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Epidemics

Part one: After two decades as a top investigator of corporate fraud, Greg Palast directed the U.S. government’s largest racketeering case in history–winning a $4.3 billion jury award and he also conducted the investigation of fraud charges in the Exxon Valdez grounding. Now working as an investigative journalist, he discussed the dirty tricks being used by both parties to sway the outcomes of elections.

Part two: Dr. Ardy Sixkiller Clarke, a Professor Emeritus at Montana State University, has dedicated her life and career to working with indigenous populations and spent seven years traveling through Belize, Honduras, Guatemala, and Mexico, collecting stories of encounters, sky gods, giants, little people, and aliens. Dr. Clarke detailed the UFO stories of "Urban Indians" who live off reservation lands.

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Epidemics

Show Archive
Date: Wednesday - May 19, 2004
Host: George Noory
Guests: Howard Markel

Dr. Howard Markel, the author of When Germs Travel, talked about the history and present state of a variety of contagious diseases. In his book, he chronicles six epidemics or outbreaks that occurred in America over the last century: trachoma, bubonic plague, tuberculosis, AIDS, cholera, and typhus fever.

Markel outlined how these epidemics share a set of common features, which include panic (often fueled by media reports), quarantines and/or the closing down of ports, and the scapegoating of a certain group (such as immigrants) who are blamed for bringing in the disease.

Along with AIDS, tuberculosis remains one of the top health threats, he said, noting a 1996 case in which a TB-infected woman traveled on a long plane flight from Seoul to Baltimore, and 29 people sitting near her came down with the illness. Influenza is another worry, and the medical community keeps a constant vigil for deadly strains of the virus, such as the one that wiped out millions in 1918, he noted.

Bumper Music

Bumper music from Wednesday May 19, 2004

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