‘The Experiment Has Failed’

IN THIS world, a rapidly shrinking global village, it is said that the chasm between the haves and have-nots is increasing. Commenting on the efforts to build a global economy, one international activist group declared: “After 50 years of this experiment, it is breaking down. Rather than leading to economic benefits for all people, it has brought the planet to the brink of environmental catastrophe, social unrest that is unprecedented, economies of most countries in shambles, an increase in poverty, hunger, landlessness, migration and social dislocation. The experiment may now be called a failure.”

What went wrong? When men pursue selfish aims, they are bound to cause harm. Investor-financier George Soros notes: “Markets reduce everything, including human beings (labor) and nature (land), to commodities.” Human imperfection is also responsible. Echoing the opinions of philosopher Karl Popper, Soros says: “Our understanding is inherently imperfect; the ultimate truth, the perfect design for society, is beyond our reach.”

Economic inequalities are hardly new. Eight centuries before Christ, a Bible writer spoke of those “who are defrauding the lowly ones, who are crushing the poor ones.” (Amos 4:1) After observing similar injustices, an ancient statesman wrote some 3,000 years ago: “Man has dominated man to his injury.”—Ecclesiastes 8:9.

What is the solution? Can human agencies solve the deep economic inequalities through international cooperation? “We do not have adequate international institutions,” says Soros, “for the protection of individual freedoms, human rights, and the environment, or for the promotion of social justice—not to mention the preservation of peace. Most of the institutions we do have are associations of states, and states usually put their own interests ahead of the common interest. The United Nations is constitutionally incapable of fulfilling the promises contained in the preamble of its charter.”

Should we despair? No. A righteous world government is around the corner! It was the theme of Jesus’ preaching. He called it “the kingdom of God,” and he taught his followers to pray for it. (Luke 11:2; 21:31) God’s Kingdom has been established in the heavens, and it will soon remove all injustice from this earth. (Revelation 11:15, 18) Instead of being a temporary experiment in rulership, God’s Kingdom will last forever. (Daniel 2:44) It will permanently solve the problems of poverty and oppression. What a magnificent prospect for the poor and the oppressed—actually, for everyone!

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The global economy has not solved the problems of the poor—billions still survive without running water or electricity