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Today's newspaper details the UN list of donations to help in the disaster in southeast Asia. The liberal American Press has cried for days about our lowly $350 million pledge of contributions thus far. How interesting that the hot beds of leftist socialism-- Germany and France have ONLY pledged $27 and $57 Million respectively!! Keep this in mind as these arrogant bastards bring their charges about the United States falling far behind their enlightened example or when their radical skin heads protest the next meeting of the World Trade Organization! I love liberalism... it means "You're free to think as I do!" The bottom line-- put your money where your mouth is! (Actually , a nice escort mantra!!)}(





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For a start the $350 million is not an equivalent amount as the figures already given by most nations. It includes long-term redevelopment aid rather than immediate (ie up to 6 months) rescue and immediate reconstruction.


Germany has already indicated that it will give more once the needs have been assessed (as has France) so the comparison is with the initial $35 million. Neither figure takes account of the central EU donation to which Germany is a main contributer. If you take international comparisons, the USA is number 8 on the list by per head of population. On a list using the international standard of proportion of Gross Domestic Product, it is number 10. By that standard France has given less per head but marginally more of its GDP (.00313% France, .0031% USA) France consistently gives three times more development aid although neither meets the UN target of 0.7% of GDP. France gives 0.41%, Germany 0.28% and the USA half that at 0.14% but a third of that is in credits to buy armaments from US manufacturers and about half the total goes to Israel and Egypt, not the most needy of nations.


The total EU government contributions for immediate relief roughly equals that of the USA which is a mixture of short and long term aid. Sweden has given seven times the amount per head and eight times the GDP compared to the USA.




Which all goes to show that the right in the USA is not only stingy but mean minded.

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>I love liberalism... it means "You're free to

>think as I do!" The bottom line-- put your money where your

>mouth is! (Actually , a nice escort mantra!!)}(






As opposed to conservatism, which states that you are free to think as Rove, Rxush, Hannity and O'Liely tell you to think, otherwise you are a heartless Godless traitor to the Fatherland.

“On the fields of Trenzalore, at the fall of the Eleventh, when no living creature may speak falsely or fail to give answer, a question will be asked. A question that must never, ever be answered: Doctor.....WHO?????"

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Guest msclonly

Really stupid!


These kind of accusations are totally stupid.


Has your Intellegence Dept or Wise Board of Advisors ever made a llst of DONATIONS or aid sent to victims, when there is a major disaster in the U.S.?

We have had some very recent major disasters with Hurricanes, earthquakes, flooding, fires, 9/11, etc. How much have these generous countries sent to out victims? Do they really have room to whine, or is it just the liberals and their Press, that make derogeratory remarks?


Donations and aid are a voluntary act of charity, but are being expected as mandatory from the U.S.


We have come to the aid of the Europeans (France, Germany, as an example) numerous times in cases of Wars and natural diasters.

Even the war in Yugoslavia couldn't be handled without our help. Or how about the countries in Africa, where they have closer connections.


Apparently, the amount of money we are spending in the Middle East doesn't count in their minds.


There is a time to stop feeling guilty and manipulated by the press and 24/7 TV networks!




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RE: Really stupid!


In fact, in some really big catastrophes in the U.S. foreign governments HAVE offered help. It's rarely needed, because the U.S. is big enough and rich enough to take care of its own needs. However, we've accepted help from Canadian firefighters and utility workers during big wildfires or following hurricanes or ice storms. We've accepted similar help from Mexico during emergencies along our southern border.


When catastrophe strikes in a small or poor country, the situation is different, because often they simply don't have the resources to be able to cope with the situation. The Indian Ocean tsunami is a case in point. Many of the countries affected, like Sri Lanka, Somalia or the Maldives, just don't have the ability to handle a calamity of this size. (To be honest, if something like this happened to one of the coasts of the U.S., I think America would be hard put to handle everything itself.) Some other countries that are larger and more prosperous, like India and Thailand, have been able to deal with the disaster mostly with their own resources. India, in fact, has been able to provide military, monetary and other assistance to neighboring Sri Lanka. Even in relatively poor nations far away from the situation, like Brazil, tons of food, clothing and medicine, and lots of money, are being collected for the victims. Where some people get the idea that only the U.S. is involved in providing aid and assistance is simply beyond understanding.


But the bottom line, honeybuns, is that if the U.S. wants to swagger and preen as the only superpower left on Earth (the result, according to Republican theology, of Ronald Reagan's personal crusade against godless Communism) then it has to accept the responsibilities that go with the title. That means helping less fortunate nations in times of need. Not only is it the Christian (and Muslim and Jewish and Hindu and Buddhist) thing to do, it's the American way. We're the good guys, remember? The country whose "Greatest Generation" united in purpose and saved the world from savagery and darkness?


Another way to look at it is "noblesse oblige." To those to whom much is given, much is expected. The U.S. has more, far more, than any other nation in the history of humankind. That alone creates an obligation to the rest of humanity. Loving thy neighbor as thyself doesn't apply just when it's convenient, or when your neighbor is easy to like. It's a full time, 24/7 obligation. It's not always easy to practice, but that doesn't mean you can turn your back when your difficult neighbor's in need. And many of our neighbors are now facing a greater need than they've ever known, or than virtually any of us ever could have imagined.

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RE: Really stupid!


The European Union and its member states have so far pledged a total of 436 million euros [$590 million] for the south Asian disaster, but that figure is likely to rise substantially, EU officials said Tuesday.


The European Commission, giving an updated overall aid figure, said the headline sum included 23 million euros from its own funds while the rest came from the 25 EU countries.


A commission aid official said the EU executive itself has a further 52 million euros [$70 million] in an emergency budget which it can draw on, while there is 221 million euros [$300 million] in an EU budget which can also be accessed, although only with the consent of member states and the European Parliament.


"There will be a substantial further funding decision fairly soon," said the official, Simon Horner, adding it was "very likely" the commission will seek to spend a "substantial proportion" of the 221 million euros.




In addition to the above, the UK government has pledged to at least match public donations to the Disasters Emergency Committee of 12 charities. This is likely to be at least $100 million. Drawing down on the 52M euro emergency budget will mean the EU will have given double the amount Bush has pledged.


The Swiss and the (very generous) Norwegians are outside the EU but have pledged $315 million. This takes the amount pledged or intended to be released from European governments past the $1.3 billion mark.

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>Since I wrote the above, the German government has announced

>it will be increasing its commitment from $27 million to $680

>million. That's 9 times the USA in GDP terms and just under 7

>times the amount per head.


Of course the number of aircraft, ships, supplies and misc. help the United States is sending means nothing to you. No, to you we are doing nothing. Londonbear, you make me sick. No matter what we do it isn't enough. What are you doing to help?

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>Of course the number of aircraft, ships, supplies and misc.

>help the United States is sending means nothing to you. No, to

>you we are doing nothing.


You're absolutely right about this. And there's a simple reason for it: the people here who are screaming about how terrible the U.S. is and how great and caring and loving the Europeans are don't actually give a shit at all about the victims of the flood.


They care about one thing and one thing only: attacking George Bush and promoting their self-hating need to talk about the U.S. as though it's the root of all evil.


The dead bodies in Sri Lanka and India and Indoneisa are just props they are exploiting - just like everything else is - to attack George Bush and the U.S. This obssession with counting who is in the lead in aid-giving - as though it's a fucking horse race - is just outright morose and sick and reveals just how corrupt and deceitful their feigned concern for the victims is.


Londonbear, you make me sick. No

>matter what we do it isn't enough. What are you doing to



I'll tell you what he's doing. He's coming to a gay prostitution site and repeating the same stupidity over and over - Europe is the eptiome of all that is Good and Loving and Caring (which is why they have a history so full of Goodness and Love and Care) and the U.S. is the root of all evil.


Doing that doesn't help the victims any. In fact, it doesn't help anyone. What it does is make HIM feel good that he gets to parade himself around as a concerned person. And that's all he cares about - making himself feel good.


You're right. It is truly sickening.

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Your pretendident couldn't be bothered to cut his vacation short to address the tsunami victims. He had to be cajoled into it.


Your pretendident made a token pledge of assistance that was a pittance compared to what the rest of the world was doing. He had to be embarrassed into doing the right thing.


This isn't about Bush hating, but it certainly illustrates why he has been the worst president in American history. Compassionate conservatism indeed.


I will give him credit though for getting his Poppy and a real President, Bill Clinton, to handle this for him.

“On the fields of Trenzalore, at the fall of the Eleventh, when no living creature may speak falsely or fail to give answer, a question will be asked. A question that must never, ever be answered: Doctor.....WHO?????"

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Kofi vacations while people drown


>Your pretendident couldn't be bothered to cut his vacation

>short to address the tsunami victims. He had to be cajoled

>into it.


Here's the proof - not that you will process it - of your Bush-hating sickness, and of the fact that EVERYTHING that drools out of the mouth of people like you has NOTHING to do with intellectual honesty or constructive critique and everything to do with your hatred and obssessive, truly sad desire to care about nothing except attacking George Bush.


Kofi Annan is the Secretary-General of the UN. If it's anyone's job to be visible and in charge when it comes to marshalling humanitarian aid for natural disasters in third-world impoverished countries like Sri Lanka and Indoneisa, it's HIS job. George Bush isn't President of Sri Lanka.


Kofi Annan was on vacation, too, when this disaster occurred and refused to return until 3 days later - and yet, liberals like you would never utter a peep in criticism about this, because he's nice and liberal and black and not George Bush. What disgusting hypocrisy.


From the Press Conference of His Humanitarian Eminence (http://www.un.org/apps/sg/offthecuff.asp?nid=660):


Q: Mr. Secretary, picking up on Richard's question, I think a lot of people are asking exactly why you waited three days on vacation in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, before you decided to fly back to New York in the face of this extraordinary crisis. Could you give us a full explanation of your thinking on that? Secondly, what kind of signal does that 72-hour delay send to the nations to which you are now appealing for greater help?


SG: First of all, there was action. It wasn't inaction. We live in a world where you can operate from wherever you are. You know the world we live in now. You don't have to be physically here to be dealing with the leaders and the Governments I have been dealing with. You don't have to be physically here to be discussing with some of the agencies that we have done.


I came back here because we have reached a level that I wanted to have meetings with all the people that I have met with today. So, we have taken action. And I don't have to be sitting in my office to take action. I think the same goes for you in your profession.

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RE: Kofi vacations while people drown


Proof? perhaps Johnny Cochran could turn it into proof, but certainly not someone of your meager abilities.


I agree that Kofi should have gotten off his ass just as His Holiness, Jesus W. Bush should have.


But I thought you Repiglicans said the UN was irrelevant and only Bush Caeser mattered?


I'd say this example more closely shows your hypocrisy and your willingness to sink to any level of contradiction to support His Fradulent Incompetency, George II.

“On the fields of Trenzalore, at the fall of the Eleventh, when no living creature may speak falsely or fail to give answer, a question will be asked. A question that must never, ever be answered: Doctor.....WHO?????"

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RE: Kofi vacations while people drown


Maybe you would like to look at the posting that started this thread and see where the xenophobia started. After Bush had been forced to grandstand and up the original $35 Billion - no wait $35 MILLION - to $350 Million there was a window where two governments that are particular hate figures for the uber-right were still assessing the likely needs before making the increased donations public.


In an attempt to divert attention away from the original critiss of Bush three tracks were laid down by the White House. The first was the "we are not stingy" line which continues was past the original context and which was directed at "the West" in general but taken as an attack on Bush in particular. The only person who has specifically called the USA's development aid budget "stingy" is Jimmy Carter.


The next element of the smoke and mirrors was the "look at all the armed forces we are committing" line which you have repeated. Noone has said that this is anything other than valuable in the delivery of aid and the transport of goods and people in the most affected areas. The contribution is large, as befits the nation with such a vast defense budget. Do not though pretend that this contribution outweighs the now comparative paucity of the US Government's cash pledge. You also ignore the civilian and military government contributions from other countries, most movingly the military help given to Sri Lanka by India and Bangladesh. India has sent more troops and 11 more ships than the USA albeit with fewer helicopters and other aircraft (41 as opposed to 62). Japan, Australia, Britain, Germany and Canada have also sent military units to assist. Other countries have sent medical teams or forensic teams to help identify the dead tourists for repatriation. That you are not or pretend not to be aware of this global effort says a lot about either you or the news sources you rely on for your partial and partisan information.


The final element is the one you used here and has been used about other countries in other fora. You specifically attacked two european countries but elsewhere it has been "I haven't seen anything about donations from the Arabs". When it is pointed out to you that not only have other countries contibuted more as a proportion of their national wealth, usually more per head of population and two of your major trading rivals, Japan and the EU, have contributed more in cash terms from their governments.


By the way, the next item on the agenda is the "we depend more on individual and corporate contributions" line. We have already seen this with a number of multi-national drug companies using the tax breaks available in the US to make their donations work there. Excellent publicity for them given the marketing embarasments they have had recently. I am not aware of any european country where the tax break on a charitable donation offsets the donor's tax. As in the UK, the charity gets an additional sum representing the tax paid on the income the donation has been made from. Here for every £100, the charity gets £28 more in these circumstances. Disregarding the tax, the main charities committee estimates income from private will be at least the equivalent of $4 per head for every man, woman and child in the UK. The distinct impression is that public donations are so high to force the government to increase the declared $96 million. The moral pressure worked as it will match public donations as a minimum. The British by the way are not usually the most generous in the EU, that laurel usually goes to the Irish but the $4 a head is a good start. Get back to us when the US private cash donations reach $1.2 billion and we can compare notes on this further.


Allied to this is the "Sandra Bulloch" gambit where much is made of the $1 million donation she generously gave. Again this is trumped by Aistralian born Rupert Murdoch who has given US$1 million and Australian $1 million but also German racing driver Michael Schumacher (sp) with $10 million.

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RE: Kofi vacations while people drown


Tony Blair was also on vacation and actually returned after the start of the New Year but I do not notice any criticism of him from the Right. To be fair to him, like Kofi Annan, he was keeping in close contact with his deputy and the others with immediate responsibility for organising aid and assistance. At times this meant he was conference calling hourly.


Forgive me if I am wrong but my calculations are that the tsunami hit Sri Lanka in the early hours of Sunday morning Texas time. Monday's White House press briefing stated that Bush had received a briefing on the situation Monday morning and was then sending some letters and when asked about the afternoon's activities Duffy replied "he was clearing some brush .... this morning, working hard on the ranch, doing some yard work" Hardly the agenda of somone fully engaged with what by that time was obviosly a huge natural disaster, even if the full extent of the deaths was not known.


Now in Europe, the Monday was a public holiday and in many countries so was Tuesday. In the UK most public offices only run a skeleton staff as virtually all take a vacation between Christmas and New Year. In many of the worse affected countries, support for relatives of possible victims was in place on Sunday. The British call centre was expanded on the Monday, the same day the US State Department started theirs.


Even Tuesday this week, the US government does not know the number of US citizens missing. The excuse is "well there are a lot of independent travellers" but the same applies to european visitors and those countries do know the number of dead and missing. My impression is that in the two most likely affected countries, Thailand and Sri Lanka, the US Embassy staff stayed in the capitals which were on the other sides of the countries. Others have delegations on the spot in Phuket and the tourist areas in Sri Lanka to assist their nationals. It does very much look as though the Bush administration is unable to support its troops in Iraq with proper armor and its tourists abroad and their relatives at home with adequate help after natural disasters.

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Charity Olympics


Here's a link to a roundup of international aid so far for tsunami disaster relief.




Since its the Beeb hopefully everyone will consider it somewhat authoritative. Do note however the time of posting and I'm sure these things change rapidly.


An internation competition to decide who can give the most to disaster victims? Hmmmm


Now thats an event I can get behind! Beats shooting at people.


Anyone have a good source on totals of private contributions from the US or other Western powers? The article cites 120 million from the US but thats just to 4 major charities. I know there are many other NGO's at work. Not to mention American contributions to true international NGO's like MSF. And is there anyway to monetize the value of military help in disaster relief? I will note that military style relief from Canada and other countries is slow getting there due to lack of airlift. Many smaller countries depend on private contracts for airlift and as you might imagine those planes are booked. Countries like the US with sizable lift assets and regional powers are best poised to act. And its quite gratifying to see India act like the regional power she has claimed to be.



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blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah


and of course........


blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah


The bottom lines are:


1. Bush is President of the UNITED STATES not the world. Although the liberal chattering class would have preferred he had come before the cameras on December 26th and fallen to the ground, begun weeping uncontrollably while rending his clothes, he didn't. Instead, he behaved exactly like he always does - in a thougthful and measured way. One step at a time. No drama. No gratuitous pain feeling.


2. Kofi Annan is the head of the United NATIONS and the last time I checked, the countries in the South Pacific were nations. Kofi waited THREE DAYS before showing his mug because he was on vacation. If anyone is deserving of criticism it's he.


3. Currently, Old Europe has its panties in a bunch about us (but not when we were protecting their asses from the Soviets). They're jealous of us and pissed off at their irrelevance (Paging France!). And as an aside, isn't it interesting that the country we nuked - TWICE - is a close ally and doesn't jerk our chain like our European "friends"? But back to Old Europe.........everything they do and say should be viewed through the prism of their envy and when you do that, you just have to ignore their spoon-banging.


4. Ignore percentage of GDP. The fact is: we have less than 10% of the world's population yet we give over 40% of all international aid.


I would advise all you black helicopter liberals to save your energy for the fight that's really gonna be ugly (because you'll make it that way) and fun (because we'll win) - the next Supreme Court appointment. If you guys defended this country against terrorists the way you defend a woman's "right" to kill her unborn child, the War on Terrorism would have been over September 12, 2001.


Cheerfully yours,



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>1. Bush is President of the UNITED STATES not the world.

>Although the liberal chattering class would have preferred he

>had come before the cameras on December 26th and fallen to the

>ground, begun weeping uncontrollably while rending his

>clothes, he didn't. Instead, he behaved exactly like he always

>does - in a thougthful and measured way. One step at a time.

>No drama. No gratuitous pain feeling.


Bush is Pretendident of the United States. His first legal term does not begin until January 20, 2005 (thanks to the Diebold Corporation).

Bush is not capable of thought. He had to wait for Karl and Uncle Dick to tell him to get off his ass and address the situation.


>2. Kofi Annan is the head of the United NATIONS and the last

>time I checked, the countries in the South Pacific were

>nations. Kofi waited THREE DAYS before showing his mug because

>he was on vacation. If anyone is deserving of criticism it's



And so he is. However, he immediately began contacting others to set processes in motion. According to Scott McClellan, Bush was so underwhelmed by the event that he went to clear shrub (heh) off his ranch. Right on top of things, out pretendident.


> If you guys defended this

>country against terrorists the way you defend a woman's

>"right" to kill her unborn child, the War on Terrorism would

>have been over September 12, 2001.


No, actually it would be over but not that soon. President Gore would have gone to Afghanistan with the right amount of troops to seal the border, crush the Taliban and Al Qaeda and capture bin laden. He would have allowed Hans Blix to have completed his inspection confirming what was obvious to all but you neocon drones that Saddam had no WMD. The Kurds or some other faction would have invaded baghdad and overthrown Saddam without a single Americna life being lost. We would have US friendly countries in Iraq and Afghanistan. Al Qaeda would be but a memory. But we Bushwhacked instead. Good thing you "won".



Alternatively yours,


“On the fields of Trenzalore, at the fall of the Eleventh, when no living creature may speak falsely or fail to give answer, a question will be asked. A question that must never, ever be answered: Doctor.....WHO?????"

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>The bottom lines are:


>1. Bush is President of the UNITED STATES not the world.


>2. Kofi Annan is the head of the United NATIONS


And the principle criticism of Bush was not the size of the contribution but his attempt to take over the relief co-ordinating functions of the UN when he started his "coalition" of four nations. True to form he included one country who said they did not want to play, India.


Now at the UN American diplomats are indicating that the "telephone contacts", which is all this group seemed to operate as, are to cease. The Bush plan is being quietly dropped but I doubt if he will annouce that with the flim-flam that he did when he first emerged from his yard work. I believe this policy change is called a "flip flop" in Republican circles.


>4. Ignore percentage of GDP. The fact is: we have less than

>10% of the world's population yet we give over 40% of all

>international aid.


The facts show nothing of the sort when you look at the OECD figures, even taking into account the nature of the "aid" and who it goes to. The USA's $15.75 billion in development aid is roughly 20% of the total given by the 22 OECD countries. Where you may have got the figure of 40% is that this is the percentage of US government aid raised in the USA as private donations for overseas purposes. (About $6 is given privately for every $15 of government aid)


In this op-ed piece from today's New York Times there is a switch between national income (GDP) and per head but perversely the math works out that the USA gives 15 cents for every $100 of national income and each American gives 15 cents per day:




"Americans give 15 cents per day per person in official development assistance to poor countries. The average American spends four times that on soft drinks daily.


In 2003, the latest year for which figures are available, we increased such assistance by one-fifth, for President Bush has actually been much better about helping poor countries than President Clinton was. But as a share of our economy, our contribution still left us ranked dead last among 22 top donor countries.


We gave 15 cents for every $100 of national income to poor countries. Denmark gave 84 cents, the Netherlands gave 80 cents, Belgium gave 60 cents, France gave 41 cents, and Greece gave 21 cents (that was the lowest share, beside our own).


It is sometimes said that Americans make up for low official aid with private charitable donations. Nope. By OECD calculations, private donations add 6 cents a day to the official U.S. figure - meaning that we still give only 21 cents a day per person."


THe UK, the only country I have comparable figures for currently, gives 34 cents per $100 of national income but plans to increase this to 41 and then 70 cents. Expresed as per person per day that is 17 cents in official aid and 7 cents in private donations totalling 24 cents.


One thing the article shoud have noted is that only about a quarter of the USA's official aid is identified as going to poor nations (on statistics given to the OECD) and the recipients of aid include Israel and Russia.

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Finally a post where a thread of sense has developed in answer to the old liberal arguments of tired queens. Now I have three heroes-- Doug69, Traveller and Fin, Fang, Foom!!! Remember, there are many more of us and soon we will not be bullied in staying in the liberal closet. CONSERVATIVE, GAY, PROUD AND OUT BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!}(





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Goodness knows, you members of God's Own Party are much too orgasmic about calling liberal posters on the board ugly names to carefully read the kinds of things LondonBear has posted.


If you can remove your red-tinted blinders for a moment, you'll see that LondonBear has posted a neutral statistical analysis of national contributions for aid, and by just about any measure the U.S. comes out on the low end of the scale. I can't imagine why this should be so surprising to the resident Fans of Fascism, since this is largely the result of their own party's policies. Besides, what do they mean by trying to have it both ways? If they actually believe their own isolationist, chauvinistic sewage, which includes letting inferior, non-American countries (i.e., the entire rest of the world) rot, then the last thing they should be arguing about is how little the U.S. provides in aid. Giving miserly is what they've supposedly wanted all along! In fact, they'd be happiest if the U.S. didn't spend a dime outside its own borders. On the other hand, if they start arguing in favor of greater U.S. assistance to the less-fortunate world, or trying to prove that the U.S. is a greater benefactor than it actually is, they'd be betraying their isolationist, know-nothing "principles."


So which is it, cupcakes? Or have you all gone so utterly schizophrenic on us that there's about to be a Thorazine shortage as soon as your attendants get you all suitably medicated? x(

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Thanks Trilingual, the Right's capacity to be deceived does not end with the WMD claims. FFF's confident assertions about the "40% of all international aid" is another case. I believe I have found the history of this claim and it is quite interesting as a study in the way the White House manipulats news and the minds of the unwary.


Sunday 26 December Tsunami hits Sri Lanka morning local time.


27 December. Jan Egeland, the UN official responsible for emergency response gives a press conference. Somewhere in that he remarks that western nations could give more in development aid. This is not a reference to the response to the tsunami or to the US in particular. In the past Jimmy Carter has described the US Development Aid as "stingy".


28 December Egeland issues a statement correcting the mis-reporting in the US press:

"I have been misinterpreted when I yesterday said that my belief that rich countries in general can be more generous. This has nothing to do with any particular country or the response to this emergency. We're in early days and the response has so far been overwhelmingly positive."




29 December. Bush's first public appearance at a press conference in the "Crawford White House". At such gigs, the questions and reporters are pre-screened, worth remembering when the following exchange takes place:


Q Mr. President, were you offended by the suggestion that rich nations have been stingy in the aid over the tsunami? And is this a sign of another rift with the U.N.?


THE PRESIDENT: Well, I felt like the person who made that statement was very misguided and ill-informed. The -- take, for example, in the year 2004, our government provided $2.4 billion in food, in cash, in humanitarian relief to cover the disasters for last year. That's $2.4 billion. That's 40 percent of all the relief aid given in the world last year, was provided by the United States government. No, we're a very generous, kindhearted nation.


You know, the -- what you're beginning to see is a typical response from America. First of all, we provide immediate cash relief, to the tune of about $35 billion [sic].



Bush has to answer a question based on a false premise. Rather than correcting the reporter, he continues the deceit. He does not answer the question but instead misdirects to what he claims is the US's record on emergency relief.


Now on here we have FFF stating as fact what he was supposed to hear. "40% of all the relief aid given in the world last year" has become "40% of all international aid" in the context of discussion about development aid. Clearly he believes, or is trying to make us believe, that the figure applying to a highly restricted set of conditions can be applied in all circumstances. Somewhere along the line the mis-statement of "$35 BILLION" instead of "$35 million" will crop up.

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In fact, they'd be

>happiest if the U.S. didn't spend a dime outside its own

>borders. On the other hand, if they start arguing in favor of

>greater U.S. assistance to the less-fortunate world, or trying

>to prove that the U.S. is a greater benefactor than it

>actually is, they'd be betraying their isolationist,

>know-nothing "principles."



Not isolationist. Thinking strategically and prioritizing. Sri Lanka is marginally more important than the Dafur region of the Sudan, so we should throw them a few bucks. Neither is terribly important. Stopping radical Islam is, so showing these predominately muslim countries, which were the major countries hit by the tsunami(God does work in mysterious ways), that we're somewhat benevolent demands that a few more bucks be thrown. But basically, I agree with Doug. Why should the government take money out of my pocket to give it to some bruised Thai fisherman. Why does the government get to determine where my charitable dollars go? I may strongly feel that killing fetuses in Gabon or abolishing the death penalty in Guatemala or promoting women's rights in Algeria are a worthier causes. I should make the decision, not the government; and to some extent, I believe there are a finite amount of resources. What is diverted to one cause, depletes another. Individuals are better at making that decision. As I said to begin with, the government should give aid only for the national interest, with clear strategic aims.



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Why the intellectual cowardice? If the governemtn should not decide how your dollars should be spent on emergency aid, why should it decide what to do with your hard earned cash at all? You are supposed to be a democracy after all, it should be up to you what is supported.


How about getting rid of the free University education given to rich foreign kids who are likely to become influential in the governments of their own countries? You could stop funding to the CIA's "College of the Amaricas" that has such notable alumni as Noriega. If people want to support it, they can give it out of their own money. Stopping conditional foreign aid would also mean you would not have the embarrassment of the big "Caterpiller" brand signs on the sides of those armored bulldozers the Israelis use against homes in the Palestinian territories. That should stop some of the criticism from those ay-rabs.


Don't be afraid, this could mean real cuts in your tax bill. Get rid of all that "pork" that supports wierd and wonderful organisations in Congressmen's constituencies. Talking of pork, why do all those ranchers and farmers need the fortunes they get from Federal funds? Why should the goverment decide that your tax dollars should pay growers to overproduce rice that has to be given away to battered Thai fishermen or the price would fall too much? Why should cotton and tabacco growers get all the aid they do, after all you might well decide to not smoke and wear polyester? (Actually, stopping these subsidies in the US and EU and abolishing the trade barriers would considerably help farmers in the third world stand on their own feet. It would also mean the end of that horrible "high fructose corn syrup" in your soft drinks that's only there to get rid of surplus corn. I am starting to definitely warm to your principles.)


Just a minute, your tax dollars are also being used to bail out stupid homeowners who do not bother to get proper insurance. When those leeches in Florida are blown out of their trailer by a hurricane or those Californians are burnt out in wildfires, why should yo be ordered to pay through your taxes? Isn't the Red Cross there to give them emergency sheler while Jimmy Carter knocks up another shack for them?


While we are at it, if you wanted to give people subsidised medical bills or pay them to do nothing, you could give money to charities. Out goes Medicare, Medicaid and welfare benefits then. Kids can get an education at church run schools, why do you need to pay for those out of your state and federal taxes? Now we are really getting Big Government out of your pocketbook.


A big one now, you might not want to spend on foreign aid but others may not want to spend on the military. What gives you the right to impose your views on others if they cannot do the same to you? You can chose to pay into a "Militia Fund", after all the Founding Fathers determined that there should not be a standing army. By now your taxes will be down to a few pennies in the dollar so you have a real choice over what you do with your own money.

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