One sideshow in the current public hand-wringing over the new flu: is it possibly related to some environmentally catastrophic factory farms? Buried behind the bold headlines about travel warnings and "pandemic" pandemonium, there came this little political charge and counter-charge: the swine flu came from Mexican factory farms where pigs are grown for slaughter in hawg ghettos.
Can you get swine flu from swine? The pig industry humans say not. Yet Russia, China and Indonesia are banning pork imports. Does this raise the level from mere pandemic pandemonium to pande-panic?
The CDC info on swine flu elides the issue of humans catching it from pigs, but does say pigs can be infect by humans or birds. It does say you cannot get flu from pork, but cook it anyway. The CDC admits that a significant number of "commercially" raised pigs in the U.S. have swine flu during their lives. Could be those Mexicoan pols are onto something: factory farms producing more than methane, manure and big profits for U.S. meat companies?
Here's a useful Q & A on swine flu. Here's a CNET report on how you can track the spread online. That means you can avoid airports, crowds, going to work, room-mates and neighbors if you decide to play solo.
Can you imagine the value right now of a face mask that could filter viruses? Or trap and destroy them? Is there a start-up working on this one? Couldn't find one.