Weekly Summary 11 (March 25-April 7, 2003)
Creating a movement for global democracy and a WP
[2nd summary, Topic V]
Continuing the discussion on participation, the debate focused on the idea of a universal language, on the importance of art, and on following nature. We also discussed the idea of consensus or qualitative democracy, on organizing teams for a future WP and on a five pronged approach for world democracy.
We continue with the fifth month of discussion around the following question: How can we create a movement for global democracy and a world parliament
and invite everyone to participate? As we near the end of the forum, many
questions were discussed that pertained to earlier conversations, either
around this particular topic or around more general issues.
Language, art and nature
Once again, the language issue was high on the agenda. This time, however,
answers were more divided than usual. Some supported once again the ideas of
a universal language. But, regarding the use of Esperanto or the Ido as a
pre-condition to building a World Parliament (WP), some participants felt
that adopting an international language such as these would only make things
more complicated and hide the fact that there may be more pressing issues to
deal with such as poverty, war and famine. The use of English, aided by a
number of other official languages might prove satisfactory as it has in
existing international organizations.
Pluralism, one participant suggested, should be the foundation of a WP.
Thus, why try to transform our languages into a universal language? Language
is an element of culture, civilization and identity. Thus, it is important
that a WP let as many languages express themselves as possible.
Art is another topic previously discussed and participants supported the
idea mentioned earlier that a WP should promote art as a way to bridge
frontiers (by creating an art committee). In the words of a contributor, art
is an opening that can introduce * the breath of the spirit * and prevent us
from going in circles in a sterile manner, thus allowing for novelty.
By the same token, one should also pay more attention to nature and the
construction and functioning of a WP would be well served by observing the
laws of nature. For instance, as one participant suggests, * If we allow
organic principles to play a part, building a World Parliament will become
an activity of pleasure instead of sheer hard work. *
Everyone remembers the analogy of the * Tree of palaver * for a WP. One
could also compare it to a seashell : it begins its life cycle as a small
almost invisible little creature but its shape is already that of a fully
grown specimen. Thus, * the blueprint for growth is present at the very
beginning of its life cycle. *
A high number of participants have shown impatience or even sheer disgust
with * politics as usual * where public life only serves as a means to
enhance the interests of the groups or individuals participating actively in
the process (which obviously includes the politicians). One contributor summ
ed up this sentiment thus : * I happen to believe that the true power in all
government comes from the people. Our governments fail us now because it has
lost our voice. We have become silent in the bureaucracy of national
political power. And we all now suffer from our own past ignorance. *
There is thus a great need to enhance the quality of representation and of
democracy in general. Thus the idea of * qualitative democracy * (or
consensus democracy) developed by one of our contributors attempts to go
beyond the *quantitative democracy * of traditional majority rule.
Qualitative democracy would be based on legislation dominated by priorities.
These priorities would be elaborated by a new breed of * professional
politicians * (a topic we discussed at length in earlier debates) who would
elaborate lists of priorities. The voluntary professional would be trained
in the WP and be selected rather than elected. They would go through *
Independent Political Academies * to get proper training.
Since the topic of the month is to find practical ways to organize the WP,
one participant suggested the following plan (summarized here) based on the
creation of * teams * :
1) coordination team.
2) team of assessment of the preliminary work
3) team of assessment of the WP
4) team of writers.
5) team of fundraising.
6) team of the population - use of the notion of district to * divide the
world population. *
7) Itinerant teams for the voting campaign
9) team of daily information
10) Computer team
11) team of contact-medias
12) team of the international language (if one is chosen)
13) Forum of facilitation of * media celebrations *
14) team of relationship with the politicians
15) team of resources for the participants to the construction of the WP
16) team of translators
17) team of creation of the citerrestrial embassies
18) team in charge of relationships with NGOs
19) *organic* team - which simulates the different WP bodies, so that the WP
can be operative the D-day of its setting up
20) Coordination of the D Day for setting up the WP
21) team of maintenance of the established data bank
22) team of *buildings* (regarding the material aspect of the WP)
23) Moving team (transportation)
24) team of accommodations
For many participants, the issue of a WP is directly linked to that of
global or world democracy. One way to think about world democracy might be
through the following approaches, relevant to communities of ideas.
The first is educational. Encourage public authorities, educators, parents
and citizens to develop critical capacities and socially co-operative
self-confidence of children from the time they start to learn a language and
other communication skills and develop intensive and extensive * ad hoc *
deliberative committees of citizens .
The second is communitarian . Encourage those organizations that are
converging to gain more influence with the UN and other supranational
authorities like the GPA (Global People's Assembly network).
The third is administrative. Encourage merging of ongoing developments of
proposals for a World Parliament outside the UN
The fourth is national. Encourage national governments to develop consent,
and as far as possible consensus, on national legislation and constitutional
evolution to increase democratic governance (provisional representation,
subsidiarity, sustainability, transparency, accountability, sociocratic
networking etc.) locally, nationally and regionally.
The fifth multilateral. Encourage world citizens and national policy makers
to develop such democratizing changes multilaterally.
As we near the end of the forum, these were some of the proposals that will
allow us to move more swiftly to the next stages of the preparatory process
for the creation of a World Parliament.