Will the flu change our lifestyles?

In the family photo, she is a strikingly beautiful young mother, vibrant and healthy.

At age 24, she gives birth to my father.  Five weeks later, on June 18, 1918, she is dead, one 0f the tens of millions of victims of the 1918 influenza outbreak that raged between March, 1918 and June, 1920.

My mother-in-law, born in 1907, remembered so many people dying in Cartersville that the town ran out of caskets to bury them.  Death, disproportionately to the young, hit most every family.

Fearing another possible flu pandemic, the Obama Administration and other governments around the world declared a public health emergency this weekend as clusters of swine flu started surfacing around the globe. The U.S. declaration allows the feds to ship 12 million doses of flu-fighting medications to the states.  So far, the 20 confirmed cases in this country are mild and no extraordinary medical response is yet warranted.

 U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention official said Sunday that the current flu vaccine does not appear to offer any added protection against the new virus, though older people who’ve been exposed to the mutating viruses for decades may have built up some immunity. 

I’m curious, here, whether anybody’s planning any changes in your lifestyles or daily routines as a result of the building concern about this particular strain of the flu.  Anybody stocking up on food?  Planning to work from home?  Avoiding large public gatherings?  Headed for the hills or the countryside?  Nobody would have taken these actions yet, of course,  so the question really is a gauge of your thinking and whether you’re concerned about this strain.

79 comments Add your comment

Copyleft

April 27th, 2009
8:12 am

UH-oh…. I search the Constitution in vain for any mention of the government having a role in disease prevention and research. Clearly the CDC should be shut down as more “socialism” that our founders never intended!

Right, wingnuts?

Gov Rick Perry, Texas

April 27th, 2009
8:14 am

Yes, Jim…in light of the potential devastation from a flu pandemic, I have decided to delay my call for Texas to secede from the United States. Instead, I ask President Obama to expedite my request to the CDC to send several hundred thousand swine flu vaccines to the Great State of Texas to protect our citizens from this possible health catastrophe.

While I personally view any and all federal taxation and expenditure as inherently evil, and feel the government health program is as inefficient as the postal service, in this case I am willing to make an exception.

Churchill's MOM

April 27th, 2009
8:15 am

The great liberal press is after our next President again. As for Chicken man’s defence of Bush’s Girl Condi she would not even make a good maid.

The Alaska Governor comes in with a scathing attack on Obama’s failure to embrace Republicans in the New York Post’s “100 Days, 100 Mistakes” broadside at Obama:

Obama soared to victory on the hopeful promise of a new era of bipartisanship. During his inaugural address he even promised an ‘end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.’

Too bad it took all of three days for the promise to ring hollow.

Start with Obama’s big meeting with top congressional leaders on his signature legislation — the stimulus — on the Friday after his inauguration. Listening to Republican concerns about overspending was a nice gesture — until he shut down any hopes of real dialogue by crassly telling Republican leaders: ‘I won.’ Even the White House’s leaking of the comment was a slap at the Republican leadership, who’d expected Obama to adhere to the custom of keeping private meetings with congressional leadership, well, private.

It’s only gone downhill from there. The stimulus included zero Republican recommendations, and failed to get a single House Republican vote.

It’s not just the tactic of using Republicans for bipartisan photo-ops, and then cutting them loose before partisan decisions, that irks Obama’s opponents. The new president wasted no time rushing forward with policies and legislation guaranteed to drive Republicans nuts. The first bill he signed into law was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act — a partisan hot-button that drew all of eight Republican supporters in the entire Congress. Then there was the swift reversal of Bush policies on abortion and embryonic-stem-cell research — issues dear to the Republican base.

And when Obama and the Democrats in Congress took up SCHIP — the children’s health-insurance bill that Republicans say vastly expands government’s role in health care — they had an easy chance for real bipartisanship. After all, the bill had been hashed out in the previous Congress, and a bipartisan accord was reached before President Bush responded with a veto. Did the Obama team push for the compromise version in the 111th Congress? Nope. They went back to the drawing board, ramming through the Democrats’ dream version.

Of course, the lack of bipartisanship isn’t limited to Capitol Hill. Obama has taken gratuitous swipes at the Republicans who recently decamped Washington, blaming President Bush for everything from the economy and the war to the lack of sufficient puppies and rainbows. And who could forget the Rush Limbaugh flap — in which Obama’s top advisers, including chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, orchestrated a public relations campaign meant to undermine the Republican National Committee chairman, Michael Steele, by framing talk-radio personality Limbaugh as the real head of the Republican Party.

For now, Obama’s back-pedal on the bipartisanship promise just makes him look insincere. But the real consequences of the mistake will be felt soon enough. As Presidents Bush and Clinton could tell him, congressional majorities do change — and at some point, Obama will need Republicans on his side. He’d be smart to spend his second 100 days making up for the serious snubs of his first.

**********Handel 2010*******PALIN MCCAIN 2012*******

Chris Broe

April 27th, 2009
8:28 am

jt

April 27th, 2009
8:31 am

Copleft and Gov.
Read about the “pandemic” of 1976.
Around 250 people were stupid enough to rely on the feds then, too.

Sen Susan Collins, (R-Maine)

April 27th, 2009
8:39 am

Hi Jim,

Sen Collins of Maine here. You might remember me for such outstanding demonstrations of fiscal responsibility as this, just a few weeks ago during the stimulus negotiations:

“Sen Collins demanded cuts in health care spending in exchange for her support of a watered-down version of the stimulus, fumed about the pandemic funding: “Does it belong in this bill? Should we have $870 million in this bill No, we should not.” ”

SO remember, citizens…good fiscal stewardship demands that we oppose federal participation in fighting a flu pandemic. This is something that should be handled by local governments and individual citizens, and is not a proper function of the federal government.

I remain proud of my principled opposition to this wasteful government spending. So, take two aspirin and try to not die from the flu, m’kay?

Copyleft

April 27th, 2009
8:45 am

Right you are, JT! Clearly we shouldn’t even have a CDC since it can’t guarantee 100% effective prevention and cure of all known diseases.

Besides, it’s not government’s job to do anything to help in the face of natural disasters… didn’t Bush already demonstrate that in New Orleans?

Still Munchin the Carpet

April 27th, 2009
8:45 am

jt

Thanks for the tip…even though I lived through that one, I’ll revisit the events of 1976.

If I might suggest…John Barry wrote a superb history of the 1918 flu pandemic titled “The Great Influenza”. I recommend it highly. Wooten does a service today to raise this historical precedent. Few people realize that more soldiers in WW I died from the flu than fell to bullets, bombs, and gas. Worldwide, more citizens died from the flu than did all soldiers lost in the war. Entire cities shut down for days and weeks. It is hard to imagine, but important to remember before one snidely dismisses the work of the US health corps as just another federal boondoggle.

Of course, one expects all gLibertarians to refuse any offers of aid from the government. Strictly on principle. Consider yourselves Christian Scientists for a while.

Billy Bob the anti-THUG

April 27th, 2009
9:00 am

I’m going to avoid my neighbor who has this lingering cough…

Diogenes

April 27th, 2009
9:03 am

Good morning, Jim,

I’ve shocked — absolutely shocked — that you would condone any role for government. You’re becoming more and more liberal as you near retirement. That’s the good thing.

Californication

April 27th, 2009
9:03 am

CopyLeft,
you are half right, if our federal government had done its primary job, protecting and securing our borders then we would not have this issue to begin with. But since they fail their primary job they are trying to make up for such disgraceful conduct with inoculations.

Redneck Convert

April 27th, 2009
9:05 am

Well, I’m making alot of changes on account of this flu. I won’t be setting next to anyone at Billy Bob’s. You never know who’s been around pigs. And I’m giving up sausage gravy even tho the biscuits is mighty dry without it. And you can bet I won’t be getting anywhere close to Mexicans.

We need to get the guvmint out of the flu business and turn the whole thing over to Private Innerprize. If we let the guvmint fight the flu we will end up wasting alot of taxpayer money and get nothing in return. I knowed a CDC guy once and he was the most worthless person I ever met. Let’s turn flu fighting over to private business. They could set up places where people could get shots for maybe a few thousand bucks a pop. And sooner or later we would be rid of the worthless bums that don’t have a job and can’t pay and then end up raising our taxes. We could let the flu do the work for us.

After the whole thing is over and only a few million are dead of the flu the business people could hand out big bonuses for stopping the flu. Then we would have Trickle Down you wouldn’t beleive. Anyhow, it worked for the big banks that went bust, I don’t see why it won’t work for fighting the flu.

That’s my opinion and it’s very true. Have a good day everybody.

Gashwin

April 27th, 2009
9:07 am

To respond to the original question (and not reduce this rather serious issue to partisan snarkiness or bickering): if it turns out that this new strain is very deadly, then I think it will have a very serious impact on all our lives. Right now I feel it’s a wait and watch situation — and pray that morbidity remains low.

Billy Bob the anti-THUG

April 27th, 2009
9:37 am

…wash hands often, cough/sneeze into shirt sleeve or hankerchief, avoid crowds, uncirculated air…and swine.

Poultry

April 27th, 2009
9:43 am

In November the CDC issued a warning forecasting an Influenza pandemic they expected to take hold sometime this year. They described the prospect of a new strain resistant to existing pharma (and of course antibiotics are useless against viruses). In the event of an outbreak, they said, families and individuals will be responsible for their own evacuation, and the officials recommended that households keep a two-week supply of food, water, medicines, etc. One reason why they issued the warning so far in advance was so that folks could begin to accumulate such an expensive stockpile in difficult economic times.

In the garage I keep a large, new, rolling trash barrel that contains what once was a three-day tornado kit and is now a two-week flu kit.

Jen

April 27th, 2009
9:44 am

Californication, that’s so naive. Are we supposed to prevent any and all international travel? Including on behalf of the US on official US business????

Big Bucks GOP

April 27th, 2009
9:50 am

Timothy F. Geithner is a central figure in the effort to rebuild the
nation’s fractured financial system and overhaul its regulations.

But in an examination of Mr. Geithner’s five years as president of the
New York Fed, The New York Times concludes that Mr. Geithner forged
unusually close relationships with executives of Wall Street’s giant
financial institutions. And his actions, as a regulator and later a
bailout king, often aligned with the industry’s interests and desires,
The Times’s Jo Becker and Gretchen Morgenson write.

Mr. Geithner was particularly close to executives of Citigroup, the
largest bank under his supervision. And as Citi was going into a
tailspin, Sanford I. Weill, one of Citi’s largest individual
shareholders and its former chairman, approached Mr. Geithner about
taking over as Citi’s chief executive, a role he immediately rejected,

Big Bucks GOP

April 27th, 2009
9:53 am

UBS, the Swiss bank that has written off more than $50 billion since
the start of the credit crisis, said Monday that the head of its
investment banking unit, Jerker Johansson, is stepping down.

Big Bucks GOP

April 27th, 2009
9:57 am

Anheuser-Busch InBev has picked private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis
Roberts as preferred buyer of South Korea’s Oriental Brewery, a company
official told Reuters,

Big Bucks GOP

April 27th, 2009
10:00 am

The trustee trying to unravel Bernard L. Madoff’s multibillion-dollar
Ponzi scheme is threatening legal action to recover $735 million from
investors who unwittingly made money off the swindle.

KWUHG

April 27th, 2009
10:39 am

you are correct copy left – the cdc should be a private run operation

Peter

April 27th, 2009
11:01 am

Georgia.a state run by Republican’s who don’t care about Education……Keep them DUMB Jim……Republican’s will get the Dumb A$$ Vote !

Fish Farms are definitely more important…….Then education !

End of state scholarship is an unhappy surprise for 1,500 students
Gov.’s Scholarship Program was eliminated from budget
By JAMES SALZER

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The state is notifying some of its top students that a four-year scholarship designed to entice them to attend college in Georgia has been wiped out.

The Governor’s Scholarship Program, a precursor to the state’s popular HOPE scholarship, was quietly eliminated in the budget lawmakers passed April 3 on the final day of the 2009 session.

Within a week of the vote, the Student Finance Commission began notifying about 1,500 students that they wouldn’t get the aid next fall.

Students and parents had no idea the money wouldn’t be coming.

“I was kind of shocked when I heard about it,” said Joey Krumpach, 19, a freshman at Georgia Gwinnett College who received the scholarship this year after being valedictorian of his high school.

Steven Longo, a Lawrenceville project manager whose daughter Julie receives the scholarship, said the award was supposed to be for four years.

“I think they are sending a bad message,” Longo said.

The Governor’s Scholarship was started in the mid-1980s as an incentive to keep Georgia’s top students from leaving the state to attend college.

It goes to valedictorians and other top students. At its peak in the 1990s about 3,000 students were getting more than $4.5 million in awards.

However, the program has been whittled back, and the state spent only about $1.3 million this year. For most students, it amounted to $900.

Governor’s Scholarship recipients also get HOPE scholarships, which pay their tuition and provide book and fee money. The Governor’s Scholarship helped pay for room and board and other expenses.

Tim Connell, president of the Georgia Student Finance Commission, questioned whether the scholarship was keeping top students in Georgia.

Connell recalled the annual ceremony Gov. Sonny Perdue has at the Governor’s Mansion for top students. When the students were asked where they planned to attend school, Connell said about 40 percent indicated they were heading out of state.

“It kind of brought into question what was the purpose of the scholarship,” he said. “$900 is probably not having a significant effect on decision making. It’s not enough to say, ‘Instead of going to Harvard or going to Vanderbilt or going to Duke, I am going to the University of Georgia.’

“It’s probably became more of an ‘attaboy’ for valedictorians.”

Krumpach, who is taking technology classes at Georgia Gwinnett, said the scholarship did help persuade him to stay in Georgia. “It was the best education for the money,” he said.

In the midst of a fiscal crisis that forced massive budget cuts, Perdue recommended the program be eliminated and the Legislature obliged. Rep. Kathy Ashe (D-Atlanta), a former teacher and member of the House Education Committee, said she didn’t realize the program had been eliminated until someone sent her a copy of the Student Finance Commission letter being mailed to students.

She said the state made commitments to the scholars.

“We need to make it a priority to reward these deserving students and keep them in the state,” she said. “I think it’s one of those places where priorities become very clear.”

Democrats have argued that Perdue and the Republican majority haven’t made spending on education a priority. However, K-12 education took a smaller budget hit this year than almost any other area in the budget.

Bert Brantley, the governor’s spokesman, said many top students are already getting a number of other scholarships, including HOPE.

“When you’re looking for things to cut back on, you’re looking for what has the most benefit,” he said. “For a lot of kids, this is just over and above what they are already spending on tuition and books.”

Mid-South Philosopher

April 27th, 2009
11:05 am

Good morning, Jim.

My, but we have a collection of creative literary artists contributing today. Oh, well, the economy is bad right now with a lot of “laid-off”, pseudo-intellects having more time on their hands than thoughts in their craniums.

Anyway…as to this “swine flu” concern…what ever happened to regular washing of the hands, covering one’s face when coughing and sneezing, and frequent applications of medicinal doses of sour mash? Moreover, whatever happened to “staying home” when one was ill with the flu…and “keep the kids home from school” (despite Roy Barnes’ and Georgie Bush’s “stupid” No Child Left Behind attendance rules) when they were sick?

Of course, we might consider locking down the southern border…Oh, wait,…that would be “politically incorrect.” Just because this latest outbreak is coming from Mexico is no reason to enforce our laws. By the Eternal, though, if this malady was being spread by a commune of polygamists in west Texas, we would be on them like a “duck on a Junebug!” That’s not politically incorrect!

Country Boy

April 27th, 2009
11:42 am

I got a swine flu shot during the pandemic in 1976 and ended up with not the flu, but with myocarditis, six months of misery and out of work. I would pass this time.

Poultry

April 27th, 2009
11:43 am

@Mid-South Philosopher,

I’m afraid it’s apples and oranges. The common flu is to deadly Influenza as Sarsparilla is to corn whiskey. The CDC predicts an outbreak of the latter, a contemporary strain of the 1918 virus capable of killing millions. They do, with you, also recommend stepping up hand-washing, as well as developing the habit of coughing, when necessary, into the crook of one’s sleeved arm–a bit implausible on shortsleeve days such as this.

As most of us are aware, Emory at present is the principal contractor-operator of the CDC, so the Centers are a public/private partnership. It seems to me that this results in the worst of both worlds, as it tends to politicize Emory’s research, something a private university aspiring to elite status can ill afford to permit. Too many of its scientists have one foot in public policy and the other in academe and pure research. I realize that this would be costly, but I’d rather see the government make direct grants to the research universities, allowing them scholarly independence, while running its own parallel federal effort variously in competition with, and cooperation with, the privates.

findog

April 27th, 2009
11:48 am

Jim,
I seem to remember that in either late 76 or early 77 we had a swine flu scare. They made all members of the Georgia Army National Guard take a swine flu shot. I remember that there had been complications to the vaccine and one old soldier really freaking out about being ordered to get the shot. Now my wife thinks we should go to the doctor a acquire Theraflu or some such anti-viral medication incase one of us gets sick.

If they would have left Blago in the governor’s office a little longer this could have blown over but all we got is death and the crown stolen by activist gays…

Jen

April 27th, 2009
11:49 am

No, the CDC, should NOT be a privately run organization. CDC is essentially an arm of DoD. There are things that cannot be trusted to business machine because decisions will be made in the best interest of profit, not in the best interest of health and safety.

Besides, all the rhetoric about bureaucracy aside the CDC is a pretty well-run, efficient organization. I don’t think a provate organization could do better.

Curious Observer

April 27th, 2009
12:04 pm

How interesting that one blogger posits that CDC is essentially run by Emory University and another states that CDC is an arm of DoD. Dead wrong on both counts.

CDC dwarfs Emory University, not only in personnel but also in locations. It has campuses not only in six places in Atlanta but also in Washington DC, Hyattsville MD, Cincinnati, Morgantown WV, Pittsburgh, in Colorado, Seattle, and numerous other locations. And CDC is part of the Department of Health and Human Services, not DoD. CDC has more MDs on staff than the rest of metropolitan Atlanta combined.

Mac

April 27th, 2009
12:08 pm

Not making any changes right now, other than being very attentive to news reports. Here in northwest Georgia, many in our communities have close ties to Mexico, so it wouldn’t surprise me to find cases here before long. I may actually start avoiding large public gatherings and contact with others as much as possible.

Jen

April 27th, 2009
12:12 pm

Curious, I did not mean to imply that CDC is part of DoD as an agency. CDC is, of course, part of HHS. However, the Commissioned Corps are a non-combatant arm of our nation’s defense.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Public_Health_Service_Commissioned_Corps

I am a CDC employee and I am well-aware of who I work for. And before anyone freaks…no I am not using government time to participate in this blog. Today I have the day off.

ProgressivePeach.com

April 27th, 2009
12:19 pm

Olympia Snowe, let’s also not forget the Republicans are keeping President Obama’s pick to head HHS out of the fight against this pandemic and on the sidelines — because they want to score cheap points with the anti-abortion wing of the Torture Party, er, Republican Party.

Leroy Jethro Gibbs

April 27th, 2009
12:19 pm

I’ll take that virus into interrogation and break it.

N. Joy Pharteen

April 27th, 2009
12:31 pm

Does Tamiflu come in suppositories? I really prefer suppositories.

GLP

April 27th, 2009
12:40 pm

Atlanta Ga: The Libertarian Party of Georgia is happy to announce that LPGa’s Communications Director James Bell, 49, has won the “Tea Party Award” presented in Chicago on April 18 at the Sam Adams Alliance 2nd Annual Sammies Awards (www.samadamsalliance.org).

Bell, who is celebrating his 20th year as a citizen activist, was recognized for his efforts in helping to defeat two Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) referenda in Douglas County, Georgia. Bell’s work with the Douglas County Taxpayers Coalition (DCTC) saved taxpayers more than $200 million.

“I am proud to be recognized for my efforts in leading a fight against higher taxation,” Bell proclaimed. “My efforts have been made possible with the support of many others who have selflessly stepped forward to offer their time and talents to a worthy cause.”

The Tea Party Award recognizes organizers of grassroots events that make a strong political point, initiate a public discussion, or earns media attention on an important state or local issue. Something like the Boston Tea Party: $5,000 cash prize!

The Sam Adams Alliance honored and presented a total of $40,000 in cash prizes to the winners at a red carpet ceremony the evening of April 18, 2009 at the Marriott Renaissance North Shore in Northbrook, Illinois. Winners were flown to Chicago from all over the country, so they could receive their recognition in an appropriate manner.

“The Sam Adams Alliance believes the winners should receive their awards from distinguished individuals whose own work merits presenting such high honors,” said Paul Miller, Communications Director of the Sam Adams Alliance. “We are proud to have so many champions of individual liberty and economic freedom presenting Golden Sammies to the winners.”

Guest presenters included best-selling author Michelle Malkin, Stephen Moore and John Fund of the Wall Street Journal, and Mary Katharine Ham. Fox News contributor Jonathan Hoenig presented Bell with his Tea Party Award.

Learn more about the Douglas County Taxpayers Coalition (DCTC) by visiting their website at http://www.DouglasTaxes.com

El Jefe

April 27th, 2009
1:06 pm

Gee, the EU is screening all passengers from Mexico, but we will not enforce our borders. I guess the ill illegals are more important to the Mahatma Obama, than our borders.

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&gl=us&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=106484775090296685271.0004681a37b713f6b5950

No, it will not impact my lifestyle. I guess the new Surgeon General will handle that one. Oh, wait, we don’t have one, the Great One hasn’t done that yet. – okay let the panicking begin.

100 Days Of Our Lives

April 27th, 2009
1:17 pm

Let’s see here. Obama’s first 100 days in office are upon us, and as expected, the DNC media tells us all about his successes with these headlines:

DNCNN:

“Schneider: Is Obama the superpresident?”

Newsweak:

“With all that the president has done, he’s in league, so far, with FDR and LBJ.”

And finally, a New York Times Washington correspondent, David Sanger says this on George Stephanopoulos’s Sunday morning “This Week” show:

“I think we’ve learned that he’s more moderate than we had expected.”

But George Wills, hardly a radical right winger and the typical lightweight token “Conservative” on the left wing biased Sunday “news” shows, said “He’s less moderate than I thought. He’s going to design our cars. He’s going to design our light bulbs. He’s going to tell us where our house shall be built. This is supervisory liberalism in the most nagging, annoying sort.”

I think the best way to judge Obama’s First 100 is to judge what he has reversed course on compared to last years teleprompter-driven promises. We can start with the Iraq war, earmark spending, and deficit spending and work our way backwards from there – both figuratively and literally.

But a couple of people are really setting the stage:

“In a South Carolina Town Where the Downturn Has Deepened Since the Inauguration, Two Obama Supporters Have Struggled, Going From ‘Fired Up’ to Tired Out”

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/25/AR2009042501870.html

You have to really give credit to the left wing WaPo for actually acknowledging that not everyone is still drooling and passing out over Obamania. In fact, his polls are declining, but you’d never know that from the majority mainstream DNC media.

Oh and by the way, Obama signing a bill written by the Pelosi-crats is really not an accomplishment. Using the teleprompter without fumbling is.

Finally, there is still hope for America when a large majority polled prefer the free market:

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/business/general_business/support_for_free_market_economy_up_seven_points_since_december

That rubs against this administration’s ambitions and goals like stroking a cat backwards.

jt

April 27th, 2009
1:19 pm

Do Not take the BROWN tamiflu!

Jackie

April 27th, 2009
1:30 pm

Making government entities like CDC private organizations has been the crux of our current problems.

If we try to make everything an organization that is based solely on profit, then the public is left to the dreaded ROI (Return On Investment) calculation, the most dangerous three words in our business models.

In the final analysis, what do we have that is beneficial to all of us? We still will pay for it.

Peter

April 27th, 2009
1:38 pm

Funny stuff here…….

El Jefe

April 27th, 2009
1:06 pm

Gee, the EU is screening all passengers from Mexico, but we will not enforce our borders. I guess the ill illegals are more important to the Mahatma Obama, than our borders.

What did Bush Do ? ZERO !!!!!!!!

Poultry

April 27th, 2009
2:03 pm

And in consonance with, not contradiction of, Jen’s interesting comments, C.O.,

I’ve not known of a multiform federal research partnership that was not administed from a central location. That is why I reported that Emory is merely “the principal” contractor-operator. Incidentally, I agree with Jen regarding the relative efficiency of the operation, against which I hold nothing and in which obviously I put great store.

The path to Emory’s eventual greatness is another question, one which I raised deliberately. But admittedly that need not have anything to do with epidemiological policy.

I’d appreciate your informed opinion about the advisability of running two parallel efforts, the one independently but largely publicly funded, the other run by the feds plain and simple. That expensive redundancy, that intentional competition, is how we keep our weapons labs in fighting form. Do you think the same dynamic might prove fruitful in efforts to prevent disease and halt its spread? I’m thinking post-9/11 here.

Poultry

April 27th, 2009
2:13 pm

@Curious Observer,

You observed @ 12:04 p.m.:

“How interesting that one blogger posits that CDC is essentially run by Emory University and another states that CDC is an arm of DoD.”

The qualifiers, e.g. “essentially run by” (an exaggeration not of my making, by the way) and “an arm of”, mean everything. It seems that we all understand CDC as neither wholly public nor wholly private. What I’m asking is, Should the efforts continue in hybrid form, or would they do better to proceed on parallel paths, the one public and the other private?

I don’t pretend to identify any problem here, but rather am only asking about an alternative model that may result in still better performance. My only concern about CDC is that its inevitable politicization needlessly politicizes in turn a richly endowed and superior university of importance to many of us here. I hate to see Emory get bogged down. Surely it can’t be for need of money.

Poultry

April 27th, 2009
2:17 pm

@Jen,

As an aside, you may have noticed that HHS of late has operated as “an arm” of the Justice Department. So many Czars and Czarinas, and already not enough turf to go around!

Republitards R Irrelevant

April 27th, 2009
2:25 pm

Dr. Jim Wooten graduate of the Big Chicken Right Wing School of Medicine, supporter of the most regressive stem cell bill in the country, and anti-science anti-medicine rancontuer querried while slapping his forehead furiously as a board certified republitard:

Will the flu change our lifestyle?

It depends on which strain and which flu. If you’re one of the people who dies from flu, I’m pretty sure it changes your lifestyle.

How prepared is the US? They aren’t.

Two drugs can treat this current strain of Swine Flu, but they are sometimes not effective in reducing the symptoms And what CNN won’t tell you, is that when you prescribe them, 30% of the patients develop flu mimetic side effects that are worse than the flu they had in the first place. Those meds are Tamiflu and Relenza. Note that moronic Pubtard Purdue, who Eric Johnson is finding a liability in his run for the paces if he wants to play “raise 10 million” wasted $6 million of your money on Tamiflu when the Avian scare was in vogue. Tamiflu not only won’t treat Avian mutated H5N1, but it will build resistance. Vet Sonny obviosly didn’t get off his fat butt to read NEJM, JAMA, or AJM or get some much needed medical help. The State Dept. of Health stood their passively and drooled when Sonny made his stupid purchase. Now they have a chance to get some bang for their buck.

They may be able to use the Tamiflu although I’m not suggesting at all that it should be dispersed yet. Of course those who can afford it are buying the pharmacies out of Relenza and Tamiflu at $67 bucks a pop for a week’s supply but after all, Georgia is the cracker retard capital of the country, so that’s not surprising.

Georgians bought out all pharmacies back when they stupidly thought Tamiflu could impact Birdie Flu. At least Tamiflu will have some efficacy if someone contracts this strain of Piggie Flu. However, it will not necessarily prevent your contracting it, and if your smart you won’t try to buy it up and take it prophylactically.

Further, buying up Relenza and Tamiflu can help promote resistance to the current US strains for these two meds that have efficacy currently, and is a bad idea. And what happens to bad ideas? Cracker Georgians embrace them.

The CDC has many affiliations with Emory. It’s not run by Emory at this time. Many CDC high officials now draw an Emory paycheck, and some of them are very good and were good when they were CDC. The CDC lost a lot of key veteran personnel under the idiotic Julie Gerberding who was a political animal more intensely than she ever applied the little medicine she knew.

Gerberding supressed many many scientific reports and the only real doctoring she did was of the scientific reports.

Currently, the CDC has refused the AJC over 4000 pages of internal memos because they still smack of Gerberdinism.

Californication

April 27th, 2009
2:29 pm

Jen,
Talk about naïve, where have 99% of the cases been? Not from international travel, but from people illegally crossing the border. The only cases outside of Border States have been in NYC where a bunch of students went to Mexico for vacation.

Poultry

April 27th, 2009
3:12 pm

@Republitards R Irrelevant,

Thanks for your valuable information and insight.

I too lament “Gerberdinism”.

Republitards R Irrelevant

April 27th, 2009
3:22 pm

Actually, Californication that’s not the case statistically. And epidemiologically it would be impossible to accurately break down the origins of an air born flu which could be mutating while in the US as to the origin of illegal immigrants versus border crossing travelers.

I’d brush up on your medicine and your epidemiological statistics applied to it before jumping to conclusions that just aren’t the case medically. 4 years of med school could be a start. When are you matriculatting?

I will agree with you that border crossers, however it gets done, who come from a country where many have died from Swine Flu are a more urgent concern now. No doubt about it–but that’s always the case when there is serious disease circulating in epidemic proportions.

The kids in the Catholic School in queens were not illegal border crossing immigrants. And historically, the soldiers at Fort Dix, New Jersey who contracted a strain that was different weren’t border crossing immigrants either. The 28 cases in NYC do not seem to have anything to do with illegal immigrants crossing borders. They have to do with travelling and family members of kids who travelled are now showing up with mild to moderate but easily managed cases of Swine Flu.

Congrats to the Repubtards who stripped flu prevention and awareness from the stim bill. You excel in medical stupidity pubtards.

We need Dr. Joe Plumber aka Sam the Unemployed and Dr. Sarah what the hell’s goin’ on I have a billion dollar deficit in Alaska with people starving right and left don’t we? No doubt the pubtards believe torture is the cure for swine flu.

Understanding Swine Flu

H1N1 Flu

STUPID EVIL REPUBLICANS TIME IS UP

April 27th, 2009
3:37 pm

GOOD JOB SONNY CUTTING THE 1500 SCHOLARSHIPS FOR GEORGIA STUDENTS,GREAT JOB JOHNNY SUXBY PHIL AND TOM FOR NORTH AND SOUTH GEORGIA LOSING THEIR JOBS.

THIS IS WHAT THE DUMB REDNECKS VOTED FOR, SO GOP KEEP SENDING THEIR JOBS OVERSEAS KEEP CUTTING EDUCATIONAL FUNDING,THIS IS WHAT THE DIXIE DUMB HICKS WANT SO CONTINUE TO GIVE IT TO THEIR DUMBA$$.

Jen

April 27th, 2009
3:53 pm

@Poultry,

Yes, all of us scientists at CDC have noticed….

@Californication,

You truly don’t understand how pandemics work. If we had ZERO illegal immigration we would still have cases of swine flu. So long as people in this country are allowed to travel outside of it, and people outside of this country are allowed to travel into it, and I’m talking strictly in terms of legal travel, then we have opened the door wide for spread of communicable diseases.

Check out the journal Nature and an article by Ira Longini….you can see for yourself how very, very quickly a pandemic occurs.

Republitards R Irrelevant

April 27th, 2009
3:54 pm

BTW, what the media lacks the skill to tell you, and so called “Homeland”(term from Ibsen’s 1880’s lit no one but Bush used–and Nepolitano inherited the term because it’s her building and agency’s name thanks to Bush) Security isn’t telling you is that this current strain is not completely treatable at all with use of Tamiflu or Ralenza. Fully 12.5% of cases of H1N1 current strains are resistant already to Tamiflu. The promiscuous buying and consumption of it will swell this figure.

The side effects in about 1/3 are the same symptoms of the flu itself which is why many physicians didn’t embrace Symmetrel to treat routine flus when it was the first nuramidase inhibitor on the market years ago in the early ’80’s. Why take a high risk of making your patient both poorer and sicker?

If you have a drug that costs $60 plus bucks per week, and your patient has mild to mod flu of any strain including H1N1, you’re often reluctant to use it when you know there is a 1/3 chance that they might get worse symptoms that are the same as their flu symptoms are additional symptoms by taking it. Particularly when as with all antivirals, the symptoms are not dramatically ameliorated, and you may be lucky to shave a day off the duration of the illness.

Given the current number of cases in the US at this time, I wouldn’t be agressive in Rxing Tamiflu or Ralenza prophylactically or even for the dx of mild cases. Bed rest, and staying in until recovery, could be best for the patient and for the rest of the population.

Since many patients will be asymptomatic for the first 3-4 days, it can be tough to make a decision to impose the cost and relatively high risk of side effects on the patient.

One thing for sure is that aside from business profs from UGA who are practicing the Amazing Race, your cable news stations will now be “All Pig Flu all the time” for a while. If there are significantly more cases, they will wallpaper CNN and MSNBC and of course the comic station Faux News with Piggie Flu.

Deadly Mutation: Swine Flu Virus H1N1 resistant to major drugs

The above article has some semantic glitches, because it’s translated from Danish.

GLP

April 27th, 2009
4:14 pm

NPR said that the SWINE flue was now the MEXICAN flue because 4 Isralies have it and we don’t want to offend the Jews.