Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Modus Operandi 

1.) As disaster approaches, ignore all warnings. Make no preparations. Do nothing:
Health officials have warned for years that a virulent bird flu could kill millions of people, but few in Washington have seemed alarmed. After a closed-door briefing last week, however, fear of an outbreak swept official Washington, which was still reeling from the poor response to Hurricane Katrina . . . .

Thirty-two Democratic senators sent a letter to President Bush on Tuesday expressing "grave concern that the nation is dangerously unprepared for the serious threat of avian influenza."
2.) When disaster arrives, and your own studied indifference results in hundreds or thousands of needless deaths, exploit the tragedy to demand the new and draconian powers you have craved all along:
Raising fears of a deadly flu pandemic, President Bush said Tuesday that he is considering the use of military troops to impose a quarantine in the event of an outbreak . . . .

"I am concerned about avian flu. ... I've thought through all the scenarios of what an avian flu outbreak could mean," Bush said. "I'm not predicting an outbreak. I'm just suggesting to you that we'd better be thinking about it."

Drawing a lesson from Katrina, Bush suggested that he should have the authority to use federal troops to seal off an infected region in a pandemic, as well to help deal with natural disasters.

"It's one thing to shut down airplanes. It's another thing to prevent people from coming in to get exposed to avian flu," Bush said. "One option is the use of a military that's able to plan and move."
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