Editor’s Note: This is part 1 of CCN’s “Peace & Stability Through The Blockchain” Series.
As Zbigniew Brzezinski wrote in The New York Times, an ongoing global political awakening means more politically enlightened people, who hold a better understanding of colonialism and empire, and share a deep dissatisfaction with the status quo. As he wrote:
For the first time in history almost all of humanity is politically activated, politically conscious and politically interactive. Global activism is generating a surge in the quest for cultural respect and economic opportunity in a world scarred by memories of colonial or imperial domination.
In the US, this is expressed via the political success of two popular Presidential candidates this cycle: Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. In 2008, Ron Paul’s early leads throughout the nation also bespeak discontent among the population.
The legacy corporations now working in the blockchain space – keystone financial institutions and technology multinationals – have a long history of promoting peace and stability on Earth. IBM, which is “all in on the blockchain”, outlines the sort of moral and business fortitude needed to define the evolution of distributed technology.
During the Great Depression, Former IBM CEO Thomas Watson maintained the workforce, continued investing in people, manufacturing, and technological innovation. He increased benefits, and IBM became one of the first corporations providing group life insurance (1934), survivor benefits (1935), and paid vacations (1936). Watson opened the IBM Schoolhouse in Endicott for his employees, where he created a research laboratory as well. (Rogers 1969)
A survivor of the First World War, Watson believed commerce could be used as an obstacle to war. Business interests and peace were mutually compatible. Watson had the slogan “World Peace Through World Trade” carved into IBM’s New World Headquarters in New York City.
An IBM business mantra, Watson lived the slogan, campaigning the concept to global business and political leaders. He earned awards from foreign governments for efforting to improve international relations with business.
This vision and guidance leading the way, how might IBM, and its collaborators on blockchain, use blockchain technology to further peace through world trade via its Hyperledger Project with the Linux Foundation? First and foremost, to be realistic, by serving its clients. How might blockchain help this?
Thus far in the blockchain experiment, we’ve seen use cases for how it can be used. As the strongest use case so far, Bitcoin represents a formidable example of how trade and finance can be streamlined, and the unbanked banked.
There are still various other examples in which individuals believes blockchain technology can usher in a more peaceful society. While Bitcoin could do wonders for the unbanked and underbanked, it could do the same in other areas, like humanitarian aid, electric vehicles and welfare.
Images from Shutterstock and Wikimedia.