Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Is the world too big to be someone's "village"?

Is the world too big to be someone's "village"? Part 1

The global village concept seems to be proving not so easily applicable.
How many people, for example, wake up every morning "in the world"?

What does each person perceive as "home" and a his/her "space"?
It is a question of personal choice and factors.

For some their "agora"/"market" is their neighborhood, for some their city, for some their district, for some their region (e.g. Alsace, Surrey) or land (e.g. Bavaria) or state (e.g. California), for some their country, for some their region (e.g. South America, Southeast Europe (aka the Balkans)), for some their continent (Europe, Africa, Asia, America). How many people can perceive the world as their oyster?

The interplay between all these levels of "space" does bring confusion. So do all these regional agreements on Free Trade Areas, Unions (European, African), and the large numbers of bilateral agreements. Which, in effect, do compete with the WTO, UN and other multilateral formats. How much more confusion can the man in the streets of London, Leeds, Lille, Amsterdam, Rome, Warsaw, Budapest, Seattle, Hong Kong, etc. handle?

Is so much choice of frameworks too much choice?

Are nations and countries a depasse notion?
Can they be replaced by regional (EU, NAFTA, African Union, Mercosur, ASEAN) or global (WTO, UN, etc.) "notion"/"frameworks of mind"? And how can they deal with the transition.

The faltering WTO talks and the EU's Constitutional problems are mere indications of the difficulty. Is the transition too fast, too slow or too fuzzy (not clear enough)?

We seem to be living in times which are so transitional that they are too confusing.

People need some stability and some liquidity, some fixed and some variable parameters in their lives. Are they getting that? Can people live with total liquidity or everything fixed? It seems that most cannot. Most need a balance of the two.

"Is the world too big to be someone's "village"? part 2

Some people travel around the world "intellectually" ie in their minds (and the www and modern media - thematic channels help), some travel "in person" - physical presence. I guess the optimum is a healthy mix of the two.

I know some people who have actually travelled - been around the world and still it is as if they have never left their house (those voyages have not "opened" up - expanded the mindsets, on the contrary, it has made them more "parochial" than before).

Globalisation and risk fatigue syndrome?

"Love", in its most general form, for one's self, for family, friends, people in general, is a key dynamic in making this world a better one. And if loving someone is not possible, at least it is worth trying tolerance.

Easier said than done, true.

The key is to try to contribute to win-win situations in our daily lives.

To slow things down when they seem to be getting out of hand.

Back to basics, as gurus suggest, does not mean abandoning our lifestyles. It means better priorities in our daily lives.

The western world is more and more specialising in the production of intellectual rather than industrial products. And high end (value added) services.

Maybe the world is suffering from globalisation and risk fatigue syndrome?

More thinking and a slower pace in our daily lives is a good way to address it.

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