Friday, January 28, 2005


His lips move.

Meet Clifford May
Remember that U.N. official who complained about Washington's contribution to the tsunami victims? He neglected to mention that even as he was deriding Americans as "stingy," the United Nations was refusing more than $50 million in aid.
Don't remember? Don't feel bad. It's not Alzheimers. It never happened.
Jan Egeland, U.N. undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs, said no such thing. According to a transcript of a Dec. 27 news conference, what Egeland was talking about was, generally, what he considered low levels of foreign aid money from wealthy nations and, specifically, the fear that these countries would spend all of the new year's foreign aid allocations on tsunami relief, leaving little money for the other emergencies that typically happen:

We were more generous when we were less rich, many of the rich countries. And it is beyond me why are we so stingy, really, when we are -- and even Christmas time should remind many Western countries at least how rich we have become. And if actually the foreign assistance of many countries now is 0.1 or 0.2 percent of their gross national income, I think that is stingy, really. I don't think that is very generous.

The word "United States" appears nowhere near "stingy." Yet somehow Egeland's remarks were grossly distorted into a claim that the U.S. was being "stingy."
Somehow? Somehow? I'll tell you how the "gross distortion occured."

Right-wingers lie.