Geldof – Press Has Shortchanged Bush’s Successful Africa Policy
Live Aid organizer Bob Geldof is chastising the US Press corps for under-reporting the positive effect that President Bush’s Africa policy has had:
Mr. Geldof praised Mr. Bush for his work in delivering billions to fight disease and poverty in Africa, and blasted the U.S. press for ignoring the achievement.
Mr. Bush, said Mr. Geldof, “has done more than any other president so far.”
“This is the triumph of American policy really,” he said. “It was probably unexpected of the man. It was expected of the nation, but not of the man, but both rose to the occasion.”
“What’s in it for [Mr. Bush]? Absolutely nothing,” Mr. Geldof said.
Mr. Geldof said that the president has failed “to articulate this to Americans” but said he is also “pissed off” at the press for their failure to report on this good news story.
“You guys didn’t pay attention,” Geldof said to a group of reporters from all the major newspapers.
Bush administration officials, incidentally, have also been quite displeased with some of the press coverage on this trip that they have viewed as overly negative and ignoring their achievements.
Mr. Geldof said that he and Bono, U2’s lead singer, have “gotten a lot of flak” for saying that Mr. Bush has done more for Africa than any other U.S. president.
Mr. Geldof said that “the main thing now is asking the candidates, ‘What are you going to do?'”
Mr. Bush, said Mr. Geldof, has “put in place a whole foundation” in the form of aid for disease prevention, government institution building with accountability measures, and investing capital in African countries to build up their economies.
“The next guy really must take it on,” Mr. Geldof said, referring to the next president.
If the press has underplayed the success of such policies that liberals would otherwise find compelling (say, if a Democrat had implemented them), then what else has the media underplayed or spun differently? In some simple minds, the man can do no good.