Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Today, Charles P. Pierce Gives The Dumbos What-For & Then Some

One of the great ironies of our time is Governor Piyush "Bobby" Jindal (R-LA) proclaiming that the GOP is D-U-M-B! That was before Governor Jindal opened his mouth about Ebola and dispelled all doubt about his IQ. Today, Charles P. Pierce — known as "Charley" in his frequent appearances as a panelist on NPR's "Wait, Wait... Don't Tell Me! " — is a snarkmeister in his takedowns of various and sundry Dumbo "experts" on Ebola hemorrhagic fever. Pierce did omit another Dumbo mental giant: Governor Goodhair (But No Brains) (R-TX) who went nuts when the first Ebola patient in the U.S. flew from Liberia to Dallas and ultimately died in a Dallas hospital. Goodhair toyed with declaring the entire State of Texas under quarantine until his staff whispered, "But, what about Iowa?" If this is (fair & balanced) Dumbo insanity (and inanity), so be it.

[x Esquire]
Your Daily Ebola
By Charles P. Pierce Snarkmeister

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I can't be the only one who thinks that the conservative nattering about Ebola is starting to reek of the same reckless pot-stirring that made the Terri Schiavo episode such a highlight of conservative intellectual activism. The difference, of course, is that Kaci Hickox is alive and well, and riding her bike all over Maine, and she's able to speak for herself, and if she wants to be Empress at this point, she's got my vote. But, among our brethren on the Right, I'm hearing a lot of the same apocalyptic wanking that frightened everyone at a Florida hospice back in the day.

And when you think of wanking, you think of the strong and steady hand of "Bobby" Jindal, the governor of Louisiana who, on Thursday, managed to dig up Irony and kill it again by warning people who have worked with Ebola overseas not to come to his state to attend...wait for it...a conference on infectious tropical diseases.

The letter from Louisiana officials to conference participants stated that the measures were being taken "out of an abundance of caution." Governor Jindal earlier urged an outright travel ban and accused the Obama administration of "malpractice" in its handling of the Ebola situation.

So says a twerp who's proud that he refused the FREE MONEY (!) available to his poorer constituents under the Affordable Care Act, and who presides over a poisoned state with an infant mortality rate worse than that of Russia, and roughly that of Kuwait. Checking in from the even more distant quadrants of twerp space is Congressman Paul (Lies From The Pit Of Hell) Broun (R-GA), who believes that the president may be set on infecting the public because he wants to kill off veterans in the VA hospitals. Broun also called Thomas Frieden, the head of the CDC, an "incompetent boob," which is not a combination of words that Paul Broun should idly toss around. Broun's solution to the Ebola problem? Sedition.

"The military should have told Obama, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and all the military leaders should have said, ‘Mr. President, this is not a military function, do not do this, we're not going to send our troops into harm's way,' because they have a responsibility to the troops and they could have told the president, ‘no, we're not going to do this,' and they should have."

Meanwhile, up in New Hampshire, somebody gave former senator McDreamy [Scott Brown] a copy of a medical dictionary, and he used it to monger a little dread about how the president is letting other diseases ride immigrants across our nation's unsecured borders, and I am not kidding about this.

In an interview with NH1, [Scott] Brown rejected the idea that he was running on "fear"—Ebola, he said, was the "No. 1, 2, and 3" issue on the minds of voters he talked to. "Carrying diseases doesn't need to be Ebola," said Brown. "but the whooping cough and polio and other types of potential diseases are coming through."

I say nothing lest I be accused of insulting the intellectual acuity of tree stumps.

And then there's Paul LePage, the human bowling-jacket governor of Maine, who is not the brightest bulb in the chandelier on his best days, and who doesn't have a lot of best days. Hickox and her bicycle are driving him crazy—less a drive, actually, than an easy seven-iron.

For his part, LePage appeared to be softening his stance on the mandatory quarantine. He told WGME in an interview, "I just want to protect Maine from that. That's all. And if the court says not to worry, hey, don't worry. I'm not going to go next to her."

That must be a relief.

There is no question that the Ebola reaction—as distinguished from the actual disease itself—is a fertile ground for Schiavo-esque fear-mongering. I keep waiting for the monks with the big spoons to show up again. Ω

[Charles P. "Charlie" Pierce is a sportswriter, political blogger, author, and game show panelist. Pierce is the lead political blogger for Esquire, a position he has held since September 2011. He has written for Grantland, The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Boston Globe Sunday Magazine, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Sports Illustrated, The National Sports Daily, GQ, and Slate. Pierce makes appearances on radio as a regular contributor to a pair of NPR programs: "Only A Game" and "Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!" He graduated from Marquette University (BA, Journalism).]

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