I wrote a few months ago about how swine flu was coming to sweep across the globe, decimate the population, and cause fear wherever a sneeze is to be heard. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want this to happen and any death from this is a tragedy.
I was going to eat humble pie when it looked like it was genuinely going to kick off a month or two ago. I actually knew some people who got it and panic seemed to spread. In China Mexicans were quarantined and in Hong Kong a hotel got blockaded. Eqypt threatened to kill all its pigs and in Afghanistan, there was talk of killing the country’s sole hog. They only have one in the whole country apparently, which is a bit weird. It must be lonely.
So far 59 people have died in Britain. Which is sad but I read somewhere that 10,000 a year die from normal flu and the number of new cases are dropping rapidly. The population stupidly started to relax and drop from their state of media-induced panic. Ministers and the press are currently trying to change this by informing us that there will be a second more deadly wave and that mass graves are being prepared. MASS GRAVES IN BRITAIN! they cry before reluctantly adding at the end that its for a worse case scenario… mumble mumble…
I was reading an article in Fortean Times that described a lot of conspiracy theories that are gleefully being slung around the internet at the moment. One of the more pervasive ones is that it is a manufactured virus designed to sell drugs like Tamiflu. I don’t really believe in most conspiracy theories (see my moon landing entry ) but this one, like others, has some intriguing coincidences.
Cut back in time to 1976. A young soldier in Fort Dix dies of swine flu (or a similar variant). Others become infected but only within the fort. This has led to the theory that the flu was manufactured as a bio-weapon. A young politician called Donald Rumsfeld calls for mass vaccinations against the flu. This policy is adopted by the Ford administration. Years later a company called Gilead Sciences develops Tamiflu and it is stockpiled in order to combat the bird flu outbreak of 2005. Which never really kicks off and the drugs are left sitting in government warehouses all over the world. The chairman for this company from 1997 to 2001 was, you guessed it, Donald Rumsfeld. Who is now keeping schtum on how many stocks he still owns.
Curious eh? A drug company with stockpiles of drugs linked to a politician and suddenly we are desperately in terror of a virus that has, relatively speaking, done bugger all. That can be immunised against by this drug and not any other ones already on the market.
It may be a coincidence, maybe not. If it is then the media and government are playing into the pharmaceutical company’s hands. What could be in it for our politicians? Apparently we stockpiled tons of this Tamiflu during the Bird Flu outbreak of 2005 and it is now getting nearer to its expiration date. It’s all going off. A massive waste of money. Suddenly there is panic instilling reports of mass graves and a million dead.
Ok maybe there is no conspiracy but it makes for interesting reading. Obviously I hope there aren’t mass swine flu related deaths as London will be the most severely affected. It will be pretty scary if a million die. Plus house prices might drop.
I’m hoping it’s just a case of the press over-reacting to sell newspapers. Apparently it has happened before but I find it hard to believe that there could be that level of unprofessionalism in our nation’s journalists.
Just remeber to sneeze in a tissue and dispose of it as shown to us by David McCusker – the actor who is the government’s ‘face of swine flu’ and appears in their ads. Who then got swine flu. And was helped by taking Tamiflu. Suspicious eh?