Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Pandemic Functional Equivalent of World War III, Kotsybinsky Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, March 20 – The two world wars of the last century transformed the architecture of the world, eliminating some outdated phenomena but putting in place others which also contained shortcomings. The coronavirus pandemic is the functional equivalent of these wars in that regard, Daniil Kotsyubinsky says.

            “After World War I, empires and what is most important the idea of empires collapsed. They were replaced by the idea of ‘nation states’ as an idea closer to contemporary people,” the Russian regionalist says. But the new order gave rise to new challenges, including the cult of the state and totalitarianism (gorod-812.ru/krah-globalizma-pandemiya-kak-zamena-tretey-mirovoy/).

            “After World War II, along with colonial empires … collapsed the idea of totalitarianism, although that didn’t happen all at once but was drawn out over almost half a century. It was replaced by the cult of ‘democracy’ and ‘human rights’ and also by the globalist dream about a happy and peaceful ‘united nations.’”

            But these ideas too presented new and as it turned out growing challenges: neo-colonialism by the strong against the weak, mass and unrestrained consumerism, and a situation in which all individuals no matter where they lived are at risk of developments that they have no possibility of exerting political control.

            Now, the coronavirus pandemic is playing the role of World War III, destroying many of these ideas and structures. People see that the whole idea of global governance is a king without clothes, however much his courtiers say otherwise. “It is difficult to imagine a misfortune greater than a pandemic.” But the existing international structures have proved irrelevant.

            “Where is the UN and the EU? Where is the IMF and the OECD?” And what is true of them is true of the dozens of other multilateral institutions that have been created in recent decades.  “All of them fell apart” as the global panic the pandemic set off took hold. And it became as if they had never existed.

            “The idea of global governance, together with the cult of its ‘main authors’ – the big states or ‘powers’ -- failed miserably. The pandemic is a global problem. But it is being solved almost exclusively locally, for, as is obvious to the unaided eye, that is the only place where it is possible to address serious problems.”

            “It is possible that the present ‘hard kick’ is not the last shock” the pandemic will deliver, Kotsyubinsky says. But it is already clear in what direction the archaisms, stupidities, and distortions built over the last 75 years is pushing humanity.” It is calling into question unrestrained markets and promoting cultural localism.

            “In a word,” the regionalist writer says, it is shifting the world from “power-centric hierarchically arranged globalism” to “horizontal regionalization.” And it is doing this by means of a pandemic rather than by the even more horrific means of a third global war.

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