Posts Tagged ‘Rome’

Banality of Rogues

January 1, 2017

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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Cracking Down On Literal Islam

November 25, 2016

Europe is finally waking up to the danger of Literal Islam. “Literal Islam” means reading the fundamental texts of Islam as what they are supposed to be, according to Literal Islam itself: as the word of God. For me, Literal Islam, Salafism and Wahhabism are roughly synonymous.

Says The Economist:”In the very loosest of senses, all Muslims are Salafi. The word literally describes those who emulate and revere both the prophet Muhammad and the earliest generations of Muslims, the first three generations in particular. There is no Muslim who does not do that.”

So what did these three generations of Muslims do? They conquered, by the Sword, the greatest empire which the world had ever been. In a century. If You Think The Sword Is True, Islam Is True. If you think there are higher values than The Sword, Islam of the first three generations, is just an invasion by the most bellicose fanatics The world had ever seen. Have a look at this map, showing the brutality, the violence of the most significant Islamist attacks and invasions between 622 CE and 750 CE:

The Franks Fought Back Four Invasions in 715 CE, 721 CE, 732 CE & 737 CE To Islamist Caliphate Collapse in 750 CE.

The Franks Fought Back Four Invasions in 715 CE, 721 CE, 732 CE & 737 CE To Pure Arab Islamist Caliphate Collapse in 750 CE.

Tremendous civilizations were wiped out by the Islamist invasions, such as those of Mesopotamia and Iran, and the Mother of all Indo-European religions, Zoroastrianism. Not content with wiping out millennia of common civilizations, Islam tried to wipe out millions of years of human evolution itself, by making women half, or less, of men. (Whereas the human species has low sexual dimorphism.)

Thus, celebrating the Fundamentals of Islam is celebrating the fundamentals of a dramatic, extremely brutal invasion. The Economist however, pretends moronically that: “…there are Salafi mosques whose preachers are theologically conservative but are far from terrorists…”

You mean they are not making bombs? Sorry, The Economist: that makes no sense. The lethal violence in Literal Islam is overwhelmingly present in the texts, maximally nasty, boringly repetitive, and extremely scary. Yes, scary, like in phobia. As in Islamophobia. Can one not be a terrorist, when one teaches that terror is what God wants, and orders?

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2009/06/22/some-violence-in-holy-quran/

There is nothing subtle about Islamic violence as found in the Fundamental texts of Islam: vast categories of (most) people are supposed to be killed (either by God, or the Believers, or both). Apostates, Non-Believers, Gays etc. Those who kill in the name of God will go directly to paradise: they will not be submitted to the last Judgment: hence the great success of the Islamic invasions. The Islamist warriors were persuaded that death would bring them eternal happiness, life, and being on the right of God.

The Last Judgment will happen only after the last Jew has been killed.  (Hadith 41;685: …”Allah’s Messenger… : The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will FIGHT against the Jews and the Muslims would KILL them…”. That Hadith is repeated a lot, and is part of the Hamas Charter.)

Some will say: no problem we will keep an eye on those who read Fundamental Islamic texts literally, make a terror watch. Propped by Saudi and other Medieval types, oil money, those people are already millions. Is surveillance to become the most important industry? Or is it easier to strictly outlaw all Literal Islam?

A few days ago, more than half a dozen Salafists were arrested in France. They were all unknown of security services (which track more than 10,000 Islamists already!). The Islamists had planned murderous attacks throughout France. One of them taught in a public school. Nobody suspected him (they hide among ourselves, like the crocs below the murky waters, ready to strike, causing ambient paranoia, as intended).

When is someone who does not follow Islam literally not a Muslim anymore? That is a simple question pregnant with a dreadful answer: those who do not believe in Islam anymore, apostates, are to be put to death.

At this point, Politically Correct demoncrats generally lash out, from their tiny knowledge base learned by rote, that Christianism is just as bad as Islamism, so we are racist to implicitly claim a difference, etc., etc.  (Never mind that most of those who lash out at Islam don’t believe in Christianism either.) Well not quite. There is not a symmetry between Islamism and Christianism. Christianism was worse, in the sense it came first, and got the ball rolling, by terrorizing first. But then Islam copied it, but it was worse, because Islam is the state, whereas the relationship between state and Christianism was much looser (except in the periods from 386 CE to ~450 CE and again, for two long periods in the late Middle Ages/Renaissance; in both cases, state terror got enacted under the guise of the Faith.

Yes, Roman officials launched condemnations to death for heresy. In 380 CE, the Edict of Thessalonica of Roman emperor Theodosius I made Christianity the state church of the Roman Empire. By this edict the state’s authority and the Church officially overlapped. Thus the state enforced religious terror, whenever convenient. Thus church leaders executed (some) heretics. Within six years of the official criminalization of heresy by the Roman Emperor, the first Christian heretic to be executed, Priscillian, was condemned in 386 CE by Roman secular officials for sorcery. He was put to death with four or five followers. The edict of emperor Theodosius II (435 CE) provided severe punishments for spreading Nestorianism (a Christianism found all the way to Mongolia). Possessing writings of Arius brought the death penalty (Arius influenced the Coptic church, hence Islam).

So the Christians, more exactly the Roman Catholics, were anti-civilizational savages. Guess what? The empire of savage fanatics soon collapsed. It was replaced by the fresh Confederation of the Franks, which reinvented Christianism from scratch, complete with plenty of newly created saints. The Franks viewed Christianism, or, more exactly, Catholicism, as a help, a secular help, to rule over dozens of millions of Roman subjects throughout much of what is presently the Eurozone (Netherlands, Germany, Eastern Europe, Italy, Gaul). But all religions were allowed, including Paganism, Judaism, islam, etc.

Things changed just at the time the Frankish emperor in Paris decided he was king of France, and it was high time to submit the giant County of Toulouse. “Philippe Auguste” allied himself to the Pope, killed a million Cathars, grabbed their lands. Thereupon, Christian terror was back, as it was so profitable. The Enlightenment would put an end to that Christian terror.

Islamist terror had been profitable all along. Still is.

A further problem is that Literal Islam is not just an incitement to ultimate violence. It is also an incitement to unreason, and violating the most basic standards of what makes humanity, humanity.

Amusingly, The Economist, propelled by the anxiety of sounding indiscriminate, contradicts itself: “It’s important to understand that of the various forms of Salafism described, there is one, the unreconstructed kind, which can (though does not always) morph into terrorism.” Well, real Salafism is “unreconstructed”. By definition.

We need clarity. Go read all the basic texts of Islam, then report. Stop parsing red herrings, please go to the meat of the matter. Religious terror was extirpated from Europe during the Enlightenment, it is high time to bring some light to all this darkness. So, instead of leaving Islam as a darkness which cannot, and should not, be explored, please visit it.

It’s instructive. The basic texts reveal that Muhammad actually ordered women’s faces NOT to be covered. So why the contemporary insistence, now, that they should be? Because it’s a way for Islamist dictators (like the various kings, emirs, ayatollahs and what not) to terrorize the Republics.

Or, at least, to put them on the defensive:’Oh, you see you don’t respect freedom of religion!’

The French Republic installed a law outlawing face covering. Islamists howled to the Moon, naturally, that’s all old tradition of Mecca, older than Islam, but the French Constitutional Court upheld the law as it was explicitly made for security reasons.

I would advise Donald Trump to have such a law passed ASAP in the USA. Every time a woman goes fully veiled in the streets she attacks civilization, human ethology, the Republic, public order, and helps convert the Enlightened West into the incomparable messes that all countries ruled by, and with Islam have become (yes, from Morocco, where Islamists are in power, to Indonesia, where the governor of Djakarta is prosecuted for “blasphemy”, because the Islamist god is that weak little simple-minded creature that needs very much to be protected, by killing lots of insulting people, lest that fragile entity wilts away…)

Just do like France, Donald: after all, it is a question of security (veiled women were used massively in the Franco-Algerian civil war, to carry explosives, allowing a tiny minority to seize power and keep it to this day, while leading Algeria through another civil war which killed at least 200,000). Outlawing Islamist veils will help to change the mood: no more blatant tolerance for the nefarious ways of the enemies of reason.

It will be interesting to hear the devilish ones preaching that Islam is perfect for the countries they, themselves exploit. And it also means the rather drastic observation: Whenever, pretty soon, burning hydrocarbons is made unlawful, Islam will disappear. Because the main reason for its modern existence will be gone. As simple as that.

Patrice Ayme’

Is Britain The World’s Most Corrupt Country?

May 11, 2016

Britain is organizing an anti-corruption conference. Is that a form of British humor, or:

Should the EU Expel Britain From The European Onion?

More than 40 years ago, Great Britain’s population voted to join the European Union. Now it’s voting to see whether it wants to leave. This smacks of the tactic of obstruction through obfuscation, the story of the criminal accusing the police of being violent.  From the point of view of justice and solidarity, it should. Then the European Union could apply sanctions against it for TAX FRAUD.

One third of tax havens of the planet are actually states which have as head of state the Queen of England. That makes the Queen of England assuredly one of the greatest head of organized crime in the history of civilization. That criminal network pervades the USA. Just contemplate this:

Anglo-Saxon Plutocrats Own The Anglo-Saxon Main Stream Media Which Wants You To Not Know That Many Of Said Plutocrats Are Just Tax Criminals (To Start With).

Anglo-Saxon Plutocrats Own The Anglo-Saxon Main Stream Media Which Wants You To Not Know That Many Of Said Plutocrats Are Just Tax Criminals (To Start With).

Let me repeat slowly. One third of the world’s tax havens in monetary volume are British: Bermuda, Cayman Islands, British Virgin Isles, Isle of Man, Channel Islands. If one evaluates the half of the world of entities made to avoid all authorities, including tax authorities, are residents of territories headed by the Queen of England.

That corruption is becoming a problem is not just my opinion. David Cameron thinks that Afghanistan and Nigeria are “fantastically corrupt”. Cameron was caught on tape boasting in front of Queen Elizabeth Cameron that  “some leaders of some fantastically corrupt countries [are] coming to Britain” for his anti-corruption summit”. And he was joking with the corrupter in chief, the Queen!

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari said he did not want an apology from Cameron. Instead he pointed out that Britain could return assets stolen by officials who fled to London.

Forget Nigeria – David Cameron needs to tackle the tax havens in Britain’s own backyard

Says The Telegraph:

“Certainly Nigeria has a reputation. But the Panama Papers have shifted the focus of corruption far up the supply chain, to the people who make corruption possible – and those people are often rather closer to home.  

The UK, to its credit, has been at the forefront of the movement to make the world more financially transparent. The 2009 G20 Summit, hosted by Gordon Brown in London, created the first blacklist of tax havens that were holding out against sharing information on bank accounts with other countries’ tax authorities.

Under David Cameron’s leadership, the UK also became the first country in the world to require companies to be fully transparent about the people who own and control them. This is the key step towards stopping people squirreling money away behind fake companies they secretly own, out of the reach of the taxman and other authorities.

Other countries have since followed suit, and soon all countries that are part of the EU will have to collect information on who ultimately owns and controls companies and make that available to anyone who can demonstrate a legitimate interest.  So we should be proud of our leadership here.     

But careful readers of the Panama Papers will notice an important fact that should have given Cameron pause for thought before he made his comments to the Queen. More than half of the companies named in law firm Mossack Fonseca files are incorporated in Britain’s own tax havens. In fact, a full 50 per cent of the companies are from the British Virgin Islands.

Prime Minister David Cameron knows this. He said so just a few months ago:

“Some of the British Crown Dependences and Overseas Territories are making progress […]. Others, frankly, are not moving anywhere near fast enough. […] If we want to break the business model of stealing money and hiding it in places where it can’t be seen, transparency is the answer.”

Thanks to unfair austerity, avoiding taxes – whether legally or illegally – is coming to be seen as wrong.  If one wants to live in a society with decent schools and hospitals, no terrorism and an army powerful enough to not have tens of millions of refugees trying to smash through the border, all – rich and poor, small companies and giant ones – should be contributing to the public power. A recent poll for anti-corruption organisation, Global Witness, and Oxfam showed that 80 per cent of British adults agreed with the statement that “David Cameron has a moral responsibility to ensure that the UK’s Overseas Territories are as transparent as possible.”

However, PM David Cameron has whined disingenuously, for years, that “he cannot impose his wishes on independent territories.” So, instead of organizing a referendum on whether massive tax fraud can be perpetrated by the Queen of England, her dependencies, dominions and other minions, Cameron organized a referendum about whether Britain wanted to be in Europe or not. As if, after voting against Europe, it would find itself somewhere southeast of New Zealand.

There are fourteen “British Overseas Territories”. The Crown Dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man are also tax havens, under the sovereignty of the British monarch. When Britain want to exert power on the dominions, it can: Britain forced dominions to abandon the death penalty (1991), or punishments against homosexuality (2000).

Meanwhile any fantastically corrupt rogue official, thief or criminal can come to Great Britain and become a “Non Dom”, a non-domiciliated person, not taxed for at least seven years. Canada and the USA have imitated facets of this program. Some of China’s richest billionaires, anxious to be skewered by president Xi’s anti-pollution drive, have their children in Canada, driving around in cars worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

All this to say that the “summit in London on the struggle against corruption”, May 12, 2016, is a colossal hypocrisy. And the stakes are not small. Not only is civilization is at stake, but the biosphere itself.

How did Rome fall? Rome fell in many ways: it became a tyranny, a plutocracy (all emperors were born from a small clique of families jousting for power among themselves, and exchanging the imperial throne as if was a frisbee). Rome became also anti-technological, and anti-scientific. Later it became a theocracy.

The historian Edward Gibbon was connected to the British plutocracy, so he could not accuse the plutocratic phenomenon to have caused the Fall of Rome. Instead, he accused Catholicism (as did Nietzsche). However, theocracy was the last justification tyranny found for itself. Plutocracy caused the Fall of Rome, and, over the next centuries, piled up the outrages.

So how did plutocracy blossom? By eschewing old Roman Republican law which limited absolutely the size of a family fortune. And how was that accomplished? With all the overseas dependencies and possessions Rome found itself with after the victory of Rome in the Second Punic War (final victory in 201 BCE). Those included North Africa, Spain, Macedonia, Greece… In those territories, it was not clear that Roman law had jurisdiction. The same loophole allowed slavery in the New World after 1500 CE: Frankish law had established jurisdiction outlawing slavery, all over Europe, in 655 CE. But the law could not be imposed in the New World, be it only because those who ruled there had no interest to see to it.

Recent globalization has operated in a similar fashion. This is all the more strange because American and French jurisdiction proclaim themselves as universal (France is presently judging Rwandan civil war criminals).

The explanation? Great Britain and the USA have been milking the tax haven, international corruption trick: trillions of corrupt, dark, criminal money has kept them afloat, by coming from all over the world. France has done so too, but on a much smaller scale  The latter case explains why Frenchman Pierre Moscovici is showing no alacrity to punish Luxembourg.

France and Germany are the core of the European Onion. It’s high time for them to seize their responsibilities. The terrible example of Britain has led to massive tax thievery by the likes of the Netherlands and Luxembourg. High time to get tough on more than retirees, elementary school children, and the indigent.

The arsenals of democracies have become arsenals of corruption. That may give leverage over Putin, since his plutocrats put their money in Western tax havens, but it’s no way to run a civilization.

Patrice Ayme’

Marcus Aurelius, INTELLECTUAL FASCIST: Why Rome Fell

February 16, 2016

Imperator Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus (“Marcus Aurelius”) is generally revered as emperor and philosopher. Both attitudes are grievously erroneous, and have a bearing to what very serious people have considered, ever since, as the highest wisdom to be embraced. I will presently roll out some (new) reasons why this is so wrong.

What endangered the Roman State? The question has been considered since the Third Century’s turmoil, the time of the “Barrack Emperors”. In 360 CE emperor Julian explained why Christianism was bringing Romanitas down. Christians worshipped a secondary and “evil God” (and that the Serpent, bringing knowledge, was “good”!). Julian removed Christianism’s extravagant privileges (such as the right to execute heretics). However, Julian ruled only three years as Augustus. Immediately thereafter, the Christians came back with great vengeance, burning libraries to the ground.

Inventor Of Intellectual Fascism Catches Flies With Philosophical Honey

Inventor Of Intellectual Fascism Catches Flies With Philosophical Honey

The thesis that Christianism nearly destroyed civilization is obviously true, and was supported in detail by Gibbon in the Decline and Fall of Rome (eighteenth century). However, it’s not the whole story. In truth, it’s plutocracy which brought Rome down, through a succession of ever more dreadful instruments to insure its reign. Christianism was only plutocracy’s latest weapon of civilizational destruction. Political and intellectual fascisms had arrived centuries earlier, rabid theocracy was only a twist therefrom.

Marcus Aurelius, emperor from 161 to 180 was the last of theFive Good Emperors” (his abominable son succeeded Marcus at the grand old age of nineteen). Marcus is also considered one of the most important Stoic philosophers. Generally revered, he will be condemned here as a stealthy, sneaky, subterraneous yet explicit proponent of INTELLECTUAL FASCISM. Marcus’ elevation of Intellectual Fascism to a virtue explains a lot of things, from the “Fall of Rome” to the present sorry state of world governance.

I agree that this is shocking, and all the little ones will run for cover, squealing: Marcus Aurelius has a saintly, superficially justified reputation (and that, per se, is revealing: Marcus is a bit to philosophy what Einstein is to physics: a naked emperor whom the commons imagine fully dressed; critters prefer to have 140 characters anchored by a few celebrities they adore, like simple baboons adore the alpha females and males).

Even more shocking, Stoicism is supposed to be the behavior one adopts when a victim of fascism. Thus Stoicism is a behavior one would not expect from a proponent of fascism…. Until one realizes that, precisely, stoicism is, par excellence, the behavior in the masses which makes fascism possible. So Marcus fed what made him possible.

So let me severely criticize, as deserved, the following passage of Marcus Aurelius kindly provided by Massimo Pigliucci:

There are four principal aberrations of the superior faculty against which you should be constantly on your guard, and when you have detected them, you should wipe them out and say on each occasion thus: this thought is not necessary; this tends to destroy social union; this which you are going to say comes not from the real thoughts — for you should consider it among the most absurd of things for a man not to speak from his real thoughts. But the fourth is when you shall reproach yourself for anything, for this is an evidence of the diviner part within you being overpowered and yielding to the less honorable and to the perishable part, the body, and to its gross pleasures. (Meditations XI.19)”

[I don’t understand Marcus’ last sentence, he seems to take himself for god, but that’s besides the points I will make, so I will ignore this obscure sentence. I will address the two “principal aberrations” accented above. They define what wrecked the Roman State, what will wreck any state, and any civilization: intellectual fascism in its purest form for the first one, and even explicit political fascismo for the second.]

This thought is not necessary.” Says Marcus Aurelius. The emperor calls the apparition of ‘unnecessary thought’ one of the “four principal aberrations”. Sorry, Your Highness. When is a thought not necessary? When it’s not necessary to Your Excellency? And if a thought is necessary, what is it necessary for? Necessary to worship you and your kind, such as your five year old son, Commodus, whom you made a Caesar then, such a genius he was? No Roman emperor had been that grotesque, prior to you. Is that a non-necessary thought?

Is a thought then necessary when it embraces the desire of been guided by only a few thoughts reigning over the entire mind, just as Marcus Aurelius reigned over all men? In other words, is a thought necessary, and only then, when it embraces intellectual fascism? Or is that the big “stoic” philosopher thinks like the general of an army (something he was)..

Another of the Marcus’ “four principal aberrations” is lying… or more exactly “you should consider it among the most absurd of things for a man not to speak from his real thoughts”. In other words, the idea of “bad faith”. To trash and condemn Bad Faith is good. Many philosophers have done it, all the way up to Sartre. But then notice that Marcus Aurelius puts ‘unnecessary thoughts’ in the same category as “Bad Faith”.

Marcus also frowns on as a ‘principal aberration’: Any “thought [which] destroys social union”. Thus “social union” is part of the leading intellectual principles which should rule on the realm of ideas, just as Marcus Aurelius rules on men.

Now, any mental progress will disrupt brains, thus the “social union”. A society which knows “social union” and no revolution is condemned to stagnate mentality until the situation becomes uncontrollable. And this is exactly what happened to Rome the day Marcus died and his teenage son succeeded to him. A spectacular fall, driven by his son Commodus’ fateful decisions, in a matter of days, from which the Roman State never recovered.

Marcus Aurelius had decided that embracing intellectual fascism was the highest behavior, and imposed for more than two decades on 25% of humanity. I would suggest removing that element, that drive to mental shrinkage, from modern stoicism.

Those who know the history of the period with enough detail will not be surprised by my scathing critique. Instead they will realize that this was the missing piece to the logic of the disaster which befell civilization.

Indeed, immediately after Marcus Aurelius’ death Caesar Marcus Aurelius Commodus Antoninus Augustus (“Commodus”), at the grand old age of 19, inverted all his father’s decisions (after saying he won’t).

Where did Commodus’ madness come from? Commodus, had been named “Caesar” at age 5… by his father, the great stoic parrot. How wise is that? It would feed megalomania, and indeed, Commodus was much more megalomaniac than the present leader of North Korea.

Commodus was accused of being a megalomaniac, in his lifetime. Commodus renamed Rome Colonia Commodiana, the “Colony of Commodus”. He renamed the months of the year after titles held in his honour, namely, Lucius, Aelius, Aurelius, Commodus, Augustus, Herculeus, Romanus, Exsuperatorius, Amazonius, Invictus, Felix, and Pius. Commodus renamed the Roman Senate the Commodian Fortunate Senate, and the Roman people were given the name Commodianus.

Cassius Dio, a senator and historian who lived during the reign of both Commodus and his father wrote that, with the accession of Commodus, “our history now descends from a kingdom of gold to one of iron and rust, as affairs did for the Romans of that day.” Soon, it would descend even lower, in part because Marcus’ poisonous ideas would be revered so much.

It is probable that Marcus Aurelius was assassinated by his 19 year old son (officially Marcus died suddenly of the “plague”; but sophisticated poisons were well known, and had been used before in imperial affairs: Tiberius, the second Roman emperor, did not realize, for more than 15 years, that his two own adult sons, both of the most famous generals, had been poisoned to death by Rome’s prefect Sejanus: that was revealed after Sejanus tried a coup, and his accomplices talked). Commodus would kill his own sister shortly after his accession (she had opposed him).

In a way, Marcus’ assassination was well deserved. His superficially noble, but deeply despicable stoicism, and his brazen advocacy of political and intellectual fascism enabled Roman plutocracy to own the entire empire as if it were its own colony.

Whereas imperator Trajan had brought up taxes on the wealthiest to make education free for poor children, Marcus Aurelius went the other way: he did not have enough money to pay the army, when savage German tribes were trying to cut the empire, civilization, in two.

Some may sneer that I am condemning Marcus Aurelius for an unfortunate passage or two. Not so. Marcus’ entire work, both in philosophy, and as imperator, is an extension of his fundamental view that thinking should be restricted to what was useful. As if one could know in advance what thinking will be useful for. In his context, to boot, what Marcus meant by “useful” was what was useful to him, the one who proffered the thought.

Thought reduced to what was useful to just One, the One? How much more stupid and immoral can one be?

Nowadays, we face the fast rise of colossal inequalities which foster impoverishment, be it material, intellectual, or even cognitive. We have to realize that some of the apparently wisest, most respected and ancient philosophy is fully compatible with, and an engine of, this lamentable development.

Philosophy, poorly done, is the ultimate propaganda for the demise of the many by the self-chosen few.

Patrice Ayme’

How Civilizations Go Down. Why There Is Hope

January 2, 2016

Gloom and doom go only that far. A number of commenters, or authors such as Machiavelli, entertained pretty abysmal considerations on humanity and its future.

In the case of Machiavelli, pessimism was understandable: he rode two horses condemned to decline and fall, namely the Republic of Florence (which was turning into a plutocracy), and Caesare Borgia, Cardinal at 18 years of age, who later resigned his church position in an attempt to seize power in Italy, a place where Spain had invaded the south (freed centuries prior, by the Franks, from the Muslims), France was trying to hold onto Naples (but lost because the Spanish general in command was too good). Most of the peninsula was covered by forts and domains which had feuded for centuries.

Nowadays, we have grounds to be optimistic. I will explain why below. However with a caveat: history is now flowing extremely fast, as we are approaching a technological and computational, thus theoretical singularity.

We Already Have A Better Understanding Of What Brought Rome Down The First Time, We Can No Doubt Avoid It, The Second Time, With Even More Understanding

We Already Have A Better Understanding Of What Brought Rome Down The First Time, We Can No Doubt Avoid It, The Second Time, With Even More Understanding

There are three reasons why civilizations collapse: invasion, ecological collapse, plutocracy.

I use all the time analogies with Rome’s Decline and Fall, yet on a much grander scale than Edward Gibbon. I root firmly the Decline and Fall as starting in 200 BCE, with the rise of plutocracy. There are a lot of deep analogies between what happened then, and what is happening now.

Yet we also enjoy major differences with Rome. To avoid Rome’s fate, we have to cultivate these differences. (And our gaze turns towards the European Union.)

Rome was a quarter of humanity, and Roma was ALL the civilized, and Republican influence zone. Yes, China, India, Persia, and well before Egypt, were civilized. But only the only drowned and expired Sumerian cities could pretend to have a high Republican index: Sumer invented the bicameral system still in use today. Persia did not, China did not, and, as far as I know, neither did India.

But Rome, like the top Greek cities, was a Republic. However, most Greek cities crashed and burned within a century or so. Rome built a huge empire, and lasted so long, it’s not clear it ever stopped. Although it declined, and fell, it got up again, as the Franks engineered and observed. Thus Rome founded the present political system

Persia was advanced enough to seriously bother Greeks and Romans, it was only or equal civilizational level for a fleeting moment under Darius, and in the late Sixth Century (thus, 1,000 year later). (This is my own observation/theory, sure to rile up some out there!)

All the neighborhood of Rome was vastly inferior. Although the Celts were superior in ocean going ships and metallurgy, and even captured Rome in the Fourth Century BCE, their abominable religion was quite a drag.  Actually, it was such a drag, the Celts embraced Greco-Roman civilization even before Julius Caesar showed up with his ten legions.

The Persian religion, Zoroastrianism was very advanced, arguably more so than Christianism (which copied many of its elements, in particular the obsession with truth and the logos, thanks god). The Middle East got tied down by the instauration of “hydraulic dictatorships” all over. The Persian/Iranian/Mesopotamian ensemble was a vast military mess which never recovered imperially, thus politically, from the People of the Seas invasions.

Now the situation is quite different.

First, the USA is a EUROPEAN COLONY.Rome was not a colony; it was initially occupied by Etruscans, themselves one of the People of the Sea. But, at the same time, the Etruscans civilized Rome. Rome also got civilized by the “Magna Grecia”, the Great Greece of Southern Italy, stating in Nea Polis (Naples).

Second, the mother ship, Europe, gave birth to a gigantic empire. It’s not just that European colonies control the Americas and Australia. France, the USA and Britain Exclusive Economic Zones, EEZs, covers much of the world’s exploitable oceanic depths.

Although weakened by its own crazies (Prussia/Germany/Nazis, Mussolini, Franco, Lenin/Stalin and their subordinates), plus major American plutocratic maneuvering, and in a bad state presently, Europe not quite done yet. After all the good guys (French Republic and British pseudo-monarchy) won. Now the French Republican systems, and monarchies to the same effect, cover Europe. Germany is sister republic to France, in particular.

Third, the Roman Republican system spread way beyond Europe and her colonies. China and India, and most of the rest of the UN have actually adopted (and adapted) many of WESTERN civilization’s better sides. However, China is still a dictatorship, and (partly) India a mess.

Another difference with Rome starts with a similarity: Rome got in a huge ecological crisis, starting around 100 CE. The Romans could not understand what was happening. They said:”The world is getting old”. Well, what was happening is that Romans had exhausted the soils, and the mines. However we know what they did not: tremendous technological progress can enable to change exploitation regimes.

Thus, the fourth difference with Rome; a huge CO2, GHG, Climate Crisis is incoming, but everybody knows about it, and fixes are in sight. A crisis is an opportunity as the Chinese would say.

Hope? People have to learn from history, and that means, the real history. Hyper maneuvering by USA plutocracy happened in much of the Twentieth Century, and is still ongoing right now. People can’t understand that, as long as they don’t realize that, without American plutocracy, Hitler just won’t have happened. At least, not happened as catastrophically as he did.

But there is hope that people, thanks to the Internet, realize that they have been manipulated in both what they know, and what they can hope to achieve. In particular, Direct Democracy is in the best position to succeed ever. The Athenian Republic found difficult to achieve Direct Democracy, because it did not have the Internet. The average Athenian voter was one day’s travel away from the voting booth. Nowadays, the average voter has her, or his hand on the voting device, namely the smartphone. No more excuses.

Objections can be raised. The preceding was a partial answer to several commenters on this site, John, Aaron, GlouconX, Eugen… The latter jumped on Machiavelli to object to Direct Democracy; however, Machiavelli was not just an author and philosopher. Like Plato, and especially Aristotle, he was a vested ACTOR of the disasters he described, and thus deeply biased, all the way to the greatest depths of the human soul. People who have interest to be stupid, will be stupid. Be it only to forget the fools leading us by the nose. Direct democracy is the answer to stupidity.

However, there is snow outside and further comments will be delayed until enough snow will have been mastered by the imperialistic author of these lines. Hey, it may be the last snow ever, let’s enjoy a cold El Nino, while it lasts! Non-Linearity is ready to ambush us. Let’s build memories while we can, be it just to be melancholic later… being of many minds is what intelligence is about.

Patrice Ayme’  

Christian Civilization Never Existed

December 10, 2015

Many fanatics, Christian or Muslim, insist that there was a “Christian Civilization”. Well, no. It’s not because people with vested interest repeat always the same thing, that it is decisively supported by the facts. It is not because some aspects of a civilization are of such and such a nature, that one particular aspect defines the whole thing. The philosophical, legal and behavioral foundations of the West were not “Christian”. Christianism was the fig leaf thrown, by the Roman plutocracy, over the apocalypse it preferred to the taxing continuance of civilization.

Although something called “Christianity” contributed to civilization considerably, the Christianism of bishop (Saint) Jerome, a “Founding Father of the Church“, in 400 CE Milan, was very different from the idiosyncratic Pagano-Christianism of Consul (and king of the Franks) Clovis in 500 CE (who re-invented Christianism thoroughly).

As so-called “Christmas” approaches, it’s good to remember that the Winter Solstice feast was Greco-Roman, and preceded the displacement of “Jesus” birth to the Winter Solstice, by more than a millennium.

“Christian” Hatred Of The Body Was Rejected By The Popes Themselves

“Christian” Hatred Of The Body Was Rejected By The Popes Themselves

[“What spirit is so empty and blind, that it cannot recognize the fact that the foot is more noble than the shoe, and skin more beautiful than the garment with which it is clothed?” Michelangelo.]

Christianism initially hated the body, in opposition to Greco-Roman civilization: love the body, and soon you will love the mind, and will want one of your own.

So Christianism closed and destroyed the baths (thus promoting devastating, civilization destroying, epidemics among the 99%) and longed for the Apocalypse (generously provided by the telling collaboration of Roman plutocrats and invading barbarians: the analogy with Islamism now is uncomfortable! Our plutocrats have been busy plotting with Islamists ever since before the Great Bitter Lake Conspiracy!)

Although some lunatics tried to force an authentic Christian civilization, it became, literally, a Non Sequitur: it’s now called the “Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire”. When one wishes for the Apocalypse as Christians and later Muslims, wished, it should be considered synonymous to the decline and fall of civilization, society, population, reading skills, security, economics, and all and any standards of sophistication.

See Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan, Sudan, Yemen… (And yes, Somalia, Sudan, and more specifically Yemen, can be compared to say, Ethiopia, which is doing incomparably better.)

What do I mean by the non-existence of “Christian Civilization”? Consider the tyrannical, self-obsessed, much adulated cretin, Louis XIV of France, the self-described, self-adoring “Sun-King” (a bloody dictator much celebrated in France this year, as he croaked 300 years ago, justly covered by gangrene, from his toes, to the top of his head. Louis’ painful and disgusting three weeks of gangrene is the only indication from his reign, which I can discern, that there may be, after all, a God).

Louis XIV tried to make France into a Catholic society, by revoking the Edict of Nantes of his excellent grandfather, Henri IV. That was more than weird: a century earlier, under Catherine of Medici, queen of France, a similar episode had been launched, the Massacre de la Saint-Barthélemy. Not only did that surprise assault in the middle of the night, killed immediately 30,000, and most of France’s intellectual elite (which could only condemn and despise Catholicism), but it launched no less than seven religious wars in 36 years, bleeding France, killing up to more than 20% of the population (so Syria has a way to go! By the way, those who wonder where the French hostility to Abraham’s god comes from, should study this).

I repeat: in less than 40 years, wars among Christians in France, killed more than 4 million people (and terrorized everybody).  Nor was it the first time: more tan a million Cathars, and all their works were annihilated by Christians around 1200 CE. And, in the Fifteenth Century, Protestants were hunted like wild beasts by Catholics (to the point Louis XI had to intervene, reminding all that killing people for religious reasons was against the law, and sending the army!)

How civilized is all that Christianism? When Rome was far removed from Christianism, no such massacre ever happened.

So here was that bloody imbecile, Louis the Blood King, trying the same trick all over again, all by himself (and his fanatical wife). It is still a great disease that such a creep is revered abjectly, by the French elite.

Thus Louis The Pervert threw out and abominably abused millions of Protestants. Many Protestants fled (that’s why there is winemaking in South Africa, and why so many Germans have French names). As protestants tended to be smarter, their flight made France much more idiotic, and thus more hospitable to Louis the Pervert and his vicious entourage of ill disguised monsters. Thus obnoxious critters make an environment hospitable to themselves

There is something in common between that so-called “Sun King” and the unfortunate fiction of Camus, Mr. Meursault, who kills an Arab, just because he can, and got too much sun, and could not care less. Louis XIV was the real life Meursault, and Camus channeling unconsciously that abomination of French history. Louis XIV killed the Protestants, just because he could, could not care less, and had too much sun.

Too bad Meursault and the Sun-King are still revered: it’s a sickness of the mood.

Christian propagandists always insisted that there was such a thing as “Christian Civilization”. But there was not.

The West was NOT A CHRISTIAN CIVILIZATION. It looked like one twice: around 400 CE, and around 1400 CE. But, in either case, although an attempt was made, the basic law was NOT Christian, but Roman (or the Salic law of the Franks, which was Roman written).

The attempt around 400 CE, a government of bishops, petered out right away. True Milan’s Saint Jerome, the most prominent “Founding Father of the Church”, had emperor Theodosius begging forgiveness (for some massacre). But then the Roman State, short in cash, put the Franks in charge of defending the North West “Limes” (frontier).

A century later, having established a huge “Imperium” (= Roman military command), the Franks sort of converted to Catholicism, modifying it extensively in the process, and submitting the Popes, for centuries to come.

The Franks re-established Roman (Late) Republican tolerance for ALL religions.

In other words, the empire of the Franks, the “Imperium Francorum” of 600 CE, was much more civilized than today’s Saudi Arabia. Arguably Arabia of 600 CE was more civilized than today’s Arabia, in the sense that Christianism, Judaism and the Cult of the Moon in Mecca, were all practiced without known religious massacre (the first religious holocaust was Muhammad’s personal annihilation of a Jewish tribe, a bit later; Muhammad is on the record as of the opinion that whoever insulted him should die, a tradition Muslims are keen, to this day, to carry forward, in the name of their Rophet; don’t ask me what a Rophet is).

The tolerance was extended to much more than Jews, Pagans (the Franks were de facto Christianized Pagans for centuries), Muslims, etc. By 800 CE, the “Renovated Roman Empire” led by Charlemagne, was at peace and the world’s richest

The “Final Solution” was Nazi (although I have accused many times Christianism to have inspired it). The “Manifest Destiny” was not particularly Christian (Founding Fathers and their preceding generation were very anti-Christian, and for “Nature’s God”). The Crusades were, mostly, a counter-attack (although I am very anti-crusades, that’s what they were in first order).

The annihilation of the Natives did not have to be a consequence from the Christian nature of the invaders. A very good example is the French, who never eradicated a population of Natives (and that’s why they lost America!)

“Secular ideologies” may have been by far the biggest mass killers…. Because they suppress everything else. In primitive societies the kill ratio is more like 50% (or at least 25%), whereas the two World Wars killed rather around 2% to 4% (at most, directly and indirectly, through famines and diseases they contributed to)

The preceding has to be kept in mind when inanities about Islam, and an “Islamist Civilization” are proffered, just because people are conditioned to mouth them, and believe it’s the truth, because everybody says it. It’s not because all the sheep bleat the same, that bleating is the truth.

This being said, because of the insistence of raw Islam to apply Islamist Law, instead of secular law, made “Islamist Civilization” much more of a reality. Islam wants to be everything, leaving no space for anything else. Islam wants to be all of society, and even to occupy visual space. Islam wants to be more than a civilization, it wants to be an obsession.

However, an inspection of history shows that all period of really shining civilization under “Islam” seemed to have involved see through dresses more than niqab, chador, and other attempts to make women into something that should be hidden.he vast body). Contributions by non-Muslims (Jews and Christian) tend to dominate (they were the majority for centuries).

Regimes which interpreted the Qur’an literally were highly successful, especially initially, thanks to ruthless surprise: initial conquest, from Spain to Central Asia, assaults of India, Indonesia, conquest of Anatolia by the just Islamized Turks, and a reconquest of Spanish Caliphate by savage, Fundamentalist Muslims from the desert. It ultimately backfired (except in the case of the Turks, arguably). For example the re-reconquest of Spain, made the “Reconquista” by the Catholics much more savage and thorough…

Many supposed “characteristics” of “Christianism” were established centuries before Christianism was imposed on the Greco-Roman world by emperors from Constantine to Theodosius, in the fateful Fourth Century. For example welfare and scholarship for worthy students was established by 100 CE (under emperor Trajan).

The Roman world kept on going, even, and especially after the Decline and Fall of the Roman imperial state. When Saint Louis, a Christian Fundamentalist and Jihadist (“Crusader”) of the Twelfth Century expressed, in writing his burning desire to “plant a knife in the belly of a Jew or Unbeliever” (“nothing would please me more”) he recognized he could not do it, because, well the (Salic and Roman) Law forbid him to do so.

Sharia Christian, or not never ruled the West very long (although, sometimes, it made sparks: see Bruno being burned alive). We are not going to start now.

Patrice Ayme’

Vice Has Many Parents, It’s Not Just Mothered By Ignorance

July 19, 2015

Vice has many parents, INCLUDING KNOWLEDGE, And Thirst Thereof:

Doctor Rabelais said, five centuries ago: “L’ignorance est la mere de tous les vices.” That naivety was a social, civilizational and juridical error well known to the Romans, which Sade corrected stridently. The broadly educated professor Rabelais wanted to foster knowledge. That meant to destroy the power of the Church (to which Rabelais belonged, as a Franciscan monk).

The Church, the Bible, Jesus, Mohammed, the Qur’an all insist that disobeying (Allah) is the source of all vice. Rabelais said: no. Instead, being brought up affectionately by ignorance is where viciousness comes from.

Rabelais Made The Church Grotesque

Rabelais Made The Church Grotesque

However the truth is more sinister: ignorance mothers most vices, in otherwise good people.  Yet, there are also plenty of bad people out there, motivated not by ignorance, but by knowledge.

Those cognoscenti can be motivated by Vengeance, Imagined Victimization, The Will To Power, the Will To Extermination, Cruelty, Sadism. Those emotions are not the children of ignorance. Far from it. They are children of knowledge.

That was a point of the Marquis De Sade. This is one reason why many of his anti-heroes are politicians: they know human nature, and, during their vacations, torture people, to foster this knowledge some more. Far from protecting from vice, knowlege, and the thirst for knowledge, can attract vice.

Sade’s heroine Justine, is more successful, the more wicked she gets, thus demonstrating that viciousness rules not just logic, but apparently the universe (the point the Cathars had already made, on a grandiose scale).

Many people will whine that such moral turpitude could not possibly be. Sade had got to be a very bad person for just having such an idea to tarnish all of humanity with. The idea that knowledge can be criminogene, and vicious is intrinsic to man. Napoleon agreed: he imprisoned Sade, for life, because the philosopher had caricatured the dictator and his countess of a spouse (the plutophile creole Josephine). Yet those ideas were the central principle of the Roman Republic, and the religion it brought forth, Christianism.

The very fact that the 99% do not want to understand what Sade pointed out, that vice was a central part of human nature, and that having plenty of knowledge could make someone more, rather than less, prone to vice, enables the banksters to own the world, and to claim that all the problems with finance have to do with their victims, the … Greeks, and not at all with those bankers who stole, with a little bit of help from their plutocratic friends, all the money.

Ignorance enables the exploitation of the 99% by the .1%. Cruelty, Will to Power, Metaphysical Denial, the rage of the Dark Side, explain the motivation of the .1%. Denying the latter, the vices which motivate the .1%, enables to deny the former, that there is an exploitation by the .1%, that we are all Greece. It’s a sort of religion of cluelessness.

Among the sheep, there is happiness in congregating around simple, time honored ways.

Patrice Ayme’

No Force, No Republic

February 27, 2015

Humanity is force. This is what vegetarians, often, want to forget. It is no coincidence that Adolf Hitler was a fanatical vegetarian, at the cost of his health (too much pea soup, I am not kidding). Hitler was out to project a sensitive image of himself. Thus the Nazis passed laws against cruelty to animals, and instituted a policy of strict protection of nature.

When the Public goes together to form a republic, a Public Thing, force is what that thing is made around, just as in a baboon troop.

Forgetting force is forgetting the Republic. Marcus Aurelius, chosen future emperor when he was just 17, outright taught stoic philosophy (some thought it was conduct unbecoming an emperor).

However, Marcus Aurelius went over the Dark Side when he forgot that’s;

Stoicism without force is only ruin of the Republic.

This has always been true, and is truer now than ever before, because, now, it’s not just a matter of nations, religions and civilizations going down in flames. It’s a matter of the biosphere going down.

It will take some getting used to: the drought in California in 2014 was the greatest in at least 1,200 years. The latest modelling is much worse.

Eradication, Final Solution to Abomination

Eradication, Final Solution to Abomination

Israel used force to prevent the construction of nuclear reactors: in 1981, a raid by eight F16s and eight F15s, dropped 16 tons of high explosives on Osirak, a French made reactor (the site was flattened again by the Americans, ten years later). Israel repeated the performance in 2007, annihilating the Syrian nuclear reactor.

If Israel does not use force, Israel will die. Rome was so strong that it could afford to go catatonic on fascism, theocracy and terminal plutocracy… And still not die. (Rome is very much not dead, as all historians who have paid attention will tell you).

The Roman Republic grew, for five centuries not so much because it was greedy, but because it had to react to exterior aggression (I basically do not know a case where Rome really instigated the aggression, the war… Except for the Third Punic war, the Carthago Delenda Est war… But, when the Roman Republic went to war, it won’t let go.)

Marcus Aurelius poisoned the empire, because he did not use force where it mattered, close and personal.

True, Marcus Aurelius spent eight year on the battlefield, trying to prevent the Marcomanni and other German savages to cu the Roman empire in two.

However Marcus Aurelius was weak in more important respects.

He forgot that emperor Hadrian, the predecessor of his predecessor, decided to choose him and Antonius Pius as future emperors, while passing over his own two sons.

Instead, Marcus Aurelius would heap all possible honors, including Consul and Emperor on his own son, before he reached the age of 16.

Instead, Marcus Aurelius would have not enough money to pay for the army, and decisively defeat the savages. Why? Because the plutocrats, heavily taxed under the great emperor (an ex-general) Trajan, were not taxed enough under Marcus.

First the Republic has to be strong.

At this point if one is on the danger list of Israel, France, or the USA, one gets disposed of.

That does not rile up my democratic instinct. Our leaders should be elected mostly to execute the “basses besognes” (= )

In the past, determined assassins and the like could only kill a few, although, as most societies wee organized according to the fascist model, there was such a thing as striking the head, and changing it.

In Switzerland, with a rotating presidency of seven (soon to nine), there is no great change to be expected by killing one (but for augmenting an ambiance of terror).

The Islamic State does more by destroying antiquities which prove that their religion is junk.

So the only justification for so much power in so few hands in the leading democracies is that they do what is necessary.

One thing they did not do was to change the financial system. There is certainty (in the case of Obama) and a high probability (in the case of Hollande) that the gentlemen will be out of power in two years. So they need them, and all their cohorts of camp followers, to make sure that they ingratiated themselves with the powers that be.

Obama was again in San Francisco, begging for money and making deals, a week ago. Some of the most influential locals (such as Brown, an African American long mayor of San Francisco) are begging him not to come anymore (the ambiance of corruption is not improved by the traffic jams Obama causes).

Obama should stick to assassination, like Hollande, or Netanyahu.

Meanwhile, the Greeks won an important victory. Although it was more symbolic than anything else, as France (still protecting her giant banks) had been forced to win the battle for the Greeks, earlier.

***

AUSTERITY IS SYNONYMOUS WITH PLUTOCRACY:

When he ran for his presidency, Hollande, the present French president declared that “Mon enemi, c’est la finance” (My enemy is High finance). People elected him on this basis, instead of voting for the other one, whose obvious friend was High Finance.

However, Hollande behaved just the opposite, deciding, after all, not to tax the hyper rich, and finally choosing a hyper wealthy young 30 something investment banker as finance minister.

Hollande went down ever more in the polls, while the French economy kept on diving from being, to nothingness. Hollande’s polls approval reached 11%, the lowest ever for a French president.

Finally France reversed course.

The mighty French Republic finally decided to declare in advance that it would run a deficit fifty percent higher than the limit imposed by the law instituting the Euro, and this for two years in a row.

This had a number of consequences: bringing the Euro down, and also solving the Greek problem: if France was going to run a 4.5% deficit, why would Greece have to run a 4.5% SURPLUS?

(The greater demand imposed by France can be qualitatively evaluated, considering the relative sizes of economies and deficits: it is as if France was going to run (15)x(1.5) above the limit, when Greece was looking only for 2x(1.5) relief. So the French violation is much greater… and was agreed to… a day or so after the Greeks won).

Paul Krugman agrees that the Greeks won. In “What Greece Won”.

As Krugman explains:

Well, if you were to believe many of the news reports and opinion pieces of the past few days, you’d think that it was a disaster — that it was a “surrender” on the part of Syriza, the new ruling coalition in Athens. Some factions within Syriza apparently think so, too. But it wasn’t. On the contrary, Greece came out of the negotiations pretty well, although the big fights are still to come. And by doing O.K., Greece has done the rest of Europe a favor.

To make sense of what happened, you need to understand that the main issue of contention involves just one number: the size of the Greek primary surplus, the difference between government revenues and government expenditures not counting interest on the debt. The primary surplus measures the resources that Greece is actually transferring to its creditors… If you are angry that the negotiations didn’t make room for a full reversal of austerity, a turn toward Keynesian fiscal stimulus, you weren’t paying attention.

The question instead was whether Greece would be forced to impose still more austerity. The previous Greek government had agreed to a program under which the primary surplus would triple over the next few years, at immense cost to the nation’s economy and people.

Why would any government agree to such a thing? Fear. Essentially, successive leaders in Greece and other debtor nations haven’t dared to challenge extreme creditor demands, for fear that they would be punished…“

Let’s not forget greed, either…

Plutocrats are those who use power, generally through the money they command, to achieve satanic aims. Generally self–aggrandizement by commanding more is a primary obsession.

Central to this strategy is the tactic of making money ever more expensive, and reserved to the hyper wealthy. The less money We The People have, the richer plutocrats have.

Instead, to operate an economy effectively, one needs enough money to conduct all and any transaction that benefits the society at large. That’s a necessity.

Rome failed in that respect in the Third Century, because it ran out of precious metals, and also of enough internal force to impose a FIAT currency. The Franks remedied both problems.

The Franks  got the precious metals in Eastern Europe (a place the Romans had not conquered, per order from Augustus, and lack of oomph from not taxing plutocrats enough, thus having too small an army).

The Franks mixed the silver they mined with less valuable metals. and enforced the value of money: faux-monaieurs, the counterfeiters, were boiled. Alive.

Who are today’s counterfeiters? Who else but the money changers? The banksters.

All this because those who have power abuse it. And not using it is also abusing it. So when the inheritance of humanity is destroyed by Islamists, and nothing is done to stop it, not enough violence is used. Obviously.

So surrendering to the austerity is not just a weakness and a madness, it is a system of thought to submit societies ever more to the plutocratic madness, a much worse prospect.

Patrice Ayme’

Dear Muslims, about Muhammed cartoons

January 19, 2015

Here is an essay from a scientist who, per the nature of his activities, physics, astrophysics, mathematics and searching for exoplanets, planets orbiting stars in our galaxy, is forced to keep his mind wide open on a lot of questions of deep and burning interest.
Professor Coel Hellier shares my general approach (not just about Islam, but in much of science). However, he is from Europe, so he does not abide by the European bashing the leaders of the USA engage in. (And American academics know they are supposed to partake in, to earn the respect that brings them money and a nice career!)

Generally European bashing is practiced by the USA in a fashion covert enough that paid-off European leaders can claim they don’t have the faintest idea about what is going on.

An example is energy policy: Twenty years ago, the USA with Vice-President Al Gore (later made a Nobel Prize, of course), started a big noise, mirror, smoke and fury about “climate change”. The European Union bought it, hook, line, sink, and now even the European boat attached to all this is sinking.

While Europe was doing extravagant efforts to reduce its greenhouse gases emissions, the USA augmented its own (counting everything, something USA propagandists will not do for you).

Result? Right now the price of energy in the USA is half of that in Europe, the European economy is sinking (surprise, surprise), European unemployment is colossal, Europeans are rioting, and the President of the USA tells Europeans to their faces that this is all happening because Europeans are racist (more smoke and mirrors).

However, today is Martin Luther King Day. Who was MLK? Somebody who wanted Americans “of color” to have the right to sit where they wanted in a bus. (Most Americans are “of color”… with the one drop rule!)

That is a right, sitting where they wanted, that the Romans already had. OK, Romans did not have buses, but they had an imperial throne, and Spaniards, inhabitants of the Balkans, French and British born sat on it. More interestingly, African born and Arab born citizens also sat on the imperial throne.

Emperor Septimus Severus, a Libyan, was, indeed of African “blood”.

So the Martin Luther King craze, and sanctimony, is not something that Europe ought to look up to, but something to look down on. MLK was very courageous, but only as an example that one does not get anywhere good, but by telling the truth.
Anyway, let the sedate and wise Coel have a go at Salafists.

Not that the top propagandists of Salafism do not know what Coel is saying: they all do. Their (meta) aim is just more power for themselves and their masters, this is always how the Islamist game has been played.

coelsblog

Islam star and crescent of person who would draw a Mohammed cartoon, if I could draw, which I can’t, and if I was good at satirical cartoons, which I’m not. Yes, we do understand that you find cartoons depicting Muhammed offensive. We understand that you value the reputation of Muhammed more than that of your own family, and that Western cartoons about your prophet are, to you, utterly disrespectful and blasphemous. We are not drawing cartoons just for the sake of being insulting, nor because we hate you. We draw cartoons because we regard doing so as important for a free society.

Over human history many ideologies have been totalitarian. The Christian religion used to burn people at the stake for heresy. The Soviet Communists sent people to the Gulag for any dissent from communist ideology. The Nazis murdered millions to further their fascist ideology.

All totalitarian regimes control what people can say, and…

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Geo-historical Civilizational Logic

September 15, 2014

Abstract: Geography can dominate history. Examples abound. Civilization cannot just clash: it has to be defended by the sword, and by ideas which are even sharper than steel. Unfortunately plutocracy hate to see force, physical and intellectual, in command of We the People. This betrayal from class interest is how top civilizations go down: when plutocracy gnaws into civilization as the gangrene it is. The death blow is then given by the savages who are sure to come circling like hyenas. The latter is a symptom of the former.

Such hyenas brought down the Roman and Chinese state. Lest we be careful now, the Union of Savages and Thugs, with big titles, like president of Syria, or Russia, or the “Caliphate”, will engulf civilization. Let’s crush them when we still can (the “Caliphate” is only 20,000 strong, so could be literally exterminated, at this point). But we will crush them better if we also extinguish our plutocratic form of government.

Not Conquering Germania Magna Was The Proximal Cause Of Rome's Failure

Not Conquering Germania Magna Was The Proximal Cause Of Rome’s Failure

THE TEUTOBURG FOREST DISASTER:

The plutocratized Roman republic (aka “Principate”) suffered a psychologically shattering defeat at the Teutoburg Forest in 12 CE (just left of the G in Germania above).

Rome, as a real republic and democracy, had suffered much worse, even terrifying, defeats. However it was then, being a direct democracy, of a much stronger, much clearer frame of mind, and it rebounded with astounding efficiency.

Instead the Teutoburg defeat marked and accelerated an irreversible decay, as the Roman polity was taken in a pincer between exterior enemies and interior plutocrats. An army led by “princes” is much less effective than an army by the people, for the people… As the conquest of Germany required.

Some will object that the Franks, who conquered Germany after 507 CE, were led by kings. Right. But those kings were elected (more or less by the people). Nobody elected Augustus. Moreover, Frankish society was submitted to the equalitarian principle: the richest Frank was often elected king, but there was, or ought to be, no “nobilitas” notion among them; that point was made to the Pope around 740 CE by the son of Charles Martel, Pepin Le Bref.

Notice that the traitor (he had been a Roman officer) Arminius and his German army chose the location and time of the battle (which lasted three days). The miserable rain hindered the usage of Roman artillery; a swamp and a rise, the Kalkreise, prevented the maneuvering of the legions.

The treachery of it all (the legions were trekking back to their winter quarters) took Varus’ army was complete surprise.

GEOGRAPHY IS HISTORY:

The steppe which goes from Manchuria to Hungary allowed the Mongols to spill at least three times, in nine centuries, all the way to Central Europe (thus, having gathered immense power, they were able to build a giant empire, all the way to India, Japan and Indonesia).

Isolation from the Afro-Eurasian hyper continent, or, should I say, cesspool, meant that the Americas were not going to win the biological war between the former and the later. And so on.

I explained that a lot of the effervescent mentality which has festered around the place presently known as France has to do with the three giant trade routes between Southern and Northern Europe. The Alps and Carpathians, mighty mountain ranges, extend to the east over a thousand miles, blocking the way. Until the crisscrossing of wide rivers in the Ukraine-Russian plains. That, also blocked civilization’s penetration until the Vikings (“Rus”) used the waterways to enable profitable trade between Scandinavia and “Rome” (meaning Constantinople).

Nowadays, we are confronted to an old fashion modern Genghis Khan, Vladimir Putin, playing fast and loose, in a calculus where human lives are nothing. Putin has said a great number of things which should be taken literally: that Kazakhstan was not a state, that the Baltic countries had been a gift to the West, that the disappearance of the “Big Country” (USSR) was the “greatest tragedy of the Twentieth Century“, etc. His agenda is clearly to reconstitute the empire of the Czars at it maximal extent: he said as much, he will keep on coming for as much as he can get. This is not the “Cold War“. This is not a drill, either. This is war.

HISTORY AS A STAB IN THE BACK:

Scotland’s push towards independence from the London plutocracy is related to the struggle of Ukraine against the age old, vicious mentality in Moscow. That viciousness is how Moscow grew against, but also thanks to, the occupying Mongols (aka “Tartars”, or “Golden Horde”). Now that viciousness needs to be destroyed, as it is only compatible with a world war.

As facts of preceding centuries, even millennia, determine the flow of psycho-history, looking forward, it’s important to find out what those facts exactly were. In particular the exact history of the giant Greco-Roman republic-empire and its innovative successor, the “Imperium Francorum”-Renovated Roman Empire, is paramount.

Exactitude reveals that things could have turned completely differently, from small details: that’s known as the butterfly effect. From the flapping of a butterfly, a hurricane started (that’s probably impossible, for Quantum reasons, but let’s ignore that).

Out of the many penetrations by sharp objects which put an end to Julius Caesar’s life, only one was lethal, said his personal physician. Had Caesar survived, the history of Europe, and, probably, the world, would have been very different. Caesar had been on his way to a very ambitious military campaign which, knowing him, and his army, the best Rome ever had, may well have succeeded. The anticipated result was the extension of Rome over Persia, and all of Europe, west of the Caspian Sea.

THE MORE EXACT HISTORY, THE MORE FASCINATING:

Here is Eugen R Lowy, commenting on my site along these lines:

“The tragedy of Europe was caused by its two major rivers, the Rhine and the Danube. Since The Roman times it divided the Continent. Charlemagne was the first to unite Europe across the Rhine. Unfortunately it was not long lasting. The next one who would try to do it was Napoleon. But he was too eager to fight wars. Unfortunately at the time bungee jumping did not exist, that could potentially have pacified him.

The 20th century brought three unification experiences, the WWII of Hitler, then the Soviet- Stalin ( SS ) experiment, and the last one, the EU. Fortunately this one was the only successful one.

Let us hope that this time the [European] unification will thrive in spite of all those short sighted, petty minded but loud speakers.”

Eugen has it right, at least as far as the conclusion is concerned.

But the devil is in the details. Napoleon was tough: he charged at the head of his troops when his plan against the invading British was enacted at the siege of Toulon (1792), and was severely wounded in hand to hand combat. Later, as self proclaimed “emperor”, he took great risks, and had horses killed under him no less than 19 times.

Real history is often all too different, from what legends have it: the Romans were established across the Rhine, for centuries. As the Salian Franks were from one of the zones the Romans controlled (more or less), one could argue that they never left.

But, indeed, the (lack of) junction between Rhine and Danube was a huge military problem (especially as it extended the “Fulda Gap”: go ask Putin what it is, he knows!).

The Franks, three centuries before Charlemagne, had already united most of Franco-Germania, across the Rhine. What Charlemagne did was to mop up the last resistance in the most distant part of Germany, among the Saxons, and to push the frontier of Europe as far as (much of) the present European Union to the East. That made the European frontier short and defensible, stopping indeed Genghis Khan’s Mongols (the Central Asiatic invaders penetrated Poland, and Hungary, but collided there with united European forces, and, although they won in memorable battles, suffered unsustainable losses).

Calling WWII and Stalin “unifications” is farfetched: they were standard occupations and not the nicest. The situation with Napoleon was more complicated. Although he was a scum, he did not get the catastrophe started. Even greater scums, such as the pseudo-philosopher Burke, got the ball rolling.

WHY DID ROME NOT EXTEND MUCH INTO GERMANY?

The first Roman to cross into Germany was Caesar. He build a bridge across the Rhine, and went in to punish the Germans for having raided Gaul. He did this twice. However, the perpetrators tended to flee deep inside the immense forests.

Caesar thought about it, and rightly deduced it would never end. So he decided to catch the Germans from behind. A conspiracy of corrupt, idiotic plutocrats inside the Senate decided otherwise. 300 years later, the Goths were at the gates of Roma, the city of Rome herself (they finally conquered Roma another 160 years later).

Caesar’s grand-nephew and heir, Augustus, went back to the unimaginative method of the slow grind. The Roman penetration extended well beyond the Rhine, and even Danube. When three legions (18,000 elite legionaires, plus the supporting army) were annihilated by Arminius (“Herman”), they were going back to their winter quarters, and that trek back, along a narrow path, was in extreme Northern Germany, exactly were the hills met the immense swamp which preceded the North Sea. Over three days, in very bad weather, hindering Roman artillery, and a geography that prevented their maneuvering, the legions fought, until they met a final trap. Those survivors who had not escaped or committed suicide, were assassinated in human sacrifices.

So what happened after that?

Three things:

1) Augustus plunged into a nervous breakdown, losing his composure completely. He butted his head on the wall of the palace, begging general Varus to give him back his legions (Varus died at Teutoburg).

Against all common sense, Augustus counseled his successors to not try to control all of Germany. Yet, Germanicus (grand nephew Augustus, nephew and adoptive son Tiberius) knew better. He overruled the recommendation of Augustus to stay on the Rhine. Beyond the orders he got, he drove deep into Germany, with eight legions, and defeated Arminius for years. However, Germanicus was poisoned (by Sejanus; that was revealed only 15 years later, although widely suspected at the time, making Tiberius the object of hatred).

2) Increasing plutocracy in Rome meant ever less power for the army: that was evident by Marcus Aurelius’ reign (180 CE), when new German nations tried to break through the Danube towards Italia. Soon pieces of the army, starting with the Pretorian Guard, behaved increasingly like occupying and plundering bodies: this was the situation after the demise of the Severus dynasty (“Barrack emperors” period).

That enfeeblement, in turn, made the Germans ever bolder. By 250 CE, the Franks were raiding from ships, Viking style, throughout not just Gaul, but Spain and even North Africa, where they struck the populations by their appearance of blonde giants.

At the same time, the Goths commandeered a fleet of non-sea worthy ships, and rampaged for years all around the Euxine Sea (Black Sea), and even all the way down to Athens (which they plundered and burned).

3) Why were there so many Germans? Obviously agriculture in the North was getting more and more productive, allowing to support more and more people. At the same time, exposition to the Greco-Roman empire had partly changed, and militarized the German savages, and they yearned for civilization and the wealth of Rome. Spectacular victories over the Roman army inside the empire persuaded the Germans that the empire was richer, and weaker, than expected. The Persians deduced the same simultaneously, invading Mesopotamia and Armenia.

***

WE ARE ALL ROMANS NOW:

It’s nice to philosophize about the demise of the Greco-Roman fascist plutocracy known to itself as the republic. What is the morality of all this, looking forward? Two main things:

1) The strength of Rome was its republic, its direct democracy, before the lamentable Augustus tinkered with it to transform it in a military dictatorship. The real, original republic, was a direct democracy.

2) Vladimir Putin is much more dangerous than the Europeans realize. Not just because of himself, the quickly expanding forces at his command, and the will he has proclaimed to establish a much larger empire all over Eurasia (which he calls the “Eurasian Union”). But also because he demonstrates to the world that Europe is much richer, and much weaker, than it was thought to be. And it makes the entire world, including the Europeans, used to this idea.

Fortunately some in Europe understand this vaguely: the French sent to the Kurds very effective, easy to use armor piercing weapons, that were used very effectively by the Peshmerga. French military advisers are on the ground. The Americans, who were not exactly born yesterday, are in the lead this time (differently from the Saturday when Obama made an about face about bombing Assad, while French pilots cooked in their cockpits).

A question is what can the USA do to help rise the bellicose spirit of Europeans?

The answer is to advantage the French Republic and loudly cooperate with it, for all to see. When the Germans and other neutrals realize that France is getting rewarded because of her effective role in defending civilization, they may be keener in following suit.

There is also no way that France can play an important military role while being held back by the 3% deficit Eurozone spending rule (the USA turns around the deficit through Quantitative Easing, a stealth nationalization of much of the economy that does not augment the deficit, technically, while having the same effect, under another name, balancing the Fed’s books).

Ultimately, who decapitates whom at will, is what history is all about. Facts don’t have to be nice, they can just stand there, impervious.

It will be European Unification, under a superior philosophy, or it will be war, under superior barbarity: Putin knows this, and opted for the latter. That’s how professionally trained assassins tend to be.

One may ponder why it is that Augustus took the wrong turn. First he wanted peace and control. Second, he did not have a grand plan (as his reaction to the Teutoburg massacre showed).

Institutionally, Augustus decided little besides making Tiberius his heir (under (one of his wives) Livia’s influence). That was informal, and for many weeks which dragged by, after the Princeps’ death in 14 CE, nothing was done about the exact status of the Roman Republic: a nervous Tiberius, although the top general did not dare say he was taking command (“of the Senate”: Princeps), before he was begged to do so by an official delegation.

Some historians have suggested the obvious: the (informal) Roman Constitution was made for the City of Rome, not an empire with a fourth of humanity. The only way for the empire to go on was to militarize and dictatorize the Republic as much as necessary, as Augustus did.

That’s not true. The empire actually morphed in a galaxy of local cities and provinces which were rather free. The central Roman administration was very efficient. However, when the central state could not pay for the armies, trouble ensued (and this was true by 150 BCE). The armies did public works, not just defense. Augustus did not fix the problem of paying for a Republican army, instead he instituted a moral decaying dictatorship.

That moral decay presided the fall of Rome is not just my opinion: emperor Decius, in the Third Century held it, and asked the Senate to re-establish the office of censor: Valerian got the job (Valerian became emperor later, and made history by becoming the first and only captured Roman emperor; he was rumored to have become the stool Sasanian emperor Shapur I used to mount his horse).

FREE AS A PEACEFUL BIRD:

On the positive side, the strength of Rome was local self-determination, and the ensuing peace: before the Goths rampaged in the central empire (Illyricum, the present Balkans, and Greece), the region had known three centuries of peace.

This is why letting local nations (Scotland, Catalonia, Ukraine, Georgia, Armenia, Kurdistan) being free is important: it was one of the ingredient of the Roman success. Notice also that the Franks duplicated that regionalization later. Yet, the Franks did the latter to excess: regionalization got so extreme, that it led to alienation, nationalism, and finally, war.

This is what the European construction wants to correct: a millennium, or more, of alienation. But it will not happen without weapons. Intellectual weapons, but also, against thugs such as Putin, real weapons.

Intellectual weapons are the most powerful: when Bush’s USA destroyed the Iraqi republic of Saddam Hussein, it fostered the sort of thugs that now reign there (the expression “Iraqi republic” is similar to the one, “republic”, that the Greco-Romans used to qualify the Greco-Roman state for centuries after Augustus). This was highly predictable for anyone with enough of a brain.

Republics work, but only when they can strike in their defense. Nowadays, whether know-nothing Americans, and half boiled Europeans realize it, the republic has no borders, it’s all over the planet.

It’s easy for Germany to be tired of the French deficit (4.4% predicted, whereas Germany is at 0%). Germany’s fate, and course correction, was determined by bombs, not deficit.

Work works, but, in the ultimate cases, war is irreplaceable.

Consider the invasion of China by the Mongols over 60 years. The Jin dynasty, Western Xia, the Dali Kingdom and the Southern Song (which fell in 1279 CE) worked hard, and were on the top of civilization (the Xia was the most powerful Buddhist state ever). Their successive defeats were not caused by lack of industry, but by lack of military skill caused by the asinine stupor a lazy plutocracy prefers in the People they subjugate (that observation was made by Mongol generals themselves, again and again).

That, in turn, was caused by the wrong ideas all over.

Wrong ideas are all over nowadays. Examples: the fact that children should be less educated in the West than in Shanghai; that the Qur’an is a book of peace; that international law does not apply to Moscow (or George Bush), and that’s not a civilization threatening event; that we are not at war with Putin; that there are (military) borders; that banks are not public utilities, that the fractional reserve system is not a subsidy to plutocrats; that Quantitative Easing is not communism for the wealthiest; that greed will solve everything; that Earth’s biosphere is not in the greatest crisis in 65 million years; that the parliamentary system in most of the West can be called “democracy”. And so on.

All these very erroneous ideas need to be beaten into shape.

Without getting the right axiomatic first, we won’t know where, or even why, to strike. This was the problem Rome had after Augustus. This is why most of Europe is supine, as threats add to injury. That’s why Obama admitted he had “no strategy” in Iraq and Syria.

That was, at least, honest. Let’s give him a hint: hit the enemy in Iraq and Syria, while extending peace feelers to the ex-supporters of Saddam Hussein’s regime (thus splitting the enemy). That’s the most moral thing to do.

The most moral thing to do, is always the best strategy.

Patrice Ayme