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EV71 Outbreak In China Sparks Fears For Olympics

timothy posted more than 6 years ago | from the not-funny-at-all dept.

Medicine 199

OMNIpotusCOM writes "CNN is reporting an outbreak of Enterovirus 71 (or EV71), that has affected more than 3700 children and killed over 20, is creating concern for the visitors and athletes expected for the Beijing Olympics in August. The virus can cause 'poliolike paralysis,' according to the article."

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199 comments

eat my shorts slashdot !! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287320)

Eat my shorts slashdot !!

Conspiracy comments in... (2, Funny)

Infonaut (96956) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287338)

5... 4... 3...

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (4, Funny)

rob1980 (941751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287370)

This is clearly Tibet's doing! Curse you, Dalai Lama!

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (3, Funny)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287586)

You'd better be careful about that or you just might reincarnate as a Dali llama!

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (2, Funny)

pizzach (1011925) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287680)

Dali is a sheep, not a llama.

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287614)

I just think it's perfect timing to rain on China's parade. With their persecution of Tibetans and all the other crap they are doing in this world, something that will keep the world away from their self-aggrandizing Olympic spectacle will serve them right.

And it's poetic justice that the country most responsible for launching the world's illnesses due to their lack of consideration for any sort of cleanliness in their farm animal world, and the constant exposure of humans to animal excrement and vice versa, should have some new outbreak scare away the tourists.

Personally, I can't understand why anyone would want to visit such a dirty country. If it isn't human filth, it's animal filth, or industrial pollution.

China is a dirty backward country and the world should shun it.

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (1, Insightful)

OMNIpotusCOM (1230884) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287674)

The sad thing about that comment is that several months ago China allowed US beef [reuters.com] back into the country after some debacle early on. Less than a month after the allowed it they turned around and banned it again because of the levels of spinal material (or some such thing) in the beef. They were afraid of BSE (mad cow disease) and their levels that they wanted were way lower than what the US or even Canada accepted, so US beef is banned again (though you can get it fairly easily through other channels). While I have no example of what you're saying being true or false, it would be very ironic if it was true with the BSE story in mind.

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287778)

Yeah, that's purely food safety related, there isn't any sort of trade politics involved at all.

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (-1, Flamebait)

OMNIpotusCOM (1230884) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288194)

Off-topic? Sure. Trolling? Possibly. Overrated? Probably. But fucking flamebait? Are you retarded or have I made an enemy... out of a retard?

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288250)

Well sure, Chinese beef doesn't have all this nasty spinal crap. After all, Chinese beef is made entirely of plastic and styrofoam.

Perspective Comments (2, Insightful)

mrbluze (1034940) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287616)

Killed 20 children. How many children are there in China? or Peking?

How many car accidents were there, or murders. Who cares, basically.

Nerd/News/Importance Factor Zero.

Re:Perspective Comments (1)

OMNIpotusCOM (1230884) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288396)

You're absolutely right! I'm sure the virus won't spread any more, killing more children, or mutate in any way so as to make it resistant to treatment or affect adults. What a tool I was to think that may be possible. Here, hold my tinfoil hat, I'm not worthy to wear it any more.

Re:Conspiracy comments in... (1)

Vectronic (1221470) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287666)

3720 / 1,321,851,888 = 0.0000028% chance of getting EV71... thats probably less than the risk of the plane you (don't) get there by crashing... which, will kill you, your kids, friends, that girl you bumped into in the line-up...

According to the article ("Adults' well-developed immune systems usually can fend off the virus, but children are vulnerable to it, according to the CDC.") seems to only effect children...

Wouldn't consider it conspiracy worthy, but definitely propaganda ("icky don't go there - stay in the US where its 'safe") sort material...

Can be said better? (2, Insightful)

ghostbar38 (982287) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287822)

It's plain propaganda... Remember that there's people in China attacking CNN by the position they took about the Olympics and this is obviously a way to punch back from CNN... Not that I'm pro-China but is obvious the intentions of CNN.

That's okay... (2, Informative)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287364)

...it only affects Tibetans {ducks head}
     

Re:That's okay... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287392)

Those poor Tibetan ducks!

Re:That's okay... (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287404)

You quack me up

Re:That's okay... (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287474)

Actually it is the Chinese who like to eat Duck.

Re:That's okay... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287490)

no u

Re:That's okay... (2, Funny)

iggymanz (596061) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287718)

you know how to eat a duck, don't you. put a leg over each of your ears and start licking.

In Soviet Russia... (1, Offtopic)

InSovietRussiaTroll (1282606) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287386)

The party bugs you!

Should I be scared ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287394)

... of a whopping 0.5% chance of death?

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

MisterBlueSky (1213526) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287456)

Yes. You should. Especially you. The rest of us.. Nah. Not really.

Re:Should I be scared ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287484)

You shouldn't be worried that you might die, but you should be worried that people will die.

Re:Should I be scared ... (3, Insightful)

mrbluze (1034940) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287646)

You shouldn't be worried that you might die, but you should be worried that people will die.
I know! Thousands of people are dying around the world every day and nobody seems to be doing anything about it!. It's a travesty!

Re:Should I be scared ... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288388)

You idiot. Other people dying is their own fucking problem. I'm sure their family and friends feel terrible, but the other 5999999800 of us don't really give a shit.

Re:Should I be scared ... (4, Insightful)

piojo (995934) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287766)

Should I be scared... of a whopping 0.5% chance of death?
That's probably a hundred or a thousand times riskier than anything you've ever done.

Re:Should I be scared ... (2, Insightful)

Kopiok (898028) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287854)

Think he's ever been in a car?

Re:Should I be scared ... (4, Insightful)

piojo (995934) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288116)

Suppose that driving carries a 0.005% chance of death, and that a person drives an average of 2.5 times per day for 10 years. This person has a 45% chance of dying in a car accident during those years. Because this calculation is wrong by more than one order of magnitude, driving must actually carry less than 0.0005% of death. I rest my case.

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

blueg3 (192743) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288226)

Care to show your math? Looks like rather egregious misuse of units to me.

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

piojo (995934) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288386)

Care to show your math? Looks like rather egregious misuse of units to me.
Kopiok implied that I was incorrect, and that getting in a car is not 100 or 1000 times safer than a 0.5% chance of death. I supposed that driving is merely 100x safer: a 0.005% chance of death (probability = 0.00005). Suppose a person takes this chance 2.5 times per day, 365 days, for ten years:
0.00005 * 2.5 * 365 * 10 = 0.45625 = 45%

If this were true, most Americans wouldn't live to be 40, they would die in car accidents. I claim that this percentage is dramatically wrong, and that driving is much, much safer than I just supposed. Probably 50,000 times safer than the original "0.5% chance of dying".

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

maelfius (592856) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288412)

You are doing the math wrong. It's not additive. See Below (the posts inc. my comment). Man I wish my math wasn't rusty at the moment.

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

piojo (995934) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288420)

I'm sorry, I ought to eat my shoe... I really shouldn't try to do math in public...

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

maelfius (592856) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288430)

In retro spec, to prove my point, it would mean that EVERYBODY would die while driving after less than 10 years years. Even moving the decimal points out to 0.00005, you're stating that it takes a mere 20 years puts you at a 91% chance to die from driving. Moving out to 25 years shows that it takes ~18000 times driving to ensure death. I don't like that thought, I drive pretty damn often and have used up a fair share of my "allotment"

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288340)

This is flawwed reasoning.

If your risk of death is 0.005% for every time you drive, independent of all other times you drive, and you drive 9,131.25 times.

Then on average, you will have died 0.45 times.

But in fact the risk was always 0.005% for every time, and the risk was never 45%.

The assumption of independence is unreasonable, and there is no basis for assuming the risk is 0.005% chance of death _each_ time you drive.

This puts taking two 5-mile trips a day, via city driving at the same level as taking two 200-mile trips a day, including city driving, daily interstate and city driving during rush-hour, etc.

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

maelfius (592856) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288402)

Honestly, I think you're doing the math wrong. It's not simply 10*365*2.5*0.005, which does equate 45.625 (the 45% chance). Again, this is not simple adding the percentage up, we need to delve into the world of statistics.

It is more akin to 0.005% chance each time you drive, independent of the number of times you are driving. On average, you'd see 0.005% death (using your numbers) across many many many times driving, not simply hit the equivalent of 100% chance eventually.

I believe the math works out to be something more akin to working as a binomial probability distribution instead of simply additively. The percentage that a person will die while driving, over 9125 trials (number of times driving in 10 years, 2.5 times a day) will still be 0.005 (or approach 0.005).

This is because each trial is independent of each other, and cannot be equated to a lottery with a fixed number of entrants.

You can state that a single person's chance of dieing in a car is higher by driving more often because there are more events (trials) that take place. Each of these trials will net the same (or similar) results.

Obviously the equation falls apart as soon as the subject dies (as there will be no further trials).

I can't seem to drum up the math equations behind this at the moment. It has been a long day and I'm struggling to get back into thinking stats at the moment. But you get the idea, I'm sure.

Re:Should I be scared ... (2, Informative)

piojo (995934) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288464)

You're right, as was the poster above you. My math was dead wrong. But this isn't:

Driving 9125 times with a 0.005% chance of death each time, the probability of living is
0.99995^9125 = 0.63

So, you've got a 37% chance of dying. This is obviously still not the correct percentage. If we say that there is only a 0.0005% chance of dying, the calculation yields a 4.4% chance of death. Still too much. So, even though I suck at math, driving is more than 1000x safer than an activity which causes 0.5% death.

And you're right that I'm making gross simplifications about what types of driving I'm considering, but the original AC post said "I wonder if he's ever stepped into a car?"

Re:Should I be scared ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288492)

driving must actually carry less than 0.0005% of death.
If that's your odds of dying when you're in a car, you obviously drive too slow.

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

DimmO (1179765) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288252)

everyone has a 100% chance of death, so 0.5% meh.

Re:Should I be scared ... (1)

ixtapa (903468) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288262)

Should I be scared... of a whopping 0.5% chance of death?
One of your 200 friends/family members should be.

and china will make the pro Tibetan people get thi (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287410)

and china will make the pro Tibetan people get this.

28 days later (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287434)

i'd hate to see what happens 28 days later

Re:28 days later (2, Funny)

Chutulu (982382) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287560)

zombies run like Carl Lewis?

Bird Flu 2.0. (1)

Rod Beauvex (832040) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287452)

That's all this is. Wake me when it has killed off more than a tiny pin prick of some nation's population. Then we may worry.

Re:Bird Flu 2.0. (1)

Ian Alexander (997430) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287530)

Wouldn't it make more sense to deal with it while the death toll is only 20 people and not, say, 20% of China's population? 20 people is still a _lot_ of people dead.

Re:Bird Flu 2.0. (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287582)

But they're CHILDREN.

Anybody who found this comment excessively callous or crass, please see the number of pediatric influenza deaths in the United States on this page:

http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/index.htm [cdc.gov]

If you look at this chart:

http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/weeklyarchives2007-2008/IPD17.htm [cdc.gov]

you will see that it is not uncommon for their to be 15-20 child flu deaths in a two week period.

Re:Bird Flu 2.0. (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288290)

Thanks for those links. I have had many debates about the intelligence of the Chicken Pox vaccine, and people arguing for it are always trying to claim that it is super dangerous. CDC links are always good for backing up an argument.

Re:Bird Flu 2.0. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287934)

The issue is that when flus like this do mutate into a form that is deadly an transmits readily from human to human it will be far too late to stop it. Note, I said when, not if. Maybe not this outbreak, maybe not avian, maybe not the 20 next outbreaks, but eventually it will happen. It has happened before you know... Granted it was a while since last time, but there isn't any reason to suspect it cannot occur again, and even in the hypothetical situation that you can come up with a vaccine within a year or two, that doesn't help much given that flu outbreaks can hit the entire globe within a few weeks time.

You would also have to deal with the logistics of trying to deal with this occurring in a world population of several billion. Put it this way, just for a moment try to consider the consequences if HIV transmitted just slightly easier than it does. Consider what would happen if it could transmit through saliva or snot as an example.

You ought to be pretty darn certain something like that cannot happen before ridiculing concerns like these, because by the time we know for sure if an outbreak like this is indeed THAT BAD then it will be far too late.

When tourists return to their home contries... (2, Insightful)

Picass0 (147474) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287566)

... they could trigger a nice little pandemic.

Sweet dreams.

Re:When tourists return to their home contries... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287670)

Especially since people will be traveling all closed up in shiny tubes with wings for nice long flights. Perfect incubation and exposure environment.

Oh, and all of those connecting flights where people exposed on one plane can get on another and expose new people if it is really virulent.

And I'm sure all the Chinese food vendors will practice good hygiene and be washing their hands after they pee in the street, take a dump, blow their nose, clean a dead chicken, or whatever else they may do in between serving all the thousands of Olympic attendees that might visit their restaurant or vending cart.

This could be a lot of fun to watch. Or not.

Re:When tourists return to their home contries... (1)

calebt3 (1098475) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287816)

Yes, those wings always make long flights so much more pleasant. Landings too.

That's okay (4, Funny)

Fear the Clam (230933) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287572)

I'm sure the Chinese have some sort of perfectly safe medicine for this.

Re:That's okay (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287802)

... and it's either lead-coated, or lead-based, depending on the level of effectiveness required.

Consideration (5, Insightful)

Narpak (961733) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287588)

I guess a gathering of people from all over the world, who stay for a while then go back home, does provide a certain degree of danger when it comes to spreading any type of contagious disease.

Sounds good to me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288440)

Spreading misery around sucks in the short term, but it is good for populations in the long term, for the survivors, anyhow.

Sure would suck to have another new-world / old-world style clash of infectious vectors again.

Always China (1)

The Fanta Menace (607612) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287622)

Why do these illnesses always spring up in China first? Is there a severe lack of hygiene there, or something?

Re:Always China (1)

mrbluze (1034940) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287686)

Why do these illnesses always spring up in China first? Is there a severe lack of hygiene there, or something?

Have you ever heard of anyone eating at a Chinese restaurant and getting sick the next day? How many Chinese restaurants are there in China?

I rest my case.

Re:Always China (1)

rob1980 (941751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288000)

One could also say the same of Indian restaurants. Shitting lava the next day is no laughing matter!

Re:Always China (1)

MadnessASAP (1052274) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288138)

Pffft... Weakling I'm not worried until the person 4 stalls down from feel like he's sitting in a furnace.

Re:Always China (1)

icegreentea (974342) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287756)

Probably a combination of less than North American standard of hygiene, as well as sheer probability. Pick a random person on Earth to infect with a zombie virus. 1/6th chance you'll end up with a mainland Chinese zombie.

Re:Always China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288040)

Probably a combination of less than North American standard of hygiene, as well as sheer probability. Pick a random person on Earth to infect with a zombie virus. 1/6th chance you'll end up with a mainland Chinese zombie.
Natures Population Control

Need I say more!

Re:Always China (4, Informative)

v1 (525388) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287840)

virus crossover can occur when one species can be infected by viruses from more than one other species. Chickens can get avian type viruses. Humans can get human type viruses. Pigs, lucky them, can get some of both. And in china it's common to raise pigs and chickens together.

Perfect breeding ground for avian-to-human crossover viruses. And crossover evolution works a lot faster than regular evolution.

Re:Always China (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288036)

And crossover evolution works a lot faster than regular evolution.

I didn't know that. When I get home, I'm going to download CrossOver, and speed up my email.

Re:Always China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288126)

I see what you did there.

Heritic! (1)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288414)

And crossover evolution works a lot faster than regular evolution.

Everyone knows evolution is just a theory.

There must be some intelligent design at work to make the Chinese sick.

Re:Always China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287886)

Why do these illnesses always spring up in China first? Is there a severe lack of hygiene there, or something?
Natures Population Control

Need I say more.

Re:Always China (1)

Cheapy (809643) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288320)

Well, when you have a good chunk of the world's population, things will tend to happen to you first.

Here we go... (0)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287634)

Let's pander to maternal instincts and do whatever the liberal crowd want "in the name of the children!"

That's all this is. Next up: athletes refuse to compete as UN surgeons warn of the contagious nature of this bug and they don't want to leave them at home to watch their parents on TV from the other side of the planet... ...and that's my conspiracy theory.

What could go wrong (3, Interesting)

frovingslosh (582462) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287638)

So we'll soon have hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world traveling into a very densely populated area with a deadly virus which has no vaccine available (which hardy matters since the people would be unlikely to get vaccinated) and then all roughly at the same time traveling back across the globe. Add to this China's documented sanitary and even pollution problems. And a government with a history of hiding facts that might impact it financially or even just embarrass it. What could go wrong? Lets just pretend we didn't see this coming and act surprised when the pandemic hits.

Re:What could go wrong (1)

McNihil (612243) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287760)

Yup... it's time to go fishin'

I'll be back in... oh... how about 2032?

Gotta fix all those UNIX date issues... well at least that is my pension plan.

Re:What could go wrong (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287764)

So we'll soon have hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world traveling into a very densely populated area

This has been a problem in very rural China. Likely there will be few tourists or Olympic travelers even remotely exposed.

with a deadly virus which has no vaccine available

possibly true to very low values of "deadly" - it's fairly mild in adults.

Add to this China's documented sanitary [problems]

in rural villages, yes, this is a issue for those living there ...

and even pollution problems.

Nice non sequitur there. Although this is likely to be more of a health issue for persons traveling to the Olympics.

And a government with a history of hiding facts that might impact it financially or even just embarrass it.

You mean the US? Oh, I get it, you're talking about the Chinese government.

What could go wrong? Lets just pretend we didn't see this coming and act surprised when the pandemic hits.

FUD much? Take a deep breath, some Xanax and run back into your Lysol-coated tinfoil cage. You'll feel better.

Re:What could go wrong (3, Insightful)

hackingbear (988354) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288450)

After the SARS outbreaks in 2003, China has been much more open on reporting outbreaks of transmissive diseases. The suppression of SARS taught them that openness would not cause panic but solve it. We just hope they apply the lesson during the Olympics and to other areas of governing.

This could crash the Olympics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287644)

Remember SARS? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SARS [wikipedia.org]

We had SARS in Toronto in 2003. It was a major problem. My wife's business relies on foreign visitors. She had zero business that year. Canadians were unwelcome in other countries no matter how far they lived from Toronto.

The outbreak started in Asia in November 2002. My wife's business literally dropped to zero the following summer. It is too early to say what will happen with the Olympics but one possibility is that they could be completely cancelled. The Chinese will do anything to keep that from happening but they have to be very careful. If the rest of the world thinks China is covering something up, they will stay home.

Jack Thompson? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287712)

"The virus can cause "poliolike paralysis" according to the article."
 
Does the man know no bounds?

John Titor... (2, Interesting)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287716)

... was right after all!

Torino was the last (summer) olympics of human history.

But this is EV71's merit, not Tibet's merit!

Forget Olympics, ISCA is in China this year (1)

DrDitto (962751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287730)

The International Symposium of Computer Architecture is in China next month. This is more relevant to slashdotters than the Olympics.

Let's cancel the olympics (4, Interesting)

boyko.at.netqos (1024767) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287734)

Let's cancel the olympics.

No, seriously.

The Olympics exists for two purposes - to allow athletes to compete against others around the world for sport and to promote the idea of international competition taking the form of athletic events instead of warfare. To promote sport and to promote peace.

In the case of the former, per-sport international athletics associations can more than supplant the role.

In the case of the latter, no one can take a look at the bloody history of the 20th and early 21st centuries since the modern olympics were founded and believe that the Olympics has been terribly successful at promoting peace.

Instead, what ends up is that every two years (now that they're staggered) there's a massive orgy of corruption and controversy; and from time to time we have to put up with someone like China or Nazi Germany hosting - or sometimes the U.S. will boycott Moscow or Moscow will boycott the U.S...

I think it's time to get rid of the Olympics.

Re:Let's cancel the olympics (1)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287970)

/signed

It's become way too political, and it never was supposed to be. The main reason China was even chosen was politics, to show that they were 'coming out' into the world as a good citizen.

Re:Let's cancel the olympics (4, Interesting)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288042)

Hello 1936? The Olympics have always been political. The torch run-around was invented by Hitler after all. He invented the pagentry and ran the flame through countries he tried to take over later.

The Olympic torch run started out like a dog marking its territory.

Re:Let's cancel the olympics (3, Insightful)

Ninjaesque One (902204) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288054)

But every few Olympics, we have someone like South Korea hosting, and dictatorships get weakened. Is South Korea an extreme? Perhaps. Are they an isolated case, and will they be an isolated case in the future? I think not.

Re:Let's cancel the olympics (1)

Viceroy Potatohead (954845) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288182)

Just to be a pissant, and carry on your point in a much more extreme fashion (in a slightly Ambrose Bierce-y fashion):

Olympics: An intermittent event which is used by highly evolved nations pretending they honour the value of each other's citizen, which lasts for a couple of weeks separated by long periods of the subjugation, dehumanisation, and murder of those same citizens. Not to be confused with treaties or peace accords, which lack the same level of athleticism.

Re:Let's cancel the olympics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288192)

No, seriously.

Okay.

The Olympics exists for two purposes...

Wrong. The Olympics exists to generate a shitload of money. You say you're being serious and then you skip that? Sorry, but it's now deeply suspicious that you only want to include "facts" that back up your target argument.

In the case of the latter, no one can take a look at the bloody history of the 20th and early 21st centuries since the modern olympics were founded and believe that the Olympics has been terribly successful at promoting peace.

Promoting peace does NOT equal wiping out warfare. Actually promoting peace during periods of warfare is a fucking good idea. What's more, the Olympics may be rather good at it - consider what the same time period might have been like without it.

I'm not a fan of the Olympics, but during these brief festivals worldwide mainstream attention is aware of other countries as something other than regular news reports about wars and economic crisis. We've got nothing else like that.

I think it's time to get rid of the Olympics.

No one is forcing you to attend. If enough people want a worldwide sports festival, let 'em do it. Compared to the vast majority of what organized groups of people do, it's one of the few good things.

Re:Let's cancel the olympics (4, Insightful)

Mr. Picklesworth (931427) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288264)

No one is forcing you to attend.
Tax money going to ludicrously expensive, mostly worthless (except for the builder) buildings would say otherwise. Speed skating, for example, is a sport I have come to despise simply because of how much public money is going into a speed skating rink nobody will ever use again. Why the hell can't the speed skaters accept a challenge and skate on a rink that isn't gold plated for their luxury, hm?

Compared to the vast majority of what organized groups of people do, it's one of the few good things.
So first you accept it's all a scheme to earn money and promote government corruption, then you say that it's "one of the few good things". I think this worldwide fellowship thing can be promoted in a way that doesn't require athletic red carpets, and doesn't implicitly piss somebody off.

People who live in the host location never like the Olympics. With that simple fact, we can clearly see Something Is Wrong.

Re:Let's cancel the olympics (1)

donweel (304991) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288374)

I agree, if the Greek for-fathers of the Olympics saw the circus show their creation has become they would be horrified. It's not supposed to be about money and politics and kicking people out of their homes. http://www.wtopnews.com/?nid=393&sid=1304256 [wtopnews.com]

Don't overrate the olympics (1)

hackingbear (988354) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288406)

The Olympics exists for two purposes - to allow athletes to compete against others around the world for sport and to promote the idea of international competition taking the form of athletic events instead of warfare. To promote sport and to promote peace.

Wrong. The Olympics now exists for only one purpose -- a venue for the advertisers. Don't overrate it.

Disease Take Out (2, Funny)

Rhesusmonkey (1028378) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287776)

Whenever I get a disease from China, I'm hungry for another global pandemic like, thirty minutes later.

Journalist Makes Baseless Speculation, News At 11 (4, Informative)

rsmith-mac (639075) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287814)

From Wikipedia, Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease [wikipedia.org] the disease that results from this virus:

HFMD usually affects infants and children, and is quite common. It is highly contagious and is spread through direct contact with the mucus, saliva, or feces of an infected person. It typically occurs in small epidemics in nursery schools or kindergartens, usually during the summer and autumn months. The usual incubation period is 3-7 days. It is extremely uncommon in adults, however still a possibility. Most adults have strong enough immune systems to utterly defeat the virus...

And outbreaks in April alone:

1. Outbreak at Lebanon Valley College, Annville, PA, USA 2. Outbreak in South Portland, ME, USA Infection may have spread to an isolated section of Westbrook, ME, as well 3. Outbreak in Auckland, NZ. 4. Reported in Santa Clara County, California, USA 5. Late March - mid April: 2,600 cases reported in Singapore, no serious cases; 1000 cases reported in the week of 14 - 20 April.[1] 6. Late April: it is reported in the chinese website (sina.com.cn) that in Fuyan, Provinz Anhui, 19 dead. 7. Late April: San Francisco, CA nursery schools.

Now I'm not saying it's of absolutely no concern, but it's not as if there's some massive killer disease rampaging through China. The average adult has nothing to worry about, and even in children the effects are rather mild with appropriate medical care. This will burn itself out well before the Olympics, and in a year no one will remember it; use some common sense here. If you want to avoid the Olympics (or encourage others to do so) there are much better reasons than this.

Re:Journalist Makes Baseless Speculation, News At (4, Informative)

OMNIpotusCOM (1230884) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288472)

Try harder, read the whole sentence on CNN, and make sure that your source doesn't end up proving you wrong.

Enterovirus 71 (EV71) [wikipedia.org]

Enterovirus 71 (EV71)infection may be asymptomatic or may cause diarrhea, rashes, and hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD). However, EV71 also has the potential to cause severe neurological disease. To date, little is known about the molecular mechanisms of host response to EV71 infection. It is stated in [4] that: "EV71 infection led to increases in the level of mRNAs encoding chemokines, proteins involved in protein degradation, complement proteins, and proapoptotis proteins."

"Enterovirus 71 (EV71), one of the major causative agents for hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD), is sometimes associated with severe central nervous system diseases. In 1997, in Malaysia and Japan, and in 1998 in Taiwan, there were HFMD epidemics involving sudden deaths among young children, and EV71 was isolated from the HFMD patients, including the fatal cases. The nucleotide sequences of each EV71 isolate were determined and compared by phylogenetical analysis. EV71 strains from previously reported epidemics belonged to genotype A-1, while those from recent epidemics could be divided into two genotypes, A-2 and B

news for nerds... (0, Troll)

owlnation (858981) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287830)

um... this may seem like a curious question, but what -- exactly -- does this news story have to do with news for nerds, technology or whatever else that /. usually reports. Slow news day?

I know that if China-bashing was made an Olympic sport there would be lots of people from /. who'd like to the chance to compete. However... I'm still not seeing the relevance of this story. And I live under the Regime of Gordon Brownshirt in the People's Democratic Republic of the UK, so I'm not criticizing any nation on their lack of freedom. Stones, glass houses and all that.

You answered your own question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287884)

To wit:

I know that if China-bashing was made an Olympic sport there would be lots of people from /. who'd like to the chance to compete.
If there are a lot of people on Slashdot interested in such things then it's relevant. Duh.

Re:news for nerds... (5, Insightful)

justinlee37 (993373) | more than 6 years ago | (#23287890)

I'm sorry, I think "news for nerds, stuff that matters" covers medicine, politics, and social sciences. Try to stop clicking your ball-point pen and snapping your suspenders in unbridled rage whenever someone suggests that something besides computers is nerdy, you're making the rest of us look like idiots.

Re:news for nerds... (1)

Canosoup (1153521) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288004)

um... this may seem like a curious question, but what -- exactly -- does this news story have to do with news for nerds, technology or whatever else that /. usually reports. Slow news day?
Contrary to popular belief, global pandemics can even affect people that never leave their parent's basement.

I thank you for yAour time (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287950)

MAKES ME SICK JUST Going to continue, CorPorations Romeo and Juliet Keep unnecessary about half of the

Diarrhea AND Sores On the Hands... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23287990)

In milder cases, EV71 can cause coldlike symptoms, diarrhea and sores on the hands, feet and mouth, according to the journal Genetic Vaccines and Therapy.

How are they getting the poo on their hands, feet, and mouth? And what do the sores have to do with that?

Re:Diarrhea AND Sores On the Hands... (1)

Kneo24 (688412) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288016)

Maybe they thought fecal play would cure that... Hey! Maybe all of that disgusting porn is onto something!

Re:Diarrhea AND Sores On the Hands... (1)

DragonTHC (208439) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288088)

they wipe their ass. then they DON'T wash their hands. Then they touch their mouth. and they just walk around in the dirt with no shoes.

not washing hands or having the access to soap and fresh running water is how these things become an epidemic.

cholera, rhinovirus, and this enterovirus all spread that way.

Think of the children! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288072)

No, really. Think of the children.
"... concern for the visitors and athletes expected for the Beijing Olympics in August," as the summary says, is quite simply idiotic and narcissistic (in a national sense), seeing as adults are rarely harmed by this disease, and the outbreak is 1000km or so from Beijing. Any concern among the Chinese government for the health of the athletes is merely to avoid a PR disaster, not because they think a westerner dying from EV71 is likely. Meanwhile there are kids dying - not nearly as many as are dying from other treatable diseases, such as malaria and influenza, but those are only rarely reported on anyway, as they've been killing millions for decades, and there is nothing new about that. If we are going to express concern over this (perhaps because we fear it will grow to a much larger scale, rather than because of the (relatively few) overall fatalities caused up until this point), the Chinese children, who are at present the only people affected or likely to be affected, are the ones we should be concerned about.

Pleconaril (1)

Guppy (12314) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288074)

There actually is an antiviral which I expect would be active against this virus -- Pleconaril [wikipedia.org] . Unfortunately, it has not been approved, and I haven't heard of much work being done with it after Phase II trials finished.

That being said, this particular virus really isn't a danger to healthy adults, mostly to children and the immuno-suppressed.

Only 3700? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23288158)

that has affected more than 3700 children and killed over 20 ... In a country of about a billion, why does this look unimpressive to me?

Why China (1)

Jeff1946 (944062) | more than 6 years ago | (#23288160)

In that part of the world people, ducks and pigs live in close proximity which facilitates the exchange of viruses. They use human waste as fertilizer also. This is why the origin of most flu viruses begins there. I still remember the Hong Kong flu. Three days of feeling like death warmed over for me and most of my friends, took a month to only need a normal amount of sleep after getting over it.
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