With little fanfare and paltry news coverage, United Nations negotiators were working this week at a conference on “sustainable development finance” in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa. They are hoping to put the final touches on a global plan — one with a price tag in the trillions of dollars. The grandiose plan is to be sprung on the world in September at the UN summit on development finance. The UN’s proposed sustainable development goals (SDGs), now being crafted by the UN General Assembly, various UN agencies, national governments, and private NGOs, are a new 15-year plan intended to replace the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that were introduced 15 years ago at the UN’s 2000 Millennium Summit, ostensibly to combat global poverty. The UN’s SDG plan is also closely intertwined with the UN agenda on global warming, which is scheduled to culminate with the mammoth climate change conference planned for December in Paris.
The Ethiopian summit was the latest in a series of recent high-level conferences sponsored by the United Nations. The pace has been fast and furious as the UN’s dedicated poverty fighters have been jetting between luxurious feasts and extravagant soirees at 5-star hotels, Michelin-starred restaurants, and gold-plated conference centers in various global venues. From June 26-July 8, it was the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development under the auspices of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) in New York City. Last week it was the Our Common Future Under Climate Change conference in Paris. This week it was the United Nations Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FFD3), which ran from July 13-16 in Addis Ababa.
On Sunday, July 12, the eve of the opening of FFD3, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (shown) addressed the Global Civil Society Forum, the NGO rent-a-mob that has become a standard feature at all UN conferences.
“Now, more than ever, the world needs your advocacy, expertise, and ingenuity,” Ban told the throngs of NGO activists in Addis Ababa. “You are the voice of the people. You can count on the UN to make it heard, loud and clear.”
The “civil society” radicals are hardly “the voice of the people.” As we have reported from many previous UN conferences, the vast majority of the organizations represented at these affairs are synthetic astro-turf groups funded by governments and leftist tax-exempt foundations. Their function is to provide pressure from below, which, combined with pressure from above by governments and globalist corporations, gives the appearance of overwhelming worldwide “consensus.”
“I am inspired by your passion, commitment and energy,” the secretary-general told the assembled “progressives,” commending their “untiring efforts.” “Over the last year, you have called on Member States to be ambitious to secure the resources we need for the well-being of all people and the health of our planet,” Ban said. “You have reminded them that a successful outcome in Addis will be necessary to securing an ambitious post-2015 development agenda and a comprehensive agreement on climate change.”
“We need your continued pressure,” Ban told the army of activists. Yes, they will need continued and increased pressure to convince the taxpayers of the world to fork over huge new funding increases for the UN's intended new global splurge.
Sticker Shock: $Trillions Demanded
But where will the money come from to pay for this new grand UN initiative? In a world of government spending gone wild, with astronomical budgets, national debts, bailouts, and bail-ins, the UN’s new SDG will give the mother of all sticker shocks to middle class taxpayers of the developed nations, who will be expected to foot the bill. The UN global planners are calling for not merely billions of dollars. Not even tens of billions or hundreds of billions of dollars. No, the time for such small-minded thinking is long since past; it is time to show our genuine commitment to the noble goals of the UN by pledging — and following through with — trillions of dollars for the SDGs.
One of Ban Ki-moon’s first speeches to the main Addis Ababa conference was to an event sponsored by the World Bank entitled “Billions to Trillions — Ideas to Action.” The event took its name from an audacious document issued in April by the World Bank Group and the multilateral and regional development banks entitled, From Billions to Trillions: Transforming Development Finance.
“Here in Addis Ababa we are reinvigorating the global partnership for development,” Secretary-General Ban told the assembled bankers. “In September, in New York, countries will adopt the post-2015 development agenda and embrace a new set of sustainable development goals.”
“In December, in Paris,” Ban continued, “governments must adopt a universal, meaningful climate change agreement. These three global events chart a new era of sustainable development, a paradigm shift towards a truly transformative agenda. Together, we are the first generation that can end poverty and the last that can avoid the worst effects of climate change.”
Ban then outlined where the UN wanted the new trillions of dollars to be spent. “I see three areas where your efforts to turn billions into trillions will be most crucial,” he said.Those three areas are infrastructure, particularly in Africa; “regional integration”; and “food security and nutrition.”
The World Bank-led report Billions to Trillions, which Ban cited, states in its introduction, “To meet the investment needs of the Sustainable Development Goals, the global community needs to move the discussion from ‘Billions’ in ODA [Official Development Assistance] to ‘Trillions’ in investments of all kinds: public and private, national and global, in both capital and capacity.” The report continues:
Globally, achieving the proposed SDGs will require the best possible use of each grant dollar, beginning with some US$ 135 billion in ODA. Yet flows for development include philanthropy, remittances, South-South flows and other official assistance, and foreign direct investment — together these sources amount to nearly US$ 1 trillion that needs to be used just as effectively. The most substantial development spending happens at the national level in the form of public resources, while the largest potential is from private sector business, finance and investment. This is the trajectory from billions to trillions, which each country and the global community must support together to finance and achieve the transformative vision of the SDGs.
“Billions to trillions” is shorthand for the realization that achieving the SDGs will require more than money. It needs a global change of mindsets, approaches and accountabilities to reflect and transform the new reality of a developing world with highly varied country contexts.
Of course, the proposed huge hikes of foreign aid would amount, as always, to enormous confiscations of wealth from middle-class taxpayers by governments, UN bureaucrats, and banksters, whom we are supposed to trust to wisely and magnanimously distribute said funds to the poor. If these communist transfer schemes actually worked as promised, the trillions in "aid" that have already been spent would have ended world poverty long ago. But, as our own federal, state, and local “welfare” and “entitlement” programs have amply demonstrated, throwing massive heaps of money on government programs doesn’t solve the problem of poverty; in fact, it invariably increases the number of people living in poverty — while at the same time creating more government graft and corruption. For 70 years, the United Nations programs, rife with graft and corruption (see more articles listed below this story), have been proving this on a global scale.
Wall Street Banksters and UN Gangsters
But Ban Ki-moon and the billions-to-trillions proponents insist that much, if not most, of the proposed increases in spending will actually be in the form of private sector investments. And that’s a good thing, right? Simply allowing free markets to efficiently carry funds to where they are most needed?
However, when the UN, World Bank, IMF, and the Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) talk about “mobilizing” and increasing “private investment” in lesser-developed countries, they are not talking about letting the free market work; they are talking about “central planning” and “central guidance” of capital flows, with the politically-connected insider commercial banks and corporations receiving special incentives, subsidies, contracts and bailouts, i.e., private profits at public risk.
The banks involved in producing billions to trillions are the African Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the European Investment Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the World Bank Group.
All of these banks, but especially the World Bank and IMF, are (and always have been) intimately tied to the giant Wall Street banks: Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Citibank, etc. Their presidents, CEOs, and directors rotate in and out of these private and “public” institutions.
Equally important, these rotating executives are invariably world government advocates and members of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the premiere globalist organization that has been aggressively and subversively promoting one-worldism for most of the past century.
At the World Bank, for instance, it is clear that the CFR has had a hammerlock on the institution from the get-go. Of the 12 men that have served as president of the World Bank since 1946, nine have been prominent CFR members. Here’s the list of 12:
Eugene Meyer (June 1946 – December 1946) CFR member
John J. McCloy (March 1947 – June 1949) CFR member
Eugene R. Black, Sr. (1949–1963) CFR member
George D. Woods (January 1963 – March 1968)
Robert McNamara (April 1968 – June 1981) CFR member
Alden W. Clausen (July 1981 – June 1986)
Barber Conable (July 1986 – August 1991) CFR member
Lewis T. Preston (September 1991 – May 1995) CFR member
James Wolfensohn (May 1995 – 30 June 2005) CFR member
Paul Wolfowitz (1 July 2005 – 30 June 2007) CFR member
Robert Zoellick (1 July 2007 – 30 June 2012) CFR member
Jim Yong Kim (1 July 2012 – )
Nine out of twelve, 75 percent; not bad for an organization that most Americans still have not even heard of. But the CFR dominance is even more absolute than the CFR membership indicates, because even the three non-members could be considered state-of-mind CFR members.
The current World Bank president, Jim Yong Kim (1 July 2012 – ), for instance, while not formally a CFR member, has been warmly embraced and enthusiastically promoted by the CFR’s blogs and publications, and has been a featured guest on the CFR’s special televised events program. He regurgitates the CFR’s one-world message and is clearly in sync with their globalist program to “invest” trillions of dollars (extracted from savers and taxpayers) in UN-designated projects and programs that will be funneled through the World Bank/IMF/MDBs and their Wall Street partners.
“In this critical year for development,” says the Billions to Trillions report, “we have come together to explore and confirm what we can do, within our respective institutional mandates, to support, and in particular finance, the eventual achievement of the proposed post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We are financial institutions committed to eradicate poverty and inequality, able to leverage and catalyze public and private development finance.”
According to the bankers’ Billions to Trillions report, the UN’s FFD3 in Addis Ababa “will be an important milestone in the post-2015 global effort to achieve universal and sustainable development, underpinning the expected adoption of the SDGs at the UN Special Summit for Sustainable Development in New York in September.” “This trajectory will continue,” says the report, with additional conferences, culminating with the UN’s “Convention on Climate Change in Paris in December, which seeks a new international agreement on climate change.”
“In short,” say the UN-allied bankers, “2015 will create a platform to support global development aspirations for the next 15 years.” The 17 SDGs range from such vague and pretentious targets as “End poverty in all its forms everywhere,” “End hunger,” and “Ensure healthy lives,” to “Take urgent action to combat climate change.”
And the final price tag? The SDG advocates are vague about precisely how many trillions of dollars they’re demanding. The World Bank report is murky on final costs. The Socialist International, meeting at the UN on July 6-7, endorsed the Sustainable Development Goals, placing the estimated cost at $3.3-$4.5 trillion. However, in 2011, the UN’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) issued a report calling for forced “investment” of $76 trillion ($1.9 trillion per year) over the next 40 years, most of it for “development assistance” in poor countries for “green technology.” Other SDG funding proposals range from single digit trillions to double digit trillions. Of this we can be sure: Regardless of the final official price settled on by the UN and its bankster allies, they will extract as much as they can get away with.
Photo: AP Images