"BECAUSE THT and gay men's health charity GMFA are dependant on funding and goodwill from establishment bodies, they have joined the establishment."
~ Peter Tatchell [UK gay rights activist]
Bureaucracy, dogma, political correctness and collusion are devices of the pathological, greedy, unconscionable and morally bankrupt, and, where the safeguarding of health and human life is concerned, consistently yield the same devastating results. In the UK they have served to transform the National Health Service (NHS) from a compassionate provider into an unfeeling, unwieldy beast wherein most of the untold billions of pounds poured into it in recent years have disappeared into a black hole or been squandered on, and by, penny-pinching, target-obsessed bureaucrats and consultants - the hidden hands behind AID$ Inc. UK (see Behind the
Curtain) - with a corresponding deterioration in services, neglect of patient care and standards of hygiene comparable to some Third World hospitals.
The same, bureaucratic malaise has infected establishment-funded AIDS NGOs globally who, for the last decade, have sung from near-identical PC hymn sheets. From the UK to Australia and New Zealand to North America and Canada, AID$ Inc.’s loyal choir boys have been:
• Running similarly ineffective campaigns;
• Entwined with Big Pharma and its vested interests;
• Repeating the same evasive tactics and obfuscating jargon;
• Spinning the same everything-in-the-garden's-rosy falsehoods;
• Misrepresenting the same dubious statistics to cover-up appalling failures;
• Jumping through the same government hoops to secure taxpayers' cash;
• Branding as liars and smearing those who dare speak out against their disempowering agenda...
...all the while adopting the swaggering arrogance of a public monopoly combined with corporate greed; essentially a "mafia" of interconnected self-interests that waves an arrogant two-finger salute at those they are mandated to serve.
Agencies that once boasted of their independence cosy up to their government and corporate funders, close ranks, install revolving doors and collude to protect their mutual interests, strengthen their dominance, bolster their standing in the public eye and support each others' identical PC agendas and policies while neglecting their obligation to serve their respective communities' best interests and educate effectively on sexual health. While giving the impression of acting independently of the other, in reality they are each served by the same drone-like, PC-indoctrinated system servers who filter all information through an identical PC processor to ensure that they tow the official, one-party PC line.
London's GMFA was established in the early 1990s by a group of gay men as an antidote to the appalling excesses and scandals at the THT, widely reported at the time by the gay and mainstream press. Subsequently, as GMFA allowed its own infrastructure to become tainted amid claims of mismanagement and poor judgment it climbed into bed with THT and, in recent years, has become a mere lap dog jumping to the dominant might of its former rival, the two agencies now entrenched in collusion and speaking with one, politically correct voice on crucial sexual health matters.
"It is time we as a community woke up to what is so clearly happening in front of our very eyes and demand change. Perhaps the likes of THT and GMFA have become too incestuous and full of cronyism to even realise the extent of how their inbreeding is adversely impacting on the health of those they are mandated to serve."
~ Seb C [UK.Gay.Com boards]
THT and GMFA's "love-in" was unashamedly serenaded in April 2006, in the London club listings magazine QX, when THT spin doctor Will Nutland and GMFA mouth-piece Matthew Hodson rubber-stamped their mutual approval of the growing number of sex-on-premises venues in London that specifically cater for anonymous, and invariably unsafe, sexual encounters in adjacent articles that served to validate the others' stand, with no space provided for an opposing viewpoint.
"[Nutland] described such venues as being 'a social health benefit', as if they were outreach facilities for hospital clinics, even though those engaging in unsafe sex can easily infect themselves with STIs and other strains of HIV - something all NHS clinics would find absolutely unsupportable - [while] Hodson chillingly states: 'I support a smoker's right to continue smoking, even knowing that it is likely to kill him', as if to say:
'I support an HIV+ gay man's right to continue having unsafe sex, even knowing that is likely to kill him.'... It is [their] fundamental responsibility to maximise the health and wellbeing of HIV+ gay men and not to sanction behaviours which can overload their immune systems with pathogens they can easily avoid."
~ Cass Mann [Positively Healthy]
"Over the past five years, the gay community has been keeping a secret: unprotected sex is becoming normal again. In the dark room of any gay club, in those pre-
sex conversations, one question - 'do you bareback?' - has become casual, ordinary, every day. Defenders of 'raw' sex see condoms as sissy, and brag that playing Russian roulette with their genitals is 'manly'."
~ Johann Hari [The Independent]
Going even further than defending the right of HIVers to transmit drug-resistant strains of the virus and STDs to one another in sex-on-premises venues while staunchly defending their right not to disclose their status to negative partners - maintaining it is the responsibility of the negative partner to protect himself - in February 2008 the same organisations legitimised such venues that adopted their "code of good practise", Play Zone, on the pretext of providing "a safer, clean environment for customers and staff" along with safer sex information and PEP prescriptions, yet again proving more active in their underlying support for the rights of HIVers who comprise the core of visitors to such venues than the chronic need to be addressing the safety and welfare of negative men in general.
Justifying the move, the usual PC rhetoric was wheeled out by Will Nutland's sidekick, Rod Watson, claiming that if such establishments didn’t exist the same activity would be driven “underground”, and those in need of such information would therefore be out of reach. In the same breath he insisted THT is not the "sex police”, yet failed to explain exactly how the arrangement could work effectively without being properly enforced by the sponsoring HIV charities, who would only be running compliance checks at these venues twice a year, nor how they will reach those driven even further underground to unsanitised, Play Zone-free venues in search of unregulated sex.
THT's Sydney counterpart, ACON, launched an identical exercise several years ago. Amid a “Sub-Saharan” epidemic of HIV gripping Sydney’s gay community, community newspaper SX ran an article in 2006 that dared question the prominent display of ACON's code of practice logo at HQ - a notorious casual sex club on the main Oxford Street strip that continued to host a dark orgy room but no condoms, and blatantly listed personal barebacking ads on its notice board. ACON retorted that the venue did not breach its code for safe sex premises and HQ promptly switched its advertising to rival paper The Sydney Star Observer (SSO) which, unlike SX, panders and kowtows to ACON to maintain its lucrative advertising contract. In August 2007, for example, SSO reported absurd claims made by Tony Trimingham, the founder of Family Drug Support, that "Crystal meth is not addictive" and is less abused in Australia than hard drugs like heroin; blatantly untrue, yet in line with ACON's agenda of disinformation around crystal meth.
"Someone has to take the blame for this outrageously long-lived, unbelievably reviving, preventable epidemic. We could start by throwing off the notion of gay pride, for there is nothing to be proud about given Sydney's HIV infection rates."
~ John Heard [The Australian]
Like THT and other gay men's HIV and sexual health organisations around the world, ACON's tentacles and influence spread far and wide. ACON's executive committee alone occupy the boards of at least 20 other community-related organisations, whose studies and reports invariably and nonsensically feature the same names giving nods to, backing up and defending each others' self-serving, politically correct stances; an elite glamourati who, aided by a compliant gay press, revel in disempowering their community by depriving it of vital health and life-sustaining information, and denying individuals and grassroots movements critical of their mistakes the right to be heard while espousing and propagating the same, narrow-minded self-interests.
"In many ways, what we in journalism need is a spine transplant. The nexus between powerful journalists and people in government and corporate power has become far too close. You can get so close to a source that you become part of the problem."
~ Dan Rather [Former CNN new anchor]
While ACON's antics have invited much community scorn and derision and stirred intense debate, culminating in the 2006 launch of CAAMA, its policies and actions are nevertheless praised and endorsed by similarly negligent and morally corrupt AIDS organisations worldwide, who push the same self-interests and PC agendas. In a document titled 'New Prevention Technologies', for example, the UK's THT enthuses:
"LIFE OR METH's approach couldn't contrast more sharply with that in Australia. ACON in Sydney have typically taken a far less fear-based approach and have issued harm reduction tips to gay men, balanced alongside information on how to 'prepare and repair' for men intending to party with crystal meth."
What THT's document conveniently doesn't mention is that, in 2003, ACON also refused to take the meth threat seriously and failed to act then to contain its creeping presence within Sydney's gay community, responding only with tips on, as THT describes, "how to prepare and repair". Four years later, meth went on to devastate vast swathes of Sydney's inner city gay community with "Sub Saharan" levels of MSM - as many as 18% - by then HIV+, while meth itself became Australia's biggest drug problem with up to 100,000 regular users and 75 meth-related deaths recorded in 2005 alone - the same year that ACON provided over 70,000 HIV services to 15,000 "clients" who helped boost its turnover to $8,509,570, of which $5,447,503 was spent on staff costs and a meagre $584,592 on campaigns. Hardly a "balanced" response... [Click on ACON PDF, left]
The resulting community furore slated ACON for systematically presiding over the physiological and psychological decimation of thousands of Australians while, at the same time, sanctioning workshops ranging from "Why Lesbians are so Fabulous" to "Meet A Porn Star" nights catering for 18-25 year olds eager to meet US porn stars and "learn the tricks of their trade". ACON's refusal to stigmatise meth and compassionately respond to pandemic levels of disease and addiction on its own doorstep - instead producing a how-to-use booklet and attacking its critics as "angry individuals with a personal life crisis" - has led some to call for it to be shut down on public health grounds and its board members tried for corporate negligence.
"As a professionally working HIV+ man who has tried to access services from ACON over the last 15 years, I have found nothing but a huge group of self-serving bureaucrats that do nothing... It is about time that the government dismantled this organisation and let the NSW Health Department stop doubling resources. What exactly does ACON do for people like me who are living with HIV? I haven't found one thing in 15 years. This is supposed to be the AIDS Council of NSW!"
~ Rob [Sydney Star Observer Forum]