at the bottom of those same charts (least cases, least deaths) I see what would appear to me to be many of the poorest countries - Tanzania, Samoa, Western Sahara, Niger, Burundi, Somalia, Chad, Sudan, Angola, Nigeria, Uganda, Eritrea, Rwanda, Ethiopia, etc (this is based on my memory of which countries are poor, not extensively researched ...).

So when people talk about the need for 'equity' or 'fairness' of vaccine access, what exactly is the biggest problem to be addressed here? It would seem to me - perhaps overly simplistically - that those countries with very few cases or deaths really don't have the same very pressing need to get vaccines.

A few simple examples - USA is pretty much the poster-child for bad numbers - the US has had 95,220 cases per 1M population, and 1,724 deaths per 1M population. Compare that to, say, Somalia - they have had 738 cases for 1M population, and 35 deaths per 1M population. So - just using these two countries for discussion - should the US be cutting back on vaccine consumption in order to re-direct some of the vaccines to Somalia? Am I looking at this incorrectly?

Last edited by Steerpike; Apr 8th 2021 at 9:02 pm.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 9:22 pm
  #4433  
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Bipat View Post
Yes 'worthy' of the term "newspaper"--- however that does not mean that everything they report is beyond criticism!
Also pointing out that they tend to produce negative reports about a particular country does not mean 'total' disapproval or that 'all' such reports are biased.
This all came about when LIW posted-- 4732 --a link to a Guardian report on vaccine exports which was largely descriptive but had followed on some previous reports which were negative.

Not everything about Guardian newspaper is positive and I presume not everything about the 'Mail' and 'Sun' is negative.
And just because some previous articles were negative (or perceived to be) about India, or were written by someone you dislike, it doesn't make them wrong then or now.

Originally Posted by Steerpike View Post
While perusing the numbers of 'cases' and 'deaths' over at the 'worldometers' site (a site I generally don't pay much attention to these days, since what happened a year ago is largely irrelevant today in terms of measuring 'effectiveness'), I noticed that the countries experiencing the most cases and deaths would seem to be decidedly wealthy countries - or at least, not poor countries. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries ... sort by either 'Total Cases/1M pop' or 'Deaths / 1M pop', and the countries at the top seem to be largely 'first world' countries - Slovenia, Luxembourg, USA, Israel, Sweden, Panama, Portugal, Belgium, etc (ignoring also the very small states like Gibraltar, San Marino, etc).

Looking at the bottom of those same charts (least cases, least deaths) I see what would appear to me to be many of the poorest countries - Tanzania, Samoa, Western Sahara, Niger, Burundi, Somalia, Chad, Sudan, Angola, Nigeria, Uganda, Eritrea, Rwanda, Ethiopia, etc (this is based on my memory of which countries are poor, not extensively researched ...).

So when people talk about the need for 'equity' or 'fairness' of vaccine access, what exactly is the biggest problem to be addressed here? It would seem to me - perhaps overly simplistically - that those countries with very few cases or deaths really don't have the same very pressing need to get vaccines.

A few simple examples - USA is pretty much the poster-child for bad numbers - the US has had 95,220 cases per 1M population, and 1,724 deaths per 1M population. Compare that to, say, Somalia - they have had 738 cases for 1M population, and 35 deaths per 1M population. So - just using these two countries for discussion - should the US be cutting back on vaccine consumption in order to re-direct some of the vaccines to Somalia? Am I looking at this incorrectly?
I suspect the differences in rates between richer and poorer countries is likely to be stuff as simple as ease of travel within the countries concerned, and no matter how much you restrict travel in the richer countries, there'll always be those who choose to ignore it.

In poorer countries, people tend to stay more local for work and shopping because the poor don't always own vehicles, the roads aren't great, and there's little public transport, Think what the US infection spread would be like had there been no Amtrak, no Greyhound, and no interstate travel.

Those same issues will hamper getting vaccines where they're needed in those poorer countries.

Last edited by DaveLovesDee; Apr 8th 2021 at 9:24 pm.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 9:27 pm
  #4434  
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by DaveLovesDee View Post
And just because some previous articles were negative (or perceived to be) about India, or were written by someone you dislike, it doesn't make them wrong then or now.



I suspect the differences in rates between richer and poorer countries is likely to be stuff as simple as ease of travel within the countries concerned, and no matter how much you restrict travel in the richer countries, there'll always be those who choose to ignore it.

In poorer countries, people tend to stay more local for work and shopping because the poor don't always own vehicles, the roads aren't great, and there's little public transport, Think what the US infection spread would be like had there been no Amtrak, no Greyhound, and no interstate travel.

Those same issues will hamper getting vaccines where they're needed in those poorer countries.
Your explanations as to 'why' are probably spot-on; but that's not my question. I'm trying to get to the bottom of the 'moral dilemma' some seem to feel about equity of vaccine access as it relates to these countries.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 9:34 pm
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Steerpike View Post
Your explanations as to 'why' are probably spot-on; but that's not my question. I'm trying to get to the bottom of the 'moral dilemma' some seem to feel about equity of vaccine access as it relates to these countries.
Apologies, I meant to answer that. For me, the answer should be that countries with the highest infection rates should get the vaccines ahead of those with lower rates, and that those priority recipient countries should then prioritise their own areas of high infection rates and ripple vaccinations outwards from those areas.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 9:52 pm
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Steerpike View Post
While perusing the numbers of 'cases' and 'deaths' over at the 'worldometers' site (a site I generally don't pay much attention to these days, since what happened a year ago is largely irrelevant today in terms of measuring 'effectiveness'), I noticed that the countries experiencing the most cases and deaths would seem to be decidedly wealthy countries - or at least, not poor countries. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries ... sort by either 'Total Cases/1M pop' or 'Deaths / 1M pop', and the countries at the top seem to be largely 'first world' countries - Slovenia, Luxembourg, USA, Israel, Sweden, Panama, Portugal, Belgium, etc (ignoring also the very small states like Gibraltar, San Marino, etc).

Looking at the bottom of those same charts (least cases, least deaths) I see what would appear to me to be many of the poorest countries - Tanzania, Samoa, Western Sahara, Niger, Burundi, Somalia, Chad, Sudan, Angola, Nigeria, Uganda, Eritrea, Rwanda, Ethiopia, etc (this is based on my memory of which countries are poor, not extensively researched ...).

So when people talk about the need for 'equity' or 'fairness' of vaccine access, what exactly is the biggest problem to be addressed here? It would seem to me - perhaps overly simplistically - that those countries with very few cases or deaths really don't have the same very pressing need to get vaccines.

A few simple examples - USA is pretty much the poster-child for bad numbers - the US has had 95,220 cases per 1M population, and 1,724 deaths per 1M population. Compare that to, say, Somalia - they have had 738 cases for 1M population, and 35 deaths per 1M population. So - just using these two countries for discussion - should the US be cutting back on vaccine consumption in order to re-direct some of the vaccines to Somalia? Am I looking at this incorrectly?
Fairness is a tricky one. Countries will large pools of unvaccinated people will, eventually, have the virus running through them and those large pools of unvaccinated people will allow variants, potentially vaccine-evading variants, to grow. And that will cause more deaths in those countries and everywhere else.

I would suggest that perhaps 'fairness' asks wealthy countries to ramp up production everywhere they can and make vaccines available not only to their own populations but to the populations of countries without the means or infrastructure to produce them themselves. This isn't 'being charitable to the poor' - it's the right thing to do for all our sakes, due to virus behaviour.

We have forgotten about illnesses and plagues that we can't control, in developed countries. Sometimes there is no perfect answer.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 10:09 pm
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by DaveLovesDee View Post
Apologies, I meant to answer that. For me, the answer should be that countries with the highest infection rates should get the vaccines ahead of those with lower rates, and that those priority recipient countries should then prioritise their own areas of high infection rates and ripple vaccinations outwards from those areas.
This makes perfect sense to me.
Originally Posted by Lion in Winter View Post
Fairness is a tricky one. Countries will large pools of unvaccinated people will, eventually, have the virus running through them and those large pools of unvaccinated people will allow variants, potentially vaccine-evading variants, to grow. And that will cause more deaths in those countries and everywhere else.

I would suggest that perhaps 'fairness' asks wealthy countries to ramp up production everywhere they can and make vaccines available not only to their own populations but to the populations of countries without the means or infrastructure to produce them themselves. This isn't 'being charitable to the poor' - it's the right thing to do for all our sakes, due to virus behaviour.

We have forgotten about illnesses and plagues that we can't control, in developed countries. Sometimes there is no perfect answer.
Obviously, nothing you or I think or want is going to have any effect right now, so this is purely speculative and intellectual. So with that caveat, would you personally advocate the US (or UK, or EU) consuming less vaccine 'today' and diverting that vaccine to Somalia (or Ethiopia or Eritrea)?

Although I focused on the very poor countries at the bottom of the lists (of cases/ deaths), I also noted that decidedly first-world countries are down there at the bottom also - NZ, Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, etc. It strikes me personally that from both a moral, and practical, perspective, The US, UK, EU, etc are doing entirely the right thing in retaining as much vaccine for themselves right now. When you add in the associated unknowns / risks (as discussed elsewhere - the issues of blood clots in women, the issue you raised pertaining to birth control, etc), it makes it even more appropriate that whether you are New Zealand or Taiwan, Somalia or Eritrea, you really should be 'waiting in line'. I'd personally VERY gladly trade places with someone in New Zealand or Taiwan right now, and wait a year or two for a vaccine.

Last edited by Steerpike; Apr 8th 2021 at 10:11 pm.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 10:16 pm
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Steerpike View Post
This makes perfect sense to me.

Obviously, nothing you or I think or want is going to have any effect right now, so this is purely speculative and intellectual. So with that caveat, would you personally advocate the US (or UK, or EU) consuming less vaccine 'today' and diverting that vaccine to Somalia (or Ethiopia or Eritrea)?

Although I focused on the very poor countries at the bottom of the lists (of cases/ deaths), I also noted that decidedly first-world countries are down there at the bottom also - NZ, Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, etc. It strikes me personally that from both a moral, and practical, perspective, The US, UK, EU, etc are doing entirely the right thing in retaining as much vaccine for themselves right now. When you add in the associated unknowns / risks (as discussed elsewhere - the issues of blood clots in women, the issue you raised pertaining to birth control, etc), it makes it even more appropriate that whether you are New Zealand or Taiwan, Somalia or Eritrea, you really should be 'waiting in line'. I'd personally VERY gladly trade places with someone in New Zealand or Taiwan right now, and wait a year or two for a vaccine.
If the assumption for the discussion is that we can't, for some reason, step up vaccine production capability then yes, I think it makes sense to vaccinate most where the virus is most out of control.

Having said that, it's always good to question the terms of the discussion. Therefore I would challenge said wealthy countries, whose industries can tool up for war, or for running shoes, or for any product you care to name, at the drop of a hat to focus on tooling up for vaccine production. We don't have to assume scarcity as a given condition any more. We have several working vaccines. The problem is making and the distributing them fast enough. In underdeveloped countries in particular, distribution mechanisms are lacking as well as production capabilities.
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Old Apr 8th 2021, 11:51 pm
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

It would be 100% without a doubt political suicide for the Liberal Party of Canada (current party with a minority government) if they even hinted of sending vaccines to other countries, people would flip out like mad.

2% of Canada is fully vaccinated, so good luck convincing Canadian's they need to send vaccines to poorer countries.



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Old Apr 9th 2021, 12:18 am
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Default Re: Off topic Political Posts moved from Coronavirus thread

Originally Posted by Steerpike View Post
While perusing the numbers of 'cases' and 'deaths' over at the 'worldometers' site (a site I generally don't pay much attention to these days, since what happened a year ago is largely irrelevant today in terms of measuring 'effectiveness'), I noticed that the countries experiencing the most cases and deaths would seem to be decidedly wealthy countries - or at least, not poor countries. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries ... sort by either 'Total Cases/1M pop' or 'Deaths / 1M pop', and the countries at the top seem to be largely 'first world' countries - Slovenia, Luxembourg, USA, Israel, Sweden, Panama, Portugal, Belgium, etc (ignoring also the very small states like Gibraltar, San Marino, etc).

Looking at the bottom of those same charts (least cases, least deaths) I see what would appear to me to be many of the poorest countries - Tanzania, Samoa, Western Sahara, Niger, Burundi, Somalia, Chad, Sudan, Angola, Nigeria, Uganda, Eritrea, Rwanda, Ethiopia, etc (this is based on my memory of which countries are poor, not extensively researched ...).

So when people talk about the need for 'equity' or 'fairness' of vaccine access, what exactly is the biggest problem to be addressed here? It would seem to me - perhaps overly simplistically - that those countries with very few cases or deaths really don't have the same very pressing need to get vaccines.

A few simple examples - USA is pretty much the poster-child for bad numbers - the US has had 95,220 cases per 1M population, and 1,724 deaths per 1M population. Compare that to, say, Somalia - they have had 738 cases for 1M population, and 35 deaths per 1M population. So - just using these two countries for discussion - should the US be cutting back on vaccine consumption in order to re-direct some of the vaccines to Somalia? Am I looking at this incorrectly?
I wouldn't assume you are comparing like to like in terms of covid cases and deaths. Some poorer countries don't have the resources to test . Others don't have the medical facilities to determine cause of death in many cases. And there are also countries like Tanzania, with its covid-denying president. Well, I should say ex-president given he died - most probably of covid - a week or two ago. Really, you have to look at excess death figures, and apparently even there some countries' statistics are dubious. So without stats you can believe, it's hard to determine fairness in vaccine distribution.
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