On second thought, don’t panic

posted at 2:12 pm on April 30, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

With Joe Biden keeping his family off of public transportation and Barack Obama giving prime-time hygiene lessons, one might be forgiven for climbing into a bunker while waiting for the first third of Stephen King’s The Stand to unfold.  Instead, people can stand down from panic mode.  Scientists have begun concluding that the latest strain of the swine flu, or H1N1 for those too sensitive to pork, may in fact be less dangerous than normal flu strains we see every year:

As the World Health Organization raised its infectious disease alert level Wednesday and health officials confirmed the first death linked to swine flu inside U.S. borders, scientists studying the virus are coming to the consensus that this hybrid strain of influenza — at least in its current form — isn’t shaping up to be as fatal as the strains that caused some previous pandemics.

In fact, the current outbreak of the H1N1 virus, which emerged in San Diego and southern Mexico late last month, may not even do as much damage as the run-of-the-mill flu outbreaks that occur each winter without much fanfare.

“Let’s not lose track of the fact that the normal seasonal influenza is a huge public health problem that kills tens of thousands of people in the U.S. alone and hundreds of thousands around the world,” said Dr. Christopher Olsen, a molecular virologist who studies swine flu at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine in Madison.

That’s exactly what I wrote yesterday.  Apart from Mexico, WHO scientists haven’t seen excess mortality in infected people.  They’re beginning to suspect that a complicating condition exists there, either poorer medical response or another environmental component that creates more fatalities.

It’s still too early to dismiss the danger out of hand, and the lack of a specific vaccine for this strain makes response slower than anyone would like.  However, the amount of panic over the handful of cases worldwide seems all out of proportion, and perhaps nowhere more so than at the White House itself.  Clearly, they wanted a chance to show that they could handle a crisis, and either purposefully or accidentally blew this one into a crisis so severe that Americans had to be warned away from public transport.

The flu causes far too many deaths in the US and around the world, and those at higher risk need to take precautions against exposure.  Let’s keep the overall danger in perspective, though.


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Comment pages: 1 2

So I cancelled my cruise for next week for nothing?

Knucklehead on April 30, 2009 at 2:14 PM

What’d I say when this started?

Chicken Little-ism.

Either Obama is clueless or this was an intentionally hyped event.

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:14 PM

Now that we’ve sent some really good experts to Mexico, the reports are coming out less scary. Alot of the deaths were due to underlying conditions that had gone untreated.

That SHOULD mean the impact is less here. But I agree. We wait to see.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

So..so…I can eat bacon again?

lorien1973 on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

Only ir you were cruising in Mexico…

ladyingray on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

Skywise, this really isn’t an Obama event. This is global.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

Back to TIWYF web-site it is.

WashJeff on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

Either Obama is clueless or this was an intentionally hyped event.

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:14 PM

yes

redrock on April 30, 2009 at 2:16 PM

I don’t trust the government.

HornetSting on April 30, 2009 at 2:17 PM

I am glad Obama promised $1.5B last night for the flu, within 3 minutes of his infomercial.

Ironically it was the only time he thanked Bush and his admin, though lied when he said “I was part of that team” . Yeah Bambi – being the Dr. that you are and your voting record, I am sure the flu was priority #1 in Chi-town…

Odie1941 on April 30, 2009 at 2:17 PM

When the only voice of reason comes from this town, you know it’s time to chill the hell out.

MadisonConservative on April 30, 2009 at 2:17 PM

The body count has increased – there are now eight total deaths according to WHO, but snot-nosed punks like Blake will continue to bitch and moan.

corona on April 30, 2009 at 2:18 PM

Approximately 36,000 people die from the flu each year without much fanfare. Until someone tells me why this bug is different from the standard flu, I’m not going to panic until at least 36,001 people have died.

Mr. Pickles on April 30, 2009 at 2:18 PM

How many do you think have died of a heart attack?

ninjapirate on April 30, 2009 at 2:19 PM

The body count has gone up to eight according to WHO, but that won’t stop snot-nosed punks like Blake from whining like the little babies they are.

corona on April 30, 2009 at 2:19 PM

can I stop breathing into this paper bag now?

gatorboy on April 30, 2009 at 2:21 PM

“Cause for deep concern.” – BHO, last night concerning Swine Flu

Either Obama is clueless or this was an intentionally hyped event.

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:14 PM

yes

redrock on April 30, 2009 at 2:16 PM

Ditto.

bluelightbrigade on April 30, 2009 at 2:22 PM

this was an intentionally hyped event.

+1

gatorboy on April 30, 2009 at 2:23 PM

Why “panic” about this crap? As filthy as humans are, as little hygiene as is common, nowadays, I’m convinced that just about every human I come into contact with can kill me.

I’m used to it, by now.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 30, 2009 at 2:24 PM

This entire administration is an intentionally hyped event.

HornetSting on April 30, 2009 at 2:24 PM

I caught the flu this past year. It was really bad. Just the regular type, but it knocked me out in a way that I’ve not been down since I was a kid.

I am cautious about this situation, having just been through a real bout.

But Biden? Biden was nuts to say what he said. He’s a bad as the GOP guy who told his wife to take out the money from all the bank accounts.

Just because people are public servants doesn’t, obviously, make them smart.

I’m simply thinking a bit more about public events, etc. Nothing big…watching my habits.

Mostly, I felt reassured by a terrific show by John Bachelor. This flu responds to Tamiflu, if you start treatment within 48 hours.

So what I decided was that there’d be no fussing around. Am I sick enough? Is this a cold? yadda yadda.

If I get it, I’m in the doctor’s office right away.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:24 PM

Well Sebelius was confirmed yesterday for HHS, so we can calm down now…

Never let a crisis go to waste…

gridlock2 on April 30, 2009 at 2:25 PM

The media and government, can’t pass on anything that can be made into a crisis.

deadbackpacker on April 30, 2009 at 2:26 PM

gridlock2 on April 30, 2009 at 2:25 PM

Yes, yes, now, babies that are exterminated in the womb will be free of any swine flu symptoms.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 30, 2009 at 2:26 PM

This entire administration is an intentionally hyped event.

HornetSting on April 30, 2009 at 2:24 PM

+1

bluelightbrigade on April 30, 2009 at 2:27 PM

She’s OK to me, gridlock. I didn’t get the blocking of her, really. I presume it was some right-to-life deal, which I don’t agree with.

She’s not a strong leader. But I didn’t get the objection.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:27 PM

Approximately 36,000 people die from the flu each year without much fanfare. Until someone tells me why this bug is different from the standard flu, I’m not going to panic until at least 36,001 people have died.

Mr. Pickles on April 30, 2009 at 2:18 PM

With a pregnant wife, the flu itself bothers me, not the death rate, especially if it is easily transmitted.

Vashta.Nerada on April 30, 2009 at 2:28 PM

So using this Administration’s arguements, can we safely assume that nearly 100 Mexicans are dead simply because they didn’t wash their hands?

And to think that tourists have complained about the water for years…

bluelightbrigade on April 30, 2009 at 2:29 PM

They have closed a few school districts in Texas due to it. The Fort Worth district is huge and has hundreds of schools. They have also cancelled Mayfest which is a big event due to not wanting people to gather together. What do officials know that we don’t?
Paranoid thought…The government doesn’t want people gathering in large groups?

TXMomof3 on April 30, 2009 at 2:29 PM

Yep, on the second day of total PANIC, I said “Wolf, Wolf!”

Next time, when it may really be a disaster, thanks to BO and “don’t take the subway-Joe”, the world will yawn and say, yeah, right.

stenwin77 on April 30, 2009 at 2:29 PM

I don’t agree with you guys. This isn’t an Obama event. You got Egypt using it as an excuse to kill the livelihoods of Christians. That says it all. LOL*

(macabre humor, but…true)

It’s global.

We’re at the verge of a change with all the international travel, etc.

I just hope it turns out to be nothing ado. But I don’t think it was government hype, other than showing the public that they were on top of it.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:29 PM

Fort Worth sounds like it over-reacted.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:30 PM

So using this Administration’s arguements, can we safely assume that nearly 100 Mexicans are dead simply because they didn’t wash their hands?

And to think that tourists have complained about the water for years…

bluelightbrigade on April 30, 2009 at 2:29 PM

That number has been corrected to SEVEN DIED from Swine flu.

Meanwhile, in the skies over NYC, a 747 was spotted…

stenwin77 on April 30, 2009 at 2:30 PM

Sort of reminds me of the summer of 2001, when there was hype over shark attacks along the East Coast. Only, there wasn’t an unusual number of them and then there was a real “man-caused disaster”.

rbj on April 30, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Skywise, this really isn’t an Obama event. This is global.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

Yes it is. The US Government hyped the threat. Simultaneously telling us to wash our hands because we can’t possibly know or understand this new pandemic flu that comes from pigs but assuring us it absolutely can’t be coming from the pigs themselves so there’s no need to stop buying pork meat… Unless you’re in Egypt.

After the US Government sounded the alarm, the other government’s jumped in and took political advantage of it.

This is purely, purely a political response. Much like the Democrats response to Katrina.

C’mon, what President says “we should shut down schools and businesses if we think there’s an outbreak” when not ONE US CITIZEN has died from this supposed disaster flu?

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:31 PM

The body count has gone up to eight according to WHO, but that won’t stop snot-nosed punks like Blake from whining like the little babies they are.

corona on April 30, 2009 at 2:19 PM

Freak. I posted what has been widely reported in the media. Your hysterical response, was to call me a liar and demand an apology. Now, you have carried your hissy fit it to an entirely new thread. See a psychiatrist now.

Blake on April 30, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Only ir you were cruising in Mexico…

ladyingray on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

I was going to the Mexican Riviera on NCL. The people on those ships spray you down with disinfectant every time you turn around.

Knucklehead on April 30, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Approximately 36,000 people die from the flu each year without much fanfare. Until someone tells me why this bug is different from the standard flu, I’m not going to panic until at least 36,001 people have died.

This one originates from “swine”. The one that kills 36,000 average is just regular old human flu. That is why it is of concern as is the bird flu.

Socmodfiscon on April 30, 2009 at 2:32 PM

That’s exactly what I wrote yesterday. Ed

As usual, you are ahead of the game, Ed.

Christian Conservative on April 30, 2009 at 2:32 PM

again living in a 27/7 world people forget that somethings take time. we have had this flu for 7 days. Nothing in the lifetime of a flu virus. Mexico has been dealing with this virus for at least a month probably 2 months. which means it has had time to infect a larger amount of people.

We will see the same pattern here in the USA in the next 3 weeks. Stories like this post do a disservice because it makes people relex and take chances. Which will just allow the virus to spread more and ultimately cause more deaths.

unseen on April 30, 2009 at 2:33 PM

Sorry, skywise…..I simply don’t agree.

France cut off all flights to Mexico.

It’s not a US political-generated deal.

It was timely. It got Obama out of the corner on the torture issue. :)

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:33 PM

……And in other news, Obama introduces Pork Stimulus Plan to help the Pork Industry…..Murtha and Byrd first in line for pork bailout.

HornetSting on April 30, 2009 at 2:33 PM

Methinks the administration should re-read “The Boy Who Cried Wolf”.

CP on April 30, 2009 at 2:33 PM

At least, with the closing of public schools, the spread of Socialism will be somewhat delayed.

Silver linings … silver linings.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 30, 2009 at 2:34 PM

OT, but do you think that if this had been a big disaster in Mexico, and BHO just said to people, “Wash your hands.”, that Kanye West would go on TV and say, “Barack don’t care about Mexicans!”?

bluelightbrigade on April 30, 2009 at 2:35 PM

That’s what I said today, too, unseen.

We just have to take precautions and see where this goes. Mexico also didn’t see the deaths for 6 weeks or so.

I do hope that the WHO has racheted this up due to the contagious factor and NOT due to the fatality factor.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Approximately 36,000 people die from the flu each year without much fanfare. Until someone tells me why this bug is different from the standard flu, I’m not going to panic until at least 36,001 people have died.
This one originates from “swine”. The one that kills 36,000 average is just regular old human flu. That is why it is of concern as is the bird flu.

Socmodfiscon on April 30, 2009 at 2:32 PM

not only that but this flu is killing healthy adults aged 20-44. Those 36,000 that die every year are mostly very old, very young, or have surpressed immune systems like those that have aids,hiv etc. that is what makes this flu different. a 30 year old is not suppose to die from the flu but in Mexico they are.

unseen on April 30, 2009 at 2:35 PM

The State telling people to wash their hands. It’s pitiful, but for millions of Americans, I’m sure that they needed the State to so advise them.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 30, 2009 at 2:36 PM

We tend to think of disease reporting systems in all regions as similar. They are not. For instance, there is a difference between a death exclusively caused by influenza virus and a death in someone who has only been infected by it. Much of the clinical data is arbitrary to some extent and patient serological markers demonstrate only infection, not disease(symptoms or pathology). We’ve been conditioned to want conclusive evidence based on a 24/7 news cycle,..add to that some authorities enjoying the limelight, and chances of sober, objective evaluation get dramatically reduced.

a capella on April 30, 2009 at 2:36 PM

Darn. I was having fun taping my nose up, to look like a snout.

capejasmine on April 30, 2009 at 2:36 PM

Intentionally hyped for many reasons. Not only is it an excuse to throw money at,it can be used by countries to take away certain freedoms. I also think here in the U.S. the obamasheep will see their savior in action and learn to rely on him. Its a trust builder for Obama. Im not saying that is what it will do,I am saying that is part of why he is doing it. Fear is a strange emotion for people that have entitlement mentalities. When tossed in the water and drowning they grab for the nearest dinghy, but they never learn to swim.

canditaylor68 on April 30, 2009 at 2:37 PM

Darn. I was having fun taping my nose up, to look like a snout.

capejasmine on April 30, 2009 at 2:36 PM

*giggles uncontollably, despite feeling like hell*

HornetSting on April 30, 2009 at 2:38 PM

When tossed in the water and drowning they grab for the nearest dinghy, but they never learn to swim.

canditaylor68 on April 30, 2009 at 2:37 PM

I really really like that. Bravo!!! :)

capejasmine on April 30, 2009 at 2:38 PM

I do hope that the WHO has racheted this up due to the contagious factor and NOT due to the fatality factor.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:35 PM

you have to ask yourself why are the governments and wHO doing what they are doing yet saying what they are saying.

their actions do not match their words. Their words are saying no big deal, their actions are saying massive pandemic coming. Which is right? all I know is Mexico closed down the federal gov today, people in mexico have been told to stay indoors, not go out to eat, no movies, no soccer matches. that would be like the USA telling fopotball fans they can’t go to the games. How bad would it have to be for the gov to do that?

unseen on April 30, 2009 at 2:39 PM

You mean Captain Tripps isn’t coming to town?

I was hoping to get a right hand man spot with Randall Flagg.

loudmouth883 on April 30, 2009 at 2:39 PM

See? Kathleen Sebelius was the *perfect* choice for HHS! Problem solved immediately!

KS Rex on April 30, 2009 at 2:40 PM

I’m sure glad that I live on a ranch in CO., and the closest neighbor is 1/2 mi. away and I only go to town every 2 weeks or so.

thomasaur on April 30, 2009 at 2:40 PM

Darn. I was having fun taping my nose up, to look like a snout.

capejasmine on April 30, 2009 at 2:36 PM

You have to tape yours?

capitalist piglet on April 30, 2009 at 2:41 PM

Again, the thing I worry about with this flu is its coming from Mexico instead of China, and what that does to our usual efforts against the disease. The busted assumptions may be worse then the virus itself.

Sekhmet on April 30, 2009 at 2:42 PM

http://www.who.int/csr/disease/avian_influenza/phase/en/index.html

Phase 5 is characterized by human-to-human spread of the virus into at least two countries in one WHO region. While most countries will not be affected at this stage, the declaration of Phase 5 is a strong signal that a pandemic is imminent and that the time to finalize the organization, communication, and implementation of the planned mitigation measures is short.

I think it’s the vocabulary that’s messing people up. I *THINK* we’re are looking at a Pandemic in the pure sense of the word. However the severity of the actual virus is not strong enough to cause any real damage in countries with modern hygiene and healthcare standards… HOWEVER, looking at the plot points of infection, it looks like it may have reached Asia. We may get a mirroring of what happened in mexico over there.

Kai on April 30, 2009 at 2:42 PM

You have to tape yours?

capitalist piglet on April 30, 2009 at 2:41 PM

LOL Yup! The Henry Waxman look doesn’t come without some creative work with scotch tape.

capejasmine on April 30, 2009 at 2:43 PM

You have to tape yours?

capitalist piglet on April 30, 2009 at 2:41 PM

Poor piglet, this whole swine hate is really getting you down, huh? I toast you with a BLT.
:)

HornetSting on April 30, 2009 at 2:43 PM

Sorry, skywise…..I simply don’t agree.

France cut off all flights to Mexico.

It’s not a US political-generated deal.

It was timely. It got Obama out of the corner on the torture issue. :)

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:33 PM

Nope, sorry… all the responses have been “Hot potato” direct responses to the US’ pressing the panic button. (Mexico’s too). If you’ve got a “certified government agency” saying you’ve got tens of thousands of deaths from the flu, YOUR government is only playing it safe by cutting off support. It doesn’t matter that YOUR scientists have even properly analyzed the flu or that your death count is WRONG. Because, like they say, nobody ever got fired for buying IBM.

Perhaps you’d explain why Russia cut off all Pork meat sales from the US?

Perhaps you’d explain why the US says all Pork meat products are perfectly safe (recalling that no full analysis has been done on this flu yet).

Perhaps you’d care to explain why another political group is BLAMING the EVIL corporate pork farms for starting this hideous “28 days flu” which will kill us all?

No, this is mass world hysteria. Started by the Obama Administration.

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:44 PM

http://doihaveswineflu.org/

thphilli on April 30, 2009 at 2:45 PM

Note that the pathological liar, Blake, can never own up to its dishonesty. In another thread, you can see how this immature twerp could only come up with a juvenile sexual expression to answer my facts. It continues to whine about how it was mistreated, that is, how its lie was exposed. Keep it up. I promise to do my best to counter all the lies you, and your ilk, write.

corona on April 30, 2009 at 2:45 PM

No, this is mass world hysteria. Started by the Obama Administration.

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:44 PM

+100

Knucklehead on April 30, 2009 at 2:45 PM

Either Obama is clueless or this was an intentionally hyped event.

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:14 PM

I vote for unintentionally hyped cluelessness during an event.

Yoop on April 30, 2009 at 2:46 PM

If only there was an easy way to know if I had swine flu.

LastRick on April 30, 2009 at 2:46 PM

ONE US CITIZEN has died from this supposed disaster flu?

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:31 PM

We have not lost a SINGLE US CITIZEN yet.

Baby who died was Mexican, and brought across the border…. it also apparently had some already existing medical conditions.

But thats OK… The ONE is on the Job now… he will wave his hands, make a speech, and the epidemic will go away!

Romeo13 on April 30, 2009 at 2:46 PM

I was in San Diego last month. My kid got really sick with a flu bug. no energy at all. He just slept for three days and was fine. It could have been this strain but how would you know when the symptoms are all the same as any flu.

Its simply media – polictical hype. I bet congress will use this “fluffed-up crisis” to jam through anither spending bill to nationalize something.

AHHHHHCHEW, sniffle, sniffle, cough.

jbh45 on April 30, 2009 at 2:47 PM

But thats OK… The ONE is on the Job now… he will wave his hands, make a speech, and the epidemic will go away!

Romeo13 on April 30, 2009 at 2:46 PM

LOL! And he laid his hands upon them, and the kool aid drinkers became lame. And he laid his hands upon the porkulus bill, and made rich politicians richer, and more corrupt.

capejasmine on April 30, 2009 at 2:50 PM

corona on April 30, 2009 at 2:45 PM

Why don’t you give it a rest?

a capella on April 30, 2009 at 2:51 PM

Unless we’ve been reading different websites, I think the response from the Obama administration has been VERY MUTED.

The CDC/HHS issued a Public Health Emergency last Sunday, but I only heard about it because I check the USGov’s website on these things.

The news is giving us secondhand information and the picture is pretty muddled. I think it’s more of a people jumping to the wrong conclusions wrt both the severity and contagious nature of this beast.

-It’s the pig flu, but I’m not around livestock, so I’m cool.
-It’s from Mexico and that place is practically a 3rd-world country.

Basically that people are OVERSTATING the severity and UNDERSTATING the contagiousness of it.

IMO, I think this is going to be a big thing in the rest of the world, especially undeveloped countries. How it performs in western countries with modern medicine remains to be seen.

Kai on April 30, 2009 at 2:51 PM

This is a cautionary tale people.

The filthy liar’s administration has completely botched this. What happens when a real crisis emerges? The filthy liar standing at ground zero of some domestic terrorist attack pledging $3.5B to rebuild infrastructure? The terrorist-loving/Vet-hating head of DHS ignoring the threats around her?

This is just a taste of how totally inept and corrupt the filthy liar and his people are.

highhopes on April 30, 2009 at 2:52 PM

Hope and Change morphed into Hype and Scare

faraway on April 30, 2009 at 2:55 PM

Skywise, this really isn’t an Obama event. This is global.

AnninCA on April 30, 2009 at 2:15 PM

In the sense that CNN International needed a hot, fear-mongering story with which to pad multiple blocks of airtime, too.

Blacklake on April 30, 2009 at 2:55 PM

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D97SUKBO0&show_article=1

White House aide’s family likely has swine flu

It would be a hilarious irony and a PR nightmare if Obama caught it from his trip to Mexico.

Kai on April 30, 2009 at 2:55 PM

Either Obama is clueless or this was an intentionally hyped event.

Skywise on April 30, 2009 at 2:14 PM

It’s blowback from Katrina… no politician can risk appearing to be unprepared or lacking in response to cataclysmic events…
in other words, cowardice

max1 on April 30, 2009 at 2:55 PM

Energy crisis….

……… government caused.

Global warming/climate change hysteria….

……… government caused.

Housing crisis…….

……… government caused.

Economic crisis……..

……… government caused.

Auto Industry crisis….

……… government caused.

Health crisis over reaction….

……… government caused.

Anyone else see a pattern hear……?

What’s next………

……… Freedom of Speech crisis, 2nd Amendment crisis, Re-Education crisis………..

Seven Percent Solution on April 30, 2009 at 2:58 PM

Like my fellow wingnuts I would like to blame the Obama adminstration for this business but it is another case of the “Katrina” effect. The 24/7 news industry at CNN, Fox, etc Like my fellow wingnuts I would like to blame the Obama administration for this business but this is just another case of the “Katrina” effect. The 24/7 news industry at CNN, Fox, etc. pushed drama instead of science to bolster ratings and garner more advertising dollars. Anybody who knows anything about the flu could see that this flu was quite mild but reports, always mixed in with 1918 stories, caused a near panic. The Obama administration just put into play existing plans drawn up by the Bush administration to fight a deadly H5N1 outbreak.

unseen:

I can see that you are still stuck on stupid. It is obvious that you don’t know much about influenza and the cause of the high death rate in 1918

jerryofva on April 30, 2009 at 2:58 PM

They’re beginning to suspect that a complicating condition exists there, either poorer medical response or another environmental component that creates more fatalities.

Couldn’t be a poorer medical response. They have a state-run health care system. That’s the absolute best kind to have — Obama told us so.

Listening to the local news now: 3 new confirmed cases in AZ.

AZCoyote on April 30, 2009 at 3:01 PM

The swine flu to be renamed the Bush Flu in 5, 4, 3, 2…

faraway on April 30, 2009 at 3:02 PM

Note of interest.
on the govt’s pandemicflu.gov page, there was a tab that listed the WHO’s threat/level and the US Federal Response level. Yesterday, the WHO’s level was at 4 and the US Federal Response level was at 0. Today the tab showing the US Federal Response stage has been removed.

http://www.pandemicflu.gov/plan/federal/fedresponsestages.html

(All this stuff was started a couple years ago as prep for the Avian Flu threat. avianflu.gov points to pandemicflu.gov)

Kai on April 30, 2009 at 3:03 PM

drudge siren

faraway on April 30, 2009 at 3:03 PM

Couldn’t be a poorer medical response. They have a state-run health care system. That’s the absolute best kind to have — Obama told us so.

Listening to the local news now: 3 new confirmed cases in AZ.

AZCoyote on April 30, 2009 at 3:01 PM

Yeah, there are reports out of Mexico that patient Zero spent days going from clinic to clinic, but they could not figure out what was wrong… she was finaly hospitalized and died a day or two later…

Romeo13 on April 30, 2009 at 3:06 PM

WHITE HOUSE ISSUES HEALTH ADVISORY FOR OBAMA’S MEXICO TRIP

redrock on April 30, 2009 at 3:07 PM

The White House is issuing a health advisory to anyone who traveled on President Barack Obama’s trip to Mexico, after a member of the U.S. delegation came down with flu-like symptoms – and tests on that staffers’ family showed they are probably infected with the swine flu.

faraway on April 30, 2009 at 3:08 PM

But what if it MUTATES! MUTATES…!

Well, at least no one is talking about the fly over blunder or carbon tax or auto maker bankruptcies…

Wyznowski on April 30, 2009 at 3:09 PM

White House warns of swine flu on Obama’s Mexico trip

Nothing to see here…move along….everything’s fine…Joe, sit down and STFU.

Wyznowski on April 30, 2009 at 3:11 PM

This flu is racist

faraway on April 30, 2009 at 3:11 PM

Surprise…surprise.

Another slight of hand trick by Barry’s Assministration to divert attention from the Gov’t paying off losers 2nd mortgages.

Any news coverage of that, nope.

omnipotent on April 30, 2009 at 3:11 PM

Reminds me of the SARS scare back in 2003.

Sadly there will always be hypochondriacs who over-react to this kind of thing. Like my Mother and one of my brothers, who run to the doctor every time they have a runny nose. When I told them during the SARS scare that I was going to Hawai’i for 2 weeks with some friends, they tried to get me to cancel my trip. No way, said I.

On the way out there (we flew from Philly thru LAX) we saw exactly one person wearing a mask. One. And none the entire 2 weeks we were in the Islands.

Even then, my paranoid relatives made me stay away from them for a couple of weeks after I got back. Amazing.

Del Dolemonte on April 30, 2009 at 3:15 PM

I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop. There has to be something here about Socialized Medicine.

We all know only the government can take care of the Swine Flu epidemic as doctors don’t have the proper knowledge. sarc/

Nuts4koi on April 30, 2009 at 3:16 PM

It would have been very helpful, and still would be, if the Obama administration had a medical expert who was giving regular and informed briefings to the media, with advice to average Americans. This is how a competent administration would address issues of rumor and panic that always come with pandemics. But this

Instead, we’ve had Janet Naopiltano studying the situation, and seemingly more concerned with controlling the flu’s name; Obama telling us to wash our hands; and Biden telling us to not use subways and planes. Obama’s disorganization and incompetence is contributing to the public panic, doubts and conspiracy theories.

Loxodonta on April 30, 2009 at 3:16 PM

State of fear.

spmat on April 30, 2009 at 3:17 PM

It was the reaction in Mexico that was really over done.

The main problem though is crying wolf over every new discovery. Like saying some parts of Antarctica are losing ice without mentioning other parts are gaining.

pedestrian on April 30, 2009 at 3:20 PM

Well how do you like them apples, they have cancelled my daughters ball games for the rest of this week and saturdays too. Some kids sick with this flu, about 60 miles away in another school district. And they could be cancelled until further notice. And on the news this morning they were blabbing about how Alabama had dodged the bullet so far.

Alex Martinez on April 30, 2009 at 3:22 PM

But what if it MUTATES! MUTATES…!

Wyznowski on April 30, 2009 at 3:09 PM

ROFL!!! Well if people start growing pig ears, and snouts, and curly tails….and Obama was exposed….then I can only smile, and think…at least Bo the water dog, will have pigs ears to chew on. ;)

capejasmine on April 30, 2009 at 3:22 PM

State of fear.

spmat on April 30, 2009 at 3:17 PM

BINGO!

Romeo13 on April 30, 2009 at 3:23 PM

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