One L(ove)

November 13, 2008

Trichotomy of Globalization?

Filed under: Uncategorized — galileehitchhiker @ 3:08 pm
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Exactly a month ago, I was privileged to attend a lecture by Harold Koh, the current dean of Yale Law School and also a preeminent scholar on international law. What brought him to Hofstra was a lecture series that was held by the law school in honor of the last presidential debate (which took place at the university). Dean Koh, who was one of the professors of Dean Nora, gave such an intellectually stimulating talk. He talked about how international law should play a great role in our governmental policies, how we should respect that field of law, and give it more credit than we usually do. He talked about the landmark case of Hamdan v. Rumsfeld and also proposed a plan of closing down Gitmo and how to deal with the prisoners there.

But what I found really interesting about his talk was the subject of globalization. He divided globalization into three:

Globlalization of Governance

Globalization of Freedom

Globalization of Terror

Dean Koh said that the first two types of globalization should unite in order to defeat the last. The United States should lead the governance aspect and should work on to regain its moral stature in the world. He pointed out that thirty years ago, when he worked in the government, there were few democratic countries as compared with non-democratic ones. But now, there are more democracies in the world than there are authoritarian ones. This makes me hopeful that if the trend continues, my children and their children will be living in a world full of democracies. This sounds highly idealistic but I do believe it is a near possibility. Now that the globalization of terror is a new threat to the globalization of freedom, the United States (through the globalization of governance) should promote the globalization of freedom by working to eradicate the globalization of terror. This seems like a neat formula but I, personally, do think that it’s too simplistic. I think it overlooks the root causes of a globalization of terror and doesn’t take into consideration the complexity of globalization as a whole. What about neoliberal governance of globalization? (Check out Pierre Bourdieu’s influential article “The Essence of Neoliberalism” in Le Monde Diplomatique) What about the waning influence of labor around the world? The ILO? While I think Dean Koh was providing a model for a political globalization, I think we still cannot ignore the impact of the model of socioeconomic globalization upon the political aspect since there is a fine line (sometimes, no line) between the social and the political. Whenever social relationships are established, they are bound to turn political. The factors of socioeconomic globalization highly impact the factors in globalization of terror. There’s evidence that some aspect of the globalization of terror stands in response to the neoliberal governance of globalization while at the same time standing against what is perceived as the Western governance of globalization. What my point is that globalization, as a whole, is nest made of webs – any attempt to simplify it with a nice little formula will only make a person lost within a prison of sticky threads.

P.S. Great news!: No more reading for Torts!

Currently listening to: Beck – Guero

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