More of the same? No!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Warning: we must avoid a “second wave”

If we allow financial institutions to once again rule the world, virtual speculative economy will again take its toll. And a second wave will arrive sooner than we expected. Tax havens continue to be jam packed, inaccessible and untouchable.

They were “rescued”… without ensuring that their “greed and irresponsibility”, in the words of President Obama, will never again create problems because the monitoring and regulatory systems will prevent it.

But the virtual economy is of such magnitude and financial power is so immense that if drastic measures are not taken, the common destiny of mankind may be seriously compromised.

We run the risk of having more of the same: the same energy sources, the same transportation for the same consumers, the same products and goods for those who inhabit the prosperous neighborhood of our “global village.”

They don’t seem to realize that a systemic change is required and not just a few “repairs” in the capitalist system that gave rise to the present perilous situation. It is ridiculous to debate for several days so that, in the end, and as if it were a great success, the European Union only offers to fight climate change the same amount that it presently spends on armament in three days.

In 2007 the United States of America invested over 800,000 million dollars in military spending. Later an equal amount went to “rescue” the banks of speculative economy… And how much can they now contribute to cure the wounds of Mother Earth and to leave future generations an habitable world?

It is urgent that the States impose a ban on tax havens; that they at least partially reduce speculative economy and increase production and consumption in broad sectors of the population through a global plan for sustainable development, with strong investments in renewable energies, food and water production, health, electric transportation, environmental protection, ecological housing… Nuclear disarmament, so well led by President Obama, must be accompanied by a rapid reduction in military arsenals (which, moreover, are composed of outdated conventional weapons, totally inadequate for modern warfare) and which, given the extraordinary magnitude of the investments that they require, represent –and I will never tire of repeating this- expenditures of over 3,000 million dollars daily, while over 60,000 people die of hunger in the same period.

We have the knowledge, the technology and the means to meet the great challenges. But we need a supernational legal and ethical framework with the authority and resources to correct so many present outrages (trafficking of all types, including trafficking in people!, destruction of the environment…). A reinforced United Nations should fully incorporate the World Trade Organization, the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund, replacing the “globalizers” of the G-7, G-8, G-20… who have caused so much damage.

We demand a change. And we are on the alert because the second wave, if we allow it, could once again break into our lives, increasing even more the present social upheaval.

The moment for a great real and virtual mobilization has arrived. It is intolerable that a group of plutocrats can seriously threaten the destiny of all humanity.

The moment for civil society to rise up can no longer be postponed. We must set a date in the not too distant future for millions of citizens, through electronic communications and through all types of demonstrations, to raise their peaceful, but strong voices. Then the “We, the Peoples” of the United Nations Charter will be truly fulfilled.