Stop Worrying and Learn to Love the Swine Flu


Special message for those of you wringing your hands and wearing a surgical mask like an asshole…

- A toddler in Texas has died of the swine flu
- Mexico’s infection and death estimates continue to climb
- The World Health Organization has raised it’s pandemic warning from 5 to 6, the top of the scal

These three items have ruled headlines for the past 24 hours.

However here are a few other things that are going on that you may not have heard

- 36,000 people die every year from the regular flu.
- Since I wrote my article on Monday, 1 person in the United States has died from swine flu.
- The tally in the last three days: Swine Flu: 1, Real Flu: 295.

I mentioned in my last update that only 18 deaths had been confirmed to have been from Swine Flu, and that the other figures were estimates. That confirmed total has since been revised downward to 7. To quote Stratfor’s reaction to this data:
“There is still a lack of information regarding the particulars about this new pathogen; but if it has killed only seven people after two months of spreading in a country with somewhat limited health care services, perhaps its virulence is not so harsh after all, even if its communicability is impressive.

Read the rest on Fark.

Challenging Speeding Laws?

One of my favorite law blogs (right up there with Grits and Bob Loblaw’s Law Blog) is by Robert Guest.

His latest entry, if I’m understanding it, is he may be challenging the very nature of speed limit laws against the state’s rule on whether the driver is “reasonable and prudent.” Which is to say, maybe going 10 mph too fast isn’t necessarily meeting that standard. Check for yourself.

Headline FAIL Trifecta Now In Play

I only had a few minutes with the DMN‘s print product this morning, but right there on the front page we had this:


The one death was in Houston, and the kid had prior medical problems. Fort Worth’s panicky (over-re)action has nothing to do with the death. You’d never know that. Nice touch with the Outbreak style photo, taken in Irving, which is neither Houston nor Fort Worth, if wikipedia’s entry on the ‘burb is correct.

And right below the panic news we get Mr. Obama’s assessment of what is his favorite subject and his first and utmost priority, himself.


Thursday Roundup: Does This Look Like a ‘Q’ to You?

  • There’s no part of this story about Ryan v Margolin that I don’t love. Keep. It. Coming.
  • Meanwhile, Bud Kennedy shows that the Guv is really going after the mouth-breathing crowd. I mean, yeah, I believe it’s been 100 days/100 epic fails, but are we really going to continue hearing this “Obama’s not a citizen!” stuff for the next four years? This is the right-wing’s version of the water-headed left-wing’s “the 2000 election was stolen!” whine.
  • Seriously though, if you are really worried about the swine flu epidemic, your risk factors, and possible symptoms, here’s a web site that will help you self diagnose —
  • And in two bits of Twitter news, first, if you’re not following the anchors and reporters from all three of the primary local network news stations, plus NBC, then you’re missing dozens OF cheery “morning” updates!!!! LOL :) that … well, it’s like getting a new blog post from Jane McGarry every 10 minutes. Or having Steve Blow text you.
  • Also, I’m getting love tweets.12

Merten Does Dallas. Dallas’ Mayor.

Been waiting for this feature story since Sam told me about it last week over lunch. Sam takes on the mayor and the People’s Hotel. Hie thee.

Daily Comments Thread

Sound off.

Tim pulled a little boner in declaring Brint Ryan had his Chazz Redd moment. I’m thinking this is going to be Ann Margolin’s shirtless with guns experience. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Wednesday Roundup: Vandelay! Say Vandelay!

  • Props to the Dallas Morning News and Austin Statesman for backing better compensation for wrongful convictions. Next up should be criminal charges for prosecutors who withhold exculpatory evidence or otherwise knowingly prosecute an innocent.

On My Reading List: Jim Schutze’s “The Accommodation”

Like Rod, I haven’t read it yet. But it’s now on the list for both the reasons Rod cites and because I just love reading Jim Schutze. Thus, The Accommodation is next, right after I finish this, this, and this. (h/t FB)

Bad Day for the Hotel; Worse Day for Jerry Allen

Really, Dallas? This is the cream of the leadership crop? Really? Councilman Jerry Allen, take it away:

That’s an element of risk that’s out there [with the city-owned hotel]…Of course, by that time, I’ll be off council. So I cannot be held accountable.

Jesus and dinosaurs, air atoms, JFK’s speech in 1972 and so, so much more as Sam Merten pulls back the curtain on one of the many wizards running Dallas. Take a look-see.

RIP Dallas Pulls Its Ads with the Ripped Off Soundtracks

picture-15I raised the question yesterday of whether RIP Dallas had secured the rights to the Rage Against the Machine music they used as a soundtrack.

Guess that answer is a 21-dot, red NO, because they’ve pulled the ad from Youtube.

(RIP Dallas’ campaign is becoming a case study for PR firms, to be filed under F.)

UPDATE: They pulled the first ad “This Is Our City” that “borrowed” the music of Citizen Cope and had to cost a bundle to shoot and produce, even if they saved on music costs.


UPDATE 2: Bethany Anderson offers free advice on free music.