The Daily Yomiuri,
Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8055
I cannot see any real benefit for Japan and the Japanese deriving from elevation to permanent membership status of the U.N. Security Council. The yearning for it is blatant pride in our faces, just as is the stubbornness of the current permanent members blocking new candidates.
United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan is very photogenic, articulate and soft-spoken. All of these are in his favor and make the U.N. look better. But I never voted for him and so he has no proper claim to represent me. He and his organization have no legitimacy in anything because of this very fact. The same is true of each and every delegate in the U.N. General Assembly and of the sitting member nations of the Security Council - permanent and non-permanent alike - including the representatives from my country. I never voted for them, so anything they say and do under the pretense of proxy is poppycock. The United Nations represents nobody, and yet it operates as if it is the legitimate international, world body for keeping the peace and other noble-sounding fantasies.
But the United Nations cannot keep peace in the world - efficaciously or not. Why? Because despite the horror and the suffering, human beings like war. It's adventurous and exciting. In addition, the U.N. has never made the peace, even when it was in a position to do so. Why? Because that's not its mandate. What a useless organization.
There are so many alternative worthy things for the Japanese government and public to be concerned with that it seems foolish for the leaders of Japan, Brazil, Germany and India to vie for membership in this polite dictatorship of fools in suits.
Published on Sunday, October 31, 2004 as “U.N. dictatorship of fools in suits.”
I usually don’t think very favorably towards the United Nations. Maybe if it suited me I would say differently and people would accuse me of contrary inconsistency. But usually my position is that it is an undemocratic organization, because no one votes for the representative members who sit there, and therefore they do not represent anyone, properly speaking. The United Nations does not represent me. It does not speak for me. The Secretary General does not speak for me. The Canadian or the Japanese delegates there do not represent me. So it talks a whole lot of gall for this body to invent and enforce international rules, procedures, laws, etc., even if it is on the basis of enlightened good for the majority of people. I think nations - my Canada especially - ought to have no obligation to abide by stupid United Nations resolutions that do not serve their interests. It’s not that nations ought not to observe UN resolutions and international protocols that issue from it, just that there should be no obligation. Participation in the UN is voluntary, and the UN depends of the financial contributions of its voluntarily participating members. So be aware of where your bread is coming from. The UN is not a patron so much as it is a client.