Motivated by the current (2011) political climate in Wisconsin it seems reasonable to devote some time and effort to comment on issues and some of the hyperbole. So we in the public should do what we can to help focus "journalists" on delineating real facts versus spin. If you accept the spin you do not understand the policy implications.
A virus is more than a biological organism. It's a social organism. It detects fissures in societies and fault lines between communities. Historian Nancy Bristow shares the lessons about human behavior that we can take away from a century-old pandemic.
It's easy to stare out your window at the nearly empty streets, at the people wearing masks and leaving a six-foot berth for passersby, and to believe that this is a moment unlike any other. To assume that the fear, the haphazard responses to the pandemic, the radical adjustments people are making to their lives—that these are all unprecedented.
But like most extraordinary moments, this one has a long trail that leads to it. Just over a century ago, a new infectious disease overtook the globe. Its history has long been buried, subsumed beneath the story of World War I. Historian Nancy Bristow believes it's no mistake that Americans have focused on their victory in the war rather than on the devastation of the 1918 flu pandemic. ...
Update 8/9/2015 - The John Haidt videos/comments are a must for reflection as the "Presidential Debates Primaries" go on and on. His TED Talk ends on the"righteous mind" being "blind to the truth" - if we are aware can we overcome????