Do The Freakin Math

Liberals and conservatives alike frequently rely on limited evidence, personal experience, religious beliefs or gut emotions to determine solutions for complex problems. From immigration to global warming - taxes to terrorism - or health care to free trade - analytical study is rare. Science based policy making isn’t the way of Washington. And the consequences are catastrophic. Change is urgently needed. Just do the freakin’ math.

Friday, December 29, 2006

UN is not the problem.

Ed Feulner, president of the anti-UN Heritage Foundation is disingenuous when he says “an effective United Nations is in everyone’s interest.”
(U.N.-der strain. 12-27-06) To him and many other ultra conservatives like him ‘UN Reform’ is code for making it weaker. To most liberals ‘UN reform’
isn’t much more than wishful thinking to make it stronger. Feulner claims that “the UN has often gone out of its way to avoid getting involved in the world’s trouble spots,” listing Darfur, Iraq and Iran as examples.
The fact is, Feulner and his like-minded cronies have gone out of their way to make sure the UN never gets the power it needs to effectively get involved in the world’s trouble spots.
Money isn’t the cure for everything but the UN’s budget and staff are both roughly the size of Disneyworld’s. These resources are completely inadequate to addressing such problems as terrorism, WMD proliferation, famine, genocide, peacekeeping, nation building, international crime control, pandemic prevention and response capacity, poverty alleviation or environmental protection, just to name a few of the crises that must be addressed because powerful governments like our own are unwilling to devote sufficient resources to prevent or deal with such massive loss of life and other basic human rights.
The Heritage Foundation has actively lobbied against any UN capacity for raising its own resources for investing in such needed capacity.
The Heritage Foundation has also actively lobbied against the creation of a stand alone UN Peacekeeping capacity. A standing force fully equipped and capable of immediate response to victims of genocidal governments like those in Darfur is obvious. Instead genocidal victims must depend upon the largess of troops donated from other more moral governments which always find some excuse not to get actively involved in fulfilling their promise of “never again”.
The Heritage Foundation under Feulner’s leadership has also actively lobbying against the democratization of the United Nations. It opposes the creation of a third UN body of individuals elected by those poor repressed people that it claims to care about. A new People’s Assembly would be far more valuable than another ‘respectable body’ of nations that believe they have a “clean human rights record”. Even the US would have trouble getting
accepted into this ‘club’. The veto power of the unelected few on the
Security Council mirrors the rights of kings, not entities accountable to any election process.
Feulner’s believes that those who contribute most to the UN can “demand a solid return on their investment”. That might work well for share holders in a corporation but real democracies or republics reject such a ‘golden rule’.
Finally, like the UN, our US Congress and the Administrative branch of our government is also riddled with scandal and corruption-and, I would add, incompetence. But there has been no call for ‘new leadership’ by Feulner and his foundation to address this legitimate problem.


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