Since the very beginning, humanity started to expand the zone of its influence and habitat as wide as possible. It was both, a mixture of curiosity and the need to find new people, places, goods, forms of living which lead to the expansion of humanity over the centuries around the world. With the increased population around the globe, first civilizations emerged from the settlements and formed the ancient empires.
Mesopotamian Civilization as the pioneer, Indus Valley Civilization was one of the most widespread, Mayan Civilization which had achieved a complex and remarkable knowledge and understanding of Astronomy. Ancient Greek and Chinese civilizations, which formed the idea of democracy and invented paper and silk respectively. And, doubtless, the most famous and the most powerful Roman Civilization which transitioned into the Roman Empire and made an invaluable impact within and around its territories.
Over time, civil war outbreaks, protests, important political decisions, the development of human rights, non-acceptance of the slavery and wars, led humanity to the point where the ideas of libertarianism and constitutionalism were formed and accepted. The complex of ideas, mechanisms and patterns were established to uphold liberty as the core principle and to establish the constitutionally based society where the rights of the individual will be outlined and protected by the government. With the development of constitutionalism, it was much easier to define the rights of the individual. Obligations of the government were codified and the maintenance of peace and order within the controlled land became less complex. Important to note, that the existence of the constitution within the state does not mean that the defined rules will be enforced, and vice versa, as the UK, shows the remarkable example of a constitutional based state without having a single codified document.
At the same time, one thing remained unchanged, as the society passed the simplest forms of government, the importance and power of the wealth keepers became more and more significant. Traders went into the politics and became aristocracy in the future, others wanted to earn money and enjoy the influence and goods given by the capital. But the power of capital has always been presented strongly around the globe, and it was clear that with the development of the means of transportation the influence will go even stronger. The first individuals, caravans and ships going between distant settlements and lands were not only about the cultural exchange, making alliances and knowing your neighbours but mainly to know the perspective trading possibilities and calculating potential income.
The first famed trading route was formed around 120 BCE when ancient China desired to get better horses from the other states of Europe and Hellenic Asia. In order to get what they want, the Silk Route was established and the first caravans went this way. Alongside the silk, porcelain, spices and many other goods, there was an established channel of information that was used to collect data about the trading partners. People started to invest money in enterprises in the other lands to support the exchange of goods and stimulate trading and the most fortunate ones formed corporations. Silk Road can be considered as the official start of globalisation process which was steadily developing before the massive outbreak in 1914, as the means of communication and international policies went on the new level.
In 1945 when the World War II ended, the combination of population overload, intentions to prevent similar devastating conflicts and to strengthen the ideas of peace around the globe were used to introduce globalization as a tool that will achieve these results. Through the global network of communications, trading routes and travelling, regional economies, cultures and societies should have been mixed and integrated with each other. The rapid development of the globalisation process gave outstanding powers to the transnational companies as their representatives started to promote their interests in various fields.
When the bipolar world order was gone as the USSR collapsed and the forces of socialists no longer kept the balance and with the depletion of socialism, the extension and construction of liberalism and capitalism based markets became so much easier. This was the time when the new-constitutionalism is believed to be formed, and it promoted a new global order and represented by the political policies derived from the classical neo-liberalism. The separation of the democratic and economic practices by giving the priority to the global economic goals rather than regional and national is one of the aims of the new-constitutionalism. If such aim is to be achieved, the dominant economic forces, such as transnational organizations will be protected from public accountability and democratic processes.
To achieve the necessary restriction level of the popular democracy, new-constitutionalism is insulating economics and property rights from both democratic and oligarchic interference. That is why, American constitutional model can be considered as the world`s first bourgeois republic which has developed completely and can be used as an example of applied new-constitutionalism. International agreements on trade, investments, rights of a private property, as well as reinforcing the international organizations such as IMF or NAFTA are justified to provide better stability in the state. In fact, such arrangements are likely to involve adoption of standards and rules that are beneficial for the global economic system fitted for the super corporations.
The globalization process is often blamed and considered as the main driving force for the development of new-constitutionalism. The current state of globalization forced governments to adopt policies which are opening economies of the states both domestically and internationally. In the last few decades, globalization has become more like a battering ram for the large scale, internationally-mobile forms of capital that used to enforce the required political view where it is necessary. This combination of new-constitutionalism in the context of globalization clearly shows that the current developments in the law making process are guided to be more market oriented. The steps accomplished by the transnational companies to the liberalization towards the world where market power forms the dominant role in any society are clearly seen.
New-constitutionalism is willing to reclassify the market in a more privatized and commodity way, as the enthusiasm of transnational companies to expand must be maintained on a high level. Intellectual property rights amendments are a bright example how economic policies and private property rights can be regulated. This can be achieved using politicians to imply required ideas within the government and to use their power to bring those ideas to the wide audience to present them in a purely positive perspective. For instance, when planning their financial and money related policies, governments are normally taking some certain steps to get the desired results, so the rules of taxation, issuance of licenses or putting down public assets on a bargain are applied. On the contrary, neo-constitutional model aims to amend or propose the law in the way to reduce budget deficits or provide capital and business sector significant tax bonuses.
The international policies and treaties are playing one of the key roles in defining the position of the transnational corporations. The North American Free Trade Agreement was signed by the USA, Mexico and Canada to ensure that there are no barriers for the trading between these three states. This is a remarkable example how an international treaty was used by the USA to boost its economy at the expense of the other members of NAFTA. More than 98% of the investments made by the US to Canada were made to takeover local companies and corporations, and it is estimated that at least 10,000 companies were taken by those investors. The other member of NAFTA, Mexico, paid its price when the US government subsidized the production of corn sector, to make it more competitive on the export market. As a result, farmers around Mexico, especially the poor ones have gone out of business as there was no chance for them to compete in such unfair circumstances.
The other remarkable example is fairly new, as the treaty of Eurasian Economic Union was signed on 29 May 2014 by Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. EAEU is considered to be similar to the NAFTA and to ensure that the trading among its members is free of any boundaries and simplified bureaucracy can be applied. At this very moment, EAEU consists of 5 countries: Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia. In terms of economic and political power within the Union, Russia is an undisputed leader, but also it is 2nd in terms of wealth and power in the region, passing leadership to China. As a result, there are certain fears that having the largest corporations among the members, such as “Gazprom”, “Rosneft”, “Sberbank” and many others, Russia can suppress the economics of the other member states to benefit its own.
New-constitutionalism also provides corporations the ways to enter the areas, which are not supposed to be controlled by the commercial organizations. There is no need to doubt or even discuss the importance of basic human necessities, but there are some areas where profit maximization can be harmful and even dangerous for the public. “The Hidden History of ALEC and Prison Labor” provided by The Nation in 2011 exposes the insights of the cheap labor provided by some penitentiary institutions. The American Legislation Exchange Council proposed specific labor legislation, as well as toughened sentencing law to ensure that massive private firms in the US, such as CCA (Correction Corporations of America) and Geo Group would be able to gain profit from their prisons. Such problems may arise even in the areas of water supply, as it has happened in South Africa, in the township of Khayelitsha when in 2002 government wanted locals to lower the usage of water in that region but to gain approximately the same profit. There were special tariffs introduced, that encouraged using a specific amount of water and water meters were installed to help families to track their water usage and detect leakage. On the contrary, government did not manage to fix the problems with tabs that were leaking, and because of the recommended limits the over usage of water was extremely costly. In the end, those who didn`t have enough money to pay for the water expenses, especially the working-class, were advised by the government to use less water.
The other set of measures used by the corporations, is to prevent people from falling bellow certain level of poverty. It is clear that any profit-oriented organization needs a market to sell goods regularly that is why there must be a purchasing power kept on necessary level. In such circumstances, ordinary poor customer will not start asking questions and potentially believe that government is capable of protecting the necessities of the vulnerable class of the society. In fact, new-constitutionalism is creating a system where government is giving money to the poor via Social Protection funds, so they can spend them on the goods made and enforced by super corporations.
All the discussion and criticism about globalization, lack of bipolar geopolitics and new-constitutionalism stated above leaves questions that needs to be covered. Is it really that bad, to live in the world based on the principles of the new-constitutionalism? Does it really matter, who is the manufacturer of the bread you eat for a breakfast, as long as it is fresh and made with natural ingredients? Isn`t it fair that the strongest prevails while the weak ones perishes, unable to compete with an opponent who is qualitatively better in every aspect? Why should we blame corporation for the violation of the basic human rights, when there is a government who failed to look after the abusive usage of powers?
To be fair, it is important to point out, that globalization would never be as developed as it is now, without the ideas and promotion of neo-liberalism and new-constitutionalism. Most economists tend to agree, that globalization provides benefits to the economies around the world. Globalization process helps to get rid of unscrupulous companies that are established around the world and abusing their mostly monopoly powers to provide people substandard goods at standard or even premium rates. Increasing competition around the globe gives companies stimulus to provide better goods, at better prices as well as optimize the processes within the corporation. Technological advancement would not be as rapid as it is, as the globalization tends to maximize company`s output and force it to reach the next level of production which leads to different innovations. Last but not least, the prosperity of the state is increasing in every single aspect, because massive corporations operating within the country attracting direct investments. New workplaces decreasing the unemployment level and raise the level of life, life expectancy and motivate people to immigrate to the prosperous state.
Unfortunately, the general public tends to agree that the price of such artificial economic intervention in the country is extraordinary high especially in the short-term. Destruction of the local business, abuse of natural resources and ecological catastrophe as it happened in China, laws that need to be changed in favor of the investors as they need guarantees that their assets are protected. No need to say, that even the basic human rights and necessities may be endangered.
It was stated by Karl Marx back in 1848, that globalization of capitalism is inevitable, as there are processes in the capitalist approach that require constant expanding. According to Marx, capitalism is doomed to look for the new markets, get the cheapest labor possible and requires continuous supply of natural resources. Classical economic theory says that capitalism supports competition, and it can be self-sustained without any help from the outside, but the facts we see today are the opposite. Hypermarkets like Walmart in the US, or Tesco in the UK have overwhelmed local shops, while the small local banks or even medium size banks networks are long gone and replaced with such giants as J.P. Morgan chase, Barclays, Santander and others. Technological advancement has changed as well, as any startup which has even the slightest chance of being innovative and profitable is immediately being merged by corporations like Sony, Apple or Samsung. The main problem of globalization is that at this very moment it goes hand by hand with the principles new-constitutionalism and neo-liberalism. Those principles are endangering humanity with inadequately powerful monopolies so tightly assimilated with the government, that it is getting hard to distinguish one from another.
There are certain problems arise, when there is such specific monopoly expanding at dangerous speed and covering the vast majority of the essential areas of human life. According to the Amnesty international, out of the 100 largest economies in the world, 49 of them are countries while the remaining 51 are the companies. All the transnational super companies are basically doing the same thing to promote their business and expand the area of operation. That is why, all of them combined can be considered as one single ginormous corporation that is monopolizing every aspect of our life. And as a result, states cannot ignore them when proposing the law, formulates the economic course for the next few years or simply adjusting the existing law. And if such corporation collapses, the best expected outcome would be to maintain the losses on the financial level only, because the chance of massive human casualties is extremely high.
Globalization has impacted every single aspect of our modern life, and it is likely to be inevitable in the long-run. It is purely logical to understand, that if the humanity keeps breeding, at some point in the future, every single square meter of the Earth would be covered with different buildings. We cannot even imagine, what would happen with the languages, as there is a chance that a there will be only one used by the whole population while your mother`s tongue would be used within specific locations. Eventually, this is the ultimate goal of the globalization, to literally erase differences of humanity and unite us all no matter what. But before that happens, there certainly will be changes around the aspects which appear whenever globalization comes. And those changes will be initiated by the economic problems and crises, as well other negative consequences caused by the globalization