Delightful listen. Hope y’all do the follow up pod once you read the book, and would be very interested in reading the tennis piece the two of you could team up on.

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Can two prima donnas work well together?

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Ethan/Ashlee -

This was a great podcast episode, one of your best ones.

I have a long simmering theory about the vaccines, which you may find a bit exculpatory of Fauci and the government, and I suppose it is, but it's exculpatory of both administrations. Here goes.

A couple things happened simultaneously:

1) We needed a vaccine. We accepted that we needed a fast-tracked vaccine, because a lot of people were dying. Yes, Bill Maher is right that they were mostly older or sicker, but that's still millions of people, and we didn't want them to die either. So the Trump admin (and I am no fan) did the one thing they can truly brag about: they removed the red tape that has to do with time consuming years and years of clinical trials.

2) We got a vaccine. It works, at least in preventing deaths. But - it's a shitty vaccine, as vaccines go. And the pharma companies knew this, everybody knew this, because we didn't have years to fully work on it and improve it. We had to get it out to prevent deaths. So the government and the pharma companies both over-promised, maybe intentionally, maybe innocently, and got most people to take the vaccine. But in over-promising, they made themselves easy targets afterwards when it turns out you can still get COVID after the vaccine, and still spread it after the vaccine. So the good part (preventing deaths and catastrophic health outcomes) ends up being overshadowed by the bad (the vaccine doesn't exactly do what we hoped and what we were promised).

3) Because the masses are extremely polarized and skeptical and frankly childish, the government and scientists simply cannot have an honest conversation about what happened here: we have a shitty vaccine as vaccines go, but it's preferable to no vaccine, and it probably saved a ton of lives, and that's the best outcome we could achieve in the abbreviated timeline. That in itself should be OK! But because of politics, it isn't. And that's where I blame the public for not "getting it". The public should understand that this vaccine was kinda miraculous and while it didn't fix everything, it fixed the biggest issue. And for that the Trump admin and the Biden admin should both be applauded, for letting it get created quickly and then getting it passed out for free and fairly efficiently to everyone who wanted it.

As someone who knows multiple older (but not SUPER old) people who died of Covid before the vaccine was available, I'm quite certain they'd have gladly taken the vaccine to avoid death, and wouldn't have talked themselves into "I'm not getting a vaccine because this just helps Pfizer and Moderna". I think most people who know directly people who died feel this way. But I can see how if you don't really know anyone who died, and if you got a very light Covid, especially before the vaccine, you might be skeptical of all of it.

It just sucks because if we ever do have a more deadly pandemic that impacts people of all ages at the same death rate and is overall much more horrible, people will look back at this as a way to downplay what the pharma companies and government will advise in a "fool me once, fool me twice" way, which I think is very dumb but also very 2020s. So I'm not optimistic at all that the masses will learn anything from this except from the Monday Morning Quarterback lessons that we seem to have learned now, like we shouldn't have shut down businesses or schools, etc etc. These talking points are red meat for politicians, but objectively they're so stupid, because you can only say this knowingly after the fact. And life just doesn't work that way.

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May 21, 2023·edited May 21, 2023

Great conversation, really enjoyed it.

Re cannibis and kids, and the book that guy wrote (and I say this as someone who uses cannabis as an adult) - the research shows that cannabis is a lot more dangerous to growing brains than adult brains. It also shows that human brains don't "settle into adulthood" for many people until their early to mid 20s.

Kids using cannabis are at a significantly increased risk of a range of mental issues, all well documented. The guy who wrote the book was spot on, and I surmise he was being shouted down by people who make money from cannabis, and idiotic users who don't bother to do their research before using psychoactive drugs.

Having said all that, it's also becoming clear that different strains of cannabis with different levels of THC, CBD, and around 120 other cannibanoids we don't yet understand, can be used to treat everything from sleeping and eating issues to pain, epilepsy, and even anxiety. Also, it is not a physically addictive drug, unlike opioids, although it can be psychologically addictive - but the distinction is very important.

I am a strong supporter of cannabis use by adults for medicinal and recreational purposes. However, we probably need to do a better job educating kids that they should know their family background before going anywhere near any psychedlic substances, and wait until adulthood to try them if they want to... of course, good luck with that!

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This all annecdotally makes sense to me.

Tangent, but I cannot understand why there isn't a single weed maker that produces a less potent strain. Think there's many people who just want to chill out a bit. Stuff is tooooo strong these days.

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Hmmmm, that's interesting. I'm in Aus where cannabis is only legal for medicinal purposes, and most of the market is mild strains. Anecdotally, the most popular product for doctors to first trial with their patients is 6% THC and 6% CBD, and there are a number of products with very low or no THC. My doctor prescribed the 6/6 stuff, and also some 18% THC, but that is way too strong for me. The 6/6 is perfect for chiling out, sleep, and pain management. It's more like the weed people used in the 60s-70s, not the blow your brains out stuff people use today.

I guess the US market is all targeted to "more THC for your dollar", the more is better fallacy so popular in capitalism. If only capitalism targeted maximisation of quality over quantity we'd all benefit.

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So what I really want more than anything now is the JJ Redick takedown piece. The full Clay Travis interview treatment.

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