Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Continuing Break-up of the Nation-State

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard has written about the meeting between Catalan leader Artur Mas and Spanish Premier Mariano Rajoy in Madrid on Thursday.  The purpose of the meeting was to present to Rajoy the demands of Catalan secession.  They demand a treasury independent of the national treasury (and somehow all of Europe is going to be joined fiscally…).

Needless to say, this idea went over like a lead balloon in Madrid.  Emotions, charges of Franco, impossibilities, “Spain is not Yugoslavia or Belgium.”  After such rejection, Mr. Mas retreated to consider the next steps: “Constitutions may or may not be modified, but they do not subjugate the will of the people.”

There is much concern that we are headed toward world government.  I believe that has already occurred, and what we are now living through is the breakup of this – as evidenced by the fracturing of various nation states.

The USSR broken into a dozen component parts.  Yugoslavia into a half-dozen.  Czechoslovakia in two.  Belgium will likely split in two.  The EU will likely lose states before it adds any - and, as is possible in Belgium and now Spain, some of the subject states may further divide.  There is outbreak of violence in many of the regions of the Middle East and North Africa bound by artificial borders created by western powers after the wars of the last century.  These, too, will not survive with the current borders – at least not in any practical sense.

It seems rather difficult to fully realize one-world government if existing attempts at one-state governments are falling apart.

Besides the facts on the ground, two books have influenced my thinking on this.  From Dawn to Decadence,” by Jacques Barzun, and “The Rise and Decline of the State,” by Martin van Creveld.  Coming at the story from two different angles, both authors conclude that the nation-state as we know it will become less relevant, not more.  The decentralization will continue.

Dr. North has written reviews of these two books, along with a third that have shaped his thinking on this subject.  The review of all three can be found here.

The promises of the state are breaking, everywhere throughout the world.  Cradle to grave safety and security will not be delivered – because these cannot be delivered.  As the promises of the all-benevolent state are broken, faith in state-solutions will disappear.  Absent the faith, there will not be consent.  Withdraw consent, and the emperor will be seen in his natural state – just as he was born, and with about as much power.

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