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View Full Version : Is Zika Virus a Blessing in Disguise?



oznabrag
01-25-2016, 07:38 PM
Brazil has recorded 3,893 microcephaly cases since an unusual spike in the rare condition was noticed in the country's northeast in October. Previously an annual average of 160 cases was the norm. (http://Brazil has recorded 3,893 microcephaly cases since an unusual spike in the rare condition was noticed in the country's northeast in October. Previously an annual average of 160 cases was the norm.)


Apparently Mother Nature has decided human women shouldn't get pregnant, if they live in the same environment with the Aedes mosquito.

I predict a precipitous drop in human population over several decades, and a booming Pregnancy Industry in Greenland.

Paul Pless
01-25-2016, 07:43 PM
Is Zika Virus a Blessing in Disguise?no.

Hwyl
01-25-2016, 07:49 PM
Callous John.

Bobcat
01-25-2016, 07:50 PM
I can hardly wait for your view of AIDS

oznabrag
01-25-2016, 07:50 PM
no.

Why not?

I mean, it sure is a horrible way to be born, but it sure makes a person pay attention as to whether or not they should procreate.

Given the theory that Nature has ways of taking care of herself, and that some sort of pathogen will inevitably run amok through the human population sooner or later, I think that a virus who's main effect is to throttle the reproductive rate is a better alternative than some other malady that will digest the tissue of living humans, leaving them to die horribly in a pool of their own former flesh.

You would prefer an epidemic of Ebola?

oznabrag
01-25-2016, 08:17 PM
I can hardly wait for your view of AIDS

The two are completely separate.

HIV is a horrible, horrible way to die, in most instances. It is rare to die peacefully from HIV/AIDS.

It is also a sexually-transmitted disease so, while it can be easily spread, it tends to focus its malice on fairly narrow subsets of the population at any one time.

This means that it is sort of disqualified as a population-thinner like the Black Death, or the more recent Spanish Flu.

The thing I find favorable about Zika is that it is very easy to tell if you've had it, and very easy to prevent microcephaly once you know you have it.

It also works with the human gestation period in that one must be certain that one will not be in contact with the vector mosquito for a minimum of 9 months to be sure that the infant will not have microcephaly.

What all this adds up to, at first glance, is a disease that, once we get up to speed on it, won't kill or injure anybody, just control the population by the mechanism of discouraging procreation rather than by killing off existing humans.

Dave Gray
01-25-2016, 08:20 PM
Sure, the poor in the areas the virus is most prolific in have access to all the best medical knowledge, equipment, and can afford it.

oznabrag
01-25-2016, 08:30 PM
Sure, the poor in the areas the virus is most prolific in have access to all the best medical knowledge, equipment, and can afford it.

I was listening to NPR on this earlier, and while this may be true in the very short term, the WHO has stated that Ziki is going to be a fact of life throughout the Americas in a very short time.

Only Canada and Argentina will remain outside the range of the Aedes mosquito, and with the climate changing they most likely won't stay Zika-free for long.

The number of cases of microcephaly has simply exploded. Over 20 times the number in a year.

This can not be ignored by people who want a family.

It is possible we are seeing Ground Zero of the human population implosion.

CK 17
01-25-2016, 08:52 PM
There are already a lot of good reasons to not procreate, or at least procreate a lot less. Never the less we keep doing it at a unsustainable rate. What makes you think zika will change things? My understanding is zika doesn't prevent procreation, it just puts the outcome at risk.

oznabrag
01-25-2016, 09:02 PM
There are already a lot of good reasons to not procreate, or at least procreate a lot less. Never the less we keep doing it at a unsustainable rate. What makes you think zika will change things? My understanding is zika doesn't prevent procreation, it just puts the outcome at risk.

People procreate because they expect 'normal' babies.

From what little I can gather, the correlation between a pregnant woman having had Zika, and delivering a baby with microcephalus is almost 1-1.

That isn't a 'risk factor', that's a flat-out prohibition.

George Jung
01-25-2016, 09:07 PM
Nice troll. I see you've been taking lessons from 'the master' (lil' 'm').

No, people (for the most part) don't procreate because they expect normal babies. From what I've seen, it's more along the lines of

'drill, baby, drill'. Or - if it feels good, do it'.

Cynical? Maybe.

The Bigfella
01-25-2016, 09:13 PM
Nice troll. I see you've been taking lessons from 'the master' (lil' 'm').

No, people (for the most part) don't procreate because they expect normal babies. From what I've seen, it's more along the lines of

'drill, baby, drill'. Or - if it feels good, do it'.

Cynical? Maybe.


With an "oops" thrown in from time to time

Keith Wilson
01-25-2016, 09:16 PM
Is Zika Virus a Blessing in Disguise?No.

Two points. First, human population growth has already slowed dramatically, is very near replacement rate in the developed countries, and it looks like the world population will stabilize later in the century. One can certainly argue that this many people strain the capacity of the planet to keep us all comfortable, but it's a very, very long way from the crisis predicted a few decades ago.


http://cdn.zmescience.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/world_population_1900_to_2050.jpg


Second, the idea of 'nature' protecting itself from the scourge of humanity is just silly. The living part of the natural world consists of genes making copies of themselves, the ones that are better at doing this becoming more common. There's no overall plan, no organization, no design, nothing but replicators and the things they build. A new plague may very well appear, getting ahead of our medical knowledge and killing a lot of people, but interpreting this as 'nature protecting itself' is the modern version of interpreting the lightning as the anger of Zeus.

Gerarddm
01-25-2016, 09:30 PM
No, it is not a blessing in disguise.

Just another disease vectored by mosquitoes. What a useless organism they are. Yes I know certain flying species feed on them, but I don't know if any do exclusively.

The great thing about colonizing space will be that we can leave Earthly travails like mosquitoes and other certain diseases far behind.

The Bigfella
01-25-2016, 09:34 PM
the modern version of interpreting the lightning as the anger of Zeus.

Ha ha. You've stigmatised him.

Keith Wilson
01-25-2016, 09:37 PM
Nah. Our friend Garbanzo is a most excellent fellow IMHO, but he does occasionally let his rhetoric run away with him. No harm.

The Bigfella
01-25-2016, 10:01 PM
I seems more like temper than rhetoric at times

oznabrag
01-25-2016, 10:01 PM
Nice troll. I see you've been taking lessons from 'the master' (lil' 'm').

No, people (for the most part) don't procreate because they expect normal babies. From what I've seen, it's more along the lines of

'drill, baby, drill'. Or - if it feels good, do it'.

Cynical? Maybe.

Troll?

You are not correct about why people procreate. Sure it feels good, but you are bringing in a whole lot of baggage that doesn't belong in this discussion, if you'll pardon my saying so.

According to the evolutionary biologists, we have to assume that we all want to procreate (prime directive) and that some are better equipped to do so, genetically.

There is growing evidence to suggest that we choose the parents of our children based on our subconscious estimate of whether the children so produced will bring us grandchildren.

Clear as mud?

We don't procreate to produce children, but to produce grandchildren.



No.

Two points. First, human population growth has already slowed dramatically, is very near replacement rate in the developed countries, and it looks like the world population will stabilize later in the century. One can certainly argue that this many people strain the capacity of the planet to keep us all comfortable, but it's a very, very long way from the crisis predicted a few decades ago.

So you say. However, there are those who think the Earth has about 4 times as many humans as it can comfortably support.

Your perspective seems to be that She should be expected to keep us all comfortable, whereas I am quite certain you wouldn't dream of regarding your wife that way.


Second, the idea of 'nature' protecting itself from the scourge of humanity is just silly. The living part of the natural world consists of genes making copies of themselves, the ones that are better at doing this becoming more common. There's no overall plan, no organization, no design, nothing but replicators and the things they build.

Is it?

In Nature, every species but Homo Sapiens has limits to its population based upon the balance of resources in its environment. Every species but Homo Sapiens lives within those boundaries.

They don't have a choice, and we seem to believe we do. We think nothing of obliterating entire habitats so the new subdivision can go in.

All other creatures are expected to accept extinction as their obeisance to Man.



A new plague may very well appear, getting ahead of our medical knowledge and killing a lot of people, but interpreting this as 'nature protecting itself' is the modern version of interpreting the lightning as the anger of Zeus.

Thus my point.

The CDC and the WHO have both been droning on for years that it isn't a question of 'if', but of 'when'.

If you get bit by an Aedes mosquito and become infected with Zika, you are gonna feel really bad for a little while. The flu-like symptoms, etc., and then it goes away.

The rate of death from Zika is just about zip, as near as I can tell.

Where it gets you is if you are pregnant. Then your baby will almost certainly be born with microcephalus.

A baby born with microcephalus is all but guaranteed not to bring you grandchildren.

Dave Gray
01-25-2016, 10:43 PM
OK, lets all be cynics. By the same logic robots and AI are a blessing in disguise. No people needed, they can be discarded to starve. Zika can be another part of the equation that will reduce population back to levels seen before the Xia dynasty.

Bobby of Tulsa
01-25-2016, 10:46 PM
Dude???

oznabrag
01-25-2016, 11:01 PM
OK, lets all be cynics. By the same logic robots and AI are a blessing in disguise. No people needed, they can be discarded to starve. Zika can be another part of the equation that will reduce population back to levels seen before the Xia dynasty.

You are, not surprisingly, missing the point.

Dave Gray
01-25-2016, 11:05 PM
There's a point?

The Bigfella
01-25-2016, 11:26 PM
There's a point?

Some call it a probiscus.... but there's certainly a point to those damn mosquitoes

Keith Wilson
01-25-2016, 11:52 PM
The point is to make more mosquitoes. They're good at it.

oznabrag
01-26-2016, 12:15 AM
OK, lets all be cynics. By the same logic robots and AI are a blessing in disguise. No people needed, they can be discarded to starve. Zika can be another part of the equation that will reduce population back to levels seen before the Xia dynasty.

Why so dark?

Zika doesn't kill you, it prevents you from breeding successfully.

That's pretty far from harsh, in the great scheme of biology.

oznabrag
01-26-2016, 03:04 PM
Dude???

Yes?

LeeG
01-26-2016, 04:00 PM
Microcephaly is no more a blessing in disguise than millions of Syrians and Iraqis suffering from war.

George Jung
01-26-2016, 04:03 PM
Different critter, LeeG - though the sentiment still applies.

LeeG
01-26-2016, 04:05 PM
Oops, autocorrect

Ted Hoppe
01-26-2016, 04:08 PM
It seems to me that the virus has been around for several decades based on a few bilge postings and some Republican party candidates and supporters.

The infection, which causes symptoms including mild fever, conjunctivitis and headache, has already been found in 21 countries in the Caribbean, North and South America.
It has been linked to thousands of babies being born with underdeveloped brains and some countries have advised women not to get pregnant.
No treatment or vaccine is available.

WszystekPoTrochu
01-26-2016, 04:26 PM
People procreate because they expect 'normal' babies.

You are far, far too optimistic

PhaseLockedLoop
01-26-2016, 04:28 PM
...some countries have advised women not to get pregnant.

Just say no, huh?

If you want to minimize pregnancies, free contraceptives would be the way to go. Abortion as a last resort.

oznabrag
01-26-2016, 04:41 PM
Micro encephalitis is no more a blessing in disguise than millions of Syrians and Iraqis suffering from war.

I didn't think it was.



It seems to me that the virus has been around for several decades based on a few bilge postings and some Republican party candidates and supporters.

The infection, which causes symptoms including mild fever, conjunctivitis and headache, has already been found in 21 countries in the Caribbean, North and South America.
It has been linked to thousands of babies being born with underdeveloped brains and some countries have advised women not to get pregnant.
No treatment or vaccine is available.

Right.

Mild symptoms and humans tend to shrug it off after a few days, and I'm pretty sure the death rate is nil.

The thing with microcephalus is a new wrinkle, so to speak. Nearly twenty times the normal rate, this year.

The medicos are thinking this is a mutation, and are pretty clear that most of North and South America will be affected soon.

IMO, there's no way this new bug will be contained to the Western Hemisphere, what with air travel being what it is, so here we have a bug that presents symptoms on the level of a mild flu, in humans, yet causes massive developmental abnormalities in the brains of human fetuses.

All the strictly Catholic, anti-abortion countries are under siege from women and their advocates who want to abort these deformed fetuses.

It is a HUGE political issue for those places.

__________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __


Once again, because not one of you brilliant, erudite, well-read giants of critical reasoning have 'gotten it', just yet:

1) The CDC and the WHO have been going on for years that sooner than later, the human race is going to be faced with another pandemic. They've been watching the bird and swine flus as the most likely perps.

2) That means there's gonna be a bug that will infect pretty much everybody on the planet.

3) Zika II seems to be a very strong candidate for that slot, as it has increased its rate of infection by about 100 times, in the space of a year, and added this horrible side effect of trashing the unborn.

4) This disease will be presenting humans with an ultimatum. Be very careful about how and where and when you bring more humans into the world, or face a world where every second human has a head the size of a softball, and a brain to match.

Remember, this disease presents as a mild flu that is over in a day or two to people who are already born.

It is not like Ebola, or the Black Plague or the Red Death, or . . . what was that flesh-eating bacteria that was in Africa a while back?

Zika does not cause billions of people to die, horribly, straining the resources of the Afghan poppy merchants. It does not cause enormous, grisly mass graves to be dug, and billions of human bodies to be burned in an effort to keep them from infecting the living.

What is does do, or SHOULD do, is to make everyone VERY mindful about procreational choices.



Now, y'all have called me 'callous', and racist and all sorts of other ugly names, but I am merely trying to point out that if Nature has sent ZikaII to thin our numbers, it is very difficult to imagine how She could have been gentler about it.

No One You Know is going to die from Zika.

oznabrag
01-26-2016, 04:43 PM
Just say no, huh?

If you want to minimize pregnancies, free contraceptives would be the way to go. Abortion as a last resort.

In the Catholic countries where this thing has erupted, contraceptives are a sin, and abortion isn't even on the map.

Nicholas Scheuer
01-26-2016, 04:44 PM
I wonder about all those infants born with only PART of a human head. Gon'na be a whole lot of pregnancy testing and abortion going on.

LeeG
01-26-2016, 05:00 PM
Oznabrag I think you are fixated for this virus to begin the great culling of the herd.

Ted Hoppe
01-26-2016, 05:14 PM
it is hard to imagine but tropical diseases and mosquito carried illness used to take out large segments of the population until the advent of screens, public hygiene and ridding standing water. I wrote my college thesis on this very topic.

One more thing, if you ever travel to the tropics or have been bitten by mosquitos, a 15 minute dip in a hotel or community chlorinated swimming pool may not only save your trip but your life.

skuthorp
01-26-2016, 06:06 PM
It's likely to travel into Southern US, tropics anywhere, northern Aus. And that's without it finding another mossie vector. The only people who can be flippant about this are those with out issue and old enough for none to come along.
I am one of these and I am definitely not flippant about it.

mikefrommontana
01-26-2016, 08:20 PM
Natures version of "The White Plague".

It's gonna be a mess.

WszystekPoTrochu
01-27-2016, 02:53 AM
Don't be so overly pessimistic, west nile virus is spread by mosquitos too and does not, nor will in near future, spread outside warm climate zone. Isn't really that common after few decades, too.

oznabrag
01-27-2016, 11:32 AM
You are far, far too optimistic


Don't be so overly pessimistic. . .

Make up yer mind, Miko!:d

oznabrag
01-27-2016, 11:36 AM
It's likely to travel into Southern US, tropics anywhere, northern Aus. And that's without it finding another mossie vector. The only people who can be flippant about this are those with out issue and old enough for none to come along.
I am one of these and I am definitely not flippant about it.

I hope you are not under the impression that I am being flip about it.

I am not.


. . . west nile virus is spread by mosquitos too and does not, nor will in near future, spread outside warm climate zone. Isn't really that common after few decades, too.

Maybe, maybe not.

Zika has taken a massive, unprecedented leap in some way.

In the past year, the rate of infection has jumped to over 20 times the former rate, and I don't recall the West Nile virus performing any such feat.

S.V. Airlie
01-27-2016, 11:49 AM
Mosquitoes travel because of changes in the climate, each kind has different tolerances say to temp. The thing scientists have to so is find a cure or a way stall the virus. They tried with the Malaria vector with some success through spraying specific areas where the specific mosquito inhabits. We can't really fight the spread but, we can hopefully inhibit or cure it with research. AIDS is a sim. issue, Epidemic and a death warrant in the '80's now it's not one but, not cured. Of course AIDS isn't temp dependent..

mikefrommontana
01-27-2016, 02:09 PM
Don't be so overly pessimistic, west nile virus is spread by mosquitos too and does not, nor will in near future, spread outside warm climate zone. Isn't really that common after few decades, too.

We have it in Montana

It may not be in Europe, but that may be due more to local climate.

Suffice it to say, it will be a problem for Central and South America. The Catholic Church has some serious rethinking to do in the face of this disease.

S.V. Airlie
01-27-2016, 02:32 PM
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/figures/m6225a1f.gif

George Jung
01-27-2016, 02:53 PM
Not sure what that map shows; my sources * suggest no transmission in the continental USA:
[QUOTE][QUOTE]

Geographic distribution — Outbreaks of Zika virus infection have occurred in Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands; currently, there is an ongoing Zika virus outbreak in the Americas [3,4 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/3,4)]. In January 2016, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advised that pregnant women consider postponing travel to any area where Zika virus transmission is ongoing, given an association between congenital microcephaly in parallel with the Zika virus outbreak in Brazil [1 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/1)]. Updates regarding the geographic distribution of Zika virus may be viewed at the CDC website (http://www.cdc.gov/zika/geo/index.html) and the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization website (http://www.paho.org/hq/index.php?option=com_topics&view=article&id=427&Itemid=41484). (See 'Perinatal complications' (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection?source=machineLearning&search=zika&selectedTitle=1%7E18&sectionRank=1&anchor=H1624509213#H1704366283) below.)
Zika virus is named after the Ugandan forest where it was first isolated in a rhesus monkey in 1947. It spread to Southeast Asia, where it was associated with sporadic infections. The first major outbreak occurred in the Yap Islands of Micronesia in 2007 [5-7 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/5-7)]. Another large outbreak occurred in French Polynesia in 2013, where public health officials estimated infection rates of 70 percent on some islands.
Zika virus infection appeared in the Western hemisphere in February 2014 on Chile's Easter Island; the virus continued to be detected there until June 2014. Zika virus infection in Brazil was confirmed in May 2015 [8 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/8)]. As of January 2016, countries with autochthonous circulation of Zika virus in the Americas include Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Martinique, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Saint Martin, Suriname, and Venezuela [9 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/9)].
In December 2015, Zika virus infection was detected in Puerto Rico. Local transmission of Zika virus infection has not yet been reported in the continental United States, but cases of imported Zika infection have been reported in travelers.
Transmission — Zika virus is transmitted to humans primarily via the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito. Zika virus is carried by the Aedes aegyptus mosquito, which lives only in tropical regions; however, the Aedes albopictus mosquito, which lives in temperate regions, is also capable of carrying it [10-12 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/10-12)]. Aedes mosquitoes usually bite during the daytime and breed in standing water.
Maternal-fetal transmission can occur throughout pregnancy [1,2,13 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/1,2,13)]. (See 'Perinatal complications' (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection?source=machineLearning&search=zika&selectedTitle=1%7E18&sectionRank=1&anchor=H1624509213#H1704366283) below.)
Thus far, there are no reports of Zika virus transmission via breastfeeding [10 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/10)].
Zika virus has been isolated from blood and semen; these appear to be infrequent mechanisms for disease transmission [10,1 (http://www.uptodate.com/contents/zika-virus-infection/abstract/10,14-17)[

S.V. Airlie
01-27-2016, 03:04 PM
I'm basing it on incidents in Montana to respond to a previous post! That' all George, it really doesn't appear to be an issue in Montana!!

AnalogKid
01-27-2016, 03:24 PM
I kinda see where you're coming from Garbonzo, but have a much more pessimistic outlook on how long it'll take, and how many poor, underdeveloped babies draining the resources of their families and communities (maybe even states in some cases) that they are born into, before yer average who-man-bean learns to take a little care over procreation.