Why Do I Fear a World Political Authority?
I share my co-blogger Mark Gordon’s apprehension toward the prospect of a global political and economic authority, but that shouldn’t come as a surprise given my deep-seated anti-authoritarian personality and ever-suspicious eye for consolidated power. Mark reasonably figures that “such a body” would “be put at the service of the multinationals and their retainers in national governments.” If given the right amount of power, this body would sit in dominion over the nations of the world, at least over select national affairs. Who watches the Watchmen wouldn’t be an uncalled for question.
Reflecting upon my concern about the idea of a world authority, I am led to wonder if the prospects expressed above are coupled with an inability on my part to imagine the world otherwise than as a sphere of separate nation-states and different people. My Church, which has been promoting a global political authority for some time now, sees the peoples of the world as a singular body, as one. Of course, it recognizes nation-states and other entities of sovereignty, but it doesn’t see any one of them in particular as essential to the human being. The Church has a global perspective and then some. Do I? Am I able to see humankind as one and apart from divisions of country, race, ethnicity, tribe, corporation, and family? I’m not sure, not as sure as I want to be.
Anyhow, despite my misgivings, I’m not ready to wave the banner of opposition to a world authority. Perhaps for such an experiment to work in favor of the common good, the political structure of the world would have to change. Perhaps we would first have to shed our national skins and molt into a global people. At present, I cannot conceive how a global authority wouldn’t primarily serve the interests of those who already wield too much power, but then cannot I dismiss the prospect as always and everywhere imprudent. Perhaps, at present, the idea best serves as a challenge to humanity to welcome a world politically and economically otherwise than our own, a world in which the common good is pursued in common.