Fiscal Cliff is Diversion from Corporate Tax Avoidance
“To some extent, the fiscal cliff debate is a farce,” said Eric LeCompte, executive director of Jubilee USA Network, which estimates that corporations and wealthy individuals avoid paying $150 billion a year to the U.S. Treasury through loopholes and offshore havens. “If we were to close the corporate offshore tax loopholes, not only would the fiscal cliff debate be over, but we would have more revenue than we would know what to do with,” said Compte. The fiscal cliff “gap” represents only $109 billion.
UN Urges All Nations Provide Universal, Affordable Healthcare
The United States joined in a United Nations resolution calling on member countries to establish “universal” and “affordable” healthcare systems. However, “the United States has actually taken us in the opposite direction,” said Dr. Margaret Flowers, of Physicians for a National Healthcare Program. Obamacare “further privatizes health care,” said Flowers. “Every industrialized nation that has an effective, universal national healthcare program uses a publicly-financed, not a market-based, approach.”
UN Sets Goals for Haiti Cholera, But Avoids Culpability
At least 7,000 people have signed a petition, backed by filmmaker Oliver Stone, to pressure the United Nations to accept responsibility for the cholera epidemic that has killed 8,000 Haitians and sickened half a million more. The UN announced plans to raise a $2.27 billion anti-cholera war chest, but fails to admit that the disease was brought to Haiti by UN soldiers, or to ensure that “this kind of disaster doesn’t happen again in another country where there are peacekeepers,” said Beatrice Lindstrom, staff attorney for the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti. The Institute filed suit on behalf of cholera victims, a year ago.
“The people of Haiti never asked for UN troops,” said Robert Naiman, policy director for Just Foreign Policy. Naiman said pressure should be brought on the United States and France, which backed a 2004 coup in Haiti and then called in UN troops to stabilize the coup regime.
Post-Election Debate in Philly
Attorney and talk show host Michael Coard faced off against veteran activist and professor of African American studies Anthony Monteiro, in a debate at Temple University. Coard attacked Monteiro’s revolutionary politics, saying: “If you despise what President Barack Obama has done, you should despise even more what Mitt Romney” and fellow Republicans would do. Dr. Monteiro pointed out that Martin Luther King Jr. broke with President Lyndon Johnson “in principle over the war in Vietnam,” and would surely break with Obama’s wars if he were alive, today.
Israelis “On Thin Ice”
Israel’s aggressive policies will backfire in the new conditions that prevail “in this Islamist Spring that is spreading throughout the region,” said Dr. Gerald Horne, of the University of Houston. “The Israelis aren’t going to be very pleased with their new neighbors, and their new neighbors will not be very pleased with the Israelis, either. So the Israelis would be advised to negotiate while there’s still time,” he said. Dr. Horne spoke on Regent Radio, in Toronto, Canada.