Values Inspire Foreign-Policy Revolution Across Borders

Values are a uniting force around the globe, slowly replacing an era of industry and economics, and soft power is more enticing than hard power for a global audience. National leaders may try to set new conditions for universal standards of justice, known as the moral high ground, but they can anticipate a struggle in justifying extreme and unreasonable claims for informed citizens in their own nations and elsewhere. Increasingly, cities, states and other entities reject the foreign policy stances of their own governments to work with likeminded people overseas, explains author and economist Joergen Oerstroem Moeller. Examples include California’s governor ignoring the US president’s decision to withdraw from the Paris agreement on climate change by exploring carbon-trade markets with China, leaders of Scotland and Wales bypassing Westminster to review their Brexit options with EU negotiators, and the Islamic State pressing for a large religious caliphate to replace governance by nations. Moeller concludes, “Irrespective of nationality, people reach across borders, united by common values, to defy policy positions adopted by their own governments.” – YaleGlobal