Selected Posts from Facebook from April 2020

I delete my Facebook posts occasionally, and archive selected posts. I lose the comments, unfortunately.

April 1

I recommend hot soup with chiles, pepper, and ginger. Then get in bed and wrap up in a sleeping bag, blankets, warm clothes, everything you’ve got. Sweat it out. It works for me most of the time.

Apr 1

The information about state testing capacity is alarming. Our capacity is not yet 10k per day. It’ll get there in a week.

So once we get there, if we cannot continue to grow testing capacity, we can’t really do contract tracing as the number of new active cases increases.

Testing results are taking 8-10 days. There’s a huge backlog.

Late results are not that useful.

That means testing needs to be rationed even more.

So this shelter-in-place probably won’t be lifted until it’s determined there’s enough testing capacity to use a containment strategy: to respond to a new active case, to do contact tracing and testing, and get results quickly.

Apr 1

LA Times had a story that the produce market downtown on 7th street has tons of produce and fruits, and not enough customers. They’re selling at discount.

I think this is a great opportunity to stock up! I don’t know how it works, but it seems like you can just buy cases of food for cash. Not a lot of people around.

I was hoping not to go shopping again, but durrrrn.

Apr 1

Masking Up at the Supermarket : LA IMC

Apr 1

Remember, when you get a mask, you must still do ALL the other things:

  • Shelter At Home
  • Wash Hands
  • Don’t Touch Your Face
  • Social Distancing when you go Grocery Shopping
  • Wear the Mask at the Store

The mask is not a magic shield that protects you. It’s more like a hat to keep the rain off.

Apr 1

Germany had a lot of testing, quarantine, social distancing, and shelter at home way ahead of everyone else.

They curtailed freedoms quickly, and got the virus under control.

Now, they can complain about the curtailment of freedom, and use their successful containment of the virus to claim the virus isn’t that serious.

Apr 1

I think the recent push to send people back to work was a kind of “best worst” decision by capitalists.

The vaccine probably won’t be here in a year, or longer.

The only way for people to survive that long is to alter society and capitalism. It’s necessary to create a kind of survival economics.

They don’t want that, because it would mean fortunes are lost, while new forms of labor are invented, and new businesses are created. The incumbent capitalists would need to lose the existing relations of production (to use a Marxian term).

The alternative was simple: send workers into workplaces, to catch the disease, and to “cull the weak”. The remaining workforce would have immunity to COVID.

Those of us who survived could be slotted back into the same old jobs, to make the same fortunes, for the same capitalists.

Not only that, but a city that was infected would have an edge over other cities that had not been infected. They could work and move with immunity, while the cities spared by the plauge would be ripe for takeover, through a kind of germ warfare.

That would be the deal the capitalists would make with this immune proletariat.

Fucking scary shit.

The resistance is to refuse the old system, to survive, to hope the virus cannot infect more people, to alter society to be safer, to form new kinds of work, and to try to find a cure, or a vaccine.

Apr 1

This is interesting. Among the country club set, it’s the younger Democrats who are social distancing, and the old Republicans who are not, and think the virus danger is being exaggerated.

I’m not sure how to characterize the split in the progressive milieu. It’s a different dividing line, but I can’t really discern what it is.

I’m definitely on the alarmist social distancing side, by miles. I think the media isn’t hyping the danger enough. Worse, I think they aren’t engaged in discussing the science enough, and are turning sappy, lately, as the death toll rises, and the healthcare system has become overextended.


Apr 3

I get the impression that the push for masks also finally got them talking about undertesting in the San Gabriel Valley.

Apr 3

I get why the different agencies and hospitals and blogs want to cite scientific studies about the efficacy of masks, but I think there’s a lot to be said for starting with observed successes, and working backward to understand the practices that led to these outcomes.

Observation counts for a whole lot, even if it’s rhetorically a little more challenging than making a deductive argument from some premises.

Hasn’t “business” been using this idea of using observed “best practices” for the past 20 years? Now that we have a “CEO” president, why can’t we use “best practices” instead of “some bullshit I just made up right now because you asked me an uncomfortable question.”

Apr 3

Interesting point about the milk market.

It’s true, if demand is low, the price will drop, but there is a base cost to producing and delivering the product, and if the profit isn’t there, the business can’t even move the product.

If it costs $2 to get a gallon of milk to the shelf, and the demand is so low that it supports only $1.99, then you lose money getting it to the store.

That’s why raw milk is being thrown out, before it’s processed, bottled, and put up for retail sale.

I imagine it’s a good time to get into making cheese, if you have the space.

Right now, vegetable wholesalers are willing to work with retail customers. You can get vegetables for around half retail price.

These are great deals, but you better be ready to either cook a lot, and store it, or ready to resell it.

Apr 3

Why aren’t 3M’s mask making techniques, which are probably a trade secret, being nationalized, and then open-sourced, so more manufacturers could make masks?

I’m not talking about DIY engineers making open source masks: I mean taking 3M’s technologies, and making them known, so smaller companies could also learn to produce 3M level products for medical grade masks.

Apr 4

(This hasn’t been explored more…)

H/T Alssa Grdn

Apr 5

axillary temp 96.29, no cough

Apr 5

Tub Made From Recycled Lumber!
H/T Nicole Raglin, Margarita Chavez

In Japan, there’s a hot bath culture, not only around the “onsen” hot spring, but also at home, with soaking tubs. Growing up, we never had a soaking tub, but very hot baths were the norm. If you want to share this, remember to include the original, so these two links are in the post.

Humidity and Temperature Effects on Coronaviruses

Smallpox and the Epidemiological Heritage of Japan

Apr 5

Comments please.

This is a response I wrote to someone who raised this issue of high false positives in the covid-19 testing. I have heard this argument from everyone from people I consider smart, to people I think are blithering idiots.

So I wrote this, hoping to persuade the most persuasive.

False positives and health policy.

Some covid-19 anti-hype people, who I tend to call “conspiracy theorists” or hype-contrarians, say that the PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 are inaccurate, and overstate the spread of the virus.

I think that a high false positive is a not problem, especially early on during an epidemic. If anything, it may help suppress the spread of disease more than an accurate test.

They need to consider testing, and test results, within the context of public health policy goals to reduce the spread of virus.

Early on, a high false-positive is a good thing, because it aligns completely with a “stay at home” or “social distancing” policy.

People are tested when they have symptoms of covid-19, or when they are contact traced to a person likely to have covid-19.

Consider the effect of test results on policy. Look at the four possible combinations of infection and testing.

True Positive
status: has SARS-CoV-2
test result: positive
policy: quarantine and isolation
problem: none
note: should test again later

False Negative
status: has SARS-CoV-2
test result: negative, conflicts with actual state
policy: 7 day quarantine to wait for results
problem: will spread virus after 7 days
mitigation: none possible
note: a test with a high false negative is a huge problem because it probably contributes to the spread of virus

False Positive
status: does not have SARS-CoV-2
test result: positive, conflicts with actual state
policy: quarantine and isolation
problem: limitation of freedom of movement
mitigation: test again later
note: a test with a high false positive leads to high counts of cases, but actually leads to supressing spread of the virus because people are isolated at home

True Negative
status: does not have SARS-CoV-2
test result: negative
policy: 7 day wait, because of suspected infection and waiting for test results
problem: short limitation of freedom of movement
note: this also leads to suppressing the spread of virus, because people stay at home

In the absence of adequate testing, the public policy necessarily becomes a widespread “stay at home” order to suppress movement, to reduce the spread of virus. This may progress to a “lockdown” if the spread gets worse.

Adequate testing allows a city to avoid a blanket “stay at home” order. This is being seen in a few places, like Southeast Asia.

Apr 5

We’re just over a week from the peak. That means that large numbers of people are getting infected right now, and were over this past week, and will form the “peak” of victims.

I have those 4900 hospitalized people, and those 800 ICU patients, on my mind. I hope they pull through and do not die.

We have to stay in as much as possible right now, to stop the spread, and to give breathing room to healthcare providers, so the sick get better care.

We need time so testing capacity can increase, so we can do faster testing, and implement precise quarantine and isolation, and avoid a lockdown.

Apr 6

Los Angeles County COVID-19 plot
Saw a spike in the number of deaths reported.

LA County is now releasing an approximate number of tests performed, so we can get a rough ratio of positives/# tests per day.

Apr 7

I think I was tricked into signing one of those contracts that messes up your rights against eviction. It was presented as a request form to ask for help with rent.

Apr 8

Your new President #COVID19 advises all Americans to destroy the economy.

Apr 8

Grocery workers are beginning to die of coronavirus

Gotta wake up to these new facts. We need open air markets. We also need neighborhood markets for food. We even need people who will sell vegetables on the corner, so you can shop outdoors.

Try mapping it out and see how many anonymous community contacts you make in a big store.

Apr 9

I was thinking the capitalist argument that slowing the economy will kill people… well, it doesn’t seem correct at all. Many of the accidents people have are at work. People get killed at work. Work is a cause of death.

With #COVID19, incidents of death due to workplace transmission, especially in healthcare workplaces, is probably going to skyrocket.



Apr 9

Gardening your own food is kind of more expensive than buying it at the supermarket, and doesn’t yet supply all your food (for nearly all gardeners).

However, it’s not that far off in price. So it means that with some efficiencies of scale, small scale farming can work. The pay would be low, but there would not be any morning commute, and the work itself would be interesting.

Mass gardening could help people avoid the store, and support social distancing.

To effect it, people would need a “right to garden”. They’d need to be able to transform unused land into gardens, perhaps regulated to require fallow periods. The “rent” would be the property taxes only, and no rent to the owner, if the owner refuses to negotiate a lease.

Apr 9

Here’s the paper from the CDC about the gatherings in Chicago that spread the virus to several people, leading to deaths.

It’s sobering.

Nice diagrams of contact tracing, as well.

Apr 9

Do you have a CPAP machine? Learn to use it. It’s being explored as a tool for COVID19 therapy, and it might have some possibilities.

I think it’s interesting because, well, I know people with CPAPs. Secondarily, it allows for therapies to be done away from a hospital, in an environment that can circulate clean, outside air into the patient’s room.

CPAPs are cheap and plentiful, and widespread. They do something similar to a ventilator, but with less trauma and fewer technicians required.

Apr 9

In Korea, if you get COVID, they give you hand sanitizer and masks! OMG. How logical. I bet they could find toilet paper and canned food as well!

If you get COVID in Korea, you get those marshmallow chocolate cookies. Hell no they aren’t going to work sick.

Pepsi isn’t going to help, though. You need ginger ale!:)

Apr 10

This is for everyone who said something like “__ kills more people every day”.


Now, it’s COVID-19 killing more than anything else.

How you feeling now?

Apr 10

I know a lot of you have hope that early spread has created herd immunity.

According to the recent edits to Wikipedia, the estimated required level of immune people to stop SARS-CoV-2 is 29% to 74%.

That’s roughly 100,000,000 people to 200,000,000 people in the US.

Apr 10

Our exponential increase is being tamed, day by day.

I used the formula X’ = X + X * c to predict the future.

I adjust c so the curve gets close to recent numbers.

c started at 0.25. Today, it’s 0.207, because growth is slower than in the past.

I’ve added a count of tests, so we can see if testing capacity is growing.

We’re 8 days since the Dr. Ferrrer of the County of LA said we should wear masks. We should see results from this action soon.

Please share and like.

Apr 10

LocationTracking – here’s how to log your excursions, so if you get diagnosed with COVID-19, you can help the hospital to find the people who you may have infected.

Every time you go out, record the data, plans, locations you visited, and people you were in contact with.

You can help your community resist rapid infection, without automatically giving the data over to a company.

Government leaders are putting out ideas related to tracking your location to figure out how the virus is spreading. They are thinking of technologies, like what Facebook or Pokemon Go do, tracking people.

I don’t think we need that. What we need are hundreds of millions of conscientious people taking care of themselves, and knowing where they’re going, and what they’re doing. Getting this important information into the hands of epidemic investigators, when they need it, is what will be effective.

Watch out about messages of how apps could give you freedom of movement. The “freedom” an app gives you comes at the cost of a digital record of your motions are being collected on your phone.

What we need to feel more “free” is to take responsibility for knowing where we are, where we have been, and whom we have contacted.

Apr 10

Cops are fighting a guy getting on a bus without a mask.

Total failure of public policy.

The right way to do this is to just announce that you need a mask to ride a bus. (Also, make the bus free and board from the rear, to protect the driver.)

Then, just let it be known that cops won’t bust mask vendors on the street. If you are selling masks, you’ll be left alone.

People will earn money to survive. People will get masks.

Apr 11

Dr. Anthony Fauci: Americans could eventually carry certificates of immunity to coronavirus
Why are people freaking out about this? We assent to things like drivers licenses, passports, and ssn. This seems to be less authoritarian in some ways. It’s based on health and a natural phenomenon.

Apr 11

I stocked up so don’t need to go buy food for a couple more weeks, but should run out of veggies toward the end.

When I go to get veggies, it will not be at a regular supermarket.

My first attempts will be to drive around and look for Latino vegetable vendors selling from trucks and vans, in the open. I think that’s safest.

My second attempt will be at Asian markets where people are 100% masked up and practicing distancing.

Third will be the wholesalers, because they’re doing open air sales – but you have to buy so much so it’s a hassle.

Edit: Farmers markets will be in here around “3” if I can remember to put it on my calendar.

Fourth will be small neighborhood markets, because there’s fewer people in there.

Fifth will be supermarkets.

Apr 12

White House Seeks To Lower Farmworker Pay To Help Agriculture Industry
How about just giving everyone food stamps, so we can spend more on food?

Let’s see. Who administers the SNAP program? The USDA! US department of agriculture.

Why? To create demand for agricultural products.

Why? To keep prices high, so there’s a profit, and farms can afford to be in business.

This push by the White Man’s House to bring back something more like slavery is disgusting.

There’s a whole different system that could be created: universal food benefits, higher prices, higher wages, and jobs for out of work people. We have a lot of unemployment.

You could put unemployed people to work on farms. They could even be subsidized by the government for a month or so, until they developed some skill in picking food.

Apr 12

This is some bullshit. They will do a “mortgage freeze” but all the money owed is due right after the freeze.

They need to push this stuff out for a few years.

Apr 12

What do you do when someone in your circle of isolation breaks it and meets with a friend? #COVID19

Apr 12

Grocery workers safety is also our personal safety as shoppers.

The workers need to be empowered to dictate the conditions of their workplaces, which are also our shopping spaces.

Apr 12

I wonder if people in Japan bow because they suffered so many epidemics.

Apr 12

“Porfirio Diaz” writes – “I’m not bashing anyone, just speaking truth to power. Trump is very much to blame with his handling of this in the US. His blind decision to close off travel from China while leaving European travel wide open is what has led to New York being ground zero for the pandemic in North America while the West Coast was fairly well isolated from the pandemic levels of contagion.

“Trump’s own racist attitude is what saved lives in the West while he let the virus run amuck in his home town. It’s a very sad and tragic tale of what happens when leaders allow their own bias to blind them from the truth.”

Apr 12

There’s some talk about austerity here and there online.

If this is serious, then it means the capitalists are giving up on a recovery, and seeking a recession that will allow the wealthiest to sweep up assets at low prices.

Apr 12

Asian American COVID-19 deaths in Los Angeles county exceed our proportion in the population. Also, it’s the one place where this data is collects, and Asians are overrepresented in deaths.

I think this reflects how AAPI people in LA are working class, and also aged, as well as the fact there’s probably travel from Asia. I also think there’s undertesting in the communities, because I look at the numbers of cases, and the SGV has low numbers.

Low numbers of cases, but high numbers of deaths, makes me think there’s a big undercount.

Apr 13

Turn country clubs into shanty towns. Spread out shanty towns with tents around 50 feet apart.

Apr 13

This whole thing with mask scams, feds taking masks and tests, and so forth, show that, for some things, in some situations, the market does not work. It’s worse than nothing.

Apr 13

I was watching a video talking about the “mobile phone” passports they use to monitor cases in China. It was pretty intrusive. They require people with the virus to carry the phone and app around and be tracked. I think uninfected people carry them, as well.

So, I could see it happening here, except for one thing: it would probably require giving people free “5G” phones.

Greed, and a tolerance for death, may save us from mass surveillance via 5G.

Apr 13

Keep the shoes outside.

Wash your ass after shitting.

Bow or namaste.

Wear a mask.

Keep social distance.

Eat lots of vegetables.

Video chat.

Mukbang at dinner time.

Excercise your lungs.

Apr 13

California will have only mail-in ballots for the forseeable future.

In the event that Trump kills the USPS, can the state of CA take it over and run it within the state?

Apr 14

I’m happy to hear Dr. Ferrer mention that we will need to create facilities to help people quarantine away from high-risk people.

This has been overlooked, broadly, by people who are pushing for “return to normalcy” and who want the economy to come back.

I suspect they don’t face situations of living with older or sick people.

Apr 14

This is the latest EuroMomo report about how much excess death they’re seeing in Europe.

Virus anti-hypers were passing this around a few weeks ago, claiming that COVID-19 was not a big deal, and that there wasn’t even much excessive death. When it was circulating, only Italy was in dark blue.

Now, there’s plenty of dark blue.

All that happened was a lag because the organization needs to get reports from the countries. So it takes some time to receive and process the data.

(The preview shows an out-of-date map. Click to view the latest.)

Apr 14

High Humidity Leads to Loss of Infectious Influenza Virus from Simulated Coughs
This is about influenza, not SARS-CoV-2 or coronavirus, but it’s interesting: adjusting the humidity up can reduce the spread of influenza virus. The humidity affects how long the particles linger in the air, remain viable, etc. #COVID19

Apr 14

Melissa Missi Quon Huber writes:

“That is a very insightful question!

My observation is that China has done things differently which has put them ahead in some ways.

  1. China had a comprehensive lockdown which helped to build a firewall of sorts against community spread.

The US still has people moving about at various levels across different states.

  1. China implemented mass use of masks, testing, and surveillance.

We are short on those supplies to keep people safer in public.

We have no infrastructure to track people through a common database.

That requires software development and a huge public health messaging strategy and implementation.

I also suspect there will be a serious lack of compliance to have locations and health tracked.

Plus, not everyone has access to a smartphone to have their temp and social contacts tracked. So we will have to get everyone access to smartphones and internet.

For better or worse, China is already poised to monitor citizens. We are not.

  1. China will have more outbreaks. We have seen that in South Korea. When they loosened restrictions the virus spread rose again.”

Apr 15

The Center for American Progress has put out a paper that says the post-lockdown Coronavirus management should be done with a big database that records your contacts and location. (American Enterprise Institute also touched on this, but in less detail.)

What do you think about this?

What do you think about Facebook and Google and your phone company already tracking your location for their ads or whatever?

Apr 15

That’s cool. Please note, however, that it’s not the isolated seniors that are at risk. It’s the ones living in multigenerational households.

They could use something a bit more expensive than tulips. They need housing access to allow for separation during flare-ups of viral spread in their community.

Apr 15

There are no such things as individuals; only society exists.

Apr 15

Read the fine print.

Gloves are a substitute for hand washing.

They aren’t magic manacles that sanitize your hands and the surfaces they touch.

If you wear gloves from place to place, use sanitizer or soap to clean them off between places. Use sanitizer before getting in the car. Use it before entering a building. Use it as you exit the building.

Just like hand washing.

Apr 15

Tigray People’s Liberation Front – Wikipedia
Tedros Adhanom of the WHO was in this political party. Opinions? I don’t have a strong opinion, but found it an interesting thing to read.

Apr 15

The high rates of healthcare worker infection are scary.

I think we might go toward more treatment at home as long as possible. Monitor people over the internet.

But this means ambulances will need to be socialized.

Apr 16

Went to the store. Before I did, I went looking for vendors in trucks, but I think it was too late in the day. I was going to F4L, but, skipped it today. So I went to Home Depot, and it was busy. They now have outdoor pickup, and I’ll probably use that service instead. It just takes a long time to pick and pack.

Then, I went to 168 in Alhambra, and it was pretty empty. Veggie prices were pretty low. The other stuff was not. It was not busy at all, so it felt “safe”.

Then I went to Autozone, and got VOCs to clean out some of the car gunk. It wasn’t busy there.

The new regulations are that masks must be worn inside the store. I hope this helps keep the staff and customers safe.

Apr 17

The people protesting in the midwest, not all of them at least, don’t deny that covid-19 is deadly. They intend to survive it with their stockpile of gear and food. That’s their goal – to see a lot of people die, so they can survive and reap the rewards of survival.

They’re hoping shit hits the fan (#SHTF) so they can use their 2nd amendment to “defend” against people.

They’re the “patriot” or “liberty” people. That’s how I read those Trump tweets to “liberate”.

Apr 17

All the rhetoric about “small business” was just a cover for big business. It should be pretty clear, now, because small business was kept away from the money allocated to small business.

Apr 17

This is your food. It’s made under conditions that, due to coronavirus, are now unsafe for workers, and, by extension, for the food.

Oh yeah, our laws are fucking evil too:

“The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (Cares) Act excludes anyone living in a mixed-status household with an undocumented family member. “

Apr 18

Today’s trend. copied from bing. I am not sure if the number of cases has gone linear yet.

Apr 18

Gin and Tonic is a great drink, and if you look into the history, you can see hints of the current fascination with hydroxychloroquine, a malaria drug (and also a lupus drug).

The gin was used to make the tonic, quinine, more palatable.

It was invented by the British East India Company, one of the early capitalist imperialist ventures, to give to crew, so they wouldn’t suffer malaria, as they entered and exploited India.

So, the drug was used as a prophylactic, to prevent malaria. Imagine how powerful they felt, drunk on gin and tonic, watching as the colonized people died.

Apr 18

One of the reasons Bernie was so popular with people of color was that he pushed Medicare for All. Black, Brown and Asian people are less likely to have medical insurance. Why? Small business is a big employer. The pay is low, and there’s no insurance.

The article says:

“There’s also an economic component to these structural inequalities: black people, Hispanics, and Asians have statistically higher levels of uninsurance rates than white people. “There’s structural racism and economic inequalities, and they both matter and can compound each other,” says Krieger. “It’s not an either or.” “

Flip this around, and look at the color composition of these new fascist anti-lockdown protests. It’s white people, and probably middle class white people, from the look of it.

Apr 18

One of the problems with the world is that they don’t see huge differences between 0.1%, 1%, and 2%.

Apr 18

The group behind the Michigan protests was the Michigan Conservative Coalition and the Michigan Freedom Fund. The fund is partially funded by DeVos. Here’s an article about them.

Apr 18

I took my friend to county general hospital because she had covid-19 symptoms. It looked like covid-19, but they would not give a test. She already had an appointment to get tested at a center tomorrow.

What the fuck?

Imagine if someone walked in and was told they wouldn’t be given the test. Most people will go get the test, but I’m pretty sure some people, without cars, would not get tested. They could get sick, and even die, and would not be part of the covid-19 counts.

I think there’s undercounting of covid-19 in the underinsured communities.

Apr 18

So, I’m looking at the current situation, and see a split between the petit bourgeois and the proletariat, with the petit bourgeois wanting to bring the “economy” back, and the proletariat refusing, or wanting to refuse, because workplaces are dangerous.

The bourgeois stole everything. They left little for the petit-bourgeois.

The petit bourgeois are in a panic, seeing their businesses fall apart, and want to go back to their normal, which was a generally nice life with a lot of “freedom”.

Meanwhile, poor workers were under the heel of capitalism, and it was already pretty miserable. Now, the calls to resume that old life come along with the threat of death in the workplace.

When you’re poor, you don’t have much freedom, because you don’t have money, and don’t have time. Being stuck at home, as bad as it is, isn’t that different from not being able to go out because you have no cash. Being forced to work in dangerous conditions, is a lot worse than it was before.

If anything, there’s some hope: some homeless people are getting put in motels, some cash is in the pipeline, buses are free (if dangerous), at least testing is free, maybe all covid-19 healthcare will be free. The real estate bubble might deflate, and maybe housing will get cheaper.

I think this split is dangerous, because the petit bourgeois, with their alignment with Trump, is similar to the way the middle class aligned with, and aligns with, Fascism.

Am I the only one seeing it this way?

Am I missing something?

Apr 19

It seems like a lot of people want to go outside, and people need to make money.

What are some possible ways to do one or the other, without increasing risk of virus transmission, too much?

What are some individual, household, or public policy tactics?

Apr 19

Looking at https://www.covidcharts.com/

Our deaths per day is around 1900, and it’s been like this starting April 7.

Our new cases flattened out on April 3rd, at around 30k per day.

Our tests started to flatten out on April 6, at around 150k per day.

I don’t know how long it takes to go from being indentified, to being resolved as either dead or cured. I’ve seen people say 20 days.

However, the point when cases flattened out was April 3, and deaths flattened out on the 7th. That’s 4 days, approximately. Is the flattening out real?

I worry about the fact our testing capacity is not increasing.

Los Angeles County increased, but I don’t know if we’re getting more. I’m driving someone to be tested today, and they made the reservation on Thursday night. That’s 3.5 days to get a test!

Then, after that, it’s 5+ days to get a result.

Apr 20

Just wondering how much TV news you’re watching during this pandemic. How much and what sources? Is this a normal amount for you?

I am watching around 1-3 hours a week, NHK and ABC. I normally watch none, and read my news online.

Apr 20

I went looking for small food stores a few days ago, and didn’t find any open.

Then, I saw one open yesterday. It had a line.

What’s going on? Are the small stores just saying “fuckit” and not opening up?

Apr 20

So, I’m thinking about sleeping outside in a tent. Partly, it’s to spare my mom of any possible viral risk.

The reason is that I read that a bunch of unhoused people in Boston, in a shelter, had the virus, but didn’t have symptoms.

I wonder if being outside changed them.

I also miss camping, and haven’t done it for a long time, so it’s an excuse to buy a tent.

Any experiences getting sick or staying healthy outside?

Apr 21

Pac Man is kind of like social distancing gamified.

Apr 21

So, all these people are out demanding more freedom of movement. (Also, flying flags, and being led around by right wingers… but whatever.)

Will they accept using a location tracking app in order to be able to move around more?

Apr 21

I thought we had flattened the curve, but backlogs of tests are coming in showing that we didn’t do as great as we thought. Not terrible, but not as good as I assumed.

Apr 22

(Scary picture)

I find this ominous picture optimistic.

  1. there is a vaccine.
  2. the government has a lot of vaccine.
  3. people are getting the vaccine quickly, maybe because Bill Gates is paying for it (though I doubt he would give anything to Americans for free unless forced to by free-open-source competition).
  4. lastly, RFID chips actually function well enough to track people.


The current situation is:

  1. There is no vaccine.
  2. There is no money.
  3. We’re already tracked by telephones, which we paid for.

Apr 22

This is so messed up. There should be a low limit to the number of people allowed to work inside the space, and a very short limit to the time. Clean up between shifts.

Apr 23

The backlog of results keep coming. The deaths are increasing. It’s expected, but also alarming.

Alarming is how the number of people hospitalized each day tends to grow.

If growth was really flat, shouldn’t the hospitalizations also go flat? What am I missing?

Apr 23

Where is the reopen Princeton Harvard and Yale movement?

Apr 23

People are buying flowbees on eBay for bucks.

Apr 23

A dog breeder with no experience was hired to lead the pandemic task force. This is not a joke.

Apr 23

The ‘Ferociously Contested’ Story of How Blackness Became a Legal Identity
I just need to remind myself the when people talk about justice or fairness it didn’t always include me.

Apr 23

Stats people are pointing out a lot of stats flaws with the Santa Clara virus antibody study, and I suspect the LA study will be as well. Despite these problems, the the studies do show some kind of (big) range of possible multipliers.

So when you see that we have 200 more new cases, you can multiply that by 20 to 50 to get an idea of how many real cases are spreading out there. It’ll be off, but the multiplier will be refined over time, with more studies.

So, 1,073 new cases we find, means maybe 20,000 new cases in the population.

Every day, we inch toward herd immunity, and hope for the best.

Apr 23

I keep hearing Garcetti or Newsom boast about our huge testing capacity, but we seem to test in the low thousands per day. So where is this capacity?

Apr 24

I get the impression that Trump gets medical ideas from TV or websites that are trying to sell BS health tinctures and UV sanitation lamps.

Apr 24

This fixation on opening up states is a problem because this is an epidemic that hits cities most.

Also I don’t think it’s possible to just open up everything at once. You have to do it controlled with lots of testing. The first opening are going to be like lab rats. We will be counting the sick and dead to see how we do.

Apr 24

I feel like it would be nice to bring back the CCC and make more parks and open spaces. We could create jobs.

We would need some more info about the spread of the virus in open outdoor air. We know it happens, but how and how much? What protections work?

Apr 24

The right wing response to covid 19 is like neoliberal eugenics. Survival of the fittest worker and death to the weak, with infection and culling performed in the workplace.

Apr 24

Can the Cartels get us PPEs?

Apr 24

I just realized that Los Angeles could open up neighborhoods by using gang territories as districts and restrict people to staying within a territory.

Apr 24

I think ventilators are good but people who get on them usually die.

Apr 24

U.S. hits 50,000 deaths from coronavirus – just as many states announce plans to ease social distancing
Let’s face it. We fucked up and are continuing to fuck up.

Apr 24

Trump said he was going to stop immigration, temporarily, to “save jobs for Americans”, or something to that effect.

Today, the order he signed does exactly the opposite of what he said. It stops processing applications for green cards, which would help out people already here and likely eligible to stay. It also allows guest workers to travel into the country, defeating the purpose of not only “saving jobs” but, more importantly, moving people from one place to another, which increases the risk that they’ll catch coronavirus here in the US, and contribute to the global spread.

He’s always doing this: right wing populist, racist messaging, and then, doing the opposite, but maybe more racist.

Apr 25

Why might Sweden’s Covid-19 policy work? Trust between citizens and state | Lars Trägårdh and Umut Özkırımlı
An interesting article about Sweden’s no-lockdown policy. A bit of ethnography about how Swedes approach the situation: by practicing what amounts to a personal lockdown.

Their deaths per million is slightly higher than the US.

What I find interesting is that I’ve seen these same attitudes among many LA facebook posters in some groups: that self regulation is paramount, and failure to do so would bring on authoritarian force.

Apr 25

‘Every single window was smashed:’ Asian-owned San Jose businesses targeted – San José Spotlight
Kristallnacht in the USA.

Apr 25

Is COVID-19 the capitalist’s dream disease or what? It kills the old, spares the young, so they can keep working.

Apr 25

I saw a video where this “Scorpion” guy suggested that opening up the economy could be done by age groups. We allow the younger workers to go back to work, first, and see how many people die.

If it goes OK, then you do another age range that’s older. You do this on and on, until too many people die, and you dial it back. The older folks get cash to live.

What do you think?

Apr 25

Always keep an eye open to spot people selling fruits and vegetables on the street or a front or side yard. You can get your food, and avoid going indoors.

Apr 25

Ever notice how you can often get over a weak cold if you rest enough and take care of yourself?

I think essential workers need 3 day weekends. 3 consecutive days of rest.

Shorter shifts, maybe 4 shifts per workday instead of 3, and three days of rest, to recover from exposure to our viruses.

I know, this means the capacity of hospitals declines. It means more people need to be hired at the stores. It means factories won’t be able to produce as much, as quickly.

I think any plan to “open” needs to be understood that it’s a plan of controlled infection, and it’s critical to slow infection in workplaces.

I think with any plan to “open”, nothing should go back to normal.

Apr 25

I know people are worried about being tracked with chips, with phone, and by cameras.

When people are able to go to barbers and hair salons again, they’re going to be tracked by their barber and hair stylist.

It’s called contact tracing.

Apr 26

What is an optimal strategy to get the population infected with the Coronavirus, to achieve herd immunity? What factors would you consider in making these decisions?

Apr 26

In a Philippine indigenous stronghold, traditions keep COVID-19 at bay
Old traditional epidemic rituals are part of an indigenous community-regulated lockdown. The rituals are a way to preserve knowledge about how to survive epidemics.

Apr 26

If you live in Denmark but work in Sweden, you get Swedish work and healthcare benefits.

If you use up all 14 of your paid sick days, the government pays you money.

So, maybe this is why Sweden doesn’t need to lockdown. People would be like “i can’t go to work” and still get paid. They aren’t worried about being evicted and starving in the street, which would be like, normal in America.

Apr 27

We need a California WPA. All these instructors and teachers should get paid to submit articles to compile huge textbooks. Thousands of pages worth. Creative Commons licensed.

No more of this textbook with a CD or web key in it junk costing hundreds of dollars. The textbooks will be free.

Apr 27

There’s this idea going around that the case fatality rate of COVID-19 is 0.1%, and the case fatality rate of flu is 0.1%. So they say it’s equally deadly. This is incorrect.

The infection fatality rate of COVID-19 might be 0.1%. That’s what the two CA antibody surveys are saying.

A “case” is identified by the swab test to find active infections.

A “past infection” is found by an antibody test.

The flu’s case fatality rate is around 0.1%.

The infection fatality rate of flu is something less than the case fatality rate. That’s because, like COVID-19, the flu has a lot of asymptomatic infected people.

Most people who get the flu virus are asymptomatic, and don’t become ill.

The flu stats (at the CDC) are based on an estimate of people who become ill. Their case fatality rate is calculated with deaths/illnesses.

It doesn’t include the asymptomatic majority.

Also, it doesn’t include the vaccinated.

If you ran an antibody test for the flu, the asymptomatic people, and the vaccinated people, who never got ill, would test positiive. You’d find an infection fatality rate < case fatality rate.

Apr 28

Meat prices spike, cattle prices fall, and ranchers and lawmakers see market manipulation
I was confused about why meat prices were high when the meat business was simultaneously killing off animals without processing them. It didn’t make sense to me.

Animals can live a long time, if you can afford the food and land for them. Smaller animals like pigs and chickens could be, illegally, housed in suburban back yards. You could store some cows at now-closed parks. If market prices are high, you could sell them individually to butchers.

Given that so many plants are now closed, there’s a lot of people who could independently be hired by small meat stores to cut up the animals. (Again, the waste could be illegally buried in back yards and vacant lots, if it couldn’t be disposed of properly. It’s not “toxic waste” like plastic – I think things like feces, hair, guts and feathers naturally compost.)

Meat can also be preserved as dry or canned meat, for years. You can freeze it for years.

It just didn’t make sense.

A web search brought this article from an ag industry website to the top.

It speculates that there’s a meat processor oligopsony; a few processors buy 85% of the meat, and have a lot of power setting prices, and are manipulating the market.

Apr 28

Meat prices spike, cattle prices fall, and ranchers and lawmakers see market manipulation
I was confused about why meat prices were high when the meat business was simultaneously killing off animals without processing them. It didn’t make sense to me.

Animals can live a long time, if you can afford the food and land for them. Smaller animals like pigs and chickens could be, illegally, housed in suburban back yards. You could store some cows at now-closed parks. If market prices are high, you could sell them individually to butchers.

Given that so many plants are now closed, there’s a lot of people who could independently be hired by small meat stores to cut up the animals. (Again, the waste could be illegally buried in back yards and vacant lots, if it couldn’t be disposed of properly. It’s not “toxic waste” like plastic – I think things like feces, hair, guts and feathers naturally compost.)

Meat can also be preserved as dry or canned meat, for years. You can freeze it for years.

It just didn’t make sense.

A web search brought this article from an ag industry website to the top.

It speculates that there’s a meat processor oligopsony; a few processors buy 85% of the meat, and have a lot of power setting prices, and are manipulating the market.

Apr 29

This sucks. There’s probably an undercount of COVID-19 deaths. (That’s unless there was an unusually brutal flu season or some other contagion also going around.)

Apr 29

Fuck Trump and his “Arbeit Macht Frei” policies. These are going to become death camps for immigrant workers.

Apr 29

All these people wanting to “open” should just go take a job at a meat processing plant.

Apr 30

I am getting the impression SARS-CoV-2 is spreading slower than expected, but is a little more deadly than anticipated.


Apr 30

A lot of people want to restart the economy to benefit business. I don’t think they’re really thinking it through.

You have to think of businesses like machines. They are machines that make something, and produce a profit as part of the process.

If the machine kills people working in the business, it’s doomed to fail.

The business shuts down, again, except more people are dead, and everyone hates the business.

It’s probably more cost effective to put up a Kickstarter to sell people shares of a guillotine, and then behead someone. Maybe Pence or Trump.

At the very least, you’re going to preserve some of the goodwill that the locked-down closed businesses have built up over the years.

Apr 30

Spike in US deaths and cases flagged as pneumonia suggests even greater COVID-19 impact
Need to read this in more detail. The number of people who died in hotspots was higher than could be accounted for by the known COVID-19 deaths.

This is similar to the stats from EuroMOMO, where it showed that the mortality rate increased in places that were hit with the pandemic.

The main thing I’m assuming is that testing is inadequate to catch all the cases, so a lot of people die of COVID-19, never tested. We only know their status WRT COVID-19 if you see how they died, and test the corpse.

Apr 30

I don’t support re-opening, but I do support the idea of controlled infection and testing people who decide to participate in risky behavior, like going to the beach.

Apr 30

In LA County, Pacific Islanders Are Dying From Coronavirus At A Rate 12 Times Higher Than Whites. These Leaders Are Fighting Back.
This is alarming.

“A couple of factors may also be exposing Pacific Islanders to the virus more than other groups. Samoa said many are working through the pandemic in “essential” fields like food services, airport security and warehouses.







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