Bird flu is spreading around the world. Millions of poultry birds have been culled to prevent the spread of the disease, and millions more are at risk. Chickens in Maine could be at risk due to proximity to infected chickens in Canada. This avian flu can be passed to humans, but so far this has only happened rarely.
Russian-led troops are now in Kazakhstan quashing an antigovernment uprising in the bud. The former Soviet republic may find out that although it’s easy to invite these forces in, it may not be so easy to get them back out:
The situation in Kazakhstan is a much bigger deal than Western media is letting on.
I believe it significantly increases the risk of NATO-Russia conflict.
Here is my report from Moscow. A MEGA-thread… 🧵
— Clint Ehrlich (@ClintEhrlich) January 7, 2022
The White House says the recent December wildfires in Colorado are “a blinking code red” for what climate-related disasters can do to this country. There are still people missing and nearly 1,000 homes were destroyed in the fires.
The Food Price Index shows that many staple foods around the globe have increased in price by almost a third. Economists are not optimistic about price stabilization in 2022.
The shipping container barge traffic jams continue on all coasts, unabated:
Popular interest in the supply chain may have faded, but the pileup of ships waiting offshore keeps growing.https://t.co/Tm3X0NfLwq
— American Shipper (@AmericanShipper) January 7, 2022
Here’s a compendium of good news stories from 2021, from cancer cases and mortality declining both in the US as well as Europe, to one of the major flu viruses going extinct, to opioid prescriptions in Canada falling to less than 20% following the legalization of cannabis.
The world has nearly 310.3 million COVID cases. The world has gained over 16.5 million cases in the last week. There have been over 5.5 million deaths in total. The US has had about 62.1 million cases cumulatively. The US gained about 5.9 million cases in the last seven days. Over 860,000 Americans have died during the pandemic—over 13,000 in the last week. The US gained over 536,000 new cases on Sunday and over 451,000 by later afternoon Monday. Cases are absolutely soaring:
The last 10 million cases came in 1 month.
It's on pace for the next 10 million in 2 weeks. Will place severe stress on hospitals.
It's just too fast. pic.twitter.com/tD2Y1GtHzQ
— Vincent Rajkumar (@VincentRK) January 8, 2022
The CEO of Moderna thinks 4th doses will be coming to a proverbial theater near you, soon. The UK and South Korea are already ordering more doses in anticipation of another set of boosters.
DeSantis allowed one million COVID tests to expire in a warehouse—while Floridians endured huge lines just to get access to one:
When you see testing lines like this across Florida and people waiting for hours to get a COVID test, remember Ron DeSantis' admitted he let a stockpile of "800,000 to a million" tests expire when our state was experiencing its worse surge in cases ever.pic.twitter.com/xhuFywDyEf
— Thomas Kennedy (@tomaskenn) January 7, 2022
Children suffer a 2-3 times higher risk for a new diabetes diagnosis (type 1 or type 2) after having a COVID infection. Vaccinations in this group are all the more important, knowing this.
COVID-related supply chain breakdowns (and weather-related ones, too, in the US) are causing bare store shelves once again:
Supermarkets short of supply as up to half of truck drivers absent due to COVID
[if only we'd had an inkling ]https://t.co/XAlgbOsExl
— ɪᴀɴ ᴍ. ᴍᴀᴄᴋᴀʏ, ᴘʜᴅ 🦠🤧🧬🥼🦟🧻🧙♂️ (@MackayIM) January 6, 2022
Schools all over the US are struggling to stay open as teachers (and students) contract COVID. Over 5,000 schools have reverted to virtual instruction.
The CDC recommendations that essentially force health care workers to work while still potentially infectious are, lo and behold, a terrible idea:
— Weird Soup (@Cosmicpixle) January 10, 2022
Omicron is causing huge waves of reinfections and breakthrough infections. This is happening so ubiquitously with Omicron that the CDC says vaccines can’t prevent transmission anymore.
The Omicron spike is causing grave disruption across all fields of services: schools, hospitals, fire departments, garbage services, subways, flights, pharmacies, etc. Hopefully the COVID case spike reaches its apex quickly, as it did in other countries (like the UK and South Africa). But, and maybe this is just me being pessimistic, the UK is better vaccinated than the US, and South Africa is a much younger country, demographically, than the US. In any case (and this is probably our unofficial mantra here) prepare for significant disruptions for at least a month or two but hope for the best. A best-case scenario would be disruptions waning in about two to three weeks.