Keeping Informed No 5.

Paddle Now www.paddlenow.org.nz

Newsletter No 5   16/12/19

This will be the final Paddle Now newsletter of 2019. In September, Paddle Now launched its website and started sending out emails to relevant groups inviting them to display. We anticipated, that by the end of the year, we would have twenty or more groups displaying. This would be sufficient to reward visitors looking for worthy causes to support and would justify the planned PR campaign to attract those visitors. 

As things have turned out, recruitment has been slower than anticipated. We now have twelve groups displayed and about twenty that have indicated they are still considering the proposal. A further fifteen or so are yet to acknowledge our initial communication.

Eleven groups have declined our proposal. Seven of these are NZ subsidiaries of big international groups that do not want to get involved in anything that could smack of local politics. It was an initial error on our part. Paddle Now failed to make sufficiently clear that it was not involved in NZ political life: that its advocacy for improved global governance would only be directed towards the groups involved. It is to be left to their discretion whether or not to carry Paddle Now’s advocacy for improved global governance to their members and/or to a wider audience and into New Zealand’s political life.

It will still probably take several years of the now rapidly accelerating economic and environmental crises, before a meaningful number of groups start to actively lobby NZ politicians to take appropriate diplomatic steps. It is a long term objective. In the meantime, Paddle Now sees its mission as being to strengthen all groups operating in these fields by helping them recruit supporters and donors. 

In view of the festive season, this fortnight’s newsletter attempts to balance bad news with good. A star grading system allows five stars for being very good news and just one star to justify despondency. Finding good news is not easy.

Environment & Climate Change

https://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-General/The-Next-Stage-Of-The-Solar-Boom-Is-Already-Underway.html     *** I guess every little helps! Heliogen, etc. Some inequitable concentrations of wealth have their usefulness! 4 minute read.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/sep/12/deforestation-world-losing-area-forest-size-of-uk-each-year-report-finds   *  There were good intentions. 3 minute read

https://oilprice.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ed58b19f2b88e4a743b950765&id=c0839a787b&e=c99099b11d ***** More good intentions: Multiple companies plan to drop emissions. However, the road to hell being paved with good intentions, only sight will justify belief. 2 minute read. 

Graph of CO2 concentrations v. good intentions. The next blog will be devoted entirely to an article (a 60 minute read) on this subject and the implications of the above graph.

Peace & Conflict Resolution

https://quincyinst.org/2019/12/04/welcome/?utm_source=Quincy+Institute&utm_campaign=1245ebbfac-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_12_05_09_07&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_5f148d0656-1245ebbfac-284475049&mc_cid=1245ebbfac&mc_eid=d176f4cf75 **** Another use for billionaires: moderating wars instigated by other billionaires. Even though the new Quincy Institute is funded by George Soros and the notorious Charles Koch, it looks set to serve a much needed moderating function among the empire-building hawks that lurk in Washington’s think-tank jungle.  6 minute video.

https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2019/12/intel-trump-troops-syria.html?utm_campaign=20191205&utm_source=sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_term=Daily%20Newsletter ** Such a puny ground force would be quite incapable of controlling any resurgence of ISIS. Having been the main agent of Syria’s demolition, the function of the USA’s stay-behind force, in blatant defiance of international law, will be to deny Syria the income it so desperately needs for reconstruction. 

In 2007-8, Major General Jonathan Shaw commanded the British troops in Basra during the Coalition’s occupation of Iraq. His force’s numbers were too small. Instead of controlling and administrating the unhappy citizens of Basra, they found themselves confined to barracks trying to protect themselves from the armed insurgency that swirled around them. The frustrated Shaw famously described his force as a “self–licking lollipop.”

Once the Syrian government has cleaned up the rebel pocket in Idlib, Trump’s residual ground forces on Syrian soil, despite the availability of overwhelming air power, risk finding themselves similarly placed. Perhaps the hawk-faction’s intention is a provocation designed to act as trip-wire for another go at regime change in Syria? 2 minute read.

Human Rights & Justice

https://reeseerlich.com/2019/11/30/foreign-correspondent-whats-next-for-bolivia-after-military-coup/ ** A factual account of the recent coup in Bolivia. 4 minute read.

https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/08/13/how-to-save-foreign-aid-in-the-age-of-populism-usaid-dfid/ *** An enlightened view of national foreign aid policies. Foreign Policy is the organ of the globalist Committee on Foreign Relations – the power-house of neo-liberalism and American Empire. In this article it presents that ideology’s acceptable face – but not without an arrière pensée! 10 minute read.

Global Governance

https://www.cadmusjournal.org/node/669 *** “Beginning at the time of World War I, world history could be described as an experiment in global governance.” Four scenarios on the future of the United Nations. 10 minute read.

https://www.democracywithoutborders.org/12106/campaign-for-a-un-world-citizens-initiative-launched-in-new-york/ **** Direct democracy for the UN? 3 minute read.

https://www.asiatimes.com/2019/11/opinion/how-to-commit-war-crimes-and-get-away-with-it/ * Yet another multilateral organ falls victim to exceptionalism. The International Criminal Court is nobbled by the USA. After Burnham, we can be thankful that war-crimes are treated with more gravity in NZ! Thank you Nicky! 5 minute read.

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