The guys started with some follow up on The Wire, The Newsroom, what colored food does to your poop, Mike Batz’ link to Craig Goldwyn’s Huffington Post article on sprouts, T. gondii in Romanian animals, and F’ed up.
Aaron’s email then prompted a discussion about Plague Inc., the CDC’s interest in it and CDC’s own game Solve the Outbreak. The guys were impressed by how progressive the CDC is in terms of social media and new ways of engaging the public.
Don then provided some info about HDScores a company that plans to make Restaurant Inspection Scores from 3100 jurisdictions from the US, Canada and UK widely available. This prompted a discussion about making restaurant scores available to the public in an interpretable way.
Ben shared his experiences from a recent trip to Calgary, where his 4 year old son Jack got sick, possibly with Norovirus. Ben was fascinated by Delta Airlines’ approach of dealing with the vomit problem, which involved plastic bags to contain the risk and coffee pods to manage the smell. Don was familiar with the approach thanks to Roderick on the Line. Ben didn’t agree with Delta’s decision to take them off plane first (thus inoculating the plane). It reminded him of two different articles. Both Don and Ben were glad Delta had a plan, even if they didn’t quite agree with the whole plan.
Don then wanted to ask Ben about a Meatingplace article by Richard Raymond entitled Is our food safer than five years ago? (free registration needed to read). Ben explained why he didn’t agree with Richard’s arguments. Don agreed and asked aloud about conspiracy theories, not dissimilar from those surrounding New Coke.
Don then wanted get Ben’s take on the IFT’s March 2013 media update. In fact both Ben and Don thought that these updates were way over the top and it reminded them of "The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons” and Doug Powell’s comment on Barfblog “I'm immediately suspicious of people … who say trust me.” Ben especially didn’t like that organizations say “trust us” and without telling people what the risks are and why they should be trusted. The discussion of food processing reminded Don of Richard Wrangham’s great book "Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human.”
The last thing on Ben’s agenda was Doug’s comparison between the porn industry and the food industry, which had resulted in a fair bit of backlash against the legendary Doug. Ben noted that Doug’s point was how the two industries differed in how they manage the risks, which people missed. And boy… you mention porn and people get excited.