« Too Much Education? | Main | More Harm From Political Correctness »

July 06, 2006

A World Without America

Greetings from the U.S.A., dart board of a largely ungrateful world!

When I look at all the sacrifices this country has made and continues to make on behalf of so many others, then listen to all the negative feedback we get for it, it almost makes me want to continue building that wall along the Mexican border.... until it completely surrounds this nation, and just tell all those other countries, "Good luck on the outside".

Peter Brookes sums things up as completely as I've ever seen them done in this regard, in an absolute must-read OpEd.

For all the worldwide whining and bellyaching about the United States, July 4th -- America's 230th birthday -- provides an opportune time for them to consider for just a moment what the world might be like without good ol' Uncle Sam.

The picture isn't pretty. Absent U.S. leadership, diplomatic influence, military might, economic power and unprecedented generosity, life aboard planet earth would likely be pretty grim, indeed. Set aside the differences America made last century -- just imagine a world where this country had vanished on Jan. 1, 2001.

On security, the United States is the global balance of power. While it's not our preference, we are the world's "cop on the beat," providing critical stability in some of the planet's toughest neighborhoods.


Also missing would be other gifts from "Uncle Sugar" -- starting with 22 percent of the U.N. budget. That includes half the operations of the World Food Program, which feeds over 100 million in 81 countries.

Gone would be 17 percent of UNICEF's costs to feed, vaccinate, educate and protect children in 157 countries -- and 31 percent of the budget of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, which assists more than 19 million refugees across the globe.

In 2005, Washington dispensed $28 billion in foreign aid, more than double the amount of the next highest donor (Japan), contributing nearly 26 percent of all official development assistance from the large industrialized countries.

Moreover, President Bush's five-year $15 billion commitment under the Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief is the largest commitment by a single nation toward an international health initiative -- ever -- working in over 100 (mostly African) countries.

The United States is the world's economic engine. We not only have the largest economy, we spend 40 percent of the world's budget on R&D, driving mind-boggling innovation in areas like information technology, defense and medicine.

We're the world's ATM, too, providing 17 percent of the International Monetary Fund's resources for nations in fiscal crisis, and funding 13 percent of World Bank programs that dole out billions in development assistance to needy countries.

And what does Uncle Sam get in return? Mostly grief, especially from all the ungrateful freeloaders who benefit tremendously from the global "public goods" we so selflessly provide with our time, effort, blood and treasure. How easily -- and conveniently -- they forget . . . unless they need help, of course.

Brooks' OpEd is fantastic and seems to cover all the bases. Read the entire piece here.

Posted by Seth at July 6, 2006 06:03 AM


Aint it the truth Seth?!!!! It makes me crazy! They are like spoiled children who usually get their way and when - for a change they don't get their way - they holler and scream "I hate you!"

This world of ours has a long way to go before it reaches maturity. I wonder sometimes if it ever will.

Posted by: Gayle at July 7, 2006 05:32 AM

I honestly believe, Gayle, that the logical first step toward the world reaching any kind of maturity might well be to send the U.N. to join the League of Nations, or to withdraw from it and evict it from Turtle Bay until such time as it has come to respect the contributions of the U.S. to the rest of the world, redefined its policies re totalitarian states, terror-supporting dictatorships and towards Israel(one of my own pet peeves -- Israel is an "inconvenience" to some of the U.N.'s best buddies, so they get short shrift from the U.N. at every opportunity. Unlike liberal Jews, I'm a pro-Israel Jew from the get-go), weeded the despots out of the "Human Rights" Commission, honestly and tenaciously investigated and prosecuted every case of internal corruption from Kofi on down to "the guy who sweeps" and become more forthcoming, accountability-wise, as to what they're doing with funds whose origins lie in the taxpayers {U & Me} of their member states.

The U.N. has a lot to do with the way many other countries, including those we've helped in major ways, view the United States. We can give 10 times more than any other country to a specific disaster relief effort, for example, and the U.N. will make sure the rest of the world "knows" that we're not giving enough.

They have far exceeded their brief, anyway, by attempting to erode the sovereignty of members such as the U.S. by trying to tell us how to run our countries.

Posted by: Seth at July 7, 2006 06:56 AM