Nigeria’s Squandered Opportunity: The Reckless Writings of a Stanford Professor, By George Kerley

When Stanford University’s Professor Joel Brinkley wrote a largely incoherent opinion article on Vietnam, leading Vietnamese in the United States and back home in Vietnam came together, petitioned, countered him and then demanded that he resign his position at Stanford University.

One of them called the article ‘the most misinformed, bigoted piece of claptrap on the subject of Vietnam that I have ever had the displeasure to read”…

See Petition by Vietnamese in America calling from Professor Brinkley’s resignation from Stanford University here

Also, the Stanford Vietnamese Student Association came out to release an Op-Ed in the Stanford Daily, in solidarity with numerous Stanford university on-campus organizations where they described Joel Brinkley’s article ‘A perversion of the cultural image of Vietnam and an antithesis to the mission of tolerance that Stanford University – students and faculty alike- should promote…”

See Op-Ed here

Professor Brinkley’s eventually apologized. The apology is also provided on the petitions page.

One commentator on the Brinkley article, Iain Purdie of Glasgow, UK stated thus “a man who is unable to research a small article on a country with volumes of data available about it is obviously incapable of reliably teaching facts to students. At a guess, he is either lazy, opportunistic or racist – none of which I will find acceptable in a person in charge of the education of others”. (Culled from the petition page provided above)

Trumpet Media through which the published article was syndicated, also offered an apology for the article stating that the opinion article did not meet ‘their’ journalistic standards.

A few days ago, the LA Times published an article titled ‘ Nigeria’s Squandered Opportunity’ authored by the same Professor Joel Brinkley.

Two online portals SaharaReporters and Premium Times again re-published the article.

Obviously fed by slave driven indigenous collaborators who are bent on continuing in their slave-master mentality to cater for their daily bread, Professor Brinkley went on to try paint a largely untruthful and gloomy picture about our country Nigeria much of which was based on dubious falsehood, misrepresentations and misinformation many of which are just outrageous to even mention.

Professor Brinkley started his article by stating that outside President Jonathan’s offices sat 17 ambulances, just in case he or any one of his aides fell ill.

He went on to state that no actual health facility nationwide had as many and that as soon as a Nigerian newspaper took a photograph of the ambulances and published a story about them, they suddenly disappeared adding that they may have been taken to an underground garage.

What manner of misrepresentation!

Why did the Stanford Professor not venture out to find out why there were 17 ambulances PARKED?

He may have been told they were they were to be donated to key medical centers across the country and in Abuja!

He did not. Rather, he fell back to the unreliable junk information fed to him back his hirelings and snoopers.

He ended his article with the sentence, “Good luck Mr. Jonathan. Its time you are impeached’.

Interestingly, maybe we should also say that this is just the right time for Professor Brinkley to also resign from this teaching position at Stanford where he is supposed to be molding minds and building the leaders of tomorrow.

So Professor Brinkley, I hereby join voices with the Vietnamese students at Stanford and DEMAND that you RESIGN immediately.

You can continue to build and nurture MINDS with the measure of falsehood, misrepresentations and misinformation that you peddle around.

While we understand the various challenges that our country is experiencing at the moment, we must never fail to remember how far we have come especially through the dark years of despotic and kakistocratic military leadership which almost destroyed the very fabric of this country.

We must learn to stand up and defend our country from those who seek to see it destroyed or undermined.

There are more infrastructural development programs being deployed across the country today than in the past years of military rule and into the initial years of our budding democracy.

There has been a lot more vigor and push in reforming the power sector today after decades of decay and neglect.

The same goes for the educational sector which suffered so much decay in decades and have left the current administration with a lot more than do than ever before.

Teachers are now being retrained, decrepit schools are now being revamped and the Federal Ministry of Education is taking the initiative to drive Federal presence across the states even as the various state governments are also being energized to take charge and save the state of our education.

Thanks to the Internet and the power of social media, Nigerians have built the ability to report the state of educational decay and the capacity to get government and interest groups to get to action.

This has also helped check and quicken action on the state of infrastructure decay that has encroached into so many sectors of our national being.

After about two decades of grim neglect, decay and massive embezzlement of billions of dollars by past governments, President Jonathan has ensured the return of working railways in Nigeria even as tracks and trains are being upgraded to live up to the challenges of the new century.

The past two and one-half years have seen massive investments in the area of healthcare development. Medical workers such as doctors, nurses and laboratory technicians have had to undergo new training to update their skills and capabilities.

Healthcare centers are being rebuilt, renovated, rehabilitated and equipped across the country.

We may never be able to restore the wasted yesteryears but Nigerians now recognize the need to get Nigeria working again.

There was a time when journalists and writers were sent to jail without trial for writing negative reports about our country Nigeria. Those years are gone.

President Jonathan is committed to doing what is best for Nigeria and Nigerians. He needs the support and guidance of all Nigerians.

The population of our country continues to increase each day and so are its challenges.

Government alone cannot do it all.

Parents, guardians, schools, teachers, friends etc must take charge in the battle to deal with the new challenges facing our country especially in areas of unemployment, security etc.

We must encourage ourselves to pursue entrepreneurial endeavors so that we can all build the skills required to create wealth and new jobs.

We must work together to build sustainable skills required in engaging government so that they will continue to do the right thing for everyone.

We must work with ourselves to ensure that we work within our means in the areas of family planning, career planning, economic planning etc.

When we build ourselves, we build Nigeria.

Read Professor Brinkley’s  controversial article here.

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