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Global Poverty: Overreaction or Sell-Out?

July 28, 2008

A few folks have decided that Americans might have a problem in recent legislation. Clearly, whether you prefer it or not, the likes of Al Gore appear to be steering the country. This infuriates a lot of people, notably conservatives, a few independents as well as national sovereignty lovers. Congress is proposing with the capable participation of Barack Obama, the Global Poverty Act (S.2433, based on H.R. 1302). Not a few Americans, many conservatives included, believe that Americans will be delivered into a state of indentured servitude as laborers for the United Nations with this bill enacted as law. Is this notion an overreaction? On the surface, it certainly appears so.

The Global Poverty Act is co-sponsored by Republican Richard Lugar of Indiana and Democrat Senators Barack Obama, Joseph Biden, Maria Cantwell, Chris Dodd, Dick Durbin, Russ Feingold, Dianne Feinstein, Charles Hagel, and Robert Mendez. Based on the participation of John McCain in bipartisan legislation, it is surprising that John McCain isn’t a supporter as well. Undoubtedly, this is another puzzle piece of legislation that suggests a declining difference between parties is close to being fully realized by the nation on multiple fronts. You can also like a presidential candidate without agreeing on everything they do. That is the thorny place that many Americans find themselves in today.

The language of the bill is fairly straightforward and unpretentious on the surface. The bipartisan bill, if adopted, would require the president “to develop and implement a comprehensive strategy to further the U.S. foreign policy objective of promoting the reduction of global poverty, the elimination of extreme global poverty and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goal.

The wording of the bill seems to be well thought out and truly appears simplistic. The wording and intention of the bill appears to a good thing for humanity, easy to bite off on. In the world that we live in, words still mean something, however. The devil is in the details as the saying goes.

First, the bill dictates function on the President of the United States. This is a curious action to require the cooperation of the president to go along with what is ostensibly the heartfelt devotion of Congressional lawmakers combined with the desires of the United Nations. If the president sees a problem with legislation that is induced by lawmakers or perhaps by the United Nations, he is duty-bound to cooperate in the name of global poverty legislation. Keep in mind that this is a federal law, not a treaty. Of course, this is simply theory, considering that words actually mean something.

The policy goals of “Millennium Development Goal” is what is probably the most comprehensive global anti-poverty program ever created, painted with 8 simple and elegant goals. They sound so good that you want to love them. While there are concerns by many, some organizations paint the bill as no more than a redirection and focus of current efforts by the United States toward global poverty with no additional money being spent. This is designed to allay the fears of those that question whether the United States has plenty of money to go around during a time of intense economic malaise during a time of financial confidence issues. Many conservative groups herald this bill as one of the largest pork-barrel projects of all time, a project that this country has no control over combined with required financing based of gross national product. Without question, it is a major wealth redistribution project.

The United States does have some control. This country elects to be a member of the U.N. by choice, including the support of that membership. However, the point is aptly made, especially since the United States is quickly becoming a lesser country than in the past. Even U.N. policy takes the future reality as the current reality, without factoring such complexities as inflation or declining economies other than already impoverished ones. As a result of declining economic strength in this nation, U.N. sanctions against this country for non-cooperation might actually have an effect, should the situation warrant such a stand. All of this depends on the future global strength of the U.N.

What does the documentary evidence suggest? While the wording of the U.N. documentation is somewhat complex, clearly the GNP target for all countries is .7 percent of the gross national product.

Does the Millenium Development Goal promise to solve the problem of global poverty? Hardly.

Regardless of how the money is gathered to pay for this innocuous-sounding legislation, it is clearly a commitment on the part of the United States and other U.N. member countries that are willing to support it. Whether the means supports the end solution is a question that only you can answer. This logical writing mind doesn’t see the need for legislation to give support to U.N. measures that the national hierarchy wants to support.

My suggestion is that you review the links to this article and write your state lawmakers accordingly. If you want to make a stand against this legislation, you have little time to do so. The appearance is that this legislation will pass. A simple yes-no, no role-call vote will be taken in typical non-accountable Congressional fashion. Still, your voice, pro or con, can strongly influence your Senator or Representative and may turn the tide if Americans still care about more than what is going on today. ~ E. Manning

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