Friday, June 09, 2006

U.S. bullying could shut down the U.N.

The biggest bully on the block strikes again!

The United States, by virtue of its economy and abiltiy to pay, contributes 22% of the overall United Nations budget. Our administration seems to feel that this means that the U.S. should have greater influence in the operation of the U.N. than others.

Currently, the United States is withholding the payment of its dues as a means of pushing its stance on management reforms within the body. This maneuver could force the U.N. to shutdown operations next month. See: Bolton's Threats Raise Fears of UN Shut-Down - Yahoo! News

While I feel that the U.N. has minimal effectiveness, it is an important forum for the nations of the world to discuss issues and try to make progress for the planet as a whole. One of the reasons that the U.N. isn't as effective as it could be is that the United States does not abide by U.N. resolutions that it doesn't agree with. And, since the United States is such a huge contributor to the funding of the body, the U.N. usually doesn't sanction the U.S. very harshly for not complying with its resolutions.

Do we really think that the world should conform to our notions of what's right? While I still believe that we have one of the best systems of government in the world, and a great deal to be proud of, our arrogance is shameful. We are a democracy, not an oligarchy or a dictatorship. How dare we insist that the rest of the world bow to our whims?

I am so proud.

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