May 14th, 2012 // 10:16 am @ Oliver DeMille
THE NEXT BIG TREND: Pooled Sovereignty
by Oliver DeMille
I recently spent two days in a Barnes and Noble reading the bestsellers on current trends and issues. I do this as often as I can—at least three times a year.
Sometimes I emphasize business bestsellers, and other times I focus on political books.
When I was too ill to do these visits for a time, I used Amazon to order the bestsellers every four months. But I prefer the bookstore, because in addition to books it has all the leading periodicals.
How to Read a Book(store) in 4 Easy Steps
I usually find a comfortable chair and stack 20-30 volumes and magazines on the table or floor next to me. Then I skim everything that looks interesting. That’s Step 1.
Step 2 consists of reading the books and articles that really pique my interest. I read them closely, and take notes in my notebook. Step 2 takes at least three hours and sometimes a lot more. If needed, I go back for a second day of reading.
Step 3 is buying the books and periodicals I want to have in my personal library, and Step 4 is re-reading them and organizing my notes from the trip and writing as needed.
On this trip, my travel plans got delayed, so I ended up staying longer than expected. I perused the business bestsellers and added more books to Step 2. Then I skipped to Step 4 and studied three books I’d already read over the last two days.
When I do these bookstore research trips, I’m always looking for something special. I want to see developing trends, new directions, and significant key words that signal where cutting-edge thought is headed. Only once in a while do I find a truly Big Trend, one which promises to remake the future. “Pooled Sovereignty” is just this kind of trend.
Sovereignty Broken Down
Sovereignty is the final say on something, or, having the ultimate power. The American framers were so concerned with the abuses caused by the limitless power of the British government that they established America with split sovereignty.
This meant that the federal government had just twenty powers, all listed and numbered in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution. The final say, or sovereignty, over everything else was left to the states, or to the people – and the states were limited in their respective constitutions.
The people were ultimately sovereign.
Moreover, just in case the federal government tried to ignore the Constitution and usurp sovereignty from the states and the people, the framers divided the smaller portion of sovereignty given to Washington D.C. into three branches and established checks and balances to keep too much power from accumulating in any one place.
For decades scholars, students and interested citizens from both Left and Right have warned that sovereignty is centralizing in Washington, that split sovereignty is being replaced by a massive centralized sovereignty—all power in one place.
Pooled sovereignty is even worse. This occurs where international organizations or treaties make the final decisions for the people, regardless of what national governments say. Indeed, some of the most damaging choices being made today are decided without the consent of Congress or the Supreme Court – not to mention the states or the people. They are made by treaties, the United Nations, G-20, World Bank, International Monetary Fund and other international organizations.
Most Americans turn off their thinking when they hear this list of international agencies—but the elite perk up with interest. This is where the buzz is.
The breeding ground for a global system that supports pooled sovereignty is found in top universities, and it is promoted by the bureaucratic elite in many nations. Much of what occurs in Washington only makes sense to those who understand this drift toward globalization.
The Grand Design
For example, a push for increased government spending, debt and regulation on small business (even in the face of recession and a struggling economy) make perfect sense if the goal is to shift the American economy away from international leadership to global participation—to make the U.S. economy and government more like those of Europe and Asia.
Stimulus, universal health care, less entrepreneurship (through increased levels of government regulation)—all are necessary to create an American economy that can fit seamlessly with the industrialized European/Asian nations.
Another step in this process is to end the use of the U.S. dollar as the world’s reserve currency and replace it with an IMF or other currency. The IMF has already proposed this change, and international support for it is growing.
Just to be clear: When the dollar replaced the British pound as the world’s reserve currency in the 1970s, the average net worth of nearly every home in Britain fell more than 30% the day after the change. The British economy has still never fully recovered, nearly forty years later.
If the same change comes to the U.S., we will likely experience a worse economy for the next four decades than we have over the past four years.
Unfortunately, as Forbes reported, “It’s hard for the State Department to imagine an international agreement to which America is not part.”[i] Republican and Democratic presidents since FDR have drastically decreased American freedom using treaties. This is bad for Americans, good for pooled sovereignty.
Ultimately, there are two types of leadership that can turn this around: presidential leadership, and citizen leadership.
We Need You to Lead Us
Sadly, few presidential candidates (from either party) and exactly zero elected presidents since 1959 have effectively pushed back against this growing threat.
As for the American citizenry leading the charge: find out what percentage of your friends can tell you the details in the Law of the Sea Treaty, the Rome Statute, or UN Agenda 21, and that is a predictor of how likely the people are to effectively lead.
In fact, this lack of citizen leadership means there is little incentive for presidents to take action against pooled sovereignty. Or to put this in practical terms, a half-century with a bad economy is likely ahead.
Unless something changes…
We need citizens who study what our government is doing, who read treaties and court cases and executive orders, etc. Without this, the age of American prosperity will continue to decline.
Where to start? The three books I closely studied at Barnes and Noble are an excellent beginning. If you are liberal, try Drift by Rachel Maddow. Conservatives will probably prefer Dick Morris’s book Screwed. If you’re an independent, read them both. In addition, everyone should read How Do You Kill a Million People by Andy Andrews. Just reading these books and the documents they cite would be a great study on current America.
The future belongs to our citizens—and the level of our citizenship will determine what happens in the years and decades ahead. If we are Type B citizens (who vote, go to jury duty, and watch the news), we’re going to witness the decay of American freedom and prosperity.
We need Type A citizens, who in addition to voting and jury duty also deeply study the issues, government documents and decisions our government officials are making. We can only influence things if we know what’s really happening.
The second day at Barnes and Noble, the intercom announced that children’s reading time was starting. I took a break from reading and walked over to see America’s future. One mother brought her small son, and she read a thick book while he enjoyed reading hour alone. I was surprised they went ahead with the reading hour when only one child showed up. I don’t know why others didn’t bring their children, and I wonder what kind of America this boy and his peers will inherit.
I asked his mother what book she was reading. It was titled—no lie—City of Lost Souls. I wish that boy had been joined by an army of his peers—preparing to lead.
All through history, free people have been nations of readers. When the people oversee the government, they remain free. When they don’t…
[i] Quoted in Screwed: How Foreign Countries are Ripping America Off and Plundering Our Economy – and How Our Leaders Help Them Do It by Dick Morris and Eileen McGann, HarperCollins, May 8, 2012.