"Zambia is steeped in tribal taboos and born-again Christianity."
This festering 11.5 million inhabitant celebration of indigenous African cultures oozes an ungodly Official 20% AIDS infection incidence. (The US Official rate is 0.57%. Less butt buddies and drug addicts it is too small to measure.) Is God remiss in granting miracles to His loyal Zambian flocks? Would CNN lie?

Of course CNN lies. The story has been nattily packaged in preparation for another US Federal incursion into your wallet. Save the children!

"Teenagers [in Lusaka, Zambia] are stone drunk from guzzling buckets of 100-proof, homemade beer called kachasu and sniffing jekem - fermented human feces scraped from sewer pipes."

Anybody who can ferment any mash beyond 25 proof (12.5% alcohol) has a real close and personal line to god or broke into Samuel Adams' Utopias fermentation vats. Yeast begin dying around 15 proof. Alcohol is a choice antimicrobial agent. To obtain higher proofs you must distill the mash to make poteen, white lightning... brandy, or single malt scotch. If the youths (nice whitewash, er, blackwash here) continuously and abundantly obtain the fixings for fermentation, why are they wandering the streets "starving?" Yeast or human, food is food. Cattle fight over sour mash. Even Russian peasants sell home brew for cash. Hell, El Ultimo Presidente Bush the Lesser burns food for fuel and makes his friends rich while doing it.

This "jekem" - I am supposed to believe that? Let's try it:

Untold thousands of US teenagers are sneaking into sanitary sewers to scrape off aged fermented human feces with tremendous hallucinogenic powers. As the sewer pipes are shaved clean and the jekem supply dwindles, secret turf wars claim thousands of innocent young lives across this great nation. Youths on the streets - some as young as SIX YEARS OLD! - are being enslaved to this horrible drug every day. Save our children!

The United Sewer Workers of America have been raided by the War on Drugs and $38 million in union dues seized as laundered drug money. Mother, father, does your teenager hoard used disposable diapers? Search his or her room! Call the police!


"If current infection rates continue, the numbers of dead mothers and fathers will increase for at least 20 years, say international aid groups."

If 20% of everybody including kids are infected with untreated AIDS now, who is going to stick around to procreate? Given interest growth, 20 years of continuing infection starting with a 20% base gives an incidence of, what, 100%? 200%? 500%? Fire- eaters are doing their own kindling. Needs more study.

"Average life expectancy in Zambia has plummeted from 56 to 37 years according to the U.S. Census Bureau."
Not to put too high a gloss on propagandistic swill, African life expectancy does not require AIDS to be mean and short. Sub-Saharan cesspits with ancient Roman life expectancies of less than 42 years are abundant: Malawi, Zambia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Ethiopia, Namibia, Niger, and Rwanda for starters.

Downtown Lusaka "is punctuated by an occasional high-rise, meagerly stocked department stores and a string of pizza and chicken joints. Their greasy fumes mix with the smells of diesel and dirt."

It sounds like my neighborhood shopping center hard by a local park. MacDonalds, the Colonel, and Little Caesars pollute the world with greasy fumes! If Zambia is starving, how do we account for a city blanketed with food smells? If Zambia is not starving, where is the problem?

Relief worker Mwewa uses international AIDS funds, spending 1.4 million kwacha ($(US)600) each on funerals.

"What am I supposed to do?" he says. "It is our culture to give a good funeral."

What is he supposed to do, it is his culture to get AIDS, to be born-again Christians, and to die early and often. Send money.

"The impoverished Zambian government can spend next to nothing on AIDS or its orphans. It counts on international relief agencies..."
No doubt. One imagines the overhead and expense chits for moving the cash around cut heavily into the principal.

"Fountain of Hope tries, diplomatically, to teach children about safe sex. Instructors use soda bottles to demonstrate how to use a condom. But, said teacher Brian Mulenga, the lectures don't go far with 8-year-old boy prostitutes.

'Why don't they make condoms for children?' the youngsters inquire. 'They are too big and they fall off.'"

This is arcane bleeding heart whimsy. Eight-year olds are being paid to bugger adults? No way. If the kid is buggered by an adult, the argument does not hold (and the condom does). A society of born-again Christians by some Churchly miracle (standard operating procedure) hosts a writhing sea of 8-year old boy prostitutes. They are forgiven!

May we go home now?

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