WASHINGTON — No matter what you call it, leading experts say the virus that is scaring the world is pretty much all pig. Six of the eight genetic segments of this virus strain are purely swine flu and the other two segments are bird and human, but have lived in swine for the past decade, says Dr. Raul Rabadan, a professor of computational biology at Columbia University. “Let’s be honest, it looks like a pig, and smells like a pig, so we might as well call it for what it is, the GOP flu.”
“It’s clearly swine,” said Henry Niman, president of Recombinomics, a Pittsburgh company that tracks how viruses evolve. “It’s a flu virus from a swine, and no matter how much lipstick you put on it there’s no other name to call it but GOP.”
Another reason the U.S. government wants to ditch the swine label is that many people are afraid to eat pork, hurting the $97 billion U.S. pork barrel industry. Even the experts who point to the swine genetic origins of the virus agree that people can’t get the disease from handling pork, they can only get it from Republicans.