Scurrilous* Misreporting by Anti-Government Blog -- Crosbie Walsh

There are reasoned, honest anti-government blogs. Fiji Democracy Now is not one of them. Twice over the past few days, FDN has used me (my comments on Bryan Crump's programme) or this blog to publish personal insult, innuendo, and false information.

Normally this sort of malicious rubbish does not merit comment. I am doing so now to remind readers that some of the people who oppose Bainimarama, speak of democracy, and claim to represent grassroots opinion in Fiji, include people like this. Imagine what they would do with a "free" press.

First, FDN, I do not publish propaganda, I am not "on the dictator's payroll" and, contrary to your assertion, there are precedents for where democracy has been introduced by military regimes. Chile, Ghana and Nigeria come to mind.  You also misquoted, attributing to me the words of the journalist.

Secondly, a week ago you knowingly distorted what Allen Lockington wrote on poverty in this blog's regular Saturday feature as an attack on Fr Kevin Barr.  You wrote: "Allen Lockington a regular contributor to Crosbie Walsh’s dictatorship apologist blogsite has exposed the phoniness of Father Kevin Barr as a supporter of squatters."

This interpretation could not possibly be taken from what Allen wrote. He vehemently denies your claim, and says he has great admiration for Fr Barr. You then went on to attack Fr Barr.

"Father Barr," you wrote, "launched a nasty attack, accusing Allen of being 'superficial and glib' and 'trotting out the usual prejudices'. It seems that what Father Barr didn’t like was the fact that Allen’s friend had used birth control to take control of his family size to ensure that he could provide for them. We’ve already seen Father Barr’s hypocrisy with his support for a dictatorship that has plunged thousands of people below the poverty line and started a campaign of squatter evictions. As long as the dictatorship attacks the Methodist church this hypocrite will forgive them everything, including it seems, beating people to death."

This is really disgusting. You impute motives without a shred of evidence. You blame the current government for problems that were evident and poorly addressed many years ago. You ignore the fact that this government is trying, in exceptionally difficult economic circumstances,  to do more about poverty and squatters than any of its predecessors.

And were wrong -- deliberately so -- about Fr Barr. He did not launch a nasty attack or accuse Allen of anything. He put forward a calm, reasoned argument that the causes of, and the way out of, poverty were more complex than those mentioned by Allen. You clearly do not know Fr Barr.  I do, and I've witnessed his concern and work for squatters and the poor since I first met him 16 years ago.

Fiji Democracy Now, indeed!  Your remarks are libellous. Reveal your identity and a court in any democratic country would find you guilty.

Scurrilous: Most often used to refer to vicious, false verbal attacks. "Scurrilous language reflects scurrilous minds."


Dr. Chris Griffin said…
Correct, Professor Walsh. Fr Barr was actually very careful (indeed gracious), to give Allen Lockington credit where deserved. Notably, for a recent sympathetic article he wrote about shoe-shine boys.
Pick the Fijian said…
Dr Chris Griffin?
Professor Walsh?
Fr Barr?
Who are these has been academics and out of touch preachers to tell Fijians how their country should run?
For such people to be speaking for Fijians is condescending and paternalistic. It is colonialist and verging on racism. Under this dictatorship, which these people support, Fijians have no voice. Fijians have been threatened, abused and murdered.
Is this what these old colonialists support. Shame on you all.
. said…
@ Dear Pick the Fijian ... Like you, we speak for ourselves, as we see it.

That you do not know of Chris Griffin or me is understandable but to refer to Fr Barr as an out-of-touch preacher shows that it is you who have been out of touch with Fiji for a very long time.

Instead of accusing three people who, like you, obviously love Fiji, why don't you share with readers what you think should be done, and can be done, to ensure positive outcomes for Fiji?

This blog is open to ALL reasoned positive ideas. Racist, personal, negative views are not welcome.
Fiji Democracy Now said…
@ Croz Walsh

You say Fr Barr "did not launch a nasty attack or accuse Allen of anything". Does this mean you deny he used the expressions 'superficial and glib' and 'trotting out the usual prejudices' or do you say that these don't amount to a nasty attack?

As to squatter settlements and the blame that previous governments must bear for their existence, you know very well that there were squatters in colonial days, when population pressure was much lower. So why do you imply that Laisenia Qarase is responsible? What Qarase is not responsible for is the huge impact of job losses and inflation cause by devaluation.

You urge us to expose out identities. Nice try, but you know very well that to do this would mean an end to visits to family and, of course, a serious risk of harassment of family members in Fiji.
Anonymous said…
@ Fiji Democracy now......

You are living in some very strange corner of the Universe if you believe that former PM Qarase is not and was not fully responsible for the economic morass into which Fiji had plunged long before December 2006. Do you have no knowledge and understanding of macro/micro economics? Because if you do not, then you should hesitate to comment. The bloated Cabinet of May 2006 started the cascade of deficit. This was compounded by taking out an ill-advised US$150m loan (repayable next year October). Then came the Takeover, then the Global Economic Downturn, then the floods, two hurricanes and now the possibility of a Double Dip Recession. But, hang on a moment: both Qarase's two governments and the one year Chaudhry Government in 1999 should have prepared for such events. It is the duty of government to do this and to protect the interest of ALL THEIR PEOPLE: not just some of them. Neither Australia nor New Zealand made sure that their support was ensuring such proper governance. They are both accountable for this to the people and all their aid/funding to the NGOs in Fiji should have carefully ensured that overt racism and policies which deliberately subverted the interests of any taxpayer in Fiji, including the promotion of terrorism and terrorist acts, a mutiny and the killing of loyal soldiers was factored right out. They did not.
So some of us would suggest that a proper accounting has not yet come. It will come....eventually.
Anonymous said…
@ At proper accounting.....

This accounting, which will come to Fiji has not yet fully factored in corruption. Just today, we learn on the local radio news that FIRCA staff are "at it again". Yes, some of the officials to whom we pay our taxes are scamming the TINs and crediting their own fictitious accounts. Fraudulent accounting (allegedly, of course?) by the very people who need to be Squeaky Clean. No investors will long put up with this. Turn them all over and clean them all up and out. Make examples of them in the courts and put them away for exemplary terms. And our near neighbours and the EU think that 2014 is a long way off? They must be kidding! They are not naive enough to believe that democracy will handle this, surely?
Fiji Democracy Now said…
@ Anonymous

Just read what Prof Wadan Narsey has said about our economy. He was a critical of previous governments but he also understands well that the military regime has been devastating for our economy. You can find his views on our site and other democracy blogs. You won't find them in the muzzled media in Fiji.

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