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Tomconroy's Journal
Tomconroy's Journal
March 31, 2023

Marc Veldhoen: SARS CoV-2, New and Familiar

Dr. Veldhoen is one of the world's leading immunological. Originally from the Netherlands, he teaches at the University of Lisbon and writes so well even scientists should be able to understand him:

SARS-CoV-2, new and familiar.
3/29/20230 Comments

SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that is the cause of COVID-19, is new but also familiar. What we have seen in the past 3 years is virology and immunology in real time unfolding.

SARS-CoV-2 has behaved much as we expected it to behave. The route of infection, the cells its infects, its transmission, replication, in large part its evolutionary path, its selection criteria, the epidemiology, the way the immune system detects it and responds, the antibodies that bind it and wane, the T cell response that stays, the reinfections, how to detect it, and how to target it with a vaccine, did not hold much mystery. We knew much, expected most, but certainly not everything was and is understood!

Let´s start with some statements to avoid confusion:
Pathogens, such as viruses, parasites, fungi, or bacteria, can cause disease and kill people
Getting infected with a pathogen is never "good"
Infections can result in damage, including to organs and immunity
There are many poorly understood ways infections can cause problems
The result of an infection is person-dependent and can range from asymptomatic to severe illness and death
Endemic does not mean mild or "nothing to worry about"​
Seasonal also does not mean mild, nor does it exclude transmission at other times.
We know a lot about viruses and immunity. What we have seen happening in the past three years is infection and immunity in real time. Not only that, but we have also seen much of what was predicted from decades of study of viruses and the immune system. SARS-CoV-2 has confirmed a lot of the things we know. That does not mean there were totally no surprises, it does not mean we should not have studied it and it certainly does not mean we know all there is to know. There are major gaps in some things. But overall, SARS-CoV-2 and the immune response were textbook.


The virus is endemic and about to be seasonal. And we have built up immunity through vaccines and infection
Per usual.

March 28, 2023

Last call for free covid tests.

My wife sent me out to get some today. I picked 8 up for free at CVS. As I understand it you can get 8 tests per month per person but the program will run out May 12. So if you start now you can still lay away 24 before the program is over. The program covers both Insured and uninsured at no cost. Drug stores in my area seem to have good supplies and they can also be ordered by mail.
I think I have the above details right but some may know better than I so I welcome any corrections. I think it's worth stocking up while the price is still zero.
I really hadn't heard that the program was ending. I suspect there may be a big demand when news spreads that there is a May deadline.

March 24, 2023

NY Times: From Rockets to Ball Bearings, Pentagon Struggles to Feed War Machine

From Rockets to Ball Bearings, Pentagon Struggles to Feed War Machine
The flow of arms to Ukraine has exposed a worrisome lack of production capacity in the United States that has its roots in the end of the Cold War.

By Eric Lipton
March 24, 2023, 5:00 a.m. ET
WASHINGTON — The Navy admiral had a blunt message for the military contractors building precision-guided missiles for his warships, submarines and planes at a moment when the United States is dispatching arms to Ukraine and preparing for the possibility of conflict with China.

“Look at me. I am not forgiving the fact you’re not delivering the ordnance we need. OK?” Adm. Daryl Caudle, who is in charge of delivering weapons to most of the Navy’s East Coast-based fleet, warned contractors during an industry gathering in January. “We’re talking about war-fighting, national security, and going against a competitor here and a potential adversary that is like nothing we’ve ever seen. And we can’t dillydally around with these deliveries.”

His open frustration reflects a problem that has become worryingly apparent as the Pentagon dispatches its own stocks of weapons to help Ukraine hold off Russia and Washington warily watches for signs that China might provoke a new conflict by invading Taiwan: The United States lacks the capacity to produce the arms that the nation and its allies need at a time of heightened superpower tensions.

Industry consolidation, depleted manufacturing lines and supply chain issues have combined to constrain the production of basic ammunition like artillery shells while also prompting concern about building adequate reserves of more sophisticated weapons including missiles, air defense systems and counter-artillery radar.

From Rockets to Ball Bearings, Pentagon Struggles to Feed War Machine
No Paywall: https://www.nytimes.com/2023/03/24/us/politics/military-weapons-ukraine-war.html?unlocked_article_code=eFkBKr-AiJpsG5AAmA3t1CVuf7CcxBPY2GbFaqaS_QHu9mtEGm0xsLy6Pc1KiNewtgxDEzNwyRevWTiqZLzlS50733WQjq_YeKcFC0PRlHfiDmL-RcuzqY1BcQBz02PxIzWziM3llVt9UhyNVT0WQ7CD_ixzFNWtUcZQaf_k14Zw2nsw0zWc6Qc7Z4URvlBLcVuaU1HzU3qpK3RCFlKBrfc4P-_h0VJT9szkHNxA4KZrw8VJHFbgjKfQ1GQXw2htnwC5qJCDFyW_GrtVZIHTogH_OXdkKG-ZVFpVxVO3purh_wJ85t7f05YJCmoxCRv-_ninYlqZCWKzyG4MixO5ppXUCKj-Mw82sNc

March 22, 2023

Watching PBS American Masters on Dr. FAUCI NOW.

It's worth a look.
It's a camera following him around during the Biden era. Not the Trump years that might have been even more interesting.

March 11, 2023

Thomas Theiner on the coming Ukrainian offensive

This is how we hope it will work. Very cogent analysis by a former Italian army artillery officer. (long Twitter thread):


March 6, 2023

President Zelenskyy's statement on the situation in Bahkmut released this morning:

Home News Current events
Volodymyr Zelenskyy held a meeting of the Staff of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief
6 March 2023 - 13:36

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy held a regular meeting of the Staff of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief on Monday.

The commanders of the operational and strategic groups of troops reported on the situation on the main frontline directions.

The members of the Staff reviewed the situation in Bakhmut in particular detail. Assessing the course of the defense operation, the President asked Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valerii Zaluzhny and Commander of the Khortytsia operational and strategic group of troops Oleksandr Syrskyi about further actions in the Bakhmut direction. They spoke in favor of continuing the defense operation and further strengthening our positions in Bakhmut.

In addition, the parties discussed the supply of weapons and equipment and their distribution to operational directions.

Bahkmut Holds!
Reports seem to indicate Russian advances have slackened in the last two days. Ukraine has allowed reporters and military analysts near Bahkmut recently. Perhaps an indication of confidence in the defense. There is a long article in the NY Times this morning reporting from the front.

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Name: Tom Conroy
Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Current location: Langley, Virginia
Member since: Sat Mar 6, 2021, 08:56 PM
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About Tomconroy

Member of NAFO. Living large on an enormous CIA paycheck.
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