Oct 27, 2021
Lakewood Patch Headline: Colorado Reaches Record-Low Number of Available Hospital Beds HERE

Record-Low Available Hospital beds is the headline, and a chart for hospitalizations (inside the actual story) shows a max of 1847 covid hospitalizations last winter, and 1187 today.     For both of those to be true then hospitals are NOT filling up with covid people, but for some other reason. (or Colorado has lost close to 700 beds since last winter)      Luckily there are many sources of real data online. Looking at the Johns Hopkins data, Colorado hospitals are NOT filling up.    Looking at the New York Times hospitalization charts – Colorado is just fine.
……… I do not believe this headline. I think the problem is that the story bounces back and forth between hospitalizations and ICU beds.  # of hospital beds and # ICU beds are two different things.   We have plenty of hospital beds, the ICU beds have a lot of covid patients.   It’s no wonder that some people dismiss it when they hear that the sky is falling because of covid – every other week.  And others are in the grip of the Pandemic Panic after they read that the sky is falling – every other week.
See the hospitalization rates below

Oct 8, 2021
Jeffco Board of Health Votes to Require Masks in Local Government Buildings (HERE)
All individuals (2 and older) must wear a mask in all indoor spaces at all county and municipal government buildings.
I have a big problem with letting any Board of Health or Health Department order us around. They should be kept in an advisory role. Primarily because their role and concern is very myopic. In this case they have blinders on in regard to Covid. Their charge is to minimize the effect of covid, and they are not asked to consider any other effect. They aren’t considering if we’re raising a generation of school children with PTSD. They aren’t considering the effects of driving hundreds (thousands?) of restaurants in Colorado out of business, or the other small businesses that have been driven to the edge or out of business. They aren’t considering that a significant percentage of the population does not share their concerns over the # of covid cases, and they are very active in their push back.
It is NOT the job of a faceless bunch of bureaucrats to decide the winners and losers as the economy makes drastic turns in this pandemic. It’s the job of elected officials (the ones that actually answer to the people) to make those decisions. Those officials must consider the recommendations of the health experts, of course, but there are many more factors to consider than just how many cases of covid are in the area.
We have elections to decide who will lead us. Can you even name one person on the Jeffco Board of Health?
If the Board of Health were in charge of the speed limit, it would be 20 mph on 6th ave, and small vehicles and motorcycles would be illegal. Too dangerous. Have you seen the annual highway deaths and injuries? Where is JCHB’s order on cigarettes? Covid deaths pale in comparison to cancer deaths. Yet we don’t allow Health departments to order us around on those health matters, why is covid different?

Jeffco Public Health has also ordered a vaccine mandate (or weekly testing) starting Nov. 1, 2021 (The order is HERE)

In 2020 the number of cases peaked in Colorado in early December. In mid-october the # cases were just starting to rise. Extrapolate that to 2021, and # cases will peak in December again, and the Health Dept will have a cow. Don’t be surprised to see reduced seating in restaurants, and several other restrictions reinstated from last year.

The Health departments are concerned with CASES. So what! Covid was scary in March, 2020 because of deaths. We simply didn’t know what percentage of covid cases would survive. Now we do, and that percentage has fallen dramatically with the vaccines. Number of Cases and number of deaths are no longer tied together. My contention is that the number of cases doesn’t matter. We will all get covid sooner or later. If the health department actually knew the true number of cases this coming winter they would jump in a hole and pull the hole in over themselves. But it’s not going to matter. 80% of eligible Jeffco residents are vaccinated, and a case of the covid will be like a mild flu or nothing for them. Not worth making another attempt at destroying the economy over.

The weather has more of an effect on covid cases than anything else. Just look at the peak last winter. We had masks last summer, we had masks last winter, we had masks this past spring. Compared to winter weather, masks have no effect.

Finally, why aren’t we taking into consideration the people who have already had covid? If there are ALL these cases, then there are ALL these recovered cases. Why should they wear masks, or show proof of vaccination? A one size fits all isn’t necessary. We’re better than that.
I suggested that people who tested positive for antibodies or definitely had had covid should be given a pin or button way back in June, 2020. That button could have been worn, and then that person could go maskless. The same principal applies now. Why should the vaccinated need to wear masks, at all? This sends out the message that the vaccines do not work. Isn’t that the opposite message that we want to send to the unvaccinated? How are we going to convince people to get vaccinated when we’re sending the message that it doesn’t work.

It’s pretty sad that masking (and vaccines) are more political issues, than health ones.
On Oct 8th Jefferson County (Democratic) Health added a mask mandate (HERE)
On Oct 8th Douglas County (Republican) Health approved an opt-out of masking mandates. (HERE)
I assume that both health boards are staffed by qualified individuals.
I guess this gives everyone a solid reason to stay with whichever belief they already have. Sigh.
The truth is that neither Dem or Rep are very good at understanding covid. Look at this NY Times article. Covids Partisan Errors

Science based Covid Responses – if only.
I flew from Denver to Chicago in Aug, 2020. In the DIA restroom the paper towel dispensers were all empty with tape across them – we must use the electric dryer – you know because of covid transmission. At the O’hare airport restrooms the electric air dryers were all turned off – we much use the paper towels – you know because of covid transmission.
Denver is a Democratic controlled city. Chicago is a Democratic controlled city. Yet they took exactly the opposite view on how to slow the spread of covid. Makes you wonder if either of them has it right.

Another example.
I ate dinner at a restaurant with an outdoor patio in Dillon last summer. The patio was basically tables set up in their parking lot.
We were required to put a mask on to walk 10 feet from the edge of their patio to our seats. So no mask outside the patio, no masks at the table, but mask required to walk across the pavement between those two.

There are reasons why some people are very resistant to wearing masks. Officials have been using very wide brushes to implement the covid restrictions. So much so that the stupid ideas cause the smart moves to look suspicious, and people lose faith that those in charge know what they are doing.
This is why I say that I’ll support Science Based Covid Responses. Not the knee jerk reactions that we sometimes see.
Chaining tennis courts – one person over here, one person over there. That’s dangerous? Really
Closing golf courses – up to 4 people over here, up to 4 people way over there. That’s dangerous? Really Better yet, when they reopened they wouldn’t rent golf carts for a week. (Oh – and the private courses never closed. because????)
Destroy the restaurant business, but construction was never touched. Was that because construction workers never congregate in the on-site offices, or because Developers contribute heavily to politicians?

It’s ok to NOT freak out.
The media is sensationalizing covid like you won’t believe. Headlines regularly use scary words like SPIKING, SURGING, FLARING when numbers go up. When numbers go down they use soft words like ‘declining’. If they say anything at all.
Plus they always find the worst case scenario, and swivel the spotlight to there. It’s Italy, then it’s Brazil, then it’s India. In the US it’s been NYC, to California, to South Dakota, to The South, to the Missouri – Louisiana area, at the end of August it was the Gulf Coast, in early October it’s Alaska and North Dakota. It’ll be somewhere else in 2 weeks. Basically they will find the ‘bad’ spot and scare the rest of the country with reports from there – over and over and over. It’s no wonder that people are scared beyond the actual risk.
Plus they jump from variant to variant. It was the UK variant, then the Brazil variant, then the South African Variant. Now it’s the Delta (Indian) variant.
HERE is a link to the CDC site that lists variants.
The bottom line is that covid is a killer virus, about 10 times worse than the seasonal flu. But the media gets revenue (clicks and readers) from keeping us watching their news sites – they have a vested interest in scaring the bejeebers out of us. Keep calm, this too shall pass.

Below is hospitalization rates for Colorado . Orange is covid patients. Blue-green is non covid. Don’t worry, be happy.

The above is from Oct 27, 2021
Colorado Hospital Inpatient Chart See todays ICU chart HERE from Johns Hopkins
Another way that the media alarms us is shouting that the hospitals are filling up. Well yes, they are designed to be mostly full – all the time. They would go bankrupt if they sat mostly empty. Above are real numbers for Colorado hospitals. Going back to Summer 2020, we’ve had a steady supply of empty beds. Covid patients are in orange. A pretty small percentage of hospital beds have been used for covid patients for a year now.
HERE is a link to an NPR site where we can look up real data for St. Anthony’s hospital in Lakewood. (Lutheran also appears here sometimes) Scroll down to just below the US map and type in “Jefferson County, CO” to the ‘Search by County to see Hospitals.)

I called St. Anthony’s to see if we can access real time data (I think the NPR site isn’t updated regularly). I was told that St. Anthony’s is required by law to report to the State daily, but they couldn’t/wouldn’t point me to an actual website where St. Anthony’s data is presented. Why is this a secret? They said to try CDPHE Which is like having a specific problem with United Airlines, and they tell you to go to (It’s hidden there somewhere.)

Vaccines —– I got mine, I suggest you get one too.

I received the J&J vaccine in Jan 2021. I’m in a study which is looking at 2 doses 8 weeks apart. IE I got a full J&J vaccine in January and again in March. Preliminary results of the study came out on Sept 21st. It reported that the two doses is 95% effective. (One dose is only 75% effective) That’s on par with the mRNA vaxes. Great, I thought, I’m good to go. The next day I got sick, and tested positive. I’ve had regular flu’s with worse symptoms, so I can’t say that it was horrible. I also can’t say that my symptoms were mild because I received a vaccine. (Correlation is not Causation). I remember how the vast majority of covid cases were asymptomatic back in 2020. Your guess is as good as mine if my vaccine helped. (I assume that it did, but there’s no way of knowing for sure) Certainly there are a lot more unvaccinated covid cases in hospitals than vaccinated cases. That correlation looks like causation.
One thing that I learned from this is that people who actually have had covid will test positive for covid long after their symptoms go away, and long after they are contagious. (This from the Co Dept of Health) The CDC recommends NOT getting tested for 90 days after a positive test. I thought it was because they wanted to keep testing down – for whatever reason. Turns out that it’s because beaten up strands of virus DNA hangs around in our bodies for weeks. Since the tests high-grade our samples the test will return a positive based on close to nothing. I pity the people who need a negative test to return to work or school. They might not get one for a long time. (While it’s perfectly safe to return)

HERE is a link to the Government Clinical trials Website.

Requiring Vaccines —- I’m against this

There are many reasons why friends and family of mine have NOT gotten the vaccine
1)… We all have seen hundreds of TV commercials that sell drugs. They all list side effects, many serious – (like death and anal leakage) These are the same big pharma companies that are making the vaccines. Simple extrapolation says that the vaccines are not 100% safe.
2)… Put 3 vaccinated people together and you will hear at least one story of how the second shot or the booster messed them up.
3)… Could the cure be worse than the disease? Put 1) & 2) together above, and the fact that most people who get covid don’t have any symptoms, and the cure can be worse than the disease for a lot of people.
4)… There are unknown long term effects. Long Haul vaccine problems, so to speak.
5)… The vaccines are experimental. It’s right on the Approval from the CDC and FDA, it’s an experimental drug. (This is no longer true for Pfizer)
6)… They feel like guinea pigs in a massive experiment
7)… Governments have told us that other things were safe in the past. Like cigarettes, nuclear fallout, asbestos, opioids.
8)… If the vaccines work, why are masks being required again? Obviously vaccines don’t work since masks are magic.
9)… They’ve been told that science doesn’t work. There is no Global Warming, no evolution, and not to trust the Government.
10).. They don’t like to be forced into anything. A gun to the head approach is unAmerican. (Vermont’s motto – Live Free or Die)
11).. What they hear has been changing. First it was masks don’t work, then they became magic. First it was protect Granny. Now it’s protect the kids. Mixed messages sow distrust in all messages.

There are many reasons to get the covid vaccine
1)… mRNA is not new, it’s been researched since 2005. It’s wide spread use with the covid vaccine happened because the money train left the station, and advances came fast and furious.
2)… We do force citizens to get vaccines already. To get into public school or day care, kids have to have: Hep B, Diphtheria, MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella), Chicken Pox, Tetanus, and Polio vaccines.
3)… It will keep you from dying. The vaccine doesn’t keep you from getting Covid, it (most likely) will keep you out of the hospital if you get it.
4)… Some people can’t get vaccinated for medical reasons. If enough people get the vaccine, they will be protected by herd immunity. (The virus won’t be circulating)