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What did President Clinton accomplish on his 12-day swing through Africa?
He attacked his own country for its role in the slave trade, “neglect” of Africa in years before he was president and for failing to stop the genocide in Rwanda.
He embarrassed himself and Catholics all over the world by accepting the sacrament of Communion in a Mass in South Africa.
And he handed out goodies — lots of goodies — in the form of monetary commitments paid for by you and me.
Though the main purpose of the trip was supposed to be to encourage new trade and paving the way for new U.S. commercial investment, the president also pledged to increase direct taxpayer aid to Africa by $130 million. Currently, Congress authorizes $700 million in foreign aid to Africa.
“Trade cannot replace aid when there is still so much poverty, flooding, encroaching deserts, drought, violence, threatened food supplies, malaria, AIDS and other diseases,” Clinton explained.
Clinton also outlined other assistance programs coming in the form of $500 million in U.S.-backed loan guarantees for U.S. companies building roads, airports, ports and other infrastructure on the continent. Clinton’s budget also sets aside $1.6 billion in debt relief for Africa.
On virtually every stop the president made on his tour, he waived your money around.
Visiting a primary school in Uganda, Clinton pledged $120 million in aid for African schools to train more teachers and to connect African children to the Internet. The U.S. already spends $10 million a year combating illiteracy in Uganda.
He promised $60 million to Uganda and four other African nations to increase food production.
He promised a new $1.2 million program to improve safety at African airports.
Announced a new program to monitor climate change on the continent — a project that will reportedly cost NASA $200,000.
Pledged $30 million to strengthen the judicial system in the Great Lakes region encompassing Rwanda, Congo and Burundi. The money would be used to train judges, prosecutors and police.
Contributed $2 million to Rwanda’s genocide survivors fund.
Even Hillary Clinton got into the spirit, announcing a $1 million grant to help African and American women communicate over the Internet and share ideas.
And if Bill Clinton has his way (and who’s going to stop him?), this taxpayer largesse is just the beginning. The United States already spends $81 million a year on environmental assistance to Africa. The president seemed embarrassed by that paltry sum, saying, “And we all should do more.”
Let’s not forget the U.S. also contributes $20 million a year to United Nations “peacekeeping” missions in Africa, too.
Now, let’s forget for a minute that there is absolutely and unequivocally no constitutional basis for taxpayer-subsidized foreign aid whatsoever. Nowadays, the vast majority in Congress believe the Constitution authorizes them to do whatever a simple majority of them decide to do. It does not, of course.
But let’s just judge these giveaway programs on their own merits — in practical terms. Before running off to Africa, Clinton managed to get the Republican House members to back H.R. 1432, the African Growth and Opportunity Act. The bill’s purpose is “strengthening health care systems, strengthening family planning service delivery systems and ensuring economic growth through environmental protection.”
“The African Development Foundation has a unique congressional mandate to empower the poor to participate fully in development and to increase opportunities for gainful employment, poverty alleviation, and more equitable income distribution in sub-Saharan Africa,” the bill states.
That’s right, 141 Republican House members are now on record in favor of redistribution of wealth. Worse yet, these programs are conducted by non-profit corporations — almost always left-wing activist groups which become direct beneficiaries of U.S. foreign aid.
So, Bill Clinton had license to play Santa Claus throughout Africa last week — if not constitutional license, he had the backing of the Republican-controlled Congress.
I doubt this would be the case, however, if the American people had any real understanding of what their government was doing. Americans were angry with President Bush for being preoccupied with an internationalist agenda. That was one major reason they fired him and replaced him with Clinton. What they don’t yet understand is that Clinton is the biggest promoter of globalism and the idea of spreading your wealth around the world that we have ever had in the White House.
If I didn’t know better, I’d say he was campaigning for U.N. general-secretary in the year 2000.