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Governance Problem: A Big Factor in Global Crises

Taking on the world's many problems starts with addressing the governance problem.
Taking on the world's many problems starts with addressing the governance problem.
Photo by Monika Graff/Getty Images

Increasing numbers of people around the world demanding their interests be met through political engagement is a boon for the democratic way of life, but the failure of governance through the world is a terrible threat to all nations and our modern world. As France andUkraine dissolve their governments over conflicting interests on every issue from economics to national security, competing factions struggling to establish themselves as the legitimate rulers of places like Iraq, Libya, and Pakistan, coupled with a lack of consensus governance in major powers like the US and Japan, a growing pattern is starting to reveal a major global problem.

If the issue were limited to just the United States, which faces persistent partisan gridlock, the issue could largely be explained away by a lack of leadership. If the issue was limited to a country like Afghanistan or Pakistan, the world could blame a history of ingrained dysfunction. If the issue was limited to a place like Iraq, the world could simply blame the problem on irresolvable cultural differences. Limiting the issue to Spain, for example, would indicate a problem rooted in degenerative fiscal policies while the situation in Ukraine could be classified as a distressing situation brought on by damaging outside influence. As dysfunctional governance is a globalized issue, all these factors and more must be blamed as the world has embraced a culture of dysfunction that is not yet fully understood.

When an individual encounters an obstacle in his, or her life, that person is able to overcome that problem given enough time, resources, support, knowledge, experience, skills, and perseverance. When a person’s capacity to cope with a situation is overwhelmed, the ensuing crisis results from an inability to resolve the issue (s) at hand. The same is true for state actors, i.e. governments. Considering the myriad of issues faced by governments around the world, as well as personal differences, political leaders are overwhelming their capacity to cope, thus they shut down, conflict, and/or engage in other defense mechanisms that is culminating into dysfunctional government.

Unfortunately, there is no one straightforward answer. Solving the problem does, however, starts with individual leaders who must engage government in order to represent the interests of their supporters, balance those interests with the broader interests of everyone, offer balanced solutions to issues, and try to work under the frameworks of broadly supported already existing solutions while being willing to embrace personal sacrifice, which Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki did in the end, instead of consistently taking hardliner stances and pursuing personal interests over national interests. It also involves working with other governments and security forces to suppress those who willfully use violence when others refuse to submit to their self-serving demands. Finally, globalized dysfunctional governance must be addressed by the Peoples of the world proactively engaging their governments in a constructive manner, i.e. helping to find practical, viable issues that balance the interests of all fellow citizens.