Wednesday, April 29, 2009

March 24, 1976: Ford Orders Swine-Flu Shots for All

1976: President Gerald Ford orders a nationwide vaccination program to prevent a swine-flu epidemic.

Ford was acting on the advice of medical experts, who believed they were dealing with a virus potentially as deadly as the one that caused the 1918 Spanish influenza pandemic.

The virus surfaced in February at Fort Dix, New Jersey, where 19-year-old Pvt. David Lewis told his drill instructor that he felt tired and weak, although not sick enough to skip a training hike. Lewis was dead with 24 hours.

The autopsy revealed that Lewis had been killed by "swine flu," an influenza virus originating in pigs. By then several other soldiers had been hospitalized with symptoms. Government doctors became alarmed when they discovered that at least 500 soldiers on the base were infected without becoming ill.

It recalled 1918, when infected soldiers returning from the trenches of World War I triggered a contagion that spread quickly around the world, killing at least 20 million people. Fearing another plague, the nation's health officials urged Ford to authorize a mass inoculation program aimed at reaching every man, woman and child. He did, to the tune of $135 million ($500 million in today's money).

Mass vaccinations started in October, but within weeks reports started coming in of people developing Guillain-Barré syndrome, a paralyzing nerve disease, right after taking the shot. Within two months, 500 people were affected, and more than 30 died. Amid a rising uproar and growing public reluctance to risk the shot, federal officials abruptly canceled the program Dec. 16.

In the end, 40 million Americans were inoculated, and there was no epidemic. A later, more technically advanced examination of the virus revealed that it was nowhere near as deadly as the 1918 influenza virus. The only recorded fatality from swine flu itself was the unfortunate Pvt. Lewis.

History's verdict of the program is mixed. Critics assail Ford, accusing him of grandstanding during an election year -- it did him no good, because he lost anyway -- while kowtowing to the pharmaceutical companies. Supporters laud the ability of the nation's health bureaucracy to mobilize so effectively.

Those who remembered 1918 probably consider it money well spent

Monday, April 27, 2009

Swine Flu and the Bronx is burning......

Geez is this the 1970's or what ,swine flu ? here we go again maybe the Son of Sam will also make a comeback or maybe the Yankees?Next you are going to tell me the Bronx is burning . I am not sure if its a for real alarm but this rehashing stuff from 35 years ago continues to remind me of the Carter Era. So is it real or another excuse or desperate attempt for a massive intervention by the government in the economy ? My bet is the latter so hold on to your piggy bank it just may get raided again.

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Monday, April 20, 2009

Is Obama's Bear Market ending or is it just a case of "You Cant Fall Off the floor?"

Increased volume and a continued move up ward suggest both the worst is over and the end is already in site for Obama's socialistic agenda . I would like to see the market move to over 9000 on the DOW to confirm . Remember the market always anticipates future economic activity and it seems the failures of the last 3 months appear to be heading for an end or is it just as some would suggest you cant fall off the floor ?

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Friday, April 17, 2009

mainstream media seems to feel obliged to cover every stupid anti American protest

Succession talk now swirls around the lone star republic as many governors have strong misgivings about recent government actions which seem more focused on the growth of government and government power than the growth of the economy . The mainstream media continues to down play the massive tax protest that are springing up across the country . April 15th this year will be know as tax protest day instead of just Tax Day. Meanwhile FOX News ratings surge because of there coverage of the Tax Protests ,while other media out lets try to down play it or dismiss it . Its interesting hw the mainstream media seems to feel obliged to cover every stupid anti American protest run by the left and there friends but decides Tea Parties are not worthy ,while calling fish sea kittens is?

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Failure as an Ideology

The 70's generational worship of FAILURE as an ideology can only lead to crisis and chaos.Recent polls show only 53% of Americans now believe that Capitalism and freedom is better than Socialism and enslavement. That means the 47% of the population now think its Ok for people like New York's Mayor Mike Bloomberg , to tell them what to eat ,drink,smoke, when to sleep and where to go dancing. Some states like tech driven California is looking to BAN large flat screen TV's ,brilliant ! Clearly this is not an atmosphere for leadership

Seems Worshiping of FAILURE has become the new social disease where the power of envy will drive even the most well meaning people to shot the self's in the foot. What amazes me is how many people seem to buying the fantasy's about the Obama administration. Despite the massive tax increases ,unprecedented national debt and despite the massive increase in unemployment many are still blinded by the phony mainstream media Orwellian fantasy of big brother.

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Friday, April 10, 2009

you cant lead from weakness and accommodation

With the making of the next "Hostage Crisis" both the Somali Pirates and the Great Leader of North Korea seemed to have learned more from history even recent history than most employees of the Obama administration or the US Stone Age Media or the Cult of Personality that has replaced the reporting of the information called the News seem to understand. The simple fact is that you cant lead from weakness and accommodation .

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Friday, April 03, 2009

The Relaxation of Mark to Market rules spurs rally ,not G 20

The recent move to relax the "mark to market" rules a step very long over due gave renewed hope that the credit crisis would be abating. Since Sarbanes Oxley the stringent "mark to market" rule have forced banks and other financial institutions to take premature write downs of assets . What was happening is that a lack of interest in a particular asset class was being interpreted as that asset having little or no value. This process became acerbated by the diminished volume in certain asset classes as the crisis brewed. A relaxation or tweaking of the rule would give financial institutions more operating margin to value loan portfolios instead of the no bid no value fixed rule. In simple term if you have your house for sale and no one makes an offer on a particular day that house according to 'mark to market" would be worthless on the close of that day. Now any one who has sold a house knows that you might have a diminished value but having no value is highly unlikely.

What is troubling is what took so long to recogize and act on this issue when it seemed so fundamental to the credit crisis? This reminds one of the unintended consequences so often of congressional action given legislation is often agreed to by people with little or no experience in the industry they are regulating. To some one in full grasp of the magnitude of the situation this should have been obvious and the first thing a regulator would have tinkered with not the last after spending over a trillion dollars .