Bird flu - let's slide
Timeframe - 10 days backwards - an overheard snippet of conversation at the airport.
"There's only been 96 deaths from bird flu in the entire world. Why does everyone have to make such a brouhaha about it?"
The sheer ignorance of such a comment makes me despair. The lack of curiosity from the blissfully unaware to even begin to look into the nature of the threat.
Its not just a potential economical-disaster such as foot and mouth. Its got the potential to wipe out large swathes of the world's population.
People in the comfortable west get inured to the constant fears and scares bred within our media. It dulls their critical functions, makes them think they're ahead of the game, makes them cynical.
However if fear was a worthwhile emotion, they should indeed be terrified. Of all the threats in the world, evolution has one of the greatest chances of decimating humanity - in our overcrowded and overdeveloped world, its the rapidly-reproducing pathogens that will always have the upper hand. If not a virus like H5N1 then some deadly strain of bacterium, as we continue to piss antibiotics into the wind.
But as evolution will purge great chunks of the world's population, so it will save humanity - some of us will survive to inherit the earth.
And since fear is the enemy of the mind - the enemy of progress, of logic - we'll just have to sit this one out. Maybe it'll do some good in the long run.
"Only after disaster can we be resurrected... let's evolve, and let the chips fall where they may" - Tyler Durden
I'm not sure if we'll be particularly better off in the event of a pandemic - the virus seems pretty devastating when it's crossed over to humans, and as to when it becomes easily transmisible from humans to humans...
In fact, we might well be worse off, at least in this country. In places where people live in close proximity with their poultry there's a chance that their immune systems might build up some sort of natural resistance. However those of us who's main experience of poultry is the supermarket may be a little less prepared.