A turning point in history?

I have spent the better part of many a recent conversation defending the positive aspects of galobalization--something which I find is too often condemned than considered. In any event, I will keep my statement brief and to the point.

It has been alleged that we stand at a sort of crossroads, where multinational corporations are gathering more and more power unto themselves, making national governments either obsolete or impotent. I would argue that any serious student of world history can find meaningful parallels throughout the course of human events. The one that springs to mind for me is the status of the senatorial landowners during the twilight days of the Western Roman Empire. Gradually, these men withdrew from affairs in Rome; and as the barbarians surged over Roman territory, they took to fortifying their estates. By close cooperation, these families survived, in some cases well into the Middle Ages, while the governmental apparatus of the Empire was gradually dismantled. Business interests were flexible enough to adapt to catastrophe; governments were not.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: There is nothing new under the sun. Countries will rise and fall, ideas will come and go, but the one constant is that people will look out for their own interests--at both the individual and corporate level--at the expense of everything else.