Now that’s a newspaper headline you don’t see every day. I’m not one to jump on the ‘conspiracy’ band-wagon, but this isn’t even conspiratorial: what we are entering into, and what just happened in Copenhagen, is just out in the open, being talked about by leaders and promoted by the media.
Now to be sure, as far as global warming is concerned, the accord they came up with accomplished little more than what Kyoto accomplished: good will toward reducing emissions. The carbon output of 60 developing nations for an entire year, and all they achieved was good-will? That is of course if you believe CO2 to be a toxic substance, you know, the same substance required for … life. I digress.
However, what was clear from Copenhagen is that a network of nations is emerging as having clear control over the affairs of the people they govern throughout the developed and even developing world (something the third world nations were irate about after the Danish text leak revealed something to this effect). There are some very good arguments particularly pertaining to democracy in this article. Here are some choice quotes (my insertions in brackets):
There can be little doubt which word won the prize for most important adjective [of the year]. 2009 was the year in which “global” swept the rest of the political lexicon into obscurity. There were “global crises” and “global challenges”, the only possible resolution to which lay in “global solutions” necessitating “global agreements”. Gordon Brown actually suggested something called a “global alliance” in response to climate change.
The mere utterance of it [the word ‘global’] was assumed to sweep away any consideration of what was once assumed to be the most basic principle of modern democracy: that elected national governments are responsible to their own people – that the right to govern derives from the consent of the electorate.
The dangerous idea that the democratic accountability of national governments should simply be dispensed with in favour of “global agreements” reached after closed negotiations between world leaders never, so far as I recall, entered into the arena of public discussion. Except in the United States, where it became a very contentious talking point, the US still holding firmly to the 18th-century idea that power should lie with the will of the people. [Making the assumed point that they are not holding in the UK … illustrated by the Trafigura story/scandal]
… if there was no popular choice about approving supranational “legally binding agreements”, what would happen to dissenters who did not accept their premises (on climate change, for example) when there was no possibility of fleeing to another country in protest? Was this to be regarded as the emergence of world government? And would it have powers of policing and enforcement that would supersede the authority of elected national governments?
In effect, this was the infamous “democratic deficit” of the European Union elevated on to a planetary scale. And if the EU model is anything to go by, then the agencies of global authority will involve vast tracts of power being handed to unelected officials. Forget the relatively petty irritations of Euro‑bureaucracy: welcome to the era of Earth-bureaucracy, when there will be literally nowhere to run.
The word “global” has taken on sacred connotations. Any action taken in its name must be inherently virtuous, whereas the decisions of individual countries are necessarily “narrow” and self-serving. (Never mind that a “global agreement” will almost certainly be disproportionately influenced by the most powerful nations.)
The EU was initially setup as a conglomeration of European nations, in which they would act together in the best interest of the region. What has happened though since its inception is they now have a council of members from each nation-state in which laws are being formulated for the entire region, to a large degree, without voter approval. On top of that, a new position was just created at the EU: the office of President of the EU.
If what she is arguing for in this article is true, what happened with the EU is now happening on a global scale with the developed nations. And if what happens with this global consortium is the same thing that happened with the EU, we had better start paying attention more. The key term that I think is the most pertinent is “unelected”. She is right to say that the US is holding out against such a tyranny, so I’m not as concerned with this here. But the UK and other European nations are right in the middle of it.
Something it seems many of the former Communists and Statists learned from the last century is that tyranny-by-force doesn’t last for a long period of time (with China being one exception I can think of). So what do many of the New Socialists and Statists do instead as a sort of new method? Stealth, deception and implementation by fragments. Just look at the EU as an example of how this might work. Very interesting events taking place in our time.
UPDATE: in response to saving the Euro, as a sort of case in point of the above issues, Angela Merkel of Germany had this to say in this article:
“The question arises over what authority Europe has to tell national parliaments what to do, in order to avoid damage to Europe itself? National parliaments don’t like to be dictated to about such things, but we need to address the problem,” she said.
Ambrose Evans-Pritchard also had this to say in the same article:
Across Southern Europe there is a mood of national powerlessness, a feeling that events have moved beyond their control – as indeed they have. Eurosceptics argued from the start that EMU would prove unworkable over time without a debt-union; that the inevitable euro crisis would be used (consciously or not) to create an EU central government; that weak states on the edges would be reduced to colonies and that far from binding Europe together, EMU would lead to acrimony and perhaps reopen Europe’s can of historical worms. Were the critics wrong?
A new global body dedicated to environmental stewardship is needed to prevent a repeat of the deadlock which undermined the Copenhagen climate change summit, Gordon Brown will say tomorrow.
The Prime Minister will say: “Never again should we face the deadlock that threatened to pull down those talks. Never again should we let a global deal to move towards a greener future be held to ransom by only a handful of countries. One of the frustrations for me was the lack of a global body with the sole responsibility for environmental stewardship.
“I believe that in 2010 we will need to look at reforming our international institutions to meet the common challenges we face as a global community.”