After having explored the decline of democracy and the surge of the digital world, today I'd like to take what most of all screams for the creation of a global equitist front: the cancellation of barriers, or in other terms, "we are all in this together."
My co-founder and I know quite a bit about this as it has been the single constant of our political engagement and the drive behind our Atlas adventure. I have three interesting sources to share with you on this front to complement what you will find below:
- Colombe's Ted Talk on the need for global action
- An article we wrote on The Economist when we first started our global movement
- The description of the Forward campaign we waged at the United Nations to bring a people backed candidate in the Institution
So far, what we have done has not been enough to change the world, so we still learn much more about all of this. Let's jump right in!
A BORDERLESS DILEMMA
It's no surprise that exponential growth in technological development and a progressive increase of global prosperity that elevated billions of people out of poverty brought along a substantial increase in the movement of goods and people.
The interconnectedness of human society augmented exponentially in modern times, according to several indicators. Today, one-fourth of global production is exported, generating massive supply chain co-dependence between countries on different sides of the planet. 1.4 billion people traveled abroad in 2018, compared to merely 400mln in 1990. Globalization, much debated and feared at the turn of the Millenium, is now an undeniable fact.
While humans purposefully drive certain dynamics, others are caused by their recklessness. Global warming and other devastating consequences of industrialization have longly plagued the natural environment. Epidemics and pandemics jumped from animals to humans when the latter invaded natural habits or farmed unwisely.
The paradox of this age is that while there is considerable consensus about the increasingly global nature of trends impacting societies, multilateralism and cross-border cooperation are spread relatively thin. While crises spread like wildfire across the planet, governments are incapable of coming together, disregarding electoral timetables and national interests. A partially successful deal on climate must be weighted against hundreds of failures of what was once called "the international community", from the inability to grant appropriate vaccines access to the failure of protecting the most vulnerable from religious fanatics or dictators.
Even more paradoxically, such failures and their impact on populations provoke calls for additional isolationism. The 2008 financial crisis ignited a wave of nationalism in Europe, the United States and beyond, while wars & climate-related migration strengthened the narrative of xenophobes. The more states lose control for their inability to face transnational challenges, the more their people lose faith in institutions and turn inwards. The next big challenge will arise directly from the climate crisis. As the consequences of that horrific mismanagement will become more apparent, governments will stumble and fall.
In this scenario, the lack of democratic, accountable, transparent global governance is as apparent as it ever has been. Traditional multilateralism struggles to coordinate the wills and moods of over 190 countries, often polarized behind China and the United States. The most important multilateral institution, the United Nations, is completely paralyzed by the veto of the P5 (the winners of WW2 that managed to hold on to their power for 80 years), and it's entirely undemocratic: citizens do not have a way to participate in its governance.
Equity cannot be achieved unless everyone has access to opportunities and rights and can accomplish their version of well-being. For this to happen, each and everyone on this planet must have a voice that transcends boundaries and barriers designed centuries ago, before the global dynamics affecting today's society were at play. This is the only way to tame global challenges such as climate change effectively and equitably. This manifesto will elaborate on a proposal for global, democratic governance with actual competencies to save planet Earth from climate-led extinction and other threats: it's humans' best chance.
Today’s piece was shorter but I feel we hit a very clear point, encapsulating the need for a global political platform (which we will build).
In the next two issues on Monday and Tuesday, I will tackle the last two issues I believe are fundamental to read today’s reality: the shift in power structure (slowly but surely) in favor of traditionally discriminated groups, and the wild west the global economy is becoming.
Speak on Monday!
PS English is not my first language. I want to reassure you that before assembling the Equitist Manifesto, some editors will review all this material and ensure it's correct and flows well ;)
✒️ Send feedback and ideas at [email protected]