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"Big Brother" Versus "Big Sister"

By Garry Davis

"World government is not an 'ultimate goal' but an immediate necessity. In fact it has been overdue since 1914. The convulsions of the past decade are the clear symptoms of a dead and decaying political system."
-Emery Reves, Anatomy of Peace, 1945

Looking back from the cool perspective of the 21st century, historians will identify the 20th as the age of male-dominated politics, a "culture of patriarchy," as Betty Burkes, president of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, defines it. The nation has been, and still is, the exclusive fiction and domain of the macho, rationally minded, competitive male, shockingly ignorant and fearful of his feminine "yin" nature.

Too simplistic? Then why is there no serious support for the concept of world government, despite the inescapable fact that it is the only method to outlaw war between competing governments?

I propose that this lack of support is rooted in an Orwellian, mythical fear of "Big Brother," i.e., world dictatorship. Indeed, the fear motive, along with the drive for power, is inherent in the nation-state system. The tribe enlarged becomes the nation in modern times. The 16th-century philosopher Renan wrote that "a nation is a group of people with an enemy." The existence of nuclear weapons makes this century, the century of the proliferation of the nation-state, the most deadly in all of human history.

But hold on. If the nation is the largest tribal unit, what is humanity? A larger "tribe"? But more relevant, what is humanity's government?

If the nation-state system itself is indeed patriarchal, that is, exclusive, tribal, and legally promoting and practicing violence, is not then world government its polar opposite, that is, matriarchal, feminine, i.e., relational? And peaceful?

To give up the power to kill - as in the days of the cave - is likened by psychologists to rendering the male impotent. That power then becomes his self-portrait or cardinal identity. That is why world government is so threatening to those supporting the male-dominated, nation-state system; they would lose the right to wage war and kill. Needless to say, since all national constitutions, with the exception of Japan's, implicitly or explicitly sanction the right to "self-defense" (i.e., war), global government represents a paradigm shift in social formulas. Humanity would exist on planet Earth...not as a tribe but as a species...indeed, a family.

The fear of "Big Brother" then is a smokescreen to perpetuate the male dominance of present-day politics. In short, men fear their own self-image, their adolescence, their inner knowledge of impotence. Unable or unwilling to face their internal moral cowardice, they must dominate the external world by staging war "games" to "prove" their prowess. Lacking human sovereignty, they cede it to the nation, the fictional creature they themselves created, which then mirrors their own fear and ignorance.

Furthermore, the state, having become the enemy of people, attacks them where they live, in the cities. Despite multiple conventions against the killing of non-combatants, the common target in this century has been city populations which, in their social integration, are likewise "feminine" in character-hence the civic rebellion against state-imposed war via the dynamic, worldwide program of "sister cities" and its companion, beginning in 1948, the "mundialization" program, the ultimate in civic social relationship.

The increase of women mayors, prime ministers and national presidents signals a radical departure in the political power equation. Norway's Per Gro Bruntland, Britain's Margaret Thatcher, India's Indiri Gandhi, the Philippine's Corazon Aquino, Pakistan's Benazir Bhutto, Bangladesh's Sheikh Hasina Wazed, and Ireland's Mary Robinson have prevailed despite vigorous male opposition and charges of mismanagement and corruption. Their presence, and that of other women legislators in national parliaments and congresses, indicate a reformation in governance. However, only when the power equation has shifted from the national to the global level, can the true balance between the one and the many be fully protected and nurtured.

Consider the so-called religious laws against women. Religion clothed in state power becomes the male sword and shield and, in the name of an exclusive god, can violently eliminate all competition, both internal and external. Religious leaders condone the same deadly male game in the name of their exclusive gods.

Then the militia groups and myopic political parties that link the United Nations, this ultra-nationalistic body, the very antithesis of a democratic world organ, with World Government is a further giveaway of macho, male thinking. The very name "United Nations" rejects both the concept and practice of world government. We must conclude that their criticism is merely a bluff, a diversion to confuse the desperate public in order to preserve their own vain and futile power.

If world government alone can guarantee safety by outlawing war, why is there not a tidal wave of support for it? Why, after Emery Reves, Einstein, Gandhi, and a plethora of illustrious men and women after World War II enthusiastically endorsed world government (see p. 14), didn't it forthrightly appear on the human horizon? Why haven't foundations donated their millions for a governed world? Why don't billionaires like Gates, Buffett, Soros, Lee Shau Kee and Riaddy support the only government that can protect their wealth? Why don't transnational corporate CEOs, who will lose everything if the war game continues ad infinitum, blow the whistle on a dysfunctional national political system carried over from the pre-industrial, largely agricultural 18th century?

Indeed, why isn't world government allied with fundamental human rights and individual political choice as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights itself mandates?

Again, fear of "Big Brother"!

Let's take a minute, and imagine that we're in the next century, looking back in time. From our vantage point, we see that the dominant political factor of the 20th century was the proliferation of the nation-state system. In hindsight, this system appears inherently dysfunctional and destablizing, even suicidal, a carry-over from the previous pre-industrial century. Furthermore, we world citizens recognize clearly the gender orientation of the nation-state as being essentially patriarchal.

We recognize that the 20th century's opposition to a global government was dominated by the very patriarchy that ruled the nation-state system. The male-oriented national system instinctively recognized that the institution of global government would mean the loss of its allegedly sovereign power and, incidentally, the control of the feminine world. Hence, in its collective fear, its madness increased to the point where humanity itself was threatened with extinction by nuclear holocaust.

The dramatic rise of women's movements throughout the world in the last quarter of the 20th century will be credited as a key element leading to a new relational political science, geo-dialectics (see the Memorandum on World Government). This was aided by the exponential increase of the refugee population, more than half of which were women and children. These human victims of national wars responded almost by necessity to the idea of a new government in which they could play a dynamic and essential civic role.

Added to this was a telecommunications revolution, with giant leaps into cyberspace via the extraordinary development of satellites linking powerful computers.

The Internet played an increasingly major role by allowing the political process of "World Syntegrity" and "world referendum" to evolve grassroots, systemic world laws. This allowed each individual to exercise sovereignty with regard to global issues that affected him and her personally.

A final factor in the development of world government was the advent of the space age, which reflected a vision of planet earth as merely part of an infinite cosmos. In preserving and protecting life on earth, humans were, inadvertently, also protecting part of a greater environment beyond the planetary confines.

Our game of hindsight must conclude, but I maintain that history will show that the fear of world government was rooted in the male mental and emotional outlook, which demanded exclusive power over human affairs and which, with incredible shortsightedness, sought to dominate the environment of our common mother, Earth itself.

The end of the nation-state era will be a triumph for women, for a nascent humanity and those revered masters from time immemorial who have taught us the principles of unity and universality.

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