Blunt Weighs In On Tardy Vaccine

In a story about the “regional and national political debate” related to the slow dispersal of the H1N1 flu vaccine, the St. Louis Beacon reveals more hypocrisy from our own Roy Blunt:

 “The onerous regulatory and legal environment in the United States has placed America’s most vulnerable in danger,” Blunt said. “The federal government has clearly failed to meet a basic responsibility to move quickly to ensure the availability of H1N1 vaccines.”

“Congress needs to be asking serious questions about why the vaccine isn’t yet widely available, even though we’ve known for six months that we needed to be fully prepared,” Blunt said.

The state Democratic Party swiftly shot back by noting that Blunt voted in June against a federal spending bill that included close to $8 billion to address the H1N1 vaccine issue. Blunt said at the time — and again this week through a spokesman — that his “no” vote was over other items in the bill.

When your response to any of our nation’s problems is always “no,” followed by a lecture on the virtues of deregulation, then it’s clear you haven’t learned anything from the past year. 

And it’s a bitch that those “no” votes sometimes come back to negate your criticism of people who are trying to solve a thorny problem, particularly one that involves producing and distributing a vaccine in a relatively short period of time. 

Come to think of it, the swine flu threat is one of the only problems not passed down from the previous administration.

Wait.  Where was Dick Cheney when this swine flu thing started?

7 Comments

  1. ansonburlingame

     /  October 30, 2009

    Duane,

    Well, it is only $8 Billion dollars. Why not throw it at the problem?

    Is it possible that some labs (that get paid to produce the vacine) could simply produce more vacine (and get paid for it). Oh, no. Our ability or willingness to “produce” has to be encourage by the government throwing more money at the problem

    Anson

    Like

  2. Duane Graham

     /  October 30, 2009

    Anson,

    The criticism of the Obama administration centered on the “outdated” methods of creating the vaccine. The argument defending the current methods is that they are “safer,” and thus more immune to tort claims. Apparently, Republicans want private manufacturers to use a more advanced process that will expose them to legal liabilities.
    And it is part of the government’s responsibility to “promote the general welfare.” What could that phrase mean, if not to oversee the manufacture and distribution of a potentially life-saving vaccine?

    Like

  3. janereaction

     /  October 31, 2009

    It seems fairly clear that the USA was behind the flu eight ball. It was first come first served, and we were not in the H1N1 line. Lots of other countries were ahead of us.

    Same situation with oil contracts for the past few years. The Chinese are buying producing properties around the globe, significantly with our dollars.

    Like

    • Duane Graham

       /  November 1, 2009

      I don’t disagree with that at all. Anson’s original objection seemed to be that there is a disconnect between government investment in the endeavour and the final product. I didn’t follow that.

      Duane

      Like

  4. ansonburlingame

     /  November 1, 2009

    To both,

    Do I understand you two? We are not buying oil contracts. Is that a government failure? Do we now expect government to buy our oil? Chinese are buying oil contracts with “our dollars”. How did they get those dollars. I believe we lent the dollars to them??

    Now Duane suggests “government investment in the endeavor” to produce H1N1. Does investment mean production? If not to whom does the government give the money to for such an investment? Why can’t private enterprise come up with their own capital? And what the hell, it is “just” another $8 Billion for “general welfare”, call it “shots” this time around. When and where do we stop.

    Anson

    Like

    • Duane Graham

       /  November 1, 2009

      Anson,

      The H1N1 is a public health problem, and if you remember the original point of the piece, it was to point out the hypocrisy of our congressman who basically argued that the government was ineffective in its handling of the problem, not that the government should not be involved. I.e., he voted against government funding to help alleviate the problem, then charged the administration with a failure to adequately address it. That’s utter bullshit, in my view.

      Duane

      Like

  5. ansonburlingame

     /  November 2, 2009

    Duane,

    And of course my point is, having failed to “handled the problem” (on the part of government) the solution is to throw more money at it by the government. Might there have been a reason for the original “problem” that was not financial in nature? Every time there is a “problem” must we always “get out our (empty) wheel barrow and ask the Chinese to fill it up?

    Anson

    Like

%d bloggers like this: