few actually die from common flu. Statistics on flu in the past had
always been estimates and models that are now proven to be completely
The only way this phenomena can be explained is that those who catch
swine flu is also immune to common flu. That makes a mockery of the
practise of taking vaccines for 3 varieties of flu if getting swine
flu which is H1N1 will also protect all varieties of flu as well.
It is better to check your ESTMATES and never pretend that ESTIMATES
"To keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to
safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of
Obama Administration's Flu Fearmongering
Michael Fumento Bio
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By Michael Fumento Wednesday, October 28, 2009
"In keeping with the administration's proactive approach" to swine
flu, the White House has announced, President Obama on Saturday
declared the disease "a national emergency." It's the second such
declaration, with the first in late April. And in case you didn't know
what "proactive" meant before, now you do: "hysterical."
Just nine weeks ago the President's Council of Advisors on Science and
Technology issued its report with a "plausible scenario" of 30,000 to
90,000 deaths peaking in "mid-October." It's now late October and past
time for a reality check.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) no longer
releases specific swine flu case or death numbers, so the agency
merely said Friday it had killed more than 1,000 Americans and
hospitalized over 20,000 in the almost 7 months since the outbreak
began. The website flucount.org, basing its figures on media reports,
lists about 1,100. The FluTracker website counts a much higher 2,800.
But even that largest figure is about the number of Americans the CDC
estimates seasonal flu kills every 10 days during the season,
specifically 36,000 deaths and 200,000 hospitalizations annually.
Yes, swine flu disproportionately afflicts the young. But it's simply
a larger slice of much smaller pie. Hence among 47,000 college
students afflicted seriously enough with CDC-defined "flu-like
illness" to seek medical help, according to an American College Health
Association running survey, there have been only78 hospitalizations
and zero deaths.
Nor is there reason to think things will worsen.
In Australia and New Zealand, flu season has ended and almost all
cases were swine flu. Yet even without a vaccine, those countries have
reported significantly fewer flu deaths than normal.
Worldwide in seven months swine flu has claimed almost 5,000 people
according to the World Health Organization, at the low end of the
range the agency estimates die from seasonal flu every seven days.
Further, the virus isn't mutating into a worse form; it appears the
outbreak may already have crested in some states; and in fact a Purdue
University study in the journal Eurosurveillance calculates the
national epidemic should peak this week.
So where's the fire, Mr. President?
Well, in fairness there's plenty of smoke.
But it's not the virus itself driving these masses; it's flu frenzy
The CDC reports that the percentage of visits to emergency rooms and
outpatient clinics by people worried they have the flu—and worried
enough to seek medical attention—is incredibly high: over 7 percent.
That's double from just six weeks ago and the highest since 2003. In
Region Six, encompassing Texas and nearby states, it's almost 10
Some swamped emergency facilities have erected tents to accommodate
the overflow, while patients at others wait up to 24 hours for a bed.
But it's not the virus itself driving these masses; it's flu frenzy.
The CDC reports that only 37 percent of samples from its laboratory
surveillance system are testing positive. That means only about a
third of the samples that even doctors (much less scared patients)
suspect may show swine flu actually do so. In the especially panicky
region Region Six, merely a fifth indicate swine flu—the lowest level
Moreover, many of those emergency visitors may actually have flu but
with symptoms so mild that in previous years they'd have stayed home
But panic is what this pandemic is all about it. It's driven by a
perpetual motion machine of journalists writing about scared people,
thereby creating more scared people to write about. And clearly the
Obama Administration stoked it with that first health emergency
declaration and with the President's Council report.
It's not just that the panic was predictable; it was predicted. The
"only realistic aspect of President's Council scenario, I wrote in
another newspaper in early September, "is that emergency facilities
could be swamped. But rather than with truly sick people, it will be
with the mildly ill and the worried well." Ironically, this new
emergency declaration can only help bring porcine flu panic to greater
Why issue it, then? Maybe because government, H.L Mencken has
observed, ever seeks "to keep the populace alarmed (and hence
clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series
of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary."
Perhaps the Obama administration doesn't deserve such cynicism in this
matter. Perhaps. But if it reacts so poorly to a non-crisis, what can
we expect when it's faced with a real one?
Michael Fumento is director of the non-profit Independent Journalism
Project where he specializes in health and science issues. He can be
reached at Fumento@pobox.com.