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Is a Global Tax on Financial Transactions Imminent?
Globalism - Ecumenism
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Ed DeShields

The United Nations remains determined to rob from wealthy countries to redistribute this wealth to its pet projects across the globe.  Its new focus proposes to collect and send new global tax revenues to the poor countries  -- after taking a big cut for itself.

I almost missed it.  And you probably did too. President Barack Obama and other heads of state this week made it a priority to meet at the UN Summit to promote its progress in meeting the “Millennium Development Goals”.  MDG’s are a wish list of grand social projects aimed at goals like eliminating proverty, or controlling the climate – mostly in poor countries in Africa.  And, the UN is its grand promoter. 

Basically, it all boils down to a grand bargain: while developing countries would have primary responsibility for achieving the MDGs, developed countries would be obliged to pay for it.  But, historically there’s been difficulty in financing it. 

The UN’s MDG as been under development since 2000.  However, progress hasn’t lived up to the lofty goals of the UN.  At the G-8 summit at Gleneagles and the UN World Summit in 2005, donors committed to increasing their aid by $50 billion at 2004 prices, and to double their aid to Africa from 2004 levels by 2010. But official development assistance (ODA) last year amounted to (a mere?) $119.6 billion, or just 0.31% of the developed countries’ GDP – not even half of the UN’s target of 0.7% of GDP.

So the UN wants more. 

This year’s MDG’s capstone is Goal 8, which calls for a “global partnership for development.”  This includes some fuzzy language pledging “an open, rule-based, predictable, non-discriminatory trading and financial system” which is code for a new global tax on financial transactions, or a so-called Tobin Tax named after the Nobel prize winner of the same name.    

It works like this.  The world’s largest financial institutions regularly buy and sell massive amounts of world currencies seeking to make a profit.  A tax on these transactions would raise billions of dollars to invest in key domestic and global priorities, such as fighting disease, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and protecting our children from poverty and reviving global warming initiatives. It would also “curtail some of the irresponsible behavior that contributes to global economic instability and market volatility”. 

The logic goes that since many of these financial transactions made by the largest financinal insitutions in the world are purely speculative and made for profit, this activity must be worthy of a new and special global tax.  Note that this same group of UN Goal 8 proponents failed to convince the Congress to add a tax to the bonuses Wall Street executives receive so it could redistribute it to the poor countries of its choice.   

Make no mistake that most of this money will go to the very dictators whose reckless policies have impoverished their citizens.  The UN global tax plan resurrects the long-held dream of the 'Tobin Tax' and adopting it would set a dangerous precedent.  Most democratics in Congress support a Tobin Tax including the powerful Ways and Means Committee members who could slide this tax through by approving it as a Treaty among nations. 

Even worse yet, the idea that the UN possesses legitimate taxing authority to fund its operations is a frightening concept.

About Ed DeShields

Last week: Banking System Halts Foreclosures

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