Conceptual Model of the Earth Federation
Glen T. Martin
(Unanimously endorsed at the 12th Session of the Provisional World Parliament)
We delegates of the 12th session of the Provisional World Parliament, meeting in Kolkata, India December 27-31, 2010, have certified this conceptual model in order to encourage the citizens of Earth to envision concretely the holistic world system founded by the Constitution for the Federation of Earth. The Preamble to the Earth Constitution rightly states that “the principle of unity in diversity is the basis for a new age when war shall be outlawed and peace prevail; when the earth’s total resources shall be equitably used for human welfare; and when basic human rights and responsibilities shall be shared by all without discrimination.” This principle of unity in diversity names the paradigm shift behind the Earth Constitution.
The principle of unity in diversity epitomizes the new paradigm emerging from the scientific revolutions of the 20th century. Previously the world had been modeled as a machine characterized by universal causal determinism and composed of isolated, independent parts called atoms that, in living systems, often acted in competition with one another. This was reflected in outdated social theories such as the doctrine of capitalist competition or the dogma of survival of the fittest. The new paradigm sees the world and human society more accurately on the model of an organism in which the parts interact within a dynamic whole that transcends the sum of its individual components.
On the human level this implies a social ecology of interdependence and mutual relationships among the many parts within a unity that transcends the sum of its interdependent parts. Hence, the diversity of persons, nations, cultures, ethnicities, and races in the world involves a complex multiplicity of interdependent relationships and “worlds within worlds,” all necessary to one another and inseparable at the deepest levels. Unity in diversity implies authentic global democracy, mutual respect and cooperation among all peoples, the ending of war and militarism, and universal sustainable prosperity.
The unity of the whole involves the social ecological wholeness of human life on Earth itself, which is itself part of the natural unity of our planetary ecosystem. Parts and whole are both real and necessary to one another. Our common human nature, our common ability to use language, our common human characteristics and mannerisms, our common ability for love, compassion and mutual recognition, and our universal human rights and dignity express the unity of the whole. There can be no true protection and appreciation of this wonderful diversity of the parts unless this is embraced, respected, and protected through true unities. As with natural ecology, a multiplicity of scientific disciplines have demonstrated that in human civilization the one and the many are necessary and complementary to one another.
The fragmentation of the system of sovereign nation-states recognizing no enforceable law above themselves and its tandem system of global capitalism in which the rich corporations, banks, and nations exploit poor people and nations worldwide has been replaced by a holistic world system under the Earth Constitution. The paradigm shift to a holistic world system established on the principle of unity in diversity has clearly predictable consequences for peace, prosperity, justice, freedom, and environmental sustainability, just as the present fragmented world system has definite consequences for each of these domains – consequences that we see all around us in the form of war, poverty, injustice, slavery, and environmental destruction. The parliament hopes that this document will aid the people of Earth to understand more deeply the terrible consequences of fragmentation and the absolute need to ratify and implement a holistic world system under the Earth Constitution within the very near future.
The fragmentation of the present world disorder parallels the fragmented, linear thinking deriving largely from that outdated paradigm. The Constitution is a product of the discipline of “systems thinking” that has developed within many 20th century sciences. Systems thinking discerns wholes. It examines interrelationships and dynamic patterns, such as those that today cause the horrible consequences of the present world order in terms of militarism, poverty, and environmental destruction. Systems thinking understands that most human behavior is a product of the systems within which we live. Changing our world system from fragmentation to holism will profoundly transform human attitudes and behavior (Senge 2006; Meadows 2008).
The Constitution is not only a product of a deep understanding of the holistic unity in diversity of our world system. It will require creative and insightful systems thinkers to enliven it, both before ratification and once ratified, into a dynamic system of democratic responsiveness to an ever-evolving complex set of world relationships. The dynamic, holistic structure of the Constitution itself will help foster creative systems thinking within the emerging Earth Federation.
The Constitution was created through a process of four World Constituent Assemblies composed of world citizens from around the globe. These visionary world citizens met four times in the Assemblies, and interacted continuously between meetings, from 1968 to 1991 to produce this document serving as a foundation for a decent world system premised on the paradigm of the unity in diversity of genuine democracy. The Constitution is the foundation stone for genuine world democracy based on the principle of all. All human beings everywhere are included for the first time in history. This is the only proper response to the fact that human rights are universal; human dignity is universal; the human longing for freedom, justice, equality, peace, and prosperity is universal.
The Constitution also offers a founded world system for the first time in history, not one that has haphazardly evolved from earlier outdated assumptions. It creates an integrated world system in which the Earth Federation is open to an evolving future guided by the vision embodied in the Constitution of peace, prosperity, justice, freedom, and sustainability. No longer locked into antiquated self-destructive economic and political assumptions and the fragmented thinking that produced them, the people of Earth will be able to move nonviolently forward toward a decent future for everyone. These founding ideals are built into the structure of the emerging Earth Federation within an open, self-correcting system directed toward their actualization within an ever-changing environment.
Article 19 of the Earth Constitution, gives the people of Earth the mandate and the duty to begin the process of building the Earth Federation now, of elaborating the ministries, agencies, and organs specified by the Constitution from day one. There is no need to wait for ratification. We call this pledge the “act of civil obedience” in which we leave the immoral condition of citizens of some so-called sovereign nation under the war system and commit to living according to the peaceful rule of democratic law under the emerging Earth Federation.
Many members of the World Constitution and Parliament Association (WCPA) and the organizations within the Earth Federation Movement (EFM) (going all the way back to the initial signatories of the Constitution at Innsbruck, Austria, in 1977) have pledged recognition of the Constitution as the law for planet Earth and therefore have begun living the transformed world system that it represents. Within the limits of the resources available to us, we activated the World Parliament under the heading of “Provisional World Parliament” in order to distinguish before and after phases of the development of viable world law. During the 1980s we created a bench of the World Supreme Court, which put all nuclear weapons producing nations on trial for this criminal act.
We have also worked to begin various ministries specified by the Constitution, and have created a number of agencies through the Provisional World Parliament (specified later in this document). We have been seeking pledges or gifts of world territory (out from under any sovereign nation and ruled under the Earth Constitution and the Provisional World Parliament). We have designed and are actively promoting a universal Earth Currency with nations and leaders around the world. And we have established the Institute on World Problems specified in Article 8.4 of the Constitution. The Institute is also a non-profit 501C3 organization in the U.S., but its mandate, mission, and authority derive directly from the Earth Constitution.
The Constitution itself demands (on both moral and legal grounds) that world citizens begin living and creating the transformed world system immediately. Self-government (by the people, for the people, and of the people) will never happen unless it begins here and now. We can no longer defer to the illegitimate system of militarized, warring nation-states. We the people must begin taking democratic responsibility for the governing of our planet.
Since 1982, the Provisional World Parliament has met eleven times under the authority of Article 19 of the Constitution. The Parliament, through passing some 47 provisional world legislative acts (WLAs) and a number of resolutions articulating the spirit and meaning of the emerging Earth Federation, has been elaborating the details and specific legislation necessary to enable, activate, and concretize the framework provided by the Constitution. By reading this legislation and resolutions, it is not difficult to discern the kind of world order being developed by the Parliament through its ten sessions to date, as well as the dynamic systems thinking that has significantly informed the work of the Parliament. All the many thousands of world citizens who have committed the “act of civil obedience” are bound by the world legislation enacted by the Provisional World Parliament. We are building the new world system within the rotten shell of the old system of war, poverty, injustice, slavery, and unsustainability.
By reading the Resolution on Good Government and its Essential Tasks under the Earth Federation passed by the eighth session of the Parliament we can see clearly the kind of transformed world system that is being promoted by the Parliament under the authority of the Earth Constitution, and the outlines of the world that many thousands of WCPA members everywhere on Earth are living as we speak. Just as we see all around us the horrific empirical consequences of the present world order, so in the work of the Provisional World Parliament we see peace structured into law, equality structured into law, the common good structured into law, the welfare of future generations structured into law, and individual freedom structured into law. (All this material can be found on-line at http://www.worldproblems.net and in the three volume set entitled Emerging World Law – Key documents and Decisions of the Global Constituent Assemblies and the Provisional World Parliament, edited by Eugenia Almand and Glen T. Martin.)
Fortunately, Article 17 of the Earth Constitution specifies four stages of implementation until the full force of the Federation of Earth is realized, from the building of provisional world government prior to ratification to three stages of ratification and implementation. This not only make the process of transformation of the world’s system practical and doable, it allows the flexibility and creativity needed for growth toward mature living in peace, prosperity, justice, freedom, and sustainability. We model the future by living it now. We grow from our failures as well as successes. The Constitution and the hundreds of thousands around the world within the Earth Federation Movement allow for this process of growth. The future and the present are dynamically linked in this way.
The institutional assumptions structuring our present world disorder for centuries have led to a world of perpetual wars, slavery, exploitation, worldwide poverty, disease, human misery, and environmental destruction. The institutional assumptions behind genuine democracy for humankind premised on the unity in diversity of all are entirely different, and the consequences of the resulting world system will be entirely different. The kind of world we live in is not the product of some mythical, greedy, and aggressive “human nature” but rather the product of the institutions, assumptions, and systems by which we organize our social lives. Common sense, practical laws, and ratification of the Earth Constitution in the present will lead to a vastly better world for all peoples in the relatively near future, just as these have been transforming the lives and practices of hundreds of thousands of people around the world since 1977.
A Peace System
Historically, many thinkers from the 17th century to the present have understood the world system of militarized sovereign nation-states as inherently a war system. War is not an occasional failure of this system but an intrinsic characteristic of the fact that there is no enforceable world law over nations and individuals that can mandate demilitarization and bring to justice those who violate the peaceful democratic rule of law. In consequence, nations operate on the basis of power politics involving the implicit or explicit use of coercion to promote their variety of perceived self-interests. The result is a world of chaos, injustice, and violence that today wastes more than one trillion U.S. dollars per year on militarism while the basic needs of the majority of human beings remain unmet. The result is a collection of 192 more or less autonomous entities who deny our basic interdependence on this Earth and who utterly lack the ability to join together sufficiently to deal with global crises such as climate crisis or worldwide diminishing resources.
People say war cannot be eliminated, and this is truly so under the institutional paradigm within which the world remains currently trapped. However, under the Constitution, the nations of the Earth Federation are federated under the common rule of enforceable laws and sovereignty is shared by governmental authorities from the local to the national and the world level. The most fundamental component for creating a world peace system is global democracy itself, for democracy institutionalizes processes of nonviolent change and embraces all citizens within a regime of political participation within which their voices are heard and their rights are protected.
At the global level such a regime would abolish the fragmentation of militarized sovereign nation-states in lethal and secretive competition with one another while mitigating the fragmented identifications of people worldwide with their local religion, ethnicity, race, culture, or other grouping. Non-military global democracy would also eliminate the military-industrial complex in which tremendous profits are made from producing munitions and military machines and which promotes overwhelming incentives for war and perpetual violence.
For this reason the World Parliament created under the Constitution is the first and foremost component of a world peace system. The House of Peoples represents all people on Earth through representatives elected from 1000 electoral districts worldwide apportioned according to population. The House of Nations represents all nations with one to three representatives (depending on population) appointed or elected by the nations themselves. And the House of Counselors (composed of 200 representatives, 10 from each of 20 magna-regions worldwide) represents the people of Earth as a whole and the common good for the entire planet.
The world democracy created under the World Parliament composed of these three houses, therefore, will embrace all races, religions, and other groupings in global dialogue and decision-making. The House of Nations will embrace all nations large and small, ending imperialism and exploitation of weaker nations by powerful nations. And the House of Counselors, with experts on all aspects of our civilization from the environment to demilitarization to cultural conflicts to principles of sustainable development, will provide wisdom and expertise to the Parliament in the service of the common good of humanity and the planet.
The Earth Constitution converts today’s system of fragmented individualism (of nations, corporations, and persons) to a global social contract. A global social contract means that all are included in the regime of collective empowerment. A planetary community is established on fundamental moral and practical principles thereby transforming (for many at least) self-interested individuals into responsible citizens. A truly democratic world system is an essential foundation stone for world peace. Every group and nation must feel that its voice is heard and that it may effectively participate in governing the Earth in cooperation with other world citizens throughout the Earth Federation. The establishment of an effective World Parliament alone creates the foundations for a genuine world peace system.
Second, under both the Constitution and the Provisional World Parliament, many specific features of the Constitution and laws passed by the Parliament establish the concrete lineaments of a world peace system. Not only does the Earth Constitution require a demilitarized world, the Provisional World Parliament has created detailed legislation to regulate and empower the process of disarmament. The very first World Legislative Act adopted in 1982 by the Provisional World Parliament (WLA #1) enacted a world law prohibiting the design, development, sale, transport, or deployment of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons and the missiles that deliver them.
The Parliament acting under the Constitution is not simply concerned with prohibiting such horrific features of our present world order. It is building the infrastructure for conversion: how to get from here to there. The World Peace Act of the Seventh Session of Parliament (WLA #13) set the parameters for a systematic and orderly conversion from the war system to a peace system. Individuals, businesses, university researchers, and government officials involved in any way in the weapons production and procurement process are systematically informed of the new world legislation and have measured grace periods within which they may desist from their illegal activities without penalty. Penalties are increased not only according to the severity of the crime (e.g., designing nuclear weapons or delivery systems, a criminal act if there ever was one) but also according to whether the criminal activity has persisted after the grace period.
A number of scholars have pointed out that private terrorism is simply war by another name. It is war waged by the weak and relatively powerless as opposed to war financed and organized by nation-states (state terrorism) and their imperial military systems. The Provisional World Parliament, at its Second Session in New Delhi, India, enacted WLA #8, creating a World Commission on Terrorism. This commission is charged not only to invite cooperation from nations and NGOs in dealing with terrorism, it is also charged to address the fundamental causes of terrorism in terms of the perceptions of gross injustices, the feeling of voicelessness among marginalized peoples, and the perception that the current world political authorities are engaged in their own terrorist war against certain groups, religions, or cultures.
The Parliament recognizes that we cannot create a decent world order with ever more war and violence, even if this is directed toward terrorists and their organizations. Only changing our institutional assumptions can change the world order in any meaningful ways. The peace system created by the Earth Constitution includes a multiplicity of elements working together to ensure that the system establishes enduring peace. First and foremost, we have seen, is the establishment of effective world democracy itself, in which people and nations from the entire planet participate in governing the planet and thereby institutionalizing the procedures for nonviolent and peaceful social change. Today’s sovereign nation-state system, with its militarism and national security apparatus, defeats authentic democracy in all nations. Authentic democracy can only develop in a demilitarized world recognizing universal rights, duties, freedoms, and obligations.
Third, the Constitution sets up an effective and impartial World Judiciary with authority over all persons, including national leaders. This ensures peace from two directions: all national leaders can be indicted for violating the law (no more impunity as in today’s world) and a judiciary treating everyone fairly and equally under the law diminishes the feelings of resentment that now fuel much violence and war worldwide. The World Court system has eight benches designed to deal with the variety of cases that might endanger world peace. It has benches for human rights cases, for criminal cases dealing with individuals, corporations, or groups, for public cases dealing with conflict between government and corporations or other groups, and for international conflicts between nations. World peace through world law requires an effective judiciary to deal with all forms of conflict between individuals, groups, or nations. When people see impartial justice being done on a global scale, they will understand that a peace system has truly come into the world.
Fourth, the Constitution creates the Earth Federation Enforcement System of the world police and world attorneys general to ensure a peaceful and nonviolent world order premised on justice and the effective enforcement of the laws against war and violence everywhere on Earth. The police will possess only weapons necessary to apprehend individuals (Article 10.1.5). All weapons of war are abolished even for the Earth Federation Government. Both Articles 2 and 10 specify that the Earth Federation will be non-military. Article 10 specifies that one of the basic functions of the enforcement system will be “conflict resolution” and states that “a basic condition for preventing outbreaks of violence, which the Enforcement System shall facilitate in every way possible, shall be to assure a fair hearing under nonviolent circumstances for any person or group having a grievance, and likewise to assure a fair opportunity for a just settlement of any grievance with due regard for the rights and welfare of all concerned.”
This fundamental tenet of a peace system (institutionalized worldwide and operating as well through the World Judiciary and the World Ombudsmus) has been elaborated by the Provisional World Parliament in World Legislative Act 32 that creates a Department of Conflict Resolution within the Enforcement System in conformity with Article 10.2.8.5. This shows the transformed role of the police from protectors of ruling class property rights and oppressive national security regimes (now their chief functions within nation-states) to protector and friend of the citizens of Earth. The legislation specifies that the civil servants involved in the Department of Conflict Resolution will involve first and foremost existing groups, civic leaders, local organizations, and participation of the people in facilitating conflict resolution everywhere on Earth where people need these services.
Officials will not be allowed to carry any weapons in this Department nor do any undercover work and, according to the legislation, they must be servants and facilitators of the people locally to solve and resolve their own problems. Nothing like this is found on a planetary scale in today’s militarized global war system. This is truly what a peace system for the Earth will look like. People are empowered to create peace by an Earth Federation whose mission is to serve the people of Earth through a world system founded on peace, prosperity, justice, freedom, and sustainability. The emerging Earth Federation is an integrated whole with all these basic functions integrated into a practical and effective system of democratic world government.
Fifth, the Constitution creates another worldwide organization answering to the World Parliament that is a vital component of the world peace system: the World Ombudsmus. This organization, with offices everywhere within the Federation, will be devoted to protecting the human rights of the citizens of Earth (as specified in Articles 12 and 13) from violation by individuals, corporations, nations, or the World Government itself. The Earth Constitution recognizes socalled “third generation rights” of the right to peace and the right to a protected and decent environment. If people’s rights, freedoms, peaceful coexistence, and planetary environment are really protected, the causes of war will be largely eliminated. The Ombudsmus Constitutionally will have significant authority to act on behalf of the citizens of Earth to protect their many rights and freedoms identified by Articles 12 and 13. No nation or group will likely want to resort to violence when they see that their voices, dignity, and self-determination are respected and protected.
Sixth, the Provisional World Parliament passed a World Education Act (WLA #26) at its eighth session in Lucknow, India in 2004. The Earth Federation government will promote high quality education everywhere and require all schools that are recipient of Earth Federation aid to include programs focusing on global issues, peace studies issues, study of the Earth Constitution, and study of the nature and responsibilities of good government within a global democracy. Education worldwide will promote peace, mutual tolerance, the founding principle of unity in diversity, and the dynamics of conflict resolution. Pedagogy will become a fundamental component in the world peace system.
Education will be one central component of an integrated Earth Federation plan to empower all citizens of the Earth to think in terms of the principle of unity in diversity, of mutual respect and tolerance within the framework of effective global democracy, and an educated citizenry capable of global citizenship. The Parliament understands that peace will be the product of a global system with many components working together: from good leadership, to the content and attitude of the mass media, to the spirit and intent with which corporations operate, to the sense that people have of world citizenship, to the degree of fairness and prosperity apparent in the world, to the quality of worldwide education. Under the Earth Constitution and the Education Act of the Provisional World Parliament students will be encouraged to examine cultural forms that suppress other human beings, for example, through dress codes or other such cultural practices. Such a system cannot be entirely created a priori ahead of time. What can be provided ahead of time is a dynamic framework like the Earth Constitution that allows creativity and innovation in structuring a world peace system such as that shown by the Provisional World Parliament.
Finally, these six elements in the world peace system set up by the Constitution are complemented and enlivened by the several other features specified in this conceptual model. If the world is converted to a prosperity system, a justice system, a freedom system, and a sustainability system, then the grounds for war and violence will have been substantially undercut. The Constitution creates a dynamic world system that includes a multiplicity of agencies and branches working together under common holistic principles directed toward these goals. As one thinker put it: “A diverse system with multiple pathways and redundancies is more stable and less vulnerable to external shock than a uniform system with little diversity” (Meadows, 2008: 3-4). All these factors deriving from the holistic paradigm of unity in diversity at the heart of the Constitution work together to create a truly new historical era for human civilization. A stable, diverse world peace system derives from the holistic structure of the Constitution itself.
A Prosperity System – The New Democratic Economics
The present global economic system, like the system of sovereign nation-states, has evolved out of European civilization since the Renaissance, slowly becoming the official doctrines concerning what is “natural” politically and economically. The so-called “natural” political organization of sovereign states was recognized at the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648 and the so-called “natural” system of economic laws was described in Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations that appeared in 1776. In both cases the imperial arrogance of Europe began the process of imposing these “natural” systems on the rest of humankind. For centuries we have seen the triumph of the nation-state system described above as a system of perpetual wars, violence, and chaos. Today, we also witness the triumph of the system of monopoly capitalism in the form of immense poverty, scarcity, and misery for at least 60% of the people on Earth simultaneous with unimaginable wealth and power for a mere 1% of the Earth’s population who own 40% of its wealth.
Impartial observers have pointed out that these few use the chaos of the present system of sovereign nations to further consolidate their wealth and power. Only by democratizing the world system can we change this horrific condition and create a prosperity system for the Earth. Authentic democracy cannot function when the few control such wealth and power. This can only be transformed when government functions on behalf of the universal rights and dignity of all the people of Earth and no longer on behalf of the ruling classes of some 192 autonomous nation-states.
The sovereign nation-state system integrated with monopoly capitalism leads to mayhem not only between countries but within countries. World Bank and IMF imposed economic “reforms” have led to economic disaster after disaster as “structural adjustment” destroys regional markets and opens countries up to predatory corporations and exploitative economic control from the imperial centers of capital. In The Globalization of Poverty: Impacts of IMF and World Bank Reforms (1999), economist Michael Chossudovsky chronicles the destruction of peoples worldwide under the onslaught of neocolonial greed run from the financial centers of capital.
In many cases (such as the infamous genocide in Rwanda) massive human rights violations were the direct consequence of the destruction of the economy by predatory control from abroad. Desperate people whose economies have disintegrated are likely to turn to irrational and murderous violence. Many other studies, such as Catherine Caufield’s Masters of Illusion: The World Bank and the Poverty of Nations (1996) and Bruce Rich’s Mortgaging the Earth: The World Bank, Environmental Impoverishment, and the Crisis of Development (1994) have shown similar results.
A main reason why the above mentioned series of events occurs and leads to breakdown of civil order and human rights violations is because the imperial centers of power define human rights in an entirely arbitrary and circumscribed manner. Human rights for them are limited to the traditional “political” rights. A poverty stricken society or government is supposed to respect freedom of speech and press, due process, voting procedures, etc. Starving people in the face of economic chaos caused by predatory economics from the imperial centers or the World Bank are supposed to respect one another’s political rights. The consistent policy of the U.S. has been to treat the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights (that includes economic and social rights) as “merely symbolic,” having no authoritative force (Blum 2000).
A major cause of the violations of political human rights today is because people worldwide are denied their economic and social rights: the right to a living wage, to healthcare, to social security, to adequate leisure time, to educational opportunities, etc. As we have seen, these are all features intrinsic to genuine democracy. When people are economically exploited and destitute, it is pointless to speak to them about respecting political rights. The Earth Constitution transforms this situation through the simple mechanism of presenting two bills of rights, Articles 12 and 13. Article 13 guarantees economic, social, and environmental rights to every citizen of the Federation creating a world where economic exploitation and chaos (due to a denial of economic and social rights) do not and cannot lead to a corresponding massive violation of political rights.
The other side of this coin of human rights violations is the practice of imperial nations in training the military elites of Third World nations in what is euphemistically known as “counterinsurgency warfare.” The top secret school at Fort Benning, Georgia, in the United States (formerly known as the “School of the Americas”) is only one example of this systematic foreign policy run from the imperial centers of the world. The militaries of Third World countries are trained in warfare against their own populations, in murder, blackmail, disappearances, torture, and other means of repression (Hodge and Cooper 2004; Chomsky 1996: 29-34; Klein 2008). Human economic and political rights cannot be respected within the conceptual framework of war, for war is precisely the barbarous no-holds-barred attempt to destroy a perceived “enemy.”
The real job of these military and paramilitary juntas is to protect the status quo by maintaining a “stable investment climate” for multinational corporations and their backers of the global economic status quo in the Pentagon and elsewhere. Protection of human rights is indeed “merely symbolic” under the system of sovereign nation-states, with its inherent domination of the weak by the strong and inherent system of global economic exploitation. Transforming the global paradigm to a non-military federation with an independent branch of government (the World Ombudsmus) serving to protect political, social, economic, and environmental rights worldwide will by and large solve the problem of human rights violations that has plagued the twentieth and twenty-first centuries (see Klein 2008).
Article 13 of the Earth Constitution guarantees equal opportunity for employment with wages to assure human dignity, free and adequate public education for everyone, free and adequate public health services and medical care, protection of the natural environment, conservation of essential natural resources, adequate housing, nutritious food supplies, safe drinking water, and social security for all citizens to protect against accident and to assure dignity in old age. None of these elements in a universal prosperity system can be realized under the present global economic system based on private ownership of natural resources, especially land, and accumulation of wealth for the few at the expense of the many. Global prosperity can only be actualized through effective economic and political democracy on a planetary scale.
Under genuine global democracy there can be no more economic imperialism of corporations or nations, no more sweatshops, no more economic exploitation, nor more externalization of costs to the environment and the public by businesses, and no more interference with planetary democracy through manipulations by the rich. As with the world peace system, a world prosperity system will be institutionalized and maintained by the World Parliament, the World Executive, the World Courts, the World Police, and the World Ombudsmus. For the first time in history, the Earth Constitution will establish the reasonable economic and political equality of all persons that are essential to effective democracy.
In short, the Earth Constitution creates a democratic world commonwealth directed to the common good of humanity and future generations. As we have seen, it is non-military by law (Article 2) and democratic at every level, leaving economic and political self-determination to the nations insofar as these conform to universal human rights and world law (Article 14). Hence, the three major non-democratic sources of the deep violence of today’s world – sovereign nation-states, transnational corporations, and global banking cartels – are brought under the democratic control of the people of Earth through enforceable world law.
All nations joining the Earth Federation must demilitarize in accordance with a coordinated and carefully orchestrated procedure. Under Article 17, half of the immense wealth saved by this process is then used to fund the newly formed Earth Federation, the other half kept by the nations to empower sustainable development. All transnational corporations are refranchised in the service of human welfare by the World Parliament. And global banking is mundialized – socially owned by the people of Earth – to be administered through people’s banks in localities worldwide.
The Earth Federation now coordinates the international actions of demilitarized nation-states through world laws legislated by the World Parliament. Conflicts are settled through the world court system and violators are subject to arrest and prosecution by the World Attorneys General and the World Police. Similarly, transnational corporations are regulated through the democratic legislation of the World Parliament. Their charters will mandate that they operate in ways that promote the general economic and environmental welfare of humanity. Their expertise and organizational infrastructures can now be used to promote universal prosperity while protecting the environment, no longer for exploitation of the most poor and vulnerable for cheap labor and resources, and no longer externalizing costs into the environment through pollution and production exclusively for private profit.
Our global monetary system today is 99% composed of privately created debt-money (Brown 2007). Because of this we live in a world of global scarcity and desperation requiring, as we have seen, massive military training for counterinsurgency warfare and massive military interventions by imperial nations designed to protect and promote the present world domination by a tiny corporate and financial elite. The Earth Constitution explicitly states that money must be created by the Federation as debt-free money addressed to the common good and planetary prosperity (Article 188.8.131.52 and 184.108.40.206).
Therefore, and perhaps most importantly, the Earth Federation issues debt-free, interest-free money to promote the prosperity, free trade, and well-being of the people of Earth while protecting the planetary environment. Individuals, corporations, state and local governments may all take advantage of very low cost development loans and lines of credit that are not premised on exploitation of the debtors in the service of private profit (Article 4). In addition, primary created (debt-free) money will be judiciously spent for global infrastructure needs by the World Parliament. Money and banking are now used in the service of the common good of the people of Earth and in protection of the “ecological fabric of life” on our planet. The rich can no longer exploit poor people and nations through a system of loans and debt that has so far created such misery for the peoples and nations of Earth.
Three key features of the corrupt oligarchy that now dominates the world economy are eliminated from the start. First, military Keynesianism (or militarism used to artificially pump up the economies of nations) is eliminated, since under Article 2 all militaries worldwide become illegal. The immense profitability and incentive for war based within the industrial-military complex is abolished. Second, legal corporate personhood is abolished. This legal deception has turned the once beneficial corporations of the world into monstrous, immortal super-humans, who use their billions of dollars and super-human legal rights to dominate the economy of our planet. Third, the Constitution also removes the ability of these corporate entities and the super-rich to influence politics, judges, and government officials through massive campaign contributions or other forms of monetary influence.
Hence, the key steps necessary to founding a truly democratic and prosperous world order take place with the ratification of the Constitution: the hold of the industrial-military oligarchies now dominating the planet is broken along with the hold of their associates, the banking, corporate, and massive financial oligarchies, and the monetary system of the world is placed in the service of the people of Earth. The founding of world democracy under the Earth Constitution accomplishes all this from its very inception.
We have seen that, during its twelve sessions to date, the Provisional World Parliament has passed some 47 World Legislative Acts designed to implement and develop the infrastructure of the Earth Federation under both the spirit and letter of the Constitution for the Federation of Earth. Many of these acts are directed toward elaborating a prosperity system for the Earth under the guidelines set forth in the Earth Constitution. These acts include the creation of a World Economic Development Organization (WLA 2), an Earth Financial Funding Corporation (WLA 7), a Provisional Office for World Revenue (WLA 17), a World Patents Act (WLA 21), a World Equity Act (WLA 22), a World Public Utilities Act (WLA 38), and an act for a World Guaranteed Annual Income (WLA 42). Together they are laying the economic foundations for a global market economy based on human rights, promotion of the common good, and a democratic world order that benefits everyone, not just the present 10 percent of humanity who today own 85 percent of all the global wealth (Brown, 2007: 271).
As early as the first session of the Parliament in 1982, when WLA 2 was passed, creating the World Economic Development Organization (WEDO), the Parliament saw through the deception of debt-based money creation. Among the means of funding for WEDO is the directive to develop the financing potential and procedures of Earth Constitution to base finance on people’s potential productive capacity in both goods and services, rather than on past savings (defined under Article 8, Section 7, paragraphs 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, and 1.7).
From this principle of funding under the Earth Constitution (that is, the creation of debt-free fiat money and credit based on the potential of those funded to produce goods and services) follows all the other principles of the Provisional World Parliament that are building the infrastructure for an equitable and just world order. With government-issued debt-free money, the Earth Federation will hire tens of millions of unemployed people in the Third World to restore the environment, replant the forests of the Earth, and restore the degraded agricultural lands of the Earth. This massive effort is absolutely necessary if we are to deal effectively with global warming. The Constitution creates a voluntary, nonmilitary World Service Corps (Article 4.36) that will employ many millions from poor countries and bring cash into communities worldwide, thereby revitalizing local economies.
The Earth Federation will have a common currency valued the same everywhere, ending speculation in currencies and the domination of “hard” over “soft” currencies. It will institute the principle of “equal pay for equal work,” without gender or other discrimination, ending the exporting of production to low-wage areas of the world in order to maximize the rate of exploitation and profit. It will encourage in numerous ways worker investment and cooperative management in the firms within which they often spend their working lives. It will distribute the work burden among the working population more equitably and empower people at the grass roots level worldwide through such democratic innovations as microloans, infrastructure development, education, and healthcare.
The first premise of the Equity Act (WLA #22) of the Eighth Session of the Provisional World Parliament was to end the geometric differences in buying power between nations by equalizing wages done for equally productive work. The Act also set a standard for the Earth Currency, the universal currency of the Earth Federation that will not be subject to manipulation and speculation as is the present chaos of national currencies. The currency is valued in terms of the dual criteria of a basket of universal and necessary commodities and one hour of productive work. The introduction of the Earth Currency so defined will alone transform the global economic system in the direction of stability, equity, and justice.
The Manifesto of the Earth Federation explains at some length the various economic measures that can easily transform the present system of domination and exploitation into one of universal prosperity. There is no mystery about how wealth is created through a combination of land (natural resources), capital, and productive labor (J.W. Smith 2010). The real question is why two thirds of the world remains in poverty when we know so much about wealth creation. The simple economic and social measures enacted to date by the Provisional World Parliament are the foundation of a world system of universal prosperity. Together, they simply place economics on the foundation of planetary democracy.
The Parliament also passed WLA #18, creating a Provisional Office of World Revenue to handle financial matters of the Emerging Earth Federation until the first operative stage of world government is activated. In order to end the unjust and exploitative use of patents and intellectual property rights that now allows First World corporations to control the wealthproducing process and the most advanced technologies in their own interest worldwide, the Parliament passed WLA #21, the World Patents Act, activating an office that supervises world patents and, with small changes in the current system (as explained in the Manifesto), will promote technology transfer and use of creative, innovative ideas for development throughout the world.
WLA #23, the Global Accounting & Auditing Standards Act, will standardize accounting worldwide according to current internationally accepted standards and help prevent corporate theft, manipulating of books, hoarding in off-shore bank accounts, and other practices that currently bedevil the world’s economy and interfere with the development of general prosperity. Again, we see that changing the assumptions from the current ones of fragmentation and division to those based on the principle of unity in diversity can dramatically alter the deleterious consequences of current institutional arrangements.
In short, the economic principles explicit within the Earth Constitution and used by the Provisional World Parliament provide a genuine “New Deal” for the people of Earth. The tens of millions hired to restore the environment will have money to exchange in their local economies. In conjunction with interest-free loans or grants for building infrastructure, sanitation systems, education, healthcare, and many private and public sustainable new enterprises, local economies will “take off” in that dynamic circulation of money within communities that economists speak of as economic health. Once the militarized nation-state is removed (today pouring more than one trillion U.S. dollars per year down the toilet of militarism) along with gigantic corporate and banking institutions dedicated to extracting private profit from localities into foreign banks of the rich, economic well-being will not be difficult to achieve.
The Constitution guarantees everyone on Earth a living wage entirely sufficient to live with dignity and freedom (under Article 13). It ensures sanitation systems, essential resources, and educational systems for everyone. It provides every person on Earth with free health care, free education, and ample insurance in case of accident or old age. Provisional world legislation enacted by the Provisional World Parliament under the authority of Article 19 of the Constitution provides every person over age 18 with a guaranteed annual income sufficient to eliminate extreme poverty and starvation from the Earth (WLA 42).
Free quality education is essential to economic health, and such worldwide education will essentially stop the brain drain in which talented and educated persons from poor countries move to first-world jobs and salaries. Reasonable laws will also regulate intellectual property rights (IPRs) thereby disseminating inexpensive technological innovations equitably throughout the world, activating sustainable and efficient economies everywhere (see the Manifesto of the Earth Federation). These many elements work together as part of an integrated prosperity system under the Earth Constitution: money creation, banking, intellectual property rights, education, technology transfer, a World Service Corps, equal pay for equal work, a global living wage, and protection of economic and social rights all working together to undergird a genuine prosperity system for the Earth.
The world order can be fairly easily transformed into one of planetary peace with justice and prosperity. The present world system of scarcity and domination is a result of the principle inherent in money created as public debt to private financial elites and on a global system of maximizing private profit at the expense of the common good of the people of Earth and our planetary environment. Perhaps the most fundamental secret lies in “democratic money”: money issued debt-free in the name of the productive capacity of the citizens of Earth to produce goods and services.
These principles cannot work, we have seen, unless we take this “all” seriously and universalize democracy to every person on Earth. This universalization process is the fundamental imperative of our time. Yet there is a concomitant aspect of our moral obligation today that requires us to abjure violence, war, and military service altogether and create a world order premised on substantive justice and fairness for all peoples. As an integrated whole, the world peace system and the world prosperity system created by the Constitution will necessarily also be a world justice system.
A Justice System
Since the time of Aristotle, thinkers have distinguished two dimensions of justice: distributive justice that considers how the resources of society can best be distributed, taking into consideration both the common good of society and the principle that equal rewards should follow equal accomplishments, and corrective justice in which society sets up a system of trials, judgments, and punishments for those who break the laws or to settle civil disputes. Historically the concept of justice has also been developed as the moral idea of fairness: the idea of treating individuals or peoples fairly or equitably. The Earth Constitution and the Provisional World Parliament have extensively developed all these aspects of justice. The same integrated set of governmental branches integral to the peace system and the prosperity system work to operate the justice system under the Constitution. With the help of many departments gathering data on world economic and social conditions, the World Parliament of some 1500 lawmakers representing all peoples, nations, and the common good of humanity studies the needs of the people of Earth and makes laws directed toward peace, universal prosperity, justice, freedom, and sustainability. All persons as individuals are held responsible to these laws.
The World Police and Attorneys General identify, indict, and apprehend suspects accused of violating world laws. We have seen that the police have only such weapons that are necessary to apprehend individuals. The requirement that police protect innocent bystanders is also emphasized, as is the humane and dignified treatment of those who are arrested and held for a fair and impartial trial (Article 12.13 and 12.14). The professional and highly qualified world judiciary within the Earth Federation Civil Service framework conducts impartial trials of those accused, and the World Ombudsmus carefully watches to see that human rights are protected throughout the process.
Under this system of correctional justice, no longer will the law and punishment be directed primarily toward the poor, with the overwhelming majority of those incarcerated coming from poor and disadvantaged background and subject to the kinds of laws and profiling that in effect punish the poor for being poor. Developing the spirit and intent of the Constitution with regard to correctional justice, the Provisional World Parliament has articulated the kinds of laws and corresponding punishments that will be fundamental to the justice system of the Earth Federation. It has worked out a system of seven classes of felonies, with corresponding punishments for conviction depending on the seriousness of the offense. (The World Penal Code is elaborated in detail in WLA # 19.) Those apprehended and tried under the Earth Federation will no longer be the poor but all persons who violate the laws regarding peace, general prosperity, justice, freedom, and sustainability.
For example, the very first world legislative act passed by the Parliament at its first session in 1982 in Brighton, England, prohibits all weapons of mass destruction and criminalizes involvement with such weapons. Under provisional world law, design, research, or testing such weapons is a class six felony, buying them a class six felony, selling a class five felony, transport, deployment, or installing a class one felony, and production, manufacture, or fabricating a class one felony. Similarly the World Peace Act (WLA #13) passed in 2003 at the Sixth Session of the Parliament in Bangkok, Thailand, proscribes in greater detail activities related to WMDs or prohibited military activity such as finance, brokerage, lending, design of components, military software programming, impeding enforcement against proscribed military-related activities, disrupting communications, designing machine viruses, conscription, bids for war damage, etc. The act provides for permits to be issued to de-mine, decontaminate, disassemble, or convert to peaceful uses military hardware or munitions plants. WLA #15, Statute of the World Court of Human Rights, assigns procedures and penalties for the violation of human rights as does WLA #20 establishing the protocols for an Earth Federation World Court Bench for Criminal Cases.
From these examples it should be clear that those indicted, tried, and convicted will be the real criminals of the world for the first time in human history. No longer will the poor be targeted, but the violators of peace, human rights, and the integrity of our environment. The justice system will operate under a truly new paradigm, protecting the rights of those accused who must be apprehended with a minimum use of force. Those accused may include heads of nations, CEOs of multinational corporations, bankers illegally manipulating the monetary system, military generals, or wealthy and powerful persons. All individuals will be equally subject to the law and the laws prohibit many of the criminal activities that are today accepted as normal under the fragmented paradigm of nation-state sovereignty and monopoly capitalism.
The rich and powerful will be for the first time in history equally subject to the law and the system of correctional justice along with everyone else. The system of distributive justice under the Earth Constitution and Provisional World Parliament is equally transformative of the present disastrous world order. We have seen that Article 13 of the Earth Constitution guarantees equal opportunity for employment with wages sufficient to assure human dignity, free and adequate public education for everyone, free and adequate public health services and medical care, protection of the natural environment, conservation of essential natural resources, adequate housing, nutritious food supplies and safe drinking water, and social security for all citizens to protect against accident and assure dignity in old age. Distributive justice first and foremost recognizes universal human dignity and the right of every person to the livable income necessary to be free from extreme misery and deprivation.
Following the Earth Constitution, the Global Equity Act mandates the World Parliament to set a living wage for the world that assures this human dignity. Based on this living wage (entirely sufficient for a good life), the act specifies the maximum wage (inclusive of investment income) as four times the living wage. (This would make those at the higher levels very well off indeed. Our planet is very rich in resources, and there is no legitimate reason why everyone cannot be well off.) As Mahatma Gandhi predicts: no more will “the few ride on the backs of the millions.” Profits for businesses beyond what is required for overhead, wages, materials, and production must be either donated to any public or private non-profit organizations or poured back into the business in a sustainable manner. Again following the Constitution (which specifies “better distribution of the workload of humanity”) the act requires Parliament to regularly recalculate what constitutes full time work with a view to a just work week for all persons. It specifies that people receive “equal pay for equal work,” taking into account individual merit, seniority, and special talents.
As we have seen, global banking is socially owned under the Earth Federation, establishing a system that makes funding available to all who have a creative, sustainable, and productive project. The resulting market system will produce not only near universal prosperity, as described above, but will produce genuine economic justice for the first time in history. Creative new ways to reward innovation, hard work, and special talents will be implemented by the World Parliament and communities worldwide to replace the destructive notion that the only incentives people require involve evermore riches even beyond what normal persons could reasonably use for a life of comfort and luxury. People will look to advancement, public awards, community appreciation, and other forms of recognition rather than simply monetary gain. These and similar principles of distributive justice will create a decent world order for the majority of persons on the Earth.
The system of correctional justice will complement the system of distributive justice. The vast majority of people will see for themselves that things are truly fair and just in the moral sense. It should be clear that the justice system also requires the peace system and the prosperity system as we have described them. This equitable system of justice will also empower the freedom system which depends on, and derives from, a just world framework.
A Freedom System
Freedom, the protection of individual human rights premised on the autonomy and dignity of the individual person, is a multi-dimensional concept that lies at the very heart of democracy. We have seen the many ways in which the several branches of the Earth Federation government work together to ensure peace, prosperity, and justice. The same is true of freedom. The Earth Federation system as a whole ensures and undergirds freedom through dozens of features working together.
Article 12 of the Earth Constitution specifies 18 items articulating a series of political rights and freedoms. It even includes seven items that begin with the word “freedom” – “freedom of thought and conscience, speech, press, writing, etc.; freedom of assembly, association, etc.; freedom to vote and campaign; freedom of religion or no religion; freedom for political beliefs or no political beliefs; and freedom for investigation, research, and reporting. Article 13 also includes five items that begin with the words “free” or “freedom” – freedom of choice in work or profession; free public education and equal opportunities; free public health services and medical care; freedom of self-determination for dissenters or minorities; freedom for change of residence anywhere on Earth. The Earth Constitution addresses multiple dimensions of human freedom (see Martin 2010).
Article 12 calls all the rights that it specifies “inalienable” and states that “it shall be mandatory for the World Parliament, the World Executive, and all organs and agencies of the World Government to honor, implement, and enforce these rights. All persons whose rights have been violated “have full recourse through the World Ombudsmus, the Enforcement System, and the World Courts.” Ultimately, however, freedom is most fundamentally assured through the establishment of a global community under the Earth Constitution dedicated to human development and the actualization of human potential. No longer will people be enslaved to multinational corporations, banking cartels, or national security state domination. These impediments will be brought into line by the global founded community of rights and responsibilities deriving from legislation empowering individuals from the ground up.
Aware that the greatest danger to freedom historically has been government itself, especially the Executive Branch of government in control of police and military, the framers of the Constitution separated the police from the Executive branch, as we have seen, and abolished the military altogether. The Executive Branch of the Earth Federation that administers the day to day operations of many government agencies is run by a presidium of five persons, one from each continental division of the planet. The Executive has no power to declare a state of emergency and suspend the Constitution, and it has no power to refuse to spend the budget allocated to it by the World Parliament (Article 6.6).
The World Police and Attorneys General, we have seen, are a separate agency responsible directly to Parliament (representing the people of Earth). The police possess only weapons necessary to apprehend individuals and, like all government officials, can be removed for cause. The World Ombudsmus, is an independent agency of government responsible to the World Parliament that can investigate and indict the police for violations of human rights. The Constitution provides a comprehensive system of checks and balances directed toward protecting freedom and democracy.
Article 13 of the Earth Constitution presents an additional 19 items articulating a series of human rights that are often referred to as “second generation rights” and “third generation rights.” The rights elaborated in Article 12 constitute the traditional political freedoms deriving from the 18th century democratic revolutions: freedom of speech, assembly, press, religion, etc. The conception of second generation rights developed through the early 20th century and were famously expressed, for example, in the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948.
These include the rights to decent wages, healthcare, social security, education, etc. They are predicated on the understanding that a supportive social framework is a necessary foundation for personal freedom and dignity. These are elaborated in Article 13 of the Earth Constitution. However, the Constitution understands that even these are insufficient for true freedom. The positive fullness of freedom can only be realized on Earth when people are also guaranteed the “third generation” rights to world peace and protection of the global environment. The Constitution takes freedom to a higher level than any previous historical form.
We have seen that the founding principle of the Earth Constitution is unity in diversity, a principle that the Federation will promote throughout the government as well as in media, education, and law. The second “broad function” of the Earth Federation specified in Article 1 of the Constitution states that it must “protect universal human rights, including life, liberty, security, democracy, and equal opportunities in life.” The entire system of the Constitution is built around this and the other five broad functions specified in Article 1, the first of which (Article 1.1) is world peace, the second of which (1.2) is freedom and the protection of human rights, and the fifth of which is “to protect the environment and the ecological fabric of life.” The Constitution is specifically designed to enhance human flourishing and freedom throughout its many dimensions.
Major impediments to human freedom and flourishing endemic to the present world chaos are removed and prevented from recurring by the integrated functions of the Earth Federation under the Constitution. For example, there will be no more national security state, world militarism, authoritarian regimes, rogue militarized terror groups, corporate violations of the dignity of employees, extremes of poverty and deprivation, lack of literacy and education, or lack of adequate health care. Scholars sometimes speak of the defense of first generation political rights as “negative freedom” – the removal of impediments to individual self-determination.
However, the Constitution will also enhance the “positive freedom” of actualization within an empowering community premised on unity in diversity. The supporting matrix of a community of rights and responsibilities, premised as well on second and third generation rights, provides the framework for the creative actualization of our individual and collective human potential. The protection of “life, security, and equal opportunities” on Earth, institutionalized through a global community of freedom (as specified in Article 1) will vastly empower the people of Earth. Freedom will no longer merely be a “freedom from” but will become the positive fullness of “freedom for.” The Earth Constitution establishes a dynamic and powerful freedom system.
A Sustainability System
Environmental destruction (like war, poverty, injustice, and denial of freedom) is a direct consequence of our present global political and economic system. If companies have to consider the bottom line in a competitive situation where they
must make a certain margin of profit or go out of business, then the incentive to externalize costs into the air, water, and soil to the detriment of the planetary ecosystem and future generations is tremendous. Genuine sustainability can only be achieved when the common good and the welfare of future generations are factored into the economic equation. Sustainability means that the resources taken from the Earth are either replaced fully (for example, lumber can be replaced though replanting forests) or used sparingly until ways can be found to substitute artificial resources for essential natural resources (Daly 1996).
The Earth Constitution contains dozens of references to “the environment” and the “ecology” of our planet, indicating that a major premise of the Earth Federation will be environmental sustainability. The Constitution mundializes those natural resources that are vital to the well being of humanity and that are limited in quantity or non-renewable (Article 4). Hence, they are taken out of the hands of giant corporate monopolies who today exploit them for the private profit of a few at the expense of most of humanity and future generations. The Provisional World Parliament has taken steps to enable this Constitutional mandate, for example, by passing the Water Act at its Eight Session. Multinational corporations have bought up water rights in India and elsewhere and used their “right to private property” to blackmail ordinary citizens who need water (see Shiva, Water Wars: Privatization, Pollution, and Profit, 2002).
In his book When Corporations Rule the World (1995), former Harvard Business School faculty member, David Korten, chronicles the devastation of our natural resources as well as the environment by multinational corporations based in the imperial centers of capital. Natural resources are essential for human well-being and need to be carefully conserved for the well-being of all the Earth’s citizens as well as future generations. The Provisional World Parliament created the World Oceans and Seabeds Authority to supervise the vast riches of the oceans for the welfare of humanity, oceans now being exploited by predatory nation-states, and private corporations without any democratic governmental supervision.
With the vast power placed in human hands by engines, electricity, and specialized machines, the ecosystems of the Earth began to be destroyed at a rate far beyond the ability of nature to heal and repair damages caused by human interference. The technological revolutions of the 18th and 19th centuries continued into the electronic and digital revolutions of the 20th and 21st centuries placing such power in human hands that human activity in its present forms may well destroy the lifesupport systems of the entire planet and collapse the fabric of life to the point where higher forms of life can no longer survive upon the Earth. The forests of the world, for example, provide the planetary ecosystem with much of the oxygen that supports all aerobic forms of life. They bind carbon dioxide that is exhaled by most living creatures and produced by all forms of combustion. They moderate the climate, provide habitats for most of the vast bio-diversity of the Earth, and draw fresh water from the ocean coasts into the interior of continents. Yet the forests of the Earth are disappearing at the rate of an area one half the size of California each year.
In addition to forests, agricultural soils of the Earth are rapidly disappearing. Unsustainable agricultural practices are rapidly depleting topsoils of the planet to the point where vast areas have become unsuitable for agriculture and have been converted to grazing lands. Yet overgrazing worldwide is turning even these areas on every continent into desert wasteland, places that cannot be used to support most life. Runoff from the use of pesticides is poisoning water supplies and ecosystems. Billions of tons of topsoil are lost each year to erosion because of these unsustainable agricultural practices.
Regarding fresh water, the over-pumping of aquifers and overuse of water is dropping water tables worldwide, causing water crises and shortages in many areas of the world. The cities of the world, in addition, are becoming poisoners of the planet’s fresh air supplies. Hundreds of millions of gasoline and internal combustion engines and other sources of air pollution spew pollutants into the air. Yet the atmosphere of the Earth is necessary to support all higher forms of life and is at the heart of the ecosystem of our planet.
These cities also produce immense amounts of polluted water, garbage, and trash wastes that are filling and poisoning countrysides, rivers, and oceans worldwide. At the same time, the human population continues to grow at the rate of 80 million new persons per year, every person of whom requires basic resources, fresh water, clean air, and agricultural and forest resources to support them throughout their life-spans, and every one of whom produces waste materials that are returned to the environment (Caldicott 1992; Renner 1996; Daly 1996; Speth 2004).
The principle of Gaia, the idea that the entire Earth (as it has evolved over its 4.6 billion year existence) forms an encompassing ecosystem, is only slowly becoming understood by large numbers of people. This awareness grows as planetary phenomena signaling the alteration of the entire global ecosystem become widely known. Phenomena such as global warming, melting of the polar ice caps, depletion of the ozone layer, collapsing of entire ocean fisheries, rapid extinction of species on a daily basis, increased planetary disasters and super-storms, and possible inversions of global ocean currents and weather patterns are well understood (Lovelock 1991).
Thoughtful human beings today have understood that human life is inseparable from the web of life on Earth. They have understood that we must alter our economic, social, and political practices rapidly to bring human civilization into harmony with the planetary web of life that sustains us. They understand that all development must be sustainable, that it must support human life in the present in ways that do not diminish the life-prospects of future generations. Today, virtually all societies and all nations are living at the expense of future generations, both of humans and other species (Caldicott 1992; Daly 1996; Speth 2004). Actualization of our life-prospects diminishes their life-prospects. At the current rate of destruction, it is even possible that we will reduce their life-prospects to zero.
The Earth Constitution and the work of the Provisional World Parliament have been dedicated to addressing these horrific consequences of the present world disorder. This premise of our global, democratically conceived, well-being is behind the Parliament’s passage of the World Hydrogen Energy Authority (WLA #10) to spearhead research and conversion to renewable clean energy for the world, the Hydrocarbon Resource Act (WLA #16) to conserve, regulate on behalf of a clean environment, and utilize democratically the world’s remaining hydrocarbon resources, and the Water Act (WLA #30) that recognizes clean water as a right of all persons and takes steps to protect the Earth’s diminishing water resources, restore sources of fresh water to the Earth, and democratically apportion these resources to all persons on Earth.
Recognizing not only that the global environment is threatened but that it is already seriously damaged (as the Manifesto of the Earth Federation demonstrates at length), the Provisional World Parliament at its Second Session adopted WLA #6 creating the Emergency Earth Rescue Administration (EERA). The task of the EERA is to spearhead the gigantic task of restoring the environment of the Earth once the first operative stage of world government under the Constitution has been activated. Millions of trees will need to be planted, major initiatives will be needed to restore diminished agricultural lands, and emergency efforts will be required to reclaim sources and conditions for fresh water for the peoples of Earth.
The Parliament also passed WLA #9 creating, within the World Administration of the Constitution, a Global Ministry on the Environment to facilitate conversion to sustainability and staff the EERA. Such momentous tasks, absolutely necessary for a decent future for the Earth, can never be accomplished by the fragmented system of nation-states or the U.N. The U.N., which is a mere confederation of sovereign nation-states, has held three global conferences on the destruction of our planetary environment: in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992, Johannesburg, South Africa in 2002, and Copenhagen, Denmark in 2009. There is common agreement that these were all complete failures to deal with our environmental crises.
The Provisional World Parliament has created a network of practical, pragmatic, and immediately necessary laws and agencies to deal with the immense problems of global environmental restoration and conversion to sustainability. As we have seen, the very first article of the Earth Constitution specifies that the fifth broad function of the Earth Federation will be “to protect the environment and the ecological fabric of life from all sources of damage, and to control technological innovations whose effects transcend national boundaries, for the purpose of keeping Earth a safe, healthy and happy home for humanity.” Both the Constitution and the Parliament are dedicated to creating a world system adequate to this task.
The Constitution explicitly requires the government of the Earth Federation to protect the ecological fabric of life on Earth, that is, to respect the Gaia principle with all its ramifications. Not only does the Constitution make this a primary mandate of the Earth Federation, but in its second bill of rights (Article 13) makes respect for the Gaia principle a right of the people of Earth themselves and a “directive principle for the world government” to actualize this right. Article 13, numbers 9, 10, and 11 read as follows. People have a right to “protection of the natural environment which is the common heritage of humanity against pollution, ecological disruption or damage which could imperil life or lower the quality of life” (9). “Conservation of those natural resources of Earth which are limited so that present and future generations may continue to enjoy life on planet Earth” (10), and “assurance for everyone of adequate housing, of adequate and nutritious food supplies, of safe and adequate water supplies, of pure air with protection of oxygen supplies and the ozone layer, and, in general, for the continuance of an environment which can sustain healthy living for all” (11).
Clearly, here again, the Constitution explicitly recognizes the need for human economic, political, and social institutions to conform to the Gaia principle (which is the principle of sustainability) protecting the whole of the planetary environment for future generations. The key to a sustainable civilization is not only to promote education concerning the principles of natural ecology. This effort alone is insufficient and will ultimately fail unless the anti-ecological institutions of the modern world, described above, are also transformed according to the scientific principles of natural ecology.
For this to happen, the entire human community must be joined together through the dynamic of genuine unity in diversity that constitutes a complementary principle of social ecology in human life uniting all people under non-military democratic world government. Only thus can the Gaia principle become a guiding principle for all human political, economic, and social processes. These principles of social ecology are inseparable from the principles of natural ecology. It is necessary to do for humanity what the natural Gaia principle does for nature. The Constitution for the Federation of the Earth joins the two together to create a truly ecological and sustainable world order.
The Constitution and its elaboration through the work of the Provisional World Parliament provide the necessary conditions for a peaceful, prosperous, and sustainable world system. Throughout our model, however, we have assumed the creative input of human beings with integrity, vision, and creative energy who must enliven the system outlined by the Constitution and the Parliament. The Earth Federation needs Parliamentarians, Judges, Administrators, Police, and Ombudsmen of who are capable of cooperatively working as part of an open ended, democratic learning community informed by the dynamics of systems thinking. We need dedicated people who are willing to begin living from this moment forward according to the ethical and legal principles embodied in the Earth Constitution.
Such persons will serve as the sufficient condition for actualizing the unity in diversity of this world system. Such persons in our present historical situation must also serve as the sufficient condition for the ratification and implementation of the Constitution. The necessary features of a holistic world system can be described in print. The sufficient conditions for its actualization depend on the love, aspirations, conscience, and intelligence of actual human beings. Within the Earth Federation Movement today, citizens all around the world are actualizing this vision and living according to the Earth Constitution, no longer according to the illegitimate and immoral system of warring nation-states.
Study of the Constitution for the Federation of Earth repays the student richly. For a model of a future world order emerges that not only transforms the fragmented and outdated paradigms of the present world disorder but shows itself to be entirely practical and imminently possible under the guidelines provided by Articles 17 and 19. The conceptual model created here by the Provisional World Parliament at its 12th session in Kolkata, India in 2010 presents only the highlights of the integrated planetary system initiated by the Earth Constitution and the Provisional World Parliament. We hope that the parameters of this model that we have sketched in this document may inspire people to ever more intensive study of the Earth Constitution and modeling of the transformed world system that it engenders.
As people begin to understand the vision, there is tremendous urgency that they also act on that vision with creativity, integrity, and energy. The Constitution must be ratified in a founding ratification convention according to the Protocols already developed by the Provisional World Parliament. It converts the presently failed world system to peace, prosperity, justice, freedom, and sustainability. It replaces the U.N. Charter with real democratic government keeping the valuable agencies of the U.N. as ministries of the Earth Federation.
Nothing less than the fate of humanity and our precious planet Earth are at stake. We invite your participation. We invite you to a life of “civil obedience.”