It's the flu season and breaking news is that the H1N1 ("Swine Flu") virus can be moderated with one inoculation. But the ever-present UR1HTR virus (also called "hate flu" or "Republican flu") has been spreading rapidly since November, 2008.
Heavily Infected Areas
The hate flu seems to thrive in the southern United States, with pockets found throughout the country, especially in rural areas. The Republican Party, especially its southern congressional delegation, is already suffering an epidemic. Being around those infected with the virus carries special risk, especially in the very young, the vulnerable, and the uninformed.
UR1HTR virus symptoms include irrational hatred of people of color (especially those in positions of power), Jews, New Yorkers and all things French. Other symptoms include loss of brain cells, aversion to facts --especially scientific ones, minimal empathy, frequent invoking of God and the Second Amendment, chanting of slogans, love of NASCAR and World Wrestling Federation, screaming, fear of change, hypocrisy, and the ability to tolerate Dicks -including Cheney, Armey and Morris -- without vomiting.
Secondary symptoms include demonizing "the unfamiliar" or "other," linear thinking, weird hats, hooded sheets in the closet, lack of humor (except for The Cable Guy, Dennis Miller, and stale jokes about a priest, a rabbi, and a black man).
Extreme symptoms include placing leg up to shin in pie hole ("You Lie!" Wilson) paranoia (Bachmann, Dobbs), pride in ignorance ("Africa is a country" Palin) and megalomania (O'Reilly, Limbaugh, Beck). All of these symptoms are often shown by those infected early in life.
In worst cases the flu causes dangerous behavior including sheepish following of idiots/idols, loud repetition of falsehoods despite indisputable facts, demonizing of those who are different or who disagree, and violence including tendency to harm others through gunfire.
Those infected with the UR1HTR virus tend to gather (Tea Bag parties, Sept. 12 rally, town halls) where the virus spreads rapidly and infects others through media enabling. Subgroups ("Birthers") often form. Disruptions (bitten fingers at town meetings) and Tourette-like statements ("He's an Arab") are common. Koolaid is usually copiously consumed.
Women with hate flu are often thin and blond, with loud whiny voices and secondary male characteristics (Coulter, Ingraham, Hasselbeck). Males often wear flag pins, often decrying same-sex relationships while displaying those tendencies (Rove, Craig, etc.)
While the UR1HTR virus cannot be yet eradicated, symptomatic relief can be achieved by removing: news organizations led by Rupert Murdoch or Roger Ailes, most talk radio, and websites like The Drudge Report. Virus victims have been known to make a fast recovery when something awful happens to them so that government intervention is needed, and if they travel to France and enjoy the snails.
At Special Risk
Children, older people, independents, family members of those infected, and those who: talk about religion excessively and /or are fundamentalists, have never left the country (or worse, the county), would benefit most from government programs, or do not have a college education (or have one from Oral Roberts, Bob Jones or any other institution with no SAT standards and a sexually-tinged name).
Those With Natural Immunity
Democrats, Union members, persons of color, atheists or agnostics, the over-educated, and travelers to more than 10 countries seem to maintain life-long immunity to the hate virus.
Boosters for Those Without Immunity
Washing hands, wearing surgical masks and coughing in elbow do not help. Quarantining those affected in southwest desert camps is considered unacceptable.
While there is no cure, the following seems to offer some protection against the virus (and may either exacerbate or moderate the symptoms in those who have already caught it): Michael Moore movies, Bill Maher, Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, NPR, Huffpost, salon.com, The Nation, following Arianna and Joan Walsh whenever they appear.
Please spread this information about the UR1HATER virus (Facebook, email, twitter, digg, reddit, etc.) to help stop the spread. It is especially important to thwart the virus before November, 2010.