Thomas Sowell

 Decades ago, Eric Hoffer wrote: "Nowhere at present is there such a measureless loathing of their country by educated people as in America." Reasons may be cited but the flimsiness of many of those reasons betrays the fact that what is really involved are attitudes.

 A recent example is a denunciation of the United States as a "land of penny pinchers" by New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof. Why? Because, aside from highly publicized tragedies like the tsunami, "we're tightwads who turn away as people die in greater numbers" around the world from things like malaria and AIDS.

 Foreign governments are more generous with their taxpayers' money than the American government is, both domestically and internationally. But real generosity is shown by those who voluntarily give their own hard cash -- and Americans do that more than anybody else.

 Incidentally, in all of Mr. Kristof's waxing indignant about the ravages of malaria, there is not one word about the banning of DDT, which has led immediately to a resurgence of malaria that has taken lives by the millions, as a result of propaganda campaigns against DDT by environmental busybodies.

 Apparently it is not the principle of saving lives lost to malaria that is crucial, but the opportunity to score points against the United States. Green extremists get a pass. So do bungling and corrupt foreigners, including the United Nations.

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

Creators Syndicate