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The deadly disease that killed more people than WW1
In the light of ebola we cannot be complacent:

"You can be young without money but you can't be old without money"
Maggie the Cat from "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof." by Tennessee Williams

For an excellent read of the search for and the finding - in Alaska - of the actual virus:

Gina Kolata, FLU, The Story of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and the Search for the Virus That Caused It, Farrar, Strauss and Giroux 1999.

This is why when the Swine flu of 2009 popped up (H1N1-2009) CDC, WHO, and governments got their knickers in a bunch.

The scariest part is that the world has changed drastically since the early 20th century.

Back then most people were rural, most still walked and rode horses, the aeroplane wasn't mass transportation, it still took weeks to traverse the oceans.

Today we have planes, trains and automobiles. The majority of humans live in cities and suburbs totally reliant on trucking and shipping for food. If a similar outbreak occurred it would cripple the worlds economy, cause stoppages of a lot of stuff and more people would be harmed or killed from the stoppage of 'stuff' than in the Spanish Flu.

What is more worrisome about the Ebola Pandemic is not the Ebola, but the fear it generates. Our civilization is too delicate to sustain itself if 15+% of people just up and decide to not do their job.

I think the CDC and WHO and governments are doing their best to downplay the implications here, scared that the markets would go wild out of the panic that Ebola would cause.

Its a mess.

Back in the pretty rural part of Alabama Im from people still talk about that flu hitting there and all the folks it killed. It took out the town church people worse since they met so often but people out in the country with no money and no reasons to go to town did better. But then pellagra was killing rural people worse than flu and it was a slow ugly way to die compared to flu.

Thinking something like that cant happen again is stupid. We can see now how easy it is to spread ebola because of jet travel. A super version of flu would do the same thing but just worse.

During the pandemic of Spanish flu, there are stories of healthy men going off to work in the morning, getting sick, and dying the next day. The flu is still a big deal. By law in the US, healthcare professional have to ask all patients starting in October till spring, if they have had a flu shot and if they haven't do they want one. The flu is very contagious and can cause a whole community to get sick in a matter of days.

If ebola spread like the flu, we would all be screwed. Luckily it's not. The scary part about the flu is that even if you have had a flu shot, it might not be effective if the strain of flu that is going around was not in the flu shot. Because a flu shot is just a cocktail of the most common flu strains.

Doctors are just waiting for a new super virus to emerge and start killing people. I wonder how many times in the past century that the world was captivated and worried about a deadly disease pandemic. I can think of 3 in the past 10 years: SARS, Bird Flu, Swine Flu.

There was also the 1970's swine flu scare. That as far as I know about the scares. I'm certain that there were others, just not as widely publicized.

Yeah flu jabs are iffy, it depends on if the experts 'guess' the right strains that will be out this year, and that works with the assumption that the flu doesn't decide to mutate into some brand new variant.

Around here they always have shortages each year. I don't get flu jabs, I do keep my pneumonia up to date and since I don't go into the public for a job I can hunker down, let someone who is high risk to complications have the jab, or someone who works in a more public arena.

What is really bad about the USA is that we don't get paid sick leave, thus a lot of Americans take OTC remedies to cover their symptoms to go to their jobs, you like waitressing, retail sales nothign where they are meeting hundreds if not thousands of people a day.

At another forum I go to (conspiracy theorists yay) the idiots think swine flu, sars mers and all other diseases are all man-made and that the vaccines are going to kill us all. Fucking idiots.

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