The centrifugal forces are too strong

In this post, I discuss an article with the title: “The Catalan crisis poses a threat to the European order” by Tony Barber, published in the Financial Times, October 6, 2017.

Tony Barber argues that “The nationalists’ push for independence risks opening a Pandora’s box of problems“.

That is an understatement.

Catalonia

Goya’s ‘Duel with Cudgels’, in Madrid’s Prado museum, is an apt image for the struggle between the Spanish government and the Catalan separatists © Prado/Getty

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Catalonia, Brexit: Is it mass hysteria?

catalonia

What problem will be solved?

Great Britain, Catalonia, Scotland, Poland, etc. have one thing in common: All these states – for whatever reason – now emphasise their autonomy – independence – from an ‘order’ (‘Europe’) they all are an integral part of, and for their security and well-being highly dependent on.

The integration of Europe, came at a high price, and has brought evident advantages, to all.

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The Architecture of Complexity: Simplification of the System’s dynamics by adding hierarchical levels, Part II

In the publication “The architecture of complexity” (1962), Herbert A. Simon makes several observations concerning the typical structure and dynamics of complex systems.

In three articles, I discuss two questions concerning the development of the System.

To answer these questions, I make use of Simon’s perspective on the structure and functioning of complex systems. The two questions are:

(1) How can the phase transition the System experienced during – by means of – the fourth systemic war (the Second World War, 1939-1945) be explained? and (2) What can Simon’s insights in the functioning of complex systems contribute to our understanding of the condition of the current international order and what can – according to Simon’s perspective – now be expected?

In Part I, I introduced some of Simon’s observations.

In this article – Part II – I have a closer look at the phase transition the System experienced by means of the fourth systemic war (the Second World War, 1939-1945).

oprichtingsvergadering-van-de-noord-atlantische-verdrags-organisatie-navo-in-washington

The North Atlantic Treaty was signed on 4 April 1949 in Washington: A non-anarchistic hierarchical structure is established in Western Europe.

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The international order: From mutualistic to parasitic?

M3

Our understanding of biology, ecology, ecosystems etc. is far more advanced than our understanding of social systems. The relationship between the structure and dynamics of ecosystems is extensively researched. The use of the scientific method by these disciplines explains their valuable insights and their progress.

Biology, ecology and ecosystem theory also offer interesting insights and concepts to improve our understanding of social systems.

Symbiosis – and mutualism, commensalism and parasitism – are such concepts.

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The Architecture of Complexity: Understanding the development and dynamics of the System, Part I

Architecture of complexity

Complexity and hierarchy go hand in hand (illustration: source)

In the publication “The architecture of complexity” (1962), Herbert A. Simon makes some observations concerning the typical structure and dynamics of complex systems.

In three articles, I discuss two questions concerning the development of the System. To answer these questions, I make use of Simon’s perspective on the structure and functioning of complex systems. The two questions are:

(1) How can the phase transition the System experienced during – by means of – the fourth systemic war (the Second World War, 1939-1945) be explained? and (2) What can Simon’s insights in the functioning of complex systems contribute to our understanding of the condition of the current international order and what can – according to Simon’s perspective – now be expected?

In this article I discuss several of Simon’s observations, before discussing these two questions in Part II and III

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Why were military organisations identical at the start of the Second World War?

Division 1st_US_Infantry_Division_WWII

This diagram shows the organisation of a US Army division during the Second World War: its organisational structure and capabilities are (almost) similar with divisions of other nations.

At the start of the Second World War (1939-1945), the organisational structures of – for example –  a German Wehrmacht – and US Army division were almost identical: Not only their basic – fractal – structures, but also the capabilities that were available at the various levels of organisation of these divisions.

Around 1500, but also now at the beginning of the 21st century, the organisational structures of ‘armies’ show much more variation.

How can this phenomenon be explained?

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