compiled by Dee Finney

8-16-05 - DREAM - I was in the parking lot of a large place - it looked rather mall-like.

It was a holiday of some kind. I didn't know if it was Easter or Thanksgiving, but a holiday that most everyone celebrated with a big meal.

I was sitting on the back of a flat-bed trailer with a bowl of something that looked like macaroni and cheese piled high. I hadn't started to eat it yet.

There was a white sheet hanging up between me and the mall entrance so I couldn't whether people were going in and out, or how many, but I heard footsteps coming towards me from the mall from the other side of this sheet. 

All of a sudden, a bum-like character showed up from the other side of the white sheet and saw what I was about to eat.

I had plenty to share, but I only had one fork.

I didn't want to share germs with the man, so I said he could eat first and then I'd wipe off the fork and eat what was left.

The man ate and ate and ate, and finally all that  was left for me to eat was the dried out cheese sauce at the bottom of the bowl.

While I was contemplating the share that was left for me, this cheese turned dark blue and started a process of pulsing and pixilating and each time it flashed there was less and less left.

Finally, I saw the number " 7 TRILLION ' and then the initials  ' U.N. '

NOTE: In the list of 'low development countries below, there are 34 countries. Some of them I never heard of. 
It is obvious from doing this research that 7 Trillion is just a drop in the bucket of the cost of what needs to be done.
See below in red for a shocking detail for this number.


Malawi facing serious food crisis

More than 4.2 million people in need of assistance

11 August 2005, Rome - Malawi is facing its worst food crisis in more than a decade, the result of a combination of factors, including drought, floods, consecutive poor harvests, endemic poverty and the effects of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, FAO said today.

More than 4.2 million people, or over 34 percent of the population, are unable to meet their food needs. Production of maize, Malawi's most important staple crop, is estimated at nearly 1.3 million tonnes this year, the lowest in a decade and around 26 percent less than last year's relatively poor harvest.

"Early and above average rains had raised hopes for a good crop, but the rains failed during the critical period from late January to end of February when the maize crop was pollinating and forming cobs," said Tesfai Ghermazien, FAO emergency coordinator in Malawi. "The dry spell also coincided with cassava and sweet potato planting in some areas."

In addition, exceptionally heavy rains in December and early January caused flooding and crop losses, especially in the southern and central part of the country.

"The impacts of the failed harvest won't be felt fully until the lean season sets in between October and April," said Ghermazien. "We need urgent assistance from the donor community to prevent a further escalation of the crisis and to avert widespread hunger and malnutrition, especially among children under the age of five."

Agriculture-driven economy

Agriculture, which is mainly rain fed, is the most important sector of the economy in Malawi, accounting for about 39 percent of gross domestic product and employing around 85 percent of the workforce. It contributes to more than 90 percent of the country's foreign exchange earnings.

Natural disasters

In recent years, there has been an increase in the frequency and severity of natural disasters such as droughts and floods, with serious repercussions on crop production. This year's drought is expected to result in a national cereal gap of between 300 000 to 500 000 tonnes.

"The challenge is to provide immediate relief supplies to the affected populations and to design long-term recovery strategies to avert similar situations in the future," said Ghermazien. "The promotion of drought-tolerant crops and crop diversification, for example, will help mitigate the impacts of droughts."

HIV/AIDS a major problem

The HIV/AIDS pandemic continues to be a major social and economic problem for the country, with around 15 percent of the population estimated to be HIV infected.

The impact on the agricultural sector has been significant, with loss of labour due to death, illness or the diversion of labour to care for the sick sharply affecting production and leaving a large part of the population without adequate food supplies.

Range of interventions needed

"Most of the areas affected by drought or flooding this year were already facing critical food shortages, and many families lost both their crops in the field and their food stores," said Ghermazien. "These households will need food aid, but also agricultural inputs, such as seeds and fertilizers for the next planting season, starting in October."

Assistance is also needed to help vulnerable households broaden their economic base. FAO is promoting crop diversification to reduce reliance on maize, small livestock production, small-scale irrigation and income-generating activities.

Interventions such as the promotion of home gardens and nutrition education for HIV/AIDS-affected households and malnourished children are needed to help improve the health and nutritional status of these most vulnerable groups.

Other proposed activities include the promotion of drought-tolerant crops, such as cassava and sweet potatoes, afforestation in flood-prone areas to improve soil structure, and establishment of fruit tree nurseries and primary school orchards to improve child nutrition.

Teresa Buerkle
Information Officer, FAO
(+39) 06 570 56146
(+39) 348 14 16 671

"Food is power! We use it to change behavior. Some may call that bribery. We do not apologize." These are the threatening words of Catherine Bertini, Executive Director of the United Nations World Food Program. Ms. Bertini, was our very own former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Agriculture. Ms. Bertini was a featured speaker at the globalist UN World Food Summit in November of 1996.

Many believe the United Nations is the focal point for the global restructuring process. It is also believed by many that the coming crisis of food shortages, famine, and political and social turmoil will lead to Marshall Law allowing socialist directorates to proclaim a revamping and restructuring of the economic system which will solve the significant concerns facing humanity.

Both Hitler and Stalin taught and believed that true Socialism would begin in one country (Germany or Russia); then, like an octopus it would grow to encompass the entire globe. Larry Bates, astute publisher of Monetary and Economic Review journal, in his book The New Economic Disorder, touches on this plan. He writes, "I have said, for many years that the term ‘New World Order’ is merely a code word for one-world socialism, with an elite ruling class to govern the rest of us under their demonic system." Bates also believes that, "The mechanism that has been set up to manage us all is a world government, an antichrist system, headquartered in the United Nations."

Proclaiming that, "The New World Order will be founded on the rule, all for one and one for all," a World Goodwill bulletin summarized the Illuminati’s blueprint for economic control by loftily declaring: "The New World Order will recognize that the produce of the world, the natural resources of the planet, and its riches do not belong to one nation but should be shared by all...A fair and properly organized distribution of the wheat, oil and the mineral wealth of the world will be developed...All this will be worked out in relation to the whole."

Colonel Edward M. House, the founder of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), was President Woodrow Wilson’s top foreign policy advisor. Col. House was one of the men who first conceived the League of Nations, the U.N.’s failed predecessor. Col. House once exclaimed: "The goal is Socialism as dreamed of by Karl Marx."

In recent years, especially since FDR, more and more presidents have decided to exercise the powers they derive from un-Constitutional Executive Orders either to bypass Congress entirely or to speed up the process of wielding governmental powers. [Executive Orders are outrageously unconstitutional!] President Clinton and President Bush have been the most flagrant violators. Mr. Clinton and Mr. Bush have issued Executive Order after Executive Order. As a result, the United States is now ruled directly from the White House and the stage is set for the restructuring of America to act in full accord under the control of One World Government operated by the Illuminati. Among the Executive Orders already in existence providing for control of people’s everyday lives and seizure of private property are the following:

E.O. 13010 - Seizure of the "Critical Infrastructure." Seizure of computer systems, the Internet, satellite systems and telephone and communications systems, by the federal government. Empowerment of the U.S. Armed Forces to perform the functions of government in event of national emergency.

E.O. 10995 - Seizure of the communications media.

E.O. 10997 - Seizure of all electric power and utility systems, fuels, and minerals.

E.O. 10998 - Seizure of all food supplies and resources and all farms and farm equipment.

E.O. 10999 and E.O. 11005 - Seizure of all means of transportation, including company and personal cars, trucks, trains, airlines, river and ocean vessels, and vehicles and conveyances of any kind, and control over all highways, waterways, and air routes.

E.O. 1100 - Mandatory induction of any and all America workers for government projects or missions, placing the entire U.S. work force under the federal government.

E.O. 1101 - Seizure of all health, education, and welfare facilities and equipment.

E.O. 11002 - Empowers the Postmaster General to register all U.S.A. men, women, and children and to issue a national I.D. card.

E.O. 11004 - Seizure of all housing and finances and the power to direct the relocation of people and resources into designated communities.

E.O. 11051 - Empowers the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) with the authority to independently put Executive Orders into effect in event of increased international tension or economic, financial, or military crises.

E.O. 13083 - Centralizes all government powers and authority – national, state, and local – in the federal government. Overrides the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and makes all state and local laws and regulations subservient and inferior to those of the federal government. Also empowers the federal government to control the social and religious behavior of the people by stating that federal law shall "define the moral, political, and legal character of their lives."

This hideously sinister Executive Order (13083), issued May 14, 1998 by President Clinton, undoubtedly one of the most shocking of all. It totally undermines and destroys the Bill of Rights and gives the federal government the awesome power even to define the "moral character" of peoples’ lives!

The general public was told little or nothing about this Executive Order by either the media or their representatives in the Congress. A small group of determined patriots caused an uproar about this Stalinist oriented infringement on the peoples’ rights and liberties. On Internet and on radio talk shows they complained with a mighty voice. Amazingly, possibly because the biannual federal election for the Congress was only a few months away, the Congress moved quickly to nullify Executive Order 13083. Shortly after the November 1998 elections, the White House announced that the President intended to reissue the nullified Executive Order.

On November 14, 1998, World Net Daily, a global news service published on the World Wide Web, carried this astonishing news article:

"The National Governors Association would like to have a national ID system, and plans to work with the White House to reinstate Executive Order 13083 to make that a reality."

WAKE UP AMERICA!!! We have 50 governors of the states coming together and agreeing to trash the Constitution, to decimate the people’s precious historical heritage of freedom and liberty against federal encroachment, and to turn over all governing power throughout America to the absolute rulers of the federal government. This is DICTATORSHIP! This is TREASON!, and America is sound asleep refusing to get involved because it trusts the elected. You think nothing like this could happen in America!? Folks, it’s happening today right under our own noses. Our society has been dumbed down to the point we do not know how to react, what to do, where to go, or how to save our great nation. If you’re looking for answers watching ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, CNN or other controlled media-hype, you’ll not likely find anything. You will know only what they want you to know when they decide it’s time for you to know.

Most Americans don’t want to get involved because they are afraid of the government, they are too caught up enjoying the "good times",or that they don’t want to be labeled as a patriot or some weird Christian.

The Marxist-Leninist-Socialist Liberals in Congress and other levels of governments have had over 50 years to overturn this nation into a Socialist welfare paradise, and they are now calling in their notes/favors.

"The age of nations must end. The government of nations have decided to order their separate sovereignties into one government to which they will surrender their arms." - The UN World Constitution

"To achieve world government, it is necessary to remove from the minds of men their individualism, loyalty to family, traditions, national patriotism, and religious dogmas." - Brock Chisolm, Director, UN World Health Organization

"The UN is the greatest fraud in history. Its purpose is to destroy the United States." - Congressman John E. Rankin

"Fundamental, Bible-believing people do not have the right to indoctrinate their children in their religious beliefs because we, the state, are preparing them for the year 2000, when America will be part of a one-world order global society and their children will not fit it." - Peter Hoagland, Nebraska State Senator stated on radio in 1983

"It is in the American interest to put an end to Nationhood." - Walt Rostow, Council on Foreign Relations and UN Spokesman

"My vision of a new World Order foresees a UN with a revitalized peacekeeping function. It is the sacred principles enshrined in the UN Charter to which we henceforth pledge our allegiance." - President George Herbert Walker Bush stated on February 1, 1992.

"We must get the New World Order on track and bring the UN into its correct role in regards to the United States." - Warren Christopher, Secretary of State under Bill Clinton, stated on CNN, January 25, 1993.

"The overall goal of the UN is a free, secure, and peaceful world of independent states adhering to common standards of justice and international conduct and subjecting the use of force to the rule of law; a world which has achieved general complete disarmament under effective international control; and a world in which adjustment to change takes place in accordance with principles of the UN." - The U.S. Program for General and Complete Disarmament in a Peaceful World, introduced September 25, 1961 to the UN by John Fitzgerald Kennedy (State Department Document 7277)

"The New World Order under the UN will reduce everything to one common denominator. The system will be made up of a single currency, single centrally financed government, single tax system, single language, single political system, single world court of justice, single state religion...Each person will have a registered number, without which he will not be allowed to buy or sell; and there will be one universal world church. Anyone who refuses to take part in the universal system will have no right to exist." - Assessment of the New World by Dr. Kurk E. Koch

The modern roots of the New World Order go back before the time of our Declaration of Independence, and stems from a secret Luciferian society which espouses "illuminism." On May 1, 1776, the Order of Illuminati was established, a quest for total world rule by a select group of "enlightened ones." Rooted in satanic worship, the Illuminati’s stated agenda includes:

1. The destruction of Christianity.

2. The abolition of private property.

3. The abolition of inheritance.

4. The breakup of the family unit.

5. The destruction of patriotism.

6. The abolition of all national government.

7. The creation of a one world government.

WAKE UP AMERICA!!! Get America out of the United Nations, and get the United Nations out of America! America is not about One World Government, and One World Government is not about America! The Constitution is not about the UN Charter, nor is the UN Charter about the Constitution!!!  Nor was President Bush designated a King or a dictator by the Founding Fathers.



Mission to Yemen reveals extent of tsunami damage

Losses estimated at $2.2 million - FAO proposes project to help 2 000 families

10 August 2005, Rome - Fishing communities in Yemen were much more seriously affected by the December 2004 tsunami than had been originally thought, with damages totalling around US$2.2 million and 2 000 families affected, a fact-finding mission carried out jointly by FAO and the Yemeni Government has reported.

The mission, undertaken in July 2005 after a request was made to FAO by Yemeni authorities, surveyed 34 coastal communities in the Al Mahara district and on the Socotra Islands, situated south of Yemen's mainland off the north-eastern tip of Somalia.

"We found that while the damage was less than in countries closer to the epicentre of the earthquake, there were significant impacts on the livelihoods of local people, especially fishermen," said FAO expert Hans Båge, who led the mission.

High waves damaged boats, engines and fishing gear as well as infrastructure vital to the fishing sector, such as ice plants, storage sheds and jetties, with 653 boats, 569 engines 1 625 nets and 16 980 fishing traps either damaged or completely destroyed, according to the latest estimates made by the joint FAO/Government mission. Many landing beaches and natural harbours were also destroyed.

These losses have severely affected the livelihoods of 2 000 fishing households and left many of them without any means of income. Most of them have not received any assistance to help them resume fishing and livelihood activities.

The halt in fishing has in turn had an economic impact on buyers, sellers, processors and others who make a living in fisheries-related activities, Båge noted.

The fishery sector plays an important role in the Yemeni economy and provides employment to more than 53 000 fishers and workers in related sectors.

Lack of financial and technical expertise, shortcomings in coordination and difficulties reaching the remote affected villages meant that initial estimates of the tsunami's impacts did not provide a full picture of damage, and authorities did not immediately perceive the need for international assistance.

Donor support for rehabilitation project needed

FAO is urging donors to support a US$2.2 million post-tsunami fisheries rehabilitation project it is proposing for Yemen.

"Many fishermen have not been fishing for six months now," said Båge. "They will only be able to start again in September when the present monsoon stops, and if they receive proper assistance."

The project would provide essential fishing inputs, such as nets, hooks, fishing line and spare engine parts and repair or replace boats, engines and fishing gear.

FAO also proposes conducting an assessment of the feasibility of reconstructing eroded beaches and natural harbours on which many Yemeni fishers depend.

George Kourous
Information Officer, FAO
+39 06 570 53168
+39 348 141 6802


Latest information on the
Oil-for-Food Inquiry


Handover to Suppliers and Missions

Frequently asked Questions

(21 November 2003)

Iraq map
The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on this map do not imply official endorsement or acceptance by the United Nations

$9.978 Billion Transferred to Development Fund for Iraq

Transfers of $1 billion each were made on 28 May, 31 October and 18 November 2003 from the United Nations Iraq escrow account, at the request of the Security Council contained in paragraph 17 of resolution 1483 (2003) of 22 May 2003. Another $2.6 billion was transferred on 31 December 2003, a further $2 billion on 31 March and $0.5 billion on 19 April 2004. Three more transfers, totalling $1.128 billion, were made in 2004 and three transfers totalling $0.75 billion have been made in 2005.

UN Secretary-General Praises

Work of Oil-for-Food Programme


United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has praised the Oil-for-Food Programme for accomplishing one of the largest, most complex and unusual tasks ever entrusted to the Secretariat.


In a statement to the Security Council (20 November 2003), he noted that the Programme, which closed on 21 November was the only humanitarian programme ever to have been funded entirely from resources belonging to the nation it was designed to help.


He said that in nearly seven years of operation, the Programme had been required to meet "an almost impossible series of challenges", using some $46 billion of Iraqi export earnings on behalf of the Iraqi people. Under the Programme, nine different United Nations agencies, programmes and funds developed and managed humanitarian operations in Iraq, meeting the needs of the civilian population across some 24 economic and social sectors.


The Secretary-General paid tribute to the national and international staff of the Programme and said that in accordance with Security Council resolutions, the UN would hand operational responsibilities, together with remaining funds and assets ranging from schools to electrical power stations and some $8.2 billion worth of food, medicines and other essential supplies – to the Coalition Provisional Authority.


He noted that the actual delivery of these items would continue well into next year and that any unspent or undispersed amounts would be transferred to the Development Fund for Iraq after the Programme closes.

He said that although the UN was closing the Oil-for-Food Programme, it "remained determined to continue helping Iraq's long-suffering people" in whatever ways were still open to it. (Posted 22 November)


Oil-for-Food Programme Ready

for 21 November Handover


The Executive Director of the Oil-for-Food Programme, Mr. Benon Sevan, updated the Security Council today (19 November) on arrangements for the handover of programme operations and responsibilities to the Coalition Provision Authority (CPA) on Friday. Termination of the Programme is effective as of midnight 21 November, 2003.


Mr. Sevan said that the CPA should ensure that appropriate arrangements are in place from 22 November for the effective management of the billions of dollars worth of supplies and equipment destined for Iraq from the Programme’s delivery pipeline and for authenticating the arrival of these goods to facilitate payment to the suppliers.


Mr Sevan noted that the CPA has been in close discussions with the UN independent inspection agent, Cotecna with a view to the retention of its services for a limited period after termination of the Programme and has given assurances that a final decision in that regard will soon be taken, thus ensuring the continuation of authentication arrangements beyond 21 November 2003.


Goods and supplies in the pipeline currently total some $8.2 billion and will continue to be delivered to Iraq well into 2004. (Posted 19 November 2003)


For more information

Other Programme News 

The Office of the Iraq Programme regrets that it is unable to respond to requests for information from companies or their representatives. The primary point of contact for companies is the Permanent Mission of their respective countries to the United Nations.


Iraqi Oil Sales Fund Humanitarian Action

Northern Governorates Central and Southern Governorates

The Oil-for-Food Programme was established by the Security Council on 14 April 1995. Some 3.4 billion barrels of Iraqi oil valued at about $65 billion were exported under the Programme between December 1996 and 20 March 2003. Of this amount, 72 per cent of the total was allocated towards humanitarian needs nationwide after December 2000. The balance went to: Gulf War reparations through a Compensation Fund (25 per cent since December 2000); UN administrative and operational costs for the programme (2.2 per cent) and costs for the weapons inspection programme (0.8 per cent).

About $31 billion worth of humanitarian supplies and equipment were delivered to Iraq under the Oil-for-Food Programme between 20 March 1997 and 21 November 2003, including $1.6 billion worth of oil industry spare parts and equipment. Additional goods and supplies from the Programme's multi billion dollar humanitarian pipeline are being delivered on a priority basis in consultation with the Coalition Provisional Authority, Iraqi representatives and UN agencies and programmes.  (21 November 2003) 
Oil-for-Food Scandal Draws Scrutiny to U.N.
Monday, September 20, 2004
By David Asman
NEW YORK  — It began as a U.N. humanitarian aid program called "Oil-for-Food," but it ended up with Saddam Hussein (search) pocketing billions to become the biggest graft-generating machine ever and enriching some of America's most forceful opponents at the United Nations (search).

Plus, some evidence suggests that some of the money ended up in the hands of potential terrorists who are opposed to the United States.

[Editor's Note: This is one in a series of articles about the U.N. Oil-for-Food program. Check back tomorrow for the next installment. For background information mentioned on FOX News Channel's "Breaking Point," click here.]

The roots of the scandal date back to 1991, when a U.N.-backed and U.S.-led coalition expelled Saddam from Kuwait following his hostile takeover of the neighboring country. Although Saddam lost the war, he walked away with one important victory -- he got to stay in power in Iraq.

Thirteen years later, a second U.S.-led coalition made of a smaller group of nations than the first effort finally knocked Saddam out of business. And it did so without the help of the United Nations, which failed to pass a resolution backing the U.S. effort.

As the death toll rises in Iraq -- the number of U.S. military casualties is now above 1,000 and Iraqi citizens continue to die daily from insurgent attacks -- the question arises: Can the United Nations help now?

A new FOX News poll finds that 54 percent of the U.S. public believes the United Nations does not reflect the values of average Americans. Only 29 percent say that U.N. policies reflect said values.

“I believe the U.N., parts of it, have been corrupt for years. But this went to a whole new level,” said Rep. Christopher Shays (search), R-Conn., chairman of the House Subcommittee on National Security, Emerging Threats and International Relations.

Shays is leading one of several Oil-for-Food probes by the federal government. The General Accountability Office has already pegged Saddam’s Oil-for-Food take at $10.1 billion. It could end up being a lot more.

Shays says Iraqis aren't the only victims -- Americans are too.

“We're talking about American lives that are being lost in an attempt to bring democracy to Iraq,” Shays said. If France, Russia, China and Germany had told Saddam it was time to back down and honor his commitments, Shays said it’s possible the United States may not have needed to go to war against Saddam.

But why did these countries really object to a second U.S.-led war against Iraq?

Some evidence suggests that those countries that said they were opposing the Bush administration on principle were actually making billions from Oil-for-Food.

“I think clearly, American blood is in the hands of a number of European countries, who could have put pressure on Saddam, who could've looked him in the eye and said, ‘the United States is coming in,'" Shays said. “And to me, some of the explanation clearly has to be the Oil-for-Food program.”

Shays added that there is a chance some of the insurgents now operating against the United States and the new Iraqi government are using Oil-for-Food money in their terror campaign.

“I think it's not only possible that insurgents are using Oil-for-Food money -- I think it's very likely,” Shays said.

One casualty was Ihasan Karim (search), the Iraqi official heading an inquiry into the Oil-for-Food program. On July 1, a bomb placed under his car exploded in Baghdad, killing him, and U.S. officials in Iraq told FOX News that they believe Oil-for-Food was the motive in the assassination. That wouldn't surprise Shays.

“I don’t know who murdered him. But I can tell you this: There are a lot of people who don't want this story to come out,” Shays said.

Shays places part of the blame on people inside the United Nations, even though U.N. officials authorized an independent investigation into the scandal.

“They’re doing this investigation, but only after they were outed by an Iraqi free press, and a government leak from the Iraqi governing council,” Shays said.

Shays said the man heading up the probe, former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker (search), has a tough job ahead.

“Paul Volcker is going to succeed or fail based on his power of persuasion and the good will of the U.N., but you're basically asking the member states to sign their own death warrant, and so it's kind of hard for me to imagine he's going to get the cooperation he wants,” Shays said.

Volcker said it will take until at least next spring to finish his report, and in the meantime, he doesn't seem willing to give Congress the cooperation it wants.

"There is a lot of smoke," Volcker told FOX News on June 23, when asked if he thinks the Oil-for-Food program was corrupt. "There are obviously big problems, and we want to see how big they were and why did they happen. Why did all this happen, in some sense, under everybody's noses?"

Shays and Sen. Norm Coleman (search) -- leaders of two of at least five federal Oil-for-Food investigations -- have started firing off subpoenas.

“We have just begun this process,” said Coleman, R-Minn. “But we’re trying to sort out this hornet's nest of corruption, of evil. And it’s going to take a little bit of time [and] patience.”

The problems at the United Nations have led some to question its value. A FOX News poll found that 64 percent of Americans say the United Nations has not been an effective partner in the War on Terror.

Yet Shays and Coleman both said in interviews they believe a role exists for an organization like the United Nations.

“I think we need the U.N. But we need it to be an honest institution,” Shays said. “When there are mistakes made, you have to uncover them and deal with them.”

Shays said that the very least, a major shakeup needs to take place.

“The U.N. is so important, we’ve been willing to look the other way when we see things we don't like. I think the Oil-for-Food program busted that.”

Coleman said he believes the United Nations had redeemable qualities, and he hoped the investigation would lead to greater transparency and more credibility for the world body.

“I’m not willing to kind of cash it in … they’re not the Evil Empire, the United Nations,” Coleman said.

For more information — including government documents, U.N. audits and past stories — click here. 


Ex-U.N. official admits taking bribes

Separate oil-for-food probe also accuses former contracts officer

From Phil Hirschkorn
Tuesday, August 9, 2005

Paul Volcker announces the latest findings Monday of the oil-for-food investigation.

UNITED NATIONS (CNN) -- A former U.N. official pleaded guilty to corruption charges Monday in the first case involving a U.N. staff member stemming from investigations into the defunct Iraq oil-for-food program.

Alexander Yakovlev, a former senior contracts officer, admitted he received several hundred thousand dollars in bribes from companies that sought to do business with the world body.

Yakovlev, a 52-year-old Russian, pleaded guilty to three counts in U.S. District Court in Manhattan -- conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud and money laundering.

The bribes came from three unidentified companies -- all U.N. vendors -- between 2001 and 2005, prosecutors said.

His attorney, Arkady Bukh, said Yakovlev agreed to plead guilty in the hopes of receiving a more lenient sentence. Bukh would not say whether Yakovlev is cooperating with investigators.

Yakovlev surrendered to authorities Monday after the United Nations lifted the diplomatic immunity that protects its employees from prosecution. He has no prior criminal record.

The move by prosecutors came just as a panel appointed by the United Nations to probe the oil-for-food program issued a harsh report on Yakovlev's actions. (Full story)

The Independent Inquiry Committee investigation, led by former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, found that more than $1.3 million was wired into an account for a dummy firm called Moxyco that Yakovlev established in 2000 in the Caribbean island of Antigua.

Volcker reported that "more than $950,000 of these payments came from various companies or persons affiliated with such companies that collectively won more than $79 million in United Nations contracts and purchase orders."

Volcker told CNN in an interview, "Mr. Yakovlev received bribes." He said the payments were not necessarily associated with oil-for-food business.

A law enforcement source said the timing of Volcker's report and the plea was "coincidental," noting that Volcker was originally going to report Tuesday.

Yakovlev was initially investigated for soliciting a bribe from a French company that bid for a key U.N. contract to monitor Iraqi oil exports made under the oil-for-food program, which supplied Iraq with food and medicine during years of international sanctions.

That company, Societe General de Surveillance, did not win the contract; it went instead to Saybolt, which bid slightly less. Nor did the Volcker committee find evidence that the company paid a bribe.

Prosecutors, meanwhile, said Yakovlev's illicit funds landed in bank accounts he controlled in New York City and Yonkers, the city in New York's Westchester County where he lives.

Yakovlev resigned his U.N. job in June amid allegations that he helped his son get a job with a firm doing business with the world body.

U.N. officials lifted Yakovlev's diplomatic immunity Monday afternoon at prosecutors' request, said Mark Malloch Brown, chief of staff for Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

Brown said the United Nations brought the allegations to the U.S. attorney's office in New York "more than a month ago" and has been sharing information with prosecutors as part of efforts to reform the world body.

Yakovlev was released on $400,000 bail after pleading guilty. No sentencing date has been set.

Federal and state prosecutors also are investigating Benon Sevan, who ran the oil-for-food program for seven years.

Volcker's panel said Monday that Sevan received more than $147,000 in kickbacks from oil sold under the program. (Full story)

Sevan resigned Sunday from the United Nations. In his resignation letter, he called his management of the program "transparent" and denied any wrongdoing. (Full story)

One company involved in oil-for-food probes, Texas-based Bayoil, and three of its officers were indicted previously on charges they paid illegal kickbacks to the Iraqi regime, which controlled who could buy its oil.

Two other people have been indicted on charges of illegally lobbying for Iraq. One of them, Samir Vicent, pleaded guilty.


Recently, David Walker, the Comptroller General of the United States, noted that the official debt of the United States is more than $7 trillion, which is about $24,000 for every man, woman, and child in America. Mr. Walker told the National Press Club, however, that if you count the unfunded liabilities--in other words, the promised benefits of entitlement programs, including the new $8 trillion unfunded liability on the prescription drug benefit alone--you are talking about $42 trillion, equal to about $140,000 for every man, woman, and child in America.



In Seattle, it seemed as if the WTO had become the bte noire for all manner of Western interest groups, including environmentalists, trade unions, animal rights activists, food nationalists, and some who simply oppose the notion of market liberalisasion. These groups took to the streets en masse, and, to the dismay of the negotiators, the "battle in Seattle" garnered enormous media attention throughout the meetings, and the notion also arose that their stand against the WTO in Seattle's streets had somehow induced the collapse of the talks. . Protesters were enormously successful in conveying the idea that civil society had been both locked out from the talks and systematically denied the benefits of globalisation. Since Seattle, moreover, an argument has arisen that trade liberalization has had no benefits for those on the lowest rung of the world's economies.

The problem with this claim is that it is impossible to establish a positive correlation between trade and the numbers of those living in absolute poverty; indeed war, natural disaster, bad governance and corruption are the more likely culprits. In addition, trade actually appears to have greatly benefited those developing countries that have adopted liberal structures and reasonable standards of governance. According to the WTO, developing countries' merchandise exports in 1999 rose 8.5% faster than world trade as a whole. The overall share of world manufactured exports of the non-OECD countries has doubled from 10% to 20% since 1980, and over a third of foreign direct investment now flows into less developed countries. The World Bank projects that the non-OECD share of world trade and output could double to 50% and 30% respectively by 2020. According to one economist, "Although it is occurring somewhat gradually and patchily, there seems to be rising awareness and appreciation of globalisation's advantages allowing national economies to allocate resources more efficiently through specialization and exchange (in static terms) and (in dynamic terms) to reap productivity gains and higher growth through widening the geographic range of markets and increasing exposure to world class competition and technology transfer, among other things...On the trade front, for instance, the fastest growing developing and transition countries are clearly those with the highest degree of openness to imports and exports".

The WTO Director General Mike Moore concurs with these arguments recently writing that "trade alone may not be enough to eradicate poverty, but it is essential if poor people are to have any hope of a brighter future". It is nonetheless true that only a relatively small percentage of the less developed countries have liberalized their trade regimes sufficiently to capture the benefits free trade generates, and in some cases, the combination of partial liberalization, continued controls, and corruption has proven economically disastrous. Finally, since the mid-1980s, much of the process of liberalization in the developing world has been unilateral; in other words, governments in those countries have decided that liberal trade regimes are in their best interest and have acted accordingly.

Beyond communicating quite clearly that the WTO needs to improve transparency, and governments need enhanced dialogue with their societies about the potential virtues of free trade, the street protesters and the sub-group that engaged in rioting (it should be noted that the union movements and many other protesters did not participate in the ugly violence that shut down the city centre) provided convenient and easily conveyed symbols for the fiasco that was unfolding inside the meeting rooms.

  Outstanding differences between the United States and Europe, of course, were also very much part of the failure at Seattle. These transatlantic trade disputes are rooted in a series of structural, political, cultural, and economic differences, which seem increasingly difficult to contain. Clearly the much-evolved relationship between the United States and Europe is an important part of the story. The vision the Americans held for Europe in the immediate post-war is now a reality. Europe is ever more united, confident, prosperous and secure. It is also, not surprisingly, more assertive, and this is evident in many multilateral fora, including the WTO.

In structural terms, where trade between the United States and Europe was in balance in the early 1990s, America's trade deficit with Europe, and indeed with the world, has mushroomed since 1994. Through June of this year, the US trade deficit totalled $177.6 billion, up from $116 billion for the same period in 1999. This puts the United States on track for a $355 billion trade deficit, far exceeding the record year of 1999 when the deficit hit $265 billion. Moreover, the US trade deficit is not a function of global protectionism, as is often maintained in American political circles. Rather, it reflects underlying macro-economic conditions, a huge inflow of foreign capital and indeed, the very structure of the US economy. In fact, the United States long laboured under a rather high propensity to import. Growth in the American model has therefore typically been accompanied by large trade deficits. Since the mid-1980s, the United States has moved from being a net international creditor nation to being a net debtor with a balance of payments deficit that could exceed $2,000 million this year, 80% of which is financing consumption as opposed to investment. The IMF projects continued record deficits at least until 2001, and these cannot be reduced without having an unwelcome impact on European and Asian exports.

The US trade deficit proved politically acceptable when American growth was relatively moderate, but that trade deficit has been expanding at a remarkably high rate in recent years. Whereas the normal pattern had been for large US trade deficits to trigger currency depreciation, which, in turn, depressed import levels and boosted US exports, today the United States, with its highly dynamic equities markets, continues to attract enormous capital inflows that have helped sustain growth and consumption, boost the dollar's purchasing power, and thus underwrite ever mounting imports. As a result, the current account short-fall in the United States is approaching 4% of GDP, and there is no sign of an impending correction. Many economists maintain that this pattern is unsustainable over the longer term, particularly once foreign investors, who have poured money into the dynamic US economy over the last decade, begin to feel jittery about US equities markets.

It is nevertheless worth noting that the combination of American growth and high import propensity has made the American economy an engine of world growth and a critical factor, for example, in limiting the impact of the recent Asian financial crisis. America's high propensity to import combined with the falling value of Asian currencies precipitated a new Asian export boom which, in turn, fostered a rapid recovery in countries which, months before, had been in the midst of financial collapse. Undoubtedly, the United States has also been an important catalyst for Europe's impressive growth over the last several years. Thus, to characterize American deficits as an entirely negative phenomenon is misleading, particularly from a global perspective.

Nevertheless, soaring trade deficits have unleashed protectionist forces in the United States, despite the fact that unemployment is very low and the country is enjoying its longest continuous economic expansion in history. The US Congress and Presidential aspirants alike confront enormous pressure to shield well-organised import competing industries from all manner of "unfair" trade practices which, broadly defined, apparently include low wages, depreciated currency and inadequate environmental standards in exporting countries. Moreover, the United States has preserved the right to do so with tools that US trade partners sometimes see as unilateral in nature. They argue, for example, that the use of "Section 301" countervailing duties reflect both an American tendency to disregard multilateral solutions to bilateral trade disputes and an unwillingness to accept the consequences of the declining competitiveness of certain US industries. The United States leads the world in imposing anti-dumping duties with over 300 currently in place, and in Seattle, US negotiators insisted that these practices should not creep onto the agenda despite widespread opposition to their use among other countries.

As membership of the GATT grew, so did the complexity of these negotiations. It became apparent during the Uruguay Round that the GATT needed substantial reform. The creation of the WTO in 1994 at the conclusion of that round was supposed to respond to this need. Indeed, the WTO is substantially more powerful than its predecessor, particularly in its capacity to enforce panel decisions.

The WTO's dispute settlement mechanism (DSM) can fairly be called the backbone of the new system. The DSM represents an enormous improvement over old GATT rules, under which disputes were frequently left unsettled. Under the old GATT system, panel rulings could not be issued without unanimous consent - that is, without the agreement of the country that had lost the case. Needless to say, such an arrangement hardly commanded respect for the rules of the game. New WTO procedures have closed this loophole by allowing rulings to stand unless there is unanimous opposition. The WTO has also established a permanent appellate body. With a few exceptions, the system is working well. More than 180 cases have been brought to the WTO since January 1995 - most by either the United States or Europe. Importantly, developing countries have also brought cases against much larger developed countries and won.

Agriculture has become a perpetual thorn in the side of US-European relations. Yet, according to the OECD, agriculture accounts for only 2% of the EU's and 1.7% of the US' total output. And out of about $6/7 trillion of world trade in goods and services, agriculture accounted for $0.5 trillion or 8% of the total

The United States argues that 85% of the world's agricultural subsidies originate in the EU and that these subsidies not only undermine American farmers but those in developing countries as well.

Agricultural exporting nations have called for an end to a special concession agreed during the last round called the "blue box", which permitted countries to pay aid directly to farmers to compensate for price cuts based on the amount of crops they plant or the number of animals in their possession. There are currently no limits on blue book trade distorting expenditures and according to US Agricultural Secretary Dan Glickman, "the EU has exploited this loophole to the tune of $25 billion per year while US blue box expenditures remain at zero".

The United States government recently tabled new proposals for agriculture talks. It is calling for substantial reductions or elimination of tariffs, expansion of remaining tariff rate quotas, elimination of export subsidies, disciplined use of export restrictions on agricultural products, limits on state trading enterprises, simplification of rules for domestic support and a ceiling on trade-distorting support. The US government is particularly focused on eradicating what it calls trade-distorting support measures, but it has recognized that national support systems that are not trade distorting should be permitted. The European Commissioner for Agriculture Franz Fischler counters that the agriculture reforms outlined in the EU's Agenda 2000 reform plan have frozen expenditures on agriculture and shifted support to less trade-distorting forms while its trade partners are moving in the opposite direction. Indeed, EU export refunds fell to 9.4% of the total value of exports in 1998 from 55% in the early 1990s.

One should note as well that the US Administration contends that the billions of dollars it has paid to farmers over the last two years to compensate for the effects of draughts and floods were not trade distorting. In June, the US Congress passed, and the President signed, a disaster relief bill providing $15 billion to farmers. The EU calls this trade distortion by other means. Commissioner Fischler points out that in America, "direct support to farming has increased by roughly 700% since 1996 and the U.S. government is now granting three times more support per farmer than Europe despite a more favourable geography É". Fischle Her also notes that Europe is the largest importer of agricultural products in the world.

On the face of it, therefore, the foundation for agricultural trade liberalisation does not seem particularly solid. Yet, the EU agrees that agriculture should be the subject of negotiations and even that some of its direct and indirect subsidies should be reduced. Europe's governments, however, are generally not in a hurry to advance this politically sensitive set of talks, and the EU accordingly is seeking a broad "multi-functional" framework for agricultural talks which, by their sheer breadth, are likely to slow down the talks to a snail's pace. Article 20 of the Agreement on Agriculture permits certain agricultural issues not directly related to international trade to be taken into account in trade talks, and the Europeans are intent on doing so. Franz Fischler recently noted that, "We have to strike the right balance between progressive reductions in support and protection and non-trade concerns...if the European Union will play a constructive role, this does not ...mean that the EU would be prepared to sacrifice the European model of agriculture on the altar of liberalisation."

In documents presented at a special session of the Agriculture Committee meeting of the WTO held in Geneva this past June, the Europeans sought to off-set the US push for liberalisation by insisting that a new trade regime in agriculture incorporate strong considerations for environment, health, social standards, food safety and quality, animal welfare, rural-urban population balances and cultural diversity.

The Cairns Group and the United States, in turn, submitted papers in Geneva that revealed their intention to push for the end of direct Union aid and export refunds.

Another factor in European agricultural reform relates to the imminent enlargement of the European Union. Enlargement will not be possible without key changes in the CAP. To include a country such as Poland in the current system would cause a financial haemorrhage in the EU budget and thus the pressures for change are coming not only from the United States, Canada and the Cairns Group, but also from within Europe itself.

European banana import policy has been the most notorious transatlantic agricultural trade dispute in recent years and illustrates the kinds of transatlantic tension that agricultural matters perennially provokes. Although WTO panels have ruled seven times that the EU's banana regime is illegal, the EU continues to extend certain privileges to ACP countries within the framework of the Lomé Agreements. This has raised questions regarding the WTO's capacity to monitor compliance with panel rulings. The United States and a number of Latin American countries continue to challenge these concessions, and the United States and Ecuador recently won a landmark ruling granting them compensation for lost markets due to the EU's preferential system.

There are signs, however, that both sides are moving to patch up differences over EU banana import policy. The EU is under intense pressure from European companies to settle the dispute because the United States and Ecuador have implemented sanctions with the WTO's blessing; damages to US producers were estimated at $191.4 million. In May, the American Congress introduced legislation, subsequently signed by the President, which introduced revolving sanctions. The EU claims that this "carousel" approach, which over time would spread the impact of sanctions more widely across European exports industries, will prove particularly costly to EU producers. This list of sanction imports is to be changed every 180 days, and those companies originally targeted, will invariably have difficulty rebuilding market share once their products have been removed from the list.

The United States Administration has delayed implementing the carousel as it has been very concerned about the WTO's ruling on Foreign Sales Corporations (see below) and may be looking for room to cut a deal.

In September, the Administration unveiled $308.2 million in tariffs on previously unsanctioned products. But a direct appeal from British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who was acutely concerned that cashmere had been targeted, has led to another delay until 1 October in implementation. Prohibitive tariffs of 100% might have created serious political problems for the UK government in Scotland.

Pascal Lamy has vowed to challenge the carousel approach in the WTO, but he has also promised to find a solution to the ongoing banana and hormone-treated beef disputes. In July EU foreign ministers proposed a new system for distributing import licences for bananas that would grant those licences on a first come first served basis - in other words, the first ships in the port would be granted that month's licence. The proposed system would most likely comply with WTO rules. The United States is seeking a timetable for a European transition from a quota-based system to a tariff-only scheme. France, Portugal, Ireland and Spain do not want to go to a non-discriminatory tariff-only system on banana imports while most northern EU states simply want this dispute to be solved as quickly as possible. But the new EU proposal could mark a path to a resolution of the dispute.



Fallout begins over handling of WTO protests in Seattle ... Many delegates at
this week's World Trade Organization (WTO) meeting in Seattle said Clinton was ...

The need for Globalization?  

In February 2002, the ILO  (International Labour Organization is the UN specialized agency which seeks the promotion of social justice)  established an independent World Commission on the Social Dimension of Globalization, co-chaired by President Tarja Halonen of Finland and President Benjamin Mkapa of Tanzania and comprising 26 eminent commissioners from a wide range of walks of life and different parts of the world, each serving in their individual capacity. Its broad goals were: to identify policies for globalization that reduce poverty, foster growth and development in open economies, and widen opportunities for decent work; to explore ways to make globalization inclusive, so that the process can be seen to be fair for all, both between and within countries; to promote a more focused international dialogue on the social dimension of globalization; to build consensus among key actors< and stakeholders on appropriate policy responses; and to assist the international community forge greater policy coherence in order to advance both economic and social goals in the global economy.

The report of the World Commission, A fair globalization: Creating opportunities for all, was released on 24 February 2004. It is available on the Commission’s website:

EXCERPTED FROM: integration/download/publicat/4_3_285_wcsdg-wp-27.pdf

[SEL is a Finnish group]
[IFU = International Union of Food]


Peter Rossman,  Communications Director for the IUF

Good afternoon Sisters and Brothers. My name is Peter Rossman, I am the Communications Director for the IUF and also responsible for much of the international solidarity work we do at the secretariat. On behalf of our members around the world, organized in 356 unions in 125 countries, I bring solidarity greetings to SEL members and participants in this seminar, and apologies for his absence from our general secretary Ron Oswald, who was called to take part in urgent negotiations involving our North American affiliates and deeply regrets that he is unable to be here with you.

I've been asked to speak about globalization, its impact on food unions and how unions can respond. It's an enormous question. I think the best way to address it is to first ask what we mean by globalization, particularly in the agrifood sectors which is where the IUF has most of its members, because getting the answer right from a trade union point of view depends on how we frame the question.

Is globalization about global trade as the dominant economic force? The industrial revolution of the nineteenth century, which permanently changed the way we live and work, was built on global imports and global exports - think of the British textile industry, for example. Is it about global finance? Developments on global stock exchanges and commodity markets have been shaping events thousands of kilometers away for decades and even centuries. When the major financial markets crashed between the two world wars, the whole world was dragged into global depression, in part because the banks were so closely interrelated. Is it about mass migration, which is such a big part of the discussion around globalization, and not only in Europe? The biggest migrations in human history took place over a century ago, making it possible, for example, for the United States to build its industrial strength on the basis of an immigrant workforce. Is it about the migration of jobs? Global shifts in manufacturing and services have been a constant feature of modern capitalism at least since the industrial revolution. England lost its manufacturing supremacy long before anyone talked about globalization. The discussion then was about loss of markets, industrial decline, loss of competitive advantage and loss of national identity - all very familiar themes. Industries, investment capital, people and jobs have been continuously on the move for centuries now. While it is true that they move further and faster today, we have to look elsewhere to see what is new and distinct about globalization.

If we look more closely at trade over the past two decades, the striking thing is not the growth in the volume of world trade, but the relationship between trade and investment. In 1999, the value of total global exports was some 7 trillion US dollars. But the value of total sales by the foreign components of the world's transnational corporations was over 13.5 trillion US dollars. Over the two previous decades, there was a significant and lasting shift in the ratio of TNC sales to global exports. These sales increased many times faster than exports rose. The figures show the process by which the TNCs extended their reach through mergers and acquisitions. The biggest percentage of world trade by far is now trade within transnational companies.

Behind these statistics is an enormous process of corporate concentration. Two TNCs now control 80% of the global grain trade, 4 TNCs the production of global starches, 5 TNCs the global banana trade, 2 TNCs close to half the global trade in roasted and instant coffees, 3 control 83% of global cocoa processing. The dairy, meat, brewing and beverage sectors all tell a similar story. A handful of companies dominate seeds and agri-chemicals, the key agricultural inputs. An even smaller number control the key commercial patents which enable them to dominate their markets and collect royalties and licensing fees. A similar process of concentration is now at work in the retail and fast food sectors, with tremendous impact back along the supply chain because supermarkets and fast food restaurants are now the biggest buyers of food products and powerful enough to influence prices and conditions of production. Even water is being privatized and brought under corporate control, and agriculture consumes nearly three-quarters of global water resources. The essence of globalization in food and agriculture is growing corporate control at every stage of the food we all depend on.

Globalization is therefore not about trade as such. It's about a shift of resources to the TNCs and the transfer of resources within those companies. Globalization is about TNCs, concentration and investment.

The direct consequence of this concentration has been, for workers, growing competition and downward pressure on wages and working conditions. Global supply chains, global marketing strategies, global branding, induced competition within the individual components of company operations, all give companies a greater capacity to place workers in competition with one another. Deregulating national labour markets in the name of flexibility gives employers additional tools to dilute union bargaining power and increase the competition even further through casualization, outsourcing and the other mechanisms we've become so familiar with. The downward limits of this global competition are ultimately set by repression. Banana production, for example, is shifting away from unionized parts of Central America and Colombia to Ecuador, where destroying unions is national policy. Increasing competition within TNCs and their suppliers means that the corporations ultimately strive to dispense with a permanent salaried workforce, just as they seek to minimize their fixed assets. This is the formula behind the Coca-Cola success. The parent company actually has very few workers, and operates through a network of franchises and "anchor bottlers."

This is the globalization we're experiencing, something very different from the universal prosperity the WTO, the corporations and their politicians have been trying to sell us. The truth is that inequality, both between and within nations, has increased over the last ten years. There are, according to United Nations figures, 20 million more hungry women and men in the world today than there were two years ago, and it has nothing to do with the weather. There is more hunger and more insecurity.

None of this is the inevitable result of autonomous economic forces. It is the product of a conscious political and social project, driven by transnational investors. It is a project of global deregulation which embeds investor rights in a global set of rules and a global system which reduces rights for the rest of us. It is about power in society, including of course the power relationship between the labour movement and the employers. It is about a new institutionalized hierarchy of rights, in which corporate rights outweigh all other rights at the level of enforcement. This system of power is codified and given enforcement authority through the WTO, and reinforced through the actions of international lending institutions like the World Bank and the IMF which are also instruments of corporate policy. The rules are backed up with economic sanctions administered by the WTO, so they are enforceable in a world where the other international institutions, like the ILO, or international Conventions on human rights, have little or no enforcement capacity.

What do these new rules mean for food workers? Let's take a concrete situation, the poultry industry. IUF members in West Africa now tell us (and trade statistics back them up) that in their countries locally produced chickens have virtually disappeared, along with many other food products that were produced locally until very recently. Poultry farmers, unable to compete with low-cost foreign suppliers, have simply stopped producing, and have therefore lost their major source of livelihood. Chickens in West Africa are now being supplied primarily by French companies who benefit from EU subsidies, either direct export subsidies or subsidies through the artificially low price of their feed, which is sold below the price of production under the Common Agricultural Policy. This is the meaning of dumping food products on world markets. At home, these companies are speeding up production, closing plants, fighting unions, crippling workers through repetitive strain injuries as a result of the excessive line speeds, and producing poultry of questionable quality and safety, due to the high rate of salmonella and other forms of contamination. The leading French poultry TNC, Doux, is now demanding that its workers perform 39 hours of work in exchange for 36 hours paid. Many French poultry workers are in fact immigrants from countries where migration is the only option when local agriculture has been destroyed and there are no jobs in the cities. Here we see very concretely how the food system is failing workers, consumers and farmers both in France and in Africa. What are the rules which make this possible?

First we have the WTO Agreement on Agriculture, which legalizes the dumping of subsidized agricultural products at prices below the cost of production, sets food safety and quality requirements below the standards previously established in many countries, imposes minimum import requirements, and deprives countries of the right to defend local and national food production systems. This has helped bring about a surge in the import of basic food staples by countries which were formerly self-sufficient in these areas. What the export figures don't show is the shattered lives and livelihoods in the food importing countries, the further growth in the power and size of the inflated agrifood exporting companies which are largely, though not entirely, based in the North, and the pressure on our members in the North and in the South.

We have the WTO agreement on trade in services, the GATS, which among other things limits the ability of states to regulate retail commerce. While the basic element of the GATS is the deregulation of what were previously thought of as public goods and public services like health care, water, and even education and environmental protection, the GATS agreement is also the international treaty force behind the growth in transnational supermarket chains.

Another "pillar" of the global investment regime, to use the language of the WTO, is the Agreement on Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights, or TRIPS. This agreement gives the agrofood, biotech and seed companies the ability to impose patent-protected genetically-modified seeds which have to be purchased every year, rather than being saved as farmers have done for thousands of years. These seeds require massive applications of pesticides. In many cases the pesticides are produced by the same companies which modified and patented the seeds, in other cases the seed and pesticide companies work together with the grain processors and traders through de facto cartels. WTO rules make it illegal to distinguish between GM and non-GM seeds and foods as soon as they enter into international trade. Even labeling requirements are being challenged at the WTO as "barriers to trade". The companies literally wrote these rules, and the rules are there to help them gain monopoly control of agricultural inputs. The TRIPS agreement is the same treaty that recently obliged India to change its patent laws to effectively outlaw the manufacture of low-cost generic drugs to fight HIV/AIDS. India has the second highest number of AIDS sufferers in the world, and was a major source of low-cost generic medicine for Africa. The WTO regime demands that profits take precedence over the right to health. Some 700,000 HIV/AIDS patients in developing countries are now denied access to affordable retroviral drugs in the name of WTO compliance.

Finally, we have the new investment rules. Global capital mobility is sometimes presented as if it were a natural consequence of technological change, like advances in electronic communications. But it is the result of conscious political changes, specifically the removal of nationally imposed limits and conditions on foreign investment. Between 1991 and 1999, there were over 1035 changes worldwide to countries' laws on foreign investment. 94 % of these changes gave more operating freedom to foreign investors and reduced government regulation. This wasn't the product of an abstract process called "globalization". It was a conscious, directed political process. When we're told that we need "rules-based" trade, we have to ask: whose rules? who benefits?

Current investment rules in the WTO already outlaw such tools as limits on the repatriation of profits by foreign investors, local content requirements, technology transfer requirements and so on. All these regulatory policy instruments are now considered barriers to trade and the WTO makes them illegal. But these don't go far enough for the companies, who keep pushing for even more room to operate without constraints. This is why new investment rules keep reappearing on the WTO agenda, and around it, in a process designed to ratchet up pressure on the WTO, in regional and bilateral trade and investment agreements, including the EU's Economic Partnership Agreements.

These new rules are best defined in the investment rules contained in the North American Free Trade Agreement, NAFTA, which are also the model for the regional and bilateral agreements. NAFTA outlaws the imposition of virtually all regulatory requirements for foreign investors by giving investors the right to demand compensation for actual or even potential future loss of earnings, in which case the individual corporation can bring a lawsuit against the offending state and demand compensation. These rules redefine the meaning of regulation. Policies, measures and laws which restrict, guide or limit the activities of foreign investors are now considered to have "taken away" the real and imagined property of the corporations. This applies equally to public heath, consumer and worker health and safety and environmental requirements. In one case a US chemical manufacturer of a toxic product successfully argued in its lawsuit to overturn a Canadian national ban that parliamentary debate in Canada about the product's safety was itself a form of expropriation.

Driving this project is the search for hyper profits. The growth of international money market funds and the unprecedented capital mobility which is driving and benefiting from global deregulation has brought about the financialization of manufacturing, services and even agriculture. Investors in these sectors now demand rates of return equal to what they can get in global financial and stock markets, rates unthinkable even a decade ago. The head of Deutsche Bank recently stated that return rates of 20% on investment should be the eventual target for investors. The example of Danone - a company which recognizes the IUF - is typical. The company invested a considerable part of its considerable profits last year in buying back its own stock, an operation designed for no other purpose than to boost its share price. These unprecedented rewards for investors are the flip side of "jobless growth". It is now highly profitable to close profitable units.

Here we have the essential elements in the globalization we have to fight if we're going to survive as organizations for defending our members and sustaining the wider labour movement as a vehicle for social progress.

Financialization and deregulation not only mean that workers are being squeezed in ways which traditional bargaining strategies have found difficult to resist. They mean that jobs are being systematically destroyed along the food chain by favoring a hyper-intensive, export-dependent system of food production. The destruction of small and medium enterprises, the transportation of primary, processed and semi-processed foodstuffs over long road and air routes, and the destruction of local food systems under the impact of cheap, subsidized imports are destroying employment in both developed and developing countries. We have to fight back, and we have to fight back by confronting the employment-destroying nature of the system as a whole, which is not the same thing as fighting individual plant closures.

In the first place, we fight back by doing what unions have always done: we organize to limit competition among workers. We can do this in the first instance by organizing to stop the outsourcing and casualization which are now rampant in the leading agrifood TNCs. The IUF has many examples of successful organizing to gain permanent status for casual workers. We need to extend this kind of best practice through the operations of each company in which we have members, and that is virtually all of the agrifood transnationals. We need to organize to ensure full respect for trade union rights, and we need to use these struggles to build up our strength, plant by plant, company by company, to get the corporations to the bargaining table. We need international recognition, not "codes", "compacts" and "social responsibility" exercises, so that when we get these companies to the table - and some of them, but not enough, are already there - we can broaden the agenda to begin to roll back the kinds of policies that are destroying our members' jobs. We need to give life and substance to international organizing, with the resources we have, to bring the isolated struggles our members are engaged in into a more coherent and effective global force. In short, we need to build the IUF, which means greater involvement and greater commitment to our work on the part of each and every affiliated union. We need you, because you are the IUF.

At another level, we need to struggle for a new global regulatory framework to affirm our rights and to put in place the kinds of social and environmental safeguards which the WTO is undermining. That is a challenge which is fundamentally political.

Union "lobbying" of the WTO and the international financial institutions, if we are to be honest, has not slowed down the companies. We've been confined to tinkering with a program which is fundamentally, radically anti-democratic and designed to lock workers and the poor into a position of permanent inferiority vis-à-vis the transnationals. Significant change has never come about by tacking a wish list on to the employers' program. Unions must regain the coherent vision and the independence of thought and action which have always been the force behind genuine reforms.

We need to develop a political response to the corporate program, and we need to link this program to our members' day-to-day struggles in ways which can effectively challenge the enormous shift in the balance of power which is what globalization is fundamentally about. While the challenge is enormous, we must never forget that the historic gains of the labour movement - gains which profoundly transformed the world we live - seemed scarcely realizable when we first began to fight for them. We fought and we won. There was nothing inevitable about the corporate advances of the last two decades. We were simply out-organized at all levels, or, failed to organize because we didn't appreciate the significance of what was taking place.

We need to reorganize, industrially and politically, because the tools which were effective in the past were developed within a national framework, and the employers now operate globally. We need new tools which build on our past achievements but give us the global reach the employers have been using so effectively. There is nothing utopian about this. It can and must be done. Our global membership gives us resources far beyond those of the corporations. The task now is to channel and organize these resources into an effective global force. Meetings like this are an essential part of that process.

Thank you very much.


Zim asks donors for US$109m
Shakeman Mugari /Godfrey Marawanyika

Dec. 12, 2003

CRISIS-RIDDEN Zimbabwe has implored aid agencies to solicit US$109 million from donors to meet outstanding funding requirements for next year, it has been learnt.

The figure represents about 10% of the $7,7 trillion 2004 budget presented last month. The agencies have appealed for donations to help President Mugabe's embattled government to breathe new life into almost every sector of the economy.

According to recent figures by the United Nations Humanitarian Appeal 2004 report, Zimbabwe needs funding to boost the agricultural sector, resuscitate the crumbling economy, and revive the health delivery system.

The report also indicates that a big chunk of the money (US$42,8 million) would go towards "economic recovery and infrastructure".

Mugabe has blasted the same donors - especially Britain and the United States - accusing them of sabotaging the country's economy.

The two countries have been Zimbabwe's biggest financiers in food assistance.

The agencies are also appealing for international donors to pour in US$24,2 million to cater for the health sector which is crumbling due to the perennial shortages of medicines and intermittent strikes by doctors and nurses.

A further US$2,9 million is required for "protection, human rights and rule of law". For coordination and support services, the UN said Zimbabwe needed US$3,3 million.

In July this year Minister of Finance Herbert Murerwa appealed through the United Nations Development Programme for food and medicinal drugs worth US$142 million.

Zimbabwe needs to import over 700 000 tones of maize to make up for the deficit caused by the chaotic land reform programme and drought conditions in the region.

High on Murerwa's priority list were health requirements to cater for malaria and Aids.

"The needs assessment established that at least five million tablets of chloroquine and 1,5 million tablets of S/P were urgently required for an estimated 509 000 malaria cases," said Murerwa in the appeal papers.

Analysts doubt whether donors will be forthcoming with their money following President Mugabe's decision last week to unilaterally withdraw Zimbabwe's membership of the Commonwealth after the country's suspension was extended indefinitely in Abuja. Much aid from Britain and Australia was premised on close Commonwealth ties.



  'Raise Social Spending to Protect Democracy'
July 20, 2004
Laksamana.Net -  The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has advised the Indonesian government to double spending on four basic social services – education, health, food and physical security – to protect basic human rights and ensure its democratic transition survives.

The recommendation is part of the UNDP's Indonesia Human Development Report 2004, which was officially launched on Tuesday (20/7/04). The report was prepared by the UNDP in cooperation with Indonesia’s National Development Planning Agency, the National Bureau of Statistics and the UN Support Facility for Indonesian Recovery.

The report says that although Indonesia has made progress in democracy, it continues to trail behind its neighbors in terms of economic growth and the provision of social services to the poor.

In the UN's Human Development Index for 2004, Indonesia ranks 111th out of 177 countries, well below Singapore (25), Malaysia (59), Thailand (76) and the Philippines (83).

Indonesia’s former province of East Timor, which had most of its infrastructure destroyed by retreating Indonesian troops and their militia proxies in 1999, is the lowest ranked Asian country on the list at 158th.

UNDP resident representative Bo Asplund said Indonesia needs to increase spending on education, health, food security and physical security from about 3% of gross domestic product at present to about 6% to match the social spending of its neighbors.

Indonesia’s annual spending on the four basic rights currently amounts to Rp53.7 trillion ($.5.98 billion).

Asplund said that although Indonesians are enjoying greater political freedom since the 1998 fall of autocratic former president Suharto, they are yet to see such liberty translate into greater economic prosperity.

He said spending on the four social services needs to be doubled so that Indonesians will have confidence the democratic process is working to their benefit. "If it doesn't do that there is a danger that many people will become disillusioned and long for the false security of autocratic rule," he was quoted as saying by German news agency DPA.

The UNDP report says confidence in the democratic political system has been undermined by widespread corruption. "Although this is a serious obstacle for business and investment it also hurts the poor who often have to pay bribes just for basic services," it says.

It states that although Indonesia’s poverty level fell from 23% in 1999 to 18% in 2002, one-third to one-half of the population remain at risk of falling below the poverty line.

Indonesia's average life expectancy at birth was 66.2 years in 2002, compared to 66.6 in 2001. The country's literacy rate for adults dropped from 87.9% in 2001 to 87.3% in 2002.

The report proposes the government increase tax collection efficiency, reallocate spending toward social services and away from state enterprises, and consider increasing the budget deficit in order to double spending on social services.

According to the report, more than 20% of public expenditure presently goes toward supporting state-owned enterprises.

The report cites some positive social indicators, such as improving literacy and a declining infant mortality rate.

But Asplund said there are also some worrying trends. "As Indonesia moves forward with its decentralization, the country's uneven human development has led some provinces to do extremely well while others lag behind," he was quoted as saying by Agence France-Presse.

He said rural areas, particularly in eastern Indonesia, face urgent human development needs, as many districts there cannot meet the cost of basic education, whereas other districts receive disproportionate support from the central government.

2004 Human Development Index
The UN Human Development Index (HDI) measures a country’s achievements in terms of life expectancy, educational attainment and adjusted real income.

This year’s HDI covers 175 UN member countries, as well as Hong Kong, China and the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Two countries, East Timor (Timor-Leste) and Tonga, are included for the first time due to improvements in data availability.

High Human Development
1 Norway
2 Sweden
3 Australia
4 Canada
5 Netherlands
6 Belgium
7 Iceland
8 United States
9 Japan
10 Ireland
11 Switzerland
12 United Kingdom

13 Finland
14 Austria
15 Luxembourg
16 France
17 Denmark
18 New Zealand
19 Germany
20 Spain
21 Italy
22 Israel
23 Hong Kong, China (SAR)
24 Greece
25 Singapore
26 Portugal
27 Slovenia
28 Korea, Rep. of
29 Barbados
30 Cyprus
31 Malta
32 Czech Republic
33 Brunei Darussalam
34 Argentina
35 Seychelles

36 Estonia
37 Poland
38 Hungary
39 Saint Kitts and Nevis
40 Bahrain
41 Lithuania
42 Slovakia
43 Chile
44 Kuwait
45 Costa Rica
46 Uruguay
47 Qatar
48 Croatia
49 United Arab Emirates
50 Latvia
51 Bahamas
52 Cuba
53 Mexico
54 Trinidad and Tobago
55 Antigua and Barbuda

Medium Human Development
56 Bulgaria
57 Russian Federation
58 Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
59 Malaysia
60 Macedonia, TFYR
61 Panama
62 Belarus
63 Tonga
64 Mauritius
65 Albania
66 Bosnia and Herzegovina
67 Suriname
68 Venezuela
69 Romania
70 Ukraine
71 Saint Lucia
72 Brazil
73 Colombia
74 Oman
75 Samoa (Western)
76 Thailand
77 Saudi Arabia
78 Kazakhstan
79 Jamaica
80 Lebanon

81 Fiji
82 Armenia
83 Philippines
84 Maldives
85 Peru
86 Turkmenistan
87 St. Vincent & the Grenadines
88 Turkey
89 Paraguay
90 Jordan
91 Azerbaijan
92 Tunisia
93 Grenada
94 China
95 Dominica
96 Sri Lanka
97 Georgia
98 Dominican Republic
99 Belize
100 Ecuador
101 Iran, Islamic Rep. of
102 Occupied Palestinian Territories
103 El Salvador
104 Guyana
105 Cape Verde
106 Syrian Arab Republic
107 Uzbekistan

108 Algeria
109 Equatorial Guinea
110 Kyrgyzstan
111 Indonesia
112 Viet Nam
113 Moldova, Rep. of
114 Bolivia
115 Honduras
116 Tajikistan
117 Mongolia
118 Nicaragua
119 South Africa
120 Egypt
121 Guatemala
122 Gabon
123 São Tomé and Principe
124 Solomon Islands
125 Morocco
126 Namibia
127 India
128 Botswana
129 Vanuatu
130 Cambodia
131 Ghana

132 Myanmar
133 Papua New Guinea
134 Bhutan
135 Lao People’s Dem. Rep.
136 Comoros
137 Swaziland
138 Bangladesh
139 Sudan
140 Nepal
141 Cameroon

Low Human Development
142 Pakistan
143 Togo
144 Congo
145 Lesotho
146 Uganda
147 Zimbabwe
148 Kenya
149 Yemen
150 Madagascar
151 Nigeria
152 Mauritania
153 Haiti
154 Djibouti
155 Gambia
156 Eritrea

157 Senegal
158 Timor-Leste
159 Rwanda
160 Guinea
161 Benin
162 Tanzania, U. Rep. of
163 Côte d’Ivoire
164 Zambia
165 Malawi
166 Angola
167 Chad
168 Congo, Dem. Rep. of the
169 Central African Republic
170 Ethiopia
171 Mozambique
172 Guinea-Bissau
173 Burundi
174 Mali
175 Burkina Faso
176 Niger
177 Sierra Leone
FROM: ://  link is disabled

August 8, 2005

Globalization hurts the poor

June 10, 2002 - Globalization isn't necessarily a bad thing, says Ricardo Acuña.

"But the way it's happening is," he warns.

The upcoming meeting of the G8 in Kananaskis, Alberta exemplifies potential gone wrong, says the executive director of the Parkland Institute, a University of Alberta public policy think tank.

Acuña is certainly in favour of our elected leaders working together on common concerns, and a meeting of the most economically powerful nations is a good venue to discuss such issues as eliminating the debt of developing countries, improving social policy, and balancing human rights with economic rights, he says. But the closed doors surrounding the G8 summit worry him.

"If, indeed, these people are working for the betterment of these peoples' lives, then why the need for secrecy?" he asks.

That privacy is necessary, he says, because governments no longer represent all of the people who elect them.

"Economic systems were put in place to serve the basic needs of people. We've turned it around now so what drives economic systems is the needs of corporations, not the needs of the people. We've got that backwards somehow," he says.

The work of the World Trade Organization shows how--in the name of globalization--corporations are empowered at the expense of citizens, says U of A Students' Union President Mike Hudema. "We have governments that are usurping the Canadian Constitution by signing international trade agreements that basically bind us for years, and even if they violate our own charter, we can't get out of them without massive sanctions.”

And when worthwhile issues are included in the summit agenda, Acuña says, the wrong elements are emphasized. Terrorism has leapt into the foreground, for example, but as a threat to the global commerce rather than as a problem with its roots in economic disparity, he says.

"If there is concern about terrorism, the first concern should be people and their well-being, and a balance should be struck between people's democratic societies and people's safety,” Acuña says.

Instead, he adds, "anti-terrorist-speak" is being used "to de-legitimize people's rights to stand up and speak out against something they are unhappy about."

Hudema also wonders whose interests will be served by having Africa on the agenda. "It usually means using international organizations like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund to privatize the industries of a selected country," he says.

Acuña believes Africa deserves attention, but he laments the fact that African civil society and academic institutions have been left out of the loop. "How can we say that we are interested in providing a solution that is workable for Africa when we're not giving Africans a chance to have input?"

Bring development issues before the United Nations, he suggests, where all concerned nations have a voice.

But the summit is actually organized to insulate world leaders from the world's citizens and the voices of dissent, says Acuña. "Political leaders are supposed to represent the people and everything is being done to limit the people being able to express those interests to the leaders in those forums."

Opponents of globalization are dismissed as violent protestors who offer no alternatives, but that's because "the media and the public eye tend to focus on the actual act of the protest and not the content of it," says Acuña.

Hudema plans to participate in the G6B. The 'B' stands for billion and the parallel summit is "for everyone who has not been invited to the G8" and will focus on alternatives to G8 initiatives. And the Parkland Institute is sponsoring the G8 travelling road show, a province-wide series of information sessions about the summit.

"I think we need to put the issues in people's hands because then you get a chain reaction of accountability happening," says Acuña. "If people get angry enough they will start that process of protest going up the political lines. We have to work it from the ground up."

The Canadian Government G8 Kananskis Summit Web site:
The G6B People's Summit Web site:


From USA Today
October 2, 2003

 Globalization hurts USA

By John Sweeney

John Sweeney is president of the AFL-CIO, which represents 13 million workers.

Let's face it. Globalization under the old rules -- reflected in current trade policies -- just isn't working. It's not working for American workers, who have lost millions of family-supporting jobs due to flawed trade policies such as NAFTA and the one that created the World Trade Organization (WTO). It's not working for state and local governments, which are finding that common-sense policies to protect workers, public health or the environment are increasingly being challenged by obscure trade rules. And it's certainly not working for developing countries, which are seeing poverty and inequality grow even as trade and investment increase.

Here in the U.S., poverty is up, incomes are down, and we are losing more jobs than at any time since the Great Depression, especially in the manufacturing sector. America is saddled with a half-trillion-dollar trade deficit. We've let multinational corporations write our trade policies for too many years. The result is a set of agreements that grease the skids for our jobs to go overseas, while doing too little to protect human rights, workers' rights and the environment.

Given this reality, President Bush certainly should keep his 2002 steel safeguards in place so the domestic industry can continue to recover and adjust. The safeguards have stabilized steel prices. Bankruptcies and layoffs have slowed, and steel companies are more profitable now than they were before the safeguards took effect.

The fact is that a majority of Americans do not support unregulated free trade; 54% say the United States needs to focus on keeping American jobs for American workers, while only 35% say companies must operate in worldwide markets, according to a recent poll conducted for NBC and The Wall Street Journal. U.S. policy needs to address growing public concerns, not ignore them.

Trade, tax and health care policies need to put jobs first. The Democratic presidential candidates have all vowed to reshape globalization so it really works for working people -- with enforceable protections of workers' rights and safeguards for domestic regulations and our trade laws.

Until we achieve this goal, workers here and abroad will continue to fall behind.

"NAFTA.. is the constitution of an emerging continental economy that recognizes one citizen--the business corporation. It gives corporations extraordinary protections from government policies that might limit future profits, and extraordinary rights to force the privatization of virtually all civilian public services. Disputes are settled by secret tribunals... At the same time, NAFTA excludes protections for workers, the environment and the public...

"Average real wages in Mexican manufacturing are actually lower than they were ten years ago. Two and a half million farmers and their families have been driven out of their local markets and off their land by heavily subsidized US and Canadian agribusiness...

In the U.S. "at least a half-million jobs have been lost" (Jeff Faux. "NAFTA at 10: Where Do We Go From Here?" The Nation, Feb. 2, 2004, 11).


Globalization Guru: Nobel Prize winner discusses the dangers of the global economy

By Alexa Jenner
February 16, 2005 | Michigan Daily, USA

GN3 Editorial Comment: Much of economic analysis that makes it to the mainstream press emanates from a single mindset that has been schooled in economic orthodoxy. Not so with the likes of Joseph Stiglitz, the former World Bank Economist, who has made a name for himself challenging mainstream views. As the article below discusses, Stiglitz is much in demand as a speaker who adds a respected voice to those challenging an elite form of economic globalization that drives unsustainable development.

By 4:00 p.m. yesterday, the 400-seat Hale Auditorium was overflowing with people. Cramming into the aisles and the doorways, students, professors and members of the general public waited in anticipation to hear the 2001 Nobel Prize winner and famous economist, Joseph Stiglitz, speak.

"A lot of us have looked forward to this all month — he's an amazingly sharp and intelligent guy," said Economics graduate student Farzana Afridi.

Stiglitz's contributions to the field of economics have allowed him to be recognized worldwide. He is well known for helping create a new branch of economics known as, the "Economics of Information" which is used by policy analysts. Stiglitz has written books that have been translated into many languages for an international audience, including his international bestseller "Globalization and its Discontents."

Stiglitz addressed the ideas in these books as well personal experiences in his speech on globalization last night. Hosted by the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, Stiglitz's speech was part of a series of lectures funded by the Citigroup Foundation, honoring President Ford's long affiliation with Citigroup.

With opinionated rhetoric and good humor, Stiglitz explained to an intrigued audience potential problems with globalization and the free market.

"Economic theory predicted the capital free market should lead to stabilization, but in reality it did not lead to economic growth or stabilization," he said.

He said Third-World countries have instead been hurt by the opening of free markets, because they receive loans during good economic times and are forced to pay back loans during recessions.

"The general preset of banking is never lend to anyone who needs the money, so what happens is that when the economy is in a boom the bankers are shoveling money into the economy (of Third-World countries). But when the economy goes down they say we're not sure you're going to be able to repay us, we don't trust you." he said.

He went on to discuss problems with the International Monetary Fund — the international organization that manages global finances and gives loans to struggling countries. Stiglitz's book "Globalization and its Discontents" argues that the IMF puts the interests of the United States over those of poorer countries, and he discussed this in his speech.

"The last head of the IMF said poverty was not his business," he said.

But he conceded that there had been a change in attitude and the IMF was working more toward recognizing poverty.

Along with discussing debt relief, Stiglitz talked about what he said are problems with opening up the markets to trade. "It is one of the most pretentious areas of globalization, but the theory is everyone should be better off," he said.

"Instead, it created anxiety everywhere in the world. Why were all these people better off and didn't know it? Because in reality they were worse off," Stiglitz said.

Stiglitz explained the problem with the trade market using cotton farmers. "The way you get subsidies is you grow more, so as these American farmers produce more, the price of cotton goes down and it hurts ten million cotton farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa. So the poorer are made poorer and the rich are made richer," he said. "In response, the U.S. Trade representative says to the Africans: 'Why don't you go into some other line of business?' This is an area where there is no other line of business," he said.

Stiglitz continued by discussing the Clinton administration's difficulties in improving access to life-saving medicine and problems with the North American Free Trade Agreement.

"The problem with NAFTA is it is hundreds of pages that no one has time to read so bills get passed in the agreement that would not normally make it through legislation," he said.

Stiglitz also talked about global stability. "The U.S. dollar is currently the most important reserve currency, but the system is unstable."

The dollar, he explained, is no longer a secure store of value. "The dollar continues to weaken, and countries such as Japan are losing money by keeping reserve in dollars," he said.

With a smile, he added, "We can convert our money to Euros, and I advise you to do so."

Stiglitz concluded by stating, "I remain hopeful that we will be able to make globalization work, and we will be able to reform. It will not be quick, and it will not be easy, and the process of reform may not in every respect be pleasant, but the alternatives are even worse."

Responding to his speech, Rackham student Andrea Jones-Rooy said, "I like his approach, and I think he's exposing problems which people may not have noticed before." She added, "If people read his books and agree with them, then the changes he's proposing may be realized."

LSA senior Amanda Altman, who is taking a class that centers around Stiglitz's work, said, "I thought it was very interesting when he was talking about access to medication and trade. It's a really important issue, and I was glad he discussed it."

RC freshman Jason Matney, who is also studying Stiglitz, said, "He is criticizing the system, but he is criticizing it from the perspective of someone who has previously served in the administration, and I think that makes it really effective."

Stiglitz was the Chairman of the U.S. Council of Economic Advisors under the Clinton administration from 1995 to 1997. He also served as the senior vice president of the World Bank from 1997 to 2000.

Stiglitz has been a professor at universities such as Yale, Princeton and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and currently holds joint professorships at Columbia University's Business School, School of International and Public Affairs and economics department.

Rebecca Blank, Dean of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy said, "Joe Stiglitz is always a fascinating and provocative speaker, and we are grateful to Citigroup for giving us the funds to bring people like him to campus."

Internet Source:

Let Them Drink Coke

"..many would be surprised to learn that Central America is soon to become one of our most favored trading partners and a promising source of profits for large trans-national companies looking to collect money from the poor in exchange for water... they will pay for it if they have to because--otherwise they will die...

" former peasants have come flooding into cities in flight from the mechanized, industrialized, fertilized, and pesticized export farming promoted by the World Bank, no new infrastructure has been built to accommodate them. The result.. is.. a great huge stinking mess. Epidemics are commonplace, and you would not drink water from a tap there unless you had a death wish...

"Enter the IDB [Inter-American Development Bank, along with the World Bank and IMF], promising to reform the water and sanitation systems--at a cost... on the condition that the newly functional water companies then be sold (or contracted) to interested private operators...

"..the first investments to be made under the IDB water reform loans.. are for the purchase and installation of water meters. First things first...

"..thousands of unionized public sector workers can be expeditiously fired... Their old jobs will be performed by low-wage, short-term contract people and computers...

"In diplomatic circles, the current wisdom is that the wars of this century will be fought over water...

"'s only a matter of time, once water becomes nothing more than another private commodity, salable as a source of profit for the powerful and ruthless" (Bocagrande, Gabriela. "Let Them Drink Coke." Texas Observer, 10/24/03, 10-11).



50 Years Is Enough
"We call for the immediate suspension of the policies and practices of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank Group which have caused widespread poverty, inequality, and suffering among the world’s peoples and damage to the world’s environment"
Africa: HIV/AIDS and Failed Development
Africa Subsidizing the West, says Museveni "The value of the coffee market is 70 billion dollars," he said. "We coffee producing countries get 5 billion. Who takes the remaining 65 billion? -- somebody else!"
Antitrust Division, Dept. of Justice committed to promoting and protecting the competitive process through the enforcement of the antitrust laws of the United States (Scout Report)
Behind the glitz article on globalization and Cancun
Brazil Leading Counter Revolution Against U.S. Economic Policies articles on current developments
The Atlantic Monthly: Economics
Calls for More Compassion, Less Discipline--Christian Science Monitor Oct. 5, 1998
Centre for Research on Globalization an independent research and media group of progressive writers, scholars and activists committed to curbing the tide of "globalisation" and "disarming" the New World Order
Commanding Heights: The Battle for the World Economy PBS site on globalization, world trade, and economic development
Corporate Crimes Jim Hightower talks about bribing legislators and stealing from the public
Corporate Crime Reporter a legal newsletter - Check out their Top 100 Corporate Criminals of the 1990s
Debs Quote, Eugene
Dissention Erupts at Talks on World Financial Crisis
Economic Justice News quarterly; "We call for the immediate suspension of the policies and practices of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank Group which have caused widespread poverty, inequality, and suffering among the world’s peoples and damage to the world’s environment"
The Economist: Thinking About Globalization & Global Doom, Global Humor
Free Trade is War article by Naomi Klein
FTAA - Free Trade Area of the Americas
FTAA is None of Your Business the media look away as democracy is traded away
Geo Newsletter bimonthly; reports on worker cooperatives and community-based economies in the U.S. and worldwide
Globalization investigative reports by Gregory Palast
Globalization article from
Globalization in Focus progressive views on globalization
Globalization Primer
Globalization: What We Can Do About It
Greens Call Worldwide Water Privatization "Theft" of Public Resources "Greens point to evidence of the devastating economic and ecological effects of water privatization: higher prices and more frequent billing; neglected infrastructure; increased use of concrete and steel in environmentally harmful dams and pipes instead of measures to conserve water; bribery of public officials and cronyism in the awarding of contracts; wasteful salaries and bonuses for water company execs"
Let Them Drink Coke article on the World Bank's plans to privatize water
The Nation: The Dark Side of Globalization & Saving the Global Economy

and part II.
Privatization Molly Ivins speaks
Privatization, Enron Style Corporate Crime and: A Look at the U.S. Coalition of Service Industries "USCSI is the largest services oriented lobby group in the United States... many USCSI corporate members have been embroiled in the corporate scandals that have rocked the U.S. and the world in the past two years. You can almost pick at random from the USCSI membership to find a corporation that is either privatizing public services, embroiled in financial controversy, or gaining from the misery imposed by an IMF loan"
Water Privatization article on the Porto Alegre talks in Brazil
What is Wrong with Corporations? "Why are Alcoa and other multinational corporations able to run roughshod over the will of affected citizens? Why does Alcoa have superior standing in court and before regulatory agencies?"
The World Bank Group Data
World History of Globalization
World On Fire... Book Notes review "How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethnic Hatred and Global Instability"
WTO History Project focuses on the 1999 protests in Seattle - collection of interviews with protest leaders and participants




Now, the most ambitious institution of globalization, the WTO, has been stopped
in its tracks. Yet there were some progressive voices who warned against ... -

FROM: WTO Struggles for Compromise ...
``Never underestimate the potential for a breakdown,'' WTO spokesman Keith ...

The Larouchites, as Alan Cabal has pointed out, have been preaching antiglobalism
since the WTO protesters were in diapers. The headline of the July 31 ...

Lee said that as WTO members, China and Taiwan should deal with each other as
equals. This has been a key demand for Lee, who has insisted the two sides ... -

Medical Teams' Advice for Protesters
One form of tear gas (CN) used during the WTO is 50% solvent - the solvent,
methylene chloride, is a highly toxic chemical which can cause altered central ...

Carter to Clinton - The Becoming
... Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff; Simon Robertson, former Chairman Kleinwort
Benson group Plc; Peter Sutherland, former Director general of GATT and WTO. ... -

Dr. Robin Falkov spoke about the WTO and the drug/vitamin problem in Europe
followed by Dr. Rosemary Ellen Guilley talking about a variety of paranormal ... -

that Congress erect "no barriers" to China's entry into the WTO because of "petty
reactions to some incidents." Both Dodd, 57, and Hagel, 55, ...

(Control agenda of WTO, G8s...) ·
Richard Boylan, Ph.D (UFOs, abductions, ET tech...) ...

Not only at meetings of the global economy's architects- the WTO, IMF, World
Bank- will such actions be challenged, but in factories, fields, and classrooms ... -

EARTHDAY - 2000 the word from the
protestors at the Mobilization for Global Justice site: ... -

Sand Point Naval Station - Seattle - FEMA detention center used actively during
the 1999 WTO protests to classify prisoners. ...

preaching antiglobalism since the WTO protesters were in diapers. ... ...

WTO (WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION) SEATTLE PROTEST . ... account for more than 100
of the 135 members of the WTO, by saying rules protecting workers should be . ...


of Man ("Conclusion"). "All laws which are repugnant to the Constitution are ...

were placed at risk, the meeting was disrupted, violence spilled out of ...

Hey, FBI/CIA/NSA/IRS/ATF/SPLC/"Sparky": I'm not anti-government, ...

WTO (WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION) SEATTLE PROTEST ... Spray was being used directly
into their faces and people were throwing water on the sitting . ...

Included in the material below is an excerpt from one the the CCW's ...

that Congress erect "no barriers" to China's entry into the WTO because of ...
Has not George Bush gone on the record stating that China has been bumped up ...

Just three months earlier, testifying to the House Ways and Means Committee on
China's WTO application, Kodak CEO George Fisher contended that "Kodak ...


Included in the material below is an excerpt from one the the CCW's ... -

Rapid progress of finalization of Iran-EU trade agreement and and speeding up
Iranian membership in World Trade Organization (WTO). ...

confident during the interview, denied that politics had played a role in ...

WTO (WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION) SEATTLE PROTEST ... This turned into a police state.
Everything you have seen on television regarding local news broadcasts ...

DC Police Crack Down on Anti-Capitalist Protests
The protesters' agendas range from globalization to the Israel-Palestinian ... Some protesters' objections go beyond globalization to capitalism itself. ...

Anti-War Global rallies protest possible US war on Iraq - Oct. 26 ...

Thousands protest war, globalization in front of US base near Pisa ... After weeks of debate over whether to allow the anti-globalization meeting, ... -

Globalization Takes Sting Out of Earthquakes - Globalization ... ... « December 30, 2003 | Main | January 03, 2004 ». Globalization Takes Sting Out of ... -


Globalization is here to stay. Trade and technology are helping people see they do not have to live in a state of ignorance and oppression. ... -


Globalization ... Michael Pugliese THE NEW WORLD ORDER ... THE NEW WORLD ORDER - A GOOD THING? H ... ...

The benefits of globalization must be shared not just by some people in some countries, but by all people in every country. Accordingly, efforts must be ...

UN Millennium Assembly celebrates arrival of global governance
Globalization;. 4. Structural changes and enhancement of the UN system;. 5. Regionalism and multilateralism;. 6. The relationship of the UN and civil ... -

... media they own so as to pave the way for the globalization of the economy and the global hegemony they intend to impose upon the entire world. ...


In These Times, Water Fallout: Bolivians Battle Globalization 5/15/00 by Jim Shultz Canadian Dimension, 2/2000, ... -

globalization groups have already been identified by name as terrorist groups, even though there is not a single shred of ...

With increased globalization, international terrorism is fast emerging as the new threat to world order. Today, No state can secure its own security without ... -

"the precondition for eventual and genuine globalization is progressive regionalization... " - Zbigniew Brzezinski at the State of the World Forum, 1995 ... -

The protesters' agendas range from globalization to the Israel-Palestinian conflict to US President George W. Bush's policy on Iraq. ... ...

... geopolitics, the US in the 21st Century, the Euro and the Common Market, "Governing globalization," Asia and the Asian crisis-- what needs to be done, ... -

... research using embryos and spoke of the right to life and dangers of globalization. ... the Pope decried that many do not reap globalization's benefits. ... -

The Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG) at grants permission to cross-post original Global Research articles in their entirety, ...

Technology and globalization have made their reach almost boundless, and they are linked to a vast network of terrorist groups throughout the Muslim world ... -

Monday September 8, 2003 Anti-globalization protests loom at Cancun talks. By Alistair Bell. ... Protests at EU summit turn violent 04 October 2003. ... ...

... by paramilitary police after throwing a fire extinguisher at a police van as anti-globalization demonstrators clashed with police in the port city. ... -

... yield satisfactory output to maximize US Corporate profit which bluntly stated is – US Corporate greed – hail to Globalization, and the New World Order. ...

TULGHUR, IRAN - ANOTHER WAR? ... various manifestoes, including PLO, Al Fatah, armed struggle in Iran The Globalization . ... -

... These European Bluebloods then entirely eliminated the Antarian experiment in Greece, and instigated their plan for globalization through the Roman Empire. ...

In fact, the looming crisis of climate change represents the globalization of this chain of local ecological and human rights problems. ... -

Labor, environmental and anti-globalization groups are readying for a showdown that analysts say will put a spotlight on trade. ...

Center for American Progress · US Politics Today · Globalization Policy. 1979 - published in Time Magazine - 2003. THE FRENCH CONNECTION ... -