Excerpts from Two Articles on World Government:

 

   From:Gandhi and World Government

Dr. Glen T. Martin

(In Bhavan's Journal, April 2003)

             At the dawn of the 21st century, the essence and spirit of Gandhi’s thought cries out for non-military, democratic world government. The world has moved in the past 50 years to the point where the violence that Gandhi abhorred is institutionalized on a global scale. It is institutionalized in the system of nation states each pretending to be sovereign independently from the sovereignty of the people of the earth. It is institutionalized in a global economic system in which the exploitation of the poor by the rich has reached planetary proportions. This essay shows that the spirit of Gandhi’s life and thought support the vision of a new world order embodied in the Constitution for the Federation of Earth....

              Raghavan N. Iyer writes that Gandhi held an open view of human possibilities and the future.   Indeed, he assumed that human beings could progress in their moral and spiritual development and that India's role was to lead in the moral elevation of civilization.  "Man's triumph will consist in substituting the struggle for existence by the struggle for mutual service," Gandhi wrote, "the law of the brute will be replaced by the law of man" (Jesudasan, 1984, p. 127).  It is this positive view of our human possibilities that makes Gandhi's thought at one with that of Sri Aurobindo who wrote that "a free world-union must in its very nature be a complex unity based on a diversity and that diversity must be based on free self-determination" (1992, p. 517).

               When accused of being "utopian," Gandhi answered that each of us should live our utopias at all times....  "The world of tomorrow will be, must be, based on non-violence.  That is the first law; out of it all other blessings will flow.... An individual can adopt the way of life of the future - the non-violent way - without having to wait for others to do so.... I see no poverty in the world of tomorrow, no wars, no revolutions, no bloodshed" (1987, pp. 458-460).

                 This is exactly what the creators as well as personal signers of the Earth Constitution have done.  They have chosen in the here and now to live under the lawful world order of a moral, just, and nonviolent future, an order in which war has been abolished and all militarism has been made illegal.

 

 From: A Planetary Paradigm for Global Government

Dr. Glen T. Martin

(In Toward Genuine Global Governance: Critical Reactions to "Our Global Neighborhood," Errol E. Harris and James A. Yunker, eds.,  Westport, CT: Praeger, 1999, pp. 15-16.)

        The key issue for the realization of democratic world government is "legitimation."  All political power, all authority, all ideas of sovereignty rest on a general recognition that certain people (those in power) have legitimate authority to issue laws or commands....Legitimacy is directly dependent on general recognition.  In the face of the present planetary crisis, the traditional institutionalized forms of power (nation-states, multinational corporations, and, in certain areas, the UN) are rapidly becoming "delegitimated."  They have shown themselves in the last half century as simply not capable of addressing the global destruction of the environment, growing desperation of world poverty, the population explosion, or world militarism.

          If citizens begin to withdraw recognition of the legitimacy of these institutions, their seemingly invincible power will evaporate like steam in the wind, just as the power of the Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos evaporated in 1986, when the majority of the citizens  of his country nonviolently refused to recognize his fraudulent reelection, and just as the former Soviet Union, once considered a monolith of unassailable power, dissolved almost nonviolently within a few years of the widespread questioning of its legitimacy.

         In terms of this insight, military institutions, nation-states, and the current global financial system might be more or less rapidly delegitimated if the people of the world began to transfer their recognition of legitimacy from these planetary fragments to the whole, as embodied in the proposed federal world government set forth in the Constitution for the Federation of Earth.

 

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