Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Why so mysterious about Ebola patients?

If one were to go to Central Casting to find that stereotypical authority figure whose omnipresent face is on television to tell the public there’s nothing to fear in the face of certain catastrophe, it would be Dr. Thomas Frieden from the CDC. Of course, that’s not to say we’re facing certain catastrophe. Far from it. The chances of any of us contracting Ebola is slim. However, our chances are increasing daily by the bungling of this crisis by our government.

Normally, in times like this when there’s the potential of a pandemic, citizens are given an abundance of information in an attempt to stop the spread of the disease. Ebola is different and it’s different for one simple reason. Its coming from Africa has made it a political hot potato.

Early on, before the disease ever reached our shores, Dr. Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organization, said, “We must be careful not to characterize Ebola as an African disease.” She said we needed to ensure that the “affected countries aren’t stigmatized and isolated.”

Of course, everyone knows what you do with a disease you can’t cure. You isolate it. Not this one. Over 150 people come to America each day from the three countries in Africa where the outbreak is most severe. Everyone from President Obama on down tells us that banning flights from these countries would not help and might even hurt. That makes no sense whatsoever unless one applies liberal logic. Dr. Frieden says it’ll “backfire” because banning people from going to these countries will cut off precious resources they need to fight Ebola. Dr. Frieden, no one’s talking about banning people from going over there. We’re worried about people coming in this direction.

He says we can never reduce the risk of Ebola spreading in America to zero. Well, guess what, Dr. Frieden. If we had banned travel before, like any country with common sense would, Ebola would not be in America right now.

But you have to understand where Thomas Frieden is coming from. This is the guy behind New York Mayor Bloomberg’s ban on smoking, trans fats and his attempt to ban large soft drinks and limit salt. The very essence of Frieden is control, so it’s no wonder that when a disease escapes the confines of Africa and comes here he wants to control all the information about it. His expertise is in manipulating the public.

There’s absolutely no reason why we shouldn’t know everything the CDC knows when it comes to those with Ebola. Frieden withheld everything about Eric Duncan when he came to America with Ebola. It was the news media who discovered his name, his flight schedule, where he’d been staying, etc. There’s no reason we shouldn’t have been told all that from the beginning. 

The CDC is worried we’ll panic but what does panic look like? It doesn’t look like hysterical people running the streets in front of Godzilla. If I knew I was on a flight with Eric Duncan or sitting next to him at an airport restaurant and I started having symptoms of a stomach virus I would immediately seek medical attention. Otherwise, I ride that illness out. If it’s Ebola and I wait three or four days, I’m dead. And I’ve also spread it to who knows who in the meantime.

Of course, Frieden still doesn’t get it. With the cold-hearted cadence of an Orwellian authority figure he refers to Eric Duncan as “the index patient.” He continues to obfuscate while a potential 55,000 carriers of Ebola per year stream into America.

Phil Valentine is the host of the award-winning, nationally syndicated talk radio show, The Phil Valentine Show.

1 comment:

  1. Bravo!
    Nailed the essence of the problem, as usual, Phil.
    Now if we could just end the out-dated tradition of the hand shake......