Seems to me that most political ideologies are on the shelf at the moment. Or maybe they have just gone on leave? Many social scientists currently consider political ideologies dead, but I wouldn’t go that far because it would imply the end of innovative and creative development in the intellectual world. And that wouldn’t only be an unlikely but also disastrous development.
Capitalism and individualism, for instance, are alive and kicking, but then again, they have been since time immemorial, and always will be.
But sure, communism is dead in all but name and socialism today lacks innovative, new ideas. Its proponents keep on repeating the same old slogans that are no longer relevant. And where can you find true conservatism today?
Liberalism or center right politics has been the name of the game for quite some time. But even those ideologies are now being questioned after the global crisis hit and leading economists couldn’t agree on how it could have happened, why it wasn’t spotted and, worse, can’t agree on how to fix it.
Ideologies make politics lively and exciting so it’s most likely just a question of how long it will take before new ideologies take shape. Actually if we don’t, politics will be even more of a status quo than it is, so some new political ideologies would be most welcome.
Maybe it would be an idea to concentrate on globalism for the time being instead? The original use of the word in business context goes back to Harvard Business Review in the 1940’s. The idea signified the freer movement of goods, services, ideas and people around the world. My father was an international entrepreneur already in the 1950’s, leading his life and businesses in global ways that were unusual then. In those days airports were like small clubs where they all knew each other, unlike today when everybody’s flying. How often do we meet people we know at an airport nowadays? Unusual, even in first class lounges. With a father like that it probably makes sense that I’m as international as I am.
In some ways politics is actually getting more and more global. Look at the G20, ASEAN and the EU, for instance. We are more and more taking part in multinational, multicultural alliances attempting to align national politics with international aims for the greater good. The problem is that there are, and has been for a long time, far to many vested interests resulting in agreements only benefitting one group. And as we all know, agreements, or business deals for that matter, that don’t benefit all interests don’t last. So maybe it’s time to try and find long lasting solutions that will increasingly create better terms of living for more people on a global scale?
It is in everybodys interest that we elaborate the global perspective even further and work towards a world where everybody can eat three meals a day, have basic schooling and access to health care. That doesn’t mean that we should leave free markets and the ability to earn a lot of money behind. Cultural and national differences will always be there thankfully, since it would be seriously boring if all human being were all the same.
International issues should be a more important part of new political ideologies. We are just one big integrated global market. Even Coca Cola nowadays considers themselves an international and not just an American company. So why shouldn’t politics follow suit? After all where would Coca Cola be today if they had concentrated on only the US?
(Re-published on request)