The global system – broken beyond repair

It is a little difficult to know where to start as so much is happening and the year has only just begun. The global system can be viewed as having four different elements: Economic, Political, Military and Religious. They are all linked together but all have unique facets in how they impact the world in which we live.

Economic System

While not unexpected, the speed with which the global economy has hit the brakes in the first days of the year has been surprising. China, which is trying to re-engineer its economy so as not to rely on exports for growth to one of internal consumption, has hit severe turbulence, the last days seeing huge drops in its stock markets. In China, many shares are bought by private individual investors and have been wiped out by the losses which began last year and accelerated to such a point that trading had to be suspended twice already this year. These are the people the Chinese authorities need if internal consumption is to be the new economic model, instead they are all feeling much poorer and hesitant about making new investments and spending. To be fair the problem is not only China’s, globally, the worlds economy has never recovered since the financial crash of 2007. The only thing that has propped up the economic system since then has been the vast amount of almost free money that central banks pumped into the system. While company stock valuations soared over the years since the crisis the fundamentals have not changed. Companies have not been making the profits to justify their stock market valuations, instead of improving profits through growth they were cutting costs. While improving the bottom line it was covering up the fact that businesses have not been growing. Now the time of essentially free money is coming to an end the fundamentals are coming back into view and is the reason why global stock markets are having such a turbulent time. The emperor has no clothes and the central banks and governments have very few options left open to them. With global share prices still having a way to go before they reflect the actual values of global businesses it is going to have a knock on effect. Pension funds and property are going to be the big losers. People are going to start feeling poorer. When people feel poorer they spend less and this impacts business growth. The system is so broken that there is no way out of this feedback loop unless something fundamental about the system is changed. Do the central banks and governments have a solution, I think not.

Political System

Something that should amaze people is that in all the time of human history we have tried all forms of government, apart from global government, and not one of them has been successful, in the long term, of bringing about peace and security, helping all its citizens to have a dignified life. Instead they have abdicated more and more responsibility to the banks, trusting them to create the conditions for economic stability and therefore political stability. I often wonder what use our governments serve. All around we see crumbling infrastructure, cuts to health-care, the education system being run into the ground, increase in social instability as well as far fewer opportunities for social improvement. In the past there were far more opportunities for people to improve their lives, these opportunities are rapidly disappearing. If governments can’t deal with these fundamentals then what is the point of their existence? This is without going into global politics, all of the major powers in competition with each other, wanting to be top dog, but this situation leads to proxy wars, global instability, power vacuums and international terrorism. As the global economy shrinks the pressure is on for these countries to work even harder to protect their interests, creating yet another feedback loop. We will see an increase in nationalism and growing popularity of more extreme political parties as they promise only they can protect the interests of the population. In reality all that happens is increased polarization of populations, minority groups being blamed for the ills of the country. We are seeing this happening in many countries around the world and it will only spread as global conditions deteriorate. It will also increase the risk of conflict as relationships between neighbouring countries break down.

guns_suit_planets_fire_earthMilitary System

The only area of real growth now is in military spending, as we all know instability is good for the military sector. War is good for business. Morals have nothing to do with it, all is for sale, often to reprehensible regimes. The conflicts these weapons are used to pursue create displaced people, refugees and untold suffering. As the global economy teeters, the risk of conflict grows as competition between nations for a greater slice of the shrinking economic pie increases. Add to this the growth of ideological and religious differences between certain countries and the count-down to increased and new conflicts grows rapidly. Countries who have major weapons industries will rely on this sector for a larger part of their economic stability while trying at the same time to keep the consequences of these conflicts where the weapons are used as far as possible away from home.

Religious System

I’m grouping all the main religions together here because they are all equally corrupt and are all equally responsible for the deaths of millions through the ages. Today, religion is used as an excuse to kill, to dominate and to keep the masses quiet in the face of increased hardship, all often in collaboration with various governments. The tension between Saudi Arabia and Iran is based on religion. Jews and Palestinians is religious conflict. The Russian Orthodox church telling ordinary Russians they should prepare for greater hardship while it is the greatest benefactor of grants from the Russian government. There is a link to this because it left me speechless russian-patriarch-kirill-does-not-see-tragedy-in-the-economic-crisis In India there is increasing Sikh extremism with the permission of the government. The Vatican, possibly the richest organization in the world sees itself as some sort of supranational government but instead of using its wealth and influence to help people is more concerned with getting richer, milking its followers and only offers prayers when people need real practical help. It consorts with political leaders around the world like a courtesan believing she is a queen who sits above her people. How long will it be until politicians around the world get tired of all religious meddling and trouble making. Particularly as the global economy gets worse and they see just how rich these religions have become. I am curious to see what will happen when the governments are broke and they then look at the religions and all their wealth and see the religious system acting as if it is untouchable.

This is the year when finally it will be understood the global system, in all its parts, is beyond repair. Maybe it is time people started thinking about the New System.

Israel, your house is abandoned to you.

Israel, when I look at you today I see so many missed opportunities. You could have had it all but you threw it all away. Instead your hard heart and lack of faith has led you to the situation you are in today, alienated from יהוה, our Father and with no hope for the future and no chance of peace. It saddens me to write this because I too am descended from one of the twelve tribes.

In your heart you know that Jesus was and is the messiah but your scribes and pharisees rejected him because they wanted a political messiah to take you from under the dominion of Rome rather than accept him as a spiritual messiah and wait for יהוה to accomplish His will in His own time. Instead you were more afraid of losing your power over your fellow Israelites and the money you earnt from them and from the taxes you made from the money changers you permitted to sit in the Holy Temple. In your own corruption you saw that Jesus was illuminating the people to how far you had deviated from the Law and the people began to have their eyes opened. So you planned for him to be put to death by the Romans so you could protect your positions and power. You were too hypocritical to do the deed yourselves. Then when messiah was dead you rejoiced, not understanding that you had helped fulfil the biblical prophecy of how he would die as a sacrifice. Yet you still think you can be the chosen ones after this?

When the modern State of Israel was formed, was it done so in the name of יהוה who you claim to worship? No, in fact your constitution is purely secular, nothing more than a political entity, no different to any other country in the world. You still claim to be special, to be able to recognize messiah when he returns but please tell me how you will know him, that he is of the house of David, of the tribe of Judah when all the records were destroyed by the Romans when they sacked Jerusalem? יהוה used the Romans to destroy the Temple to show you were no longer his people as you had rejected His messiah. Messiah’s return will be to judge us all, including you Israel. What works have you done to prove your holiness? What faith have you shown in יהוה your Father? Instead you put your faith in bombs and guns and have forgotten the times when יהוה said ‘you will not need to fight this day but stand and watch your deliverance’

Israel, you are nothing. Your house is abandoned to you.

The state of things

The human-race is like a car which is rolling towards the edge of a cliff and instead of hitting the brakes we seem to be hitting the gas.

United Nations

At the UN Headquarters, “let us beat our swords into ploughshares”

The vast majority of people just want to get on with their lives, wanting to raise their families in security both financially and physically, but we now live in a time when that is becoming harder and harder for more and more people. Society is becoming very deeply divided and tribal, politics,religion race and wealth are the dividing factors.

After World War 2, there was a period when things seemed to be going reasonably well. During that time we saw nations rebuilding themselves along with the fall of colonialism, businesses were booming and the quality of life was improving for the majority, medical care was made easily available, housing was easy to find, as were jobs that paid a living wage even at the lower end of the social scale. Racism was recognized for the injustice that it is and action was taken, women were able to take their place in the workplace, no longer simply as a secretary but as lawyers and doctors etc. Of course challenges remained but the point is, improvements were being made in society which were unimaginable not so long before. Of course there was the cold war, and some terrible proxy wars were fought between the two superpowers, Korea and Vietnam, at terrible human cost but in many ways the world was more stable during the cold war than it is today.

Politics was also less partisan in the past, the different parties of many countries could often find a way to work together. Today, politics of the democratic system is polarized and tribal in a way not seen for a very long time and to be honest the wheels are starting to fall off. Then there are countries where there is a single “strong man” in power, as always the power goes to their heads. Those who desire power should never be allowed to have it. The same goes for countries which are governed or ruled by a single family or tribe. They can not imagine never being in power and so set up systems to perpetuate themselves no matter the suffering that might cause others.

Interestingly, over the course of human history, we have tried all forms of government, royal rule, emperors, feudal systems, dictators, authoritarianism, communism, democracy yet none of them can prove themselves in the long run. For sure there have been some benevolent kings and queens in the past who genuinely cared about their subjects but then they died and the situation invariably changed. It strikes me that we are not able to govern ourselves and as society becomes more divided the task will only become harder and more dangerous. As a thought experiment, maybe what is needed is a benevolent global ruler or organization that has the power to put a stop to all the chaos. Quite honestly, if things continue the way they are then the situation can only become worse. The cliff edge approaches.

Religion is a big issue too these days. Everybody is aware of radical Islam and in particular how ISIS (daesh) use it as an instrument of power and fear. The Pope recently said there could be a case for creating an international military force to take them on. This is interesting as the Vatican usually stays neutral on the use of armed force, at least publicly. It must be said that ISIS (daesh) are doing everything they can to create a clash of civilizations, the wanton destruction of historical sites is more about trying to provoke an international reaction rather than for any religious belief. That the Vatican is now weighing into the situation, with all its power and influence, could well lead to what could be seen as a christian crusade by the muslim world even if they don’t support the extremists. To be honest the entire Middle East is beyond hope. Those of you who follow this blog know of my deep interest in the region, it is like a second home to me but the political and religious situation will only become worse. Nothing short of a geo-political earthquake of a magnitude never imagined can resolve the chaos, game playing, war and death. Israel and Palestine is a crazy situation, they are family, literally related to each other but hate each other with all the fury of an erupting volcano. In fact if you could take religion out of the equation there would be no other difference between the Jews and the Palestinians, just members of the same blood line going back to the biblical Isaac and sharing the land.

Our political leaders do not have the answers to the challenges facing the human-race today, their impotence and incompetence becomes more obvious every day. They try to change things but ultimately nothing ever changes, they only add another layer to the crust of everything which has gone before. The global political system has taken on a life of its own which ultimately nobody can control, a little like Frankenstein’s monster and see how that ended for its creator!

The United Nations which was set up after World War 2 to bring about international “peace and security” is little more than a place where political games take place, where self interest is made apparent and very little good is ever done. Saying that, if the global situation continues the way it is, when we really could on the brink of destroying ourselves it could well turn out to be the organization to be given real power and oversight of the international situation, but the situation will have to develop much more for that to happen, maybe when our leaders and politicians see there is a direct threat to their own security. Can and will it happen? Yes. Will it be successful? No.

I have written this article because for all the following I do of international politics, religion and economics, whatever I write is ultimately futile, not that it will stop me, it is just that for the moment I am tired of writing about specific situations because there are so many of them and too many new things happening every day. All the atrocities of war, the political arrogance, the religious meddling, honestly it takes a lot of energy and I can see where it is all heading. It is not my intention to depress anybody with this article, simply to demonstrate that the global system as it stands (political, economic and religious) is self destructive and beyond repair. It needs to be dismantled.

The Ultimate Futility of The Longitude Prize

The Longitude Prize this year has the very best of intentions. Offering a $10 million prize to anybody who can create solutions in the fields of antibiotics, dementia, food resource, helping people with paralysis, water distribution, and environmentally friendly flight. These are all issues of our time that need addressing and I am curious to see what the results of this competition will be. At the same time it also struck me that ultimately, even with the best of intentions, any progress in these fields will not benefit the vast majority of people. Why?

We live in a world that is driven by profit and power at the exclusion of all else, even governments are run along the lines of business even though their responsibility is to govern. I’m not sure they understand what that means though. If there are any breakthroughs in the above areas the question is always going to be, how can the most profit be made from them. That unfortunately means that in many areas of the world they would not recieve any benefits, for the reason that there is no profit to be made from the poor. In the field of medicine it is sometimes discovered that an old drug whose patent has expired can be used to treat an entirely different condition. When this happens the Pharma company that makes the discovery, has the drug re-certified for different usage and then sells it at a hugely inflated price even though the drug itself has not been modified, simply rebranded. This then means that people in poorer parts of the world are no longer able to get hold of the original drug that they need so much. Where is the morality in that?

Looking at food, making sure that everybody has enough, which must surely be a human right, is a huge issue today. It is laudable that the Longitude Prize wants to address this issue but to be honest there is already enough food in the world for everybody. The problem is distribution. Again, there is no profit in the poor and it is the poor who are hungry. This is something which should be a function of government, after all it is their responsibility to look after their people. Governments also allow business to pervert food supplies. For example, genetically modified corn, did you know that a farmer is not allowed to keep seed from the last harvest to plant the next year? Why? Because so doing infringes the patent of the company which owns the modified corn. Therefore farmers in poorer and dryer parts of the world who were happy that they could grow corn that needs less water then discover that they are locked into buying new seed every year. If they hold back some of the seed to plant later the business will hit them with huge fines, and be supported by the governments in their actions, fines they cannot afford. So instead of helping people to grow food that needs less water they end up being effectively owned by a conglomerate because they use the modified corn. Where is the morality in that? The governments, where are they? In the pockets of the conglomerates. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not anti business, I simply take the view that morality has a part to play, life is not just about hugely inflated profits. The same goes for water, a part of the prize wants to look at the development of desalination as a way of addressing water shortages. But who will pay? It is an expensive business and those who are most thirsty tend to have the least money. It will never occur to the minds of global businesses and politicians to supply food and water to those areas which desperately need it, simply because there is not the profit to be made. No mater the suffering of those who live in those areas.

The only way to address these issues is through global governance. Instead, politicians are more interested in lining their own pockets and looking after those who are closest to them. Even if somebody goes into politics with good intentions they ultimately fail. Why? Because in the end it is always the deeply embedded political establishment which changes the person, the person will never be able to change the system. The global political system is designed to perpetuate itself and protect itself from those who might be altruistic. Throughout human history we have tried every form of government, non of them work, they only serve a part of the population and the percentage of the population they serve is shrinking rapidly. Until there is a form of government which takes its responsibilities seriously, the only way that can happen is if there is a global government in order to see that all people’s interests are looked after, then efforts such as the Longitude Prize will ultimately be in vain.

We live in interesting times and soon to be even more so. When you study the global political and business system it appears to becoming more sociopathic with time. Normally, sociopathy is something we relate to people but it appears that organizations can express the same behaviour. Here is a list of typical sociopathic behaviour, which when taken together create a monster. See what you think.

1. Very charming. Think of all the efforts governments and big business put into their charm offensives. To always portray themselves in the best light. Their leaders are often chosen in part for their charisma.

2. Spontaneous and Intense. They are unbound by normal social contracts, they do what they can get away with and the only sin is that of being caught. They make decisions which don’t make logical sense or have any sense of morality. Decisions are made to look good but without any real substance that is constructive for society

3. Incapable of feeling guilt, shame or remorse but put on a show if forced to.

4. Very good at lying

5. Intelligence which is used to decieve

6. Incapable of love and very self serving. However are good at acting as if they care.

7. Great wordsmiths. Goes with the charm which is used to decieve

8. Instead of apologizing will go on the attack to push the blame elsewhere

9. Delusional, believing that what is said is true because they have said it.

10. The need to win at all costs and dominate others.

When you take the above characteristics and refer them to the global political and economic system, the paralells become all too clear. What this goes to show is that we are living in a very sick world. There is no cure for sociopathy and there is no cure for the behaviour of the political and economic system. The system is clever, and very good at perpetuating itself, but as always with sociopathic behavior, leads to its own downfall. It is simply a question of time. Maybe that time is closer than many realize.

The financial crisis of 2007/2008 was symptomatic of a system trying to rebalance itself, to get back to a time when there was not the mass speculation and financial instruments that created money that never existed. The quantatitive easing was the response of governments to stop that happening. Since that time the economic system has almost arrived back at the level it was before the crash. Nothing systemic was really changed so all the ingredients are in place for exactly the same thing to happen again. Only this time it will be bigger. Economically we are in a period similar to that between the First and Second World War. The calm before the storm. The next time the economic system tries to reset itself the effect will be far greater and it will cause the global middle classes to shrink dramatically.

Politically, at a global level, conditions are dangerous, the period before the First World War was marked by rampant nationalism, countries looking to dominate one another, just as the situation is today. The situation between Russia and Ukraine is extremely dangerous, things are just getting started there and the potential for it to spill over into Europe in future is real. The Middle East is more explosive than many realize as political/religious forces seek to expand their influence. Talking of religion, the Orthodox Church in Russia is very influential in the actions which are taking place in Ukraine. The Church and Putin are extremely close.

We live in interesting times. Going back to the Longitude Prize, it is good that people still care, but until there is fundamental change in the Political, Economic and Religious systems that run this world then all the best will in the world is not going to improve the lives of people. That is why the prize is ultimately futile.

I know the tone of this article seems depressing but it isn’t. When the time is right I will expain why.