As we witness the antics of politicians trying to impose their version of the truth on the pandemic or the climate emergency, we could be forgiven for feeling despair.
How will we ever escape from this cycle of corruption?
When countries encounter problems bigger than themselves, they look to the United Nations and its agencies for solutions. But the U.N. is merely a reflection of its members: nation states, each pursuing their own interests dusted with the merest pretence of collaboration.
This is not to say that sometimes the right outcome emerges. Ceasefires are agreed, aid is dispatched and protocols are signed.
But it is always late and seldom enough to make a real difference.
In my latest book, Infinite State, the U.N. Secretary General understands the central flaw in the conduct of human politics.
Geography must give way to biology. Species must rise above nation. Only then can the planet and all its inhabitants secure their survival.
Of course, she is mocked. A simplistic and naïve idea, guaranteed to alienate every power bloc, every political party, every armed state.
Just as the cause seems hopeless she sees a glimmer of light coming from the most unlikely place.