The New Burkeian

Reflections on the Revolution in Conservatism

Monday, January 03, 2005

Tsunami (or The True Benefits of Civil Society)

With the unprecedented damage and destruction of the recent Indian Ocean tsunami, the real nature of Democratic civil societies can be seen. The stories of individuals doing their part to help people in need is overwhelming. Whether it is a cab driver in Baltimore who hands out envelopes for donations, or the people at my work wanting to actually go to the effected areas to contribute, Americans are doing what they can to help. And American individuals and NGOs are already on the ground doing their part.

Forgive me for using a terrible tragedy to further my views on the Actionary cause to spread Democracy. Understand that I am only showing the true power of civil society to make the world a better place.

It has recently come to my attention that all Aid efforts by the US are being coordinated through an independent group of nations involving the likes of Japan, India, Australia, and Singapore. Meanwhile, the UN is having conferences at 5-Star hotels to determine the best way to administer Aid. Consider this piece by the Diplomad:

In this part of the tsunami-wrecked Far Abroad, the UN is still nowhere to be seen where it counts, i.e., feeding and helping victims. The relief effort continues to be a US-Australia effort, with Singapore now in and coordinating closely with the US and Australia. Other countries are also signing up to be part of the US-Australia effort. Nobody wants to be "coordinated" by the UN. The local UN reps are getting desperate. They're calling for yet another meeting this afternoon; they've flown in more UN big shots to lecture us all on "coordination" and the need to work together, i.e., let the UN take credit. With Kofi about to arrive for a big conference, the UNocrats are scrambling to show something, anything as a UN accomplishment. Don't be surprised if they claim that the USS Abraham Lincoln is under UN control and that President Lincoln was a strong supporter of the UN.

What's important here is that this independent group of nations (all Democratic with Free Societies) has coordinated an effort to alleviate the suffering of those affected by the tsunami outside of the UN super-bureaucracy. While the UN is flying officials to posh hotels along the Indian Ocean, Americans and others are on the ground doing their part. Much of this occured before the US announcement of the amount of Aid to be granted. This is because individuals within our civil society decided to help before even our government could do anything.

Individuals and their ability to accomplish extraordinary things is inherent within Democractic civil societies. Individuals can decide how their time and resources can best be spent. This all relies on the basic assumption that people are naturally good and compassionate. I think the enormous outpouring of Aid has proven that. Americans do not need the UN, or even their own government, to tell them how to help people. It comes naturally.

This is a huge victory for the Administration, and Democracy in general, in the WoT. This is what Democracy is really all about. Individual people are doing what they can to make the world a better place. It also highlights the UN's inability to deal with the problems of the world in a quick and efficient manner. If the UN cannot even get their Aid effort going by now, no wonder the US decided to act against Iraq after a decade of Saddam's violations against UN Security Resolutions. These issues were not going to be dealt with effectively.

Understand that it is the coalition of Democracies that are coordinating the relief effort most effectively. It was the coalition of Democracies that dealt with Saddam effectively. And it is the coalition of Democracies that will win the WoT. The power of Democracy does not come from governments, resources, or military might. Power comes from the ability of individuals to decide to help. Civil societies create those individuals. And when individuals are truly allowed to decide their own fate, good things come to the world. It is sad that it takes the tragedies of a tsunami or a Saddam Hussein to show us that. The inherent good of mankind will prevail, though. The New Burkeian has always believed this.

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