When 'Disease Control' Isn't Code for 'Lifestyle Control'


The CDC's fancy new digs in Atlanta reflect a renewed interest in controlling communicable diseases, spurred largely by fears of bio-terrorism. It's nice to see the agency still tries to protect us from deadly microbes, when it isn't busy protecting us from ourselves.

NEXT: The Rhetorical Hitcheroo

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  1. So did they ever find any cracked sidewalks?
    Surel that was the culprit.

  2. I’d feel safer if the CDC was housed somewhere far from a metropolitan area, in a building that could be locked down quickly.
    Is the old Biosphere II still for sale?

  3. Jeff P.: I was thinking the same thing, til I recalled that:

    A. The really nasty stuff already lives in what is essentially its own atmosphere. BSL-4 spaces have no connection in terms of air, water, etc. to anything else, and everybody wears what’re basically spacesuits.

    B. Up til BSL-4, one must be stupid to get sick in a lab. BSL-4 is where one can get sick just by being in the area. As noted in this short version (provided by UC Davis) of the CDC biosafety protocols. (A handy list of the BSL levels various pathogens require is here, again from UC Davis.)

    C. Only 8 pathogens actually require BSL 4.

    D. Land is expensive.

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