The thought of one-world government freaked out (his words) my favorite crunchy conservative.The power of global financial entities has outstripped the power of nation-states to subordinate their activity to the common good, even as the commons cannot be protected from the irresponsibility of these entities. The solution proposed by the Pontifical Council is a form of global political and economic common governance in which nation-states relinquish sovereignty to a significant degree in exchange for gaining a measure of accountability and control over global capital.Source: Rod Dreher.
After the jump, more from Dreher (and Jeffrey Weiss and ... me).
Dreher's logic is peculiar (to me):
It's peculiar that Dreher is perfectly willing to cede such authority over matters pertaining to our immortal souls, but not over matters pertaining to our pocketbooks. If we had to have one or the other, personally, I'd have it the other way around. Dreher is drawing a distinction between the secular and sacred and postulating that the sacred is somehow protected from human tyranny whereas the secular is not. I don't see it myself.it is a deeply troubling document. Why? Because it attempts to ally religious authority to the creation of globally centralized political and economic power, with the idea that if only we rationalize our political and economic relationships, and put them under the authority of a wise Authority, we'll all be better off. I can see how that would work in religious matters (hey, the Vatican is just that kind of authority), but in political and economic matters, it is a temptation to tyranny.Source: Rod Dreher.
Whatever. Dreher eventually calms down (a little) and, in another post, asks, reasonably, "If not world government, then what?" What, indeed? The question may be moot. I'm reminded of a passage in Francis Fukuyama's "The Origins of Political Order:"
China's political consolidation continues to the present day. It is erroneous to think that this global trend of consolidating political units will somehow stabilize at 192 (more or less, the current number of member states in the United Nations). Dreher might be freaked out at the thought of one-world government. He might consider it a nightmare. But it's likely to be irresistible. We can bury our heads in the sand and pretend that organizations like the United Nations, the World Court, the International Monetary Fund, and on and on, will go away if America closes the door to them. Or we can actively engage them to ensure that universal human rights are recognized and honored by whatever global political systems do emerge.There is clear evidence, however, that there was a tremendous reduction in the total number of political units in China, from approximately ten thousand at the beginning of the Xia Dynasty to twelve hundred at the onset of the Western Zhou, to seven at the time of the Warring States.Source: The Origins of Political Order.
Jeffrey Weiss, in RealClearReligion, has another take on the Vatican's suggestion. Like Rod Dreher, he, too considers it a big deal, but rather than railing against it as a nightmare, he is puzzled why so few other people seem to think it's a big deal, judging by the relative lack of coverage the document generated in the media. He points to two possible reasons. First, the Vatican's authority, even among Catholics, has been on a decades-long decline. He's certainly right there. Second, one-world government is a fantasy unlikely to happen in the lifetimes of anyone alive today. He's probably right about that, too. But, the ancient Chinese probably considered unified government to be a fantasy, too. Check back a hundred years, five hundred years, a thousand years from now. One-world government then? It's more likely than not, I'd wager. Like it or not, the question is not whether we'll have one-world government. It's what kind of one-world government we'll have.
By the way, Rod Dreher used to work for The Dallas Morning News. Jeffrey Weiss still draws his paycheck there, but I read both of their pieces elsewhere. I don't know what the heck The Dallas Morning News publishes anymore.