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BCM
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No amount of evidence to the contrary will convince someone who thinks they're privy to something that no-one else knows and/or accepts as true. If anything, the voice of the overwhelming majority standing on the proverbial shoulders of  giants of established science and trustworthy sources will make them dig their heels even deeper in the dirt, exclaiming that people are not ready to accept "the truth" about the world populace being controlled, manipulated and lied to in service of some insidiously nefarious entity.

I'm not a scientist, I'm an autodidact (self-taught) so basically everything I claim to know is by definition suspect, but I choose to lean in on the expertise of a couple of thousand years of scientific progress instead of cherry-picked solipsistic self-claimed experts producing algorithm-friendly bullshit videos on the internet with dubious credentials and conspiracy theory rhetoric.

I understand and admit that the COVID vaccines have unknown long-term effects, because there is simply not enough data to analyze and make inferences from, but coupled with active misinformation and conspiratorial campaigning from parties whose motivation for such is suspect we've ended up in a situation where a noisy, sensitive and obnoxious minority is pushing absolute bullshit wherever and whenever they can, cussing people because their beliefs are not uncritically shared - ridiculed, even.

I know people crave certainty, it's an evolutionary need. I know people feel powerless against huge, global things like COVID. I know people love to feel that they're special. I know there's a lot of people spreading misinformation and conspiracy theories because they lack the knowledge to critically assess the information (metaknowledge, Dunning-Kruger being the obvious keywords here) - this is also about education: most bullshit peddlers are (statistically) less educated (so don't take this personally and carpet-bomb me in your qualifications, real or imaginary).

While I subscribe to the adage "I would rather have ques­tions that can’t be an­swered than an­swers that can’t be ques­tioned" (dubiously attributed to Feynman), there is a proper way to question the answers, and it has a method - something the tin-foil helmeted cohort isn't using.

Personally it's really hard for me to constantly and repeatedly encounter bullshit without saying anything, because there's so much of it nowadays. I become condescending and oftentimes even rude, because I just can't fathom wherefore people invest their time and personality into bullshit and sling it around like apes hurling feces at the spectators in the zoo. Like religious zealots they think they're absolutely right and under the impression that if only everyone else understood what they know, the universe would be a better place, all the while making the universe a worse place with their bullshit - and they take immediate offense if their views are not accepted as valid.

Better living through chemistry - less than three weeks to my second jab.

Edited by dcom
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18 hours ago, BCM said:

enough. enough now.

fair warning - this thread will be closed on the 19th july. we need to stop with all the spreading of fear. it's not achieving anything and i want no part of it.

Happy to hear this is ending, the fear needs to stop and the world needs to move on and learn to accept this virus like they do with colds / flu even IF it is more harmful, it's not going away,

Research should be focused on treatments for those who are infected rather than endlessly chasing the impossible goal of "zero covid"

I get that some people think us who're happy for things to be moving towards normal again (yeah right..) think we're selfish but I think the world has been massively selfish in how it's accepted everything that's happened in the last 18 months and the negative impact that it'll have on many generations to come, most of all, the impact this will all have on children. I don't know how many people here experienced trauma as a kid but I did and believe me, it's a life long ordeal to come to terms with and process / let go of, I'd much rather be using my energy else where (like making music!) but instead I so often need to turn my attention towards the trauma as it repeatedly gets in the way of me living my life. Now we're going to have a whole generation of traumatized children who had no say in any of this and it seems to me that no one stopped for a minute to think about the consequences it'd have on them.

All this online censorship of professionals doesn't exactly inspire confidence within me for the direction that humanity and our leadership is headed, this has yet again been example of governments taking advantage of an emergency to seize powers that we'll now never get back.

Reality is, everyone's going to die, there's a billion different ways it could happen and it could be right NOW that it happens, the majority of us haven't been at more risk over the last 18 months than the rest of our lives (unless you want to include risk of suicide) I find it so hard to believe that everything that's happened in the world over the last 18 months was purely in response to a virus that imposed such a low risk on the majority.

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There's always a bunch of fruitcakes with some "alternative ideas". Sometimes it's better that way. And sometimes it just isn't. When it comes to getting rid of this pandemic, it just isn't. But fruitcakes will be fruitcakes. So we just have to accept that. And make sure that the majority does what is right for all. Looking at the US, currently, half of the population being (fully) vaccinated is an issue that needs to be addressed.

What I have no tolerance for though is the kind of cynical attitude where people justify their inaction with the excuse that they don't believe a large enough sample of the population will get vaccinated anyways. So it wouldn't make sense to be vaccinated themselves either. That's just some self-fulfilling BS. If you're a functioning adult you understand the responsibility you have in being part of a greater good. Or part of the ambition.

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rather than endlessly chasing the impossible goal of "zero covid"

That's a rather self-serving misrepresentation of why national policies are the way they currently are. The goal is not "zero covid" you tinfoil capped moron. The goal is to be able to re-open society. And yes, everyone is well aware that covid won't go anywhere soon. But if we manage to re-open societies and get a better grip on the pressure on the healthcare systems, that should be an outcome we could all be happy with. No matter where you stand on getting vaxxed or not. Currently though, our best and most quick way out of this lockdown is through people being vaxxinated. Simple as that. 

And no, this is not an argument against effective treatments. But those treatments will not get us out of the current lock down. It's really that simple. This virus spreads too quick. And given the features of the delta variant, it looks like it evolves into versions spreading ever more quickly. 

The only alternative is to have everyone infected/resistent. If that's you idea of a better alternative, you can explain that to all relatives of covid related deaths. And also give a shout out to the people working in your healthcare system. Because you're basically giving them the middle finger.

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A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it. . . . An important scientific innovation rarely makes its way by gradually winning over and converting its opponents: it rarely happens that Saul becomes Paul. What does happen is that its opponents gradually die out, and that the growing generation is familiarized with the ideas from the beginning: another instance of the fact that the future lies with the youth.

-- Max Planck.

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1 hour ago, Petajaja said:

Happy to hear this is ending, the fear needs to stop and the world needs to move on and learn to accept this virus like they do with colds / flu even IF it is more harmful, it's not going away,

Research should be focused on treatments for those who are infected rather than endlessly chasing the impossible goal of "zero covid"

I get that some people think us who're happy for things to be moving towards normal again (yeah right..) think we're selfish but I think the world has been massively selfish in how it's accepted everything that's happened in the last 18 months and the negative impact that it'll have on many generations to come, most of all, the impact this will all have on children. I don't know how many people here experienced trauma as a kid but I did and believe me, it's a life long ordeal to come to terms with and process / let go of, I'd much rather be using my energy else where (like making music!) but instead I so often need to turn my attention towards the trauma as it repeatedly gets in the way of me living my life. Now we're going to have a whole generation of traumatized children who had no say in any of this and it seems to me that no one stopped for a minute to think about the consequences it'd have on them.

All this online censorship of professionals doesn't exactly inspire confidence within me for the direction that humanity and our leadership is headed, this has yet again been example of governments taking advantage of an emergency to seize powers that we'll now never get back.

Reality is, everyone's going to die, there's a billion different ways it could happen and it could be right NOW that it happens, the majority of us haven't been at more risk over the last 18 months than the rest of our lives (unless you want to include risk of suicide) I find it so hard to believe that everything that's happened in the world over the last 18 months was purely in response to a virus that imposed such a low risk on the majority.

The ability to “move on” highly depends on which country you live in. As most of us reside in the “rich” countries, being tone deaf to the unimaginable suffering in countries that don’t have access to the more dependable vaccines is unbecoming. Even though I’m not religious, I am soo thankful the vaccines arrived before Delta. I cannot imagine the carnage that would have ensued in 2021, and variants were a big concern of mine last year, before the media really found it to be their next shiny object, same with boosters.

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1 hour ago, Satans Little Helper said:

What we've all heard a million times already.

Some nice projecting you're doing there 😉

Your response essentially amounts to 'fuck you' and it's funny that that's always the response anyone gets when they at all question the narrative on this, if everyone's thoughts on it are so stupid it shouldn't be difficult to address them so that person doesn't continue to spread supposed misinformation.

I'm sorry, what exactly was it I said that warrants calling me a "tinfoil capped moron"?

You say the only alternative is for everyone to get infected but that really isn't the case is it? if only the world was so simple that everything could be reduced to black or white.

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For some reason I can't edit my post but I was going to add:

Also to add, I, my partner, my parents, several of my friends have already had Covid and survived it without issue, I see no reason for why we still need to risk out future health with taking a vaccine with no long term safety data. It's funny you mention being part of the greater good and I see this endlessly echo'd now since the pandemic but I didn't see people doing jack for the greater good prior, everyone was more than happy living their selfish little lives ignoring actual racism, actual threat to the environment, actual issues of inequality and injustice in the world.

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33 minutes ago, Petajaja said:

Also to add, I, my partner, my parents, several of my friends have already had Covid and survived it without issue, I see no reason for why we still need to risk out future health with taking a vaccine with no long term safety data.

You're discounting the over four million people who have died from COVID because you and your close family have survived it without vaccinations. That's about as callous and insensitive as you can get towards those perished - you've been statistically very lucky, but then again, as a Westerner with access to high-quality medical care you probably didn't have to worry about it that much anyway - you've played the game using the lowest difficulty setting there is, and now you're gloating.

This is the other kind of bullshit prevalent nowadays, the "me and mine had the disease and it was nothing, the vaccine is unnecessary" crowd - they're equally dangerous compared to the misinformation and conspiracy theory rejects. Just because you've had good luck (or access to high-quality medical care) - or you're fabricating your story for whatever reason - doesn't mean that the rest of humanity needs to suffer and/or die when preventative medicine is available. Yes, there might be long-term effects, but I'm betting that the effect will be millions and millions of saved lives.

Edited by dcom
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Stumbled across a community testing mobile station today, so I obliged.  Very easy.  Gave my e-mail address so they could send my result, which arrived negative within half an hour.  They gave me a pack of home self test Rapid Antigen tests too.   Job done and now I feel ok visiting my vulnerable grandad at the weekend.

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3 hours ago, dcom said:

this is also about education: most bullshit peddlers are (statistically) less educated (so don't take this personally and carpet-bomb me in your qualifications, real or imaginary).

 

IMO the most important thing that is learned from a post-secondary education (primarily Ph.D.) is that you learn very quickly that you're absolutely clueless.  You're forced to read mountains and mountains of publications from researchers who have made both large and incremental steps before you; and this mountain of papers is just in your own narrow area of research!  You know when a Ph.D. student is ready to defend their dissertation when you ask them a tough question about their own area of research, and their response is that they don't know (and that it's OK to not know), but they do know where to go look for it and how to piece together different pieces of research to get the answer.

It really causes you to think differently and more critically about things, and to have a more well-adjusted perspective on things like COVID research, even if it's far from your area of research.

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28 minutes ago, Petajaja said:

For some reason I can't edit my post but I was going to add:

Also to add, I, my partner, my parents, several of my friends have already had Covid and survived it without issue, I see no reason for why we still need to risk out future health with taking a vaccine with no long term safety data. It's funny you mention being part of the greater good and I see this endlessly echo'd now since the pandemic but I didn't see people doing jack for the greater good prior, everyone was more than happy living their selfish little lives ignoring actual racism, actual threat to the environment, actual issues of inequality and injustice in the world.

I have no issues with people who already had covid and survived to not go for a shot of vax. Thing is though, there are still plenty people who didnt have covid and who cant be arsed to got a vax shot either. So in terms of public discussion, it's kinda strange to freely go out and argue against taking a vax as if it's complete waste. Generally speaking that is. Even though you're arguing from a very specific context. And also note there are plenty people who think they had it, but didn't. Want to give them an excuse as well?

The racism and environment issues are strawmen, as far as i'm concerned. Different and separate issues. With vastly different impact on societies and need vastly different solutions. I do agree though that in each of those, we all carry a bit of responsibility. But if you make some blanket statement like "I didn't see people doing jack", it is just that: a blanket statement. There are plenty people who did. And probably plenty who didn't. But I don't think that's an excuse for doing jack when it comes to this pandemic though. Not sure why you even need to bring that shit up? Need an excuse? Does that validate your position? 

Also, solving an issue like racism or the environment is way more complex than this pandemic. It basically takes two shot of vax. That's it. And still people are crying like sensitive snowflakes with their personal freedom being taken. It's two f-ing shots, bunch of cry babies. And it's free.

If those shots would solve racism and save the environment as well, they probably still cry. and make these nonsense arguments. I mean, have valid concerns.

 

 

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14 minutes ago, randomsummer said:

It really causes you to think differently and more critically about things, and to have a more well-adjusted perspective on things like COVID research, even if it's far from your area of research.

Yes, critical and metacritical faculties are as important as the ability to assess both knowledge and metaknowledge. Metacognitive skills require learning and they're never ready nor finished, even the most intelligent people believe stupid things. To know and understand you need a mountain of base knowledge and information coupled with the ability to separate wheat from the chaff - and that takes time and dedicated work. I just turned 47 and I'm starting to grudgingly accept that I can know and do anything, but not everything.

Edited by dcom
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A cool thing to do to learn some humility is to take an advanced or expert level textbook on any scientific subject and see how little you know about it.

Edited by thefxbip
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1 hour ago, Rubin Farr said:

I cannot imagine the carnage that would have ensued in 2021, 

People in India can, though.

Indonesia, with around 10% of its population vaccinated, is on the brink of not having to imagine either.

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8 minutes ago, thefxbip said:

A cool thing to do to learn some humility is to take an advanced or expert level textbook on any scientific subject and see how little you know about it.

I'd suggest A New Kind Of Science - it's controversial and hard, so you'll need to flex your connectome in various ways.

Edited by dcom
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20 minutes ago, thefxbip said:

A cool thing to do to learn some humility is to take an advanced or expert level textbook on any scientific subject and see how little you know about it.

I work in a relatively narrow field of research that almost nobody has heard of (rheology).  Been studying and working in that field for 16 years.  I go to the annual conference every year and there's still tons of shit that I don't understand.

My colleagues at work call me the rheology "expert".  Sure, to them I am an expert but even in this narrow field, it takes a lifetime to become a true expert, and even then the expertise may only be in 2 - 3 subsections of the field.  This is precisely why we can't just listen to one or two sources of information and form a rigid opinion, especially about something as serious as covid.  You will have to trust the network of scientists and peer reviewers who have put huge amounts of human-hours into this problem.

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Admin saying this thread will close next week is a silly joke, right? We're nowhere near the end of this yet. 

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Just to go further into meta (and although it has been discussed elsewhere, too), the misinformation, conspiracy theories and bullshit are information viruses, evolving and mutating and their field of study is memetics (emphasis mine):

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Memetics is the study of information and culture based on an analogy with Darwinian evolution. Proponents describe memetics as an approach to evolutionary models of cultural information transfer. Memetics describes how an idea can propagate successfully, but doesn't necessarily imply a concept is factual. Critics contend the theory is "untested, unsupported or incorrect". It has been labelled as pseudoscience by many scholars, making memetics unable to establish itself as a recognized research program.

(The irony of memetics being labeled as pseudoscience - untested, unsupported, incorrect - doesn't escape me.)

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2 minutes ago, dcom said:

Just to go further into meta, the misinformation, conspiracy theories and bullshit are information viruses, evolving and mutating and their field of study is memetics (emphasis mine):

(The irony of memetics being labeled as pseudoscience - untested, unsupported, incorrect - doesn't escape me.)

Like how religion is a disease of language?

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4 minutes ago, Rubin Farr said:

Like how religion is a disease of language?

Religion is the second worst and still ongoing pandemic we've ever had. Humanity itself is the worst.

Edited by dcom
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