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The Terror of Fake News

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  • I read that article and another. Both types of flu viruses will take you down by enabling a secondary opportunistic infection, such as pneumonia, to take hold and thereby killing you. Precisely what you see in those Washington nursing home deaths. I go to nursing homes and it is the perfect place for any kind of virus given the close quarters, the understaffed overworked staff who may not always wash hands, and the generally poor health of the residents. The reason Covid-19 is 20 times more lethal at 2% vs 0.1% is that it is new to humans whereas human bodies have seen influenza.

    What amazes me is how people have gone nuts about this. Except for the last two years I have never gotten a flue shot and I work in a medical setting. I have never gotten the flu in all the years I have been in that setting. The last time I had the flu was the London flu making it's way through the SDSU dorms in 1973. Lots of hand washing and no shaking hands in the office so I can maintain sterility at all times. I'm not worried about this but several have asked me my thoughts.

    Now imagine a real pandemic due to a flu virus. The Spanish flu, created in the WWI trenches in 2018, moved around the world killing 50-100 million people. No public health capabilities at the time and if there were they all would have been overwhelmed in the first two days. That virus was particularly lethal because it induced a very strong immune response leading to a cytokine storm. Your body is flooded by all kinds of chemicals created by your immune system flooding your lungs and killing organs. You could be dead in a matter of hours with no way to stop it then or even today. Who had such immune systems? Why young healthy adults and they were devastated around the world causing long term economic effects since they are working age. You know the virus was recovered from a preserved frozen body in the permafrost of Alaska so it could be broken down in total for the first time genetically.

    Now imagine another Spanish flu virus today with air travel instead of trains. Actually you don't want to imagine such another pandemic as the effect could be 250 million deaths. However, the odds are another will happen just like the proverbial 100 year hurricane, earthquake, or tidal wave.


    • Twitter labels video retweeted by Trump as 'manipulated media'

      A video created by the White House social media director and retweeted by Donald Trump is the first to be tagged by Twitter as "manipulated media." The video shows Democratic candidate Joe Biden appearing to endorse Trump after the end of his sentence was pruned off. Twitter came up with the guideline last year ahead of the 2020 election to highlight "video that has been significantly altered or fabricated in a way that intends to mislead people or changes its original meaning."

      The original video showed Biden saying: "Excuse me. We can only re-elect Donald Trump if in fact we get engaged in this circular firing squad here. It's gotta be a positive campaign." However, Scavino cut off the end of the video so it just said, "Excuse me. We can only re-elect Donald Trump."

      The video marks the first time Twitter has used the "manipulated media" tag, according to the Washington Post. The social media company first showed the policy in November 2019, created after consulting with users and experts from institutions like Witness, the Reuters Institute and New York Universities. It's designed to help Twitter crack down on misleading information leading up to the 2020 election. During the 2016 campaign, it was widely blamed for allowing fake news to circulate on the platform.

      The label first started to appear to users on Sunday night, but it has only showed up on timelines and not searches. (The label did not show up for me at 2:30AM ET when I searched for Scavino's tweet.) However, Twitter spokesperson Katie Rosborough told the WaPo that it's working on a fix for that.

      Scavino claimed on Twitter that the video was "not manipulated," though it was certainly "deceptively edited" which also violates Twitter's rule. Twitter has been reluctant in the past to take action against Trump's tweets, even though they sometimes violate its standards, for reasons of "newsworthiness" and "public interest."

      Facebook, by contrast, did not flag the tweet as deceptive, drawing a rebuke from the Biden campaign. "Facebook's malfeasance when it comes to trafficking in blatantly false information is a national crisis in this respect," said Biden campaign manager Greg Schultz in a statement to the NY Times. "It is also an unconscionable act of putting profit above not just our country, but every country."

      Number 2 on the 4 Things to Always Remember about Donald Trump:

      Every criticism or insult of someone else is a projection of his own weaknesses. What he accuses others of is what, not they, are doing.

      Exhibit A: His constant ranting about "fake news".
      My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over.


      • Jeff Zucker crapping himself.