Friday, October 16, 2009

The Demise of the (Inter) State

I am quietly observing that scientific literature followed by the mass media have slowly left using the term 'international' and substituting it with 'global'. The substitution is motivated by the fact that we live in an ever-increasingly interconnected world where nationality becomes less of an issue, or made to be, when it comes to collectively moving to a mutual objective.

Global modernisation, if you will.

Within that framework lies global hand washing day, global effort to eradicate poverty, global awareness of digital and educational divide.

When it comes to the betterment of people's welfare, particularly those marginalised (e.g. third world countries, the poor in third world countries, the laggards, those still suffering from marasmus even when most of the world has been using the internet for 10 years), I think the demise of a nation-state is indeed justifiable.

But when it comes to national integration and moving towards a national goal (orang kaya mbok ya sedekah ya), then the irrational fraternity to help our kind is also needed.

And the list goes on to more micro aspects. Religion, ethnicity, neighbourhood.

If the purpose is to help people, does it even matter?

It's not the exclusivity, it's the aspect that needs emphasising to motivate the goodness in all of us. The question is: how do we do this without exploiting or promoting ethnocentrism?


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