CHICAGO, Ill.-Just when it seemed the “global cities” movement couldn’t be more overtly radical, former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Feb. 28 addressed the non-profit organization Chicago Ideas to pump his new book-the title of which takes the proverbial mask the rest of the way off the movement and lays bare its worldview: “The Nation City: Why Mayors Are Now Running the World.” Thus, the “nation city” has suddenly become a singular part of the collective “global cities” vernacular.
Take note that Emanuel is not futurizing; rather, he is stumping to make the case that the nation state currently is an anachronism against which mayors, joined by some state governors, should rebel in order to usurp and “devolve” national power to the local level. The one-world architects themselves, many of whom run major foundations and think tanks, call it “glocalism.”
For this exclusive report, this writer has found that there’s been a gradual turning up of the “heat” on this issue that appears to be deliberate. Three or four years ago, at forums that this writer has covered, such as the annual Pritzker Forum on Global Cities in Chicago, there were several suggestive statements about localities doing an eventual end-run around the nation state, but most of the statements were confined to mayors wanting “a seat at the table” in order to be more seriously “consulted” about immigration policy, international trade, and foreign policy and diplomacy.
The next step up came in February 2018 when Ivo Daalder, who’s president of the influential think tank, the Chicago Council on Global Affairs-which puts on that annual Forum on Global Cities each June-traveled to London’s illustrious Chatham House think tank, which is in the same “money line” as the infamous Council on Foreign Relations. The program that Daalder attended explored the revealing question: Should cities have their own foreign policy?
That very same month, then-Mayor Emanuel, who served two terms before his 2019 retirement, helped unveil the “Resilient Chicago” plan-an offshoot of the North American Climate Summit in Chicago held in December of 2017. That summit, the first of its kind held by the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy-an EU-created entity presided over by former New York Mayor and former presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg-produced the Chicago Climate Charter. That pact comports with the ongoing “global cities” movement.
Emanuel signed an Executive Order at that time in early 2018, committing largely unwitting Chicagoans to the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement, not only as pushback against President Trump for backing the U.S. out of that pact the year before-but also to accentuate the point that, under the global-cities rubric, the nation-state itself is being constantly marginalized.
What’s fundamental here is that the participating mayors pay no heed to the Constitution’s Article I Section 10, to wit:
No state shall enter into any treaty, alliance or confederation . . . . [and] No state shall, without the consent of Congress, enter into any agreement or compact with another [U.S.] state, or with a foreign power.
At the Chicago Ideas interview on CSpan 2, where Emanuel shared several personal stories with moderator and Ariel Investments CEO Mellody Hobson, he was silent on the fact that municipalities are creatures of their respective states and therefore would automatically collide with Article I, Section 10 under any city-foreign diplomacy scheme.
“You say the future of society is with mayors and cities,” Ms. Hobson noted. “Yes,” Emanuel, a former U.S. Congressman, replied, while adding: “A third of [my] book is about the center of gravity of our politics is moving out of Washington, out of Brussels, out of London-to local.”
In his view, national governments are rife with “distance, dysfunction and disinterest.” From the vantage point of the locals, he said, those gaps should be filled with the “intimate, immediate and impactful” policies of cities. “Local governments are leading the charge on climate change; local governments are leading the charge on immigration,” he continued.
Emanuel, who also served as a White House staffer in the Clinton and Obama administrations, ascending to chief of staff for the latter president, added that while the first third of his book is about “political science,” the subject of “urban politics” is next, and the final third, curiously, is Emanuel’s attempt to write his own history based on Winston Churchill having been asked how he knew historians would treat him well.
Churchill famously replied, “I plan on writing it,” which is what Emanuel is doing accordingly.
To be sure, Emanuel, who became Chicago’s first Jewish mayor, spoke proudly of his Jewish upbringing in Chicago, though not in religious terms, while outlining several ideas for what he sees as proper city governance (improving K-12 schools, better libraries, better mass transit, entertainment events and other aspects of city life). He feels these things provide “shared experiences” which function as the glue that prevents “diversity” from tearing society apart because no one can agree in a multicultural society on the basic tenets of workable governance.
But, while stressing that “diversity becomes a liability if you don’t agree on something”-and noting that 147 languages are spoken in the Chicago Public Schools-he took a sharp ‘left turn’ by saying: “I really think what this country needs right now is national service,” instead of simply suggesting, for starters, that English should be the official language and should be strictly adhered to in the schools to improve communication and social cohesion.
Moreover, national service agencies such as AmeriCorps are premised on the people serving the government and not the other way around. And Emanuel’s municipal ideas, whatever their merit, do not require a total restructuring of the local-state-federal relationship to be implemented. So, some worthy ideas that might stand on their own merit instead are leveraged toward achieving a more illicit “end-game.”.”
The Latin phrase adopted by America, E Pluribus Unum, or “out of many, one,” evidently doesn’t qualify under Emanuel’s vision as a means of finding common ground and common cause, because, in a true melting pot, there’s assimilation. Accordingly, the chaos of 147 languages in the schools would be quelled with a strict adherence to English.
Nor does Emanuel seem to recognize America’s dominant Christian ethos and European roots that until recently produced social concord. Those of Emanuel’s secularist ilk for decades have instead screamed for “separation of church and state.” But since the “diversity” (i.e., multiculturalism) that Emanuel supports is not the same thing as assimilation-where moving to America means you become an American in the fullest sense-his chief remedy becomes social engineering in the form of national service, instead of liberty under the law where “men are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights.”
Therein lies the delicate deception.