The United States, the so called policeman of the world, is failing to police a really serious problem in the world. The current Global War on Terror has about “230,500” military personal in Iraq and Afghanistan (Infoplease). The Global War on Terror currently has cost “5,376” American lives (Infoplease). There is another Global War that exists today that will cause many deaths in the future if the problem isn’t controlled. This other Global War that exists wouldn’t cost any American lives. The time has come for the United States to enter the war against Global Warming and stop the destruction of the only place humans call home, Earth. America needs to enter into this war by passing national climate legislation. In order to pass national climate legislation the United States has to change their capitalistic mindset that runs politics in government. Sphere Sovereignty theory of limited government is the answer for a successful change in American government and has to be the idea Americans grasp onto to help save this beautiful planet.
Capitalism is “an economic system in which investment in and ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange of wealth is made and maintained chiefly by private individuals or corporations, as contrasted to cooperatively or state-owned means of wealth” (dictionary). “A capitalist economy, a term coined by 19th-century German economist and social theorist Karl Marx to describe a system in which a small group of people who control large amounts of money, or capital, make the most important economic decisions” and in 2010 seems to be making every other decision as well, from political decisions to environmental ones (about). “Capitalist economies concentrate power in the hands of wealthy business people, who aim mainly to maximize profits” and businesses find themselves maximizing these profits by destroying Earth (about). Big time corporations only care about increasing profits, not don’t care to act in environmentally sound manner. Profits usually decrease when acting in environmentally friendly manner and no CEO wants to lose his five summer homes to save the environment. Capitalism is a great concept that drives on the ideas of the freedoms Americans value deeply, but capitalism needs to be kept in check and has no right being in government. Government should be a separate entity with no influences from multi-billion dollar industries.
The fight against Global Warming in America has gotten even harder to combat and capitalism grows stronger every day, especially now with the Supreme Court’s decision in the United States. In a 5-4 decision the Supreme Court “overturned a 20-year-old ruling that banned corporate and labor money” in favor of Citizens United (foxnews). The Supreme Court struck down the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA). BCRA was an amendment to the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971. The Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 provisions are: “requirements for candidates to disclose sources of campaign contributions and campaign expenditure, Federal Election Commission created, public funding available for Presidential primaries and general elections, legal limits on campaign expenditure for those that accept public funding, legal limits on campaign contributions by individuals and organizations”(fec.gov). The Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 prohibited: “donations directly from corporations, labor organizations and national banks, donations from government contractors, donations from foreign nationals, cash contributions over 100 dollars and contributions in the name of another” (fec.gov). The Supreme Court dismantling these acts leaves the government widely venerable to big time corporation influences.
The Citizens United decision impacts the environment greatly. The Green Party, which its environmental platform is “Human societies must operate with the understanding that we are part of nature, not separate from nature. We must maintain an ecological balance and live within the ecological and resource limits of our communities and our planet. We support a sustainable society which utilizes resources in such a way that future generations will benefit and not suffer from the practices of our generation. To this end we must practice agriculture which replenishes the soil; move to an energy efficient economy; and live in ways that respect the integrity of natural systems” (gp) doesn’t stand a stand a chance now to get members into congress when up against Democrats and Republicans. Sanda Everette, co-chair of the Green Party, stated that “The ruling especially hurts the ability of parties that don’t accept corporate contributions, like the Green Party, to compete.” A big disadvantage is right “big oil and corporate polluters spent over $500 million to kill the climate bill, and push for offshore drilling” (climateprogress).
Imaging how much money they will spend to get a politician in there that won’t even bring up a climate bill. Ruthless businesses will shell out millions of dollars to get their candidate into congress. Once their candidate is in congress, he will pass or shoot down any legislation that will affect the company that got him into office. Big time businesses like Exxon can virtually buy a seat in government now. They already shell out millions of dollars in lobbying to stop legislation from being passed; now they can just get right to the source and empower the person they want. Businesses won’t have to spend money on lobbying because they already will have a person in congress that won’t bring up laws that will hurt affect company profits. Big time industries can go ahead and pollute the world and raise Co2 emissions, while controlling government through shelling out numerous dollars in elections. Someone will likely argue well the citizens of the United States will see what is wrong with the Citizens United decision and stop this atrocity from happening.
Average American citizens don’t have money to fight a multi-billion dollar business. Most American citizens can’t give adequate support that is needed for climate legislation because they are dealing with immediate issues: working nine to five so they can pay off their mortgage, putting food on the table, and provide other necessities for their family. The general public and blue collar workers also don’t have enough time to be adequately informed about every politician’s platform. Most of the time people get home from work and relax by watching TV. “Americans watch more than 142 hours of TV a month” which means people are receiving a lot of their information from what they see on the television. Big business being able to donate as much money as they wish can pay for tons of ads to be aired on TV supporting their candidate running for election. Essentially corporations can now buy elections. Once their candidate is in office he will shoot down any laws that will hurt his corporate sponsor. That isn’t right. The government should remain separate and not succumb to any sort of influence by a big time corporation when it comes to policy making. The sphere sovereignty theory that stems from the law framework theory of reality offers a new way of thinking that Americans need to take to stop the environmental crisis.
Law Framework is “the idea of a framework of laws under which all created things exist and function” (Clouser, 243). Law Framework “includes all the different kinds of order we experience to exist, and regard them all as equally real components” (Clouser, 244). All things exist and function find their orderliness under at least one of these aspects “quantitative, spatial, kinetic, physical, biotic, sensory, logical, historical, linguistic, social, economic, aesthetic, justitial, ethical, fiduciary” (Clouser, 244). Things pass through these functions either actively or passively. A rock’s active functions are quantitative, spatial, kinematic, and physical; whereas an animal’s active functions are quantitative, spatial, kinematic, physical, biotic, and sensory. A person would pass through all the aspects actively. A passive function would be a tree stump being used as a chair.
“All creation depends directly and equally on God, so that all genuine aspects are equally real” (Clouser, 241). This needs to be taken into account when working with the Law Framework, because “Any one aspect isn’t more real than any other, or that any aspect produces another” (Clouser, 242). There is no one order of experience or component that is any more real than another or any component more dominant than another. This means the fiduciary aspect isn’t higher than the spatial aspect. A person isn’t superior to a rock because a person actively functions under the fiduciary aspect and the rock doesn’t. Law Framework theory of reality gives the guidelines to the sphere sovereignty theory of limited government that should be followed to run an orderly, equal state. This is a brief summation of the guidelines that constitute law framework theory, but now there is enough information to show how the Law Framework theory is applied when talking about government.
Sphere Sovereignty is the idea of limited government. Sphere Sovereignty uses the principles associated in Law Framework to interpret justice and make the rules for a just government to follow. Spheres are areas of authority that naturally arise in human life; a just state confines its authority to its own sphere. Society has irreducible spheres of authority “any one aspect isn’t more real than any other” (Clouser, 242). An example is a business staying out of the government aspect in a society. A corporation’s purpose is to provide people with a product and make a profit off the product. A corporation has no right in saying what law should or shouldn’t be passed in Congress. A business and the government are seen as two separate identities “having a distinctive nature” from one another (Clouser, 242). Things having a distinct nature shows that one doesn’t produce the other either. Sphere Sovereignty is also non-hierarchal so one sphere isn’t any more dominant then the other because. The government has no right telling a company what the price of a certain product should be. The state is there not to dominate over the public but to keep things equal and just.
When it comes to the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United sphere sovereignty is in direct opposition with the outcome and wouldn’t allow the horrendous decision to happen. In Sphere sovereignty a society has irreducible spheres of authority, meaning government can’t intrude on business and business can’t intrude into the government sphere. The government only has the right to intrude into the business sphere to fulfill the government’s duty out “the sword of justice, to mete out corporeal punishment to the criminal” meaning the government has the right to step in if a business is breaking the law (Kuyper, 93). “The highest duty of the government remains therefore unchangeably of justice and in the second place it has to care for the people as a unit” (Kuyper, 93). The BCRA was put in place by the U.S. Congress to protect their citizens from business paying for elections and putting a person they want in power. Sphere sovereignty would agree with BCRA as the right law to have. Justice comes from everyone having an equal opportunity during an election. The Supreme Court making it illegal for the Federal Election Committee to ban corporate donations goes against sphere sovereignty because the government and business sphere is no longer separate.
There is no hierarchy amongst man and “no man has the right to rule over another man” (Kuyper, 82). Everyone is equal and the government should reflect equality. A person’s voice, with a five figure income, is hard to hear over a multi-billion dollar company. Businesses will be able to buy elections and pass legislation that best suits them. Businesses become the top dog in America and will be able to run the government by shelling out numerous dollars into a campaign that will see their candidate win. Their candidate win’s because their voice will be the only one heard with numerous ads on TV promoting their platform and ads slandering the opposing candidate. There is no longer an equal playing field; corporations now rule the political game. The Supreme Court striking down the BCRA put big time business on top of the food chain. One sphere shouldn’t dominate over the other. Business blocks out any single voters voice of being heard. A person having a sphere sovereignty mindset stops this from happening. A person knows that a company has no right saying what should be illegal and legal. The BCRA was one way of keeping a sphere from intruding into another sphere.
Sphere Sovereignty also deals with capitalism and the way big business influence government policies. Americans need to fight this “new organizing principle that has moved into place in the West that acts in the same totalitarian way as statism did in a previous era” (cardus). This new form of totalitarianism is consumerism that has “grown out of the individualist pole; it has been shaped and developed in response to the primacy of the sovereignty, needs, demands, and wants of the individual” (cardus). Sphere sovereignty will have Americans “challenge the supremacy of consumerism, and to ask what the proper purposes of economic life are and what limits there should be to its influence” (cardus). People controlling their consumer behaviors with a sphere sovereignty mindset will limit capitalist powers. People having a sphere sovereignty mindset will ask business to work ethically and produce less. Capitalism will take on a new shape to keep up with the sphere sovereignty principles and “economic activities thus need to respect families, justice, good marital sex, and rest from work and shopping. We need to move toward an institutional life that is not dominated by consumption” (cardus). Americans understanding and learning about the sphere sovereignty theory will learn that American over consumption isn’t necessary.
“The State must see that the wheels operate as intended. Not to suppress life nor to shackle freedom but to make possible the free movement of life in and for every sphere. It must provide for sound mutual interaction among the various spheres, insofar as they are externally manifest, and keep them within just limits” (cardus). The government has a duty to keep business out of other spheres, which includes the environment because “the Law framework theory point of view is that everything in the universe has an ethical aspect because everything has at least passive properties in every aspect. That means not only animals but plants and inanimate objects such as lakes and rocks have ethical rights passively. There are ways we may not treat them and other ways we must treat them in order for us to have acted ethically” (Clouser). Heating up the planet isn’t ethical because as the planet heats up the environment changes killing thousands of species and making them becoming extinct. Global warming is has been the holocaust to countless species. Humans have no right to intrude on an animal’s sphere let alone kill them off. Government provides justice and can protect the environment and animals by watching over big business practices and enacting a climate bill.
If America takes on the sphere sovereignty way of thinking business will be held to the sphere sovereignty standard. Multi-billion dollar companies can’t buy their way into government and will be accountable for all their actions. Business are social institutions and “social institutions have rights and obligations, not just individuals. So families, churches, schools, businesses, etc., all have ethical rights and obligations to one another. That’s why, on the sphere sovereignty view, a business may not pollute a river or destroy a landscape even if it owns it. Legal ownership does not confer an absolute right to dispose of property in any way whatever. Disposal and use of property must also meet sphere sovereignty criteria” (Clouser). Sphere sovereignty criteria also forces everyone to recycle properly and consume less in order to protect the planet.
The Netherlands government is one that runs under the sphere sovereignty theory of limited justice. The Netherlands does a good job in protecting the environment. “The cost of environmental regulation is high in the Netherlands as compared with other countries, but strict environmental regulations may even enhance the competitive advantage of firms, because they can trigger innovations in products and processes” (pbl). America having environmental regulations will spark innovations from the car industry to produce eco-friendly cars and oil companies to look for a cleaner fuel source. In February 2003, “the Netherlands’ Ministry of Transport, Public Works, and Water management aired a series of ads on the theme of inundation” due to Global warming and climate change (Kolbert, 120). “A quarter of the Netherlands lies below sea level;” instead of waiting for disasters like America did with Katrina, the Netherlands does their best to anticipates natural disasters in order to prevent deaths from happening. The inform their citizens of the possibilities that can happen from global warming. The Nether lands spent “$390 million dollars to lower surrounding dikes and flood rural areas to prevent disastrous flooding from happening in heavily populated areas.” Unlike in American politics where plans take a forever to get passed by congress, the Netherlands know “it is important to get started immediately” on projects that help preserve the environment (Kolbert, 125). The Netherlands recognizes the government’s role to protect its citizens. Sphere sovereignty offers the change the United States needs to undergo to thrive as a country and protect the planet from global warming.
America adapting the sphere sovereignty theory, situations like America backing out of the Kyoto Protocol would never happen. America would have enacted a lot more environmental policies then the Clean Air Act in 1990. The government would have the duty to take a stance in protecting the environment. The Chinese “plan on innovating around these climate problems, and selling to us, and the rest of the world, the technology that’ll lead the 21st century” (guardian). American taking a sphere sovereignty approach in government that wouldn’t be the case. The U.S. government would pass a climate bill for the country to meet. American corporations would have to think of new environmentally friendly ways to meet government standards. GM would produce a new car that met emission standards set by the U.S. and companies would have to operate factories in an environmentally sound manner.
Congressman John Shimkus, of Illinois “dismissed the dangers of climate change by quoting Genesis 8:22: “As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.” He added, “I believe that’s the infallible word of God, and that’s the way it’s going to be for His creation” (newyorker). Sphere Sovereignty would rebuttal his argument with that “sphere sovereignty writers point out that according to the book of Genesis, God placed humans in charge of his creation when he ordered them to “dress the garden and keep it” and gave then “dominion over it”. The word translated ‘dominion” is actually a term for “stewardship”; he made then caretakers of nature” (Clouser). People aren’t here to dominate and use all the earth’s resource but take care of the planet. America would lead the way in protecting animals and stop the extinction rate. People being superior to animals have the duty then to protect them from harm. Joe Barton, of Texas “who is one of the House’s top recipients of contributions from the oil-and-gas industry” wouldn’t be allowed to accept such things from the oil and gas industry. President Obama wouldn’t have to push for a climate bill because it would already be understood in a sphere sovereignty form of government that a climate bill is necessary. How people think is the order that they act in and sphere sovereignty is a way of thinking that will protect this planet from global warming.
The time has come for the United States to police the global warming situation. America can no longer play second fiddle to countries that have climate legislation. America believes in democracy, now is the time to show that democracy works and is the answer to protecting our planet. Democracy has the best chance for success under theory of sphere sovereignty. American citizens must change their capitalistic mindset that has been so detrimental to our planet and adopt a sphere sovereignty mindset. This country through sphere sovereignty will lead the world in defeating global warming.