Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.
I think I’m where most sane people are on the coronavirus outbreak:
–Concerned but not panicked.
–Calm but not apathetic.
–Taking reasonable precautions but remaining skeptical of what all the purportedly “best experts” here in the United States are telling us about every aspect of their belated crisis management and response (especially on their pimping of vaccine development to prevent the disease).
Here are some plain, nonhysterical facts: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control is a bloated federal government agency with a long history of incompetence, fraud, secrecy, mission creep and shady alliances with both social justice causes on the left and private corporations on the big business right. The “deep state” of entrenched bureaucrats embedded in the Beltway bowels is alive and thriving at the CDC. The unelected elites who’ve occupied top offices at the public health-industrial complex are hostile to public scrutiny while clamoring for ever-ballooning budgets. Their recommendations have often been detrimental to citizens’ well-being and freedom.
And, yes, many of the scientists who work there are rabidly anti-conservative and anti-Trump.
It’s a brazen lie that President Donald Trump “slashed” CDC funding, which is being used as an excuse for the agency’s coronavirus unpreparedness. Cognitively impaired and truth-challenged Joe Biden made the claim during last week’s Democratic debate that these purported “Draconian cuts” put Americans at risk. But Trump’s budget proposal to cut some sliver of CDC fat has never been enacted, and Congress increased funding, instead.
At nearly $7 billion, CDC’s annual budget is more than 200% larger than it was two decades ago. On top of that, a shady big business lobbying group called Corporate Friends of CDC has raised hundreds of millions of supplemental dollars — which raises serious conflict-of-interest issues. In 2007, Sen. Tom Coburn’s fiscal audit of the agency discovered vulgar expenditures including CDC syphilis prevention funds spent to host a “safe-sex” event with a porn star, CDC HIV/AIDS prevention funds spent on a transgender beauty pageant, and $45 million in CDC funding spent on conferences featuring prostitutes, protests and beach parties.
Despite the flood of money, the agency been caught flat-footed on outbreak after outbreak. They squander untold millions on other health threats in favor of pushing gun control and nanny state hobby horses (TV violence, helmet laws, video games, anti-bullying campaigns and explicit sex education, for example). CDC has one primary job — Disease Control — but has managed to botch it without ever learning from past failures. Let me remind you of some of the CDC’s long history of royal screw-ups:
–The notorious 1976 swine flu vaccine scandal was catalyzed by mass hysteria whipped up by CDC junk scientists clamoring for more money; Congress obliged and nearly 45 million Americans were unnecessarily jabbed with a vaccine for a disease that had fizzled by the time the shots were ready. The vaccine resulted in an increased risk of developing Guillain-Barre syndrome — leading to muscle weakness and paralysis.
–In 1999, the CDC misspent $22.7 million appropriated for chronic fatigue syndrome and was investigated in 2001 for squandering $13 million on hepatitis C research.
–In 2000, the agency essentially lied to Congress about how it spent up to $7.5 million earmarked each year since 1993 for research on the deadly hantavirus. “Instead, apparently without asking Congress, the CDC spent much of the money on other programs that the agency thought needed the funds more,” The Washington Post disclosed at the time. The diversions were impossible to trace because of shoddy CDC bookkeeping practices.
–In 2009, the CDC recalled 800,000 doses of swine flu vaccine for children ages 6 months to 3 years after the products manufactured by Sanofi Pasteur failed potency tests.
–In 2012, the CDC’s main building housing infectious anthrax, SARS and monkeypox gases was discovered to have been leaking deadly pathogens due to a flawed engineered airflow system.
–In 2014, the CDC’s lackadaisical response to Ebola virus gave the greenlight to Patient Zero Thomas Eric Duncan and infected medical personnel to board commercial airlines while ill — exposing untold numbers of travelers to the deadly disease. Expensive isolation chambers that had been subsidized by taxpayers to the tune of $15 million sat buried in a Georgia warehouse.
–For the past few years, the agency has employed a fear campaign to induce Americans to get regular flu shots (formulated based on guesswork) using flawed statistics and despite international scientific conclusions that there is “no evidence” to support the CDC’s assumptions that the vaccine reduces transmission of the virus or the risk of potentially deadly complications.
–Just this week, the Informed Consent Action Network reported astonishing results from its lawsuit against the CDC to obtain scientific documentation for the agency’s claim that “vaccines do not cause autism” — specifically for the first seven vaccines given to your child in their first six months of life. CDC had stonewalled, and then finally produced 20 studies — 18 of which were irrelevant to ICAN’s public records request and two of which suggest that vaccines may indeed cause autism. In other words: The CDC is lying while continuing to smear vaccine critics as “conspiracy theorists” and public health threats.
As if to underscore my point about this agency’s misdirected priorities and rank political pandering, the CDC director this week found it more urgent to condemn Republicans as racist for accurately describing the origins of the virus from Wuhan, China, than to do his job.
Informed diagnosis: The “best people” — who have now been rewarded with more than $8.3 billion in new “emergency funding” — are not in charge.
Michelle Malkin’s email address is [email protected].
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