The United States during the past 100 years has been a leader in world affairs, but it took the tiny nation of Papua to finally let George Bush know, in no uncertain terms, the world was sick and tired of his obstruction in the fight to end global warming. Kevin Conrad, a delegate from Papua told the United States of America, “If you’re not going to lead, get out of the way.” American delegates spent two weeks of constant obstruction to prevent the nations on planet Earth from accomplishing the goal of reducing global warming. In the end, under incredible pressure from virtually every nation in the world, the Bush administration finally caved in and said it would go along with goals of reducing global pollution in half by 2050. This was a considerable shift from last summer’s Summit 8 meeting where Bush would only promise to “seriously consider” such a goal.
However, in the end, the United States remained conspicuously on the sidelines when it came to establishing goals for 2020. All nations, except the United States, agreed to aim toward a 25%-40% reduction in global pollution by 2020. Bush continues his mantra that American business and our economy will be seriously damaged if America works toward such goals. Perhaps, he can explain why other industrial nations are able to work toward the 2020 goals. In the end, all nations at Bali, except for Burma, signed the agreement. The United States and Burma remained holdouts, Burma on the goal of establishing a roadmap that in two years will replace the Kyoto agreement, and the United States on refusing to agree to 2020 goals.
The behavior of the United States at Bali stands in sharp contrast with American behavior in creating the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan. Our nation once led the world, today, we receive lectures from Papua on how to be an ethical society.