Top Leaderboard, Site wide
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
June 23, 2017 Disclaimer: Please read.

Statements and opinions expressed in articles are those of the authors, not Truthdig. Truthdig takes no responsibility for such statements or opinions.

What’s Next for the Bill Cosby Sex-Assault Case?

Truthdig Bazaar
Making History

Making History

Richard Flacks

Listen, Yankee!

Listen, Yankee!

Tom Hayden

more items

Ear to the Ground
Email this item Print this item

Swine Flu on the Verge of Pandemic

Posted on Apr 29, 2009
Flickr / sarihuella

With news of the first swine flu death outside of Mexico (U.S.) and the first infection of a patient with no connection to Mexico (Spain), the World Health Organization has reclassified the health scare one level short of a full pandemic and has urged governments to initiate emergency measures.


Announcing the increased alert level in Geneva, WHO Director General Margaret Chan urged all countries to activate their pandemic plans, including heightened surveillance and infection-control measures.

She said action should be undertaken with “increased urgency”.

Read more

Banner, End of Story, Desktop
Banner, End of Story, Mobile
Watch a selection of Wibbitz videos based on Truthdig stories:

Get a book from one of our contributors in the Truthdig Bazaar.

Related Entries

Get truth delivered to
your inbox every day.

New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

Join the conversation

Load Comments
Mark E. Smith's avatar

By Mark E. Smith, May 3, 2009 at 12:47 pm Link to this comment

This is getting interesting.

Now the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is saying that the swine flu may have begun in California with patients who had never visited Mexico or had any contact whatsoever with pigs.

Should we start calling it the California flu?

Report this

By samosamo, April 30, 2009 at 1:15 pm Link to this comment

By Joel Whitehurst, April 30 at 1:57 pm
““You have to admit that, as far as the Washington establishment is concerned, this “pandemic” is certainly a welcome diversion from the public outrage at the screwed up economy and the crooked appointees, politicians and bureaucrats.
I think they’re lovin’ it, don’t you?”“

Very much so. We elect them and that is the end of it for them. Which also goes towards there being so many separate crises playing at one time. Great diversions and obfuscation. There are about 10% of congress worth retaining, all others should be voted out or prosecuted for any crimes they commit and then jailed.

Report this

By Joel Whitehurst, April 30, 2009 at 10:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The one thing that most people agree upon is that you can’t trust the government (Mexican or U.S. or world) 
You can bet your life that whatever is going on with the flu is entirely different from what they’re telling us.
You have to admit that, as far as the Washington establishment is concerned, this “pandemic” is certainly a welcome diversion from the public outrage at the screwed up economy and the crooked appointees, politicians and bureaucrats.
I think they’re lovin’ it, don’t you?

Report this

By purplewolf, April 30, 2009 at 9:48 am Link to this comment

Fadel: Yes the swine flu can be lab grown.Almost anything can be nowadays. Under Bush there was a lot of lab grown germ-warfare/viral specimens created that were and still are unaccounted for. Among them, the virus for Spanish Influenza-grown from specimens from the frozen corpses from the outbreak in 1918 that were harvested for possible future use as a weapon. Other specimens include: small pox, bubonic and pneumonic plagues,measles. etc.

We have some very sick minded unethical ideas for using these viruses, not for the cure for or betterment of the human population.(Here is where Inherit The Wind will accuse me of the tinfoil hat conspiracy theories). Take the Blanket Fever that this government aided in giving to the American Indians in this country, although never ordered by the government to do so, it was suggested by one of the higher up military personal(can’t remember his name) in this country and low and behold, it came to pass that the blankets passed out to the Indians by the military were infected with Small Pox, the reason it was called the Blanket Fever, that causes so many deaths. Some will dispute these facts as we only get a cleaned up version of history from the research books written by and for mostly the white mans Angelo-Saxon side is his-story and not from the side of the victims, which is always much different that the side we hear from.

As for the slaughter of the pigs, hogs, etc. it will have no effect in the spread of this flu, it will only raise the price of “pork”. I just read that Egypt raises all the pigs, mostly for export as only their Christian population which is said to be about 10% of the population eat pork, the rest is for export.

Swine flu is an airborne disease, so eating pork will have no connection to becoming infected with this latest flu outbreak. As in the past, every year it is a “new flu” that governments/pharma companies claim that everyone need to be vaccinated against so more money is made by big corps.

In the case of some vaccinations, sometimes less is better.

Report this

By NAFTA-boy, April 30, 2009 at 8:23 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

So swine flu seems to have started in Mexico, which has many areas with primitive sanitation.

The recent E. coli outbreaks in the US were eventually traced back to tainted vegetable fields in—yup, Mexico, with its areas with primitive sanitation.

The recent salmonella outbreaks in the US were also traced back to Mexico. 

Seems like Mexico gets all the benefits of free trade without having to maintain any standards.

Report this

By Southern Gal, April 30, 2009 at 8:19 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Plans for addressing pandemic flu are put in place to prevent the worst case scenarios from happening and to protect people. There is no way to predict how bad this flu can get and how many people could be killed. If organizations like CDC and World Health Organization did not take measures to protect public health, they would be criticized for not acting before things got out of hand. I am concerned about the origins of this flu. These types of combinations of flus have been referred to as “manufactured”. Law enforcement people had to attend seminars offered by Homeland Security on responses to these flus/viruses in their communities. It was presented as a possible tool of terrorists. I haven’t seen any media refer to manufactured flu. I’m not so sure about the terrorist angle, but wonder if we are being used as guinea pigs.

Report this

By joel, April 29, 2009 at 9:22 pm Link to this comment

I sense that the press will print, as gospel, just about anything a liberal politician or a bureaucrat with “M.D.” after his name tells them.
Since exactly when have we believed anything that some Mexican official has said?  Those “officials” down there have a pretty poor track record when it comes to telling the truth. 
It’s very, very possible, given what I’ve seen of Mexican health “professionals”, that the folks who have died in Mexico died from the treatment rather than the disease.  If that assumption is untrue, then why have most of the cases identified and treated in the U.S. been relatively benign?

Report this

By samosamo, April 29, 2009 at 9:05 pm Link to this comment

I just googled ‘total dead from latest swine flu in world’ and all I could get was 159 dead in mexico with about 1300 possible infections from ‘USA Today’. I dunno but something just isn’t working out right.

Report this

By joel, April 29, 2009 at 8:46 pm Link to this comment

The CDC and the WHO, both fairly useless, top-heavy bureaucracies, are salivating at the opportunity to ask for increased funding to deal with what their P.R. departments choose to call call a “pandemic”.
Consider the facts carefully, consider the sources of the dire warnings, concentrate very, very hard, and, even using all of the imagination you can muster, it’s pretty difficult to see a pandemic here, isn’t it?

Report this

By Fadel Abdallah, April 29, 2009 at 7:29 pm Link to this comment

I was surprised to hear how much President Obama and many other health officials have been emphasizing hand washing as a preventive measure against the spread of swine flue! Does that mean that this virus in mostly or only transmitted through unclean hands? But how did the virus get into people’s hands, while bypassing their heads, faces or other parts of the body?!

I understand that the usage of masks is intended to prevent the virus from getting into people noses and that makes sense. But that also indicates that the virus can be carried through the air. If this is the case, there is no amount of hands washing that can prevent the spread of the virus.

Yet, they are saying, at the same time, that no one should abstain from eating pork products. I find this a contradiction since I assume that the virus could also be transmitted through contaminated pork products.

It seems to me that there is a lot of confusion regarding the swine flue virus! Yet, I’ve been wondering how, all of a sudden, such “clear-shaven” animals could be the source of so much fear and threat to human beings! I am almost thinking about writing some poetry on this!

And there is yet another disturbing aspect to all this, which is whether the swine flue virus can be clinically produced in the lab! If this can be done, then it would render the nuclear bombs as obsolete weapons of mass destruction, which in itself is good for humanity!

Another interesting piece of news related to this has come from Egypt, where the government has ordered the slaughter of all the pigs in the country. This is interesting because I thought that Egypt, being predominantly a Muslim country, where people are prohibited from eating swine products, would have such industry. I spent several years in Egypt in the 1960’s and never saw a pig. But it seems raising pigs has come to Egypt in later times! Why and how?! I don’t understand! Therefore, I wish pigs can talk to tell us the truths about all these confusing issues!

Report this

By Kaelieh, April 29, 2009 at 3:03 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We should just go ahead and close the borders to Mexico. Some people say that’s premature. I say it’s preemptive, and a smart move. If you wait until it’s “necessary” it’s too late.

Report this

By diamond, April 29, 2009 at 2:35 pm Link to this comment

How is this a pandemic? The word pandemic means
‘A disease that is prevalent throughout an entire country, a continent or the world’. How is this disease throughout an entire country (US) because one Mexican child has allegedly died of it? References to the 1918 flu are misleading. In 1918 there were no anti-viral drugs or anti-bacterial drugs to contain it. It followed world war 1 and many European countries only had very basic health care. Groups of war refugees were moving from country to country and living in poverty and unsanitary conditions and nutrition was bad.  Medical experts say this flu is readily treatable with normal flu medication and there is some doubt on the claims that 150 people have died from it in Mexico because there is no definite documentary evidence that’s what they died of. Even in a normal year thousands of people die from garden variety flu - usually the elderly and people with weakened immune systems because of other diseases. Of course it can’t be ignored, but the hysterical beat up in the media has pushed all mention of the rape and torture in Abu Ghraib aside and given the mainstream media an excuse not to cover it and I don’t believe for one minute that’s a coincidence.

Report this

By NYCartist, April 29, 2009 at 2:13 pm Link to this comment

Really good segment on swine flu on DemocracyNow this morning.  A geographer, scientist said it should be called NAFTA flu, although could be started anywhere in the world.  He made a couple of good points: predicted for years, based on “pork cities”, farms of 30,000 cooped up pigs, and the IMF helping it go worldwide, same for chickens. 

The other good point, for me, was that the flu is not virulent at this time, as in causing many deaths.  He said that the 1918 Spanish influenza (not sure what name he called it) started as not very virulent, lethal in the Spring but had mutated by Fall into something virulent/deadly.  April 29, 2009

Report this
Right Top, Site wide - Care2
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
Right Internal Skyscraper, Site wide

Like Truthdig on Facebook