Distilling the viral facts of a pandemic, COVID 19’s replication process is far more stable due to its ability to “check and correct” its replication errors

The Spanish Flu V’s The Common Flu V’s COVID 19

Distilling the viral facts of a pandemic 

August 10, 2020
By Steve Holmes

There are 3 components to my focus.
  1. The Virus: If I get it, will it kill me, and if so how?
  2. The Pandemic: Will this kill me?
  3. How do all these viruses and pandemics tie in together?
The Spanish Flu is a subset of influenza A. (H1N1)

In 1918, the flu or influenza was not a known or recognized virus, in fact, there was no preorganized response for it.


The Spanish flu was probably more likely to have originated from France or China, it was ‘avian’ in nature, but this has never been able to be confirmed as fact. What is known, is that it did not originate in Spain, it was convenient in the day, to call it the French or Spanish flu, but since the King of Spain died of it and this was widely broadcasted, it became known as the Spanish flu.

The Pandemic factor of 1918

The then-novel flu virus was able to spread quickly and globally primarily due to WW1’s tightly packed soldier environments, which dispersed the virus back to their homes as the war came to an end, subsequently infecting many more communities around the allied world. There is no way of knowing the actual total amount of people who died of this virus, but 50 million is the historically accepted figure.

Commonalities of the pandemics

Firstly, what does the Spanish flu and COVID 19 have in common as pandemic events?

  1. They are both global events
  2. They are both viruses
  3. They both access and interfere with our respiratory functions.
  4. They both impact specific age groupings

After that, there is very little in common.


Globalization is a significant factor that appears to be underestimated not so much in its ability to transport the virus to all points of the globe, but economic dependence on it.

When “Aids” became an overnight reality a new reality, free sex anywhere anytime any way became the Omni focus, and understanding that change was needed if we humankind was to survive.

Today’s needs are yesterdays desires

This is the new reality – needs have changed or should I say our comprehension of them has changed.
This 2020 world is structured completely different from 100 years ago, we are no longer able to just shut everything down (lockdowns) and fix a problem – we are no longer very good at village-ing in this modern globalized world, localism is something we are going to re-learn over time. Yes, Smart Localism will become the vaccine to this pandemic.

Comparing the viruses

The common Flu (Influenza’s A,B & C) The common flu virus is 6.5 times more unstable than Covid 19 – what does this mean?

COVID 19’s replication process is far more stable due to its ability to “check and correct” its replication errors, which means the virus RNA signature stays the same (more reliable.) Ultimately this makes it easier for our immune system to overcome and eradicate any future recurrences. This also makes it easier for medical researchers to also understand and generate treatments. I think at the time of writing this comment COVID19 has created fewer than 10 mutations out of a possible 30,000.

The common flu spreads faster and wider due to its high replication and unchecked error rate, which makes it more difficult for the body’s immune system to recognize and respond successfully too.

 The Spanish Flu – (Influenza A – subset H1N1)

The Spanish flu virus, infected tissue 39,000 times higher than other comparable flu viruses and had 100 times morbidity rate. There are 8 genes in the Spanish flu’s genomic profile with one gene in particular – Hemagglutinin (HA) a human protein that proved to be the lethal factor in it’s makeup. The inclusion of the HA protein enabled the virus to easily connect infected cells with healthy cells by clumping blood cells together.

Covid 19 nor other common flus have HA protein genes as a factor in their genomic profiles.

The majority of deaths in the 1918 Spanish Flu came from the very young,  young adults and pregnant women. The older generation were largely immune – why was this? The older population had already been exposed to similar gene combinations over their lifetime and as such had built up an immunity.

“We as humans do not learn from history and are therefore doomed to repeat it. The Spanish flu lasted for 2 years. The second wave killed far more people than the first, and in total there were 4 waves.

“It killed somewhere between 20 million to 50 million people. Citizens were ordered to wear masks, and everywhere shut down and boarded up schools, movie theaters, and business. Mail distribution stopped, as did garbage collection.

“Many people had to dig graves for their own family members.

“Here we are 100 years later, and what have we learned? Half the people do not want to wear masks because they think it is a hoax/it is not that bad/the government is lying/insert insane right-wing conspiracy theory rhetoric here.

“People want to prioritize their own narcissistic desires and privileges over other human beings’ lives.

“What did they have in 1918? No TV. No internet, not a lot of food supply.

“What do we have? TV, internet, movies that can be watched from home, UberEATS…you name it. And yet we are a world full of entitled and selfish people who lack human empathy and act oppressed when given any minute sense of responsibility.

“Travel is not a necessity. Movie theaters are not a necessity. Throwing parties is not a necessity.

“Being a decent human being should not be a revolutionary act….it should be common sense.” – anonymous.

So after that longish but very basic overview here are the comments I would make on Sally’s post

  1. Sally: We humans do not learn from history …
    Clearly we have learned from history. We have progressed from not knowing what Influenza – flu is to manage it very well over the past 100 years along with massive breakthroughs in knowledge, and living standards.
  2. Sally: “It killed somewhere between 20 million to 50 million people.”
    Yes that is correct and a fact in history
  3. Sally: “Citizens were ordered to wear masks”
    There was no evidence then nor is there now whether masks do or do not work in normal living conditions.
  4. Sally: “shut down and boarded up schools, movie theaters, “
    Indiscriminate lockdowns have other consequences – Targeted lockdowns as with targeted treatments, are a proven successful method. General lockdowns do not.
  5. Sally: “Many people had to dig graves for their own family members.”
    It was Brevig Mission in Alaska (1918), where 72 of the villages total 80 adult population were buried, after succumbing to the virus. These graves remained frozen, and in 1951 the graves were excavated and lung samples were obtained. The graves were excavated again in 1997 which made the most significant breakthrough in discovering an obese mid 20 yr old woman called “Lucy” with her lungs perfectly preserved. This provided the breakthrough in sequencing the viruses genome.
    NB: The genome is the complete list of genetic instructions that make up an organism, similar to a blueprint used for construction.
  6. “Here we are 100 years later, and what have we learned?”
    A pandemic of the mind can become far more lethal than what created the fear in the first instance. There is a saying “People who don’t know they don’t know, make for excellent politicians” or something dangerous like that?
  7. Sally: “People want to prioritize their own narcissistic desires and privileges over other human beings’ lives” … “What did they have in 1918? No TV. No internet”…
    We now live in a world fuelled by globalization that has converted wants and desires into necessities and primal essentials. No one can easily be distinguished from another and no one can now decide this for another. We have all dipped into this globalized well and in the near term we can no longer undo ourselves – this is no longer narcissistic, it is the new reality
  8. Sally: “Being a decent human being should not be a revolutionary act….it should be common sense.” – anonymous”
    “Evolution by Revolution is a strong human attribute, understanding this is vital and creates commonsense – Steve Holmes”
    People want easy twitterised answers to questions that are far more in-depth than my words here. We have a wonderful world that we all share, I think we humans have embraced the challenge and the opportunity very very well, but as with anything, there are corresponding responsibilities. Responsibilities are no doubt being lost in the rush, we each need to invest in a fuller answer if we choose to stand out and shout. Shout about what you do know in a way that contributes to the whole, and resist in shouting out that which you do not know – this indulgence will only weaken the whole.

Posts like Sally’s?
Striking out helps her feel relevant in protecting people from something worse occurring. COVID 19 has served up a reality check on ‘globalization’ and its indiscriminate global growth sprawl. But we all must be very careful what we wish for, as many, many benefits that we enjoy today are baked in and embedded into this globalization model.

What is an answer?
Firstly when it comes to the virus itself, clearly the majority would rather act on twitter sized headlines and comments that are at best pieces of the facts. If we want the outcomes we need to take responsibility for the facts and their truths. This requires a pause and learning beyond a couple of hundred characters of text. The virus and its pandemic reputation in the media and the political mindset is not the same virus in fact.

Smart targeted Localism
With so many lifestyle benefits at stake, highly targeted “Smart Localism” will re-empower responsibility at the grassroots of everything that is important. Globalization is/was a phase that we are moving through and localism is our next phase. The globalization accelerated progressively since 1946, now we will see localism try to re-establish its foothold and reshape globalism as we know it today.

Dying of or with COVID 19 –
It’s all the same to the statisticians and record keepers.  The democratic society has never seen such dishonesty at its core.

  • Suicides are far-reaching and ruin lives beyond repair – this rate is escalating and heading out of control.
  • COVID deaths (of and with) are running at 22,000 per week, Cancer is running at 160,00 per week and climbing quickly due to COVID 19 access restrictions.
  • COVID impacts primarily the elderly at-risk population, Cancer impacts all ages, many more young lives are being lost today due to the pandemic of the mind, especially the political vote covering minds.
  • Depression is expanding and many home assaults and crime will become a greater problem for generations to come.
  • All lives matter, but people die anyway – I am surrounded by death every day, it is getting worse, none of these are COVID, but more are occurring because of COVID and the pandemic grip of the political mind.


A favour if I may! 

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Kind Regards

I have found writing to be one of the most empowering treatments in my journey, it evolved me forward, both grammatically and contextually. Perhaps more importantly, writing lifts me above the chaos, transporting me to a place where anything and everything is possible, as long as I remain open and willing to its reality. Opportunity finds the open door that my writing creates. Writing allows me to organize and see my thoughts, to see them as real, and to learn quickly from them.

As some will already know, I feel the responsibility of surviving an unsurvivable cancer. Sharing my own experiences, and what I have since learned because of them, has placed me at the very edge of a new revolution in cancer outcomes. I remain at this edge with my arms outstretched to pull as many back up to the safety of solid ground as I can. I cannot think of a better use of the opportunity that I have been given. Read more @ www.steveholmes.net.au

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