Saturday, November 10, 2007

An assumption and a proposition

O.k., let's make an assumption and a proposition, and see where it leads us . . .

First, the assumption: let's assume that globalization is going to continue.

Let's assume that more and more power is going to be sapped from the family, from the local community, from churches and local organizations, and that that power is going to move up the line to the state, to the nation, and then on to supra-national organizations.

Hey, if we are talking about reality, the question arises: Is this assumption correct?

I suggest it is. Trends are up, up, up.

Look at it this way: many people nowadays are perpetually looking to the government to solve the perceived problems of living life on Earth.

From keeping the streets safe; to filling the potholes; to keeping the water piped into our homes and the air we breathe clean; to educating the kids in government schools ("public schools" as they are called in the United States); to "managing" the economy to minimize downturns and make sure reasonably safe jobs with decent pay are available; to providing everyone, or as many as possible, with health care; to finding global markets for locally produced goods - people look to government for answers and action.

Political campaigns are typically mostly about the candidates trying to outdo each other in their plans to have the government take and larger and larger role in solving society's problems, from misbehaving kids to trade deficits with other nations.

Combine this with the attitude that ever increasing global trade is a good thing, and you have a powerful recipe for the transfer of power from the individual and the family right up the line to international organizations.

Examples abound, but I'm just touching on a few general remarks here. Think about it and you'll come up with lots of your own examples.

So there's the assumption. What's the proposition?

The proposition is that we need to pay attention to globalization; we need to think about the process and ask ourselves, is this good? Are there dangers lurking in our headlong rush into economic and political integration around the world? If so, how can we avoid the pitfalls ahead?

I propose that we ask ourselves: How did we come to the nation-state, the paradigm that has been so prevalent around the world for these last several centuries? Is the nation-state worth preserving? Could it be that as we run toward global integration that we are forgettting the essential role of the nation-state in protecting and preserving true freedom?

Is there a sinister side to globalization? Are we blind to the dangers ahead? What can we do politically to begin to confront the coming Leviathan?

More to come . . .

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