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Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 09:13 AM   #1
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Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy

I saw a guy yesterday with a flu mask on.

I've read interviews with people like Dick Cheney that say the bird flu epidemic will have a big impact on the world economy.

I'm thinking it will and that people will become more hesitant to go to public places - shopping, entertainment, travel, etc.

Do you think it will have any impact?

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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 09:14 AM   #2
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

I wouldnt like to be a bird right now.

Other than that, I think this ones going to be more concerning as a news item than anything else.
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 09:17 AM   #3
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Depends. We talking about something that stays confined to birds and never mutates into something that can be easily transmitted from human to human? No big deal.

OTOH, if the virus mutates to something that is easily transmitted and fairly virulent/deadly, it would not be pretty.
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 09:22 AM   #4
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Let me answer that question with a question - have you heard anything lately about SARS? That was last winter's scare scenario. Bet they come up with something new to scare folks with next year.

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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 09:28 AM   #5
 
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

I'm with Grumpy.

My understanding is that usually, when viruses mutate significantly, they also lose much of their virulence.

My uneducated guess is that there's a 1/1000 chance that the bird flu will be a significant problem in the next 10 years. The network news has to make it sound like a 50/50 chance of a pandemic.
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 09:32 AM   #6
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
I'm with Grumpy.*

My understanding is that usually, when viruses mutate significantly, they also lose much of their virulence.*

My uneducated guess is that there's a 1/1000 chance that the bird flu will be a significant problem in the next 10 years.* The network news has to make it sound like a 50/50 chance of a pandemic.
Al, I'd agree that the chances of a pandemic are probably less than 50/50, but nobody really knows. I'm not exactly building a bomb shelter in the backyard.
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 10:01 AM   #7
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Quote:
Originally Posted by brewer12345
Depends. We talking about something that stays confined to birds and never mutates into something that can be easily transmitted from human to human? No big deal.

OTOH, if the virus mutates to something that is easily transmitted and fairly virulent/deadly, it would not be pretty.
Brewer -I think it has mutated...been reading about people dying from it...those that work with fowl.
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 10:07 AM   #8
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanTien
Brewer -I think it has mutated...been reading about people dying from it...those that work with fowl.
As I understand it, the people who have cauht it got it from infected birds. If there has been a documented case of human to human transmission, I have not heard about it. The day I hear about such a case, I will make some hasty preparations (like buying puts on life insurers/reinsurers).
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 10:23 AM   #9
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Quote:
Originally Posted by brewer12345
As I understand it, the people who have cauht it got it from infected birds. If there has been a documented case of human to human transmission, I have not heard about it. The day I hear about such a case, I will make some hasty preparations (like buying puts on life insurers/reinsurers).
I'm looking for an entry point for MMM (although masks,etc. just a small part of their business - but growing) - the stock has been pushed down
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 10:29 AM   #10
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Bird Flu Paranoia
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy
Old 02-28-2006, 10:36 AM   #11
 
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Re: Bird Flu - Will It Have A Big Impact On Economy

Quote:
The day I hear about such a case, I will make some hasty preparations (like buying puts on life insurers/reinsurers).
Yes, the thing we have to worry about is the market's response to a rumor about the bird flu.* That is, if the news media hype a possible person-to-person transmission,* look out.

That is, we have nothing to fear but fear itself.
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 10:47 AM   #12
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

Not to worry folks, while a pandemic is plausible and something we sould worry about, I'm quite certain the federal government will swing into action with one of the many plans they've been crafting since 9/11. You know, in the event a terrorist blows up, say, some levies in lousiana, or lets loose a viral menace across the country?

Those fine plans can, i'm sure, be quickly and easily modified to handle the outbreak of a natural disaster.

We have nothing to worry about.
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 12:01 PM   #13
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

I'm suspicious that this is more hype than real threat too. But I don't believe the source of the hype is News sources. Our news sources aren't smart enough to think of this kind of thing. I believe we have a lot of medical research labs and a NIH bureaucracy that is constantly looking for ways to justify the massive government funding they get.

If you are a technology research lab, you go to DARPA and try to convince them that there is a grave technical/military threat out there but that you have an idea for new technology that can address the problem if you only get $10M in research funding. The DARPA program manager wants to get more budget too. So he takes your view cells and sells the threat to his supervisor, who also wants to grow his budget. Before long you have Congressional staffers supporting the research publicly because its a good campaign issue, becuase it will support investment and employment in their district, . . .whatever.

I think the story is the same for NIH and medical research, only the dollar figures are much higher.
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 12:11 PM   #14
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

SARS was a nasty nasty bug that cost Toronto and the rest of Ontario a lot of money.

There was a real concern about it spreading to the general population.

Very few people had it, but those who did ended up on ventilators.

The concern with avian flu is if it mutates and spreads to humans who gets a ventilator?

Under 40?

Wealthy?
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 01:09 PM   #15
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zipper
The concern with avian flu is if it mutates and spreads to humans who gets a ventilator?
Well, the paranoid (like me) already bought respirators and antiviral meds.* * Those with money and guns will get what they need.

I don't think anybody can predict the odds or the timeframe of something like this happening, but some simple facts are clear to me:

1) Humans are susceptible to infections from viruses, including some deadly infections.

2) This virus infects the lungs, and lung infections are the easiest to spread.* * The only real questions are* whether the infection will kill you before you can spread it or whether the lung tissue infected will be too deep in the lungs to allow easy expulsion.

3) Pandemics happen, and humans are more mobile than have been at any time in history.

So, to me, it's not a question of "if?" but of "when?"

As for the impact on the economy, let me paraphrase the poet Don Rumsfeld.* *This is just a known unknown.* * Chances are that an unknown unknown will bite us anyway, so always be prepared for that economic bite in the ass.
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 01:16 PM   #16
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zipper
The concern with avian flu is if it mutates and spreads to humans who gets a ventilator?
The guys whose wives work in that department at the hospital...
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 05:42 PM   #17
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

Brewer and I have had this discussion about the virus mutating to be passed between humans, and we have our stock longs & shorts ready to execute when the panic word hits the streets.

We also have a few weeks' hurricane bird-flu food stockpiled so that we don't have to leave the house.* We have the family painting mask respirators on hand too.

Of course all your Hawaii-bound flights will be diverted to Los Angeles or Tokyo...
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 05:45 PM   #18
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

..............a 70 year old $ gazillionaire or your son or daughter?

There are only so many ventilators in North America.

If a pandemic with 2% mortality occurred make sure you have enough food and bottled water to ride it out.

If you have to venture out make sure you wear rubber gloves and have lots of antiseptic wipes.

Shopping carts have the highest germ counts.

Schools would shut down because kids are the main vectors.

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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 06:02 PM   #19
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

Nords, mechanical respirators are in hospitals.

Basically a pump to keep you alive until your immune system recovers.

The Toronto SARS patients were on life support.

SARS came to Toronto from Hong Kong, and the patient was admitted to the local hospital.

The bug is airborn and it infected nurses and doctors before they knew what hit them. They took it home to their families and the sh*t hit the fan!

At that point the whole Province was on red alert.

Mrs. Zipper is a hospital worker and security guards were hired to screen everyone coming and going.

Ever since then all hospitals have hand sanitizer bottles available every few feet.

Avian flu has the potential to make SARS trivial.
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?
Old 02-28-2006, 06:40 PM   #20
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Re: Bird Flu - Big Impact On Economy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zipper
Nords, mechanical respirators are in hospitals.
Thanks for the tutorial, Zip, but I'm referring to the canister-filtration facemasks that one wears around hazardous chemicals like spray-on paint VOCs. We call them "respirators" too. Maybe it's trampling the vernacular of the iron-lung community, but that's what it's called.

Sounds better than calling it a "gas mask".
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