Thursday, 14 December 2017

UN “Investigating” Poverty ... in America

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The United Nations wants you to think it cares about poverty — and to prove it, the widely ridiculed dictators club has launched a major investigation into “poverty.” But this globally hyped “investigation” into alleged “extreme poverty” is not focusing on Zimbabwe, Cuba, North Korea, Venezuela, Haiti, Chad, Congo, or other nations impoverished by Big Government. Instead, the UN's brave investigators have been deployed to “investigate” the richest country in the history of humanity — a nation where welfare pays more than minimum wage, where one hour of minumum wage work is worth more than many of the world's people earn in a week, and where the “poor” often drive nice cars, enjoy flat-screen televisions, and regularly eat until they become obese.

Yes, the UN has dispatched a bureaucrat to the United States of America, supposedly to “investigate” the alleged “extreme poverty” that afflicts Americans. Already, the half-baked UN visit has sparked a deluge of propaganda being dishonestly used to demonize freedom, undermine individual rights, promote Big Government, and give cover to brutal regimes that have driven their people to starvation. And in the weeks ahead, it is likely to get even more outlandish.   

The UN propaganda tour, led by fanatical anti-Trump zealot Philip Alston, the bombastically titled “UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights,” went across the nation telling “journalists” how bad America was. “Some might ask why a U.N. Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights would visit a country as rich as the United States,” Alston, a radical left-wing lawyer, said in a widely quoted statement. “But despite great wealth in the U.S., there also exists great poverty and inequality.” Among other locations, Alston visited Alabama, California, West Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. He was even given a tour through Skid Row by a fringe anti-police “community organizer” funded by billionaire extremist George Soros.   

As evidence of poverty in America, the tax-funded propaganda outlet NPR and the UN bureaucrat pointed to the re-emergence of hookworm, which spreads from human feces, in some mostly black areas of Alabama. Alston provided an abundance of quotes for fellow left-wing activists posing as journalists to sprinkle into their stories. “I think it’s very uncommon in the First World,” he said after visiting a community in Alabama that apparently has not yet built itself a proper sewer system. “This is not a sight that one normally sees. I’d have to say that I haven’t seen this.” After exploiting homeless people in California as PR props, Alston again feigned shock. “I think it’s on a scale I hadn’t anticipated, block after block of people,” he said. “When you see how concentrated it is, it’s more shocking.”

Propaganda organs of mass-murdering communist socialist regimes seized the opportunity to demonize freedom and the United States. “Environmental racism, extreme poverty, and disease thrive on a breathtaking scale in U.S. Black communities in the South,” reported communist propaganda broadcaster TeleSur, funded by the murderous dictatorships ruling Venezuela and Cuba (both sit on the UN “Human Rights Council”), without explaining what “environmental racism” is supposed to be, and without comparing the alleged “poverty” in America with the very real life-threatening destitution of the starving peoples they oppress through terror and brutality. “The U.N. official’s tour aims to provide transparency to the human rights violations, destitution, and lack of access to crucial basic services that have blighted oppressed communities throughout the United States.”

Sounding a lot like radical left-wing activists in America enjoying six-figure salaries, the mouthpiece for brutal communist dictators whose populations struggle just to eat also alluded to “the institutional violence of inequality,” the “violence of grinding poverty,” and “oppressed nationalities such as Black, Native American and Latino communities.” Sounding a lot like the brutal communist dictators, Alston claimed there was a human right to be taken care of by government. “There is a human right for people to live decently, and that means the government has an obligation to provide people with the essentials of life, which include power, water and sewage service,” he said. “But if the government says, ‘oh no, we’re not going to do it,’ and leaves you to install very expensive septic tanks, that’s not how it should work.”

The far-left establishment media in America has been more than happy to play along with the UN’s phony narrative, too, portraying Americans as helpless and useless wretches simply waiting around to be fed, housed, clothed, and cared for by their uncaring government. Reporting on a visit by the UN “expert” to Puerto Rico, for instance, the increasingly statist Associated Press quoted a number of Puerto Ricans who acted as if the U.S. government had some sort of moral and even legal duty to rebuild their houses, feed them, fund their local governments, remove debris from their streets, and more. (U.S. taxpayers and donors have sent many billions in relief.) Of course, in reality, the U.S. Constitution delegates no power over “disaster relief” or poverty to the federal government — period. And there are plenty of independent-minded people in Puerto Rico, none of them quoted by the establishment media, who resent being treated like children or prisoners in desperate need of government caregivers.     

Unfortunately, it is true that there is some poverty in America. Perhaps more unfortunately, though, the UN has no interest in the actual causes of this poverty — causes such as the central banking scam, a corrupt monetary system that enables a banking cartel to conjure money into existence for its cronies, a crony governmental system that robs the poor to give to the politically connected mega-rich, onerous taxation that now consumes trillions of dollars per year, a regulatory regime that costs Americans trillions per year, pseudo-“free trade” regimes and organizations designed to subvert national independence while hollowing out critical sectors of the U.S. economy, illegal wars demanded by the UN that maim young Americans mentally and physically for life while bankrupting taxpayers, and so much more.

Instead of those legitimate concerns, the UN is interested in exploiting “poverty” only to the extent that it serves to justify — at least to the propagandists in the establishment media who will then parrot it to the public — everything from Big Government and dependence to globalism, socialism, and technocracy. Indeed, even when the UN “expert” admitted to being “impressed” with how local non-profit organizations in Puerto Rico had helped locals recover from the storm, he continued by claiming that “one of the challenges is how the government can harness their power.” Why anybody would want the power and efforts of voluntary organizations and charities “harnessed” by government was not made clear. And yet, for the UN and the globalist Big Government mongers who populate its upper ranks, this ideological extremism is the norm.

Brazenly attempting to pervert the meaning of human rights, which America's Founders said are endowed upon each individual by God, Alston claimed “human rights” require that government assume responsibility for feeding, housing, clothing, and medicating the public. “The idea of human rights is that people have basic dignity and that it’s the role of the government — yes, the government! — to ensure that no one falls below the decent level,” he said, ignoring the incredible generosity of Americans and the understanding of God-given individual rights outlined in the Declaration of Independence and codified in the Constitution. “Civilized society doesn’t say for people to go and make it on your own and if you can’t, bad luck.”

In America, despite the fake news and deceptive impressions delivered by the UN and its allies in the establishment media, individual people and churches — especially Christians — already provide massive poverty and disaster relief, not only in America, but worldwide. According to multiple news reports following the hurricanes that hit the United States this year, faith-based groups, not government, were responsible for a staggering 80 percent of the aid delivered to affected communities. Different churches, working with each other, divided up the work, with certain Christian denominations delivering water and other supplies while others focused on providing meals and still others helped in clean-up and rebuilding efforts. Aside from that, American charities are typically the first on the scene when disaster strikes in other nations, too. Whether these facts will make it into the UN report remains to be seen.

But American generosity that far exceeds that of any other country is a phenomenon that has long been documented. Indeed, even after generations of statist indoctrination and Big Government, Americans are still the most charitable people in the world, by a great deal. According to a survey by the Almanac of American Philanthropy released last year, Americans on average out-donate Europeans from nations such as Italy and Germany at a 20-to-one rate. Americans also overwhelmingly trust private charities over government agencies to solve the nation's social problems. In fact, the margins are massive, with almost half of Americans believing in private charity versus less than a third — no doubt the non-givers — trusting government. Alston apparently thinks the will of the people should be ignored, in favor of the UN’s extremist demands. Perhaps he hates “democracy.”

While in decline due to government taxation and welfare, as well as the erosion of religion and morals, American generosity has always been part of the nation’s ethos. “Wherever at the head of some new undertaking you see the government in France, or a man of rank in England, in the United States you will be sure to find an association,” wrote Alexis De Toqueville, a Frenchman who traveled through America in the 1830s and wrote a glowing report about the liberty-minded, Christian nation he witnessed. “Americans of all ages, all conditions, all minds constantly unite. Not only do they have commercial and industrial associations in which all take part, but they also have a thousand other kinds: religious, moral, grave, futile, very general and very particular, immense and very small; Americans use associations to give fêtes, to found seminaries, to build inns, to raise churches, to distribute books, to send missionaries to the antipodes; in this manner they create hospitals, prisons, schools.”

The UN and its largely autocratic member regimes would have everyone believe that only government can and should provide hospitals, schools, and relief from poverty or disasters. And yet, over two centuries of American experience prove that this narrative is not only fundamentally flawed, but dangerous. In reality, charities, churches, and voluntary associations have always done a much better job than government. Government, for its part, has utterly failed, unless making more people dependent upon government was the goal: In 2014, on the 50 year anniversary of the start of the “War on Poverty,” there were a record number of people on welfare.     

Countless propaganda reports from around the world cited the dubious claim that there are “41 million Americans officially in poverty according to the U.S. Census Bureau.” What they did not say is that people under the official “poverty line” in America — including this writer, incidentally — live far, far better than even the tiny middle classes throughout most of the rest of the world. Rather than wasting taxpayer money on “investigating” alleged “poverty” in the United States, the UN would be better served by investigating the well-documented, officially acknowledged epidemic of child rape and sexual abuse among UN “peacekeeping” forces. But that investigation would not advance the dictator club’s party line — especially the totalitarian ideology holding that “human rights” do not include freedom from coercion, but instead require slavery in the form of dependence and unlimited government.

A preliminary report by Alston is due at the end of the week, with a more comprehensive document expected in the Spring.

Photo: AP Images

Alex Newman, a foreign correspondent for The New American, is normally based in Europe but has lived all over the world, including in Africa. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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