To Vax or Not to Vax? Get the Vax.

A CDC internal memo that got leaked to the Washington Post informed us that vaccinated people can carry and “shed” the covid virus just like unvaccinated people. This is why the CDC recently decided that vaccinated people really ought to be wearing masks in indoor public places, especially if crowded and near hot spots. There have also been some big-headline news stories featuring vaccinated people who became infected (example).

The attention being given to “breakthrough” infections has frustrated the White House.

At the heart of the matter is the news media’s focus on breakthrough infections, which the CDC has said are rare. In some instances, poorly framed headlines and cable news chyrons wrongly suggested that vaccinated Americans are just as likely to spread the disease as unvaccinated Americans. But that isn’t quite the case. Vaccinated Americans still have a far lower chance of becoming infected with the coronavirus and, thus, they are responsible for far less spread of the disease.

“The media’s coverage doesn’t match the moment,” one of the Biden officials told me. “It has been hyperbolic and frankly irresponsible in a way that hardens vaccine hesitancy. The biggest problem we have is unvaccinated people getting and spreading the virus.”

Here’s some data that popped up on Axios: Less than 0.1% of vaccinated Americans infected with COVID-19. Click on the link to see the chart.

Of the 164 million vaccinated Americans, less than 0.1% have been infected with the coronavirus, and 0.001% have died, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Why it matters: While “breakthrough cases” have been getting some media attention, the low numbers show that the pandemic is mostly a threat for the unvaccinated population.

So that’s reassuring, although I’d like to see comparisons to the same data for the unvaccinated. Big numbers confuse me. Well, small numbers confuse me, too.

Regarding the unvaccinated: A writer for Politico reports on the bar scene at Lake of the Ozarks, one of the vacation spots generating Delta variant infections here in the heartland. In a sane world the place would have been shut down to stop the spread. But no; all the bars and resorts and what not are operating at full tilt with no covid restrictions whatsoever.  It begins,

In a county designated a Covid hot spot, in a state with one of the lowest vaccination rates in the nation, and in a region where hospitals are nearing capacity as the Delta variant takes hold, Erin, a bartender at Backwater Jack’s, couldn’t be in a more vulnerable position. She interacts closely with hundreds of maskless customers—sometimes on a single day. She knows most of them are probably not vaccinated. And she doesn’t care. She isn’t either.

“I’m living, breathing proof—I’ve not been sick once. I’ve been as hands-on as you can be with people from everywhere,” Erin said, as a motorboat thundered to the dock and another group of customers climbed out. Like others who spoke for this article, she asked to go only by her first name. She said she’d heard a rumor—common among vaccine skeptics but also plainly false—that “more people are dying from getting the vaccine this week.”

Why we’re doomed. I’m back to wearing masks in indoor public places and going nowhere unless it’s necessary.

Our other vacation spot, Branson, is also operating full tilt. This week we learned that the unvaccinated niece of an old family friend spent July 4 weekend at Branson with her husband. She died on Tuesday; the husband is still in the hospital.

Some employers are stepping up to mandate vaccinations. I suspect that will become more and more common. Vox has a good rundown on who has the legal authority to mandate what.

Stupid Twit of the Day award goes to Sen. Ron Johnson, who said he would support a vaccine madate for a really deadly disease, but not covid.

24 thoughts on “To Vax or Not to Vax? Get the Vax.

  1. I’m back to wearing masks in indoor public places and going nowhere unless it’s necessary.

    Amen sister…

    A month after my 2nd Moderna jab, I felt adventurous enough to start eating inside selected restaurants again.  That is on hold again and it is because of tRumpTard anti-vaxxers. 

    I am so damn tired of the stupidity of the American populace.

  2. How is Ron Johnson allowed to go outside without supervision? My dog's smarter than him.

    Not to be too picky, but I think you meant to say vaccinated people can shed the virus, not shed the vaccine.

      • I learned the hard way. Nothing like a judge leaning over the bench and saying, "That may be what you meant, but that's not what you wrote."


  3. I’m still wearing a mask. And I’m vaccinated.

    Silly me but it seems a no brainer to remain cautious.

  4. Florida infections are up 50% in the last week. According to the NY Times, the 7-day average yesterday was 15,800. Peak infections in FL before that, 17,991.  So if the trend holds, next week we set a new record.

    Florida Hospitalizations are at 9,288. The trend from July 4 (2,240) to July 27 (8,816) has been fairly constant. There's no sign it's flattening out. Hospitalizations peaked almost exactly a year ago at 11,788. Hospitalizations lag infections. Just wait.

    Florida fatalities haven't caught up. 183 fatalities reported yesterday, but the 7-day average is 58. In the last 12 months, there were two peaks in fatalities, almost a year ago and in January at 185 per day per the 7-day average. 

    Infections can be deceptive – the number of tests per day has spiked this month.  Hospitalizations and fatalities are more reliable indicators. Unfortunately, Florida plays games with reporting. Both those numbers may be under-reported. 

    The fatality rate with the original (not delta) Covid in the twin peaks ran about 1.7 to 2% of hospitalized patients didn't make it. The lag between peak hospitalizations and peak fatalities was about two weeks. In other words, peak fatalities followed by 14 days. Hospitals may be getting better at treating Covid – we may see better outcomes except…

    There's only so many ICU hospital beds. When the doubling rate overwhelmed Italy, they didn't treat patients my age and older. We were deemed gonners and left to die in the corridors of the hospitals. Younger people got respirators. The fatality rate was obscene, up to 1000 per day.

     How close is Florida to hospital overload? According to the NY Times, Florida ICUs are at 82% of capacity. From what I can find online, FL had 6,200 ICU beds three years ago. Call it 7,000 now. That suggests optimistically that FL has 1,400 ICU beds available. We hospitalized 2,500 people in Florida in the last seven days. (Not all will go to ICU.) I'd say 'teetering' describes the situation. When NY was looking at these numbers the governor screamed for federal assistance, much of which Trump sent. DeSantis won't admit there's a problem until there's bodies stacked like cordwood in the Florida sun. 

    The good news. About half the population isn't seriously at risk by choice. But that hasn't helped the numbers in July. I wouldn't bet everything will go away in August.  No insurance company would cover DeSantis' bet. If it doubles once more (two weeks), we're screwed. If it doubles again (at the current rate) we'll have daily fatality rates over 200 – possibly WAY over 200 daily if the hospital system buckles. We'll be locked in there for three weeks because the statistics are sealed almost that much in advance. The federal government can't respond until DeSantis cries, "Uncle."


    Maybe not. There's no guarantee we didn't peak yesterday. At some point we WILL hit saturation and numbers WILL come down.


  5. Mr. Loser's son, the Jr., suggested that only those vaccinated against COVID be allowed to vote.

    Sounds good to me.

    • “Mr. Loser’s son, the Jr., …” Seriously, he said that? He’s really too dumb to figure out that would hand the nation over to Democrats for years to come?

  6. [Note from Maha: This comment is riddled with long-debunked claims and logical fallacies. I am keeping it up in case anyone needs a punching bag today.]

    "Of the 164 million vaccinated Americans, less than 0.1% have been infected with the coronavirus,"

    This sounds like a very solid stat until..  –

        "CDC: COVID Testing Isn't Necessary For Fully Vaccinated People

       The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated its guidance for people who are fully vaccinated, saying that most don’t need to be tested for COVID-19, even after having a known exposure to the virus."

               A great way to ensure that the stats reflect what you want them to say, is to reject the collection of any stats that dont serve the intended purpose of what you are seeking to 'prove'.. which is what is taking place.

    The Covid 'Viral' payload is only ONE part of the threat, although you would not know this from the media reports, CDC or NIH. 

    The other half of the threat is that the Covid Spike Protein, which breaches human cells, and is a health danger in and of itself – the only protection that the so-called 'vaccinated' actually are proven to potentially have, is a deliberate exposure to the Spike Protein, which is generated in their bodies by the so-called 'vaccines'.

    These people never encounter a Covid viral payload, meaning that once the Spike mutates, it can breach the cells and they would not have any protection from the actual Virus after merely being administered the 'vaccines' – that vaccinated persons immune system is only trained to mount a response against the breaching protein itself, not proven to do so against the actual Virus.

    When people suddenly die a few days after 'vaccination', stroke-out from brain blood clots, or have their limbs amputated after either the 'vaccines' or even in some cases a natural infection, this is not due to the actual Viral payload (the vaccinated never even encounter this) – it is due to the volume of clotting Spike Protein that is coursing through the persons blood stream..

    The people who are actually dying from the Covid viral payload are those with breathing issues and this generally takes some time to kill them.  In contrast, the Spike Protein victims die often suddenly, with little or no warning from the S.P. clotting.

    When you repeatedly hit people with S.P. – natural infection / two 'vaccine' shots / booster shot – you are creating a S.P. storm in their bloodstream each time, and there will be long term consequences for many of these people.

    If you recall at the outset of vaccination, it was claimed that all Spike Proteins 'disappeared' within the intra-muscular injection site, which is proven false now, by multiple studies.  Not only does the S.P. NOT disappear, it gets into the blood stream and into all internal organs, and causes deaths in its own right.

    Now, you might want to reconsider why the media is so determined to silence those who dont repeat what they are peddling. 

        • Thanks.

          This kind of exploitation of debunked disinformation is a bizarre phenomenon. Anyone who gloms on to a claim without checking further is either reckless or malicious. Which is not to say that new claims shouldn't be reported on, they should. But you have to point out that this is a new report and shouldn't be relied on until it's been confirmed or rebutted. Some claims do eventually prove out.

          These claims were debunked before this was posted here, though. No excuse. 

      • I won't post here again, because it is pointless dialoging with a faith-based belief system.

        The only point that I will bother to address is the CDC citation noted in the original post (that I was welcomed here to comment on) which reported that THE CDC asserted that only a tiny fraction of one percent of vaccine recipients tested positive for 'Covid'.

        I responded not with opinion or personal whimsy, but with the SAME CDC's own actual current policy, which instructed against testing vaccine recipients for 'Covid'. 

        This is not my opinion or wild conjecture, nor is it faith-based.  It is plain and simple duplicitous conduct by an agency that knew what it would find if it had conducted testing of the vaxed, and it did not want to find it.

        The Spike Protein issue is actually now the central issue in the Covid debacle. I can post actual medical studies, while you are posting opinion pieces from advocacy web sites – NOT medical studies.. as can be seen above.  

        In my own life experience, one thing has become evident –

        if you are right, and you know it, you dont need to censor someone else.  If you know that your version will not survive scrutiny or comparison, you actually have to censor..

        Thanks all, good luck. 

        • I just want to note two things: One, I did not “censor” JF’s post. I didn’t delete anything or change a word. I just flagged it for the steaming pile of whatever that it is, because I pay for the bandwidth here and I don’t want to add to the ignorance pile that’s high enough already. Righties seem to have a congenital inability to understand what the word “censorship” means. See: First Amendment Primer (for Righties).

          Two, whatever the CDC recommends about testing — and it was a recommendation, not an order — here in Real-World Land people with covid symptoms are getting tested for covid regardless of vaccine status. No doubt there have been asymptomatic people, both vaccinated and not, who have slipped through the testing cracks these past several months. I suspect the people who use data to create models account for that.

          All you have to do, really, is note the strong correlation between low vaccination and high covid rates in “hot spot” areas. Vaccines do make a difference.

        • Oh grow up. The pieces I cited are by experts, which I have no doubt you aren't, and reference the current state of knowledge.

          The virologist (at a veterinary school, no less) who started this nonsense has been debunked again and again, including by his own peers at the college where he teaches.

          At least the guy got himself some fame before being exposed. Maybe you can find work with Andrew Wakefield.


  7. <i>"Of the 164 million vaccinated Americans, less than 0.1% have been infected with the coronavirus,"</i>


    Well, if athe various vaccines have about a 90% effectiveness rate we can expect 10 out of 100 vaccinated people to be vulnerable to the virus  Looks like vaccination plus other precautions are keeping the infection rate a lot lower. 


    Something is working and it's not the advice from the antivaxers.

  8. I will remain covid cautious, mask up when in stores, etc., but also not focusing on every inflamed headline and tweet.

  9. I'm with Marsha!



    Not in the 'we're together' sense of "with" – because she has better taste than to hang out "with" the likes of me – but in the 'my opinion concurs' "with" her opinion of "with."

    Who's "with" me?!?

    Never mind.

    After that, I don't know if even I'm "with" me. 



  10.  I was exposed a week ago. I've been using the free at home test supplied by my employer weekly and the test I sent in on Monday came back positive Thursday.  I contacted people I'd talked with in person immediately and advised they be tested (I swim at an outdoor pool; my son coaches the swim club in Seward and told the pool staff how happy I was for him and Lydia Jacoby).  Friday I had a lot of consults with medical and public health people.

    I've had mild cold symptoms. runny nose, sinus headache and draining congestion. Checking my oxygen levels a few times a day, but it's staying between 93% and 98%.

    A week from now (more or less) I'll be done with isolation. (more or less is due to needing to be symptom free for 4 days, and while my symptoms have been improving daily it remains to be seen when I'm symptom free).

    I'll be masking indoors. It's a mild inconvenience. In my case wearing a mask isn't providing benefit for preventing infections – All the guidance says I'm not infectious. My immune system has antibodies from vaccination and from recovering from an infection which is very likely to keep me from being infected again. I have yet to see any data on recurrence among recovered breakthrough infections – I'll be looking for it but think the lambda parameter for this Poisson series will put occurrence reports about 14 months after the initial breakthrough infections. I've not done the math on this, basing this on overall breakthrough infection rates and a career that has needed quick insights from time series.

    So why? Because people don't know my status. I want people to feel safe as they go about their lives.

  11. There are so many well written and well thought out responses above, I feel I can only provide …….


    0.1% of 164 million is 164,000

    0.001% is 1640

    Those numbers are dwarfed by the Covid 19 Delta variant numbers among the unvaccinated.

  12. Oh, that's infected and deaths of the 164 million who are vaccinated.

    Cancel Nerd Alert

Comments are closed.