This headline, from the Scotsman, is an eye-popper. The phrase “swine flu” is gross, even evil. No one calls it “pig flu.” That would sound like a cartoon and would diminish the foreboding. You say someone got the pig flu and everyone grins. You say swine flu and everyone gets quiet.
It's all fun and games until you start the World Swine Flu Pandemic.
“Pandemic” is just plain magical. Putting it together with swine flu is headline genius. “World one step from” gets the clock ticking. It’s no longer just a still frame shot of the guy in the hockey mask with the chain saw. Now it is a movie with the stupid teenagers (the whole world!), walking step by step into the dark doorway.
Somewhere in the recesses of my aged brain the Chicken Little alarm bell rang. I hate Chicken Little, and all her friends, Henny Penney, Goosey Loosey, etc. I thought I would check out the latest Chicken Little story.
The Center for Disease Control website has big oozing gobs of Swine Flu information, including the “Swine Flu and You” link and a “Swine Flu Video.” Next there will be Swine Flu cartoons, so kids can panic too.
CDC reported that the first cases in
The boy received symptomatic treatment, and all his symptoms resolved uneventfully within approximately 1 week.
This means the kid stayed home from school, ran a fever, coughed and puked, and is now back in school.
The World Health Organization has now weighed in with a “Phase 5” alert – the first time ever. “[WHO Director General Margaret] Chan told reporters in
Interesting that WHO weighed in with its DEFCON 1 message on the same day the situation in
Actually, there are only 26 swine flu deaths in
This in a nation of 109,000,000. That’s probably fewer deaths than from tequila poisoning in
Now 42 deaths is bad stuff, certainly for the 42 who died and their families. It deserves our help and our prayers. I am just not ready to get into my “pandemic” EPA suit and hide in the basement with an AK-47.
Some history here. In 1976 there was a huge vaccination effort launched because of a strain of swine flu found in some soldiers at
In December of 1976 the program was halted because it seemed not many people actually got very sick from the flu, but lots of people got sick from the vaccine. About 45 million people were vaccinated.
Imagine how they felt. This, by the way (forgive my digression) is the Federal Health Care Way. It is subject - as with every federal project - to the 7 Mystical Federal Stages:
Blaming of The Innocent
Rewards and Promotions for The Guilty
Multiply the Swine Flu Innoculation Debacle ($400 Million) times 10,000 (equals $4 Trillion) and VOILA! you get universal health care.
The 1976 vaccination program cost about $400 million, and left thousands of people with Guillain-Barre syndrome, a nervous system break down that is painful, debilitating and sometimes fatal. The federal government, which had to insure the drug companies because private insurers wouldn’t cover the risks on the vaccination program (insurers aren’t always dumb like AIG), paid around $90 million to people who got Guillain-Barre.
So the Eternal Optimist is not ready to throw in the towel just yet and slit his wrists to avoid a slow, horrible death from the “Swine Flu Pandemic,” even if the “World [Is] One Step Closer.”
Right now Eternal Optimist thinks he is “One Step Closer” to a vodka tonic with lime, which I understand prevents Swine Flu, and also prevents Swine Flu Frenzy. Which erupted after Trillion Dollar Deficit Frenzy, which was triggered by Recession of the Century Frenzy, which followed on several years of Global Warming Frenzy and Real Estate Will Always Go Up! Frenzy.
I figure in about three weeks this will all blow over and Obama and me can get back to spending money we don’t have on stuff we don’t need.