Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Caveat emptor

Over at the Right Wing News, you'll learn that John Hawkins has sold advertising to the UN:

Some of you may have noticed my new advertiser: the United Nations Foundation. Now, I must admit, it seems very odd to me that the UN is advertising on RWN. In fact, it's kind of like the KKK buying an ad at the ADL website. You know -- who would imagine it? But, I am a capitalist and since my taxes are used in part to pay UN dues, I figure I'm getting at least $65 of my own money back by selling them an ad.
He then follows this update/confession with a funny riff about how he is not going to point out the UN's many (and detailed) failures, viz,
For example, it wouldn't be polite of me to point out that despite the fact that the ad on the page is touting how "tough" the UN is on terrorism, the camps the UN runs for the Palestinians are terrorist enclaves. Moreover, it certainly wouldn't be diplomatic of me to point out this excerpt from my interview with Jed Babbin.
Amongst the many laudatory comments Hawkins got for this, he also received this scolding:
'Hey, folks - I don't care how much you come to Hawkins' defense. He sold out his principles for a buck. It doesn't matter how much or how strongly he criticizes the UN from now on out. The UN is not paying him to kiss up to them. They're paying him for a spot on his website, which amounts to some kind of endorsement. And that is what they got. I run a blog called Semillas: Sowing the Seeds of Social Justice (Hawkins' Note: No link until you show me the money Huck). Hawkins, I'll pay twice your monthly advertising rate for a spot on the Blogad section of RWN to advertise this blog. Hawkins and the rest of you might like to think that this would amount to nothing more than just taking the money and laughing all the way to the bank. But I would consider it a moral victory and money very well spent. Sometimes, you just need to walk away from the money because there are things more important than the almighty dollar. It's called 'principle.' --huckupchuck
I think huckupchuck (I don't want to think about the origins of that name) would have more of a point if Hawkins, upon receiving his $65.00 suddenly began writing sycophantic articles lavishly praising the UN. That would indeed be selling out. Since Hawkins, however, is is blatantly sticking up for his principles, it seems to me that the UN is free to throw away -- I mean, spend -- its money any way it likes. Hawkins did not put a gun to the UN's head, he did not make any representations to induce it to advertise on his site, nor did he change his viewpoints one iota once he accepted the UN's money. I think the lesson for the UN would be caveat emptor, with all points going to Hawkins.