Now is the time to encourage the translation of the idealism, which seems to have inspired Barak Obama, into real changes. One positive effect of recent conflicts and the global economic crisis is that we now have a clear global desire for economic and political reforms and for better protection of human rights, which inevitably risks becoming a casualty when national economies crumble. This envisages a departure from some key aspects of capitalism that have been shown to be inappropriate to a world with a much stronger commitment to international human rights.
We should take note of the growing global distaste for military measures like the Bush response in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, and the recent destructive Israeli operation in Gaza. We Australians, in my view, have become a little too obsessed with the need to keep our guns well oiled, and to acquire a new generation of weapons.
Now is the time for a concerted international move to reduce defence expenditures, so that we can redirect desperately needed resources towards securing a regional and global economic recovery.
– James Dunn, CLA member, Cook ACT, 1 Feb 09