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Slave Master 4000 Slaves 0

Recovering Slave experience

                  Most slaves were non literate, and with high death rates among the population, and movements of slaves through buying and selling, there is little on record. Throughout empire there has been consistent resistance, violent and non violent.

                       As an example the Thistle woods estate in Jamaicathe writings of Thomas Thistlwood an overseer, reveal a cruel regime of punishments for even the most minor offences, duties and tasks enforced by floggings and beatings. The sexual abuse of female slaves was considered normal, from Thistlewoods account, we learn that female slaves were powerless to resist. Also the random cruelty displaced shows a complete disregard for human life, as slaves seen as nothing more than commodities, with few human rights which we take for granted today. The attitudes of elites towards slaves, reveals a certain mind set where random cruelty was acceptable, the logic was to ensure compliance, but the effects of these policies on slaves must have been devastating to the mind and body of slave experience, we can only guess what a slave must have felt after a flogging.                 

                         Despite the brutality, the slaves themselves were able to organize family and social structures and hierarchy among themselves, within the limits of their brief lives. They had culture, religion, music, dance, customs and some were small merchants.  There was continual resistance covert and non-covert.

                      Slaves running away was a common problem, if caught the punishment was very severe including possible execution, although some escaped slaves were given land and freedom, as long as they prevented other slaves from doing the same. From these policies we can deduce that the fate of slave and master was linked economically and socially.

                                  Some female slaves through their relations with the master were able to gain privileges for themselves or their family, i.e. from being sold and separated from their family. From Thistle woods account we know that those female slaves who resisted sexual advancement would often be sold off to other plantations or punished in other ways, from this we can deduce that many female slaves accepted sexual abuse as the price to be paid to remain in their community.

                We know that the birth rate of slave women was very low, as a consequence slaves were having to be imported. From this we can deduce that those children born to slave women died early due to neglect or other reasons, possibly as mothers did not want their children to become future slaves. It is difficult to know the slave mindset, as little written evidence remains of their existence, but from patchy evidence we can tell that slaves were not passive, were well aware of their circumstances and many resisted in subtle and non subtle ways including slave revolts which existed throughout the slave empire

                                        What i have described is related to plantation experience in Jamaica. I want to look at slavery in the America’s. Unlike plantation slavery where slaves outnumbered whites by a good margin, living isolated lives, the threat of slave revolts were always on the mind of the overseer hence the brutal punishments handed out. In the America’s the slave population was small and lived within the vicinity of the white slave master and his family. Worthy Park reveals a lot about slave experience .

                             House slaves would be in daily contact with the master and his family, there would be some sort of mutual relationship between master and slave. Daily contact with slaves, close bond with the Masters children could be used to gain privlages, i.e.not being sold off to other estates or subject to harsh brutal treatment. From work records we can deduce type of labour and activities performed by men, women and children, such as Worthy Park Estate, detailed records show a system of rewards and punishment, but we must resist the temptation to believe all Estates are run on the same basis, allowing for this we can recreate some aspects of the daily working lives and personal relationships of slaves.

                    What i have written above has been supported by records by elites and literate non elites. The writing of free slaves like Olaudah Equinos, a slave bought and sold many times. Of  Ignatius Sangho describes in detail the sexual abuse of female slaves, of the runaway slaves, of the cruel punishment and of the black on black violence. We must be careful in reviewing elite evidence of free slaves, as they are not representive of the normal lives of slaves, also they are not going to be too critical of the system which has released them from slavery.Despite these qualifications elite black slaves can provide useful information of the slave experience in general, through their often biased personal accounts.

 

Sex and Empire

                         Within the British Empire there was continual movement of people, mostly males going to parts of empire from the metropole, and people within the empire to work on projects of empire. Many of these were males and single, as a consequence demand for women to serve these men became a priority, and prostitutes filled this role along with wives.

                          The lives of these women are long forgotton, but we can try to see through the fog of history by using the right lens. Singapore and Nairobi­ came to have a high concentration of prostitutes because of the high single male population. The empire authorities tried to regulate this business, through various policies, to try to contain the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. It is from these policies of elites that we can try to recreate the lives of these women.

                                In the Japanese   colony of Singapore, prostitutes from Japan were registered in Japan before being brought over, the Japanese were less caring about prostitutes from other places like Korea and Taiwan. From accounts of Osak  who was bought from a poor family for 300 yen, made to work in a brothel to repay 2000 yen to the owners. Japanese prostitutes like Osaki served mainly Japanese men about 6 per day, she had regular medical checks and was protected from violence.

                   Some went on to become mistresses and wives, some to do other things like Janet Lim who went on to become a nurse. We must be careful of Osaki’s oral account and must cross reference it with other evidence. The Geisha syndrome popularised in movies and books has distorted the reality of the lives of these women.

                       Also the survivor’s syndrome, for Osaki personal account will have many negative view of men. The reality is that Osaki’s parents are ultimately responsible for her being sold into prostituition, which she clearly avoids mentioning. This could be due to cultural factors of not offending parents in Japanese society.

                                         Coroner’s reports of Japanese prostitutes like Lee ah choi, give us glimpse of the reality.Choi stabbed by a client for refusing to run away with him, had acid thrown into her face. Many prostitutes suffered from venereal diseases and routine violence, and ended up in mental institutions as being certified insane. By looking through the records we can try to see patterns, of reports of payments to brothel owners or medical expenses, relationships, drug addictions and alcohol abuse.

                       All this tells us that prostitutes died early, of debt, disease and violence. Prostitutes in Nairobi often were sole operators, conducting business on their own, had more freedom, despite this they had no protection from random violence and disease

   The British when they controlled Singapore, a coolie town for migrant male workers. Rampant spread of venereal disease forced the authorities to pass the settlement contagious disease act 1870  to try to control the spread of infection, with regular medical checkups and identity cards and those women infected, locked up. The policies were not effective as it drove the business underground.

                               Female historians have pointed out the voices of women ,elite, literate or non literate have been little heard in the empire. This tells us the role of women was seen as subservient to the male in empire, almost second class citizens.

                            As for the non elite, non literate women, they were little more than commodities to bartered, with little personal protection and colonial policies which effected them in a very direct way, we can deduce that prostitutes had very little control over their lives, and few options to escape poverty and prostitution.

 

Settler Communities Kenya

                        The Kenyan people being non literate, ‘signed agreements’ through,customs,ceremonies,blood ties and oral  agreements, land  rights was  a non issue, as it was common land. With arrivals of white settlers things changed dramatically for the inhabitants. Chief Kamiri  was made to sign a treaty which he did not understand, which in effect turned most of his people into squatters, also giving much giving fertile land to settlers.

                          Failure to understand the agreement and its consequences, as the Chief had no access to independent legal advice marginalized his people.

                                   At first the locals did not resist white settlers as they thought they would leave. As the situation deteriorated for the locals and weakened by drought, there ability to resist declined. Kenyan history being oral and belief in Gods, the locals accepted their situation as disaster was fore told by the prophets, of domination of non circumcised people.

                                Now it is difficult for us to express the emotions of the dispossed people who became unwelcome squatters on their own land. Half of the Gikuyu became squatters.Resistence to encroachment, and evictions by settlers created conditions for conflict. The locals continued to graze on white settler land, gather food and firewood in protected area’s, and kill animals for food, on payment of taxes.

                      The white settlers used some of the settlers as a cheap labour force, some evicted by force of the land. Also the Maasi who’s life and culture and wealth revolves around cattle, found many of their traditional grazing lands and water supplies out of bounds as white settlers partitioned of land with fences and wires, as a consequence they had to find other area’s for their cattle to graze, this meant they were encroaching on other tribal lands, with inevitable conflicts. The British by imposing their cultural values and legal system upon a pastoral people had naturally upset the patterns of relationships which existed before, of land, water and resource use.

                                  From the locals perspective their culture and laws did not recognize the white settlers rights to the land which they had held communally for hundreds of  years.Resistence lead to a number of rebellions, culminating in the most serious the Mau Mau rebellion brutally put down by the British.

                                Later the British did set up a land commission to address the grievance of the locals  no satisfactory solution has been found, the conflict remains unresolved to this day. This tells us that the events of the past  effecting the non literate locals has become part of the social history which has been handed down, from this we can recover the lost voices of resentment of colonial policies, which have had a direct impact on the lives of non literate Kenyans.

                            Looking from the perspective of the locals we can see a clash of cultures between the white settlers with their legal documents and the locals who saw the land issue not a problem. Misunderstanding about ownership of land from the beginning set in motion future conflict. The concept of absolute private property rights was an alien concept to Kenyans .After independence one million acres of land released,Gikuyu and non Gikuyu rushed to buy land which they had owned originally, and has lead to tribal clashes

 

Summary

  Slave experience tells us that the simple master/slave relationship was more complicated. Slaves were able to within their limited circumstances to negotiate preferential treatment for their family, especially slave women through their personal relationship with the master. Also there was continual slave resistence throughout including slave revolts. Slaves had their own culture, religion, petty business, and legal system of punishments and rewards

                       With the issue of sex and empire, the lives of prostitutes can be given meaning, by looking at colonial policies, records of sales, coroner’s reports, personal accounts.

                          The Kenyan experience, through elite policies tells us a clash of cultures and misunderstanding which lead to conflict, how a non literate people were conned out of their lands. We can see how the world of the Kenyans fell apart as they became squatters on their own lands, their oral history now has a bitter colonial past which still impacts on politics today

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The US 10 Mexico 1

 

               The US-Mexico border is quite unusual in that the Rio Grand River is a natural border for 1200 miles between the two countries. The two countries also share the resources of the river which in the past and to the present day poses real challenges to how the resources are shared equitably .The river also high lights modern day issues of globalization between a rich country and  poor one. Despite being close neighbours in many respects they are worlds apart living side by side.

                             Poor Mexicans can see the riches available in the US but getting to the land of opportunity many barriers have been created by the US to keep out many Mexicans. The Mexican border high lights the tensions between the two countries as reflected in the water issue.

                             The US-Mexico border is heavily protected with walls, electric fences, patrolled by helicopters, mobile vehicles, and high levels of security monitored 24 hours of day to keep out unwanted illegal migrants. Despite the heavy security some 2 million migrants try to get into the US each year, most are turned back.

                       Despite this heavy border controls there is also much trade in goods, services, capital and people flows between the US-Mexico borders. These legal monitored flows reflect the increasing connectedness between the two countries in the economic links which have been fostered and enhanced by the signing of the Nafta accord.

                                   The Nafta accord has meant that US and transnational corporations have located plants at the border of the US-Mexican border to take advantage of the cheap Mexican labour force.

                           So the proximity of the working relationship where Mexicans work in modern high tech mostly manufacturing plants but also distance. So the boss of South Korean firm LG and others living in the US travel across the border to his plant to supervise and over see the daily workings of the plant.

                                Similarly the Mexican workers of these plants are shipped in daily on company buses from shanty towns to work in these plants for about $4 dollars which is far less than the the US £40 per day. Mexican workers work in a modern hi tech firm and go home at night to their shanty town dwellings where there are few amenities.

                  The border maquiladoras of global firms have managed to secure a piece of Mexican territory and made it independent from Mexican governance, no independent unions allowed other than the Mexican government union which negotiates directly with the corporations. The corporations can determine work, hours, conditions, hire and fire any one without compensation .If a female work becomes pregnant; there are no company, health schemes or pension provisions.

                          The US government manages daily from the US-Mexican border the flow of goods, services and people. These flows of goods, services and people are linked to global markets, in a global supply chain .Mexican workers although close to the US are fear full of losing jobs to lower cost countries like China, despite China being many thousands of miles away, this highlights the issue of proximity and distance, globalization has made the two concepts much closer together for comfort for the low paid Mexican workers and they know it. We have thanks to globalization a global work force where trans nationals look for the cheapest labour costs, distance no object for these highly mobile corporations

                             With the issue of migration flows from Mexico is the issue of Mexicans already living in the US some 27million (dd205 videos 1-10).the largest Mexican population living outside the US is in Los Angeles, where are settled in certain areas of the city which they have colonized and made in to a little Mexico, they continue to use their own language, maintain their own culture have their own TV stations and newspapers.

                                 Many Mexicans living in the US still regard themselves as Mexicans, there is constant flow of Mexicans across the border, despite the distances Mexicans do not feel lost in US culture, and the proximity of their culture enables them to remain in touch with their roots. The Mexicanization of some cities with large Mexican populations worries some Americans who fear it as a threat to their culture. Some of them have set themselves as vigilante patrols to stop illegal Mexican migrants from entering their country. It is inevitable in this world of cultural flows, of flows of goods and services in a globalized world, the US being a rich country it is going to attract such migrant flows, and the proximity of the Mexican border is worrying for some Americans while for Mexicans this border has become a vast distance which they find difficult to overcome.

                                   

                                  

                            This unequal Nafta trade signed by Mexican president Salinas high lights the unequal economic relationship between the two countries. Applying the same principle to the water issue, the Rio Grand River is owned by both countries yet access to its resources is unequal and contentious. The issue of how and how much water is used by both sides, because the political and economic situation of  both states differs they have come to different conclusions which has created tensions between the two countries. By proximity the two countries might be inter-connected but they see things very different.

                The flow of the river and its natural flows have been altered by the United States, by diverting the water flow parts of the river have now become dry. The US has the legal right to control their water within its territory, but by diverting the water its flows into Mexico side of the river have been affected, now there is the issue can one country stop the natural flow of the water of river flows into another state, which can be detrimental to that state i.e. Mexico. As the usage of water increased their is added pressure on both sides to secure more water resources.

                            The original water treaty signed to apportion the water resource though still in force, the water usage has gone up but the supply has not kept up with demand. On the US side agri- business such as cane sugar plantations and citrus fruit growers who are linked in to world markets want more water from the Mexican side.

                      The Mexican side have seen their population go up and need more water. Interesting point to note is the water usage on both sides demonstrates the unequal relation on the US side water usage is 190 gallons per household while on the Mexican side it is 70 gallon per family  and is shipped in tankers by the Mexican government. The proximity of the rivers resources and the distance of global markets are driving the US to access more of the water territory of Mexico.

                  At no time have the US looked at their prolifigate use of water resources, irrigation for agri- business. It believes rightly or wrongly that it is entitled to standard living which has created water shortages. The Mexicans seem to be suffering the most.

                    They are increasingly denied water resources and opportunities to raise their living standards, the unequal distribution of water resources is maintaining equilibrium of wealth for the US side and poverty on the Mexican side despite the proximity of the two populations, not much wealth is being transferred to the Mexican sides, despite the location of trans- national corporations.

                             the Chamizal park with golf courses soak up huge amount of water, on the Mexican side water is used for immediate need either local consumption or local agriculture. Because of the dominant position f the US monopoly on the water use, its control of flows and territory, of  goods, services capital and people flows, the US behaves like a colonial power next to its immediate neighbour. At no time has the US ever considered serious water conservation and water management of households and business.

 

Summary

          The water issue highlights wider issues of gloabization, of flows of goods, capital, services and people across the border, the US controls most of these flows being the dominant economy.

                    Proximity of the borders has created opportunities for American and transnational corporations to take advantage of the cheap labour, but it have also created distance for so many Mexicans, for them the US is a dream. The water issue demonstrates the unequal relation of who has access to most of the water resource and how it is used. In this unequal situation Mexico is the loser, economically and politically.

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Capitalism 10 Chinese Communist party 1

‘China’s communist political system now relies increasingly on a capitalist form of industrialisation for its legitimacy’.

Introduction

                   I intend to show that the Communist party (ccp) is relying on capitalism to save it from destruction. This is a change in strategy rather than faith in markets.1will use Galbrathian analysis to show how politics and economics influence each other. How the ccp has had to continually adapt to changing circumstances to ensure its continued survival, and I will use Kornai’s idea of a true market system and measure whether China fits his model

Analysis

               The collapse of the Russian communist empire terrified the ccp as they could be next. The economy had stagnated, internal divisions within the ccp which have always existed intensified, as to the best way forward. Under the then premier Deng the state started to practice elements of capitalism from the late 70’s.

                                      China’s main asset being its large population, free trade areas were created mostly along its coastal region with port facilities, to make trade and investment easier. Foreign multinationals encouraged to take advantage of cheap Chinese labour, which they did. The ccp has tried to manage this process as capitalism has been unleashed. Any system of rule must to some extent rely on consent. In a democratic system this consent is through a multi party system, in China force is often used.

                       Any success or failure must rest at its door unlike a multi party system where blame can be apportioned. Since the ccp party is acting on behalf of the ‘people’ and its intention to take the Chinese people towards a socialist paradise which they are incapable of realising for themselves.

                         For Kornai (journal of perspective.2000) a capitalist system must give primacy to absolute property rights, a political system that backs this through a legal system and dominance of the market in exchange relations.

                          One of the first things the ccp has done is to recognize property rights in law. Closer inspections of the property laws have serious flaws. The ccp party has endorsed people’s right to property which is not the same as Kornai’s absolute property rights. The party retains the right to the land on which much property is built. On infrastructure like motorways, schools, hospitals the party uses private/public investment and private contractors to build. The private sector is allowed to make profit over an agreed number of years e.g. 25 years for a toll road, after which ownership is transferred back to the state.

                         Some state industries have been privatized, some sold to managers, employees, foreign investors, but many still remain in state control. Private business is tolerated, but if state interests are threatened the ccp acts quickly without due legal process. As an example because of rampant property speculation the ccp party has imposed a property tax within 24 hours.

                                     With state owned enterprises (soe’s), foreign direct investment has been targeted towards industries which the state wants to develop, a form of alliance capitalism as in the car industry, enabling investment and technology transfers.

                                The private sector is too small as yet to develop a substantial industrial base. The private sector and much of China’s export market is in low value, high volume output, and low tech exports. Many soe’s  are being reorganized in such a way that they are often run by professional managers on a commercial basis, with ownership in ccp hands, there are continuous movements of professional personnel from one industry to another, this hybrid system does not accord to kornai’s idea of a true capitalist system.

                                     State controlled banks continue to support soe’s, often at the expense of the private sector. Many state banks are insolvent as they have been financing the expansion in infrastructure development, and without state support they would have gone bankrupt. Lending is restricted by the state, informal lending is severely punished.

                           The law is not equal in China, as the legal system is not independent of the state, rule of law and one party state are incompatible. The party continues to interfere in all aspects of China’s economic and social affairs, including banning a popular talent show, restricting internet sites, locking up human rights activists. Any questioning of the party’s legitimacy is brutally put down. The expansion of the economy has enabled the party to strengthen its hold on power. China’s sovereign wealth fund is roaming the globe looking for assets and securing resources where it can.

                                     Despite China’s incredible development through embracing capitalist.Politicaly the party is very vulnrable.The party believes it can control capitalism that could be its undoing. It also believes that an emerging middle class is going to drive the economy to the next level from low level manufacture to a consumer led society.

                               Francis Fukuyama (democracy lecture. Long foundation.yutube) has said that once a country reaches $8000 gdp per person people demand more political representation. As a safe guard against this possibility, the ccp now allows local elections where people can choose who they want to represent them, as in Beijing. With the private business sector the party has co-opted some well known business people into the party hierarchy.

                                           Despite these measures the party is not very transparent in publishing accurate, credible accounting data as to the true financial position of the Chinese growth figures of 9-10% have been questioned by people like Mit economist Lester Thurrow (mit world. Lecture series), who has come to the conclusion that the China’s gdp growth is half of what the party states. He did this by looking at energy use and apportioning it between domestic and commercial.

                                           China has recently joined the WTO, which is interesting as it has shown blatant disregard for patents and intellectual property rights, one reason Microsoft refuses to make major investments there.

                                            The party’s annual budget statements cannot be independently assessed. Despite this the party has not remained static. It has adapted politically to the new realites.The budgeting process has been made more transparent,imputs to the process have been improved, more people are being appointed with expertise and not just political appointies.The party has sacked people for corruption, with well publicized cases(mostly lower order party officials).

                                                    For the ccp there remain huge social and economic problems which party and capitalist development cannot solve alone. China’s rapid industrialization is causing huge environmental problems, with bad air and polluted rivers. Capitalist development has created huge gaps between rich and poor, two thirds of the population (800 million) are still rural and poor by western standards. The rural urban migration is causing social problems in the cities. no job security, exploitation of workers, labour disputes on a daily basis, unions not allowed, workers increasingly petitioning the ccp to improve their working condition, wages rising making parts of the economy uncompetitive as in garment manufacturing, more jobs lost than created, with the rise in the informal economy, untaxed and unregulated, increasing pressure on resources of cities of water,housing,schools,jobs and basic amenities is giving city planners headaches, the rise of shanty towns as in Beijing.

                                         By embracing globalization the ccp has connected 1.3 billion people into the world economy. This has raised the expectations of the Chinese people to western living standards which the ccp cannot hope to fulfil for all its people, its legitimacy is being tested daily as it is spending more money  on internal repression. Although many Chinese people still support the hierarchy of the party, but often not local party officials who they believe to be incompetent and corrupt.

                             There seems a Chinese puzzle the soe’s are becoming richer and more powerful as the state sector shrinks, they have a vice like grip on key aspects of the economy.121 soe's are worth $2.9 trillion in 2010,although their share of gdp has declined, in 2009 85% of China’s $1.4 trillion dollars in bank loans went to soe’s(www.Economist online).The party operates  through two institutions the assets supervision and administrative commission and the communist party organization department, it regulates pay and appoints and rotates bosses of the soe’s.Managers of soe’s often alternate between the soe’s and government, this allows politicians to change soe’s and soe's to change government policy. Chinese state companies have been buying up profitable private companies, while many private sector business have been going to the wall, the state companies borrow at 2.6% while private ones at 4.7%(Economist online).The party has created a uneven  capitalist playing field, supporting soe’s at the expense of private business.

 

Summary

                   China’s embracing of capitalism is more strategic than ideological.Kornai’s idea of a capitalist state does not apply to China. China is practising state sponsored capitalism. Key sectors of industry remain in public ownership, despite the rise of a private sector. The private sector seems to provide a supporting role for the state sector. Although China’s soe’s are small in number they are gigantic corporations, like China telecom which has 600 million customers. China is guiding the industrialization of its country and securing firmly its hold on power, through increasing ownership of capitalist development and the means of production

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Comparative Advantage the West and the Rest

 

The theory of comparative advantage and  how far it is useful in understanding the realities of world trade.

                           

                        I intend to answer this question by giving a brief explanation of the theory of comparative advantage and Waltz’s theory of international politics, then relate these to the world of international politics ,trade  and the functioning of the world trade organization

                   The theory of comparative advantage is based on the simple assumption that countries should make best use of their endowments be they natural like mineral resources or man-made like skilled labour, innovation or advanced technology in manufacturing or services. It is possible for a country to produce all goods and services it needs as long it has the resources to do so, but sooner or later it will reach limits known as production possibility frontiers.

                               To increase the amount of goods and services once it reaches production possibilities frontiers, it will need to give up those things where the opportunity costs to make are too high and concentrate on those things which it is best at making better and cheaper. So if it is cheaper and better to make cheese in the UK than cars and it  cheaper and better to make cars in China than making cheese, by trading with one another both countries will be able get more of cars and cheese at cheaper price, both countries can move beyond their production possibilities frontiers.

                                     Waltz’s theory of international politics is based on the assumption that countries at local level are sovereign and subject to laws governing that country. At the international states are anarchic, self interest and power determines outcomes, despite international law there is no world government to enforce rules on states, other than states themselves.

                                        The WTO was set up to regulate trade and investment among nations i.e. create a level playing field for all, since the rules are made by member  states to which they are subject and since the WTO has no army to force countries to abide by its rulings and countries have to enforce its rules on other countries, rich countries Waltz theory suggests are able manipulate the rules to gain the most advantage in an anarchic situation, the distribution of power favouring the rich countries, although poor countries by organizing can be a counter balance to power depending on the circumstances.

                                            To fully appreciate power relations we need look no further than the garment industry and agriculture. In both these trades poor countries have a comparative advantage in competing with rich countries and yet poor countries have never fully benefitted from these trades because of the poor terms of trades which richer countries have been able to impose on poor countries through the workings of the WTO and other means.

                                 The USA and the EU heavily subsidize their farmers, this makes their agricultural produce artificially lower in price, on world markets this means poor countries farmers find it hard to compete limiting their export possibilities or having to accept much lower prices. Despite commitments to lower trade barriers poor countries do not have the power to make rich countries stop subsidizing their agriculture.

                                        According to WTO countries can impose, fines, tariffs or restrict even stop goods from the offending country entering their markets if a country does not stick to the rules. So for example the USA company Tyco one the worlds biggest chicken processing company routinely dumps chicken parts(the rejected ‘brown meat’ from its market) onto the Haitian market, now Haiti can impose trade sanctions on the USA,doing so would not hurt the US much but more on Haiti as it is reliant on exports to the US.

                                      This imbalance of power and disparity in wealth means that poor countries options are limited. There is no level playing field in world trade regulated by the WTO but more so the distribution of and use of power, The USA,Japan and EU have managed to rig the international trading system to gain as much advantage as possible.

                                 The way this has been has not been by outright flouting of the rules but by clever manipulation of the rules and loop holes. Rich countries have qualified permanent experts at WTO meetings, while many poor countries lack expertise and permanent staff to represent their case, the result of this is that many meeting are held and decisions made without representations from poor countries. Only when these rulings come into force do poor countries realize they are disadvantaged, by then it is too late, at the time of writing WTO rulings run to over 26,000 pages and more are added everyday. There are 1700 meeting every year, of the permanent staff of the WTO only 94 out of 552 are from poor countries. The Doha round which collapse because the US threatened to walk out of talks unless tripp's was on the table, pressure from US business which hold many patents and intellectual property rights by companies like Monsanto was responsible for the US position.

                                 The multi fibre agreement where poor countries have an advantage, the rich countries have agreed to lower tariffs over a long period while at the same it retains the right to limit imports by imposing quantity restrictions. By clever manipulations of the rules even when tariffs come down poor countries will not benefit because the rich countries will have reached their allotted quotas from poor countries, and since the initial tariff’s are so high lowering them will make little difference.

                                   The theory of comparative advantage is not static. Countries like Taiwan, South Korea, Japan and now China, countries which have  few natural endowments like oil or gas, have by being export led and investing in select industries through tariff  protection and industrial trade policies have been able to create giant industrial giants like Samsung of South Korera,Sony of Japan and telecom giant of China Telecom, they have also moved their  societies from agriculture to a industry based society and now towards a post industrial society, these countries did not develop by following wto rulings when they industrialized.

                     Many poor countries are still reliant on a few primary exports, the old colonial pattern of trade, despite the comparative advantage this means that price fluctuations can be very harmfull.Colombia a major coffee grower has seen the price of coffee drop affecting the lives of many farmers, unlike the rich countries who have welfare safety, Colombian farmers can suddenly be immersed in poverty with few alternative options.

                         Poor countries have found it very difficult to trade out of poverty, infact the opposite is happening with the globalizing of poverty through trade, this is the conclusion of Michael chessudovsky (the globalization of poverty.2003).he explains how it works, a country that exports raw peanuts is subject to low tariffs, if however if that country decides to export peanut butter it is subject to 1000% tariff!.

                            He also explains how the IMF and World Bank through loan conditions are imposing a harsh trade regime which is making things worse, by opening up their economies especially agriculture the affect has been devastating on poor countries farmers. Mexican farmers have lost out badly as US agri subsidized corn has destroyed the local market; in Senegal EU subsidised tomato concentrate has destroyed the local market.

                            

As Waltz suggests at the international states are anarchic ,they may co-operate if it is in their interest, but underlying the WTO  ruling hides the interests of the powerful to manipulate events and circumstances, now the rich countries do not always get their way, by operating as a block China,India,Russia and Brazil known as the brics are co-operating together so that their interests can be represented, and doing trade deals to lock out the US and the EU,this constant shifting of alliances and power known as state craft is according Waltz is the normal working of anarchic states at the international.

                  

                                   With terms of trade so poor the reader may ask why they participate, for poor countries to be locked out of the world trading system means they will have no access to world markets, it is better to gain something than nothing. The 1986 Uruguay round where poor countries signed up to open up their markets, have gained very little. African countries export over 28% of gdp but are still poor due to low prices for primary goods and have not been able to get out of the poverty trap, despite their comparative advantage in natural mineral resources, because they lack the skills and expertise to mine these, and the investment needed in expert machinery. As a consequence they have to rely on rich countries to make the investment to mine the resources, as conditions of the investments most of the money ends up in the hands of the mining company leaving little for local development that which is left after the elites have looted their share and hidden it abroad

                          The theory of comparative is now discredited by the examples  outlined above, the problem lies  in the real world where economic and political power comes into play as in the WTO meetings of the Uruguay and Doha rounds where the US and EU have dominated. According to Ha joon jang (kicking away the ladder.2000 ed),if comparative advantage was applied as its originator intended, Japan would still be growing rice, America wheat, South Korea fish and vegetables. According to him there is no reason that things cannot be made and sold anywhere.

                                 He gives the example of Toyota which is the second largest car company, started of making small machine parts and later moved into the auto industry under the guidance of investments and industrial polices of the then Japanese government to industrialize the country through acquisition of technology and protection of its home markets.

                        According to Ha Joon Jang nearly all rich countries have practiced the infant industry protection schemes to develop their industries behind high tariffs on foreign goods and services, this is not what the WTO now suggesting to poor countries. By opening up their economies poor countries have not had liberal free trade but globalization, where giant multi-nationals have been able to expand incorporating more of the worlds land, resources and people into their domain of operations.

                                     China is the classic example its comparative advantage was cheap labour, which it has used to attract muli-nationals.It has been careful to use foreign direct investment to develop key industries like the auto industry and telecoms. It now has world class mobile phone Company called Huwuai which is now launching products into western markets

                  The theory of comparative advantage does not necessarily lead to gains in trade but also depends on terms of trade, poor countries reliant on a few primary goods are especially vulnerable to price fluctuations and have not been able to trade out of poverty

                                   The WTO a western creation favours the powerful like the US and EU who are able design and enforce ruling which often are not in the interest of the poor countries. Liberal free trade as enforced by the WTO has not made many poor countries prosperous; if we take China and India out of the equation evidence suggest many poor countries have got poorer, especially African countries

                               Most trade is still done between rich countries around  75% of gdp,with only 15% of the world’s population, rich countries continue to dominate trade and WTO rulings, despite poor countries having comparative advantage in certain trades, they have been locked out of these key markets or terms of trades so poor they have benefitted very little

                              Rich countries developed under high tariffs and import restrictions when their industries developed, only when their industries were able to take on the best in world markets did they become free trade converts. This is not what is being sold to poor countries, in debt, reliant on few primary goods, despite comparative advantage have seen few benefits

                           In our concept of the Good Society fair and free trade is to be ecouraged,and must be benficial to both sides.The Western Imperial and colonial mindset has to change.The old pattern of colonial trade of poor countries suppying raw material at low prices is keeping countries poor, still exists.

                             This situation cannot last for ever,poor countries are now organising for better terms of trade,If the West does not change its policies it will suffer in the future,the EU and the US trade with the rest of the world is declining and will continue to decline.It can be part of the solution to global prosperity or the problem.

                                                    Kind Regards Tiger Moto

                                                  

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Britains Empire System

 ‘What the British Empire proved that empire is a form of international government that can work-and not just for the benefit of the ruling power’     Nial Fergusson-Historian

 

                        I intend to argue that Ferguson is right, but for the wrong reasons. Empire is about international government political and economic. Empires are also built on coercion no matter how benign the intensions.  I will use the British Empire to make most of my points, using the following building blocks of empire, transport and communication, Imperial strategy, politics and the philosophy, religion, technology, culture of imperialism, the legal system of empire, military power, economics and trade policy and mobility of people.

                               I will show the links between them in Britain’s attempt to form an orderly empire .I will show that the main beneficiaries of empire are elites of the metro pole and those of the periphery. I will also show that any benefits to the colonized masses were often unintended consequences of imperial policies. `

Imperial strategy

                       The early part of the British Empire was expansion to acquire territory in competition with other empire builders. Britain being the most advance industrial nation wanted to bring its technical know and capital to convert resources of other lands in to goods and services for European and world markets.Britains approach to obtain consent from local leaders where possible and use force when necessary.

                     The best way way to describe Britain’s imperial strategy would be pragmatic liberalism. India being the prime example where the Britain deposed the Mughal rulers, with the help and connivance of some princely states but kept the old system in place of local rulers who were willing to be compliant to British rule. Those not willing to comply were either removed by force and or replaced by a more compliant leaders Britain maintained the caste system in India

                            In other parts of the world the British had to use force to acquire Caribbean islands and in the Americas .Britain’s strategy to link different parts of the world under one political and economic system.

                                             In attempting to bring global order the empire builders often had to displace other existing political and economic order in place. India had trade, economic and political links with many countries including China and the Middle East. These trade ties exited long before the European empire builders arrived on the scene. The Portuguese took over by force existing trade routes of the Chinese, Arab and Indians. So contrary to Ferguson in many parts of the world a global economic and political order existed. The best claim the British can make is they were able to extend this global system encompassing more of the planet than any other empire builder had done in history.

 

Transport and communication

                          Having acquired colonies spanning the wolrd, they must be linked by a transportation and communication system. The British sea empire, maintained through advances in metal and wood technology were able to build bigger and better military and commercial ships. This enabled the British to better defend it territories and transport more tonnage in commercial goods.

                                         The sea borne routes under British control were secured by passage of the navigation acts of 1651-1663, ensured safe passage for goods and people, forming the basis of Britain’s overseas trade for nearly two hundred years. Later foreign ships were allowed to use Britain’s water ways, to transport goods as long as they paid a toll, and port fees. The sea routes were linked by ports along the empire, vital in the transportation system. The development of Ports like Hong Kong, Calcutta, Singapore, and Cairo performed vital trade functions for ships, without this development free flow of trade would be difficult, especially overland .Today many of these ports continue to be hubs of in global trade and existing seaborne trade routes are still used today.

                                               Linked to the ports, there must be overland transportation system. The invention of the railway along with the existing system of roads, canals and rivers greatly increased speed and volume of trade. The extensive railway system in India opened the country to penetration of goods, services and people far more than was possible. The Mombasa to Uganda railway system opened up east Africa for exploitation. With the railways system came the telegraph system, making communication in real time to co-ordinate economic, political and social activity across the empire.

                     Ferguson is right without the innovations in transport and communication many parts of the world would not have changed or be linked into international markets.unfortunatley for the British collecting, taxes and organizing trade became an administrative nightmare. Communication between different parts of the empire, and trying to form consistent policies of linking economic benefits of the periphery to the metropolis became a difficult. The British did build the railways with Indian labour and many Indians benefitted from   jobs created and ability move goods and people faster than before did bring benefit those Indians who could afford to pay, but all this was paid for by taxes on Indians!

 

 Economics and trade policy

                  The rational for empire is to bring economic benefits to all parts of the globe, the intellectual arguments of Adam smith who believed free trade benefits all to be applied across the empire. Now mutual free trade unhindered by tariffs or quotas between countries or regions is proven to be economically beneficial. Under an empire system most of the economic benefits will go to the metropolitans an example then East company India Company was given a royal charter to pursue trade on behalf of the crown. This company controlled substantial amount trade in empire.multi national’s toady perform the same function as the east India Company.

                                       The East Indian Company traded globally in sugar from the Caribbean, opium from India to china, tea from china to Europe and spices from India to Europe and many other products. With factories located across the empire, the company was able to co ordinate the supply of goods to European and world markets. It had its own ships, as demand for goods like for sugar grew in Europe; it created investments in plantations colonies in the Caribbean.

                                      The benefits of the east India Company are they able to bring products or services which are often made or used locally with limited markets, to a wider customer base. With the technical know in sugar refining, sugar became an international product, which it still is today, same with tobacco and cotton manufacture, with the advent of the spinning jenny, increasing production.

                         Ferguson is right the British Empire created global trade in commodities, by applying free market principles, but by looking closely we see some contradictions. Before the British arrived India was already advanced in cotton manufacture and metals. The British stopped development in these industries so as not to have competitors. The British also forced farmers to grow cash crops for markets, like opium for the Chinese markets,

                                       The consequences of these free market policies was that when famines arrived, the farmers had no food for local consumption, also their unwritten agreements in time of famine for food aid from other farmers was destroyed by British land policies. What we see here is a distortion of free market principles. The other issue how money was made from India around 70% from taxes on land tenure according freed Harrison (the silver bullet 2006), under Britain’s mercantile trading system many people suffered. The main beneficiaries of trade for the British were the crown, the upper class, the business elites, and local rulers in India.

 

The legal system

                            Britain’s concept of the rule of law and private property is now universal. Without consistent laws which work with enforcement and punishment if necessary no empire can work. Also the British Empire has to have some legal for legitimacy other wise taking over other peoples land and property is hard to justify. So the legal system served two purposes (1) to secure the empire against others and (2) use laws to control economic and social activity in the empire

                                             As an example the land treaties signed with tribal leaders in New Zealand and Kenya secured fertile land and resources for the british.with India laws introduced to regulate of land tenure to control the output of Indian farmers. My second point laws to regulate economic and social activity can be explained by Britain’s American colony. Within a short period of time acts were passed to control where settlers lived, regulation of banking, taxation policies, local governance, of officials and so on.

                                              Ferguson is right the rule of law at the international must be consistent in empire; otherwise people will not invest if unsure of the outcomes. Also corrupt free government is important in empire, especially the civil service which Britain set, was vital in the running of empire. The administrative  system the British left behind is still in operation today in India .the British trained a considerable number of Indians who worked for the British civil service in india,they benefited from training in English  law and administration. The majority of Indians came from the high caste of Indian society, a very small number of the Indian population

                                .A closer inspection shows that laws were often designed to secure the interests of the ruling power. the Kenyan treaty was signed by the tribal leader who had no idea what he was signing or had access to legal advice explaining the implication of the treaty, for instance most of his people became after the treaty squatters on their own land with no rights to the resources. The avalanches of taxation laws on the Americas lead to fight for independence. Land tenure in India benefited the ruling power and local leaders, so laws are important, but if these same laws have different outcomes for different groups then they are bad laws or unjust laws, Indian farmers did not see any direct benefits of British rule

 

Politics and philosophy of empire

                        The main figures in this debate were Adam smith with his free market trade theory which brings s prosperity to all and the philosophy of john Stuart mills who believed that it was imperative for the British to bring the benefits of their advanced civilization to the rest of the world. He believed Britain acted selfishly for the benefit of others. These two views were the fundmental bedrocks of the empire

                                         In any international government or empire, the ideology of empire must be maintained otherwise the whole project loses credibility and legitimacy. International politics demands that policies must reflect wider considerations than local politics. As an example the indenisation of the brutish civil service in India, where Indians involved in running their own country. The umbrella of the British imperial power system brings together different parts of the world under a federal system of informal; and formal control. Of markets, private property rights, the rule of law, investor protection, corrupt free government and the provision of public goods to the core and periphery of empire. This Anglo-globalization according to Ferguson is good for all, as it brings prosperity to all even if distributed unevenly. We see parallels of this thing in the present day neo liberal agenda of free labour and capital movements as the solution to international development. According to Ferguson only an imperial power like Britain can embed good governance, the rule of law, the provision of public goods. This is based on the assumption that imperil subjects are incapable of governing themselves

                                      On closer inspection there are obvious problems. The politics of the time justified, slavery, countries forced to trade in goods not wanted, like china forced to buy opium of the British, in forcing colonies to produce agriculture produce for international markets at the expense of local needs. When it suited Britain it abandoned free trade and introduced rtariffs.simply replicating British institutions and formal structure do not they will work.

Culture of imperialism

                        Britain exported what it regarded as   ‘superior’ cultural values to empire; culture can be seen as imperial ideology which the powerful use to bring what can be described as universal values to empire. As an example the British in India banned bride burning and child brides, also attempts were made to give women more rights through a process of emancipation in encouraging girls to to go to school in Kenya female circumcision was also banned.ferguson is right without British intervention these cultural practices would have continued, so the British can be seen pioneers in universal human rights.

                                             How no one can argue fort bride burning, or female circumcision. These universal benefits across empire can be seen to bring protection for the subjects, an international, order based on universal values and human rights can be seen to benefit all. But failure to understand local cultures can lead to wrong conclusions and solution. In Kenya female circumcision was seen safety measure for young girls too stop them getting pregnant. In Indian culture girls are not educated because they are given away on marriage, while sons stay and look after their parents. Applying imperial cultural values in trying to create an international order without local understanding can lead to problems.

 

Mobility of labour

          Linked to economics and trade is the mobility of labour. Under the empire system, labour was needed for trade, investment, social and administrative reasons. Settler communities in New Zealand and Kenya transformed the landscape by introducing new plants and animal species, making the land more productive and the produce to international markets, which never existed before. Slave labour in the Caribbean was vital in the sugar industry. In Indian the British made much use of indentured labour in India such crops as opium. There is know the creation of flexible mobile labour markets does bring benefits for all concerned, as labour moves to where it is most needed. Modern economies simply cannot function with some international labour.

                                     But under the imperial system not all labour was free. Slaves had few rights. Indentured labour also had few rights. The waiting treaty left the Maoris margin zed on their own lands unable to earn a living of the land. In Kenya like the one sided treaty left the Kenyans squatters on their own lands struggling to make a living? So Britain’s policies on creation of a mobile and flexible labour market have had mixed success.

 

Military power

                       The projection of military power is vital for empire for internal and external security, investment in advanced military technology ensured Britain had superiority in weaponry. A fleet of military naval ships ensured Britain could reach any part of its empire and deploy soldiers. Not all military personnel came from the metroplole.in Indian Britain had many local Indians recruited  into the imperial army, known as sepoys,who were give,training,weapons,uniforms, medical help, good wages and pensions.ferguson is right here we see direct benefits for locals. on closer analysis, we find most of the soldiers came from the  elite of Indian society  .these sepoys were often used to suppress fellow Indians and paid for by taxes on indians.many armed personnel  were mercenaries with no fixed loyalties and did not necessarily come from within the empire. The threat of force must be real, used to deter invasion, to suppress civil strife and ensure compliance with in the empire

 

Religion

             The role of religion in empire is tied up with the culture of imperialism, of civilizing the savages and turns them into good Christians through conversions. There have been notable success in Japan where a sizable local Christian community exited. The Portuguese in goa married local women and a vibrant Christian community was created. The French likewise, gave locals same rights as French citizens. Even after decolonization there are substantial Christian communities, so the metropole religion has had a beneficial influence. The idea being these converts would become representatives of British interests in india.missonaries can be seen as religious army sent from the metropole, to unite the empire under a common religion.

                            For Niall Ferguson the Empire system was a good thing and he believes more would have been better. So for Ferguson the Empire was his concept of the good society. Just a few problems. (1) He would not be saying this if he was on the receiving end of Colonialism. (2)He basis his theory that the Indians before British rule had no laws, civil society, no culture, politics or economics of any value. So the arrival of the British to India was a blessing in disguise.

                  India was on the verge of industrialization before the British arrived. The Indians had learnt metallurgy, and had made a dome shaped object. They were also experts in cloth manufacture. When the British arrived they put a stop to both developments, as they did not want competitors.

                        The nature of mass poverty is the direct result of British Colonial policies. The British destroyed India’s concept of the Good Society and imposed its own. The system of administration the British left, still affects the lives of millions of Indians today. It is said that the British ruled the rulers of India, if that is true then the majority of  Indians today  are not a free people.

                        Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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Human rights and the responsibility to protect

 

                                              ‘Norms such as the responsibility to protect’ and claims to human rights can never become universal characterized by cultural difference.

             The concept of human rights has existed in all societies from the past to the present. Each country has come up with its own concept of human rights. This has depended on a countries historical and cultural history which varied from country to country. As a consequence of these diverse nature of societies of multi cultural, multi- racial and multi -ethnic identities, of varied political and religious norms, divergent views of human rights have arisen.

                 Female circumcision is a cultural practice in some African and Middle Eastern countries which in the western countries is regarded as abhorrent and violation of person’s human right. While pornography prevalent in the west is regarded as abhorrent and violation of female human rights in many Muslim societies.

                    Religion has played an important part in the development of societies and given rise to different and diverse discourses in what is regarded as human rights. In the western Christian tradition much emphasis is placed on the individual to behave morally and ethically and to do the right thing .In contrast in Islam there is no concept of the right of the individual being sacred above his family and community. There is no rights culture of the individual in Islamic societies, only duties and obligations to family and community at large, and roles are clearly defined for men and women.

                     At the international this has led to conflicts over human rights issues. The sentence for stoning to death of a Nigerian woman for adultery (www.cnnworld.com.sept26.2003) caused outcry in the west and pressure at the international from many human rights organizations managed to get the sentence reduced to a prison sentence. At the same time some western governments like the U.K were quite happy to send people it regarded as terrorist threats to countries where they were tortured to elicit information, known as rendition flights.

                  Western hypocrisy seems to have no limits. For many years they have been quite happy to support and do business with dictators and undemocratic regimes who have ,tortured, raped and killed their people in the most horrific ways.Saddam Hussein,Pinocet,the Shah of Iran and Mubarak of Egypt  to name a few. In these sample cases the West was happy to disregard human rights when it suits them.

                        Now it is true that in many non western countries there has been a blatant disregard for the protection of human rights especially of minorities. This has been often due to regimes either being undemocratic, failed or weak states unable to apply laws to protect people, often of very poor societies, divided societies wrecked by ethnic and civil strife.

                       The human rights agenda really began after world war 11, after what happened to the jews.the great powers did not want a repeat of the genocide. The human rights charter endorsed by most countries of the world was the first attempt to codify in international law minimum standards of human rights.

                        Unfortunatley the human rights charter has not been upheld as the UN organization intended. The UN has been very selective where it will intervene on humanitarian grounds.

 

                               The right to protect often means sending troops, countries are reluctant to do this unless their national interest is threatened. So the Kurds in Iraq during the first gulf war protected from Saddam Hussein, but Kurds in turkey are not protected from the Turkish army because Turkey is a western ally. Because of the selective use of what is regarded as universal human rights the whole process has become discredited

                 To overcome the obvious limitations and the contested issues of human rights the UN has come with the concept of r2p (the right to protect).The idea being that innocent people must be protected if the state fails to do its duty, especially women, children and old people, since it is they who suffer most in conflict situations. In present day conflicts civilians are the main casualties. Again the concept of r2p can only work if it is applied consistently.R2p is similar in concept to the Red Cross it tries to de-politicize the right to protect people, like the Red Cross which does not take sides in a conflict but will give medical treatment to both sides of the conflict. The idea being to mitigate the cultural differences as expressed in Samuel Huntington’s clash of civilizations thesis towards a common agenda on human rights

                       

                        The reality in world situations is that the modern  state systems and sovereign integrity is a European idea made universal through colonization, which created arbitrary borders and lumped together diverse communities often antagonistic against each other, this often meant suppressing dissent and  self determination to ensure the state remained intact.

               The human rights implications have been severe, leaders from minorities have ended up ruling majorities, the allawites in Syria, in Bahrain Sunni minority over the Shia majority, in Africa despots galore, in other countries minorities have suffered human rights abuses disproportinatley, the Christians under Mubarak and under democracy continue to suffer

                             To create a national identity and protect human rights for many countries has been very difficult. When the state fails to protect its own citizens from human rights abuses because it is a failed state, or has a weak or ineffective government it is very difficult for the UN to apply r2p.The Congo being one example where estimates of upwards of 2 million killed, the international community unable to bring peace to a country which is at war with itself.

                       For philosopher Michael ignatief the human rights agenda is western moral imperialist. It is another weapon used to interfere in the affairs of other countries which they do not like.

                   President carter raised the issue in the 1970’s that Chinese people were not allowed to leave the country which was against the human rights charter, Den Xiao Ping(the Premier) was puzzled by this remark ,paused for a long time then replied how many million  Chinese the US would like, this quickly ended the conversation on this subject. This one incident vindicates ignatief’s assertion.

                            One modern view is that of ‘imagined communities, since people in a country are unlikely to meet each other face to face, religion or territory is used to connect people, so Israel is home for the Jews and Israel will try to protect Jews where ever they live, or Kashmir where religion and territory is used to defend the rights of the people. For theorist Alexander Wendt of the constructivist school ideas at the international of states, identity and discourse in human  rights issues is often determined how other states behave and interact with one another, ideas of cultures and human rights exist within states and between states

                  So the concept of human rights is subject to change and argued over, as an example some countries continue to use capital punishment, while there is concerted campaign at the international to ban capital punishments as it is seen as infringement of a person’s human rights, i.e. we can never be certain 100% that the person is guilty.

                     Applying the above with all the limitations mentioned above I want to analyse the African union attempt to emulate the UN in coming up with a set of universal norms to protect the innocents. Initially the African union did not interfere in the affairs of other countries directly i.e. sending in peace keeping troops to protect the innocent. This was more due to Africa at that time run mostly by dictators and undemocratic regimes, also some of the countries belonging to AU saw themselves as enemies. As a result of this there was little criticism of human rights abuses. So non intervention became a norm for the AU despite gross human rights abuses.

                                       This later changed as Africa became more democratic and any elected government lacked legitimacy if it was not seen to protect all of its citizens regardless of their religion or ethnicity. So the AU despite the diverse nature of African countries has tried to use the shared history of colonialism, slavery and liberation to come up with the norms where intervention is now considered, of minimum standards of behaviour of AU states. It must be said norms do not determine behaviour.

                                So the AU now expects every member to respect the rule of law. So norm violating behaviour i.e. unconstitutional changes not accepted, or unfair elections, the UN’s concept of rp2 concept to applied with minimum standard of human rights expected, things like ethnic cleansing not accepted. Many African countries continue not to implant the r2p concept of the AU.

                               Despite these new policy commitments the AU has been reluctant to criticize or intervene, in Darfur Sudan despite the evidence it has not acted. In Rwanda and the Congo it has been active to bring peace.

                           The problem with Africa is that many of the conflicts are internal to the countries i.e. civil wars, inter- tribal conflicts between different ethnic groups claiming to represent the national interest of the country. It is very difficult to solve human rights problems and protection of the innocent in civil war conflicts.

                    Even the UN finds it hard to act, if the rule of law and democracy breakdown and no government in charge or different groups claim to represent the interest of all the people, who do you negotiate with in this situation. If you do deal with one group as the UN has done in Darfur you simply antagonize the other side who see humanatarian intervention as supporting the enemy.

                    So the AU faces the same dilemma as the UN of when to intervene and on what basis it has the responsibility to protect the innocent, as any act of humanitarian action will be seen some in the conflict situation as being politically motivated. It has tried to use the constructivist’s idea of using the past common history to bind African countries towards some sort of collective expectations of norms.

                          Politics at the international as with AU is wrapped up in language of national, ethnic and social identity, of nationalism, self determination, issues defined by values and local loyalties, which are constantly changing, when nations and nationalism collide .This inevitably leads to changing views of human rights and responsibility to protect the innocent, when who the innocent are subject to contention and change. Respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity means for the AU it is very reluctant or limited to act and under only extreme circumstances,often this means if the state is about to collapse it may intervene for humanitarian reasons.

 Summary

                           The concept of responsibility to protect (r2p) was intended to resolve the issue of cultural differences and human rights. The originators of the UN human rights agenda have through policy formulation tried to bypass sovereignty, territorial integrity and historical and cultural differences of states, and come up with a universal norm r2p, designed to protect the innocents through humanitarian non political intervention and allow if possible help the innocent of conflicts regardless which side the people belong to of the conflict

                    The African union have tried to do a similar thing and have gone through a political change from non intervention to intervention by invoking a similar political stance to the UN’s  r2p.It will no longer tolerate disregard for national and international laws, or non democratic means to change the constitution, unfair elections, ethnic cleansing. This is a remarkable change in African politics arrived at through considerable discourse on what human rights means among African states, and even more remarkable to arrive at a common stand.

             I intend to answer this question in two parts. Part 1 I will discuss and critically assess whether human rights can ever be truly universal or always contested. I will discuss the UN R2P human rights charter which tries to come up with a human rights declaration with universal applications. In part 2 I will discuss how the African Unions has attempted to come up with a similar declaration of human rights as the r2p.

Analysis

             The concept of human rights has existed in all societies from the past to the present. Each country has come up with its own concept of human rights. This has depended on a countries historical and cultural history which varied from country to country. As a consequence of these diverse nature of societies of multi cultural, multi- racial and multi -ethnic identities, of varied political and religious norms, divergent views of human rights have arisen.

                 Female circumcision is a cultural practice in some African and Middle Eastern countries which in the western countries is regarded as abhorrent and violation of person’s human right. While pornography prevalent in the west is regarded as abhorrent and violation of female human rights in many Muslim societies.

                    Religion has played an important part in the development of societies and given rise to different and diverse discourses in what is regarded as human rights. In the western Christian tradition much emphasis is placed on the individual to behave morally and ethically and to do the right thing .In contrast in Islam there is no concept of the right of the individual being sacred above his family and community. There is no rights culture of the individual in Islamic societies, only duties and obligations to family and community at large, and roles are clearly defined for men and women.

                     At the international this has led to conflicts over human rights issues. The sentence for stoning to death of a Nigerian woman for adultery (www.cnnworld.com.sept26.2003) caused outcry in the west and pressure at the international from many human rights organizations managed to get the sentence reduced to a prison sentence. At the same time some western governments like the U.K were quite happy to send people it regarded as terrorist threats to countries where they were tortured to elicit information, known as rendition flights.

                  Western hypocrisy seems to have no limits. For many years they have been quite happy to support and do business with dictators and undemocratic regimes who have ,tortured, raped and killed their people in the most horrific ways.Saddam Hussein,Pinocet,the Shah of Iran and Mubarak of Egypt  to name a few. In these sample cases the West was happy to disregard human rights when it suits them.

                        Now it is true that in many non western countries there has been a blatant disregard for the protection of human rights especially of minorities. This has been often due to regimes either being undemocratic, failed or weak states unable to apply laws to protect people, often of very poor societies, divided societies wrecked by ethnic and civil strife.

                       The human rights agenda really began after world war 11, after what happened to the jews.the great powers did not want a repeat of the genocide. The human rights charter endorsed by most countries of the world was the first attempt to codify in international law minimum standards of human rights.

                        Unfortunatley the human rights charter has not been upheld as the UN organization intended. The UN has been very selective where it will intervene on humanitarian grounds.

 

                               The right to protect often means sending troops, countries are reluctant to do this unless their national interest is threatened. So the Kurds in Iraq during the first gulf war protected from Saddam Hussein, but Kurds in turkey are not protected from the Turkish army because Turkey is a western ally. Because of the selective use of what is regarded as universal human rights the whole process has become discredited

                 To overcome the obvious limitations and the contested issues of human rights the UN has come with the concept of r2p (the right to protect).The idea being that innocent people must be protected if the state fails to do its duty, especially women, children and old people, since it is they who suffer most in conflict situations. In present day conflicts civilians are the main casualties. Again the concept of r2p can only work if it is applied consistently.R2p is similar in concept to the Red Cross it tries to de-politicize the right to protect people, like the Red Cross which does not take sides in a conflict but will give medical treatment to both sides of the conflict. The idea being to mitigate the cultural differences as expressed in Samuel Huntington’s clash of civilizations thesis towards a common agenda on human rights

                       

                        The reality in world situations is that the modern  state systems and sovereign integrity is a European idea made universal through colonization, which created arbitrary borders and lumped together diverse communities often antagonistic against each other, this often meant suppressing dissent and  self determination to ensure the state remained intact.

               The human rights implications have been severe, leaders from minorities have ended up ruling majorities, the allawites in Syria, in Bahrain Sunni minority over the Shia majority, in Africa despots galore, in other countries minorities have suffered human rights abuses disproportinatley, the Christians under Mubarak and under democracy continue to suffer

                             To create a national identity and protect human rights for many countries has been very difficult. When the state fails to protect its own citizens from human rights abuses because it is a failed state, or has a weak or ineffective government it is very difficult for the UN to apply r2p.The Congo being one example where estimates of upwards of 2 million killed, the international community unable to bring peace to a country which is at war with itself.

                       For philosopher Michael ignatief the human rights agenda is western moral imperialist. It is another weapon used to interfere in the affairs of other countries which they do not like.

                   President carter raised the issue in the 1970’s that Chinese people were not allowed to leave the country which was against the human rights charter, Den Xiao Ping(the Premier) was puzzled by this remark ,paused for a long time then replied how many million  Chinese the US would like, this quickly ended the conversation on this subject. This one incident vindicates ignatief’s assertion.

                            One modern view is that of ‘imagined communities, since people in a country are unlikely to meet each other face to face, religion or territory is used to connect people, so Israel is home for the Jews and Israel will try to protect Jews where ever they live, or Kashmir where religion and territory is used to defend the rights of the people. For theorist Alexander Wendt of the constructivist school ideas at the international of states, identity and discourse in human  rights issues is often determined how other states behave and interact with one another, ideas of cultures and human rights exist within states and between states

                  So the concept of human rights is subject to change and argued over, as an example some countries continue to use capital punishment, while there is concerted campaign at the international to ban capital punishments as it is seen as infringement of a person’s human rights, i.e. we can never be certain 100% that the person is guilty.

                     Applying the above with all the limitations mentioned above I want to analyse the African union attempt to emulate the UN in coming up with a set of universal norms to protect the innocents. Initially the African union did not interfere in the affairs of other countries directly i.e. sending in peace keeping troops to protect the innocent. This was more due to Africa at that time run mostly by dictators and undemocratic regimes, also some of the countries belonging to AU saw themselves as enemies. As a result of this there was little criticism of human rights abuses. So non intervention became a norm for the AU despite gross human rights abuses.

                                       This later changed as Africa became more democratic and any elected government lacked legitimacy if it was not seen to protect all of its citizens regardless of their religion or ethnicity. So the AU despite the diverse nature of African countries has tried to use the shared history of colonialism, slavery and liberation to come up with the norms where intervention is now considered, of minimum standards of behaviour of AU states. It must be said norms do not determine behaviour.

                                So the AU now expects every member to respect the rule of law. So norm violating behaviour i.e. unconstitutional changes not accepted, or unfair elections, the UN’s concept of rp2 concept to applied with minimum standard of human rights expected, things like ethnic cleansing not accepted. Many African countries continue not to implant the r2p concept of the AU.

                               Despite these new policy commitments the AU has been reluctant to criticize or intervene, in Darfur Sudan despite the evidence it has not acted. In Rwanda and the Congo it has been active to bring peace.

                           The problem with Africa is that many of the conflicts are internal to the countries i.e. civil wars, inter- tribal conflicts between different ethnic groups claiming to represent the national interest of the country. It is very difficult to solve human rights problems and protection of the innocent in civil war conflicts.

                    Even the UN finds it hard to act, if the rule of law and democracy breakdown and no government in charge or different groups claim to represent the interest of all the people, who do you negotiate with in this situation. If you do deal with one group as the UN has done in Darfur you simply antagonize the other side who see humanatarian intervention as supporting the enemy.

                    So the AU faces the same dilemma as the UN of when to intervene and on what basis it has the responsibility to protect the innocent, as any act of humanitarian action will be seen some in the conflict situation as being politically motivated. It has tried to use the constructivist’s idea of using the past common history to bind African countries towards some sort of collective expectations of norms.

                          Politics at the international as with AU is wrapped up in language of national, ethnic and social identity, of nationalism, self determination, issues defined by values and local loyalties, which are constantly changing, when nations and nationalism collide .This inevitably leads to changing views of human rights and responsibility to protect the innocent, when who the innocent are subject to contention and change. Respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity means for the AU it is very reluctant or limited to act and under only extreme circumstances,often this means if the state is about to collapse it may intervene for humanitarian reasons

                           The concept of responsibility to protect (r2p) was intended to resolve the issue of cultural differences and human rights. The originators of the UN human rights agenda have through policy formulation tried to bypass sovereignty, territorial integrity and historical and cultural differences of states, and come up with a universal norm r2p, designed to protect the innocents through humanitarian non political intervention and allow if possible help the innocent of conflicts regardless which side the people belong to of the conflict

                    The African union have tried to do a similar thing and have gone through a political change from non intervention to intervention by invoking a similar political stance to the UN’s  r2p.It will no longer tolerate disregard for national and international laws, or non democratic means to change the constitution, unfair elections, ethnic cleansing. This is a remarkable change in African politics arrived at through considerable discourse on what human rights means among African states, and even more remarkable to arrive at a common stand.

                                 In our Concept of the Good Society all countries should respect interantional law,but it's a bit annoying for the rich countries to lecture poor countries,when during Imperialism and Colonialism they did not practice human rights,(and they new it was wrong,slavery being the classic example)Slavery only ended when it became unprofitable.

                                      Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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Is the State Based Interantional Order being Changed ?

                Is the state based international order is being transformed ?

                     I am going to answer this question by looking at supra political and economic organizations like the UN, WTO, IMF, World Bank and EU.How these organizations are transforming the state based international order. I will also analyse American power and the liberal international order it has tried to impose on the world.

                  Linked to the above is the issue of globalization and global finance and trade aided by icts.i will use Realism and Marxism to analyse the international order. I will argue that the state system though geographically defined, functionally internally and externally has always been subject to change. Some functions of the state have been relinquished while in other areas it has increased in scope. I am going to show how political and economic power can change international order, and states can be transformed through institutions like the UN, WTO, EU, IMF and World Bank

The state system

             The modern state system according to most historians emerged with the West phalian system, modern legal independent states with defined borders and sovereignty and recognition by other states. Within the state system has arisen geopolitics, how politics organizes societies through the state system to co-exist with others. This encompasses political and economic relations with other states at the international. The inter-actions of which gives rise to different forms of international order

                             By analysing the principle units of the international system of states, the structure of the relations of the units(states), the interaction and capacity and dominant processes of interaction, we can arrive at some logical conclusions of the state system and its possible transformation. How state systems common concerns of security and power can make them behave similarly or not. So the distribution of power distinguishes at the international, as anarchy changes distribution of power among units in a never ending balance of power. This is the Realist’s interpretation of the international state system

             For Marxism social property relations which at the moment is capitalism which is expressed as patterns of class power at the state level, among states which leads to a structure of geo-politics at the international, this leads to uneven and combined development at the international with the spread of capitalism i.e. an Industrial capitalist core which dominates the geo-politics and influences states at the periphery. This uneven relation for Marxists defines the international order

                     The UN is the the most serious attempt in the 20th century to bring political order among states at the international. The intention of the UN to replace the rule of coercion and anarchy among states with the rule of international law. The UN as a world government has failed, although as a political institution it has succeeded in organizing states among some common principles. Its ability to enforce international law has been very limited and selective, due to the structure and the internal dynamics of its workings

                         Its most important charter is the human rights agenda. It applies to all signatory members. The permanent 8 members of the Security Council can veto any resolution, even if the majority countries vote for it. This puts the UN resolutions at the mercy of the 8 members. The effect at the international is that resolutions end up reflecting the interests of the permanent members, not always as intended.

                               Applying Realist analysis states align themselves along common interests, the US and the EU will often align themselves on issues which affect them, this often means rich countries interests versus poor countries. Intervention in other states affairs on the grounds of human rights abuses being one of the most contentious issues at the UN and how it has affected the state system and international order

                  Realist distribution of power in the UN means intervention is often based if self interests are threatened, so the West intervened in Iraq to defend oil interests and not in the Rawanda.For Marxists the rich countries are protecting capitalist interests, so the UN reflects the distribution of political and economic power at the international, which often means rich countries interests dominate UN resolutions.

                  Realist’s distribution of power at the UN does change as does the change in alignment of power. So the rise of China, Russia, Brazil, and India is changing the international order as these states can be a counter balance to US and Western power. They themselves are trying organize willing states within their sphere of influence. So states might have sovereignty but to achieve many of its aims at the international they must align themselves with other states in order to achieve the things they need. Even powerful States like the US need to co-operate with other states like on climate change in order to achieve success. The obvious limits of the original human rights charter where intervention is very limited, a much sturdier UN charter referred to as R2P has been designed. The idea being that every state must protect its citizens i.e. not mistreat minorities, protect the vulnerable even in conflict situations, failure to do so means that the UN can intervene. The r2p tries to overcome the issues where internal conflict i.e. civil wars where the UN has not been very successful at stopping, but the UN can now hold states accountable in international law, which can lead to sanctions or intervention.

                       States by signing up the UN charter implicitly if not always in reality, to behave ethically and morally among a community of nations, as Winston Churchill once said it is better to jaw jaw than war war.

                       As a political organization the UN is gradually bringing nations towards commonly agreed norms and values. The UN trying to overcome anarchy among states by providing limited security of some kind for all nations. For Marxist’s the nature of capitalism is that it needs political and economic stability among nations for it to succeed, to expand and accumulate, anarchy among nations is anathema to capitalist expansion as it creates uncertainty. Since the formation of the UN there has been no major nation to nation conflict. By getting states to abide by UN resolutions the UN is creating inter dependence between states, which hopefully will reduce anarchy among states and provide better security if states feel they get equal representation of their concerns. The UN may not be able to prevent wars among states, but unilateral action by any state not sanctioned by the UN can and does affect a state’s political, economic and security future.

 

             Its role is to regulate free trade between nation states and to ensure a level playing field in international trade, the life blood of the world economy, so it is essential that all states follow the rules of international trade to ensure that all states benefit.

                    Every state has equal vote and can participate in its rulings. In reality the outcomes are not the same for all states. Most international trade is between rich countries hence the rulings of the WTO tends to favour those rich states.

                           Political relations between nation’s states at the WTO are dominated by national economic interests. So for the US the tripps agreement and international patents rulings to be rigorously enforced, it also wants tariffs reduced on goods which it would benefit directly. Political elites in powerful nation states like the US and EU are able to determine to a considerable extent the agenda at WTO meetings.

                           Applying Realist logic we find states organize themselves along political and economic interests. The US and EU will often act as an economic block to ensure its interest are represented. Poor states are often outmanoeuvred within the complex technical details and negotiations, as a consequence poor nations often end up signing to rulings which are often against their self interest. The transformative nature of the WTO on nation states is that it tries to reduce anarchy among states, by making states trade inter- dependent, co-operation has been replaced in some instances by opportunism where states pursue short term gains rather than absolute long term gains without resort to violence.

                           The transformative nature of the WTO is that states give up the right to determine some independent economic policies, even if they are against its economic interests, because locking yourself out of the WTO system means no gains from trade, so poor nations would rather participate even if the gains are small. Therefore the state needs to increase in scope to ensure it meets its WTO obligations, while at the same time it gives up rights to per sue some wholly independent trade policies which may conflict with WTO rulings. So states can no longer control capital flows within borders, dominant financial institutions like wall st and London make investment decisions on where to invest, states now have to compete to attract these capital flows offering, low taxes, few worker rights, low wages. On a global level the state’s ability to make investment decisions independently in a global environment is becoming increasingly difficult

                     Applying Marxist analysis the dominant form of property relations being capitalism it succeeds by expansion and accumulation. Trade being the primary means of capitalist accumulation, dominated by financial centres like Wall Street and London. They want all states to be open to global finance which has now been aided icts which has made the financial flows quicker. The effect on states is that states can no longer control international capital flows within its borders due to WTO rulings. States now have to compete for global capital investment. The international order that has emerged is that the core rich countries the main consumers of transnational goods and periphery states who provide the cheap labour for production and  raw materials has emerged. This has created combined and uneven development. The rich states continue to have high living standards while poor states are locked into low growth or stagnant economies from which they find hard to break out off. The workings of the WTO continue to replicate the disparity between rich and poor states despite political representations at the international. The WTO has been able to change the international order relating to international trade by having conflict resolution methods and tries to bring international order to trade so that beggar thy neighbour policies, cannot be used by states which in the past led to conflict. Also by avoiding trade conflict between states, the WTO has transformed the state based international order through its enforcement and rulings into compliant trading nations among a community of nations in now a highly complex integrated globalized world, aided by icts and international capital flows.

                        The rise of India, Brazil, China and Russia is changing the distribution of power among states at WTO meetings as these states want their priorities to be more represented.

          The European community (EU) is the most ambitious project to merge economics and politics of nation states. The idea being political and economic integration is to avoid realist’s anarchy and security issues which have afflicted states in the past. By pooling sovereignty, by getting rid of border controls, a common legal system of EU human rights, with laws increasingly made by the EU politicians and officials which then once agreed all states must comply with.One of the conditions of the EU any disputes with member states must be settled peacefully.

                The EU as an economic block is the largest in the world. This gives the EU at the international huge political and economic influence. States within the EU by giving up sovereignty and subjecting themselves to EU laws and regulations, hope to overcome the Realists anarchy and security issues among states and thus states in the EU have been transformed at the international with now a common foreign policy, economic and political relations with other states. In the now multi-polar world of the US, China and Russia and Brazil and India, the EU.It is now becoming inevitable states need to co-operate to achieve the things they need at the international, hence the rise of economic and political blocs. Political and economic Trading blocs are also rising in other parts of the world as a result of trade and globalization, and common concerns about security.

               

                        Applying Marxist logic we find the EU gives primacy to capital accumulation and expansion, this is the whole idea of the EU to create a huge market for goods and services within EU borders. Within the EU we find core  big economies like  Germany,France,Italy,UK,Spain and peripheral states like the new Eastern states like Poland, Romania and Bulgaria, even within the EU we see uneven and combined development where the new Eastern states of the former USSR provide cheap labour for corporations within the EU.So transformation of the state based order within the EU reflects dominant interests of the rich and powerful states like Germany, these then become reflected at the international.

                        The US as the hegemon of the last 70 yrs has maintained international order without major conflict like WW11, first it kept order in bi-polar world with USSR now in a mutli-polar world it continues due to its economic and military might. Without US influence and the security umbrella it has provided the EU and other states there would have been more serious conflicts, Realist’s anarchy and security issues would have created more turbulent and uncertain world.

                         The US by projecting its power has tried to impose its liberal international order on states, of democracy and free flow of capital, of individual and property rights. The way the US has done this is those states which have come under the US security and economic umbrella have seen development and progress, so the EU has developed under the security umbrella of NATO backed by the US. EU has managed to avoid conflict for over 70yrs, by avoiding Realists anarchy by transferring its security obligations to the US. Under the US the capitalist club of states like the EU, Japan, Canada, Australia, and South Korea have done very well politically and economically. There is considerable co-operation between the US and its allies, relations between both have been transformed at the international, there are very close political and economic ties between the US and its allies, and despite occasional disagreements no major conflict has arisen.

                            This is a remarkable achievement considering their histories. In the now mulit-polar world we see re-organization taking place with, China, Russia, India and Brazil rising politically and economically which may rival the US, although they all have chosen co-operation with the US rather than conflict. So China is now a member of the WTO, Russia is intending to become one. The UN is being increasingly used to air disagreements.

                  The Transformative nature of this is the even great powers like the US, China, the EU and Russia are limiting themselves, mindful how they will be perceived among a community of nations. The US is now slowly retreating back from its role of the world’s policeman and wants political and economic issues to be settled by states themselves and through  supra-international institutions like UN.WTO ,World Bank IMF,and other international bodies like the World Human Rights Court, all of which the US  has been instrumental in creating. With military bases all around the world the US can still intervene militarily anywhere in the world, so states are well aware of US military power. The US as the world’s hegemon contrary to popular opinion has been very successful through a mixture of, coercion, trade, co-operation, alliances and often cash incentives with other states to achieve peaceful existence and international order.

                    It must be stated that American power has been used around the world reflecting American corporate interests at home. States at the international through co-operation and coercion to open their economies so that American corporations may benefit, hence the American liberal international order has been based around, free flow of capital and private property rights .Under the American system using Marxist analysis some states in the world have transformed into peripheral states to supply resources or cheap labour, while others have become markets for these goods, now in a global supply chain supplying global markets. So the EU have done remarkably well under this system while other states less so. China is now playing the same game as the US locating industries to cheaper production areas of the world. As the level of resources, changes in technologies and changes in alliances shift to reflect the new realties, their will emerge new powerful states, they may morally restraint themselves or be opportunistic. In this new unstable environment with the rise of China,India,Brazil and Russia Realist uncertainty of anarchy and insecurity may rise again, their is an element of this with China and Japan having an escalating conflict over a few disputed islands.

 

               With the demise of Communist Russia, from the 1980’s there has been huge increase in global finance and international trade. States have been integrated in closer economic and political integration, even communist China is embracing capitalist development. This has been greatly aided by the revolution in information technology such as the internet and satellite communication, and reduction in transport costs. The transformative nature on states is that there is no part of the world not linked directly or indirectly in this global era of politics, trade and commerce. Globalization has transformed some nations those with technology, resources or access to capital to become more powerfull, while those states less fortunate have seen their economic and political position decline in relation to other states.

                         This has been most reflected in the statistics of the UN and World Bank where the inequalities between nations have increased. Applying Marxist analysis we see the core rich nations like the US and EU have been able to lock many poor states into an uneven economic relationship. So the Nafta agreement has benefited US and multi-nationals to use cheap Mexican to produce goods for a global market, but Mexicans have not benefited much because the wages are too low to raise living standards. Mexico was in a weak position to negotiate a better deal, the Realist’s distribution of power favouring the US, so Mexico’s options were limited. These types of trade agreements are being replicated all over the world in countries like Bangladesh, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Philippines.

                 Applying Marxist logic, capitalism needs to expand to accumulate, and the core rich state like US uses the peripheral state of Mexico as cheap labour, to accumulate capital in global production chain for global markets. This locks Mexico into equilibrium of poverty of low wages and little investment into the real economy. Even China is now losing more jobs than it creates as its wage costs rise (www.china labour watch).China has the same problem as Mexico as it cannot control global production and capital flows. As trans-national corporations have no regard for borders or local laws of states and as states have to compete for finance and investment, they have to behave in a similar way, offering low wages, few environmental regulations, few worker rights, low taxes and often full profit repatriation to attract investment. So many functions of the state through globalization have been hollowed out leaving the state and its functions limited in scope

                       These two lending institutions have had more affect on states than any war. Over 100 states of the world (Russia Today TV interview with World Bank President March 2013), rich and poor are subject to policy conditions of these bodies. Through policy conditions they have been able to change the internal political and economic dynamics of states, through structural adjustment polices on such states as Tanzania through macroeconomic policy implementations. Greece is suffering the same fate as its policy conditions bite on the people of Greece, so states might be sovereign, have monopoly of legitimate use of force, in both cases now the state’s ability to use either is becoming limited in scope and action.

                            The IMF and World Bank impose inter-nationalization of the economy of states, free flow of capital and foreign investment which helps the expansion of capitalism to every part of the state, through privatization and openness. The transformative nature of debt on the state is, it has less control over its economy, hence less political and economic security at the international, this means it has fewer options for independent development, due to its debt obligations to international lending instituitions.They then have to behave similarly politically and economically at the international to meet their obligations.

                   

Summary Analysis

          The nation states legitimate use of monopoly of force remains, as well as the integrity and sovereignty of borders, in this respect security for every state is still an important issue, so security is the foundation of every state, which is reflected in foreign policy of every state. Globalization is eroding the distinction between domestic and foreign policy, i.e Investment decisions in Japan can affect jobs in the EU.The mass privatization of many public services, wether done voluntarily or through loan conditions of the World Bank and IMF.The affect of this has been that the core element of the state in domestic control and on the monopoly of force and to enforce laws is being weakened. Its capacity though has been increased to join international bodies like the WTO to make international agreements, so become functionally similar in the way they behave The supra-international institutions like the UN,WTO,World Bank,IMF the polices of which are creating universal conditions. Trade agreements bind states together, since foreign policy not based on trade but security issues, if foreign policy through such trade deals become domestic policy then the level of violence among states must become reduced, as this reduces anarchy and increases security.By this analysis to overcome Realists anarchy, there must be international agreements on transport, trade, telecoms, sea routes, banking, airlines etc.These agreements may make states more secure,by making co-dependency through such long term agreements, anarchy may be reduced by implication as anarchy in one state will affect others, chaos leads to disorder among nation states.

                     Security is now seen more through transparency, inter-dependence is creating the conditions for this. Those states that are nuclear powers are subject to inspection by the IEAA, an independent body which tries to ensure the safety of nuclear facilities and ensure that states comply with their international obligations. Any attempt to prevent this process can and does lead to sanctions or worst, as Iran is finding out.

                         The role of the US in international order has been more by agreements and alliances, soft power than brute force which has been limited, and often not successful. The security of the US on the global level has protected the capitalist’s states, and enabled liberal democracies and capitalism to expand. This is a remarkable achievement,even Communist China is becoming more capitalist and may become democratic. As democracies expand anarchy and chaos must decline based on the thesis that democracies do not go to war.

                      As I have stated earlier that the scope and the functions of the state internally and externally have always been subject to change, in some aspects its functions have been reduced i.e. domestic control of the economy and in others its scope has been increased i.e. its obligations to international treaty agreements. Today states and nationalism on which the state is built on is giving way to inter-nationalism, freedom of the person protected by the state and protected from the state, as the UN human rights r2p is trying  to do. In the new co-operative international infrastructure some functions have been transferred to international institutions. The idea being to reduce anarchy and chaos, and to allow expansion and accumulation of capitalism. As the financilization of the US and the EU economies is spreading to the rest of the world, as states are becoming functionally similar.

                          The States monopoly of the use of force is now very problematic. Force is unpredictable and has no logical outcome often creating disorder and chaos among states. Rogue states and international terrorism cause havoc among nation states, hence efforts to eradicate these threats to ensure a stable international order.

                     In our concept of the Good Society we are not against Supra International Organizations as long as they work for the benefit of everyone.

                           At present the situation is Powerfull states can use these organizations to bully and coerce smaller nations in to doing what is often against their own self interest.Until this situation can be remedied these supra national organizations will lack legitimacy.

                  

 Bibliography    

 

 Chomsky.N. (1991) What Uncle Sam Really     Wants.Odonian Press.UK

Vidal.G (1992) The Decline and fall of the American Empire.Odonian press.UK   

Rowbotham.M. (2000) Goodbye America!.Globalizaton, debt and the dollar empire. Published by Jon Carpenter.UK

Shutt.H. (2010) Beyond the Profit System. Published by Zed books.UK

Cooper.R. (2004) The Breaking up of Nations. Order and chaos in the twenty-first century. Published by Atlantic books.UK

Fukuyama.F (2004) State Building. Governance and world order in the twenty-first centuary.Published by Profile books.UK

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Reparations or Retribution

 how past events and absent figures shape contemporary demands for global justice

            The idea of restitution and reparations is not new. Recently however there has been added urgency. With the rise of democracies, the fall of communism, global communication and globalization, there has been a rise of global justice movements all over the world. So what were local issues affecting certain parts of the world can become global issues. The slave trade and the mother’s movement of Argentina being two of them

                              The slave trade is estimated for the transportation of 12-15 million salve, with around 2 million dead inntransit.1800 parts of Africa, Europe and the Americas linked to the slave trade.No event in global history has left a mark on global history than slavery. Records of slavery form slave owners and business transactions and personal accounts of past slaves like Olaudah Equinos are being used to make demands for restitutions and reparation of past wrongs of slavery. So past history is being used to right a wrong done to people who are no longer alive

                       In order to prove a wrong there must be a perpetrator who has done a wrong and there must be a victim, so that the victim i.e. claimant can make a demand upon the perpetrator. With slavery the victim and perpetrator are both dead. So the best than can be achieved is recognition of wrong, an apology as the former labour Prime Minister Tony Blair has made, and restitution such as Remembrance Day or a museum. The UN recognize slavery as a crime against humanity and UNESCO recognize the impact of slavery on modern day societies

                              Global reparations movements in Brazil and Africa with the  Abuja declaration 1995, have not been happy with this situation, they are making demands for slavery and colonization by showing that the past still affects the present i.e. that man African states are neo-colonial states where past colonial p[policies still affect them i.e. uneven trade realations.Intellectuals like Ali Marui make this point, that the slave trade has created a global black Diaspora which would not have been possible without colonialism and slavery associated with it, and the poverty and racism which still persists in large numbers in these societies

                             The Abuja declarations main claims are that enslavement, colonization, looting, theft of resources and later transition to neo-colonial states has damaged the economies of African, that small changes in the past can lead to large consequences i.e. the inability of African states to recover from the loss incurred. What if speculations had not Africa not been colonised i.e. counter factual arguments used to justify reparations. The work of Walter Rodney How Europe Under developed Africa (1974), whose thesis is that slavery retarded African development. The work of people Ronald wright, a brief history of civilization (2000), show that economic and social progress is not linear. There is no evidence to suggest had  slavery not impacted on African societies they would progressed, many parts of Africa have  were  not colonized.They have  shown not to have progressed to western levels

                                        The problem with the Abuja declaration and Walter rodenys work is that they both see slavery as black and white issue and that history develops along a linear path. Slavery existed among whites as indentured labourers in the empire; her Islamic world practiced it for 1000 years, among black communities, in the past what is now Nigeria a queen in that region sold 250,000 of her people into slavery. In fact after slavery had been ended, she continued to send more slaves. She was requested by the government of the day no to send any more .So there was fair amount of collusion by Arabs and blacks in the slave trade, without which slavery would not have been as successfull.Also the conditions of many ordinary people in the countries of empire e.g. the UK work and living conditions were not much better than the black slaves.Manchesters science and industry museum has the machinery and documentary evidence to show how one group exploited the other. Liverpool and Bristol two port cities that benefitted form slavery have old buildings a reminder of their slave past. We seem to neglect that during the age of slavery many people campaigned against William Wilberforce being one prominent individual. Majority of whites did not participate directly in the slave trade

              One strategy of  the slavery global justice movement for reparations has-been to claim a special shared collective identity of slavery, history and injustice, the unequal relationship between blacks and whites, of racism. These anti-western sentiments ignore the role of blacks and Arabs in the salve trade. This is the contention of the works of David Hurwitz who argues against reparations for slavery. Unlike the Nazi regime where one individual can be blamed, there is no single individual in slavery plus values,norms,politics and society were far more different  than today. Slavery was the norm in many societies in the past, is it right to impose moral values on past societies which they did not hold. The global silvery justice movements seem to think so. Many pay homage to the slave ship London which sank in which many slaves died.Resurecting the lost voices and the ghosts of the past to make them relevant today, may make us reflect on past history, does not mean we right a wrong done in the pastas some global justice movements suggest, with demands for money, land, and apologies for past wrongs

                       Many African countries and blacks in general are happy for global justice movements to blame others for their present situation. This conveniently avoids talking responsibility for one self, avoids the responsibility of African leaders and the elites of these countries for any moral obligations to help the poor. The blame someone else syndrome (BSE) has been used by all societies at some time or other, global justice movements are no different in this respect

                                         The Argentine mothers for the missing movement for the missing children and relatives has been going since 1977.there are two groups, one group which wants to know what has happened to the missing and the other group to keep alive the memories of the missiing.During the military dictatorship10,000-30,000 went missing. The main tactic of the movement is to demonstrate outside the Madre de plaza in silence with pictures of the missing. The role of the pictures is to show that these missing people continue to affect the lives of those living in the present, the connection between a mother and her child, the photographs often elicit strong emotions from spectators, even they are dead, they are a reminder of the lost hopes and potential of these individuals to become descent productive members of society. The photographs have become a substitute for the real people. As the women line outside government house confronting the soldiers, reminding them the role of the armed forces inn tier disappearance

                                  The pictures remind the authorise that the issue of the missing is unresolved and must be dealt with despite the age of the mothers movement, even when they have gone global justice movements which have now taken inters test in this matter will continue to keep the memories alive of the missing. So if the authorities believe that if they ignore the issue long enough most of the protestors will be dead on the issue forgotton.With globalization and mass communication, global justice movements operate in borderless world.

                             The demands of the mothers are (1) to bring the perpetrators to justice if still alive (2) fate of the missing to be known and social justice to be realised by the authorities to the wrong done. It is very difficult for the present democratic governments to try the perpetrators or bring justice, as part of the argentine becoming democratic the military have been given virtual immunity from such prosecutions. Few prosecutions have need brought and they have been pardoned. The pictures due to global justice movements are now on the internet, they have become a permanent reminder of past injustices and wrongs, so the problem for any future argentine governments is not likely to go way until, full disclosure and justice had been deliver. The rise of global justice movements like amnesty international and human rights watch are not limited by geography or politics, their aim is to high light and catalogue  gross human rights abuse anywhere in the world past or  present.

                                            The internalization of the argentine mother’s movement means the victims will not be forgotton.Maybe like in South Africa there may in the future emerge a truth and reconciliation commission which will foreclosure for all they terrible incident in the history of Argentina

                                                                        

                                    If look at the argentine mothers and the slavery movements, both seek to bring back to life the dead and give them meaning and relevance today. Both try to show how past events affect the present. The reparations slavery movement want money, land, justice and apologies. The argentine mothers want apologies and justice. Both seek to make present authorities responsible for the wrongs of past authorities.

                    The reparations movement unable to target particular individuals has tried to use the strategy of collective guilt of colonialism and collective   suffering of blacks to show that they continue suffer of past wrongs 

                  In our concept of the Good Society past wrongs must be recognized,those Imperial and Colonial powers must put 1% of their gdp towards a global reparations development fund for infrastructure projects  for two hundred years or until gdp parity is reached. This policy would avoid future retributions             

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The Role of the Media In the Good Society

                                                          Assessing the role of information and communication technologies (icts) in the emergence and success of ‘networks of dissent’.

                 Dissent occurs in all societies to a greater or lesser extent. In the past people have organized using whatever methods were available at the time, because communication in the past was not as global as today, dissent was too a great extent localized i.e. few events reached mass or global audiences. Today however with mass communication, sattelite TV, internet, 24 hour news channels like CNN, AL JAZEERA, BBC and others, events can soon reach global audiences within a very short time. This can be a hazard if events move quicker than people’s ability to organize; it can lead to a delayed response or even inaction, which may not be positive for the recipients of any action to help them

                             Anyone who watches news events will know how events happening anywhere in the world can reach mass audiences within minutes of them happening. With news reporters and  organizations like ngo’s and human rights having people monitoring events and waiting for situations to rise ,and all these organizations are media savvy as they want their side of the story to be told.

                             With the rise of icts has arisen for those who have access to information technology the global network civil society. people can now form the comfort of their homes and without putting themselves to physical harm join human rights organizations or participate in civil disobedience e.g. anti war collations or join anti- nuclear organizations, to organize and through icts can email dissent or organize petitions to put pressure on governments, local MP’S or local government to change things that you want. This is the natural hall mark of a democratic society to use non violent and legal means to organize and put pressure on authorities to change things which you do not agree in a logical argued in a perisasvie manner.

                                   I now want to look at the case of Nike the well known sports goods manufacturer and the global organized campaign to improve the pay and working conditions for the workers who make their goods in South East Asia. Nike came under commercial price pressure from competitors to lower its cost in order to remain competitive in the market place. It had no choice to locate to low cost parts of the wolrd.it did deal with sub contractors who would employ the necessary labour to make Nike’s goods. It must be said Nike did not stipulate wages for the workers to be employed, that was to decided by the subcontractor, the assumption being the sub contractor having local knowledge would be paying the local wage rate.

                                Stories began to circulate from ngo’s, workers rights organizations, about the appalling conditions in the factories, of the treatment of mostly female workers, of 12 hour shifts, few breaks to eat or go to the toilet, of sexual harrassment, of the low wages, of use of child labour, of the cramped conditions where the women lived, wages of £1 a day to make a pump costing £7 to make sold on world markets for £70.

                                  International labour unions and concerted campaign of organizations using the internet and satellite TV channels began to circulate stories about Nike workers. The main news channels also began to take interest in the stories. Nike tried to defend itself against the bad publicity, its pr department rightly pointed out that it was not directly responsible for the treatment of the workers but the sub contractor. This defence did not work well for then them, a worker organization charity managed to smuggle a 12 year old worker to America who was interviewed on prime time TV on the main US channel about her treatment and worker conditions. For Nike things could not get any worse, one of the Chief executives of Nike ended up personally on prime TV apologizing to the girl for what happened to her.

                                The response by Nike has been to draw up a sort of human rights workers charter for any of its sub contractors to abide by. The problem again here is compliance, because the sub contractors have to have some at the factory to monitor the conditions and report anything that might infringe the charter.

                                        If we analyses the success of the campaign. Nike is a global company, most of its goods are sold in rich countries to customers who are by world standards rich and can choose not buy their products. The campaigners against Nike were also from the rich countries that are socially minded and have the time, energy, knowledge and ability to access icts to organize an effective campaign, and also they know how to use the media to tell their story.

                                    So Nike really had no defence but to give into the pressure. The reality is that where Nike products made in poor countries, most of the exploiters are not global companies like Nike but local employers who often have no regard for the welfare for their workers. Here global civic organizations have been less effective, because of the local political and economic situation employers are immune from form criticism as by some it is seen as meddling in their affairs.

                           The recent fire in a garment factory in Bangladesh which killed 100’s because doors were locked, the local government has done nothing, despite criticism of its failure to carry out the necessary health and safety checks. In a corrupt country like Bangladesh it is very unlikely that those responsible will be punished. We have to ask in the Nike case who’s agenda is being served, the Nike workers were treated no worse than local standards, was the campaign to appease the guilt of middle class consumers in the West or a genuine attempt to bring humane practices in the work place. We have a tension here between the local agenda versus the global agenda and the high light the obvious power relation between workers and employers, which exist everywhere. It must be stated that the sweat shop campaigns have not been simply limited to Nike but are ongoing everywhere in the wolrd, be they local, national and global with or with icts

                        There is no doubt that a global civil society, of an active citizenry, persueing the common good can be a force for good. For Gramsci the civil society realms where the ruling class seeks to legitimize its rule. In the new globalized world of giant corporations, of global institutions like the world bak, IMF, and the WTO, of an emerging political and economic elite linked by common interests. As a counter balance to these power structures has emerged global civic organizations which are not for profit but act on society at large in positive way. So for Gramsci the civil society realm is no longer local or national but global thanks to icts.For Gramsci counter hegemonic forces like the emergence of global civil societies are forces which try to transform social relations against the  the hegemony of the ruling classes

                        In the west at least many people are by passing traditional forms of dissent i.e. lobbying at your local mp, going on websites seeking like minded people and organizing national campaigns. Migration watch a website which wants migration to the UK reduced managed to get 100,000  signatures online for its e-petition which is the minimum needed to get mp’s to discuss the issue in the house of commons.

                 As globalization has hollowed the nation state, organizations like EU and global corporations, and supra-national institutions like the IMF, world, bank, WTO are global governance organizations. Citizens in the west are realizing that political and economic power has shifted, so by using icts have reverted back to Athenian style direct democracy and organizing online bypassing the local forms of democracy.

                            For instance the Migration watch website has been so effective at discrediting the governments own immigration statistics, the UK government (last labour government) has tried to smear migration watch as a racist organization, this has badly backfired for them, as migration watch is linked to other similar sites all over the world and produces authoritative statistics which the UK government finds difficult to dispute.

                   The jubilee campaign has managed to get together many organizations from Oxfam to anti-globalization movements, together into one campaign. The effect of this has been  the pooling of collective intelligence, knowhow and resources, the jubilee 200 debt relief campaign has been successfull,because it has been able to take on governments, the IMF and World bank, and financial institutions by arguing for the case with its own experts able to argue  their case. The world wide interest in the campaign means that the g7 and g20 meeting could not ignore the issue. The campaign has been partially successful, it has been able to get dent relief for some countries and debt rescheduling for others. Satellite TV, protests, the internet and social activism developing countries combined to push the agenda onto the world scene.

                             Governments and organizations have had to come up with new strategies to neutralize this new form of online social activist. In China and Iran there is press and internet censorship, these have not been very success full as citizens have been able to bypass these controls easily. The US has brought criminal charges against weakileaks including stopping money getting to it. Again this has not worked as the founder Julian Assange recently announced a million new documents to be released.

                         So governments all over the world are in dilemma, in the past there could control the flow information much better, as global civic societies have began to appear online, people no longer trust governments to tell the truth, as an example the UK government in future will no longer count foreign students in the migration statistics. Migration Watch quickly picked up the fraud and will continue to include students in its statistics and the BBC now regularly relies on migration watch statistics in its reporting on the matter.

                               It must be stated that the online global civic communities are limited to these people who have access to icts.In many parts of the world most people do not have access to a telephone, but this changing with the price of communication coming down due to advances in  technology, more and more people are now able to access information, the transformative nature of this as Manuel castles documented means that society is slowly being transformed, the world is becoming more integrated, people all over the world are finding they have more in common with each other than their differences. This is helping to forge new alliances across geographical and cultural boundaries

                                The Arab spring which has swept the whole Middle East was helped by a youthful population who were media savvy and were able to organize through social activism for change using online media sites. The Arab governments were not able to stop the flow of information.Although Egypt has gone back to now being an elected dictatorship.You rarely hear criticisms in the West,remember if you are a friend of the West we turn a blind eye to rigged elections and gross human rights abuses,these are one of the highest principles of  West Imperialism .

                         

Summary

                  The emergence of its has enabled people to organize at local, national and global level, the ease and low cost means more and more people able to participate. As globalization has proceeded the role of the state has changed, the west people no longer trust governments, and are organizing and creating new democratic forms of participation. Campaigns such as Nike and the jubilee 2000 show that global civic institutions can work.

                                 In the poor countries people are using icts to get their governments to provide basic things that they need. So in poor countries people are organizing for more democracy and better government.

                                           The media can a be force for good in our concept of the Good Society.It enables people to organize for change and the media  can high light injustices.Change only comes about when people orgnize and agitate for change,freeing themselves the power system that is keeping them poor and marginized.(we only advocate non violent means for change The Ghandi Principle)

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Important Websites and People you need to know about

 

Websites and important people you need to know about

 

·         Business insider.....Excellent business information on the US economy

 

 

·         Zero hedge...... Excellent business information on the US economy

 

 

·         Positive Money...UK based website which wants monetary reform of the

                   UK banking system, to create money debt free and interest free.

 

·        Migration Watch..    UK based, best source of information on  migration statistics in the UK.An independent and trusted site

 

 

·        Tax Justice     Best site for information on Tax Evasion and money laundering

 

 

·         Michael Hudson (Economist).     One of the best economists in the world has a unique understanding of finance and how real economics works.

             His writings explode many myths and conventional wisdoms of economic theory. He along with other like minded economists is trying to overturn conventional economic theory on its head.

                          In summary Michael Hudson + others believe most of what is taught about economics is junk

 

·        Renegade Economist.... A website which gives alternatives to mainstream economics. It high lights the shortcomings of our present economic system and suggest better alternatives

 

·        New Economics Foundation... A UK based website which wants to replace our current economic and political system, which is not working for the majority of people.

        They want an economic and political system which puts people first; we must live within resource limits and look after the environment for future generations

                     The New Economics Foundation covers a very large range of subjects and provides in depth analysis of why our present system is not working and provide in depth technical analysis and alternatives. This is a very important website, which will over time be very influential.

 

 

·        Naomi Prins..     Is a financial journalist, before   that she held many senior posts at some of the biggest financial banks in the US at Managing Director level. She has a unique understanding of what banks actually do, her books are very revealing as an industry insider, how our Banking system is not working for our best interests.

              As an example in the past Investment banks made money for clients, now many of them make money from clients.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

                                       

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Property Porn

                                         The UK Boom and Bust cycle is a property cycle, it has life cycle of 10-14 years. The UK is going through another property boom, which will make money for those who buy right or sell before the crash. For the majority of people it will bring misery, unaffordable property prices and high rents.

                               Successive governments have used the high prices of property as a feel good factor to get themselves elected. In the last election which was won by the Conservatives, they did two things (1) they propped up the property market by subsidizing first time buyers with deposit insurance, which actually raised house prices as the government covered large portion of the deposit. The second it ensured austerity cuts did not apply to pensioners as they are most likely to vote, pensioners benefits have remained intact and inflation proof

                             So you have the situation where the government used tax payers money (that’s your money) to get themselves elected and you the vote paying public also known as TAX MUGS  voted for this, with or without your knowledge or consent.

                        In the UK the main way for people to get rich is not by making something of value or a service of value to society, but through land and property speculation, so peoples main asset their house is their means of making money, and we expect our house prices to go upwards regardless of the economic consequences to the rest of the economy.

                               It is seen as act of faith that property prices can only go up, remember the property owning democracy In the UK is the middle Class, and we know “God intended” the middle classes to be rich. As the battle ground of British politics is satisfying middle class aspirations, they are a “force to be reckoned” with, and property for them sacrosanct

                        Because successive governments treat land and property like any other commodity the assumption is in the free market supply and demand will meet equilibrium, as I explained in my introductory article, why land and property is not like any other asset. Supply and demand cannot reach equilibrium if the planning system regulates, restricts what can be built, where it can be built, what type buildings are allowed and a host of other local and environmental factors need to be taken into consideration, and this only right otherwise you will have urban sprawl.

                      

                    There are many factors that determine demand for property, migration, more people living on their own, whether your property market is open to foreign buyers, the number of houses built to meet demand and the shortfall, resistence from existing property owners etc.

                         There is no single factor in housing that can be blamed, this is a system problem which needs to be tackled at source, and ultimately governments need to decide what property is for and what functions of property are permissible i.e. Use value or Exchange value .

                        I would like to propose some questions for my readers:-

·        Should domestic property be only used for people to live in

·        Should people be allowed to make money from the increase in their property value which is not related to any meaningful economic activity beneficial to society?

·        Should we tax house inflation domestic or commercial

·        Should we only allow people to sell their property at which it would cost to rebuild, as that is what its real value is? When you insure property it is the rebuild cost you insure it for, not what you have paid for it  

·        If we only allow property to be sold for its rebuild cost, the assumption is property will be built for their use value not exchange value, which would mean better properties, lower cost, based on need not speculation, fewer empty properties

·        Should we stop foreign buyers unless they live at least 8 months of the year in the property, otherwise we tax them very highly for non use

·        Should rents be based, not on fictitious market rents but on ability to pay which can be linked to average wages in an area so it generally  assumed you should not pay more than 30% of income towards rent or property loan, which in the UK would be a maximum £650 per month (based on the average wage £26,000)

·        By fixing rents as a percentage of the average wage, which would vary by area, it will automatically get rid of house inflation and property prices will be stable.

·        By taxing property inflation people can still pay more for any property they like, it would mean they would have to decide the use value, will their asset generate sufficient income to justify the high price ,as they will not be able to make money by selling at a higher price. The assumption is property will be bought for longer time period, profit will come from its use value not exchange value

 

·        The present situation is not working we have the highest house prices in the world with the exception of Monaco. In Japan and Germany house prices have come down

·        Should we restrict how many properties landlords can buy, ensure that any new or old properties are available to first time  buyers, to stop property flipping after a few years, we will tax them heavily if they sell within five years

·        The present situation of property speculation means you have over 500,000 empty properties, land hoarding. The average house price in London will be £1 million by 2020.The average wage in London at present is £30,000+ .People in London are having to borrow 12X their income, this is ridiculous, it is not sustainable

·        The present situation is a shambles, as most of the lending in this country is against property which is non productive asset, generates very few jobs. I know someone who owns 70 properties, they employ one handyman

·        Some children, who are adults, are moving back with their parents, as they cannot afford to buy or rent. This may be good for family values but restricts social mobility, some employers to attract workers have to subsidize their accommodation.

 

                                                        My list is not exhaustive it is for debate, my personal view is that people become emotionally attached to land and property as a consequence it affects their rational judgement.

                             I did an experiment once explained all of the above, that an increase in property value that is not the result of any direct input of the owner is pure inflation and must be taxed away. The victim of my experiment did not buy my argument, despite being told everybody would be subject to the same law, everybody would be taxed on property inflation. To me the UK’s addiction to property can be best as PROPERTY PORN, in the long run not healthy for our concept of The Good Society.

                   WE HAVE A BIG BIG BIG PROBLEM....in housing, we need help our governments will not do anything, and the property owing population have mental health issues!!!!!.

                                Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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Media Control in Democratic Societies part 5

Propaganda Part 5
The UK is fast becoming a fascist state,an  elected dictatorship.Mi 5 the state security apparatus is paying Muslims to spy on fellow Muslims in Mosques and other public places,namely to combat terrorism.No one is looking at British Foreign policy,every time some one does mention its  ignored or some unkind things are said about the person.So the UK Media has selective amnesia like its US counterpart.#
               The demonization of Saddam Hussein was a pre-text for invasion.How he was an evil Dictator ready to take over the world,a threat to Western way of life,to democracy.We must stop him before he conquers the world.Iraq at that time was devastated after fighting Iran,has no industrial base,with poorly armed conscript peasant army.
                   A huge amount of dis-information in the Western media was needed to convince the public to support intervention,chemical weapons of mass destruction ready to be  used with in the hour as Tony Blair the UK prime minister said in the house of commons when he gave the biggest pantomine performance of his life.(total fabrication and lies)
                      The gruesome results have been one million+ dead and injured(first invasion ,(including half a million children under the oil for food and medicine program,another half  a million  dead+injured since we liberated Iraq (second invasion).the total must be close two million,dead and injured
                    All i can say the imposition of  democracy and human rights in the wrong hands is a killing machine.Our state supported propaganda system brainwashes us into supporting wars without end,meddling in the affairs of other countries in the name of democracy and human rights is putting the citizens of this country in danger,of possible harm as has been made clear by many security experts.
                  We the public in democracies, are complicit by our absence and silence,supporting a propaganda system,the world of the US as mercenary enforcer with the EU in an expanding Nato to the East towards Russia and China and now starting an arms race,two formidable nuclear armed countries,and we pay for this with our taxes
                      We must develop a defense against the propaganda system by looking at alternative media and be able to analyse and evaluate what we are being told.No one is going to pour the truth  in to your brain,you have to do a lot of studying and research yourself,its hard,time consuming but rewarding.
                         Start today go to youtube you can find lectures,and documentaries,discussions on many subjects.Protect yourself with intellectual self defence.
                             Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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Media Control in Democratic Societies part4

Propaganda part 4
 Genocidal brutal terrorists attacks and wars are good at mobilizing public opinion around a cause even if it is sold on a pack of lies.The invasion of the Falklands Island by the Argentinians generated a lot of hatred and patriotism,over an insignificant Island,populated mostly by sheep.A relic of Britains Imperial past.
                              In the past Hitler whipped up hatred against jews and gypsies.In the US the red scare about the Russians coming worked well.This cannot be used any more,so it got replaced with narco-terrorists, trying to turn American children into drug addicts.
                             This has been replaced with Islamic Terrorists,with new Hitlers like Saddam Hussein or Bin Laden or Ghadaffi.(Its funny how the West supported these people in the past and they were doing the same thing,but you don't hear much about that in the Media these days-there is no limit to Western hypocracy
          An MIT study asked people if the US should intervene with force to reverse illegal occupation or countries with bad human rights records,about 2 to 1 agreed.If that principle was applied we would bomb  Turkey,Washington, Tel Aviv.
               Why does not anybody know this,in a well functioning propaganda system you concentrate on the crimes of others not your own.When Israel invaded Lebanon which it does periodically.The government of Lebanon asked the Israeli government to observe UN resolution 425,to withdraw unconditionally from Lebanon.Israel ignored the resolution,because it has the backing of the worlds biggest terrorist state the US.#
                     Israel has a franchisee licence from the  US to be the middle terrorist  state ,the regional psychopath.It can do what ever it likes and is protected by the worlds leading terrorist state the US.    Very little discussion of this gets in the Media discussion.If we look at the first  Gulf war in the 1990's the Iraqi opposition asked for their country not to be destroyed.Earlier that year Saddam was in the US and favoured trading partner.The Iraqi opposition called for Democracy then.they were ignored,not much in the mainstream media,or discussion.#         
                         The Iraqi opposition are not much different from other peace movements.They were against Saddam Hussein and against the war in Iraq.
                        Western hypocracy has no limits or inhibitions.#
                      One of the   Reasons  for  intervention, are aggressors cannot be rewarded,and their aggression must  be reversed by quick use of force.In principle this is good practice.
                     The US did not uphold this principle,when South Africa occupied Namibia in 1969.The US did not impose sanctions or medicine embargo as with Cuba,it did not bomb Capetown,no it carried out "quite diplomacy".Over 20 years around 1.5 million people killed in Namibia and surrounding region.Do you hear much about this. NO that is the spectaculiar success of propaganda.                                        

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Media Control in Democratic Societies part 3

Propaganda part 3
In order to get people to support wars in distant lands,in killing and torture you have to frighten them.Remember when Tony Blair the UK prime minister sent tanks to Heathrow because according to him their was an imminent terrorist threat.The British people saw as an over reaction and dismissed the antic,although it made good headlines in the newspapers.What not many will tell you that Ronald Reagan former US president used the same tactic when he told US citizens that Guatemala was three days away from invading Washington.
 The intelligent members  of the British public have always been skeptical,so the population is not always passive,obedient,apathetic.I was listening to bbc radio radio show called five live,there was a discussion and a respondent rang in and said he could not say what he wanted,the radio presenter pushed him on the subject and asked who is is telling him not to say things.
                     I fully understood the mans predicament he was self censoring himself,knowing if he said something even if  true would leave him open to criticism.The bbc radio propagandist knew full well the acceptable bounds of debate on the show,you can have heated discussion within a very narrow band of acceptable liberal agenada and no more.
                    Another radio presenter George galloway left a radio  show he hosted, beacuse he could not say all of what he wanted to say.This is the state propaganda sysytem at work.
                     Goebbels ,Hitlers propagandist  was asked how he was able to make the Germans into war mongering nation.He said you have to frighten the people.
                In the propaganda sytem you also have to falsify history in controlling the public mind.So the Vietnam war in the US is not presented as genocidal war against a rural peasent population,but for a fight against communism and for democracy and human rights.
                 In the US media Vietnam intervention was seen as defending the South from the Viet Cong.This rediculous propaganda can work when you have a concentrated  media and a conformist supine intellectual class and conformist scholarship.
              As an example of this British  school children are taught about world war two and how bad Hitler was,and the six million jews killed,what is not mentioned he killed six million non jews including gypsies and his own people who did not meet his high standards.
                            You will not be taught about the 7-30 million famine victims of British Colonial policies.
                       Americans were asked how many people killed by  American military intervention in vietnam,the average figure 100,000,the actual figure 4 million killed and injured.The US propaganda machine managed to keep the figures very low
                    But all is not lost the internet,alternative news media like Russia Today and Al Jazeera and citizen journalism,skepticism about politics,low trust in  people in power,has given rise to social justice movements all over the world,live pictures,video is countering the state corporate propaganda machine.

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Media Control in Democratic Societies part 2

Propaganda part 2

                             In order to control the population the “The Art of Democracy “is used in manufacturing consent. In order to get in to positions of importance you have to serve the people already in positions with real power, the people who own and run society. The intellectual “specialized service” class serves this power system of the dominant class.

                                    You internalize the values and beliefs of the dominant class. This means indoctrination from an early Age, the values and interests of private power. In The US their capitalist free market system has indoctrinated from birth the population. No alternatives are taught to this system. So the US is a state-corporate military industrial complex.

                                   The rest of the population must be detracted with programs like big brother and stars in your eyes. The general assumption is that most people are guided by emotion than rational. So “necessary illusions are created to detract the public from power and truth. In non democratic societies force is used, in democratic societies we use propaganda. In the democratic West we have what is called the Public Relations Industry, to lie, deceive and detract the public from the truth. The job of the public relations industry is to “control the public mind”.

                                   When people organize and demonstrate that is not democracy in action, but seen by the power system as a “crises of democracy”, because the population is getting out of control. One way to prevent people organizing is to emasculate the unions. When ever in the UK, union’s strike they are bitterly criticized in the media for disrupting public services, very rarely is the full Union’s point of view given. So what is presented by the propaganda system is one thing, the truth another.

                                  Union power has been declining in the Western world since world war two. The big business community have been spending huge amounts of money through the public relations industry to align their interests with the publics and the unions as attack on both people and the business community, with their activities.

                            An example of the propaganda system at work I will give a factual example. I am a small shop keeper, get my milk from the same supplier, who also supplies a very large well known supermarket. This supermarket has been advertising on Television to the public that they get their milk from local farmers. This is true except  they forgot to tell you when the supermarket gets milk deliveries only one of the 20 trolleys of milk are from the local farmer, the rest of the milk is imported. This is lying by omission, but excellent propaganda, but the public will not know the truth.

                           When Unions’ strike in the UK, the mainstream Media i.e. the state propaganda system convinces the public, that the public interests are the common interests, of business, government and the people.

                               In the propaganda system, you will be asked if you support the troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, not what they are doing out there and why they have been sent out there. Any one raising the political issue will be branded as unpatriotic.

                               Power, democracy and class struggle is never mentioned in the mainstream news media. The population has to be detracted and marginilized and you have to frighten them. So the UK is a Big business run society.....not a serious well functioning democracy and government is the servant not the master.

                                  Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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Media Control in Democratic Society

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The Role of Media in Society (part 1)

The role of media in contemporary Politics and society asks us to think what kind of world we want to live in. There are two concepts of Democracy. One where the public have a meaningful say how they are governed, this is the dictionary definition. The other more gruesome and realistic definition is that the public must be barred from the public arena, and information must be narrowly defined and rigidly controlled and the mainstream media is the one i.e. the state propaganda system, which equals = Media and disinformation.

                                   History of propaganda is a very sad and bloody one. In the US 1916 Woodrow Wilson was elected on the platform of peace without victory. At that time the American people were pacifistic. They saw no reason to get involved in a nasty European war.So Wilson set up the Creel commission to persuade the population to support a war against the Germans.

                               The technique is the same to scare the population, the Red Scare when the USSR was the evil enemy. The same technique used by the British about Belgian babies being used by the Germans as bayonet practice. In the first Iraq war stories about baby incubators being turned off in hospitals by Iraqi troops.Gadaffi and is evil dictator along with Assad etc.

“State propaganda when supported by the educated classes, and when no deviation is permitted from it can have a big effect, it was learned by Hitler and many others, and it has been pursued to this day”

                                         (Noam Chomsky p13 Media Control 2nd edition seven stories press)

                                     In the US where modern propaganda emerged Walter Lippmann wrote “The common interest elude public opinion “and can only be managed by a “specialized class” of “Responsible” men (1)

                               This view is very common, as a consequence a small number of people make decisions in a country for the rest of us. Lenin in Russia used the same argument, and dictators in other countries have used the same argument.

                      When you elect a candidate remember he or she services state power =   Real people with power +Big business. This is known as “progressive democracy”. For Lippmann democracy consists of (1) the specialized class involved in running the country (2) the general population the other 99% of the population who to be marginalized. In modern Western democracies the voter is a spectator not participant. He is a person at a football match, supports his team, waves the flag, has no say in the outcome of the game, does not set the rules or participate in the rule making process, and cannot elect the coach or players.

                                 Every so often the voter is asked who can be your leader; this is known as an election, a meaningless process that is largely a joke in the West. In the US 50% population does not vote, as far as they concerned the whole system is rigged and both parties are two side of the same coin, representing money interests not the peoples interests.

                                 The logic behind this principle if you allow the public to participate they are just going to cause trouble, and it is humane they not get themselves into trouble..... See part 2

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The Zero

                                 Most people know the concept of nothing or having nothing is something people have understood for a long time. Before the Zero was functionally used by the Arabs, Roman numerals were used which were limiting. The concept of the Zero pre- dates the Islamic Civilization. It was used by the Babylonians and the Sumerians and the Mayans, most of it as a symbol of some sort. So the Zero is a common symbol of many past civilizations.

                  It was the Indian Mathematician Brahmagupta who made practical use of the Zero in equations of additions and substractions.He was one of the first to recognize it as a symbol and a number.

                 Later the Zero travelled to China and the Middle East around A.D 773 To Baghdad.AL Khwarizmi used it to invent Algebra in the 9th century, for multiplying and dividing numbers which became known as algorithms.

                    The Zero travelled to Europe courtesy of the Moors brought to Spain.The Italian mathematician Fibonacci used equations using the Zero which did not require an Abacus. Fibonacci’s equations became very popular with merchants who used them to balance books.

                  By the 1660’s the zero became common place in Europe It was fundamental in the workings of Descarte, Isaac Newton, Liebniz in Calculus. It paved the wave for Physics, Engineering, Computers (the binary code of ones and zero’s) and in Financial economics theory. So the history of the zero is one the most important invention of human civilization.

                  Bringing the subject to modern times I want to use the zero for a completely different purpose. Take a blank piece   of paper and draw a big zero in black felt pen .Now look at this zero. This zero could be your bank balance, your investment returns, your exam results, your promotion prospective, your chances of winning the lottery, or success with the opposite sex.So the zero has many uses.

                      I want to use the zero in a very particular context, Politics .I can see some sceptical looks from my readers, what has the zero got to with politics, well let me explain.

                         I live in the U.K the birth place of Democracy. The UK is run by two main political parties, Conservative and Labour and a smaller party called the Liberals. So the UK for the last 100 years has been run by this two and half party racket.

                              Now the ZERO is the influence the UK voter has on public policy. I will repeat the UK vote paying public have Zero influence through the ballot box. Some people in the UK may well have worked this out, please be patient. Now if a party does something you like and voted for, it is not because they listened to you, it just happened their interests coincided with yours.

                         When the UK government decided to go to war with Iraq, some two million people registered their protests. It made no difference to the outcome Tony Blair went ahead (As he had given US president Bush Junior (also known as Dumbo Bush) an understanding a year earlier to go with the US invasion force.

                                     So when you vote you may think you are voting for a candidate to be in power to serve your interests and needs, well I am sorry to tell you this is a big lie.

                          When you vote for a candidate you are voting for them to serve power, not be in power. The reader may well ask if voting makes no difference why bother voting at all. Not voting is not a solution. You must vote, next time you go, you can do two things (1) cross out the names of all the candidates and write non of the above (2)vote for minority single issue candidates or minority parties. These two things will register your discontent.

                As an example if you want out of the EU, support small business and want limits to migration vote Ukip. If you are not well off which is most of us, vote for the Greens, they have an excellent policy of the citizen’s income, where everyone will be paid a living wage which meets your basic needs and keeps you above the poverty threshhold and give you a dignified existence.

                      Just remember the two and half party racket have been running this country for over a hundred years, this would seem long enough for them sort out the UK’s economic, political and social problems. They are not the solution but the problem.

                       So make yourself familiar with the Zero which in UK politics means no influence and no change. If you really want change which is often a popular party slogan you must vote for change.

                              So let’s turn the Zero in to positive number. If you find politics hard to understand and confusing, do not worry. My advice do not read papers, or listen to mainstream TV, it’s mostly propaganda. Go to the internet there are lots of very clever people who have websites which give you enough information to make an informed choice. Watch non UK TV like Russia Today or Al Jazeera who give a more balanced view of UK politics, and often have on their shows heavy duty intellectuals worth listening to.

                     So get active let’s turn the Zero into a positive number for change, which means change for the better, and not the two and half party racket.

               Kind Regards Tiger Moto

p.s  I have YouTube channel called the good society.com where there will be a video coming soon called the democracy Con: the Zero

                             

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The EU Refugee Crises

                                                             Many people watching the news will be aware of the refugee crises engulfing the EU.The terrible incidences of boats capsizing and the subsequent deaths from drowning including the terrible picture of the three year old boy found on a Turkish beech, which spiked the heart and conscience of many people around the world.

                      The UK Prime Minister was shamed in to making a statement to allow a few thousand extra refugees into the country, an absolutely disgraceful statement considering that Germany is preparing to allow in hundreds and thousands. The meeting at the EU to discuss this issue the Chair woman was in no doubt as to the failure of EU countries come up with the money to deal with the issue. Besides bickering the EU has no unified response to the situation

                        There is a new game being played in the EU ,its called ‘ Pass the refugee’, where each Country affected by the influx of refugees builds borders, gasses them use violence by police and security forces to keep them out of the country or in one place, or puts them on coaches to transport them to the border of another country.

                            In the game of ‘Pass the Refugee’ Hungry, Croatia, Serbia is winning at the moment. They will no doubt soon be joined by other EU countries as this game becomes more popular. I ask my readers to come up with solutions to these problems here are my suggestions

 Tiger Moto’s solution to the Migrant Crises:-

 

·        The countries responsible for bombing these countries have direct responsibility to take in ‘ALL THE REFUGEES’. The UK& US will have most of them. `       

·                                                                                                                        The P&O ferries should be sent to these war torn regions and bring these people to the UK.As many of these people are paying smugglers thousands of dollars to come. The refugees would save money, as P&O charge a lot less. This would mean when they get here they will have savings, they would need less tax payer money to settle. A win win situation for all of us.

·                                                                                                                        P&O should also lay on special liners to sail across to the US where most of these people should be going to, as the US IS DIRECTLY responsible for most of the refugee problems in the region. Since large numbers will be going to US, we the British taxpayer as a humane gesture will give each person a resettlement grant ,so that that they can start a new life in the land of Free and the Brave, where they can really taste the fruits of democracy and human rights.

·                                                                                                                   The other option is give this refugee EU citizenship and allow them to settle where they want. Most will settle where there are already large Diaspora communities, which will not affect the recipient country in adverse way as the they already have substantial migrant communities.

·                                                                            The UK is home to very large numbers of migrant’s communities, our population will be become even more diverse and multi-cultural, and remember in the UK we celebrate diversity and Multi-Culturism, so there will no objections from the public? Remember in the UK we love diversity?.

·        So the reader can decide which game the UK should play (1) Pass the refugee (2) ‘Refugee holiday to the US (with one way ticket) (3) The Calais  solution (4) We should stop interfering in the Affairs in other countries. You cannot bring Democracy, Freedom and human rights by bombing and destroying countries.

·        If readers have their own solutions, be free to discuss (My favourite solution is number (4) ).

 

                             Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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Myths about Islam pt1

The Middle East to most people is a region of extreme violence,politics,nationalism and religion.The Middle East is a complex region old and new,a 2000 year civilization.
            The modern Middle East is the product of the first world war,collapse of the Ottomon Empire,Czarist Russia and Western Imperialism and Colonialism.The Sykes-Pico agreements between France and Britain drew lines on a map and divided up the territory according to their own national interests.
                At no times were the people's  of these regions asked what they wanted.Under the Western imperial system,political,economic and social values imposed on these regions were not of their choosing.
                     The concept of Islam is contested one,there is more than one version.In the Western media Islam is reduced  to synchronised head banging sessions in the Mosque.These are rituals of Islam ,real Islam is a civilization which pre-dates Chritianity,which was successful for over a thousand years until the Europeans in their expansionist phase destroyed it,by winning many key battles.
             Just like the British Empire there are many myths,and in Islam there also many myths.When the Ayatollah Komeni after the 1978 Iranian revolution tried to revive the Caliphate,this was not recreation of the past but his own personal preference and reading of history.
               The creation of the Middle  East Psycopath  Israel is also a modern 20 century project,nothing to do with the ancient  kingdoms of Soloman and David,these are minor figures  and have nothing to do with modern creation of the Middle East Psycopath- Israel.There is also no thing  as a Jew which we will discuss in later articles.
                 The increasing clan  based interpretation of religious texts is evident in Christianity,Islam ,Hinduism and Judaism.So we have in the US religious fundamentalism,40 million who believe every word of the bible and are preparing themselves for the second coming of Christ.#
                   Hindu nationalism has been used by the present Indian Prime minister to get elected.In Judaism there are those who believe they are the chosen people  and the land of  Moses that God gave them.(which makes God a racist and property developer).So facts have been replaced with myths.
                 The Saudi Monarchies claim to the Holyland  the birth place of Islam was introduced in 1986 to deter a rival claim by the King Hussein of Jordan to the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.So the holy land places are 20 century inventions.
                 The Arab-Israeli conflict is about two rival ethnic groups claiming the same land under the British mandate to Palestine in the 1920's.It has nothing to with ancient religious texts.In the 1920's the Jewish population was very small.After the creation of Israel,the Jews became the majority after the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.The idea of jewish home land (Zionism)pre-dates the creation of Israel,it was an idea of Atheist jews mostly European Zionists.
                            The Jewish star of David  is nothing to do with Israel,history,religion or King David.It is symbol used by Christians,Jews and Muslims,found on many Mosques in Iran and Persian gulf states.
                     Yasser Arafats checkered head scarf which became a symbol of Palestinian nationalism,was designed by Manchester clothing house in the 1920's for newly created Arab legion in Jordan.
                      Symbols are used to promote ideology,to consolidate political power.As the world becomes more globalized Dominant Imperialist Ideology is now dissapearing,as people increasingly reclaim their cultural,historical,linguistic identity.So contrary to to the globalized one world view,there are going to be many worlds.
            So people  increasingly rely on myths to make sense of a changing world
 Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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The Flying Pigs Award

                                                              For my non U.K readers flying pigs is a term used when someone tells big lies. When someone tells a big lie we say to them that pigs can fly, it means we know you’re lying. So the Flying pigs awards goes those people whether they be in public, private, business, academic, political life etc.

                                  So if you would like to nominate someone for the flying pig’s award we would like to hear from you.

                                        To get you started I will not mention a Labour party politician who appeared on a popular political T.V program in the UK, the subject discussed was immigration, whether the economic benefits justify high immigration. She said that the migrants to the U.K brought an economic benefit of £6 billion,

                  The statement she made is factually correct, accept for one small point .The two faced cow forgot to mention that the migrants also cost the U.K tax payer around £6 billion in providing provisions such as schooling, health and housing, so overall net benefit is nearly ZERO. So she gets my flying pig’s award.

                                     If you want hard evidence for the above please go to Migration Watch website (www.migrationwatch.uk.org) who have all the hard facts about migration to UK

                           So please be free to nominate a liar of your choice for this award. (Make sure you get your facts right before accusing someone for this ward, you don’t want to be on the receiving end of Court Action)

                           Kind Regards Tiger Moto

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