Over the entire 20th century, and the 13 years of this century, foreign nations have been using military force to depose oppressive regimes. No matter what your opinions of these actions are, the fact remains that they have occurred. Conversely, foreign nations (the United States in particular) has funded coercive, and undemocratic regimes in other nations if they were considered western-leaning. Again, this is a fact, regardless of people's opinions.
It is clear that foreign nations can have both a positive and negative effect on human rights and liberty in other nations. Now consider this. As our society becomes ever more globalised, whether we like it or not, the individual concept of statehood is going to be less and less important. Whether for the better or worse, the future is in the hands of the large corporations.
As companies become ever more valuable, and push the $1trillion valuation mark (the current most highly valued company is ExxonMobil, with a market capitalisation of $408bn, but I see as highly likely that within the next fifty years, a company will break the $1trillion), their economic power becomes comparable to even some western nations. Many countries around the world struggle to reach $1trillion in GDP.
Now riddle me this. Would it ever be justified for a large corporation to use it's considerable economic resources to place pressure on undemocratic regimes in third world countries, to democratise? I do not, for one second, promote bringing in or arming a revolutionary militia. I propose that might it not be morally better for a company to threaten to impose economic sanctions on a nation (for example, threatening to call in debts owed, or reneging on deals), and in doing so bring about a change in political culture from within the political classes, than for a foreign country to simply provide arms to citizens to depose a government?
This way of promoting democracy and human liberty (the way I propose), is infinitely more humane. Not only will countless lives be saved on both sides, it would seriously increase the likelihood of a continuing stable democracy, as the nation would be threatened with economic ruin, a credible threat of economic ruin. In today's world, nations such as China refuse to have a dialogue about changing their human rights policy, and we, as democratic western nations, must simply endure this, as we are slaves to China, economically.
Ergo, economic sanctions are the only way to deal with countries with such appalling human rights records as China. Only corporations, I believe, can do this. The nations of this world are so economically interdependent, it is shocking. If I powerful corporation were able to lend, let us say £50bn to a country with a questionable regime in desperate need of it, with certain caveats pertaining to human rights and liberty, and a commission of some sort to ensure that these caveats were met, would that not be preferable to watching countries sit idly by, unable to do anything without inflicting considerable human costs?
The United States is powerless in the eyes of China, who owns 8% of US national debt, and as I have stated, this is echoed throughout the world, a complicated slew of countries owning other countries' debts. Yes, a lot of governments' debt is owned by private corporations, but I argue that this must grow. Think about it. The corporations will own more government debt (whichever country is in questions), and the country would not own any debt of the corporation, meaning that only corporations can effectively impose economic sanctions on countries because they hold the leverage.
I didn't want to use the phrases 'moral imperative', and 'mission', but it would be a fine thing if powerful corporations could use some of that power to influence global events for the better. Could it reach the stage that some powerful corporations are shareholders in the World Bank and IMF? For better or worse, corporations are going to surpass many nations in terms of economic power, and this could be translated into diplomatic power. As a budding titan of industry myself, if I could have the chance to exercise my power to bring democracy and liberty to a people, WITHOUT the need for human cost (as indeed, spiraling military costs of countries), I would like to think that I would take it, and that I would be congratulated for doing so.
2003, the US and UK removed Saddam Hussein: considerable human and military cost (ongoing)
2011, the UK and many other nations armed the rebels and removed Colonel Gaddafi: considerable human and military cost
2063, ExxonMobil (for example) places economic pressure on a country in the developing world with an appalling human rights record and a dictator, to bring about democratising reforms: human cost = 0, military cost = 0, benefit to society = priceless
Could this ever be justified? Watch
- Thread Starter
- 17-04-2013 23:37
- 18-04-2013 23:20
While it may be all well and good you saying that you'll bring liberty and democracy to the world and while you do have a point, what stops other multinational industries from simply exploiting the system and bringing governments to their knees for their own personal gain?
Business' main objectives are to maximize profit to impress their shareholders, why not just corrupt the system to be able to maximize the profit? They're not democratically elected and therefore, have no issues in exploiting these countries, and who would call them out on it?
Good plan in theory but I don't think everyone has the same moral compass as you have, which is a sad fact.