2012 #18 Winter –

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All college students,

& high-school seniors and juniors-

Enter this contest for an  all-expense-paid trip 

to participate in our national meeting in Washington D.C.

“WHAT DOES OUR U.S. GOVERNMENT DO

TO TRY TO DEAL WITH GLOBAL PROBLEMS?”

MARCH  15-17,  2 0 1 2

HEAR AND SEE HOW THE U.S. ADMINISTRATION WORKS AND INTERACTS WITH THE U.N., THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT, AND OTHER INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS.

HOW CAN WE GET OUR CONGRESS TO BE MORE RESPONSIBLE WITH REGARD TO DEALING WITH GLOBAL PROBLEMS?

VISIT THE WHITE HOUSE &  LOBBY YOUR MEMBER OF CONGRESS

Citizens for Global Solutions of Greater St. Louis will provide transportation, registration, meals, & lodging for any college student or for a high-school junior or senior to participate in the Citizens for Global Solutions national assembly in Washington DC.  

    The conference begins at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, March 15, so you should be able to leave St. Louis Wednesday.  The conference ends Saturday, March 17 at 5:00 p.m., so you could be back that night if you wish.  If you want to do sightseeing in Washington on Saturday, we will also provide hotel lodging for you for Friday night (but not extra meals).  The cherry blossoms will be at their best.  Getting to & from the St. Louis airport is your responsibility.  

     If you want to be a contestant for this all-expenses-paid trip, write a 3-5 page printed essay (double-spaced) consisting of 2 parts.  In the first part tell us about your background and accomplishments.  Why would you be a good person for us to send to this meeting?  In the second part share with us your thinking about one or more of the problems our world community faces and how we and our government could deal with them more effectively.

     For more information about CGS see our website here.

In exchange for this subsidy, CGS of St. Louis expects you to give us a brief written report about

the conference & what you learned from it.   (This gets published in our local  newsletter.)

Send your essay to: Ronald J. Glossop, 8894 Berkay Avenue, Jennings, MO 63136-5004

or preferably by e-mail to Ron at: rglossop@mindspring.com.  Be  sure  to  include  your home address  and  home  telephone  number. For more information, call (314) 869-2303.

Deadline:  Noon March 3, 2012.  Winner(s) will be notified by March 6, 2012.

PANEL DISCUSSES U.N. IMPROVEMENT

Suzanne Reinhold and Dorothy Poor

(first published in the October 2011 W.I.L.P.F. newsletter)

The UN Charter says the first goal of the UN is “to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war.”  Obviously the UN needs work.  A panel of three peace activists shared opinions at the Ethical Society Sept. 25 on “How to Make the UN More Effective.”  Their audience included members of the sponsoring organizations: Citizens for Global Solutions, The United Nations Association, and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom.

Prof. Jean Robert Leguey-Feilleux of St. Louis University explained that, however imperfect, the UN does good things.  The UN High Commissioner for Refugees deals with some 20 million refugees.  The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) is a good start toward organizing world business, and expanding the G-8 to the G-20 was a good move because it invites input from emerging economies.  The Security Council has learned to get around the veto at times by using consensus and informal agreements.  UN peacekeeping forces need to be better organized and disciplined.

Ron Glossop, Chair of CGS/STL, asserted that a just and peaceful world community ultimately requires a democratic world federation and that we should continue making strides in that direction with the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) principle.  With the ICC we now have a permanent international tribunal that can try and prosecute individuals responsible for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.  The R2P principle radically modifies the concept of national sovereignty, indicating that national governments and the international community have a responsibility to protect all residents from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.

For both the ICC and the R2P a frequent problem is how to enforce the law.  Theoretically that’s the responsibility of the Security Council and national governments that have ratified the treaty.  But the veto in the Security Council can stop actions, and national governments are often reluctant to act as they should.  Needed to make the UN more effective is an agreement among permanent members of the Security Council not to use the veto in cases involving human rights.  Glossop explained that the UN has neither troops nor armaments and that UN Peacekeeping forces are comprised of soldiers from countries that need the income.  Recent “peacekeepers” have come from Fiji, Pakistan & Bangladesh.

Also needed, said Glossop, is:

(1) an individually recruited, specially trained UN Emergency Police Force which can take action quickly with no risk of national casualties;

(2) expansion of jurisdiction of the ICC to other crimes such as aggression and possession of plans or materials for making nuclear weapons;

(3) a Parliamentary Assembly with advisory status to address critical global problems such as climate change, possible pandemics and getting rid of nuclear weapons;

(4) changing the General Assembly into a true legislative body that could create world law; and

(5) adoption of a weighted voting system in the Security Council as a way of getting rid of the veto.

Ultimately, he concluded, we need a global democratic federation to move beyond our anarchic international system.

Bill Bartholomew, CGS/STL board member, provided a skeptic’s view: that law and only law can bring peace among people; treaties never can.  He stated that UN has achieved few of its goals.

ICC DEPUTY PROSECUTOR FATOU BENSOUDA

Fatou Bensouda, center. At left is Professor Leila Sadat of Washington University’s Whitney R. Harris World Law Institute. Photo by Hicham Jaddoud

By Suzanne Reinhold and Mary Jane Schutzius

(first published in the October 2011 W.I.L.P.F. newsletter.)

Fatou Bensouda, soon to be appointed to the position of chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Court, spoke at the Washington University Law School on Sept. 22, 2011.  Gambian-born Prosecutor Bensouda was in St. Louis to receive the 2011 World Peace through Law Award by the Whitney R. Harris World Law Institute.

The award, established in 2006, recognizes individuals who have advanced the rule of law and contributed to world peace by work in the field of international law and international relations.  “This year’s laureate, International Criminal Court Deputy Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, has dedicated her career to the pursuit of justice and the rule of law.  This Award acknowledges her extraordinary work in the field of international criminal justice and her many achievements as an ardent champion of human rights,” a report by the award committee said. Bensouda explained that the ICC prosecutor must investigate referrals for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes to determine if a reasonable basis exists to proceed.  Currently, the ICC is investigating whether individuals in the Libyan government of Moammar Gadhafi committed crimes against citizens, and whether a member of the Kenyan government conscripted children into the military.  The ICC, like the Nuremberg trials, prosecutes individuals, not governments.

Prosecutor Bensouda stated that the “shadow” of the ICC is what matters.  The threat of prosecution of the worst perpetrators will prevent future atrocities.  To the question of why the ICC has prosecuted only persons from Africa, she responded that the ICC is concerned with victims, not the locations of the countries of the perpetrators.

Fatou has recently been chosen to become the new Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court in June 2012 when the 9-year term of Luis Moreno-Ocampo ends.

LOCAL CGS WEBSITE REVISED; NOW MORE USER FRIENDLY

All readers are urged to take a look at our chapter’s new website at <http://CGSstlouis.wordpress.com> and to urge others to do the same.  It is now possible to make your own comments, a feature that gives you a chance to express your views and which should help us attract new viewers and members.

Our special thanks to Marideth Sisco who does the layout and design of our newsletter as well as maintaining the website.  We also appreciate the work of Sarah Denton who provided important assistance in the redesign of the website.

All readers are also urged to keep themselves informed by regularly viewing our national CGS organization’s website at <http://www.globalsolutions.org>.

Vatican report on reforming international monetary systems examined

On October 24, 2011, the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace issued the document “Towards Reforming the International Financial and Monetary Systems in the Context of Global Public Authority.”  David Oughton has selected the following excerpts from this important document:

The grave economic and financial crisis gripping the world today springs from multiple causes…  Since the 1990s, we have seen that money and credit instruments worldwide have grown more rapidly than the accumulation of wealth in the economy, even adjusting for inflation.  From this came the formation of pockets of excessive liquidity and speculative bubbles which later turned into a series of solvency and confidence crises that have spread and followed one another over the years.

This has led to very serious repercussions for employment as well as other effects that have probably not yet seen their full impact…  The distribution of wealth did not become fairer but in many cases worsened…  The crisis has exposed behaviors such as selfishness, collective greed, and the hoarding of goods on a mammoth scale.

In the prophetic encyclical letter “Pacem in Terris,” Blessed John XXIII … expressed the hope that one day “a true world political authority” would be created…  A supranational authority in this arena should have a realistic structure and be set up gradually.  It should be favorable to the existence of efficient and effective monetary and financial systems; that is, free and stable markets overseen by a suitable legal framework, well-functioning in support of sustainable development and social progress of all, and inspired by the values of charity and truth.  It is a matter of an Authority with a global reach that cannot be imposed by force, coercion or violence, but should be the outcome of a free and shared agreement and a reflection of the permanent and historic needs of the world common good.

A supranational Institution, the expression of a “community of nations”, will not last long, however, if the countries’ differences from the standpoint of cultures, material and immaterial resources and historic and geographic conditions, are not recognized and fully respected.  The lack of a convinced consensus, nourished by an unceasing moral communion on the part of the world community, would also reduce the effectiveness of such an Authority.

The principle of subsidiarity should regulate relations between the State and local communities and between public and private institutions, not excluding the monetary and financial institutions.  According to the logic of subsidiarity, the higher Authority offers its subsidium, that is, its aid, only when individual, social or financial actors are intrinsically deficient in capacity, or cannot manage by themselves to do what is required of them.  Thanks to the principle of solidarity, a lasting and fruitful relationship would build up between global civil society and a world public Authority as States, intermediate bodies, various institutions–including economic and financial ones–and citizens make their decisions with a view to the global common good, which transcends national goods.

However, a long road still needs to be travelled before arriving at the creation of a public Authority with universal jurisdiction.  It would seem logical for the reform process to proceed with the United Nations as its reference because of the worldwide scope of the UN’s responsibilities, its ability to bring together the nations of the world, and the diversity of its tasks and those of its specialized Agencies.  The fruit of such reforms ought to be a greater ability to adopt policies and choices that are binding because they are aimed at achieving the common good on the local, regional and world levels.  Among the policies, those regarding global social justice seem most urgent:  financial and monetary policies that will not damage the weakest countries, policies aimed at achieving free and stable markets, and a fair distribution of world wealth.

[There is a] need for a minimum, shared body of rules to manage the global financial market which has grown much more rapidly than the real economy.  This situation of rapid, uneven growth has come about, on the one hand, because of the overall abrogation of controls on capital movements and the tendency to deregulate banking and financial activities; and on the other, because of advances in financial technology, due largely to information technology.

One can see an emerging requirement for a body that will carry out the functions of a kind of “central world bank” that regulates the flow and system of monetary exchanges, as do the national central banks.

Globalization, despite some of its negative aspects, is unifying peoples more and prompting them to move towards a new “rule of law” on the supranational level, supported by more intense and fruitful modes of collaboration.  With dynamics similar to those that put an end in the past to the “anarchical” struggle between rival clans and kingdoms with regard to the creation of national states, today humanity needs to be committed to the transition from a situation of archaic struggles between national entities, to a new model of a more cohesive, polyarchic international society that respects every people’s identity within the multifaceted riches of a single humanity.

Only a spirit of concord that rises above divisions and conflicts will allow humanity to be authentically one family and to conceive of a new world with the creation of a world public Authority at the service of the common good.

BOOK REVIEW:

THE UNITING OF NATIONS:  AN ESSAY ON GLOBAL GOVERNANCE

By John McClintock  

[Brussels:  P.I.E. Peter Lang, 3rd ed, 2010]

(Book review by Ronald J. Glossop–Oct. 27, 2011)

The Uniting of Nations argues for the need for a governed world community and uses the European Union as a model for how that can be accomplished.  One must start with small steps and proceed gradually in such a way that national governments will want to join to gain something specific for themselves.  The European Union would be the nucleus and other countries could join this global political union separately, but they would then be required to work together to form their own regional organizations.  Thus eventually there would be a world federation made up of regional federations, one of which would be the European Union which initiated the new global organization.

McClintock begins the book with a summary for those “who do not have time to read the whole essay” (p. 17).  The world faces many problems, problems which no country by itself can solve and which can only get worse.  The only way forward is for countries to work together. Europe is a region of the world demonstrating how nations can share sovereignty in order to improve both their national welfare and the welfare of the whole group.  “What Europe has done, the world needs to do.  This essay explains how” (p. 18)

The many current global problems not being handled shows that “the present system of global governance is dysfunctional” (p. 18).  The basic problem is the lack of a sovereign governing body for the whole global community which can make and enforce laws as sovereign national governments do within countries.  Just as citizens share sovereignty in order to establish a governing body within their nations, so national governments need to share sovereignty in order to establish a governing body at the global level.  The European Union is a good example of a governing body over nations which has both sovereign powers and political legitimacy.  On the other hand, the U.N.’s Security Council has impressive powers on paper but not in the real world.  The U.N. Security Council also lacks political legitimacy because 5 countries are permanent members with a veto power while at any one time only 7% of the 193 countries are represented at all.

The global community must do two things:  assist the failing nation-states and “bring into being a governing body which can act effectively at the global level” (p.23).  But the first task itself requires “a system of global governance that works” (p. 24) and the rules set down in the U.N.Charter are such that the Security Council can never be reformed.  “Something new needs to be created” (p. 25).  This new global organization could be initiated by “the European Union and around half-a-dozen or so pioneer states” (p. 26).

As was done in Europe the new global governance community could start with a few countries focused on a single problem like food security (p. 27) and then “a community for climate, energy, and prosperity” (p. 28).  As the European Community was furthered by the Zeitgeist of a united Europe, so the current Zeitgeist of globalism can support the creation of a Global Union.  Perhaps future historians will see the European Union as an experiment in sharing sovereignty by states that could be followed by the whole world.

Having given the overall thesis, McClintock turns to the details.  The global threats not being handled by the current global governance system are “War and Conflict,” “Acts of Terrorism,” “Nuclear Weapons,” “Depletion of Natural Resources,” “Instability in the Domain of International Finance,”  “The Outsourcing of Jobs,” “Migration,” “Indebted Countries,” “The Violation of Human Rights,” “Climate Change,” “The Concentration of Corporate Power,” and “Pandemics.” McClintock documents each of these problems and how the existing global system is not dealing with them.  International organizations exist but they “are not in a position to make and enforce law” (p. 74).  They do not possess sovereign powers (which is what Hobbes noted a government must have) and they don’t have political legitimacy (which Rousseau & Locke noted that a government must have).

In chapter 3 McClintock focuses on the problem of failing states and asks what is necessary for a state to succeed as a state.

The two pre-conditions for success are a sense of national unity and a benign international environment (pp. 84-85).  He gives a detailed account of the history of Sierra Leone and a brief reference to India in order to substantiate his view.  Chapter 4 gives a history of the European Union emphazing its successes while chapter 5 gives a history of the U.N. recognizing its successes but emphasizing its shortcomings.  Chapter 6 argues that the European Union is a better and more legitimate governing body than the U.N. Security Council.  Chapter 7 titled “A World of Chronic Anarchy” marks the culmination of McClinton’s thesis that the basic cause of our global mess is “the fact that the behaviour of states is unregulated” p. 159.

Part II. “What Are the Options?” has only one chapter, chapter 8.  The options he considers & rejects are (1) reforming the Security Council, (2) expanding the European Union to include all countries, (3) merging existing regional organizations, (4) expanding the G-8 or NATO or The Commonwealth of Nations or The Non-Aligned Movement or The Conference of Democracies to include all nations, (5) getting the United States to become an enlightened global hegemon, and (8) strengthening the role of international law (p. 172).  McClintock then concludes “that if the world is going to avail itself of a governing body that can be effective, it has no choice but to create such a body” (p. 186).  His specific proposals on how to do that, following the example of the European Union, are set forth in Part III (chapters 9-14).

Chapter 9 is a general discussion of the new global organization that would put forward technical solutions that would be “politically acceptable to all the parties concerned” (p. 189).  The principles to be followed are gradualism, inclusivity, voluntary membership, membership availability to all nations which could share sovereigny in the relevant area, do no harm to states outside the community, and all states would be required to gather into regions so that the global community would have “at most 15 to 15 members—one member for every region in the world” (p. 193).  Nations could originally join individually but would have to join with other nations in the same region to form a single regional organization.  The global community as a whole would have 3 institutions (a legislature, a judiciary, and an executive) plus other organs.  It would seek good relations with all countries which aren’t yet members, but could as a last resort take tough measures such as suspending trade and cooperation. In chapter 12 McClintock lays out a food security plan which might be the first practical project for the global community.  In chapter 13 he describes a second project, “a community for climate, energy, and prosperity” (p. 189).

Despite the great contribution this book makes to thinking about global governance, it is not without deficiencies.  No mention is made of the role of NGOs or of the International Criminal Court or the language problem facing Europe and the global community.  Even though McClinton is arguing for the need for a world federation, he says nothing about the arguments of other well-known advocates of world federalism such as Alexander Hamilton.  From a world federalist point of view it is surprising that there is nothing about the difference between a confederation and a federation although that distinction is at the very core of McClintock’s main thesis about the need for a more effective global organization.  But McClintock does successfully address what has been a huge issue for world federalists, namely, how do we begin to move forward from where we are now?

UPCOMING EVENTS

Sunday, February 26, 9:45 a.m. –  Retired Army Colonel Ann Wright, co-author of Dissent:  Voices of Conscience, a book which exposes government mistreatment of  whistle-blowers, will speak at the forum of the Ethical Society of St. Louis, 9001 Clayton Road, Richmond Heights MO 63117 (3/4 mile west of the Galleria).

Sunday, February 26, 12:30 p.m. –  “WAS INTERVENTION IN LIBYA A MISTAKE?”  Bud Deraps and Ron Glossop will debate the very controversial issue of whether the U.N.-authorized intervention in Libya in early March 2011 was a mistake or a good idea.  The debate will be held in the Hanke Room of the Ethical Society of St. Louis, 9001 Clayton Road, Richmond Heights MO 63117 (3/4 mile west of the Galleria).  Park behind the building and enter the door on the right.  As soon as you are inside, turn right to get to the Hanke Room where the debate will take place.

Saturday, March 3, 10:15 a.m. –  CGS/STL Board of Officers and Directors meets at World Community Center, 438 No. Skinker, 63130 followed at noon by national CGS conference call for Partners for Global Change.  Meeting open to all.

Thursday, March 15 to Saturday, March 17, Washington DC.  National Citizens for Global Solutions convention in Washington DC.  See the front page announcement for the essay contest for more details.

Sunday, April 29, 9:45 a.m. – Forum in the Hanke Room at the Ethical Society of St. Louis.  See February 26 event for details.  The topic is “CAN THE U.N. BE DEMOCRATIZED?”  The speaker is Dr. Joseph Schwartzberg, Distinguished International Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota.  He is author of the monograph REVITALIZING THE UNITED NATIONS:  REFORM THROUGH WEIGHTED VOTING (2004) as well as many articles and other books.  He has just finished a new book titled 

TRANSFORMING THE UNITED NATIONS:  DESIGNS FOR A WORKABLE WORLD.  Dr. Schwartzberg has visited over 100 countries, focusing mainly on the Indian sub-continent. He has been very active in the Minnesota Alliance of Peacemakers, the World Federalist Association, the international World Federalist Movement, and Citizens for Global Solutions (especially its World Federalist Institute) as well as other professional and peace-oriented organizations.

Sunday, April 29, 3:45 p.m. – Dr. Schwartzberg will also be the speaker at the beginning of our CGS of St. Louis annual business meeting at the Ethical Society addressing some of the issues he discusses in his new book.  Afterwards we will also have our usual buffet-style turkey dinner.  More information will be provided in our next newsletter.

MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL TIME IS NOW

The membership year for Citizens for Global Solutions runs from October 1 to September 30.  That means that now is renewal time for almost everyone.  The only ones who don’t need to renew are those whose expiration date on their newsletter label is  10/1/2012.

Everyone else should send the membership form on p. 7 of this newsletter to the national CGS office, 418 Seventh St. SE, Washington DC 20003 together with a check of $25 or more.  Because CGS is now a political organization with a Political Action Committee, this annual membership fee is not tax-deductible (but extra tax-deductible contributions can be made to the CGS Education Fund at the same address).

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