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More off-the-wall thoughts, submitted on an occasional basis by our Guest Blogger:  Jack Diamond.

 

This week I’m taking a look back in time with ‘Whatever Happened to…

 

First, whatever happened to – Repetitive Strain Injury?

Does anyone remember when repetitive strain injury was about as common as the adverts on Downton Abbey (for the uninitiated, Downton Abbey is a period drama on UK TV interrupted every few minutes, it seems, by adverts)? It was caused by doing the same actions, usually involving the upper arms or fingers, repeatedly and intensely over a period of time.

According to the NHS website repetitive strain was ‘a general term used to describe the pain felt in muscles, nerves and tendons caused by repetitive movement and overuse.’

So, basically, it was caused by using muscles a lot that hadn’t been used in a while previously.

And people were taking time off work for this and getting moved to do different jobs because of the ‘repetitive strain’ of doing that one task over and over again. There were even probably a few individuals who sought financial compensation from their employers for the effects of repetitive strain injury.

I wonder what today’s teenagers would make of repetitive strain? My guess is they’d probably ignore it. I mean, have you seen the speed teenager’s move their thumbs when texting or updating their Facebook statuses? And they do this for hours at a time – walking in the street, sitting on buses and trains, on the way to school, on the way home from school and, probably but who knows, during lessons at school as well.

Repetitive strain is a thing of the past. I can’t imagine any kid these days running to their mother, complaining about the pain in their thumbs from constantly texting.

Did it ever exist? Undoubtably, some people got sore muscles from doing one task too frequently over a period of time. I have the same problem when I kick a football around for 90 minutes non stop. My muscles ache.

Today’s kids, with their constant texting, have put paid to repetitive strain injury.

Whatever happened to – Acid Rain?

If you were around, and read the newspapers or listened to the news, in the 1970s or 1980s, you will undoubtably have heard of acid rain. It was, we were told, going to destroy all our forests and woodlands and, following that, probably civilisation as we know it. Well, what happened to it? Everything went quiet on the acid rain front.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I have no doubt that acid rain actually existed. In fact, if I remember my geography and physics lessons correctly, all rain is acidic. But this version of acid rain was apparently caused by coal fired power stations.

Obviously, we in the UK took steps to shut down our coal fired power stations. Problem solved.

Or not. From news reports of only a couple of years ago, China was building 363 new coal burning power stations. On top of that, India was building 455. There were 1,200 coal plants in the various stages of planning across 59 countries.

So, what happened to acid rain?

I’m not for one minute suggesting it never existed and that we were misled by governments, environmentalists and the sensationalist section of the tabloid press, but we have far, far more coal fired power plants than in the 1970s and 1980s and yet no-one speaks of acid rain these days.

Perhaps it’s simply because we’ve got bigger and better things to worry about these days?

Whatever happened to – Swine Flu?

You must remember the swine flu epidemic? It was only a few years ago and our government here in the UK was forecasting 65,000 deaths in this country alone.

So, what happened to it?

Well, there was swine flu and it did kill some people – mostly those with pre-existing conditions. How many people did it kill in the UK? Certainly not the 65,000 that the experts were expecting.

The actual number of deaths from swine flu in the UK was 457.

So, we had a massive over estimate of the number of deaths. What else? Oh, yes, the government, in their wisdom, made plans to buy 132 million doses of the swine flu vaccine. The population of the UK is about 64 million. So, that would have been more than two doses of the vaccine for each and every person in the UK, assuming that every person wanted the vaccine (or, indeed, wanted two doses of it).

Why, you have to ask? Why would any Civil Servant or Minister in the Government sign a contact for that number of vaccines?

The total cost of the swine flu pandemic was put at over £1.2 billion. That’s 1.2 billion Pounds of our tax payer’s money here in the UK.

So, what happened to swine flu?

Again, yes, it did obviously exist – 457 people died from it. But it wasn’t the massive, looming disaster that we were, again, led to believe.

 

So, I have to ask, do you believe it these days when governments, environmentalists or anyone else give us warnings of doom and gloom about how the world is going to end, imminently, if we don’t do something quickly (which, it seems, usually means paying money to someone or raising taxes)?

I, for one, have become slightly, just slightly, cynical over the years.

 

 

(The views expressed in our Guest Blogs are personal opinions only and do not reflect the views of PCGraphics.)

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