Institutions and Competition

Refugees and Realpolitik

October 12, 2016

Can folding a 60 year old U.S.-controlled organization that is a child of the Cold War and the Marshall Plan into the United Nations help stabilize a refugee situation that is spinning out of control, or will it further clog the sclerotic arteries of the crowdfunding system on which the UN under Ban has come to depend?


Recently the People's Republic of China, facing its own ethinic and religious "migration issues", joined the IOM and was praised by Ban.


Russia, Indonesia (with the world's largest Islamic population) and Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, have chosen to maintain their "observer" status.


Employing the politically correct leitmotiv of “social inclusion,” the mandate of the new United Nations Organization for Migration is doing the good work of uplifting the status of migrants.  The organization seeks to imbed their UN approved  definitions for migration and immigration related memes on the international community.


But while the social media "success stories" of some “migrants” becoming rugged individuals and pulling themselves up by their own bootstraps do project a cost effective alternative to the more expensive human capital produced by G-20 nations and their upscale lifestyles, the costs of mediating "populist" and "nationalist" disruptions to globlization will evaporate those gains and, as always, stimulate growth in the defense driven economies that secure the globalist set-up and provide the milieu that encourage those actors who foment conflicts.



Populism. Real threat or red herring?

Populism is a term that developed in the West. In simplistic terms it represents people who work in concert to countervail the interests of power elites.


But you don't hear those the mainstream western media defines as “populists” like Donald Trump or the Brexit crowd, calling themselves “populists.”


Academics and other Western mainstream experts tend to minimize the importance of class conflict (Marxist-Leninist and others) in the “conversation” about populism.


So if “populism” isn't a threat, why are key players in the world economic order speaking out and reassuring the international financial community that populism is not a threat?


Christine Lagarde of the International Monetary fund noted recently that the current spate of populism and nationalism do not pose a threat to globalization.


Jim Kim, boss of the World Bank, served up a similar message at the semiannual meeting of that organization.


Stanley Fischer, the deputy chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve, meanwhile, has long viewed populism as a threat to the global economy, in one instance calling it "dangerous.


Recently appointed UN secretery general Antonio Guterres says "we must make sure that we are able to break this alliance between all those terrorists on one side and the expressions of populism and xenophobia on the other side... the two reinforce each other and we must be able to fight both of them with determination."


In the Middle East and South Asia, religious, ethnic and other groups who seek statehood or some other geopolitical goal  qualify as "populist" groups. But by linking populists with "terrorist groups" Guterres seems to have borrowed a page from the playbook of former U.S. president George W. Bush, the intellectual author of the "axis of evil" meme.


How long will big trouble generate big money?

The hot new meme, Global Forced Dispacement (GFD) does not come from the new UN Migration Agency, but from the existing UN High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR) that was operated by Gut.erres. Will these organizations become rivals under secretary general Guterres  or will they operate in harmony?


According to UNHCR stats, 65.3 million, one in every 113 people worldwide were displaced from their homes by conflict and persecution in 2015.


But the UN is faced with a statistical relevance problem.  Elsewhere, the UN Sustainable Development Blog claims that 244 million "migrants" live "abroad."


Will incoming UN Secretary General Guterres, a veteran of the refugee business, be able to provide what the Germans call klarheit (lucidity понятность) to this mess?


Or will UN member nations grow tired of the emotional dramas associated with the crowdfunding of seemingly intractable refugee and migratory problems.


Already, we are witnessing a major split among major and regional powers over The International Criminal Court and what constitues "war crimes."  


The court was created to met out justice to individuals determined to be responible for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.


China, Indonesia, India, Pakistan, Turkey, the United States and Argentina refuse to sign the treaty.


Russia, Egypt, Iran,and Israel have signed the treaty but have not ratified it.  Relations between Paris and Moscow have become frayed after French president Hollande suggested that Russian president Vladimir Putin should be tried for "war crimes" linked to Russian military activities in Syria. Never mind how many thousands of Syrians were killed by French troops during the infamous French mandate of Syria, whose consequences are still playing out today.


This new diplomatic impasse offers a reminder that "populism" in its various constructs is not the major threat to the struggling economic order.  The world global economy still operates on fiat money that is secured by defense driven growth and the petroleum economy.


Its time to wake up and reconcile refugee and migratory affairs with realpolitik.  

note: this blog has been updated with info and links that offer helpful background

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