A must read for all who are frustrated with the world that we presently exist in - sickness, inequality, migration, the big corporates dictating everything equals misery. This is not what life is meant to be. I would say Simpol is the first step and one that we can all take NOW I would suggest anybody who enjoyed this book will love Peter Joseph's book The New Human Rights Movement. It is great to see these and the other books like them on our book shelves, it really does mean enough of us are questioning how things are and seeking answers
A famous phrase about politics is that it is "the art of the possible." In recent years with much disillusion around, sometimes the possible seems far away.
Written by a businessman/campaigner and a psychologist looks at the contemporary scene with issues like globalisation, religious fundamentalism, population growth and ecology and looks for ways that some of these issues might be addressed. Though looking for political solutions, this book is not aligned directly to any political ideology. Their approach is more psychological in the manner of Jonathon Haidt's The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion in seeing ideologies as reflecting angles and values connected with look at the world. It also draws on Integral thinking and Spiral Dynamics suggesting insights they bring to the area.
Though this, the authors look at what blocks some of these things. They point to institutions both governmental and corporate and suggest one of the major blocks is an over emphasis on competition and competitiveness which leads to various forms of progress being blocked and leaving citizens feeling disempowered. It also suggests ways this block might be surmounted which bypasses the limits of party lines and the corporations.
A fascinating short tract that offers many insights and may point to a new way of doing politics that breaks old limtations
Finger on the pulse writing with witty titles and eclectic use of fairy tales, poignant quotes, political and psychological insight and sharp lateral thinking making grand use of biology, history and physics. What an application! These well educated men, it seems, find themselves on a path with potential riches at the end that aren't about wealth, fame or historical notoriety, but something far more valuable - heart and a common humanity! After reading I am vibrating to the same political frequency as theirs - SIMPOL!
This book makes clear the fundamental phenomenon behind so many of today's intractable problems such as environmental degradation, namely 'destructive international competition'. This is essentially transnational corporations playing one country off against another to get the best terms. Whilst I kind of knew that already the solution was far less obvious and so it was a delight to read through the carefully thought through details of the Simpol solution.
This material needs to get 'out there' in university courses, political circles. the media, etc. More than anything its ideas should be included in today's movements aiming to make a better world. Perhaps John Bunzl and Nick Duffell should even initiate their own Simpol movement.
The SIMPOL Solution offers the key to how our current world problems can be resolved in an effective and tangible way. It brings a new hope to politics with a brand new perspective and innovative thinking, proposing a real solution for lasting global change. We should all become aware of how our world could finally change for the better and how we can all make a difference, and this book can be the answer!
This book is a powerful diagnosis of many of the world’s current problems, which it puts down to competition between nations. It is this competition that leads nations to lag behind on a range of issues where it pays them to do so, such as environmental legislation. If everyone else incurs short-term costs by clamping down on poor environmental practice, a nation that doesn’t do this gains a short-term advantage. Because there is no overriding international authority to impose a ‘level playing field’, the temptation to do this ‘free riding’ is too strong, especially in democracies where governments have to deliver well-being quickly.
The authors’ ingenious solution is that world leaders should get together and agree a set of policy areas where they agree there is a problem and where they will co-operate and not free-ride on others’ goodwill. They will then agree a set of policies and put them into practice simultaneously (hence the book’s title, SIMultaneous POLicy).
In democracies, the driver for this can be voter power. If enough people sign up for Simpol, pressure can be put on at the ballot box. With non-democratic countries, the problem is harder. The authors suggest that, given the fact that most non-democratic countries are poor, some of the simultaneous policies should favour poor countries, such as an end to western farm subsidies and a global tax on multinationals, the super-rich or on financial transactions that would be distributed to poorer nations. Pressure would also be put on ‘rogue’ states that, despite this, refused to play ball.
The authors cite fascinating examples of where co-operation has emerged in that apparently most competitive of areas, evolution.
Can this work? Looking around the world at the moment, with strident nationalism becoming louder, not quieter, the prognosis does not look good. But times change. This option needs to be there on the table when they do.
In The Simpol Solution John Bunzl and co-author Nick Duffell describe, with piercing clarity, the major obstacle to solving global problems, namely, the force of Destructive Global Competition (DGC). They show how it prevents governments from making needed changes to national policy on a whole raft of issues, because governments fear this will place them at significant competitive disadvantage relative to other nations. Bunzl and Duffell argue convincingly that recognising this situation, and realistically grasping a plan to counteract it, is hobbled by major psychological blind spots which affect governments and citizens alike. The suggestion is that moving past these blind spots requires us to go through the five stages of the grieving process put forward by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, and that it is only then that the need to move away from a nation-centred governance context towards a new context of worldcentric governance can be fully accepted.
To further complicate matters, Bunzl and Duffell show how the powerful unconscious forces which structure our need for identity can block this acceptance process. Using insights from a number of psychologists, with particular focus on Ken Wilber’s All Quadrant All Levels (AQAL) Model, they outline one possible way of understanding this process. They describe a series of levels of consciousness that all individuals and societies pass through, and note that the worldcentric perspective is only accessible at the second tier of this series. The shift from the first to the second tier is identified as a particularly difficult transition, and also especially relevant to our current predicament.
Bunzl and Duffell then outline a strategy for enabling this transition towards worldcentric political action. They identify ten criteria that such a strategy needs to meet, and demonstrate how the Simpol solution, a citizen-led global-policy platform, can meet those criteria. By giving citizens the tools to place political pressure on their representatives to support global policies which all nations adopt simultaneously, it has the potential to make the needed shift in governance context, from nation-centric to worldcentric. They conclude that this shift, from a competitive to a cooperative approach to global issues, is what is needed for the next phase of our evolutionary journey as a species, in which we begin to assume conscious control of our own evolution.
This is a very interesting book and so relevant for out times, the worldview requires worldview solutions, and at present that is sadly lacking and dismissed by Governments and other parties; A new paradigm and at the same time level of thinking and delivery is required and those that are aware & knowing will deliver, it will be a painful upheaval, but is no less required if we are all to change a systems and delivery that is fundamentally flawed, Now is the time.
The book not only offers an eye-opening psychological explanation of why we're stuck in a situation of "Destructive Global Competition", but also shows an original and thoughtful way out of it. Definitely worth reading!