Friday, October 17, 2014

Obama can't "Philosophical"-ly Have It Both Ways on Ebola Travel Restrictions

After meeting with several public health officials yesterday, Obama reiterated his policy of not implementing travel restrictions from areas of Africa where the Ebola epidemic is growing out of control.

Mr. Obama made the following statements  that don't stand up to critical analysis:

I don't have a philosophical objection necessarily to a travel ban, if that is the thing that is going to keep the American people safe. But the problem is is that in all of the discussions I've had thus far with experts in the field, experts in infectious disease, is that say travel ban is less effective than the measures that we are currently instituting--that involve screening passengers coming from West Africa...

...If we institute a travel ban instead of the protocols that we put in place now, history shows that there is a likelihood of increased avoidance. People do not readily disclose their information. They may engage in something called broken travel, essentially breaking up their trip so that they can hide the fact that they have been to one of these countries where there is a disease in place. And as a result, we may end up getting less information about who has the disease, they are less likely to get treated properly, screened properly, quarantined properly, and as a consequence we could end up having more cases rather than less...
The President, an individual with two Ivy-league degrees and skilled in the art of rhetoric, should know well that those statements open him up to being accused of having it both ways.  With his statement he concedes that infected (and possibly infectious) individuals "may engage in something called broken travel, essentially breaking up their trip so that they can hide the fact that they have been to one of these countries where there is a disease in place."

Mr. Obama would have us believe that once a travel ban is instituted, an infected individual will use 'human cunning' to evade the travel ban and get to a treatment facility in the United States.  As if the act of a travel ban brings out the creative-evasive thinking in infected individuals.  His critical-deficient thinking makes no provisions for realizing that the 'human cunning' exists even without the travel ban.  Infected individuals have every incentive now to creatively circumvent the screening process in a country like Liberia.  Using cunning like:

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

implementing a travel ban is inconvenient to the health-care workers in those countries who want to come home to their families. Why should the government deny them that opportunity if they are not sick. If they are sick why would they choose to come home to pass the virus to their family? National Security is the only fret here and as the president and many experts agree, a ban will not stop such a motivated individual. Carl from Ohio

November 6, 2014 at 9:08 AM  
Blogger Porkopolis said...

Carl:

"Why should the government deny them that opportunity if they are not sick."

Because there's a difference in being infected and infectious.

We only have the capacity to determine the latter; and reasonable caution should be taken with healthcare workers that we know have been in direct contact with infectious patients.

November 6, 2014 at 1:16 PM  

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