Sign of the Future Theocracy: Super Gonorrhea

Disease outbreaks are more frequent during periods of negative mood.

Socionomics Institute: Negative Mood Sickens Society
In the United States, people are increasingly sad. The CDC reported in October that Americans’ “use of antidepressant drugs has soared nearly 400% in the past 20 years,” making them the most frequently used medications by people ages 18-44.10 Mental health professionals cited several possible reasons for the spike, including the “struggling economy and the record number of layoffs and home foreclosures.” … And for the second year in a row, in 2010 the number of U.S. soldiers who killed themselves exceeded those who died in combat.12 July 2011 brought “the highest monthly toll ever recorded,” according to the National Journal.13 A CDC study recently found that the U.S. suicide rate for adults of working age rises during economic hardship and declines during prosperity. With laudable insight, the authors cautioned that the correlation could be non-causal: “… a third factor may increase the risk of both suicide and unemployment.”14

Socionomics holds that there is indeed a significant third factor, society’s mood, which influences both societal health and the economy.
When mood is negative, people are more susceptible to diseases. Risky sexual behavior occurs at social mood tops and the hangover is the diseases. The sexual revolution of the 1960s turned into widespread STDs and the AIDS epidemic in the 1970s and 1980s. The latter decade also saw a push back by society. This was a counter-trend within a larger wave of positive mood that wouldn't peak for another two decades. The Moral Majority emerged, there was the concept of "safe sex" and (with drugs) the "Just Say No" campaign.

Today we are in a much deeper period of negative mood because it is not correcting the recent upswing in mood, but the prior centuries of positive mood. The costs are much higher. Instead of an AIDS epidemic that was largely contained to the homosexual and drug user population (and despite that, still produced a gruesome body count), the current STD epidemic will eventually spread across all of society. Drug use is much more widespread and is already causing a decline in life expectancy.

The Hill: Super gonorrhea threat — it's a public health crisis that is on the horizon
A British man has been diagnosed with what some are calling the world’s “worst-ever” case of gonorrhea – a strain that is reportedly resistant to all antibiotics normally used to treat the disease.

This report is a confirmation of one of our greatest fears — untreatable gonorrhea could be on the very near horizon at a time when rates of the infection and of STDs overall are at record highs in this country. When we see a case like this in the U.K., it’s not a question of if, but when we’ll see it in the U.S. And once it’s here, it could spread quickly.

...The National Coalition of STD Directors is calling on Congress to allocate an additional $70 million to next year’s federal budget to support federal STD prevention at CDC. This much needed investment will allow STD programs to ready themselves to combat drug resistant gonorrhea, and to address the highest STD levels in history and the real and present threats of congenital syphilis and infertility.

Untreatable gonorrhea would be a public health catastrophe in the US, but that’s the path we’re on if something doesn’t change. As it stands, our public health system and STD programs are under resourced and ill-equipped to handle the influx of antibiotic resistant gonorrhea, but with investment and support of proactive prevention strategies we can hope to stem the tide.
It will get far, far worse before this wave of negative mood completes. These are the good times. We are at the peak of a bull rally within the bear market of social mood.

Finally, the 1980s were the positive mood reaction to the negative 1970s. But they weren't a return to the 1950s. That was a response to the much more negative 1930s (war and depression is often a result of negative mood cycles). What is coming when this current negative wave ebbs and society returns to positive mood? Probably something that today we might describe as theocracy (if right-wing) or authoritarian (if left-wing). Both left- and right-wing will strictly regulate behavior. This will likely regulate both personal behavior as well as society's response to diseases. Smoking is a template for what could be coming. Anti-smoking campaigns are based in part on the fact that government pays for healthcare. It was also argued second-hand smoke was harming non-smokers. The logic of these arguments will make a compelling case for state regulation and suppression of risky sexual behaviors down to fines for failing to wash your hands (the technology for the surveillance state already exists) if there is an major epidemic that causes millions of deaths.

Whatever form they take, the coming health threats and the societal shift they produce when positive mood resumes will be at least an order of magnitude larger change than the 1930s to 1950s change.

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