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GLOBAL DEMOCRACY October 17, 2011

Posted by wmmbb in Global Electoral Politics, Global Warming Politics, Humankind/Planet Earth.

Direct democracy is limited by scale.There are various models, not least the General Assembly model in evidence at Occupy Wall Street.

Then there is representative democracy that morphed into television democracy. The paradigm that frames what democracy looks like. Could there be, or should there be a global democracy that pushes the boundaries of the nation state and calls into question the influence and behavior of global players, including governments and transnational corporations?

For some reason The Guardian published an article by Ana Sofia Suarez and Shimri Zameret, “A manifesto for regime change on behalf of humanity”. Part of the manifesto included the following:

The Manifesto continues:

Undemocratic international institutions are our global Mubarak, our global Assad, our global Gaddafi. These include: the IMF, the WTO, global markets, multinational banks, the G8/G20, the European Central Bank and the UN security council. Like Mubarak and Assad, these institutions must not be allowed to run people’s lives without their consent. We are all born equal, rich or poor, woman or man. Every African and Asian is equal to every European and American. Our global institutions must reflect this, or be overturned.
Today, more than ever before, global forces shape people’s lives. Our jobs, health, housing, education and pensions are controlled by global banks, markets, tax-havens, corporations and financial crises. Our environment is being destroyed by pollution in other continents. Our safety is determined by international wars and international trade in arms, drugs and natural resources. We are losing control over our lives. This must stop. This will stop. The citizens of the world must get control over the decisions that influence them in all levels – from global to local. That is global democracy. That is what we demand today.
Today, like the Mexican Zapatistas, we say “¡Ya basta! Aquí el pueblo manda y el gobierno obedece”: Enough! Here the people command and global institutions obey! Like the Spanish Tomalaplaza we say “Democracia Real Ya”: True global democracy now!” Today we call the citizens of the world: let us globalise Tahrir Square! Let us globalise Puerta del Sol!

The article concludes:

We prefer to leave it as a principle, and know that there are many suggestions on how to give people control over the global decisions that shape our lives. When French activists demanded national democracy for the first time, no one believed it was possible. Today no one believes global people’s control is possible. Future generations will judge things differently. Today we start building a movement for global democracy.

The people in New York have been denigrated as a “mob”, well, if anybody wants to see what a real mobilization looks like they might consider recent events in Madrid (via War in Context):

Some of the significant aspects of the OWS movement are that it is consciously nonviolent and uses the post television media of communication which can be simultaneously local and global. The method of organization and communication is different, and to this point has not been subverted by finance and public relations. One plus is that users, if they use, can disconnect from the pervasive corporate propaganda, and perhaps envision what an economy based on human needs would look like.

Since international governance is necessary, why should in principle should it not be democratic. One pressing reason is to control global market finance which now is hold the countries of Western Europe in hock, rather than those in South America and Africa. War is a crime against humanity perpetrated and sustained by nation states.

The looming environmental crisis we are told cannot be addressed because of the institutional dynamics of international capitalist organizations that can take engineering and other risks, as happened in the Gulf of Mexico and currently in the Bay of Plenty, and get away with it. The Earth Summit held in Rio Janeiro that recognized many of the critical global problems is now almost twenty years ago. The Copenhagen Conference on Global Warming, and Cancun that followed were ineffective. Durban does not hold out promise for progress. Michael McCarthy, in The Independent, suggested that the participants were simply talking their way to oblivion.

Could it be that global connectivity of the internet and its related technologies be used to address and stimulate action on common problems facing all the inhabitants of Planet Earth?



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