Patterico's Pontifications


Florida Businesses Prohibited From Requiring Patrons To Provide Documentation of Covid-19 Vaccination

Filed under: General — Dana @ 3:21 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Even before the pandemic, you wouldn’t find me on a cruise ship. Now, “vacationing” on a giant floating petri dish where there is no requirement for proof of Covid-19 vaccination makes it even a harder pass for me:

Florida and cruise companies could be locked in a battle over vaccine requirements as the state puts a ban on vaccine passports while cruise lines continue to mandate the jabs for passengers and crew.

On April 2, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order banning vaccine passports and local businesses from requiring this proof of vaccination. This ban applies to cruise lines as well…

“The Governor’s Executive Order provides that businesses in Florida are prohibited from requiring patrons or customers to provide any documentation certifying COVID-19 vaccination or post-transmission recovery to gain access to, entry upon, or service from the business,” McCloud told Insider in an email. “Therefore, the Executive Order prohibits cruise lines from requiring vaccine passports for their Florida operations.”

The CDC lists the most common causes for visits to a ship’s medical center:

Approximately 3%–11% of conditions reported to cruise ship medical centers are urgent or an emergency. Approximately 95% of illnesses are treated or managed onboard, and 5% require evacuation and shoreside consultation for medical, surgical, or dental problems. Roughly half of passengers who seek medical care are older than 65 years of age. Most medical center visits are due to acute illnesses, of which respiratory illnesses (19%–29%); seasickness (10%–25%); injuries from slips, trips, or falls (12%–18%); and gastrointestinal (GI) illness (9%–10%) are the most frequently reported diagnoses. Death rates for cruise ship passengers, most often from cardiovascular events, range from 0.6 to 9.8 deaths per million passenger-nights.

The most frequently reported cruise ship outbreaks involve respiratory infections, GI infections (such as norovirus), and vaccine-preventable diseases other than influenza, such as varicella (chickenpox). To reduce the risk of onboard introduction of communicable diseases by embarking passengers, ships may conduct medical screening during embarkation to identify ill passengers, preventing them from boarding or requiring isolation if they are allowed to board.

And specifically, Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (VPDs):

Although most cruise ship passengers are from countries with routine vaccination programs (such as the United States and Canada), many crew members originate from developing countries with low immunization rates. Outbreaks of measles, rubella, meningococcal disease and, most commonly, varicella, have been reported on cruise ships. Preventive measures to reduce the spread of VPDs onboard cruise ships should be followed:

All passengers should be up-to-date with routine vaccinations before travel, as well as any required or recommended vaccinations specific for their destinations…

Crew members should have documented proof of immunity to VPDs

Some cruise lines have already announced their plans to protect crew and guests:

Part of Norwegian Cruise Lines Holding’s return to sailing plan includes a sweeping COVID-19 vaccine mandate for both guests and crew aboard Norwegian’s three brands: Norwegian, Oceania, and Regent Seven Seas. The ships will also initially operate at a reduced capacity, and will implement several other health protocols to create a “safe, ‘bubble-like’ environment.”

Silversea Cruises became the second major cruise line to announce it will require COVID-19 vaccinations for all passengers when it resumes global itineraries on June 5.

Meanwhile, Gov. DeSantis is facing questions about whether he has the authority to impose the ban:

The Coast Guard and the CDC have asserted control over pandemic-related cruise line activity at the port, but most decisions have been made by a “unified command” that includes the state, federal and county governments, working with the cruise lines, said Ellen Kennedy, spokeswoman for Port Everglades.

Asked about DeSantis’ assertion, Port Director Jonathan Daniels said by email: “We are working with the cruise lines and through all local, state and federal regulations and guidelines to effect a safe restart to cruising.”

…Jim Walker – an attorney based in South Florida with a specialization in maritime law – who told the Sun Sentinel that DeSantis may not have the jurisdiction needed to either prohibit cruise lines from enforcing a vaccine mandate or bring cruises back.

Here is a report about different cruise lines and their current position on requiring ( or not requiring) proof of Covid-19 vaccinations.

I’ll leave you with a little trip down memory lane:

There is little doubt among experts that the handling of the virus on board the Diamond Princess was an abject failure from the onset. Simply put by Dr. Anthony Fauci, the Director of the (US) National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, “…it failed”[8].

Despite this acknowledgment, there is still no clear answer on who should be in charge in future situations that mimic this one. The Japanese government and the Diamond Princess corporate leadership disagreed from the beginning about who was in charge. At the time, the Japanese officials feared bringing potentially infected passengers onshore, since there was no clear place to quarantine everyone. And, they did not want the virus to spread throughout Japan.

After 39 days on the ship (and over three weeks in quarantine) the last of the 2,666 passengers finally disembarked and began their journeys home on February 27th; only to reset the clock and begin an additional two-week quarantine in their home countries. However, the ship remained docked in Japan for another three months while the company focused its efforts on quarantining and repatriating the remaining crew members who had not yet departed on government charter flights[9].


The Height of Irresponsibility: Tucker Carlson Says It Seems Like the Vaccines Don’t Work and the Government Is Hiding That From You

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am

Here’s the short version of my rant:

The natural response from Tucker defenders is going to go something like this: that’s a Media Matters for America clip, but if you watch the whole segment he is asking some pretty legitimate questions. Like: why do Fauci and other health experts keep saying we need to stay locked down if the vaccines still work? And why did the feds pause Johnson & Johnson after a handful of blood clotting episodes? None of this makes sense!

In my view, that defense fails. What Tucker Carlson is doing here is evil. I’ll explain.

First, if you’re worried about context, you can get all the context you want in a ten-minute clip embedded here. But the heart of why this is evil is fully contained in the clip above that I retweeted, and it can be found in this quote:

So maybe it doesn’t work and they’re simply not telling you that. Well you hate to think that, especially if you’ve gotten two shots. But what’s the other potential explanation? We can’t think of one. We know the Prime Minister of Canada has decided, after thinking about it a lot, that vaccines just don’t work — and we know that, because he said it out loud.

Uh, no, he didn’t, you lying scumbag. Here’s what Trudeau said:

I think it’s really important that we work from facts and understanding of the science around things. We know for example that the UK is ahead of just about everybody else on vaccinations and yet they maintain very strong restrictions and are facing a very serious third wave. Vaccinations on their own are not enough to keep us safe, we need to engage in the right kind of behaviors. Do things that the conservatives aren’t always good at like wearing masks, keeping distances and obeying public health rules.

Saying that vaccines, in a population that has not been fully vaccinated, should be accompanied by other non-pharmaceutical interventions is not the same as saying “vaccines just don’t work” and it is a lie for Carlson to say otherwise. It is the height of simplistic and even stupid thinking to equate “having a portion of the population vaccinated will not immediately stop the virus in its tracks” and “vaccines just don’t work.”

I don’t think Carlson is so stupid he can’t tell the difference. I don’t think he truly thinks vaccines don’t work. He’s just pandering to the fringier parts of his massive audience for ratings. Period.

So why are health experts saying we still need to be careful for a while, even if vaccinated, and why are they encouraging the continuation of non-pharmeceutical interventions for a period of time after vaccination? Is it because “vaccines just don’t work”? No, it’s because they are concerned about variants and still-ongoing local spikes of cases.

People could have a discussion about whether Fauci has been overcautious. I’m not as convinced as most on the right seem to be that his caution is *necessarily* awful, I read a book about COVID by Nicholas Christakis, who knows a thing or two about public health, and he has consistently been of the view that a vaccine is not going to return us back to normal with a snap of the fingers. With spikes recurring in certain areas, and variants on the loose in parts of the world, if the public health experts want to signal that some caution is in order for a while longer, I’m not going to get too huffy about it. As I have always said, COVID has a longer attention span than Americans do.

And while concern motivated by businesses going under is a genuine issue, I am really put off by the people who act like wearing a mask is some great sacrifice and infringement of our freedom, and I accord very little weight to their whining. Hurting businesses are a different matter, and we can certainly debate government caution in light of the economic suffering so many have felt for so long.

But all of that has little to do with Tucker’s trafficking in conspiracy theories to appeal to an audience of three million people, with an outsized contingent of vaccine skeptics. He could phrase his argument the way most on the right are these days: obviously the vaccines work, as the evidence of their efficacy is stark and overwhelming . . . so why all the caution?? Instead, he panders to anti-vaxxer sentiment.

Social norms do not allow the adequate response. I can’t find words — at least words that I can repeat without being drummed out of polite society — to properly convey the depth of my contempt for this punk in light of what he did here.

And the best part is, although I can’t find evidence of it, that you know he has been vaccinated. I’d bet a year’s salary on it. But it’s probably a closely guarded secret, because it might cut into his ratings if people found out.

Tucker Carlson is just a truly terrible, awful person, and what he has done here is evil.

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