The Many Hats of a National President
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
"I like to believe that people in the long run are going to do more to promote peace than our governments. Indeed, I think that people want peace so much that one of these days governments had better get out of the way and let them have it."
"Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed."
President Dwight Eisenhower
Allied forces in World War II
"We have learned to be citizens of the world, members of the human community."
President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
World War II President
President Barak Obama will speak tonight to the American people, if rumors are correct, mainly about the dire U.S. economy with its $14+ trillion debt and $663 billion military budget (not including $9.1 billion for its nuclear program) for 2010. But while listening, contrast his words on September 23, 2009 to the assembled (and no doubt embarrassed) diplomats of the United Nations.
Here is a smattering of relevant excerpts (without comment) consistent with the quotes above of Obama's fellow presidents:
"Mr. President, Mr. Secretary-General..determined to act boldly and collectively on behalf of justice and prosperity at home and abroad..
It is my deeply held belief that the energy we use can sustain our planet, or destroy it..
In the year 2009, more than any point in history, the interest of nations and people are shared..
In this hall, we come from many places, but we share a common future..
Because the time has come for the world to move in a new direction. We must embrace a new era of engagement based on mutual interests and mutual respect, and our work must begin now..
We have sought-in word and deed-a new era of engagement with the world. Now is the time for all of us to take our responsibility for a global respect to global challenges..
..the magnitude of our challenges has yet to be met by the measure of our action..
The structure of world peace cannot be the work of one man, or one party, or one nation..
It cannot be a peace of large nations or of small nations. It must be a peace which rests on the cooperative effort of the whole world..
No world order that elevates one nation or group over another will succeed..
Together, we must build new coalitions that bridge old divides, coalitions of different faiths and creeds, or north and south, east and west; black, white, and brown..
..to serve the common interests of human beings..
..four pillars that are fundamental to the future that we want for our children: nonproliferation and disarmament, the promotion of peace and security; the preservation of our planet; and a global economy that advances opportunity for all people..
..seek a world without (nuclear weapons)..
The world must stand together to demonstrate that international law is not an empty promise..that the future does not belong to fear..
..the most powerful weapon in our arsenal is the hope of human beings, the belief that the future belongs to those who build, not destroy..
But all of us must decide whether we are serious about peace, or whether we only lend it lip-service..
These are God's children. (Palestinians) And after all the political and all the posturing, this is about the right of every human being to live with dignity and security..
And far too many people in far too many places live through the daily crises that challenge our common humanity..
I believe that the people of the world want this future for their children. And that is why we must champion those principles which endure that governments reflect the will of the people..
..democracy and human rights are essential to achieving each of the goals that I have discussed today..
Because governments of the people and by the people are more likely to act in the broader interests of their own people rather than in the narrow interests of those in power..
The people of the world want change..
This Assembly's Charter commits each of us.."to reaffirm faith in the fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person..in the equal rights of men and women.." Among those rights is the freedom to speak your mind and worship as you please; the promise of equality of the races, and the opportunity for women and girls to pursue their own potential..
..the ability of citizens to have a say in how you are governed, and to have confidence in the administration of justice..
There are basic principles that are universal..
There are certain truths which are self-evident."
My insistent question since 1948, as you might have guessed if you are a faithful reader, is simply what we, the citizens of the world, are doing to claim our planet before it disappears in a flash of nuclear flame? Roosevelt is said to have enjoined a group of irate citizens who were demanding something or other, "Make me do it!"
While Obama is a master wordsmith as other presidents have been before him, we, the citizens of the world, are the prime power of political change if we but knew it. Emerson wrote that "Politicians follow haltingly and at a distance the will of the people."
To this end, a new educational tool is presently online (but in construction: The World Government Foundation web site: www.worldcitizen.org (shortly to be changed to www.worldgovernmentfoundation.org) which will buttress the present World Government site presently at www.worldgovernment.org where you can register your innate world citizenship and learn how to exercise your sovereignty on the planetary level. The electronic tools are here and now.
Let's syntegrate! (To quote Stafford Beer).
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