The Donald loves talking to crowds. Having conquered the Republican challengers and Hillary, he will soon be up to the final group of non-believers - the United Nations General Assembly. Here is a suggestion for what he should say - to be delivered with a teleprompter.
" Mr. Secretary General, fellow delegates, ladies and gentlemen: Welcome to New York. What a great city. We love our city, and we love hosting you here. Great people. A great City.
" I really appreciate the opportunity to talk with you directly to explain our perspective on the world - you have heard much about me and my priorities in the context of a contentious political campaign and through the distorted lens of a media which openly favored my opponent. I hope that you will listen with an open mind, and that today will mark a new beginning. A commitment to work together.
"Let's celebrate the fact that the last 70 plus years have been a period of relative peace and prosperity. After World War II the world leaders put together a network of political, economic, and military institutions which have supported stability in the face of huge population growth and technological advance - the United Nations, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organization, military alliances, and international courts to oversee voluntary international agreements. The United States has been a major - actually the major - advocate and supporter in these efforts to keep the world safe and prosperous. We will remain so.
"But in three regards, the direction of the system is not sustainable, and the United States will be making course corrections to ensure longer term stability and prosperity. In some regards we have lost our way and taken the easy path; we cannot do this any longer.
"First, it is a basic responsibility of every government to protect its borders. In the past few decades we have lost control of our southern border and failed to keep track of visitors in our country on visas. We now are home to millions who have entered the United States illegally, and millions more who entered legally, but did not honor their commitment to leave after a defined period. This puts our citizens at risk of attacks by terrorists who are committed to harm us. It puts us at risk of criminals who would harm our people and our society. It puts our workers at risk of being displaced by substantially lower-paid economic migrants. It creates an under-class living in the shadows, fearful of exposure, and ripe for exploitation. As a top priority for the Trump administration, we will be securing our borders and dealing humanely with those millions who are in the United States illegally. We ask your help in restoring a system of cooperation where your citizens do not find it necessary to leave their homes, and where American laws are respected.
"Second, we believe in free, fair, and balanced trade, but are no longer able to sustain trading relationships which result in annual deficits of $600 billion or more. This is not good for our financial system; it is not good for our manufacturing capabilities; it is not good for our workers. If we are smart, we will address this together now while we have time to make gradual, but decided adjustments. The goal will be to eliminate all large chronic trade imbalances with our partners by increasing exports of things where we enjoy an advantage - agriculture; energy; high-end manufacturing; financial services - and by reducing import of those things which we can efficiently make here. This will require creativity and negotiation. It will require understanding that the current system cannot continue. It will require acceptance that the game has changed.
"Third, the United States has been expected for too long to act as the world's policeman. This is not good for the United States and, frequently, it is not good for other countries which are having difficulty establishing the basic structures of government. Many in this Assembly have been partners in this effort - as part of peacekeeping efforts in Africa and the Balkans; as part of internationally-sanctioned support for struggling democracies such as Afghanistan; as allies supporting stability along the borders between major nations. There will be two hallmarks of the Trump administration in this regard: deployment of American resources will reflect a clear understanding of America's interests; and the cost of the American engagement will be fairly shared with any country receiving the benefit of our protection. This policy should not be seen as a sign of weakness or abandonment of our friends. Rather, it reflects the reality that even the strongest nation on earth cannot and should not carry the burden of preserving peace and liberty in all the corners of the earth. Each of your governments should be expected to look out for the well being of your people, to pay your fair share of the cost of maintaining international order, and to work toward good relationships with your neighbors.
"There are two subjects of pressing importance where you will see an increased American focus:
- Radical Islamic terrorism must be eradicated. We pledge to work with all international police and intelligence agencies to root out terrorist cells before they can attack your and our citizens; and, we pledge the necessary leadership and support to international efforts to destroy al Queda, ISIS, and their offspring. The enemy is not religion; it is terrorism. It must and will be eliminated.
- Finally, and importantly, the spread of nuclear weapons must be stopped. There must be inspection and strict enforcement of the agreed limits on Iran's nuclear program, and we look to cooperate with the countries of East Asia to roll back the unacceptable, dangerous, and destabilizing development of nuclear weapons and missile systems by North Korea. The countries in this room have been successful in the goal of containing proliferation for decades, but the last ten years have been a failure. We will not allow this path to continue.
" I thank you for your attention. In selecting Secretary of State Tillerson and Ambassador Haley, I have chosen proven executives and leaders who are committed the policies which I have outlined. They will be clear in their direction and priorities. Together we can make this a better world.
"Thank you. Enjoy our great city. If you share these goals you will have a strong partner in the United States of America."
Trump will not get a Nobel Peace Prize. He will perhaps engage in self-congratulatory hosannas, like Barack Obama or John Kerry. He will provide notice that there is a new sheriff in town.
bill bowen - 12/22/2016