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Palm oil: Is Free Malaysia Today sacrificing integrity for clicks?

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Written By Olivia Williamson
Thursday, 23 August 2012

Lesley Henderson-Bradbrook's letter to Free Malaysia Today on 21st August 2012 shows how much some people are prepared to suspend principles and good judgment just to feel part of the show!

Her correspondence is riddled with so many errors and misrepresentations that it should serve as a case study of how good intentions can go dry as a bone when facts are embellished!

An egregious example is her claim that "deforestation is out of control" in Malaysia which is a significant distortion of facts when viewed in the light of the of the FAO’s recent “State of the Forests – 2011 Report. The report observes that whilst rates of deforestation between 1990-2000 were high at a time of significant development in SE Asia, the trend had reversed dramatically between 2000-2010. Deforestation rates during this latter period “more than halved, making her claim of rampant deforestation entirely false!

Even the CIA World FactBook 2011 lists Malaysia's forest cover at 59.5%. Juxtapose this against her beloved United Kingdom's 11.76% and she loses all legitimacy and credibility to mouth off that deforestation in Malaysia "is out of control"!

Further, her simultaneously offensive and moronic charge "regarding the appalling treatment of ALL of the animals in Malaysian zoos..." is facetious! Whether we should giggle at her vain attempt at melodrama or guffaw at her careless treatment of the facts, one thing cannot escape our attention and it is this.

Free Malaysia Today (FMT) has been publishing diatribes such as these for some time now, sometimes two in tandem on the same day, making no attempt to fact check the contents of the emails! Equally galling is the fact that FMT has been regularly declining to publish or deleting our responses to these diatribes and gross misrepresentations.

It behooves any impartial publication to publish a diversity of opinions and let the principle voices have at one another so long as the attacks are factual! As things stand, FMT has failed to live up to its stated aim to "get hold of truth and drag it out for all to see." For a blog that promises that "In pursuit of truth, we spare no effort to get our facts right…," it is certainly disappointing to find that FMT is happy to violate its own mission statement by taking a partisan stance on this issue!

When FMT declared that "people become restless when momentous events in the country do not get reported truthfully, Or when the flow is all one way," they have absolutely no intention of observing this pledge for it is honored more in the breach than in the observance!

Is FMT sacrificing its integrity for clicks? If FMT's aim is to strengthen its reputation and gain respect as an impartial online publication, this continued partisanship marks an ignominious low for FMT, tarnishing its reputation in ways that is likely to do irreparable harm. This is certainly not journalism. It is a joke!

So FMT, you may censor our views but you cannot stop this response from filling the blogosphere for it has already made its way into the internet and social media such as Twitter and Facebook!

For an online publication that complains frequently of government censorship to now turn around and censor opposing views on this palm oil issue means one of two things. Either FMT is intolerant of opposing views or it has sold out to the forces arraigned against palm oil - forces such as the Environmental Directorate of the EU Commission who have never hesitated to give generous grants and payola to environmental NGOs and other organizations to carry out vicious anti-palm oil campaigns that they are aware are based on false and manufactured evidence principally to erect artificial trade barriers against palm oil to prevent competition against the EU’s own edible oil industries such as rapeseed and sunflower oil! (see: “Taxpayer Funding, NGO Collusion and Manufactured Crises: A Case Study of Malaysia and Palm Oil.” : Libertiamo) THE END


Carl  31. October 2012 at 05:04 pm

Maybe FMT has sold out to the highest bidder! LoL!!

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