2009: Fighting Globoliath

Fighting Globoliath

  Publication by Fourth World Review, a Transition Journal, London, No 151 Nov/Dec 2009

Over fifty years sjnce Kohr’s Breakdown of Nations was first published, former Austrian Ambassador Michael Breisky hails his theory of scale as being more relevant than ever.

David’s fight against Goliath is a wonderful story every century loves to reenact. For me, the 20th century’s fight was between David Leopold Kohr and Globoliath, crown-prince of the Philistine empire of Globalisation. The fight began in the mid-1950s, when David Leopold, the Austrian born philosopher, wrote his „Breakdown of Nations“. Using this book like a slingshot, he hurled three simple ideas against Globoliath:

  1. One: At any time, every man and every woman is good for a big surprise (and not to speak of children!).
  2. Two: The complexity of things increases with the square of their size.
  3. Three: Man’s capacity to understand complexity is limited. If complexity rises beyond this limit, surprises are likely to get nasty and nastier.

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