I hate being right.
But this time you are going to hate it if I'm right, especially if you got jabbed.
I predicted when the jabfest started that evasion was extremely likely and VEI (Vaccine Enhanced Infection), whether through OAS, ADE or some related mechanism was so likely that I expected it; not "more likely than not", but "I wouldn't take the bet the other way even with a decent odds multiplier."
By the time Delta came through it looked like we had a lot of fading of effectiveness -- enough that for non-high risk people the math no longer worked, because the jabs were not protective enough to counterbalance the risk from the side effects -- but not VEI.
But there's a reason we usually need five years to qualify a jab, and this sort of risk is part of it. Viral mutation is a constant thing and it takes time to know whether the pattern suggests trouble. If it does you stop during the trials until you sort it out, because if you don't you screw a huge number of people, likely permanently, instead of a few volunteers.
Unfortunately Omicron showed up. It has a mutational pattern that does not make sense as a natural event, which instantly raised my eyebrows as its closest ancestors were seen nearly two years prior. But the real problem wasn't there -- it was that the data almost immediately showed negative effectiveness in those who were jabbed. That is being jabbed made it more likely that you'd get infected rather than less.
The original data was quite thin but it quickly got fleshed out -- in Denmark and Israel, to name two places to start. It has since shown the same pattern everywhere else that has high jab rates.
If you think about that for a minute it has a number of implications and all of them are nasty. VEI in any form can lead to wildly-elevated rates of severe disease and death because any mechanism that improves infectivity likely also increases the viral load (and damage) before the immune system can clear the infection. Thus if you find negative efficiency you ****ed up and must instantly stop any inoculation process as it is a near certainty you are doing severe harm.
This same negative impact has not been seen in people who were previously infected; while Omicron does indeed appear to get through prior infection immunity in some people prior infection remains partially protective against Omicron and significantly attenuates the virus, unlike vaccination. In other words if you had Covid and did not get jabbed while Omicron may well "get" you you're likely to not even recognize it as anything different than a cold.
Fortunately Omicron is much less replication-competent in the lungs on a base level, while still being very replication competent in the nose and other parts of the upper respiratory tract and, on the data, it appears to be much more-transmissible than prior variants as well, which is why it has out-competed Delta within the space of weeks. Specifically it appears that the wild variation seen with earlier strains, where most people weren't contagious at all while a few were wildly so disappeared: If you get Omicron you're contagious for the first couple of days to the point that anyone susceptible who gets near you is likely to get hit. It's not measles -- but it thinks it is.
This elimination of the crazy, random variation in communicability on a per-person basis also exposed the insanity of "masks" as a countermeasure. They never worked but you might think they did because the person who got Covid was one of the "very low spread" folks, thus they didn't give it to you! Voila -- masks work. Uh, actually they don't and now since Omicron doesn't behave that way you wear one, the other person wears one and you get hosed anyway. Thanks for playing; told you they were worthless among the general public. The response? Let's send everyone N95s! Yeah, they work great (NOT!) in the general public who doesn't understand the rules and couldn't follow them anyway given the various constraints, but heh, we gotta do something rather than simply admit we lied, masks were useless, virus will virus and now the virus has proved it to everyone just like influenza did in 1918.
There is some dispute over exactly how much less harm Omicron does in the lungs but its not a small difference -- it's a huge one and that's very, very good news. This is probably the luckiest draw (assuming it wasn't engineered this way, and it might have been) we've had to date with this virus because if it hadn't been anyone vaccinated would have been at wildly increased risk of death irrespective of whether they had Covid before or not.
In other words we dodged a serious bullet here that could have easily led to a Philippine Dengue-style disaster -- except instead of a few kids getting killed we could have easily lost five percent or more of all vaccinees -- that's at least ten million Americans alone and unlike the "blame the virus for everything" fest the first two years these really would have all been virus-caused and wildly enhanced by our jabfest.
Unfortunately with the wild potentiation of infectiveness by the jabs and that Omicron has outcompeted Delta based on what we know to date means there the balance of harms is not currently known. We may well take a very significant hit death-wise from this anyway among vaccinees simply because of wildly potentiating the virus in those people and if the negative effectiveness multiplier overwhelms the less-damaging-to-lungs aspect it's going to whack people in size and those who got jabbed are statistically at higher rather than lower risk -- and quite-possibly by a lot.
At present we do not know.
There is pre-existing evidence (all the way back to the fall, before Omicron) that being jabbed may inhibit induction of natural immunity if you get the virus after you take the shots. Whether that's temporary or permanent we have no idea but it showed up in the data, as I pointed out, both here and in the UK by the summer months. That should have instantly stopped the jab-fest but of course that would have required people admitting they advocated for (and even tried to mandate or did mandate) a stupid thing. Instead, in the US, they stopped reporting the data and hid what was becoming obvious. If the negative efficacy of the jabs against Omicron includes the same suppression of natural immunity that appears to be in the data for other strains, which we will not know for several months, those who got jabbed will be able to get continually reinfected with Omicron until the cumulative damage results in a severe or fatal case. If it happens this will be insanely ugly and effectively prevent Omicron from fading off with the circular firing squad repetitive victims being almost-exclusively comprised of vaccinees.
At present we do not know and we can't know if that suppression is in play with Omicron for several more months.
Its also possible the next mutational twist may restore some of the missing Omicron virulence in the lungs. I will note that this is not likely simply on the basic principles of entropy but our continued jabbing is putting a massive finger on the scale. If it happens and, as Israel has shown the 3rd jab is nearly worthless against Omicron then even a tiny increase in lung virulence could easily kill a million or more vaccinated Americans and again, given the negative effectiveness the most-seriously screwed would be those who took the jabs.
AT PRESENT WE DO NOT KNOW AND WE CANNOT PREDICT EVOLUTIONARY PATHS NOR, IT APPEARS, ARE WE VERY GOOD AT STOPPING INTENTIONAL HUMAN ACTIONS EITHER.
Note that the Federal Government has just pulled the EUAs for monoclonals. These are drugs that are, effectively, the "final product in the body" of being jabbed. They know damn well what the risk is -- not just that the drugs are worthless against Omicron but could end up boosting the infection, making it worse. Since these drugs are, basically, the product of the jabs the obvious risk that the same thing has or will happen with the jabs either with Omicron or what may evolve from it should be clear to anyone with an IQ greater than their shoe size.
At present we do not know.
Its possible that the negative effectiveness of the jabs will wear off. That would be excellent but it will only wear off if people stop taking jabs. If you keep trying to play for another month or two of "protection" that is followed by six months of enhanced infectivity you are eventually going to lose on that dice roll and get screwed. Of course all the pharma CEOs (who's primary purpose in life is to make money) plus the government agencies (who's primary purpose in life at this point is to keep you from hanging them for conning you into doing something stupid) are telling you to play for that extra couple of months.
At present we do not know and there is no way to find out for an extended period of time.
Anyone who tells you they know any, say much less all of these things and thus can compute this out and make a recommendation based on a reasoned evaluation is lying. The first of these conditions is bad enough and over time we will learn more about it, but by then Omicron will likely be gone, having infected damn near everyone.
Omicron and the vaccine negative effectiveness against it, which is now in full evidence, is a warning. A warning that included a wildly lucky draw from the evolutionary deck in that materially less virulence in the lungs doesn't provide much in the way of evolutionary advantage, never mind that the curious absence of visible precursors in public data, even though everyone has been looking for the last two years, strong suggests that it wasn't an evolutionary accident at all in the first place.
Whether the risk bucket for those who can get screwed will shrink to any material degree with time is not known. Only time with no more jabs will answer that question. Since coronaviruses have animal reservoirs the odds of this virus entirely disappearing approach zero.
We can't go back and un-jab those who did it. If what happened turns out to be a permanent enhancement in infective risk and the short straw comes up in evolution there's nothing anyone can do about it now. This could easily prove, as I warned might happen, to be the most-stupid public-health set of actions and worst public-health disaster in human history.
You have to be insane to deliberately expand that risk pool given the warning signal we have on the table today until all of the above questions can be answered with certainty, and there is just no way to do that other than time which we damn well should have taken in the first place.