Free Markets, Free People

Daily Archives: September 10, 2010


There are pundits and there are, well, you tell me …

I’m coming to believe there’s a perpetual “silly season” among many pundits and wannabe pundits. The punditry market is so saturated that even the barely marginal among them are landing gigs on cable TV.

I’ve been monitoring, as I’m sure most of you have, this preacher who wants to burn Korans on Saturday.  He has every right to do so, but as with the mosque builders in NYC, it is an insensitive and culturally inappropriate thing to do.

That said, to the point of my first sentence, the “silly season”.  One of the main contributors to that, of course, is Keith Olberman who I assume fancies himself as a serious pundit, or commenter (and other than the left, the only who considers him to be that).

Yet this was the extent of his original contribution to the Koran burning story:

MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann was one of the first to call attention to the Limbaugh/Jones nexus when he posted news of it on Twitter overnight: " ‘Rev.’ Terry Jones was classmate of none other than Rush Limbaugh (Cape Central class of ’69). Coincidence?"

What in the hell does that mean except to say “hey I’m dumb enough to believe correlation is causation”.

My first reaction to this “revelation” was “so”?  My second and continuing reaction to it is, “so”?  I mean of all the mindless nonsense to append to a story that’s been blown all out of proportion to begin with, this pretty much takes the cake. 

Guilt by association, correlation is causation, pick your fallacy, Olberman does and probably has committed them all.   Thankfully he’s not watched by many except brainiacs like this commenter:

While this is not surprising, it is amazing. Amazing that I didn’t see the similarity in opinions and call this ahead of time. But, if you have ever been to Cape Girardeau you would understand. This was and is part of the South, I think it is further south on a GPS than Lexington, KY.

*sigh*

The inmates are truly in charge of the asylum. Too bad Olberman doesn’t have a "stupidest person in the world" segment – he could be the first nominee.  The commenter could be #2.

~McQ


UN no longer content with role?

Not that its “role” has been much more than a third-world debating club to this point, but apparently it is tired of that and wants to move on to a more glorious and important role.  That’s per George Russell reporting at Fox News.  Russell reports that UN Sec Gen Ban ki-Moon and about 60 of his top lieutenants spend the Labor Day weekend at a resort in Austria plotting their takeover of the world. Talk about "mission creep".

Here’s what he was able to glean from the “position papers” that were used at the meeting and what they included:

– how to restore “climate change” as a top global priority after the fiasco of last year’s Copenhagen summit;

– how to continue to try to make global redistribution of wealth the real basis of that climate agenda, and widen the discussion further to encompass the idea of “global public goods”;

– how to keep growing U.N. peacekeeping efforts into missions involved in the police, courts, legal systems and other aspects of strife-torn countries;

– how to capitalize on the global tide of migrants from poor nations to rich ones, to encompass a new “international migration governance framework”;

– how to make “clever” use of new technologies to deepen direct ties with what the U.N. calls “civil society,” meaning novel ways to bypass its member nation states and deal directly with constituencies that support U.N. agendas.

Of course the biggest problem that faces the UN in each of those areas is that old anachronism, at least in the UN’s view – national sovereignty.   Each of the above would require severe weakening of national sovereignty and, frankly, that’s what the UN would like to see. 

That’s because the UN sees itself as the “go to” organization for global governance, which it obviously feels is “the next step” in the utopian evolution of man.

Hammering away at perceptions that nation-states cannot adequately meet global challenges, but the U.N. can, is a major theme of the position papers, which were assembled by a variety of U.N. think tanks, task forces and institutions, including the United Nations Development Program, and the U.N.’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs.

This is an organization so inept it can’t carry on a proper peace keeping mission and so corrupt it gives organized crime a bad name.  This is the same organization that has included Libya on the Human Rights Commission and whose peace keepers have been cited for cases of rape and child molestation, and stood by doing nothing while Hezbollah rearmed itself in Lebanon. 

Yet it feels it could handle the role of global governor and chief of wealth redistribution.  And that, of course, would start with their primary potential cash cow – climate change:

Rolling just about every U.N. mantra into one, the paper declares that “nothing is more crucial to preventing run-away climate change than lifting billions out of poverty, protecting our planet and fostering long-term peace and prosperity for all.”

And to do that, the paper suggests, equally dramatic shifts in political power may be needed. “Is the global governance structure, still dominated by national sovereignty, capable of responding with the coherence and speed needed?” it asks. “Or do we need to push the ‘reset’ button and rethink global governance to meet the 50-50-50 Challenge?”

Not only that – a little behavior modification might be in order:

“The real challenge comes from the exponential growth of the global consumerist society driven by ever higher aspirations of the upper and middle layers in rich countries as well as the expanding demand of emerging middle-class in developing countries. Our true ambition should be therefore creating incentives for the profound transformation of attitudes and consumption styles.”

And, of course, as you might imagine, the foregone conclusion of each of these position papers is the UN is the organization best suited to take on the job of global governance:

“At the practical level, through the U.N. system we have all kinds of expertise and capacities, even if not adequate resources, to actually do something,” the paper notes.

Really?  Can anyone point to a system anywhere, to include our own governmental system, which is more inept, corrupt or unable to do much of anything it was chartered to do?  Is that anyone who actually believes that nation-states are going to willingly give up their sovereignty to a group of bureaucrats who’ve demonstrated neither “expertise” nor “capacities” to do much of anything but waste money?

And speaking of money, that’s part of the plan as well:

It is “urgent to secure U.N. participation” at regular meetings of the G-20 finance ministers and their deputies,” according to one of the papers, a group that the U.N. Secretariat, based in New York City and Geneva, does not interact with very much.

Why?

“The much paraded reform of financial governance institutions has not gone far enough,” the position paper for the U.N. leadership’s keynote session asserts, and the voting power of emerging players and developing world, in general, which demand a greater say on these matters, remains inadequate.”

The answer? “An enhanced political will is clearly needed to avoid return to status quo, to push forward regulatory mechanisms, and improve financial governance.”

Or, said another way, the third world demands a seat at the table and a say in how the first world handles its money – and, most likely how it is to be redistributed. 

The group also see peace keeping as a means of nation building UN style:

In essence, as another paper observes, the U.N. peacekeeping effort is transforming into a new kind of supervisory organism in which not only conflicts but also national institutions and cultures must be regulated for longer and longer periods of time.

“Even where a semblance of stability is achieved,” the paper by Ban’s peace-building support office argues, the achievement of peace may involve more than “adopting a constitution or holding elections.” It adds that “more fundamental change may be needed in a country’s institutions and political culture as well as in public perceptions and attitudes.”

It was quite a meeting if the position papers were any indication.  How much if any of the agenda will see the light of day much less be achieved is anyone’s guess.  But the fact remains those are the ambitions of the UN leadership today.  The problem is I have no confidence that the administration now in place in the US wouldn’t look favorably at much of what is outlined above.  That, of course, would be disastrous – both to the US and the world.

(HT: papajj)

~McQ

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