Sunday, February 06, 2005

The Politics of Freedom

     The Carpetbagger has a post from Morbo which discusses the chance that Bush's freedom cudgel will be weilded to free the people who need it the most.

     Sadly, like so much else, the issue of freedom is a political business.  Morbo relies on Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Freedom House, and Reporters Without Borders.  Now, up front, let me say that most of the employees of these organizations are well-meaning, but if you know of a case where a real political minded person was denied employment at one of these agencies, for having their own agenda, please let me now.  The truth is that all of these groups are in some sense or other front groups.  OK, I can't find any nefarious links to Reporters Without Borders, but I do sense a pro-Western bias in their coverage of non-reporter based facts.

  • Amnesty International
    For a few years now, Amnesty's Executive Director is man named Dr. William Schulz.  I'll start by saying the only nice thing I can about him, he doesn't like torture.  He doesn't like it at all.  Has AI cared at all about Alberto Gonzales, or the US torture or rendition?  Their front page trumpets Sudan, a classic issue of the religious right in America, where the UN doesn't think there was a genocide, but the US is pushing the idea anyway.  Even though Dr. Schulz is a sincere opponent of torture, he is, more than that, a true friend of the Bush administration.
    Schulz is a product of one of America's premiere right wing law schools, the University of Chicago(also alma mater of John Ashcroft).  The other two currently are Georgetown and George Mason, by the way.  With a Doctor of Divinity and a Doctor of Ministry from Meadville-Lombard Theological School, perhaps I am too harsh on him.  But I have seen Schulz mock the very concept of Human Rights, and declare that the greatest American champions of the oppressed are a couple of Georgetown professors.  He is a Unitarian Universalist, went to Oberlin, has no problem with gays, but that still doesn't explain what I saw when I saw him at Georgetown (on C-SPAN).
  • Freedom House
    Unlike Amnesty, I am hardly the first to point out Freedom House's right wing agenda, so I'll just like to the incredibly informative Right-Web.
  • Human Rights Watch
    Perhaps I'm overstating their political agenda, but there are a very large number of powerful CFR and Soros related people on the Boards of HRW.  CFR was the foreign policy establishment during the Cold War.  Gore was a member, Bush was not.
  • Reporter Without Borders
    Like I said, this is a new group to me.  I don't know who funds them, or who is in control.  On the topic of the murder, imprisonment, and harassment of journalists, I expect they are very good, if not the best.  But when they delve into other areas I have to criticize.  I see, for example, that they think it is a travesty that China, Cuba and Zimbabwe are on the Human Rights Commission of the UN.  The US has killed more innocent people in the last two years than any other country.  Another way to look at it is, if human rights abusers are never allowed to be on the Commission, they will always treat the Commission as suspect, and they will just tune out their constant nagging.  So, in this regard, at least, I see them as stepping outside what they understand and pontificating.
     Luckily I never do that ;)

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