Category Archives: United States

Both CDC and U.S. Army say Ebola can be transmitted by air

From the beginning of the Ebola epidemic last spring in West Africa, the federal government’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had insisted that the deadly viral hemorrhagic fever (in the infection’s horrific end stage, the victim bleeds from every orifice) can only be transmitted via direct contact with a victim’s bodily fluids — blood, vomit, urine, feces, sweat, nasal charge, or semen.

This, despite a Canadian research in 2012 which found the Ebola virus to be transmitted by air between one animal species (pigs) and another (monkeys).

On Oct. 2, 2014, however, the CDC changed their minds.

For the first time, the CDC, in the person of its director Tom Frieden, cryptically admitted that, “in theory,” a sneeze or cough “could” spread the virus from someone experiencing Ebola symptoms. Frieden did not explain what “in theory” means. (See “CDC now admits ‘in theory’ Ebola can be transmitted by air“)

Imagine my surprise when, on the tip of a reader of this blog, I discovered that the United States Army had known about this all along, since 2011 — that the Ebola virus can be transmitted by air, albeit in “rare” instances.

Army Ebola

 

On pages 116-117 of Medical Management of Biological Casualties Handbook (7th Edition), published by the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases in Sept. 2011, is said:

“Lassa, CCHF, Ebola and Marburg viruses may be particularly prone to nosocomial spread due to periods of high viremia corresponding with bleeding propensity. In several instances, secondary infections among contacts and medical personnel without direct bodily fluid exposure have been documented. These instances have prompted concern of a rare phenomenon of aerosol transmission of infection.”

Here’s a screenshot I took of the passage:

Army Ebola pp. 116-117

Note that:

  • The word “nosocomial” is defined as “Originating or taking place in a hospital, acquired in a hospital, especially in reference to an infection.”
  • The word “viremia” is defined as “The presence of a virus in the blood.”
  • In the passage above, “high viremia” simply means the presence of a lot of Ebola viruses in the blood.
  • The word “aerosol” means “A fine spray or mist.”

Translated into simpler English, the passage from U.S. Army’s handbook should read:

The Ebola virus may be particularly prone to spread in a hospital environment where Ebola patients with a lot of the virus in their blood are bleeding profusely. “Several” instances of Ebola infections had resulted among contacts and medical personnel without direct bodily fluid exposure. These “rare” instances have prompted concern that Ebola can be transmitted via a fine spray or mist.

Translated into even simpler English, that means you can catch Ebola from inhaling microscopic particles of the blood or vomit or sneeze spewed into the air by someone who is very sick with Ebola, even if you think you were following the CDC guidelines by making no bodily contact with the bodily fluids of the infected.

Read the Medical Management of Biological Casualties Handbook for yourself, here.

Do you feel safer now? /sarc

H/t FOTM’s CSM

~Eowyn

Family of 10 y.o. boy who murdered 90 y.o. woman doesn’t want him back

Tristen Kurilla

American society is breeding psychopaths.

The angelic-looking boy in the pic above is one of them.

He is Tristen Kurilla, age 10.

On Oct. 14, 2014, the AP and Daily Mail report that 10-year-old Tristen Kurilla from Pennsylvania has been charged as an adult in the beating death of a 90-year-old woman, Helen Novak.

Novak was in the care of Tristen’s grandfather, Anthony Virbitsky, on Sky Lake Road in Damascus Township, Pennsylvania.

Prosecutors in Wayne County said that on Oct. 11, county emergency responders got a call reporting the death of an elderly woman, Helen Novak.

District Attorney Janine Edwards said in a statement that Tristen’s mother, Martha Virbitsky, had brought the boy in to the state police barracks at Honesdale the same afternoon and reported that her son had told her that he had gone into the woman’s room to ask her a question and she yelled at him. So “he got mad, lost his temper and grabbed a cane and put it around Novak’s throat,” police said.

When Tristen was advised of his rights and interviewed by a trooper, the boy said he “pulled Novak down on the bed and held the cane on her throat and then punched her numerous times.” Tristen then went to his grandfather and first told him that the woman was “bleeding from her mouth” but denied he had harmed her.

Later, the boy admitted that he had punched the woman and put a cane around her neck. He described how he had pushed the cane into Novak’s throat for several seconds and then punched her five times in the throat and the stomach. “I was only trying to hurt her,” Kurilla told detectives.

Police said an autopsy performed at Wayne Memorial Hospital in Honesdale indicated blunt force trauma to the victim’s neck, and the death was ruled a homicide. Dr. Gary Ross also said the boy’s account to police “was consistent with the injuries he observed.”

Tristen was charged as an adult with criminal homicide and aggravated assault, with the prosecutor’s office noting that the crime of homicide “is specifically excluded from the juvenile act” and therefore “a juvenile who commits the crime of homicide is charged as an adult.” Kurilla is being held without bail pending an October 22 preliminary hearing.

According to court documents cited by WFMZ, the boy’s mother, Martha Virbitsky, told police she “has had a lot of trouble with Tristen and that he has had some mental difficulties.”

Here is another pic of Kurilla making the I-love-you devil’s horns sign:tristen-kurillaAccording to Ericka Sóuter of CafeMom, Oct. 16, 2014:

Tristen’s “parents don’t want him back. They reportedly would rather have the poor, troubled child behind bars awaiting trial than with them. [...]

Since being taken into custody, he has been held at jail in a private cell. Originally, the family’s attorney had petitioned to have the boy returned to his father or moved to a juvenile detention center. But that request has been rescinded. The juvenile facility is over 90 miles away, making it too hard to visit. As for the other option — they don’t want him back under their roof. His parents, apparently, are an ‘emotional wreck’ and don’t feel comfortable having him in their care. [...] So they want him to stay just where he is. They believe he is being treated well and is allowed to color and play. [...] Tristen may see things differently. Detectives found a piece of paper in his cell with ‘How to Escape’ written on it.”

~Eowyn

That’s rich: After hiring Ebola crisis actors, NYT decries Ebola conspiracy theories

The august New York Times used paid “crisis actors” in its video report on the Ebola epidemic from Liberia, but has the audacity (Obama’s favorite word) to publish an article decrying Ebola conspiracy theories.

Beginning at the 8:08 mark in the video above, you’ll see the New York Times‘ video report of a young man wearing a neon-green t-shirt supposedly sick with Ebola, who flung himself to the ground outside a health clinic. Note that he displays none of the symptoms of Ebola: no sweat, no vomit, no diarrhea.

Most damning is the fact that, beg. at the 12:42 mark in the video, as he was walking away from the camera, the young man’s father stuffed a handful of cash into his back pocket.

Ebola cash

My post on this, “Is Ebola pandemic a false flag?,” also dealt with CNN similarly resorting to crisis actors in its reporting on Ebola. Ask yourself this question:

Why would NYT and CNN hire Liberians to PRETEND they’re deathly ill with Ebola? 

See also these other fake reportings by CNN at Sandy Hook and the Gulf War.

Below is Alan Feuer’s hypocritical New York Times article of Oct. 18, 2014, on Ebola conspiracy theories.

~Eowyn

do as i say

The Ebola Conspiracy Theories

The spread of Ebola from western Africa to suburban Texas has brought with it another strain of contagion: conspiracy theories.

The outbreak began in September, when The Daily Observer, a Liberian newspaper, published an article alleging that the virus was not what it seemed — a medical disaster — but rather a bioweapon designed by the United States military to depopulate the planet. Not long after, accusations appeared online contending that the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had patented the virus and was poised to make a fortune from a new vaccine it had created with the pharmaceutical industry. There were even reports that the New World Order, that classic conspiracy bugbear involving global elites, had engineered Ebola in order to impose quarantines, travel bans and eventually martial law.

While most of these theories have so far lingered on the fringes of the Internet, a few stubborn cases have crept into the mainstream. In the last few weeks, conservative figures like Rush Limbaugh and Laura Ingraham have floated the idea that President Obama had sent aid to Africa, risking American lives, because of his guilt over slavery and colonialism. And just days ago, the hip-hop artist Chris Brown took to Twitter, announcing to his 13 million followers: “I don’t know … but I think this Ebola epidemic is a form of population control.”

Conspiracy theories have always moved in tandem with the news, offering shadow explanations for distressing or perplexing events. Though typically dismissed as a destructive mix of mendacity and nonsense, they often reflect societal fears.

“Conspiracy theories don’t have to be true to tell us something about ourselves,” said Michael Barkun, a professor emeritus of political science at Syracuse University and the author of “Culture of Conspiracy: Apocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America.” “They’re not effective as accurate accounts — they’re effective as expressions of anxiety.”

The notion, for example, that health officials are conspiring with Big Pharma to consciously spread — and then cure — Ebola as a profit-making venture might sound like the plot to a cheesy summer thriller, but in fact it touches on a genuine aspect of our health care system, said Mark Fenster, a professor at the University of Florida’s Levin College of Law and the author of “Conspiracy Theories: Secrecy and Power in American Culture.”

“The truth is that we do rely on private corporations to develop and produce our pharmaceuticals,” he said. “While we may not like that fact, it’s not so hard or paranoid to imagine private companies acting in their own best interests.”

The theory works, Professor Fenster added, because it is “truthy,” to borrow from the comedian Stephen Colbert. Which is to say, it has just enough veracity “that it rings true when carried to Ebola,” he said.

It’s not surprising that populist and anti-government conspiracies are rampant at a moment when opinion polls suggest that our trust in government has reached a record low. In fact, most theories pit those who perceive themselves as powerless against a dominant cabal of secretive elites.

That model certainly seems to fit the allegation that the Department of Defense created Ebola in a military lab to loose on the world as a Malthusian device to reduce the population. “Conspiracies against the powerless tend to be effective because the masses often feel that way,” James F. Broderick, an English professor at New Jersey City University and co-author of “Web of Conspiracy: A Guide to Conspiracy Theory Sites on the Internet,” said. “They reflect and reinforce the idea that ordinary citizens are victims of the government.”

Viral outbreaks, as a genre, have long attracted conspiracy theorists, beginning in medieval times when the Jewish leaders of Toledo, Spain, were blamed for having spread the Black Plague. More recently, the AIDS epidemic was also said to have been caused by a government plot.

The Ebola virus, experts say, is classic conspiracy theory fodder: a silent killer that penetrates the body undetected and lies dormant for weeks. Its sources are obscure, its symptoms horrific.

“Diseases in particular are suited to conspiracy because they are invisible and invisibly transmitted,” Professor Barkun said. “Our senses can’t tell us exactly how the danger spreads. The theory has an answer for what mystifies and frightens.”

Many conspiracy theorists pride themselves on having inside information, but in the case of Ebola such alleged information, or misinformation — the government is in on it! — can erode the public trust when it’s needed most.

“If these were just opinions that people spouted off on talk radio or at dinner parties, you could argue that there wasn’t much harm,” Professor Broderick said. “But to have the C.D.C. debased in public as a puppet of the New World Order or of major corporations is obviously a dangerous proposition.”

 Nonetheless, some scholars find value in conspiracy theories because they allow us to vent and give voice to hidden fears.

“I view these things as a way of framing the world, of offering us narratives,” Professor Fenster said. “And they’re not necessarily a bad thing. Conspiracy theories are something that’s available in American discourse as a way of telling stories, as a way of explaining who we are.”

Dozens of Obama’s sons & daughters brawl at AZ State Fair

In his brilliant bestseller on evil, People of the Lie, the late psychiatrist M. Scott Peck, M.D., wrote that we can’t hope to cure a disease if we refuse to name it.

Once again, however, America’s pusillanimous media cower from naming the disease by refusing to report the truth.

This time, it is a “brawl” at the Arizona State Fair in Phoenix.

And as in so many similar brawls, flash mobs, knock-out games race riots, the media use the coy euphemism of “teens” in place of “blacks” — a fact that you can see with your own eyes in these screen shots I took from the 3TV news video.

AZ state fair riot1AZ state fair riot2AZ state fair3AZ state fair4AZ state fair5

Karen Brown reports for 3TV that more than two dozen teens were arrested after a large fight on the first night of the Arizona State Fair, Oct. 10, 2014.

Police say as many as 60 “teens” from the same neighborhood were involved in the fight. The “teens” even began fighting with police officers who stepped in.

An adult woman was seen kicking and hitting a police officer. She was one of two adults arrested.

The fight continued several blocks from the fairgrounds, located at 19th Avenue and McDowell Road.

The Arizona Department of Public Safety said that 35 “teens” were arrested and released to their parents.

About 75 officers from multiple agencies were assigned to the state fair.
“To prevent this from happening again, we’re gonna have a stronger presence here, said Maj. Ken Hunter with the Arizona Department of Public Safety. “At the gate, there will be more aggressive searches and we will be very visible throughout the rest of the fair.”

See also:

~Eowyn

A revolution in politics is coming

Technology drives social and political change.

Just as newspapers and magazines are going out of business because of the Internet, and brick-and-mortar store sales increasingly are eclipsed by online shops, the day will soon come when how Americans do politics will also be up-ended.

That’s what long-time journalist Ron Fournier predicts in “The Era of Political Disruption,” in National Journal, Oct. 21, 2014. Below is his article:

From time to time in this column, I predict that the United States is entering an era of great political disruption, a bottom-up revolution on the scale of what upended the music, television, movie, media, and retail industries. Fueled by the radical connectivity of the Internet, abrupt new actors in those fields dismantled the status quo, shifted power downward, and created an explosion of options for consumers.

Consider what just one change wrought. You can now choose any musician’s song from any album, download it instantly and from virtually anywhere on earth for less than the price of a candy bar, and store it on a device with thousands of other tracks from just as many different singers. That’s power.

I ask you, how long until Americans recognized they’re no less equipped to disrupt politics and government? How soon before we stop settling for an inferior product in Washington and at statehouses? When do we demand more and better from the Democratic and Republican parties—or create new political organizations that usurp the old?

I don’t know the answers. I do believe it’s a matter of when, not if. Because, while we may be a presidential cycle or two away from the Great Disruption, you can already spot green shoots of populism emerging from an otherwise bleak midterm landscape.

Unsatisfied consumers: Disruption thrives when the status quo is not serving the needs of a changing public. Netflix, Amazon, and Buzzfeed wouldn’t exist if people had been satisfied with the way the entertainment, retail, and media industries were operating. The same American public that forced change on those industries is equally, if not more, annoyed with the political system.

A majority of Americans hold a negative view of the GOP, according to an NBC/Wall Street Journal survey. The Democratic Party’s image is underwater, meaning that more people disapprove than approve of the party. The percentage of Americans identifying themselves as independents is rising steadily, from 31 percent in 2004 to 44 percent in September, according to a Gallup study cited by Democratic consultant Doug Sosnik.

“Americans’ long-brewing discontent shows clear signs of reaching a boiling point,” Sosnik wrote a year ago. “And when it happens, the country will judge its politicians through a new filter—one that asks, ‘Which side of the barricade are you on?’ “

While many independents will vote Democratic or Republican, they’re doing so out of a lack of choice. Last year, NBC/Esquire commissioned a nonpartisan analysis of the electorate and determined that a full majority, 51 percent, make up a “New American Center,” voters whose attitudes and ideologies leave them without a natural home inside either the GOP or the Democratic Party. These voters share common values that run counter to the polarized, zero-sum ways of the two major parties.

Exacerbating this disconnect between the parties and the people is the public’s sour mood. Huge majorities of Americans say the country is on the wrong track. They see a grim future for themselves, their children, and their country. They believe their political leaders are selfish, greedy, and short-sighted—unable and/or unwilling to shield most people from wrenching economic and social change.

Ambitious disruptors: A handful of politicians are looking over the horizon and offering themselves as an alternative to the GOP and the Democratic Party. Independent candidate Greg Orman threatens to unseat GOP Sen. Pat Roberts in heavily Republican Kansas. Republican-turned-independent Larry Pressler has put the South Dakota race into play. A libertarian pizza delivery man may gobble up enough voters to determine the Senate race in North Carolina. In Alaska, Democrats are backing an independent Republican for governor.

In governor’s races, nearly a dozen incumbents are in various levels of danger; their challengers seizing the mantle of change.

Still, this year’s elections won’t result in a wave of newly elected independents, nor will a record number of incumbents lose their jobs. The Old Guard will conclude that the status quo is safe. But the Old Guard is a ship of fools, living on borrowed time. They remind me of smug newspaper publishers, music moguls, and bookstore-chain operators who were abruptly disrupted out of business.

“Look beneath the surface, and you’ll see this is more of an anti-incumbent, anti-establishment year than people realize,” said Joe Trippi, who helped bring modern technology to the political system while running a 2004 Democratic presidential campaign for Howard Dean. “Change is coming. Big change.”

Young disruptors: The ranks of the congressional candidates include a dozen or so millennials, people who came of age after 9/11. They include Elise Stefanik, 30, a Republican who helped me research a 2006 book about leadership when she was a Harvard undergraduate. Nick Troiano, 25, is running as an independent in Pennsylvania. “If I win, it will send a signal to Washington that you’d better watch out, that there’s a huge generation of millennials poised to disrupt politics as usual,” Troiano told me in April.

Even if the Old Guard defeats Stefanik, Troiano, and every other young candidate in November, they can’t stop the changes millennials would make to the system. This generation of Americans is relatively civic-minded, pragmatic, tolerant, diverse, and less interested in ideology than results. The only thing that can stop millennials from disrupting the system is the generation itself; young Americans are deeply disillusioned with politics and government, and their inclination to solve problems outside of traditional institutions could create a severe brain drain in Washington.

Conventional wisdom argues against even the remote possibility of an independent presidential bid; against the dismantling of old party structures and the creation of new ones; and against any structural reform to government. I get it. There are thousands of reasons why you might place your bets on the status quo.

I’ll put my money on the people. Trippi is right. Change is coming.

~End of Fournier article

the-powers-that-be-copy

The question, of course, is how this political revolution will come about. We haven’t yet figured out the way.

I propose that we begin by each of us going independent, i.e., registering as Independents unaffiliated with either of the two main parties. I did that 10 years ago.

For conservatives, the Democrats are demon rats. Voting for any Democrat is completely out of the question.

But if you think the Republican Party is the answer, think again. Please acquaint yourself with a curious legal agreement that the GOP entered into with the Dems — the 1982 Consent Decree — in which the Republican Party agreed to neither contest nor combat voter fraud. See my post, Why the GOP won’t challenge vote fraud.”

See also “America’s Bipartisan Ruling Class vs. the People.

~Eowyn

U.S. official says Army’s industrial base in “death spiral”

Dr. Eowyn:

The U.S. Army’s assistant secretary for acquisition, logistics and technology is sounding the alarm that our military readiness is severely compromised by sharp reductions in research, development and acquisition spending.

But Obama instead is throwing open America’s doors to illegals from Central America and, reportedly, plans to import foreign Ebola patients.

Does anyone still doubt this president’s agenda is the destruction of America?

Originally posted on Consortium of Defense Analysts:

The Association of the United States Army (AUSA) is a private, non-profit educational organization that represents America’s soldiers and supports the U.S. Army – Active, National Guard, Reserve, civilians, retirees, government civilians, wounded warriors, veterans, and family members.

Stew Magnuson reports for National Defense that on Oct. 15, 2014, the final day of the AUSA’s annual conference in Washington, DC, a panel of officials, industry leaders and academics spelled out all the problems with the U.S. armed services’s research, development and acquisition enterprise.

The panel’s moderator asked at what point will Army readiness be compromised by sharp reductions in research, development and acquisition spending.

Heidi Shyu

Heidi Shyu

Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and TechnologyHeidi Shyu replied, “We are already at that point” and that the Army-owned manufacturing facilities are in a “death spiral.”

Shyu said R&D and acquisition accounts have dropped twice as fast as the Army…

View original 410 more words

Family of Ebola-stricken nurse Amber Vinson say she was ‘in no way careless’ flying while sick

Amber Vinson

Amber Vinson

Daily Mail: The family of a Dallas nurse who cared for Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan then caught the disease herself have angrily denied she was ‘careless’ in flying to Ohio and back while carrying the virus.

Amber Vinson, 29, who works at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, caught Ebola after helping to care for Duncan. She then went on a trip to Ohio and back – and was hospitalized with the virulent illness hours after her return. In the wake of her trip 153 people are being monitored for signs of the disease, and three are in quarantine.

In a statement released by her family today, they say Vinson would never ‘knowingly’ put anybody at risk, was vigilant in testing herself for signs, and followed all the relevant protocols.

The statement attacked any suggestion that she ignored medical or government guidelines. Medical staff dealing with Ebola are allowed to fly provided they wore protective gear while dealing with the virus.

The statement said she reported her body temperature three times before boarding her flight home last week.The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has acknowledged Vinson checked in repeatedly and was cleared for travel.

Cleveland station WOIO reported the family’s statement and said that they feel public comments and media outlets ‘mischaracterize Amber and her actions’. It said: ‘Suggestions that she ignored any of the physician and government-provided protocols recommended to her are patently untrue and hurtful. Although the majority of the correspondences we have received since her diagnosis have been positive, we are troubled by some of the negative public comments and media coverage that mischaracterize Amber and her actions.”

‘To be clear, in no way was Amber careless prior to or after her exposure to Mr. Thomas Eric Duncan. She has not and would not knowingly expose herself or anyone else.’

Three people have been quarantined in northeast Ohio following Vinson’s visit to Cleveland to prepare for her wedding. None of the three, quarantined after new monitoring guidelines by the state, has exhibited Ebola-like symptoms.

Initially, only Vinson’s stepfather had been quarantined, in his home in suburban Akron. The two others, in Cuyahoga County, which includes Cleveland, and in Summit County, were quarantined after.

Ohio governor John Kasich ordered the new guidelines, which include travel restrictions, on Saturday. A state health official said the guidelines are meant to remove any chance of Ebola spreading. ‘As we’ve seen, travel is a potential problem,’ state epidemiologist Dr. Mary DiOrio said. ‘It’s why the people of Ohio are dealing with the situation we have right now.’

Under the guidelines, anyone who has had direct contact with the skin, mucus membranes, blood or bodily fluids of someone diagnosed with Ebola must be quarantined for 21 days.

Anyone who did not have direct skin contact but reported spending more than an hour in close proximity to an infected person is not to travel commercially for 21 days. Such people also are to seek permission to travel outside the health jurisdictions where they live. People who were in the same enclosed space as an Ebola carrier are not to travel outside the U.S.

Kasich said the federal government should ban travel from West African countries hit hardest by the Ebola epidemic, which has killed thousands of people, mainly in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea.

Vinson cared for a man who died from the disease in Dallas. She was diagnosed last week. She flew from Dallas to Cleveland on Oct. 10 and flew back on Oct. 13.

Ebola is spread through bodily fluids. Someone who is infected does not become contagious until he or she shows symptoms of the disease. Health officials have said Vinson exhibited some symptoms while in Ohio.

There are 153 people being monitored in Ohio because of contact or potential contact with Vinson. They include people with whom Vinson had direct contact, those who visited the Akron bridal shop where her bridesmaids tried on dresses on Oct. 11 and those who were passengers on the flights she took.

Vinson is being cared for at a specialized unit at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. Her family said she is a ‘deeply committed nurse driven by a fundamental passion for helping others.’ One of Vinson’s Dallas hospital colleagues, Nina Pham, also is being treated for Ebola.

common sense

DCG