Questions tagged [covid-19]

Questions about political actions related to the outbreak of a novel coronavirus in 2019, SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19. For general public health policy questions, use [public-health]. For questions requiring medical answers, please ask on https://medicalsciences.stackexchange.com

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116 votes
9 answers
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Why is Trump dubbing COVID-19 as the "Chinese virus" considered offensive, while many past epidemics have had similar naming schemes?

To preface this, I'm not a supporter of Trump, but I disagree with the way some major media outlets have criticized him over his nickname for COVID-19, the "Chinese virus". In addition, it is not ...
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86 votes
10 answers
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Why are masks a political topic in the US?

Why has coronavirus become such a political topic? What I mean by this - why are things such as mask wearing so political? Shouldn't we know whether or not wearing masks work? Why does the answer to ...
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77 votes
7 answers
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Why is COVID-19 prompting such wide scale action versus other infectious diseases?

The COVID-19 outbreak has been dominating the news recently, with loads of headlines and efforts being made to stop it from spreading. Why this disease? It's not one of the most lethal ones, or one ...
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65 votes
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Why is the lab leak theory such a big deal?

I don't really understand what is the point fighting over about the lab leak theory. Certainly other virology labs should care, they want to be sure they don't make the same mistake. And certainly ...
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61 votes
5 answers
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What are the objections to Mitch McConnell's COVID-19 Bill?

In the US Senate on Sunday, March 22nd, Democrats blocked the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act in a 47-47 vote that was split along party lines. McConnell indicated that he ...
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52 votes
7 answers
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What reasons are offered by those who both endorsed social distancing and then endorsed the BLM mass protests?

I hope this doesn't get labeled as a bad faith question. I'm genuinely curious what the rationale is for supporting the mass gatherings and protesting following the death of George Floyd, despite ...
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51 votes
6 answers
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Why do Western countries seem to be less efficient than Asian countries in fighting against COVID-19?

So far it appears that Western countries especially in Europe (e.g. Italy, Spain, UK, France, Germany) struggle to curb the spread of COVID-19. This is in contrast to most Asian countries (China, ...
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8 answers
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What benefit does the USA gain when it withdraws from WHO?

According to the Financial Times, Donald Trump has threatened to quit the World Health Organization (WHO). Donald Trump has threatened to withdraw from the World Health Organization unless it ...
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3 answers
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During the COVID-19 pandemic, why is it claimed that the US President is making a trade-off of human lives for the economy?

This question posted recently makes a lot of assumptions, including the US President is currently making a trade-off of human lives for the economy or Trump's pro-economy death-permissive ...
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43 votes
10 answers
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What is the reasoning behind nighttime restrictions during pandemic?

Many countries apply different forms of nighttime restrictions during pandemic: curfews, early restaurant closings. What is the reasoning behind that? Intuitively it seems to me that people are less ...
42 votes
8 answers
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Have any countries that are currently in lockdown published a detailed long-term exit plan?

Currently almost every country around the world is in a state of lockdown. However all of them seem to be in a state of 'indefinite' lockdown, with no long-term plan published anywhere. Has any ...
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41 votes
4 answers
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Why are Democrats blocking COVID-19 pandemic relief bills with the objection that it's not enough instead of passing it and then passing another?

I read an article that said that the most recent COVID-19 relief bill was not passed because Democrats didn't think it was enough. The article is here: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/09/11/gops-coronavirus-...
41 votes
3 answers
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Does the Japanese government not have the authority to cancel the Olympics?

An article talks about how Japan recently declared a third state of emergency due to the pandemic, most people in Japan don't want the 2020 Olympics to take place, and how their health care system is ...
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39 votes
3 answers
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Prior to COVID-19, had any country fiscally targeted unvaccinated individuals?

Upon reading that Quebec may impose a health tax on unvaccinated Canadians, I wondered the following: Prior to COVID-19, had any country fiscally targeted unvaccinated individuals?
39 votes
3 answers
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What political and social factors underlie Sweden's controversial response to COVID-19?

Sweden has adopted a far less radical set of policies in reaction to COVID-19 than most other European states. Many other European states are in "lock-down", with severe restrictions on ...
38 votes
6 answers
12k views

Why has Russia declined OPEC's request to cut oil production?

On Friday, Russia declined to participate in a plan devised by the Saudi-led Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to cut oil production levels, in order to keep oil prices steady ...
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36 votes
4 answers
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What is the rationale behind delaying the imposition of more radical Covid-19 countermeasures?

On March 3rd, the UK government released a publication detailing its Coronavirus action plan, which contains the four-stage plan that will be implemented throughout the country, in all four devolved ...
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34 votes
2 answers
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What are the implications of Hungary's emergency coronavirus bill?

Today, Hungary's parliament voted by 137 to 53 to enact the new COVID-19 bill, which apparently grants Prime Minister Viktor Orbán sweeping powers, in order to allow Hungary to deal with the crisis. ...
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31 votes
6 answers
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Why did Trump's "rally 'round the flag" effect evaporate so quickly?

When the WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic, alarm bells went off in the public and Trump's approval started rising. On 538's polling average, his approval rating rose from 42.5% to 45.8%. But, as of ...
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31 votes
10 answers
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Is there an explanation for why ~20% of Americans think the US's response to COVID-19 has been better than South Korea's?

In this article, it's claimed that 20% of the US thinks the US is handling the COVID-19 outbreak better than South Korea, 21% think it's about the same, 26% think it's worse, and 32% aren't sure. This ...
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30 votes
11 answers
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Why are Democrats fighting so hard to vaccinate the reluctant?

Even though safe and effective COVID vaccines have been given emergency use authorization in the US, some people are still reluctant to receive them, over safety concerns, preference for "natural ...
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29 votes
14 answers
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Why is there so much reluctance to make the COVID vaccine mandatory for adults?

For all the talk on how its important for everyone to get vaccinated, not a single country has so far made the COVID vaccine mandatory for adults. Some states are making it mandatory for college ...
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29 votes
2 answers
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What happened to the vaccine panels that were planned by Democratic leaders back in 2020?

Governor Inslee of Washington promised to create a panel of experts to review the safety of vaccines back in October 2020: Washington will be joining other western states to take steps to review the ...
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29 votes
9 answers
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Why is the lack of seasonal agricultural workers considered a problem given the high unemployment rate in every Western country?

Currently farmers in Western countries are warning governments that without foreign workers their fields will be impossible to harvest: “We are in need of a lot of foreign workers,” Eystein Ruud, a ...
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29 votes
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What was the US government's official plan for dealing with future pandemics prior to 2020?

Pandemics are not a new phenomenon and people like Bill Gates have been talking about preparing for the next one for many years now. Did the US government have an official plan in place for what they'...
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1 answer
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Why are non-Schengen countries excluded from the Covid-19 US travel ban?

The US government suspended travel from Europe to US, except for countries which are not in the Schengen area such as the UK and Ireland. Many comments from EU leader seem to assume that this is a ...
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27 votes
10 answers
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Have any public figures faced any consequences for breaking pandemic rules, especially their own?

I know worldwide many leaders have been caught hypocritically breaking their own pandemic rules or ignoring their own guidelines. I won't name names to keep this neutral, but I'm sure we can all ...
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27 votes
4 answers
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Has any country's government concluded they need more decentralization to fight Covid-19 or future pandemics?

Somewhat predictably, China has blamed their initial problems in responding to Covid-19 to decentralization and poor decisions from regional authorities: The rare admission, from Director of China's ...
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27 votes
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When did the WHO decide there was evidence of human-to-human transmission of Covid-19?

A January 14 WHO tweet that has been widely re-broadcast months later by the right-wing US press (e.g. NYPost, WashExam but not exclusively by them, e.g. Bloomberg opinion piece, Politico o.p.) said ...
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What's with the threatened Trump veto due to insufficient individual covid relief?

According to Reuters: Trump said he wants Congress to increase the amount in the stimulus checks to $2,000 for individuals or $4,000 for couples, instead of the “ridiculously low” $600 for ...
26 votes
3 answers
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Is there mass unemployment in the USA or is there not?

When reading statements of Donald Trump, e.g. this Tweet, there is a better employment rate than ever in the USA right now. But many news sources in Europe report, that there is mass unemployment. ...
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2 answers
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How much of the US media referred to the COVID-19 as the "Wuhan Virus" until it received an official designation from the WHO?

It has been claimed in a fairly upvoted answer here (which is why this not a notable-enough claim for Skeptics SE) that For a fun exercise, put a news organization into google's search along with "...
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25 votes
6 answers
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Why doesn't India mass-produce COVID-19 vaccines?

I read (mirror): [January 5, 2021] India has one of the largest vaccine manufacturing capacities in the world (including the largest vaccine producer - Serum Institute of India) and has secured ...
25 votes
10 answers
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How do leaders choose between lives and money?

Amid the current pandemic many governments imposed heavy social restrictions in an attempt to flatten the curve and thereby save lives, and those restrictions take their toll on the economies. For ...
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24 votes
5 answers
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How has the handling of the coronavirus outbreak (CoViD-19) affected Donald Trump's approval ratings?

From the outside it appears that the coronavirus (CoViD-19) outbreak has caught the USA off guard and that it's been handled quite poorly to date. So my assumption is that this would have a negative ...
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24 votes
1 answer
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What are the objections to Pelosi's COVID-19 Bill?

Subsequent to the Democrats blocking the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act in the US Senate on Sunday, March 22nd, in a 47-47 vote that was split along party lines, Nancy ...
22 votes
1 answer
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What has the reaction from the EU been to Trump suspending travel from the whole 26-country Schengen zone?

Breaking news US President Donald Trump has announced sweeping new travel restrictions on Europe in a bid to combat the spread of the coronavirus. In a televised address, he said travel from 26 ...
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21 votes
3 answers
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Why wasn't Point Roberts given an exception to the Canada-US border closure?

Point Roberts is a small community in Washington off the tip of the Tsawwassen peninsula south of Vancouver, with a population of around a thousand. The only roads connecting Point Roberts to the rest ...
20 votes
4 answers
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Why can one still buy newspapers during lockdown?

In the middle of the Covid-19 lockdown, at least in France and in Italy newsagents are in the list of first-necessity stores that remain open. "To go buy a newspaper" is a legitimate reason to leave ...
20 votes
1 answer
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Does the signing statement made by President Trump nullify the oversight provisions of the CARES Act?

On March 27th, President Trump signed the COVID-19 stimulus bill, the CARES Act, into law. This came after days of debate, where Democratic lawmakers insisted on the inclusion of oversight measures ...
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19 votes
3 answers
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Why is North Korea refusing COVID vaccine donations?

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/kim-jong-un-rejects-covid-vaccine-offer-urges-north-korea-n1278445 North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ordered officials to wage a tougher epidemic prevention campaign ...
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17 votes
4 answers
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Why is Trump promoting hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for COVID-19?

As of this writing (2020-05-18) Trump has publicly recommended the use of hydroxychloroquine as a preventive measure for COVID-19. In addition, he has publicly announced that he is taking it himself ...
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3 answers
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Questionable COVID-19 procurement outside the UK

There is an ongoing situation in the UK regarding the propriety of the procurement of some goods and services during the response to COVID-19. Conservative PPE contracts Michael Gove and VIP lane ...
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2 answers
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What is the official position of human rights organizations on protest restrictions during the pandemic?

Australia was recently in the news for restricting the right to protest during a surge in COVID cases: Hundreds of fines have been issued and dozens charged in Sydney after anti-lockdown protesters ...
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16 votes
1 answer
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Does the US President have the power to quarantine a state or other locality?

On Saturday, March 28th, President Trump told reporters that he was "considering imposing a quarantine on New York state". He later tweeted that he was giving consideration to a quarantine of "hot ...
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15 votes
4 answers
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Is the West hoarding Covid-19 vaccines?

I read in the news that some organizations/poorer countries have been complaining that western countries are hoarding the Covid 19 vaccines. I have doubts about how true this is. True, some countries ...
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15 votes
3 answers
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Why did China fail to force their elderly to get vaccinated against COVID, despite being an authoritarian state?

Hong Kong has been in the news recently due to their extremely low vaccination rate for the elderly: Just 15% of elderly residents in Hong Kong’s care homes are fully vaccinated against Covid-19, ...
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14 votes
2 answers
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What kind of interference was feared by Democratic leaders when creating the "vaccine panels"?

Governor Inslee of Washington promised to create a panel of experts to review the safety of vaccines back in October 2020. Zach Lipton states in a comment that the following concerns were up in the ...
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14 votes
1 answer
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Has the effect of crises on leaders' approval ratings been researched?

In the last few weeks, the leaders of practically every country I've looked at have seen their approval ratings improve significantly. An obvious conclusion to draw is that this is due to the COVID-19 ...
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13 votes
5 answers
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Are there any polls explicitly measuring "quarantine fatigue" in Western countries?

There are numerous articles talking about how people are tired of staying in lockdown: As Greece enters its third week since restrictive measures were first imposed to combat the spread of ...
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