Pigs Revenge… Just the Facts Please

Swine Flu with PigI have seen several comments on this site over the last couple of weeks that lead me to believe that many of us are quite uneducated in regard to the Swine Flu pandemic that has been proclaimed by the World Health Organization. And it is starting to hit the news cycle regularly again, after an initial die-down following the first outbreaks. So I thought maybe I would take some time to weigh in on it, and perhaps even give my left leaning folks some stuff that even they can agree with (after all it is no fun having them NEVER agree with me). So I am going to answer some of the myths about the H1N1 virus, using information I found on the web. And I am then going to quickly discuss the entire subject broadly to offer my thoughts on where we are and why.

Swine Flu is a serious concern, and rightly so, at least in my opinion. The World Health Organization has officially rated the H1N1 virus a pandemic. Technically speaking this is a fact, as whether it is a pandemic has nothing to do with power, only with the number of different countries that they have seen outbreaks in. It appears that the flu is not any more deadly than other forms of traditional flu. In fact, the 1% death rate is lower than the rate of death due to regular flu in the United States. So that should mean we should be less worried about it, right? Not so fast. Almost every site that I read, including the WHO site and the CDC releases, state that the cause for such concern is that this is a form of the flu we have never seen before. And we have seen some peculiar behavior surrounding H1N1.

CDC Swine FluWe are in the middle of summer in the United States. This is essentially the time of year when flu has very limited impact on the population. This is the “safe” time of year in terms of the flu. Flu season doesn’t start for many weeks yet. However, despite conditions not being optimal for flu viruses, H1N1 has infected tens of thousands of people in the US, during a time when most children are not even in the place where disease spreads quickest: schools. And while the flu generally has been a sickness that sickens the healthy and kills the weaker, this strain has managed to kill both the weak and healthy alike. According to some articles I read, teens, young adults and pregnant women, who are not usually at high risk for developing complications from the regular flu, appear to be at risk for hospitalization and even death from swine flu.

The bottom line appears to be that health officials are so concerned because this is a virus they have not seen before. It is highly adaptable and mutations occur naturally in viruses. As a result they have no idea how this virus will act once flu season hits. There is the possibility that it will not spread as rapidly as the regular flu virus, but there is also the possibility that it will spread faster and more easily. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the worst could be yet to come, so Americans need to prepare for a large outbreak this fall and winter as children return to school and people spend more time congregating indoors.

I figured I would add in a couple of the myths that I saw about swine flu that were on Fox News:

1. The H1N1 vaccine being developed will not give you the disease. Flu vaccines often scare many people because they get a cold during cold season, which happens to occur during flu season. The vaccines use dead virus particles, which means there is absolutely no way to contract H1N1 from the vaccine.

Swine Flu Masks2. Wearing a mask will not really help you. Apparently as soon as masks get moist, which is quickly after putting them on, they are no longer effective. The only effective means of protecting yourself is to not come in contact with those who show symptoms.

3. Apparently hand sanitizer is very effective against the swine flu virus. It is recommended that people DO use hand sanitizer often if they feel that they are at risk of coming into contact with someone who may be affected. I know that in my store we use the stuff religiously. We have done so for years. There are bottles everywhere. When dealing with the public, you shake a lot of hands. The virus is transmitted through moisture droplets, but a cough on a hand, followed by a handshake a subsequent rubbing of your eyes can cause transmission.

4. Avoiding pork or pigs is completely unnecessary. You cannot get H1N1 from eating pork. You cannot get swine flu from a pig. Despite that fear, which is rational given the name of the virus and the fact that it resembles the true virus found in pigs, there is no chance of catching the virus from a pig, unless that pig was just touched by an infected person. And there is zero chance of getting a virus from a cooked piece of pork.

Flu Shot Cartoon5. If you get a flu shot every year, you should continue to do so. The flu vaccines developed each year are meant to combat strains of the flu most likely to attack the US that particular year. The regular flu virus will still be present this year just like any other year, so protect yourself from it as you usually do. The flu shot for this year was developed before the swine flu hit, so it will not help protect you from swine flu. The swine flu vaccines are an entirely different vaccine and should be taken in addition to the regular flu shot.

6. A flu or cold symptoms do not automatically mean that you have swine flu. Colds are more common, and the symptoms of a cold are usually less severe. The difference is usually that a fever is more prevalent in a flu victim. Additionally flu’s have a propensity for causing nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, where colds do not. Coughing and sneezing are generally NOT flu symptoms. Fevers from a flu are generally higher (above 101 degrees). A sore throat is a symptom, but not a major one.

So there are some of the major myths and realities that I found out as I researched swine flu. Now for my commentary.

I know there are some folks who believe that this is just another way for the government to keep us scared and under control. I have had several people tell me that. They are afraid that this is all just a control play by government, that the swine flu isn’t really an issue or something that anyone needs to worry about. I don’t believe that this is true. I don’t think that the government is blowing this out of proportion. Most of the communication that we are seeing surrounding the H1N1 virus is information being released by the World Health Organization and the US Centers for Disease Control. Those groups tend to stick to their missions rather than playing a political game.

Swine Flu ProtesterI have also heard that this is only a big issue in the press because the media is attempting to distract people from other real issues that government doesn’t want people to notice. On this one I understand the sentiment. However, after some careful consideration and a little digging, I don’t think that this one is true either. I think the media lives on fear, craziness, death, sickness, and scandalous behavior. They print what sells. And a word like pandemic sells really well. I did find it somewhat interesting that there is all this new sine flu talk as the President loses control of the health care debate and seems poised to lose the battle as long as people pay attention. But I really do believe that is coincidence in this case.

I did not write this article to raise alarms to anyone. I certainly don’t think that the Swine Flu virus is something that we need to panic about. But I do believe that it is something we should pay attention to and be educated about. That is what I was attempting to do here. Dispel some myths and help explain why this has gotten so much media attention. The irony, of course, is that if this much attention wasn’t given to Swine Flu and it got really bad, people would blame the government and the media for not alerting us sooner and more urgently.

Now I don’t hold any sort of medical degree and I was piecing the information together from a few articles that I read on the subject. I put links to them below. But I am interested to learn more myself. And I certainly want to know if something was wrong with what I have presented. So I look forward to hearing from other folks who have been learning about the H1N1 virus. Should we be more worried than we are? Or is this just another government ploy to set us up for some form of increased controls?

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H1N1: Separating Myth From Fact – Infectious Disease – FOXNews.com

Swine Flu: Why You Should Still Be Worried – Infectious Disease – FOXNews.com

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Comments

  1. “Worrying is for old women and children”. I’ve always liked that saying.

    I tend not to think about something like this until it is close to smacking me in the face. Not because I don’t think its a concern but because I haven’t seen it. My wife did have pneumonia in June (which she caught from my brother in law) that at first we thought was swine flu because of all the media attention. A quick trip to the doctors office convinced us otherwise.

    I think 25 years ago this would not have made the news. But since it has to do with death and making people sick its too much for the news media to avoid. I’m not so far down the conspiracy trail that I think the gov’t is responsible though.

  2. esomhillgazette says:

    When there are several thousand dead in the US of A, then I’ll start to worry. Until then I wish they’d give it a rest.

    Of course I’d appreciate it if they’d keep one eye open on it just in case it mutates or changes. But that’s Govt for you. Panic or Ignore, with no in-between.

  3. I think it is good to prepare yourself. Like know what the signs are so if you happen to come across someone who might have this flu, you know what you are looking for. I think just being aware is a good thing anyway. My brother gets concern because he is a cop and is exposed to alot of people. I dont think we are a stage where we need people to be all out in a crazy mode.

    • My understanding is it is so close to normal flu, a doctor cannot tell you have it without running tests. The NY lawsuit was in part because they were slow to inform or recognize it was swine flu, and they were looking for it!

  4. Well I dont think swine flu is that bad really many more people die from seasonal flu, I just see this as practice for when something really nasty comes along.

  5. Ray Hawkins says:

    Just two cents:

    1. The company I work for (125K employees spread throughout USA) has made no mention as of late – we have a significant number of employees that come in contact with the public each day. I’ll pass anything on as I hear it.

    2. Personally I have some concern in that I have an infant and want to ensure we take proper steps as advised.

    Thanks for the posting!

    • Here in the UK I work for a major telecommunications company and although I am not public facing myself there is usually an email a week reminding us of the precautions. If any employees are found to be displaying flu like symptons we have to take at least 10 days off. The NHS also runs TV ads and has sent out leaflets to every household detailing symptons and what we have to do to recieve treatment.

    • Ray:

      Left you a note on USW’s other post of the day, regarding Govt contolled health insurance.

      JAC

  6. Common sense should tell you, if you’re feeling sick, stay home if you can. Why surround those around you of catching your germs, and possibly getting them sick.

    • Would be nice then if my company actually paid sick time, but instead it rolls it into vacation time so if you’re sick, you have to use up your vacation time. The end result? As long as someone can get out of bed, no illness is going to prevent them from working.

  7. Thanks USW, I am now more likely to take the vaccine.

    How about some conspiracy theory drama?

    Baxter International is a drug company that has been at the center of three major drug contamination scandals, one of them occured only a few months ago in February of this year:

    1. Live avian flu was found in flu vaccines intended for human use:
    http://www.torontosun.com/news/canada/2009/02/27/8560781.html

    2. They sent out Heparin that did not even contain the main ingredient, but instead contained a chemically similar compound:
    http://www.nowpublic.com/health/heparin-blood-thinner-baxter-partially-contaminated-fda-announced

    http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/stop-baxter-international-from-developing-the-h1n1-vaccine

  8. Good article USW.

    Now for what I think is the most intriguing news story of the day:

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,539221,00.html

  9. YAAAAAAAHHHHHH! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES! THE PIGS ARE COMING, THE PIGS ARE COMING! WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE!!!

    There. Now that I got that out of my system I just feel better!

    Here is my problem with the pig flew;

    Does anyone remember waaaay back during the Bush administration something about a possible bird flew pandemic? Anyone? Does any of this panic attack sound familiar? Anyone?

    Our government spent quite a few millions of our hard earned tax dollars developing and stockpiling the “Avian Flu Vaccines” just in case there was this big pandemic like really waaaaaaayyyyy back during the first part of the last century that killed millions and millions of people. Then it never happened.

    Now we have President Hussein with his ObamaCare cure all for our health care concerns. Just so we po folk can all get health care. In that plan is a provision to actually ration out just which of us po folk is to get taken care of, and which of us po folk is not to get taken care of. But only if a real “emergency” just should happen to mosey along into the limelight.

    Wouldn’t a flu pandemic that had the “potential” of killing more than a billion people kinda fall into the category of just such an emergency? Does any of you good folk out there see this as not just a coincidence?

    To be certain, I am one who has never believed in coincedences. Kinda like drunk driver “accidents”. You know, drunks get drunk on purpose then drive like maniacs on purpose while drunk, so why call the wrecks they get into “accidents” when it was all done on purpose?

    It just seems to me that this here pig flew stuff and Hussein’s ObamaCare stuff are just way too convenient.

    Kinda like VP Al Huggatree’s convenient lies that he got a Nobel Prize for.

    Anyone get my drift? Anyone?

    Hellooooooo? Anyone out there? Anyone?

    • PapaDawg:

      The existence of the swine flu and its potential damage is a COINCIDENCE.

      The question is how will our current govt use or not use it to gain other advantages.

      The Progressive mantra does not require that “crisis” be manufactured but that a real “crisis” be exploited. Thus was the case when the Dem’s were screaming at Bush about lack of vaccine for the potential bird flu.

      The threat was real, we never know the actual threat (statistically) because we don’t know for sure how the little bugs will react or morph. But part of our govt increased the panic, thus perception of crisis and used it to beat up Bush.

      Now we are faced with a little boy who constantly cries wolf. The boy is our govt. and now we must judge each and every time whether there is a wolf or if the boy is once again crying out for attention.

      We are the arbiter of our own liberty. We must take control of everything that affects us, that includes knowledge. We can not longer afford to depend on the govt for information and action because we are “to busy” doing other things.

      Best Wishes
      JAC

      • Hey Pard, I just don’t know about those COINCIDENCES at all!

        Look at it this way if you would;

        Within a year of Bush in office we get the bird flu “possible” pandemic. As Hussein takes office we get the swine flu “fer shure” pandemic.

        I sorry bout that, but this is just way too much of a closeness to be accidental. I mean when was there any other RECENT flu pandemic scares? And ol’ Hussein just wants us to by his ObamaCare package hook, line, and sinker without ANYONE reading the dang 1100+ pages of it!

        Really? I mean gimme abreak here!

        Then Hussein’s people who put this thing together just want to cut off everyone who is “not a useful citizen” from this ObamaCare during an “emergency” . . . you mean that a pandemic running wild just ain’t no emergency? . . . Right there is his excuse! Kiss off all infants up to two years old and anyone over the age of 65.

        And just how many of us fit into that category?

        READ THE DANGED 1100+ PAGES OF THAT OBAMACARE FIASCO IF YOU DON”T BELIEVE ME!

        The devil is in the details, or in this case the fogged up double talk lawyer-speak!

        I just can’t believe that these guys are pushing so hard for this garbage because they don’t think this pig flu will go bonkers this fall.

        I’m telling you tht there just ain’t no such thing as a coincidence here on this!

        • PapaDawg,

          I might agree if there was a pandemic crisis happening. In other words if there was a giant epidemic and everyone was getting it, it could be used to push health care reform. As it stands, with swine flu they have done nothing but warn people and offer caution and advice. They have not tried to link it to health care reform in any way that I have seen. And it wouldn’t make sense to do so. The only vaccine will be offered for free to anyone who wants it. They found all they needed to push for health care reform when they cooked up their “47 million uninsured” hoo ha. I don’t think this swine flu stuff has anything to do with health care reform in terms of being “created”. I do agree with JAC that what will be important is how the scare is used going forward. Thus far they have not in any way. Until they do I give them the benefit of the doubt.

          • Then with what you are saying this is nothing but a crapshoot.

            With one role of Husseins dice we have one winner and many losers.

            Well, as for me, I just don’t like the odds.

            Do you like them? If you do then you must be much younger than me.

          • I hope that one of the “mob” will ask about the 47 million at a town hall. Seems like some fuzzy math to me.

            Anthrax, smallpox, asteroids,
            climate change,
            etc. etc.

            like Gilda used to say, “It’s always something”

            • There will be 47 million uninsured, we will just have to wait til after all Husseins policy’s get them put out of their jobs!

    • Hey PapaDawg,

      I’ve got a suspicious mind, and I find it too coincidental. I can’t help but feel that we’re being set up for something big. My woman’s intuition is sound the alarm on several developments.

      BF,

      OT, have you seen this? What’s your take? The sick feeling in my gut just got a bit stronger.

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/markets/6018076/RBS-uber-bear-issues-fresh-alert-on-global-stock-markets.html

      • Black Flag says:

        I disagree that commodities will suffer, but the rest of the article is plausible.

        The question one needs to ask as far as stocks – where is the growth going to come from for companies to also grow?

        Right now, its only health care (thanks to government) and government.

  10. Flu pandemics have been around for a while and they should be rightly feared. Have a read what happened with the Spanish flu in 1918.

    • Black Flag says:

      Bob,

      Sorry, friend, that is a horrible analogy.

      Can you tell me what world-changing event preceded the Spanish flu? Hopefully the date will help you.

      All real pandemic killers follow a devastation of simple hygiene. Millions of men returning from war after years living is rat invested trenches filled with unburied dead, suffering from malnutrition and lack basic latrine hygiene was the reason the flu took off.

      Same with the Black Plague – 1347.

      After a protracted siege, during which the Mongol army under Jani Beg was suffering the disease, they catapulted the infected corpses over the city walls to infect the inhabitants. The Genoese traders fled, taking the plague by ship into Sicily and the south of Europe, when it spread.

      it is clear that several pre-existing conditions such as war, famine, and weather contributed to the severity of the Black Death.

      Black Death killed 8 million Germans during … The 30 Years War.

      The polio epidemic occurred…when? 1949… I wonder what world changing global disaster preceded that one???

      Global killer disease only manifest in hygienic disasters. It is completely bizarre to fear such a minor flu as this one.

      • Black Flag,

        You make good points about the factors leading the spread of the flu. However, it is the “death rate” by percent that is relevant to how serious any given flu virus is.

        The Spanish flu was deadlier than most, regardless of method or reason for being pandemic.

        The reasons why it was so deadly have recently been discovered, after the virus was resurrected. Now THAT scares me, the resurrection part.

        • Black Flag says:

          I do not agree, Dee.

          The hypothesis is that the strain struck a particular age group not normally associated with flu deaths, as demonstrated in the graph. (peak of 25-34)

          But wait!

          What is the age group of men and women returning from the great war? 18-45…. exactly age group that has a statistically relevant increase over the norm.

          If one studies the graph, you realize that babies and old people do not fight wars.

          Also remember, that the scales of the graph are arbitrary, there is no particular reason to select 25-34 or 18-24 or 20-39, etc. Without out the raw data, it is hard to measure whether the graph suffers from what is know as “Chart-manship”.

          It is important to note, that this flu was atypical of where the fatalities occurred. In this case, without also considering the environmental influences, it is possible that incorrect cause and effect may be attributed to an event.

          • Black Flag,

            I do not disagree with you regarding the potential reason for a higher death rate in the 25-34 age group. We would need more data concerning the death rate of enlisted vs. non-enlisted persons of that age range to more clearly see the factors involved.

            Recent studies (using the reconstructed virus in monkeys) do indicate that those with the strongest immune systems (typically the 24-34 age range) have the worst outcome due to the cytokine storm that Bob refers to below.

            The death rate from the Spanish flu compared to regular flu is higher for ALL age groups, until age 65-74 where the lines merge.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1918_flu_pandemic

            “Older adults may have had some immunity from the earlier Russian flu pandemic of 1889.”

            Look at age 1-4. I estimate that the death rate jumps from approx. 200 to 700. That is a tremendous increase regardless of age. Look on either side of the 25-34 age group. Ramps up and back down according to immune system status for those ages? OR were those age groups of “enlistment” age, just not the prime age?

            As for the living conditions of the time, and hygienic practices, up to a point of certain stress factors (like war, malnutrition, etc.) would exposure to common pathogens build a stronger immune system, in spite of also more easily spreading infectious disease?

            Bottom line for me is the Spanish flu was more deadly than other flu strains of the time, and significantly so.

            The Swine flu is very similar in it’s genetic code and behavior.

            Vigilance is warranted both of H1N1 AND the government taking advantage of the situation to use excessive control measures over us.

            I have serious concerns with the vaccine being rushed into production and am awaiting the results of the current clinical trials. Then I have to decide whether to believe them or not.

            What a dilemma! 😦

            • Black Flag says:

              As far as 1918 – no, I do not believe they had a hardier immune system – indeed, I would argue they had far worse.

              War time conditions of the soldiers was a disaster -malnutrition, lack of proper latrine, lice, rodents, unburied dead, exposed infected wounds – all would drive the immune systems to the bottom, and offer a huge potential for cultivation of viruses.

              The home front – with the rationing, etc. also reduced their nutrition – would have dropped their immune systems.

              There has been no disease disaster in the western world for the last 200 years that was not preceded by a disaster in health or hygiene.

              And, this is during the time of Bob’s point of order’s of magnitude ease of travel and population intermixing.

              I, personally, hold no more concern over H1N1 than I would any other flu.

              Individually, there will be those that suffer worse than others –

              (1) would a flu shot mitigate that (I don’t know for sure, but I doubt it)

              (2) how does a person know they are that rare risk? (I don’t know of any way)

              (3) is it worth the potential risk of adverse effects of a shot (IMO, for me, no).

              But, hey, it’s just me…..

              • I’m not very keen on getting the shot. Even though I know technology and understanding in vaccine development have become better since the ’70s, it still is not perfect and can have long term unintended consequences. My Grandma got a Swine flu shot back in the ’70s and immediately developed a cough that could not be cured (or even a reason found). She coughed until the day she died.

      • And now BF we live in a much more connected world, we can get to anywhere on the globe in a matter of hours. Yes hygiene was bad but this was after the war and it attacked the healthy. When you are dealing with something that creates a cytokine storm it does not matter if you are fit and healthy in fact it would be worse for you. It does not matter in what circumstances the flu strain could be mutated in the fact is something like this could happen again and with the cheap and available transportation could be spread around the globe in a day.

        • Black Flag says:

          No, it did not attack the ‘healthy’ – it attacked the age group most affected by WW1 – the warriors. WW1 for the most part did not affect the families at home – the aged and the very young – which is precisely where we see no statistical change in flu deaths (see graph above post).

          The hypothesis of the cytokine storm has yet to be proven in its cause. The question still remains – was the disease impacted by other environmental affects?

          Again, the matter of disease is a direct correlation to hygiene – compared to that, nothing else makes any significant statistical difference.

          • I thought I had seen something that supported your hypothesis:

            “What is known is that on March 5, 1918, soldiers at Camp Funston, in Kansas, began coming down with influenza in large numbers.

            Military posts have always been fertile ground for outbreaks of contagious disease. Barracks bring people from many regions into close quarters under high stress. So it wasn’t a surprise that ground zero of the pandemic was a military installation, or that the disease was next reported, on March 18, at Army camps in Georgia. The symptoms were mild, with few deaths. But the numbers of ill were high — 2,900 cases out of 28,586 troops at the Georgia camps.

            The epidemic then hopscotched from one military post to another in the East and South, spilled into the civilian population, and reached the West Coast in late April, where an outbreak was recorded at San Quentin Prison.

            By then, however, it had already made a bigger and more fateful leap, across the Atlantic Ocean with hundreds of thousands of soldiers going to join the Great War.”

            from http://www.puertorico-herald.org/issues/2003/vol7n30/KillerVirus-en.html

          • http://www.ninthday.com/spanish_flu.htm

            “Not only was the Spanish Flu (as it came to be known) strikingly virulent, but it displayed an unusual preference in its choice of victims—tending to select young healthy adults over those with weakened immune systems, as in the very young, the very old, and the infirm. The normal age distribution for flu mortality was completely reversed, and had the effect of gouging from society’s infrastructure the bulk of those responsible for its day to day maintenance.”

            http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3455873.stm

            Millions of Indians died whole villages in Alaska were wiped out, it did not just affect the soldiers.

            Flu mutations can happen anytime, unhygienic conditions sure can help but they can happen all the same. All it takes is for us to be unlucky and get a particularly nasty strain to mutate and we will be in bad shape. Its not like the world lives in a super hygienic environment anyway. A flu strain could mutate in Africa, India or anywhere else with poor conditions. Just a matter of time.

  11. I really don’t believe there is too much to worry about. I was in Vegas in May and saw one couple wearing masks to a show we went to. They looked pretty silly. I do think that they are making a bigger deal of it that it is. We went to the UK last month and it was all over the news there. Also, there was a questionnaire we had to fill out and turn in before they would let us on the QM2 to sail across. I’ll do the flu shot thing like we always do 🙂

    • I hear tell that this swine flew vaccine could have some pretty deadly reactions built into it, and since they haven’t bothered themselves in testing it I think that I’ll just pass on getting it.

      I still don’t like the odds.

  12. I could not wait to share this one.

    >> PHONE REPAIR
    >> A Kansas farm wife called the local phone company to
    >> report her telephone failed to ring when her friends called
    >> – and that on the few occasions, when it did ring, her dog
    >> always moaned right before the phone rang.
    >>
    >> The telephone repairman proceeded to the scene,
    >> curious to see this psychic dog or senile lady. He climbed a
    >> telephone pole, hooked in his test set, and dialed the
    >> subscriber’s house.
    >>
    >> The phone didn’t ring right away, but then the
    >> dog moaned and
    >> the telephone began to ring.
    >>
    >> Climbing down from the pole, the telephone repairman
    >> found:
    >>
    >> 1. The dog was tied to the telephone system’s
    >> ground wire with a steel chain and collar.
    >>
    >> 2. The wire connection to the ground rod was loose.
    >>
    >> 3. The dog was receiving 90 volts of signaling
    >> current when the number was called.
    >>
    >> 4. After a couple of jolts, the dog would start
    >> moaning and then urinate.
    >>
    >> 5. The wet ground would complete the circuit, thus
    >> causing the phone to ring.
    >>
    >> Which demonstrates that some problems CAN be fixed by
    >> pissing and moaning.
    >>
    >> Thought you’d like to know.

  13. A little over a year ago my husband brought home a little book that the county was giving to all their employees. It was all about how to react and control a pandemic outbreak and it specifically mentioned swine and avian flu. Just seems kind of coincidental that a year later we have a swine flu pandemic going on.

  14. Bee in my Bonnet says:

    I work in health care, more specifically Infectious Diseases. I have approached many of the Infectious Disease docs to get their take on H1N1. The concern about this virus comes from tha fact that a) it’s season is vastly different from the regular flu season. b)As USW stated, it afflicts the healthy rather than the ‘weak’ and c) there seems to be some genetic similarities to the flu virus that caused the pandemic in 1918. Interestingly enough, the 1918 pandemeic acted similar to what is occurring today. A relatively benign illness in Spring, a waning of illness during the summer months and then it hit the population hard in the fall and winter. The physicians that I talked to said that those in the health care field have no idea if H1N1 will act the same way in the fall. They are taking precautions, just in case, but it may be no worse than other flu seasons.

    In the hospital that I work, there are signs everywhere. If you are feeling ill (fever, muscle ache, sore throat, etc), please do not come and visit relatives/friends. They are also actively promoting that workers do NOT come to work if we are feeling ill (which is a departure of the previous mindset of ‘unless you’re dead, come to work’).

    I don’t usually get the flu shot but I may get this one. I am waiting to see the results of the human studies.

    • I'm learning! says:

      I don’t normally get the flu shot either. I really didn’t plan on this one. Mainly because I feel uncomfortable with a vaccine that is developed quickly, not tested well, and for something that hasn’t even been as bad as the “usual influenza”. However, I am highly interested in what people like you have to say that work in that environment and see the reality, not political or media spin. Please everyone on this site that works first hand with this, give us your insights as this progresses!

      My son just started working for a hog farmer this summer – 2,000 – 3,000 hogs there at any point in time. I wasn’t the least bit worried about him working there due to the swine flu. I still can’t believe what a killing that market is getting due to this! But, I am almost out of pork in the freezer, time for me to butcher at a discount!

  15. Just keep your PH levels high. Cut sugar and alcohol and drink cranberry juice. The immune system is a powerful thing. 🙂 Seriously, I never got sick until I stopped working out and eating healthy, and my ph levels dropped. I got them back up, now I don’t get sick again. I haven’t been around swine flu, but I have been around the regular flu a lot and I never get it if my PH is right.

    Could just be me tho, this is not my area of expertise. 🙂

    • I'm learning! says:

      A PH level in the human body isn’t something I have heard much about. I don’t get flu or cold often either. Or for that matter other infections. I like cranberry juice. I try and make sure I get plenty of Vit. C and try to get 1/2 hour of sunlight every day without sunscreen to soak in Vit D. I’ve heard/read a lot about that and think it helps. There is a lot to say for natural medicine. I have a chiropractor that is well versed in that and I trust him more than most doctors I know when it comes to dealing with minor ailments. How would you know if your PH is off? I know how it is in my aquarium, but other than the yearly blood test, I wouldn’t have a clue.

  16. Black Flag says:

    Notify me!

  17. Black Flag says:

    Next Steps Toward an H1N1 Influenza Vaccine

    HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is directing nearly $1.1 billion in existing preparedness funds to manufacture two important parts of a vaccine for the Strategic National Stockpile, to produce small amounts of potential vaccine for research, and to perform clinical research over the summer.

    Anyone doubt why the H1N1 is so important? Pharm’s are suffering in the economy.

  18. Black Flag says:

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601103&sid=alZncUEvwtIM

    Ingredients (called adjuvants) are experimental — !!! The oil has been linked to causing diseases in test animals — contains mercury —

    “University of Florida in Gainesville reported that mice injected with oils used in the adjuvants developed conditions of the type that occur when the body’s immune system produces an excessive protective reaction”

    Rushed vaccines are rarely safe. I guess the US Govt. failed to learn its lesson during the polio fiasco.

  19. Black Flag says:

    I’m sure most know my ability to research topics.

    There is nothing I can find regarding the list of ingredients to this vaccine.

    I do not recommend anyone to be a human guinea pig for a swine flu.

    (Don’t you just love my puns….:) )

    • Yea, you’re funny BF. I don’t take flu shots, never have, never will. I wouldn’t want to be a guinea pig for anything, especially not knowing what the side affects could be. Hell, look at the side affects you get with just aspirin, like maybe bleeding ulcers, thinning blood, bruising easily. Gets rid of the headache, and good for the heart, but don’t need the other stuff. Oh, I have to take back the easily bruising. Flick me, and I bruise like a banana, and I don’t take aspirin either.

  20. TexasChem says:

    I would research the relationship that the members of the World Health Organization has to pharmaceutical companies before I started endorsing this swine “flew”.You may just discover it is actually flying over the cuckoos nest.

    The US Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, has just signed a decree granting vaccine makers total legal immunity from any lawsuits that result from any new “Swine Flu” vaccine. Moreover, the $7 billion US Government fast-track program to rush vaccines onto the market in time for the Autumn flu season is being done without even normal safety testing. Is there another agenda at work in the official WHO hysteria campaign to declare so-called H1N1 virus—which has yet to be rigorously scientifically isolated, characterized and photographed with an electron microscope—the scientifically accepted procedure—a global “pandemic” threat?

    The swine flu vaccine has been rushed to the market even before safety tests are complete. A federal advisory panel said the FDA should move ahead to approve or license the new H1N1 vaccine without waiting to receive data from clinical trials to test its safety and efficacy.” (Wall Street Journal. July 24, 2009-see here)

    I found something really interesting and important at Bild.com English on-line edition, August 7th 2009. The German health expert Dr. Wolfgang Wodarg is a specialist in lungs, hygiene and environmental medicine. He is also the chairman of the health committee in the German parliament and European Council. In this article, he warns us that the swine-flu is grown in a solution that consists of cancerous cells from animals.
    There is fear that the risk of cancer could be increased by injecting these cells with the vaccine. Johannes Löwer, president of the Paul Ehrlich Institute, says that the swine flu shot can cause worse side effects than the actual swine flu virus.

    Further, Johannes Löwer, president of the Paul Ehrlich Institute, says that the swine flu shot can cause worse side effects than the actual swine flu virus.

    Contrary to what we are being fed in the media, Dr. Wodrag reports that the swine flu is milder than normal flu. “If you look at the number of cases, it is nothing compared to a normal flu outbreak,” he added.

    I would read this article I am linking below before I decided to take this vaccine or not.

    http://www.naturalnews.com/026503_pandemic_swine_flu_bioterrorism.html

  21. TexasChem says:

    Ten things you’re not supposed to know about the swine flu vaccine “Hat Tip” to Mike Adams.

    (At least, not by anyone in authority…)

    #1 – The vaccine production was “rushed” and the vaccine has never been tested on humans. Do you like to play guinea pig for Big Pharma? If so, line up for your swine flu vaccine this fall…

    #2 – Swine flu vaccines contain dangerous adjuvants that cause an inflammatory response in the body. This is why they are suspected of causing autism and other neurological disorders.

    #3 – The swine flu vaccine could actually increase your risk of death from swine flu by altering (or suppressing) your immune system response. There is zero evidence that even seasonal flu shots offer any meaningful protection for people who take the jabs. Vaccines are the snake oil of modern medicine.

    #4 – Doctors still don’t know why the 1976 swine flu vaccines paralyzed so many people. And that means they really have no clue whether the upcoming vaccine might cause the same devastating side effects. (And they’re not testing it, either…)

    #5 – Even if the swine flu vaccine kills you, the drug companies aren’t responsible. The U.S. government has granted drug companies complete immunity against vaccine product liability. Thanks to that blanket immunity, drug companies have no incentive to make safe vaccines, because they only get paid based on quantity, not safety (zero liability).

    #6 – No swine flu vaccine works as well as vitamin D to protect you from influenza. That’s an inconvenient scientific fact that the U.S. government, the FDA and Big Pharma hope the people never realize.

    #7 – Even if the swine flu vaccine actually works, mathematically speaking if everyone else around you gets the vaccine, you don’t need one! (Because it can’t spread through the population you hang with.) So even if you believe in the vaccine, all you need to do is encourage your friends to go get vaccinated…

    #8 – Drug companies are making billions of dollars from the production of swine flu vaccines. That money comes out of your pocket — even if you don’t get the jab — because it’s all paid by the taxpayers.

    #9 – When people start dying in larger numbers from the swine flu, rest assured that many of them will be the very people who got the swine flu vaccine. Doctors will explain this away with their typical Big Pharma logic: “The number saved is far greater than the number lost.” Of course, the number “saved” is entirely fictional… imaginary… and exists only in their own warped heads.

    #10 – The swine flu vaccine centers that will crop up all over the world in the coming months aren’t completely useless: They will provide an easy way to identify large groups of really stupid people. (Too bad there isn’t some sort of blue dye that we could tag ’em with for future reference…)

    The lottery, they say, is a tax on people who can’t do math. Similarly, flu vaccines are a tax on people who don’t understand health.

    • Tex,

      I am on the fence about taking a vaccine at this time, but they have started trials. I have no doubts it will be rushed.

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32284927/ns/health-swine_flu/

    • And the adjuvants DO NOT contain mercury.

      And the adjuvants have been found to have no connection to autism. Rates of autism continue to rise despite the fact that the adjuvants with mercury, that were used with the combined vaccinations, was stopped many years ago. The number of folks pushing the vaccination/autism connection is small but very vocal.

      And, if you read the entire link you will see that the American companies have not used or even decided to use the adjuvants. They prefer not to use them. Which of course might better fit BF’s view that this is all about the money. They may get paid more for the concentrated vaccine than the diluted vaccine.

      If this flu increases significantly this year our medical system will be severly taxed. Doctors told me last year if caught very early normal flue treatment under medical supervision is very successful. Hospitalization is often needed to assure the proper care, and will be certainly required for the cased that are not identified quickly. Which in America will be most as we usually wait until the fever hits the 102 mark before we head to the Doc. They also said that once the symptoms show it is way to late for a vaccination. It means you contracted the bug about 48 hours earlier.

      Bottom line. Many will die this year from this flu and other flu. Will the vaccine prevent some from dieing, probably. Will the vaccines cause problems for some, probably. Unfortunately because the varieties of flu and thus the vaccines differ each year there is no way I can see to develop sound data from which to evaluate the statistical risks of taking or not taking the vaccine.

      So it comes down to whether you trust the medical field, including Pharma companies to do what they think is the right thing to best protect us. Its your life, you make the call.

      • adjuvants

        I don’t know what that 50cent word means.

        Influenza vaccines have something called a suspense sirum(?)that does contain Mercury and I am allergic to it and cannot take the flu shots.

        So I suppose you know more than my doctor?

  22. Murphy's Law says:

    USW,

    Thanks for the info, that was a very timely article- I work in public schools traveling from one school to another, mostly Hispanic students- and last year I thought the whole swine flu scare was quite overblown. But given the information in your article I can see why this flu is taken more seriously.

    In my area of Texas (DFW metroplex), as in most of Texas I suppose, there is not only a large Hispanic population, but they are almost constantly traveling back and forth between here and Mexico. I often hear my students talking about grandma, uncle, etc coming up from Mexico and staying for awhile. Since Mexico is where this all seems to have started and where if I am not mistaken there were the most deaths, it makes me sit up and take notice. I’m not afraid to be around my students, but needless to say I use hand sanitizer a lot!

    I have taken the flu shot some years, some not…..though last year my dr encouraged me to take it (along with a tetanus booster) since many of my students have multiple impairments and sometimes dig fingernails in and scratch unintentionally.

    Oh boy….another year is about to start…….

    Murf

  23. Black Flag says:

    Polio vaccine blamed for outbreaks in Nigeria

    Mutation of live virus in oral doses linked to 124 cases this year, experts say

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32418446/ns/health-infectious_diseases/

    I wonder what headlines will see after this H1N1 vaccine goes viral…

    (Don’t ya love my puns 🙂 )

  24. Black Flag says:

    Bob

    “Not only was the Spanish Flu (as it came to be known) strikingly virulent, but it displayed an unusual preference in its choice of victims—tending to select young healthy adults over those with weakened immune systems, as in the very young, the very old, and the infirm. The normal age distribution for flu mortality was completely reversed, and had the effect of gouging from society’s infrastructure the bulk of those responsible for its day to day maintenance.”

    As I pointed out, Bob, what age group was representative of those that went to war? Hmmm, the same age group….. do you wonder if there was a more important, underlying causation of the spike in that age group?

    Millions of Indians died whole villages in Alaska were wiped out, it did not just affect the soldiers.

    Whoa! MILLIONS!!!

    There were no people left in Alaska then….!

    How about 750? Yeah, that sounds more reasonable.

    The Alaska Native population in Nome was decimated—176 of the 300 Alaska Natives in the region died.

    Elsewhere, entire Native families too sick to feed their fires froze to death in their homes. Many who were brought to a makeshift hospital believed that it was a death house, and so, instead, committed suicide. Spit the Wind, widely considered Alaska’s greatest musher, died at the age of 25. He had survived a grueling expedition to the North Pole in which he had been forced to eat his snowshoe lacings, but he couldn’t survive the flu.

    On November 7th, the governor issued a special directive to “All Alaskan Natives.” Natives were urged to stay at home and avoid public gatherings-something anathema to their communal lives. The pandemic swept through communities, killing whole villages. One schoolbteacher reported that, in her area, “three [villages were] wiped out entirely, others average 85% deaths…. Total number of deaths reported 750, probably 25% [of] this number froze to death before help arrived.”

    Again, if you inspect the circumstances closely, you will find that nutrition, hygiene, the weather and the general lack of health care were the cause.

    Flu mutations can happen anytime,

    That is not an argument. That is a fact.

    The argument is that the threat of global human disaster due to a flu is directly correlated with the hygiene and general health of the population.

    A common cold is fatal if the health and hygiene is compromised, too.

    unhygienic conditions sure can help but they can happen all the same. All it takes is for us to be unlucky and get a particularly nasty strain to mutate and we will be in bad shape. Its not like the world lives in a super hygienic environment anyway. A flu strain could mutate in Africa, India or anywhere else with poor conditions. Just a matter of time

    They do! And the problem is…in Africa, India or China rural communities – where hygiene and health is compromised!

    Begin to worry, Bob, when Socialist health care systems begin to collapse. Then the threat is huge.

    With the health system exhausted economically, and unable to provide even the most basic care, a disaster will be in the making.

    But until then, it’s “Chicken Little” running around scare-mongering the people.

  25. Black Flag says:

    Remember the use of a similar swine flu vaccine in the United States in 1976 when:

    * More people died from the vaccination than from swine flu.
    * 500 cases of GBS were detected.
    * The vaccine may have increased the risk of contracting GBS by eight times.
    * The vaccine was withdrawn after just ten weeks when the link with GBS became clear.
    * The US Government was forced to pay out millions of dollars to those affected.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1206807/Swine-flu-jab-link-killer-nerve-disease-Leaked-letter-reveals-concern-neurologists-25-deaths-America.html#ixzz0OTF7wtBc

  26. Black Flag says:

    csm

    — money supply ‘ the definition accepted by the Austrian School of economics. DEFLATION IS A DECREASE IN THE TOTAL STOCK OF THE MEANS OF PAYMENT – OR “MONEY” ‘ … This does not include credit?

    It does include credit spent. Follow:

    You have $1000 LoC on your Visa. They up it to $10,000. How much more money is in the economy now?

    Answer: Zero

    You buy a new TV for $5,000. How much more money now is in the economy? Answer: $5,000.

    You pay back $5,000. How much more money is in the economy? Answer: -$5,000

    does Keynes count it?

    No, I don’t believe he did. The “potential” to spend has no economic meaning. Money stuffed under a mattress is deflationary tactic – it removes money out of the economy.

    Is the cash I just borrowed from you (yeah, right, I know, but bear with me…) part of the money supply. Seems to be,

    Where did the money come from? If it came OUT of my bank acct., and IN to your bank acct., what was the net of the exchange? Zero.

    If it came out from my mattress and into your bank acct., the net of the exchange is INFLATIONARY.

    If it came out of my bank acct., and into your mattress, the net of the exchange is DEFLATIONARY.

    Why does the bank acct., matter?

    Because all money in a bank acct., is essentially lent to someone.

    Why does someone borrow? To spend it. Or deposits in a means that earns more money than what it costs (I lend it to you for a rate lower than the bank pays for a deposit, which means you deposit into a bank and then the bank lends it)

    …. or you spend it on a TV.

    if credit is part of the money supply, how is it counted?

    ONLY if it is used. $1000 LoC unused is not counted. You spending it, causes it to be counted in increase of the money supply. You paying it back contracts the money supply.

    So paying off a loan to a bank, and the bank NOT re-lending the money causes deflation.

    Taking money out of the bank and putting in your mattress – (which reduces bank Reserves (which are deposits such as yours), which reduces the amount of money it can lend by law, thus they have to call back ~9x the amount of money in loan, which reduces the money in the economy) is deflationary.

    Clear as concrete?

    • sneaky, my friend… I’m almost done thinking — the concrete is becoming more like glass bricks — there’s something there — wonder what it is 😉 c

  27. bottom line says:

    I’ve done a little research about H1N1. I’m not one to buy into everything I hear, because I am capable of independant critical thinking. However, there are a few things I’ve heard/read that raise serious questions. #1-It is my understanding that, according to some scientists, the H1N1 has similar charactoristics of an “engineered” virus. While these charactoristics DO occur naturally, it is very rare. #2-Baxter, the company that makes the H1n1 vaccine, has in the past, distributed vaccines with live avian flu virus in it. This is especially disturbing considering that the procedures for handling these things is, if properly followed, lock tight and fail-safe. This could have only happened by EXTREME neglegence or intentional sabatage. So was it sabatage or neglegence?…who cares?…it doesnt matter. Either way, Do you trust them enough to take the vaccine? #3- Baxter has been given legal immunity against liability for a product they aren’t properly testing. WTF!?! I don’t know any more about this than the rest of you, so I cant conclusively say too much… but I am inclined to be suspicious of the circumstances. Something isn’t right.

  28. I READ IN SEVERAL PLACES THAT THIS VACCINE WAS MFG. IN A LAB ON PURPOSE AND THE REPORT ALSO SAID THAT THE FLU DOES NOT MUTATE FROM ONE SPECIES TO ANOTHER NATURALLY. SO SOME BODY ORDER THIS TO BE MIXED WITH THE BIRD FLU AND FIGURED IT WOULD BE A GOOD CRISIS, NEVER LET A CRISIS TO BE WASTE, WHO SAID THAT???????

  29. There is a lot of information in the media about swine flu. To the point of overwhelming. Although not expressly untrue, many facts are lacking and worst of all, the information is presented grossly out of context. Presenting facts selectively, and using a loaded message to produce an emotional rather than rational response spells propaganda.

    Unfortunately, the biggest casualty of this corporate-driven, politically-supported, media-manufactured hysteria is – common sense.

    Stay informed. Don’t take anything for granted just because someone ‘credible’ says so. Pull as many facts that are available together into a picture that makes sense for you. Draw a conclusion of your own. The truth will set you free!

    Some facts at my blog http://theconsciousnessrevolution.wordpress.com/category/swine-flu/

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