What's Going on Right Now


What's Going on Right Now
Photo by Anastasiia Chepinska on Unsplash

It's been a big week.

Let's dive in.

We're cornered by bird flu

Finland has officially ordered 20,000 doses of bird flu vaccine. They plan to start administering them to their most vulnerable immediately. Technically, they've ordered a vaccine for H5N8, but it's the H5N1 strain that's currently causing outbreaks among dairy cattle and infecting farmworkers. Scientists say it "should still confer protection," but it sounds like they're just doing their best and crossing their fingers. Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Agriculture hopes the virus will burn itself out.

A new preprint study confirms what some of us suspected all along, that bird flu adapted to spread among seals, sea lions, and other mammals across South America for the last two years, decimating entire populations. We're talking deaths in the tens of thousands. According to an interview with the authors, mammalian spread is "nearly the only explanation of how it went around the entire southern tip of the continent... Honestly, there are not very many more ways this could have happened." You might remember watching these outbreaks unfold while minimizers insisted that seals and sea lions were catching infections from birds. They were wrong. Not only did bird flu spread among mammals, it jumped from mammals back into birds.

For once, The New York Times has done a fairly good job of representing the threat bird flu poses to us. The H5N1 strain has demonstrated remarkable shape-shifting abilities. It's most likely airborne. It demonstrates the capability to adapt to almost any host when it's given enough chances. Although the strain in South America didn't show any signs of adapting to humans, history tells us that avian flu viruses are fully capable of evolving that ability unless we eradicate them. That's why it's a foolish idea to sit back and hope it'll just extinguish itself. That hasn't been happening.

A new study in Nature has found that raw milk from infected cows contains "astronomical numbers of viral particles" and it "can survive for hours." They're trying to spin this as good news that milking has probably been driving infections, not airborne spread, but we don't know how long that will hold. It's certainly no reason to sit back and relax.

As H5N1 gains ground, H5N2 has come out of left field to kill a bedridden patient in Mexico. It's a first, and a pretty sure sign of human transmission. Nobody knows quite what to make of it, except the corporate media has already been emphasizing that the patient had health problems. Well, everyone has health problems now. We'll talk about that in a minute...

Meanwhile, bird flu has shown up in mice in New Mexico. Scientists say it's alarming because mice live right next to humans. They can go almost anywhere, carrying disease with them, and they've sparked plagues and pandemics throughout history. Not to mention, cats like to eat them. From here, it's hard not to imagine bird flu winding up in squirrels, opossums, and raccoons. In short: our officials act like they're cornering bird flu.

No, it's cornering us.

A little truth comes out

As you know, we're constantly fighting an information war when it comes to public health. This week, NPR finally did an honest piece on Long Covid, discussing a study in Nature Communications that confirms that exercise is bad for you several weeks following a Covid infection. The study showed that even mild Covid damages your mitochondria, our "cellular power plants." Tissue samples also found "severe muscle damage, a disturbed immune response, and a buildup of microclots" in recovering patients. After Covid, even brief exercise throws your entire body into disarray. This condition lasts for weeks in the best-case scenarios. It varies for each person. So they're not making it up.

After Today ran an embarrassing piece of public health propaganda about the "mysterious" uptick in heart attacks among young people, Parade ran a much more accurate piece describing how "even mild cases of coronavirus infections may pose more severe risks than have been previously reported." They discuss a study showing that roughly 75 percent of patients from 2021 are showing "signs of cardiac injury after recovering from mild cases of Covid-19." Add this to the long list of studies about Covid heart damage.

There's another article making the rounds, an interview with the head of the Brainworks Foundry, Philip Alvelda, covering all of the ways Covid destroys our bodies. But the interview goes much further than that, with Alvelda confirming and validating our observations that our corporate media have colluded with government interests to deny and downplay everything from Long Covid to airborne spread, while secretly making every effort to avoid the virus. Among the many truth bombs here, Alveda describes a billionaire friend of his who spent two million dollars monitoring his vital organs and discovered that an asymptomatic infection aged his lungs 13 years.

One infection did that, and he barely knew.

If there's a collection of pieces on Covid to reread when you're feeling gaslit, this one would make my top five.

Thank you, truth tellers.

The techno-fascist dream unfolds

Microsoft, Dropbox, Slack, and Adobe have now all rewritten their terms of service agreements to give themselves full, unfettered access to all of our files. They list several reasons, including monitoring us for crimes and also harnessing our work for "machine learning," in other words training artificial intelligence, which has been unmasked as little more than plagiarism software. According to The Stack, content creators aren't happy. It's sending major ripples through social media. Creators are planning to dump the software in protest.

Nate Bear writes about the "real mask-off moment" for Silicon Valley tech billionaires meeting with Argentina's president, Javier Milei. The meetups have been going on for months, and they've included everyone from Peter Thiel and Mark Zuckerberg to Tim Cook and Sam Altman. Since taking power last year, Milei has driven the country into a deep depression. Food and fuel prices have gone up from 50 to 100 percent, and overall inflation has more than doubled. The government has essentially eliminated support for the disabled and unemployed. It's all done on purpose, to create a hobbled state ripe for manipulation by tech billionaires and their AI software.

If that weren't enough, all these tech billionaires have been developing new weapons systems and testing them out in Gaza. You could think of it as piloting new ways to do genocide, and they absolutely intend to use them to crush dissent anywhere around the world. As Bear explains it, "We're witnessing the solidifying of a trans-national techno-fascist movement right before our eyes." Not many people are paying attention.

Actually, scratch that.

A lot of us are paying attention. But we need even more.

As the transnational fascist agenda solidifies, we're watching the final consequences of the genocide in Gaza. According to The Guardian, 1 million refugees face death and starvation after fleeing their last refuge in Rafah. Two UN organizations now predict that these refugees will likely starve to death by the middle of July. Israel has been blocking aid for this very reason. Once they're gone, the U.S. will take credit for negotiating a ceasefire. They won't tell us that there's nobody left to negotiate it with.

We'll know.

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