October 29, 2007

Book Review: OWD (Sorry, WWE, not NWO)

One World Democracy: A Progressive Vision for Enforceable Global Law by Jerry Tetalman and Byron Belitsos (Origin Press, 2005, ISBN 978-1-57983-017-5).

This book was written by: Jerry Tetalman, who registered as a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War. He is president of the Citizens for Global Solutions of San Diego.
It was co-authored by Byron Belitsos, a poet and the CEO of origin press. His involvement with the world democracy movement started in 1986 when he joined the World Federalist Association; he is now a board member of one of its successor organizations, the Democratic World Federalists.

What is in this book: A cry for a single government serving the entire world, since "we can say categorically that the UN has failed to bring the peace and stability that the broadening of sovereignty has been shown to confer upon humankind"(p.14). Before we can commence said broadening, “something must fill the vacuum that is created by the absence of a world government to enforce global law to keep the peace. And given the failure of the United Nations, that role will, by default, fall to the world's largest military and economic powers”(p.33). According to the authors, global government isn’t just something that can happen, it’s something that will happen, whether we like it or not, and “in the absence of a democratic world government, a ‘new world order’ will be provided by default by the world's largest superpower"(p.34).
We may as well opt for the omnipresent and all-powerful government of the New World Order that we democratically elect, which will be way better than the omnipresent and all-powerful government of the New World Order that is forced upon us. The book then adroitly soothes the fears of separatists, militiamen, and other individuals afraid of “Big Brother.” These individuals can read the following excerpt in the calm, rational style for which they are famous, entirely without searching for any hidden subtext or noticing anything alarming or ominous about the phrases that I have emphasized on my own:

"Eventually, all nations of the world would join of their own free will due to the numerous advantages of membership. They would quickly see how they would be protected from foreign invasion and terrorism by the power of the law backed by global government; they would be relieved of the burden of large military budgets; and they would gain the economic advantages of free trade and fewer restrictions within the governed area."(p.103)

What is not in this book: The gradual results of this world-spanning government redefining new and more aggressive powers for itself, or granting legislative favors to corporate patrons. While the authors warn about the dangers of corporate influence on civil government, they state that one thing "more powerful than corporate bribery is public outrage"(p.187). While in theory, this outrage works equally well against governmental abuses of power, there is no discussion of how this outrage has fared against illegal wiretapping programs, the awarding of no-bid contracts to favored corporations, or the indefinite detainment of individuals at Guantanamo Bay.
Also, no space is devoted to resolving the truly critical issues that would face such a global undertaking, such as what color the one world government should choose for its law enforcement army's uniforms, whether the supercomputer of the centralized bureaucracy in charge of tracking and monitoring all citizens should run Windows or Apple software, and if it would be better to have our identity chips implanted in our foreheads or in our right hands.

Would you recommend this book to Pat Robertson? No. At first, he would agree with the authors when they say that "war and anarchy can be eliminated only when a new sovereign source of law is set up over and above the old clashing groups," (p.14) because he'd think that they were referring to the power of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. However, the authors' later statement that "the new world government can endorse no religion; world public opinion should strongly discourage international political parties based on religious ideology"(p.199-200) might rub him the wrong way.

Would you recommend this book to Lou Dobbs? Yes, but only after explaining to him that under the new system, he could keep the Mexicans from sneaking into our country by telling them that they're already in our country. The authors note that "the best thing the U.S. could do to stem the tide of immigrants coming from Mexico and other developing countries would be to launch a massive campaign of foreign aid for development, political reform, and family planning assistance"(p.166), and go so far as to suggest that the same amount of money we have spent on border security could be used to fund these programs with far more tangible results.
In fact, such a plan could produce significant savings since border guards expect steady salaries, but government assistance can be promised for years and then quietly cut from the budget without actually being paid.

What is interesting about this book: The opening phrase of the book is, “imagine an old Star Trek series like this:"(p.3).
There are also some interesting figures regarding the word choices used in this book that would probably be of no interest to either militiamen or separatists:
-In the first 5 chapters, not counting chapter or section headings, words like "democracy," "democratic," and "democratically," are used 91 times over 91 pages.
-The phrase "New World Order" only appears 4 times in the entire book, counting one time where it describes a "New Democratic World Order."
-Neither the words "zionist" nor "conspiracy" appear at all in the book.

Digg this Stumble Upon Toolbar

No comments:

Read more reviews...