Question on securitization- short answer. A security question on the long answer. Understand the
connection between concepts, application of theories, definitions.
Peremptory norms (Jus Cogens)
Treaty law- particularly important to IR, due to the limitations to the first two laws. It allows
states to decide which particular treaties they want to enter into and which they do not. There is
nothing contained in the UN or the formation of it, that it will try to be a world state. How did
states go about treaties and answering incidents?
What’s the difference?
Why would a state pursue different types of treaties?
Unilateralism- one state forcing its way upon others
Bilateralism- two states involved
Multilateralism- many states involved.
USA is a country which pursues unilateralism more so than the other two, USA exceptionalism
tells us that it really does depend on which issue areas and states they are dealing with. There
have been instances where the US has pursue unilateral, bilateral (ICC, not only has the US
sought exemptions of its troops working in abroad but also exemption in bilateral treaties. Most
countries in South America know that when the US will involve their troops they are exempted
from the treaties), and multilateral.
Canada has not pursued unilateralism, doesn’t like bilateralism, it likes to celebrate the fact it is
the country that has signed more multilateral treaties than any other. Why? It isn’t simply
because Canadian leaders liked to do so, for instance realism would say that institutions, treaties,
etc are often exercises in power. We see this often with US with unilateralism (direct application
of power over a country that didn’t want you there), bilateral (agreement between two countries,
example US and Columbia, US has more power. If you want access to our military hardware and
our money you will sign these exemptions from ICC). Multilateral (it is simply a way in which
power is reflected). But neo-liberal institutionalism tells us that if we play the game again and
again you will ultimately hit a point of optimization. Power asymmetries within multilateral
institutions over the long term tend to be relatively flat (one country dominating that multilateral
institution over others- IMF and UN) Canada has tended to favour these type of multilateral and
bilateral treaties because looking at history we have been in shadow of other power countries.
Before it was our mother country, Britain, send Canadian troops to war, didn’t pay back our
money. Then we went towards US, who did the same thing. We would always be overpowered if we entered in bilateral treaties against a powerful country. This explains why a state would go in
one direction over other.
The problem with state-centrism…
Often governments control less resources than transnational actors
Not all national political systems are coherent
Distinguish government from society and nation from country
Theorizing about different actors
How do private groups, companies, and national minorities engage in transnational relations?
In certain countries those countries may have more power, what does it mean in the broader
picture of IR. Does it mean we have to re-theorize how we think of IR?
Transnational Corporations (TNCs)
Governments losing control?
Limited government control over international trade
Ability to move production constrains individual governments in regulation and taxation.
Capital flights- part of capitalism in a global economy means that companies can often
move their factories in various locations around the world depending on the price of
labour, tax, and environmental regulations. There is often no International law or lack of
it which constrains how certain transnational actors operates within IR. There is no body
that oversees all TNCS around the world. Coca Cola should they be operating in Mexico
would fall under the environmental regulations, taxation and the labour available there or
the cheap price of it there. Some companies have been involved with killing civilians.
Authority structure over TNCs generates extraterritorial impact and potential for intense conflict
between governments. Race to the bottom- such that it is in a global economy damaging to many
governments and societies if they say they will be less competitive with the rest of the countries.
Non-legitimate groups and liberation movements: