From the NYT:
By ALAN COWELL OCT. 15, 2014
The authorities in Texas reported on Wednesday that a second health care worker involved in the treatment of a patient who died of the Ebola virus had tested positive for the disease after developing a fever.
The worker, who was not identified by name, had been “among those who took care of Thomas Eric Duncan after he was diagnosed with Ebola,” a statement from the Texas Department of State Health Services said.
Mr. Duncan, a citizen of Liberia, one of the three West African nations most stricken with the disease, died a week ago. …
The total number of people being monitored is now 125, health officials said, including 48 who have been watched for more than two weeks after coming into contact with Mr. Duncan before he was admitted to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital on Sept. 28. …
One nurse at the hospital, Nina Pham, 26, who helped look after Mr. Duncan is already being treated for Ebola.
I’m going to be a bore about this: we have had for the last 40 years an independent National Transportation Safety Board to investigate bad foul-ups and issue safety recommendations because you need professional experts who don’t have conflicts of interest. The NTSB.gov website explains:
In 1974, Congress reestablished the NTSB as a completely separate entity, outside the DOT [Department of Transportation], reasoning that “…No federal agency can properly perform such (investigatory) functions unless it is totally separate and independent from any other … agency of the United States.” Because the DOT has broad operational and regulatory responsibilities that affect the safety, adequacy, and efficiency of the transportation system, and transportation accidents may suggest deficiencies in that system, the NTSB’s independence was deemed necessary for proper oversight. The NTSB, which has no authority to regulate, fund, or be directly involved in the operation of any mode of transportation, conducts investigations and makes recommendations from an objective viewpoint.
The NTSB doesn’t investigate every car crash in the country, but it does look at larger disasters and try to figure out what we could do better next time.
We can all make up a list of spectacularly egregious border fiascos — Ebola Guy, the Boston Bomb Brothers, that Egyptian conman to whom the Obama Administration assigned the entire blame for Benghazi, and, oh, yeah, 9/11 — where the system failed the American public, where somebody with expertise, authority, and an independent budget should have looked at the system that let these jerks into the country. But there is no organized system, no National Immigration Safety Board to “conduct investigations and makes recommendations from an objective viewpoint.”
An official government agency issuing an official government report would be extremely useful in terms of media dynamics. For example, the Boston Bomb Brothers and their fellow Chechen “refugee” Ibrahim Todashev who was apparently involved in that ritual anti-Semitic triple murder in Waltham on the tenth anniversary of 9/11 would be a great example to consider how refugee status is granted and ways to improve the process.
When you look at how these guys got declared refugees, it’s just hilariously terrible: The Tsarnaevs are here because Uncle Ruslan was married to the daughter of a CIA heavyweight and Todashev was declared a refugee even though his dad reports directly to the mayor of Grozny who reports directly to Ramzan Kadyrov who reports directly to Vladimir Putin.
But, the sheer absurdity of it all means that it is completely outside the Overton Window of respectable journalism: Are you some kind of nut who thinks that CIA higher-ups sometimes pull strings? What is this, a conspiracy theory?
Similarly, the ongoing scandal currently being investigated by the FBI that the biggest operator of charter schools in America is a Turkish test-prep cult run by Muslim holy man Imam Gulen, who is holed up in the Poconos, partly at the behest of the same ex-CIA man who used to Uncle Ruslan’s father-in-law, in case his cultists who have taken over the Turkish police manage to take over all of Turkey, and now the cultists are using H-1B visas to bring in Muslim men who can’t really speak English to teach American children, and they have to kickback a big chunk of their salary to the cult … Well, that’s just ridiculous. Only conspiracy wackos would pay any attention to such a ludicrous story.
Now, all this wild stuff has been thoroughly documented in many highly respectable outlets (a lot of reporters would love to have an audience for this kind of thing). But it gets no traction in part because Americans have been trained that it’s low status to pay attention to anything that sounds like a plot, even bumbling, absurd ones like these.
But if there were a government report … Then it would be respectable to write about this stuff.