Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Flee From Foul Fowl

The whole world seems to have gone bird flu crazy. I offer this awful post title as a tribute. Today, I read that the government has announced that they will provide a vaccine for the pandemic. Unfortunately, they can't actually purchase the vaccine yet because no-one has actually manufactured one because no-one knows what strain is causing the pandemic because there isn't actually a pandemic. Er, is that right? It seems a bit ridiculous somehow. Perhaps I just don't understand all this science business. Like with SARS. I must have misunderstood when I thought they said it would kill everyone on the planet or something.

The hysteria is really going beyond a joke on this one though. I heard on the radio that sales of chicken meat in the UK have dropped sharply. Hurray for panicky pointless reactionary rubbish!

There was a guy on More4 News last week trying to explain why these sorts of viruses have everyone in the UK in such a flap (sorry). His theory is that it's basically a new manifestation of Orientalism. The West transfers it's fear of the East into fear of germs from the East. It's the yellow peril disguised as a virus. Given the level coverage and reaction to the bird flu, I'm starting to think he's got a point.

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