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Daily Archives: April 20, 2023

Long COVID Is Being Erased—Again

The Atlantic: “…Most Americans simply aren’t thinking about COVID with the same acuity they once did; the White House long ago zeroed in on hospitalizations and deaths as the measures to worry most about. And what was once outright denial of long COVID’s existence has morphed into something subtler: a creeping conviction, seeded by academics and journalists and now common on social media, that long COVID is less common and severe than it has been portrayed—a tragedy for a small group of very sick people, but not a cause for societal concern. This line of thinking points to the absence of disability claims, the inconsistency of biochemical signatures, and the relatively small proportion of severe cases as evidence that long COVID has been overblown. “There’s a shift from ‘Is it real?’ to ‘It is real, but …,’” Lekshmi Santhosh, the medical director of a long-COVID clinic at UC San Francisco, told me. Yet long COVID is a substantial and ongoing crisis—one that affects millions of people. However inconvenient that fact might be to the current “mission accomplished” rhetoric, the accumulated evidence, alongside the experience of long haulers, makes it clear that the coronavirus is still exacting a heavy societal toll. As it stands, 11 percent of adults who’ve had COVID are currently experiencing symptoms that have lasted for at least three months, according to data collected by the Census Bureau and the CDC through the national Household Pulse Survey. That equates to more than 15 million long-haulers, or 6 percent of the U.S. adult population. And yet, “I run into people daily who say, ‘I don’t know anyone with long COVID,’” says Priya Duggal, an epidemiologist and a co-lead of the Johns Hopkins COVID Long Study. The implication is that the large survey numbers cannot be correct; given how many people have had COVID, we’d surely know if one in 10 of our contacts was persistently unwell…”

What’s Happening to Twitter Could Never Happen to Mastodon

PCMag: “An incomplete and unscientific explanation of why Mastodon is safe from Elon-style shenanigans. Several Twitter crises ago, my editor pitched me the idea for this story. The suggestion was to explain not just why I thought Mastodon—a decentralized social network for Twitter-style posts—was better than Twitter, but also how it could resist whatever Musk-inflicted… Continue Reading

Gallup: Half the Country Now Identifies as Independent

IVN: “Gallup’s latest polling found that 49% of Americans self-identify as independent of the two major parties. The record-setting number shows voters’ growing dissatisfaction with the US political process and their options. Notably, Gallup analyst Jeff Jones observed that Gen X and Millennials are bucking a historical trend.  In the past it was not uncommon… Continue Reading

ICANN and Verisign Proposal Would Allow Any Government In The World To Seize Domain Names “ICANN, the organization that regulates global domain name policy, and Verisign, the abusive monopolist that operates the .COM and .NET top-level domains, have quietly proposed enormous changes to global domain name policy in their recently published “Proposed Renewal of the Registry Agreement for .NET”, which is now open for public comment. Either by design,… Continue Reading

Proton launches an end-to-end encrypted password manager

The Verge: “Proton, the company behind Proton Mail, has announced the launch of a new password manager: Proton Pass [beta]. While the service will eventually become free for everyone to use, it’s currently only available as a beta to Proton’s Lifetime and Visionary users for now. As is the case with Proton’s other products, Proton… Continue Reading

Rare-earth mining

Rare-earth mining. “Shuang-Liang Liu et al. have compiled a dataset of 146 mining projects targeting rare-earth elements, which serve as “critical raw materials in many low-carbon technologies.” The dataset lists each project’s name, company, location, status, deposit type, estimated tonnage of deposits, element composition, and other details sourced from “company annual reports and public presentations,… Continue Reading

New Research Sparks Concerns That Ocean Circulation Will Collapse

Yale Environment 360: “Scientists have long feared that warming could cause a breakdown of ocean circulation in the North Atlantic. But new research finds the real risk lies in Antarctica’s waters, where melting could disrupt currents in the next few decades, with profound impacts on global climate. It is being hailed as a sea change… Continue Reading

HHS Making Ownership Data for All Medicare-Certified Hospice and Home Health Agencies Publicly Available

CMS – “The Biden-Harris Administration has made promoting competition and protecting consumers a top priority. Today, in support of the President’s Executive Order on promoting competition and the Administration’s commitment to transparency, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is releasing ownership data for all Medicare-certified hospice and home health agencies. For the… Continue Reading