Prepared Citizens

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

  • Previous Posts

  • Michael Osterholm Quotes:

    “What we need to be doing now is the basic planning of how we get our communities through 12 to 18 months of a pandemic.”

    “Ninety-five out of 100 will live. But with the nation in crisis, will we have food and water? Are we going to have police and security? Will people come to work at all?”

    “It's the perfect setup. Then you put air travel in and it could be around the world overnight.”

    “We can predict now 12 to 18 months of stress of watching loved ones die, of wondering if you are going to have food on the table the next day. Those are all things that are going to mean that we are going to have to plan -- unlike any other crisis that we have had in literally the last 80-some years in this country.”

  • US Health and Human Services

    Secretary Michael Leavitt

    "If there is one message on pandemic preparedness that I could leave today that you would remember, it would be this:

    Any community that fails to prepare with the expectation that the federal government or for that matter the state government will be able to step forward and come to their rescue at the final hour will be tragically wrong,

    not because government will lack a will, not because we lack a collective wallet, but because there is no way that you can respond to every hometown in America at the same time."
  • Joseph C. Napoli, MD of Resiliency LLC

    "I think a new meaning is evolving for resiliency and resilience.

    In some contexts the words are being used to mean the strength to resist being impacted by an adverse event rather than either the “capacity to rebound” or “act of rebounding” from adversity.

    Therefore, resiliency and resilience appear to be assuming the meaning of fortitude, that is, “the strength or firmness of mind that enables a person to encounter danger with coolness and courage or to bear pain or adversity without despondency” as defined in the Webster’s Third New International Dictionary.

    If so, we are coming full circle with science accepting a religious moral virtue – fortitude – as written in the Bible’s Book of Wisdom"




  • Faith Based Resources

    John Piper
    Jonathan Edwards
    Reformation
    Pink-Saving Faith
    Pink-Christian Ethics

    "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves"
    (2 Corinthians 13:5).

    Why Faith Groups Must Care

    When the Darkness Will Not Lift by John Piper

    Stand

    Be Not Afraid
    Overcoming the fear of Death
    by Johann Christoph Arnold







    While I am not a professional journalist, I do embrace the code of ethics put forth by the Society of Professional Journalists and the statement of purpose by the Association of Health Care Journalists and above all else I strive to "do no harm".


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  • Definitions

    from Wikipedia



    Pandemic Influenza


    An influenza pandemic is an epidemic of the influenza virus that spreads on a worldwide scale and infects a large proportion of the human population.

    In contrast to the regular seasonal epidemics of influenza, these pandemics occur irregularly, with the 1918 Spanish flu the most serious pandemic in recent history.

    Pandemics can cause high levels of mortality, with the Spanish influenza being responsible for the deaths of over 50 million people.

    There have been about 3 influenza pandemics in each century for the last 300 years. The most recent ones were the Asian Flu in 1957 and the Hong Kong Flu in 1968.



    Seasonal Influenza


    Flu season is the portion of the year in which there is a regular outbreak in flu cases.

    It occurs during the cold half of the year in each hemisphere.

    Flu activity can sometimes be predicted and even tracked geographically. While the beginning of major flu activity in each season varies by location, in any specific location these minor epidemics usually take about 3 weeks to peak and another 3 weeks to significantly diminish.

    Individual cases of the flu however, usually only last a few days. In some countries such as Japan and China, infected persons sometimes wear a surgical mask out of respect for others.



    Avian (Bird) Flu
    Avian influenza,

    sometimes Avian flu, and commonly Bird flu refers to "influenza caused by viruses adapted to birds."


    "Bird flu" is a phrase similar to "Swine flu", "Dog flu", "Horse flu", or "Human flu" in that it refers to an illness caused by any of many different strains of influenza viruses that have adapted to a specific host.

    All known viruses that cause influenza in birds belong to the species: Influenza A virus.

    All subtypes (but not all strains of all subtypes) of Influenza A virus are adapted to birds, which is why for many purposes avian flu virus is the Influenza A virus (note that the "A" does not stand for "avian").
    Adaptation is non-exclusive.

    Being adapted towards a particular species does not preclude adaptations, or partial adaptations, towards infecting different species.

    In this way strains of influenza viruses are adapted to multiple species, though may be preferential towards a particular host.

    For example, viruses responsible for influenza pandemics are adapted to both humans and birds.

    Recent influenza research into the genes of the Spanish Flu virus shows it to have genes adapted to both birds and humans; with more of its genes from birds than less deadly later pandemic strains.

    H5N1 Strain


    Influenza A virus subtype H5N1, also known as A(H5N1) or simply H5N1, is a subtype of the Influenza A virus which can cause illness in humans and many other animal species.

    A bird-adapted strain of H5N1, called HPAI A(H5N1) for "highly pathogenic avian influenza virus of type A of subtype H5N1", is the causative agent of H5N1 flu, commonly known as "avian influenza" or "bird flu".

    It is enzootic in many bird populations, especially in Southeast Asia. One strain of HPAI A(H5N1) is spreading globally after first appearing in Asia.

    It is epizootic (an epidemic in nonhumans) and panzootic (affecting animals of many species, especially over a wide area), killing tens of millions of birds and spurring the culling of hundreds of millions of others to stem its spread.

    Most references to "bird flu" and H5N1 in the popular media refer to this strain.



    As of the July 25, 2008 FAO Avian Influenza Disease Emergency Situation Update, H5N1 pathogenicity is continuing to gradually rise in wild birds in endemic areas but the avian influenza disease situation in farmed birds is being held in check by vaccination.

    Eleven outbreaks of H5N1 were reported worldwide in June 2008 in five countries (China, Egypt, Indonesia, Pakistan and Vietnam) compared to 65 outbreaks in June 2006 and 55 in June 2007.

    The "global HPAI situation can be said to have improved markedly in the first half of 2008 [but] cases of HPAI are still underestimated and underreported in many countries because of limitations in country disease surveillance systems".





    Pandemic Severity Index


    The Pandemic Severity Index (PSI) is a proposed classification scale for reporting the severity of influenza pandemics in the United States.

    The PSI was accompanied by a set of guidelines intended to help communicate appropriate actions for communities to follow in potential pandemic situations. [1]

    Released by the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on February 1, 2007, the PSI was designed to resemble the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale





    From the Massachusetts Health and Human Services



    Isolation


    refers to separating people who are ill from other people to prevent the spread of a communicable disease.



    Quarantine


    refers to separating and restricting the movement of people who have been exposed to a communicable disease and are not yet ill.
  • Additional Information

    Creative Commons License
    Prepared Citizens by Catherine "Jackie" Mitchell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.
    Based on a work at http://www.preparedcitizens.org.




    The posts on this site are subject to change. Mostly due to errors in spelling or grammar. I never said I am a professional journalist. I have new appreciation for the job that they do. Also, not all comments made by others will make it onto this site. Comments that advertise a commercial product do not get posted most of the time.


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  • standingfirm

After a week of world financial meltdown

Posted by preparedcitizens on October 10, 2008

After a week of watching world financial meltdown I sought the word of God for understanding.

I am not financially savvy. When I watch the news or read the stories, it is almost as though people are speaking a foreign language. My life is lived almost totally unfocused on money and the world of finance. No kidding. It isn’t that I feel dirty carrying or using the stuff I just have never really sought “fortune” or fame for that matter.

As long as we were not hungry, as long as my children were fed while they were growing up under our care, as long as my bills were/are paid on time, for the most part I am ready to ignore the stuff. I have simple wants and needs. I am satisfied to buy and wear used clothing or cheap t-shirts and jeans that are 20 years old.

When there is a small amount of extra cash to spend on the things that we neglect for years we typically spend the money on those things. New hearing aids, paying off some doctor bills, paying for a new roof or other major repair is about all we do. Investments, oh my, what are they?

Through my husbands employer there is a retirement account which now has about one-fifth less in it after this weeks activity and that represents our entire life’s savings. No complaint, it is so much more than so many. But right now even that isn’t looking like it will be there at retirement.

It isn’t that we wouldn’t like to be able to live a luxurious lifestyle, it is just that we are so busy living the life that we have that we don’t spend much time thinking about such things. I did think about the comforts of a hot tub this week because of my soreness but then thinking about the upkeep of it, the energy usage….a simple pleasure seemed suddenly so much trouble.

Even the thought of bailing out Wall Street really doesn’t faze us except for the hardship that it means for all while the heads of certain unnamed corporations who we are bailing out are living it up at resorts. That was a slap in the face I must admit. We have seen that type of injustice before and we live a type of it now, another post for another day, perhaps. It is just that this all reminded me of another time in my life when words said was not deeds done and greed and suspicion ruled the day. I had forgiven the parties involved even though my forgiveness was not sought, yet this time and to this blatant extent the sins of greed and sloth from a few has just hit home in my heart pretty hard.

There are times when those sins of a few impact so many people so hard and so thoroughly that it is awfully hard not to stand up and speak up. Not because of the love of money but because of the disregard for so many people already or soon to be struggling. If not for my own and my families benefit, but for the benefit of those who cannot speak up either because they are not aware of the problem or because they do not have the megaphone loud enough to reach into any hallowed halls or chambers of congress. Not that I do to but I do realize that my tiny voice carries a little bit further than the whisper of some at the moment. And it is for them that I feel compelled to speak. Not out of pride or boastfulness that I can speak but out of a sense of deep responsibility for people like us, common every day folk who are living, breathing and struggling to live our lives without relying on the kindness and generosity of others. We are independent by choice and by Gods grace, which is sufficient for our every day needs.

But then I picture those corporate executives laughing and living it up at a resort while my fellow countrymen are being asked to sacrifice to bail out their companies, to take upon us the yoke of their responsibility while they laugh their way to the bank.

I am not opposed to a bail out because I understand that in the long run it is this action that will benefit the majority, if proper safeguards and thought are carefully applied. Once again, we are being asked to trust leaders who have let us down. I am not quick to point the finger of blame on leaders who failed to lead because I know that there are times when even the most blatant errors are not done with intention to hurt but because the information on which decisions at the time were made was just not there or not there in a sufficient way to make the right decision. I have to be knocked in the head with blatant misdeeds, obvious obfuscation, and clear intent to do more harm than good before I will jump on the fall guy.

I afford our President and many other leaders latitude and I will afford Barney Frank, Chris Dodd and Barak Obama the same despite the allegations of impropriety swirling around them. Sometimes the destructive public accusations seem more like a kick in the teeth rather than a measured response done through appropriate means. We must remain above the fray and furor. If there are investigations into allegations to be made we must do so under the rule of law and common civility rather than succumbing to mob rule and provoking disorder. Scapegoating takes many forms some seeming quite righteous.

We must be careful not to fan the flames of anger, hatred, and bitterness.

Money is the issue for some, breach of the publics trust is the issue for me. For surely, whether your responsibility is to your stockholders or to citizens if you are a public servant, there is a measure of trust that exists. A breech of trust cuts to the core. A parent knows this the first time their child lies to them. A citizen knows when a leader falls prey to abuses of power that the trust has been broken. Breech of trust is a deep wound.

If the lying, cheating, stealing, greed, and desire for power at all costs does not bother you a bit then the rest of this post probably won’t interest you much, but please read on. We all make mistakes but as I have said in other posts, it is the unrepentant heart that I do not trust and right now I am not seeing people even admit to wrongdoing let alone repent of that wrong doing. Teflon – the non-stick surface, some people just seem to be coated in it.

The Rich Young Ruler

As He was setting out on a journey, a man ran up to Him and knelt before Him, and asked Him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”

And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone.

“You know the commandments, ‘DO NOT MURDER, DO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, DO NOT STEAL, DO NOT BEAR FALSE WITNESS, Do not defraud, HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER.'”

And he said to Him, “Teacher, I have kept all these things from my youth up.”

Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, “One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”

But at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property.

And Jesus, looking around, said to His disciples, “How hard it will be for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!”

The disciples were amazed at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God!

“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

They were even more astonished and said to Him, “Then who can be saved?”

Looking at them, Jesus said, “With people it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God.”

Peter began to say to Him, “Behold, we have left everything and followed You.”

Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake, but that he will receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life. “But many who are first will be last, and the last, first.” ~Mark 10:17-31

The rich young ruler could not see that in giving up everything he was demonstrating his capacity to love. He had kept all the commandments and yet still could not give up all that he had, his gift of his heart. His love of possessions and worldly accomplishments held him firmly to the earth. When we have wealth and comfort we are self satisfied and unwilling to give up this comfort even when it would mean we would gain eternity and a hundred times what he had right now.

So, while money fails to enthrall me, to satisfy me, to make me sick with worry the lesson of the Rich Young Ruler speaks to my heart. Somehow seeing hearts break, lives crumble, and anger in the public rise just was too much when I consider the source of all this trouble — greed within the heart of man.

Preparing just got a whole lot harder than it should have been. Prepare while you still can.

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