Hi readers. Thanks for coming by for a read.
Probably the Synthetic Crisis Manufacturing Center is going to have to find some new plague scare organism after the current Ebola crisis loses steam. The bug has just been around too long waving the bloody flag. I recall as early as 1992 Ebola was being talked about as potentially scary. Same year as hantavirus in northern New Mexico offered itself up to the scare bidness.
Problem is that humanity knows what a bullgoose badass honest to goodness epidemic looks like. 1918 influenza filled the bill and gave a burst of financial health to the cemetery plot bidness. Black plague walked across Europe enough times to burn itself firmly into the memory of everyone since.
Anthrax. HIV. Malaria, Yellow Fever, Cholera. Equine encephalitis. Rabies. Heartworms on dogs. We 21st Century types who own televisions know all about epidemics and epizootic. So naturally not just any yawn in the virus family can keep our attention and adrenalin levels up.
At first glance Ebola looked good. Fairly long incubation period, high kill rate, the victim probably throws off the virus a considerable while before showing symptions sometimes. In ’92 Ebola could stand on its own hind legs as a worthy source of wide-eyed shivering hugging ourselves look-under-the-bed fear.
And you have to admit it’s held up fairly well over the years without actually killing many people or spreading much. This time it’s fewer than 2000 people contracted it, less than half of them dead. Heck, I’m betting there were more people than that chopped to death with machetes last week in Africa. Certainly more killed in Gaza, Syria, plenty of other places as bystanders in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Not to say Ebola won’t someday get loose and kill a respectable portion of humanity. It might. But as a means to fill in for something to be scared of between meteors striking the earth and all the ice on the planet melting it needs to do a bit of outreach. Work a bit harder and explore new locations.
Public relations and a good resume can only carry on so long before something has to be produced. And Ebola’s beginning to appear to be all hat and no cattle.