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Professional comments: global ethical human rights to replace neoliberal absolutism

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Professional comments: global ethical human rights to replace neoliberal absolutism.

Anthony Ravlich
Human Rights Council (New Zealand)
10D/15 City Rd.,
Auckland City.
Ph: (0064) (09) 940.9658

The following are some of the comments made (and some of my replies) after my posts in late March and May 2013 on a social networking site (linkedin) mainly for professionals.
The posts deal with our council’s promotion of an ethical approach to human rights, development, globalization (in brief, global ethical human rights) to replace neoliberalism which has, in my view, morphed into a neoliberal absolutism (see below) i.e. very extreme ‘top-down’ control.
Global ethical human rights is steadily growing in support, including high profile support (see anthony ravlich’s blog, guerilla media), despite being banned by the mainstream media. To my knowledge since my book (see below) describing the foundations of the ethical approach was released in 2008 it has never been made known to the general public.
I have a duty in my work to inform people of important truths and do not believe any such truths should be kept ‘in-house’ even on social networking sites.
The following is the March post:
“Reaching full potential: ethical human rights, development and globalization for World Peace to replace Neoliberalism”.
“Global ethical human rights is described briefly as follows:
(1) An ethical human rights requires the core minimum (at least) of all the rights in Universal Declaration of Human Rights for all. This would entail survival with dignity PLUS the added dignity of self-help (including a voice in the mainstream, without any discrimination). This would be sufficient for the individual (and consequently the State and the World) to reach his/her full potential. The core minimum rights are ensured but higher levels need to be earned.
The principle involved is the equal status of civil and political rights and economic, social and cultural rights at the level of the core minimum obligations of the State.
Both ‘survival rights’ and ‘self-help rights’ are encapsulated in Article 22, UDHR, which states: “Everyone has the right to social security and is entitled to realization…..of the economic, social and cultural rights indispensible for his dignity and the free development of his personality”.
(2) There is an emphasis on an ethical ‘bottom-up’ development e.g. small social/ economic entrepreneurs, small/medium business, and new, original ideas to forge new paths into the future with such development of human knowledge (e.g. space travel may be necessary for human survival) to be based on the individual rather than determined ‘top-down’. This would, in my view, mean far greater employment.
For example, Article 2(1) of the Declaration on the Rights to Development describes ‘bottom-up’ development: “The human person is the central subject of development and should be the active participant and beneficiary of the rights to development”.
(3) An ethical globalization requires an ethical human rights 'bottom-line' for all States - to protect against extreme ‘top-down’ control by the State as well as ensuring fair competition without exploitation (e.g. China and India would not get an unfair competitive advantage by exploiting their workforce). Ethical globalization does not require regionalization so States do not have to forgo considerable national sovereignty.
This is not a return to protectionism. For example, people can be informed e.g. labeling of goods, where imports are made, for example, with child or sweatshop labour. As well as ensuring no such exploitation takes place it provides opportunities for domestic production.
(4) There are also duties. Article 29(1) states: “Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible” i.e. all have duties including groups and associations, the Corporations, Public Bodies including Academia, as well as political, racial, religious groups etc.
While individuals have duties it is the ultimate duty of the State to ensure all have (at least) their core minimum human rights but also has a duty, where necessary, to help other States achieve theirs.
The following are some of the comments on the above:
B. Sheka, CEO & Human Right Expert, Sierra Leone stated:
“Yes! Yes! Reaching full potential by women and youth human rights is a challenge in Sierra Leone. Practically, local chiefs continue to extort monies from poor women”.
Nelson Owusu Ntiamoah, Executive Director at Local Government Agency on Reproductive and Material Health stated:
“I love what I'm reading Anthony, this reinforces my years of advocacy for bottom-up development that reflects the ideals of human-face and human rights development. This must be the message for the years ahead!”
Stephen Bell, IT Infrastructure and Support Team leader, New Zealand, asked:
“Where does morality fit into this?”
My response: an example of a moral code is the Golden Rule which states that, "One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself."
If you do not have, at the very least, the core minimums of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights you would be living in a situation of extreme violence (includes extreme poverty) which equals slavery or worse.
So according to the Golden Rule if you do not want to be treated as a slave then one
shouldn't treat others as slaves.
Muhammad Salaam, Citizens Council for Human Rights and Salaam Legal Network, United States, states:
“Helen Keller said..... " The world is full of suffering and it's also full of overcoming it ". Human Rights are natural rights and innate values, that should never be compromised nor taken for granted. Neo-liberalism shares no societal balance nor humanistic fairness, that can produce true spirituality and peace within a just society. It simply breeds hate, discontent and *deceptive *intelligence, which rationalizes disobedience to God”.
The following is the May post:
“Neoliberal Absolutism, in my view, is official i.e. international law (OP to ICESCR), as from today (Geneva Time). It involves very extreme top-down control which aims to eliminate individual rights.
“International law (Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights) entering into force today (Geneva Time) means economic, social and cultural rights have equal status with civil and political rights but because it has been made compatible with the IMF’s neoliberal economic policies it means that what the world is now seeing is all aspects of human life covered by the UDHR being subjected to very extreme ‘top-down’ control to eliminate individual rights, including individual economic and social rights”.
Juan Blesa, international lawyer, adjunct professor at various universities, Spain, stated:

“Hi Anthony, I just read your post and I am very excited about your ideas. I basically agree with you and would like to know more about your views.
I currently work on international public authority and extraterritorial corporate liability for human rights violations in European law, particularly EU, German and Spanish law. I also prepare for publication my phd dissertation, which deals with UN exercise of public authority in the so-called failed states.
I am fairly fascinated by critical appraisals. Trouble is, when it comes to law, one cannot usually say that it provides for solely one type of policy. Rather, it allows political institutions in charge of their application for a broad margin of appreciation. So one cannot easily talk about "bad laws" in an evil sense, but just about weak regulation and definitely evil policy (you call it absolutism, which is fairly evil, right?).
Interestingly, I was thinking about writing something about the OP 'cause I'm suspicious about some of the same points you are. I mean, it is just the same story as the millennium goals right? On the one hand you call for the actual implementation of basic human rights, on the other you want the world to continue relying on the very same neoliberal gobalized economy which is depriving millions of them. Keep them uncritical with regard to the fundamental flaws of the global financial speculatory and market economy, based on neo-slave work.
I am interested in knowing more about the global ethical approach you proposed. What exactly do you mean by "left-tribal" interests as opposed to individual rights? Is this some kind of development of Zizek's ideas? I find those very interesting and strongly support moral approaches to HRs, rather than purely legalistic or technocratic, but honestly, I'm a bit suspicious about it and would love to get it straight.
But, since my profile on linkedin is not up-to-date, I'll tell you that I am an international lawyer from Spain. I work as external researcher in international law, particularly human rights, and as adjunct professor at various universities (currently I teach EU human rights policy at the International University of Andalusia -Spain, and intercultural communication at the university of Hamburg, among other things).
I look forward to future cooperation and exchange on these issues.
Thank you for your post and your consideration”.
Marcus Czarnecki MA, Restorative Practices Champion, UK, stated:
“Hi Anthony - not sure I understand the significance of this...or can think it through as I am not acquainted with the concepts, can you explain its effects in simple terms please?”.
My response: “I hope to answer your question more fully in my next book dealing with neoliberal absolutism. I have already written a considerable amount on neoliberalism and the alternative ethical approach to human rights, development and globalization. In the short term, my research indicates, economic, social and cultural rights means greater social responsibilities placed on the Corporations. In my opinion, increased bureaucratic control will lead to the decline of the Corporations and independent sector as well as right-wing politics - this is to achieve greater political unification in order to more effectively implement more extreme 'top-down' control.
While in the population I see more people turning inwards (no great dreams for the future of humanity, no seeking of truth, no authenticity) because development is determined from the 'top-down' rather than the 'bottom-up' i.e. from the individual. Their truth is political (in their interests) so it is necessary (in the public interest) to eliminate the major threat that universal truth, including the global ethical human rights approach I promote, poses to their ideology. My guess is that the left-tribal interests, largely based on descent/social status at birth at the UN, are playing for time”.
Klaudio Vinkerlic, Research Croatia Economics, states:
Two thoughts on “Why would people agree to give corporations and people who hate people, more power than people themselves? Did our elected false-idol worshipping leaders write heart out of the laws, in order to create society that is completely ruled by the evil eye mind? In order to get our lives back, we will need to re-write every single law and put heart back in it… our experiment with heartlessnesswill then be complete.”
Roger Lewis, Little Ear and Junior Anarchist at Viking Sound Cooperative, Sweden states:
Quote from Spinoza:
‎"It has been the one song of those who thirst after absolute power that the interest of the state requires that its affairs should be conducted in secret... But the more such arguments disguise themselves under the mask of public welfare, the more oppressive is the slavery to which they will lead... Better that right counsels be known to enemies than that the evil secrets of tyrants should be concealed from the citizens. They who can treat secretly the affairs of a nation have it absolutely under their authority; and as they plot against the enemy in time of war, so do they against the citizens in time of peace." Spinoza, Tractatus Politicus, 1676
Brush up your Spinoza, The revolution is only around the corner and it seems Spinoza callled em as he saw them upsetting the suits and befrocked of the time. Call em as you see em you will be suprised how many people are sensing and intuiting the same problems. As with all abuse we are groomed not to speak put.
Baruch Spinoza (24 November 1632 -- 21 February 1677) — later Benedict de Spinoza — was a Jewish-Dutch philosopher. R...

Atika Lohani, PhD law student of Dundee, Scotland, UK. Assistant Professor of Law, University of Sargodha, Pakistan states:
Thanks Anthony I am doing literature review on ICESCR and your post has been a part of this effort. I would like to share your work, opinion as well.
My response: I consider that the adoption of the Optional Protocol to ICESCR at the UN in Dec 2008 was very much an ideological decision (and resulted, in my view, in the global financial crash in 2009). In your review you might like to look at the work of Arne Vandenbogaerde, Human Rights Consultant, and Wouter Vandenhole, Professor of Human Rights Law, UNICEF Chair in Children’s Rights, University of Antwerp Law Research School, who state in the abstract to their article: “In this article it is submitted that the text of the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, as finally adopted on 10 December 2008, is to be seen as the outcome of a drafting process that was dominated by ideological prejudices rather than concerns with potential effectiveness of rights…… At times an absolutist search for consensus seems to have been the driving force behind weakening the text” (The Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: an Ex Ante Assessment of its Effectiveness in Light of the Drafting Process, Human Rights Law Review (2010), May, 2010)
Joseph Ndibuagu, Principle Legal Officer at Ekene Ndiguagu at Co Nigeria, states:
[Joseph Ndibuagu is also responding to a link I provided in the above post where I made harsh (but justified in my view) criticisms of human rights leadership at the United Nations, see a recent letter entitled ‘Tell the World: Ethical human rights, development, globalization to replace neoliberalism’, which is contained in my ethical human rights plan for youth published by 3 Quarks Daily on 8 May 2013, http://www.3quarksdaily.com/3quarksdaily/2013/05/the-new-anarchists.html ].
Anthony, permit to say that I find it extremely difficult to agree with your thesis that that the entering into force of the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and its perceived compatibility with IMF supposed neoliberal economic policies means that "all aspects of human life covered by the UDHR" is now "subjected to very extreme ‘top-down’ control to eliminate individual rights, including individual economic and social rights". 

My humble view is that the reverse is the case. Let us call to mind that the Protocol obliges its parties to recognize the competence of the Committee on Economic Social and Cultural Rights to consider complaints from individuals. A forum that makes it possible for individuals to enforce their rights as protected by The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) cannot pose a danger to the same rights it seeks to protect.
Accordingly, I find myself unable to see how this can, as you posited, eliminate individual rights and freedoms. Moreover, it is difficult to see how either ICESCR, its Protocol (that just came into force), or IMF economic policies, conflict with avowed States right to self-determination, or even hamper state sovereignty in any way. I congratulate you on your work in trying to develop and sell to the world your "global ethical approach". I am sure that the United Nations will have and attentive ear to anything that will make the world better. Without holding their brief, I feel sure to state that the very eminent and distinguished persons you passed out as "ignorant, cowardly, and paranoid human rights leaders" will always welcome better ideas with a smile.

(My book referred to above is 'Freedom from our social prisons: the rise of economic, social and cultural rights' (Lexington Books, 2008) which was recommneded on the United Nations website for about two years and sets out the foundations of global ethical human rights).


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