Thursday, June 25, 2009

In defense of the UN

Normally I don't like to give too much kudos to people who apparently use an infamous porn star as their avatar, but aaronm echos some of my sentiments with this comment:
Here we go with the whole “the UN is useless” trope issued by the dreary, right-wing, don’t-give-a-hoot-about-what-goes-on-outside-the-heartland remoras of the board. First, I should issue disclaimers, lest the this gets the Brendon Carr treatment, but I am not a member of the left and I do have a pile of stories, from first-hand witnesses about abuses, sloth and graft in the UN. However, before we go throwing the baby out with the bathwater, consider that some constituent organisations, such as, let’s say, the IOM, do some outstanding work where governments fail. Again, disclaimer, my partner and several friends work within, but that is another thing. But rest assured, in our patch of SE Asia, given the goings on in Iraq, Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan, we are slowly being swamped by asylum seekers and despite the best efforts of the Australian government to cash up the Indonesians to resist the onslaught, it’s still a losing battle. When we are getting 40-odd arriving by boat a day, mostly via Malaysia whose lax immigration laws (vis-a-vis arrivals from Muslim countries) and general lack of desire to do anything about the problem exacerbates it beyond control, someone has to step in and fill in the cracks. It is to that end that I see this particular branch of the UN stepping in where nobody else can. So before we bag the whole shemozzle, and heck I agree Ban is bad for the organisation and lots needs doing to reform it, remember the odd bit of good does come out of it.
Indeed, it was just today that I was at the UCI library gathering immigration data from the International Organization for Migration for some 

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