Rush Limbaugh’s latest bit of idiocy is a rant in which he insists that COVID-19 (a coronavirus) is a conspiracy to bring down Trump. He says the virus is just a common cold and only (only!) two percent of people infected by the virus will die. The fact that this man now has a Presidential Medal of Freedom makes that honor about as worthless as a doorstop in an open air market.
Sure, most people who get this virus will recover with no longterm ill effects. But while those people have the virus, they will spread it far and wide. They’ll be able to do so because they don’t feel all that bad. This is what makes this particular strand of the virus so dangerous. A virus that knocks you on your ass keeps infected people out of public places like shopping malls, sports stadiums, workplaces, nurseries, nursing homes, etc. But a virus that just feels like a little cold? Oh, that virus is gonna spread and spread fast. And, yeah, most people will be okay. But you know who won’t be okay? The elderly, the obese, and people with compromised immune systems and a history of health problems. Rush Limbaugh is nearly 70 years old, he’s been obese his entire adult life, he’s suffered from addiction and heart problems, and he’s currently being treated for Stage IV lung cancer, so his immune system is crap.
If Limbaugh believes this particular virus is no biggie, he should invite a few infected folks to come sit with him in his radio studio and talk about it.
No one should panic about this virus, particularly not in the United States. But we can’t dismiss it either and we’d better learn from it. Because if we can’t respond quickly to a virus like this one, a virus that is highly contagious and deadly in about two percent of known cases, then we’re in real trouble when a more dangerous virus arises. And it will.
Limbaugh is trying to rouse his band of merry idiots to outrage because the stock markets are falling as reports of the virus rise. Yeah, it sucks to see your retirement funds take a huge hit, but this is no conspiracy. This is what it means to live in a world where many of the items we use and wear every day are produced halfway across the globe. When people get sick in China, we feel the side effects in America. And if two percent of the Chinese work force were to suddenly disappear, you can bet it would have far-reaching and devastating consequences on the world economy.
So anyone who dismisses a fast-spreading virus like COVID-19 because it “only kills two percent” of the people infected, isn’t smart enough to talk to a room full of cats much less have his own radio show. Limbaugh is ignorant, dangerous, and reckless.
If we’re relying on statistics, Limbaugh is not likely to live through the next presidential administration. The survival rate for people diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer is less than 10 percent over five years. What does he care if he sows chaos and fear and disinformation? What does he care about global markets? He doesn’t. Limbaugh only cares about himself. And he has some nerve trashing the efforts of worldwide medical organizations while he takes advantage of the best medical treatments money can buy—treatments that most Americans in his situation can’t afford.
Limbaugh has been spreading his plague of hateful lies for too many years. I don’t wish anyone dead, but I damn sure won’t miss Rush Limbaugh when he’s gone.