The impossible dream
That somehow the world can reorganize itself to ward off impending doom.
Governments around the world have failed us. Much of the blame reverts to the U.S. as the primary hegemonic power. Such are the risks of empire.
After a 75-year failed “containment policy” aimed at Russia, the US is prepared to initiate another aimed at China — the worlds largest economy and soon to be the dominant military power.
Precious resources and funds are about to be invested in war-making machines when the earth is crying out for environmental rescue. And the UN has warned that we are close to the point of no return on global warming.
Though many people are screaming for help, most are still influenced by oligarchs and autocrats to ignore their self preservation to maintain a geo-political structure that seals their doom. Yes, the one-percent are ultimate survivalists deluded by escape ways to the stars.
I think that towards the end most people will realize that all they wanted was “competent government” dedicated to solutions that improved the quality of life for all, preserved nature’s sustenance and regulated those whose policies and actions were blindly self serving. In a desperate last resort, people will look toward benevolent authoritarians to deal in a forceful and timely manner with the life threatening issues at hand.
How such leadership asserts itself may differ from one geo-political situation to the next. Where autocratic government already exists, no problem. Multi-party parliamentary systems are experienced at compromise to meet a crisis. However two-party democracies never seem able to overcome the tyranny of the majority or the minority, as is the case in the U.S.
The best bet seems that if the major powers committed to solving the major problems threatening survival on the planet, and held everyone in compliance, some progress might be made. A temporary state of emergency suspending all national constitutions would be required for all nations to act in concordance. No refuseniks could be tolerated.
There would be a need for “Articles of Survival” to guide the actions of the supranational group. This would define the lifestyle, economic, environmental, energy, agricultural and resource policies (etc) required to reverse the damage to the planet. Personally I hope that out of this commitment to human values and rights would emerge the courage to stop the wasteful accumulation of more armaments, the conversion of global military bases to environmental administrative and action centers, enforced energy policies, equitable policies governing food production and health services, and some economic policies that might affect population growth and location.
If this draconian effort worked, there would be very little desire to return to the world the way it was. New ways of governance would emerge. The nation state might be deemed detrimental. New national constitutions would stress human rights and humane living, as opposed to political processes and ways of divvying up power.
I was never one to harbor utopian dreams. However, a totally pragmatic approach to saving our earth has my unequivocal support. No ideology or economic philosophy or religious belief should stand in the way of humane propositions. The classical Greeks left us with a revolutionary beginning and history, through the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, has provided venal adjustments to those “pure” ideas.
Maybe other non-western cultures have parallel ideas. What a great adventure to reorganize society not in terms of material objectives but to elevate the human condition to its highest possible level – retaining only those ideas and practices that contribute to this evolution.
Fat chance getting the U.S. on board where altruism seems confined to the Blue States. We are a democracy that has morphed individual freedom into selfishness. We are a capitalist society that squeezes the nation’s wealth upward without regard for the de-cumulation below. And a society where each faction lives by its own rules and wants to force others to conform.
Unless Russia, China, India, Japan and the EU combine to end American hegemony, no progress can be made. The U.S. needs to team up by electing a real non-partisan leader, one not already contaminated by the process of governance by disinformation.