World Revolution Through World Law

Glen T. Martin

(copyright 2005-2006)



Restoring the Legitimacy of Nations Through the Supreme       Act of Civil Obedience



1.  The History Behind the Documents in this Book

2.  World Revolution as a Paradigm Shift from Fragmentation to Unity-in-Diversity

3.  The Twisted Logic of the Nation-state System

4.  Are We Inside the Belly of the Beast of the Box of Our Own Assumptions?

5.  Global Monopoly Capitalism

6.  Economics - Inequality Structured Into Law

7.  The "Normalization" of Evil

8.  Revolution and Legitimacy


The future of our world at the dawn of the twenty-first century is obscured by a dark cloud of hopelessness and despair. Violence, militarism, and war destroy the lives and hopes of millions each day. Millions more each day, including thirty thousand children, die of starvation or starvation-related conditions. Crippling diseases and plagues tear through thousands of communities in Africa, Asia, and South America.
Global warming threatens to disrupt the entire ecosystem of our planet while oil production increases daily. Yet everyone knows that the burning of oil is one of the main causes of global warming. Agricultural lands, fresh water sources, and ocean fisheries continue collapsing worldwide. Weapons of mass destruction are built and deployed with the intent of world domination and conquest. A fleet of Trident Submarines slithers across the bottom of the oceans of Earth. Each submarine, upon receiving the order to fire, or as the consequence of some terrible accident, is capable of wiping out 123 cities worldwide.

For giant profit-making enterprises, gigantic war industries, media conglomerates, and corporate prostitutes of consumer whims, it is business as usual. They are in the business of protecting the status quo which is the source of their exorbitant profits. And for millions of first-world consumers wallowing in their self-indulgent and unsustainable lifestyles, it is also business as usual. While the majority of humankind writhes in a living hell, they flash their credit cards, indulge their mindless entertainment, and covet their corrupt luxuries.

All human beings share the same fundamental spirit, a spirit arising from the very heart of the sacred universe. In the light of this spirit, we understand that we are all brothers and sisters capable of living together in peace, harmony, mutual respect, even love, on this precious planet Earth, which is our home. But the dominant institutions of our world alienate us from our fundamental spirit. They have taken on a life of their own that is threatening to destroy not only humankind, but the sacred Earth that has been entrusted to us as our home.

It is ordinary people, and the ordinary person in each of us, who must act together now to save the Earth and our common future. This book is based on the gigantic truth that such action is not only necessary but very possible. Humanity is at the verge of a breakthrough to a new world order. We do not need to wait for some “miraculous” transformation of a corrupt human nature. We need only transform the humanly-made, flawed institutions that alienate and distort our common humanity. We can rapidly and easily build those practical and common-sense institutions that allow our common humanity to flower in peace and prosperity.

The rule of universal law, applying equally to all and enforced fairly in the service of all, is a fundamental mainstay of human civilization. And it is democratically legislated universal laws that are the foundation of a transformed world order of peace, justice, and prosperity. The world has never yet had full democracy, not because some good constitutions have not been written, but because an interdependent world requires universal democratically legislated laws in the service of everyone.

You cannot fracture the Earth into approximately 191 competing territories and expect peace, justice, and prosperity to be the result. Humanity has the technical ability, the intelligence, and the spiritual capacity, at the dawn of the twenty-first century, to easily create a transformed future for the Earth (Martin, 2005). Now is the time.

This book contains all the essentials for creating that new and decent world order for the Earth. It provides a blueprint for a nonviolent revolution that founds the world order on genuine political and economic justice for all nations, peoples, and persons on Earth. As such, this small book may be one of the most important you will ever read. It is truly history in the making. You hold in your hand the key to justice, freedom, sustainability, and peace upon the Earth. Treasure it; think about it, and act on it. The survival of humanity and a future for our children are what is at stake.

1. The History Behind the Documents in this Book

There has been a great demand among the worldwide membership of the World Constitution and Parliament Association and related movements to produce a small volume containing the basic documents of the coming “revolution through world law.” This book is our response to this demand. It has been kept intentionally short so that it might be inexpensive and easily acquired by its readers. Some have given it a nickname: “The Blue Book.”

Those who wish to study the amazing history and legal accomplishments of this fast-expanding movement in more detail (including provisional world laws enacted to date) should acquire Emerging World Law – Key Documents and Decisions of the World Constituent Assemblies and Provisional World Parliament, edited by Eugenia Almand and myself, with a Preface by Dr. Terence Amerasinghe. This larger volume includes the four documents from the present volume as well as extensive chapters of commentary, analysis, history, provisional world laws passed to date, development of the World District Courts, etc.

The four documents collected below are official documents of the World Constituent Assemblies and the Provisional World Parliament. The Constituent Assemblies and their representatives wrote, debated, and approved the Constitution for the Federation of Earth as described in this Introduction. The Provisional World Parliament approved both the Manifesto of the Earth Federation and the Pledge of Allegiance to the Constitution at its Seventh Session in Chennai, India, in December 2003 and passed the “Declaration of the Rights of the People of Earth to create and ratify a World Constitution and hold sessions of the Provisional World Parliament” at its Eighth Session in Lucknow, India, in August 2004. These four together are perhaps the most fundamental documents in our revolutionary movement to create a decent world order on planet Earth for the first time in history.

In 1958, an agreement to call a World Constitutional Convention was initiated by four persons and circulated worldwide for signatures, with a request that both national governments and people of each country send delegates. From this call began a movement of world citizens from many countries to create a constitution for the Earth and initiate democratic world government.

With this initiative, a World Committee for a World Constitutional Convention formed. Thousands signed the initial agreement, including many prominent leaders. The organizers of this action traveled around the world to enlist support. Between 1961 and 1962, a definitive call to the World Constitutional Convention was adopted. Many persons signed, including the heads of five national governments. During the next four years, two Preparatory Congresses were held, first in Denver, Colorado, USA, and then in Milan, Italy. An outline of democratic procedures for debate and the drafting of a world constitution was formulated.

In 1967, the decision was made at the Third Preparatory Congress to hold a World Constitutional Convention in 1968, even if there were no governmental delegates who had signed up. 300 people’s delegates pledged. The first World Constitutional Convention was held accordingly at Interlaken, Switzerland, and Wolfach, Germany. It was attended by 200 people’s delegates from 27 countries and five continents. At this Convention, work was begun on drafting the Constitution for the Federation of Earth.

During the next seven years, a strategy for “Reclaiming Earth for Humanity” was circulated and directions were developed and given to the drafting commission to write the Constitution according to the guidelines developed at the first World Constitutional Convention. This commission of four persons worked together consistently, nearly completing the first draft of the Earth Constitution. Between 1973 and 1975, the first draft was finished, printed in 1974, and circulated worldwide for comment, together with the call to the second session of the World Constitutional Convention (now defined as the “World Constituent Assembly”) in 1977. Comments on the first draft were compiled and the drafting commission met once again to write the second draft. This was completed and circulated worldwide in 1976.

In June 1977, the Second Session of World Constituent Assembly was held in Innsbruck, Austria. The proposed Earth Constitution was debated paragraph by paragraph, amended, then adopted with 138 original signers from 25 countries and 6 continents. A worldwide call for ratification by the nations and peoples of Earth was issued. The Constitution was sent to U.N. General Assembly and to all national governments.

From 1978-1980, the Earth Constitution was again circulated worldwide for debate and ratification. The Third Session of World Constituent Assembly was held January 1979, in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The Assembly adopted the “Rationale For A World Constituent Assembly” and defined the right of people to convene the Assembly, draft the Constitution, and obtain ratification. (This “Rationale” was the predecessor of the “Declaration of Rights of People” included in this volume.) A worldwide appeal was issued for national parliaments to ratify. Under the authority of Article 19 of the Constitution, the people of Earth begin holding sessions of the Provisional World Parliament in 1982 in Brighton, England.

The process of the development and elaboration of provisional world law had begun, continuing at the Second Session of the Provisional World Parliament in New Delhi, India, in 1985 and the Third Session in Miami Beach, Florida, in 1987. A continuing discussion at these meetings of Parliament over details within the Constitution revealed the need to hold a Fourth Session of the World Constituent Assembly, which was held in Troia, Portugal, in 1991. Delegates adopted 59 amendments to the Earth Constitution (mostly small, precise changes in wording), and the document took on the final form that is now included in this volume. During the course of its 33-year development, literally thousands of world citizens worked at developing the Earth Constitution in the form that we have it today. It is the only world constitution in existence that has undergone such a rigorous process of democratic, participatory development.

Since 1991, the campaign for ratification of the Constitution has continued, with thousands of people and organizations becoming personal ratifiers of the document. (Official, final ratification must, of course, take place in accordance with the provisions set forth in Article 17 of the Constitution.) A network of organizations and people was formed called the Global Ratification and Elections Network, to promote ratification of the Constitution. This network is now being integrated into the newly emerging Earth Federation Movement, a movement which may soon have chapters in every country on Earth, devoted exclusively to getting the nations of the world to ratify the Earth Constitution.

The process of developing a body of provisional world law has also proceeded through the Fourth Session of the Provisional World Parliament in Barcelona, Spain, in 1996, the Fifth Session on the island of Malta in 2000, the Sixth Session in Bangkok, Thailand, in March 2003, the Seventh Session in Chennai, India, in December 2003, and the Eighth Session in Lucknow, India, in August 2004. The Ninth Session is currently being developed for Libya in Africa for the end of February 2006. When the World Parliament is finally activated (upon ratification of the Constitution under Article 17), the urgent work of the Earth Federation will already be partially in place, with a body of high-quality world law available for the World Parliament to accept, reject, or modify.

The Manifesto of the Earth Federation presents the reasons why we urgently need to build the Earth Federation and work to have the people and nations of Earth ratify the Constitution. The “Declaration of the Rights of the People of Earth to create and ratify a World Constitution and hold sessions of the Provisional World Parliament” presents, in a brief form, the official justification for our work of building the Earth Federation independently of the approval of the illegitimate collection of so-called “sovereign” nation-states.

The Constitution is the solution to the nightmare conditions on planet Earth: conditions, as the Manifesto points out, that are the direct result of the system of “sovereign” nation-states in cooperation with exploitative, monopoly capitalism. It is the only viable, practically available solution that we have before us today. It may not be a perfect document (no document could be perfect and non-controversial to all thinking persons). But it is an excellent and brilliantly conceived document, the official ratification of which would almost overnight create a decent world order for humanity.

The Pledge of Allegiance, adopted at the Seventh Session of the Provisional World Parliament, is an instrument by which the people of Earth can affirm their commitment to a new and decent world order independently of the corrupt system that now dominates the Earth and holds all governments hostage to its destructive power. Even prior to the adoption of the pledge, many thousands of people were becoming personal ratifiers of the Constitution, putting their names on file with the World Constitution and Parliament Association as recognizing the Constitution for the Federation of Earth as the supreme law of planet Earth. By doing this, they at least partially extricated themselves from participation in the corruption of the present world system and expressed their affirmation of a world system that includes and respects all human beings on the planet equally.

Today, the Pledge serves this function. People are signing the Pledge and sending a copy to the World Constitution and Parliament Association to keep on file for posterity and history. They are also posting it on the walls of their offices and their homes, on street corners and in public places. By doing so they transmit their support for a new and just world order and their rejection of the corruption and disintegration of our present world order. The Pledge is fast becoming a key document in the development of the new world within the dying husk of the old.

In every country people are also acting to build the Earth Federation Movement, a movement unlike any political party that has ever existed. The Earth Federation Movement is not attempting to take power in any country, nor to influence the ways any country is run according to a political platform. The Earth Federation Movement’s goal is not to take power of any sort but to have all nations ratify the Constitution for the Federation of Earth. The goal is not power for some organization or interest group. The goal is for the people of Earth to take power under a Constitution that enshrines their rights, protects all of them equally, and recognizes their sovereignty over all parties, organizations, and nations.

2. World Revolution as a Paradigm Shift from Fragmentation to Unity-in-Diversity

Today, it is becoming apparent to millions of people that nonviolent world revolution is our only option and that world law is the only practical route to that option. It does not matter whether one focuses on environmental issues, human rights issues, health care issues, worker safety or exploitation issues, poverty issues, democracy issues, civil liberties and freedom issues, or any number of other issues facing our world – the conclusion is the same. There will be no positive solution to any of these issues without world revolution.

World revolution is defined as a new order established on principles that eliminate the present system of domination, exploitation, and destruction of people and nature on Earth and establishes the just rule of democratically legislated law for our planet. We need a new order premised on justice, sustainability, equity, freedom, and universal prosperity. We will see that this is not a “utopian dream” but very possible, even necessary.

The ongoing destruction of the global environment, the rapid diminishing of agricultural lands, fresh water, and ocean fisheries, the assumption of ever-greater wealth and power by the few at the expense of the many, the unspeakable poverty and misery that a large portion of humanity must endure for their entire lives, the destruction of human liberty and human rights everywhere on Earth, the continued development and manufacture of weapons, and the use of war as an instrument of foreign policy as well as U.N. policy – all of these facts about our world lead to the conclusion that world revolution through law is our only option.

A fuller account of these crises is included in the Manifesto that comprises Chapter Three below. The study of these issues that has appeared in book after book shows that all of them are deeply interrelated. (For a list of such books, see the bibliography to this volume.) We live in a world system that inevitably produces these horrors and has led to this gigantic world crisis that we face today.

These deeply interrelated crises are not accidents of history. The are products of the dominant institutions of our modern world that evolved five or six centuries ago and are singularly unsuited for planetary protection of human life and the environment in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Thousands of books have exposed the fatal flaws in these institutions, yet the dominant powers and dominant media use every resource at their command to prevent an understanding of these institutions from developing in the people of Earth. The dominant institutions of our world are global monopoly capitalism integrated with the system of “sovereign” nation-states.

The origins of these institutions with the birth of the modern world during the Renaissance, along with the rise of science and the scientific method, defines the character of “modernity.” When these institutions were born much of our planet was still unknown. People living on one continent did not know about those living on other continents. Nature seemed to be an infinite and inexhaustible resource there for the taking and exploiting. Exploitative capitalism and the early “sovereign” nation-state seemed institutions that could produce wealth for many and glory and security for nations. It did not seem to matter that the world was divided into thousands of competitive corporate and national units, all operating out of self-interest without regard to nature or people.

The fragmentation of these early modern institutions was not questioned because the world itself was not understood as single unit. There was little conception of a single human race trying to become successfully interdependent on a tiny “spaceship Earth.” There was little or no conception of a planetary environment integrated into a single ecosystem that could be fatally disrupted by human activity (Harris, 2000).

Today, despite the best efforts of the corporate-owned dominant media to prevent understanding, and despite the immense propaganda spewed forth by imperial governments, more and more people worldwide are realizing that the world has no future under these institutions. For the global crisis that we face is precisely the product of these institutions, forms of organization five centuries old that were never intended to regulate the whole of our tiny, planetary ecosystem or to integrate and harmonize the vast multiplicity of the Earth’s people.

If we are to survive on this planet much longer, if we are to eliminate the nightmare conditions in which a large portion of the Earth’s population are forced to live out their lives, if we are to preserve the collapsing planetary ecosystem, if we are to abolish militarism and war as instruments of nation-states, we need new institutions designed for the world as we face it today: a fragile, integrated, interdependent whole.

This means planetary revolution. It means founding human civilization and our relationship with the global environment on new, planetary institutions. The old systems of fragmentation have taught us much that is useful. In the political sphere, they have taught us about democracy, human rights, multicultural respect for one another, and the need for freedom, justice, and basic equality of all.

Modern science has taught us about the dynamic “field” nature of our universe, where parts are inseparable from wholes (from the macro to the micro levels) and particular things and events are incomprehensible apart from unifying systems within which they are integrated. Science has taught us about the balanced and delicate ecosystems that form an integrated series of ecosystems up to the planetary level. Across the board, every area of twentieth-century science has shown that the parts are inseparable from the whole (Harris, 2000).

All these understandings are built into the Constitution for the Federation of Earth. Planetary revolution means establishing planetary democratic government based on the goal of protecting our global environment and serving equally all the diverse people that live upon the Earth. It means replacing the fragmented and failed institutions of global exploitative capitalism and the system of “sovereign” nation-states with the unity-in-diversity of democratic world government. It does not mean abolishing diversity but truly protecting it for the first time.

Under the systems of fragmentation, those parts that are bigger, stronger, or more aggressive than other parts (whether cultures, religions, ethnic groups, corporations, or nation-states) dominate or assimilate those parts that are smaller, weaker, or less aggressive. Under systems of fragmentation there is no true diversity but only the chaos of a war of all against all, inevitably resulting in the imperial domination of the strongest corporation, religion, or nation-state.

Even when military wars are not proceeding, economic, cultural, and ideological wars continue unabated. Minorities, indigenous peoples, small religious groups, weaker ethnic groups, or weaker nations have always suffered persecution, domination, exploitation, or assimilation. Only the collective force of democratic world government under the Constitution for the Federation of Earth can give the Earth that unity-in-diversity that is at the heart of the universe, of our planetary ecosystem, and of human civilization on this planet (Martin, 2002).

The fragmented systems by which we have been operating for five centuries have led to the global crisis that we now face. These systems are clearly the underlying cause of this crisis. They cannot be reformed, because it is not some particular feature of these systems that is the problem but the set of assumptions themselves that make up these systems (Martin, 1999).

The new paradigm, affirmed by all the sciences of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, is unity-in-diversity. This principle applied in the human realm means the integration of all the parts (cultures, ethnic groups, religions, corporations, nations) into a whole (democratic world government) without losing their unique character as parts. Indeed, as we have seen, it is only the collective force of the democratic whole that can protect and preserve this uniqueness and individuality. The Constitution is explicitly based on the principle of unity-in-diversity.

3. The Twisted Logic of the Nation-State System

In a world divided into nearly 200 territorial units, competing with one another politically, militarily and economically, there is a perpetual danger of total disaster. It is the logic of the nation-state system itself that lays the ground for disaster, not corruption of peoples or leaders. Rather, the system corrupts both peoples and leaders due to its implacable logic, inherently destructive of democracy, freedom, justice, and peace.

a. The most obvious danger inherent in the logic of nation-states is that of war. War and militarism destroy all four values identified here, even if the war, or the militarism, is promoted as a “defense of democracy.” National sovereignty is by its very nature a root cause of war, because every national sovereign government regards security and defense against possible invasion or aggression as a first and most vital interest. Most sovereign states, therefore, seek to maintain as powerful an arsenal of weaponry as they can afford and spend inordinate amounts of their wealth on armaments, which other states view as a potential threat. The result is an ever-increasing arms race in the attempt to maintain a balance of power, which generates international tensions and crises that constantly tend to explode into war (Harris, 2000).

As Errol E. Harris points out in his essay “Are We Unteachable?” below, the United Nations cannot prevent this, because Article 2 of its Charter commits it to uphold the sovereign status of its members, and Chapter VII provides, as its means of “peace-keeping,” only warlike measures “by land, sea, and air.” Accordingly, as long as states remain sovereign and independent, world peace cannot be maintained and neither can the legitimacy of nation-states. The U.N. is premised on the same flawed logic of nation-states that belie the noble ideals enshrined in its Charter.

b. In a world where corporations operate with the goal of accumulating wealth regardless of the common good and outside of independent oversight of their activities, democracy, freedom, justice, and peace will again be the victims. An economics predicated on the secret machinations of self-interest will see any of these four values that interferes with its self-interest as negative values to be defeated. The most obvious example is militarism where giant corporations have a vested interest in the continuation of the war system and in promoting the war system with the governments of their respective nation-states.

Today, some multinational corporations operate autonomously, outside of any individual nation-state and hence beyond the possibility of effective regulation by any and all governments. They use the anarchic system of a multiplicity of governments to their own advantage, regardless of the good of peoples or the Earth itself. Some corporations have assets larger than the nation-states within which they operate.

Under this system, they strive for power and influence over governments. Governments are colonized into the service of private, profit-making institutions, unaccountable to the common good or the welfare of the community they are supposed to be governing. There is an anarchy of greed, exploitation, and cynical self-interest.

c. Third, the system of “sovereign” nation-states gives institutional support to the lowest aspects of our common “human nature”: blind territoriality, the tendency to submerge our individuality into a collectivism of state worship, and a tendency to blind obedience to state authorities and their military mandarins. This means the possibility of fascism is always present. Fascism requires enemies to bind the nation into a unit submerged in the power of the state. It requires the complicity of corporations who see their link with state power as the source of undreamed-of profit and wealth. And it crushes diversity and individual rights and freedoms, submerging citizens in an obsessive “patriotism” that asks no questions and hates the diversity and uncertainty of democracy.

As long as the “territorial instinct” is exacerbated by dividing the world into nearly two hundred autonomous units, as if the Earth could be the “private property” of the people who happen to be born at a particular place, there will be the danger of obsessive nationalism and fascism. Any honest history course covering the modern period will reveal the havoc this territoriality has played with the values of democracy, freedom, justice, and peace. Only a united world, premised on the principle of unity-in-diversity can overcome this ever-present consequence of the logic of nation-states.

d. Under the logic of nation-states, mass media tend to operate in the service of the nation with which they identify. Mass media dedicated to the freedom of information and the creation of an educated and informed public are essential to the values of democracy, freedom, justice, and peace. Yet the mass media of each nation-state tend to reflect the dominant values of that state and its system of power. The “news” is disseminated to the population of each nation from the point of view of the national establishment with its dominant governmental and business elites (who often own or control the mass media). The result simply reflects the destructive logic of the system of nation-states, promoting international misunderstanding, war, fascist tendencies, imperialism, and injustice.

e. The logic of the modern nation-state system creates a near inevitability that powerful states will act to dominate and exploit weaker states. Inherent in the modern world system are the aspirations to empire and hegemony of the strong over the weak. The entire history of modernity bears this out. Imperialism, colonialism, economic exploitation, hegemony, spheres of influence, and secret pacts and intrigues not open to the public comprise the history of “sovereign” nation-states. It is not ambitious rulers and compliant populations that are primarily at fault. Rather the logic of the system itself recruits ambitious rulers and promotes blind “patriotism” in compliant populations.

These five flaws in the logic of the nation-state system make a world of democracy, freedom, justice, and peace nearly impossible. The ideals of democracy, freedom, justice, and peace have developed at the heart of the modern project, especially in terms of the “Enlightenment” project of the eighteenth century. They form the greatest legacy of modernity as well as the highest hope for our future on this planet. But the principles of democracy have their own inner logic that is in fundamental contradiction with the logic of the nation-state system as outlined here.

Democracy can only be world democracy. The twisted logic of the “sovereign” nation-state system gives us the world described above of militarism, corporate manipulation of governments, the ever-present threat of fascism, systematic media distortion of information, and imperialism. Under these conditions, authentic democracy within nations is nearly impossible. Decisions and conditions from outside the nation impact individual nations in ways beyond the control of citizens. Governments necessarily have to keep their foreign and military policies secret from their own citizens, defeating civilian oversight of government which is the essence of democracy. Economic and other decisions within the nation necessarily impact people in other countries. Citizen control of their lives (democracy) becomes an impossibility.

The only real freedom must be world freedom, guaranteed to every citizen of Earth. Freedom is impossible under this current world system. Governments routinely restrict freedom because of the uncertainties created by the chaos of nation-states. They maintain elaborate immigration protection systems, elaborate systems of visa restrictions, and elaborate security arrangements because of the threat of terrorism, subversion, or machinations of other nation-states. None of this would be necessary in a world where gross injustices have been eliminated and every nation and person has equal rights to participate in government. Only democratic world government can secure real freedom for the peoples of Earth.

Justice can only be world justice. As long as some nations have substantially more wealth, power, and influence than others, there will never be a just world order. The logic of nation-states, we have seen, ensures that there will never be economic, environmental, juridical, or democratic justice among the diverse peoples of Earth. Only world government under the Earth Constitution, with the clear mandate to treat all equally and to create a just world order, can succeed at this task.

Finally, peace can only come to humanity as world peace. All of the consequences of the logic of the nation-state system work to destroy the possibility of peace in the world. Militarism, unregulated corporate power, the tendency to fascism and blind patriotism, the distortion of news and the media, and imperialism all work to destroy the possibility of peace. War is a criminal activity. The production of weapons of war is a criminal activity. Only when these activities are recognized for what they are and abolished by enforceable world law will there be peace on the Earth. Only when substantial justice has been created for the peoples of Earth will there be peace. No force on Earth can create world peace except democratic world government.

Throughout the history of nation-states in the modern period of the past 500 years, one or more of these logical consequences of the nation-state system have coalesced to perpetually destroy democracy, freedom, justice, and peace in our world. This history is there for all to see. Today, with the technology of weapons of mass destruction brought nearly to perfection, this system portends the self-destruction of the Earth and our common human project. Today, all five of these negative consequences of the nation-state system have coalesced in the global empire of the United States.

4. Are We Inside the Belly of a Beast or the Box of Our Own Assumptions?

As a number of scholars have pointed out, the people living within the global imperial center today are the most propagandized, manipulated, and brainwashed population in the world (Chomsky, 1989). The people within the U.S. experience job loss, outrageous health-care and insurance costs, environmental degradation, decaying infrastructure in their cities, repression of civil liberties, privatizing of social security, growth of the prison industry, draconian laws targeting minorities and the poor, and growing social disintegration.

At the same time, when U.S. troops invade or bomb other countries, yellow ribbons appear on autos and in windows saying “support our troops.” It does not matter if the troops invaded another country, if they are committing mass murder of civilians, if they are engaged in torture or repression. The mantra is “support our troops.” The propaganda system (in the service of the ruling class) is just that effective. Exploited and marginalized people in the U.S. often support the very system that diminishes their lives.

The mass media focus on the atrocities of “official enemies.” The people are told these others are “enemies” based upon secret evidence. Fictitious “evil” actions of these enemies are even published for public consumption according to misinformation created by the CIA or their own government. The public is told they must trust their government (that operates in secret) as it attempts to protect them from horrible enemies in a dangerous world. Democracy is a sham and voter apathy is notorious.

The mass media uncritically repeat the formulas, photos, selection of certain information, and ideological framework provided by government and the ruling powers within the imperial centers. Two to four million people are slaughtered in Vietnam and the American people mourn only 65,000 of these deaths. U.S. troops invade Iraq and slaughter its people, and the mass media speak of those courageous Iraqis who resist as “insurgents” or “rebels.”

Military personnel in brutal dictatorships are trained by the imperial troops to repress their own people (or their neighboring countries), as happened in Indonesia, East Timor, Columbia, El Salvador, Guatemala, and elsewhere, and the media within the U.S. are silent about the connection, the massacres, and the implications of this “foreign policy.” Perhaps 200,000 people are slaughtered in the first two years of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, and the American people only mourn 1,800 of these.

Are the American people so hopelessly corrupt that they would support such horrific acts on their part of their military and care only about their own forces? This is not the case. The problem, we have seen, is not “the American people” but the system of “sovereign nation-states” that institutionalizes a system of blind loyalty towards the country where one happens to be born. The people of Germany supported Nazi troops in the same way: Deuschland über alles! they chanted, and organized civic groups to “support our troops” in the field.

Imperial nation-states cultivate and promote “patriotism” in order to maintain popular, blind support for their systems of domination and exploitation. In the U.S. the slogan is “God bless America.” The fact that this translates into the destruction and domination of other peoples worldwide is of no concern, since America, in the popular mind, is the chosen one of God. The problem is not the people of the United States. The problem is the world system of sovereign states where such blind loyalty is promoted everywhere, destroying, in turn, democracy, freedom, justice, and peace.

The military oppression of other peoples by the imperial centers functions in the service of economic exploitation. The wealthy imperial centers want control of oil, diamonds, gold, manganese, forests, coal. They want “financial stability” for their investments. The kinds of countries in the world system that can be counted on most to provide this “financial stability” are dictatorships and authoritarian regimes whose governments operate on behalf of the tiny wealthy elite in their countries who do business with the multinational corporations and the tiny wealthy elite of the imperial centers (Chomsky, 1993).

Democracy is considered an “unstable form of government” in the foreign policy of the U.S. and has been routinely subverted, overthrown, or suppressed in dozens of countries since the ascendancy of the U.S. to global dominance at the close of World War Two (Blum, 2000) That is because a fragmented world system cannot support the unity-in-diversity of democracy. Only the sovereignty of all the people who live on Earth institutionalized in the Earth Constitution can achieve the goals inherent in democracy: peace, equity, freedom, and prosperity.

Citizens of the imperial centers of capital are not so much trapped in the belly of a corrupt beast as within the box of their own limited assumptions. From inside the “box” of these institutions, the future is indeed hopeless. But there is no reason why human beings cannot think outside that box to a new order premised on the whole of our planet, the whole of its ecosystem, the whole of the human population, and the common good of all peoples. Without this gestalt switch, without this simple paradigm shift, the murderous evils of our current world system will continue unabated.

Real revolution is not violent revolution. Very often violent revolutions establish a new government on the same flawed assumptions as the old. Real revolution is thinking outside the box of outmoded institutions. Real revolution involves solving the crisis in civilization and governance by establishing a new, more adequate paradigm. The simple switch to the principle of unity-in-diversity for planet Earth, expressed in the Constitution for the Federation of Earth, will cut through our immense problems and create a decent life for all the diverse peoples of our planet. It is not violence, but leaving the constricting box of our old institutions, that constitutes real revolution.

From within the belly of the beast, the point is not to overthrow or destroy “the beast.” For history is a series of “beasts” all preying upon their weaker neighbors, all eventually overthrown to be superseded by another “beast.” Without changing the assumptions behind economics and the nation-state system, there will always be another beast, another imperial center, or another “world war” of competing imperial centers.

No country or its people is intrinsically evil. It is the flawed world system that impels countries to act in evil ways. A new world system under the rule of democratically-legislated world law will transform this “beast” nature of all powerful countries. It is the assumptions behind the system of “sovereign” nation-states that creates imperialism. The world will demilitarize and solve its problems through democratic processes. The only legitimate route to world revolution is through world law.

5. Global Monopoly Capitalism

The second dominant institution of the modern world, global capitalism, is inextricably linked to the first. The nation-state system and global capitalism are both destructive of freedom, prosperity for the majority, peace, justice, the environment, and a decent world order (Martin 2005, ch. 9). World revolution is necessary to achieve any and all of these goals. And the only way that world revolution can possibly succeed is for the world to ascend to the level of genuine, enforceable, democratically-legislated world law.
The consequences of not doing this, that is, the consequences of the present world system, are horrible and intolerable to all decent, informed people. These consequences can only be changed by a simple change in the premises by which we operate. Instead of the fragmentation of “sovereign nation-states” and global exploitative capitalism, we need a united world under a democratic federal world government with an economic policy designed to promote prosperity for all those who live on Earth.

As a worker on behalf of the Earth Constitution since 1995, and as Secretary-General of WCPA since 2003, I have traveled to many countries and seen for myself the inhuman, nightmarish conditions in which people are forced to live. They are literally “forced” to live like this, enforced by the global economic system, backed up by imperial military might, often by the repressive forces of their own governments trained and equipped from imperial centers, and trapped by an international visa system that prevents them from going elsewhere. It does not have to be this way.

I have also read many of the excellent books that have appeared concerning the savagery of empires past and present as well as books on the global economic system, the nation-state system, the global crises that the world currently faces, and the historical foundations of the current world disorder (see the bibliography). The Manifesto of the Earth Federation expresses not only extensive research into our current world system but a great deal of personal experience as well.

The global system of domination and exploitation has been maintained for five centuries through the military, economic, and political might of the imperial nation-states. The system has involved the interbreeding of the two dominant institutions of the modern world – the nation-state system and monopoly capitalism. The marriage of these two institutions has led to the horrific world we live in today – a world where one fifth of the Earth’s population live in “absolute poverty,” where wars proceed unhindered all over the globe, where the environment is being rapidly degraded, and where the future appears more and more without hope.

Global capitalism destroys democracy. Inevitably, uncontrolled concentrations of wealth interfere in politics and the law-making process on behalf of their own amoral pursuit of wealth and power. Inevitably, “freedom” is defined not as respecting the individual rights and dignity of individuals worldwide but as the license of corporations to rob and exploit and manipulate government and press as they please (Chomsky, 1996, pp. 86-91). Inevitably global capitalism results in a few winners with stupendous wealth and power with the majority of humankind as exploited and dominated losers. Finally, war, growth of a prison industry, violent conflicts, the counter-terrorism business, global “security” measures, and the consumption of weapons and ammunition are sources of immense profit for global capitalism. World peace is an impossibility under this system, which is inextricably linked, as we have seen, to the system of “sovereign” nation-states.

6. Economics -- Inequality Structured into Law

In the Europe of feudal times, independent city-states realized that the resources necessary for production and wealth lay in the countryside. They would organize raids into the countryside to destroy the early industrial technology of the surrounding towns and villages and make these rural areas dependent on the city for processing their raw materials into the products necessary for life (Smith, 2005a). This process of domination was institutionalized in the laws passed by the governments of the cities and forced upon the weaker towns and villages. They understood, even then, that all wealth comes from a combination of nature’s resources, human labor power, and industrial capital. They took steps to control this process in their own interest.

With the development of modern nations after the Renaissance in Europe, this same policy was implemented by the ruling powers of these nations. They understood that capital was not accumulated through “free trade,” but through establishing monopoly control over the wealth-producing-process. This was done through both private property laws and by maintaining a low-tech periphery that supplied cheap raw materials to the industrial centers of capital to be manufactured into goods and sold back to the periphery or other consumers at great profit.

“Sovereign” nation-states began to compete with one another for colonies and for control of technology, resources, and markets. They understood that monopoly control of the wealth-producing process is the key to the capital accumulation of great wealth and power. The military forces of these European nations were deployed to ensure domination over the colonies, the enforcement of laws that prohibited the development of technology or machines of production in the colonies, and to defend the colonies against encroachment by rival European nations also bent on controlling the wealth-producing process in their own interests.

The British were the first to discover the great propaganda value of promoting an Adam Smith “free trade” doctrine to the world while they took careful steps to ensure control of the wealth-producing-process for England and its ruling elite. Nations acted to control technology, cheap resources, and markets in their own interest while preaching to the rest of the world the need for “free trade” (Smith, 2005a). The private property laws, the laws of trade and exchange, and international trade laws were promoted as “democratic” and as giving “equal opportunity” to all. In reality, they functioned to privilege the few at the expense of the many and to favor the imperial nation at the expense of the periphery (Korton, 2001).

However, all the European nations understood this same principle and engaged in tremendous rivalry to colonize the world and control the wealth-producing process in their own interest. This led to the two world wars. Nations made trade and military pacts with other nations in order to promote their own power and self-interest and increase their colonial spheres of hegemony in the interest of wealth accumulation for the motherland and her ruling elite. This rivalry led to gigantic world wars in which the imperial nations of the world exhausted their resources in the battle (Smith, 2005a, Introduction; Hudson, 2003).

From this carnage, the United States emerged as a leading world power after the First World War. The allies whom it had aided were now deeply financially indebted for the billions of dollars in military aid they had received from the U.S., and this debt was not about to be forgiven (Hudson, 2003, Ch.1). The United States bled its former European allies to enrich itself. It was now emerging as a leading world power with its own sphere of hegemony in all of Latin America and with emerging global interests.

The industrial development of the United States drew cheap resources from Latin America and manufactured these in its industrial centers to be sold back at tremendous profit. The government acted to control market relations and the wealth-producing process in its own interest. The U.S. military routinely interfered in Latin American countries to protect “U.S. interests” there. In the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries, it intervened in Nicaragua alone six times, including invading and running the country for a period of thirteen years (Harris and Levy, 1975)

After the nations of Europe, along with Japan, again exhausted themselves in the carnage of World War Two, the United States emerged as the undisputed world economic, imperial, and military power. Even the developing Soviet Union could never begin to match the economic and military power of the U.S. Nevertheless, U.S. Cold War propagandists routinely inflated the power of the USSR in order to serve their own imperial interests. These imperial interests were no longer Western Hemispheric. They were now truly global, from Middle East oil to the tremendous natural resources of Southeast Asia.

After the Second World War, however, former colonies of the old imperial powers were anxious for freedom. Dozens of new countries were formed and joined the United Nations during the 1950s and 1960s. The United States favored de-colonization of the periphery of the old colonial powers, but it had no intention of creating a world of “free and equal sovereign nation-states” as the Charter of the United Nations professed to do. Physical colonial occupation was replaced by economic, political, and military manipulation and domination from abroad.

Military bases were constructed all over the world from which U.S. military power could be projected at a moments notice. Leaving aside a network of secret bases not publicly acknowledged, Pentagon statistics for 2002 tell us there are 725 such bases, with a replacement value of 118 billion dollars, and with close to 300,000 U.S. military personal stationed in 153 countries. All this, along with billions of dollars in secret operations, is directed to monitoring and controlling the economic, military, and political movements of every country on Earth (Johnson, 2004, pp. 153-161).

But the military is only an adjunct to a system of inequality of rights structured into law. Trade laws, intellectual property laws, private property laws, laws regulating financial institutions, laws regulating stocks and bonds, and laws awarding control of the airwaves to gigantic private interests all together create the global system of exploitation. The entire nexus of modern law consists in “inequality structured into law” through the legal creation of what economist J. W. Smith calls “subtle monopolies” (2005a).

Today the United States largely controls the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). It promotes international trade agreements through the World Trade Organization and uses its immense political, economic, and military influence to coerce nations into signing agreements such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or the Free Trade Agreement of the Americas (FTAA). Inequality is structured into law under the propaganda slogan of promoting “free trade.” The beneficiaries are never the poor nations who find that their wealth is transferred by billions of dollars each year to the imperial centers of capital, leaving them more underdeveloped, more impoverished, more illiterate, more diseased, and more disparate with each passing year (Rich, 1994). As of 1998, the ratio of wealth flowing north on the globe to wealth going south was 7 to 1. Seven dollars flowed to the imperial centers for every one dollar flowing to the poor majority of the world’s population in the south (Smith, 2005a, p. 20).

Global capitalism interlinked with the system of “sovereign” nation-states is part of one, integrated system of exploitation. As Stan Goff expresses this:

Think colonizer and colonized. Think parasite and host. Interdependent polarities.... The ceaselessly expanding accumulation regime that defines the global structure of society has a shorter definition. Capitalism. Like a shark, it can never stop doing what it does or it will die. What it does is accumulate and expand value. What it eats are workers, and women, and colonies, and the biosphere. (2004, pp. 194-195)

It is the nation-state system (where nations inevitably act in their own perceived self-interest), in league with the global system of exploitative monopoly capitalism, that has created this economic nightmare for the majority of humanity. Both these institutions must be transformed into the unity-in-diversity of democratic world government under the Constitution for the Federation of Earth.

Under democratic federal world government, the prosperity of all nations and peoples is the constitutional goal. The elimination of poverty, illiteracy, misery, and disease worldwide is the goal. The preservation of the global environment for future generations is the goal. Demilitarization of the world is the goal. And the institutions will be in place (for the first time in history) that can meet these goals quickly and efficiently.

Once equality is structured into law through conversion of the present system of exclusive titles to nature’s wealth changed to conditional titles (first recognized as necessary by American economist Henry George), these horrific systems of subtle exploitation will come to an end. Once property laws are based on the common interest of all human beings in using nature’s resources to a create decent life for everyone, economic efficiency and genuine sustainable development will take place rapidly.

This cannot be done under the system of sovereign nation-states, since the system is predicated on the fragmentation of the absolute self-interest of these states, never on the good of all. It cannot be done by “fair” trade agreements or by the United Nations for the same reason. Real equality of opportunity structured into law requires real, enforceable world law. Again, we find ourselves confronting a revolutionary situation as we realize there is no way to a general economic prosperity for the majority of human beings without democratic world government under the Earth Constitution.

Both dominant institutions of the modern world ensure that inequality (poverty for the majority of nations and peoples) is structured into law. Both dominant institutions of the modern world are transformed with the adoption of the Earth Constitution. Both our political and our economic systems must be based on the principle of unity-in-diversity.

The Earth Constitution contains many explicit provisions concerning world trade and the conservation of world resources for the good of all. In addition, implicit in the Constitution are the economic principles described in the Manifesto of the Earth Federation below. Both exploitative capitalism and “sovereign” nation-states are fragmented institutions incapable of creating a just and prosperous world order. We require nothing less that a world revolution through world law.

7. The “Normalization” of Evil

Some authors speak of the “normalization of evil” that has afflicted our consciousness and is promoted by the world’s corporate mass media (Goff, 2004). The unspeakable horror of the lives of the poor is ignored, marginalized, not mentioned, not brought to attention. This is intentional on the part of the ruling elite of imperial societies. Those who control the media and those who benefit from the world system in all the imperial and former imperial nations want the horror of poverty and of war to be acceptable to society, when it is not entirely invisible at least to be normal, inevitable, and “natural.”

Some philosophers and economic theorists tell us that the horrific condition of the world is “normal” or “natural,” given human nature. Some religious fanatics tell that the condition of the world is the inevitable product of some “original sin.” Other such fanatics tell us that we are destined to face an “Armageddon” that is a consequence of this sin. They tell us that the destruction of the environment and building of weapons of mass destruction should be encouraged because it will hasten the second coming of God. Such philosophies and cheap theologies serve the purposes of the power-elite in “normalizing” or “naturalizing” what any decent, sane human being must surely recognize as not only mad, but evil.

Under the dominant system that produces this horrific world disorder, people must not be allowed to see what is plainly in front of their faces: that the fragmented institutions by which we organize life on Earth are the source of this horrific evil. If the evil is not normalized, if it were recognized for the obscene and shocking thing that it is, then people would inquire into the reasons for this immense suffering endured by the world’s poor or the insane institutions of militarism and war.

They would become upset and angry. Upset and angry people do not make good self-indulgent consumers of goods that destroy the environment or are manufactured in horrible third-world sweatshops. If this state of affairs were not “normalized,” people would begin to see the system of domination and exploitation for the intentionally maintained and ruthlessly protected system that it is. They would act to transcend both the nation-state system and global monopoly capitalism.

This same process of normalization has operated throughout the modern period to justify the savagery of the imperial dominators. When I was in Ghana in June 2002, our hosts took us to a series of “castles” that have been preserved as museums up and down the entire coast of West Africa. These castles, built and fought over by the Portuguese, the French, the Dutch, and the British, were used to collect the slaves who were crammed into dungeons awaiting the slave ships that would arrive to take them further into the nightmare of bondage to whomever could afford to purchase them.

We saw the horrific tortures devised by the troops who ran the castles to punish recalcitrant slaves. We saw horrible, dehumanized conditions under which the slaves were kept awaiting transport in the even more horrible holds of slave ships. We saw the systems of rape of the women and girls devised by the officers of each castle.

We learned of the perhaps 40 million human beings who were transported and of the massive death, disease, and suffering they endured in transport through this slave system. To us, this was horrible, not normal. Looking back on a former era from the distance of the early twenty-first century, we guests were able to see these practices for what they were. To the slavers and the imperial troops who were essential in maintaining the system of domination and exploitation, the situation was “normal.” They bestialized and dehumanized their victims and rationalized their domination to the point that it became “natural” and “normal.”

Today, the imperial center of the empire spreads its tentacles of torture, murder, suffering, and massive destruction throughout the world – from Vietnam to El Salvador, to Guatemala, to Somalia, to Columbia, to Haiti, to Yugoslavia, to Afghanistan, to Iraq, and beyond (Blum, 2000). The same psychic techniques of dehumanization and bestialization are used. Vietnamese men, women, and children were slaughtered indiscriminately in “free-fire zones” (comprising most of the country) by the invaders of their homeland. Any U.S. soldier showing the slightest compassion for a Vietnamese civilian, even a child, was belittled as “a gook-lover” (Goff, 2004, p. 16).

But they were not simply slaughtered from both the air and land forces, they were raped, tortured, and mutilated by American forces. This savagery is essential to the logic of empire and not the result of accident or a “few bad apples.” U.S. military training is training in the dehumanization of other peoples and the concomitant of that training is savage treatment – bestializing imprisoned captives in Guantanamo or Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, driving sharpened stakes into the vaginas of women in Vietnam (Goff, 2004, p. 20), devising exotic tortures for the U.S.-sponsored, CIA-supervised death squads of Columbia, El Salvador, or Guatemala (Chomsky, 1996).

This must be “normalized” for those involved and covered up for those who do not wish to know the truth. Citizens of the empire must be taught to “support our troops.” Mass media must report in sanitized, neutral language in such a way that the “enemy” is dehumanized while imperial troops are humanized and glorified. Propaganda reports from the Pentagon must be repeated uncritically as objective “news.” The system is amazingly successful. The citizens of the imperial center of the empire are numb to any sensitivity to the suffering of “non-Americans.” They cooperate with the corporate media, intentionally blocking their own consciousness of the rest of humanity. “Comfortable white America will kill to protect its illusions” (Goff, 2004, p. 19).

They normalize reports of massive death tolls of “enemy” people, pigeonholing them as “subversives,” “terrorists,” or “insurgents.” They care only for the death toll of Americans. The huge numbers of dead and maimed are just a number, a cipher, a neutral statistic from which no imaginative account of human suffering is derived. The reports of U.S. soldiers indiscriminately shooting women, children, and old people in Iraq are not printed in the corporate owned media. Photographs revealing the agony of non-Americans are suppressed by the mass media. Like the imperial soldiers of the age of slavery, they have normalized and sanitized the hideous treatment of other peoples in the service of the system of domination and exploitation.
The “logic of empire” can tolerate nothing less. The U.S. army training of Latin American military officers at what was called the “School of the Americas” in Fort Benning, Georgia, has produced dozens of horrible torturers and mass murders, while the Army claims it teaches them “human rights.” In 1992, a training manual was smuggled out of the school which taught people torture and assassination as political tools (Hodge and Cooper, 2004).

The policy is not simply reflected at this school, however. Explicit U.S. foreign policy is built in part on the training of foreign military personnel worldwide in techniques of “counter-insurgency warfare.” This is warfare within nations directed to preserving the horrors of the status quo on behalf of those who benefit from the current world system. This means, in covert foreign policy terms, techniques of terrorizing and brutalizing their own populations.

It is important to realize that the use of torture is not just for extracting information. Its use is integral to the primary necessity of empire – to create terror in subject populations. The official line of the U.S. military is that torture does not work because the victim will say anything and the information is not “righteous.” However, the torturers are experts in discerning what is “righteous” from what is not.

But that is not the main point. When the tortured just names the names of everyone he or she knows, this is valuable as well. The U.S.-supported dominators – in El Salvador, Guatemala, Chile, Argentina, Indonesia, East Timor, South Vietnam, and elsewhere – have routinely arrested, murdered, or brutalized everyone named. Similarly, human rights organizations have estimated that 70 to 90 percent of the brutalized inmates at Abu Ghraib prison were innocent of resisting the U.S. invasion of their country. (Let us dwell for a moment on the irony of that statement: “innocent of resisting the U.S. invasion of their country.”) The target is not just “subversives.” It never has been. It is necessarily the general population – who are required to live in terror (Chomsky 1996).

Edward S. Herman in The Real Terror Network describes the “institutionalization” of torture as U.S. foreign policy in the 1960s and 1970s. And Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman chart the specific relationships between the U.S. and the use of torture worldwide in the first half century after World War Two (1979). It has been a systematic feature of covert foreign policy for decades. When tortured and maimed bodies were regularly found by relatives in garbage dumps in El Salvador or Guatemala, when tortured people were released in East Timor to tell their story, when photographs of extreme humiliations were taken in Abu Ghraib prison, this has real political effectiveness in the service of covert foreign policy.

Empires, indeed, require cruelty “to subdue restive foreign populations.” And they require their troops to treat the victims as non-humans, sub-humans, very much like the Untermenschen of the Nazis. The majority of the world’s population suffering from the misery of extreme poverty and subject to the “grand strategy” of U.S. world domination, must be forced into a condition of political apathy and hopelessness in which they do not attempt to make change (Chomsky, 2003, Ch. 2). Their constant awareness of the incredible brutality to which they will be subjected if there is even a hint of political activity on their part is essential to keeping them in this condition.

The purpose of empires is always economic. (For a revealing description of the economic side of the empire read David Korton’s When Corporations Rule the World, Michael Chossodovsky’s The Globalization of Poverty, J.W. Smith’s Economic Democracy, and John Perkins’ Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.) The purpose of the U.S. empire is that the poor and wretched of the world should accept U.S.-owned sweatshops paying starvation wages, and U.S. corporations extracting the resources and wealth from their pliant countries while they remain in poverty and misery.

Without terror, people would never accept the brutal conditions of death, deprivation, misery, hunger, and disease that most of the people in the “grand area” endure for their entire lives. Today, the top 18 percent of the world’s population owns 83 percent of the world’s wealth. Each year untold billions of dollars in wealth are transferred from the poorest 60 percent of humanity to the wealthy imperial centers of capital. The rules of world “free trade” are formulated to ensure this transfer. Imperial military policy is formulated to protect and promote this system.

If the rights of the poor were respected – political rights and human rights – then they would organize and defeat the empire at will. They would take steps to use the resources of their countries to benefit their own people. This is exactly what empire cannot allow. Formerly secret Washington documents give this as the explicit reason for overthrowing the governments in Iran, Guatemala, Chile, and elsewhere. Only terror keeps subjugated peoples accepting the horror of their present lives of unspeakable poverty. Terror and its corollary torture are absolutely essential to U.S. foreign policy, as it is to the imperial logic of the system of “sovereign” nation-states.

Economic domination and exploitation by imperial nation-states can only be ended through effective democratic world government granting enforceable economic and political rights to all people on Earth and making economic exploitation illegal. Empires cannot be abolished from the Earth without creating a new world order that makes their existence impossible. The underlying assumptions of the United Nations and the current world order are two: the system of so-called sovereign nation-states and globalized monopoly capitalism.

A world order based on these premises makes empires inevitable. The systematic use of terror and torture by the imperial nation-states in their defense of empires can only be ended through enforceable democratic world law under nonmilitary world government. Mere political or military resistance to the empire from within has been going on for as long as the empire has been going on. In nearly every case, the empire has won and millions (literally) have lost their lives resisting it. It won in Vietnam as well: destroying three to four million lives and creating an economic basket-case of a nation, stultified by an ongoing economic boycott, and riddled by chemical poisons, massive birth defects, and high cancer rates.

Resistance and criticism to these horrendous practices are not enough. The empire’s propaganda machine is immense and will always be able to convince the majority in the imperial center that “these abuses do not reflect the true goodness of the American people.” The multi-billion dollar budget allocated to “covert operations” has the cover-up of this system from the American people as one of its primary goals. Career CIA agent Ralph McGehee, who defected and extensively studied CIA archives, describes the propaganda machine as follows:

The CIA is not now nor has it ever been a central intelligence agency. It is the covert action arm of the President’s foreign policy advisors. In that capacity it overthrows or supports foreign governments while reporting “intelligence” justifying these activities. It shapes the support presidential policy. Disinformation is a large part of its covert action responsibility, and the American people are the primary target of its lies. (1983, p. 192)

The goal of empire is not only to establish a hegemony with client governments to dominate the politics and economics of exploitable countries. If this goal does not succeed, victory for the empire can still be salvaged by destroying any viable alternative to its system of domination.

Hence, the massive destruction of the civilian infrastructure through savage bombing that took place in Vietnam in the late 1960s to early 1970s, Iraq in 1991, and Yugoslavia in 1999. Alternative victory can also be secured through economic blockades preventing recalcitrant countries from becoming economically successful. This strategy has been used against Cuba, Libya, North Korea, Vietnam and many other countries with significant success. The fact that millions of innocent civilians suffer and die from these practices is irrelevant to the aims of empire.

Struggle for justice must be informed by a positive vision of a transformed world order. That is the function of this little book. It contains the seeds of a transformed world order, the core of nonviolent world revolution. As a reader, you are warned that you are holding dynamite in your hands – the very real and practical possibility of a new world order that is available to the people of Earth here and now. The changes needed are not difficult, nor impractical. But they are indeed fundamental.

The “Declaration of the Rights of People,” the Manifesto, and the Earth Constitution together in this volume provide all that is necessary to establish this new world order. The framework for the new order is practical, simple, and common sense. It does not require 1,000 page U.N. reports or ten-year studies from some blue-ribbon “Commission on Global Governance.” All that is required is the political will to take action now. Any normally intelligent person can see the common sense of the solutions put forth in these documents.

The option of violent revolution within the oppressed regions of the world is not viable. Such action only reinforces of logic of empire. In the imperial center, the justification is made for bigger imperial military budgets, more sophisticated weapons of immense destruction, and more training of torturers and murderers for “counter-insurgency warfare.” In North Vietnam, every building over one story high had been destroyed by the time the invaders withdrew. Even if the resistance “wins,” the people lose. Meanwhile, the immense evil of the empire is “normalized” in the eyes of the imperial population, who are told there are violent enemies everywhere.

Afghanistan will never recover in our lifetimes the immense damage done to it even if it throws out the imperial invader. Iraq is poisoned forever by a significant quantity of depleted uranium in its soil and water (with a radioactive half-life of 4.5 billion years). The Cuban people have endured 44 years of crushing poverty enforced by a vicious economic blockade of their country. The only option for the oppressed majority of humankind is to establish the genuine rule of democratic law on Earth. The only option is to change the terms of the equation, abolish the institutions that perpetuate such horror, and found a truly civilized world order on the principle of human unity-in-diversity for the first time in history.

No nation or people is inherently evil. Neither the Portuguese, the Dutch, the Spanish, the French, the British, the Germans, the Italians, the Japanese, nor the Americans are inherently evil. Their behavior is the product of the institutions that shape them and encourage their complicity in the maintenance and “normalization” of these perverse practices. If we change the institutions, we will change the world order of domination and exploitation with its inherent logic of torture and dehumanization of victimized peoples.

The institutions of the modern world that have created this horrific world disorder are the nation-state system integrated with the system of exploitative monopoly capitalism. These two systems have worked hand in glove with the wealthy holders of capital controlling the policies of nation-states in their own interests and the rulers in imperial nation-states promoting and protecting the private wealth and power of the capitalist class. At one time, the soldiers of the empire maintained the “castles” where slaves were collected, raped, and tortured as part of a system promoting the private profits of corporations – independent slave trading companies. The U.S. military today destroys the poor and their aspirations worldwide on behalf of the rich and their system of trans-national corporations. Only by changing both these institutions (the nation-state and monopoly capitalism) can we truly transform our world order into one of peace, justice, equality, and prosperity.

The Earth Constitution lays out the framework for this new world order, based, as its Preamble says, on the principle of “unity-in-diversity.” The Manifesto elaborates the new economics implicit in the Constitution and outlines the practical steps by which the world can move to a new, truly human, truly peaceful and just era. The long nightmare of domination and exploitation is nearly at an end. It is up to you, the reader of these documents, and all others of good will and good faith, to establish the new premises for a just world order: the unity-in-diversity of all peoples and nations.

8. Revolution and Legitimacy

Revolutionary change is justified when institutions that govern human interactions become unable to fulfill their promise of peace, prosperity, justice, equity, and freedom for citizens. At one time national governments might have been able to make this promise with some hope of fulfillment. At one time proponents of the world’s dominant economic system may have been able to make this promise without hypocrisy. But those days are gone forever.

Today, the promises of nation-states to provide peace, prosperity, equity, and freedom, like the promises of the economists in the World Bank or the dominant universities of the imperial centers of capital, ring of propaganda and hypocrisy (see Perkins, 2004). More and more thoughtful people are realizing that neither governments as we know them nor the dominant economic system can fulfill their promises. These institutions have become illegitimate.

They are not illegitimate because of corrupt people in power. Rather, the institutions themselves tend to place corrupt people in power. The nation-state and global capitalism are illegitimate because they cannot fulfill the purposes for which they supposedly exist. The very logic of this system destroys the possibility of the realization of these ideals. And the very hypocrisy of this situation invites corruption (Goff, 2004; Perkins, 2004).

Global poverty, disease, and misery are increasing worldwide. Global violence and social chaos are increasing worldwide. Global democratic institutions and respect for human rights are declining worldwide. Global wealth and power have steadily been concentrated in fewer and fewer hands throughout the twentieth century. The hope of global security and peace has steadily disappeared (Renner, 1996).

With the development of super-sonic weapons, space-based weapons, nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons, depleted uranium weapons, stealth weapons, cruise missile weapons, inter-continental ballistic delivery systems, nuclear submarine weapons systems, and other forms of technological means of destruction, no nation is able any longer to guarantee security for its population. Attempts to create security under the system of “sovereign” nation-states have led to more and more militarism, greater and greater governmental secrecy, and the development of “national security states.” This has meant the giving up of aspirations to democracy, freedom, governmental openness, and protection of civil liberties, while simultaneously decreasing real security. It has meant the destruction of democracy in nations large and small worldwide.

With the development of globalized economics, economic decisions taken in foreign centers of capital impact the livelihood of people in entire nations or regions of the world. The promise of governments to promote the prosperity of their people becomes a chimera. The central banks of many debtor nations have been taken over by the World Bank and structural adjustment has been forced upon helpless governments in which the economy of the country is reoriented to pay off international debt while services to the poor majority are slashed or privatized to exploitative multinational corporations. The economic health and stability of nations is not in the hands of the governments of nations (Chossudovsky, 1999; Caufield, 1996; Rich, 1994).

Legitimate government is government that can promote the security, peace, freedom, and prosperity of its people. By these criteria, no government on Earth is today legitimate, for globalized weaponry, globalized economics, and global interdependence have placed control of these goods beyond the scope of any government, even the most powerful.

Today, there is no force that can protect the global environment. There is no force that can regulate the global economic system on behalf of the prosperity of all the people on Earth. There is no one who can control global militarism, weapons proliferation, or the manufacture of weapons of mass destruction. The economic and political institutions of the modern world have become obsolete and, in turn, illegitimate. As Philip Allott writes, “A legal system which does its best to make sense of murder, theft, exploitation, oppression, abuse of power, and injustice, perpetrated by public authorities in the public interest, is a perversion of a legal system” (1990, p. xvii). (For a more detailed examination of this issue, see my Introduction to Emerging World Law, Almand and Martin, eds., 2005.)

This makes all human beings into what Richard Falk calls “pilgrim citizens” in search of a legitimate world order within which to be citizens (1992). It means that such a world order is yet to be established. Yet citizens of the world are not without the resources to accomplish this. Our impediments are lack of will, lack of revolutionary courage, and lack of the necessary information – because our options are excluded from view by the global propaganda system in the service of the illegitimate institutions of the past.

Thousands of citizen pilgrims and visionaries have acted to address this situation by creating the Constitution for the Federation of Earth and the Provisional World Parliament. The Constitution has been translated into twenty-two languages and sent throughout the world. It is premised on the principle of unity-in-diversity and designed to address all the global problems that are beyond the ability of nation-states to handle. Adopting it as the supreme law of the Earth can easily give us a world of security, peace, freedom, and prosperity within a relatively short time, perhaps twenty years.

Adopting the Constitution and federating all the nations of Earth under the House of Nations will also restore legitimacy to the nation-states. They will no longer be “sovereign,” that is, in complete control over all affairs and entirely independent in “foreign policy.” All nations in the Earth Federation will have to obey world law – environmental law, human rights laws, and laws against possessing military machines and weapons of mass destruction.

The harm now done by the principle of “sovereignty,” where big states impose a system of domination and exploitation on weaker states, will come to an end. The harm now done by global economics, where trade relations bring immense profits into the imperial centers of capital while world poverty and misery continues to grow, will come to an end. There is no other way to transform the system as a whole except through enforceable world law.

The Constitution gives us legitimate government – government capable of bringing security, peace, freedom, and prosperity to all peoples on Earth. But the Constitution has not yet been ratified by the people and nations of Earth according to the procedures set forth in Article 17. The Constitution outlines a morally legitimate democratic world government, but it does not yet have the legitimacy of effective enforcement of world law that can only come with ratification.

This is another reason why our situation is a revolutionary one. It is our moral duty as pilgrim citizens to create a decent world order under the rule of enforceable world law. The current governments of the world are illegitimate without democratic world government under the Constitution. We are obligated to act to create a nonviolent revolution through world law.

One way to do this is to become a personal ratifier of the Constitution and begin work to get the people and nations of Earth formally to ratify the Constitution. You can begin by copying the Pledge of Allegiance to the Constitution at the end of this book, signing it, and mailing it to the offices of the WCPA along with your address, e-mail, etc. By personally recognizing the legitimacy of the Constitution as world law, each person so doing is taking a revolutionary stance, one morally required by our crisis situation at the beginning of the twenty-first century. I declare that I will henceforth recognize the Earth Constitution as the supreme law of the Earth, superseding all merely national laws.

The situation is somewhat parallel to the one I found myself in as a young man in college facing possible draft into the Vietnam War. I had taken a world history course my freshman year. We studied one war after another in that course, one invasion after another, one empire after another, for the past 2,500 years. I realized something about the tragic history of human beings on this planet. And I realized that every empire and every nation attempted to justify its wars in the eyes of its population.

The Nazis justified their invasion of Europe just as the U.S. government declared it was “fighting Communism” in Southeast Asia. I understood that this war system that perpetuated itself throughout history was illegitimate. And I made a revolutionary decision. The buck would stop with me. They could imprison me, persecute me, even kill me, but there was nothing they could do to make me fight as part of their illegitimate system of death and destruction.

Today, we face the illegitimacy of the global economic and political systems of modernity. And we have before us a founding document that creates legitimate government for the Earth and restores the legitimacy of the national governments once they have become members of the Earth Federation. I can passively refuse to act out of self-interest (being personally comfortable within the current world order) or out of cowardice (for social stigma or other penalties will possibly come from both government and the dominant social conformity).

Or I can take the revolutionary act of signing the Earth Constitution and stating that the buck stops with me. Whether the rest of the world signs or not, I have had the courage to say that I will not live without legitimate government. I will be a citizen of the Earth Federation. They can imprison me, persecute me, even kill me, but they cannot take away the fact that I have publicly chosen to live under legitimate government.

The war system may continue, even though I am a conscientious objector to this horrific and diabolical system. The system of “sovereign” nation-states may continue, even though I have personally ratified the Constitution. However, my act contributes to the ground-swell of persons who have chosen to live their lives on authentic moral principles. My act is a powerful one feared by the dominant elites who require control over the public mind to ensure their horrific system.

My act also frees me in many ways from their system of corruption, domination, and death (not entirely, of course, for no one is entirely free of the dominant system). I refuse to go along with their system and have taken the revolutionary decision to live under the rule of legitimate law applied equally and fairly to all persons who live on Earth.

All over the world today there are courageous people recognizing the illegitimate, unjust nature of laws, policies, or systems and engaging in acts of nonviolent civil disobedience. To commit civil disobedience in the face of this illegitimacy is often a heroic and noble act that risks jail or worse forms of repression. But the act places those who perform it in a “no man’s land” of life without government (based only on their moral principles). We are citizens of the world first, and our rights derive from our humanity, our sovereignty as world citizens (Davis, 2004, pp. 22-24).

My civil disobedience declares that I have a moral right nonviolently to violate the laws of this illegitimate system and its governments. People doing civil disobedience to illegitimate systems are now living in an anarchy in which their moral principles may disagree with those of others and there is no ground for the equal treatment of everyone under the rule of democratically enacted universal laws. They are in danger of appearing to disrespect all laws (Zinn, 1990, Ch. 6).

They have rejected the present-day hypocritical claim that they are living under “democracy” as a lie. Conceptually speaking, they are now living in a “no man’s land” beyond the framework of legitimate government. This vacuum must be filled by a complementary act of civil obedience. The decision to respond with civil disobedience to illegitimate governments and institutions is complemented by a voluntary decision to submit oneself to the rule of law under the sovereignty of the people of Earth.

Combining civil disobedience to illegitimate government with the supreme act of civil obedience to the Earth Constitution means that I have not rejected the principles of legitimate government in committing civil disobedience. I have only rejected what is no longer legitimate. This is the key to world revolution through world law.

As Gary Davis never tires of saying, each of us is a world citizen first and foremost, born on spaceship Earth, and the governments that claim us as a member of some pitiful territorial segment of the Earth are entirely illegitimate (1984). We need to act out of the dignity and sovereignty of our world citizenship which is what is truly real about us, and not out of cowardly subservience to these corrupt, imposter nation-states.
We must work to expose the illegitimate nature of all governments and their dominant economic institutions today. We must make the supreme act of civil obedience ourselves, whether or not we engage in civil disobedience. We must also show our present governments that their legitimacy can only be restored through federating under the Constitution for the Federation of Earth. We do not want to abolish national governments but restore their legitimacy.

As democratic guardians of their respective peoples through nation-wide territorial laws, and federated within a world government that deals with global issues and the needs of all the Earth’s citizens, nation-states are legitimate. As so-called “sovereign” nations, independent of the rest of the world, claiming some “ownership” of us prior to our world citizenship, they are illegitimate. If they want our civil obedience, our governments themselves must choose the moral act of civil obedience to the Earth Constitution.

Otherwise they are hypocritically demanding our obedience to their laws while themselves refusing to live under the rule of law. Our governments today insist on the anarchy of claiming they are autonomous individuals (“sovereign” nation-states) with no genuine, enforceable law above them. We are supposed to obey their laws, but they are unwilling to live under the rule of law themselves. Without this choice of civil obedience, they remain immoral and illegitimate. Without our own act of civil obedience, our own personal choice to live under the rule of world law, our personal lives also remain immoral and hypocritical.

The Constitution for the Federation of Earth has greater legitimacy than any other document today. Other constitutions have been proposed, and many have been written. But none has been created by four Constituent Assemblies of world citizens, none has been translated into twenty-two languages and distributed worldwide, and none has created organizations that are actually building the institutions of democratic world government within the shell of the old world system. There are no other real options.

No other constitution has actually created District World Courts that have taken genuine legal actions, and none has founded a Provisional World Parliament that has done extensive work in elaborating an excellent body of provisional world law (see Almand and Martin, 2005). Through these actions, we are actually building the emerging Earth Federation. We are inviting all people and nations to join the emerging Federation of Earth!

By recognizing the Constitution as the legitimate law for the people of Earth, I am taking a stand for a transformed world order based on the rule of universally enforceable democratic laws. In a world of international chaos, imperial domination, and global economic exploitation, this is a revolutionary act. It is also a fundamental moral act, as we have seen, to take a stand for human security, peace, freedom, justice, and prosperity.

It is not an act on the political left or the political right. It is an act that is in front, premised on a real future for human beings on this planet. It is an act that demands a similar stance from all human beings. We find ourselves in a revolutionary situation on planet Earth, and we are required to act in the face of that situation.
The Earth Federation Party is the party of all people of Earth. It cannot be defined by the “political spectrum” of left or right. It seeks no power for itself. It seeks only to enfranchise the disenfranchised people of Earth through the Earth Constitution. The people and nations of Earth can then elect whom they want to represent them. We do not have a political platform but rather an urgent moral mandate to represent all the citizens of Earth. We are the sufferage movement for all the people of Earth.

However, many persons interested in creating a decent world order are not ready to question their own privileged position within the imperial centers of power. They encourage mere reform of the world order toward democratic world “governance” (many of them speak only of “governance,” not government) and do everything they can to criticize those who affirm genuine world government under the Earth Constitution. (For our published response to some of these reformists, see Toward Genuine Global Governance, Harris and Yunker, 1999.) Our revolutionary commitment (like all such commitments) involves an implicit criticism of their timidity and inaction. E-volution is not the same as Re-volution.

E-volution of the present world system of “sovereign” nation-states and global capitalism will not and cannot give us a substantially better world. For one thing, there is simply no time for this, since the world condition is one of global crisis and daily getting worse. Secondly, the very nature of these systems, as I have shown above, will forever subvert attempts to modify them toward a better order. International law and worthwhile U.N. agencies need not be abolished. They can easily be converted to valuable tools of world law by founding them on legitimate premises.

Only a founding document, presenting for the world a set of principles for a decent world order from the very beginning, can give us hope. A founded society is not an evolved society, which can only be a hodge-podge of conflicting forces, conditions, and claims. A founded society under the Constitution is structured for a just world order from the very beginning (Martin, 2005, chs 12 and 13).

This founding document gives us the premises of unity-in-diversity under the sovereignty of the people of Earth. The present system can easily be converted from its current absurd and unjust premises (“sovereign nation-states and exploitative monopoly capitalism) to legitimate premises. With this simple conversion, a new world order would have truly begun.

We sign the Pledge of Allegiance to the Constitution and the “e-volutionists” claim that the Constitution is “only legitimate in the eyes of its ratifiers.” Others claim “the Constitution was not sufficiently democratically created.” We need decades, they say, to involve all the people of Earth in writing a constitution. One wonders how the more than one billion people now starving to death on the planet feel about this. Some others, comfortably embedded in wealthy first-world institutions, claim that those who affirm the Constitution are “the lunatic fringe of the world government movement.”

To take a truly nonviolent revolutionary stance in today’s world requires courage, integrity, and the capacity for real moral decision and action. It also requires a clear seeing of the absolute need for world government promised on a founding document. It is not for the timid and faint-hearted who cling to their harmless “idealism.” “Oh wouldn’t it be nice if the world were a place of security, peace, freedom, and prosperity,” they say. “Let us hold another conference about it.” Let us “dialogue.” Let us have “participatory democracy” in our ineffectual NGOs.

Anything but real government. Anything but taking on ourselves the responsibility for creating genuine government for the Earth. Anything but making a revolutionary commitment to the principle that “the buck stops with me, and decision to live under real, legitimate government begins with me.” Anything but a genuine act of civil obedience. In this, they are like the nation-states who also refuse to live in a world of enforceable law.

Like the nation-states, they refuse to take responsibility for governing themselves. We citizens of the Earth Federation deeply respect the often genuine motives of people in the movement to create a decent global world order. We cooperate and network with them as much as possible, but we cannot let their largely ineffectual idealism corrupt the revolutionary purity of our commitment to world revolution through world law. We must begin to govern ourselves. However, such idealism has its place.

It may do some good through educating people to be concerned about global issues. It may make some incremental changes in the United Nations system or other global “governance” institutions. But ultimately, only those with the courage to choose world revolution through affirming practical and concrete world law in the here and now are going to be effective. It must begin someplace, and that place must be me.

It is up to each of us in the world, poor and rich, of every race, religion, and culture, to create a decent world order for future generations. Governments are trapped in a network of economic, political, and military corruption and are not likely to lead the way to a just and free world order. The rich are often trapped in the corrupt system that generates their wealth and are not likely to lead the way. We must mobilize ourselves as world citizens to pressure our governments to act to ratify the Constitution for the Federation of Earth. The ratification process in Article 17 of the Constitution requires both people and nations to participate.

The Earth Federation will be a true federation with effective government at all levels. Local city and town governments will still operate. Regional governments and national governments will be vital. The revolutionary difference is that under world government they will all be working together rather than in competition and hostility to one another. All levels of the federation will have to obey world law that requires respect for the rights of not only their own citizens but all other citizens worldwide.

All that is necessary is twenty-five nations who become fed up with the vampire of the present world system sucking the life and blood from their peoples and perpetuating forever immense human suffering, disease, death, and despair. All it takes is the leadership of twenty-five nations who are not hopelessly corrupted by their masters in the imperial centers of capital in the global north. How this process can easily work is described below in section seven of the Manifesto entitled “Common Sense Economics Under Democratic World Government.”

In a very short time, with only a little courage and political will on the part of oppressed nations of the global south (in cooperation with world citizens from every nation), the foundations of a decent and prosperous world order can be established. The cornerstone (the Earth Constitution) is finished and ready to be placed. All that is required is a few decent, courageous, and honest national leaders and their citizen supporters.

But ordinary people must also act to educate, and to build the Earth Federation from within, regardless of the response of governments. These governments are no longer fully legitimate and their legitimacy can only be restored through joining the Earth Federation. The future of the world and humanity is in our hands, not in the hands of governments. We represent legitimacy, not them. We must act now: boldly, intelligently, and decisively. The Constitution also allows for direct ratification by people.

To sign the Pledge of Allegiance to the Constitution for the Federation of Earth is a truly transformative act. To create a chapter of the Earth Federation Party, in which every member has signed the Pledge, is not just to create another organization working for some ideal. It is a practical decision and a commitment to take one’s stand on a truly new world order in the here and now. Protest marches taking place everywhere on Earth often chant “What do we want? Justice. When do we want it? Now.” It is this “now” that is at the heart of revolutionary nonviolent morality.

This “now” is what Mahatma Gandhi took his stand on. He insisted that we should all live our “utopias” every day of our lives, in the here and now. For they are not merely “utopias,” but the common sense of the way human beings should be living on this Earth. Gandhi insisted that “we must be the change we want to see in the world” (1987, pp. 458-460; Jesudasan, 1984, p. 32). The right time to demand justice is now. And justice can only exist if it is institutionalized within a founding document.

The world will not and cannot “evolve” toward justice, at least not on the level I am addressing here. Justice is an ethical decision, a decision that can be made by nations, corporations, groups, and individuals. It is not a slowly evolving organic life-form. It is not an impractical “ideal” to be postponed indefinitely into the future. It is a choice, a decision, capable of transforming our world in the here and now. But the transformation requires an institutional framework, the Earth Constitution as the basis of a founded, just, world government.

The here and now of the decision to live one’s life as a citizen of the Earth Federation is a gigantic and powerful one. It not only confers ever-greater legitimacy on the Constitution for the Federation of Earth. It confers a powerful moral legitimacy upon our own lives. To sign the Pledge is not the end of our work. It signals the beginning. As citizens of the emerging Earth Federation, we have much work to do. Tomorrow will be too late. The time for world revolution through world law is now.


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