Global Cooperation


RE: The Internet Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

So – do you think the Internet should be given the Nobel Peace Prize? Funny if the U.S. Department of Defense – that funded the technology enabling the Internet in the 1960s, would win the prize for peace! OK, so much has happened since that work of the U.S. military’s Department of Advanced Research Projects, that resulted in the ARPANET – the first system to connect computers at distance in 1969.  So maybe they don’t get to walk on stage to collect the prize.

Nobel Peace Prize

But back to the substance of the question – what has the Internet done to enable “... fraternity between nations .. the abolition or reduction of standing armies and  .. the promotion of peace congresses.”? Well, plenty – if you look around. The Internet has weakened the control of various authoritarian regimes, by enabling the forces of popular democracy to organize and build support. Online campaigns have enabled major change of all kinds. And we could say that violence has many causes, with ignorance, disunity, and poverty being very common, and that clearly, the Internet can have a positive effect on all three. Of course the Internet can also be a tool to plan violence – as Al Queda has demonstrated. Perhaps the full potential of the Internet in the realm of peace has yet to be seen.

In his book Not-Two Is Peace Adi Da says “The Internet is an indispensable and, altogether, key and central tool–unique and new to global humankind–for organizing, implementing, and surely (in every practical sense) happening the global cooperative order of the totality of humankind. Therefore, the Internet should immediately be made thus to serve.” He goes on to say that “The necessary and immediate tool for the collective organizing of the total human population in Earth is the Internet!” Adi Da’s basic point here is that the only way things are going to change for the better (which they must – and soon, to avoid catastrophe) is the force of EVERYONE standing up for the collective interests of the planet. And the only vehicle for such a movement to arise, and manage the necessary change, is the Internet.

They gave the Nobel Peace Prize to Barack Obama last year because he provided leadership and hope that great things – towards peace, could be achieved. Maybe the same kind of thinking points to the Internet as a worthy recipient for the next one.

For more on Adi Da’s instructions on Peace please see The Global Cooperation Project website.

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News Item: Complexity and Collapse by Niall Feguson

Guest Blog Post – Dennis Bumstead

From time-to-time, Global Cooperation will publish articles by other authors. These articles will have as their common element, an insightful commentary on the state of the world related to that described by Adi Da in his book Not-Two IS Peace
This post is particularly interesting in relation to the “systems” chapter, “Reality-Humanity”, p 213 in Not-Two Is Peace, and more generally in relation to the often asked, often doubting question ‘can radical, large-scale change ( for good or ill) actually happen?’.
Dennis is the General Manager of the Global Cooperation Project – read more at http://www.globalcooperationproject.org/

Complexity and Collapse

Empires on the Edge of Chaos

March/April 2010
Niall Ferguson
NIALL FERGUSON is Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University, a Fellow at Jesus College, Oxford, and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. His most recent book is The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World.

There is no better illustration of the life cycle of a great power than The Course of Empire, a series of five paintings by Thomas Cole that hang in the New-York Historical Society. Cole was a founder of the Hudson River School and one of the pioneers of nineteenth-century American landscape painting; in The Course of Empire, he beautifully captured a theory of imperial rise and fall to which most people remain in thrall to this day.

Each of the five imagined scenes depicts the mouth of a great river beneath a rocky outcrop. In the first, The Savage State, a lush wilderness is populated by a handful of hunter-gatherers eking out a primitive existence at the break of a stormy dawn. The second picture, The Arcadian or Pastoral State, is of an agrarian idyll: the inhabitants have cleared the trees, planted fields, and built an elegant Greek temple. The third and largest of the paintings is The Consummation of Empire. Now, the landscape is covered by a magnificent marble entrepôt, and the contented farmer-philosophers of the previous tableau have been replaced by a throng of opulently clad merchants, proconsuls, and citizen-consumers. It is midday in the life cycle. Then comes Destruction. The city is ablaze, its citizens fleeing an invading horde that rapes and pillages beneath a brooding evening sky. Finally, the moon rises over the fifth painting, Desolation. There is not a living soul to be seen, only a few decaying columns and colonnades overgrown by briars and ivy.

Collection of the New-York Historical Society
The Savage State, from Thomas Cole’s The Course of Empire (1833-36)

Conceived in the mid-1830s, Cole’s great pentaptych has a clear message: all empires, no matter how magnificent, are condemned to decline and fall. The implicit suggestion was that the young American republic of Cole’s age would be better served by sticking to its bucolic first principles and resisting the imperial temptations of commerce, conquest, and colonization.

[The balance of the article is available on the Foreign Affairs site at http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/65987/niall-ferguson/complexity-and-collapse%5D



People of the Internet

A very good, new series on the BBC – SUPERPOWER – which considers the influence of the Internet on our world and this time, is now [March 2010] on. For one of the commercials promoting this series see below. This brief clip relates directly to the theme of our previous blog entry, and illustrates in a creative, poetic manner, the prediction of Adi Da about the role of the Internet in saving the planet.

For information on the series see  SUPERPOWER

And for more on Adi Da’s guidance on what this time is and what we should do about it, please see http://www.Da-Peace.org