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6 Months Later - John Bolton At The UN  
User currently offlineCfalk From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1688 times:

After all the yelling and screaming last year, Bolton has now been Ambassador to the UN for over 6 months now, and he hasn't started a war yet.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060303/...u=X3oDMTA5aHJvMDdwBHNlYwN5bmNhdA--

Here's a little piece on his latest activities, which I think is quite indicative of the culture he is up against. My father in law worked at such high levels in the UN, and he told me that actually getting people to do any work there is like trying to get orange juice out of the ass of an elephant.

So how do you think he's been doing? Has he been a good ambassador? Should he get confirmed by the Senate this session?

19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineKevinl1011 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 2964 posts, RR: 47
Reply 1, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1687 times:

Is he related Michael Bolton?  Wink


474218, Carl, You will be missed.
User currently offlineA319XFW From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 1673 times:

Quoting Kevinl1011 (Reply 1):
Is he related Michael Bolton?

 rotfl  That's exactly the same question I was going to ask!

Quote:
As for the morning briefings, "this is impossible," he said. "We aren't having a daily briefing each day."

And there was me thinking that 'daily' meant every day Big grin


User currently offlineHatTrick From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 110 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 1641 times:

Quoting Cfalk (Thread starter):
and he hasn't started a war yet.

That comment smacks of flamebait. Besides, Bush has plenty of others fit for that task (touche').
Given Bolton's past comments about the U.N, it is highly unlikely he will be well recieved as a person, let alone an Ambassador leading the "U.S. campaign to reform the United Nations"


User currently offlineCfalk From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 1626 times:

Quoting HatTrick (Reply 3):
Given Bolton's past comments about the U.N, it is highly unlikely he will be well recieved as a person, let alone an Ambassador leading the "U.S. campaign to reform the United Nations"

Are you saying that his demands are unreasonable? That the UN is above things like professionalism, integrity and results?

Like I said, my father-in-law was in the UN. He's a workaholic. He's 75 now and still can't sit still for more than 5 minutes. You can imagine how well that fit in at the UN. He was the only guy in his division that actually did any work, simply by showing up more than 2 hours per day. He was making all the rest look bad, so they fired him. (Not exactly fired - he was a civil servant for his own government, but he was no longer welcome to work at the UN!)

He has great stories about those days at the UN. But by far the most infuriating is how the UN is full of people just jerking off 95% of the time. All of us (whatever country you live in) contribute to these guys' salaries. Doesn't that make you mad?


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 5, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 1612 times:

If Bolton should actually contribute to increased effectiveness in the UN administration, I'm all for it. But the primary problems regarding the UN are not on the administrative level but in the unwillingness of several member nations to get things forward. Administrative issues have been misused as a pretense to prevent any political progress - we'll see if there will be any constructive movement all in all...

User currently offlineRJpieces From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1601 times:

From what I've read, Bolton has been facing tough opposotion to reform there but doing a worthwhile job.

I am supposed to hear him speak tomorrow. I will post the highlights.


User currently offlineHalls120 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1589 times:

Quoting Cfalk (Thread starter):
My father in law worked at such high levels in the UN, and he told me that actually getting people to do any work there is like trying to get orange juice out of the ass of an elephant.

 rotfl  As a veteran of numerous US delegations to various UN meetings, I can say with absolute confidence your father in law was dead on correct.

Quoting Cfalk (Thread starter):
So how do you think he's been doing? Has he been a good ambassador? Should he get confirmed by the Senate this session?

He should, but he won't. All it takes is one senator to hold something up, and Bolton has many enemies on the hill.

Quoting Cfalk (Reply 4):
He has great stories about those days at the UN. But by far the most infuriating is how the UN is full of people just jerking off 95% of the time. All of us (whatever country you live in) contribute to these guys' salaries. Doesn't that make you mad?

You're overdoing it. 90% would be more accurate.

Here is a typical UN meeting.

Published start time - 10am. Actual start time - 10:30, if you're lucky.

If it is a multi-day meeting, the chair will typically ask member states NOT to make long winded oral statements about country achievements, asking that they instead submit their statements in writing. Predictably, everyone ignores the chair, and the first day is a waste of time.

Lunch break begins at 1pm.

afternoon session published start time - 3pm. actual start time - 3:15

people start drifting out at 4pm to get a cup of coffee before the coffee bar closes, and to smoke - even though the building is a smoke free area.

At 6pm, the session ends. If you are lucky, you've actually had 5 hours of susbstantive meeting time.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 5):
If Bolton should actually contribute to increased effectiveness in the UN administration, I'm all for it. But the primary problems regarding the UN are not on the administrative level but in the unwillingness of several member nations to get things forward.

You couldn't be more wrong. The UN professional staff is riddled with incompetency, sexual harassment, and general misconduct. The work environment at two UN locations is so poisonous that UN employees won't be seen with visiting delegations from their home countries, lest UN management suspect they are being disloyal. In response, it is common for country delegations to host their UN employee nationals at off site meetings held in quiet out of the way places. Last year at one UN meeting, it was very awkward for several of us from the UN delegation when we happened to choose a resataurant that was also being used for a meeting of UN employees from a certain unnamed EU country and their delegation.


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 8, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1579 times:

That does not in any way contradict my statement - as long as several UNSC member nations see it as their primary mission to keep the UN toothless and/or obedient, there is not much of an incentive to clean up the administration (which - it needs to be repeated - is a subordinate executive organ, while the actual decisions are still made by the member governments).

It is nice if the administration should in fact be improved, but as long as the actual essential issues aren't moved forward, this is a minor side issue, at most good for a diversion from the important topics.


User currently offlineHalls120 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1571 times:

Quoting Klaus (Reply 8):
It is nice if the administration should in fact be improved, but as long as the actual essential issues aren't moved forward, this is a minor side issue, at most good for a diversion from the important topics.

While I understand your point about the bigger issues on the table, for the unfortunate employees that labor under UN mismamgement, it is far from being a minor issue.


User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 10, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1562 times:

Quoting Cfalk (Thread starter):
So how do you think he's been doing? Has he been a good ambassador? Should he get confirmed by the Senate this session?

I think he has a tough hill to climb given the Democratic opposition to his placement on the US side and the ineffectiveness of the UN on the international side. I'm glad to see though that some folks from other countries find the UN to be full of a bunch of clowns. While in principle the idea of the UN is a good one in practice it is completely broken. The good thing is with the ineffectiveness Kofi Annan won't get through his master plan of usurping national sovereignty and placing the UN as the global head or the Internet control he so desperately wants as well.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 11, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 1542 times:

Yeah, DeltaGator, thank you for an excellent demonstration of the kind of ignorant paranoia that's the problem here.  crazy 

User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 12, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 1530 times:

Quoting Klaus (Reply 11):
Yeah, DeltaGator, thank you for an excellent demonstration of the kind of ignorant paranoia that's the problem here.

Just some of the ideas that have come out of the UN. Again, in principle it is a good thing. In practice, it is broken. The same could be said for many governments worldwide.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineCfalk From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 1524 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 12):
Quoting Klaus (Reply 11):
Yeah, DeltaGator, thank you for an excellent demonstration of the kind of ignorant paranoia that's the problem here.

Just some of the ideas that have come out of the UN. Again, in principle it is a good thing. In practice, it is broken. The same could be said for many governments worldwide.

I think Klaus is talking about the quote below.

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 10):
The good thing is with the ineffectiveness Kofi Annan won't get through his master plan of usurping national sovereignty and placing the UN as the global head or the Internet control he so desperately wants as well.

I agree with what you said about the UN being a good idea, but broken. But the above statement smacks a bit of conspiracy theories. Personally, I don't think Kofi has the intelligence or the vision to promote such a concept. He is most certainly the worst Secretary General that I can remember.


User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 14, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 1521 times:

Quoting Cfalk (Reply 13):
I think Klaus is talking about the quote below.

I know.

Quoting Cfalk (Reply 13):
Personally, I don't think Kofi has the intelligence or the vision to promote such a concept. He is most certainly the worst Secretary General that I can remember.

I'm not a huge conspiracy theory guy at all but some of the ideas being put forward by the UN do worry me. Don't underestimate him though despite the red tape he has to work through daily.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 15, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 1509 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 14):
I'm not a huge conspiracy theory guy at all

Now that's a relief...! Big grin

Quoting DeltaGator (Reply 14):
but some of the ideas being put forward by the UN do worry me.

The UN is not governed by the secretary general but by the member nations' governments. The SG can only make suggestions, but in even more cases his suggestions have originated among the member governments.

If you want to "un-break" the UN, start campaigning in Washington. The Iraq invasion was a prime example how to break the UN. So what shall it be?


User currently offlineHalls120 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 1497 times:

Quoting Klaus (Reply 15):
The UN is not governed by the secretary general but by the member nations' governments. The SG can only make suggestions, but in even more cases his suggestions have originated among the member governments.

Oh really?

Here is how the UN describes the duties and authority of the UN SG.

Quote:
The Charter describes the Secretary-General as "chief administrative officer" of the Organization, who shall act in that capacity and perform "such other functions as are entrusted" to him or her by the Security Council, General Assembly, Economic and Social Council and other United Nations organs. The Charter also empowers the Secretary-General to "bring to the attention of the Security Council any matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security". These guidelines both define the powers of the office and grant it considerable scope for action. The Secretary-General would fail if he did not take careful account of the concerns of Member States, but he must also uphold the values and moral authority of the United Nations, and speak and act for peace, even at the risk, from time to time, of challenging or disagreeing with those same Member States.


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 17, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 1491 times:

Which puts exactly zero executive decision powers into the hands of the secretary general.

User currently offlineHalls120 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 1486 times:

Quoting Klaus (Reply 17):
Which puts exactly zero executive decision powers into the hands of the secretary general.

True. But he is more than just a suggestion generator, which is what you have implied.


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21495 posts, RR: 53
Reply 19, posted (8 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1481 times:

Sure. But almost all the ills people are so used to complaining about are actually dependent on the member governments to resolve. The administrative reform is a minor side show compared to the central issues.

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