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October 25, 2009
Where's the Swine Flu vaccine, Barry?
The nasty bug has been detected in 46 states now, and is rapidly spreading to schools and workplaces. The president has declared a "national emergency" which is mostly a technical step; it allows federal and state resources to be mobilized to fight the epidemic.
But tell me this isn't a government operation. Jackie Calmes and Donald McNeil of the New York Times are reporting that despite the long lead time, the vaccine supply is inadequate:
President Obama has declared the swine flu outbreak a national emergency, allowing hospitals and local governments to speedily set up alternate sites for treatment and triage procedures if needed to handle any surge of patients, the White House said on Saturday.
In a typical year, flu kills about 34,000 Americans so we are not at a crisis level with Swine Flu - yet. But unless the government can figure out a way to boost the supply of vaccine, this may be a very ugly Christmas as people avoid malls and shops where a lot of people congregate, and do most of their shopping online.
Will anyone dare ask Obama why the shortage of vaccine? Not unless they want the "Fox Treatment."
Given the hoopla the administration presented their "plan" for dealing with the Swine Flu, you would think these little details like having enough vaccine for everyone who wanted it would have been taken care of.
And tell me that this isn't the same crew who lambasted George Bush for falling down on the job during the Katrina crisis?
Yes it is the same thing, my liberal friends. And your man is screwing it up.
Even the Times compares the snafu with Swine Flu vaccine with Katrina:
Federal officials predicted last spring that as many as 120 million doses could be available by now, with nearly 200 million by year's end. But production problems plagued some of the five companies contracted to make the vaccine. All use a technology involving growing the vaccine in fertilized chicken eggs; at most of them, the seed strain grew more slowly than expected.
Two hundred million doses by year end? And they project having only 30 million by the end of October? Also, as the story notes, they are doling it out by the several thousand.
Seems you're a touch short there, Barry. It's a long way to 200 million doses from the 30 million we'll have by the end of the week - or the 120 million you promised we'd have by this time. So congratulations, you're only 400% short in your projections.
Now some might be bold enough to call that rollicking incompetence. But how can we when you're so smart and able? Must be Bush's fault.
Tom Singer adds: