RUSH: I must hit you with what is said to be a correction. Yesterday we opened with the big news that the World Health Organization, which is part of the United Nations, reported that half of the AIDS or HIV infections in Greece were self-inflicted. The economy is so bad, the welfare state so entrenched that the World Health Organization said that half of the HIV infections in Greece are self-inflicted so that the recipients can get the equivalent of $900 a month welfare, 700-some-odd euros.
Well, today the World Health Organization has apologized. They blamed an editing error for claiming in their September report that half of the new HIV cases in Greece were acquired deliberately by people trying to claim government benefits. "In a correction issued on Tuesday, WHO said the report should have read that 'few' new cases of HIV are deliberate." The original report said half, and that was an error. It should have said "few."
Now, that's a big error. And I don't think they can blame this on auto correct or macros.
"'This was just a gross editing error for which the WHO apologises,' said WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl. In a report published by WHO's European office, the agency wrote [and we reported yesterday] that 'about half of new HIV infections are being self-inflicted.' WHO said it only became aware of the mistake on Tuesday after journalists asked about the claim. Since the financial crisis first hit Greece several years ago, rates of HIV infection have soared."
So what do you think really happened here? Do you think they goofed up? I don't, either. I think they're trying to walk back what they inadvertently admitted yesterday. And being leftists, I'm sure they didn't think that they would get the kind of reaction they got. I'm sure they were expecting to get reactions rooted in sympathy and compassion, and instead they got reactions that were based and rooted in outrage. They were not prepared for that, so now it's, dare we say, CYA time here at the World Health Organization. Can I say that? I guess I already did. Okay, look, we got a few seconds to delete it if you think that's running a risk. We can just bleep it. We're gonna let that one go. Everybody approves, staff-approved comment.
Okay, I'll say it again, just to make sure you got it. The World Health Organization is now in a very, very slick CYA mode to cover up for the supposed error yesterday, the gross editing error, quote, unquote, for reporting half of new cases are acquired deliberately by people trying to claim benefits. Nobody is denying, by the way, that the rates of HIV infection have indeed skyrocketed. They have soared. But it's not by virtue of self-infliction. I mean, there's some of that going on, they now say, but not nearly half.
RUSH: You know, this is how this stuff happens. I was just made aware of something by Koko Jr. at RushLimbaugh.com. Koko Sr. is on vacation. Koko Sr. always goes on vacation Thanksgiving week. Koko Jr. sent me a story. Slate.com is essentially blaming me for getting the story about Greeks self-inflicting themselves with AIDS wrong, and all I did... I didn't do anything! The people at Slate.com say that I made an "outrageous claim" that Greeks are infecting themselves with AIDS for welfare payments.
I didn't outrageously claim anything. I read a report by what, in fact, French foreign minister Dominique de Villepin called "the temple of the United Nations," the World Health Organization. He did. He once called the UN "the temple of the United Nations," and it's my fault, and they lash into Drudge because Drudge put a link up to the story, and they quote me yesterday.
"So the people -- ignorant though they are, blissfully ignorant though they are -- they're always victims, they are always innocent. They never have one responsibility, not one iota of responsibility in any aspect of their lives." All I was doing was reading a report, and yet the fact that it spread, the claim is laid on me as being "outrageous." This is how these people besmirch and smear and tarnish people's reputations, where all I was doing is reading something that these people's precious United Nations reported.
RUSH: Look, I don't want to beat a dead horse, but this is an opportunity, because the audience here is expanding in droves. The latest audience research figures show this. So I've got an opportunity here to explain to people. How many times in the past couple weeks have we had people call here who say, "I used to hate you. I used to believe all that stuff about you, and then somehow, some way I ended up listening to you and I found out, not only was it not all true, I found out I agree with you and I'm now conservative." We've been hearing this a lot lately. The audience is expanding and new demos are being reached, and in large part of because of the book. I got something really cool about that in a minute here, too.
So the way this happens, yesterday the World Health Organization puts out their story that half of HIV infections in Greece are self-inflicted by people wanting welfare benefits. I didn't say it. The World Health Organization said it. Matt Drudge linked to it. I reported it. And then I said, "This is what the welfare state does to people. This is what creating dependency among people does." And, by the way, Hillary Clinton's favorite news outlet, Al Jazeera, reported the story well. Their headline: "Greeks Self-Inject HIV To Claim Benefits." It's in the Al Jazeera English language version, Hillary's favorite news agency. And yet the Slate.com link on their home page to this story, "The Epic U.N. Editing Error Behind Rush Limbaugh's Outrageous 'Welfare State' Claim."
I didn't claim anything outrageous! I didn't make anything up. I simply reported what the left-leaning World Health Organization said, and I reported it like everybody else who read it. But somehow I'm responsible for making it up now. Somehow it isn't true, and I made it up, even though I didn't.
Now, where do you think Slate.com got the marching orders to do it this way? Two words, I'll give one guess: Media Matters. It's exactly how they portrayed it. So this is how -- for those of you new to the program, you're probably as aware of it now as longtime listeners. This is what the left does. They cannot compete openly, fairly, in the arena of ideas, so they have to besmirch, impugn, destroy, whatever, the character, the reputation of people who are effective critics of theirs. Like everybody else, I believed it. It was the United Nations. It's the gospel. Dominique de Villepin called the World Health Organization "the temple of the United Nations." I reported it.
Look, HIV infections are soaring in Greece. They are soaring and it made total sense. Now they've walked it back. But somehow it's now out there, for the low-information crowd, that I made it up. And I didn't. Teachable moment. This is exactly how they've been doing it for 25 years. This is the kind of crap that the left has been -- and not just on me, but Ted Cruz, Sarah Palin, you name it. Anybody they're afraid of, anybody they deem to be effective, standing in their way. They're not interested in a level playing field or any of that. They're interested in wiping the playing field, eliminating any opposition.
RUSH: By the way, on that Greek story, the World Health Organization and the news that half of the people infected with AIDS were self-inflicted. I remember the actually source that I read was something called New Scientist, which we quote from semi-regularly on this program. And they were simply quoting the World Health Organization. Yet at Slate.com, it's Rush Limbaugh's "outrageous claims" about the welfare state, implying that I made it up, for the low-information audience (I'll be generous) that these websites have.
Drudge linked to it, Al Jazeera had it, but somehow I made it up.