Simple Numbers, ergo Simple Decision

Viruses are small.  All filters are not created equal.  Idiocy abounds.  Our citizenry is downright ignorant about basic dimensions.  The gap between the average citizen’s entry-level scientific literacy and that necessary to function in a semi-technical society is about one parsec.

Thankfully, we have American Thinker and Andrea Widburg on duty. https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2020/09/the_cdc_director_has_doubled_down_on_masks_but_is_he_wrong.html

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10 thoughts on “Simple Numbers, ergo Simple Decision”

  1. As I wrote here waaaaay back in the beginning, this is what my BMD  said initially. Those surgical masks are only to prevent gross droplets  from falling into a wound.  They’re no more effective than the polite practices of sneezing or coughing into your hanky, or your elbow.  And if you do sneeze or cough, all the mask does is project your breath out each side. Screw ‘em!  Dems just want everybody muzzled so we’ll be reminded all day every day that we’re no longer free—AND that we’ve been convinced that it’s no big deal to cover our faces and appear in public Only as fungible disease vectors. RESIST!

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  2. Hypatia:
    As I wrote here waaaaay back in the beginning, this is what my BMD  said initially

    I remember that! Even as I was reading the linked article, I thought of your post.

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  3. drlorentz:

    Hypatia:
    As I wrote here waaaaay back in the beginning, this is what my BMD  said initially

    I remember that! Even as I was reading the linked article, I thought of your post.

    I recall as well, and also the post by 10 Cents.

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  4. Trinity Waters:
    Viruses are small.  All filters are not created equal.  Idiocy abounds.  Our citizenry is downright ignorant about basic dimensions.  The gap between the average citizen’s entry-level scientific literacy and that necessary to function in a semi-technical society is about one parsec.

    Just as two wrongs don’t make a right, two idiots don’t make a genius. Andrea Widburg and her email buddy don’t understand that virions (virus particles) are not emitted singly and in isolation. They are embedded in much larger aerosols, i.e., in spit. This passage, while true, is utterly irrelevant, misleading, and indicates that the writer is innumerate and scientifically illiterate:

    Covid-19 virus molecules are about 0.1 micrometers in diameter. That is 400 times smaller than the plaster particles that penetrated the mask.

    While there are no practical masks for general use that filter 0.1 micrometer particles, there are masks that can successfully filter the much larger particles that carry virions. People who work construction or in other dusty areas wear masks because they are much smarter than Andrea and her friend. Workers don’t wear surgical masks in dusty environments for a reason.

    Since we’re collecting idiots, it’s time to add CDC Director Redfield. As Hypatia pointed out long ago, keeping out small aerosols is not the function of surgical masks. If Redfield had said that dust masks were somewhat protective against the WuFlu, he would have been correct. By waving around that surgical mask, he only proved that he is a liar because I cannot believe he doesn’t know better.

    We’ve gotten to the point where public officials are just telling bald-faced lies and mostly getting away with it. This does shows the illiteracy or the gullibility of the public; I’m not sure which, maybe both.

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  5. The analogy most suited to describe mask is you put up a tall cyclone fence to keep deer out of your yard but the same fence doesn’t keep out mosquitoes.

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  6. PhCheese:
    The analogy most suited to describe mask is you put up a tall cyclone fence to keep deer out of your yard but the same fence doesn’t keep out mosquitoes.

    The pro-mask folks make the argument that masks are not meant to protect the wearer. The idea is that they reduce the spread of disease by confining aerosols expelled by breathing or talking to a smaller region, nearer the wearer and more distant from others. Only midwits such as the American Thinker writer Widberg and most Twitter twits think otherwise. They get these other ideas from dishonest members of the political class such as the CDC director and most news outlets.

    The news people are probably dishonest and dumb but director Redfield surely knows better while implying the opposite by saying that “this facemask is more guaranteed to protect me against COVID than when I take a COVID vaccine.” The casual listener will conclude that the mask will prevent him from breathing in virus-laden aerosols.

    Redfield has plausible deniability. If challenged, he’d probably say that he meant masks slow the spread disease by reducing the distance over which an infected person projects the virus. I don’t know whether there is much evidence of a significant benefit but midwit Widburg and her pal don’t address this argument. Instead, they just look stupid by arguing against something no serious person is claiming.

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  7. The CDC is a political dumping ground, as are the NIH, DOE, HUD,  DOEnergy, DOEducation, Bureau of Indian Affairs, NASA, ATF, Homeland Severity…alphabet soups of studied corrupt incompetence.

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  8. The mechanism by which a HEPA filter and such are effective is dielectric polarization of microfibers (large field divergence).  Large particles (aerosolized goo from a sneeze) are physically entrained.  Small particles are electrically adsorbed.  Cotton does not do the latter.  A washed proper mask must be repolarized.  Wearing compliant safety glasses physically excludes airborne particles from the eyes.

    We then arrive at the uncomfortable truth that a nerd with oversize spectacles breathing through an unworn elasticized bra cup or unwashed polypropylene microfiber sock is well protected.  A DemSoc snot breathing through a cotton “Che” Guevara mask is not…on the inflow.  The outflow, large moist particles, is entrained.

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  9. Trinity Waters:

    drlorentz:
    This passage, while true, is utterly irrelevant, misleading, and indicates that the writer is innumerate and scientifically illiterate:

    Egad!  So put your mask on already.

    Unfortunately, that won’t fix stupid. Otherwise, I’d consider it.

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