Monday, May 04, 2009


Only if you have been living under a rock could you not know about the impact of the flu strain H1N1. The story of the "pandemic" has been the lead news story in many media outlets for several days now, although I note that in today's Washington Post (May 4, 2009), the flu stories have been relegated to page 4, with the first paragraph stating that "the new virus is not as lethal as initially feared."

All sorts of precautions have been taken. For example, to date some 400 schools throughout the United States have been closed for two weeks on the advice of the CDC. I have not found any information as to the financial impact such shuttering causes (What are substitute teachers doing for income when schools close?), although this Washington Post article discusses educational options for students unable to attend class while the schools are closed and cleaned — and, I might add, students on hiatus are likely turning into mall rats. At the same time, Mexico has announced an easing of imposed measures as the flu cases there seem to have tapered off. And on today's edition of the CBS Morning News, the lead story read "Flu Spreads. But Glimmer of Hope?"

This source reminds us of the actual definition of the scary word "pandemic":
A pandemic does not necessarily mean what you think it does, it is NOT black-plague carts being hauled through the streets piled high with dead bodies. Nor does it mean flesh eating zombies wandering the streets feeding on the living. All a pandemic means is that a new infectious disease is spreading throughout the world.

By definition, a "pandemic" is an epidemic that is geographically widespread. Fear-mongers are always careful to add the innuendo that millions of people could and probably will die, as in the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918 that killed about 20 million people worldwide.
The same source goes on to state that fear mongering is afoot and that Tamiflu isn't necessarily a benign remedy. Read the entire essay HERE.

Is there truly a perilous pandemic of a dangerous strain of flu, or is fear mongering the greater danger?

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posted by Always On Watch @ 5/04/2009 08:07:00 AM