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Archive for May, 2009

Swine Flu – Influenza A (H1N1)

Saturday, May 2nd, 2009

I’ve been thinking about this for the past week: what to write about the so-called “swine flu.”

Being without cable I think has provided me a little shelter from the hysteria. Instead of fast clips, sound bites, and conclusion-jumping, I’ve had the chance to read the ostensibly more thought-out articles found in (digital) print.

Some have lived up to this charter, if you will, but the medium has not been spared its own unique ballyhoo. This is the land of conspiracy theorists whose views seldom find favor among mainstream venues.

You know, ideas such as whether our government has cooked this rare concoction of strains up in its own labs, its release not an accident, but intentional; or maybe it’s all a grand scheme to finally usher in the New World Order. Hogwash! ;)

Not that these things don’t/won’t/can’t happen, rather I don’t believe they’re orchestrated by human conniving, though maybe stupidity. There is no conductor here but Time.

Look, we’ve found Patient Zero!

This cute picture’s been making the rounds, and I just had to include it. My caption’s OK, but my friend had one that just cracked me up when he posted it on Facebook: “You little bastard! You’ve killed us all!”

While I do agree with the sentiment of those in the health movement that a good diet is essential to proper immune function, it makes me uncomfortable when folks declare a sort of untouchability by way of their vegan, raw food, what have you, diet. Just as when some in the Calorie Restriction Society talk as though their long life is a guarantee. Seems like tempting fate to me, and you won’t catch me being so smug. That said, eating well can only help (probably more than these), and you’ll feel better for it regardless, so just do it! :)

If there’s a silver lining to all this, it’s that attention has been brought to the horrible living and dying conditions of factory farmed animals. Take for example the CNN videos posted on VegSource.

For a detailed timeline of this particular outbreak and strain and more information on the biology of flu in general, see this Wikipedia entry.

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