March 15, 2007

Too Much To Respond

Chuck had a post on his blog that I was going to leave a comment on, but then I thought “screw it, I’m going to post the response on my blog” not because I object to commenting on someone else’s blog, but because… er, longer posts is what I have my own blog for.

Chuck has had a really rough time lately. In fact, a few of my friends are going through some pretty crappy stuff including medical, family, stress, work, and school-related stuff. I’m not in the habit of calling people out, so I’ll keep this general. I want folks to know that I’m here to talk if you need it. Of course, most of you are probably too busy to talk, and I guess that’s part of the problem! We’ll sit down together soon over a drink or coffee or whatever. On to Chuck’s post.

Health

Thanks for the update, Chuck. I hope that the least invasive treatment takes care of the lingering effects of your pneumonia. However, going on the idea that anyone can come up with treatments and “who needs proof???” I’ve come up with my own treatment for lung infections. Clearly, the reason bacteria is holed up in your lung is because it’s such a pleasant place to hang out. The bacteria are treating it like a trendy new club. They’re probably drinking Cristal and Jager in there, hangin’ with their peeps, chillin. Meanwhile, you’re feeling like crap.

So give those Pneumococcusuckers a kick in their ciliated asses!

  • Step 1: Purchase “William Hung: Inspiration”
  • Step 2: Place CD in player.
  • Step 3: Queue up “She Bangs”
  • Step 4: Lean forward with mouth open to allow sound waves to best penetrate your air passages.
  • Step 5: Hit play

There will be a slight discomfort at first, as the sound cannot be completely shielded from your ears. You may very well experience some irritation localized to your sense of good taste. However, that just tells you it is working. Repeat the procedure for an hour, or until you pass out. Make sure you have a companion there to watch you. You will be groggy and have a killer headache when the treatment is complete. Do this every day and you will probably forget all about any chest infection.

(OK, I actually don’t think streptococcus pneumoniae have cilia, but I’m taking license.)

Mr Deity

I’ll take that. Thaaaaaaank… you. (steals link for shotgun post.)

RSS & YouTube

http://www.youtube.com/rss/user/misterdeity/videos.rss

http://www.youtube.com/rss/user/suttsteve/videos.rss

Substitute any user name between the slashes after “user” and you have yourself a user-based feed. I don’t know why they don’t make this detectable, but they talk about it here.

And I think I’m afraid if SuttSteve. And at the same time I am suddenly a lot less intimidated about having a podcast. However, my research indicates that if you have a blog, you can estimate the number of people who will watch your podcast to be the natural log of the number of people who read your blog. So where Vb is blog visitors and Vp
is podcast visitors, Vp = ln(Vb).

By my calculations, I would have 2.7 podcast visitors, which is not yet worth the effort, even if you round that 7 tenths of a person up to a whole person.

Texas and the HPV Vaccine

You wrote:

The thing I can’t shake is that the early complaints about the possibility of making this drug mandatory that came out of Fundie USA was that it would encourage young women to have sex. Which is the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. But I can’t help feeling that because those who said it are realizing how stupid that sounds, we are now getting other excuses like a through d above. I find myself wondering if HPV was transmitted in a nonsexual manner, would there be any outcry at all?

It’s not just that social conservatives think that it’ll make girls have sex (and they seem to be pretty much in denial about what their daughters are doing anyhow, or the effect that their attitudes have had on female sexuality). There is also a government conspiracy undercurrent running through that very paranoid subculture. They think the government is going to slip some sort of sneaky secular dirty tricks in there with the drugs… like something that will make your daughter believe in algebra instead of faith based “mathemagics.”

These are the Same People Who Said…

Nothing of substance to add to your comments except to affirm that the global warming deniers are using similar tactics to the anti-evolutionists. Purposefully skewing research, misinterpreting old arguments, etc. Sad.

Posted by James at March 15, 2007 8:53 AM
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Comments

The big issue with Gardasil isn't the silly reasons some people have given for objecting. The problem is that Merck is subsidizing legislative efforts all over the country to push through mandates for THEIR VACCINE while other companies are still in the testing process for similar vaccines. THAT's my objection. Mandate the first one because it's been pushed through faster? I don't think so.

Second reasonable objection: The vaccine costs $360 per person. See objection 1 on that one, but there are some legitimate concerns about blowing state and local medical budgets, not to mention families on a vaccine that's not been tested extensively in the age group for which it is being mandated.

I think the vaccine overall is a good idea, but the fact that Merck is paying to lobby the state legislatures instead of lowering the price to something more reasonable really gripes me.

Posted by: Judy at March 16, 2007 8:54 AM

Just so I'm not unclear, I think there are perfectly reasonable science-based objections to any particular treatment, and the people that use reason and science to determine these things have not stopped or slowed down their efforts. And I appreciate that.

It's the unreasonable people who, in the last decade, seem to be gaining in voice and attention (and in the last 6 years, a sympathetic ear in government); they really worry me.

Now, your objections are also reasonable, practical objections. Clearly, there is a business reason for Merck wanting to be the first through the door with this treatment.

It hurts Merck in the long run if they are unscrupulous in their attempts to get the vaccine out there quickly, and I don't appreciate that. I'm not a big fan of the way drug companies sometimes do business.

On the other hand, because of unreasonable opposition, you need a lot of lead time to get people used to the idea of a vaccine like this. You can't argue with the unreasonable, but sometimes time wears away at the knee-jerk reaction. Thus, lead time is important from a policy perspective.

So we've got the situation we've got.

Posted by: James at March 16, 2007 9:12 AM

Thanks for your responses James, especially for the RSS feeds for YouTube... that's helpful!

Posted by: Chuck S. at March 16, 2007 2:21 PM

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