Banality of Rogues

The famous Prussian Jewish philosopher Hannah Arendt, an anti-Nazi who slept assiduously with the Nazi Heidegger, her thesis advisor, married to someone else, wrote about the “banality of evil”, a concept that became famous… Although Arendt’s “discovery” would have made the Catholic Inquisition shrug and smirk, five centuries prior (the Inquisition would have said:’This is exactly what we have been talking about, evil everywhere!’)

Today I will speak of the banality of rogues. You see rogues tie in with the (re-)Foundation Principle. No rogues, no civilization. (There goes one of the main critiques against Donald Trump! Yes, I just saw the movie “Rogue One”…)

We have a real, huge example in history, the very base of our present civilization: the Franks were both rogues, and “renovators”, as they themselves described themselves, of the Roman empire. No less. But actually the Franks did much more, founding Western civilization in full, by outlawing slavery, making secular education mandatory, and running an imperial, military society which, somehow, saved and overcame antiquity, while preserving an open society (the whole picture got in trouble with the First Crusade: see, it’s the fault of Islam, once again, ha-ha-ha).

I was reading in a history publication, how the Roman empire went down, and they mentioned all sorts of barbarians: Visigoths, Ostrogoths, Burgundians, Vandals, Alans, Huns… They forgot to mention the most important ones, the ones vested with Roman power, more than any others, the Franks… It was as if they talked about breathing, but forgot to mention air.

Ignoring the re-foundation of Rome by the Franks is ignoring, not just history, but the re-foundation of civilization, no less. Indeed the Franks removed the most glaring defects of Rome.  (That “renovated” empire officially went on until Napoleon, emperor of the rogue imperial part of said Roman empire called Francia, then France, shut it down in 1804.)  

Habitable Exoplanet With Ring In the Movie Rogue One: In Our World, Our Mental World, There Are Now Exoplanets Everywhere. In 1600 CE, Giordano Bruno got burned, just for suggesting that.

Habitable Exoplanet With Ring In the Movie Rogue One: In Our World, Our Mental World, There Are Now Exoplanets Everywhere. In 1600 CE, Giordano Bruno got burned, just for suggesting that.

[Earth may have had a ring at some point in the past (some scientist have speculated, looking at some otherwise weird data). Thousands of exoplanets have been found since the first one, 51 Pegasi b, at the University of Geneva eleven years ago. An exoplanet was found, in 2016, around the closest star, Proxima Centauri, a red dwarf; the planet is in the habitable zone. Details are unknown, as the planet does not seem to come between us and its star; good spending in astronomy would allow to look at it directly, using existing technology.But our corrupt leaders have prefered to give money to our plutocratic masters, and, thus, crumbs to themselves, rather than making science all it can be. Science is the one job for all, and necessary for survival, moreover.] 

How did Rome die? Basically from sclerotic thinking, mental paralysis, senility: the establishment by Augustus of his damned “Principate”, with a permanent “First Man” (Princeps) at the helm, was the fundamental cause of mental decay. We The People got completely disinterested from the most interesting question, and the few families at the helm were too idiotic to have any new ideas.

Once mental decay is at the helm, and pervades the base, nothing can save a society: when problems occur, they can’t be solved. This is what happened to Rome. Confronted with worse problems in the Fourteenth Century France sailed right through, as nothing had happened, because Fourteenth Century France was an intellectual power machine, greatest in civilization so far, ever.

Buridan, who was worth ten Newtons, at least, having overturned Aristotelian physics, discovered ⅔ of “Newton’s” laws, and justified, as a result, the heliocentric system, was not just chief of the university of Paris, but counselor to four French kings. That was typical of the situation in France, England, Germany and Italy at the time. Buridan’s network of students and collaborators extended throughout Europe. Meanwhile Florence’s bankers funded that Italian Republic’s mighty army with national bonds…

So the fierce, swift and abominable Black Plague killed half of Europe, and no aristocrats… So what? Rome, affected by smaller plagues, tottered on the brink of extinction…

Yes, one can point to the sorry state of the Demoncratic Party, with its entrenched interests, drinking the elixir served by self-serving plutocrats (such as those who set-up Obamacare without cost control. And no, don’t point at Trump; he and his Kellyanne Conway, among others, are a breath of fresh air, after decades of increasingly metastatic plutocracy. We will see what they do.

Sometimes heavy destruction is the only way to construction. It is alway the case, when the construction is huge. (And this is true for brains too, explaining why philosophers have it hard, when they interact with the commons… and reciprocally!)

Oh yes, it can hurt: this is the implicit theme in the last Star War saga (“Rogue One”). The rebellion has done evil things we are informed, and we see it trying its very best, to do some more (the father of the heroine is assassinated by the rebellion, although he works against the empire; the movie is notable also for the fact the main hero and character is a human female in her full glory, second to males in no way whatsoever!)

It is a complicated world. It will get ever more complicated. Mastering its complexity is the most crucial part in fighting evil. To master complexity, one has to understand it first. Thus, standing in the way of understanding is the greatest, deepest meta-evil.

Only rogues dare to understand, and act upon, what others refuse to understand, or even see. Rogues are necessary to progress, forward, and civilization is riding a bicycle: no forward motion means collapse. Because a ruined ecology is always biting at the heels of civilization.

Civilization may not like rogues, but it needs them, to be born again, with a better intelligent design, necessary for survival.

Being a rogue is not just a neurohormonal state. It is a mental architecture. Studies just published showed that first mothers get their brains permanently modified (details another time). Similarly a rogue brain is different from the brain of a servant of the establishment like Obama. It is permanently different. Giordano Bruno, or Galileo, or Descartes, or Montaigne or Abelard, were permanently different.

The superiority of the “West” (“Pars Occidentalis” as the Romans said) is due to its being just enough of a host medium to rogues. The fate of rogues was not as good in Islam, by orders of magnitude; after he got in so much trouble for fighting the Church, Abelard, in the Twelfth Century, toyed with the idea of going to live among the Islamists (so he wrote). Wisely, he did not do it: he would have been killed there (instead, in the West, his ideas won, over the centuries…)

Happy New Year To All (even the abysmal Obama, basking in Oahu, and his cohort of the corrupt!)

Rogues watch ants with sympathy…

Patrice Ayme’

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13 Responses to “Banality of Rogues”

  1. ianmillerblog Says:

    I have just seen Rogue One too – my view is what is unusual here is the script-write is firmly behind the heroine. And,of course, visual effects tend to lose any cause for thinking.

    I also get the impression you are a little tough on poor old Isaac. As for Rome, I have to agree. The problem was the senatorial class were more concerned with their personal wealth than with Rome. When they started to base their army on mercenaries, they forgot the mercenary is not interested in discipline, the original strength of Rome. The late legion was a mere shadow of, say, under Corbulo.


    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      A bit too tough on Isaac?????? Well, attributing way too much to Isaac, is stealing from others. Worse, it hides how thinking evolved. Isaac was great. Stupendous. However, he was not Buridan class. Buridan showed Aristotelian physics was wrong. Inertia existed. The Earth could fall around the Sun.

      That idea, falling around, given to Newton, was known in writing at least a generation before Newto’s birth. Buridan pointed out there would be a sort of rotational inertia. It’s likely the idea of falling around originated then. Kepler had it. Kepler thought the law was 1/d. Bullaldius, a French priest/astronomer who was at the Royal Society when newton was in diapers, or not yet born, got the 1/dd law, from a scientific reason.

      Descartes is arguably more important than Newton. Although he got the physics wrong, he got the analytic geometry right. Then Fermat invented calculus. Newton invented what I would call geometric calculus. Stupendous, yet minor. Newton had his optics. Spectacular, but it’s likely the prism was invented before (see my latest essay on glasses).

      Who invented what, when, why and how is crucial to understand civilization. For example reading exactly what the predecessors of Buridan, some of them Muslim, tried to do is enlightening. The Muslims did not go as far, by a very long shot, probably because they were afraid to be executed.

      Buridan, though, was a rogue. He refused to do the religious thing. Yet he became rector, and adviser to kings, thus untouchable: it’s the case of the rogue who ends up leading the rebelion and sitting right of the emperor (French kings were “emperors in their own kingdom”, from the deliberate split out of the Roman empire in the latish Tenth Century…)


  2. Partha Shakkottai Says:

    Hi Patrice:
    A bit off topic but interesting. This is strange. The passion for secrecy might have been the motive but the technique is impressive. Refer to


    for full explanation.

    Planetary orbital times of

    Number/ Planet /Book Number/ Number of Riks in the books/ Days /Ancient /Current/

    5/Saturn,/VIIxVII , /104×104, /10816,,/ 10,759.30/

    is an example for 5th entry, /Saturn, /of books VII multiplied by VII /which is 104 and 104,/ancient /and current values./

    The code has been retrieved for all 5 planets. and both synoidal and sidereal periods. If the code is not known this information vanishes and people who are not initiated into the code see nothing. They ( like Wendy Doniger) see only some primitive rubbish and don’t have an idea of the information it is hiding two thousand years before Kepler.

    Similar deciphering has produced planetary diameters listed by

    From Indian Civilization Part 2 : Astronomical Observations

    By Raj Vedam, Jan 2016

    (all dimensions (2r) in miles)

    Mercury 3008 (Vedas) 3032 (Modern)

    Saturn 73882 (Vedas) 74580 (Modern)

    Mars 3772(Vedas) 4218 (Modern)

    Venus * 4011 (Vedas) 7520 (Modern) ocean of CO2 + rocky core

    Jupiter * 42624 (Vedas) 86881 (Modern) gas giant

    (*Maximum discrepancy with least earth like planets. Saturn has no discrepancy even though it is also a gas giant.The gas in this case is heavier methane.There was no way of finding composition of gases or even if they were gases at all, in 700BC.)

    Of course the night sky is a giant clock with multiple dials and multiple hands. And pretty accurate at that, because they are the actual phenomena and not a gear driven clock with low friction.

    Astronomy is an observational science. You can’t experiment but you can observe and deduce what it means.

    I wish to add more. Kepler’s laws or their equivalents from 3000 BC are not enough to get planetary diameters because gravitational force and centripetal force are equal and planetary mass cancels out. The only explanation is to use an independent principle, the conservation of angular momentum of the initial solar disk. It would be fascinating where it is hidden in Vedas. No matter. I have shown it gives reasonable sizes and the fact that such a list exists means some one was clever enough to have thought of it In 3000BC, 25 centuries before Newtonin dynamics.

    Is all this physics hidden somewhere in Vedas ?


    • Gmax Says:

      Hi Partha. Sounds strange. I thought Patrice said it was nearly impossible to determine the phases of Venus, because Venus’ disk can’t be seen by a normal human eye, even under best circumstances.
      So how could they see Mercury’s disk directly, without telescope???????


      • Gmax Says:

        If Venus could be seen as a disk, the Ptolemaic system would never have been considered. Patrice showed the drawing.


        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Indeed. Well there was an in-between model, as I said somewhere. Galileo’s observations did not exclude it, stricto sensu. The key was economy of thought. (More refined studies of venus phases excluded it later, with better telescopes!)


      • Partha Shakkottai Says:

        What are synodic and sidereal periods of planets?

        Vaibhav Sharma, Physics Grad Student in IIT Bombay
        Written Oct 15, 2014

        “The difference between both periods lies in the vantage point from which you observe the planet.

        The time taken by a planet to go around its parent star as seen from a fixed point outside the system is called the sidereal period. It is the actual time it takes to go around the star.

        The time that a planet takes to return to its exact same position with respect to the star as seen from a planet also in motion around the same star is called the synodic period. It is the relative orbital time that an observer perceives from his/her own vantage point as that point itself moves around the star.
        For example if someone observes the Mars from the Earth,  he might mark the Mars’ position in the beginning as the one where Mars, Earth and the Sun are in a line. The next time that he/she observes Mars to be again in line with both the Sun and the Earth, that time would be the synodic period as it would be the perceived orbital time of Mars as seen from the Earth. In that time, the Earth will actually overtake Mars as it completes its orbit and only when they both realign with the Sun does the synodic period complete.”

        You don,t need telescopes and phases of planets to do this.


  3. Partha Shakkottai Says:
    Is the site I referred to above.


  4. Gmax Says:

    Rogue One is a very nice movie, just saw it, on your recommendation. Inspiring to see a woman running the show. The movies is the darkest of all star wars, thus the deepest.

    Even the Republican minded rebellion is showing up as quite nasty, and the empire a bit more nuanced. Anyway, loved it. Reminding us of the beauty and fragility of our home, third rock from the sun, and only blue dot


  5. Kevin Says:

    Bonsoir. Je tenais juste à sacrifier à la tradition et vous présenter mes meilleurs voeux pour 2017, passant outre mes petites vexations; je ne sais pas trop comment vous évaluez ou évaluerez cette année écoulée, mais je me permets de vous souhaiter une bonne et heureuse nouvelle année, qui ne lui soit que supérieure en tous points! Ceci pour vous, pour vôtre famille, vos proches, et vos écrits!
    My passive-aggressive comments will otherwise resume shortly, as my petty-mindedness sees fit.


    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Bonsoir Kevin, et meilleurs voeux. Et merci des votres. Desole’ du delai, mais il m’arrive de ne pas avoir le temps de me connecter a mon propre site. Vos commentaires sont toujours tres apprecies, car ils m’apprennent des choses. C’est un mystere que quelqu’un avec un emploi que vous decrivez vous meme comme modeste, ait des commentaires aussi judicieux…

      Cela doit etre en partie l’air des montagnes (vous etes a Chamonix, non?) Tres important, les montagnes…

      Aggressivity is necessary to intellectual achievement. A dirty little secret Conventional Wisdom is afraid to recognize. It was just discovered, it’s necessary for… motherhood(!!!). So why not the sainthood of higher thoughts? Petty mindedness too (the obsession with detail…) So let’s hope your comments are back…

      (Dominique seems to be sulking ever since I did not seem really sorry of seeing Clinton/Government Goldman-Sachs, lose the election… However, I must confessed I am delighted…)


  6. Amlecciones Says:

    Full of thought, your writing. Agree to some of your ideas, I do.


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