From TPM Reader DW …
My eldest daughter (a French citizen) lives in Paris. When Paris locked down, she was only allowed to go out of her house – up to 1 kilometer- for exercise or to the store, twice a day, and for exercise- it had to be between specific hours. It was pretty drastic since she lives in a very tiny Parisian studio and was not allowed to do any exercise socially, such as walk with a friend. She was required to carry a written statement about why she was out should law enforcement stop her. They did allow people to return to their families before their shutdown and most of her Parisian apartment neighbors went to their parents’ regional homes. The only people she came in contact with were the grocery store clerks, who were behind plastic panels. Her hours at the university that employs her were reduced, but French unemployment made up the difference.
This story about sending the National Guard into hospitals is bizarre and telling about our national situation. Six months into this crisis the canonical sources of data on the COVID epidemic in the US are one data project run out of The Atlantic (The COVID Tracking Project) and another run out of Johns Hopkins University. The federal government isn’t really even in the game. These are glorious, impressive, dedicated works of public service and data science. But the fact that they need to exist is, frankly, a disgrace.
Now the Trump administration has decided that hospitals are being lax about reporting data on COVID cases. It appears likely that most hospitals are doing just what they’re told and that the problem is disorganized and inconsistent guidance from the Department of Health and Human Services.
From TPM Reader FW …
I echo ME’s anger. We both are in our mid 60’s and work from home so that part of Covid hasn’t been a big deal. We started to draw back in mid February, when I started stocking up on stapes. Except for early voting in late February I haven’t been anywhere outside of our immediate neighborhood. I switched to grocery delivery. We get food delivered once or twice a week. Some enterprising neighbor has arranged for food trucks to copy by a few times a week (they normally get their business from bars). I haven’t had a draft beer since February and was sort of hoping that by now I would feel safe visiting a local brewery with a beer garden — but no. Probably 75% of the people I see walking the neighborhood wear masks and I could have predicted most of the 25% that don’t from behavior before the pandemic.
From TPM Reader AK …
Several times a week I say out loud, “I wish I was in New Zealand right now..” I want more than anything to experience living in an English speaking country with a competent government, and friendly people that believe in science and don’t hate each other. It’s disheartening that I can’t even flee to Canada right now because the border is closed.
From TPM Reader ANON …
I think it’s too extreme to call the new orders in California a return to a shutdown.
And I note that other news sources and pundits (e.g., Krugman) have given similar reports.
In areas that have kept to a slower schedule, nothing has changed at all, additional public outdoor attractions will reopen as scheduled on Monday. However, it is true that some business openings that were scheduled to open in the next two weeks will be postponed.
From TPM Reader SK …
I find ME’s take on California a little narrow and politically self-serving.
The die was really cast in CA back on Memorial Day weekend. Every couple of weekends after the shutdown the girlfriend and I would go driving up the 101 thru Malibu towards Ventura, really just to see the ocean on a drive to get out of her Valley apartment. Not stopping outside of a gas pump, and not interacting with anyone. The first time we drove, late March I think, the whole area was deserted, with hardly any cars in either direction. But, ultimately, even before Memorial Day, we started seeing more and more cars stopped on the side of the road on that drive, people out, half-masked at best, trying to escape outdoors.
From TPM Reader ME reports in on California moving back to lockdown …
This 2nd California shutdown really pisses me off.
I live in Los Angeles and work for one of the big movie studios. I was one of the last employees to stop working on the lot in March, but since then I’ve been super locked-down working at home.
I’ve noted repeatedly in recent weeks that for all the calamities of our national COVID response, we are actually doing a lot of testing.
As you can see, we’re doing a lot of tests and the growth over time has been steady and sustained.
Over the last seven days the average number of daily tests was 681,374, with the highest daily number 845,777. That’s a lot of tests. And we stack up fairly well against other large countries in Europe in terms of per capita testing.
Here is a very concerning article just published by a practicing physician in Vox. He reports, admittedly on very limited clinical evidence and anecdotal reports from colleagues, that people appear able to get reinfected with COVID after fully clearing an initial infection. He also suggests that such reinfections may be more severe. He compares it to diseases like dengue fever where you get a worse case each time you get it.
We’ve seen a handful of reports like this over the last four or five months. I have generally dismissed them because in every case I had seen (mostly out of East Asia), more thorough analysis showed the reports to be mistaken.