I hate to brake the news to my twitter friends, and it feels like funeral news, but localism & decentralisation is NOT the answer. I can’t find a single case where a centralised cultural/political/econ. crisis resolved this way.
Cleisthenes CENTRALISED 10 Tribes of Athens and … boom! Athenian democracy!
Rome CENTRALISED the power of 35 tribes… and boom! Roman Republic!
13 US colonies CENTRALISED their power into a single motto (“no taxation without representation”)…. a Confederation and … boom! American Revolution!
Pre-revolutionary France was marked by the attempts of the monarchy to impose central control. They couldn’t achieve it. It was AFTER the French Revolution & the Declaration of Human Rights (1789) that CENTRAL power was established to resolve social & economic disparities.
We could go on and on with how Britain became a UNITED Kingdom and how better UNIONS (not better devisions) were always the natural solution to hard social issues.
Promoting abstract models of better borders, localism & decentralisation as the solution for modern evils is like being physicist and vouching against gravity. It’s not that it will not happen, it’s that it can’t happen.
This question roots back to the most ancient text of western civilisation: Iliad of Homer. It’s a text that envisioned, for the first time, the CENTRALISATION of Greek city-states as the SOLUTION to an EXISTENTIAL THREAT.
This “Homeric Vision” is exactly what Alexander the Great enforced, not hiding his Homeric poetic inspiration. The Homeric strategy of CENTRALISATION of greek city-states was enough to establish the dominance of the western culture vs. the east for the first time.
For those who don’t get it, the ‘western culture’ was dominated by one characteristic: THE REFUSAL TO BOW TO DESPOTS. When Alexander demanded from his soldiers to bow, for the first time, he was heavily criticised by greek historians & then mysteriously found dead.
After systemic corruption & roman dehumanisation, Christianity appeared, and colourfully described CENTRALISATION of Rome as the evil Antichrist, posing one solution: the CENTRALISATION around the body (ecclesia) of Christ, the saviour.
Today we face the following challenge:
– Evil cartel(s) consolidated central role in politics & economy. e.g. European parliaments collectively apply the same central EU directives.
– A bunch of illiterates consolidated power in higher academic institutions
DECENTRALISATION = divide & conquer
CENTRALISATION = the ancient fight against [centralised] good vs. [centralised] evil. SOLUTION = (the last 2000 years)
UNION around true humanism: virtues of Christ & vision of Homer. Balance btwn individual and common good.