Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Silent Enemy

Trey Smith

We have previously discussed how Congress and the White House continues to spend hundreds of billions on foreign wars without pause but have failed to address an emerging global threat to humanity: antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria. It is part of the lunacy that governs this nation. We spend wildly on wars while largely ignoring a threat that could endanger the entire population. Recently, Thomas Frieden, director of the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, put it in the starkest terms to try to get someone to pay attention. Indeed, Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organization, has warned that we are moving into a “post-antibiotic era.” That means “an end to modern medicine as we know it. Things as common as strep throat or a child’s scratched knee could once again kill.”

The CDC has been presenting data on the rise of bacteria resistance to carbapenems, the most powerful antibiotics that represent our final line of defense. CDC is reporting the appearance of the bacteria now in every state and what it describes as the realization of the “nightmare” scenario for the medical field. Frieden puts the estimate now at over 2 million Americans with infections each year that are resistant to antibiotics. Of those, at least 23,000 people die as a result. To get perspective, we have been waging wars for over ten years at a cost of over a trillion dollars after 3000 were killed by Islamic fanatics. Almost ten times that number are dying each year from this crisis and we are looking at an exponential increase. Yet, few members of Congress have even mentioned this threat or the need for a “war on resistant bacteria.” It just doesn’t get you the same popularity and votes as demanding more defense appropriations. While money has been gradually increased in recent years, it is still a fraction of our appropriations given to pork projects and war efforts.
~ from The End Of Modern Medicine: CDC Reports Millions Faced With Drug-Resistant Bacteria And Rising Death Toll As Washington Ignores The Emerging Crisis by Jonathan Turley ~
You want to know one of the primary reasons WHY there are antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria? It is because we overuse antibiotics! Instead of only using them when needed, the marketplace is flooded with them.

The meat industry is largely to blame. Cows, chickens and pigs that are destined to be served on American dinner tables are force-fed antibiotics. That keeps them healthy enough -- often in unsanitary conditions -- to pass inspection and to become the meat that you meat-eaters eat! Meat producers follow this strategy because (surprise, surprise) it cuts costs and increases profits.

Health advocates have been warning for years that this doomed strategy would lead us to where we find ourselves today, but the powers that be didn't care. As long as those short-term profits kept rolling in, our political leaders and the corporate meat industry was more than willing to turn a blind eye. And now, it doesn't matter if you are a meat-eater or not; this vexing problem can strike A-N-Y-O-N-E at any time. Even worse, there's not a whole helluva lot you can do about it!

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