NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


October 20, 2005

Paul Volcker, who led the probe into the United Nation' (U.N.) oil-for-food scandal, now suggests the organization should suffer financially if it doesn't reform. It's an idea that has merit. How well it would work, though, depends on how far the United States and its Western allies are willing to cut the dues they pay to prop up this organization, says Investor's Business Daily (IBD).

Unfortunately, Volcker opposes the very thing that might make his idea work: The United States unilaterally withholding U.N. dues.

  • American taxpayers spend nearly $4 billion a year on the United Nations, says IBD.
  • American taxpayers foot nearly a quarter of the U.N.'s total budget and almost a fourth of its peacekeeping tab.
  • They also provide the U.N. with a free tract of pricey land on the East River in New York -- a massive hidden subsidy.

If the United States withheld its dues from the U.N., the organization would be in deep financial straits. A better idea might be for the United States to lead the creation of a new international body of nations - whose members would be democratic governments, not the dictators and kleptocrats that now run wild at the U.N.

Source: Editorial, "Dues Consideration," Investor's Business Daily, October 20, 2005.


Browse more articles on International Issues