I'm a boosted, healthy person living in NYC where the vaccination rate is relatively high and positivity rates have plunged. My take, helped by your post, is to loosen my self-imposed restrictions that affect quality of life. I won't look to get Omicron, but if I do, the silver lining may be a boost against a subsequent variant. I'll also still be careful and mask around high risk people. Thanks Zvi!

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I'm only part of the way through, but I wanted to comment on this quote:

"But on further thought, that’s totally wrong: this pattern could be caused by beliefs causing illness, but it could also be caused by illness causing beliefs, which obviously happens all the time."

I think that this excludes the idea that both belief causes illness *and* illness causes belief, and it wouldn't be the first cycle in the human body that does this. Its the primary driver of pain. Injure a joint, feel pain, and you'll still feel pain after the joint is structurally healed. Physiological measures of depression like heart rate respond to self talk about depression [citation needed, but I know I read this a while ago], etc. You can release saliva if you think about food. You can dump all kinds of hormones into your blood stream if you think about a naked attractive person or bear attack. Arguably, you can dump mucus in your nose if you drink milk and think it causes congestion, but not if you don't [citation needed for all these, sorry].

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There is a paper [1] that suggests that "many long COVID symptoms may not be a direct result of the SARS-CoV-2 virus but may be the result of COVID-19 inflammation-induced EBV reactivation". Any thoughts on that hypothesis?

[1] "Investigation of Long COVID Prevalence and Its Relationship to Epstein-Barr Virus Reactivation" https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/labs/pmc/articles/PMC8233978/

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Thanks again for all the work you put into these. This was truly monstrous, but with all the work seemingly being done to keep people scared of COVID and fluff up Long COVID to keep the panic train going, it was probably necessary. Well done.

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I'm confused by this:

"If you’d shown me a positive serology test in January 2021 and asked me if I’d had Covid, I’d have said yes, because you just showed me the test, so I guess I must have.

"The French public did not think this way.

"I find that to be an interesting study result in its own right. People simply don’t believe such tests, or don’t even care enough to look at them in context."

In January 2021, what was the percent who'd had covid? Using CDC numbers it's maybe 8% of the US by the end of Jan 2021, but that's probably an understatement. But with a sensitivity of .87, using Bayes theorem, you are still getting P(covid|+test)=.87*X where X is percent have had covid in the past, right? I don't think X is as high as .5/.87=.57

If I were on the edge as to whether I thought I had covid in the past, suppose I had been sick after being exposed to covid (or what I thought looked like covid), then a test like this would sway me one way of the other, I guess. But if I had a really bad disease or if I never felt sick I don't think I'd change my mind. Maybe that's what the French population did. Maybe the researchers told them how to interpret the test results? Maybe your priors are much higher that you got covid without noticing? Though that seems different that saying "you just showed me the test, so I guess I must have."

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״about future unknowns. Given how much time has now passed, and what I see as the relevant reference classes, I don’t think we need worry about this going foward, but precautionary principle does apply.״

We are only two and something years out from the first known infection with SARS-CoV-2. Over the same period, zero people with HIV will suffer AIDS or will be hospitalized for it because it takes 3-15 years to appear, nobody with Measles will suffer SSPE that takes 7 years from infection and same for Herpes Zoster, Post Polio, liver failure after Hepatitis C etc.

HIV is 100%, SSPE is lethal 1 in 600 for little kids and 1 in 1,400 for adolescence. So it's a huge risk to take for unvaccinated kids, we do not yet have vaccines for kids up to 5. How do you plan to protect them until we do?

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I appreciate your taking on this very very important question about evaluating Long Covid. How do you account for studies showing brain issues in hamsters? Your post doesn’t deal enough with studies such as this showing measurable issues with brain function comparable to Alzheimer’s etc — could you address that? Surely may be something that could be more specific about those comparisons made such as to Alzheimer’s — is that a valid comparison? Otherwise your post reads too much like — hmm, haven’t been able to measure it, so let’s say it’s worth the risk/reward. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/covid-smell-loss-and-long-covid-linked-to-inflammation1/

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"but I do continue to think a lot of it is ‘blame whatever is wrong with me on Covid.'"

Fuck you Zvi. Just fuck you.

I know you don't have it. I do.

I'm never gonna subscribe to you now.

If you weren't such a great writer and fellow Tribal member I would hunt you down and torch you online for saying something so profoundly ignorant.

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