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RE: [ba-unrev-talk] NYTimes.com Article: An Uncertain Trumpet

Aldo,     (01)

Thanks for your cogent remarks. Indeed, I am strongly in favor of
international standards bodies, some health orgs, cultural exchange,
tourism, education, collaboration, etc.     (02)

Where the concept goes sour is with economic integration. Political
integration soon follows, leading to all the problems we are trying to
avoid: poverty, disenfranchisement, environmental destruction, mindless
bureaucracies, etc.    (03)

The arrogant UN and its economic brainchild, the WTO, have caused most
of these problems by overreaching, politicking and internationalism.    (04)

Re. peace in Europe has been sustained by NATO and 250,000 US troops
based in Germany for half a century. Not to mention France's Force de
Frappe, tested in Micronesia as recent as 1995.(?) The power-mad
socialist EU's response to the Balkan crisis was a disgrace.    (05)

You're right the EU is highly dysfunctional. The sick extreme right that
has mobilized across Europe is just a hint of what's in store for this
demented meta-government and the continent. The Brits get it, having
been burned before: economic and political superstructures just don't
work.      (06)

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-ba-unrev-talk@bootstrap.org
[mailto:owner-ba-unrev-talk@bootstrap.org] On Behalf Of Aldo de Moor
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2002 1:41 AM
To: ba-unrev-talk@bootstrap.org
Subject: RE: [ba-unrev-talk] NYTimes.com Article: An Uncertain Trumpet    (07)

John,    (08)

> The call today is to retire these flaw supra-governments in favor of 
> far more organic, direct and community oriented methods. The same goes    (09)

> for    (010)

I partially agree with your points. True, international governmental
structures induce problems of legitimacy, efficacy, etc. However, where
we seem to disagree is on the necessity of these structures, on whether
they are an 'evil empire' (your point of view) or a 'necessary evil' (my
perspective).    (011)

You seem to confuse type and instance. The UN is an instance of a type
of global meta-government, or rather of a worldwide meta-discussion and
negotiation organization. In today's global system with all its links
and dependencies, such a structure is inevitable. If we'd go your way,
we would still have a global village, but then even more out of control.
Multinationals and governments could - and would - still do their thing,
but now even more unchecked and unbalanced.    (012)

As an instance, the UN is flawed and needs *reform* (NB: one reason it
is so ineffective, is because of the continuous sabotage committed by
the US). However, we cannot do without *some form* of meta-government.    (013)

A good example is the EU. This form of meta-government is also seriously
ill, and needs to be restructured. Just think of the lack of legitimacy
of European policy-making. 80% of European laws are now produced in
Brussels, but the quality of democratic decision-making is highly
questionable. Still, would we want to do without it? Despite all its
problems, it has prevented wars amongst its members for the past 50+
years. Even more important, it has changed people's mindsets: a war with
Germany would be totally inconceivable. Having achieved the almost
complete erasure of the deep feelings of hatred and mistrust engendered
by WWII is a major achievement, I would say. The very fact that half my
colleagues and many students at the university are non-Dutch, is also a
tangible result of how this organization has increased intra-European
collaboration and exchange.    (014)

'Organic, direct, and community oriented methods' are needed,
absolutely. But rather than abolishing the global level and going back
to some Thomas Hobbes kind of brutish tribal society, we need to inject
those methods at the highest levels as well.    (015)

Regards,    (016)

Aldo    (017)

  ---///     e-mail: ademoor@uvt.nl
IN|F/OLAB    phone +31-13-4662914/3020, fax +31-13-4663069
  |///       home page: http://infolab.uvt.nl/people/ademoor    (018)

Dr. Aldo de Moor
Infolab, Dept. of Information Systems and Management - Tilburg
University PO Box 90153, 5000 LE Tilburg, The Netherlands
==    (019)