Separate or Together?
Many people quit their job and go off on their own only later to get a board of advisors, join networking groups and trade associations. Britain left the European Union but a number of other countries are trying to join. The Texas Republicans voted to leave the US but thousands of others are trying to get in. Methodist churches are leaving the denomination. Separate or together, which is better? That all depends on what you value. "Network Effects" also play a role.
Many people who control natural resources such as farmland or oil and gas resources have a fierce independence. They need to protect those resources and naturally support separation. It can be quite satisfying to think that we don't need anyone else.
Does separation help everyone? Not necessarily. The costs of "Brexit" are still being compiled, but recent estimates put a 4% per year cost to the total British economy and small businesses in Britain claim an 11% cost. Since small businesses are the engine of the future, that suggests that "Brexit" will be costing Britain more and more over time.
The Methodists have a median age of 65 which means that they have a deeper split between the young and old. If the churches do not find a way to serve the young urban working families, the churches will be closed in twenty years.
On the Great Seal of the United States of America, we have the phrase "E. Pluribus Unum". The meaning is, "out of many, one". We have built a great country out of different states, many peoples, and radically different ideas.
Some reasons for our success are that we have a common currency, federal laws, common patent system, and easy movement between the states. Because of these, ideas and cities have flourished.
Business networking groups tout the economic value of networking. Some businesses that participate in networking get 80% or more of their business through such groups. People working together for common purposes can help each other succeed. Business people need all the advice and outside knowledge they can get.
"Network effects" describe how when more and more people interact with each other, new ideas, new businesses, and new ways of making money appear. The more people who interact, the more value is found in the connections. This is why large cities have value even though they have more crime, more diseases, and much higher costs. Large cities bring people together to generate new wealth. Larger free trade regions build more wealth.
Separate or together depends on what we value and on how quickly our circumstances change. When our environment changes, we have to learn new skills and new ways of dealing with this changed environment. No amount of separation can protect us from all changes. In a changing world, we often do better together with other people who can help us.