Wednesday, September 24, 2008

BUSH CASTS SHADOW

Bush_UN_2008
photo: Richard Perry/The New York Times


LULA SPEAKS TRUTH TO POWER


Upheaval on Wall St. Stirs Anger in the U.N.



NY Times
By NEIL MacFARQUHAR
Published: September 23, 2008

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UNITED NATIONS — Wall Street and the Bush administration’s record of financial oversight came under attack at the United Nations on Tuesday, with one world leader after another saying that market turmoil in the United States threatened the global economy.

“We must not allow the burden of the boundless greed of a few to be shouldered by all,” said President Luiz InĂ¡cio Lula da Silva of Brazil in an opening speech that reflected the tone of the gathering.

The annual opening of the General Assembly habitually casts a shadow over New York every September, snarling traffic and tempers. But this year it is New York, or at least Wall Street, projecting its shadow back across the United Nations. Virtually every president or monarch from around the globe made some reference to the financial upheaval, and the looming cloud was also the buzz of the back corridors.

With a pillar of American power — its financial leadership — so badly shaken, there was a certain satisfaction among some of the attendees that the Bush administration, which had long lectured other nations about the benefits of unfettered markets, was now rejecting its own medicine by proposing a major bailout of financial firms.

But there was also serious concern that the United States had not policed its markets carefully enough to prevent the damage to its economy and others, making it much harder to raise money for the world’s most vulnerable people.

“The global financial crisis endangers all our work,” said the secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, who used his opening remarks at the General Assembly to question the reliance on free markets. “We need a new understanding on business ethics and governance, with more compassion and less uncritical faith in the ‘magic’ of markets.” Read full article

U.S. debt growing larger and faster...

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National Debt Increases under Democrat (Blue) and Republican (Red) Presidents...

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