[IRPCoalition] Time-sensitive: 24 hour sign on period for ITU Plenipot joint recommendations

michael gurstein gurstein at gmail.com
Wed Oct 22 23:34:51 EEST 2014

Actually Milton, the term is "We the Peoples". recognizing the diversity and
multiplicity of the peoples of the world and presumably their various forms
of governance and aspirations towards efficacy and empowerment including
through their representative governance structures most of which at least
nominally have presented themselves as "democracies". 


True that many states haven't lived up to those early aspirations, (some of
us even remember when the US could, with a straight face present itself as a
fully functioning model democracy) but this is no reason to deny the
legitimacy of those aspirations and instead out of what--cynicism, fatigue,
self-interest, racism, elitism-whatever--opt for governance through
corporate autocracy errr. a multi-stakeholderism dominated by Western,
technocratic, primarily male, overwhelmingly white elites.


But at least I give you credit for being clear and straightforward in opting
for this form of governance by "private sector-based MS institutions", would
that others in CS were as forthright in admitting where their loyalties




From: Milton L Mueller [mailto:mueller at syr.edu] 
Sent: Wednesday, October 22, 2014 1:04 PM
To: 'michael gurstein'
Cc: 'bestbits at lists.bestbits.net'; 'IRP'; 'governance at lists.igcaucus.org'
Subject: RE: Time-sensitive: 24 hour sign on period for ITU Plenipot joint


The UN has never been about "we the people." It has always been about "we
the states." With nearly half the states in it being nondemocratic, and
international law treating any and all states as sovereign individuals with
equal rights, "democracy" in the UN system means one government, one vote. 


Not 'democratic' in the good sense at all. We can agree on this, however: 


we should find alternative and effective ways of manifesting [snip]
democratic impulses in this new era and with new mechanisms and processes.


But personally I think private sector-based MS institutions are doing a
better job of that than anything that will come out of the UN and its
clientelist co-optation of civil society and development groups. And some of
these institutions work better and preserve the freedom and autonomy of
communications better precisely because they are _not_ democratic in the old
sense of pure majority rule.


Milton L. Mueller

Laura J. and L. Douglas Meredith Professor

Syracuse University School of Information Studies


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