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Your Abbreviated Pundit Round-up

January 3rd, 2010, 04:01 am admin Leave a comment Go to comments

Saturday and it’s still 2010. Isn’t it over yet?


Democratic senators rallied around President Obama’s pick to head the Transportation Security Administration on Friday as new details emerged indicating that key lawmakers already knew when they voted in November to advance his nomination that he had mischaracterized a personal incident in his testimony.

Holy crap. They’re not folding. Maybe they actually learned something during the health care debate.

Michael Richman: The Redskins suck.

Bob Herbert: No, it’s the Jets that really suck. They fool you into thiunking they don’t, and then…

Brendan Miniter: Bob McDonnell, the GOP’s great hope.

As for the damaged Republican brand, one message voters sent with Mr. McDonnell’s election is that they don’t want the GOP to repeat its mistakes from the past decade. Mr. McDonnell seems to have received that message, saying that it was important for him to run on fiscal issues, because “we’ve got to hold the line on taxes and we’ve got to cut spending.”

Lindsay Beyerstein (The Nation): What’s next for health care reform?

Donald McNeil:

Although it is too early to write the obituary for swine flu, medical experts, already assessing how the first pandemic in 40 years has been handled, have found that while luck played a part, a series of rapid but conservative decisions by federal officials worked out better than many had dared hope…

For example, in the early days, they ignored advice to close the Mexican border and pre-emptively shut school systems. They released part of the national Tamiflu stockpile, but did not give it to millions of healthy people prophylactically, as Britain did. They ordered vaccine made with a 50-year-old egg technology rather than experimental methods. They bought adjuvants — chemical “boosters” — that could have stretched the first 25 million vaccine doses into 100 million, but did not use them for fear of triggering a backlash among Americans made nervous by the messages of the antivaccine movement.

See, it’s just like Y2K. Do a lot of work and it will turn out less than feared (and the work will help with ancillary things, like preparing for the next one, shoring up infection control and hospital surge capacity, and other things that can be used for any disaster.)

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