Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Reason #874,558 Why The Entire UN Should Be Dumped In The East River...

(via McQ at QandO)

The UN is at it again fighting tirelessly against Human Rights Abuses, and seeing as how they've been so successful in places like Cuba, Saudi Arabia or Darfur, it's time to turn their attention on the big prize. You guessed it, The United States.

This headline is just so incredibly ridiculous I don't know where to begin-

Racial Poverty Gaps in U.S. Amount to Human Rights Violation, Says U.N. Expert

UNITED NATIONS, Nov 29 (OneWorld) - Despite enormous wealth and various federal and social welfare schemes at work, the United States is failing to help millions of its people trying to get out of poverty, according to an independent United Nations rights expert.

"Resource constraints have limited the reach of the assistance programs and social discrimination has aggravated the problems in many situations resulting in poverty clearly seen as a violation of human rights," Dr. Arjun Sengupta declared after visiting the United States last month.

"If the United States government designed and implemented the policies according to human rights standards much of the problem of poverty could be resolved," he added.

Dr. Sengupta, an expert on human rights and extreme poverty of the world body's Commission on Human Rights, said he chose to visit the United States because he wanted to illustrate that extreme poverty was not only prevalent in developing countries, but a phenomenon that is found in most nations in the world, according to U.N. officials.

"The case of the United States was particularly interesting as it presented an apparent paradox: as the wealthiest country on Earth, with higher per capita income levels than any other country, the United States has also had one of the highest incidences of poverty among the rich industrialized nations," Dr. Sengupta said.

Good lord. Human rights violations? Someone explain to me where in the Constitution it says that "all citizens will be provided free healthcare and no one will ever go hungry".

Is there extreme poverty in the US? Without question, yes. There are areas of the country where the jobs have evaporated and people were stuck with no immediate ways out, thus things are horribly bleak. Certain parts of West Virginia or Kentucky come to mind as examples. But to say that these people are without any assistance from the government or private charities and thusly are victims of Human Rights Abuses is beyond ridiculous. Here's a little list of How "Poor" are America's Poor-

* 38 percent of the persons whom the Census Bureau identifies as "poor" own their own homes with a median value of $39,200.

* 62 percent of "poor" households own a car; 14 percent own two or more cars.

* Nearly half of all "poor" households have air-conditioning; 31 percent have microwave ovens.

* Nationwide, some 22,000 "poor" households have heated swimming pools or Jacuzzis.

"Poor" Americans today are better housed, better fed, and own more property than did the average U.S. citizen throughout much of the 20th Century. In 1988, the per capita expenditures of the lowest income fifth of the U.S. population exceeded the per capita expenditures of the median American household in 1955, after adjusting for inflation.1

Better Off Than Europeans, Japanese
The average "poor" American lives in a larger house or apartment than does the average West European (This is the average West European, not poor West Europeans). Poor Americans eat far more meat, are more likely to own cars and dishwashers, and are more likely to have basic modern amenities such as indoor toilets than is the general West European population.

"Poor" Americans consume three times as much meat each year and are 40 percent more likely to own a car than the average Japanese. And the average Japanese is 22 times more likely to live without an indoor flush toilet than is a poor American.

The Census Bureau counts as "poor" anyone with "cash income" less than the official poverty threshold, which was $12,675 for a family of four in 1989. The Census completely disregards assets owned by the "poor," and does not even count much of what, in fact, is income. This is clear from the Census's own data: low income persons spend $1.94 for every $1.00 in "income" reported by the Census. If this is true, then the poor somehow are getting $0.94 in additional income above every $1.00 counted by the Census. Indeed, the gap between spending and the Census's count of the income of the "poor" has grown larger year by year till, now, the Census measurement of the income of poor persons no longer has any bearing on economic reality.

You want Human Rights Abuses that are worthy of international condemnation? How about this?

Horrific conditions and suffering make it the last worst place on Earth

By Jack Rendler
May 15, 2005

There are 23 million people living in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea), and all of them – men, women and children – suffer every day under the heel of the most repressive regime on Earth. Their plight has been abandoned and ignored by most of the world for nearly 50 years. But there is now new hope and opportunity to restore their freedom and dignity.

The suffering of the North Korean people does not benefit from the drama that attends well-publicized human rights crises such as Iraq and Darfur. Even when hunger and starvation killed as many as 2 million North Koreans in the mid-1990s, the world took little notice. And the greater toll is the continuing long-term day-to-day grinding down of the hearts, minds and souls of all North Korean people.

The North Korean government may be unique in all the world in its ability and willingness to both starve its people and oppress them, to deny them basic civil rights as well as access to food and health care. The government in its showcase capital Pyongyang does not permit international inspection, does not respond to inquiries, and does not fulfill its United Nations obligations. Officials concentrate on keeping the world from North Korea and Koreans from each other.

The regime does not tolerate opposition of any kind. Those who are assumed to be less than loyal are arrested, imprisoned, starved and executed. Entire families are detained or "resettled" because of the supposed political deviation of one relative. Under the concept of "collective retribution," children are punished for the political sins of their parents, denied education and socially ostracized.

Hundreds of thousands are held in a system of prison and labor camps.

Any unauthorized assembly or association is regarded as a "collective disturbance" that is punishable. There are reports of severe repression of people involved in public and private religious activities, through imprisonment, torture and executions. Many Christians are reportedly being held in labor camps.

Someone please explain to me again why the UN is still in New York. Because I am at a loss to see how this organization is anything more than soapbox for dictators and socialists.



Update: A little less than a year ago, I wrote about Reason #874556 Why The Entire UN Should Be Dumped In The East River......A world without the UN.......Hmmmmmm...

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