10/24/14

The Council Has Spoken!! This Weeks’ Watcher’s Council Results – 10/24/14

The Watcher’s Council


In remembrance of the soldier, Corporal Nathan Cirillo, who died in Canada this past week at the hands of a radical Jihadist. We also honor Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers for his bravery in taking down said Jihadist and saving untold lives.

The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match-up.

Babası oğluna bir bağ bağışlamış, oğul babaya bir salkım üzüm vermemiş (“The Father gave his son a vineyard, the son didn’t give a single bunch of grapes to the father.” – Turkish Proverb

“Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go.” – Hermann Hesse

“Alliances are broken from considerations of interest.” – Niccoló Machiavelli, The Discourses, 1517

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ES-rGPcBG_k/T4feezGECbI/AAAAAAAABPc/RkTNEfGXWtE/s400/Razor.jpg

This week’s winner, The Razor’sThe RazorKick Turkey Out Of NATO is a persuasively written essay that embodies the thoughts expressed above… it makes little sense to hold on to an alliance that really isn’t one. Here’s a slice:

Lord Palmerstone once noted that nations do not have permanent allies, only permanent interests. This statement assumes that a nation always acts in its own best interest, and this assumption is the basis for the realist school of international relations. Realists always expect national actors to do what is best for themselves. If an action does not benefit the nation in any particular way, or worse threatens it, then one cannot reasonably expect it to act even though one might think and others might agree that it is the right course of action. In international relations at least according to the realist school, there are no completely altruistic acts by nations or their actors.

I’ve been rooted in the realist school of international relations well before I got my degree in political science, having grown up while Henry Kissinger acted as Nixon’s national security advisor and later secretary of state under him and his successor Gerald Ford.Realists not only expect nations to act in their best interests, but regimes and the organizations constituting them to do the same. In statecraft realists aren’t surprised when regimes do what’s best for them even when it might compromise or damage others, but are willing to act in their own best interest when the opposite party acts in theirs.

Case in point: Turkey. Under the regime of Recep Erdogan for the past 12 years Turkey has been acting in the best interest of Erdogan and his ruling party the AKP. Erdogan is an Islamist in a nation where political Islam had been banned for decades after its re-founding under Kamal Ataturk. While Ataturk and the secularists saw Europe as a useful ally that would strengthen Turkey and their regime in the Middle East, Erdogan has instead positioned Turkey as the next Islamic Caliphate more in line with the Ottoman Empire of the 17th century rather than secular and Democratic Western Europe.

Perhaps the biggest interest Erdogan has besides the desire to remain in power is to avoid empowering the Kurdish minority within Turkey. Unlike the Palestinians, the Kurds have a much longer claim to their land stretching from northern Syria across southeastern Turkey, northern Iraq to Iran. One commonality between Erdogan and his secular predecessors has been the oppression of the Kurds in Turkey and their nationalist aims. The no-fly zone established in northern Iraq after the first Gulf War led to autonomy under Saddam and later the post-Saddam Iraqi government. Iraqi Kurds are as close to independent as Kurds have ever been, and their Syrian, Iranian and Turkish cousins recognize this.

From Erdogan’s perspective the decimation of the Syrian Kurds by the Islamic State (IS) is welcome. It weakens the Kurdish cause by reducing the number of Kurds in the region. Plus the Syrian Kurds were also strong supporters of the PKK, Turkey’s al-Qaida. From the realist perspective Erdogan will not act against IS on behalf of the Kurds unless there is an even greater, more pressing interest to do so.

And that’s the problem. Current American and European leadership is run by idealists not by realists. American and Europeans leaders simply do not understand why Erdogan and to more worrying degree Vladimir Putin act the way they do. To them bombing Kurds in Turkey instead of IS in Syria makes absolutely no sense just as annexing Crimea and dismembering Ukraine. They do not see the world the way Erdogan and Putin do, but realists do. Realists recognize that Putin and Erdogan will only act when the pressure applied to them is real and painful.

For Erdogan that pressure should include Turkey’s rejection from NATO and any possible future admittance to the EU under his regime. If Turkey acts in its own interests, so should the EU and the United States. The truth is that instead of being a beacon of secular Islam as Turkey once was, Turkey under Erdogan has become just another corrupt, Islamic Middle Eastern dictatorship with caliphate dreams. Turkey has condoned the rise of IS as well as backed other terrorist groups such as Hamas. It has kept a tight leash on the American base in Incirlik, preventing it from participating in the second Gulf War and in attacks on IS.

More at the link

In our non-Council category, the winner was Volokh Conspiracy’sCan ministers who make a living by conducting weddings be required to conduct same-sex weddings? submitted by Rhymes with Right. The piece examines the latest bit of bullying by same sex marriage advocates.

Here are this week’s full results. The Right Planet, The Independent Sentinel and Ask Marion were not able to vote this time out. None were affected by the usual 2/3 vote penalty for not voting.

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum and every Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere and you won’t want to miss it.… or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

10/23/14

Ebola Pandemic: Risks and Realities

By: James Simpson
Accuracy in Media

The Ebola outbreak has stirred worldwide concern—and panic in some quarters. It is by far the largest outbreak of the deadly disease in recorded history. The media have jumped on the story for its obvious headline value, but at the same time they have served us poorly by misreporting, minimizing or simply refusing to report this administration’s glaring failure to protect American citizens. So what are the facts, and what kind of response can we expect from official Washington?

Just the Facts

As best can be determined at this point, the first Ebola fatality was a boy of two from the town of Gueckedou, Guinea, who died on December 6th, 2013 following a brief illness. He infected other members of the family, who in turn infected relatives and a health worker. These victims, in turn, carried the disease to other nearby towns. It took time however, for people to realize what was happening. A World Health Organization (WHO) timeline indicates the outbreak was first reported on March 14th, 2014, after eight people died in the city of Macenta, Guinea. Both Gueckedou and Macenta—about 50 miles apart—are major trading centers in the heart of the Guinean jungle and are located near the border with both Sierra Leone and Liberia. By March 19th, 23 deaths had been reported—all from the same area—with 35 suspected cases.

By March 23rd, Guinea’s Ministry of Health reported Ebola had spread to the capital, Conakry, some 450 miles away. On March 22nd, the first Ebola death in Sierra Leone was reported. The 14-year-old victim died after attending a funeral for someone who had died in Guinea. Liberia reported its first victims on March 25th. By the end of the month there were a total of 81 deaths, including two in Liberia. Today the reported number of cases in Africa is over 9,200, with at least 4,604 deaths.

The original source for this outbreak is believed to be tainted fruit bat meat. So-called “bushmeat,” including bats, primates, cane rats, big cats, dog and other sources, is widely prized by Africans, and there is a major black market for bushmeat among African expatriates here in the U.S. But bushmeat is a vector for a host of deadly diseases, including Ebola, monkey pox, HIV, Marburg and others. Primates and other animals may eat fruit already partially consumed by infected bats and imbibe their saliva, or otherwise come in contact with bat saliva or feces. These animals in turn become disease vectors for other animals and humans. According to one extensive video report from a Vice News journalist on the ground in West Africa, bush meat is brought into the tri-border region from the surrounding Guinean jungle by hunters. It is then transported to markets in nearby Sierra Leone and Liberia. Thus, tainted meat can wind up quickly distributed throughout the region. This is a possible explanation for its rapid spread.

As shown in chart 1, both cases and deaths have grown exponentially. These are only the reported instances. There are likely many others that have gone unreported.

Ebola Pandemic - Risks and Realities - Chart 1 10232014

Chart 2 shows Ebola’s distribution by country. Despite the fact that it originated in Guinea, the growth of Ebola has been relatively linear in terms of the number of illnesses and deaths within that country. Sierra Leone’s caseload is growing fairly rapidly. Nigeria was recently declared disease free, but WHO has reported 20 cases and eight deaths there to date. The disease has also broken out in the Democratic Republic of the Congo–but this is apparently unrelated to the West African strain, based on genetic analysis. Liberia, however, has spun out of control.

Ebola Pandemic - Risks and Realities - Chart 2 10232014

WHO predicts approximately 20,000 cases of Ebola by November, a reasonable projection if the disease continues to follow its exponential growth path. WHO refuses to project beyond November, but following that exponential growth path to January would see about 100,000 cases or more. The CDC has projected 550,000 cases by January 20, but claims that actual cases have been underreported by a factor of 2.5. Adjusting for this discrepancy, CDC projects 1.4 million by January 20.

Epidemic in Perspective

While Ebola is a deadly disease with a mortality rate of 50 to 90 percent, this epidemic must be put in perspective. It has spread rapidly in these African countries because of the short supply of treatment facilities, which are substandard in any event, characterized by poor hygiene generally, and the ignorance among the general population about treatment and ways to avoid infection. For example, some believe that they will die if they go to a hospital. Some infected patients have even fled the hospital, often assisted by family members who then get sick. Others have blamed medical personnel for spreading the disease. In September, eight health workers were murdered by people convinced they were bringing Ebola into their village. Many believe the disease doesn’t even exist and thus take no precautions at all.

Ebola is not as easily transmissible as other more common diseases, some of which take many more lives. Influenza, the common flu virus, kills between 250,000 and 500,000 people worldwide each year, according to the World Health Organization. In the United States the range varies widely, but CDC has estimated that between 1976 and 2007 there were on average 24,000 influenza-related deaths annually. The 1918 flu pandemic, the grandfather of them all, killed 50 million people worldwide and 675,000 in the U.S.

The 2009 H1N1 “swine flu” pandemic was the subject of worldwide handwringing at the time. Ultimately, it did infect about 61 million Americans, with 274,000 hospitalizations and 12,469 deaths. Worldwide, it killed between 150,000 and 575,000 people, which is indistinguishable from regular flu season mortality—although it hit young children harder. Some people believed the whole episode was hyped to enable massive spending for vaccinations. Whatever the case, it did not live up to the dire predictions that motivated Western countries to shell out billions to create a vaccination for it.

However, it is Ebola’s gruesome symptoms and death rate that truly frighten people. While influenza kills many people every year, its death rate is about 0.1 percent. The 2009 swine flu pandemic had a mortality rate of 0.026 percent. Even the 1918 Spanish flu killed less than 2.5 percent of those infected. The latest Ebola epidemic was initially estimated to have a 50 percent mortality rate, but that has since been upped to 70 percent.

Obola

Under normal circumstances, there would probably be little to fear. But President Obama seems determined to bring the Ebola epidemic to the U.S., given the Obama administration’s jaw-dropping idiocy in handling the entire issue. It is almost as though they were living in an alternate reality. Consider:

  • Obama plans to import Ebola-infected patients from other countries to America for treatment at American taxpayers’ expense. The administration is keeping the southern border wide open despite at least 100 West Africans being apprehended there this year.
  • In addition to his utter ignorance about Ebola, Ron Klain has cited overpopulation as the world’s biggest problem, especially in Africa and Asia. He also makes the incredible accusation that America is not engaged in world affairs.
  • CDC Director Tom Frieden makes the incredulous claim that suspending flights into the U.S. would actually cause more infected people here—and tells healthcare professionals to “think Ebola.”
  • At the same time, he admits that screening in Africa has prevented 77 possibly infected individuals from boarding planes.
  • Airline personnel are supposed to take the temperature of any West African passenger showing signs of fever—increasing the risk of contact with infected bodily fluids.
  • Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell admitted, “there may be other cases, and I think we have to recognize that as a nation.”
  • Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson dismissed concerns over Ebola crossing the southern border, doubling down on former DHS chief Janet Napolitano’s claim that the southern border has “never been stronger.”

A credible dire prediction was recently made by General John Kelly, commander of U.S. Southern Command, who suggested that an Ebola epidemic in Mexico or Central America would create a real problem: “If it breaks out, it’s literally, ‘Katie bar the door,’ and there will be mass migration into the United States,” Kelly said. “They will run away from Ebola, or if they suspect they are infected, they will try to get to the United States for treatment.” He also said with certainty that “there is no way we can keep Ebola [contained] in West Africa.” General Kelly is making preparations for a possible outbreak in Central and/or South America. At least one person in government is thinking.

Finally, the Obama administration has sent—not 3,000, as they originally claimed, but 4,000—U.S. troops to assist in efforts against Ebola in Liberia. This will include 700 members of the 101st Airborne. They were supposed to be tasked with building special Ebola field hospitals to compensate for the inadequate facilities there. Recent reports, however, state that they will be in direct contact with patients. Despite this, they are not being issued any hazmat suits, just gloves and masks. Now Obama has called for the National Guard and Reserves to pack up for Ebola country.

It never stops!

Many mistakes were made in the handling of Thomas Duncan, the Liberian man who was Ebola’s first fatality in America. Before he was positively identified as infected, Duncan had exposed up to 100 people to Ebola. Forty-eight are still under observation. Two healthcare workers who treated him have since been diagnosed with Ebola. The hospital has closed its emergency room.

Consider the health crisis this one patient has created. Dallas, Texas emergency patients have fewer options now. With more cases, a nightmare scenario could arise where emergency care becomes unavailable to non-Ebola patients. This has already happened in West Africa. And despite CDC’s idiotic admonition to “think Ebola,” a healthcare worker returning from Nigeria coasted through, no questions asked.

Dr. Gil Mobley appeared at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on October 2, dressed in full protective gear with “CDC IS LYING!” emblazoned on his back. He did this to draw attention to the CDC’s incompetent handling of the Ebola crisis, saying they were either lying or grossly incompetent:

“For them to say last week that the likelihood of importing an Ebola case was extremely small was a real bad call. Once this disease consumes every third world country, as surely it will, because they lack the same basic infrastructure as Sierra Leone and Liberia, at that point, we will be importing clusters of Ebola on a daily basis. That will overwhelm any advanced country’s ability to contain the clusters in isolation and quarantine. That spells bad news.”

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and other prominent Republicans have called for a temporary ban on flights from infected countries of West Africa. They have been joined now by 27 congressional Democrats, but Obama says he won’t change his mind unless the WHO does. A majority of Americans want the bans. In a nod to the pressure they are receiving, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced this week that passengers from the three infected countries must come through one of five designated U.S. airports.

Dr. Michael Osterholm leads the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP) at the University of Minnesota. At Johns Hopkins University on October 14, he spoke plainly about the threat Ebola poses, and what we know about it—unlike the delusional pap we have been getting from Obama and Co.:

  • The more I study about Ebola, the less I know about it.
  • Reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled.
  • Everything we know about Ebola so far is based on a total of 2,400 patients from the past 24 outbreaks over 40 years. The longest set of generations has been five. (For reference, we are at 9,000 to 20,000+ patients, and we’re on generation 20 to 25 this time around).
  • People are never frightened by statements like, ‘I don’t know, but this is what I’m doing to learn.’ But they do get scared if you tell them A or B with certainty, and it doesn’t happen—or if dueling experts tell you A and Z simultaneously.
  • “We don’t know what will really work. We should try everything we can… I believe the only thing we can do today is continue to try the treatment bed approach, to try to do as much as we can to isolate infected individuals, and quarantine and so forth…we’ve gotta do what we can.”
  • It’s time to reconsider our response, and if we hadn’t been so dogmatic about things we didn’t know, that wouldn’t be so hard.
  • There’s no Plan “B”. If West Africa is a gas can that was waiting for a match, the rest of Central Africa is a gasoline tanker waiting for a match, and nobody anywhere has a Plan B…
  • I believe we can have an effective vaccine; but there’s a big difference between getting a vaccine, and actually how and where we’re going to make it, how we’re going to get it there, and who’s going to get it into Africans now…
  • We have a problem with couching things in certainty for which certainty does not exist…
  • Some Ebola patients don’t present with fever, ever…
  • Aerosols are created, and research has indicated that with Ebola, airborne transmission has been observed between laboratory animal species. We shouldn’t not tell people about this, because top Ebola virologists have studied this, seen it, and are very concerned about the possibility…

Did Dr. Frieden attend this meeting? No.

Weaponized Virus?

Experts believe that Ebola would be difficult to use as a mass bioweapon, unless the effort was undertaken by a well-financed state with the proper infrastructure. Even then, it would be difficult to infect more than a few people at a time, unless a truly airborne variant was created—a difficult task, according to experts.

But that does not mean nasty people won’t try. Cuban, Russian and Chinese doctors, nurses and “specialists,” have gone to Sierra Leone to “help.” More are on the way. You can be sure that among those “doctors and nurses” are bioweapons experts, anxious to get their hands on this new strain of Ebola. But they are not alone in seeing Ebola’s advantages. Sadly, there are others with demented visions for the uses of this disease. Some populate the American left.

ISIS and the Lunatic Left

In 2006, the Chairman of the Environmental Science Section of the Texas Academy of Science, Forrest M. Mims, III, was moved to report the following story. That year, the Texas Academy of Sciences gave its Distinguished Texas Scientist award to Dr. Eric R. Pianka, professor of ecology at the University of Texas. In his acceptance speech, Dr. Pianka said of humanity, “We’re no better than bacteria!” and recommended that world population be reduced by 90 percent through the use of airborne Ebola virus. He enthused about the killing efficiency of the virus, pointing out that it only took days for people to die, and concluded: “We’ve got airborne 90 percent mortality in humans. Killing humans! Think about that!”

The audience gave him a standing ovation. The journalist who originally reported this story contacted Professor Pianka by email sometime later:

“I pointed out to him that one might infer his death wish was really aimed at Africans, for Ebola is found only in Central Africa. He replied that Ebola does not discriminate, kills everyone and could spread to Europe and the Americas by a single infected airplane passenger.”

The monstrous Islamist group, ISIS, shares the lunatic left’s enthusiasm for Ebola. The group has suggested that suicide bombers inside the U.S. infect themselves with the disease, and once symptomatic, blow themselves up in crowded spaces like malls or subways. You have to hand it to them, they are nothing if not creative, but why do we observe so many leftists lining up on their side? This is a question that awaits an answer. Meanwhile, Judicial Watch reports that four ISIS members were arrested on the Southwest border around October 5.

There is one, and only one, silver lining in this looming catastrophe. Obama’s poll numbers are plummeting. The November 4 elections may become a referendum on his leadership. If so, it will be a complete rout. If genuine leaders replace these feckless Democrats and useless RINOs, perhaps they can at least put a roadblock in front of Obama’s agenda for the next two years. If not, Katie bar the doors.

10/23/14

Feds Scramble for Risky Vaccine

By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media

By failing to impose a travel ban, the Obama administration allowed a carrier of Ebola from Liberia into the United States, where he infected two nurses, one of whom was allowed by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to travel on a plane. But don’t worry. The publication Politico says the system “is working.”

The “experts” say they still don’t know how or why two nurses treating the Ebola carrier contracted the disease. So-called “revised guidelines” for handling Ebola have now been issued by the CDC. The pressure is on for an Ebola vaccine.

This is an old story that deserves investigation and comment. Was the “system” working back in the 1970s when hundreds of people got neurological disorders and some died from a swine flu vaccine before it was withdrawn?

The Politico author, Harold Pollack, is a self-described “liberal health-policy wonk” who believes that Obamacare “will save many thousands of lives every year.” Perhaps that colors his thinking on how the Obama administration has put our lives at risk.

Mary Schiavo, a CNN aviation analyst and former inspector general for the Department of Transportation, is not a policy wonk, but she knows a lot about flying in and out of countries and the risks that go with air travel. She notes that just one Ebola case in the U.S. resulted in almost a thousand people being monitored for possible exposure to the virus.

Speaking common sense, she added, “If we leave our borders [open] and don’t have any restrictions on non-essential travel from Ebola countries to the United States, obviously, we will be a country of choice for that, and if one person causes us to hunt for a thousand, just think of those numbers, as they multiply.”

But Harold Pollack, writing in Politico, tells us that the system is working now and was even working during the swine flu scandal of the 1970s.

Here’s how he puts it: “Almost 40 years ago, the CDC suffered public humiliation when it was perceived as having bungled a massive vaccination campaign for a Swine Flu epidemic that didn’t materialize.”

So this was just a “perception,” not something having to do with reality. It was just bungling.

I decided to go back in time and investigate this “perception” about bungling.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the CDC’s swine flu vaccination campaign resulted in more than 500 people developing Guillain-Barre syndrome after receiving the vaccine, while 25 people died.

The CDC says Guillain-Barre syndrome is a rare disorder in which a person’s own immune system damages their nerve cells, causing muscle weakness and sometimes paralysis.

The New York Times reported the number of dead at 30.

The Washington Post said the federal government ultimately paid more than $90 million to hundreds of victims.

But there is just a “perception” that the CDC blew it, according to Pollack.

Pollack, in the same piece, praises Fox News anchor Shepard Smith for using his show to denounce “irresponsible” coverage of Ebola.

Pollack’s piece is worse than irresponsible; he insists that the Ebola threat is overblown yet ignores the fact that in the swine flu controversy of 1976 the public health establishment manufactured an “epidemic” for the purpose of scaring people into getting vaccinated. Many people listened to their government and got sick or died.

In that case, the CDC Director, Dr. David J. Sencer, was fired. The CDC museum is named after him.

In the case of Ebola, CDC Director Tom Frieden keeps his job while Obama appoints a political fixer to manage the effort, in an attempt to save his political party from outrage over allowing Ebola to gain a foothold on American soil.

But Pollack protests: “Ebola is not ‘Obama’s Katrina.’” The record shows that the first patient ever diagnosed with Ebola on American soil came during the Obama administration, as a result of a deliberate policy to help “fledgling democracies” in West Africa, according to CDC Director Frieden.

That’s politically correct language for giving black Africa special access to the U.S., and putting their interests ahead of America’s.

It didn’t have to happen if the administration had been making it a priority to protect the American people.

“There will be further infections, perhaps other challenges and blunders,” Pollack goes on. “But America has seen worse. HIV/AIDS has killed more than 600,000 Americans, not to mention tens of millions around the world.”

This is a fact that cannot be disputed.

What he neglects to point out is that AIDS was, and is, politically protected because of who it infects—mostly male homosexuals, who constitute major funders of the Democratic Party.

The CDC reports, “Men who have sex with men (MSM) remain the group most heavily affected by HIV in the United States. The CDC estimates that MSM represent approximately four percent of the male population in the United States but male-to-male sex accounted for more than three-fourths (78 percent) of new HIV infections among men and nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of all new infections in 2010 (29,800).”

In Atlanta, where the CDC is based, gay bath houses still remain open and help spread the disease.

To make matters worse, The Huffington Post ran an article titled, “Can We Make Gay Bathhouses Cool Again?” and asks whether more of these “sex dens” can reopen.

Rather than address this insanity, Pollack uses his Politico piece to attack “conservative politicians [who] have consistently opposed major public health efforts in HIV prevention…” What these conservatives have said is that the lifestyle that spreads the disease ought to be discouraged, in the same way the federal government argues against smoking cigarettes that shorten one’s life, and kill.

Instead, the male homosexuals who finance and run the gay lobby, and who are at increased risk for HIV, hepatitis B and other infections, are now demanding the “right” to donate blood.

Meanwhile, showing complete disregard for public health, the Obama administration allows state experiments with “medical” and recreational marijuana to proceed, despite the documented link between marijuana and mental illness. Colorado health officials are now fearful of marijuana-infused candy, called “edibles,” being dropped into kid’s bags this Halloween.

Democratic Party money-bags and hedge fund operator George Soros, who finances the drug legalization movement, is largely to blame for this debacle.

But back to Harold Pollack, who is described as a regular contributor to The Washington Post’s Wonkblog section, a place where intellectuals are supposed to pontificate on important issues of the day. His credentials are impressive, but he seems to lack common sense.

Now that Ebola has been allowed in, there is an additional danger that he clearly doesn’t want to talk about—that the public health establishment will use the fears it has generated among the populace to try to stampede people into taking a risky Ebola vaccine.

According to the CDC, human testing of an “investigational vaccine to prevent Ebola virus disease” is now beginning. The so-called “fast-tracking” process is underway. Perhaps this was the intention all along.

As Barbera Loe Fisher of the National Vaccine Information Center argues, “A logical conclusion is that some people in industry, government and the World Health Organization did not want the Ebola outbreak to be confined to several nations in Africa because that would fail to create a lucrative global market for mandated use of fast tracked Ebola vaccines by every one of the seven billion human beings living on this planet.”

It looks like the CDC was much faster in approving human trials of a vaccine than in stopping Ebola from coming into the U.S. in the first place.

In addition to the 1976 swine flu debacle, there were several vaccine scandals involving children during the Clinton administration. A hepatitis B vaccine was withdrawn because it contained a toxic substance, and a vaccine against diarrhea was withdrawn because it, too, was dangerous to children.

In addition to the renewed push for an Ebola vaccine, a “crash” program to develop an HIV/AIDS vaccine has been underway for decades.

An HIV/AIDS vaccine sounds like a good cause. Billions of dollars have been spent by Bill Gates—and American taxpayers—on the program. But what if they get this one wrong, too? And what if a mandatory AIDS vaccine causes HIV/AIDS in millions of healthy people, many of them children and the elderly?

Whether the mandatory vaccines work or not, they will most likely be covered under Obamacare.

10/22/14

Watcher’s Council Nominations : ‘You Usta be My Girl’ Edition

The Watcher’s Council

http://www.theblaze.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/600x399151.jpg

The president hasn’t been invited to do too much campaigning for his fellow Democrats this year. In fact, they have pretty much treated the idea of him making an appearance on their behalf like the president was suffering from Ebola.

One of the rare exceptions was Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, who’s seeking the governor’s seat in Maryland. He thought it would be a great idea to have the president as a headliner at a campaign event to gin up black turnout. Instead, the largely black crowd in Maryland streamed for the exits while the president was still reading his speech to them off of the teleprompter.

The story was so embarrassing that Facebook actually blocked the link to a Yahoo news story about what happened like this:

And anyone attempting to post the story on their own Facebook account got this message:

This week’s edition gets its title from the variation of the title of an old O’Jay’s tune that was undoubtedly echoing in President Barack Hussein Obama’s head as he watched the crowd walk out on him and remembered happier days. They did usta be his girl (or another word I could think of), after all, but some of them are apparently getting tired of the same old song.

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

This week, The MidKnight Review, Changing Wind.Org, Blazing Cat Fur and The Pirate’s Cove earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (mandatory, but of course it won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6 PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out on Wednesday morning.

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members, while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week…

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter… ’cause we’re cool like that! And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!

10/20/14

Forum: Why Do You Think Obama’s Actions On Ebola Have Been So Ineffective?

The Watcher’s Council

Every week on Monday morning, the Council and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum with short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture or daily living. This week’s question: Why Do You Think Obama’s Actions On Ebola Have Been So Ineffective?

The Independent Sentinel: Mr. Obama is ineffective in handling Ebola because he sees everything as political. He doesn’t do anything for the right reasons.

Everything is done for political reasons with the goal of manipulating the public.

Mr. Obama has trouble making decisions. He’s a political coward. He’s so afraid of what people will say or how it might affect his political agenda that he can’t seem to do anything effectively. When he finally does act, it’s too little.

He has politicized every agency. Agencies are no longer doing what they are entrusted to do. Agencies we used to respect are now failures because they are working on the leftist political agenda.

Obama’s a political animal without the usual moral strictures.

He is always a day late and a dollar short and will continue to be for the next two years.

Simply Jews: Frankly, it is hard for me to blame the current POTUS in a situation like this.

The whole heavy and creaky government juggernaut is not a creation of the last POTUS but of many decades of out of control growth, decay and increasing inefficiency.

Besides, vigilance and preparedness is not something the government institutions are known for – in any country of this world.

I am not a natural born optimist, so in my opinion, things will get much worse before everyone in the health system will get a handle on what is exactly the right thing to do and stop doing stupid things. This is, unfortunately, the human way of learning.

JoshuaPundit: Honestly? I don’t think he cares about anything but the politics. Ron Kain is simply a partisan hack operative who can be relied on to toe the party line and keep things as buried as much as possible.  Dr. Thomas Frieden was a little too obvious and kept tripping over his own stupid tongue, so the regime wants him out of the spotlight.

Two things, BTW that very few people are discussing. First, the connection between the appearance of Ebola and other infectious diseases like Enterovirus D68(AKA EV-D68) and the president’s open borders policy. EV-D68 has already killed half a dozen Americans and there are currently over 500 cases in hospitals all over America, particularly in areas where the White House shipped illegal migrants without any in depth health screening from Central America, where there has been a major outbreak of the disease.

And second, given previous actions by this president, the racial aspect. I would happily be wrong about this, but I have a feeling that if Ebola was endemic in Ireland or Poland rather than West Africa, not only would there be a strict travel ban in place already, but I doubt we’d have 3,000 U.S. troops in Dublin or Warsaw exposing themselves to infection.

Laura Rambeau Lee, Right Reason: President Obama never fails to put politics ahead of everything else, especially when there is a good crisis to manage. CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden’s inability to convince us that a travel ban is not necessary to prevent others from bringing the virus here only helped to fuel the hysteria of a possible epidemic in America. Whatever happened to erring on the side of caution, at least until we know exactly how the two nurses in Texas contracted Ebola from Thomas Eric Duncan?

Dr. Frieden couldn’t sell the Administration’s talking points. The media has been relentless in its coverage and furthering the hysteria. Caving to political pressure President Obama appointed political insider Ron Klain as his “Ebola response coordinator”; a man with no medical experience or credentials. Presumably they believe he will do a better job with the talking points than Dr. Frieden. It’s not about getting control of the situation; it is about getting control of the narrative.

On a positive note, the CDC policy of contact tracing seems to be working. Today (Sunday) is day 21 and we have not heard of any of Mr. Duncan’s family members or other contacts, or any other health care workers who were in contact with Mr. Duncan, developing symptoms to indicate they contracted Ebola.

Hopefully we have seen the end of this latest crisis.

The Right Planet: ONE WORD: POLITICS! The Obama Administration handling of the Ebola issue is not just ineffective … it’s criminal. Let’s just apply a little common sense here and stick to the who, what, why, where, when and how.

Shall we?

We have a deadly virus called Ebola. We know viruses can mutate, and often do over time. There are several species or genus of Ebola, from what I understand–namely Ebola Zaire, Ebola Sudan, Ebola Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Ebola Bundibuygo (Uganda). I find the regional nature of the Ebola species rather intriguing. I would assume the deadly virus is quite virulent, and is able to adapt to a wide range of environmental factors, considering the outbreaks have steadily increased since 1976, and across numerous regions.

There had been a rather linear and steady increase in Ebola deaths since the first case appeared in South Sudan in 1976. But Ebola deaths have increased dramatically in 2014. Fatalities caused by the Ebola virus steadily began to rise during the month of May, and then a dramatic and alarming increase in Ebola deaths began in mid-July 2014. The concern now is there could be an exponential increase in deaths if the Ebola outbreak is not contained.

But I’ll leave all that to the epidemiologists and infectious disease experts … which brings me to President Obama appointing Ronald Klain as the “Ebola Czar.”

Are you kidding me?

Without even going off on a rant about the whole unconstitutional nature of the “czar” regime, one would think the president would appoint an expert in epidemiology with an extensive medical background. This is not the time for a “revolutionary change agent.” Ebola is a disease. The appointment of a extreme-left political hack is nothing more than Obama employing his former debate coach to help manage his public relations in order to protect his precious political image, when the focus should be on preventing a possible pandemic.

One thing I’ve heard from some medical experts is the Ebola virus is being spread because of the “opening up” of travel within western and central Africa. So, would it not be logical to listen to the medical experts and restrict travel in the affected and effected regions? It’s not like the travel bans would be permanent. It makes no sense to me that a patient infected with Ebola must be quarantined here in order to prevent others from becoming infected, yet the administration refuses to quarantine Ebola at its point of origin, in western Africa–which is the only real way to isolate the virus, that I’m aware of.

Up until now, the Ebola virus was isolated to Africa. But now, the virus has killed a Spanish nurse and a man in Texas. Will we have new species of Ebola now? Like Ebola Spain and Ebola Texas? The consistent minimizing of serious threats by the president screams to me that he is far more concerned about his firm hold on power than he is about doing the right thing. Banning travel in western Africa is not a “racial issue.” Ebola is no respecter of race; it will kill a white man just as fast as it will kill a black man. But, apparently the only person Barack Obama listens to is … Barack Obama.

 GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD: Unbelievably Jay Vee.

Selecting an organizational partisan hack (no matter how great at organizing) shows 44 and his posse are all politics all the time. Cats like General PAce (Retd) from the Marine Corps or even somedobby like former TN Senator Bill Frist (who by happy double chance is a doctor AND has been to West Africa bunches of times) would maybe might be more better.

It’s like the longest running gag on Jack Ass – and we the people are the punch line.

The Glittering Eye: They’re only ineffective if you believe there are real material risks posed by Ebola in this country. If you think that the only risks are psychological or political ones, what he’s been doing have been effective. Under pressure to “do something”, he’s committed troops to West Africa, presumably to build hospitals without staff or equipment. They certainly don’t have the training to treat patients or even handle dead bodies.

That’s how I interpret the appointment of Ron Klain as “Ebola czar”. His job is clearly to keep the story tamped down until after the November elections to minimize the damage it might do to Democratic chances of holding the Senate.

Well, there you have it!

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