The still expanding human biomass and mindlessly pursued economic expansion are straining against the planet's physical limits. Oil! Energy! Ecology! Growing vulnerabilities in hyperlinked national economies! The transformation of the current global system, "mixed economy/weak multilateralism," into a radically new one, "two-level economy/strong multilateralism," looks like the only way to avoid drifting toward extinction.
Charismatic leadership and rational arguments cannot see us through such a transformation. Remember 19141945? That was the price of going from the first global system, "laissez faire/metal money," which ruled the world during most of the 19th century, to the current one. Only another chaotic interlude, another Darwinian showdown among forcefully supported alternatives, can overcome the ominous macrohistoric hurdle on the horizon.
The physical nature of history's unfolding supports this theory. The development and transformation of global systems is a thermodynamic evolution. Change in the network of billions of interconnected minds is its central process.