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The US scores surprisingly badly in a new ranking system charting abuses of power by nation states, launched by a group co-chaired by former UK foreign secretary David Miliband.

The US comes close to the median of 163 countries ranked in the Index of Impunity, reflecting a poor record on discrimination, inequality and access to democracy. The country’s arms exports and record of violence are an even bigger negative factor.

The US ranks worse on impunity than Hungary and Singapore, one a poster child for democratic backsliding and the other an illiberal democracy.

The UK performs creditably at 147, only 26 rankings away from the most accountable state. Its score is brought down by its protection of offshore tax havens that facilitate tax abuse in other countries.

So, err, why is the internal inequality in the US something that is a measure of the impunity of the abuse of power by he United States?

Answer – because inequality is the Left’s new theory of everything.

15 thoughts on “Umm, what?”

  1. Hmmm.. The Guardian, usually only too happy to link through to the Damning Reports, is unusually light on actual references in the article. Very light. As in : none.

    And the only “Index of Impunity” I can actually find on the web is about journalists killed on the job v/s population size and some sundries. And that only shows a top 10…

    If the report is so groundbreaking and novel-approach-y and Bees’ Knees-ish… You’d think you could find it online easily enough…

  2. Here it is – I had to search around for it but it was published this morning – you have to register to download it so will do later on:

    Here’s the key findings:

    The legacy of colonialism and the slave trade is correlated with higher impunity scores. Nearly all the 20 countries with the highest levels of impunity are former colonies or countries affected by colonialism. Similarly, about one-third of the 30 worst-ranked countries were affected by the slave trade. However, while impunity scores are informed by circumstance, they can be molded by policy choices: some countries that have suffered from the historical legacy of slavery and colonization such as Ghana and Senegal, score well on the Atlas.

    Of course they’re not coming to a predetermined conclusion in this instance….

    Environmental degradation is where impunity continues to thrive, even among otherwise accountable societies. Canada, which is one of the best performing countries on the Atlas and traditionally scores well on similar indices, is only moderately better than the mean in terms of environmental degradation. India, China, Russia, and the US—all among the largest greenhouse gas (GHG) emitters globally—place 20th, 70th, 78th, and 101st, respectively.

    If we didn’t have fossil fuels a large proportion of the populations of these countries would probably be dead.

    Violence against women and gender-based discrimination is a global problem. This type of impunity negatively affects the human rights and conflict and violence scores of theocracies such as Afghanistan. But it also affects some liberal democracies, states in conflict such as Syria, and peaceful countries including South Korea.

    I’d say it mainly affects countries where militant shirtlifters offer death threats against ‘TERFs’ or people brave enough to stand up to them – but I am guessing that doesn’t feature in the report.

    Human rights are being abused and accountability is falling within democracies. Certain democratic countries that perform well on the unaccountable governance dimension perform substantially worse on the abuse of human rights. In fact, Singapore, which is not a full-fledged liberal democracy, ranks better on unaccountable governance than certain democracies. Weaker democracies such as Mexico, Kenya, and Ukraine are scored on par with non-democratic countries including Jordan and the UAE.

    The role of unaccountable supranational left wing bureaucracies and private corporations in severely curtailing freedom of expression and action is apparently just hunky dory.

    I look forward to reading the whole thing but on the face of it it would appear to be like much a lot of ‘research’ in UK and US academia. A piece of work designed to reach a preordained conclusion.

  3. “I look forward to reading the whole thing”

    Read it for me too, VP. I can’t risk the brain damage by doing it myself.

  4. Its score is brought down by its protection of offshore tax havens that facilitate tax abuse in other countries.

    So not using one’s tax power is an abuse of power.

    And as an American, I have to say the US should be brought down the list for the way the courts are increasingly being used as a political weapon against the Icky Class that supported Trump.

  5. Ted S

    Hope the Catskills are treating you well – nice part of the world!

    I always find it amusing to point out that the argument against ‘tax havens’ boils down to apparent annoyance that the people of somewhere like North Korea have an obligation to be oppressed by their government, and ‘tax abuse’ limits the government’s freedom to oppress.

    The whole thing has been rumbled by Murphy’s insane comments on ‘country by country reporting’ where oil companies have been critiqued for doing as he asked – … He and his ilk are brigands- nothing less..

  6. Jim – depressingly sound conjecture, that.

    V_P – your fondness for the Catskills leads me to wonder whether your first name isn’t Rip.

  7. Are they still churning out these “studies” trying to show that the country half the world is trying to get into is worse than the ones they’re trying to get away from? They’ve never fooled anyone with a functioning brain, and they never will. But they keep trying. Einstein had a name for that.

  8. Bloke in North Dorset

    So a bunch of progressive lefties come up with a measure that compares countries and the USA does badly. I’ll be nobody saw that one coming.

    OT but talking of lefties. I didn’t realise how bad this Qatar EU bribery scandal was until I saw they’re even arresting socialists. It must have been really egregious if the authorities noticed it over their usual witch hunt of the right.

  9. Yeah Jim. When I look at their map, the only non-white non-Western country to get a nice green look is Namibia.

    Interesting to see they don’t classify Greenland or Western Sahara. I suppose Western Sahara is taboo. The ‘refugees’ there are supported in their right to murder with impunity by all the leftists.

  10. Which timeframe is the study looking at? Is this before or after England and France took over virtually every country in the world?

  11. David Miliband: Richard Murphy with a degree from Oxford.

    A PPE degree, which is basically a certificate of attendance.

  12. BiND, I think the whole Quatar-Eu thing is because those arrested socialists “forgot” to tie their mates in when it came to that particular pecuniary trough.

    And they Got Caught.. A deadly sin for any politician, but more so for the socialists..

  13. “David Miliband: Richard Murphy with a degree from Oxford.”

    David was wangled into Oxford by his marxist academic father and his cronies. A bit like La Toynbee, perhaps.

    I’ve not seen the same point made about his brother Ed.

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