Teen Mental Health

You cannot possibly be surprised about this.

Experts are warning of a “teen mental health crisis” and like, of course the kids are having a mental health crisis.

  • We’re hip deep in Nazis and fascists who are attacking everyone but straight white dudes who agree with them and appear to be making considerable headway.
  • We’re staring down the barrel of a climate apocalypse.
  • We’re in the grips of a pandemic and our leaders have decided that the best way to handle it is to ignore it.
  • They’re paying way too much to get an education that will maybe get them a job that will still treat them like garbage and won’t pay the bills anyway.
  • They can’t afford health care, let alone mental health care.
  • We send them to schools where they might get shot, and refuse to do anything sensible to prevent that.
  • The entire world is run by and optimized for the benefits of sociopathic oligarchs.

We built a world where they have no hope. Are you actually surprised they’re having problems?

Friday Notes (4/1/22)

A few quick notes. No April Foolin’.

There are no April Fool’s jokes in this post. It’s 2022 and the nature of “truth” and “reality” have already mostly dissolved – you don’t need me adding to the problem with bullshit pranks.

🦠 The knock-on effects of a COVID-19 infection currently include long-term cardiac damage, and, possibly, long-term brain damage. To that, you can add an increased risk of developing diabetes. Keep in mind – we’re not talking “Long COVID,” here. This is just what you might be dealing with after even a so-called “mild” COVID-19 infection. Get your shots; wear your masks.

📊 I keep hearing this “70% of Americans disapprove of the direction of the country” statistic being touted all over the place this week, which is weird, because that number is from January. Like. Why is everyone talking about it now?

💩 Sarah Palin has announced she’s running for Congress in Alaska. I thought that was an April Fool’s at first, but the New York Times is reporting the story.

This Week’s Posts

Anti-gay, anti-trans, anti-woman, anti-Semitic, & anti-POC legislation, activism, & hate crimes

I don’t want to live in a country where it’s okay for this kind of racist, misogynist, anti-Semitic, homophobic bullshit to be the norm.

This is the tip of the iceberg. This is just the stuff I could remember off the top of my head, so I could Google links about it.

People, we have a fucking problem. Thirty to forty percent of the American population is driving this shit, and it’s only getting worse. I don’t know what the answer here is, but I know we better figure one out quick, because this is a bad situation and I don’t want to live in a country where it’s okay for this kind of racist, misogynist, anti-Semitic, homophobic bullshit to be the norm.

900,000 Dead

Sometime this weekend we reached 900,000 American deaths from COVID-19.

Sometime this weekend we reached 900,000 American deaths from COVID-19.

🦠 Poynter: 900,000 Americans have died from COVID-19

This weekend, the U.S. death toll from COVID-19 passed the 900,000 mark. Only two months ago, President Joe Biden observed the country passing 800,000 COVID-19 fatalities.

But somehow, the 900,000 figure barely makes news. So many have died and so many are still dying from the virus that, in our quest to feel normal again, we have become numb to the numbers.

This number is almost certainly too low – the real number is probably already over a million, but the current “official” total is sitting at 902, 719 this morning.

Early on, under Trump, many Republican states started fiddling with their numbers, failing to report COVID-19 deaths or reporting them as something else to make the situation look better than it was. I haven’t heard that this has changed, so I assume that’s still happening.

This number, 902,719, also doesn’t account for the non-COVID-19 deaths that are happening because COVID has overwhelmed hospitals and doctors, and people aren’t getting the care they need. Heart attack patients who couldn’t get into an ER. Cancer or dialysis patients who couldn’t get treatment. Deaths of neglect and despair.

Counting all that, the number is so much higher than 902,719.

The Omicron Wave

I guess we just gave up on COVID.

I want to direct your attention to this blog post, written by author Chuck Wendig: “The Great Surrender: How We Gave Up And Let COVID Win.

I feel like I’ve lost my goddamn mind, but we’ll get back to that point soon. Let’s start with this. Two things seem to be true at this moment in the pandemic:

First, that our numbers are higher than they’ve ever been, in most cases not just by a hair’s breadth, but often by two, three, even four times their previous peaks.

Second, that we are doing less now to mitigate cases than ever before.

This blog post sums up a lot of the feelings of general am I going crazy?-ness that I’ve been having as I watch case counts climb across the US and here at home.

A couple of years ago I signed up for the Oregon Health Authority’s daily COVID-19 email update, so every weekday the OHA emails me the daily case count. I’ve been watching these numbers for two frickin’ years, which in itself seems insane. But anyway, I’m pretty sure at the worst we hit somewhere between 2,000 and 2,500 new cases a day.

Last Thursday we had over 10,000 new cases in one day. I’m bracing myself for today’s email, which will give us the total over-the-weekend numbers. If things hold, it’ll be like 30,000 new cases. I expect to have a tiny little heart attack when I open that one up.

But back when we were hitting 2,000 new cases a day, the nursing homes were shut down, the stores were shut down, the restaurants were shut down, and schools were online-only. We have none of that now. I mean, we’re one of the few states that still has an indoor mask mandate, but that’s it.

The other day my boyfriend had to run to the grocery store and it was a total zoo. Everyone was out sick, so the handful of employees that could show up were working in a madhouse. The lines for the cashiers ran all the way to the back of the store for no reason, other than there were no employees. And this is the state of things all over town.

I feel like I’m going fucking insane. This is objectively, measurably, visibly worse than anything we dealt with, even at the beginning of the pandemic, even at Delta’s height.

Why aren’t we doing anything? Why are we just happy-assing around with everything open? Why aren’t we shutting things down again? Where are those test Biden was supposed to mail us? Why aren’t we getting N95s in the mail every week? Where’s the stimulus money so people can stay home and be safe? Where’s the WFH mandates?

I’m super bad at math, but 10,000 is way more than 2,000, isn’t it? Like, I’m pretty sure it is.