With the UN serving as a portal into the U.S., the tyrants of Iran, Venezuela and affiliates have been whooping it up this week at the UN General Assembly. On moral or political grounds, these global gangsters don’t even deserve entry to New York. But, in the interest of seeing whether Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have at least solid financial grounds for appropriating the UN as their personal frat party, I had a look at the always entertaining list of member state dues for the UN’s $1.9 billion “core” 2006 budget.
Iran, with 67 million people, pays .157%, or $3 million. Venezuela, with 26 million people, pays .171%, or $3.2 million.
Just to pick a handy standard of comparison, Israel, with only 7 million people, pays .467%, or $9 million. In other words, the oil-rich states of Iran and Venezuela, put together , pay only slightly more than two-thirds of what Israel contributes all by itself.
All this is utterly dwarfed by the U.S. contribution of 22%, or $423.4 million. And that’s just a small fraction of the real river of U.S. money flowing into the UN, which, including voluntary contributions, will top $5.3 billion for this year alone — more than one-quarter of the UN’s real budget of about $20 billion (when it comes to money at the UN, there’s always more to the story). Anyway, folks — Kofi Annan rang the peace bell this morning, so it’s not as if nothing useful gets done over there. Your tax dollars at work.