A bigger, better, more integral globalism


#1

In our last episode together, Ken made an interesting point:

“Right now government is confined to national native nation states. That’s the fundamentally highest form of real government that we have. The market on the other hand, it’s the free market, and then we try to curtail it with certain moral sanctions, no slavery, no trafficking, that kind of stuff. But otherwise the market tends to be very competitive and aggressive in that sense. And the problem is, the market is now global, the governments are national. And we don’t have a balance there, and that’s producing some disasters.

We really don’t have a government that can match the size of the market and therefore [be able to] oversee the market in very limited but important ways. So that’s an issue. And so now we have nation states hung in this global competitive free market. And anything that a nation state does, like help the environment — but if it does so it’ll cost it hugely in terms of economic competitiveness. We have a market that’s actually driving us into more and more externalities, more and more environmental destruction, and we don’t have anything to counterbalance that. And that’s a nightmare. So this is a real important issue that we have to keep in mind as we’re thinking about ways to move forward integrally.”

I think this nails the issue — our economic systems have gone transnational, and yet our governance remains stuck at the national level. Which means there is a governance vacuum at the level of the transnational holon — and since nature abhors a vacuum, that space where a global regulator should be ends up getting filled by corporate interests and agendas, resulting in the corporate plutocracy we have today. Plutocracy is not the result of national governance, it is the inevitable result of a lack of real global transnational governance.

So in my equation, moving toward nationalism — which stands in contrast to “transnationalism” — does not curtail plutocracy, it reinforces it. It cedes the territory to plutocratic interests, who say “since there is no meaningful governance here, we will create our own, in our own image.”

(I think this also factors into much of the cynicism many people feel around government. Our political leaders and representatives are supposed to be, among other things, a shield between the public and these transnational corporate interests. And due to the nature of the conflict — localized nation-states versus nonlocal transnational conglomerates — this shield is constantly being buffeted by corporate lobbying and influence-peddling. Which means the shield is always in some sort of direct contact with this transnational plutocratic layer of our holonic stack. For many, this produces a knee-jerk cynicism that says “you are interfacing with corporations, therefore you must be bought and sold by those same corporate interests.” It’s a naive idealism that overlooks the fact that our governing bodies are supposed to be engaged with these corporations, prioritizing public interests while also trying to find win-win scenarios where everyone can thrive. Therefore it is no surprise when Democrats and Republicans alike go on speaking tours on Wall Street, and this does not automatically mean something nefarious is happening. Even accepting money from these corporations is not necessarily a sign of corruption, it’s more a symptom of a much more sinister issue America has with the game theory of campaign finance. “If I don’t take their money and try to find a compromise that gives them a little of what they want, they will fund my opponent who will give them everything that they want.”)

Today’s “globalism” is hamstrung by the fact that there is no real global regulator to set and enforce policy. And there is a lot to criticize about the current state of globalism. It’s an international globalism, enacted at the level of the nation-state, not a genuine transnational globalism enacted at the level of the global holon. It is, therefore, a globalism that is governed in many ways by plutocratic interests.

At the same time, even this weak, flattened globalism has produced some amazing results over the last 60 years or so, having pulled more people out of poverty across the entire world than any other force in history, with far less bloodshed. It’s created some major problems locally, of course, but I think it’s unwise to neglect these important facts about the successes of globalism.

So I continue to believe that the solution here is not to eliminate globalism as a whole and return to nationalism, as that only reinforces and emboldens plutocracy.

The solution is to create a bigger, better, and far more effective globalism, one that can remain uncontaminated by corporate interests, and one that supersedes the nation state while also remaining aligned with the interests of its constituent nation states.

Thoughts?


#2

I plan to respond to this soon.:sunglasses:


#3

I’ve been interested in bioregionalism and it’s potential to help build a healthier global system.

At first glance it appears smaller than nationalism, as most bioregions contain smaller areas of land than the nations that contain them, but I think it’s bigger than nationalism within the human psyche, with a globally unifying underlying principle. If bioregionalism becomes the dominant form of cultural and political organization, then the focus on how the land shapes our minds and vice versa becomes a common thread among all bioregions. That thread builds the foundation for coordination among bioregions (assemblies, associations, coalitions, etc.) on a global level.

The folks that I know who are promoting bioregionalism, tend to focus on cultivating and highlighting the cultural identity of the bioregion as a way of unifying groups and individuals around the common ground (literal and figurative) that exists. That common ground forms the foundation of working together towards economic, social, and political structures and changes.

I like it because it offers a group identity that’s based on probable common experiences of individuals that come from living in and interacting with the bioregion’s features, with the understanding that the environmental features significantly influence the experience (rather than an adopted socialized identity and prescribed values which claim intrinsic superiority, as is common in nationalism). It seems like a necessary green component of an integral system (which replaces or supercedes nationalism). My instincts are saying that once this group/identity component is established, the individual/behavioral aspects will begin to be enacted. The cooperatives or corporations based on bioregional values and goals might coalesce and coordinate to compete with and even overrule corporate interests.

From my perspective, it fits the described requirements: resists corporate interests by prioritizing each bioregion’s environmental interests, supercedes the nation state through the creation of local and global cultural identities which fit better with an individual’s self-identity due to its basis on common personal experiences, and aligned with the interests of the constituent nation states because the nation state’s interests consist of the sum of bioregional interests that are contained within it.

An example of how bioregionalism can produce coordination similar to globalism: the World Cup (globalist) versus the World Football Cup (bioregionalist)

Is anyone else familiar with bioregionalism? Is it possible that it’s a necessary component of retooling our social, economic, and political systems to be more integral?


#4

When I watched the segment on Integral Politics and heard Ken discuss the need for a transnational global overseer of nation-states and their decision-making around market/economic issues, decisions that can have far-ranging deleterious side-effects, I resonated strongly with this.

To ground the idea of this need in a specific example that is just right around the corner, consider Brazil (again).

President-elect Jair Bolsonaro takes office in January. More than just a far-right nationalist or illiberal populist, he is an authoritarian and in the words of Noam Chomsky, “…the most malicious and vicious creature of the current range of pretty ugly characters that we see around the world.” (in interview with Amy Goodman of Democracy Now). Without even considering Bolsonaro’s racist, homophobic, and misogynistic views; or his affinity for military dictatorships, brutality and torture; and his vow to destroy/imprison his political opponents, Bolsonaro’s economic goals present “a potential disaster for the world.” (Chomsky)

He plans to open the Amazon to his agribusiness supporters, thus furthering the destruction of an ecological system that the entire world is dependent upon for helping with cleaning the air. Brazil being rich in natural resources, gold aplenty for example, Bolsonaro has also vowed to open the country to investors, which on the surface doesn’t sound like a totally bad idea, except as Chomsky states it, “…the stock market will be able to rob freely.” This is an example on the horizon of what was stated in the initiating post here, nationalism not curtailing plutocracy, but reinforcing it, ceding (governance) territory to plutocratic interests (in the case of Brazil, most likely to big agribusiness, big mining, big timber).

“Opening the Amazon to further exploitation will be another serious blow at the prospects of survival of organized human society.” (Chomsky)

And speaking of the survival of humans, Bolsonaro’s take on the indigenous people who live in the rainforest is that “they don’t deserve a square centimeter of land.” Some of these tribes are as small as a dozen people, still wearing G-strings and hunting with spears and bows and arrows.

The world builds monuments, parks, and museums to protect and study the ancient ruins and artifacts of humanity’s ancestral history, and yet, will we allow the sacrifice of these Amazonian tribal people, some still living at the magical stage of development? These people are first and foremost living flesh-and-blood humans, and they are also flesh-and-blood examples of humanity’s cultural history, and in my opinion, should be considered living world treasures to be protected. But Bolsonaro’s election suggests we can look forward to the “virtual genocide” of the indigenous population, according to Chomsky. While there are NGOs and advocacy groups trying to protect the Amazonian tribes, and while past Brazilian leadership has also presented challenges, advocacy groups haven’t encountered a Brazilian leader who is as antagonistic towards indigenous people as Bolsonara presents himself to be.

Everything in the manifest world is inter-connected, in my opinion, not just markets/economies, but ecological systems and people too. That there isn’t some kind of global body-politic that serves as overseer/regulator of the exchanges between nation-states, and between nations and corporate interests, and that turns a sharp eye to the effects of these exchanges on the Whole, seems not only unintelligent to me, but also immoral. The world needs a very smart, empowered, embodied Conscience as a global overseer/regulator might provide; we needed it yesterday.

While I do believe in evolutionary leaps in a positive direction, given the degradation of democracy throughout the world and the continuing sweep of far-right nationalism and anti-globalism, I’m not holding my breath on this one. But as Ken says, it’s important to keep it in mind as integralism moves forward. Without sacrificing attention on happenings in the USA, I think it’s important that we attune more and more to global issues, period.


#5

I’d say that yes, the need for global governance to balance a globalized economy is a crying need. But I’d also say that we have been slowly evolving in that direction for much of the last century. The League of Nations after WWI didn’t get very far, but then the very horrors of the 30s and WWII gave the push for the creation of the United Nations in 1947, along with the Bretton Woods financial institutions. While there is indeed a lot to criticize in the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organization et. al., these are movements toward a world federation.

For the very reasons you cite in your post, Corey, I have been watching the European Union experiment with great interest. It is indeed a major push toward a next emergent level, transcending while including the sovereign nation-states of Europe. They are struggling with this but so far hanging on. I find it most interesting that the very part of the world that created the sovereign nation-state, i.e. western Europe, and then spread it all around the rest of the world via colonialism, is now making tentative steps toward transcending its own creation.

Let us remember that sovereign nation-states were the result of the 30 Years War in Europe; part of the crucible out of which the Modern world order arose out of the Medieval. We are now in the midst of a process that looks like it is pushing into the next phase. Which we all fondly hope and expect will be something second tier.

This is kind of rambling, but my general point is that the evolution of the next phase of governance has already begun, and indeed has been in progress for a while now. What the new world order in terms of governance might become, I have no idea, though; my interests and engagements lie mostly in the UL.

Any ideas from any of you LR quadrant savants? What might a second-tier, teal world governance look like?


#6

Soon but I’m too tired tonight. Some very good replies here though. Blessings.


#7

Ken’s view that there isn’t much inter-national cooperation somewhat misses the existence if bodies like the UN, EU, Pacific Alliance countries and the growing trend to free trade. I see how he observes recent Conservative governments with their emphasis on fiscal performance, competition and the idea of making money at any cost resulting in Countries leaving trade blocks to go their own way (Brexit) and raising new tariffs (US).

These examples show another fundamental difference between Left and Right. Right says we will pursue our own goals even if its at others’ expense, then when we have sufficient , or way more sufficient than we need, we will look to assist others where needed. Left says we will all progress together to achieve improved living, share ideas and resources.

The pendulum swings between left and right in truly democratic countries so that a kind of balance is maintained.

We see these traits playing out in Various Left and Right communities worldwide.

We also see leadership of government v business v people. The internet is giving people more power than it has ever had before. Influencing voting patterns, awareness and opinions through social media. While governments are resisting global carbon reduction targets, banks are limiting investments in coal based energy infrastructure. People are buying more electric powered transport. People are demanding democratic rule. Power brought by people and corporates are not limited by national borders.

This ultimately should influence bureaucrats to operate more neighbourly in their foreign relations. Think of their neighbours as neighbours rather than competitors or enemies. Work together with synergy rather than brinkmanship. We can evolve more efficiently together in peace than in conflict and destructive action.

Ervin Laszlo in Science and the Enchantment of the Cosmos postulates that any action promoting evolution is right and good whilst action hindering evolution is wrong or evil.

As awareness of Integral thinking increases throughout society, governments will begin to think more holistically and globally. We are a secret society whose mission it is to achieve this goal. We need a secret handshake, a logo, visual identity so we can recognise one another. Yes I’m kidding.

#infinitelove
Peter


#8

Here is where I wanted to share another idea.

A concern I have is the apparent adhoc way governments provide foreign aid to disadvantaged countries. There doesn’t appear to be much effort placed into benefit realisation.

Funds are spread wide and thin across many countries with little accountability for outcomes.

Australia has poured many millions of aid to our nearest neighbour Papua New Guinea which still suffers from political instability, poor infrastructure, poor governance and judiciary.

And the elephant in the room…corruption. In one sense money going to corrupt bureaucrats still gets into that economy at some point, so it is not wasted.

What if each country corralled a significant portion of its aid to one country over a period of years and made a concerted effort at benefit realiastion? What if it encouraged its citizens to support that one country with tourism, Established strong cultural and business ties with that country?

Call it a Buddy System.

What if every first world country helped one third world country in such a fashion? Imagine what could be achieved.

Any thought?

#infinitelove

Peter


#9

A couple of thoughts: simplistically, foreign aid is the poor people of rich countries giving to the rich people of poor countries. Unless the poor countries have an infrastructure that allows for foreign aid to help its development the money simply goes round and around the world’s rich.
As to the EU, Brexit has shown how fragile progress is. Anecdotally, the reason people in the UK voted to leave the EU was because they didn’t like unelected bodies telling them how to run their country. The governance of the EU and the economics of the EU needed change: Germany was fiscally doing to Greece and Portugal what the EU was set up to prevent. i.e. the autonomy retained by the individual states compounded by an unelected governing body allowed the powerful states to behave in a way that is contrary to the rational for the EU.


#10

It would be great if we could solve the problem of a globalism that’s dominated by plutocratic interests by creating “a bigger, better, and far more effective globalism, one that can remain uncontaminated by corporate interests, and one that supersedes the nation state while also remaining aligned with the interests of its constituent nation states.”
But how can this "more effective globalism’ come into existence? To bring this to pass it’s necessary to go to the root of the problem and to create change starting from the bottom up. If there aren’t enough people who understand the problem and the necessity of the solution, I don’t see how it can come about.
I’ve been paying a lot of attention and giving a lot of thought to an aspect of reality that I believe even Ken Wilber and most integral thinkers are not seeing clearly.
No one has the ability to delve deeply into all aspects of reality, and we are immersed in a culture that has been manipulated by powerful people with colossal amounts of money. We have all been influenced by propaganda–no matter how intelligent, integral, and well informed we are.
A small number of very wealthy people who have libertarian, Ayn Randian, survival of the fittest worldviews have been using their money to change the culture and the laws to suit their goals of the accumulation of ever more wealth and power. Their strategists have developed long-term strategies to control the values of the public. Sophisticated propaganda campaigns are so well-funded that good ideas that go against the goals of these politically active plutocrats are successfully undermined and prevented from influencing enough people to be effective.
I don’t have time to go into more details, but here is a list of important resources that can enable people to see this aspect of reality more clearly:

Jane Mayer’s talks and books about dark money
“Trumping Democracy” (a documentary)
Article: Robert Mercer: The Big Data Billionaire Waging War on Mainstream Media" (theguardian.com)
Book: “Lies, Incorporated The World of Post-Truth Politics” by Ari Rabin-Havt and Media Matters
“The Reclusive Hedge Fund Tycoon Behind the Trump Presidency”
by Jane Mayer
“How the Koch Brothers Built the Most Powerful Rightwing Group You’ve never heard of” by Alexander Hertel-Fernandes, Caroline Tervo, Theda Skocpol
Books by Noam Chomsky: “Requiem for the American Dream” and “Manufacturing Consent”


#11

I appreciate your summary of the development of global or at least transnational bodies - and I believe what’s needed to develop a better globalism, is to have enough leaders at 2nd tier to mature a 2nd tier world governance. Green is not enough as it fails to make proper room for nations governed by less matured leadership, and “when green attacks orange, amber wins”.

I suspect the European Union is the closest to a success beacause it aims to include similar nations with green leadership; but now it struggles when backlashes results in amber politicians increasing their influence. A successful global government is much harder as it needs to include - make room for - such a large variety of nations and elected politicians.

How to get to that tipping point, is challenging. The first step would be to see this happen in enough nations to provide enough leader resources for a global government - and I can’t see that has happened in any nation yet. Maybe a crisis could push things, e.g. a climate crisis that will demand global leadership.


#12

To see how difficult this is, just take a look at Brexit. The Conservative party was ripping itself apart over membership of the EU , set up a referendum to deal with it, this nicely ripped the country apart. We don’t seem to be anywhere near the critical mass to have globalism at a level above orange.