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-   -   How to Judge Pandemic Policies (https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/f168/how-to-judge-pandemic-policies-247760.html)

Dockhead 25-03-2021 17:39

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Lake-Effect (Post 3373219)
"Effective" is relative.

Here's an article detailing how poorly most wearers of N95 masks are actually being protected. Sorry - most health professional wearers, I should say. It's kind of fussy to use them correctly.

So, make your best guess about how the average (non-medical-worker) person would fare with their N95 mask, and NOW answer the question of whether stating that they don't guarantee "effective" protection is manipulatively untrue.

If you're still on the fence, consider how many healthcare workers have gotten COVID. And they're the pros at mask-wearing.

I believe it was a much more gray-area thing at the time, they made a call in March about to say re mask wearing, and to me the only errors were not reflecting more about asymptomatic transmission and recommending basic masks, AS WELL AS making a more honest plea to not buy up all the N95 masks.

Branding them liars for this one call... and mischaracterizing it as simply a flipflop on "masks"... seems petty. But I do understand how hard it is for a libertarian to say anything nice about government bureaucracy :wink:


I've said a lot of nice things about government bureaucracy recently. And I am full of admiration for Operation Warp Speed, and the vaccine rollout in general in the U.S. A lot of good people did a lot of good work, for all that to happen.


But the other bit is simply illogical. Either masks are worth wearing, or they're not -- you cant' have it both ways. Saying they're not worth it, in order to discourage people buying them up, so that more will be left for health care workers, who apparently think they ARE worth wearing, is simply a lie. Sorry, but there is no way around that, and no way to spin it some other direction. A lie undermining public trust in health care authorities. That's really all there is to it.


Is it the biggest thing which happened in this pandemic? No, of course. But it's a sad and dirty chapter in the whole story.

fourlyons 25-03-2021 19:17

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Lake-Effect (Post 3373027)
Seriously - if you know that you're in danger of an immediate shortage of PPE, AND asymptomatic transmission is not yet understood to have as big a role as we now recognize (and still denied by some...), is that the time you'd stand up and proclaim that N95 masks MIGHT protect the wearer (if you wear'em right and don't touch your face, etc etc). What exactly is the ethical course here, if there's an imminent risk of a public stampede on N95 masks and hoarding? Do you not attempt to compare the harm of running out of PPE in overloaded hospitals with the harm of not immediately promoting masks on everyone?

And not pushing masks as soon or as hard as you or I might wish isn't "lying". Selective truth-telling is part of ethical legal practice, is it not?

You asked, " What exactly is the ethical course here,"

You tell people the truth as you know it to be, then make your argument to save the limited ppe for essential workers and trust the people to do the right thing. Anything else will destroy your credibility when you need it the most.

Lake-Effect 25-03-2021 19:40

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dockhead (Post 3373272)
Either masks are worth wearing, or they're not -- you cant' have it both ways.

:rolleyes: There are different types of masks applicable to COVID transmission, there are different reasons for use of each type, there are different classes of potential mask users with different needs, and there are different benefits and costs to society for each combination of the above.

Your either/or statement above is a gross oversimplification of the mask situation a year ago, and it's still an unhelpful misrepresentation of the current case for masks. But if it helps justify your "they lied!" claim, I guess it's just fine. Carry on.
:peace:

Lake-Effect 25-03-2021 19:57

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fourlyons (Post 3373321)
You asked, " What exactly is the ethical course here,"

You tell people the truth as you know it to be, then make your argument to save the limited ppe for essential workers and trust the people to do the right thing. Anything else will destroy your credibility when you need it the most.

... I think re masks, they did tell the truth as they knew it at that time. With one exception as far as I'm aware (the Surgeon General's tweet, whoopee; how the F did Twitter become the last word on ANYTHING official?).

It's no secret who most damaged the credibility of his entire pandemic team.

Dockhead 26-03-2021 04:35

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fourlyons (Post 3373321)
You asked, " What exactly is the ethical course here,"

You tell people the truth as you know it to be, then make your argument to save the limited ppe for essential workers and trust the people to do the right thing. Anything else will destroy your credibility when you need it the most.

Exactly :thumb: It's not complicated.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lake-Effect (Post 3373329)
:rolleyes: There are different types of masks applicable to COVID transmission, there are different reasons for use of each type, there are different classes of potential mask users with different needs, and there are different benefits and costs to society for each combination of the above.

Your either/or statement above is a gross oversimplification of the mask situation a year ago, and it's still an unhelpful misrepresentation of the current case for masks. But if it helps justify your "they lied!" claim, I guess it's just fine. Carry on.
:peace:

What is ethical and truthful is unambiguous and uncomplex to those with a good relationship with the truth.

And trust is built over years; destroyed in a moment. That's why you can never compromise with it; never attempt to dissolve it into some obfuscatory "complexity". But I do admit that in our political culture nowadays, this is pretty much a lost cause. "“It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is." :facepalm:

GordMay 26-03-2021 04:55

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dockhead (Post 3373491)
... And trust is built over years; destroyed in a moment. That's why you can never compromise with it; never attempt to dissolve it into some obfuscatory "complexity". But I do admit that in our political culture nowadays, this is pretty much a lost cause. "“It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is."

More than 130 nonprofits, from across a broad spectrum of industries and political persuasions, issued a statement March 20, 2020, that urged a measured response, that serves the public interest.
“We strongly urge government branches and agencies to recommit to, and not retrench from, their duty to include the public in the policy-making process, including policies relating to COVID-19 as well as the routine ongoing functions of governance,” the organizations wrote.
The National Freedom of Information Coalition, a nonprofit that provides education and research for citizens in acquiring government information, organized the statement.

Some of the recommendations include:
- Postpone nonessential government business decisions until after the pandemic has subsided, when the public can once again fully engage.
- Move necessary decisions online in livestreamed meetings accessible to all, including opportunities for public input and questions. Record the streams and post the recordings so people can view it later.
- Do not conduct the public’s business via private channels, such as social media, texting, and phone calls. (This holds true all the time, but especially now.) All official communications should be preserved and made accessible to the public online.
- Post documents and data online as a matter of course, so people don’t have to request it and government workers don’t have to take the time to retrieve and disseminate them.
- Officials can provide journalists greater access to hospitals and other health installations, applying safety precautions and protecting the privacy of victims.

Efforts to make government more accessible now, can result in permanent improvements in the future, to better serve citizens.

Sometimes it takes a crisis to pull together, and move forward, as citizens and government working together, fully engaged and well informed.

"132 Organizations Sign Statement on Government Coronavirus Emergency Transparency and Public Access"
[March20,2020]
https://www.nfoic.org/sites/default/...%2C%202020.pdf

GordMay 26-03-2021 05:02

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Science isn’t enough to save us

Policymakers need insight from humanities and social sciences to tackle the pandemic, argues Hetan Shah, the chief executive of the British Academy in London.
“Science gave us vaccines, but SHAPE (social sciences, humanities and the arts for people and the economy) disciplines help us get to social realities, such as vaccine hesitancy,” notes Shah.
Shah gives an overview of a British Academy report on the pandemic’s social impacts, which traces the contours of COVID-19’s long shadow, and outlines how to reverse our losses.

“COVID-19 recovery: science isn’t enough to save us” ~ by Hetan Shah
Policymakers need insight from humanities and social sciences to tackle the pandemic.
https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-00731-7

valhalla360 26-03-2021 05:05

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Lake-Effect (Post 3360544)
I believe there are good examples of the US pulling together as a nation in the face of crisis, so I don't think it's that. It has more to do with one party's leader deciding that his best move (for CYA and strategic reasons) was to downplay the severity of COVID and to openly mock the precautions.

But what's half a million olds, feebs and sickos, anyway? Survival of the fittest.

Is this the same leader who sent infected patients to nursing homes and then fabricated false data while writing a book about how to handle a pandemic between being interviewed by his brother who works for a major media outlet even getting an Emmy (or some such award)?

The EU is in the middle of a huge political play over brexit because they didn't get in early on vaccine orders.

No country has been immune to playing politics.

valhalla360 26-03-2021 05:19

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dockhead (Post 3361544)
That's not how they analyzed the effectiveness of measures. You should read the studies.

The problem is when you have dozens of variables changing and you can't isolate individual actions it becomes a bit of a guessing game unless an action is completely and totally overwhelming.

Even worse, many policies are the same in word but not in deed.

I've done research (non-pandemic related) where you have many variables changing simultaneously...anyone who commits with surety is likely feeding you an agenda or at least feels the need to come to a conclusion.

valhalla360 26-03-2021 05:27

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by thinwater (Post 3361608)
It has been said, and the science and practice in hospitals supports this, that if we have choked down with 100% (not 90%) mask wear and proper hygiene for 2 weeks at any point, an epidemic can be choked out. But we couldn't do it because that's "too restrictive." Yet if I tell people they will wear hardhats and respirators in a work setting all day, they will (or they will leave... and some will be fired).

If you are talking about the very beginning when it was a few hundred cases limited to wuhan...maybe.

Once it gets much beyond that, no, science and practice do not support this idea.

Of course, it's easy to Monday Morning Quarterback but what level of potential for pandemic do we shut down the world? There are dozens of "potential" events every year (think of the new flu strains that could turn deadly if nothing else). Do we shut down the world for each?

Group9 26-03-2021 05:41

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fourlyons (Post 3373321)
You asked, " What exactly is the ethical course here,"

You tell people the truth as you know it to be, then make your argument to save the limited ppe for essential workers and trust the people to do the right thing. Anything else will destroy your credibility when you need it the most.

For some unknown reason, that is the one of the hardest thing for government to get right. And, no matter how badly they get it wrong, the will wake up every morning, thinking that they get to start with fresh credibility.

Politicians and government spokespersons almost seem baffled when people take the veracity of their past statements into account when judging the veracity of their current statements.

And, if there is one thing you really need as a government, to successfully deal with a pandemic, in a free country, it’s trust from the people you are trying to control, that you are telling them the truth.

valhalla360 26-03-2021 05:41

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Lake-Effect (Post 3373027)
Seriously - if you know that you're in danger of an immediate shortage of PPE,

Then you issue an emergency order prohibiting sales to non-medical personnel and say this is why you are doing it.

You don't lie about it. Most people already saw that it was a lie when they first said it but now the authorities proved they were lying about things, so you still see the echos in terms of those who refuse masks and anti-vaccers, etc... because very reasonably, they assume the authorities are lying...even if they aren't.

PS: I feel like I'm in 1984 arguing with someone practicing "doublethink".

boatman61 26-03-2021 06:22

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
The Pandemic Policy has been pretty simple really..
Induce irrational fear into people over a relatively mild desease..
There are various theories as to why.. a cover for introducing draconian laws to make population control easier, a reset of a mismanaged world economy by the dominant Western powers, a grand plan by the Illuminatti and even manipulation control by alien life forms.
However, regardless of the 'Reason' it is a massive campaign of Project Fear when one looks at it with dispassionate eyes..
To date after more than one year the Global Death rate stands at 2.7 million..
World population stands at 7.7 billion making the claimed viciousness of Covid-19 a joke..
With the Global birth rate standing at 19 per 1000 its barely a scratch on the future population.
Meanwhile frightened people clamor for conformity for 'the greater good' causing division, hatred and even violence on non-conformists..
So it seems, whatever the real reason behind this Campaign the prognosis to date is.. with the resistance being shown.. just 50/50.
Lets see what another year's brings.

GordMay 26-03-2021 06:45

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by boatman61 (Post 3373546)
The Pandemic Policy has been pretty simple really...

As has the contrarian movement's disinformation campaign:

“Inside a COVID-19 conspiracy boot camp” ~ by Katie Pedersen, Eric Szeto, Asha Tomlinson

"While Canadian health authorities fight back against what Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam has called "an infodemic" — the spread of false information about the COVID-19 pandemic — others are working just as hard to target the public with conspiracy theories.
CBC 'Marketplace' journalists took part in a U.S. COVID-19 conspiracy "boot camp," where aspiring activists — including the leader of one of Canada's prominent misinformation campaigns — learn tactics of persuasion to sow seeds of doubt about information coming from public health authorities ..."

More https://www.cbc.ca/news/marketplace/...camp-1.5963503

Lake-Effect 26-03-2021 07:22

Re: How to Judge Pandemic Policies
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 3373526)
Then you issue an emergency order prohibiting sales to non-medical personnel and say this is why you are doing it.

You don't lie about it. Most people already saw that it was a lie when they first said it but now the authorities proved they were lying about things, so you still see the echos in terms of those who refuse masks and anti-vaccers, etc... because very reasonably, they assume the authorities are lying...even if they aren't.

PS: I feel like I'm in 1984 arguing with someone practicing "doublethink".

Amazing powers of hindsight. Then again, a wise poster recently stated:
I've done research (non-pandemic related) where you have many variables changing simultaneously...anyone who commits with surety is likely feeding you an agenda or at least feels the need to come to a conclusion.
Yes, it was hard to get everything just right, especially as the pandemic was unfolding.

It's this obsession to brand the first mask messaging as "lying" that bugs me. With hindsight, yes, of course it would have been better to have had a better understanding of asymptomatic transmission so that in that initial message, cloth or surgical masks were recommended over N95 masks, and why... and putting more emphasis on the potential shortage of PPE as a factor. Even to prohibiting sales of N95 masks to the general public... but how do you think that would have gone over? Generated a panic maybe, and an instant black market in N95 masks?

And no-one is taking into account the effect on healthcare if there had been a run on N95 masks.

I've already shown that the protection to the wearer of even N95 masks in the hands of the general public is not a given (so no lie there), and many of you conveniently forget that there are 2 major classes of masks, and 2 main goals of mask policy.

Anyway, we're past all that. This after-the-fact claim of "lying" seems to be coming mainly from the right wing, I guess in an effort to shift blame from the liar-in-chief (who still holds sway over the GOP), who did more than anyone to throw US pandemic response into disarray.

Still seems too early to play the blame game, but whatever.


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