Thursday, April 30, 2009

Nobody panic, Everybody panic

A week ago we were all going about our business, minding our own business, worrying about the economy. Nobody had heard of swine flu. Then suddenly we are expected to worry about it.

I was sceptical, put it down to another round of scaremongering that would amount to nothing much. Frankly I was too busy to be worried. I had other things on my mind (getting some shoes reheeled, finding a savings account with a decent rate of interest, that sort of thing).

Then tonight I read the story in the free newspapers that experts are warning to be prepared for 94,000 people in London to die. That is large number, but more than that it is a precise number. How do they know it will be 94,000, not 93,000 or 95,000? And apparently my borough will be the worst affected. Again, how do they know? Do they already have the names and addresses of the unfortunate ones? What makes this borough more susceptible to it? Should I consider moving?

Best case scenario, the best we can hope for is 7000 deaths. 7000 deaths doesn't seem like something you would hope for.

Is it time to panic?


M said...

I guess I am completely naive, but it does seem like this swine flu thing has gotten out of control. And I don't mean the illness, I mean the hype. It practically has its own theme music and logo on the cable news shows now.

They found one kid in Ft. Worth, TX who likely has it...and they shut the entire school system down through May 8. They are busy scrubbing down the school corridors and all, for one kid.

It all seems so extreme and so sudden.

Feet In The Earth said...

I agree, I didn't see the stupid London reports, but everything else seems to be completely at odds with it. The only people to have died are mexicans (including the kid in the US). The symptoms for everyone else are akin to a heavy cold/ cough type thing. Plus, considering how on top of it they are already, I can't see it getting as worse as some stupid newspapers are hyping.

That said, I'm only 9 weeks from my wedding, and in the back of my mind I'm worried that one of us will fall ill.

The hype was the same for SARS, CJD, and Bird Flu, and they were only a fifth as bad as they said.

M said...

And now I hear they're cancelling high school proms and other events. Imagine how hacked you'd be to miss the prom. 25 years later, you'll look back and remember that you missed your high school prom because of one kid who MIGHT have had swine flu. Bummer!

Anonymous said...

i think we are in the midst of a panic pandemic...I just cannot believe the media hype is equitable to the reality...

I saw that article too - where did they get that figure from and how did they identify the 2 London boroughs to be the worst affected? They didn't include the reasoning behind the statements....which seems a bit lame - surely it exists?

I too was confused by the choice of boroughs, not least as in London people commute across multiple boroughs twice a day, the inner London boroughs workforce are predominantly from outside London so does the figure include those who just reside in the borough or work in it and (I'm no Dr but if we are brutally honest) there are loads of other London boroughs with poor quality overcrowded housing, low access to medical facilities and high levels of child poverty and poor nutrition, which are surely more likely to be hit in a pandemic?

Roses said...

I think I fancy watching 28 Days Later, tonight. Or maybe I am Legend....?

The end of the world is always, bloody nigh. If it means no work Tuesday morning - bring it on.

Anonymous said...

Ah well...I've lurched through 'till the early hours of Saturday morning without contracting it...result!