Food prices are rising precipitously. Commodities like metal and grains are also getting more expensive. This is being felt the most in developing countries, but just like the pandemic, this problem will quickly spread to the West.
Semiconductors and other electronics supplies are in serious bottlenecks. This is something to pay attention to because it’s going to hit US companies and consumers:
Supply chain bottlenecks are emerging… pic.twitter.com/LsKuaZ63Pf
— The Long View (@HayekAndKeynes) March 2, 2021
Solar storms could be catastrophic—we know another Carrington event could cause absolute and rapid devastation on a global scale. US agencies are paying more attention to the threat of solar storms.
The world has over 116.2 million COVID cases. The world has gained 2.7 million cases in a week. There have been nearly 2.6 million deaths in total. The US has nearly 30 million cases. Over 533,000 Americans have died. There have been over 1,900 deaths in the last 24 hours in the US. The US gained 68,000 new cases yesterday—case growth is plateauing. The US, Brazil, and Mexico lead the world in daily deaths from COVID.
Senior citizens who are not tech savvy are having trouble signing up for their vaccine appointments. Tech savvy isn’t necessarily the only problem–I’ve seen a few very opaque sign-up websites myself and have resorted to sharing sign-up phone numbers instead with folks who needed it. The blind are also having significant sign-up problems as well, as many of the vaccine appointment websites have no accessibility features.
Every frightening COVID variant imaginable has been circulating in Houston for weeks. Now that the state has opened up and the mask mandates have come down this is worrisome, indeed:
BREAKING: TX Gov. @GregAbbott_TX says “now is the time to open Texas 100%”.
Apparently, lifting all pandemic business restrictions?
— Matt Largey (@mattlargey) March 2, 2021
BREAKING: Texas is lifting its mask mandate, making it the largest state to end an order intended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Gov. Greg Abbott has faced sharp criticism from his party over the mandate, imposed eight months ago. https://t.co/WHPLWzf9jF
— The Associated Press (@AP) March 2, 2021
Mississippi is following suit:
BREAKING: Mississippi is opening: no more mask restrictions or capacity limitations for businesses, statewide. Gov. Reeves says all businesses are allowed to establish their own requirements, but it will be an individual decision from now on.
— Nick Judin (@nickjudin) March 2, 2021
The B.1.1.7 variant now accounts for 10% of US cases. If it is as transmissible as we think it is, it’ll be ~80% of cases in 2-3 months. It is most definitely not the time to be relaxing measures.
Israel is using a vaccine passport. We don’t yet know how successful the program is, but I can’t say I’m eager to hear the details. It seems incredibly dystopian to me to be forced to advertise one’s private health history to the world to get some freedom of movement and activity. I’m not sure America will go this route. I suppose the US does this to some degree with international travel vaccine requirements…
Temperature scanners and symptom checkers used in schools and universities seem to be more of a calming placebo than a useful detection system. If we had a test-trace-isolate program in place, the symptom checking websites/apps might actually be useful. But we don’t, so they’re not.
Biden’s going to use the DPA to produce more vaccines for the US:
Psaki announces President Biden will invoke the Defense Production Act to support Johnson & Johnson and Merck’s COVID vaccine partnership, including equipping two Merck facilities with standards needed to manufacture the single-shot vaccine https://t.co/gtLhAnvyLK pic.twitter.com/MbhZ3tupjJ
— CBS News (@CBSNews) March 2, 2021
And this will help us get enough vaccines to vaccinate any American adult who wants one within a few months (hopefully):
Three weeks ago, I announced we would have enough vaccine supply for all Americans by the end of July.
Now, with our efforts to ramp up production, we will have enough vaccines for every American by the end of May.
— President Biden (@POTUS) March 2, 2021
South America is still facing a raging pandemic burden:
— CIDRAP (@CIDRAP) March 3, 2021