American Elephants


Ebola: What to Do, What Not to Do. Understanding the Problems. by The Elephant's Child

International agencies like the World Health Organization (WHO) run by the United Nations have become an international irrelevance. The failures of the Centers for Disease Control are disturbing, though they are supposed to be run by the government’s finest. Protocols supposedly put in place months ago were not observed, those exposed were “self monitoring” for symptoms. They weren’t supposed to be traveling on public transportation, and yet did. And it’s fairly clear that people possibly exposed were simply not taking quarantine seriously. Maybe seriously up until it was inconvenient, but then ignored.

There is a clear desire on the part of our government to prevent panic, but apparently little knowledge of how that is accomplished. Evidence that the agency has done their homework, and know what they are talking about is central. If people believe that you don’t know what you are talking about, your usefulness is over. Protocols that simply ask where people are coming from and take their temperature are, according to knowledgeable people, useless, since elevated temperatures are common and not diagnostic. The Wall Street Journal reports:

Since the 1990s, the WHO has gradually transformed itself from a disease fighter to what Dr. Chan calls “a normative agency” that makes international public health rules and promotes political goals like universal coverage. “That represented a very significant change over prior WHO policies,” says Laurie Garrett of the Council on Foreign Relations, who calls the WHO’s response to the epidemic “just shameful.”

Doctors without borders (Médicins Sans Frontiéres), the international aid agency, is recommended as having set the gold standard for Ebola safety, yet 16 of their staff members who have risked their lives in West Africa are infected, and nine have died. The U.S is providing $142 million in aid to the organization.

Paul Sperry reports at Investors that Muslim burial rituals may be to blame for much of the spread of Ebola. The body of an Ebola victim can be more dangerous in death than in life. 73% of Sierra Leone’s and 85% of Guinea’s people are Muslim. Islam is practiced by more than 13% of Liberians.

When a Muslim dies, family members do not turn to a funeral home or crematorium to take care of the body. Relatives personally wash the corpses of loved ones from head to toe. Several family members may participate in this posthumous bathing ritual, known as Ghusl.

Before scrubbing the skin with soap and water, family members press down on the abdomen to excrete fluids still in the body. A mixture of camphor and water is used for a final washing. Then, family members dry off the body and shroud it in white linens.

Again, washing the bodies of the dead in this way is considered a collective duty for Muslims, especially in Muslim nations. Failure to do so is believed to leave the deceased “impure” and jeopardizes the faithful’s ascension into Paradise (unless he died in jihad; then no Ghusl is required). Before the body is buried, Muslims attending the funeral typically pass a common bowl for use in ablution or washing of the face, feet and hands, compounding the risk of infection.

Though these customs are prescribed by Sharia law, they’re extremely dangerous and should be suspended. Mosque leaders must step in to educate village Muslims about the dangers of interacting with corpses.

The practice has led to the spread of the disease. Families must be helped to understand why some practices cannot be done because they place others at risk.

Last month, Red Cross workers in Guinea were attacked by family members while trying to bury Ebola dead safely. In Sierra Leone, moreover, a family took Ebola-ridden bodies secured in body bags from the Red Cross, opened them up and exposed all members of the family to Ebola. They all contracted the disease.

The UN warns that the spread must be contained within 60 days or the infection rate can jump from 1,000 a week to 10,000 a week. Saudi Arabia, the center of Islam,  has banned pilgrims from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

President Obama argues that  ban on travel would do more harm than good, because travelers “might go underground.” Now he’s talking about sending National Guard troops in addition to the 4.000 U.S. Military already there. The military had better take very great care of our troops, and see that none get infected.

 



Quarantines and Tests: Finding Out Sooner And Faster. by The Elephant's Child

The Daily Mail reports that the recommended 21-day quarantine period for the Ebola virus may not be long enough. The World Health Organization advises the 21 day quarantine, but the WHO advised on Wednesday that there is a global plague, which can cause “vomiting, marked hypocalcemia, metabolic acidosis, convulsions and , in rare cases, even death. Not Ebola, but the overconsumption of energy drinks.

In Colorado, in the Corgenix lab in Broomfield, scientists are working on a new test—called a lateral flow dipstick type test — that can identify Ebola in 10 minutes, much faster than current methods that can take three days to diagnose. The test works much like a home pregnancy test. A drop of patient’s blood is placed on a test strip, then dropped into a buffer solution. Two lines show a positive result, one line means the test is negative for Ebola. It can be used in the field, and is currently being used to detect the deadly Lassa virus in west Africa. The new test will get the green light in about a year at the earliest, depending on the government.



The Kids Don’t Like Michelle’s Healthy Lunches. by The Elephant's Child

American children have responded to Michelle Obama” healthy lunches by dumping their full trays into the garbage bins. School boards are demanding that the Obama administration relax the standards.

  • 83.7 percent of school districts have seen an increase in plate waste.
  • 81.8 percent had an increase in cost.
  • 76.5percent saw a decrease in participation by students.
  • 75 percent of school leaders want an increase in federal funding for school districts to comply with requirements.
  • 60.3 percent want flexibility for school districts to improve their ability to provide good nutrition, without harm to other operations.

This is National School Lunch Week.  The 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act calls for limits on fat, sugar and salt and a higher use of whole grains and veggies. The administration is quite sure it’s just not presenting them correctly. There are calorie limits for each meal, which I believe are the same for the 7 year-old and the 240 lb. football linebacker in high school. (That doesn’t seem possible).

Schools are urged to invite a legislator to lunch, or members of the press. There are special coloring sheets, word searches, crossword puzzles and more for the students to celebrate National School Lunch Week. Schools can win packets of stickers. There are tee shirts and aprons, posters and balloons and buttons.

Schools are urged to ask members of their staff if they would be interested in dressing up in different sports costumes for lunch. Add sports decorations to lunch lines. Rename some of your menu staples like ‘Touchdown Tacos, Fastball Fruit Salad, or Half-Time Hamburgers. Take pictures of your students enjoying lunchtime. Send them to the SNA Facebook page, but remember to get media release forms signed first. Ask local high school or college athletes to come in uniform to eat lunch with the younger kids.

That should do it.

School_Lunchschool-lunch   The left believes that to accomplish a good purpose, all you have to do is pass a law. They always forget that their prized laws affect real people.

 

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School Lunches

 

 

 

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ADDENDUM: Here’s another picture of a school lunch, as prescribed by Michelle Obama’s lunch program. Parents are furious. Some kids have the option of bringing a lunch from home , but many children depend on school lunches.This is pretty meager, unappetizing fare.

 




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