So, like Avian Flu, another man made virus kills a few folk, infects a few more and it's a health emercency.
It appeared on 14th April and lo, there's a huge health emergency in the US when about 20 people get infected and none of them die, a few other folk from around the world have contracted it but seem to have only "mild symptoms". How does that remotely constitue an iminent pandemic? Freaking out the world for the flu. Why? Many thousands die from your common-or-garden flu all over the world every year.

The official reported death toll in Mexico is seemingly nothing compared to the actual death toll reported by hospital staff. Seems odd that it's killing loads in Mexico but elsewhere symptoms are mild.

So who is telling the truth?

Are people just being paranoid, throwing around these ideas or is there some sinister agenda behind it all? I've turned up all sorts of theories on the tinterweb.

Was it an accident where someone accidentally got themselves infected in a lab somewhere?
Was it manufactured and put out there in order to get the phamaceutical companies more money? After all it's well known that large pharmaceutical companies and world government have many people in common.
Was it manufactured to kill, incite panic and have people clamouring for vaccinations that will do them more harm than good.
Is it an exercise to pull people into order through fear?
Is it population control?
Is it a practice run for something worse yet to come, to see how well it works and how it is handled?
Was Avian Flu a practice run for this?
Is a bacon butty safe?!
What about chimichanga?!
Is it a bird? Is it a Plane? Is it a hat? Is it a sandwhich?

What do you think?

Also, a quick poll:

[Poll #1391776]

I'm really interested in what people think and what they would do. I've made the post public and the poll open to all.

From: [identity profile]

I take echinacea to boost my immune system. It doesn't stop you getting bugs but it does seem to lessen the severity of a cold etc. I'd rather not subject my body to the chemicals etc in a vaccine.

From: [identity profile]

The trouble with viruses is that they are constantly mutating. You get ones that are deadly, and you get ones that spread fast. If a deadly one picks up some fast spreading abilities, then we're in trouble.

There are a lot of things that have always lurked in rainforests & jungles and as these are cut back we come into contact with them - ebola is a classic example. If ebola ever mutates into something that spreads fast, we're pretty much screwed.

I think that's why everyone is so jittery when a new virus harmful to humans is identified. Depending on how it transmits itself, it could be beyond containment very rapidly.

If you wanted to be really cynical, you could view viruses as the planet's antibodies ridding it of troublesome humans.

From: [identity profile]

"If you wanted to be really cynical, you could view viruses as the planet's antibodies ridding it of troublesome humans".

Aye, this is something that has crossed my mind. Cynical? Moi?

From: [identity profile]

What is probably killing all those people in Mexico is either a concurrent MRSA-type outbreak at the hospital, or the effects of getting the flu on top of a life of dire poverty and deprivation and no access to medics.

Flu sucks, it keeps you unable to get up for a week at least, and that, if you're malnourished and immunosuppressed as a result, is bad news.

That, or if you get it direct from herding pigs, it's nasty, and it gets less nasty when passed on between humans...
redcountess: (Default)

From: [personal profile] redcountess

Poverty, pollution, the high altitude would all be contributing factors to the Mexico deaths, although it's interesting that the Mexican fatalities are seemingly all young people (which were also the main demographic of the Spanish Flu but many of those were soldiers returning from WW1) whereas in North America and elsewhere it's the more traditional demographic (the very young and very old and chronically ill).

From: [identity profile]

They think they've found Patient Zero (ie the guy who got it from the pigs); he's a Mexican five-year old kid who lives near a pig farm.

As for conspiracy theories, I am sceptical.

From: [identity profile]

And if one doesn't get vaccinated, one helps act as a reservoir and can spread the disease even if one is asymptomatic.

I have very few kind words for anti-vaccine people (especially given that the paper everyone claims shows links between MMR and Aspbergers goes beyond shoddy science and into the actively malicious - not only did the main author take money from anti-vaccination groups to write it, he LIED about his results).

From: [identity profile]

And if one doesn't get vaccinated, one helps act as a reservoir and can spread the disease even if one is asymptomatic.

That is true in the case of some vaccines, but not with vaccines for viruses like flu.

The problem is due to the high mutation rate of viruses - if you vaccinate everyone to make them immune to the initial strain, you just create a selection pressure for mutated viral strains not covered by the vaccine. So actually vaccinating everybody is a bad thing.

From: [identity profile]

PS. I suspect the reason more people die in Mexico is because flu makes your lungs suck and pollution is rife there.

So a mild case is made worse by the atmosphere and other local problems.

From: [identity profile]

Oops, there I go listening to people again! I was reading from lortd knows where (I must've read several news reports and blos instead of working today!) that the majority of folks out there reckon it's man made. I'm sorry for my post not being factual! Should have worded it better.
I'm no biologist. I suspect that the different strains making up the virus is what has people thinking it's likely, swine flu strains from two continets, human and avian. The two different continents thing along with testimony from people claiming to work in the medical profession and biotechnology saying they were first warned about it a year ago and have been and given guidelines to deal with it throughout the past year; These seem to be the main reasons for the suspicion it was probably man made.

From: [identity profile]

Paranoid people have certainly suggested it - but paranoid people will suggest anything and everything!

flu is well known for jumping species, though I guess the difference this time is that mostly when you get bird/pig-flu it infects a single person and then doesn't spread any further. This one started off like that but managed to infect people afterwards, making it more likely to spread.

This one has bits of man, pig, and bird flu all rolled up together but that doesn't really make it special, or hint at it being "manufactured". Realistically I think the idea that people would release a disease like that with a hint of making money, or killing of a lot of people has to be grossly naive at best and silly at worst.

From: [identity profile]

I'm supposed to get the normal flu vaccine due to my asthma but I've never bothered. I can't see me getting off my arse and getting the swine flu one. If someone actively 'encouraged' me to get it I probably would.

From: [identity profile]

Why would it be a conspiracy? There are lots of nasty bugs out there that could do damage, it just needs the right circumstances. Think what happens to someone when their immune system is compromised. We're damn lucky in this country to be well nourished, have clean water and access to good healthcare.

It often gives me pause, that the most important factor that has helped humans live longer is not improvements in medical technology, it's basic hygiene. And basic hygiene can help a lot with avoiding this too.