THE RIGHT-WING-SWINE FLU
MORE STUPID "IDEAS" FROM "CONSERVATIVE" IDEOLOGUES
WE DON'T NEED NO STINKIN' PUBLIC HEALTH
And We Ain't A-Gawna Give Up No Soov-rain-ay-tee To No Furrin Docters!
Propose a coordinated international response to potential global pandemics, and right wing nuts start imagining black helicopters swooping in from France and Outer Mongolia, shooting up their pick-up trucks and terrorizing their masters' country club. Sane people just think stopping plague is a good idea. Conservatives think it's spoiling a chance to re-live the scariest parts of the Bible.
Paid corporate stooges think whatever they're paid to think, no matter how nonsensical, hypocritical and pernicious. Check out the asinine ideological screed in the Times yesterday by Lord Doozhebag Van Brooks.
"Globalism Goes Viral"
"Experimentation"! Yeah, that's what a plague requires! Trial & error! "Decentralization"! "States rights"! "Emotionalism"! "Tribalism"! "Xenophobia"! --Not organization, cooperation, professionalism or preparedness. Let's just do everything ad hoc. Spur of the moment. Wheeee!!! Fun, da plague, yeah?
' If the response were coordinated by a global agency, those local officials would not be so empowered. Power would be wielded by officials from nations that are far away and emotionally aloof from ground zero. The institution would have to poll its members, negotiate internal differences and proceed, as all multinationals do, at the pace of the most recalcitrant stragglers. Second, the decentralized approach is more credible. It is a fact of human nature that in times of crisis, people like to feel protected by one of their own. They will only trust people who share their historical experience, who understand their cultural assumptions about disease and the threat of outsiders and who have the legitimacy to make brutal choices. If some authority is going to restrict freedom, it should be somebody elected by the people, not a stranger. Finally, the decentralized approach has coped reasonably well with uncertainty. It is clear from the response, so far, that there is an informal network of scientists who have met over the years and come to certain shared understandings about things like quarantining and rates of infection. It is also clear that there is a ton they don’t understand. A single global response would produce a uniform approach. A decentralized response fosters experimentation. '
As to our man Brooks, first of all, he's a Canadian. Nothing he says matters, in America. His opinions are like Canadian quarters. They have no value, and no one will accept them.
Second, he grew up in Manhattan's Stuyvesant Town, which is a near-perfect product of centralized authority à la Robert Moses. I guess he didn't like living in such a well-designed and well-managed community. Perhaps he was traumatized at an early age by all the peace and quiet. Too bad he didn't grow up a few blocks farther South, in Alphabet City, which is what Stuyvesant Town, aka "the Gasworks," used to look like. Think chaotic junkie jungle. Those of us who lived below 14th Street East of Broadway would have killed for a nice warm roach-free apartment where the plumbing & electricity always worked, and there were no bodies in the hallways. But we were all such authoritarians in the East Village in the 50's, 60's, 70's & 80's! Especially those Ukrainian refugees. What a buncha commies!
Third, this is just another example of right-wing nuts putting their half-baked "philosophy" ahead of real people's problems and workable solutions. The imposition of authority from above that they're always whinging about is exactly what they are trying to do in forcing their sociopathic template on the entire world. Their hero Dubya, the Lawnmower Man of world politics, pretty much showed us where that could lead. Those of us, that is, who had forgotten Hoover, Hitler & Co.
Finally, what part of "GLOBAL PANDEMIC" does numbnuts not understand? He should read up on the Global Spanish Influenza Pandemic of 1918-1920. They had no "global" health authorities. The response was all "local" and "emergent." The result was a plague that spread from North Pole to South Pole, and from Europe to Australia, killing as many as 100 million people, more than died in WWI & WWII put together. A public health disaster today on the scale of the Spanish Flu would mean up to three billion sick and two billion dead, worldwide. Billions, not millions. 1,000,000,000.
The Spanish Flu Pandemic was one of the primary motivators behind the development of international aid & global health organizations. Why is it that right-tards cannot learn from horrid old history, and why do they keep insisting that we all re-experience those horrors just so their wild-ass notions can have another shot at implementation? Panic is the stock in trade of demagogues and yellow journals, but doing nothing, as the Repukelickin's & Blue Dogs suggest, "pork-barrel" "special-interest," "earmarks" or not, is not an option.
Conservatism, like corporatism, Fascism and Nazism, is a dangerous mental plague and should be snuffed out by international effort. Actual knowledge is the best prophylactic.
Props to a great post by wesgpc of FireDogLake.
Labels: 1918-1920, CDC, collective action, conservative ideologues, cooperative, disease, epidemic, global, international, outbreak, pandemic, public health, Spanish Influenza, Swine Flu, viral, virus, W.H.O.
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