Hollow states – controlled by a global economic system

John Robb of Global Guerrillas neatly summarizes a pessimistic view of the near future for the nations of the West; meaning the countries of the euro-zone, the United States and Canada.  Robb suggests that

“the current sovereign debt crisis is about something much more interesting:  it’s another battle in a war for dominance between “our” integrated, impersonal global economic system and traditional nation-states.  At issue is whether a nation-state serves the interests of the governed or it serves the interests of a global economic system.”

One can find a great deal of intelligent discussion of this subject at HCN, a forum associated with the website Calculated Risk.  The general consensus is that the various branches of government in the US particularly have been “captured” by multinational corporate interests.

Robb goes on to say that

“When this war ends, and it won’t be long, the global economic and financial system will be the victor.  Once that occurs, the nation-states of the West will join those of the global south as hollow states: mere shells of states that serve only to enforce the interests of the global economic system.  These new states, more market-states than nation-states, will offer citizens a mere vestige of the public goods they offered historically.  Incomes will fall to developing world levels (made easy to due highly portable productivity), and wealth will stratify.  Regulatory protections will be weak.  Civil service pensions will be erased and corruption will reign.  The once dominant militaries of the West will be reduced to a small fraction of their current size, and their focus will be on the maintenance of internal control rather than on external threats.”

The stratification of wealth distribution in the US is well documented, and regulatory agencies have been shown to be co-opted by the industries they have a mandate to regulate.

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