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We Need to Reclaim the UN's Radical Vision of Global Economic Justice


We Need to Reclaim the UN's Radical Vision of Global Economic Justice

Adam Parsons

What are the political implications of meeting the established human right for everyone to enjoy an adequate standard of living? In short, it necessitates a redistribution of wealth and resources on an unprecedented scale, which is why activists should resurrect the United Nations’ radical vision for achieving Article 25.


The Universal Declaration of Human Rights probably needs to be reworked into a Universal Declaration of the Rights of Life which should include the various forms of life on earth that inexorably contribute to planet stability. Having seen our planet from space woke many up to the fragile nature of its current life sustaining state. Man and worm must coexist (sorry Monsanto cum Bayer). Economic definitions such as Gross Domestic Product need to be shelved and more enlightened measures of balance need to be developed to address the existential threats to the planet’s capacity to support life as we know and need it. It is past time for Big Ideas and Bold Actions.


The article states “While civil and political rights have enjoyed an increasing degree of implementation throughout the world, the historical record on economic and social rights is far less sanguine.”

I am confused. How are ‘civil’ rights different from ‘social’ rights?

The article states “[The United States] government has no obligation to safeguard the rights of citizens to jobs, housing, education, and an adequate standard of living.”

Every state has an obligation to provide schooling to children, and under truancy laws every parent must send their child to the state school or to a satisfactory alternative. (Plenty of arguments over whether children are receiving adequate or ‘equal’ education, and plenty of glossing that some children manage to learn more easily and quickly than others.)

As for jobs, ‘non-discrimination’ is holy writ to the US Govt. and society. While no one has a ‘right’ to a job, everyone has as much legal right as any other equally qualified person to a job.
– There is, btw, a suspicion that authority would like to prefer blacks and Hispanics for jobs, but can’t under the ‘equal protection under the law’ principle of US society. This is most obviously seen in university admissions; that authority wants blacks and Hispanics to get more advantages and privileges going forward than others in society.

The writer states “Consider that more than 60 percent of the world population struggles to live on less than $5 per day, an amount which the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has considered the minimum daily income which could reasonably be regarded as fulfilling the right to “a standard of living adequate for…health and well-being,” as stipulated in Article 25.”

Compare with a recent report that 200 years ago approximately 100% of the world population lived on less than $4 per day.

WiseOwl is just one of many who believe that for the sake of the whole world the human population must be made a lot smaller than it is now, and the standard of living of the remaining population has to be reduced a sustainable level; maybe less than $5 / day, without so much struggle to obtain live-upon resources of <= $5 / day.

(This comment may contain an undisclosed amount of sarcasm.)


I always wonder how some articles/news essays gain many responses and others of at least equal value, relevance and wide truth, do not. Perhaps some are just so obvious and humanity is such dire need of such change that to write any criticism, support or whatever fails to cover the subject…this call to "resurrect the United Nations’ radical vision for achieving the promise of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is one such. I applaud Adam Parsons on spreading this vision!

“More vigor” and political action demanding “Global Economic Justice” - “the established
Human Right for every man, woman, and child on earth to enjoy an adequate standard of living” clearly falls on deaf ears of the mostly/totally complicit political, government, and financial/banker mechanisms of usury, global wage-slavery, corporate fascism, and endless for-profit wars, but should be lauded and supported by a wider dedicated activist readership.

As far as the need in all justice for the “redistribution of wealth and resources on an unprecedented scale” that is the bedrock of the change that must be accomplished on planet Earth, The vast wealth accumulated over generations is an obscenity. That one man/woman should possess more wealth than millions/billions even is and atrocity and abomination. Their wealth did not happen in a vacuum; it was accumulated within society, and when the level of wealth is achieved any more in a theft from the society and world! President Eisenhower wrote about the theft and Huey Long about the limits of accumulated wealth. I would go further than Huey Long in the “redistribution” or limits of accumulated wealth to undo the current obscenity in today’s world.

“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.” - DDEisenhower

“We do not propose to say that there shall be no rich men. We do not ask to divide the wealth. We only propose that, when one man gets more than he and his children and children’s children can spend or use in their lifetimes, that then we shall say that such person has his share. That means that a few million dollars is the limit to what any one man can own.” - Huey Long