We were in the sixth grade. Ratification of the United Nations Charter had been rushed through the United States Senate, with little discussion or debate. To explain the event, American students were issued a pamphlet on the "U.N.O." (the United Nations Organization); yet within a matter of a few days, these were recalled & replaced by a similar looking pamphlet on the "U.N." (the United Nations). Obviously, some one--or some group--with the power & resources to print a great many pamphlets, had decided that it was a mistake to refer to the new organization as an "organization," and wished to change the focus. At the time, this seemed only mildly alarming.
It was not till High School that we realized that there were many in both Government & Academia, who wanted to persuade Americans and--by America's then considerable influence--others, to surrender sovereignty to a World Government. By our Junior year, we had encountered the original "Debate Handbook" (as different as night from day from our own Conservative Debate Handbook); the first, in 1950s school libraries as result of a Federal writers' project in the 1930s--a Keynesian stimulus to largely subsidized Leftist authors. As well recalled after sixty years, the "Handbook" was blatantly biased, both towards Communist theory & the Internationalist pursuit of World Government.
To the Collectivist & Egalitarian writers, seeking to slant student perceptions in debate, the issue was not whether Communism or World Government were good or evil--not whether sound or nihilistic, designed to destroy nations & confiscate the fruits of human achievement & abort true social progress;--but whether, assuming their idealism, they were practical. The thrust was to frame the debate in terms of how to best obtain them!
This was a wakeup call; not to a realization that there were serious enemies of the American tradition in positions of influence in Academia--that had long been obvious--but that those who planned our destruction, had no intention to ever allow reasoned or objective debate. When we went off to College, we prepared to challenge, not blindly accept, radical proposals, however sugar coated. The real job lay before us.
Within weeks of entering Oberlin College, we were subjected to the tactical rationalizations of Norman Cousins, Editor of The Saturday Review (leading American literary journal) & chief spokesman for the United World Federalists--an organization openly promoting World Government--in a required undergraduate assembly. In a broadcast over the college radio station, a couple of weeks later, we analyzed Cousins' approach as "Surrender By Subterfuge," a betrayal of Independence. How else to describe it?!
Cousins was articulate. He began by recounting in detail, his visit to a hospital in Hiroshima, where hopelessly deformed survivors of the atomic bombing were maintained. Only when he had the audience thoroughly horrified at the consequences of atomic warfare, did he turn to his actual message--that such war must be avoided at any cost;--that to prevent same, nations must surrender sovereignty to a World Government. The means to achieve his end? A complete redirection of education, away from teaching how peoples differed, to a new focus on what we had in common.
No where did Cousins acknowledge that what he was asking people to ignore--in a slick appeal to fear & panic--were all the things for which better men had been willing to die. No where did he try to balance the quest for identity & unique ethnic or cultural development, against his call for an effective return to the humanist pursuit at Babel. No where did he admit the betrayal, being called for, a specific surrender of what the Founders had declared in 1776; what had been won at Yorktown & recognized by the 1783 Treaty of Paris. (We refrain from calling it "Treason," because although it may indeed be generic treason, philosophically; it does not precisely conform to the Constitutional definition that must be applied to put someone on trial in the United States. So we confine analysis to Cousins' oft repeated call for surrender.)
To any American, dedicated to the promise of the Founders to secure the "Blessings of Liberty" to their posterity, a surrender of what those brave men achieved on the battlefield can never be acceptable. But that is not the only fundamental flaw in the Cousins "argument." There is an implied premise, in the claim that we must have World Government to prevent the Nations of the world from savaging one another, that there is no effective alternative, or alternatively that a World Government would be more likely to prevent the horrors of modern war than would, for example, the traditional American view of treating others with respect & demanding respect back--the Washington/Jefferson policy; really only an application of the Golden Rule to international dealings; although we did vow to punish the "first insult."
We certainly cannot predict that there would ever be universal acceptance for such a foreign policy by all nations, even if America should return to it. We will always have to look to the adequacy of our Defenses. Yet could a World Government ever be an acceptable substitute? The profound differences between peoples; the needs of diverse peoples, with varied talents, ideals & pursuits, adjusting to quite different surroundings & dynamic changes, both natural & human; properly mandate the pursuit of greater local autonomy, not greater centralization. The great paradox is that those who believe that the nations of the earth cannot be trusted not to destroy one another, seem to believe that their peoples may somehow be merged to mutual benefit. Again, even where they delude themselves, what is being advocated is surrender; surrender, whether by subterfuge, panic or compulsion; but surrender, nonetheless.
Yet even in surrender, there is no reasonable expectation of peace; no likely escape from the terrors of modern living. If we have learned anything from the recent increase in acts of international terrorism, it is that when a Government becomes too strong to openly confront in traditional ways, those who oppose it will adopt new tactics. There have always been forms of guerrilla warfare. These became internationalized with the Anarchist movement over a century ago. They morphed again, as the technological gap between nations became more dramatic in the late 20th Century. While there are obvious ways to counter Al Qaeda & the like; the lesson is now generally understood. Terrorists adopt tactics that avoid a target's strengths. For this there is no perfect answer--not even the nightmare of a "1984" society. The best path is to work with the traditional leadership of every people--those who know their own well;--not seek to sew all in a single pattern. That folly can only help those bent on mischief to recruit.
A world State would force millions to seek more innovative ways to fight remote domination. It would end destroying even the public pursuit of "peace," creating a desperation among those denied the self-expression, now provided by identification with a congenial social order. It would fail, ultimately--thank God--simply because we are not all alike! But the unwinding could be every bit as hideous as Norman Cousins' terror images from Hiroshima.
While Cousins' call for a shift in educational focus from the qualities that make any nation, tribe, folk or community, unique, to one that pretends that we are all the same--for a stated ulterior motive--fits nicely with what Egalitarian/Collectivist movements have long sought in efforts to level all segments of existing nations; it is a mistake to imagine them all under one umbrella. There are a great many groups, individually directed--often individually employed by rivals seeking power & influence, while particularly appealing to quite different groups--which will on many occasions certainly work together. Most of these, also, appeal to the same compulsive neuroses, which drive the emotional appeal of the Egalitarian Left, in general. But they are best analyzed separately; for though they have a symbiotic relationship, in the common fallacies that they embrace & promote, they really do have separate functions & identities.
In the Conservative Debate Handbook, Myths & Myth Makers In American "Higher" Education, deals both with Norman Cousins & some of these other promoters of egalitarian efforts to suppress human understanding of the qualities that make individuals & definable races, tribes, nations, subsets or other aggregations, unique. There, you will see the roles of such "players," in dismantling existing societies, as Ashley Montagu, Gordon Allport & others--who also acknowledge their support for World Government--explained. Again, we do not suggest their efforts, all part of a single common plot. Yet those, who would destroy existing civilizations do often work together; just as those who would maintain their heritage will work together, even though different "players" will reflect quite different priorities & quite different approaches, even as we do so.
Thus, while the idea of surrendering the ability to wage war on behalf of national interest or even survival, is not the same issue as making believe that all peoples have the same talents; or that Gordon Allport's claim that it is wrong for people to prefer to associate with those with whom they share a common heritage, rather than with those with whom they do not, is the same as a Socialist redistribution of wealth scheme; the fact is that Collectivist Egalitarians do share & promote the same underlying fantasies. Thus, answers to all the driving fantasies on the Left will have much in common.
To appreciate those answers, we need to not only understand, but publicly acknowledge, the full extent of the threat.
Since the 1930s, the United States State Department has been a magnet for students from leading Colleges & Universities, who wanted to remake the world--rather than actually serve America's unique & strategic interests. Thus it was almost predictable that we would push internationalist schemes at the expense of national sovereignty on other nations; that we would line up with those who sought to force tribal peoples to accept the administrative boundaries that the former Colonial powers drew for their convenience, rather than allow the tribes to go back to managing their respective, smaller but more truly indigenous, tribal lands. We have dealt with some of the outrages--even genocide--that this has led to among Third World peoples, in Chapters 18 & 25 of the Conservative Debate Handbook. Other aspects of this policy--destructive both to our interests & to those of any peoples selected by our "one world" nation builders--have proven major aids to the ability of our present enemies to recruit live bodies, willing to sacrifice themselves to do us mischief.
Yet even were it not a direct threat to American sovereignty; a proven threat to other peoples who want to pursue what is unique in their own heritage, without having to face some form of forced homogenization; the Norman Cousins' educational prescription could not possibly be more harmful. In its conformity with what was already embraced by America's domestic Egalitarian/Collectivists, it has clearly furthered, what we have described as The Greatest Mischief Ever Wrought. At issue in the broader misdirection of education, analysis, policy & perception, are all of man's higher aspirations--the former celebration of man's higher aspirations--now threatened by all that is base & self defeating: The aspiration to excel being torn down by appeals to envy & resentment, guilt & jealousy; the acceptance of personal responsibility--essential to positive progress--frustrated by a false model that teaches the less successful to blame others for any disappointment.
The contrast is stark. Unless we return to reverence for a unique heritage; for what actually works for human betterment; to truth, itself; the disintegration of existing societies, coupled with exploding demographics fueled by deliberately anti-Nationalist immigration policies in most Western Nations, promise lost direction, social chaos & an ugly future. A form of World Government imposed on top of such would indeed be humanity's worst nightmare. The answer to this--as most threats--is to openly confront the false dogma, now poisoning public perception. Will you help?