Carbon Copies

Speaking of politics, the BBC has a listing of year end quotes from world leaders, among which is the following:

The capture of Saddam Hussein and the highly significant decision of Libya to give up its weapons of mass destruction provided a positive end to the year. In 2004, there can be no let up in the struggle against international terrorism. We are all its potential targets. As in the past, the government’s goals in the New Year will be to maintain for (our country) national security, economic strength and social stability.

President Bush you think? Not a bit of it. This is Australian Prime Minister John Howard’s end of the year quote, only altered to remove the country name to fool you, the unsuspecting audience.

The Taiwanese President talks about peaceful discussions and collaboration with China, while the Chinese President talks about reunification of the motherland. Nothing new there.

Then there was this, by the Ugandan leader, Yoweri Museveni:

Aids still remains a problem. We must close all the loopholes through which Aids is coming. The main route is promiscuity. Anti-retrovirals are not a cure. They prolong life, all right. However, that life is permanently gloomy. Avoid unprotected sex if you are promiscuous.

Though Museveni’s rejection of medicines, which have been shown to help AIDs sufferers live more than a ‘gloomy existence’ is discouraging, he at least admits that the country has an AIDs problem. Which is more than can be said for the South African President’s end of the year address, which doesn’t meantion AIDs, the country’s leading killer, once.

However, before you think I scoff at these world leaders, let me say that they have my utmost respect. After all, they aren’t warning their police forces to be on the lookup for people carrying Farmer’s Almanacs or maps; nor doing their damnedest to discourage travel into or out of the country.

Hmmm. In my recent trip I carried maps. In fact, I drove by the Western White House when the President was in residence, carrying a map of Texas with me.

Please don’t tell on me.

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