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By I. F. Dekker, W. G. Werner

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Of course the relationship between imperium and sacerdotium was an issue in political thought ever since Augustine’s “De Civitate Dei” and the Gelasian doctrine 10 clergy and feudal nobility formed trans-territorial classes that preserved a considerable degree of uniformity across the system. Behind many scenarios of new medievalism, there is a false dichotomy of modern order vs. (neo)medieval disorder. But what about such modern experiences as total warfare and mutual assured destruction? It is a sad truism that disorder and violence have walked along with history, and there are no signs that violence and disorder are going to pass away.

To give a flavour of what “overlapping authority and multiple loyalty” actually means in the life-world of the people concerned, it is illustrative to invoke the example of John Toul, who tried to balance rival obligations to four lords – Lord John of Arcis, Lord Enguerran of Coucy, the Count of Champagne, and the Count of Grandpré – with the latter two having equivalent status but precedence over the first two. “If it should happen that the count of Grandpré should be at war with the countess and count of Champagne for his own personal grievances, I will personally go to the assistance of the count of Grandpré and will send to the countess and count of Champagne, if they summon me, the knights I owe for the fief which I hold of them.

According to the 2002 edition of the Yearbook of International Organizations, 59 per cent of all non-governmental organizations have their headquarters in Europe. When adding the American percentage to the European share, the Western world scores 85 per cent of all NGOs worldwide. The Transatlantic bias of non-governmental organizations becomes even more evident if one compares the absolute numbers of NGO headquarters in different states. In 2002 there were 19873 non-governmental organizations, 3510 of which had their headquarters in the USA, 2012 in the UK, 1800 in France, 1028 in Germany, and 517 in Canada.

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