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A Singable Earth Charter, EU Constitution or Global Ethic?

Also published in abridged form in Statistics, Visualizations and Patterns (Vol 5 of the Yearbook of International Organizations, K G Saur Verlag, 6th edition, 2006/2007, as section 10.4.2) under the title: Why any Earth Charter or EU Constitution should be Singable.
Guidelines for consideration
Policy implications: a "Concert of Democracies"?
Cognitive engagement with complexity
Individual identity within global frameworks
"Singing the Earth"
Sustaining collective memory of articulations of collective intent
Distinctions relevant to technical considerations
Organizational implementation

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Guidelines for consideration

The following considerations could be borne in mind when reflecting on the potential role of song in ensuring that a Constitution should have credibility and value beyond that typically associated with legal documents:

  1. Needs to be short -- but able to embody a complex pattern of information (in the light of advances in auditory display and sonification)
  2. Needs to be memorable -- especially in the sense of its function of "re-membering" a divided society
  3. Needs to offer reminders of significant relationships between matters that may otherwise be treated as dangerously unrelated -- vital feedback loops from a systemic control perspective
  4. Needs to be attractive in the context of a complex social system -- especially according to the new understanding of "strange attractors" in the complexity sciences
  5. Needs to strike a balance between the dysfunctional symbolic extremes of:
    • the Ode to Joy, adopted as the anthem of Europe -- appealing primarily to the older generation, if only because of its classical quality, exemplifying the democratic challenge that admiration does not necessarily enable participation
    • the overwhelming popular winner of the Eurovision Song Contest in 2007 (Hard Rock Hallelujah) -- a heavy metal band in monstrous demonic guise, appealing significantly to the younger generation [video]
    • the 300-pages of the legal text of the proposed European Constitution [more] -- unreadable, and therefore incomprehensible, to most EU citizens (and perhaps deliberately so)
  6. Capable of being refreshed periodically, if not annually, in the light of new insights, challenges and opportunities -- and if only in recognition of the limitations of any previous version
  7. Inviting participation, if not entraining it -- as a contrast to the apathy-reinforcement characteristic of modern political discourse
  8. Inherently imaginative -- reframing the past, offering new significance to the present, and pointing to new ways of thinking about the future
  9. Challenging to cognition -- an element of puzzle and mystery to be "solved", as with many computer and other games in which there is a gestalt to be recognized (possibly even at several levels)
  10. Imminently practical in its elaboration -- as with the procedures for open competition for major architectural or other design projects
  11. Susceptible to animated accompaniment -- with possibilities of exemplification through multi-media techniques and gaming simulations
  12. Embodying systemic understandings valuable to governance at all levels -- and consonant with experience at those levels
  13. Challenging to the conventional mindsets of lawyers, managers, politicians, academics, designers, commmunicators and system builders -- responsible in their various ways for the current democratic deficit and the failure to address the issues of society effectively
  14. Implying the future possibility of techniques whereby principles of governance could be elaborated from aesthetic patterns -- as a complement to the dominant tendency to use costly marketing techniques, including promotional music, to render legal texts acceptable
  15. Offering a new vehicle for the articulation and transportation of value-charged insights -- especially a vehicle capable of holding the values of the future
  16. Encompassing meanings and values held to be significant by a greater proportion of the population -- bridging the cultivated divisions between political parties
  17. Offering means of embodying the paradoxes of contemporary society -- and suggesting perspectives from which they may be transcended
  18. Responding to the collective schizophrenia which fails to bridge between aesthetics and governance -- between "opera" and "work" -- as complemetary disciplines, exemplified by the role performed by epics in some cultures (eg the Mahabarata in India, the Dragon Dance in China)
  19. Suggesting harmonious patterns of complex relationships, so effectively explored in the discipline of musical harmony -- and practiced by singers worldwide
  20. Embodying an aesthetic feel for what "Europe" means -- and what it means to be a "European" in a European cultural context, or a citizen of the world
  21. Giving credibility to challenging responses to challenging complexes of social problems (as exemplified by: the 12 songs of The Globalization Saga: Balance or Destruction, 2004, as a CD accompaniment to a book by Professor Franz Josef Radermacher, FAW - Institute for Applied Knowledge Processing, Ulm, in association with the Global Marshall Plan Initiative; the 13 songs in the CD accompanying the book of Alan AtKisson, Believing Cassandra: an optimist looks at a pessimist's world, 1999 -- the AtKisson Group is currently engaged in a strategic review process for the international Earth Charter Initiative)
Das über das Medium Musik, auch komplizierte Sachverhalte einfach transportiert werden können und Songs als Brückenschlag zur Seele funktionieren und damit sensibilisieren die Augen für notwendige Entwicklungen zu öffnen, das hat sich bei den bisherigen Präsentationen der Musicalsongs bewiesen, sowohl in Bildungskontexten als auch in internationalen Konferenzen. Franz Josef Radermacher, member of Club of Rome
len Konferenzen. Franz Josef Radermacher, member of Club of Rome

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