Yes, the right wing believes – and I think this is sincere – that Obama is trying to put the US government under control of the UN and issue a global tax. Here’s the specific claim, courtesy of Cliff Kincaid at

A nice-sounding bill called the “Global Poverty Act,” sponsored by Democratic presidential candidate and Senator Barack Obama, is up for a Senate vote on Thursday and could result in the imposition of a global tax on the United States. The bill, which has the support of many liberal religious groups, makes levels of U.S. foreign aid spending subservient to the dictates of the United Nations.

Senator Joe Biden, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has not endorsed either Senator Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton in the presidential race. But on Thursday, February 14, he is trying to rush Obama’s “Global Poverty Act” (S.2433) through his committee. The legislation would commit the U.S. to spending 0.7 percent of gross national product on foreign aid, which amounts to a phenomenal 13-year total of $845 billion over and above what the U.S. already spends.

Turns out, this claim is completely untrue. But wait, there’s more.

The House version (H.R. 1302), sponsored by Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.), had only 84 co-sponsors before it was suddenly brought up on the House floor last September 25 and was passed by voice vote. House Republicans were caught off-guard, unaware that the pro-U.N. measure committed the U.S. to spending hundreds of billions of dollars.

I’d love to see some evidence that “House Republicans were caught off-guard,” especially since the bill does not commit the US to spending “hundreds of billions of dollars”. But wait – there’s still more!

Jeffrey Sachs, who runs the U.N.’s “Millennium Project,” says that the U.N. plan to force the U.S. to pay 0.7 percent of GNP in increased foreign aid spending would add $65 billion a year to what the U.S. already spends.

Complete fiction. Let’s look at the facts. First, the bill itself. I’ll quote only the beefy, relevant part.

The President, acting through the Secretary of State, and in consultation with the heads of other appropriate departments and agencies of the United States Government, international organizations, international financial institutions, the governments of developing and developed countries, United States and international nongovernmental organizations, civil society organizations, and other appropriate entities, shall develop and implement a comprehensive strategy to further the United States foreign policy objective of promoting the reduction of global poverty, the elimination of extreme global poverty, and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goal of reducing by one-half the proportion of people worldwide, between 1990 and 2015, who live on less than $1 per day.

I see nothing in there about delegating any amount of authority to the UN, nor any commitment to a particular dollar value. What I see is a requirement for the President to formulate a concrete plan to meet already existing US policy goals, and to achieve a benchmark goal (one of the 8 UN Millennium Development Goals) that we had already agreed to years ago.

So where does this claim that the UN is going to “force” the US to commit 0.7% of GNP to development in the third world? A pledge made in 1970 by many of the world’s governments, that 0.7% of GNP would provide the funds necessary to lift the third world out of abject poverty – and that they would strive to provide that money.

That’s it. That’s the evidence of a conspiracy to subjugate the US to the UN. A bill requiring the President to articulate a plan to meet existing US foreign policy goals, using one of 8 UN Millennium Development Goals as a benchmark, that delegates no authority to the UN to enforce any pledged funding level, nor any mention of any funding requirements at all. I can only think of one word that describes this kind of delusion.


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  • double h

    Contrary to what some would have you believe, this is not some kooky liberal democrat idea. This bill does nothing more than set a course of action to accomplish an initiative that the U.S., along with 180 + other countries, has already agreed to, the UN Millennium Development goals. The Millennium Development goals initiative is supported by George W. Bush, along with other republicans. The Global Poverty Act itself was co-sponsored by two rather conservative republicans. Most of the bad press associated with the bill is from the talking heads of American Conservatism, and as usual, their supporters are simply regurgitating their commentary rather than thinking for themselves. There are eight aspects to the Millennium Development goals, all of which are needed to make the world a safer and more productive place. And the truth is that when attempting to secure ourselves from attack, illegal immigration or any of the other major concerns of America currently, our money is better spent making the impoverished nations more prosperous than it is spreading death and destruction around the world. We currently are spending 100+ billion dollars in Iraq per year, and another 500 billion funding the military industrial complex. And that does not account for the amount spent rebuilding infrastructure that we demolished.

    Not to over simplify the issue, but currently there have been over 100,000 innocent civilians, many of them children, killed in the war on terror. Everyone of those had either a mother, brother, father, sister, aunt, uncle, etc. that will carry a hatred for the US for most likely the rest of their lives. So in essence we have created nearly 1,000,000 new enemies of the US. That is what breeds attacks on the US. What if instead, we would have clothed, educated, feed, or provided needed medical treatment for 100,000 innocent civilians. What would the response have been to that? The United States is worth roughly 30 trillion dollars, most of which is held by the top ten percent of our population, we can afford to help out. I have not agreed with Bush on many things during his administration, but I do support him on poverty. He has taken steps towards actually helping impoverished nations rather than making a profit at their expense. If you are not aware of what I mean consider this. Bush has proposed that we increase the amount of foreign aid that is actually spent within the local agricultural industries. Before we would simply purchase food aid from American farming surplus, which provided our commercial farms with more profit, while the local farms of the areas we helped disappeared. This process did nothing to reverse the trend or reduce poverty. It simply made the situation worse. The industrialized world holds in its hands the ability to abolish all forms of poverty, it also holds the ability to abolish all life. Which should we do?

  • double h

    I like the article

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