Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The attention span of the US consumer....

I admit that I was first in line to beat up the media over their breathless swine flu coverage. I never got the flu, but I was certainly sick of the scrolling headlines of "Woman in Boston with flu-like symptoms", "School closed 6-8 weeks because a child vomited last night.", etc, etc.

However, it seems like we've turned the page a bit too quickly. Consider the following charts - 1) via The Disciplined Investor blog shows deaths (red line) and confirmed global cases of swine flu (I don't work for the pork industry so it will always be swine flu to me). What's particularly interesting is that the number of cases have almost doubled in the last four days, but no one seems to care. I'm happy to hear that this is not a terribly dangerous version of the flu, but it seems like we should take note of what appears to be a growing pandemic not a fading one.

If this virus figures out a way to hook up with the tamiflu resistant version or the Asian bird flu then we might really have an issue.

According to Google Trends, earlier this week more people searched for the term "American idol" than "swine flu". Thus, the nature order of the world have been restored.


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