The United States was voted off the UN Human Rights Comission on May 3rd, 2001. However, very few people have stopped to consider the strategy which the U.S.A, employed in response to the vote.

The U.S. was, at the time, in the process of paying approximately $580 million dollars in back dues. After the vote, the U.S. suspended payment on all owed dues. The U.N., at the time, was suffering from a deficit of $75 million dollars, and continues to struggle.

When the criticism fell as it must, the U.S. was seen as fully to blame. When questioned about the dues, the U.S. pointed out that other nations also owed delinquent dues, but were not being focused on. Most were Third World nations who lacked a stable government or economy.

A comparable situation would be a U.S. citizen refusing to pay taxes when he disagreed with a congressional decision. Thoreau aside, the acceptable democratic method of dealing with an unpopular decision is to use one's voting power to oppose it.

The U.S. seems determined to coerce the U.N. into following its political whims; its Security Council veto gives it control over nearly all international decisions; now it can oppose world decisions by witholding funds.

A similar tactic is the U.S.'s vetoing of international peacekeeping missions in response to the Rome Statute, which formed the International Criminal Court. In this case, they are not only holding back democracy but allowing the deaths of civilians across the world.

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