Saturday, July 28, 2012

The UN Arms Treaty, AKA The Lawyer Full Employment Act

The UN and its supporters, e.g., the NY Times, the LA Times, Amnesty International, etc., are busy pushing a so-called global arms treaty (full text here).

Like all UN texts, this treaty has high-flying language that sets out all sorts of noble purposes and aspirations. I have written many, many times before that the real purpose of 99% of UN resolutions is slowly, sometimes subtly, to change definitions and alter the very language we use when discussing a topic. While the vast majority of UN resolutions do not have the force of law, they seek to alter the battlefield of ideas so that one finds himself using UN terms and relying on UN data and definitions. When I worked at the UN, under the Reagan administration, we fought ferociously, for example, against persistent UN efforts to define "individual rights" not as limitations on the power of the state and as something which accrues to an individual merely for being alive, but as something that is given by the state to the individual. We were quite successful, but since then the US position has softened, and we have bought off on the idea of social and economic rights which require the state to do something to secure. We find ourselves losing the battle on rights at the UN and the OAS, as a consequence. Rights, in essence, are now whatever the state says they are,

This UN text, however, goes beyond just definitional games and abstract debates. This proposes to be a full-blown treaty; it would have the power of law. For anybody concerned with individual rights, especially the right of an individual to self-defense, this treaty poses enormous problems. Read the text yourself and you will find them one after another. The treaty, as with all liberal/leftist efforts, seeks a massive role for the state and an implied one for lawyers, in those countries, such as ours, where we take the law seriously. Look at Article I, for example. The objectives laid out there would require an enormous new body of law and regulations to be drafted and implemented in the US; it would require it to be drafted in such a way as "to establish the highest possible common standards for regulating or improving regulation of the international trade in conventional arms." In other words, we would have to try to bring our laws and regulations into sync with those of the rest of the world. I do not need to spell out what that means when it comes to bearing arms.

Articles 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 comprise the core of the treaty. These articles would provide endless employment activity for "activists' and their lawyers. They establish obligations on the "State Parties" that would, in essence, kill the trade in small arms. The language about weapons "being diverted to the illicit market," or "used to commit or facilitate gender-based violence or violence against children" means endless lawsuits against exporting and importing states, manufacturers, and sellers. While the ostensible purpose is international trade, that would quickly become a domestic legal issue in the US. Say, for example, that a Glock, either one made in Austria or in a Glock factory in the US, were used for "illicit" purposes or was involved in an incident of "gender-based violence" in the US, the lawsuits would be ferocious. The threat of constant legal action effectively would halt the export and import of small arms--at least from and to those countries that take laws and treaty obligations seriously. The treaty would provide the basis for additional US domestic legislation that would incorporate the UN language and ideas into our laws. Private firm gun manufacturing and sales would be halted by the constant threat of lawsuits.

While proponents claim that the UN Treaty would not infringe on the second amendment rights of Americans, that is a lie. The purpose of the treaty is to circumvent the second amendment by destroying the small arms industry and trade. It is an effort at a gun ban. They know that and we know that.

14 comments:

  1. So. They know and we know that they are trying to subvert our constitution. This is an act of aggression. Why do we need to pander to aggressors? Why not just treat them as aggressors? Is there anything the UN contributes to, rather than skims from?

    I find my inclination to abandon the UN only grows stronger with time.

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    1. The problem is that this administration has gone along with the negotiations. In the old days, we would have announced from the start that we want nothing to do with this, would vote against it, would reduce our contribution to the UN by the amount used to administer or enforce the treaty, and would not consider ourselves bound by it.

      That was Reagan; compare him to what we now have.

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  2. At HotAir dot Com:
    it looks like the UN won’t get a chance to dictate terms of the Second Amendment any time soon.

    HotAir is the only place I am seeing this reported...

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    1. It won't be dealt with before the election.

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  3. Article 20 is also intended as a back door to significant gun control mischief once the treaty is ratified. Curious on whether our ppl negotiated that language in specifically or just accepted it cheerfully.

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  4. The UN. Mischief waiting to happen. Because they know best how other people should live. What could go wrong?

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  5. Article 11 sounds like it is a great way to register guns.

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  6. I am increasingly distressed with the UN and the manner in which it interferes in our domestic affairs. And I am increasingly convinced we should get out of the UN, stop our funding, and get it out of the US. I do not think the organization can continue without our financial support (as UNESCO was discovering when we pulled our support) and I find it stupid beyond belief that we should fund an institution that works against us.

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  7. Mr. Mad, I'll bet you know Charles Hill, with his similar resume and views. He is writing primarily about the UN and how Obama has botched foreign relations – { { "The democracy wave that began 20 years ago [at the end of the Cold War] is now turning backward." Why? "The conduct of the Obama administration." } }

    Hill also touches on the underlying problem, in agreement with his Yale colleague David Gelernter:

    { { "What I'm beginning to see is that when you try to explain something like this to someone, they don't have any idea what you're talking about. They just don't get it. But you wrecked your educational system the way we have. I'm talking about fourth grade, not higher education."

    He talks about his aunt, who was principal of a middle school. The library was "incredible." Students read "Tacitus or Horace or Caesar's 'Gallic Wars.' Now we don't teach that. And we don't teach American history." } }

    See:
    Charles Hill: The Empire Strikes Back
    http://professional.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443343704577552821956795292.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop&mg=reno64-wsj

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  8. "it would have the power of law"
    The Law does not go where enforcement cannot reach.
    That is why China hasn't left Tibet, or Russia Georgia.
    Any politician attempting to weaken the 2nd amendment has no future in America.
    I'm not sure why anyone pays any attention to the UN. One of the first things a potential commander is taught is to not give orders you know will not be obeyed. The UN is in the position of making rules nobody follows, giving orders that are ignored. It has become even more of a farce then when it was created.

    Haji can't shoot.

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  9. I am overcome by my guilt that the USA has monopolized the UN since its inception. Our imperialist occupation of that organization must come to an immediate end. I propose that the USA atone for its UN sins by relinquishing its stranglehold on the UN's location and permitting it to be free. I think that an acceptable penance would be to move the UN to Mombasa and to raze the existing Turtle Bay building so we can begin the healing process. Then the truly free people of the Earth could meet in an atmosphere of hope and change, safe from the horror of being located in NYC. Well it is a glorious dream anyway...

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  10. The OldMan is wise beyond his years...

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  11. Mass Shooters everywhere agree, Catcher in the Rye leads to full employment of lawyers and less guns on the street. Is that twinkle twinkle little start I hear ... ?

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  12. Hello! Let me first highlight the fact that you definitely have built a cool site. Also I want to know one thing. Do you consider the option to write in a professional way or online blogging is a of yours?

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