Questioning the AIDS advocacy conspiracy
Posted by sanityinjection on December 1, 2008
I was very pleased to see this piece in the Associated Press questioning whether too great a percentage of international humanitarian assistance is being devoted to AIDS and not enough to other serious illnesses:
I never thought I would see the day when AP would, without sneering, quote an analyst criticizing the entrenched AIDS advocacy industry. The simple truth is that there are people who earn their living by making sure the funding stream for AIDS never diminishes, and they do it by deliberately exaggerating the extent of the threat. This has been going on since the 1980s.
That’s not to say that AIDS isn’t a major health concern in some countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. But the level of resources being devoted to the disease is that of a major worldwide pandemic, and that simply isn’t the situation. As the article notes, even in African countries where AIDS remains a major problem, more children die of pneumonia and other diseases caused by a lack of clean water. I don’t presume to know what is the appropriate allocation of resources to all of these health issues, but I do think it is about time that such allocation be made according to factual information rather than slick PR campaigns designed to frighten and manipulate rather than inform.