Since at least the 1960s, the John Birch Society has been fighting a lonely battle to get the United States to pull out of the United Nations and kick the UN out of New York City. If you don’t know anything about the John Birchers, they’re an interesting bunch. They’ve always believed in a world of conspiracies and communists under every rock. When it comes to the UN, though, it just might be that the Birchers had it right from the start.
The United Nations is now calling for confiscating wealth from the “super rich” in relatively prosperous countries in order to send it to poor countries. It’s not an income tax. The proposal is to confiscate 1 percent of the wealth of billionaires. It’s simple theft of an estimated $400 billion in order to send it to corrupt and repressive governments that have run their people into the ground.
I’m not worried about alleged conspiracies for a “new world order” or a fictitious “North American Union.” But I am worried about the fact that more and more people want the UN to function as a world government. A UN agency has recently proposed that it take over the management of the Internet, and the agency chief admitted that part of the purpose is to make sure that small countries’ telecom monopolies are able to make money — by preventing other ways of getting data in and out of the country. Doesn’t that sound like a great excuse for repressive governments?
The proposal calling for the billionaire tax was loaded with other proposals to raise money. Here are a few of the other proposed taxes in the document:
— a tax of $25 per ton on carbon dioxide emissions would raise about $250 billion. It could be collected by national governments, but allocated to international cooperation.
— a tax of 0.005 percent on all currency transactions in the dollar, yen, euro and pound sterling could raise $40 billion a year.
— taking a portion of a proposed European Union tax on financial transactions for international cooperation. The tax is expected to raise more than $70 billion a year.
Income transfers don’t work. They never have. All they do is destroy wealth, destroy incentives to be productive and reward corrupt, incompetent governments which preside over (and created) the disasters in other places.
What’s worse, this is no longer a question of whether voluntary aid to other countries is a good idea. (And many thoughtful people have argued that even voluntary aid is a bad idea. Here’s a random example.) If the “world society” is going to take money from rich people to give it to incompetent governments (or even directly to the poor, which wouldn’t happen anyway), it establishes the principle that successful people owe support to the countries around the world that refuse to set up a system under which their people can be free and prosperous.
You might look at the 1 percent confiscation and say, “Well, those people have plenty of money. What’s it going to hurt to take just a little? And it will only affect a few people.” Those were the arguments made about the federal income tax when it was established. It was only going to apply to “the rich” and the percentage was going to be tiny. That didn’t last long.
If such a world tax is established, what would happen to countries that refused to participate in the UN? The agency is slowly starting to act as though it has the right to claim dominion over the Earth, just as national governments already do over their territory. I don’t believe that such a powerful future UN would allow any place in the world to exist outside its jurisdiction — and that’s scary.
The UN isn’t strong enough to pull that off today. It’s time to make sure it remains weak and ineffective. As painful as it might be to agree with the John Birchers, it really is time to “get the U.S. out of the UN.”