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Our Own Agenda :: Foreign Relations

A YES! Take on What Americans Want

President Barack Obama faces huge challenges as he takes office. But he's got one asset that is rarely mentioned. Large majorities of Americans agree on some of the most important issues of the day, from health care to foreign policy. “Ten Policies for a Better America” shows an agenda a majority supports—whether we vote red, blue, or some other political color.

Hover over or click on each policy button to see the YES! Take on What Americans Want.
[Buy or Print poster version below.] [Link to this agenda: image downloads to spread the word]

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YES! MAGAZINE GRAPHIC, 2008. Illustrations by Brandon Laufenberg/istock
Click on each policy button and scroll down to see respective poll citations.

Our Own Agenda. A YES! Take on What Americans Want. YES! Magazine graphic
  • Lead a global effort to abolish nuclear weapons.

  • Rule out unilateral attacks, deploying weapons in space, and torture.

  • Phase out U.S. role as global police, and instead work through the U.N. and other international agencies to develop and enforce international law.

  • Work with other countries to improve global health and environment.

81%
Oppose torture and support following the Geneva Conventions.

76%
Say the U.S. should not play the role of global police.

79%
Say the U.N. should be strengthened.


73%

Favor abolishing nuclear weapons, with verification. 80% favor banning weapons in space.

85%
Say that the U.S. should not initiate military action without support from allies.




Sources


Index


The era of the U.S. as sole superpower is drawing to a close. But what our role transforms into, and how peacefully we make the transition is largely up to us, the citizens of the U.S. These articles provide some hopeful paths forward:
YES Archive buttonThe Way to a Just Foreign Policy

The United States has some pivotal choices now that its brief time as the world’s sole superpower is drawing to a close. Becoming a good neighbor is one of them.
YES! Magazine #46, A Just Foreign Policy

YES Archive buttonSmart Security and the End of War

David Korten’s thoughts on a just foreign policy.
YES! Magazine #46, A Just Foreign Policy

YES Archive buttonRaiding the War Chest

How to save billions by “right-sizing” the U.S. military (getting back in the “defense” business).
YES! Magazine #46, A Just Foreign Policy

YES Archive buttonAbolishing Nuclear Weapons

Secretary of State George Shultz shows us why we must do so in an interview with Sarah van Gelder, and Jonathan Schell shows us how to go about getting rid of the most deadly weapons known to humanity.
YES! Magazine #46, A Just Foreign Policy

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A Just Foreign Policy :: YES! Magazine Cover image, Summer 2008, Issue 46
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Are we ready to ditch the superpower role and join a world of equals to confront our common challenges? YES! presents A Just Foreign Policy.



SOURCES:

FOREIGN RELATIONS

73% FAVOR ABOLISHING NUCLEAR WEAPONS, WITH VERIFICATION. ::
Results are from poll in U.S. by Knowledge Networks Dates of Survey: September 14-23, 2007 Sample Size: 1247 Margin of Error: +/- 4.0 %
www.worldpublicopinion.org/pipa/articles/international_security_bt/432.php?nid=&id=&pnt=432

80% FAVOR BANNING WEAPONS IN SPACE. ::
Ibid
www.worldpublicopinion.org/pipa/articles/international_security_bt/444.php?nid=&id=&pnt=444

81% OPPOSE TORTURE AND SUPPORT FOLLOWING THE GENEVA CONVENTIONS. ::
Belden Russonello & Stewart survey of 800 likely presidential election voters nationally, for the ACLU from August 21, through September 9, 2007. The margin of sampling error for the survey is ±3.5 percentage points
www.aclu.org/pdfs/national_polling_20071004.pdf [page 2]

76% SAY THE U.S. SHOULD NOT PLAY THE ROLE OF GLOBAL POLICE. ::
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, conducted by conducted by Knowledge Networks, between June 23 and July 9, 2006, of 1,227 American adults The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.
www.americans-world.org/digest/overview/us_role/hegemonic_role.cfm

85% SAY THAT THE U.S. SHOULD NOT INITIATE MILITARY ACTION WITHOUT SUPPORT OF OUR ALLIES. ::
Public Agenda interviews with 1,006 adults conducted between March 18, 2008 and April 1, 2008. Margin of error is 3%.
www.publicagenda.org/reports/public-agenda-confidence-us-foreign-policy-index-spring-2008

79% SAY THE U.N. SHOULD BE STRENGTHENED. ::
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, conducted by conducted by Knowledge Networks, between June 23 and July 9, 2006, of 1,227 American adults The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.
www.americans-world.org/digest/global_issues/un/un1.cfm



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Sarah van Gelder wrote this article as part of Purple America, the Fall 2008 issue of YES! Magazine. Research by Noah Grant. Sarah is executive editor and Noah is editorial assistant at YES! Magazine.Photos of Sarah van Gelder and Noah Grant
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