Trying to decode an article about vaccines and COVID breakthrough

The headlines are scary. Australia, locked down and people arrested for leaving home. Camps being set up for internment. In Chicago, a mother stripped of parental rights because she won’t get the jab. Teen athletes, stricken with myocarditis and pericarditis. Eric Clapton, who took the shot and lost the use of his hands, writing a protest song. Restaurants and venues requiring vaccination certificates for entry. Articles showing that in Israel, the most vaccinated country in the world, the vaccinated are falling to COVID in droves, while the unvaccinated aren’t having the same problems.

What are we supposed to believe? Our own lying eyes, or our government and scientists performing under duress? How are we supposed to live when we know this is a nightmare and we can’t get out?

I’ve spent some time trying to make sense of the San Jose Mercury News’s incomprehensible report about a study from UCSF. The author of the study, Dr. Charles Chiu, is quoted extensively in it, so I don’t know if the twisting of facts is his or the newspaper writer’s doing. I don’t know if the study mentioned will pass peer review (it hasn’t yet), but I know I am rolling my eyes trying to make sense of what it says and, while I don’t have a medical education, I do read, extensively, about science and COVID.

The article starts out by talking about the troubling surge in “breakthrough” cases among the vaccinated. It opens using the phrase “waning immunity and ferocious contagion.” It talks about how the virus is learning to outsmart “our immune system.” But from what I can tell, what the virus is outsmarting, for the most part, is the vaccine and how it affects the immune system.

We know that those with natural immunity to COVID from having had the virus are the least likely to get one of the variants. Nobody knows for sure how long natural immunity will last. We do know now how long immunity from vaccination lasts, and it’s not a long time. Not that this article brings up any of this. What it says, instead, is that antibody-resistant mutations “are playing an ever-larger role in our highly vaccinated region’s pandemic.”

Dr.Chiu found that 78% of infections in fully vaccinated people were caused by variants. He apparently makes no distinction (or the writer of this article didn’t) between the unvaccinated who had COVID and those that didn’t, but the article says only “48% of the cases [are] among unvaccinated people, who remained an easier target for earlier generations of the virus.”

Despite the next statement — that a “growing list of studies” are unraveling why the vaccinated are “still” so susceptible to infection”—the article somehow jumps to the conclusion that everyone must get vaccinated to beat COVID. Oh, of course! Follow the orthodoxy, whether it makes sense or not!

Before it gets to that conclusion, the author discusses how the virus will mutate, ad infinitum, and Dr. Chiu is quoted saying that eventually, “you’re going to see the vaccine not work, or its efficacy will be reduced significantly.”

His solution? Keep reformulating vaccines, to keep us “safe.”

The next set of statements in this twister of an article reassure us that people who have a breakthrough infection but don’t get symptoms, carry low levels of the virus, the implication being that they won’t infect others. Chiu says that the vaccinated people who have symptoms, can, however, spread COVID. “You’re essentially as infectious as someone who was unvaccinated,” he said.

Let’s think about this: The virus mutates to beat the antibodies produced by the vaccine. People who acquired immunity due to having had COVID, are not as susceptible to the variants. Their immunity protects them, most likely (but this is not proven, for obvious reasons) long-term. More and more of the infections are caused by the mutant viruses that the vaccine doesn’t protect against.

The article’s conclusion is that we must vaccinate as many people as possible, and give them boosters, too, “otherwise, if the virus continues to circulate and mutate,” he said, “this may become a never-ending round of whack-a-mole.”

Why? Why not just let us get this treatable disease (those that are not at great risk of dying from it, so 98-99% or so of all people, especially those under 70), and develop natural immunity? Why not just do what Governor DeSantis is doing in Florida, which is to set up clinics to dispense monoclonal antibodies or allow people to get the ivermectin protocol treatment? Then, we’d actually reach the elusive goal of herd immunity, as has Sweden, which didn’t succumb to all this fear porn in the beginning. Instead, we are turning the country and much of the world, into a police state. It’s time to say no!

Image: mRNA vaccine by spencerbdavis1. Pixabay license.

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