By: Thomas Lindaman

Normally, Ted Turner is the last person I’d look to for deep philosophical questions, but he came up with a pretty good one during a CNN interview recently. He asked what the world would be like without the United Nations. Naturally, the UN’s Billion Dollar Man suggested the world would be far worse without the UN there to do whatever it’s supposed to be doing.

So, thanks to Ted Turner, let’s take a moment to imagine what the world would be like without the UN.

If the UN were to disappear tomorrow, we’d be getting rid of an ineffective global entity. When it was established, the United Nations was meant to be a forum where world leaders could talk over whatever issues they needed to in order to avert war. Have they? Well, let’s just say after over 60 years of trying, they’re still waiting on their opportunity to shine. Yep, the UN is a whopping 0 for their history in stopping wars. With that kind of record, they’re the Chicago Cubs of international organizations. Heck, the International House of Pancakes has stopped more wars than the UN.

Small countries with communist or totalitarian leanings would have to find new ways to gain international legitimacy. As it stands, they get attention by being member nations of the UN and voting along with their buddies to torque off the United States. We saw this during the debate over whether the US should have gone into Iraq, in spite of the fact Saddam Hussein had pretty much told the UN to shove their multiple resolutions against Iraq in an uncomfortable place. (Like the back seat of a

Along with this, the countries of the world would have to figure out how to fix their own problems instead of putting the blame on America. Listening to the UN, you get the impression that we’re the cause of all the ills of the world, from poverty to starvation to the rise of hair metal bands in the 80s and 90s. Okay, I can admit we were responsible for Winger, but the rest of the stuff isn’t exclusively ours. Is it our fault that leaders of countries make bad economic decisions that keep their people poor? No. Is it our fault that many of these same leaders are corrupt and line their own pockets first? No. I’m sure we’d still get blamed for that stuff, but without the UN, those comments would be ignored like Mel Gibson making a speech at a bar mitzvah.

Without a UN, America wouldn’t have to send money to maintain membership. Think about it. Whenever Democrats complain about President Bush’s “overspending” they always look to removing tax cuts. Why not cut out the millions we’re sending to the UN to treat us like a redheaded stepchild? We could get the same treatment in Vegas and it would only cost an extra $50 to be spanked with a cricket bat while you’re dressed as Little Bo Peep…not that I’d know anything about that, mind you.

Some would say we need a United Nations to give everyone a voice. But do we? Consider that there is a universal language out there that speaks louder than any speech ever made before the UN General Assembly, one that even the UN acknowledges as having legitimate power. It’s called money. If some country wants to torque off the world, the best way to handle it is to show disapproval by shutting down any and all economic dealings with that country. Get a few other countries to go along with it, and you can force a change in that country. Plus, it might clear up that corruption problem by getting rid of those who prefer to line their wallets at the expense of the less fortunate. But enough about Kofi Annan.

Plus, we would get rid of the stupid idea of UN sanctions. Saddam Hussein proved how ineffective they are throughout the 90s. After he signed the cease fire that ended the first Gulf War, Saddam considered his options, weighed the consequences accordingly, and went right back to doing what he said he wouldn’t do in the cease fire agreement. The only way sanctions work is if the country having the sanctions put on them is willing to abide by them. What is the UN going to do? Pass another set of sanctions that will be ignored? Oddly enough, that’s exactly what the UN did with Saddam, and we all know how that turned out.

So, what would the world be like without the United Nations?

A lot better, from where I sit.

Thomas Lindaman is a Staff Writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc. and The New Media Alliance is a non-profit (501c3) national coalition of writers, journalists and grass-roots media outlets. He is also Publisher of

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