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I am sorry about your house! That makes me sad for you, but I do believe that God has a plan and it’s better than yours or mine. ;) I sound like Job’s friends.

I enjoyed catching up on your journal. I have no idea what to think about the Covid issue. I was offered the shot as being a farmer, but I didn’t sign up for it. I don’t have issue with vaccinations, so I’m sure eventually I will get it, but I’d like to wait and see for a couple years. That said, I wonder if it will be a requirement for my kids to go back to public school. In that case it will take more consideration on my part.
 

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"The Tokyo Metropolitan Government plans to conduct clinical trials of the anti-parasitic drug Ivermectin at metropolitan and public hospitals to assess its effectiveness against COVID-19, Nikkei has learned."


It will be months before they have answers, but I'm glad they are asking the question.
 

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I know some people who plan on taking it. A man was just telling me that his brother and his family took it. It would be easy enough to do I guess.
 

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I don't know if I would take it or not. I'd really like to see better data. Survival rates are 99.5% in my age group so you need a large sample size to say X helps with any certainty. I don't think trials like that exist - yet. Maybe Tokyo and Oxford will provide us the data we need.
 

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Husband said he intends to. I probably would; I don’t see the harm in being wormed. Lol. Do you ever think about that? It is the one solid health standard for animals. Everyone agrees and everyone worms their pets and livestock. Yet, for some reason we think that we humans are so particularly clean and perfect that we no longer need wormed. Of course we wouldn’t have worms! Disgusting!

I know a group, who are of a different culture than our own, who do worm all their school kids and their families occasionally when someone is said to have gotten infected. I doubt there is any difference between their children and mine, and I wish I knew when they were doing it because I would join them!
 

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I guess it bothers me a little if people take that because of some perceived distrust of the actual vaccine, which has gone through rigorous clinical trials. If they don't believe that science, but are willing to take something based on even less science, that doesn't make any sense to me.

I do think about things like ingesting wormers and other antibiotics in the context of having backyard chickens. There are so few meds available for poultry because there's no financial incentive to go through the process of testing/FDA approval on meds that are likely helpful and safe, but without testing, not officially allowed. The backyard chicken community seems pretty savvy at using "off label" meds to nurse chickens through infections, wounds, internal problems, etc. I've wormed my hens over the years using horse Safeguard, and made my best guess about egg withdrawal periods (but also figured the minuscule amount of wormer passing through wasn't going to hurt us). My husband thought I was nuts the first time he caught me feeding monistat to an old hen to clear sour crop, but you know what, it worked like a charm 😉 I appreciate why access to animal antibiotics are restricted, and why we regulate medicines fed to the factory level food supply. But I do feel frustrated when I can see one of my chickens clearly has an eye infection, and I know what antibiotic she needs and how to use it, but I can't get it for her unless I can convince a vet to write me a script. Or just buy fish antibiotics, which for some reason are not regulated and the same exact thing?!
 

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@egrogan I know what you are saying! It bothers me, the micromanaging of the medical industry. It’s about money to me. Yes, I completely understand that antibiotic overuse creates germs that are superbugs. I also get that people might take an antibiotic or another drug that might hurt them without proper oversight. Same for treating their animals...

Yet I also see it this way: my girls and I have asthma. This is unchanging. Can I get an inhaler without a prescription? Nope. Can I get a prescription without a doctor visit? Nope. The doctor requires a visit every 6 months. That visit costs a lot of money. $300 after insurance. So, for each of us to get our prescription it would take $1800 a year, besides what it costs for the inhaler.

A bladder infection is easy to know when you have it, and yet getting the smzs to treat it requires a lot of money. Simple things they make very difficult, and in turn, people like me get worse care. Animals too... it is easy enough to know your horse needs antibiotics in certain situations, but not easy to get them.

The medication to sedate animals would be another that would be so beneficial to animals for their owners to have. I have stapled and sewn many dogs back together while someone held them down. It would be kinder to have them sedated, but it is kind also to not allow them to die of their injuries.

I don’t think the people behind the rules truly care if a person is misusing sedatives, because drug users will find drugs in one way or another. Instead, they care about the money spent. People will spend the money for the necessary medicines most of the time. This is especially true if they are frightened to make any of those decisions themselves. So, it doesn’t matter if you chose between groceries and an inhaler to them.
 

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@Knave, so frustrating about long-term meds for chronic conditions like your asthma; you know you need it, you know how to use it, but you still need so much external "permission" to get it. Or (apologies @bsms), birth control. WHY can I not buy over the counter pills? They don't even cost anything anymore with my insurance, but I still need annual exams and prescriptions from the doctor, and monthly visits to the pharmacy to have them filled. It should be far easier.
 

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FWIW: I get checked for skin cancer every 6 months. They removed several basal cell carcinomas and one filled with cells that would have turned into melanoma cancer. But...every 6 months I have to renew my insurance permission to be seen by the doc. At least with the COVID stuff, they were willing to renew the paperwork over the phone this time instead of requiring me to go see a nurse at the base hospital who would decide if I really need to see the dermatologist again - although he's an MD and has told me I need to be seen twice a year for the rest of my life.

I don't know if ivermectin works. I've read it is very well tolerated by humans. Not sure why they can't at least give doctors permission to TRY it since it is likely to do no harm and MIGHT help. Heck, placebos often help - no one knows why.

Just seems Big Business and Big Government protect each other. Not exactly a political statement since I'm well to the right politically while my well to the left niece agrees whole heartedly. We've gone through similar with the dogs. Want a pain killer for a dog? See a vet and get a prescription! Your dog is suffering and no vet will see him for 3 days? Sucks to be your dog, eh! Or drive to Mexico and buy some over the counter. Just don't get caught bringing it in! What are you trying to do? Ease your dog's suffering without permission?
 

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Something horse related, finally: Rode Bandit today for the second time in a month or so. He was...bouncy? Energetic? Started in an older snaffle, one with a roller & double-joints. He was heavy on the front. Seemed pre-occupied. The roller? Not used to being ridden? I don't know. Switched to his normal snaffle, a single joint O-ring. He was better in it, but maybe because we'd spent 15 minutes fussing already?

Lots of fast trots. Quite a few canters. Fast canters given the small size of my arena (70x120 max, about 60x100 max used). I was riding with two hands (rare) and posting much of the trotting (rare). At one point, he was falling into the turn at a canter. It is OK to LEAN into a turn, but not FALLING, which has a very different feel. So I kept tightening the turn until we were doing what was, for a 30 foot diameter circle, a fast canter. He usually relaxes into rolling canter but he was doing a good clip. I was worried, given his attitude, that he'd buck when we exited the canter so I switched to one hand, put my palm against the rear of the horn, we straightened out - and he did nothing. Just slowed. Then stopped. Went to two hands again and he switched to a fast trot.

Well, I needed the workout. So did he, I expect. I had my longest stirrup setting at the start and switched after 5 minutes to the next hole higher (1.75" gap IIRC). After 30 minutes, he was settling and I was pooped, so I called it quits. I'm out of riding shape. More than he is, I guess.

I wrote on another thread that I think giving a horse some independence in gaits, transitions, etc part of the time is good for a rider. If you do a stand to canter transition without asking for it, exactly, other than leaning a bit forward, well, that isn't bad practice for a spook into a canter. So I was directive at times but didn't put up a fuss if he gave me something I hadn't asked for. My back isn't sore but my legs are so I guess I ride mostly in my legs. Not my butt. And I think that is good on a squirrelly horse.

We're going to go look at a number of homes in the Hereford area tomorrow, south of Sierra Vista. All are on 4-5 acres. We actually hit a gallop briefly a few times today in our 60x100' circles. I think of myself as a trail rider, not an arena one. But if I had room for a 300 x 125 foot arena, I might switch. We could gallop in that distance and I enjoyed working harder at my riding than I do most of the time on the trail. Plenty of dirt roads going between the 4-5 acre properties but not much by way of trails there. Unless you trailer. But with enough room, I could have fun riding in an arena. And if I broke up a flake of hay into 4 parts and let Bandit stop and eat a few bites at times, Bandit would be fine with it. He understands working for food.


Hereford is close to the border - that is Mexico in the bottom of the picture. Sierra Vista is 50,000 people about 10 miles away, and Ft Huachuca is about 15 miles. Very civilized compared to the areas we've been looking at. But Sierra Vista has a 100 bed hospital and we're at an age that we need to think about things like that. And there are no interstate gas pipelines running through any of the properties we'll look at tomorrow. I now know to look for that potential issue!
 

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Sounds like a very energetic ride!

Interesting to hear about the Ivermectin and such. Most of my coworkers have had their second Covid vaccine. Although I've heard a blanket statement that the benefits outweigh the side effects, for me personally that is not true. For my age bracket and gender, there is a .04% risk of dying from Covid. That means if all the women my age in OR got Covid, about 24 would die, and most of those would be those with obesity, diabetes, drug users, etc. My personal risk from Covid is almost nil.

Meanwhile, if I get the vaccine, most likely I would have to lose work for a couple of days and use my hard-earned vacation money to cover the hours. That is judging by the fact that 7 out of 10 people who had the second vaccine called in sick for a couple of days. Most had a fever, chills and/or sweats, and other symptoms that kept them from being able to work. One nurse has been out for a week.

For many people, the risk from Covid far outweighs the negatives of the vaccine, I just don't fit under that blanket. Some might consider it a duty to others to go through that, but I'll ask if it came at the price of hundreds of dollars (my vacation hours that will otherwise be spent getting paid to be traveling somewhere), how far your duty would go. If you saw a stranger on the corner and they said hey, if you give him $500 right now you'll lower his chance of Covid, would you do it? I feel like that's what they're asking me to do. Use my own money to potentially protect a stranger. Rather than give money, I think I'll continue to wash my hands, not cough or sneeze around anyone and maintain distance. It's just cheaper for me.
 

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I find the thoughts on taking the vaccine very interesting. I live in small rural village of 150 people. And that village is in a rural county in NW IL. COVID hoax and anti vaccine are very common place here. Unfortunately in my very small village we have had 3 people get COVID - 1 died and the other is on oxygen and in a wheelchair and the third (wife of the second person is fine after flu like symptoms) The person that passed was an older gentleman (77) with no underlying health conditions. What makes his death more of a tragedy is that his son-in-lay passed from H1N1 when that ran rampant. So that family has suffered immensely from foreign virus'. The other gentleman was 66 with no underlying health conditions and strongly anti vaccine. He and his wife both contracted the virus - they believe from church gatherings, and he became very ill with pneumonia and is now out of the hospital after 2 weeks and in a wheel chair until he gains his strength back but may be on oxygen for the rest of his life. I know a handful of people who have gotten 2 doses of the vaccine and the side effects were zero to fever and chills. I am on the fence about taking the vaccine - but I have had 20 hip replacements in 10 months so that puts me in the high risk category (I am 50 yrs old) I think @bsms has stated it very well though that our country looks at health care as a cash cow industry. Dr visits are required for so many non essential visits and they charge your insurance 100's of dollars for a 15 minute visit. Before we blame the Dr's look at what their employers take off the top. I am afraid of when that bubble pops as the fall out will be ugly.
 

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My youngest daughter has had both shots now. Said the second shot left her quite sick for 30 hours and sore for a few more days.

I know three retired nurses, none of whom plan to take the vaccine. Then there is the lady whose visitors tested positive and needed outpatient treatment. Since they couldn't travel, they stayed with her until well, quarantining in her house - and she didn't catch it. She sold pharmaceuticals before retiring and had to be very familiar with test results, safety standards, etc - and she is refusing to take the vaccine. I'm planning on taking it. But when people tell me I'll still need to avoid travel, wear masks (or double masks!) and have as little to do with other humans as possible even after being vaccinated....what IS the point?

While looking for places to live, we've visited 6 churches in Cochise County. All meeting live. No mask requirement, although folks are welcome to wear one if they wish. Singing allowed. Some space out the seating. Some don't. Like many churches, their "population" tends to be older. None have had outbreaks of COVID. The county itself has one of the lowest rates of infection in Arizona - and most of the cases have been in the border town of Douglas as folks flow from Mexico north to get better health care. (Nogales and Yuma are also the highest rates of infection in the state for the same reason). It is also a county where lots of folks spend a lot of time outdoors. I think that helps.

COVID is funny, in a very unfunny way. It doesn't respond the way many viruses do. It is a very uneven killer. I think many people are genetically resistant already. They either won't catch it, or their body will toss it off as easily as we do the common cold. But no one KNOWS if they are genetically resistant. And for those who are not, you can go from mild or no symptoms to dead in days. Which one am I? Don't know. Can't know, until I catch it. I'm inclined to get the vaccine if I'm ever offered it. But the fact that 100% of the retired nurses I know are refusing gives me pause. As does the fact that I've been living my life as normal as possible for the last year, have two kids in school daily and had no issues. I'm tempted at least to take some ivermectin and skip the vaccine.
 

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The Department of Defense has 4 phases to rolling out the vaccine. I rank in....Number 4! Maybe I'll keep a spare tube of horse wormer around....until I become eligible for the vaccine in....2022? 2023?
 

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I got my second shot on Friday with no ill effects at all. My arm hardly ached. According to the CDC, I can start back going to church in 2 weeks! I've already started back teaching Sunday school, but I stopped going to church because almost nobody wears masks and they don't social distance. Lots of folks from church have had covid and spread it.
 

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I’m so glad you didn’t get sick @knightrider! My aunt (close to my own age however) and several of the teachers got the vaccines. The first one was fine, but the second made them all very sick. Two were only sick for a day, but the rest were two or three days. She said she was bedridden and miserable.
 

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Hiya @bsms and everyone here - that's such an interesting discussion on worming etc you had there, and sadly I was away, so excuse me for chiming in now.

Re ivermectin vs vaccine, I'll say that I agree with @egrogan's argument. Ivermectin isn't side-effect free either (especially for some dogs with Border Collie genes) plus it's not going to be anywhere near as effective as vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 if at all - I think in people there's a bit of a tendency to prefer the devil you know to the devil you don't, even in instances where they are equally risky, or the "old devil" is actually riskier. With the vaccine we don't know the long-term side-effects, but I do think that the potential long-term side-effects of actually getting infected with SARS-CoV-2 are likely to be worse than the potential long-term side-effects from vaccination. We already know about "long COVID" and some people getting organ damage from viral infection - and I doubt that we'll see that from a vaccine (which doesn't cause a viral infection, just creates antibodies).

I personally was worried about shorter-term side effects, like cytokine storms if exposed to virus after immunisation, and that's already been vetted in the drug trials. Coronavirus vaccines always were tricky for that reason and I'm glad they appear to have found ways past this problem. Of course, for long-term and unusual side-effects only the long term will tell us, as with anything (DDT, thalidomide etc), but personally I'll be lining up for the vaccination when it becomes available to me (I'm not in a priority group and we still don't have community transmission in WA) - just like I do flu shots. By the way, I didn't do flu shots for ten years at one point after two years in a row being stabbed into a nerve in the arm and then having weeks where I couldn't lift it without pain. But then Brett started working at a medical practice and raving about how good the nurse there was at doing shots and I've been getting annual flu shots again since then too, without having arm problems afterwards! (y)

Now as worming goes, I've actually taken ivermectin because none of the human over-the-counter wormers treat tapeworm, and the stuff you get on prescription has more listed side-effects than ivermectin (which is in human use in Africa etc). It's not that I had evidence of having tapeworm, but that one day I asked myself what the chances were of having escaped tapeworm infection given that I've had lifelong associations with dogs, not all of whom were necessarily wormed (neighbour's dogs, dogs in the street etc - I love dogs) - and that my dog potentially carries the really problematic hydatid tapeworm eggs on her coat because she rolls in fox scats, and foxes can carry hydatids, and hydatid disease is seriously nasty and very hard to treat - not like just having normal intestinal tapeworms.

By the way, I did not find any evidence of intestinal tapeworm after taking ivermectin - but I didn't look that closely, so it wasn't impossible - just I didn't have spools and spools of dying tapeworm coming out of me like you hear about in some of the tales that do the rounds, and like you can sometimes see when neglected dogs are wormed etc. That'd be freaky... and now I'm going to stop in case some of you are having dinner.

Oh and I don't dare give ivermectin to my dog, she has BC genes.

And something that shocked me:

Yet I also see it this way: my girls and I have asthma. This is unchanging. Can I get an inhaler without a prescription? Nope. Can I get a prescription without a doctor visit? Nope. The doctor requires a visit every 6 months. That visit costs a lot of money. $300 after insurance. So, for each of us to get our prescription it would take $1800 a year, besides what it costs for the inhaler.
OMG @Knave, that's so terrible! 😱 I get the odd asthma attack when I have really bad hayfever, so I always have Ventolin (the bronchiodilating reliever puffer, not the "preventer" which is corticosteroids which I really don't want to inhale no matter that it's "recommended" to do it - Ventolin is fine for me for treating the odd attack). Ventolin is over-the-counter and costs me $20 and the puffer usually lasts me 1-2 years. If I wanted a prescription puffer, the gap fee for a GP visit here is currently $48 and the rest ($38) is covered by Medicare - and there's many GPs who don't charge gap fees to patients who aren't well-off, like pensioners or people on social security or just on discretion, because they don't have much spare cash and request a "bulk bill" consultation.

I love our universal Medicare system in Australia and think it's wonderful value for money (2% of taxable income for average income earners, less for the less well-off, more for higher-income earners) and great peace of mind. Also I love that in our society, average people don't have these huge financial issues around going to see doctors or having to go to hospital or getting expensive drug treatment, because many drugs are subsidised by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme so that we pay around $20 per standard prescription (some things much less, like the contraceptive pill is $5 for three months' worth).

When I broke my foot two and a half years ago the total cost to me for the hospital visit and follow-up with the specialist orthopaedist at fortnightly intervals was zero. I chose to buy an i-Walk support crutch, but got ordinary crutches on an as-needed free loan from the local hospital for as long as they were useful to me - I returned them after six weeks. The moon boot was complimentary, they fitted it at the hospital.


A bladder infection is easy to know when you have it, and yet getting the smzs to treat it requires a lot of money. Simple things they make very difficult, and in turn, people like me get worse care.
And that's precisely what doesn't happen when everyone is automatically insured with a not-for-profit scheme through the tax system. No shareholders to skim money off the operation, no private-company executives with their salaries and bonuses, no average people stressing about medical treatment when they need it or getting lesser care, no pensioners limping around because they can't afford joint replacements, noone robbing the bank because their relative has a rare disease that's expensive to treat. The stress of illness and needing surgery etc is already enough without financial stress compounded on top of it. Also, our society saves money because people's problems are seen promptly, and lifestyle conditions get medical management early. So, less medical complications and less time off work than when you have to really consider money as well when seeing a doctor. I've got animals and I know what would come first if it was a choice of my seeing a doctor or my horse not getting his Cushings treatment. Thank goodness I never have to make that choice.

If you guys ever get a chance to get a Medicare system like Australia's I would highly recommend you go for it - it was brought in here in the 1980s and it's an almost universally beloved scheme that's working very well. The only people that don't love it are the right-wingers and the private insurance companies. 😛
 
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