The CDC is Fundamentally Broken

Posted in Government,Government Incompetence & Waste,U.S. by Ryan on the October 17th, 2014
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is a fundamentally broken organization and plans should be underway now for the replacement of its Director and any other senior leadership involved in decision making during the response to Ebola in the United States thus far.

The abject incompetence evident in the non-response to the first confirmed Ebola victim in the United States has exposed the absence of capability and adequate planning to deal with a contagious and deadly disease of any variety.

As a result of the CDC’s ineptitude and inaction, 2 nurses have contracted the disease and hundreds have been unwittingly exposed.

The nature of this inaction and lack of awareness betrays fundamental and inherent flaws in the CDC and its leadership. This inaction is so profound, it cannot be fixed while maintaining current leadership. A lack of planning and subsequent scenario management shows that new leadership at the CDC, or a new entity entirely ought to lead the charge against any future incidents of Ebola within the United States.

Reza Aslan’s Deflection

Posted in War on Terror,World by Ryan on the October 3rd, 2014

I’ve seen a few people on Facebook post Media Matter’s edited clip from CNN where Reza Aslan berates the anchors for conducting a “stupid” conversation that could be defined as “bigotry.” Simply because they use the same term Mahrer uses (we don’t know, Media Matters doesn’t show Mahrer’s comments), or introduced it themselves, to identify issues prevalent in many or all Muslim countries as issues prevalent in many or all Muslim countries.

My initial comment was as follows:

Accusing people of bigotry is pretty serious. Aslan drops it without caution, apparently because of a difference in semantics in how to identify numerous Muslim nations through which several common issues are prevalent, but not exclusive across all Muslim nations.

He brings up the point about Somalia. Aslan’s rebuttal is that outside of this no Muslim majority countries have female genital mutilation issues, yet simply googling shows the practice is heavily prevalent in Mali and other Muslim majority countries. In Mahrer’s comments themselves he says that 91% of Egyptian women have been subjected to genital mutilation. All over into Asian Muslim countries it is still practiced. Imams on the Maldives have even recently called for it to continue. The nation he first references as a “Christian nation” that has a FGM problem in Africa is Eritrea. 50% Christian. 48% Muslim.

Religion doesn’t promote violence or peace? It’s what people bring to it? Well, in the last few years, an awful lot of horribly violent people have been bringing violence to Islam.

1 year ago, I wrote a blog post about some of the awful things going on around the globe just that week. Just that single week. Mass murder in a mall in Kenya. Hostages in gun battles in the Phillipines. Villagers massacred in Nigeria. Scores killed in a church bombing in Pakistan. A common thread connected all these events.

I don’t paint with a broad brush, but the brush I paint with thinks critically, is logical, is educated and realistic.

I grew up here in the DC area. I went to school with Muslims. I cut the grass for the Iraqi family in my neighborhood as a teenager, an Iranian family lives down the street. My last job had a recent grad that started working there who was Muslim. We had some fun chats about Islam and Mormons and Ramadan and so forth over the summer. I took the “Islam and the Gospel” class at BYU. Served a mission where the Ottoman Empire had been and a residual minority of Muslims remain. I have clear eyes on weeding out bad apples from good apples and assessing the big picture. I think everyone is best served by truth and honesty in observing facts as they stand with regard to the profound issues at play in so many Muslim countries, and what the common variable is again, and again, and again, and again.

Rather than address the elephant in the room and agree that people should embrace liberal values that ensure freedom for people to act and think as they will, [Aslan] hammers the semantics of using the term, “Muslim countries.” This does little to persuade me that he actually cares about these issues and really cares about seeing them solved in the countries they plague. He reluctantly admits to them, but seems more keen to emphasize that the hosts are skirting bigotry and conducting a “stupid” conversation because they identify huge swaths of Muslim countries as “Muslim countries.”

What exactly does Aslan thinks connects the countries with these issues? Race? Language? Economics? Or religion?