Friday, January 08, 2021

When they are effective, vaccines prevent transmission



They were dancing to the tune of song by Elán, a prominent Slovak rock band, about the Nurses of Kramáre (the largest Slovak hospital, in Bratislava, the Slovak capital) but these girls were actually students of a medical high school in Trenčín.

Coronazism revolves around the narrative that people have the duty to give up their freedom and most of the things that have made their lives worth living because if they don't,
they will meet someone who will meet someone who will meet someone who will meet someone who will die of Covid-19 due to this chain of infections.
And because the person who died couldn't have defended himself and he didn't agree to join the same chain that also includes the infected person on the first side of the chain, it was a manslaughter of a sort. Coronazis don't discuss how the guilt is supposed to be divided among the people in the long chain (and why the person who is worried hasn't moved to another planet if he doesn't want to voluntarily share the planet with the people who may be infected) but the argument above would be what they would offer if they had the brain to formulate explanations; and if they didn't have the arrogance to restrict the basic civil rights without a proper explanation.

In several examples in the history, the vaccines have slowed down the propagation of a disease and protected many people. But especially in the case of Covid-19, they do something else, too: they make the argument above invalid. Everyone who feels substantially threatened by the coronavirus (whether the fear is justified or not) may get vaccinated. I actually think that he should. If he doesn't, it means that he doesn't feel threatened and he voluntarily joins the society that wants to live in the old way where unintentional infections, especially in long and indirect chains like the chain above, are legal (and ethically OK). In the old society, unintentional infections are "allowed" simply because the opposite legal system, where one needs to prevent himself from infecting others unintentionally, leads to a precautionary behavior that is far too costly and such a cure is worse than the disease (at least worse than Covid-19).



Even though, like most Czechs (and most French men etc.), I plan to avoid the Covid vaccines if it is sufficiently possible (because I see risks in intentional "extra effects"; plus some risks related to my possible allergies to similar things, I fainted as a kid a few times), I encourage other people to get vaccinated and I think that by getting vaccinated, they not only protect themselves against the virus but also help to tame the virus and send the epidemics towards zero.



There is another meme that "a vaccine is a passport to the old normal life". On one hand, I don't want the separation of the people to the people of several categories (the vaccinated ones could be a higher caste); on the other hand, the logic underlying this meme is unquestionably true, at least to some extent. A vaccinated person "leaves the game". For almost a year, I have emphasized that the same holds for a Covid survivor who has almost certainly gained the immunity. All such people should regain their freedom to walk without face masks, to play as musicians at concerts, to attend the concerts, and everything else. It has no real advantage to restrict the lives of millions of people who have the immunity – either because they are survivors or because they have been vaccinated – so the government simply shouldn't do so. The number of people who have been officially positive is already above 7% in Czechia. It's a lot of people who could and should become free again! I would allow positive antibody tests to be a passport to the old freedom, too.

At this level, I find it unavoidable that in a healthy society that evolves from the status quo in most countries, the vaccinated people will have greater rights than the unvaccinated ones. But as far as I can predict, it will be just a temporary state of affairs because within a few months, and at most weeks after a critical number of the people gets vaccinated, the disease will shrink to a negligible fraction of its current status and everyone will regain all the rights and freedoms! (I am still confident that Covid will already be tiny long before tens of percent of the people in the West will have been vaccinated – and in this sense, the vaccine will play a some role in the big picture – but I don't want this text to depend on this prophesy which isn't quite certain.) So in the long run, and I feel nearly certain that already before Summer 2021 (the warm weather will slow down the virus just like one year earlier), everyone will be free again and there will be no difference between vaccinated and unvaccinated folks. But temporarily, I think it is totally right to open the world for the vaccinated people before others. If something goes wrong and the disease doesn't go away despite the widespread vaccination, the arguments and policies that were sketched above would have to be revisited and modified.

All these things sound simple enough. But surprisingly enough, you may encounter numerous people who are supporting the vaccination but who also deny that they work – in the sense of preventing the disease of an individual (for most vaccinated people); and preventing his ability to spread the disease further (from most vaccinated humans). They either deny the effectiveness (in the sense above) for all Covid vaccines; or just mRNA vaccines (especially the Pfizer one). Sometimes they explicitly tell you:
This vaccine will still lead to the disease, problems of breathing, ... of most of the people who are infected. They just won't need a ventilator.
Oh really? Whenever this is the case for a person who was vaccinated, the vaccine must be counted as a "fail". If the person is sick, the vaccine didn't work (and whether such an ill person needs a ventilator is a fishy, accidental, and mostly subjective question). The 95% of the people who got a vaccinate that was measured 95% effective surely didn't cough badly after they were vaccinated and later exposed to Covid-19, did they? They didn't. It's what we mean by saying that the vaccine is hugely (95%) effective. I think that these comments sometimes sound that the person hasn't understood the difference between vaccines and drugs or something else. Drugs deal with the existing disease and help the symptoms to go away, sometimes along with the underlying causes, sometimes without them. A vaccine (Wikipedia) "is the most effective method of preventing infectious diseases". A vaccine partially or completely prevents the disease from appearing. If it doesn't for a given person who was vaccinated, it was ineffective; if the stuff doesn't prevent the rise of the infectious disease in the society at all, it is not a vaccine at all!

All vaccines that we are discussing – for Covid-19 or otherwise (like smallpox that was eliminated thanks to a vaccine) – are being pumped into the blood stream. That's where many things happen. If you don't know, the blood moves through your body at a walking speed. In a few seconds, the blood from your arm gets to your brain. A man has 5 liters of blood, a woman has 3-4. The blood is a solution with lots of things in it. Some of them are tiny, like the antibodies (protein molecules, below a micron of size). Others are large, like cells including the white blood cells and other cells (several microns in size). The cells are the "solid part" of the blood and they make it red because they include the red blood cells; the antibodies are molecules (albeit large) so they belong to the liquid part of the blood, the blood plasma (which is almost transparent).

In this speedy environment of the blood, many processes dealing with "concentrations" occur before all other places. But they eventually occur everywhere. So the immunity that is "in your blood" is ultimately able to defeat the virus on the surface of your lungs as well, isn't it?

A virus isn't quite alive, it is a piece of the genetic information that jumps on the host and forces him to copy the virus using his own factories. A bacterium is alive, a small animal, and may perform these basic life functions without a host and without a nanny state. But when it comes to the consequences for the individual and public health, the differences are irrelevant. When a virus or a bacterium (or a fungus such as the Candida yeast) gets into the blood, it may start to exponentially grow in the blood. That's how you get ill when the concentration is high enough. Then these nasty germs may get to your saliva and infect others, too.

If and when you gain the immunity, the environment in your blood becomes unfriendly towards the particular intruders. Why is it unfriendly? Because the blood contains antibodies whose shape is complementary to the intruder. The antibodies act like anti-Semites who jump at the corresponding Semite (this is purely a metaphor, I don't want to say anything political at all!) and both of them, glued together, are prevented from entering individual cells (the antibody is large enough so that it doesn't penetrate the cell), and they are ultimately excreted from the body (using special trucks or transporters for the Semite-anti-Semite pairs which have a technical biological name). The environment of the blood is so unfriendly that their (intruders') number immediately has the tendency to decrease. There is something analogous about the infectious diseases and cosmology. The size of the Universe cannot be constant – because the size of the Universe is analogous to the altitude of an apple above the table in a gravitational theory. It just cannot sit at a constant place in the middle of the air. It either flies up or falls down (at one moment, it can switch from one to the other). In the same way, a Universe is either expanding or contracting. And the concentration of the harmful virus or bacterium is either quasi-exponentially increasing, or quasi-exponentially decreasing.

When it's increasing, it's unavoidable that the concentration will get large and you will probably exhibit some symptoms. The concentration will grow up to the moment when something slows down the growth. But the "something" wasn't there to start with, so you didn't really have the immunity towards the disease. On the contrary, if you have a pre-existing immunity, it means that the concentration of the stuff in the blood is being reduced from the beginning.

The details why it is so may involve many tricks. The focus of the immunity may be on the RNA of the virus, some proteins, or some secondary molecules or cells that are created shortly after the intruder appears in the blood stream. But none of these details really matters. The immunity means that the environment of your blood is unwelcoming towards the virus or the bacterium. The concentration goes down. Immediately or almost immediately. But let me get to the point.

Do vaccines prevent transmission of Covid-19?

You may click at the link above. In recent weeks, you could find a huge number of articles that say "we don't know". It's been said by an WHO official, too. I think that an intelligent person must quickly see what is actually going on. Most of these articles say "you need to wear a mask, respect social distancing, and be a slave of the WHO, Fauci, and similar entities even after you get vaccinated". They just like the power to screw people's lives and they don't want to lose this power over the people just because of a detail, that they were vaccinated and left the Covid-19 game.

Thankfully, while he has disappointed us in many ways, the current Czech minister of health Dr Blatný said on TV that the vaccine prevents transmission. But you may hear the opposite thing – well, not quite the opposite, "just" some (bogus) comment about the uncertainty – from various journalists and officials. Maybe the Pfizer vaccine and perhaps other vaccines don't prevent the transmission of Covid-19 at all. Sometimes, the following explanation appears:
The vaccine keeps the people safe but we don't know why it works so everything is possible.
What a staggering pile of BS. We know how vaccines work because vaccines are products of clever bioengineering that starts with the nearly complete understanding of some biochemical processes or life processes, that continues with a clever trick and design how to hurt the intruder, and then these theoretical plans are turned into a real substance that often works. Maybe you don't know how a vaccine works because you are a stupid or dishonest journalist or a Marxist terrorist in charge of the WHO or its part but the people who have designed the vaccine do know how it works and why it works! Otherwise they couldn't have created the vaccine in the first place.

Also, the type of the vaccine (mRNA or otherwise) doesn't really affect any of these considerations. When the vaccine is effective, it creates the immunity in the blood (and indirectly other organs – although the dynamics of the concentration elsewhere may follow different growth rates) of the vaccinated person that implies that the number of copies of the virus is quickly shrinking when a perturbation occurs. So the person is worse for the reproduction of the virus than the glass of an iPhone: inside the human, the virus is actually declining. If we don't require iPhones to wear face masks, we shouldn't require vaccinated people to wear them, either (after a week or so).

The processes producing the immunity may be more complex and it is hypothetically possible that something wrong happens that will make it possible for more than the 5% (the vaccine was ineffective for them) to transmit the disease to others. But it seems clear that the doses will be vastly lower and probably so small that lots of the saliva will contain strictly zero copies of the virus. And the number zero makes the infection impossible. And I think that even when the number is nonzero, a small enough dose just won't cause a real disease of another person.

If I focus on the policymaking: the general textbook material about the vaccines, what they are, why they work, along with the data about the huge effectiveness of the Covid vaccines (note that flu vaccines only have 35% effectiveness; Covid-19 was much easier to hack for the vaccine designers) imply that the degree of transmission (and especially dangerous, high enough dose transmission) of Covid-19 will be vastly smaller from the vaccinated people, and that's why the policies must assume that the vaccinated people are harmless. To say the least, it should be the default approach.

Just days ago, I was shocked by Fauci's assertion that the vaccines may be useless for preventing the transmission etc. so while everyone should be obliged to be vaccinated (he is considering mandatory vaccination!), the potential patient will still be obliged to wear a face mask and respect the lifestyle-ruining restrictions. I think that these comments totally lack any logical justification (if the vaccine is this useless for the society, you just can't possibly make it mandatory, as Fauci considers!) and these Fauci plans (both mandatory vaccines and mandatory face masks and other restrictions afterwards) are just crimes against humanity and the execution of Fauci should be planned, for the society to be ready for the possibility that he will turn his inhuman plans into reality. I am shocked that someone would agree with something as insane as Fauci's double-suppression plans.

Truly free societies wouldn't make vaccines against diseases with such a low CFR mandatory (note that 30% of the kids with smallpox used to die; compare it with some 0.2% due to Covid-19, and yes, I have switched from the 0.1% camp to 0.2% because it's clear by now that 0.1% was an underestimate); and they wouldn't order the mandatory closure of businesses or face masks, either. Some real world societies aren't quite free so they may violate the civil rights in one of these two cases. But if a society violates the civil rights in both directions – even though the mandatory vaccination clearly contradicts the mandatory restrictions afterwards – then it is a hardcore fascist society and I am shocked by everyone who is supporting Fauci in these matters.

Again: vaccines may be prophylactic (preventing or ameliorating) or therapeutic (mostly vaccines against cancer; they're used when the disease is already ongoing) but the Covid-19 vaccines must be considered prophylactic and the measurements of the effectiveness combined with the basic textbook material about vaccines and immunity and combined with basic logic imply that the vaccinated people, after the time needed for their immunity to grow, become immune which also means that they can't serve as incubators for the virus that could infect other people. Vaccines prevent transmission and the 95% effective Covid-19 vaccines prevent an overwhelming majority of the infections and if a large majority of the people were either naturally immune or vaccinated, the number of new "cases" per day would be guaranteed to shrink to zero. That's what the societies must assume. Everything else is a denial of basic immunology and vaccinology, saliva into the faces of the skillful folks who have engineered the vaccines, and a transparent recipe to try to turn our societies into fascist dystopias on a permanent basis regardless of any facts.

And that's the memo.

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