Posted by Henry Bauer on 2007/11/27
Doublethink is the act of simultaneously and fervently holding two mutually contradictory beliefs. It is an integral concept of George Orwell’s dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four
What is the greatest tribulation for a continent ravaged by a deadly incurable virus spread sexually and from mother to child, where in many parts of that continent the infection rate is as high as 30%, occasionally even higher?
High birth rates, of course:
“’High birth rate soaring HIV spread, say experts’, Evelyn Lirri, The Monitor (Kampala), 10 November 2007 (http://allafrica.com/stories/printable/200711100030.html, accessed 11 November 2007)
Uganda’s high population growth rate threatens to undermine efforts to fight the HIV/AIDS epidemic . . . . At a growth rate of 3.2 per cent, there is a greater risk of women giving birth to HIV/AIDS positive babies through mother-to-child transmission . . . . at least 110,000 children are living with AIDS in Uganda . . . . mother-to-child transmission is the second biggest mode of HIV/AIDS transmission in Uganda. . . . with Uganda’s high birth rate–one of the highest worldwide–chances of women giving birth to HIV/AIDS infected children is very high. . . . Every year, about one million babies are born to HIV positive mothers and out of these at least 25,000 get infected with the virus. . . . 7.9 per cent of women have HIV/AIDS”.
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1. Having HIV/AIDS doesn’t affect a woman’s capacity to carry and deliver children: nearly 8% of women have the disease, yet Uganda’s birth rate is among the highest in the world.
2. The rate of transmission of HIV from mother to child is only 2.5%.
“It is estimated that about 15-30 per cent of babies born to HIV positive mothers will become infected during pregnancy and delivery and another five to 20 per cent will be infected through breastfeeding.”
So: it isn’t a mere 25,000 babies who get infected, it’s 150,000-300,000 during pregnancy and another 50,000-200,000 during nursing–200,000 to 500,000 per year from 1 million births: 20-50% of births.
Now, the HIV/AIDS epidemic is a couple of decades old, so this has been going on for quite some time, and antiretroviral treatment has been quite inadequate. The present generation of child-bearing women stems from babies born near the beginning of the epidemic and since. In that time, 20-50% of those cohorts must have died of AIDS–and, indeed, few of all the infected babies born even in the last decades or so are still living; of 200,000 to 500,000 per year, times ten or twenty years, only about “110,000 children are living with AIDS in Uganda” (above).
For a decade or more, 20-50% of potentially childbearing women have been dying, leading to one of the world’s highest birth rates.
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Morals of this story:
Disease leads to high birth-rates, which further spreads disease.
When “experts say”, don’t believe a word of it.
HIV/AIDS numbers don’t add up.
Trust the media to disseminate absurdities with a straight face.
HIV/AIDS theory is impervious to contradictions.