Interestingly, both Besser and Brennan are anti-terror experts. Excuse me for asking, but is there anyone in government at the moment who might be like, you know, an expert on the flu? I’m sure both men are competent public servants, but for the love of Mike, given all the holes in Obama’s health team, it may have been a confidence builder if we had seen a doctor taking questions. Don’t we have a surgeon general or something that’s supposed to do stuff like that?
Well, no, not exactly. We almost had a surgeon general, but Sanjay Gupta declined the honor. I guess he figured there were enough CNN personnel already on the White House payroll.
No HHS secretary, no top department heads at the agency, no permanent director at CDC, no surgeon general, and in charge of this flu emergency is a rather dense, but well-meaning secretary of homeland security who looks under her bed every night for fascists, neo-Nazis, Kluxers, and veterans returning from the wars who she believes will go rogue and join the militia movement.
Come to think of it, maybe if we told Napolitano that swine flu was a right-wing extremist plot hatched by abortion foes and anti-illegal immigration activists, she’d have the government whipped into shape to face this crisis in no time.
So Obama and his half-government seem to be doing all they can to both scare people to death and downplay the crisis. Nice trick if you can pull it off. But they aren’t, so it’s now time for plan B — and that’s “B” for “Blame the Republicans.”
The left-wing netnuts are getting very good at turning tragedy and crisis into a political football that bounces to their advantage. You will recall that the hurricane strength winds had barely died down in New Orleans when the liberal blogosphere erupted in anguish over the slowness of the federal government’s response to the disaster. And in the following days, a reason was found for the government’s tardiness: George W. Bush hated black people and wanted them to die.
Not being the most imaginative of folk, our lefty friends woke up this morning and, whether a result of coordination through their infamous “JournoList” or just because all liberals basically think alike anyway, decided to repeat their success with the Katrina campaign by blaming Republicans for the lack of preparedness by government.
The message is clear: Conservative Republicans want to kill you:
When House Appropriations Committee chairman David Obey, the Wisconsin Democrat who has long championed investment in pandemic preparation, included roughly $900 million for that purpose in this year’s emergency stimulus bill, he was ridiculed by conservative operatives and congressional Republicans.
But former White House political czar Karl Rove and key congressional Republicans — led by Maine Senator Susan Collins — aggressively attacked the notion that there was a connection between pandemic preparation and economic recovery.
Of course, the fact that all House Republicans and all but three senators voted against the stimulus bill, where Obey’s proposal was inserted, means that Republicans want all of you to die a horrible death, drowning in your own fluids as you burn up with fever and your loved ones look on in horror and dismay.
Well, they don’t come right out and say it, of course. But that is clearly the message being advanced on major liberal websites and blogs.
The only problem with this meme is that it’s not exactly true, as Don Surber points out:
If we follow this silly Democratic talking point, then for every dollar spent on fighting swine flu will cost taxpayers $874.44 using Nichols example.
What is more, Republicans were right. An emergency appropriation could be made after the fact — as we do every disaster be it hurricanes, tornadoes or blizzards. Is he saying by not appropriating money for these certain disasters that Democrats favor hurricanes, tornadoes and blizzards?
Nichols is just mouthing the White House words.
And another problem that may prove a bit more difficult for our lefty friends to explain away is that no one — no House members or senators from either party — got to vote on Mr. Obey’s preparedness measures. Did those bloodthirsty Republicans who want to see all of you dead defeat the forces of sweetness and light by cruelly pulling some arcane parliamentary maneuver to force the codicil out of the bill?
Not exactly. It appears that Mr. Obey’s preparedness spending was removed by Senator Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from New York. And even Schumer believed it didn’t belong in the stim bill:
“All those little porky things that the House put in, the money for the [National] Mall or the sexually transmitted diseases or the flu pandemic, they’re all out,” Schumer said.
And as Michelle Malkin points out:
There is actually one sane person at the Daily Kos. Probably won’t be there for long, but give this person credit for pointing out that the left-wing attacks on Republicans over flu pandemic funding are utterly ridiculous. The money they are shrieking about was included in a different bill passed by the Senate – and in fact, was funding requested by George W. Bush.
That funding was part of a $7 billion request from back in 2005, when government was gearing up for bio-terror and bird flu preparedness. Most Republicans supported that request and helped pass the omnibus budget bill in March of this year, which gave Mr. Obey his $900 million in pandemic preparedness.
So I’m sure you’re relieved to know that the GOP really doesn’t want to kill you — at least not with swine flu. But when the next crisis comes along, you can be sure that liberals will once again politicize it as fast as they can in order to prove that their political opponents belong either in a loony bin or on death row.