Thursday, June 16, 2005

Son, can you SMELL that, can you smell the mendacity?

The normally reasonable Johann Hari seems to have drunk the Indy Kool-Aid of America envy, joining the BBC in a habit of simply making up data to prop up a flawed concept.

Expat Yanks Robert Tumminello and Scott “Tiberius” Burgess notice especially poignant “vernal pools” of hateful invention:

«Mr. Hari immediately reveals himself to be one of the uncomprehending masses, severely misrepresenting administration policy with his claim that:

"If you are an organisation in Africa seeking a single dollar of US funds, you have to agree that - across your entire organisation - you will sign up to the evangelical agenda."

An evangelical agenda which, according to Mr. Hari, holds that "you must never 'promote promiscuity' by handing out condoms or vigorously promoting their use."

Mr. Hari needs to inform USAID, the primary administrator of American aid for Africa, as they've been consistently violating this evil no-condom policy - more so, in fact, than any organisation in the world….

…As a matter of fact, not only does the organisation support condom use, but, as the
New York Times reported in 2004 - in an article headed "Bush Backs Condom Use To Prevent Spread of AIDS" (seemingly missed by Mr. Hari) - donations of condoms by USAID nearly tripled from 1999 to 2004, making that organisation (again, the primary means by which US aid is distributed) the world's largest condom donor. Mr. Hari's description of a concerted administration policy to "assault and undermine the providers of condoms" is simply ridiculous.»

Scott also points out that USAID is the largest distributer of condoms in the world. He also points out that they have a policy of not funding abortion as a birth control method, something which is compatible with virtually every person’s view of the world unless they live in Europe and North America.

Hari, in an effort to laud the greatness of the holy capucha, the most virtuous and divine preservatif, simply cant lie quickly enough to not be caught out by a guy who holds down a real job and doesn’t write political tripe for a living. Never mind that those hideous results that show that the most densely Catholics parts of Africa are least likely to be have rapid and widespread communication of HIV/AIDS.

Robert finds the Beeb trying hard to form a Zappa cover band as a mother of invention:
«Standing next to [General] Pace, Rumsfeld said nothing to contradict or to embelish on any of that.

Well, he didn't until he appeared on BBC's Newsnight, when he SUPPOSEDLY told us the following -- according to the BBC web site:

Iraq 'no more safe than in 2003'

Now, what does that title and those introductory lines indicate to you? That's right, that Rumsfeld said those words verbatim. Indeed, when I first read this page, I thought, "Wow! He said what?"

Then, seconds later, realizing it is the BBC after all, and that they are only single stroke quotes, I went looking anyway for that exact phrase . . . which had led me to believe, based on the opening lines that followed, that Rumsfeld had said that. No good. It appears NOWHERE in the piece as a Rumsfeld quote.»
If the likes of the Indy and the BBC didn’t keep inviting people to shoot fish in a barrel, they wouldn’t. Readers can smell the mendacity.

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