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The Turn Towards Unity: Converting Crises into Opportunities

Author(s): Garry Jacobs

Journal: Cadmus
ISSN 2038-5242

Volume: 1;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 106;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Human progress is stimulated by external threats and pressures. Values distilled from long experience possess the essential knowledge and power needed for continuous development and evolution. Successive waves of foreign invasions following the collapse of the Roman Empire coalesced the tribes of England into a nation state. Centuries of incessant warfare finally compelled the countries of Western Europe to evolve a regional union within which war has become unthinkable. Most recently, the rising incidence of terrorism has compelled national security institutions to forge a network for global coordination unimaginable during the Cold War. Challenges met are converted into opportunities. Opportunities missed degenerate into problems. All crises are psychological in origin. The remedy always calls for a change of attitude and values. The greatest threats confronting human beings today do not come from external aggressors. They are the result of problems that affect humanity as a whole and can only be addressed collectively by the entire human race. International financial instability, unemployment, terrorism, proliferation of nuclear weapons and climate change are indications that humanity is entering a higher phase in social evolution that compels us to evolve more effective instruments for governance at the global level. No nation or group of nations acting on its own can protect itself from these threats. Effective action to address these issues is unlikely to come from governments whose source of power and very identity are based on national sovereignty and separateness. Mechanisms for global governance will not be effective unless founded upon universally accepted values in fact as well as in principle, a condition violated by the undemocratic character of the UN system. Power relents only in the face of greater power. Power that exceeds that of the five permanent members of the Security Council can only come from representatives of humanity as a whole. A confederation of transnational organizations with shared values and common concerns can formulate a vision and plan that will constitute the seed for future world government. Organizations have evolved to the point where they can play the pioneering role traditionally played by pioneering individuals in the past, but even such organizations must depend on a core group of aspiring individuals to point the way.

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