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D&D and the rising pandemic

There has been a lot of good news coverage in the AP about how it is more than a supply issue, how greed and patents are in fact a hurdle when it comes to vaccines and pharmaceutical companies. But way above my pay grade. Not going to debate you but definitely think the past behavior of big pharma indicates we should be extremely sjeptucal about what their messaging on the supply issue (and that doesn’t mean rich countries can’t also be taken to task for not sharing the vaccine: greed of country, greed of corporation, both are bad things here)
 

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Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Right now, due to IP law, there is little incentive in any company besides Phizer and Morderna to try to make the tricky lipid wrapping process of mRNA vaccines cheaper, and setting up a factory in places that grant them patent monopolies to try to do that isn't going to be viable.

I think we are talking past each other. Incentive or not, funding or not, making improvements TAKES TIME. It isn't like you remove the IP restriction, and next week there's a flood of cheap Pfizer-type vaccine on the market! There would likely be months of spin up time before anyone else can make it at scale at all, and more months before they could actually improve the process, especially because major process change probably requires a new round of testing and certification for use.

If we lifted the IP restriction today, I don't think we'd see much improvement in cost until 2022. If, say, India's current predicament is the motivator, this is not a viable solution.

No, this is what governments do. They set the rules that determine what the legal issues are. And governments determine what lawsuits are allowed.

If you aren't living in a dictatorship, the government has limits. And, at least here, "the government" is not one entity. It is at least three. And one of them has the specific job of checking whether the other two are out of bounds.

There is precident that they can retroactively increase the length of protection under the IP statute, and the US supreme court said "this is completely up to congress".

There's very little legal similarity between broadly extending rights, and cancelling rights to specific items.

We aren't talking about a general change to IP law. We are talking about cancelling IP rights on two specific items. This amounts to the government annexing (some would say, "stealing") Pfizer's and Moderna's property. There are already Constitutional limits on government seizure of property, you know. It is in the 5th Amendment - "...nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation."

The Congress alone is not going to change the Constitution for the vaccine.

If the US government wants to remove the IP protection from these vaccines, they will have to buy them, at fair market value.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Short term even if you did forcibly buy the you might bite yourself in the ass.

Would the vaccines have been deviled as fast if the companies couldn't make bank on them?

IP should probably expire after the death of the creator or 25 years. You can only IP a brand eg McDonalds not the products..

Means the corporations etc have to invent new stuff all the time instead of milking stuff for generations.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
9 border workers fired for refusing vaccines.


By law you can refuse a vaccine but it's not covered in employment law.

Basically similar to wear what you want (in private) but the boss can make you wear a uniform or fire your ass.

You can't refuse work boots and hi vis vest either on job sites so there's also that.
 
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Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
IP should probably expire after the death of the creator or 25 years. You can only IP a brand eg McDonalds not the products..
The Brand is a matter of Trademark and separate from copyright which is also separate from patents which are the actual methods used.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
By law you can refuse a vaccine but it's not covered in employment law.

Basically similar to wear what you want (in private) but the boss can make you wear a uniform or fire your ass.

You can't refuse work boots and hi vis vest either on job sites so there's also that.
I think in practice employers can fire you for almost any random STUFF they want to we have in the US a few explicit exceptions that can often be very difficult to prove.

Language, please.
 
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Hussar

Legend
While I approve of the move to fire folks that refuse to get vaccinated, there's no way that any politician is going to try to make this a law. It is a pretty hefty violation of rights, regardless of how justified, and sets a really, really scary precedence.

I mean, if I can fire you for not getting a medical treatment, where does that end? Will employers now require vaccination lists before hiring? How invasive into your privacy can they get? Do existing issues like, say, diabetes, allow employers to refuse to hire or fire an employee? After all, someone with diabetes is far more likely to have problems than someone without.

IANAL, but, that's a pretty terrifying concept. I get the public safety argument, but the existence of things like that school in Miami, shows that employers are not medical professionals and are potentially wrong about the risks involved. Not to be a douche here, but, what are the odds of an unvaccinated worker spreading coronavirus? I don't know, and I'm pretty sure that most people don't either. Which is different from, say, wearing a hardhat, where we can calculate the odds - or, rather, the odds have already been calculated by someone somewhere.

While a large part of me applauds them for taking a stand against people refusing the vaccine, the implications and precedence makes my skin crawl.
 

Mikeythorn

Explorer
I don’t think it is too different from any other safety requirement. A builder who refused to wear a hard hat on a demolition site shouldn’t be permitted on the site. A worker dealing with the public who is not vaccinated should not be dealing with the public. If neither are able to do their job, then neither should be expected to retain that job.
 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
While I approve of the move to fire folks that refuse to get vaccinated, there's no way that any politician is going to try to make this a law. It is a pretty hefty violation of rights, regardless of how justified, and sets a really, really scary precedence.

For the US...

Isn't the law in many states currently "at-will" employment, where you can be fired for any reason that isn't related to being in a protected class or doesn't violate the contract you were hired under? Not getting vaccinated for religious or medical reasons would be protected, is any other reason?

In any case, some states have some required immunizations for hospital employees, for example: State Immunization Laws for Healthcare Workers and Patients | CDC

I guess we'll see if it being an emergency use authorization matters when someone sues about losing a job over it. Some hospitals in TX, for example, have required it: Hospitals, Colleges Requiring COVID-19 Vaccination .
 
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Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Not getting vaccinated for religious or medical reasons would be protected, is any other reason?
If I suddenly decide my religion says I have to have my hair rainbow colored (this is what anti-vaxxers have done the equivalent of starting a new religion where they make that a feature) is firing me for having rainbow colored hair then firing for religious reasons?
 

Hussar

Legend
If I suddenly decide my religion says I have to have my hair rainbow colored (this is what anti-vaxxers have done the equivalent of starting a new religion where they make that a feature) is firing me for having rainbow colored hair then firing for religious reasons?
If you can prove in a court of law that your religion says that you have to have rainbow colored hair, then, yes, it would. Note, hair issues have come up in Canada before. See Baltej Singh Dhillon, for an example.

 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
If I suddenly decide my religion says I have to have my hair rainbow colored (this is what anti-vaxxers have done the equivalent of starting a new religion where they make that a feature) is firing me for having rainbow colored hair then firing for religious reasons?
While the SCOUTS has said it isn't there business to judge the sincerity of folks religious beliefs, no one quickly jumped to the defense in Cavanaugh v. Bartelt in Nebraska about Pastafarianism (and I'm really disappointed it didn't get pushed up higher to get SCOTUS to formally say some things aren't protected and the courts decide, or that everything is protected - especially since one of the birefs in Masterpiece Cakeshop cited it).
 

Ryujin

Hero
If you can prove in a court of law that your religion says that you have to have rainbow colored hair, then, yes, it would. Note, hair issues have come up in Canada before. See Baltej Singh Dhillon, for an example.

Just make sure that you skip his more recent escapades and only look at the news stories from the late '80s. The newer reports on him have nothing to do with the turban issue.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
If I suddenly decide my religion says I have to have my hair rainbow colored (this is what anti-vaxxers have done the equivalent of starting a new religion where they make that a feature) is firing me for having rainbow colored hair then firing for religious reasons?

Religion here is specifically covered by laws preventing discrimination.

Easiest get around is health and safety rules.
 

Eltab

Lord of the Hidden Layer
I don’t think it is too different from any other safety requirement. A builder who refused to wear a hard hat on a demolition site shouldn’t be permitted on the site. A worker dealing with the public who is not vaccinated should not be dealing with the public. If neither are able to do their job, then neither should be expected to retain that job.
If the worker got immunity the natural way (caught the virus and kicked it) then that worker need not be vaccinated. Give the employee a Corona-antibody test to make sure. If they are full of antibodies, get off their back.
 

Mikeythorn

Explorer
If the worker got immunity the natural way (caught the virus and kicked it) then that worker need not be vaccinated. Give the employee a Corona-antibody test to make sure. If they are full of antibodies, get off their back.
That seems reasonable in most circumstances. The original case being talked about originated in New Zealand though, so that case almost certainly could not be made by the sacked workers.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
It's kind of hard to get fired here. Generally theft and assault will do it, or whatever else the the employee defines as serious misconduct in the contract.

Certain categories the employer can't opt out of eg gender, sexuality, politics, religion.

Easiest way is to fire someone is health and safety so the vaccine can be treated as safety equipment.

The government can't force you to take the vaccine, neither can your employer.

You can't force your employer to retain you if you don't follow the rules.
 

Hussar

Legend
You can't force your employer to retain you if you don't follow the rules.
That, again, is a sticky, sticky issue. Particularly if it is actually a religious issue. Like NZ, it's hard to get fired in Canada. And, let's be honest here, in an organization as large as border guards, there surely must be desk jobs that aren't regularly facing the public where the mask mandate is not as much of an issue. I doubt this is quite as cut and dried as you're making it out to be.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
That, again, is a sticky, sticky issue. Particularly if it is actually a religious issue. Like NZ, it's hard to get fired in Canada. And, let's be honest here, in an organization as large as border guards, there surely must be desk jobs that aren't regularly facing the public where the mask mandate is not as much of an issue. I doubt this is quite as cut and dried as you're making it out to be.

Religion is covered by employment law.

Things not specifically covered the employer can put in the contract and they can easy require the vaccine as part of the job requirements.

My wife's aunt got vaccinated today and it's essentially mandatory for her (or find a new job). She works in an old folks home.

Much like free speech the government can't muzzle you but your boss can. I can walk down the street in a Nazi uniform bit I can't refuse to wear the uniform at McDonald's.

At least without going through the disciplinary process. I can get kicked off a job site for not wearing hi vis vest or steelcap boots.

Bill if Rights covers refusing a vaccine but they can amend that easy enough, make exceptions if required and in any event it doesn't cover employment law.

Simple act of parliament could also revoke that law if required. They just need a simple majority and they have that winning an outright majority last year due to Covid response basically.

Reading the article I posted they can dispute the firing bit they're still gone at best they get a payout and you can't really sue here. Well you can but even if you win you're not going to make megabucks and you still have no job.
 
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