In an era of politics characterised by unconstrained corporate lobbying, a well-oiled ‘revolving door’ between industry and government, and an endless stream of campaign contributions from dirty oil and other lucrative industries, is the long-championed ideal of a truly democratic state now a lost cause? Should concerned citizens and activists turn their attention instead to establishing sustainable economic alternatives within their towns and communities?
Sovereignty has been ebbing from nation states and flowing toward corporations for quite some time now. This has been true at least as long as both sides of wars have been funded by corporate entities. The corporate model with its fixation on profit is amoral at best, but proves to be immoral in an economic game that allows for externalities such as poverty and pollution. Until true morals are brought into the economic system the world will continue toward catastrophe.
Excellent sober analysis. Looking at what is already being tried and realizing the limitations is not defeatist, but necessary. Though single issue event organizing hasn't resulted in sustained citizen coalitions, the fight against TPP and TTIP may be different. Yes it is a defensive battle, stopping them will not get us to a better place, just hold off for a while going to the worse place they're trying to herd us. But all these new trade treaties are so radically blatant and they expose so clearly the time of day that most reasonable people everywhere oppose them. Just possibly, the citizens of the prospective national signatories to these pacts will spark the global cohesion Rajesh is looking for. Any national government that promises to sign these pacts can rightfully be accused of malfeasance, dereliction of duty, and possibly treason.
To an otherwise succinct analysis I would add a studious tracking of the issues involved in INDIGENOUS RIGHTS as a component to 'thinking globally'. We forget at our peril that the indigenous peoples are on the front lines of the abuses of the transnational extractive, mining, global strategies for mega dam hydropower that is backed by heavy industry with mining also riding its coattails in addition to usurpatious land grabbing, for GMO monoculture plantations among others.
Advocacy groups like International Rivers also provide background documentation, provide cyber activism opportunities - and yes, it is worth the few minutes it takes to sign petitions to build presence of legitimacy that cannot and must not be ignored.
Intercontinental Cry posts news from all over the world to make available information that is essential to democratic process - BECAUSE this is one of the most impactful areas where the extractive industry rubber meets the road.
Among shared concerns is a phrase identified by indigenous peoples that resonates throughout international and local concerns "PRIOR AND INFORMED CONSULTATION".
Sound like a familiar necessity?
A really-existing alternative is being build by the Kurdish people - particularly in the NE corner of Syria that the Kurds call Rojava and in the Turkish and Iraqi regions where the formerly Stalinist but now libertarian (in the classical anarchist-socialist sense) PKK and Peshmerga have de-facto control.
Representative democracy can not work when its representatives can be and are purchased at the same time international interests are stabbing it in the back. Democracy needs to be redefined and implemented internationally by the people not the monied interests. There are millions of people in the streets across the world working for social change they need to be recognized as such not as rioting protestors. Their ideas and voices need to be centralized and accorded appropriate study not simply rejected and media murdered.
That is the long way of saying that to make systemic reforms and build a sharing society, there needs to be a globalized form of direct democracy. Today that is achievable with technology. Politicians only hinder direct democracy.