Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Nick Buxton, "UN undermined by G20," Open Veins, June 29, 2009.

[This is a conference that Harper missed. Steven Edwards at CanWest's Ottawa Citizen opined that "developed countries fear the three-day gathering will descend into a raucous denunciation of the capitalist system;" the BBC said much the same in less candid language. Nick Buxton got closer to the flame than our chickenshit leaders and found people asking tough questions. Harper has no anwsers. The last thing Stephen Harper wants to hear is tough questions. That's why being allowed into the PM's press conferences is like getting an invitation to a Royal Wedding; it's why questions have to be submitted in advance. I don't think Buxton is as pissed as I am. He's just puzzled, like the kid who just discovered that the Emperor Has No Clothes. -jlt]

Maybe I was being a naïve activist, but I thought I would be covering an important and consequential event. The world is facing a devastating economic crisis, accompanied by a toxic mix of crises of climate chaos, food prices and even flu outbreaks, so surely the world's eyes would be on the UN as 192 nations gathered this week to supposedly develop a smart, effective response to these pressing and interconnected issues.

Yet, here I am on the second day of the UN conference on the Global Economic Crisis and its Impact on the development, and for the press it is as if the meeting did not exist. Until Michael Jackson’s death, the latest dull exploits of US celebrity misfits Jon and Kate - famous mainly for their ability to reproduce- were the only stories staring out at me on most front pages.

  “How can the G20 argue that they represent the world? We cannot entrust the authors of the crisis with finding the solution. They created a situation where you could say anything no matter how stupid in support of free movement of capital and it would be accepted.”
President Rafael Correa of Ecuador

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