The Peach

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Monday, August 29, 2005

Millenium Development Travesty

The World Summit, taking place at the U.N. September 14-16, was designed to be a gathering of world leaders, meeting to assess progress toward the Millenium Development Goals which call for cutting global poverty in half by 2015. The MDGs were agreed upon by these leaders in 2000, so it made sense to meet at the five-year mark and ask, "how are we doing?"

Made sense to everyone except, apparently, the Bush administration. The latest is that, at the insistence of John Bolton (a mustachio'd villain if ever there was one), the document to be signed at the Summit has been gutted of all references to global poverty and the MDGs. That's correct: The U.S. has introduced 750 amendments to the document "that would eliminate new pledges of foreign aid to impoverished nations." Among other things, the Bush administration objects to a provision that calls for wealthy nations like the United States to give seven tenths of one percent of their GNP in aid to impoverished countries.

Well, where are all those Christian values voters now? The Peach is sure there is a book they like to refer to, that places concern for the poor at the top of the list of human priorities. A list that, by the way, does not even mention tax cuts for the wealthy. We are thrilled to see some religious organizations taking it upon themselves to call attention to this massive disconnect in our civic and moral discourse.

Sojourners, a progressive Christian organization, is holding a vigil and public demonstration at the U.N. for the three days of the World Summit to call upon President Bush to put his money where his pious mouth is. We urge Peach readers to learn about taking action on the sojo.net web site, and consider coming to the U.N. tojoin the demonstration. You'll certainly see us there in all our fuzziness.

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