What's in the News

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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2820 on: December 15, 2020, 04:15:49 PM »
Fear Tax.  That's a new one.
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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2821 on: December 17, 2020, 10:56:50 AM »
Five Eyes alliance considers sanctioning China

Australia’s largest allies may come to its aid in its escalating trade war with China.

The Five Eyes alliance has reportedly held discussions over how to respond after Beijing added coal to a growing list of sanctions imposed on Aussie goods.

The group – made up of Australia, the US, the UK, Canada and New Zealand – has reportedly touted retaliatory trade and economic sanctions.

Mike Green, a former special assistant to ex-US president George W Bush, said the international response needed to be broader than the Five Eyes and should include NATO and the European Union.

“China’s market is so huge (that) it’s unlikely the rest of us will have, in a democratic society, the ability to completely boycott it,” he told ABC Radio.

“The Chinese have a slight advantage there. But what we have is numbers, and we have more and more countries that are alarmed at what China is doing.”...

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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2822 on: December 17, 2020, 05:41:54 PM »
Sounds like someone in the USA desperately wants to create a sequel to the cold war.  How sad.
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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2823 on: December 28, 2020, 07:08:00 PM »
Australia's relationship with China can survive – but it won't be the same again

There can be no return to the relations of the past. The question for 2021 is how to find a new settling point

Australians have had a rude awakening this year. Convinced for a decade that the Asian century was theirs for the taking, the downward spiral of Australia’s relationship with China has come as a shock to many....

Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2824 on: December 30, 2020, 02:02:36 PM »
Washington Still Wants China to Be a Responsible Stakeholder

Despite heated language, the U.S. goals haven’t changed.

The U.S. policy community has produced no shortage of strategies for competing with China. Increasingly frustrated that the long-standing U.S. policy of engagement failed to turn Beijing into a “responsible stakeholder,” the Trump administration, along with a bipartisan cross section of Washington’s policy community, changed tact [sic]. Their competitive strategies are willing to impose costs on Beijing, restrict economic engagement, and tolerate greater bilateral friction to push back on China and more aggressively defend U.S. interests. But competition, it is often pointed out, is not an end in itself. What, then, do these competitive strategies seek to achieve?...

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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2825 on: February 11, 2021, 05:18:23 PM »
China's first Mars probe has successfully reached orbit around Mars.

https://www.theverge.com/2021/2/10/22276153/china-reaches-mars-tianwen-1-probe

“Exploring the vast universe is the common dream of all mankind. We will cooperate sincerely and go hand in hand with countries all over the world to make mankind’s exploration of space go further,” Zhang Kejian, director of the China National Space Administration, said in a statement Wednesday.

Next up, selecting a landing site for the surface probe and rover.
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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2826 on: June 02, 2021, 05:52:47 PM »
Jab enough people with Sinovac and good things happen.

Just one COVID-19 patient is in critical condition at the Dr. Geraldo Cesar Reis clinic in Serrana, a city of almost 46,000 in Sao Paulo state’s countryside. The 63-year-old woman rejected the vaccine that was offered to every adult resident of Serrana as part of a trial.

Doctors say the woman was awaiting one of Pfizer’s shots, which remain scarce in Brazil. But she is an outlier here. Most adults rolled up their sleeves when offered the vaccine made by the Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac, and the experiment has transformed the community into an oasis of near normalcy in a country where many communities continue to suffer.


Full article - https://apnews.com/article/caribbean-brazil-coronavirus-pandemic-business-health-20bd94d28ac7b373d7a8f3f9c557e5b6


I just wish more example cities like this could be set up around the world.  Showing people that high vaccination rates really help restore normalcy will make more people want to get vaccinated.
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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2827 on: June 11, 2021, 01:10:27 PM »
This post has been moved Upstairs................

AMonk
« Last Edit: June 15, 2021, 10:03:47 PM by AMonk »

Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2828 on: June 20, 2021, 12:54:35 AM »
China's most belligerent journalists used to be the ones doling out insults online. Now they're the targets

Reporters from China's jingoistic government-owned media outlet the Global Times have become the latest targets of an increasingly radical wave of nationalism sweeping through the world's largest country....

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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2829 on: June 22, 2021, 03:47:21 PM »
04 June 2021
WHO approval of Chinese CoronaVac COVID vaccine will be crucial to curbing pandemic
CoronaVac is one of two Chinese vaccines already sustaining vaccination campaigns in more than 70 nations. Both should soon be much more widely available to low-income countries.

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-01497-8

There was a study showing a 51% effectiveness rate.  People who keep pointing to that study ignore one other statistic from the same study:

This overall protection is lower than that provided by the seven other vaccines already listed by the WHO. But, importantly, trials suggest that CoronaVac — an inactivated-virus vaccine produced by Beijing-based company Sinovac — is 100% effective at preventing severe disease and death.

And to put things further into perspective:

The WHO’s efficacy estimate of 51% was based on data from late-stage trials among health-care workers in Brazil, posted online as a preprint1 in April. Of the 9,823 participants included in the analysis, 253 had COVID-19 — 85 in the vaccinated group and 168 among those who received the placebo. None of the vaccinated volunteers was hospitalized or died owing to COVID-19. Smaller, late-stage trials in Indonesia and Turkey have shown higher efficacies of up to 84%.

Preliminary findings from a post-trial study of 2.5 million people in Chile estimated that CoronaVac was 67% effective at preventing COVID-19, and 80% effective at preventing death from the disease, despite the presence of the Alpha (B.1.1.7) and Gamma (P.1) variants of the virus SARS-CoV-2.



My personal best advice to anyone is Get vaccinated NOW!  Every COVAX approved vaccine (and a number of others awaiting approval) is better than no vaccine.  Every vaccinated person slows down the spread of the virus.
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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2830 on: June 22, 2021, 03:59:42 PM »
What would happen if 95% of the adults in a town in an area with a large number of Covid-19 cases were all vaccinated (80% with Sinovac's Coronavac vaccine)?

When the vaccination rate hit 75%, cases plummeted.  Now the town is an island of normalcy surrounded by towns still struggling with the disease.

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2021/06/brazilian-town-experiment-shows-mass-vaccination-can-wipe-out-covid-19

https://www.cnn.com/2021/06/06/americas/serrana-vaccination-experiment-intl-latam/index.html

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-57309538

So, for anyone pointing to cases not plunging in areas with 50 or even 60% vaccination rates, the problem isn't the vaccines.  It's failure to reach the critical level for herd immunity to break the chains of transmission.

If you aren't vaccinated, pick a vaccine (any gov't approved vaccine) and get yourself vaccinated.

If you are vaccinated, encourage your friends, family, and coworkers to get vaccinated.



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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2831 on: June 24, 2021, 07:32:24 AM »
Jab enough people and it works, sure but definitely not with sinovac. Take a look at Chile, The Seychelles, Mongolia just to name a few as countries with almost 70% vaccination rate that are going through another heavy wave of lockdowns and having their emergency rooms slammed.
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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2832 on: June 25, 2021, 04:14:45 PM »
Based on Serrana, it looks like Sinovac requires about 75% vaccinated to see a big shift.  At 95% vaccinated (adults only), it does amazing things.  There are still cases, but they are much less severe.

Unless one of those other countries pushes to 75% or beyond, a true comparison will be difficult.

Similar issues are seen in the US where people say "but half the people in town got the RNA vaccines and we're still having cases."  Even 10% vaccinated will have some effect, but that can be washed out by other issues.  There's a tipping point for herd immunity where enough transmission chains get broken.  The more infection the pathogen is, the higher the percent needed (for example, due to being VERY infectious, measles requires an extremely high percent of immune people to seriously slow down an outbreak).

My primary worry about the RNA vaccines is that they are very specifically targeted.  So far, none of the variants seem to have altered the target sequence, but if a new one did, that would require a new version of the vaccine.  An inactivated virus vaccine may be less effective, but it shows the entire virus to the immune system, so should be effective against a wide range of variants of the virus.
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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2833 on: June 26, 2021, 02:04:49 PM »
Getting "normal" is going to be a 5-10 year project. Vaccination currently more or less guarantees an end to serious disease and death, and it does slow down transmission, but it doesn't stop it completely. Herd immunity then is just the first part of whatever system has to stay in place for managing transmission. Outbreaks, lockdowns, border controls... they're going to be part of the international system for a while yet.

imo. notthenews

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Re: What's in the News
« Reply #2834 on: June 28, 2021, 08:48:40 PM »
You may be right, but it likely won't be due to vaccine inadequacy.  People declining to get vaccinated already is the biggest roadblock to herd immunity in some countries.  Those who are vaccinated and still get infected are much more likely to have mild to moderate cases.  Those cases are easy to deal with.  Running out of ICU beds, oxygen, and ventilators for the severely infected aren't.

For other places (like Israel), it's more spreadable variants showing that one needs to get above the bare minimum for herd immunity.

And for the rest of the world, it's a matter of producing and distributing enough vaccines.


Here's a real-world example of what happens within a few weeks of a new spike infecting vaccinated hospital workers in a country that has a low vaccination rate:

https://jakartaglobe.id/news/sinovac-vaccine-protects-health-workers-from-severe-covid19-in-deltahit-kudus

As of June 17, 6,085 health workers and health support personnel in Kudus had been vaccinated with the first dose, and 5,888 people had received the second dose.

“Almost 100 percent of the health workers in Kudus, amounting to around 6,000 people, have received the first and second doses of vaccination," Badai said.

"Of this number, only 308 health workers were exposed or around 5.1 percent of the total number of health workers. Most of them have recovered and have started working again," he said.

Abdul Aziz Achyar, the director of Kudus's dr. Loekmono Hadi Regional General Hospital, said a total of 153 health workers at the hospital confirmed to have Covid-19. Only 11 people, or 7.1 percent, needed hospitalization. The other 86 (56 percent) used to be in self-isolation but now ready to work, following the rest of their colleagues who had recovered earlier.




So, where will the vaccines come from?

China's average domestic doses is above 20 million per day and India's has passed 8 million.  That's over half the doses in administered in the world.  At current rates, China will be solidly inside herd immunity levels in early September and can export 20 million more doses per day.  As the current wave abates, India will likely return to filling orders for export, but is unlikely to accept any larger commitments until a significantly higher percentage of it's population is vaccinated.

The US has a sufficient amount on hand to finish vaccinating everyone who suddenly realizes that vaccination is a good thing, so can shift the bulk of it's production to exports.

Technology sharing arrangements for Astra Zeneca, some of the Chinese vaccines, and the Russian Sputnik 5 are increasing the number of production points around the world.  The US did commit to joining in these programs, but RNA vaccines are more challenging to produce, so those types won't gain new production as fast.

Currently, there are over 200 vaccines for Covid-19 in development, ranging from "Let's figure out how to make this" to "We're finishing Phase 3 and need to apply for emergency approval."  If one of those ends up with good results, few side effects, and is faster, easier, and cheaper to produce, it could be a game changer.  If not, let's look at just the India and China numbers.


If we decide to stick the numbers at a total of 28 million (20 for China, 8 for India), which is very conservative and we also err on the conservative side by ignoring all current exports, all other production (and assume 2 doses is going to be the standard) and that China will need everything until the end of September for domestic, how good/bad is that?

Let's make it simpler.

India will need more time to catch up, so we can simplify further with 20 million doses per day from China.

Out of  world of 7.7 (give or take) humans, how big of an impact can 20 million doses make?  That's the approximate equivalent of "only" 10 million fully vaccinated people per day.

Or, the equivalent of 300 million fully vaccinated people per month.

Or the equivalent of 3.6 billion fully vaccinated people per year. (One more simplification - pretend NO ONE on Earth was vaccinated on or before September 30, 2021, so we need to vaccinate everybody.)

So, for China to get the Earth to herd immunity by itself starting from NO ONE anywhere vaccinated (no other vaccine producers) while ignoring the amount already being exported per day and the possibility of ramping up production, it would take about 2 years to reach herd immunity from when these exports being -So, October 1, 2023.

Now let's look at reality.

Over 800 million people worldwide are already fully vaccinated and over 900 million are partially vaccinated.  That's 2.5 billion fewer doses needed.

China is already making more than 20 million doses per day and exporting the excess.  India will be back in the export game soon (admittedly at temporarily reduced levels).  Both China and India will continue to ramp up production.  The US can now export nearly all the vaccines it produces.  Other countries that either produce their own or that have acquired the technology will likely first focus on their own populations, but then will shift to export.  Worldwide, total production is increasing and this can easily exceed 50 million doses (equivalent to 25 million fully vaccinated people) per day within a few more months.  That's a global capacity of fully immunize 9 billion people.

The world has the production capacity.  The world has the distribution capacity.  There's zero reason (other than some new super-variant, people believing stupid conspiracy theories, or local wars getting in the way) for every country in the world to get to 85+% vaccination rates of their adult populations long before June 28, 2022.  All it takes is the political will to achieve the goal.

This is a simple test.  If all nations can set aside any disputes over vaccine production and distribution for the next 12 months, this will be easy.  If some countries choose to play political games, the blood will be on the hands of the leaders who stood in the way.

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