Hedley Bull, a British scholar of international relations, stated that anarchy was "the central fact of the international system and the starting place for theorizing about it." (Bull 1966: 35) No international legislature makes laws to regulate the relations between states and no supreme executive stands ready to inhibit the actions of a single state when those actions oppose the common will. No authority exists to which one state can turn for justice in its affairs with its neighbors. It is due to this absence of a central governing body that the international system is often described as an anarchical system. Anarchy is, therefore, simply the absence of a higher governing authority. Sovereign states are autonomous and independent. Because of this autonomy there is no world government. 1/ANARCHYJames C. RobertsTowson University
The roots of of the word anarchy literally mean "without a leader." The word combines the Greek prefix "an-" which means without, with the Indo-European root "arkh" which means "begin" or "take the lead." Historically, being without a leader signified the absence of a political ruler (Shipley 1984, 18-19). In common usage anarchy has come to signify both the absence of a ruler and the disorder that is bound up with the absence of a ruler. The Oxford English Dictionary gives its first definition of anarchy as "absence of government; the state of lawlessness due to the absence or inefficiency of the supreme power; political disorder." (Oxford University Press 1971, 301). Although wars and conflict dominate the image of international relations, anarchy does not mean disorder. It simply means that among sovereigns, there is no ruler, no superior authority, and thus no world government. In fact, recent theory of international relations attempts to understand why so much of international relations is well ordered and peaceful in the absence of a supreme ruler. 2/
Literally, anarchy refers to the absence of a ruler. More generally, political anarchy is the condition of any polity that is lacking in formal institutions of government at the system level, that is highly decentralized with respect to the distribution of authority and power. Defined in this way, anarchy is by no means synonymous with disorder or chaos. There is no a priori reason to conclude that the emergence of effective systems of rights and rules is infeasible in polities characterized by a high degree of decentralization with respect to the distribution of authority and power.
(Young 1978, 272)
"With many sovereign states, with no system of law enforceable among them, with each state judging its grievances and ambitions according to the dictates of its own reason or desire - conflict, sometimes leading to war, is bound to occur. To achieve a favorable outcome from such a conflict, a state has to rely on its own devices, the relative efficiency of which must be its constant concern." (Waltz 1959: 159)From this view, anarchy means that nation-states must be constantly aware of the motives and capabilities of their neighbors. Power is measured in relative terms. That is, states need not be the most powerful, merely more powerful than their potential enemies. Cooperation with others should be done cautiously to avoid dependency. Orderly international relations emerge from the uneasy standoff of a balance-of-power where equally powerful states avoid conflict out of uncertainty and fear of the outcome.
. . . if one plant, sow, build, or possesse a convenient Seat, others may probably be expected to come prepared with forces united, to dispossesse and deprive him, not only of the fruit of his labour, but also of his life or liberty. And the invader again is in the like danger of another.Hobbes posited that because of this anarchical state of nature, humans naturally and inevitably devise government to mediate the disorder. Without government, there can be no commerce, no property, and no order. Sovereign individuals willingly surrender some of their autonomy to obtain these benefits. So, why does the anarchy of the international system not generate a world government in the same manner? Hedley Bull called this question the domestic analogy. He claimed that there are characteristics of the nation-state that preclude a similar process at the international level. Among these characteristics are the state's self-sufficiency and the ability of individuals in a state to bond together for common defense.
And from this diffidence of one another, there is no way for any man to secure himselfe, so reasonable, as Anticipation; that is, by force, or wiles, to master the persons of all men he can, so long, till he see no other power great enough to endanger him. (Hobbes, 1964:83)