As the modern secular nation state becomes increasingly totalitarian, European history provides the model for the political reconstruction of the Western world. This historical map of Europe circa 1300 should be the ideal for those opposed to the corrupt and now bankrupt nation state and the system of international political and financial governing bodies and organizations that seek the elimination of all regional and local sovereignty.
The map shows that Europe at the time and for many years afterwards was comprised of numerous political configurations – principalities, duchies, confederations, and city states. Instead of a few centralized nation states that currently dominate the landscape, Europe was, for the most part of its history, politically decentralized–which explains not only the Continent’s tremendous economic growth, but also its unparalleled cultural achievements.
Monarchical style governance was the most popular form of rule during the period; and despite the negative modern bias against kings and queens, there was far greater personal freedom than there has been in the “democratic age.” More importantly, warfare, when it was conducted, was far less destructive in loss of life and that of wealth and property than the horrific contests that have since taken place. Moreover, the monarchical age was one of metallic money, which proved to be difficult to manipulate by the political classes.
Political and economic theory has long since shown that decentralization results in greater individual liberty and economic growth. A multitude of independent states and sovereignties is a far better check on tyranny than the supposed “checks and balances” of modern constitutional democracies. Even the much celebrated “separation of powers” concept adopted by most constitutional republics has not prevented the rise of the “total state.”
Numerous states provide the opportunity for the oppressed to “vote with their feet,” expatriating from draconian regimes. The threat of population drain and thus a reduction in the tax base is a far superior check on state power.
A number of small states makes it unlikely that a fiat paper money system, in which the world currently suffers under, would emerge. It would be extremely difficult for a dominant monetary authority to coerce and get a multitude of states to agree to accept a single currency outside of their control. Even the Euro almost failed to come into existence; and had Europe been more decentralized, the “Euro experiment” would have never been attempted.
Unfortunately, under the current ideological mindset, the breakup of the nation state into smaller units does not seem likely. Social change typical occurs after there has been an ideological shift, and the present dominant political paradigm is that of statism. However, an economic collapse or the continuing fall in living standards could lead to the breakaway of regions from their nation-state overlords.
Those opposed to the current world order need to redirect their efforts away from “reform,” electoral politics, or lobbying for favorable court decisions and instead focus on the development of organizations, the forming of alliances and relationships whose end result is the creation of new autonomous entities outside the hegemony of the nation state.
As farfetched as the idea of a decentralized world might seem to be, there have been some recent examples of it. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the separation of the Baltic states shows that no matter how impregnable a regime may appear, political disintegration can happen. The severe economic crisis that led to the fall of Soviet Communism could take place in the United States or in any number of European regimes.
While the nation state is in perilous financial position, it will not relinquish its power voluntarily. The politically-connected financiers will do whatever it takes to keep the system afloat and will use any upcoming economic crisis to accelerate their drive for a New World Order. If a politically decentralized world is to come about, the groundwork for it must be now laid.
Lord Acton’s famous words about political centralization should be the mantra for those who seek a more peaceful and prosperous world devoid of the tyrannical nation state: “power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
Photo credit: Jordi Escuer (Flickr)