Fernando Fuster-Fabra's Blog

LEADERS & LIES

December 31, 2012
Leave a Comment

World leaders

 

“Others judge us by our past deeds, we value ourselves on what we are capable of achieving, but it seems no one bothers to evaluate what we are doing here and now.

–       Fernando Fuster-Fabra Fdz.

 

Spanish version: http://wp.me/pRlnf-7C

 

Year 2012 could have been the turning point for the crisis but it has ended being the consolidation of a disastrous style of world governance.

 

The replacement amongst elected and appointed posts in the countries relevant in planning global economy have barely contributed to substantial changes in the governance criteria.

 

A Barack Obama who defaulted on several of his electoral promises during his first term of office ended being reelected whilst the diplomatic incursions of his nation continued leaving dead in the streets of the Middle East. Today, he is still engaged in a tug-of-war with his political adversaries on the brink of the ‘fiscal cliff’, with the worldwide risks same represents for all other state economies.

 

The succession in China has not deterred the tight-fisted censorship that citizens suffer in their path towards global communications thru the new technologies. While they boast of bullet trains, they restrain human rights.

 

European leaders are incapable of reaching an agreement on how to manage a crisis baptized with a name (Euro Crisis) that has little to do with the real situation.  I will not even bother to list down their individual weaknesses as it would turn out to be a never-ending string.

 

Latin America continues being a keg of gunpowder about to vlast depending on who has the lit match in his hand. To mention the extremes, these swing from the inflation down south to the northern assassinations in the hands of the drug mafias.

 

India bears the burden of its most negative traditions, unable to avail of the opportunity of the moment. Corruption, as in many other parts, contaminates the atmosphere just as much its outdated transport system.

 

Russia hardly will ever be a true democracy while people like Putin desire to perpetuate themselves in power. The shadow of the Kremlin hovers like a vulture over its former domains.

 

Japan has just elected a new prime minister of the old school in the hope of salvaging their stagnant economy just as it faces a territorial dispute with neighbouring China over a handful of islands in the China Sea. 

 

The sad truth is that 2012 has been a year wasted by a bunch of leaders who not only did not fulfill but also lied, some rather shamelessly.

 

Who are the ones that control them and who are the true governors of the world?

 

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Sitges – Barcelona, Spain    

Advertisements

KYOTO COUNTDOWN AFTER CANCUN

December 18, 2010
5 Comments

Earth in Peril

 

 

 

 

Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get.

–       Mark Twain

 

*******************************************

 

 

Climate change? Who cares? …. This seems to be the generalised world attitude after a rather tepid Cancun meet that has been marred by Bolivia’s objections about the insufficient agreement reached.

Although the Cancun pact sets up a future billionaire “green” fund for developing countries and in some manner is an advance in greenhouse gas emissions reduction from industrial countries from 25 to 40 per cent in the next 10 years, debate on a much needed definite global pact has been postponed to the 2011 Durban Climate Conference, just a year before the Kyoto Protocol comes to an end.

True to say, China has tried to sell a softer image than its previous hard-line posture in the Copenhagen meet in 2009. Nevertheless, the deferment of the definite global pact may well permit this industrial giant to emit contaminating gases without supervision. Another Asian emerging giant, India, was nudged by the USA to accept emission limitations whilst China and the USA itself seem to skip a much desired supervision of their own emissions.

The Mexican conference president, Foreign Secretary Patricia Espinosa, had a rather relevant role to stop bickering and permit a consensus only Bolivia refused to accept. As she gavelled the end of the 193 countries’ meet, Espinosa breath in relief but was aware that a crack had been opened in the Latin American front.

What is worrying is that the so-called consensus pact reached last weekend has had little repercussion on citizenry comments over the globe. It seems that we, the citizens of the world, have lost not only faith in our leaders’ capability to resolve climate change nut also that we are less interested in this ever-growing problem.

As the clock ticks away the seconds to the finalisation of the Kyoto Protocol, we must admit that the $100 Billion Green Fund is no guarantee that emerging nations will apply same to curtail greenhouse gas emissions in their respective territories. Nor can we be sure that climate change will be channelled accordingly in other aspects of environmental protection, such as is the case of potable water facilities and ocean water protection.

As I see it, the real danger of a conflagration amongst nations in the next decades will revolve around water, its equitable distribution and the rights of all to avail of water resources towards quality of living.

This should make us consider seriously all that goes about around in the geo-political pacts on climate change and environmental resources global administration.

Fernando Fuster-Fabra Fdz.

EU Environmental Consultant

Madrid-Barcelona


G-20, SEOUL: MEETING OF QUESTIONED LEADERS

November 12, 2010
3 Comments

Versión en español:  http://wp.me/pRlnf-1I


A series of meetings commenced in Seoul on Thursday evening amongst the countries that are considered to command the developed and emerging economies of the world. In this their fifth meet after the burst of the financial crisis, the countries belonging to the so-called G-20 Group plus some invited nations (Spain amongst them), shall try to reach an agreement.

 

What agreement must they reach?

 

In previous sessions, measures were adopted but almost none have been carried forward to full extent. Amongst such agreements were: the ‘re-foundation of capitalism’ or ‘strict regulations to curtail banking abuses’, to mention but a few of the numerous good-will statements that have ended in nowhere.

 

Con June 23rd., I wrote that the G-20 meet of Toronto   http://wp.me/pv6EY-4T was the last chance the leaders had to see the crisis from another angle. I reaffirm my previous statement. In the almost six months that have elapsed, world leaders have suffered a loss which makes them less credible than when they commenced to be a group of twenty bent to convert themselves into the new impulsive force of the world economy.

 

U.S. President Barack Obama has long shed his buoyant Nobel Peace Award to suffer his first relevant electoral defeat in the last mid-term elections.

France’s President Nicholas Sarkozy is undergoing is lowest ebb in popularity after a flood of strikes against his retirement age reforms, just as he is about to take over the G-20 rotating presidency. Precisely, he is the leader that so arrogantly announced during the Washington, D.C. summit in December 2008 the ‘re-foundation of capitalism’.

 

The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, virtual winner in the UE arenas with her imposition of part of her criteria on budget deficit cutbacks and regulation measures on EU members’ non-compliance, is not more credible after several electoral defeats and the doubts arisen from her change of views in political affairs such as tax cuts and nuclear power plants closures.

 

Novell British Prime Minister, David Cameron, after some protocol misstep in his visit to China on the way to Seoul, has suffered his first student revolt in absentia whereby the younger Britons acted in a manner not seen since the times of his venerated mentor, Margaret Thatcher.

 

Needless to say that the Italian Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, is not only subjected to an ethical scrutiny of his sexual misdoings but likewise has been practically abandoned to his fate by his parliamentarian supporter to date, the ultra-conservative leader, Gianfranco Fini.

Russian President Dmitri Medvédev still has the shadow cast by his mentor and actual prime minister, Vladimir Putin; a shadow that chases him every step he takes, without knowing who will finally be Russia´s new czar of this millennium.

 

Naoto Kan, Japan’s Prime Minister, had hardly landed when the last G-20 meet was held and no relevant role can be accounted him thus far in the search of a solution of the international crisis. He has enough with trying to keep himself in office longer than his predecessor who resigned after 8 months.

 

The last G-20 host, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper did not obtain a definite final communiqué in the June G-20 summit; hence the widening breach in various fronts that have led to the so-called ‘currency war’ at present. The threat of a G-2 mentioned in June is now a currency war between two adversaries, the USA & china, which brings the world back to the brink of another profound crisis.

 

The aforementioned leaders make up the original G-7 which with Russia added was converted to the G-8. Furthermore, the European Union was given a seat in the G-8 and likewise representation in the expanded G-20. These are the directors, up till the recognition of the G-20 as possible substitute forum, of the destiny of the world economy.

 

The G-20 has given more importance to the emerging powers, of which China, India & Brazil are worth emphasising. In fact, some of their objections to G-7 veteran member stances obliged these to reorient their postures in the last meets of this new economic forum. Furthermore, the emerging members have made their presence known in other forums, some of quite a bit of importance, such as the Doha Round con international trade & commerce and the summits on climate change & environment, the latest held in Copenhagen with a forthcoming event in the next few days at Cancun.

 

The world problem cannot be limited to economic issues and the policies in budget cutbacks but rather should be visualized from another angle based on globalised commercial interaction towards a more balanced distribution of wealth in the framework of sustainable development that doesn’t exterminate or planet nor put an end to its inhabitants’ liberties and social well-being.

 

And such lack of will to descend from their power-seats to see the problem from another angle is putting these questioned leaders at a stalemate, without any capacity to react much less to act correctly.

 

 

Fernando Fuster-Fabra Fdz.

Observer of Human Behaviour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


G-20 TORONTO SUMMIT: LAST CHANCE TO SEE THE CRISIS FROM ANOTHER ANGLE

June 23, 2010
Leave a Comment

Spanish Version              http://wp.me/pRlnf-1a


After a futile Busan meeting of economic ministers earlier this month, hopes of progress and consensus amongst world leaders at the G-20 Summit are scarce.  One inevitable question crops up – Are these government leaders governing their nations and the world for the citizens that elected them or for the financial markets that sway their fragile decisions?

Just as Obama was about to take over at the White House and Spain was first invited into the group, the G-20 met in Washington D.C. under a retreating George Bush. Two other summits, London https://fernandofusterfabra.wordpress.com/2009/04/19/hello-world/ & Pittsburgh https://fernandofusterfabra.wordpress.com/2009/09/26/the-pittsburgh-summit-the-world’s-future/ , have been held since then with practically the same futile results. Chances are that the Toronto summit will be more along the same line.

Whilst the USA has flirted with China in what was dubbed ‘G-2 formula’, the EU has been incapable of having a solid single stance towards international economic policies in the successive summits. Furthermore, the White House is cautious about withdrawing public expenditure hastily meanwhile recovery is hardly convincing. On the contrary, German chancellor, Angela Merkel, has whipped other EU leaders with French President Sarkozy’s consent towards drastic public debt cutbacks in the 27-member club. This opposed views will make it difficult to come to a common ground in the truly indispensible actions G-20 leaders must take without further delay.

Canada’s Prime Minister and summit host, Stephen Harper, is precisely against the only common point between US and European leaders – the levy on bank operations. His posture will probably be used by other leaders from emerging economies to delay any actions that may endanger their respective growth rates. However, this very growth may well be the cause of economic overheating in Brazil, China and India that could put any recovery in serious trouble. Harper, who boasts of Canada´s economy y banking solvency seems to forget that he heads a nations that has steadily lost relevance in worlds affairs and whose banks are too conservative to be a reference as institutions for the New Millennium.

Moreover, China may have apparently made a concession to the USA with regards the Yuan but it would prove naive to consider such tactical move as a definite trend towards Chinese permanent cooperation in all economic and political international issues. On the contrary, this move may well be countered by a rather steadfast stand against any of the US–EU proposal at the Toronto summit.

In a similar manner, Brazil’s outgoing President, Lula Da Silva, in an effort to impress Brazilian electors and assure his proposed successor’s victory will probably play a hard-line strategy against US proposals.

I feel that world leaders continue being incapable to think big https://fernandofusterfabra.wordpress.com/2009/12/29/world-leaders-uncapable-to-think-big/ nor are they creative enough to view the crisis issue from another angle. It is evident that the G-20 meet must start off by recognising the main cause of this sneaky situation. No solutions will ever be effective if free-trade and globalisation isn’t governed by global financial & investment regulations agreed by world leaders and implemented under strict authorized international supervisors. The care-free ways of liberal monetary flows has been unleashed for three decades to produce the existing crisis that may well pervade another decade or so.

Is any world leader brave enough to put the warning bell leash on the market’s unscrupulous misdoings?

Fernando Fuster-Fabra

Barcelona


NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT, BEYOND START II

April 11, 2010
Leave a Comment

Finally, tedious negotiations have brought forth a new disarmament agreement between the two nuclear super powers. The Obama Administration has learned that White House timetables do not necessarily tally with those of other world leaders with their own negotiating strategies.

In a similar manner as the domestic healthcare issue, the historic signing of the new START bilateral agreement in the appropriate scenario of Prague is no guarantee that said goodwill expressed by both U.S. President Obama and Russian President Medvédev will lead to a nuclear non-proliferation as per the NPT  of 1968. Whereas Russia’s Duma will surely ratify the agreement, the U.S. Senate may still present objections to such arms reduction to show the Republican hawkish stance on American military supremacy.

True to say, all American Presidents from the end of the Cold War onwards have signed some sort of arms agreement with the defunct U.S.S.R. and then with Russia. The weakest link may have been during the previous Bush Administrations, where world conflicts elevated tension between these super powers.

However, one must not forget that, neither India nor Pakistan, known to possess nuclear armament, are signees of the NPT. Israel not only has remained adamant to accept said treaty but has so far refused to admit its nuclear potential. In a similar situation but in the process of turning into a nuclear power is Iran. Curiously, these four countries are close to or in the midst of the Middle East hotspot. Besides, one must take into account that both Pakistan and India have borders with another nuclear power, China. Furthermore, China is a firm supporter of yet another potential nuclear developer (North Korea) based in the Far East.

How well will the United States of America and Russia be able to handle the growing nuclear risks in these tension-loaded Middle East & Far East regions?

Under the disguise of uranium enrichment for energetic purposes, any of these states may well be in fact producing nuclear weapons. Such are IAEA suspicions on Iran and North Korea upon their refusal to undergo U.N. supervision.

A meeting called by President Obama in Washington D.C. on April 12-13 where 40 world leaders are expected to discuss the risks of nuclear power in the hands of international terrorism has failed to persuade Israel’s Netanyahu to join in said caucus although it will count with the presence of China’s President Hu Jintao.

The shadow cast by Netanyahu’s absence may not be fully enlightened by the assistance by China’s Hu.

Both Obama and Medvédev are aware that China has yet to fully agree on sanctions to be imposed on Iran by the U.N. Security Council presided by Japan during this current month. China has carefully weighed its decision based on its growing trade relations with Iran, present-day tensed bilateral economic exchange with the United States and the renewed START agreement between Americans and Russians.

On the other hand, Israel and its hawkish Prime Minister are a pain in the neck for the Obama Administration still pending a definite solution plan. Tensed relations have existed ever since Netanyahu took over with a challenging attitude towards White House demands to sit down at a negotiations table with the Palestinian Authority. Far from towing the line, Israel has permanently provoked American emissaries (Biden & Mitchell), refusing to bend down to Obama’s petition for moderation.

Will START II have meant pressing the reset button to minimise all nuclear endeavours in armament or, on the contrary, be the commencement of further underground attempts by potential and/or existing nuclear states bent on having a say on nuclear policies in the international scene?

Fernando Fuster-Fabra Fdz.


OBAMA AFTER COPENHAGEN

December 20, 2009
1 Comment

Almost a year after taking oath of office and with the unexpected Nobel Peace Award to his brief presidential CV, President Obama must be evaluated as to his effective achievements in his first year in the White House.

Surely, media all over the world but more so the U.S. press will undertake a point by point fulfilment analysis of the President’s electoral promises. From a global point of view, one must get down to brass tacks to properly evaluate Obama’s first year in office.

At this point and time, the closing of the U.N. Summit on Climate Change in Copenhagen could be the best indicator of the pressures the U.S. President must have been subjected to in the last twelve months since his historic election.

The U.S. stand on curtailing CO2 emissions showed signs of a shift away from the irresponsible disregard of the Bush Administrations (2000-2008) of the Kyoto Protocol; a new will to participate was expressed upon Obama’s takeover. However, after the Asian Presidential tour in November that ended with a China-US meet, thunder clouds again appeared in the December Copenhagen summit skies.

Obama’s charms lost force and the Chinese Government did not succumb to his persuasive speeches. Moreover, China has a firm grip on U.S. Government Bonds which are the funding source for the Obama’s anti-crisis strategy.

The Asian posture, mainly China and India, have remained unchanged in spite of the President’s efforts during his Beijing summit and at the first dignitary banquet at the White House in honour of India’s Prime Minister Singh. Without the United States and China accepting the European Union’s CO2 cutback proposal and financial scheme, any alternative agreement would be a whitewash that would fall short of all minimum expectations.

And this is exactly what has happened.

Obama’s four-hour negotiations resulted in a lame pronouncement initially only back by India and South Africa, to later add in China and Brazil. President Obama has sought a way out that has put his goodwill relations with the European bloc in jeopardy.

Obama has likewise had his hands pretty tied up at the home front to make any spectacular promises on the principle issues at stake at the Copenhagen meet.  How much of Obama’s climate change posture is due to a need to face up to global challenges for approval of vital bills into laws?

At the outset of the New Millennium’s second decade, the world’s most powerful man Barack Obama, as Head-of-State of a nation whose international supremacy is put to test, must set up a visionary list of priorities in his quest of long-term objectives. A clash of interests among main issues vital before the eyes of the average American such as healthcare, Afghanistan troops, Guantanamo, Iraq withdrawal, unemployment, climate change, sustainability, etc. have been cleverly manipulated to cast the shadow of a doubt as to Obama’s capacity to live up to his campaign promises.

Has Obama’s lukewarm speech before the Copenhagen climate change assembly anything to do with the upcoming voting of indispensible funding and bill approvals on the mentioned issues in the U.S. Senate?

Have potent lobbies influenced the Obama Administration to prevent signing a new protocol that could prejudice vested interests profits and multinational expansion strategies?

There are relevant lessons to learn from Copenhagen. One that cannot be missed is Obama’s failure to live up to expectations in Oslo earlier this month. He now has to double his efforts not only to turn his words into acts but also to end his so-called just wars.

Obama must admit he cannot walk alone towards a better world in peace. We, the people of the world, are watching.


Fernando Fuster-Fabra, Madrid


    PRUEBA GRATIS: Google Apps for Work