My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica

Monday, February 8, 2016

How Jamaica's February 2016 Sports Calendar will help spread the Zika Virus

The Zika Virus outbreak in Brazil doesn’t mean the cancellation of the 31st staging of the Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from August 5-21 2016.

Instead, athletes will have to decide if they want to go to Brazil and compete with the risk of contracting the Zika Virus as noted in the article “Zika Virus Outbreak: US Olympic Committee 'Will Not' Stop Athletes From Going to Brazil”, published Feb 8, 2016, by Gillian Mohney, ABC News.

Way too much pride is at stake for any athlete to miss the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Which means that the Zika Virus will be able to go global once everyone is infected. This is actually a good thing, as it’ll help Americans and the entire world build up immunity to the Zika Virus in the long run.

So despite the Zika Virus threat potentially going islandwide here in Jamaica as detailed in my blog article entitled “Why the Ministry of Health is covering up Local Transmission of Zika Virus in Jamaica”, the show must go on in the next 179 days.


This means more sports events leading up to the big event as noted in the article “Track And Field CALENDAR: February Events And Venues”, published Monday February 8, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Jamaica's sports Calendar for the month of February 2016 - Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro on the horizon

With that said, here's a list of the sporting events just for the month of February 2016:

1.      February 11
a)      Corporate Area Development Meet – UWI Usain Bolt Stadium
2.      February 13
a)      Camperdown Classic – National Stadium
b)      King of the Ring – Excelsior High School
c)      Milo Western Relays – Catherine Hall, Montego Bay
3.      February 14 
a)      Russia Winter - IAAF Indoor Meet – Moskva (CSKA), Russia (international event)
4.      February 16 - 17
a)      Central Championships GC Foster College
5.      February 17
a)      XL Galan - IAAF Indoor Meet – Stockholm (Globe Arena), Sweden (international event)
6.      February 19-20
a)      Council of Community Colleges of Jamaica Championships Catherine Hall, Montego Bay
7.      February 20
a)      Sainsbury's Glasgow Indoor Grand Prix – Glasgow (Emirates Arena), England (international event)
b)      SW Isaac Henry Invitational – National Stadium
c)      MTT/Dinthill Development Meet – Dinthill Technical High School, St Catherine
d)     Ben Francis Invitational – Jamalco Sports Club, Halse Hall
e)      GC Foster Classic – GC Foster College
8.      February 27
a)      McCook/Gibson Relay – National Stadium
b)      New Balance Indoor Grand Prix – Boston (Roxbury), Massachusetts, USA (international event)
9.      February 28
a)      1st NACAC 10km Road Race Cup – San Juan, Puerto Rico (international event)

Folks, mark your calendars as it's gonna be a very busy February 2016! With so many Jamaicans congregating at these huge social gatherings, the Zika Virus will definitely spread quickly thought Jamaica.

The Aedes Aegypti mosquito will have ample opportunity to bite and infect Jamaicans as predicted in my blog article entitled as detailed in my blog article entitled “Why the Ministry of Health is covering up Local Transmission of Zika Virus in Jamaica”.

So what can you do?

Jamaican Carnival of Sports - Be safe in Rio de Janeiro as the Zika Virus spreads

The symptoms of the Zika Virus will appear four (4) to seven (7) days after the initial infection. The symptoms will last for up to four (4) weeks or longer:

1.      Conjunctivitis
2.      Fever
3.      Headache
4.      Joint and muscle pain
5.      Rash
6.      Swelling of the lower limbs
7.      Weakness

The symptoms of the Zika Virus are not much different from the common cold.
 

Most people in Jamaica will probably have the disease and not even know it, unless you have a weakened immune systems if you're one of the following types of people:

1.      Babies
2.      Children suffering from an illness
3.      Elderly persons with other health problems

The following precautions work just as well:

1.      Wearing long-sleeved clothing or long pants
2.      Using DEET insect repellents
3.      Sleeping under mosquito nets
4.      Removing or covering container that can hold water

Just makes sure that you take the necessary precautions, especially spraying on some DEET Repellant or making your own repellant as detailed in my blog article entitled “How to make non-DEET Mosquito Repellant and learn to love Zika Virus”.  
 

Reducing the places that the Aedes Aegypti, the vector for the Zika Virus, can breed as shown in the CARPHA Yard Poster below, will greatly reduce the chances of getting the Zika Virus.
 

So enjoy the sports and be safe as the 31st staging of the Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil draws near.


How Islamic Cybergroup Team Emirates hacked the Ministry of Transport and Works

 Islamic Terrorists hackers are at it again in Jamaica.

This time they've hacked the website of the Ministry of Transport and Works on Saturday February 6th 2016 as reported in the article “Transport, Works and Housing Ministry website hacked”, published February 7, 2016, Loop News.
 

The hackers, going by the name Team Emirates, hacked into the Ministry of Transport and Works website, declaring that they were spreading the “true word of Islam.” As of writing this article, the Cyber Emergency Response Team is investigating this hacking incident as noted in the article “Transport Ministry's website hacked”, published February 7, 2016, RJR News Online

This is first such hack for 2016 with 2015 being most famous for the hacking of the JIS (Jamaica information Service) website back in July 2015 as noted in my blog article entitled “Anatomy of ISIS hack of the JIS Website - How the @JISNews Website was hacked and Why Hactivists couldn't access sensitive GOJ Databases”. 

This cannot be a good look for Islam in Jamaica, with the ICOJ (Islamic Council of Jamaica) denying since November 2015 that Jamaica is becoming a haven for Islamic jihadists as noted in the article “No terrorist threat to Jamaica, says Islamic Council”, published Sunday, November 29, 2015  by Jedial Carter, The Jamaica Observer.

It'll be interesting to see what the hackers got their hands on this time, aside from defacing their Ministry of Transport and Works! But a lack of diligence as it relates to clicking on suspicious email links may have led to this incident as was the case with the JIS hack.


Sunday, February 7, 2016

How to make non-DEET Mosquito Repellant and learn to love Zika Virus

In all this furore over the Zika Virus, including the cover-up by the Minister of Health Horace Dalley as pointed out in my blog article entitled “Why the Ministry of Health is covering up Local Transmission of Zika Virus in Jamaica”, it looks as if I overlooked something super obvious.
 

Causation does not equal correlation.


I say this in light of the fact that Colombia has diagnosed some 3,177 Pregnant Women with the Zika Virus and is now in a wait-and-see mode to determine if any babies are being born with microcephaly as noted in the article “Colombia Diagnose 3,177 Pregnant Women With Zika, But No Microcephaly”, published Saturday February 6, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Three (3) in Colombia have died from the rare nerve disorder called Guillain-Barre disorder with three other deaths being investigated as noted in the article “Three Develop Rare Nerve Disorder After Contracting ZIKV In Colombia, Die”, published Saturday February 6, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.   

So despite the lack of the Zika virus being established as the true cause of these conditions, the WHO (World Health Organization) to declare the Zika virus a Global Epidemic, erring on the side of caution as noted in the article “Zika Virus a Global Health Emergency, W.H.O. Says”, published Monday February 1st 2016 by Sabrina Tavernise and Donald Mcneil jr, The New York Times

Which makes me wonder.... is this panic is somehow being magnified by the media in much the same way sunlight can be magnified by a glass bottle to burn an ant?

Media sensationalization of the Zika Virus - Chikungunya might have already made us immune

Ok, some facts!

First thing off the bat is the cases of microcephaly in Brazilian babies being associated with the Zika Virus as noted first in my blog article entitled “739 Zika Virus Cases in Brazil and 2 adult deaths - How Zika Virus is causing birth defects in unborn Brazilian babies”. 
 

This is just a correlation as scientists have yet to establish causation; it could be a case that microcephaly was always common to babies born to Brazilian women, especially given their poor environmental track record.

Ditto too reports of it being transmitted by body fluids such as from kissing, touching or sexual intercourse as noted in the article “Active Zika found in saliva and urine” published Friday February 5th 2016 By James Gallagher, BBC News


We simply do not know enough about the Brazilian cases as well as the mechanism by which the Zika virus works to make such a declaration.

But the travel bans are understandable and in fact, may end up boosting tourism arrivals to Jamaica as reported in the article “Jamaica Added To US Zika Travel Advisory List”, published Thursday February 4, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.  

So too are twenty eight (28) day blood donations from persons infected with the Zika Virus as noted in the article “Zika virus sees blood ban on donors returning to UK from Latin America”, published Wednesday 3 February 2016  by Adam Withnall, The UK Independent.

Secondly, the symptoms of the Zika Virus, which take four (4) to seven (7) days after the initial infection to manifest and last for up to four (4) weeks or longer, are not much different from the common cold:

1.      Conjunctivitis
2.      Fever
3.      Headache
4.      Joint and muscle pain
5.      Rash
6.      Swelling of the lower limbs
7.      Weakness


In fact, 80% of adults infected with the Zika Virus, as suggested by the video above, show now outwards signs of being ill or suffer any adverse effects. So even if the Ministry of Health cover-up as it relates to a local spread of the Zika Virus is real, given that the Aedes Aegypti mosquito can breed in swamps and stagnant water in gullies, does it make a difference?
 

After all, we'll soon be infected and recover just as quickly as we did from the Chikungunya Virus as noted in my blog article entitled “Minister of Health comes clean on Chikungunya Virus Epidemic - 35 Official Cases as 60 percent possibly Infected and Medicines running low”, developing immunities along the way.

Plus there may be the possibility that if you had caught the Chikungunya Virus, you already have immunities from the disease. This is good news for the vulnerable as listed below:

1.      Babies
2.      Children suffering from an illness
3.      Elderly persons with other health problems

They will suffer, but not as badly as they did from the Chikungunya virus. Still precautions such as changing ones diet to include more vitamin C and B12 supplements as explained in my blog article entitled “Why the US of A must fear Zika Virus as Dominica and Jamaica next by February 2016”, will help you recover faster.

Also the following precautions work just as well:

1.      Wearing long-sleeved clothing or long pants
2.      Using DEET insect repellents
3.      Sleeping under mosquito nets
4.      Removing or covering container that can hold water

But what if you cannot afford to purchase a DEET Insect repellant? Worse, how do you apply it to your baby, as their skins are sensitive and might blister if you rub DEET directly on their soft skin?

How to make you own non-DEET mosquito repellant - Save money on protecting yourself from Zika


That's right dear reader! You can make your own non-DEET insect repellant using the following essential oils:

  1. Castor oil
  2. Catnip Oil
  3. Citronella Oil
  4. Clove oil
  5. Garlic oil
  6. Geranium
  7. iso-propyl alcohol
  8. Lemongrass oil
  9. Neem oil
  10. Pimento oil
  11. Rosemary oil
  12. Soy Oil

To make the repellant, simply blend the above ingredients in pure iso-propyl alcohol to a puree. Then leave to stand to seep for at least 2 days. After it’s done seeping, strain using a fine mesh cloth, keeping the puree to make more later.

The alcohol suspension of essential oils is highly concentrated and will repel most mosquitoes for at least three hours after application. Best of all, it won't irritate the skin.

Combined with the following precautions to reduce the breeding areas for the Zika Virus as shown in the CARPHA Yard Poster below, the chances of being bitten by an Aedes Aegypti mosquito carrying the Zika Virus will be greatly reduced.
 

Still, the Ministry of Health has to come clean on the local spread of the Zika Virus as well as the fact that the Aedes Aegypti mosquito can reproduce in stagnant water in gullies and slow-moving streams.



Saturday, February 6, 2016

Why the Ministry of Health is covering up Local Transmission of Zika Virus in Jamaica

Looks like there is a cover-up brewing in the Ministry of Health headed by Health Minister Horace Dalley!

Interestingly, Friday February 5th 2016 has been declared as a cleanup day in Portmore as reported in the article “February 5 is Clean-Up Day in Portmore”, published  February 2, 2016 By Peta Gay Rowe, The Jamaica Information Service.

It has now been revealed on Thursday February 4th 2016 that the first case of the Zika Virus was located in Greater Portmore as noted in the article “Jamaica’s first Zika case was in Greater Portmore, Dalley reveals”, published Thursday, February 04, 2016, The Jamaica Observer
 

This is the part of Portmore that the 4-y-o child who is the first official case of the Zika Virus resides. I’d pointed out in my blog article entitled “How Zika Virus confirmed in Portmore, St. Catherine will spread throught Jamaica”  that the Zika Virus was primed to spread islandwide.

Health Minister Horace Dalley had initially refused to reveal the section of Portmore that the 4-y-o child who had just returned from Texas was from as noted in the article “Ministry refuses to name community with first Zika virus case”, published Thursday, February 04, 2016 by Anika Richards, The Jamaica Observer.

Zika Virus now a Global Epidemic - Spread by Sexual Intercourse and Body fluids

So now that we know, Greater Portmore peeps may want to start buying up bottles of DEET mosquito repellant along with bottles of Vitamin C and Vitamin B12 to start boosting their immune systems against the coming onslaught of the Zika Virus.

After all, the WHO (World Health Authority) has declared on Monday February 1st 2016 that the Zika Virus is a Global Epidemic possibly bigger than Ebola as noted in the article “Zika Virus a Global Health Emergency, W.H.O. Says”, published Monday February 1st 2016 by Sabrina Tavernise and Donald Mcneil jr, The New York Times.
 

The cleanup effort is really a roundabout way of saying that the people of Portmore are basically doomed, as the National Bird in Portmore, especially Greater Portmore is the Aedes Aegypti Mosquito.

Now we may be even more doomed, as Brazilian scientists have now detected the Zika Virus in saliva and Urine, suggesting that it can be passed through contact with body fluids e.g. kissing as noted in the article “Active Zika found in saliva and urine” published Friday February 5th 2016 By James Gallagher, BBC News.
 

This isn't surprising at all, as evidence is now surfacing that suggests that the Zika Virus can also be spread via  sexual intercourse, effectively an exchange of bodily fluids as confirmed by the CDC in the article “Zika has been sexually transmitted in Texas, CDC confirms”, published February 4, 2016 By Sandee LaMotte, CNN.

Mis-information is spreading folks; something isn't right about the Ministry of Health's declaration as it relates to the Zika Virus.

Ministry of Health Coverup - Infection timeline reveals that it came from Jamaica

For one, the 4-y-o child did not get the Zika Virus in Texas as noted in the article “Texas link to Jamaican Zika case unlikely”, state officials say, published February 1 2016, The Houston Chronicle.
 

The obvious clue can be seen from the timeline of his diagnosis:

1.      Sunday January 17th 2016 - Returned from Texas
2.      Tuesday January 26th 2016 - Reported sick; Blood samples were sent to CARPHA (Caribbean Public Health Agency) for testing
3.      Friday January 29th 2016 - CARPHA reported the samples tested positive for Zika Virus
4.      Saturday January 30th 2016 - Ministry of Health reported 4-y-o child from Portmore as first Zika Virus Case

As far as the Texas DSHS (Department of State Health Services) are concerned, there is no cause for alarm as there is no evidence of a local spread of the Zika Virus in Texas. To quote Texas DSHS spokeswoman Carrie Williams: “Given what we learned, the evidence supported the fact that infection likely occurred in Jamaica and did not raise a concern for local transmission here. We're not releasing case details beyond what Jamaica is providing, given there isn't a public health reason to do so”.

By Monday February 1st 2016, Minister of Health Horace Dalley was very quick to point out that they did not say that was the case, as they'd mentioned he come back from Texas as stated in the article

But if this is the case, it means that the Zika Virus was already in Jamaica and may actually be spreading among the population  as I'd log ago predicted in my blog article entitled “12 Jamaicans infected with Zika Virus - Why Zika Virus is already Spreading in Jamaica due to Climate Change”.

Folks, we may be witnessing a cover-up similar to what happened back in September 2014 during the spread of the Chikunguya Virus as noted in my blog article entitled “Jamaican Chikungunya Virus cover-up - JA$10,000 for Chikungunya Virus Test as Tropical Storm Edouard boost Aedes aegypti Mosquito”.

Why the Zika Virus may have been in Jamaica since October 2015 - Winning General Election at any cost

In fact, as I’ve asserted above, the Zika Virus may already be in these parishes labled as high-risk for Zika Virus as reported in the article “7 parishes declared high-risk areas for Zika virus”, published Thursday, January 21, 2016 by Kimberely Hibbert, The Jamaica Observer:

1.      Kingston
2.      St Andrew
3.      St Catherine
4.      St Thomas
5.      Clarendon
6.      Manchester
7.      Westmoreland
 

It'll be somewhat difficult to tell, as the symptoms of the Zika Virus, take four (4) to seven (7) days after the initial infection and last for up to four (4) weeks or longer:

1.      Conjunctivitis
2.      Fever
3.      Headache
4.      Joint and muscle pain
5.      Rash
6.      Swelling of the lower limbs
7.      Weakness

As of Thursday February 4th 2016, The CDC (Center for Disease Control) have place Jamaica on their US Zika Travel Advisory List, advising American citizens susceptible to the Zika Virus not to travel to Jamaica as well as other countries where the disease is spreading as reported in the article “Jamaica Added To US Zika Travel Advisory List”, published Thursday February 4, 2016, The Jamaica Gleaner.

The very vulnerable are:

1.      Babies
2.      Children suffering from an illness
3.      Elderly persons with other health problems
   
Also, contrary to what the Ministry of Health is saying, the Aedes Aegypti Mosquito does not need perfectly still clean water to lay it eggs. It only needs water in a slow moving stream e.g. gullies or rivers, as they can lay their eggs and attach them to algae blooms or aquatic water grass growing in water.

Removing old tyres and water containers will not work. Removal of water in the gullies and drains, albeit moving water, is prime breeding ground for the Aedes Aegypti mosquito. Despite this, people in Portmore can reduce their chances of being bitten by the Aedes Aegypti mosquito by:

1.      Wearing long-sleeved clothing or long pants
2.      Using DEET insect repellents
3.      Sleeping under mosquito nets
4.      Removing or covering container that can hold water

Reducing the breeding places for the Aedes Aegypti mosquito will reduce the spread of the Zika Virus as shown in the CARPHA Yard Poster below.
 

So gullies and swamps can host the eggs of the Aedes Aegypti Mosquito as the Ministry of Health focuses their cleanup efforts on other alternative breeding sites for the Zika Virus. The focus of prevention efforts must therefore focus on reducing the breeding capability of the Aedes Aegypti Mosquito.

Not to mention the Ministry of Health telling the truth. As of now I'm awaiting the first report of a local transmission of the Zika Virus, as so far it appears to be spreading rapidly via mosquitoes and body fluids.