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Trump’s Chernobyl? Media Wuhan Virus hysteria stokes public panic

Empower Wisconsin | March 12,  2020 

By Joy Pullman, The Federalist 

Since the coronavirus came on the horizon, media figures have been stoking panic, leading to mass shortages of basic health supplies, business travel cancellations, and market drops, all while the confirmed disease number hiked yesterday to around 0.000002 percent of the U.S. population.

So far, U.S. cases of the basic seasonal flu outnumber coronavirus cases by a factor of 45,000 (using federal stats for this year’s flu and real-time tracking of coronavirus confirmations). The flu season has even been especially bad this year, with between 20,000 and 52,000 deaths, compared to 29 so far from coronavirus.

According to infectious disease expert Dr. Paul Carson, who works for the North Dakota public health department, the flu appears to be about five times more contagious than coronavirus, which means containment is possible, although especially for the elderly coronavirus appears to have higher death rates. Especially for the young, however, the flu is still more dangerous than coronavirus in the United States, said the U.S. surgeon general Monday.

Yet did this year’s flu “pandemic” tank the stock market, get members of Congress on the House floor wearing gas masks, cause Americans suffering from the common cold and post-surgery pain to find no relief due to empty shelves at stores, and have the president stampeding to burn untold taxpayer dollars on “economic stimulus” amid decades of federal debt and deficits? No.

As Wuhan virus trickled to U.S. shores, U.S. media have hyped Armageddon to, well, a fever pitch. But so far, the actual health effects have been minimal, while the social and economic effects have been serious. What accounts for the mismatch between hype and reality?

A major factor is open media cheerleading for stock market crashes and economic downturns. Not only is it clear that corporate media can’t be trusted to provide accurate information about an issue of public concern, it’s clear they don’t care about public health or the economy. They care about destroying Trump, and if they have to ruin the U.S. economy to do that, that’s what they’ll do.

On March 9, the “Politico Nightly Coronavirus Special Edition” email’s subject line was “America held hostage by coronavirus.” “The world is drowning itself in hand sanitizer and suffocating itself with fear,” hyperventilated reporters Renuka Rayasam and Sudeep Reddy. Now, why might that be, journos? Well, consider a few examples of what passes for news about a potential public health concern that only appears to matter this much because of the negative effects it could have on a president the media hate.

Washington Post columnist Brian Klaas claimed in a March 9 column, “The coronavirus is Trump’s Chernobyl.”

Chernobyl was the explosion of a nuclear reactor in the Soviet Union. Naturally, the communist government hushed it up and thus people went on with their lives instead of evacuating areas contaminated with radiation. This caused an estimated 9,000 to 16,000 deaths across Europe plus 3.5 million radiation-exposure-attributed cancers, birth defects, and other serious maladies just in nearby Ukraine.

Read more at The Federalist.

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