Detroit (AFP) - Auto giant General Motors (GM), the main shareholder in autonomous car company Cruise, confirmed Friday that the business will cut 160 jobs, or eight percent, of its workforce."It was a very prudent action," GM chief Mary Barra told an online conference organized by Bank of America, noting that the layoffs will not involve technical staff dedicated to the company's mission of developing self-driving vehicles."They've grown very quickly," she said of Cruise, which employs 2,000 workers largely in the San Francisco Bay Area. GM bought Cruise Automation in 2017, and Cruise was spu...
Dear Pandemic Problems,
There's a growing rift between me and my son-in-law, who says the COVID-19 vaccines are not safe because they have not been "FDA approved." What makes our rift even more difficult? His wife and grown kids with families themselves will also not get the vaccine because of this FDA approval issue. What do I do?
Ruffled by Rifts
Ruffled by Rifts, it does appear that rifts are all around you — or at the very least, you are in the minority of being willing to get vaccinated in your family. I know it's frustrating, and rest assured that you are not alone. I've answered many questions now from people who find themselves in similar predicaments. Plus, it doesn't help that families being divided on whether or not to get vaccinated is adding fuel to perhaps decades of family drama, and at the very least four years of the Trump era tearing families apart.
I have no idea if your family members are staunch anti-vaxxers, or to what extent political allegiances play a role here. But I do know that undermining their concerns won't help if there is any hope of them getting vaccinated. The best approach is to listen to their concerns, and have empathy, which it sounds like you've done a little bit of already.
So, you say that your son-in-law is saying the COVID-19 vaccines are not "safe" because they have not been approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). While partly true, this is a classic example of how misinformation spreads. Technically, the COVID-19 vaccines haven't been "approved" by the FDA. However, all three vaccines available in the U.S. have been granted an emergency use authorization, also known as an EUA.
EUAs, by the way, aren't limited to vaccines — they sometimes are issued for medical devices, in vitro diagnostics, and some therapeutics. When it comes to passing an EUA, there are specific conditions that must be considered; they are likely to be granted in situations when "there are no adequate, approved, and available alternatives."
That is certainly that case with COVID-19. The FDA usually takes years to formally approve a vaccine, but in the coronavirus pandemic, the priority was to get a safe vaccine in as many peoples' arms as quickly as possible — hence the emergency use authorization.
But just because there's a bureaucratic difference between an EUA and approval doesn't mean that there isn't a rigor to attaining an EUA. Specific criteria must be met. For example, clinical trials must be done on tens of thousands of study participants to generate at least two months of sufficient scientific data needed for the FDA to determine a vaccine's safety and efficacy. You can read more about this process here.
In order to apply for full FDA approval, a company needs to show at least six months of data. Since Pfizer now has that, recently submitted an application for full approval. The FDA is expected to take at least a few weeks to review it, according to NBC News.
Now, what do you do? Well, I suggest expressing your concerns about their health and safety, and what the consequences are of not getting vaccinated. You could also note that attaining an emergency use authorization is a very rigorous process. And ask: Once the FDA formally approves the Pfizer vaccine, will you get it? While it's not ideal for your family members to wait, it's better than a straight-out refusal of getting vaccinated. Hopefully if they have more understanding into the EUA process, and perhaps speak with their doctors, they can be persuaded to be vaccinated.
Dear Pandemic Problems,
My husband is refusing to get the Covid vaccine. I will be fully vaccinated by the end of the week. Am I wrong to not want to be intimate with him for fear he could infect me?
Hesitant about Intimacy
Dear Hesitant about Intimacy,
Congratulations on being fully vaccinated so soon. As someone who recently joined the fully-vaccinated club, I feel so grateful not having to worry (as much) about getting the coronavirus, potentially dying from it or spreading it to people. It seriously feels so good, and I'm excited for you to feel so good, too.
And yet, you are at a crossroads with your husband not getting vaccinated. I'm curious, why is he refusing the vaccine? The first step to understanding someone's hesitancy is to better understand why they don't want to be vaccinated. It could be due to misinformation they've consumed, a previous trauma or experience.
You ask: "Am I wrong to not want to be intimate with him for fear he could infect me?"
Unfortunately, I cannot answer this question for you. The CDC has not issued guidance on sex between vaccinated and unvaccinated people, and what the risk is. (Hopefully they will soon.) The CDC states that vaccinated people can still possibly get infected and spread the virus to others, but there is still much to be learned from this situation. I'm definitely not a marriage therapist, but here's what I would tell my best friend: do not anything you're uncomfortable with, as that won't be good for your marriage.
I hope you and your spouse can talk about the implications of him not getting vaccinated, and how that might impact the future of your marriage. My hope is that he will listen, and carefully consider your concerns. If not, there's always couple's therapy. If you can't afford to pay out of pocket, check with your insurance or look for free or low-cost counseling options.
"Pandemic Problems" is an advice column that answers readers' pandemic questions — often with help from public health data, philosophy professors and therapists — who weigh in on how to "do the right thing." Do you have a pandemic problem? Email Nicole Karlis at firstname.lastname@example.org. Peace of mind and collective commiseration awaits.
The conversation got heated Thursday when "The View" co-host Meghan McCain lectured Sara Haines for continuing to be bothered over the Jan. 6 attacks on the U.S. Capitol instead of what she deemed to be "real problems."
The conversation began as the panel talked about outright denialism from Republicans on the House Oversight Committee Wednesday. Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-GA) announced that he is an insurrection denier to viewers, saying that those who attacked police, and trashed the Capitol were just "visitors" being "orderly" in Statuary Hall that day.
Rep. Pat Fallon (R-TX) said during the hearing that the attackers were just a "mob of misfits." Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) passed over the violence saying that "many…peacefully protested" on Jan. 6. Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA) claimed "it was Trump supporters who lost their lives that day," as if that somehow made the attack on the Capitol acceptable. Rep. Ralph Norman (R-SC) questioned how Attorney General Merrick Garland even knows that the mob was of Trump supporters.
"I feel like we're stuck in a Borat film," Haines said. "That was unbelievable to watch. And [Clyde] couldn't look up at the camera. He was looking at a script because I think he could barely believe and doesn't believe what it was saying."
She went on to say that Clyde made it sound like the people scaling the walls and breaking through the windows and doors were just peacefully protesting.
"I went to D.C. I don't know if that was the VIP package, but we weren't allowed to sit at Nancy Pelosi's desk and put our feet up and take pictures like you're visiting Santa Claus and storm the hallways," said Haines. "By the when they were walking through the hallways in 'an orderly fashion,' I think is what he said, they were saying 'Where do you think they are?' They were hunting down people. I mean, it's -- I don't know how anyone through that without completely shocked."
One of the main reasons that the Jan. 6 incident continues to be part of the discussion is that so many Republicans are now denying that it happened at all. Democrats have called for a Jan. 6 commission, modeled after the 9/11 commission to walk through the security failures, and other pieces of the attack and make recommendations on a path forward. Republicans are blocking the commission, in part, because they think there should be people on it that continue to deny it happened.
It prompted Meghan McCain to lash out about the media, who she said is "still talking" about Jan. 6 and avoiding critical reports on Joe Biden.
McCain said that she was unable to put gas in her car because the station in her neighborhood had lines down the street because "there's no gas whatsoever." She claimed the country is in a crisis "like it's the 1970s all over again." Due to the hacking of the Colonial Pipeline, many in the eastern United States freaked out and flocked to fill up their cars with anticipation that prices would skyrocket. That has resulted in a gas shortage.
"You know what's also a strategy, Sara, a strategy is not focusing on anything the Biden administration is doing right now that is leading this country into a crisis." McCain continued. "There's a crisis at our border, inflation rates are sky-high, the middle east is on fire, unemployment is crazy and a lot of Americans can't figure out how they're going to get gas in their car."
As a fact-check, the "crisis" on the border has been going on for years, from the Obama administration through Trump and into Biden. Until there's a massive fix that solves the crime, drug and climate change problems in Latin America it is likely to continue, explained Jorge Ramos in The New York Times last month.
As Raw Story explained Wednesday, the inflation problem isn't actually a problem. Inflation dropped so significantly during the pandemic last year that it appears to be stabilizing, according to economics reporters at the Washington Post. One hundred-year chart shows the so-called "inflation problem" in the proper context.
The people who have been wrong about inflation forever would like to use their pretend concerns about inflation to… https://t.co/JoPRzw6xBa— LOL🇺🇸GOP (@LOL🇺🇸GOP) 1620863470.0
Co-host Sunny Hostin chimed in after McCain explaining why people are still talking about Jan. 6 — because it still hasn't been resolved.
See the full video below:
QAnon-loving Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) is coming under criticism for stalking and harassing Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), whom she falsely accused of supporting "terrorism" on Wednesday.
However, a compilation of videos put together on Twitter by user David Waldman show that Greene has a pattern of stalking her political opponents and harassing them even as they try to mind their own business.
One of the most infamous such instances came before she was ever elected to office when she harassed school shooting survivor David Hogg on the streets of Washington D.C., where she yelled at him about his support for new gun safety laws.
In 2020, Greene also visited the United States Capitol building and tried to force Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) to retake their oaths of office on the Bible instead of the Koran.
Waldman also links to complaints from Reps. Cori Bush (D-MO) and Marie Newman (D-IL), who both complained about Greene stalking them.
Check out the videos below.
Marjorie Taylor Greene is a dangerous stalker. The woman followed David Hogg, I believe under 18 at the time, with… https://t.co/lXOJ6Qmlxu— Reesus Patriot (@Reesus Patriot) 1620911176.0
Marjorie Taylor Greene visited the Capitol in 2019 and falsely claimed that Reps. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib are… https://t.co/dbGFK6udFd— Eric Hananoki (@Eric Hananoki) 1597775914.0
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