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Guest Suggestion: Thomas P. M. Barnett, author of The Pentagon's New Map

Last post 06-23-2007, 11:05 AM by WiseLalia. 3 replies.
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  •  05-07-2007, 7:58 PM 22471

    Guest Suggestion: Thomas P. M. Barnett, author of The Pentagon's New Map

    I listen to all of the mp3's on international politics and have yet to be impressed. For a fully yellow take on Iraq, "Globaliazation," China, the military, tsunami response, helping the destitute of the world, the responsibiliy of the priviliged, despots, failed states, up and coming powers like Brazil, the WTO. He's got a plan.

    When we teach intgral consciousness, we use his book for the politics session. It's the most compassionate, responsible, integral and intelligent "proposal" (his word) my partner and I know of.

    His work should be featured here.
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  •  05-07-2007, 9:59 PM 22477 in reply to 22471

    Re: Guest Suggestion: Thomas P. M. Barnett, author of The Pentagon's New Map

    amazon.com:
    "It all starts with America and yes, it all starts with security," he writes. Barnett's vision is highly U.S.-centric and recalls the "white man's burden" philosophy of British colonial authorities. He advocates "regime change" in North Korea and Venezuela. And his solutions for the problems of the Third World are straight out of a banker's mouth: privatization, deregulation, globalization. But Blueprint for Action is an important account of the current thinking and debates at the highest levels of the Pentagon. --Alex Roslin


    mark,

    i've read neither 'the pentagon's new map' nor 'blueprint for action', which came out the following year (2005). from the reviews at amazon.com it sounds like it's definitely worth reading by anyone interested in integral politics, but i'd recommend giving it an aqal framework.

    barnett wants this century to be the 2nd american century. that might possibly work as a plan b, with pursuit of turquoise world governance as plan a, but i think it'll be furiously resisted if we make it plan a. in that case it will be seen as empire building on a global scale.

    just my initial thoughts,

    ralph

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  •  05-28-2007, 12:20 PM 23474 in reply to 22477

    Re: Guest Suggestion: Thomas P. M. Barnett in AQAL

    How is Barnett's "proposal" AQAL? A good question, one I should have anticipated. Let me start by ignoring the first tier critique from Amazon.

    Barnett's on a mission to minimize war and the mass suffering of entire, disadvantaged countries. Something we'd all like to see. He divides the world into Blue and down countries and Orange and up countries. Note: I will use AQAL language for this review, Barnett does not. He says life in Blue-down is "short, brutal and miserable." Life in Orange-up is what WE all know and enjoy.

    So he proposes Orange-up nations work together to systematically bring the Blue-down countries up. Just as Blue empires raise Red societies (Pax Romana, Britanica), Orange raised Blue societies (WWII). The Yellow leadership of today needs to raise Blue down up to Orange to put an end to the abject poverty, repression and terrorism of failed states (Afghanistan, Somolia) and rogue states run by Red dictators (N. Korea, Iraq). He says helping the citizens of these countries is a moral imperative for those of us leading our comfortable, affluent lives.

    The downside is the Yellow leadership needed doesn't really exist yet and Green will do all it can to stop it.

    Barnett is all about the lower right quadrant. He says the US will never go to war with China because we are their best customer. They want our business. For example, during a SARS outbreak in China, the Chinese refused all aid from the West to contain it. In typical Chinese style, they said they could handle it (they couldn't, but face-saving is more important to them than the lives of a few peasants). The result was, foreign business people stopped going to China and all the Joint Ventures China depends on started grinding to a halt. At the insistence of Chinese business, Western help was requested.

    Iraq: Barnett's first book was written in the lead up to the current Iraq war. What he wanted was for the US military (the only one who can) to go in and "decapitate" the Hussain regime. Then, send in enough troops from all over the world (the G20 actually) to actually secure existing infrastructure so everyone would still have a job to go to instead of chaos, poverty and starvation. (He is not at all happy with what Bush did.) We then needed to immediately implement a culture-specific "Marshall Plan," which is not something the world is good at. (The Balkans was our best recent success and was done by NATO).

    What he says they need is Orange opportunity to better their circumstances. 'Education, business and jobs, which require laws, law enforcement, and stable markets. The Boogie Man of Green, "Globalization," as opposed to isolation and the resulting poverty and oppression. Being a suicide bomber is a much less attractive option if you could instead, go to school, get a better job and expect your children to do even better.

    The non-conflict solution to a "closed state" is a "slow opening." Taking a generation's time to grant civil and economic liberties. This requires a benevolent dictator and has happened in Singapore and is in process in China. Russia went too fast and chaos resulted.

    Green hates Barnett as just another "Arrogant Neo-Con." U.S. Isolationists don't like his "interventionist" ideas. Orange likes him because he is pro business, but they don't understand his lower right ideas and the CRUCIAL nuances of what is required. Yellows will love him, but like in Post-WWII Germany and Japan and then in South Korea, success takes decades (a generation actually), and Americans have a short attention span.

    Barnett was a professor at the Naval War College, now works for a D.C. Think Tank, is a Democrat, adopted a Chinese girl, and has briefed Democratic and Republican Presidential candidates along with hundreds of others. He said he got started down this path when one of his children got cancer and he had to re-evaluate everything he'd ever held dear.

    An alternative to reading his book is watching his "brief" (I haven't). You can buy it on DVD from C-SPAN or download it free from Johns Hopkins.

    http://www.jhuapl.edu/POW/rethinking06/video.cfm#barnett

    http://www.c-spanstore.org/shop/index.php?main_page=product_video_info&products_id=193938-1

    Don't read his columns or second book until you've seen the brief or read The Pentagon's New Map, they won't make much sense.

    For an eight page "cliff notes" version, you can go to:

    www.elequity.com/contego/alphasoup/OBCTestimony.pdf

    'but you really ought to read the book.
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  •  06-23-2007, 11:05 AM 24803 in reply to 22471

    • WiseLalia is not online. Last active: 12-08-2007, 11:07 AM WiseLalia
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    Re: Guest Suggestion: Thomas P. M. Barnett, author of The Pentagon's New Map

    I want to support having Barnett on Integral Naked.  Both the IN members and Barnett would gain from this interaction.  Here is some background on Barnett and his work.

    Barnett, born in the mid 60s, obtained his Ph.D. at Harvard where he focused on Russian geo-politics.  Getting his degree at about the time of the overthrow of the Soviet Union, Barnett ended up working for the Department of the Navy and the Pentagon for 15-20 years.  Barnett is married, the father of four children, three biological children and one “Chinese daughter.”  Barnett has written two books for the public: The Pentagon’s New Map (2004) and Blueprint for Action (2005).  Although he is a Democrat, Barnett is seen more favorably by the neo-conservatives, though no political movement claims him as an agenda-setter. 

     

    Why is Barnett of interest to integal thinkers?  Barnett is an integral thinker.  His analysis of 21st century geo-politics is an integral analysis.

     

    Some of Barnett’s basic ideas: The world is divided into camps.  The Core, the group of developed nations, has a high standard of living, an educated citizenry, and will not war against another Core state, because that would be counter-productive.  The Gap, commonly referred to as the Third World, is a collection of isolated states, where life is miserable and war is common both within the state and between states.

     

    The Core is Western Europe, the USA, Canada, Japan, Israel, Australia, and New Zealand.  The New Core is a collection of states that has almost made it into the club: Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Eastern Europe, China, India, Pakistan, Russia.  The Gap is all the other states.

     

    How Barnett distinguishes the Core from the Gap is essentially the distinction between a state governing from the Blue value meme or below, versus the Orange value meme or above. 

     

    Barnett unknowingly agrees with Ken Wilber when he says that the greatest threat to peace is “unconnectedness.”  Barnett is referring to states in the Gap having no stake in peace as they gain nothing from it.  “Connected” states do gain from peace, since they benefit from trade.  Wilber’s way of speaking of this is that what is needed in the world is higher consciousness.  Barnett would say more “connectedness.”  Both are speaking of the same thing: a world in which there is no reward for war, only for peace.

    Lalia

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