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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • The US promised to pay the dues. It doesn't really matter beyond that--if the payment of the dues to the UN isn't unconstitutional, and they're not (the constitution doesn't forbid entering into treaties or agreements that involve payment, nor does it binding on the non-US governmental parties in the agreements the US makes), we have an obligation.

    We promised. We pay. If we don't want to meet obligations we've agreed to, we should bail on the agreements.
    • Back a few years ago we did promise to pay the rest of the dues IF certain conditions (reforms and such) were met by the UN. I know of no unconditional promise. Now, Clinton and his ambassadors promised, but they have no legal authority to make such a promise. So I am not sure which promise you are referring to.
      • We promised to pay the dues when we joined. If at some point we didn't want to cough up the cash, we should've left the UN. We didn't.

        We were instrumental in setting up the club. We joined the club. We knew the financial obligations involved in being in the club. We never left the club.

        We owe the dues. Period. If we don't want to pay, we shouldn't play, and resign our UN membership.
        • Let's be clear what the US did: it ratified the UN Charter, which is not an unqualified promise to pay, but an agreement that if we don't pay, that the UN may enact a specific penalty, the removal of our right to vote in the General Assembly.

          There is no actual obligation to pay. There is no promise to pay. There is no "owing" of dues. The UN Charter has a process for nonpayment and that process involves taking away a vote, not resignation.

          The US in ratifying the UN Charter did not give the UN a blank c
          • Let's be clear what the US did: it ratified the UN Charter, which is not an unqualified promise to pay, but an agreement that if we don't pay, that the UN may enact a specific penalty, the removal of our right to vote in the General Assembly.


            That sounds like the US once stated (officially) that "yeah the UN is good idea" and hasn't had anything to do with it since.

            The US has done far more than that. It has acted as a member of the UN and participated in its operation.

            If you're going to actively parti
            • That sounds like the US once stated (officially) that "yeah the UN is good idea" and hasn't had anything to do with it since. The US has done far more than that. It has acted as a member of the UN and participated in its operation.

              Of course. My intent clearly was never to imply what you said it sounds like. My intent was to state the fact that there is no legal obligation to pay.

              If you're going to actively participate in a club, you ought to pay the appropriate dues. If you disagree about what is appr
              • I just want to clarify something in case it's been missed: I am not against payment of the UN assessments. What I am against is treating it as though this money is promised by virtue of prior ratification of the UN Charter; that the US is legally required or obligated to pay it; that the result of nonpayment should be leaving the UN.

                I feel I've demonstrated that none of those things are true: the only legally binding promise allowed by our Constitution is that of Congress appropriating a specific amount;
          • This reasoning seems sound, however does the US ever wag its finger at other countries who withhold paying dues, but contribute financially in some other way? For example, do some other countries financially support a particular UN program, but withhold their dues for fiscal or political pressure from time to time? Since I know next to nothing about the UN save what I learned in high school decades ago...why am I even bothering to reply? :\
          • "There is no actual obligation to pay."

            The always subjective concept of "legal obligation" depends on two things: what laws you consider valid, and whether you think that law is the only source for obligations.

            Personally I say that seeking to do the bare legal minimum in any enterprise is not exactly aiming one's sights very high. "I'm such a legalist/literalist Coffee Achiever that if I did one whit less than what I'm doing now, I'd be hauled into court!! WOOHOO!"

            • No, there actually is no legal obligation outside of Congressional approval of specific funds. There is nothing subjective about it. There is no law or treaty or regulation whatsoever relating to the United States that obligates payment.

              In other words, it cannot be about what laws I consider valid, since there is no law anywhere, valid or not, which provides such obligation in the first place.

              And your vain attempt at moralizing the issue is specious in light of the fact that I was very clear, several ti
              • It's further odd that you would characterize what the United States has done for the United Nations -- that is, far more than any other nation -- as the "bare minimum" in any case.

                Your vain attempt at vain tempting is vain! I said nothing of the sort. Altho you apparently inferred that I did. I legally oblige you to give me a donut now.

                Yow! Are we in law school yet?

                • You were either implying that the US has done the bare minimum, or that I (or someone else, who wasn't invovled in this discussion) was advocating the bare minimum. Perhaps it is the latter; though I was very clear that I was advocating no such thing, so the implication wasn't reasonable in any case.

                  As to giving you donuts, no, there's no such obligation, though there was an agreement that if I don't provide a donut, you get to ignore me on #perl ... but whatever.