View Full Version : new world order ?I
I am concerned about rumors that the United Nations has plans in the works for taking over the World. The NAFTA TREATY, the EURO, ect,ect. A world Goverment has been in the works since the mid 18th century. I would like to hear what some of your thoughts are about this.
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03-17-00, 06:43 PM
I think New World Order conspiracists (sp?) who think there is a secret cabal to put the entire world under one government are particularly funny because they have it exactly backwards - and what I think will actually happen is at least as fascinating, and a lot more controversial. BTW, this post ends rather abruptly, because I got tired
of typing, but I put down all the salient points:
One very important thing to understand about the world today and in the near future is this: information technology made the industries which create the most value, thus are most profitable, thus are the best tax base – SMALL. Physically small. A steel mill or a car factory can not be picked up and moved. A software company, whose most valuable assets fit inside a laptop, can. And these "information assets" turn economy of scale on its head. It is no longer advantageous for a car company to coordinate all its production done under one roof. You request bids for most car parts to subcontractors via Internet, then use computers to analyze and match up their bids as they come within hours (I’ve written software for exactly that, so I know what I am talking about). The subcontractors use CAD/CAM software to drive their lathes and to put out parts exactly to your specifications. Some of them happen to be in Argentina, some in Japan, some in Germany. The CAD/CAM may be written by a contractor in Moscow, the Web page to collect bids by someone in Seattle, and the bid analyzer by yours truly. Your main assembly plant is not in the country where you are incorporated.
My point is – in the Information Age very few geographic locations hold inherent production advantages. Sure, there are big differences between countries – taxes and regulations in US and Europe, rampant corruption in Russia and Africa, - but these are political, i.e. man-made differences. Geographically the industries, which drive Information economy, can be anywhere – and their workforce is spread all over the globe. When you combine this fact with the fact that this workforce is useless unless highly skilled and highly motivated, you come to a startling conclusion – War of conquest is no longer a paying proposition.
I did not say "any war", but specifically "war of conquest", i.e. capturing territory. Since the beginning of civilization kings and countries fought over economically valuable real estate. When Germany captured Poland in 1939 it gained a big chunk of natural resources and a labor force. Of course, that labor force hated the Germans, sabotaged whenever possible, and could not be trusted to do anything but grunt work, but grunt work was exactly what Germany needed from the Poles. In 1939 there was still great economic value in pick-and-shovel labor – the kind of labor conquerors can get out of the conquered.
That is no longer true. Suppose Slobodan Milosevic managed to re-conquer Croatia. What would he gain, besides a really angry guerilla force? Nothing Serbia could sell – at least not enough to justify the expense of the conquest. Which does not mean it is in his interests to become friends with Croats – on the contrary, as long as Serbs are whipped up in a patriotic frenzy and view all their neighbors with hatred and suspicion, Milosevic is a great hero. He would not last a day if Serbs woke up and decided they have nobody to fear. But capturing territory of Serbia’s enemies would be counterproductive. Information economy has no effect on wars of secession, "ethnic cleansings" and terrorism against real or perceived oppressors – if anything, it may make them worse. But (except for Middle East, where "territory = oil") I expect wars of conquest are over for good. It also means that infantry is losing its importance. Any West Point cadet will tell you the Army truism that "planes can bomb the enemy, special forces infiltrators can assassinate leaders, but it takes a grunt with a rifle to take and hold territory." I doubt West Point professors will admit that nobody needs to "hold territory" any longer, but that does not make it less true. War has become high-skill affair – terrorism and counter-terrorism, bombing and infiltration. Little work is left for the grunt except peacekeeping duty – keeping some pair of ancient enemies from tearing each other’s throats.
Even if you agree with the above statements, it is hard to see all of its implications. The first implication is – An independent country needs not be large, nor be a part of an alliance, to be safe. Before World War II the world was divided between few powers, in 1950-1990 between just two powers. Any small player had to align with one or the other of the big boys, or get swallowed – usually not by the big boys themselves, but by its equally small neighbors who did align. Now, every year several new countries split off – sometimes without a fight, sometimes violently. But once they split off, the cost of re-conquering them is prohibitive, as Russians found out in Chechnya. And a small country can operate more efficiently, simply because governmental bureaucracy is smaller, easier to manage, and more visible to the citizens’ scrutiny, especially with Internet. Does not mean small country must be efficient and open – Chechnya is anything but, - but it can. In Industrial Age more was more and less was less. In Information Age, less is more.
Second implication – Not only companies, but also individuals who drive information economy, can move with ease. It used to be that if you wanted to enjoy "luxuries of civilization" (running water, streets with no potholes, salmonella-free meat) you had to leave in the West. No amount of money would buy these things in Moscow, Prague, or Luanda. Don’t know if they are available in Luanda yet, but you can certainly buy decent living in Prague and Moscow. And skilled information specialists can earn decent living anywhere they can plug in a modem.
Third, and most heretical implication – Jurisdiction is becoming commercialized. High-tech companies and individuals earn disproportionate amount of money and thus pay disproportionate amount of taxes. Ease of moving allows them to shop around between jurisdictions and it forces jurisdictions, which want to keep this tax base to compete among each other. Countries and states which charge high taxes and provide poor services will lose customers. I live in Massachusetts because here a productive family gets good value for the taxes. When my kids grow up, I will almost certainly move – perhaps to a different country.
Don't misunderstand me - I am not saying people are "economic robots" driven by nothing but pursuit of money. But whatever motives and interests people have, modern communications and transportation make it easier than ever to find people who think the way one does, and deal mostly with them. What chance does any national government, let alone a world government, have for maintaining a cohesive population, when a individual has greater ties with like-minded persons half a world away than with his neighbors?
Fourth implication - Low-skill people will become increasingly unimportant to the political process. During Industrial Age most wealth was produced by large numbers of low-skilled workers and was defended by equally large numbers of infantry soldiers (drawn from the same social class, by the way). This gave workers/soldiers a great deal of political power. However distasteful the notion may be to the people raised in traditions of equality, in Information Age the bulk of wealth is both produced and defended by small numbers of highly skilled professionals. This may well be the end of democracy in the modern sense – and I do not expect the process to be peaceful or pleasant. Demagogues like Pat Buchanan are going to revile "revolt of the cultural elites" and "betrayal of democracy" – in fact, they already do, and not just in the US. Quite possibly, many will ride into political offices under the banner of populism, protectionism, and nationalism. The likely effect of their election will be a wholesale flight of skilled professionals into more receptive jurisdictions, and thus drastic fall of revenues in the jurisdictions they will flee. I deliberately use the word "jurisdictions" rather than "countries", because this process is already happening within countries, particularly within US. States and cities are competing for customers – with low profile, to avoid populist outrage, but they are doing it all the same. Populist victories in some US states but not others would cause these states view each other with hostility reminiscent of Civil War.
I expect within 30 years several industrialized countries to break up as a result of all that. A secessionist movement in Northern Italy feels that it is unfairly subsidizing the South. Belgian Flemish population feels the same way about Waloons. Many provinces of Russia are already de facto independent – they pay no taxes to Moscow. To a lesser degree, it is also true in China. Every year Quebec holds referendums whether to secede from Canada. One thing going against Canada’s unity is that it is a huge country with few people and a large expensive road network – increasingly a drawback in the age of telecommuting. And when Canada does break up, American northern states will find it increasingly difficult to compete with Quebec and especially more developed British Colombia. The stage will be set for the breakup of the United States.
This is far more speculative, but I think future historians will call 16th-20th centuries period "The Age of State" or "The Age of Nation-State". They will also draw an arbitrary line, possibly as early as 1990 (breakup of Soviet Union), and call it the end of that Age. Whatever the next "Age" is called, it will be characterized by small countries, almost like city-states of Renaissance Italy, catering to different groups much like hotel chains do. People who like scrubbed streets and hate stepping on gum will find Singapore attractive. Fans of Beavis and Butthead may prefer Tijuana. In city-states of Pacific Northwest tobacco will be probably illegal, while Independent Republic of Havana would be shrouded in cigar smoke. Christian Fundamentalists may flock to "Kingdom of Elohim" or some such carved out of portions of Alabama, Georgia and Florida, and punish blasphemy by flogging. Some megacity might draw fans of body-modification, perpetually "plugged-in" via implants in their skull, whereas some naturist community would regard merging of human and computer as a perversity. Etc.
To Letticia, Great discourse but I think you have got it all wrong. These people have a plan IN PLACE to reduce the population of this planet to two (2) billion. That is from over six (6) billion.
A war with China would be a start.
03-21-00, 10:54 PM
I also agree with alot of what you have said Letticia, except there is one thing that is more important then economics. The most fundamental need, and that is a place to live. To illustrate my point take Australia. We have an extremely small population when you conssider the vast amount of land in this country. Our most threatning neighbour is only a very short distance to the north. This neighbour has proven to be hostile, faces population problems, and is well aware of the lifestyle that Australians enjoy. So I put it to that there is still a reason to fight over territory, and will be more so as the worlds population grows.
Has anyone ever read Foucault's Pendulum, by Umberto Eco? I think it should be standard reading for any conspiracy theorist. Unfortunately I can't tell you exactly why without screwing the ending (and the book's a pain in the ass to read, unless your an Italian existentialist with a Zen sense of humor--literally.) But one thing the novel does have plenty to say about is the Knights Templar; while I am unfamiliar with the details of the greater portion of that specific history, the overview reads like the ultimate conspiracy theory/Indiana Jones mystery. Essentially glory, fame, downfall, hidden treasures, cabals, manipulations of King and Church alike, and all the dirty, homoerotic, Devil-worship crap that is of the Templar mythos.
The point to this is that the Knights Templar seem to have formerly held the status of the Zionist-UN Conspiracy, the BEAST conspiracy, and half the half-baked crap I've heard coming from ultraconservative American churches. (A young girl, about 14, associated with one particular church whose entire history is based on the prophecies of a 14 y/o girl, wrote a fictional tract that has apparently permeated the church which asserts that on a date already known, the United Nations will sweep across the United States, arresting every Sabbatarian Christian and throwing them into tiger cages until the time of their trial, which was to be Inquisitory--sign allegiance to the World Church or be executed in the electric chair. I used to have a copy of this, until I got drunk and set the damn thing on fire; I'm told I can get another at any one of the church's fine bookstores.)
But there is a rich history of conspiracy theories, some of which might even be true.
But it seems to me that people are simply too stupid to pull off some of the conspiracies I hear bandied about. I mean, come on ... what NSA screwhead would really think that no hackers in this country could figure out if a $20 bill was tagged for tracking? Actually, the stupidity of the NSA screwhead is what makes that damn story so plausible.
Yes, I've heard about ECHELON. No, I'm not happy about it. BUT ... what's the major threat here? I know damn well that they're already listening, watching, and know exactly how much pot I smoke and even what my favorite sexual position is. But, and this is limited right now to Americans (I cannot speak for the degree of Liberty in any other nation), what in the Hell can "They" do?
Example: When I was 10 and SDI was just through Congress the first time, I remember my brother trying to scare me with stories of satellites that could hit the tip of a ball-point pen with a laser, or read your headlines from space. I remember thinking: What can they do about it? I was 10 and I knew my Constitutional rights. To be more direct, think of any state where sodomy is against the law, or oral sex. Okay, what prosecutor is going to stand up in court and admit that he needed to use a thermal image from an orbital satellite to gain evidence of the alleged crime? Likewise with something like ECHELON ... is sodomy, or prostitution, or drug use really such a problem that we need a global espionage network to address these issues? (Hide the poker-shack!)
Since I'm rambling pointlessly now, I'll wrap up ... :D
Essentially: Templars and other stories equals history of conspiracy theory. Counterpoint being that I truly think that people are generally too stupid to actually pull off various global conspiracies. I mean, this is a world where a computerized pet's whining can incite a woman to kill a bicyclist. We're nitwits.
But that's just my stupid opinion. ;)
The whole business with the fossilized dinosaur eggs was a joke the paleontologists haven't seen yet. (Good Omens, Gaiman & Pratchett)
[This message has been edited by tiassa (edited March 21, 2000).]
<img src = "http://users.esc.net.au/~nitro/BBoard_member_gifs/bowser_anim.gif"> I think you place too much value on your shoulders. In truth, it's just a snack for the grunts when things get very bad.
It's all very large.