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Messages - James S. Rustad

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1
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: Yesterday at 10:00:00 PM »
New COVID-19 hospital admissions in the USA have been dropping since the end of August.
https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#new-hospital-admissions

The same trend is apparent for total hospitalizations.
https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#hospitalizations

Interesting. But these data are following indicators. Something has happened pretty much nationwide, that given incubation times may not yet show in those reports: Back to school. Full classroom s again in many places... for the moment.

LAUSD has been back to school since mid-August.

Since August 16, 1,957 schools have reported at least one case to Public Health. School programs reporting one case increased initially from 467 during the first week of school to 562 during the second week of school; reports of single cases have declined over the most recent two weeks of monitoring to 414 sites. Sites reporting two cases remained at a similar level for the first three weeks of school at an average of nearly 250 sites, however the number of sites reporting two cases declined to 139 sites this week. Sites reporting three or more cases have been declining since the first week of school from 441 sites to 127 sites. There has been a 43% decrease in the number of schools reporting three or more cases between the most recent two weeks of monitoring.

In K-12 school settings countywide, between August 15 and September 13, 7,995 student cases and 1,193 staff cases were reported, with the vast majority occurring at LAUSD, which tests everyone weekly. With more than 1.5 million students and 175,000 staff countywide (by last year’s counts), 0.5% of the student body and 0.7% of staff have become infected since school districts reopened. This is slightly higher than the 0.4% rate of infection experienced overall in the County. Given the massive testing of asymptomatic individuals at schools, this very low rate of infection affirms the safety provided to students and staff at schools.

So far the statistics are good.  So much so that the district is loosening up on quarantine requirements for students exposed to COVID-19.  Attending school in person appears not to be the superspreader event that some claim.

2
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: Yesterday at 06:46:37 PM »
New COVID-19 hospital admissions in the USA have been dropping since the end of August.
https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#new-hospital-admissions

The same trend is apparent for total hospitalizations.
https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#hospitalizations

3
Your Turn / Re: LifeSiteNews and Project Veritas
« on: Yesterday at 01:31:06 PM »
Jan. 6 insurrection

That's one of the things that bugs me about your screeds.  Your language goes over the top.  If January 6 was an insurrection, why was there so little shooting?  Call it a riot, but "insurrection" really doesn't fit.

4
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: Yesterday at 08:10:56 AM »
Pastor Austin believed the news published in the New York Times.  Can't blame him, the paper he accepts as THE authority let him down by publishing FAKE NEWS. :o

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/17/nyregion/carmines-nyc-hostess-attacked.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article


5
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: Yesterday at 08:02:16 AM »
If that is your question, why not provide your answer?

Because I'm curious about YOUR answer.

James, I humbly suggest that you reread the post since I actually did answer your specific question. You may have missed it.

I suppose there may be forms of socialism where the members of the society agree to centralize decisions about property and income. In that case, such agreement would not violate the commandment.

I read this as describing a one-time agreement that you can't escape later - even if you were born long after the agreement was made.  That is why I was seeking clarification.  I'm used to hearing this argument from those who are claiming that everyone born in the US today has agreed to our system of government (Your parents agreed for you.  So they could get out of it?  No, their parents agreed for them.  And so on.)

6
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 20, 2021, 11:10:48 PM »
Just heard the local TV news talk about how the COVID-19 pandemic has now killed more people than the 1918 flu pandemic.

I found an article that gives more information:

The U.S. death toll from COVID-19 has surpassed that of the 1918 flu pandemic, according to a tracker from Johns Hopkins University, highlighting the extraordinary damage incurred by the current virus.

On the other hand, later in the same article it is mentioned that the 1918 flu pandemic death rate was 6 per 10000, while the COVID-19 death rate is 2 per 1000 (so far).  It's because there are roughly 3 times as many people today than in 1918.

However you measure - total deaths or death rate - COVID-19 is near the top of the list of pandemics.

7
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 20, 2021, 10:44:11 PM »
If that is your question, why not provide your answer?

Because I'm curious about YOUR answer.

8
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 20, 2021, 01:17:32 PM »
I'll look forward to reading King's article. I suppose there may be forms of socialism where the members of the society agree to centralize decisions about property and income. In that case, such agreement would not violate the commandment. I suppose that as often as Americans vote to socialize aspects of our property and income, we move towards such a socialist society.

As soon as one person disagrees with centralization, then it's back to violating the commandment again?

The Seventh Commandment
You shall not steal.
What does this mean? We should fear and love God so that we do not take our neighbor’s money or possessions, or get them in any dishonest way, but help him to improve and protect his possessions and income.

The "take" does not include practices like taxation (cf. Table of Duties, Romans 13). So legitimate government might take a portion of one's income for governmental purposes without violating the commandment. Just because someone objects does not make the taxation wrong. The question then becomes, Is socialism a legitimate form of government?

That's not the question.  The question is if the centralized decision making about everything is a violation of the commandment as soon as one person disagrees with the centralized decision making agreement posited in your first post.

9
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 19, 2021, 05:16:14 PM »
I'll look forward to reading King's article. I suppose there may be forms of socialism where the members of the society agree to centralize decisions about property and income. In that case, such agreement would not violate the commandment. I suppose that as often as Americans vote to socialize aspects of our property and income, we move towards such a socialist society.

As soon as one person disagrees with centralization, then it's back to violating the commandment again?

10
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 11, 2021, 02:28:34 PM »
Updated Sept. 8, 2021: A study in Science Transitional Medicine finds natural infection may provide more powerful protection than double dose Covid-19 vaccination.

In other words, you may be better off not being vaccinated unless you are high-risk.  And if the natural resistance is as strong as some data indicates, not vaccinating everyone may eventually better protect those who are high-risk than if we vaccinate everyone.  Think about this - if 100% of the population is vaccinated but can still be infected, the virus can still spread.  If 90% have the stronger natural resistance that better prevents the virus from spreading, that improves the protection for the remaining 10%.  Perhaps we should stop criticizing the vaccine-hesitant and start thanking them for running the risks involved in becoming naturally resistant to COVID-19.

As for me, I am high risk and have had two doses of Pfizer Comirnaty vaccine and plan on getting a booster on schedule.

11
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 10, 2021, 08:12:13 PM »
I posted this a week ago.  I was hoping that someone would comment on it.  I've added a few comments in bold italic text.
Largest study of its kind finds face masks reduce COVID-19
Wearing face masks, particularly surgical masks, is truly effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19 in community settings, finds a new study led by researchers from Yale University, Stanford Medical School, the University of California, Berkeley, and the nonprofit Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA).

Figure 1 on page 23 of the study shows interesting data for the control, cloth mask intervention, and surgical mask intervention villages.
  • Cloth mask villages show a 5% relative reduction (p = .540).A p-value of .540 means this is not statistically significant.
  • Surgical mask villages show an 11.2% relative reduction (p = .043).This one IS statistically significant.
More information from the study is quoted below:
WHO COVID-19 Symptoms In Figure 2 and Tables A9 and A8, we report results from the
same specifications with WHO-defined COVID-19 symptomatic status as the outcome.
We find clear evidence that the intervention reduced symptoms: we estimate a reduction of
11.9% (adjusted prevalence ratio 0.88 [0.83,0.93]; control group prevalence = 8.59%; treatment
group prevalence = 7.60%). Additionally, when we look separately by cloth and surgical masks,
we find that the intervention led to a reduction in COVID-like symptoms under either mask type
(p = 0.000 for surgical, p = 0.048 for cloth), but the effect size in surgical mask villages was
30-80% larger depending on the specification. In Table A10, we run the same specifications using
the smaller sample used in our symptomatic seroprevalence regression (i.e. those who consented
to give blood). In this sample we continue to find an effect overall and an effect for surgical masks,
but see no effect for cloth masks.Symptoms are reduced in villages with cloth or surgical masks but blood tests show no effect for cloth masks.  People could be convinced that they are protected by cloth masks and thereby report fewer symptoms.  Blood tests are not much affected by beliefs, so they're more likely to be real.

12
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 10, 2021, 08:03:33 PM »
Someone upstream accused me of the reference to “God culling the herd.” I don’t think I use that here, and I am not the origin of that reference, I’m inclined to think that those who refuse to be vaccinated are “culling” themselves. They are the ones getting seriously sick. They are the ones more likely to die.

From another thread, this seems to be the closest:
On the other hand, nature may "cull the herd" with disease, a type of "population control" and who knows what wars, both local and regional, might do to populations in some areas of the world.

13
Your Turn / Re: Once again, in loco parentis
« on: September 08, 2021, 01:10:08 PM »
I'm reminded of the question "What kind of people live here?"

A man entered a village and went to the monastery on the edge of town, where he was welcomed by an old monk, the wise man of the village. The visitor said, “I am deciding whether I should move here or not. I’m wondering what kind of neighborhood this is. Can you tell me about the people here?”

The old monk said, “Tell me what kind of people lived where you came from.” The visitor said, “Oh, they were highway robbers, cheats and liars.” The monk said, “You know, those are exactly the same kinds of people who live here.” The visitor left the village and never came back.

Half an hour later, another man entered the village. He sought out the wise old man and said, “I’m thinking of moving here. Can you tell me what kind of people live here?” Again the monk said, “Tell me what kind of people lived where you came from.” The visitor said, “Oh, they were the kindest, gentlest, most compassionate, most loving people. I shall miss them terribly. The old monk said, “Those are exactly the kinds of people who live here, too.”


14
Your Turn / Re: Once again, in loco parentis
« on: September 07, 2021, 08:20:23 PM »
Even if you sue the school and win, they still won't tell you.

“If a parent asks a teacher a question about their child as to these matters, including information about the name and pronouns being used to address their child at school, the teacher CAN choose not to answer the question.  The District does NOT have a policy that a teacher must choose not to answer that question if a parent asks about their own child.  It is within the teacher’s discretion whether to answer the question or not,” according to guidance from the district’s general counsel.

15
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 03, 2021, 09:28:11 PM »
Largest study of its kind finds face masks reduce COVID-19
Wearing face masks, particularly surgical masks, is truly effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19 in community settings, finds a new study led by researchers from Yale University, Stanford Medical School, the University of California, Berkeley, and the nonprofit Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA).

Figure 1 on page 23 of the study shows interesting data for the control, cloth mask intervention, and surgical mask intervention villages.
  • Cloth mask villages show a 5% relative reduction (p = .540).
  • Surgical mask villages show an 11.2% relative reduction (p = .043).
More information from the study is quoted below:
WHO COVID-19 Symptoms In Figure 2 and Tables A9 and A8, we report results from the
same specifications with WHO-defined COVID-19 symptomatic status as the outcome.
We find clear evidence that the intervention reduced symptoms: we estimate a reduction of
11.9% (adjusted prevalence ratio 0.88 [0.83,0.93]; control group prevalence = 8.59%; treatment
group prevalence = 7.60%). Additionally, when we look separately by cloth and surgical masks,
we find that the intervention led to a reduction in COVID-like symptoms under either mask type
(p = 0.000 for surgical, p = 0.048 for cloth), but the effect size in surgical mask villages was
30-80% larger depending on the specification. In Table A10, we run the same specifications using
the smaller sample used in our symptomatic seroprevalence regression (i.e. those who consented
to give blood). In this sample we continue to find an effect overall and an effect for surgical masks,
but see no effect for cloth masks.

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