We are entering the third year in our battle against COVID. A battle we are losing.
So different from World War II. Two years after Pearl Harbor, we were steadily beating back our enemies.
The COVID battle a strange one. We move one foot ahead and then fall back two. The U.S. and the rest of the world are working hard to discover the path to victory. Some victories. Many failures. Especially at this time.
Today’s blog is a detailed report where we stand. No need to read it with a grain of salt. It is real and true.
Observations/comments are written as they appear in my notes. No order involved.
The world is a tsunami of COVID infections. The U.S. experiencing 1 new case every 16 seconds. Mild compared to France where 2 new cases are popping up every second.
The omicron surge is affecting our young children big time. Hospitalizations increased 66 percent last week. Average new daily cases 378.
Deaths are considerably lower however when children are contrasted with adults. Whether it will continue so, remains to be seen. Children are relatively new in large numbers to the virus.
Children afflicted are obviously unvaccinated. Rules do not yet cover them sufficiently.
Question: I wonder how unvaccinated parents feel when one of their children become infected. Note recent cases involve babies also.
The ball drop last night in Times Square an absolute disgrace. Big deal the politicians cut the crowd back from tens of thousands to 15,000. Still enough to do considerable spread damage.
I admire Atlanta. Atlanta knew, as we all do, that a huge public gathering New Year’s Eve could, no would, result in additional surge. Atlanta cancelled its public events.
Many other cities world wide did the same as Atlanta. Acted responsibly and cancelled their ball droppings, fire works, etc.
Politicians have to stop compromising with what is right and appeasing citizens. Leadership sometimes requires going against the mass. The COVID attack is one.
The New York City ball drop last night was at a time when New York City had experienced its highest single day number of new infections. At a time also when COVID hospitalizations had increased 67 percent during the week ending thursday. The week began with 4,744. On thursday, new hospitalizations were at 7,919.
Eighty percent of the New York City hospitalized were unvaccinated.
Sixty two percent of Americans have been vaccinated with at least 2 shots. Where are the other almost 40 percent? Those that are significantly contributing to new cases. The number of unvaccinated hospitalized prove the point.
Gail Collins in her column in the New York Times this morning referred to America as the ‘land of the needle free.”
Another example DeSantis’ ineptitude is reflected in this morning’s Citizens’ Voice: “Florida has erroneously embarked on a program to incentivize people not to be vaccinated by extending unemployment benefits to those who quit their jobs rather than agree to private company requirements that employees be fully vaccinated. Without this program, these workers would be ineligible. What a waste.”
Employers are desperate for workers. Their staffs dwindling because of the virus.
Airlines an example. Thousands of flights cancelled over the weekend because of insufficient pilots to fly the planes and attendants to work them.
United has offered a solution which the Pilots’ Union has found acceptable. Work overtime for extra pay.
“Open flights” a constant the past several days. Flights where pilots are not available. Pilots have been offered 3 1/2 times their normal pay to fly open trips from 12/30-1/3. Triple pay 1/4-1/29.
Attendants will also receive incentive pay. The actual amount not yet available.
Some other carriers have also agreed or are in the process of agreeing. They have not yet been identified.
I mentioned about 10 days ago a leading physician in the COVID fight in Israel announced “fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh shots are on the way.” Israel announced yesterday that it has begun administering “fourth shots.” Limited at this time to those with weakened immune systems and elderly residents and employees in care homes.
It would not surprise me if we are into the “fourth shot” in the relatively near future.
It was reported this past week that COVID can result in “long term” illness in adults and children. The problem being “inflammation” that can damage the heart, lungs and brain.
I saw on TV yesterday the story of a COVID survivor with some residuals. He is deaf in his left ear and has lost most of his sight in his left eye. He also claims his brain does not function as before.
A few non related COVID items.
Betty White died yesterday at 99. One week short of her 100th birthday.
An exceptional actress, comedian and person. I recall her role in The Golden Girls. Outstanding! In addition to her part in The Mary Tyler Show.
Her third husband was Allen Lunden to whom she was married 18 years before he died. I recall his TV announcing work in the 1960’s. He hosted College Bowl and Password. College Bowl was one of my favorite TV quiz shows.
Ludden died many years ago. When Betty was asked why she never remarried, she responded when you’ve had the best, you don’t.
I watched Alabama/Cincinnati yesterday. Alabama won 27-6.
A no competition game. Alabama just too powerful and too experienced.
I did not watch Georgia/Michigan which Georgia won 34-11.
The two winning teams meet in 2 weeks in the championship game.
I cooked dinner again last night. My New Years Eve dinner.
I am not one to argue with success. Enjoyed a filet mignon and hash browns again.
Added apple cobbler and one glass of red wine.
Once again, a treat. A problem, however. Cleaning up. Don’t like it. Cleaned as I cooked. Still work left at the end of the meal.
Went to bed and sleep at 10. Thought I might wake at midnight. Didn’t happen. It was 2 am.
I thought I could get a rerun of midnight. Great pics on NBC, ABC, CBS and MSNBC. No audio, however. All other stations ok. Still without ABC audio this morning.
Enjoy your first day of the New Year!