Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Providence...has chosen YOU as the guardians of freedom, to preserve it for the benefit of the human race -- Andrew Jackson

Ultimately, some theorize, the root of the dysfunctions in the free (democratic) political and economic systems of today's world powers may not be along ideological, racial, or gender lines, but along divisions by economic class. Without economic independence and stability, educational goals, political and ideological freedoms, and other so-called human rights advancements are neither truly secure nor sustainable. From this perspective, the politics of the global issues emerge as a principal barrier to arriving at decisive solutions and actions to correct the endemic problems the issues represent. Skepticism and allegations that governments placed on lists of global "violators" (by nations or collections of nations through, for example, the United Nations, or through "watchdog" groups like Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Transparency International...) lack the political will and governmental capability to use resources sent in support of free economic development (and other programs) eventually leads to the denial of resources-- to a potential downward spiral into the very political dissolution said resources were planned to prevent.

But piecemeal politics, foreign policies developed with situational (value-laden) judgements about the speed or adequacy of responses to alleged human rights or global issues violations cause people and governments to react with increasing confusion, contradiction, and inefficiency to global issues and crises. National responses, national cooperation and support-- which require time, organization and long-term vision-- are the sine qua non of effective policy development and execution. Long-term goals should be defined, backed with long-term resource commitment and economic, educational, and social development compatible with the diverse cultures of the nations with which established free nations are being asked to work. Somehow, definitions of crises, of crimes, of terrorist acts, must be arrived at, and actions to prevent the occurrence of such crises must be taken. Somehow, the world's resources, human potentials and creativities, equities, freedoms and environmental stability must be, similarly, defined, and their dissolution prevented.

Competition over economic, educational, environmental and other resources, over democracy or totalitarianism, will, logically, lead to escalating conflict and depletion of those resources, freedoms, and power (if you will) for autonomy. Such competition and conflict diminishes the effectiveness and legitimacy of democratic systems of government, endangers the survivability and sustainability of security for values, institutions, and programs of (international) support and development.

In the event of such competition for power, of such conflicts over the concepts of national security, it will, apparently, be the Western, democratic societies which will suffer the greatest loss of credibility and legitimacy from the dysfunction of efforts at promoting this same democracy through such cause-driven decision-making. That is, since it is the Western philosophies which espouse the rights to make individual choices, seek individual liberties (within the bounds of civil society), and yet promise the development of a better life for all, America, and other Western nations become targets of convenience upon which to blame the economic and social problems at large -- should (western) attempts to promote (ecologically sustainable) democratic institutions and market economies fail. Established, Westernized nations can be seriously threatened by assuming too great a role as "brokers of peace" in evolving political/economic environments. In a coercive environment (even one upholding the ostensibly laudable goal of establishing and developing peace and democracy), a political climate can be created in which anti-democratic, radical elements can thrive-- denigrating and possibly destroying the paths to human rights and freedoms.

This denigration of well-intentioned efforts to promote democracy may succeed because target-conditional domestic and foreign policy making, far from increasing national or international freedom of choice, tends to impose increasing restrictions of social and economic "discipline." Rather, policy-making should be informed with the vision and realization that definitions of democracy and security within and between nations should view and enhance the well-being of these nations as a whole-- considering individuals and groups as human beings-- and each nation's systems of natural and technological resources.

From this perspective, in the situational/epochal environment of global issues and politics, it becomes apparent that problems of violence, of the abrogation of human rights and freedoms, are not culturally specific, or rooted in specific societies. As such, unilateral actions against nation-states conducting egregious violations against global issues, against human rights, may not be wholly successful, because such concerns and conflicts are transnational in nature.

Therefore, since it appears that in human society there are larger requirements for liberty, for human (and environmental) rights which have, at least, zonal (east-west; north-south, for example) central lines, and which can not be mitigated by specific, unilateral action, it would also appear that transnational (for example, a majority of nations participating in the United Nations) actions-- embargoes, peace-keeping forces, security "monitors" against the promulgation of instruments of mass destruction (be they weapons, technological incursions, or other) may be necessary. Where moral lines may not be drawn, again, due to the murkiness or sensitivity of the issues of global needs as opposed to some issues of national sovereignty, again, definitions of crises, of terrorism and related crimes, of security, stability, and sustainability of national and international autonomy and human rights must be established. To elaborate-- if short-term, systemic devices or deprivational solutions are employed as unilateral, rather than transnational (or global-majority) fail-safes to conflicts of freedom of choice, of national sovereignty, and of international crimes, then it appears that this need-based decision-making will result in international crimes; it appears that this need-based decision-making will result in a short menu of violence or apathy, or in a new type of barbarism, a war of all against all.

Without recognizing differences and agreements of principles, no lasting, viable action may be taken to offset the ravages of intra-and inter-societal violence. As the decisions to establish freedoms of choice, to establish the "rights" to safe, secure and sustainable existences outlined by the "global issues" require the participation of all levels of society-- from the policy makers, to enforcement officials, to the voting or represented public, and through any peripheral or semi-disenfranchised groups-- so, too, the establishment and maintenance of the political will to safeguard these freedoms must involve all strata of the societies upholding and benefiting from them. Working within viable infrastructures to ensure freedoms is a sine qua non of civil society. Defining those areas of disruption and violence through socially-accepted channels of policy, legislation, and enforcement requires the consideration of, and, when appropriate, the participation of all levels of that civil society. Stemming the flow of terrorism and crime (political, economic, environmental, informational, etc) must be a participatory responsibility as well.

In arriving at an introduction to an understanding of security, sustainability, and stability, of conditions for peace, then, it may be useful to consider these issues in a national, and, where possible, global context. Those who make spoken and implicit promises to establish and secure the well-being of a people and a system of governance but cannot advance the human condition of those living within those systems will generate grievances when expected standards of improvement of human rights, environmental and holistic sustainability are not met. A political will for establishing a uniform financial market-- to establish a single market (or style of market) in banking and securities, in rights to financial privacy, and in uniformity of money laundering laws, reporting and enforcement efforts (to promote the greatest degree of legitimate market freedom for the greatest number of legitimate market participants)-- is taking shape. Any political will to safeguard existing freedoms and legitimate economic growth, as well as to encourage increasing freedoms, must accompany efforts to develop a collective stewardship of democratic institutions and free, market-driven economies. Any global economic security must remain mutual, and would not be enhanced by rigid conformity to current conditions, regimes, or concepts of old hierarchical structures (economic, political, or informational).

Developing this pluralistic concept of security and of mutually beneficial relationships entails the establishment of conditions which permit orderly change, which will allow and encourage the flourishing of democratic (free, human-rights oriented) institutions and of free, human-rights oriented economies. Increasingly, it appears that concepts of a "global community" are defined not so much by governments, alliances, or ethnic divisions. Rather, emerging ideas of a global community increasingly involve, and are defined by concerns of commerce, the environment, communications, public and private sector interactions. To a great extent, impetus for this change has risen from increasing capabilities in the global mobility of people, commodities, information and ideas.

This concept of mutually-beneficial security, however, also entails a recognition of the mutual dependence and responsibility which the world's nations hold for the world's environment. If former notions of sovereignty-- over territories, over people-- are changing, so, too, are notions of control over, and of the distribution or protection of, the earth's natural resources. It appears that the whole concepts of security, and, hence, of strategic analysis and tactical support, are transforming-- undergoing a radical reformulation of the definitions of the concepts.

That is, "peace" means not just "freedom from conflict or war," but also an amelioration, and a cessation, of those conditions (economic, environmental, social) which tend to engender outbreaks of violence (civil or national/international). If this is so, then "security" should not mean only "protection from civil or military aggression." A paradim shift which would redefine peace to include life-enhancing qualities (the global issues: human rights, environmental protections, et cetera) and conditions would also require statesmen (and individuals) to recognize a redefinition of security to include protection from influences and occurrences (terrorism, physical, financial, environmental, or other criminal activities) which would jeopardize these life-enhancing qualities.

Traditional concepts of security seek to protect a nation as a sovereign state-- secure from external threats of violence or power seizure; these concepts seek to protect a nation, within its borders, from internal threats which would disrupt or destroy the "status quo" through violent, or illegal means. These concepts, traditionally, have focused less upon individuals, groups of diverse human beings, or environmental realities, than upon protecting and enhancing "the powers that be."

Psychological analysis of the causes of dissatisfaction, of disillusionment and of rebellion among rural, urban, or even national groups of individuals has led to the development of theories concerning individual/group trust in, and dependence upon, ideologies, comparative value- and rights- judgements. Also considered are the users and abusers of trust (and the abrogation of trust), of coercion, of existing and alternative organizations and purveyors/controllers of "power."

With increasing freedom of and access to information, individual and group expectations for achievement reise to the highest common denominator (in general). And with the promulgation of group/human values and global concerns come correspondent increases in expectations for the timely fulfilment of goals and values.

Thus, the expanding definition of security would postulate a refined concept of what would constitute an "external threat"-- viewing more direct threats to and opportunities for security that just military actions, causes of war, and the like. Similarly, an expanded definition of security must view internal security as more than the maintenance of an established political order (or the orderly, electorally-driven transfer of political power).

Additionally, the refined definition of security, if true to the espousal of "global" values of human rights and environmental conservation (etc), must also include the enhancement of the well-being of the nation (or global community) as a whole. Individuals and diverse groups of human beings, the nation's systems of education, commerce, and communication, and the natural resources and technological advancements of the national, international, or global, community, must be considered in promulgating regulations to protect, and definitions of threats to, the secure and stable development of the community (however large that is) and its economic and environmental well-being and sustainability.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Numbers and Language, Access and Visibility, and Responsibility in Social Causes

Thoughts on Philanthropy, "Global Giving," marginalization, exploitation, trafficking, and social responsibility 

Perhaps one of the disconnects between the impulse to be involved in humanitarian aid/outreach efforts and the ability to achieve results is less grounded in the ease of access and levels of attention available to the famous and wealthy, than in the recognition of all the levels of the work which needs to be done.

And having the fortitude and funding needed to overcome all the disconnects between served and marginalized, capable and needy, exploited and autonomous certainly does improve chances to observe, bring wide-spread media attention, and even to intervene in, to ameliorate the inhumanity of man against man, or the sufferings of man and/or nature due to human-caused condition, exigent circumstance, catastrophe, or natural disaster.

The capacity to arrive onsite, aware of and connected with the necessities and challenges confronting those enduring a situation, aware and able to measure the nature of response, the accomplishment of each micro-goal along the sometimes lengthy road to recovery or resolution is undeniably powerful, but not all situations call for the direct involvement and intervention of "outsiders." Some situations need, rather, the involvement and intervention of those living every day within the circumstance, combined with the capacity for sharing, for crowd-sourcing, awareness, and contribution of support, even from a remote location.

Not every person can live/work onsite; some, like the staff in GlobalGiving, an online crowd-sourcing site which helps locally-operating causes to raise funds from a potentially global pool of interested supporters, work generally in an office suite, connected by paper, landlines and internet. Some, like the various locally-operating GlobalGiving Project Leaders, work wherever their interests/abilities and commitments allow them to go.

Some, like the stars of popular media, royals, current or former politicians, philanthropists, philosophers, and others who sit on boards,, run and/or fund foundations, may visit sites, but continue with their own careers or avocations, relying on staff to keep them involved and informed.

The tissues connecting recognition of needs, and realization of progress might be visibility, credibility, and responsibility. So-called "interventions" are often held up to scrutiny through the lenses of universal human rights, and must preclude intentional or circumstantial impoverishment of economic or educational systems, energy resources. The misuse of funds, misdirection of information, misappropriation of trust, or exploitation of any group (even in the name of a "cause") cannot be sustainable.

Products, media, and services which exist on the borderlines of exploitation, dealing with the "tough issues" of trafficking, drugs, and user-funded addictions create their own marginalized worlds of crime and isolation. These are unlikely to be mitigated by a visit and eloquent plea for intervention by prominent personage(s), or by a hand-slap, a boycotting of a product, or a petition to a media site, politician or corporation. Neither can a cessation of willingness to post ads selling services similar to those purchased at the cost of dehumanizing and endangering segments of our shared populations, alone, stop the provision and purchasing of such services. Until there is access to, and redress for the populations victimized by exploitative behaviors, as long as the insulation of money or power can prevent such access, victimization will, most likely, continue to occur. 

Unfortunately, humans and the civil or tribal societies we create seldom come with an inclusive litmus test for ascertaining the fairness and humanity of our choices and actions. 
And obviously, not everyone can live or even talk with people living in the peripheries of our 'social strata.' But we can remain aware of current events, current injustices, and we can rally those resources within our respective capabilities, in order to make changes for specific, and for a greater, good.

The responsibility for learning, for enabling access and education so all can learn, to make sustainable, equitable, supportive choices rests with Each Of Us.

Millions of species on this planet are Earthlings. One species is human. Our choices, due to serendipity or access, enable our one species to effect the evolution, continuity and/or extinction of almost everything else on this planet.

What do I think about the tough issues? We need to face them, and take responsibility for our choices.

And continue to work so that organizations like Global Giving, credible sponsors, NGOs and other groups continue their efforts to promote inclusion, to aid, assist, to undertake philanthropic and humanitarian activities to improve the condition of our shared and interdependent existence

Friday, May 20, 2011

On Palestine, a Green and Sustainable Peace

Yesterday, US President Barak Obama delivered a speech calling for a renewal of peace talks between Israel and Palestine, and the establishment of a sovereign Palestine. “The status quo is unsustainable, and Israel too must act boldly to advance a lasting peace…The dream of a Jewish and democratic state cannot be fulfilled with permanent occupation.”

Tony Blair, the former British Prime Minister, part of an international effort to secure an Israeli-Palestinian peace, said security assurances, provisions for lasting peace cannot be resolved without addressing issues of territory.  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement that “without a solution to the Palestinian refugee problem outside the borders of Israel, no territorial concession will bring peace.”

Around the globe marginal populations and refugees are at risk from looming crises of hunger, water access, environmental deprivation, poverty, urban and rural infrastructure failures continues in many sectors. The need for access, redress and inclusion of foundational populations, those with whom the stability of the entire pyramid of society rests, has been accelerated through the benefits of internet communication, information sharing, even video-chat. And the so-called Arab Spring, beginning most notably with the tragedy of the fruit seller in Tunisia, is resonating throughout communities around the world.

The challenges of the at-risk, foundational, refugee and disenfranchised groups are global, and include many races, circumstances and centuries of struggle. The challenges of the at-risk, foundational, refugee and disenfranchised citizens of Palestine can also be traced for decades and centuries of a struggle-- to live, raise families, and find the futures which fellow citizens around the world also seek. The people of the region are strong, enduring, and able to see a present and a future which can move beyond the traps, and the missed opportunities for peace, of the past. We can face these struggles together; we can attain a sustainable foothold along the pathway to life, in Palestine, in the region, in the world—common ground can be found. Through small steps towards sustainability, large steps in finding and celebrating our coexistent lives can be taken.

Part of what makes partner nations in the UN great is the strength of our shared, and ‘Universal,’ human rights, our freedoms. The enrichment of our cultures and communities stems from the contributions of all members of our societies. A walk through the “Main Streets” of any community will show people, families and neighbors who want to live their lives, and achieve better lives for their children.

We, the peoples of the partner nations, can see the similarities in our lives. We are governed within national frameworks which uphold sovereign rights, and complicated balances of trade, finance, resources, environmental responsibility.

Yet we, each, and all, are party to the decisions of the governments which pilot the paths to our futures. We, each and all, share the terrible costs of war, pollution, depletion and exclusion. We, each and all, share and are responsible for securing and achieving the global potential for peace,  security and sustainability for all our peoples, our environments, our economies and societies—for our survival.

What if we could take steps to bridge our differences, to walk together towards a more peaceful and sustainable world with expanded understanding, enriched cultures, improved environments? What if, in the case of Palestine, we could walk together, work together, to help the ordinary people of Palestine build a green, sustainable, sovereign state? What if scholars, scientists, experts and citizens, could work together to enable the people of Palestine sustainable access to work, education, medical care, adequate food, water, energy and resources? And, since projects based in reason, sustainable infrastructure and environmental practices, and community-based/nationally-supported responsibility are replicable, what if a green-solution for Palestine could become a blueprint for bringing security and sustainability to peoples around the world?

There are so many educated young people, in Egypt, in Lebanon, in Libya, in nations around the world, caught between a vision of a future filled with joblessness, disenfranchisement, fear and violence—or a future filled with possibilities, where time could be spent in service to benefit their home communities, their neighbor’s communities—while they learn to utilize their skills and trades to find solutions to deprivation and depletion. There are many young people, and parent generations, in Palestine, in the region, around the globe, who could work together, supported with internet technologies, sharing experiences, preserving indigenous and cultural heritages. We can work and walk together, to learn skills, trades, arts which can enrich lives and, finally, to achieve a goal of generations and attain adequate resources, peace, and a hopeful future. In Palestine, right now, there is a chance to attain a safe, secure, and sustainable future that could be, should be, shared— with families, neighbors, and society at large.

The root causes of terrorism, disenfranchisement, refugee status, of impoverishment and exclusion could and should be addressed. The root causes of environmental depletions, inadequate supply and sourcing of water, food, energy and resources could and should be addressed. The root causes of fear between the precariously balanced peoples of Palestine and Israel could and should be addressed.

What if we, ordinary citizens, scholars, experts, could harness the knowledge necessary, recruit the corps of business, scientific and educational partners required, and forge service projects which could bridge gaps between an impoverished and endangered present and a stable and resilient future? There is no single straight line between our concerns, conflicts, and crises today, and the potential for the realization of human rights, peace, stability, security and sustainability tomorrow. But what if we could agree on a place to start? Or what if we, simply, decided to begin to build a green and resilient future?

What if Palestine could become a shining cornerstone of our shared development, utilizing renewable technologies, sustainable food and water and resourcing, universal concepts of rights and balance between peoples and species on our interdependent planet? Would then the relationship between neighbors, and neighbor-nations see a cessation of the reasons for conflict? Our shared cultural intelligence should promote the concept that our progress as a species, our peace and sustainability, must be attained in concert with the development of all ‘others’—the foundational peoples of our shared existence.

The service projects, in Palestine, and wherever else needed, could and should foster collaboration between specialists, scholars, and the young people of many nations, to mitigate the threats to shared borders between Palestine and Israel, the regions of the Middle East, and the world at large. To mitigate the threats to our human development, to contribute to the development of sustainable practices—creating green jobs, arable soil, secure water supplies, renewable energies, developing medical solutions to health crises, digitizing the huge compendium of human knowledge and records, of Palestinian culture, of regional culture, expanding partnerships among Palestinians and the commerce of the peoples of the globe—now is the time to work, in Palestine, in all endangered, foundational communities, to create healthier environments, better lives, secure futures.

Experts, scholars, elders from each nation, from each community could guide the selection and development of those projects most needed to improve the sustainability of life in each community, in each segment of the sovereign societies of Palestine, and, by extension, the region, the world. Based in community, founded in individual strengths and responsibility; working together, these vital contributions could build, each upon the other, the quality of life for those in the communities. The young people from host and neighboring nations and communities, working without the baggage of prejudice and years of national/international distrust, could realize their similarities, serve together to achieve common goals, improve and enrich the condition of life for all.

Palestine cannot survive as it is. The world cannot stand by and let Palestine perish. The recognition of shared responsibility, of shared effort and shared achievements could transcend misunderstandings and divisions between sects and locales, habits and beliefs, between poverty and potential, between crisis and stability.
Over the centuries of our shared history, many people have grappled with the problems facing the world’s peoples, challenging their religions, their governments, testing their shared responsibilities and their perceived differences. The knowledge of the ages rests in the writings and speeches, is seen in the choices and actions of these visionaries, scholars, and leaders. In our shared march toward the future, can we undertake to support a partnership of service which could form a corps of young people, and the generational foundations of all peoples, and through investing in the futures of these young people, invest in the future of humankind?

In his “On a New Beginning” speech in Egypt, 2009, US President Barak Obama spoke of forging new levels of trust based “on the sharing of common principles of justice and progress, tolerance and dignity of all human beings.” And, as he concluded, “It won’t always be easy, but if we make an effort to bridge our differences rather than resigning ourselves to animosity, we can move forward toward a more peaceful world over time.”

Palestine can find a place for a sustainable future, and the security of Israel, the region, and all our shared planet will be more assured, our peace, economic, and environmental frameworks more sustainable, through building a resilient green corridor, which can extend from Palestine, to Israel, through the region of the Middle East, Northern and all of Africa, and the world. We have but to begin, to take a step, together.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Forests: Nature at Your Service

You don’t have to be a tree-hugger to value trees, forests, and the life-systems that our green canopies sustain ( ). With the approach of World Environment Day, the UNEP is eager to increase awareness of the importance of forests for all of earth's inhabitants. Embodying “Nature at your Service,” as the UNEP declares, forests are as varied, multi-populated, and multi-purposed as nature itself. I am neither scientist, nor naturalist, but, having lived near many forests around the world, I hope to share some of my experiences and love of the life forests sustain.

Anyone departing the impermeable surfaces of inter-city connectors for shaded suburban forests can immediately feel the refreshing fragrance of green-forested spaces. Oak woods in Maryland and Virginia offer welcome relief from the heat and hustle of Washington, DC. Running through the pine forests of the Carolinas, the aspen groves of the Rockies, or through the pine, birch and maple forests of the northern states (8 gallons of maple sap boil down to 1 gallon of syrup in sugar houses that smell like distilled summer in the snowy, leafless brilliance of a north-country winter’s day), seeing the passage of seasons in the flaming foliage of fall, people can glimpse the brilliance and simplicity of nature’s renewable forest systems. Old trees drop, decay, support animals and ground-life while the seeds or root systems of vibrant trees spread new life for the canopies of future years.

In the sequoia forests of the America’s west coast, trees hundreds of years old stretch towards skies so distant the tree tops are obscured. And the bases bear marks of burrowing creatures, forgotten humans who hollowed out tunnels, fires which raged in years long past. In Japan, too, stand ancient pines. Many temples are bounded by towering gates constructed of trunks of trees so immense it takes the arms of many people to ring their base. Seeing huge sakura (cherry trees), rainbow-colored azalea, and grape-scented wisteria cascading down the rugged mountains and hills is surpassed only by walking along the forest floors, hearing and seeing the birds and other wildlife living within and below the shaded branches.

In Thailand, forests vary in character from north to south-- fruit, palm, rubber, ancient species all mingling and supporting orchids, mosses, humans, occasional elephants, and other wildlife among trees new and old. On Goh Samui, there are wonderful trees with roots tall and thin as walls forming mystical houses for forest denizens, and adventurous hikers alike. The biodiversity of Malaysia, of Indonesia, of islands small and large, ancient, stable lands or evolving volcanic formations, from sea coast to mountains, living in tree canopy and in grasslands, is amazing as well.The bamboos stretching from China across many countries in hundreds of varieties, provide food, shelter, building and art materials for our world. And in Senegal, where the Sahel leads to the vast Sahara, massive baobab trees stand vigils in an arid land, forming mini-forests themselves when their leaves sprout and spread, and still giving shelter when their dry branches shade the earth below. And forests of prickly pear cactus form life-zones for smaller creatures, finding water, rich soil, and habitation where they can.

The argan groves, palm-oases, cork woods and grasslands of Morocco, are home to many prized aromatic and medicinal plants, flowering and food plants, and numerous animals.  It is interesting to view food-forests which have survived for hundreds, even thousands of years--aspen groves in Colorado, archa (juniper) groves in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan, palm stands and bamboos... naturally-occurring seeming mono-cultures which are actually thriving food forests rich with biodiversity. Yet when, in the interests of  convenience, expansion, or commercial growth of one kind or another, actual mono-cultures are planted, they become, all too often, vulnerable to myriad parasites, and vast acres of trees or other plantings can be lost. And when, for example, in the guise of providing farmland or housing tracts, forests are destroyed, whole eco-systems can falter, interdependent species cascading, sometimes to the point of extinction, as levels of water, food, shelter, even soil health fall prey to the backhoes and bulldozers of "progress."

The medicines, the valued plants and animal species that inhabit the forests, rainforests and jungles of the world, even the sea-weed forests of the ocean floor, are unique and irreplaceable. Join with the UNEP in celebrating World Environment Day ( ). Find a way to partner with local communities, with a global effort; help preserve our Environment, so we can all share the benefits and beauties of our forests on our interdependent planet.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Nationalization and the Perfect Storm

As Danish Physicist Niels Bohr (1885 – 1962) noted, “Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.”  Bohr himself often attributed the saying to Danish artist and writer Robert Storm Petersen,  (1882 – 1949), also known as Storm P, who was said to have borrowed the quotation from another source.
Human societies are close to creating a nearly perfect storm of government, educational, economic and environmental redefinition. Increasingly dense populations, consuming ever-greater quantities of hard and soft goods, natural resources, and services have pushed the boundaries of supply/demand market concepts. As with air and water, in cases where the laws established by the governed do not prohibit or otherwise discourage pollution, assets are at risk of being squandered.
Although there is no absence of price signals that most resources are valuable, given the rising costs of fuels, precious metals and other mined/extracted commodities, people as a whole, represented by the UN, by larger, allied-government interests, are coming to view extractives as finite resources. Some, like fuel, wear out, or are wholly-consumed with use. Some, like precious metals, do degrade, but can be re-fined and re-used. Some, like minerals and energy catalysts, fall within a murky territory of degradation and/or depletion through consumption, while also often producing pollutants and by-products which further degrade or damage the environment as a whole.
Because of these characteristics, extractives are becoming public goods, consumables intermediated by the market, therefore theoretically beyond price. Normally, when human societies produce goods of this kind, they may not be sold. Private companies have no incentive to produce goods which cannot be sold. Logically, then, production/use/reclamation of mined, finite resources must be conducted through government intervention.
But, as the U.S. baseball-playing philosopher Yogi Berra said, “it’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” 
No market can cling to the past. Everyone is affected by something apparently as changeable as the weather-- the future. Is there a perfect storm looming? Let’s look at some of the factors involved.
Widely available internet connectivity; a wired-in economy with radically-shifting concepts of value costs, and processes of production; contrasts between private (goods that can be used by only one economic entity/consumer at a time, and which wear out with use) and public (goods which contribute to our wellbeing, and which, through non-rivalry in consumption, may increase in utility or value with use) goods/products .  Efficiency of distribution is increased because access is so widespread and mobility practically unlimited; efficiency of procurement is increased because with increased knowledge and access come increased confidence in consumption; yet efficiency of market controls, self-selection mechanisms of price, availability, and responsibility have reached a point where accountability is avoided at almost all costs, and so the terrible costs of mis-appropriation or unrivaled assimilation/consumption are being passed on to all individuals, whether they have consumed or profited from use of the resources, or not.
And these costs, of un-limited commercial exploitation, are borne and felt most severely by the public on the periphery of economic well-being, by the subsistence-consumers, by those least able to afford alternatives, and least able to claim the protection of their leaders and governments to prohibit this exploitation.
On our shared planet, we are coming to understand that water and air are valued commodities—yet still “public” resources—characterized by non-exclusivity in access, non-rivalry in consumption. We would perish without water and air. Yet people pay a premium for goods claiming a low “carbon footprint,” pay a premium for “pure water,” pay king’s ransoms for vacations or living spaces with crystal-clear air, sparkling water, nature untrammeled by the noises of an industrial, clamoring public, intent on earning a living, achieving some measure of leisure and entertainment, attaining some security for an increasingly unstable future.
In tinsel-town, on the silver screen, disasters only last as long as the film is running.  In the looming perfect storm of our globally-wired-in, socio-economic biosphere, our lives increasingly resemble a big-screen disaster film: almost predictable in the unprecedented number of shortages, instabilities, black-swan events, and natural disasters. Movie mogul Samuel Goldwyn, credited with his own version of “never make predictions—especially about the future,” might have loved this real-life “script.” Except that this digitally-powered revolution of the market is likely to last long after the excitement disappears, and attendance for most of us is neither voluntary nor painless. Many of our old economic and consumption habits appear to be walking with us on a path toward extinction.
 We do not need every generation to reinvent concepts of social, environmental, and economic responsibility. We can stand on the shoulders of the giants of the past, and dedicate our energies and collective intelligence to moving forward.
Aristotle (384 – 322 BC), wrote in his Politics that: Civilization is a group of good people working together to do good things. While legislation proposing the abolishment of private property and the holding of all things in common appears attractive and might be thought humane [philanthropos], the opposite will prove true. Every state is a sort of partnership [koinonian], and every partnership is formed with a view to accomplishing some good [agathou]… the partnership entitled to the state [polis] and political association [koinoia he politike] would include all the others, work the most of all, and aim at the most supreme of all goods and good things.
Aristotle placed a low value on political innovation, and highly valued balance and stability. He warned against recourse to civil war as a means of correcting political imbalance, because through revolution “the bonds of civil society [politiken koinonian] are loosened.”
If confidence measures the level of trust needed for the economic health of individuals and nations, and monetary systems consist of mixed values, such as: precious metals; resources; production, trade and service assets; trust (confidence)-based paper money, loans, debts, and credit-- then reciprocated-confidence/mutual-trust is a cornerstone of continued economic balance. When work, savings, and investment have been remunerated with favorable returns, then confidence in the soundness of economic behavior, and trust in the continuation of increased wealth grow.
When elements beyond the reasonable expectations of those individuals and nations to maintain their wealth jeopardize or efface economic well-being, individuals are reluctant to abandon their trust in their monetary systems and the politicians and agencies appointed to oversee and run them. Nations are often slow to protect the cornerstones of the credit and economic systems, and in times of economic turmoil, politicians, economists and media pundits offer a confusing and often contradictory barrage of accusations, opinions, and possible solutions. Leaders and businesses are  called upon to rectify bad decisions and economic losses, in exhortations based largely, again, upon “trust” that our collective, national, regional, and community bonds of “civilization” will empower, impel, even compel all the “good people” involved to do “the right thing.”
Possibly because the alternatives, acknowledging the loss of life-savings, fiscal balance or even national economic sovereignty are too frightening to masses of financially-untrained people accustomed to comfortable sustenance or even moderate affluence, confidence in the power of a charismatic voice to re-establish economic order raises even further.
Panic ensues when undermined economic systems, returns for work, trade and investment, insurance against calamity, collapse. Confidence gives way to increasing distrust, in leaders, media, banking and business systems. Unlimited distrust threatens the cessation of services, production, provision, and protection. Local and national economic system failures spiral toward infrastructure crisis, and provide opportunity for a new cadre of leaders to gain the confidence, sway the loyalty, and seize the reins of economic, political, and often, resources/production and military control, either through rebellion/impeachment, coup, or revolution. And the old order is replaced with a new order.
Rules enforcing transparency, financial accountability, and shared responsibility have some role in whether or not safeguards against ensuing insufficiencies of replacement, continuing depletion, corruption and repeated collapse are established and implemented. However, if no citizen-wide, community-to-nation enacted agreement exists to recognize the assessment, arbitration and authority of these rules or powers of enforcement, the fragile re-establishment of economic health and sovereignty remains in jeopardy.
So where does this leave us?
Libya is currently in turmoil; assets frozen, current leadership and a “Libyan Opposition” fighting for their concepts of economic freedom, political sovereignty, individual human rights. A treasure trove of natural resources are at stake. Similar scenes in Egypt find crowds revolting against years of established rule and practices, oil pipelines exploding, futures uncertain. The uneasy peace in resource-rich Sierra Leone, blessed with deep-water ports, a wealth of resources, and struggling to develop a recently-war-wrought, newly-empowered population. Consider also the contrasts in Namibia: poverty and promise, resources, deep-water ports, established elites and emergent populations. And increasingly visible is the unrest in Uganda—with private corporations of foreign nations involved in drilling and mining for oil and resources, profits widening gaps between elite classes, urban dwellers, and some of the most isolated peoples on earth, straddling the horizonless sands of the desert, the endangered waters at the sources of the the Victoria and African Great Lakes, the Nile and other great rivers of the region, experiencing load-shedding and power outages, water pollution, and apparent government clamp-downs on information/internet/communications access and public gatherings.
What of South Africa? Seen as a middle-income, emerging market, South Africa enjoys an abundant supply of natural resources (value estimated in the billions of dollars), well-developed financial, legal, communications, energy and transport sectors; a profit-oriented infrastructure which supports the distribution of goods and services to major urban centers throughout the region.
In 2007, South Africa began to experience an electricity crisis. The 18th largest stock exchange in the world, trade and trust began to be disrupted. Confidence had blossomed between 2004-2007, as South Africans enjoyed macroeconomic stability, a global commodities boom, and increasing microeconomic development and security among its formerly-excluded, least-advantaged citizens.
Legacies of problems from the apartheid era: poverty, lack of economic empowerment for most of the disadvantaged groups, a shortage of public transportation and services for most of the disadvantaged groups, aged power plants, lack of economic mobility and opportunity for most of the disadvantaged groups, and lack of education and communication, which has largely kept isolated and allowed the exploitation of the disadvantaged groups.
At an economic panel at the World Bank on Thursday, 14 April, 2011, Jay Naidoo, founding General Secretary of the Congress of South African Trade Unions and the former Minister of Communications for President Nelson Mandela’s cabinet said, “Global governance cannot be determined by elites… civil society cannot simply be relegated to side forums… “ Reiterating the fact that the core of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa was the struggle against a labor system that exploited black workers, Naidoo continued: “Of course there will be attempts to co-opt these movements but I am confident that the leaders know what they want.”
On Monday, April 18, 2011, Minerals Minister Susan Shabangu announced that South Africa has found widespread violations during an audit of miners and other mineral rights holders in the country.  Over 400 notices were issued for prospecting violations, and over 700 for environmental violations. The notices include intentions to cancel previously awarded prospecting and related rights licenses. Shabangu was speaking at the official launch of a new online mineral application system that aims to ensure transparency and end administrative blunders. The eastern province of Mpumalanga, which is rich in coal and other minerals, has caused particular concern on the environmental front.
But Minister Shabangu also said that she was disappointed that, “despite our genuine effort to engage them…  BEE (Black Economic Empowerment—a policy in South Africa to expand economic ownership to historically disadvantaged blacks) partners did not even honor this call. “  South African mining companies must be 26 percent black-owned by 2014, and many are scrambling to meet that target—and “fronting”—where black investors are named beneficial owners, but the company is really owned and run by white miners—remains a problem.
The process of grafting transparency, economic parity, environmental security and political stability can be very painful. While skill, union or other affiliation, racial or linguistic background, education and access formerly excluded some, and assured others of secure places in the economy, transitions to modern, wired-in systems of education, communication, and exchange have virtually ensured that an entire new ecosystem of public and private goods, holdings and distribution must be developed.
While transition in a few areas may not pose excessive problems to stability, if a large number of economic sectors are challenged, stressed, and fail simultaneously, that perfect storm of instability, crisis, and revolt could ensue. With the price of industrial products becoming, in the digital age, intangible: patents, design, branding, marketing, the price of limited resources, and finite resources is even more intangible.
Who can gauge the cost of depletion or extinction? There is no replication, there are no grafts or infusions or quick fixes to the eradication of something that had been plentiful, which no longer exists.
The competition of the market, for goods so precariously balanced, is fierce. The message is clear. The high profits and privacy margins of industry are in danger, threatened by open source technologies, communication, and accountability. People are able to “unbreak” the misguided misappropriations of resources, access, and distribution of the past. No sector can truly hold itself separate from the perfect storm of information sharing, of digital access, of nearly instant application and accountability.
If the brokers of information are trustworthy, the authorities elected to represent the citizens, to stand in the governments and infrastructures which uphold public values, public and private interests and freedoms, human rights and biosphere-sustainability will be well able to at least guide our progress to the future. The rules of physics have yet to be transformed; Niels Bohr is still correct—“it is very difficult to make predictions, especially about the future.”
But when governments can integrate the advances which internet-enabled collaboration and verification have commenced, states can also use the internet, the coordination of wired-in systems of infrastructure, to safeguard the markets, the possible nationalization of finite resources, the re-assessment of resources and products as private goods produced in coordination with the public good… Individuals can, in a wired-in world, pursue their specific interests, maximize their abilities, and still have time and the knowledge to affirm that the states and officials whom they elect and support are safeguarding the interdependent systems which connect us all.
Should South Africa nationalize its mining and extractive industries? We all share the problems of scarcity, depletion, pollution, human rights access/violations, bio-security, which face all humanity. We are not necessarily burdened with the task of deciding who should benefit and profit from extracting and using the minerals and resources buried in the earth of South Africa, any more than global citizens are responsible for deciding the sovereign affairs of the unsettled situations in Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Uganda, and elsewhere. Where there can be a black market of goods traded over the internet, as well as a reconfigured open market accountable through access to the internet, the economy will be challenged, will require reconfiguring from old models of ownership and profit through exclusivity, to more equitable, open, sustainable systems.
We may not have the advantage of being able to forecast the future, but we can protect our futures, requiring those handling the goods, services, resources, and profits of our individual efforts to maintain transparent, equitable, accountable and responsible practices

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Shared Responsibility or self-preservation; Corporate social responsibility and nationalization and the Mining Industry

“Men and women from all nations share the same global address – we all live on the same planet, with its finite land masses, bodies of water, and other resources. The stewardship of our planet is a responsibility which transcends boundaries, continents, and peoples. The stewardship of human rights, of intrinsic values (such as freedoms, peace, sustainable human and environmental “health”), are also responsibilities which cross boundaries. Ultimately, these are responsibilities which can, potentially, lead to mutual recognition and cooperation between peoples, or which can lead to distrust, disunification, dysfunction, conflict, and destruction…

Our interdependent future requires recognition of common denominators, including the sovereignty, independence, and mutual-inter-dependence of each state, the acknowledgement of basic values and rights which are universal, the embedding of  principles upholding the security and sustainability of our mutual “global” rights and freedoms (including economic, educational, environmental, peripheral factors, and other inclusive global conditions of peace and security).

If a group insists that its sovereign or corporate rights, its path to self-determination includes the abrogation of the rights of others, then, perhaps that group is traveling down the “pathway” towards the obsolescence of its own existence—particularly in an increasingly global environment. Conditions leading toward peaceful coexistence, sustainable and inclusive markets, social/political actions, and collective relations should not command the thoughts or activities of others, but, perhaps, only prohibit the commission of those actions which would infringe upon the global rights of yet a third group of “others.”

And it is from this vantage point that we see the viability and necessity of addressing the integration of concepts of personal, corporate, and state responsibility into our fundamental strategies, operations, cultures—and consider concrete cases and specific problems of development, including nationalization, and the sustainability of crucial infrastructures or industries. The answers to these challenges present unparalleled opportunities to uphold and respect the sovereignty of those individuals, groups, and international alliances mutually inhabiting this globe, with its limited space, and finite resources—and its multiple possible patterns of intellectual (or political) development .

The definition and amelioration of “root causes” of social, economic, educational and environmental progress, and of the concomitant threat of degradation of these factors, must remain a participative responsibility in any society, local, national, or global, which wishes its policies and practices to have relevance for its citizenry, resilience to meet its challenges, and widest possible/holistic implementation of those disciplines and principles, strategies and cultures which will enable us to achieve the highest possible levels of sustainable performance and peace.”[1]

We are now at a crossroads in our development. The advent of broadband and other global communications networks, the linking of common markets, the technologies permitting the free physical/intellectual movement and exchange of people, goods, services, capital, and intellectual or creative property/common concepts have ushered in unparalleled opportunities, and challenges, to build a shared, sustainable future.

Fundamental, and in some cases, almost overwhelming shifts are underway in world politics, culture, religions, economics. The necessity for responsible action, for choices which can maintain transparency; principles of anti-corruption; human rights; environmental, humanitarian and specific labor-force stewardship, is inescapable.

And the social and political will to safeguard existing freedoms, legitimate economic growth (the greatest degree of legitimate market freedoms for the greatest number of legitimate market participants and the voiceless global environment must accompany our efforts to develop a collective stewardship of our shared planet.[2]

Without leadership, trusted sources of information, and collaborative protocols to ensure transparency, anti-corruption, fair/safe labor practices, and opportunities, however, sustainable development, indeed, the security of states, communities and individuals, are at risk. Inclusive strategies to define and implement our shared responsibilities to meet the social, political and economic challenges of our increasingly global existence can benefit societies and economies around the world.

The UN Global Compact is such an initiative. Endorsed by chief executives, with over 8700 corporate participants and other stakeholders from over 130 countries, the Global Compact is a practical framework for the development, implementation, and disclosure of sustainability policies and practices. Increasingly, business participants are recognizing the need for collaborative infrastructure and corporate development, collaborative consumption, and partnership with governments, civil society, labor, and the United Nations (to list the most central of “trusted broker” entities).

“[T]he Global Compact exists to assist the private sector in the management of increasingly complex risks and opportunities in the environmental, social and governance realms, seeking to embed markets and societies with universal principles and values for the benefit of all”[3]

As a specific effort, the Extrative Industries Transparency Initiative ( ) is a coalition of governments, companies, and civil societies joined in an effort to make natural resources of benefit for all. Working to set a global standard for transparency in fuel and resource mining, members have worked from their 12 EITI Principles (established in 2003) to affirm that management of natural resource wealth for the benefit of a country’s citizens is the domain of sovereign governments, but that, in seeking solutions, “all stakeholders have important and relevant contributions to make—including governments and their agencies, extractive industry companies, service companies, multilateral organisations, financial organisations, investors, and non-governmental organisations.” EITI participants “share a belief that the prudent use of natural resource wealth should be an important engine for sustainable economic growth that contributes to sustainable development and poverty reduction, but if not managed properly, can create negative economic and social impacts.”[4]

Scholars of economic development can trace the hazards of inviting “investors” and “donors” to share costs and corporate decision-making with the sovereign governments and industries party to any “joint venture,” including mining/extractive operations. Rich in subterranean resources, African nations are beginning to enjoy what the World Bank has forecasted can be a multi-year expansion of economies by 5% or more annuallyContrasts between the rapidly-expanding economies of Africa, Asia and Latin America (based in no small part upon mining/extractives industries and resource assets) and the financially struggling economies of North America and Europe will intensify, according to most financial and investment experts. (,,contentMDK:21848549~menuPK:5242459~pagePK:148956~piPK:216618~theSitePK:336930,00.html )

Without appropriate stewardship of the resource/mining assets of developing nations, the profit-driven exploitation of investment returns, especially in mining and export of metals, minerals, and fuels, could unbalance the value-chain of commodity and resource production, to the detriment of the citizens of each resource-rich sovereign nation, and the collective citizenry of our interdependent planet.

Established mining and trading companies are attempting to maintain their long-term contractual obligations upon the emergent/developing markets. Competition from established European, Anglo-Australian and other mining conglomerates is being met by the apparent geo-strategic move of Asian mining, production and investment giants.

“Beijing’s equity is welcome and global companies have moved to invite Chinese companies into their operations as joint-venture partners…” says Sanusha Naidu, research director of the China in Africa Project with the NGO, Fahamu. “But the market share still lies with western global-resource companies like Rio Tinto and Anglo American when it comes to supply and determining the pricing index.”[5]

Anthony Goldman, head of London-based PM Consulting, posits that increased global competition and scrutiny of resources,  financial responsibilities, and shareholder practices have created a new dynamic in the previously muddy ground of mining industries. “Opacity adds layers that allow for greater flexibility when it comes to political pariahs, or sanctions, or questionable sources. [Now the need for capital] outweighs the need for discretion.”[6]  Or corruption, as the case may be.

In any corporate practice, transparency is only one factor in ensuring the principles of responsible and sustainable market and holistic development. Local citizens, especially those in underserved, under-educated communities in developing nations, have not possessed the access, tools, or even concepts of ownership which would empower them to hold investors, donors, and governments accountable for the stewardship of assets and development of sustainable infrastructures. Natural resources, mined commodities have a far greater threshold of visibility, however. Citizens can more clearly see what is produced, and demand their fair share of the limited precious resources buried beneath our planet’s surface, within the boundaries of each specific sovereign nation.

But reforms are hard-won, and accountabilities which exist to protect shareholders and citizens of companies listed on the New York Stock Exchange, for example, do not yet exist in European or Asian stock exchanges.[7]

In theory, developing countries with their own natural resources might not need the foreign investment of partner extractives/mining corporations. Accepting joint venture or corporate loans creates an imbalance of costs and profits of production, with these now-debtor resource-rich nations being forced to divert at least part of their production to export sales merely to pay interest on loans, or operational costs of foreign-held industries. And the lion’s share of profits, of interest in corporate assets, and, effectively, assets from sales of mined resources, remain within the closed ranks of majority-shareholders in companies which established contractual strangleholds on the natural resources of the citizens of each resource-rich nation, of the collective citizenry of our interdependent planet, decades or even centuries ago.

And such vested interests seem loath to adapt the reforms urged by citizens, communities, the EITI, the UN, sovereign governments, and socially-responsible NGOs, corporations, and other stakeholders.

For example, mining in South Africa has been the central impetus to the development of Africa’s wealthiest and most advanced economy. The discovery of a diamond on the banks of the Orange River in 1867 marked the commencement of the hugely profitable (for the owners) diamond and gold mining industries in South Africa. Currently, South Africa is the world’s largest producer of chrome, manganese, platinum, varandium and vermiculite.  The second-largest producer of minerals including palladium and zirconium, South Africa is also the world’s third-largest exporter of coal. ( )

South Africa takes a clear position of prominence among nations blessed with a cornucopia of the limited natural resources available on our shared globe. Julius Malema , the leader of the youth arm of South Africa’s ruling political party (the African National Congress, or ANC), has urged the official debate of nationalization. In 2010, the ANC agreed.

For the moment, however, it appears that the scheduled Spring, 2012, debate over the nationalization of the South African mining industry has been pre-empted by a decision announced by Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu. “The youth league, informed by challenges of poverty, challenges of unemployment amongst the young people and pressures of needs and people seeing democracy but not being able to tangibly benefit from that, they think that one aspect is to nationalize the mines.”

However, “Government policy is clear: it’s a mixed economy; the state will participate in the sector, but we will not nationalize,”Shabangu said. “We can’t say [calls for nationalization] at the end will influence or formulate policy… it must be discussed and that debate must go on sensibly,” Shabangu stated, in an interview at Bloomberg’s headquarters in New York, in March, 2011. According to Cynthia Carroll, chief executive officer of the London-based mining company Anglo American Plc (AAL) , South Africa’s largest private employer, operating in South Africa since 1917, said that supporters of nationalization are “advocating the road to ruin,” and that mining companies won’t invest unless their assets are ‘secure.’

Under current “black-empowerment legislation,” mining companies have a 2014 deadline to ensure that black investors have a 26% interest in mining companies’ South African assets. According to an ANC Youth League policy document, the state should own at least 60% of all the country’s mining assets (mineral reserves in South Africa are estimated at over $2.5 trillion).[8]

Mineral and natural resources are assets held within the sovereign territories of each nation’s boundaries. In the political, economic, and environmental realities of our increasingly interdependent planet, it is crucial that the environmental, engineering, and corporate/industrial community integrate sustainability in dealing with the technical, economic, social, political and environmental issues of today and of our shared future. Mining and extractive assets are as limited, and, arguably, fragile in quantity and quality as the Earth’s resources of air and water.

And like air and water, international issues of collaborative consumption, waste and watershed management, bio-system and human safety and preservation, and strong local-community based initiatives are required to enable individuals and communities to support the sustainable infrastructure development policies and practices of their leaders and governments.

Air and water know few boundaries, but subterranean mineral assets can be considered a birth right, prized by those inhabitants born in areas of provenance over those natural resources. Realistically, some profits must be earned by production-end corporations, or the costs of business become onerous. Ethically, depriving fellow humans of a sustainable, decent living in order to control the flow of profits based upon outdated, often unfair contractual agreements wrested decades or centuries ago, from leaders of an under-served population, must be considered unsustainable, and out of keeping with our more inclusive understanding of universal human rights and global infrastructural responsibility and environmental stewardship.

Transparency and debate are not magic bullets for violations of the UN Global Compact’s ten principles ( ) in the areas of human rights, labor, anti-corruption and the environment. Collaborative corporate/social responsibility and principles of collaborative consumption cannot erase past depredations, nor ensure the embracing of a set of core values which would ameliorate or preclude future irresponsibilities in mining/extractives, or corporate developmental practices in general.

The 2011 UN Global Compact states that “embedding principles and responsibility into the marketplace is an essential part of the solution [to address challenges to global integration, sustainable development, protection of our planet, and, ultimately, peace].

Natural resources on our shared planet are, by definition, limited. Businesses and governments should support and respect the protection and continuation of internationally proclaimed human rights, environmental rights, and attendant issues of sustainable co-existence. Tolerance, respect, and stewardship are a sine qua non of peaceful interdependence in an increasingly global community.

Any debate on natural resources, human/biosphere preservation and sustainability and nationalization must include the responsible recognition, discussion, support and enactment of these issues. 

[1] Michele Comment, “An overview of social and political communities, disenfranchisement, and social and financial infrastructures,” An Ethical consideration of Terrorism, Introduction, pp. x-xvi; M.A. Thesis, Vermont College of Norwich University, 1993.
[2] Michele Comment, “Conditions for Peace: Secure, Sustainable, Stable Development – in an Increasingly Global Community,” op.cit., pp. 25 – 34.
[3] “A more detailed analysis of the benefits of participation in the Global Compact can be found in The Importance of Voluntarism — which also focuses on the importance of the Global Compact as a complement rather than substitute for regulatory regimes” in
[4] EITI Principles # 2, 12 and 1, , 2003
[6] The Africa Report, February 2011, op. cit.
[7] 2010 passage of the US Dodd-Frank act contained the first-ever “publish what you pay” law, empowering “millions of people by giving them access to the information they need to hold their leaders accountable, demanding greater social and economic results, and reducing levels of corruption.” From: “Transparency will ensure Ugandans benefit from their oil”, Winnie Ngabiiwe and Joe Powell, 11 March, 2011,
[8] South Africa Won’t Nationalize its Mining Industry, Minister Shabangu Says” by Simon Casey, , , 10 March, 2011