Monday, October 16, 2006

The RED 3-legged Stool

"Where ONE takes on the bigger, longer-term beast of changing policy and influencing government, (RED) is, I guess, about a more instant kind of gratification.…
…There are though still 4.3 million Africans without drugs, which is why 100% of (RED) money is going directly to the Global Fund to support the work they are doing.

A new marketing program has just been publicly launched at the global level. Called the RED campaign, and championed by the rock star Bono, this idea merges the 1) for-profit sector's ambitions for profit$ with the 2) non-profit sector's zeal for combatting AIDS, with the 3) world governnance ambitions of the United Nations. This plan perfectly fulfils business guru Peter Drucker's vision of a "healthy" Society, which he termed the 3-legged stool.

And Rick Warren stands to benefit directly from this RED campaign! Read on…

"LOS ANGELES, Oct 13 (Reuters) - Irish rock star Bono went on a shopping spree and appeared on the influential Oprah Winfrey TV chat show on Friday to launch his latest campaign to fight AIDS in Africa.

"Saying he was convinced that 'this generation can be the generation that says 'no' to extreme poverty' in Africa, the U2 singer and activist urged Americans to buy 'Red'-branded clothes, cell phones, shoes and iPods and see a portion of the profits channeled to fund AIDS programs.

"The Red campaign -- brainchild of the U2 singer and Bobby Shriver, nephew of the late President John F. Kennedy -- has already raised about $10 million in Britain since its launch there earlier this year.…

"…The money raised by the Red campaign will be sent to the U.N.-backed Global Fund. It was established in 2002 to channel government and private-sector funding into the fight against AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis -- the big killer diseases of the developing world -- with a focus on Africa." [emphasis added]

This RED campaign is connected with the ONE Campaign, which Rick Warren publicly endorsed in 2005.

"The Red campaign works alongside the ONE Campaign to Make Poverty History -- a longer-term project launched in 2005 by Bono and 11 U.S. aid and nonprofit groups -- that has more than 2 million members."

Bono has also been connected with Bill Hybels of Willowcreek:

"In August, US Megachurch pastor Bill Hybels received a phone message from Bono, who was aiming to 'vision-cast the churches and wake them up to the HIV/AIDS pandemic."

The RED campaign was launched in January 2006 at the World Economic Forum:

"26 January, 2006 –Today, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Bono and Bobby Shriver announced Product RED, an economic initiative designed to deliver a sustainable flow of private sector money to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. It is the first time that the world’s leading companies have made a commitment to channel a portion of profits from sales of specially–designed products to the Global Fund to support AIDS programmes in Africa with a focus on women and children.…

"RED presents a new and profitable way of doing business by harnessing the partners’ brand-building expertise while generating a new income stream for the Global Fund." [emphasis added]

What is this UN-backed Global Fund?

"The Global Fund, which was created as a unique public-private partnership, presents an unprecedented opportunity for the private sector to make substantial and impactful contributions to the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. Since its inception, the private sector - including businesses, business associations and individuals - has contributed to the work of the Global Fund in a variety of ways, ranging from engaging in the governance of the Global Fund to contributions of cash and non-cash resources to collaborating with in-country partners and recipients. As the global response to combat the three diseases gathers momentum, the continued and expanded engagement of the private sector will play a critical role in ensuring the long term success of the Global Fund and the fight against AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria." [emphases added]

The Global Fund has specifically set up the 3-legged stool for the purpose of partnership for health issues:

"The Global Fund represents a new approach to international health financing.

"As a partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and affected communities, the Fund works in close collaboration with other bilateral and multilateral organizations, supporting their work through substantially increased funding.

"The Global Fund is an independent organization, governed by an international Board that consists of representatives from donor and recipient governments, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), the private sector (including businesses and philanthropic foundations) and affected communities." [emphasis added]

How will Rick Warren benefit directly from this RED campaign? Note the press release about the launching of the RED campaign at the World Economic Forum in January 2006:

"A portion of profits from the sale of RED products will support Global Fund-financed programmes which positively impact the lives of women and children affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa. These include programmes in countries such as Rwanda, which has a proven track record and ambitious targets. For example, in the past two years, Rwanda has increased the number of people receiving treatments for HIV/AIDS ten-fold." [emphasis added]

Making Rwanda the recipient of this funding stream from the RED campaign will surely make Rick Warren and his Global P.E.A.C.E. Plan look good internationally.

Not one of the major media articles or interviews pertaining to this RED campaign asked the hard questions about the money streams and corporate profits, nor the underlying purposes, goals and methods.

A Wall Street Journal article, basically a puff-piece, contained only several negative hints of the unwieldy new partnerships forming.

"Stephen Lewis, Mr. [Kofi] Annan's special U.N. envoy for AIDS in Africa, says, 'The companies are going to benefit a hell of a lot more from Bono's name than the global fund is going to benefit from the companies.'…

"Mr. Shriver says all of the companies they approached were a bit stunned' when they first heard the pitch: 'We want you to make money.' Although he suspects some companies worried about being accused of AIDS 'profiteering,' he says he believes it's the best solution to get companies to contribute over the long term. 'No private-sector company whose job is to make profits is going to on a sustainable basis give away money,' he says."

With such a grand global plan to eradicate HIV/AIDS everyone simply assumes the highest ethics, and the goal tugs at the heart. But this entire RED operation is much more ambitious than eradication of diseases. The first stage is creating these new partnerships. More to follow…

The Truth:

"And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour,…" (Rev. 17:4a)