Third World in United States
"Tens of millions of people are hungry every night, including milllions of children who are suffering from Third World levels of disease and malnutrition. In New York City, one of the richest cities in the world, 40 per cent of children live below the poverty line, deprived of minimal conditions that offer some hope for escape from misery, destitution and violence."
Noam Chomsky, speaking about the United States
The flooding of US with disease vectors Americans have built no immunity to at the same time dismantling of public health and THE SATURATION OF US FOOD SUPPLY WITH HORMONES AND ANTIBIOTICS AND FOOD-BORN DISEASE is creating the perfect storm for a massive epidemic and everyone knows this. The first sign you are third world is when governments spend more money preparing for epidemics than for quality health and PUBLIC protections. Poverty, lack of public services, and in the US a government that deliberately allows food to be filled with antibiotics.....70% of Americans are at/near poverty and this number is growing fast. Some people will blame it on the influx of immigrants ----some of it is-----but the big picture is global corporations and global markets and neo-liberals/neo-cons pushing more and more people into poverty while eliminating basic public services and protections.
THIS IS WHAT THE FUTURE LOOKS LIKE WITH NEO-LIBERALISM. ALL OF MARYLAND'S POLS ARE NEO-LIBERALS AND MARYLAND IS BUILDING THESE TRANS PACIFIC TRADE PACT STRUCTURES LIKE THERE IS NO TOMORROW!
Antibiotic resistance could be 'next pandemic,' CDC says
Hoai-Tran Bui, USATODAY 5:18 p.m. EDT July 22, 2014(Photo: MANDEL NGAN, AFP/Getty Images)
Antibiotic resistance that turns ordinary disease-causing bacteria into illnesses that can't be controlled could bring about the "next pandemic," Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Tom Frieden warned at a National Press Club event Tuesday.
Frieden also addressed a series of laboratory safety lapses that brought CDC lab precautions to the public spotlight. But he devoted much of his attention Tuesday to other threats still facing public health.
Frieden brought attention to the growing trend of antibiotic-resistant bacteria — which can cause patients to "enter the hospital with one disease and leave with another," Frieden said. Antibiotics and similar drugs — referred to under the umbrella of anti-microbrial agents — have been commonly used to treat infections and diseases for the past 70 years. However, their common use has caused some bacteria to mutate and become resistant to these drugs, according to the CDC.
Frieden cited CRE -- a deadly family of bacteria that are nearly immune to antibiotics — as one of the most problematic infections because of their ability to "jump" between organisms and even species.
"Anti-microbial resistance has the potential to harm or kill anyone in the country, undermine modern medicine, to devastate our economy and to make our health care system less stable," Frieden said.
Antibiotic resistance costs $20 billion in health care spending a year, Frieden said. To combat the spread of resistant bacteria, Frieden said the CDC plans to isolate their existence in hospitals and shrink the numbers through tracking and stricter prevention methods.
"We always want to be part of the solution, but sometimes in health we're part of the problem," Frieden said.
Human error was a large part of the discussion surrounding CDC in recent weeks, with the series of troubling lab-safety lapses involving live samples of anthrax and a cross-contaminated strain of bird flu that caused CDC to shut down two of its research labs and vow to strengthen its lab-safety regulations.
Frieden also appeared before an oversight subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee on July 16 to testify on the lab-safety incidents. The committee is investigating the agency's safety protocols and whether any of the staff had been infected.
Frieden confirmed again at the press club that no staff or members of the public were exposed to any pathogens and the CDC is still implementing its changes to lab-safety precautions. The CDC is still investigating the bird flu breaches, he said.
Although the CDC missed the pattern of weaknesses in lab safety until now, Frieden said, the agency is working to remain transparent from now on.
"If you work with dangerous organisms day after day, month after month, year after year, sometimes there is a tendency to get lax," Frieden said. "What we have to ensure is that though human error may be inevitable, we should do everything in our power to make sure that … there will not be human harm."
Antibiotic Resistance and the Industrial Meat Industry: Foodie Underground
by Anna Brones on July 14, 2014 in Food EcoSalon
ColumnDealing with antibiotic resistance starts with thinking about what’s on your plate.
I was watching a PSA this week, all about antibiotics. It got me thinking: why aren’t we more pissed off about the problem of antibiotic resistance? Or moved to change our actions that are part of causing it?
Imagine you have an infection . . .
. . . that your child has an infection.
Nothin’ major a few days of antibiotics should clear it up, right?
Well-known antibiotics are proving to be less and less effective every year, and people across America are starting to wonder why.
More and more people are starting to talk about antibiotic resistance. But we shouldn’t just be talking about antibiotics, we should be talking about what we’re eating. Because it is in part our food habits that are fueling this problem.
Antibiotics, originally developed to protect human health, are now keeping the industrial livestock industry alive. About 80 percent of the antibacterial drugs sold in the United States go to livestock, and not even to sick livestock. They’re simply used to keep animals healthy in a system that’s inherently unhealthy for them, raised in overcrowded spaces that are often unhygienic. This non-therapeutic use of antibiotics helps keep the industry producing cheap meat. I’m talking about your bacon. Your hot dogs. Your burgers. Your bologna sandwich. Are people still eating those?
As the industrial meat industry has grown, so has the use of antibiotics. Between 1985 and 2001, the use of antibiotics in feed for industrial livestock production rose by 50 percent. The U.S. isn’t alone. In Britain about half of antibiotics go to livestock.
According to the Union of Concerned Scientists:
While the links between animal agriculture and human disease are complicated and in need of additional study, evidence is strong enough for scientists and public health organizations to call for reduced use of antibiotics in agriculture. The CDC has concluded that, in the United States, antimicrobial use in food animals is the dominant source of antibiotic resistance among foodborne pathogens.
Drug resistant bacteria that develops on farms, easily reaches the general public, making these bacteria a national health issue. We’re not talking about just a few cases here and there of not being able to deal with certain infections. We’re talking full-blown health crisis. In fact, according to the NRDC, drug-resistant infections are estimated to cost Americans up to $26 billion per year in additional healthcare costs. That $5.99 steak on sale might seem like a good deal now, but the ramifications and costs of its productions are much higher.
“A post-antibiotic era – in which common infections and minor injuries can kill – far from being an apocalyptic fantasy, is instead a very real possibility for the 21st Century,” wrote the authors of a recent World Health Organization report on antimicrobial resistance.
Beyond leaving us incapable of dealing with infections, there are also studies on the link between obesity and the use of antibiotics. The use of antibiotics for livestock is making us fatter and keeping us from treating infections. Choosing to eat industrially produced meat isn’t just a matter of your own health, it’s a matter of global health.
Wherever you fall on the eat meat vs. don’t eat meat argument, I think we can all agree that this is a flawed system. Using antibiotics in farming is dangerous. We are keeping an unsustainable alive, while at the same time putting our own health at risk.
We need a different system, and that starts with thinking about what’s on the plate in front of us.
In Maryland our Chesapeake Bay is becoming infested with infective species coming from the International Harbor at Baltimore. From stink bug infestation to skin infections, from Tuberculosis to parasitic worms. No worry----it is only hitting the poor. Well, as with all epidemics everyone will become impacted and with reduced resistance and little access to health care fatalities will soar. In Maryland it is Johns Hopkins and O'Malley pushing the Port of Baltimore as an International Harbor AND IT DOES NOTHING FOR THE CITIZENS OF THE CITY OR STATE. IT IS PURELY ABOUT THE RICH CONTROLLING MARKETS. Johns Hopkins is also the policy-maker behind the most private and profit-driven state health system that places most people in preventative care.
When a nation loses its public health system and people start having to face disease and illness everywhere they turn...you have the making of chaos, crime, and violence. THAT IS WHERE NEO-LIBERALS AND NEO-CONS ARE TAKING THE US.
As we know we have an asthma epidemic in the US and it is affecting all income levels......you see below the connection.
Researchers Trying To Track Third World Infections In U.S.
May 14, 2010 By JOSEPH BROWNSTEIN
ABC News Medical Unit Researchers and legislators are in the midst of and effort determine just how far some obscure but deadly third world diseases have penetrated into the United States. CDC Researchers and legislators are trying to determine just how far some obscure but deadly third world diseases have penetrated into the United States.
Studies in recent years have shown that diseases typically confined to less-developed countries have entered the United States, coming over the border or arising in places where conditions abruptly changed, like post-Katrina Louisiana. But poverty and a lack of access to healthcare have made it hard to determine how severe the problem might be.
"The poverty in the U.S. tends to concentrate in certain pockets," said Dr. Peter Hotez, chair of the department of microbiology, immunology and tropical medicine at George Washington University Medical Center. He cited the Mississippi delta, post-Katrina Louisiana, the border region with Mexico and U.S. inner cities: "Those particular areas, for all practical purposes, resemble a developing country."
Some of the diseases that are part of this surveillance effort include Chagas disease, caused by ticks that can cause heart enlargement and ultimately death; trichomoniasis, a sexually transmitted disease that can cause inflammation and difficulty urinating; and toxocariasis, which is spread via infected dog feces in soil and can cause vision and breathing problems and developmental delays.
Some of these diseases, which Hotez calls the neglected infections of poverty, can spread among people through sexual transmission or via blood. However, they stay mostly under the radar because, at least for now, more affluent Americans are unlikely to contract these diseases.
"These diseases are not occurring among people in the suburbs," said Hotez.
Substandard housing and dirty soil, like that found in sandboxes in urban playgrounds, are the preferred residences of the critters that can cause these infections.
Many of the diseases may go misdiagnosed when infected people do make it to a doctor.
A recent effort to make a survey of the prevalence of these diseases was sponsored in the House version of the health care reform bill by Reps. Gene Green (D-Texas) and Hank Johnson (D-Georgia). The amendment was dropped during reconciliation to pass the Senate version of the bill.
Scott Goldstein, legislative director for Johnson's office, said that efforts would continue to get a survey of the infectious diseases covered in the original amendment as a stand-alone bill.
"Once we [complete the survey] we can have a better idea whether new guidelines need to be issued," he said. "The researchers we've talked to have said it's quite possible these things have been out there in the United States."
Johnson's district includes parts of Atlanta, where many may be infected.
"We have some significant areas where people are very poor in our district, but that's not unique to our district," Goldstein said.
"Once people learn about it, I don't think it will be tough to get people to sign on," he said.
Although the Congressional Budget Office did not score the amendment as part of the original bill, the study would likely cost a few million dollars.
A Possible Asthma Link? Because of the lack of studies of the neglected infections of poverty, it is unclear what the next steps would include.
After rising concerns about Chagas disease, the American Red Cross began screening blood donations for it in 2006.
But it is less clear what might be done about perhaps the most widespread of these infections, toxocariasis.
Antibiotic resistance is soaring in part by overuse by physicians in treating common ailments but all of the resistance is super-sized because of hormone and antibiotic use in the meat industry. This is all done for profit. It is meat exports that placed this use of chemicals in animals on overdrive. If we simply produced meat for the citizens of a state-----we could keep animals in a humane environment and get rid of disease without chemical use. THIS IS THE PROBLEM AND SOLUTION. Neo-liberals took a first world food industry in America and made it third world. Now, Clinton and Obama are travelling the world insisting that nations signing on to the TPP accept hormone and antibiotics in meat AND practice this procedure in these nations. Neo-liberals and neo-cons are knowingly expanding the use of antibiotics and hormones even as we know it is bringing a pandemic caused by antibiotic resistance.
Look below to see how much health care costs will soar when this happens.....increased hospital stays, treatments, medications.,.....JUST AS 80% OF AMERICANS ARE BEING PUSHED TO PREVENTATIVE CARE ONLY WITH THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT. How much will your family be able to pay with a 30-40% co-pay? You will be bankrupt in no time.
Everyone knows this is what will happen. Your national labor and justice leaders know this is where neo-liberals and neo-cons are taking the country so when they back neo-liberals, they are handing the membership to third world status. ALL OF MARYLAND POLS ARE WORKING TOWARDS THIS GOAL----WHY ARE YOU RE-ELECTING THEM EACH ELECTION TO DO JUST THAT?
CREATING THE CONDITIONS FOR A HEALTH PANDEMIC AT THE SAME TIME LIMITING PEOPLE'S ACCESS TO MOST OF THE HEALTH CARE NEEDED IS POPULATION CONTROL.
1. How is Antibiotic Resistance Defined?
Antibiotic resistance is the ability of bacteria to withstand the antimicrobial power of antibiotics. Simply put, antibiotics that used to cure an infection no longer work.
Antibiotic resistance is a global threat, and The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) considers antibiotic resistance one of their top health concerns. Infections with drug-resistant bacteria may lead to longer hospital stays, more costly care, and an increased risk of death.
2. What are Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria?
Antibiotic resistant bacteria cannot be fully inhibited or killed by an antibiotic. The drug may have been able to cure an infection before the resistance occurred, but now is not fully effective.
Bacteria become resistant to antibiotics by adapting their structure or function in some way that prevents them from being killed by the antibiotic. Examples of bacteria that have become antibiotic resistant include those that cause skin infections, meningitis, sexually transmitted diseases and lung infections such as pneumonia.
3. Why is Antibiotic Resistance So Important?
Antibiotic resistance can lead to a life-threatening bacterial infection. One reason bacteria are becoming resistant is because antibiotics are sometimes inappropriately used for an illness caused by a virus. An antibiotic cannot cure a viral infection.
Examples of illnesses that are caused by a virus include most sore throats, coughs, colds and runny noses, sinusitis, bronchitis, and the flu. Talk to your doctor about your illness, discuss whether it is a bacterial or viral illness, and ask if you really need an antibiotic.
4. Why Can't Viral Infections Be Treated With Antibiotics?
Most viral illnesses do not need special medication and are “self-limiting”, meaning the patient’s own immune system can fight off the virus. A patient with a viral illness should rest, drink plenty of fluids and treat symptoms with over-the-counter medications as needed.
Sometimes, in extended viral illnesses, bacteria may invade and lead to a “secondary infection." If a fever occurs, or the illness worsens over several days, a health care provider should be contacted.
5. How Do Bacteria Become Resistant to Antibiotics?
The mechanism of bacterial resistance may happen in several ways: bacteria can neutralize the antibiotic before it has an effect, bacteria may be able to pump the antibiotic out, bacteria could change the site (receptor) where the antibiotic normally works, or bacteria can mutate and transfer genetic material to other bacteria.
Common antibiotic resistant bacteria include Staphylococcus aureus (serious skin infections) and Mycobacterium tuberculosis (tuberculosis of the lungs).
Take time to keep up with Trans Pacific Trade Pact TPP because all of what we see with neo-liberalism and third world conditions is placed on steroids with TPP. It has a goal of creating the same conditions in the US for corporations as they had in China. This is what drives our race to the bottom and Bill and Hillary Clinton are the face of this as are Bush/Cheney. The Affordable Care Act was designed to meet the terms of TPP----deregulation and ending of public subsidies---making markets of health care, education, and food/water.
Luckily TPP is illegal and a COUP against the US Constitution and can simply be made null and void.
Control over food is at stake with Trans-Pacific Partnership
By Mark Dunlea
June 26, 2013
The agriculture section of the Ecology Branch of the Green Shadow Cabinet opposes the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) as the latest Free Trade Agreement (FTA) assault against food sovereignty, where the profits of multinational companies are placed ahead of the food security needs of individual nations. The TPP seeks to revive the stalled expansion of the World Trade Organization.
The TPP is a trade agreement under secret negotiation by by Australia, Brunei, Chile, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam. Japan will join at the next meeting).
Access to food is a basic human right. Instead, TPP expands the notion that food is just another commodity subject to economic speculation and exploitation solely to increase the profits of multinational corporations. TPP promotes export-oriented food production, its passage will increase global hunger and malnutrition, alienate millions from their productive assets and resources; land, water, fish, seeds, technology and generations of cultural knowledge.
In order to guarantee the independence and food sovereignty of all of the world's peoples, it is essential that food is produced though diversified, community based production systems. Food sovereignty is the right of peoples to control their own food and agriculture; to protect and regulate domestic agricultural production and trade in order to achieve sustainable development objectives; to determine the extent to which they want to be self reliant; to restrict the dumping of agricultural products in their markets, and; to guarantee local fisheries-based communities the right to manage their aquatic resources.
A TPP trade agreement will impact all levels of the food system, from the growers, to the markets distributing the food; from the quality of the food available to consumers, to the ability of governments to protect and be held accountable to their people. The TPP is designed to help agribusiness get bigger and more powerful in their drive to consolidate ownership of the food system -- from seed to shelf. The TPP will speed up the global race to the bottom in terms of farm prices, workers' wages, environmental standards and human rights.
Farmers have been excluded from the negotiations over TPP. Access to meetings and materials are limited to officials and corporate stakeholders. U.S agricultural representatives are predominantly Big-Ag supporters, including Monsanto, Dupont, Syngenta, and Walmart. Free Trade cannot be Fair trade when the people are excluded.
TPP will empower agribusiness to sue countries for trying to limit the kinds of food they import. Domestic food safety standards can also be challenged / weakened as barriers to trade. The TPP will increase risks to food safety in the U.S, as similar "equivalence rules" in prior agreements have forced the U.S. to, for example, permit the import of sub-standard meat product.
Public Citizen, a non-governmental organization, points out that there are over $13 billion in pending corporate "investor-state" trade pact attacks on domestic environmental, public health and transportation policy. Mere threats of such cases have repeatedly resulted in countries dropping important public interest protections, exposing their populations to harm that could have been avoided. The use of international tribunals to overturn regulations has increased dramatically in the past decade. Tobacco firms are using the regime to challenge tobacco control policies.
Yet while TPP countries have agreed to provide foreign investors an array of extraordinary new privileges, the TPP countries have not required investors to agreed to health, labor or environmental obligations.
Like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which displaced millions of Mexican corn farmers, the TPP is expected to flood markets with cheap products, increasing pressures on small farmers to grow cash crops, rather than traditional food crops. And, like NAFTA, TPP will force small farmers off the land forcing them to migrate to cities, and cross borders hoping to survive. FTAs have undercut the right of local producers to receive a fair, locally determined price for their products by forcing farmers to compete in the global food market.
As a result of FTAs, agricultural production has increased the use of fossil fuels for production and transportation, thereby increasing pollution; increased the use of chemical inputs; expanded the health and environmental risks associated with genetically modified material; and reduced biodiversity by favoring mono-cropping.
Many environmental, farm and fair trade groups are concerned about the negative impact the TPP could have on where and how dairy products are produced and processed. The U.S. dairy industry generates $140 billion in economic activity and employs an estimated 900,000 workers, while providing nourishment to millions more. The nation cannot afford to compete with dairy imports produced under unfair conditions.
Rather than adopt the TPP, governments must uphold the rights of all peoples to food sovereignty and security, and adopt and implement policies that promote sustainable, family-based production rather than industry- led, high- input export oriented production.
Support agroecological trade policies that:
- Ensure adequate remunerative prices for all farmers and fishers;
- Exercise the rights to protect domestic markets from imports at low prices;
- Abolish all direct and indirect export supports;
- End domestic production subsidies that promote unsustainable agriculture, inequitable land tenure patterns and destructive fishing practices;
- Protect fish resources from both land -based and sea-based threats, such as pollution from dumping, coastal and off-shore mining, degradation of river mouths and estuaries and harmful industrial aquaculture practices that use antibiotics and hormones;
- Establish national and local mechanisms for quality control of all food products so that they comply with high environmental, social and health quality standards;
- Recognize and enforce communities' legal and customary rights to make decisions concerning their local, traditional resources;
- Ensure equitable access to land, seeds, water, credit and other productive resources;
- Prohibit all forms of patenting of life or any of its components, and the appropriation of knowledge associated with food and agriculture through intellectual property rights regimes and
- Protect farmers', indigenous peoples' and local community rights over plant genetic resources and associated knowledge -- including farmers' rights to exchange and save seeds.
- Ban the production of, and trade in genetically modified (GM) seeds, foods, animal feeds and related products;
- Encourage and promote traditional agriculture and organic farming, based on indigenous knowledge and sustainable agriculture practices.
Here in Maryland TPP can already be seen.....Ehrlich and O'Malley are the latest in the last few decades to make a living as a politician working towards TPP. All people need to do is engage-----all of these policies are illegal as the US Constitution guarantees our rights as citizens to legislate and to elect people to represent us in doing this. We have Equal Protection and a Bill of Rights all of which cannot be brushed aside in these trade deals. It will be easy peasy to reverse when we elect Democrat
Prevent the TPP Pandemic
By Maureen Cruise, RN, Director, Healthcare for All -LA Chapter
“If the American people knew what was in it, it could never be passed.” Ron Kirk, the former US Trade Representative who negotiated much of “it”…the Trans Pacific Partnership.
TPP has been dubbed NAFTA on Speed. What’s the TPP? Few people can answer that question without researching because negotiations are secret except for the 600 corporations and trade representatives from the US and 12 countries primarily in the Pacific Rim comprising 40% of the world’s economy. TPP is labeled a “free trade” agreement with only 5 of 29 chapters actually dealing with trade. The few leaked documents reveal that the TPP will subjugate national governments and re-regulate economies and societies to establish global corporate hegemony. “… It is a rigged trade agreement that would represent a global corporate coup if passed. The TPP is bad for workers, consumers, the environment and even national sovereignty.” Lauren Steiner Credo Action organizer. www.act.credoaction.com
On December 25th, PNHP members Antoinette Jacquard RN, Georgia Brewer, the All Care Alliance State Coordinator and I joined about 250 activists to rally President Obama, Senator Harry Reid and Congressperson Nancy Pelosi who were in Beverly Hills on a fundraising visit. Obama is lobbying congress for fast track capability to approve the TPP Agreement without any congressional consideration, bypassing discussion, debate and a vote by congress.
There are many reasons for Healthcare justice advocates to oppose the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). Public Citizen, PNHP’s Margaret Flowers MD and Attorney Kevin Zeese have written extensively about the TPP and its potentially devastating effect on healthcare globally. The late PNHP researcher Nicholas Skala’s brilliant work on the WTO, GATS and NAFTA provides a good context for understanding these so called “trade” agreements wide ranging impact on Healthcare delivery, access and cost. Summarized here are points gleaned from these sources.
*1. The TPP will re-regulate the pharmaceutical and medical device industry patent protections, eroding the affordability of life saving medicines. Generic drugs will become less available. EVERGREENING drug patents will extend patents ensuring a never ending upward cost spiral sacrificing affordability for the many to the profit making on medicines exorbitantly priced for the few. Surgical Techniques, laboratory tests and medical treatments can be patented restricting availability to people in need.
*2. The TPP will empower the for profit institutions and damage our ability to control costs by directing our precious healthcare dollars to industry profit centers and removing much needed funding for actual medical treatment. Provisions enable corporate access to government subsidies, tax breaks, access to capital currently reserved for non profits that provide basic goods and services to benefit our populace at affordable rates. TPP rules demand that healthcare be treated as a strictly commercial interest. Patients as commodities subject to market based decision making. The gutting of Labor laws could remove patient and workplace safety protections making hospitals and clinics hazardous. Decimating staffing ratios whether in the lab, on the hospital floor or in the surgical suite would surely lead to an increase in medial error, unnecessarily endangering patients. Reducing time allowed for patient visits leaves both provider and patient at risk of negligence.
*3. The TPP may challenge the advancement of publicly funded healthcare systems, effectively blocking the possibility of an equitable and just single payer healthcare system. Medicare, Medicaid, Tricare and Veterans Health Services are at risk of privatization. Bulk purchasing can be prohibited. Public Health entity reimburse-ments could be legally challenged if they undercut the more expensive reimbursement to commercial interests. Public Health Education and Prevention Programs may be terminated if they are viewed as conflicting with corporate profits. Public Insurance, like a single payer or a public option system, would be disallowed because it would challenge the profit making and power of the private insurance companies.
Our citizens are already self rationing unaffordable medications and foregoing costly medical treatment essential to their health and well being because prices are too high, the waits are too long, access is too limited. Record industry profits and obscene CEO salaries rise exponentially year after year fueled by neglecting our population’s medical need. This immoral and unsustainable system, designed to service greed not need, promotes wealthcare at the expense of healthcare. The TPP is a malignancy advancing the twin diseases of our time: The pathology of poverty and the pathology of power. We cannot allow this lethal pathogen to infect our society, our economy, our communities.
We have no antidote for this impending catastrophic pandemic. We must prevent its very existence. Expose the TPP. Excise the TPP. Flush the TPP.