Is “connectivity” transitive?

I think I’m beginning to have a better understanding of the differences between what Tom Barnett believes and what I believe:  he believes that connectivity is a transitive property.

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  • Barnett’s model has a largely static view of the world. His postulated flows are really aggregations, rather than individual streams, and changes in one can vastly change others. Barnett’s model doesn’t really seem to account for that, and seems to rely on the ability to change just one thing.

    Unless he’s developed his model further, the flows are unidirectional, and that’s clearly wrong. For example, the Core attempts to assert a rule set, such as “no nukes for terror-supporting states”, and the Gap asserts a counter rule set: “not only do we get nukes, but attempts to assert a rule set over us result in wars in Lebanon and Gaza, so there”.

    It’s a good theoretical framework for understanding the sources of international instability, but it has serious flaws that need to be addressed before it can be used as a tool to change those sources of instability.

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