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I would have thought that the analysis of Covid infectees by their political affiliation was, in principle, testable, provided the relevant data is collected, which it probably is not being done at the moment.

You would have to control for other risk factors - number of people in home, urban, suburban, and rural locations, age, customer facing occupations, face mask wearing or not etc: not an easy task, but not intrinsically impossible.

In fact we need statistical data on how effective various mitigation strategies are - we may be expending a lot of effort on less efficient measures. Just because Trumpistas oppose mask wearing doesn't prove they are wrong.

For a long time public health authorities in Ireland regarded mask wearing as unnecessary and ineffective outside of hospital and clinical settings. It's not entirely clear what caused them to change their minds... certainly I have seen no conclusive data.

Personally I think mask wearing should be required in public places where social distancing is not possible, but more because of the precautionary principle rather than hard evidence of effectiveness.

The US is currently conducting a live social experiment in different approaches to reacting to the pandemic. We just need to collect the data to know what strategies work best, and to what degree.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Nov 22nd, 2020 at 04:09:38 PM EST
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