Spanish Town, Jamaica
(crossing myself over and over...!!) I agree with Balladeer on this issue, at least 90 percent. The UN is, for the most part, quite useless in policing the world. The 10 percent which I do not agree with has to with the issue of Cuba's human rights record. I won't get into that on this thread though. Maybe I will start a new topic related to that at some point.
Now about my views on the UN, I believe that there has never really been a serious collective will to give the UN the strength it needs. The powerful nations which were mentioned earlier, are only just now beginning to question the effectiveness of the UN when it was always THEY who had the power to strengthen it. Bear in mind that when the UN started out, most of the current members were not yet members.
Countries with proven bad Human Rights records should never even be considered for membership on certain commitees (certainly not the one related to Human Rights) In fact, if a certain country is proven to be blatantly anti-human rights, it's membership in the UN itself should be in question. I am not sure if the UN charter/constitution allows things like that, but if it doesn't, maybe it should.
Having said all that, an institution such as the UN is necessary. So maybe a lot of re-tooling and re-formulating is required. I will continue to maintain though, that the ineffectiveness of the UN should be no excuse for maverick behaviour. Rather, serious attempts, with as many of the members as possible, should be made to fix what was aways a very leaky pipe.
Balladeer, the UN Building would make a very ugly appartment building. So I disagree with you on that as well. Maybe I should have said 85 percent.