“My dream is a hemispheric common market, with open trade and open borders,” said Hillary Clinton in a paid 2013 speech. But while we only learned of these comments courtesy of WikiLeaks, some dream bigger and more openly — such as Peter Schurman, founder of One Global Democracy. Interviewed on the December 6 edition of Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight, he boldly laid out his vision: a world without countries, where every adult gets a vote to determine how you will live.
That means the voting age population among 1.4 billion Chinese, 1.3 billion Indians, 1.2 billion Africans and 1.8 billion Muslims (yes, there’s some overlap there) — the vast majority of the world — would largely determine policies governing 330 million people living in the former United States. Of course, though, eliminating borders would mean we’d perhaps end up with one billion living in the former United States.
But never fear. When Carlson mentioned that “global democracy” may not work because people are very different and asked if Schurman wanted Chinese, with whom he had “nothing in common,” making decisions for him, the utopian replied “You’d be surprised, actually. If you look at international polling data, it is really surprising how much in common we have with people all over the world” (video below). Perhaps. But as ex-intelligence officer Ralph Peters put it, “It’s the differences that kill you, though.”
For sure, however, is that a “global democracy” would kill many of the rights and freedoms we hold dear. Put simply, since most of the world is not American, it’s not likely they’d vote for policies closely reflecting the American ideal. In fact, since most on this planet aren’t even Western… well, you can finish the sentence.
Schurman, formerly the founding executive director at MoveOn.org, has a whole page of polling data purportedly showing that there is widespread agreement on many issues. And he is advocating actual “democracy” — where every person gets to vote on every policy — sort of. A video he created (shown below) states that a person would be allowed to “delegate” his vote to someone he “trusts.” One can only imagine the kind of corruption this could invite (vote buying, anyone?). Additionally, if enough votes were delegated to some very persuasive individuals, this would amount to the emergence of de facto representatives.
Moreover, Schurman responds to criticism in his video’s comments section by saying “that robust constitutional protections will be needed to safeguard human rights and minority rights.” Of course, though, if we have a global constitution whose provisions cannot be trumped via popular vote, then already there are limitations on “democracy.”
Unsurprisingly, all the individuals featured (save a brief shot of Ronald Reagan) and policy imperatives implied in the above video are left-wing. Yet Schurman appears sincere — just sincerely wrong. He mentions how technology has radically changed and that global democracy is made possible by two phenomena in particular: “blockchains,” the technology behind bitcoin; and a “liquid democracy” model, where everyone can vote directly on policy. But perhaps he ignores something that doesn’t change: man’s nature.
Large or small, high-tech or low, democracy is merely glorified mob rule; it’s, as is said, two lions and one lamb voting on what to have for dinner. Ancient Greek philosopher Socrates was executed, for allegedly corrupting the young (with ideas) and “mocking the gods,” after 500 Athenians voted 52-48 percent to convict (they regretted the decision soon afterwards and erected a statue in his honor). Thus did James Madison write in The Federalist, No. 10 that “democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths.”
So while Schurman bills his idea as a guarantor of peace, it could only be peace of a sort: a temporary kind that disrupts inner peace by imposing what is perceived by many to be tyranny — and that’s won at the end of a gun.
For example, if even 60 percent of the world voted for a given policy, that would still leave more than 2.5 billion dissenters, who, in many cases, would be densely clustered in certain regions. What happens when one billion Muslims strenuously object to a policy contrary to Sharia law? What happens when the world’s far poorer majority votes to extract staggering amounts of wealth from the Western world? And what happens when countless millions of Third Worlders flock to the West and there isn’t even room to house them? What happens when the natives object?
Either heavy-handed methods are used to enforce compliance, or defiance is tolerated — in which case you have a breakdown in the rule of law, de facto autonomy, and movement toward separation. In other words, we have countries for the same reason most of us have autonomous households and don’t live communally: We like having our “space” and being with our families. Well, national families exist, too.
And they can be very, very different. Schurman plays this down on his polling-data page, which, again, makes the case that most of us want the same things. But polling outcomes can be manipulated based on question phraseology; moreover, vague generalities can be deceptive. For example, virtually everyone claims to want “freedom.” But, to do what?
Everyone believes in limitations on freedom, which is, by definition, what laws are. Where we disagree is on what those limitations should be. For instance, one poll found that 58 percent of American Muslims believe that criticism of Islam or Muhammad should not be allowed under the Constitution; and Pew Research Center reported earlier this year that in most countries in which Muslims are present in large numbers, a majority of them want Sharia to be the law of the land.
All this, not to mention that the Chinese, the Russians, the Muslim world, and many others have no interest in being part of any one-world scheme unless they’re running the show. Internationalism, and now post-nationalism, are obsessions of Western pseudo-elites who, being philanderers of nations, suppose that everyone is as unfaithful as they.
Image: screenshot from YouTube video about One Global Democracy