Thursday, April 30, 2009

" Dark Continent Dragon Fever"....

i'm not an avid facebooker. but i love to swing by and see what everyone's up to, feeling and thinking.

yesterday i discovered a comment by my friend Omar (S Talib) who said,

"... if we name Malaria and Cholera something more snappy and "Dark Continent Dragon Fever...", we may get as much attention as Swine Flu. I mean, after all, malaria kills a child every 30 sec..."

this struck me as completely true. why does Swine Flu soar to the headlines along with the Obamas and their new puppy, the gloomy world economy, Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan? on a daily and repetitive basis? yes. fine to remark on it. fine to know about it. but worse things are happening at sea right now. why don't they cancel ALL FLIGHTS? planes are the worst places for viruses to spread. . . planes are hardly "Green" are they? deadly to our atmosphere right now...they consume an inordinate amount of fuel too...and they spread Pig flu.

malaria at present, poses a risk to HALF THE WORLD'S population.

more than a MILLION PEOPLE die of the disease EACH YEAR.

the parasite is a devilishly clever and resistant little bastard, almost as resistant as lice. except you can't comb the killers from your blood. they seem to develop a resistance to all the latest drugs...oh and HIV is old hat is it?

yet swine flu still makes the headlines.....? FLU? i find this kind of sensationalist reporting irresponsible and ill informed. it seems as soon as any deadly disease makes its way into the first world, it makes headlines. who cares when its mostly third world being affected? it's not us, its them. we're ok jack.

i am outraged.

i have to admire the Gates Foundation for donating US$ 22.5 million with the intention of fighting this great killer. even though i hate the factory which they financed on my doorstep for its complete disregard to local environment...but lets not bang on about this old fruit least they are making mosquito nets and not breeding pigs....
on a lighter note, i heard that bono at a concert once clapped his hands and said,
"... every time i clap my hands a child dies in africa."
someone in the audience shouted out, " well stop fucking clapping your hands then, mate!"

there. off my chest.

thanks for bearing with me....comments are welcome, comme toujours.

tooooodely old pip, y'all, and bisous, buzzing mozzie ones...bzzzzzzzzzzzzz X.X.X. j


Bill Stankus said...

No argument about malaria. I'm guessing, but perhaps the attention Swine Flu is getting in the media is because it's mostly a new story. Generally the media lacks proportion and imagination so when a new thing shows up, they all pile on and then rely on the old adage, "People are interested" in order to flog the story to death.

One more thing. There's often in these news stories about the spreading of flu reference to the great influenza deaths that occurred in the post World War ! era. It was a major outbreak and the death toll was astonomical... thus being a good sidebar story for any flu issues happening today.

Janelle said...

yes agree bill! thanks for your input....perhaps its just that death, on a massive scale, is a more regular and open occurence this side....? xxx j

Mud in the City said...

Totally agree and there was an article in the paper this weekend saying the same thing.

Sadly Swine Flu has a funky name and (even more depressingly) for people in the US/Europe it might affect People Like Us.

For an awful lot of folk, diseases in what they still think of as the Dark Continent are out of sight and out of mind. People are short sighted.

Tessa said...


Janelle, I'd like to fling my flippin' arms around you, girl, to thank you for expressing EXACTLY what many of us are thinking, but just don't have the gift (or the guts) that you do to shout it out LOUD AND CLEAR.

Bono and Geldof drive me to drink. Yes - for god's sake stop clapping your fucking hands you stupid, self serving pricks and get out there with your private planes filled to the gunnels with mossie nets.

And, folks, if any of you visit Africa to go on safari or to loll in luxury in an hotel, put a couple of mosquito nets in your Louis Vuittons and give them away to people who need them before you leave.

Elizabeth said...

I see all my addicted blogging chums are out in force this merry May morning when we should have more pressing things to do....
Yes, the media are quite impossibly silly about swine flu
it's up there with Bush's terror terror terror when more people in the US were dying of obesity, guns, McDonalds etc etc.

If they published the actuarial charts of what people worldwide actually died of, and at what age, people, maybe, would stop being so hysterical about the ruddy swine flu.

Yes, malaria and polluted water borne stuff is much more dangerous.
We send money at intervals to the Carter Foundation and various other do-gooding causes in Africa.
Who knows if it does any good? The only thing we can do this end.
Have a wonderful weekend

word verification:

most odd
would sado-masochism solve all our problems......?

mighty jo said...

thanks for some perspective & for pointing out the sensationalizing of the media.
as far as the swine flu hoopla would be nice if maybe the pig industry would take notice & become aware of the damage they do to the environment as a result of this whole "epidemic"...but, of course, they would have to accept blame first....
wouldn't that be nice?

Janelle said...

yeah mud. so true. and i shouldn;t be so outraged about it, now should i? its more the media...that old chestnut...XXX j

hey elizabeth...carter always had a good track record this side...he was a farmer. he was also a mediator during the first zambian democratic elections....from kaunda to chiluba....i reckon your money is being well channeled. ongera sana. XXX j

mighty jo,...yeah..the ruddy pig farmers eh?? poor old pigs...who kissed them first???? that's the one to blame... xxx j

Madame Ladybug said...

I agree with you completely about malaria. I wonder if it is possibly less to do with it's name though, than it is to do with it's geographical location!

Lover of Life said...

I totally agree. It just doesn't seem fair.

Lori ann said...

Ah this is hard Janelle, I am not qualified to make any kind of statement, but know that alot of people here care very much about the aids epidemic and malaria. I believe alot of people everywhere do. We've been involved in fundraising efforts to buy and distribute nets. Oh what I'm trying to say is please don't feel forgotten, there are people that are trying to help make things better. I pray all the time, for all the people in the world. And I did want to say I LOVE your compassion on this subject. This was an important and beautifully written post.
♥ lori

Anonymous said...

Does malaria spread by coughing or touching something someone has coughed on? Can you get it while flying in an enclosed cabin on a plane or movie theater? Malaria is horrible as is aids but they do not affect business the way a virus can. I think the business world is very concerned and the fear is spreading.

Janelle said...

thanks for all the comments...
thanks anonymous. you are right. x j

Janet said...

there's no vaccine for malaria, so why on earth would the moneymaking pharmaceutical companies ply newspapers with misinformation to sensationalize their sales. . . . . ???

I think it speaks for itself where all this crap hype about swine flu is coming from!!!

I buy into much of an article on - Swine Flu pandemic FACT OR FICTION - worth a read.


Reya Mellicker said...

I have no idea why some things capture the public imagination and others do not. What is glamour, Janelle? You are steeped in it (you the person). What is it, anyway?

On a superficial level I wonder about this whenever I'm in an art gallery - why are some painters "good" and others ignored? What about fashion - why is blue "in" but red isn't (just an example, I have no idea what's in style).

Thank you for this.

Dick said...

Good points, well made! Swine flu is about relatively prosperous white people; malaria is about relatively disadvantaged black people. It's a simple equation that accounts for developed world indifference.

Love the Bono story. Good to know that the voice of the common people can still be heard in the midst of that contemporary Western equivalent of the mass revivalist meeting, the stadium rock concert.

Anonymous said...

Wow , thanks for the mercola site, very informative. Have a family member immune compromised due to cancer, we are all very concerned about being in public places in concern for her. So far no vaccine is avaiable to the public in U.S. and after reading the article . I think I'm glad! The businesses that will be hurt are shopping malls, movie theaters, public transport,etc and Bono's concerts!

fush and chips said...

More scary names needed indeed.

I was hot to trot to visit my then new Zimbabwean girlfriend, but my passport had expired. So I ran into home affairs and choking back the sobs (sexual frustration in this case easily transposed into tearful hysteria) and said I had a friend up North dying of BLACK WATER FEVER, so needed a new passport chop-chop.

Got my passport in 24 hours, though I did feel like a bit off a rotter when the woman at the passport office said kindly "Our thoughts are with you. Travel fast and safely".

Janelle said...

thanks you all for your comments!
fush, yes. quite!~ x
anon, glad you found something helpful here. whew. x thanks janet.
great to hear from you D x
ah lori. don't feel abandonned. no no. just was a niggling nugget which needed to be pinned up.. x
madame and lover - yes. well, point taken. well y'know, life isn't fair at all.x

Chimera said...

Catching up and catching up and yes and yes indeedy. (wonder who your anon buisness person was? Bit sentorious I must say. Probably owns the patent for Swine flu vaccine...)
Actually wanted more to say how lovely and sumptious your yellow magic post was! the sunbird loves you quite obviously. Or wanted to check his email. No really - I loved the nymphs and the fantastic fairy king! Al so beautiful tripping and whispering aroudn the star flowers.
Thanks Janelle - i know you are having a hard time of it but your writing still shines through and sending huge hug.
Tanvi xx

Janelle said...

ah thanks sweet tanvi. thanks! sorry haven;t swung chez toi for a while but coming SOON promise!!! xxx j

Exquisitely Black said...

The answer? People have incredibly short memories. AIDS, malaria, world hunger - these are old hat to the news and in the endless quest for ratings, they seek out the latest, greatest story. Sometimes the media seems to have no conscious, no sense of responsibility - they love spreading fear and panic - again ratings motivated, not true journalistic motivation. IMHO

Wil Robinson said...

Sadly, Swine flu is a story because it affects white people in the West.

When malaria spreads to North America and Europe (with global wamring, perhaps?), it will become "newsworthy."