Debating Poverty Eradication At The United Nations: Does The Media Hate The Poor?
By Danny Schechter
United Nations, New York: One is always proud to be invited to speak at the United Nations, one of the few global institutions that is still taken seriously, and that can generate international resolutions and shape programs free of total domination by the big powers.
When you are an outsider like I am, it's a bit of an ego boost to think that the world might be listening to little old you, and that, at least for one session, you are among the chosen to hold forth on something serious in what critics deride as "The House of Babble.'
I have been around the world body for years, even as recipient of a prize for a TV documentary from the UN Correspondents Association (UNCA). In that case, the film offered a strong critique of the UN cockup in Bosnia, but then, the award was presented to me by the then (and sixth) UN Secretary General Boutros-Boutros Ghali, who clearly hadn't seen it
So, yes there is pretense and hypocrisy, but there are also sincere and dedicated people--diplomats and international civil servents-- working to improve the world.
This is not to say that the big powers lack influence there since they control the Security Council and show clout by lobbying for their political positions, while staffing the Secretariat and agencies with their loyalists.
Right across the street is the spanking new US Mission, a symbol of Washington's power and intent to stay in control.