Tuesday, January 2, 2018

100 years ago this month

Millions of people! More dead than from the worst Western War ever.  Probably worse than the worst war ever.  Killed more, total, than the Black Death did 800 years ago could in many decades.  More people TO kill in the 20th Century.

And it probably all started in Kansas.  Hog farms.  Migratory birds gave it to the pigs, the pigs gave it to the people of Haskell County. That's one theory.

Nothing like it has happened since.  Not that big, obviously.  But one could start at any time.  It's hard to wrap your head around.  Flu that killed hale young people within a few hours.  Fine at breakfast yesterday, dead by supper today.

Wait, we made this movie in 2011.  Gwyneth Paltrow killed everyone.  In fiction.  She hasn't killed that many in real life yet.

Of course, bad official policy made the mortality much worse.  There is no bad thing that can't be made infinitely worse once government gets involved.  It's called the 'Spanish Flu' because Spain, not under wartime gummint censorship, actually talks about the illness in the newspapers.  Spain probably got the pandemic late, but the ravages were silent in the US, France, etc...  It's probably should be called Kansas Flu.


Speaking of the movie Contagion.  Filmed in 2010, blogging was still a thing.  Enough that people insulted it when they felt threatened by the truth!  (or scurrilous lies...)

"Blogging is graffiti with punctuation."


Thank goodness this is not was I was suffering from last week.  

1 comment:

Brad_in_IL said...


For your readers who might be interested in more detail, check out a book titled The Great Influenza.

Book's a bit dry in places, but does give a good analysis of how the 100 year old contagion was spread, and how scientists of the day tried to combat it.