October 27, 2014

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The Week’s Most Contagious, Courageous, and Outrageous Headlines

Craig Spencer, a volunteer physician for Doctors Without Borders, will go down in history as the missionary who brought the Ebola virus to New York City. He is the Johnny Appleseed of Ebola in the Big Apple.

After weeks spent volunteering in Guinea”€”where an estimated 440 healthcare workers have already contracted Ebola despite American authorities”€™ blanket assurances that the lethal virus is extremely difficult to transmit”€”an asymptomatic Spencer returned to NYC on October 17. Upon his return he was still infected with a case of wanderlust, as he reportedly rode two different Manhattan subway lines, visited a Brooklyn bowling alley, jogged along Riverside Drive, ate at a meatball shop, and hailed Uber cars to and from Brooklyn.

On Thursday, though, he tested positive for the Ebola virus. He was placed in isolation at Bellevue Hospital, where he reportedly kept “€œlecturing the staff about proper treatment,”€ which couldn”€™t have been very reassuring to staff members, seeing as their lecturer somehow slipped on a viral banana peel in Africa and became infected.”€œBetter to be paranoid and alive than dead and gullible.”€

“€œBetter to be paranoid and alive than dead and gullible.”€

In mid-September, Barack Obama had delivered the following comments at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta:

…I want the American people to know that our experts, here at the CDC and across our government, agree that the chances of an Ebola outbreak here in the United States are extremely low. We”€™ve been taking the necessary precautions, including working with countries in West Africa to increase screening at airports so that someone with the virus doesn”€™t get on a plane for the United States. In the unlikely event that someone with Ebola does reach our shores, we”€™ve taken new measures so that we”€™re prepared here at home.

That “€œunlikely event”€ has happened, yet authorities and pundits continue to dismiss any apprehension among the citizenry as fear and paranoia rather than an awakened survival instinct.

“€œBeing on the same subway car or living near a person with Ebola does not in itself put someone at risk,”€ New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said at a news conference Thursday evening.

New York news anchor Errol Louis went so far as to smarmily imply that so long as city residents don”€™t pick up feces or mucus and “€œeat it,”€ they should be fine. Again and again, the trembling human sardines packed into New York City were lectured that this is not an airborne virus and it is nearly impossible to catch.

Perhaps it depends on how one defines “€œairborne.”€ According to the World Health Organization, Ebola can be transmitted when:

…virus-laden heavy droplets are directly propelled by coughing or sneezing (which does not mean airborne transmission) onto the mucus membranes or skin with cuts or abrasions of another person.

According to this 2012 study, a strain of Ebola was passed from pigs to macaques “€œwithout direct contact.”€ And according to a 1995 study titled “€œLethal experimental infections of rhesus monkeys by aerosolized Ebola virus“€:

We…demonstrated aerosol transmission of Ebola virus at lower temperature and humidity than that normally present in sub-Saharan Africa

Hmmm…what environment on Earth would have lower temperatures and humidity than sub-Saharan Africa? Oh, right”€”New York City in the fall.

“€œDoctors Without Borders,”€ indeed. The feds”€™ slack response may be directly related to that without-borders thing. Either they are hopelessly inept and untrustworthy, or they are deliberately permitting both a demographic and viral infiltration. Americans were assured that the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 would not substantially alter the nation’s demographics. That was either a severely misinformed promise or an outright lie. This Ebola crisis is already far worse than was promised only a month ago. Better to be paranoid and alive than dead and gullible.

Lee Aronsohn, co-creator of the sitcom Two And A Half Men, has signed a deal with ABC to help write and produce Totally Illegal, a comedy about a rural Canadian woman who slips into the USA without papers and finds refuge with a totally legal multigenerational Mexican-American family. As everyone knows, this is the standard scenario for illegal immigrants to America. As not nearly enough people know”€”or are willing to articulate”€”most Hollywood producers can afford to cloister themselves from the downsides of illegal immigration.


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