Swine flu 2 – this time it’s personal
How ill have I been this week? Very ill. Ill enough to start wondering what it’s like to be really ill. Ill enough to get bored of Diagnois Murder. Even ill enough to watch Ice Cold in Alex without fancying a beer at the best levitra end. Not too ill that I didn’t fancy Sylvia Sims though. But as I’m starting to swim up from the delirium and clogged lungs, it gives me a whole load of questions that I can’t seem to find answers to.
Like, I had this damned bug, back in July. Why have I got it again? Why are so many people getting it again? And why is it worse, second time around? We’re assured by the CDC and WHO that the H1N1 strain doing the rounds is the same unmutated spec, so why the greater severity of symptoms now? Okay, maybe the bug I had in the summer was something different, simplest explanation, even though it fit the price of lasix symptoms then. But that doesn’t explain why winter flu is commonly held to be far more severe than summer flu – even when the strain is identical. And I see that medical science is a bit baffled by this too. Forget the dull and dreary theories that transmission rates are greater when we huddle next to each other in front of the fire – I prefer a theory with a little more zap – panspermia. Lying in bed with three degrees of fever it all became clear to me – I was ill because the stars in their courses had made it so, the solar wind had bought this invigorated bug to me. This was already – thanks to my new ipod – an enforced week off work with a Hawkwind soundtrack, now it had a Ray Bradbury/Richard Matheson plot too. Driven by 2009′s burst of solar activity after an unprecedented hiatus throughout 2008, swine flu was peppering the earth’s atmosphere like cosmic buckshot, and I’d stopped a couple of barrels…
Yeah well, I said was feverish. In truth, the panspermia idea is interesting, and of course analysis of meteorites for traces of bacterial life happens routinely now, but I’d drifted into Fred Hoyle territory this week mostly because I’ve been reading up on solar cycles with regard to the grand global warming scam. (If you haven’t come across the latest crumbling of the AGW myth, then get yourself along to Bishop Hill’s plain english analysis of the shameful fraud underpinning the buy periactin cheap “hockey stick” chart). There plainly is something unknown at work with regard to the seasonal variance and intensity of flu bugs, but whether it’s got ‘owt to do with waves of pink-tinged protons buffeting the Earth, who knows. I assume they’re pink. The ones at HW gigs usually were.
But what puzzles me is why more people aren’t puzzled by this. You get the chief medical office, Liam Donaldson, saying today that: “We are seeing more serious cases than before but no sign of any change in the virus. This is giving me some concern. There’s a school of thought that when a flu virus is operating in the summer it’s milder than when it’s operating in the flu season without a change in the virus. We don’t understand why,” and no one bats an eyelid. Isn’t this – or shouldn’t this – be something fundamental? If what a virus is, is what it is, and if it hasn’t changed, it yet becomes something else, isn’t that a bit of a problem for the theory? All around the world, in every climate, in both hemispheres, influenza exhibits seasonality, and nobody knows why…. I love this shit.
I’ve been accused of being anti-science – by that twat Sunny “twat” Hundal I think. I’m not anti-science at all. I’m extremely pro-science, pro-technology. I reckon I have a far greater understand of what this world owes to technology on a day-to-day basis than any green activist sitting on any rooftop in the world. What I am against is enforced consensus. Dull conservatism. The painful ideological manacles that proved rocks can’t fall from the sky because there were no rocks in the sky. So I like questions – anachronisms. Difficult topics. Kuhn would say that it’s research in just such areas that drags science forwards. Yet it seems that today, “science” is being defined – by the media and funders at least – as the science that doesn’t go into such areas. If flu is seasonal… that means something. Something that drives me crazy in medicine is the constant dismissal of, say, subjective benefit of a homeopathic remedy, as “just a placebo effect”. The placebo effect – just because you give it a name it doesn’t end the discussion! It *means* something. The placebo effect is univeral, it’s highly significant, we have *no idea* what is going on. Moreover, it is not static – drugs that were once ten and twenty times more effective than placebos – eg some SSRIs – are today less effective than placebos. What is going on?
I’m going back to bed. Symptoms this week: fever up to 39.4, agonising joints, superglue on lungs, hacking cough, insomnia, crippling headache, dull-wittedness, slowed reactions (too slow even for XBOX-based recuperation therapies), entertainingly randomised periods of constipation and (to use the tv advert terminology) urgency, and rivers of snot. Rivers, and rivers, of snot.
PS – my own theory? The virus is the same. The host is different. Flu isn’t seasonal – we are. Far more than we realise.
Tags: bad science, delirium, exogenesis, flu, fred hoyle, i am legend, kuhn, paradigm, sunspots, swine flu