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MJ...is this the Monterrey summit you spoke of?(21 posts)

MJ...is this the Monterrey summit you spoke of?BikeViking
Mar 12, 2002 11:46 AM
THis is just another screwy idea from the U.N. THey need to keep their hands out of American pockets. It's bad enough that our OWN government wastes our money, much less a group of "diplomats". My vote is No Way!!!

U.N. Conference To Promote Global Taxes; Bush Will Attend
Cliff Kincaid, CNSNews.com
Tuesday, March 12, 2002
A United Nations conference this month will ask world leaders, including President Bush, to consider global taxes to finance increased foreign aid spending.

The March 18-22 International Conference on Financing for Development in Monterrey, Mexico, is organized by the U.N. with the participation of the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and the World Trade Organization. It will mark the first-ever "summit-level" international conference on global development, and Bush is one of more than fifty world leaders scheduled to attend.

The conference will be preceded by a March 14-16 "global forum" of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) committed to "Financing the Right to Sustainable and Equitable Development."

However, these meetings will take place amid controversy.

A recent study conducted by the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees and Save the Children of the United Kingdom revealed that some humanitarian assistance was provided to refugees in Africa, mostly children, in exchange for sex.

In Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, workers from international and local NGOs and U.N. agencies, including U.N. peacekeeping forces, were allegedly "using the very humanitarian aid and services intended to benefit the refugee population as a tool of exploitation," their report said.

Also, according to Dr. Norbert Vollertsen, a German doctor who spent 18 months inside North Korea, foreign aid funneled through the U.N. and intended to feed starving people in North Korea is instead being used for military purposes and to prop up that country's Communist regime.

Nevertheless, the push is on for a global tax to guarantee more foreign aid money.

Although the U.S. Mission to the U.N. claims to have worked to eliminate references to global taxes, the final conference document still recognizes the value of "innovative sources of finance."

'Currency Transaction Taxes'

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan issued a January 2001 report identifying them as "currency transaction taxes" on a national and global basis which could finance "social development and poverty eradication programs" around the world.

Annan commissioned a high-level panel on Financing for Development, headed by former Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo and including former-Clinton administration Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin. The panel issued a 72-page report last June proposing an International Tax Organization (ITO) and an "adequate international tax source" for global spending programs.

One idea is the Tobin tax, named after Yale University economist James Tobin, which would target transactions in the foreign currency markets that currently total between $1.2 trillion and $2 trillion a day.

Supporters call the Tobin tax the "Robin Hood tax" because it supposedly taxes the rich nations to benefit the poor. But it would also affect the IRAs, Mutual Funds and pension plans of ordinary Americans that have money invested abroad.

Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., and Senator Paul Wellstone, D-Minn., introduced a resolution on April 11, 2000, calling for implementation of Tobin-style taxes. A "Tobin Tax Campaign" in the U.S. also counts the AFL-CIO, Friends of the Earth, and the World Federalist Association as supporters.

While not openly endorsing the Tobin tax, the foreign aid lobby known as InterAction expressed alarm that the Monterrey conference document deleted a reference to "the need" for an ITO, which it described as "a powerful global authority to monitor capital flows ..."

InterAction, a coalition of American-based NGOs that receives $1 million a y
yepMJ
Mar 13, 2002 1:38 AM
minus the political slant of the article you have to admit it's a pretty good idea - after all we all end up bailing people out when they get into difficulty via the IMF - however, the costs are generally more hidden

an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure
yepBikeViking
Mar 13, 2002 8:04 AM
This is just another excuse for the UN to get at the American "cash cow". Why would any nation surrender its sovereignty any pay a "global tax"? Who decides how much everyone pays? Pehaps we need a "global Congress" to manage the money? Maybe we need a "Global President" or a "Global Army" to rid the world of "evil"? THis reeks of corruption on an exponential scale.

Money hasn't solved any problem to date. Haiti took $4 billion, $1 billion we don't even know where it went and the place is still a $hithole. It's just international socialism, in my opinion. ANy nation that wants help and can SHOW that it will be money well spent, should get help. There are too many despotic regimes out there that take our "good will" and use it to further their cause, like North Korea. Stealing money from the hardworking people of the world will not make North Korea a better place. Don't the Europeans pay enough money the the State without adding that on top of it? It really is YOUR money.

Secondly, I can only imagine the corruption that would exist at that level. I don't have the facts at the time, but I do remember the UN was having severe problems accounting for their money.

Scott
yepMJ
Mar 13, 2002 8:37 AM
fact is that corruption exists - and we're all paying for it one way or another - IMF loans, bank defaults, insurance etc.

a global tax should take care of global problems - but I forget your preference for unilateralism - ignore everybody until you bomb them is not an effective, or sophisticated approach to global problems

while you worry about the global congress and global army - funny I thought the UN already covered those things - maybe you can keep an eye out for black UN helicopters

Haiti - baby, bathwater, throwing out; familiar turn of phrase non?
yepBikeViking
Mar 13, 2002 11:07 AM
Just because corrupution exists does not mean we need to throw more of our money at problems/organizations that have not done well. The American education system is a perfect example. We spend so much money, but we get no tangible results. I am against throwing good money down a rabbit hole. The UN "tax" would be a huge one.

You always resort back to this allegation that we "Americans" prefer bombing to diplomacy. If you think we went after the Taliban too quickly, please explain why to the families of those 2830 people who were slaughtered on 9/11. The UK responded quickly (and rightfully) to the invasioon of the Falklands. Not a lot of diplomacy went beofer that wrong was righted. Terrorists understand NOTHING but force. Look what diplomacy got Chamberlain in 1936. We have to deal with this evil by force becasue it's all they understand. Diplomacy did not get Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait.

The USA does not ignore the world and then bomb them when they don't cooperate with us, contrary to your belief. I'd like specific instances of our "bomb first, talk later" approach. We are widely engaged with the world, but it is my opinion that your perception of American diplomacy is incorrect. Just because there are disagreements doesn't mean we are the "cowboys" the worlds wrongly perceives us as.

I am not in fear of black helicopters, but James Madison, a geat man said,

"There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpation."

This is just another example of that "gradual and silent encroachment". WHo will manage this HUGE pot of cash collected by the UN? It is my opinion that a new international bureacracy would be created to manage it. It would just be another example of good money going down a rabbit hole. I cannot think of any wondrous turnarounds any country has made with the help of UN money. Are there any?
yepMJ
Mar 14, 2002 1:47 AM
and because there are a few corruption problems with a system that's benefit is overwhelmingly good is not a reason to discontinue the entire project - some people drink drive - that doesn't mean we should ban alcohol - or cars

very simply - if Afghanistan had been engaged over the past decade (post Soviet War) it would not have been a blackspot that allowed terrorists to set up shop - it's very simple to see - diplomacy and engagement is not a three week ultimatum - that is (perhaps a deserved) ultimatum - the point is that the situation was unrecoverable at that point - thiings should have been done before then - like the Moneterey conference is looking to do

Falklands? Chamnberlain? - not the same discussion - but if you want to go down that road - teh US was responsible for appeasing Hitler as much as Chamberlain - the US may have helped Europe (thouhght the Russians defeated Germany) but it is widely recealled that the US showed up 2 years late - where was the US in 1936 - ignoring everyone - what forced involvement - not Hitler - but an attack on the American soil - does this sound familiar to you yet? - do you see any parallels with recent history? - perhaps if the US had engaged in the world through the 1930's (1990's) and not buried it's head in the sand ignoring the world - there would not have been an attack on American soil just after the close of the decade... - Pearl Harbour, Sep 11 - take your pick

Falklands was a PR exercise by an extremely right wing UK government - I think you'll find many (here) still strongly object to the entire jolly

those that don't remember history are dooomed to repeat it -wake up already

you mean diplomacy did not get Saddam out of Kuwait thereby jeopardising oil supply

the US is the unilateralist cowboy - the fact that you (or anyone else of your persuasion) don't recognise it is part of the problem - leave your cocoon and see how US actions are perceived elsewhere

examples -

Georgia
Phillipines
Sudan
Afghanistan x 2
Panama
Grenada
Vietnam
Palestine (not directly but the US is complicit)

the American education system is widely and rightly recognised as first rate - I don't undestand what you're on about with that one
yepBikeViking
Mar 14, 2002 6:12 AM
I have yet to see any example of this systems that is overwhelmingly good. I am not advocating the US pull out of the UN, I am advocating that we spend our money in a reasonable manner, one that may actually achieve a result. These poor nations need hand-ups, not handout. This Monterrey conference is looking for even MORE money beyond what every nation pays in dues. Throwing good money after bad will not fix problems.

Yes we (the US included) should have done more at the end of 1989, but the Afghan people were left to determine their own fate and the Taliban was the result. They also have a share in the blame because they permitted this despotic regime to come to power. Plenty of blame for everyone here.

The point I was trying to make regarding Chamberlain was that appeasement of despots does not work. The US was an isolationist government at the time and have learned from it, contrary to what you may believe. You canoot even compare the policies of the '30s to those of the '90s. We are far more engaged than you would like to believe. I cannot foresee, even in hindsight, how diplomacy could have derailed Hitler from his plans. By the way, I think the US had quite a hand in defeating the Germans, as well as the Russians. My father-in-law would take great exception to your remark (WWII vet with Silver Star and three Purple hearts).

Had we handled the Iraqi's like this in 1990, the Saudi's would have their necks under an Iraqi boot. I am not naive enough to think this war was not about oil, because it was. However, because we did not handle Saddam like Hitler (removing him from power), we still are faced with this nettlesome problem. Was our foreign policy that bad under Clinton or is it just easy to gripe about a Republican President?

Ownership of the Falklands is questionable at best. Quite honestly, unless there is a great oil reserve in the South Atlantic, the UK should have negotiated those islands away quite some time ago. That being said, they were still British territory when the Argentinians invaded and that cannot go unanswered. It is a sign of weakness.

History repeats itself, to be sure and further diplomacy would not have gotten bin Laden for us. Hitler and Saddam are perfect examples of how despots/terrorists DO NOT respond to the world of diplomacy. They respond to overwhelming force.

Just because we are "perceived" as cowboys, does not make it the truth. SHould ANY nation worry about what others think of it IF the nation is acting in its own self-interest? I don't think so. No nation on this planet will put its "world image" before its self-interests.

We can discuss any country on your list specifically, but for the sake of space, I'll forego a response for now.

American students consistently score lower in comprehensive testing than a majority of nations. we are usually Top Ten, but I would not consider it first-rate. If it was first-rate, why do our political elite (GOP and Dems) send their kids to private school, but don't wnat to provide that choice to lower income Americans via school vouchers?
yepMJ
Mar 15, 2002 4:51 AM
UNHCR and UNPROFOR and UN food programmes and UN monitoring missions and the UN in general is making a difference - I think the burden of proof is on you with this point - because you;re not aware of the good things they do is (not taking shots/flaming) your ignorance - you need to say how such programmes fail to meet their objectives (taking into account the obvious limitations would be helpful and deal with my rebuttal)

I don't think we can blame a poverty stricken third world country who didn't have the means to deal with their own destiny much less the destiny of armed trerrorists - the responsibility falls with the west (not just the US)

while the US (and the UK) both dealt with Germany - the contribution was almost meaningless - the Russians defeated the Germans - read a military history book - that's not a sleight on anybody who was involved on the western front if (we're scoring points here - my granfather was in the US 99th infantry during the Battle of the Bulge and received a purple heart - he left the army and did 25 years in the USAF atferwards) that doesn't change the facts

read JRM's post below - I think the parallels between US isolationism between the 1930's and the 1980's-2000 are overwhelming - engaged economically perhaps, not comprehensively

agree with the points about Saudi Arabia and Clinton's failings - however, Bush is taking teh US further and further away from engagement - look at Israel/Palestine post Clinton for an obvious point of reference

Falklands - nobody has a clear answer as to why it was deemed to be important - I would say it was pride - I would think a sign of weakness is to only be able to deal with disputes via the military

diplomacy is not about engaging the bin laden's of the world - it's about engaging people so the bin laden's of the world don't have a place to spawn

all nations must deal with other nations equitably and agree to abide by the terms and acceppted behaviour of international organisations and diplomacy - unilateralism is a short sighted approach to diplomacy - BTW I'm assuming you're reference is to the US doing what it should rather than North Korea or China

I look forward to your comments on the brief list of contries where the US has relied on the miitary rather than diplomacy

US students as a whole perhaps - but the best education in the world is available in the US - the best thinkers, movers and shakers all come from the US - perhaps if the wealth disparity wasn't so significant the scores wouldn't be so low - elite US acedemia is second to none - it is globaly valued and recognised
read thisMJ
Mar 14, 2002 2:15 AM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/bush/story/0,7369,666880,00.html

America is not a hamburger

President Bush's attempts to rebrand the United States are doomed

Naomi Klein
Thursday March 14, 2002
The Guardian

When the White House decided it was time to address the rising tides of anti-Americanism around the world, it didn't look to a career diplomat for help. Instead, in keeping with the Bush administration's philosophy that anything the public sector can do the private sector can do better, it hired one of Madison Avenue's top brand managers. As undersecretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs, Charlotte Beers' assignment was not to improve relations with other countries but rather to perform an overhaul of the US image abroad. Beers had no previous diplomatic experience but she had held the top job at both the J Walter Thompson and Ogilvy & Mather ad agencies, and built brands for everything from dog food to power drills.
Now she was being asked to work her magic on the greatest branding challenge of all: to sell the US and its war on terrorism to an increasingly hostile world. The appointment of an ad woman to this post raised some criticism but Colin Powell, the secretary of state, shrugged it off: "There is nothing wrong with getting somebody who knows how to sell something. We are selling a product. We need someone who can rebrand American foreign policy, rebrand diplomacy." Besides, he said, "She got me to buy Uncle Ben's rice."

So why, only five months on, does the campaign for a new and improved Brand USA seem in disarray? Several of its announcements have been exposed for playing fast and loose with the facts. And when Ms Beers went on a mission to Egypt in January to improve the image of the US among Arab "opinion makers," it didn't go well. Muhammad Abdel Hadi, an editor at the newspaper Al Ahram, left his meeting with Ms Beers frustrated that she seemed more interested in talking about vague American values than about specific US policies. "No matter how hard you try to make them understand," he said, "they don't."

The misunderstanding probably stemmed from the fact that Beers views the US tattered international image as little more than a communications problem. Somehow America still hasn't managed, in Beers' words, to "get out there and tell our story". In fact, the problem is just the opposite: America's marketing of itself has been too effective. Schoolchildren can recite its claims to democracy, liberty and equal opportunity as readily as they can associate McDonald's with family fun and Nike with athletic prowess. And they expect the US to live up to its claims.

If they are angry, as millions clearly are, it's because they have seen those promises betrayed by US policy. Despite President Bush's insistence that America's enemies resent its liberties, most critics of the US don't actually object to America's stated values. Instead, they point to US unilateralism in the face of international laws, widening wealth disparities, crackdowns on immigrants and human rights violations, most recently in Guantanamo Bay. The anger comes not only from the facts of each case but also from a clear perception of false advertising. In other words, America's problem is not with its brand - which could scarcely be stronger - but with its product.

There is another, more profound obstacle facing the relaunch of Brand USA: the values Beers is charged with selling are democracy and diversity. Many of America's staunchest critics already feel bullied into conformity by the US government (bristling at phrases like "rogue state"), and America's branding campaign could well backfire, and backfire badly.

In the corporate world, once a "brand identity" is settled upon, it is enforced with military precision throughout a company's operations. The brand identity may be tailored to accommodate local language and cultural preferences (like McDonald's serving pasta in Italy),
read thisBikeViking
Mar 14, 2002 6:24 AM
This is just another anti-US rant. The only thing of substance addressed in the article are pasted below.

"it's because they have seen those promises betrayed by US policy. Despite President Bush's insistence that America's enemies resent its liberties, most critics of the US don't actually object to America's stated values. Instead, they point to US unilateralism in the face of international laws, widening wealth disparities, crackdowns on immigrants and human rights violations, most recently in Guantanamo Bay."

To What unilateralist policies does the author refer? The widening wealth disparities is interesting. Does that mean the UN now has a right/responsibility to take earned wealth an re-distribute to poor nations? Who determines how much of our "wealth" we must give to the "greater good?"

Our problem is we haven't cracked down on immigration enough. The 9/11 hijackers were all legal, if memory serves me correctly. What problem does the author have with our immigration policies and our alleged crackdown on immigrants? No specific listed...

The human rights violations of the Gitmo detainees is an absurd notion!! They are being treated well and, once their usefulness has been expended, I am sure we will turn them over to their originating nation who will ACTUALLY do something about any crimes committed in Afghanistan. No torture going, they're getting three squares and a place to sleep. Amnesty International can take a hike on this one. They are being treated better in Gitmo than they were in Afghanistan.
read thisMJ
Mar 14, 2002 7:13 AM
unilteralist policies - UN, Kyoto, Monterey, humanitarian aid (it's pretty well known outside the US)

the wealth disparity is an issue that applies inside the US as much as outside

crack down on immigration? tyhat's pretty rich - who exactly are the immigrants? I'm sure native americans have a pretty good idea - but I guess that's not what you mean

would you as a (former/current) member of the military be interested in being treated as nicely as those at GITMO - would you be interested in not being afforded the Geneva Convention?

yeah criticise AI - they're so out of order making sure that human rights aren't being violated
We are going backwards...jrm
Mar 14, 2002 4:06 PM
Bush's withdrawl out of the IMF has taken us back to the infant Nato era. The IMF stabilized the world for some 15 years. Second, The proposed development of strategic nukes brings back the nervous days of detente' foriegn policy that bred a arms race and instability. lastly, were pointing fingers at arab nations and leaders. And the pathetic part is that we're defending this using a fallacy ridden logic that ANY non-demcratic aligning country that "breds, trains, finacially or morally supports terrorists is evil and a direct threat to the US. And we still support f-ing israel. We are stepping back into the unilateral strongarm foriegn policys of his father and the reagan era. Instead of going forward, G-dubya wants to prop up this old ghost up and make it better then it was.
That's it, I'm moving to Sealand. . .js5280
Mar 13, 2002 9:33 AM
The only problem is the riding kind of sucks there. . .

http://www.fruitsofthesea.demon.co.uk/sealand/index.html
Evil USA...couldn't get response in belowBikeViking
Mar 14, 2002 7:56 AM
UN - we have differences of opinion with the UN from time to time...why does that make us a bad guy? Should we do as they say just becasue they are the UN? I don't think so.

Kyoto - depending which "scientists" you ask, may or may not be valid re: global warming. We are not willing to hamstring our economy on as-yet unproven science.

Monterrey - we have done this one in the earlier thread. I view it as a sovereignty issue...can't see much negotiating for this potential "world tax"

Humanitarian aid - we give away billions each year in aid, as well as sending our paecekeepers (read military) to Bosnia, Sinai Peninsula, Haiti (for a while). We spend a ton on aid.

Wealth disparity - I would refer to the need for the UN to dispense hand-ups, not hand-outs. Just because a country is a $hithole doesn't make it deserving of our money if th inhabitants are doing nothing to help themselves.

What was the author's orginal point re: immigration? We are a nation of them and people continually aspire to move here. There as to be a check on that, as we can't accept ALL people of the world who want to live here.

I did my 96 days in a tent this summer in Turkey. A little bit better treatment, but our guys (US and UK) are living in worse conditions in Afghanistan.

They are not combatants, not deserving of Geneva Convention protection. HOWEVER...they are receiving the same rights as if they had protection under the Geneva Convention. Nothing wrong here.

Where was AI in there outrage for the 2830 people killed on Sept 11? Absent without leave. The detainees are being treated humanely and no one can argue about that, considering the company those animals kept. What would any other nation have done in our position? Let them go!?!?! That would be insane. Everyone gripes about our treatment (reasonable), but I would be interested to hear what other more "kindhearted" nations would have done.
Evil USA...couldn't get response in belowMJ
Mar 15, 2002 4:31 AM
when you disagree with the UN and unilaterally decide to withdraw funding etc. that is over the line - disagreement is fine - but there should be an appropriate method of voicing disapproval rather than taking your toys out of the sandbox

the scientists who discount global warming are reactionary and marginalised - tobacco companies had scientrists who, for years, insisted smoking was nt a health risk

world tax - you dropped this point - we're all gonna pay somehow - bank defaults, IMF, global economy - why not have a system that can address global problems?

hand up not hand outs plays well at home - it plays less well to the third world who are incapable of pulling themselves up by their boot straps - the best development programmes are indeed those that help people help themselves - but it is not realistic to appoly across the board - that is not appropriate in all programmes - furthermore a hand up should not be a handout for western business - birth control is a great programme to look at in overcrowded third world countries - why has the US withdrawn these programmes - doesn't sound like a handup to me that sounds like keeping them down

immigratrion - if the US took more timer to make thnigs better elsewhere (rather than just a profit) less people would be inclined/forced top leave - it's still pretty rich in a country with such a vibrant economy, an abundance of space, materials and resources - notwithstanding arguments that migrants actually make an overall contribution to economies where they turn up - specifically in the US - because they're there - doesn't mean their sucking the system dry - it's still pretty rich

our guys chose to live in a tent - don't complain if you made the choice

if they were captured we would want them (you) afforded the Geneva Convention and not interrogated about military infrastructure without any rights - I hope that an enemy country never asserts that our guys (and girls) (and you) are non combatant animals undeserving of the Geneva Convention as easily as you have without any grounds or reasoning

'kindhearted nations' - I think you mean nations which afford basic human rights - that's your answer

was it Thomas Jefferson who said that the man who would go without liberty for the sake of security deserves neither? - always liked Tommy J

AI's job is to highlight regime's which abuse human rights -I don't think that Sep 11 needed any highlighting - had their earlier proclamations concerning Afghanistan been heard and acted upon then perhaps Sep 11 would never have happened
Evil USA...couldn't get response in belowBikeViking
Mar 15, 2002 5:53 AM
We have started paying, so our toys are back in the sandbox, but if we have enough disagreement on what the money is being spent on and the UN won't resolve it with us, we'll take our money back, plain and simple.

We can play the my scientist versus your scientist all day on "global warming"...will have to agree to diagree. THat's why nations negotiate.

Yes we all pay now, but to add a tax burden to the money already being paid, there is no benefit added. Unless all nations will stop paying dues in lieu of this tax. I don't see that happening. No bureacracy ever gives up money (needed or not) without a fight.

You can find fault with anything that the US does, so any help we give is not going to be good enough. We'll have to agree to disagree again on hand-up versus handout.

It's called capitalism. Everything is for profit. Why does anyone start a business? TO help the poor? Not really. Good business balance the profit margin with the knowledge that they NEED workers to keep making money. Our system would not work if all businesses were as evil as you seem to think they are. No one would want to work for them.

It's our country and we will take in the people we think is appropriate. We took in a lot of Castro's prison population during the Mariel boatlift in the late 70's. Not all people are eligible to come to the US. I am sure the UK has immigration standards also. No country just lets the rabble into their borders.

Not complaining...but you refuse to recongize they are being treated under the Geneva convention even though they don't qualify. They had no uniforms and were no a part of a standing army. They get the perks, but not all of them. Perhaps we should ship them to the UK for more humane treatment? I think your govt would be doing the same thing with them. What basic human rights are they not getting? I haven't heard any of them yet. They have Red Cross/Red Crescent access, they are getting religious advisers? How are we SPECIFICALLY violating their human rights?

Jefferson is unrelated to this. We are not giving up American liberty, we are holding illegal combatants until we have determined their status. What would you do with them?

AI was absent on Sept 11, didn't say a thing, and that says a lot. THey can gripe about human rights of the detainees all they want. What would they SPECIFICALLY do with them? Nobody has come forth with that info.
re: global warming....Starliner
Mar 15, 2002 8:24 AM
i We can play the my scientist versus your scientist all day on "global warming...

Well, BV, if the other guy's scientists end up being correct, what is your plan for cooling things down? If and when it reaches that point, the only thing you will be able to offer up is a regretful apology for your irresponsibility.

Better to err on the side of caution with matters whose consequences cannot be shrugged off.
re: "yep" (reply button not working)BikeViking
Mar 16, 2002 6:49 AM
UNHCR and UNPROFOR and UN food programmes and UN monitoring missions and the UN in general is making a difference - I think the burden of proof is on you with this point - because you;re not aware of the good things they do is (not taking shots/flaming) your ignorance - you need to say how such programmes fail to meet their objectives (taking into account the obvious limitations would be helpful and deal with my rebuttal)
I don't think we can blame a poverty stricken third world country who didn't have the means to deal with their own destiny much less the destiny of armed trerrorists - the responsibility falls with the west (not just the US)

--I have never had a problem with what the UN CURRENTLY does. All of the programs are fine and it is running on the money the UN currently gets, but it still does not address WHY this bureaucracy wants MORE money? THere is not specific plan I have seen (do you know of one?). What shorfall will this address? I have a philosophical problem with vesting my money to any bureaucracy that does not specify WHAT it is spending my money on. The State of Arkansas set up a "Tax Me More" fund, so that the guilty feeling people who felt they weren't taxed enough could send their money to the State's general revenue fund. Perhaps the UN should do the same. Money does not help people who won't change (Haiti, North Korea, most African nations). Most of them can't hold a proper election WITH UN observers persent!! Colombia need the help as they are actually doing something now to rid themselves of the FARC.

while the US (and the UK) both dealt with Germany - the contribution was almost meaningless - the Russians defeated the Germans - read a military history book - that's not a sleight on anybody who was involved on the western front if (we're scoring points here - my granfather was in the US 99th infantry during the Battle of the Bulge and received a purple heart - he left the army and did 25 years in the USAF atferwards) that doesn't change the facts.

--I have read PLENTY of history on this subject and your minimization of the US contrbution is astounding. There is NO denying the big role the Soviets played in the war, but to lessen the American contrubiton is absurd. US industrial capacity alone was a big player in all of this. Normandy was not meaningless. WHen the German had to deal with two fronts (their mistake for attacking the USSR) it split their full committment to either front. The argument could be made the Germans did themselves in because they never consolidated their USSR gains and stretched their supply lines too thin. I won't even START on the Pacific theater...not a 'minimal" contribution at all!! WWII was a HUGE effort and no one has ever said the US won WWII all by itself, but to say what we did was minimal is absolute nonsense. (BTW---I wasn't scoring points...I was illustrating that there are MANY AMerican s that would disagree w/you, myself and my f-i-l being one as well). --I do have to ask a straightforward question...are you a member of a Socialist/Communist Party? I have not heard this type of propaganda since the USSR was still on the planet. I am not flaming, I haven't heard that "USSR won WWII" stuff since the late 80s.

read JRM's post below - I think the parallels between US isolationism between the 1930's and the 1980's-2000 are overwhelming - engaged economically perhaps, not comprehensively

--How are we not engaged? Who are we ignoring? Who are we bombing without coordinating with allies?

agree with the points about Saudi Arabia and Clinton's failings - however, Bush is taking teh US further and further away from engagement - look at Israel/Palestine post Clinton for an obvious point of reference.

--Clinton tried to make peace but failed. The Palestinians had almost everyting they wanted, but Yassir preferred to see Israel wiped off the map. Look at his speeches...he talks a great game to the diplomats, b
re: "yep" (reply button not working)MJ
Mar 19, 2002 5:41 AM
your points about the UN aren't credible - how are people supposed to help themselves without basic resources and infrastructure? I note that you are self-referential to Arkansas - I don' think it's about anybody feeling guilty - it's about the richest economies in the world giving something back

er, I don' think that the UN pitch is for more bureacracy - I think it's for more aid - maybe you should look at that again

the fact that you raise Columbia as a point of somebody doing it for themselves is crazy - US involvement in Columbia is complicit in right wing death squads which we are funding - presumably to fight the war on drugs (which the CIA began exporting) - the war on drugs sounds good to right US wing voters - it doesn't sound so good to addicts or Columbian peasants - did you see Traffic? have you seen the most recent US prison population figures? - the war on drugs isn't working you may be interested to know - you should read up on Coumbia before you say anything else on the subject - pick up some recent editions of the Economist for a middle of the road, unbiased persepctive (no it won't have singing-John-Ashcroft's patriotic hymns in it but it will have the facts)

I am certainly not a communist/socialist - any more than you are (have you read Marc Reisner's book yet? - when you do we can have a discussion) - the fact the the Soviets defeated the Nazi's is a historical fact - you are right to say that the Pacific and US production figured heavily in the European war - but the fighting done by the Soviets so overshadows the west's contribution to the fight (other than in material) as to make it wholly inconsequential - you can keep Saving Private Ryan - I'll take the Battle of Kursk which involved more men and material than the entire western front did from June 1944- May 1945

I've given you the country list - which you have dropped in the other thread - as far as who else is the US/west ignoring - most of Africa would figure in any reasonable appraisal of failures

did Clinton fail? do you have Arafat's speeches? do you speak arabic? do you know what he says to diplomats - what I know (repeating myself here) is that Arafat rejected a proposal - then Sharon began his provocations - big man for a country made up of refugees - I understand the plan Araft rejected was not tenable for any Palestinian infractructure, independence or self-reliance - it was an unworkable shell of a state that was on the table

anything further to say about global warming? or do you now agree with Bush's scientists as pointed out by the other poster?

read this -
http://www.guardian.co.uk/globalwarming/story/0,7369,670120,00.html

and this (lots of links here)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/globalwarming/0,7368,395145,00.html
re: global warmingBikeViking
Mar 16, 2002 8:29 AM
We can play the my scientist versus your scientist all day on "global warming...

Well, BV, if the other guy's scientists end up being correct, what is your plan for cooling things down? If and when it reaches that point, the only thing you will be able to offer up is a regretful apology for your irresponsibility.

Better to err on the side of caution with matters whose consequences cannot be shrugged off.

--I have a difficult time with that logic.. SHould all women have their breasts removed because the MIGHT get cancer? I guess we should alll become Christians because there MIGHT be a God? Faulty logic, in my opinion.

THere is enough inconclusive evidence to specifically blame human activity for global warming. Can anyone prove this was not going to happen WITHOUT human contribution? There was conclusive irrefutable proof of the problem CFC's caused in the atmosphere. When I learned about them in Meteorology, it's a scientific measurable detriment they had in the atmosphere. No one disputed their negative effect. THey were banned and we are seeing better levels of ozone at the planets poles. That means we should examine it carefully before making rash decisions in ANY direction. No one can ACCURATELY predict weather from day to day, much less the specific, measurable effect of greenhouse gases on the ENTIRE planet.
Bush's scientists don't agree with yoursStarliner
Mar 16, 2002 1:45 PM
Early in Bush's presidency he assembled a group of scientists of his own choosing to look at environmental issues such as global warming. Upon completion of their study, Bush's panel surprised him by essentially agreeing with the data provided by the other scientists who are concerned about the problem.

I don't know who you are listening to, but you really ought to think about what you would do to address the problem that has been laid out by a lot of credible people - now, not later. There comes a point when holding onto doubt becomes negligent, and in this case that negligence will wreak havoc in future years with regard to floods, droughts, property damage, death, and destruction.