Having taught a new method of critical thinking for leadership and communication courses where the students were aspiring researchists and lawyers, I have to say I agree with your outline of fallacy. When research methods begin to resemble Debate 101, stupidity has reached new heights. Sensible people aren't automatically rigorous or ethical people, and if they don't understand the liability of position and policy, they resort to some pop science version of what "critical thinking" is, and propagate policy that looks a lot like, well, bad sportsmanship, as you described.
Maybe it's because the common, everyday flu kills more people worldwide than the swine flu. Seems we always have to have a 'crisis' going on somewhere for those in charge to be happy. Personally I think it was all a plot implemented by news agencies in order to bolster their rates and revenue.
The problem I have with the article is that in making the case against denialism, he is lightly blowing off opposition to scientific ideas. In large part, I agree with the point, but in a few places throughout, he's kind of saying, "I believe this, so those guys are denialists."
His editor needed to go through that article and pull that stuff out.