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It feels like the substance app is cutting this off before the end but maybe the blood donation paragraph was actually the final thing?

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Ugh substack app, not substance

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Is there any way you could write up an explainer on why we don't want people donating blood for compensation? (Paying for blood seems like a really good way to clear the national blood shortages--most people would rather spend those ~20 minutes doing something else, so a small compensation would in theory overcome that. Also, people pay for plasma donation--what's so different there???) An article like that seems to be in your wheelhouse and would in theory be something Balsa could build on to effect a probably low-cost positive change.

The fact that we seem to consider this some flavor of unethical would blow my mind, but the past few years have proven that the United States consistently legislates against our own best interests.

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I mean, the short explainer is that the Red Cross has this belief for stupid weird moralistic reasons, and so we have this stupid rule. In terms of the why? It's something along the lines of 'they're doing it for the right reasons' and... yeah, obviously the response is 'so what.' But there are many such cases.

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Because people who only donated blood when they were paid had a higher instance of Hep C, HIV, etc. If you start paying you basically get a lot of homeless, needle-drug addicts donating blood.

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Yeah, AIUI this policy was actually developed in response to very real and realized problems, not abstract moralizing. Not a good poster child for wanton overregulation.

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Plus, at least in my state it is perfectly legal to give blood plasma for compensation, and there are no obvious ill effects.

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Commentor Sleazy E is permanently banned. I try to not ban or censor, but at some point a continuous barrage of the same rude, nasty, content-free stuff week after week adds up. You have to draw the line somewhere, and I've decided I've had enough of letting people's time be wasted.

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One big reason for keeping the Covid emergency was that it was used to justify a lot of things that should have been done anyway, and without it you have to go through long bureaucratic channels to keep those good things. I work in immigration, and an example would be that it was used to do away with the requirement that certain immigration forms have a wet signature. There are anti-immigration groups that will sue to reinstate this requirement if the government doesn't jump through the right hoops to make the change permanent, and that takes time and work. Multiply this by several hundred different stupid regulations across the government and you have a large part of why the emergency has lasted for so long.

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It's crazy for Trump allies to hit DeSantis as being pro-vaccine, in no small part because *Trump himself is pro-vaccine and considers the vaccine to be one of his greatest accomplishments.* (Correctly, IMHO.)

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When to stop covid posts: Do you get a report of the number of readers? If I stop reading then you are free to stop writing. :^)

No new vaccine: Can another country not do this? How expensive is it?

Vaping: I prep cook for a bar/restaurant, ~75% of the young people vape, nicotine or THC. TBH it's great and way better than when everyone smoked cigarettes in bars.

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I do see how posts do on opens/views/clicks but I consider that a very poor metric for value.

On vaccines, there are a few customers who would be big enough, I suppose, but they think it's our job or don't care.

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Re: when to stop posting on covid. (Yeah that was just meant to be a joke. When I'm not reading anymore.) Seriously, I've really appreciated all your covid posts, once I found you. It's you that caused me to get boosted before omicron hit, so thanks for that. It seems like the covid news will continue, so I will continue to read it, if you write it.

So on 5-11 will I stop having to wear a mask when I go into the doctors office? I can wear a cloth mask (bandana) so it's really just mask theater.

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“I continue to be confused on whether the Republicans think that if the House passes a bill then it somehow becomes law?”

I know this is said in jest, but I’ve heard people say outright that “of course they know that’s not how it works.... but a lot of of the voters don’t know that.”

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