Category Archives: Uncategorized

Giant Study Finds Vaccine Much Safer than No Vaccine

Largest real-world study of COVID-19 vaccine safety published. They compared “884,828 vaccinated individuals aged 16 and over [who] were carefully matched with 884,828 unvaccinated individuals based on an extensive set of sociodemographic, geographic and health-related attributes.”

This study focused on adverse events that may develop in the short to medium term after vaccination, and those with clinical significance. The study did not focus on common immediate symptoms such as redness and discomfort at the injection site or fever. Symptoms that occurred within 6 weeks of the vaccine (three weeks after each vaccine dose) were defined as an adverse event of the vaccine if they occurred more frequently among the vaccinated group compared to the control group.

The results were clear:

The vaccine was found to be safe: Out of 25 potential side effects examined, 4 were found to have a strong association with the vaccine.

Myocarditis was found to be associated with the vaccine, but rarely—2.7 excess cases per 100,000 vaccinated individuals. (The myocarditis events observed after vaccination were concentrated in males between 20 and 34.) In contrast, coronavirus infection in unvaccinated individuals was associated with 11 excess cases of myocarditis per 100,000 infected individuals.

Other adverse events moderately associated with vaccination were swelling of the lymph nodes, a mild side effect that is part of a standard immune response to vaccination, with 78 excess cases per 100,000, appendicitis with 5 excess cases per 100,000 (potentially as a result of swelling of lymph nodes around the appendix), and herpes zoster with 16 excess cases per 100,000.

In contrast to the relatively small number of adverse effects associated with the vaccine, high rates of multiple serious adverse events were associated with coronavirus infection among unvaccinated patients, including: Cardiac arrhythmias (a 3.8-fold increase to an increase of 166 cases per 100,000 infected patients), kidney damage (14.8-fold increase; 125 excess cases per 100,000), pericarditis (5.4-fold increase; 11 excess cases per 100,000), pulmonary embolism (12.1-fold increase; 62 excess cases per 100,000), deep vein thrombosis (3.8-fold increase; 43 excess cases per 100,000), myocardial infarction (4.5-fold increase; 25 excess cases per 100,000), and stroke (2.1-fold increase; 14 excess cases per 100,000).

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Fixing the Senate: A User’s Guide

New draft at SSRN, co-authored with David Froomkin who happens to be my son and is a J.D./Ph.D (political theory) candidate at Yale. It’s called Fixing the Senate: A User’s Guide, and here’s the abstract:

The Senate is the most undemocratic part of the U.S. Constitution – worse even than the Electoral College, although the two are related, and some versions of fixing the Senate would ameliorate the Electoral College also. Unfortunately, each state’s ‘equal Suffrage’ in the Senate is protected by a unique Constitutional entrenchment clause. The Entrenchment Clause creates a genuine bar to reform, but that bar is not insurmountable. We argue first that the constitutional proscription on abolishing the Senate has been overstated, but that in any case there are constitutional reform proposals that range from abolishing the Senate to various degrees of disempowering it. We then argue that there are several promising reforms that could move in the direction of democratizing the Senate without constitutional amendment. In particular: admitting new states, breaking up the largest states, and a new Constitutional Convention. This paper canvases benefits, costs, effectiveness, and likely feasibility of each of these methods by which one might seek to make the Senate more representative despite the entrenchment clause. Several of the proposals create an opportunity for Supreme Court review and perhaps obstruction, raising questions about the relationship between Senate reform and Supreme Court reform.

Shout-out to Larry Solumn for giving it the “highly recommended” seal of approval.

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New Glory?

Reports are that the most powerful man in the coming Senate — swing voter Sen. Joe Manchin — says he is open to the idea of statehood for Puerto Rico and DC.

That seems an excellent response to the current political situation.

But it will require a new flag.

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Election Stress Post

Is the election stress getting to you? I hear from a lot of people that they’re really feeling it today.

Myself, I feel just fine, as you can see from this recent photo:

(Photo via Make Me a Zombie)

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Show This to Your Cuban-American Friends

I wish every Cuban-American and Venezuelan-American in South Florida could see this video, “Trump is English for Castro“:

From the Lincoln Project of course. There’s an English-language version for the gringos.

While you are at it, read Waging Nonviolence‘s 10 things you need to know to stop a coup.

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Black Eyed Peas Produce Uplifting Biden Video

The Black Eyed Peas and Jennifer Hudson give Joe Biden the full Obama video treatment in this video entitled “The Love“:

Looks like maybe the closing pitch of the Biden campaign will be its own restorative version of hope, although it’s notable that the slogan in both this and the other day’s “Go From There” video is “Love”.

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