If a nuclear bomb goes off near you, your cells are vaporized into a pre-molecular plasma from which you will never recover. You then become part of the cosmos from which you came. If you're not too close to the initial blast, and live through it, you can get the horrifying form of radiation sickness that causes physical visible manifestations and searing pain beyond description. The flu virus has got nothing on the bomb.
That's why I found the discussion on Real Time with Bill Maher so remarkable Friday night: Maher claimed that the Taliban was within 60 miles of the
capitol of Pakistan, Islamabad, and US forces were not overtly involved in counter measures to prevent a possible ultimate government takeover by these militia-terrorists who have repeatedly and directly threatened the US through their cohorts, Al Qaeda.
Yet the big story was becoming, and now is, that there are some reported outbreaks of a version of the flu virus in Mexico City that have elements of swine and bird flu mixed in. In fact, in a city of 20 million people, the largest on the planet, several dozen people have been said to have died from the flu, and several thousand people have the bug. The word "pandemic" is bantered around the media, and oh yes, of course, the drug companies are scrounging and scurrying to come up with a vaccine. There is money to be made in them thar shots! Let's remember the deaths of the pandemic in 1918 were from bacterial infections, for which there were no antibiotics. Shots wouldn't have helped then, they won't help now. Antibiotics will help with follow-up complications such as pneumonia.
Other remedies such as tamiflu and relenza can have worse adverse side effects than not taking them, and tamiflu,
"...the most commonly used drug in the fight against influenza, no
longer works against the dominant flu bug circulating in most of the United States, raising serious questions about how the nation might fare in a large flu pandemic, government health officials said." Yet these anti-virul drugs will certainly be hawked to anyone with the willing cash. What's really needed is a program of who should get, and who doesn't need, antibiotic protection, which can really save lives compromised by infection following a bout with flu.
Obama's got a lot on his plate, to say the least. There's the problem of the economy, or what is perceived as a huge problem by so many people around the world that they have changed their purchasing habits to further hamper economic growth and get out of the bottom of the current economic cycle downturn.
One of Obama's biggest advisers, Larry Summers, former Harvard President, is so interest-conflicted that one wonders how anything he does for or tells to Obama would possibly help anything about the economy.
Then our cool dude pres Barack has promised to repair the medical care system that's totally out of control-a big campaign pledge he made. That task alone would keep several experts busy for at least a year just to analyze, let alone come up with a plan to fix it--because unless you're ready to get the insurance companies out of the loop--Anthem, Blue Shield, Kaiser etc--you're not going to cut health care costs because the insurance companies are the bleeders of the system. Not to mention big pharma, which is a separate blog
post of its own. As the MC said in Cabaret, "Mony Money Money Money."
There's 2 big problemas. So picture now as Obama retreats from the limelight and back to the halls of the White House, and he gets briefed on the latest in international bogeymen--in private, classified, top secret!
And that's the biggest piece on his plate--Al Qaeda wants to nuke New York. Don't you think? Isn't that really their ultimate dream--to set of an atom bomb in the middle of Manhattan?And as every day passes, this possibility becomes more of a reality.
And Obama wants to solve the economy crisis, and he wants to make sure everyone gets proper health care without going broke in the process. But if the bad guys set off a nuclear bomb in New York, that would make the other hassles our president is faced with non-issues in comparison.
My dad has a friend who's made a lot of money in investments. He tells my dad there cold be a revolution in this country, because the poor people will rise up against the rich. After all, the poor people see all the nice cars and refrigerators that the wealthy people have, and they feel left out so they'll get their muskets and hide in the forest with the swamp rat while waiting for their big chance to take over. Like Washington when he beat the Red Coats.
My dad has some right-wing friends who like to say whatever comes into their brains, and since they are rich they think they know what they're talking about. Just like the pundits who claim there is no more racism in this country--it's a thing of the past. So where does the Southern Poverty Law Center get these statistics for hate groups and enclaves around the country?--my dad's friend should be concerned about the disenfranchised right-wing nuts who are part of militia groups who have, unlike "poor people," the wherewith all and contacts to attain real bad weapons and train others in their use. Then they go into neighborhoods or schools and show off what they know.
I'm all in favor of revolution, like Jefferson who said "Every generation needs a new revolution.” There should be one every few years--but without the guns. We have a ballot! A good revolution would get rid of the tax code, nationalize medical care for everyone, and overhaul the antiquated gread school curriculum to remove homework from the lives of otherwise fumnctional families. But poor people rising up like the Bolshevicks agains the Czar is a scary scenario only in that the mind who conjured it is so out of touch.
I remember a scary conversation I had with a friend some years back while we were sitting on a bench in Disneyland waiting for our children to finish one of the rides. Joe was one of those insiders as a kid -- well, older "kid" he was 25 --during the Vietnam War--he was a flyer, recruited as a cowboy pilot who could get into enemy territory and leave no tracks. He didn't even wear dog tags on his bombing raids which were all classified.
The events of 9/11 were huge and phenomenal--most of us can't really believe to this day what happened. Two tall skyscrapers and several other buildings were flattened by hijacked airliners commandeered by terrorists with nothing but box cutters and a knowledge of how to fly a plane.
Wouldn't the mentality, the mindset, behind that attack really be to want to blow up lower Manhattan? Isn't that the next plan on the docket? Isn't that why there haven't been any attacks since 9/11--because they lie in patience and preparation.
Isn't this what Obama knows is his biggest challenge--how to prevent such an attack? 3,000 people died on 9/11--what would be the cultural psychological effect of several million people dying in a nuclear event? What war would we engage in to avenge that scenario?
While we watch Obama gyrate about the economy, health care, and Afghanistan, we should know that in the dark corridors of his residence after the spotlight is off and the real light comes on, our president is busy trying to figure out how to keep us from being nuked. Otherwise, the rest doesn't matter, does it?
What--was Friday a slow news day? So let's worry about the flu! And tell Huffington Post to get back to work and stop jumping on the flu-panic bandwagon.