Swine Flu, Shhmine Flu.

Okay - we promised from the beginning that this blog would be used to try and be a voice of reason in the world. Calling out the shenanigans we see every day. Well.....IT'S TIME TO CALL SHENANIGANS! This one will be a doozie...

Go ahead and scoll down to the blue header if you hate the proper format of Introductory Paragraphs > Supporting Paragraphs > Conclusive Paragraphs.

We've been hearing about swine flu, swine flu, swine flu every time we turn around. From the TV news, on the radio, in the newspapers, on any "informative" website out there (msn, yahoo, etc...), politicians are throwing out there 2 cents...AS WELL AS, from close family and friends, random shop owners who bring it up, the cashiers at restaurants...EVERYONE is talking swine flu.

Does anyone know why? Do you know why? What's the word they're using most often when talking about it? It always comes right after the words "swine" and "flu"..... it's "EPIDEMIC". (the really frightened ones are utilizing the much more severe description of "PANDEMIC".)

Well...being a compulsive truth-seeker, I've learned that the media is rarely ever "dead on". (So sad that people can walk by their tv set, hear a snipit about a breaking story, and take it at face value and start the whole..."did you hear that...." trend.) I hope I can inspire some of you to become truth-seekers. Not taking my word. Not taking the word of MSNBC, CNN, or Fox News. Not taking the word of our politicians. Either way...let's get into this one....


Want to see how severe your REGULAR OLD FASHIONED GRANDMOTHER'S FLU is? I went ahead and used the CDCP to gather some data about the Classic Influenza vs. Swine Flu.

It is estimated that about 36,000 people died of flu-related causes each year, on average, during the 1990s in the United States. During these years, the number of estimated deaths ranged from 17,000 to 52,000.

Death rate extrapolations for USA only from REGULAR Flu:
63,729 per year
5,310 per month
1,225 per week
174 per day
7 per hour

Between 3 and 5 million people experience severe illness due to regular, seasonal flu around the world each year, and between 250,000 and 500,000 die as a result.

Let us put it into context....Remember the BIRD FLU pandemic that was sweeping the world? We were told that the threat was emminent and severe, right? Only 300 people have ever been affected by the bird flu (most in indonesia) and of those 300....about 2o of them were "confirmed" dead from the bird flu. 20. Twenty. Two-Zero. Yet it was a pandemic????

As of last night, there had been 20 confirmed cases of swine flu in the United States, 19 in Mexico, and six in Canada. But in Mexico "the infection is suspected of causing as many as 86 deaths and more than 1,300 illnesses". I will also note here, that the MAJORITY of cases of "confirmed deaths" were of indivudals who already had major illnesses that weakened their immune systems, or of babies who's immune system struggles with the common cold. All other healthy individuals simply went home and got over it the same way that they did from classic influenza.

You'll also start to see the differences in confirmed and suspected. Person A coughed a couple times before dying...therefore I suspect he had swine flu. Now, the news (being the stand-up reporters they are) isn't reporting the confirmed cases too often, are they? You're more likely to hear the climing death toll and hospitalizations SUSPECTED to be caused by swine flu. Please know...this is intentional.

So we have a pandemic on our hands...do we?

A little history....In 1976, the Swine Flu pandemic was supposed to sweep the world. (Hey, much like a global FREEZE was emminent in the 1970s and everyone needed to go green and change their lives. Do we really not learn from these things?) Well, congress decided that they needed to do something to save the people. They voted to give out immunizations to the public. (sidenote: only two perceptive congressmen voted against this idea. Both were actual physicians.) That year...26 people died related to the situation. One was SUSPECTED to have died from the swine flu. The other 25 died from complications from the immunization that the government provided.

Anyways...to wrap this up - we'll do a little short list of facts:
1. The Swine Flu is no more lethal than the Classic Influenza Virus.
2. The Swine Flu is no more contagious than the Classic Influenza Virus.
3. The Swine Flu is passed along the EXACT SAME WAY that the Classic Influenza Virus is passed.
4. The Swine Flu has the EXACT SAME symptoms of the Classic Influenza Virus.
5. The Mortality Rate of the Classic Influenza Virus is .96 per cent - The Mortality Rate of the Swine Flu is .04 per cent.
6. You have a significantly stronger chance of winning the lottery twice than dying from the Swine Flu.
7. You have a signfiicantly stronger chance of contracting and dyning from HIV/AIDS or Tuberculosis than dying from Swine Flu.

What's my point with all of this? NOT AT ALL to downgrade the severity of this or any illness, but to simply reason out the HYSTERIA. The CLASSIC INFLUENZA is a lethal, dangerous, and severe sickness. If you have a weak immune system, it can be deadly....just as much as the swine flu. So rather than freaking out, cancelling everything you have planned, and being afraid of the outside world....simply start taking some responsibility to take care of your body and your health.

By the way...Is anyone else still waiting for the Killer Bees to come, bringing a Global Freeze in their wake, followed by the Bird Flu Pandemic, proceeded by the Global Warming, and topped off by Y2k?
:) Yah, me either...


Here are some videos that will be the small glimmer of reason you see on mainstream media sources.


lindsey brooke said...

nice well-balanced report... :)

Mrs. Tharpey said...

mhm he seeks *truth*!!!
and yah he's a bit compulsive about it.... :)

b-rother said...

sounds like sound reason... well put!



Mama PC said...


MrsW said...

Here's my 2 cents :)

I think the alarm bells are ringing not because this is a severe or widespread or unusually contagious flu strain - all the points you quite rightly contest - but because of its pattern of infection amongst atypical age-groups. Whilst many people die each year through seasonal flu, this normally occurs within an identifiable group (frail, immune compromised, elderly) so much so that many are protected through selective vaccination.This flu isn't following that pattern, it is affecting (though not necessarily killing) young healthy adults who don't normally suffer from seasonal flu at all, and we don't yet have a vaccination for vulnerable groups though those over 60-ish might have some immunity thanks to the H1N1 outbreak in 1968. The pattern of this new strain is alarmingly similar to the 1918 pandemic which eventually came in three recognised waves, the first of which was deemed "not that bad" as it only killed in small numbers, mainly the very old and the very young (strange youthcentric definition of "not that bad" if you ask me!). If over-stressing measures that are required to contain it now before it has an opportunity to mutate, like in 1918, require a bit of scaremongering I'm for it!

I think there's a sense of, almost, disappointment when these things don't fulfil the worst case scenario predictions. The cries of "Oh it was nothing!" are kind of tinged with the subtext "And you said it was gonna be big... hmph! Bollocks! When's hurricane season?".

Nothing stranger than people. I blame the press :) Do I get change from my 2 cents?

Mr. Tharpey said...

thanks mamaPC! always great to have someone in the medical field weigh in on these topics!

Mr. Tharpey said...

Mrs.W - i appreciate your contribution and it's highly valued here. a differing opinion is never an incorrect opinion. it's just different :)

i can't help but disagree though with the idea regarding particular "people groups" that these viruses attack. Examples of US deaths (not many of them) are newborn baby (who would have had the exact chance of dying from seasonal flu given the under-developed immune system) and a mother who had just given birth (who's immune system is compromised at that point. there are PLENTY of stories of birthing mothers who caught the flu while in the hospital and died.)

It's been confirmed that over 85% of the deaths in mexico were in people who within the last year had struggled with cancer or some other MAJOR deadly disease within the last 6 months to a year. All had comprimised immune systems.

What about the reports of healthy college kids who contracted the swine flu strain? They all said "I felt pretty bad. slept it off. feel great now!"

i understand that a large amount of deaths from seasonal flu come via pneumonia that is easily caused by the flu symptoms in elderly people, but if you look at the numbers, the same age groups are affect by BOTH strands, and it's just as deadly to specific types of people with specific types of situations.

all-in-all...we agree on my key point: the media's job is to overhype. people are just being people and reacting to what they see/hear pushed at them all day every day. in the end though...they can only keep it up for so long :)


MrsW said...

"What about the reports of healthy college kids who contracted the swine flu strain? They all said "I felt pretty bad. slept it off. feel great now!"

Isn't that the really worrying bit though? Healthy college kids don't normally catch seasonal flu. Over here in Britain it's secondary school children (11-18) and young adults that are affected - not your normal flu peeps. I'm 42 so 2 years older than the 20-40 group they are worrying over - well phew for that!

Our press are being a bit stoic if you ask me - there's no sign of hype or panic, we are mired in typical British complacency (when it comes to health). The thing about a pandemic is that it's not necessarily a fatal infection that spreads, something mild that behaves accordingly is an equally valid pandemic.

My Dad has been working in and flying back and forth from Mexico for the past 2 years - I'm probably not at all objective here :)

BTW I suspect the birthing mothers catch flu cos they are in hospital - not because they have given birth! If you think about it hospitals are probably the worst place to introduce a newborn to the world - they're where sick people go - childbirth isn't a clinical condition and I've never understood why it has been so medicalised (I have many theories but that's a whole other post).

Mr. Tharpey said...

wow...i need to move to britain.

i am a healthy 23 year old and can't remember the last time i went more than a year without catching the seasonal flu that goes around here.

MrsW said...

Ah but you're a man. Flu is the one that leaves you lying on your back for six weeks recovering.... "man flu" is just a cold :))