Posts Tagged ‘Theocracy’

ALL WE NEED IS TECH

September 30, 2013

REAL TECH, that is.

We Are TECHNOLOGICAL ANIMALS, THEREIN OUR REDEMPTION. Out With Financial “Products”.

Suppose we were gods: would we need to work? No. We would not even need an economic system; whatever we would want, it would be.

Indeed, what’s the difference between infinitely advanced technology and god like status? None.

So we see that technology primes economics. Technology also dominates not just the psychology of individuals, but the psychology of society itself. We are technological animals, and have been, ever since we depended upon tools and weapons for our survival: that’s several million years, all the way back to our distant ancestor species.

Without advancing technology, there would not even be a sustainable civilization, as resources get exhausted. Indeed, a given technology exploits given resources. Those are always finite.

Even Sol’s thermonuclear reactor has finite resources. The most recent observations show that the sun’s energy production is even somewhat erratic (some stars, such as the Cepheids, are extremely variable).  

For example, there is just enough lithium, on the whole planet, for a few million electric cars. Without much more advanced batteries, electric cars, a commendable goal, will stay an aborted dream.

The main technologies used nowadays, and by main, I mean those mostly contributing to Gross (“Domestic”) Product, are all unsustainable, because they rise the CO2 level at a rate that will turn the Earth into Venus within a few centuries.

Two or three centuries is very little time to switch COMPLETELY, and absolutely, to NON CO2 producing industries (as we will have to; skyscrapers may have to be built with wood, as present day concrete makes lots of CO2… although switching to much better Roman concrete will diminish CO2 emissions considerably!).   

The present economic stagnation has a lot to do with confusing the weapons of plutocracy with the technology we need to survive as a civilization, just as we mess up our spaceship. Finance supreme caused a brain drain down to hell, in the service of Pluto. A lot of ingenuity was spent on inventing new financial “products” or “technologies” that were just new ways of stealing people by skirting the letter of existing laws.

The transfer of most resources, including the brightest young minds and hopes, to “greed is all we need to make society right“, has caused this stagnation.

We saw the same exact thing happen to Rome under the plutocratic “Principate”… with the multidimensional collapse of the state, and even civilization, and population, as consequences…

Not only did resources, such as forest and metallic mines, got exhausted, but health care imploded, while the barbarians closed the military technological gap, allowing them to roam through the empire. All this because democracy had been displaced by plutocracy.

The collapse of civilization blossomed into the Dark Ages of the Fifth Century, with its many dramatic invasions (including by savages who came all the way from Mongolia, the Huns!).

However, in the original case of “Wacht Am Rhein“, the PAGAN Franks took complete command of the Roman forces by 486 CE, and acquired total military control of Gallia and Germania within 21 years. That neutralized the horrendous, civilization devouring, mind extinguishing Christian theocracy, that had caused the catastrophic collapse of everything (including of that of the population).

The ascent of the Franks had depended, for already two centuries, upon technological superiority, especially in metallic weapons (nothing new: the Roman army had purchased metallic armaments from the Celto-Germans for nearly a millennium). The civilizational bias favoring new technology had insured the ascent of the Greeks and the Romans. Yet, the mood of improving matters through technological solutions was undermined by slavery, and, more generally the mentality that all problems of man could be solved by exerting violence upon other men.

The overall mood enabled Macedonia, the Hellenistic kingdoms and the fascist Roman plutocracy, with its Principate, to take over the world from the republican poleis. Some historians will say: well, it was decided on the battlefield by, Philip Antipater, and Alexander of Macedonia. True. However it was not that simple: the mood of friendliness to fascism and plutocracy pervaded the works of Pluto, Aristotle, and those they influenced (top politicians, captains in the Athenian Navy).

The philosopher Demosthenes was extremely conscious that the wrong mood reigned, and urged the Athenians to resist Antipater, as their ancestors had resisted Xerxes. The Athenians fought back. Indeed. But not with the ferocity they had deployed against Persian plutocracy. 

Plutocracy in friends is a terrible thing, all the more as it is harder to resist. 

But the Franks put technology on steroids by making all citizens free, and outlawing slavery. The technological stagnation that had characterized fascist, plutocratic Rome was over. (OK, the Franks were also plutocrats; but their plutocratic index was much lower than that of the aristo-religious families of around 400 CE.)  

Consequentially, major technological and intellectual advances blossomed.

First of all, a more sustainable, less energy intensive economy was built around wood There was no more slaves to dig underground for coal, or stones. Absolute Worth Energy per capita had to be augmented. Using wood massively in housing allowed to do this (whereas using wood for mines, as was done before, was not possible anymore, from lack of slaves and too much depth).  

To replace human slaves, while augmenting production, friendly species were bred, from giant draft horses to protein laden beans. Mechanization was extreme, with thousands of wind and water mills per province. Carolingian script and German were invented by 800 CE. Caroligian script actually augmented the AWE of writing (it was devised to minimize the effort of the scribes).

Considered on objective indicators (total population, military might, ecumenism, religious tolerance, inclusivity, energy per capita, AWE per capita), the Imperium Francorum (486 CE-800 CE) was clearly an upswing, and achieved higher than Rome at its apex in some very important dimensions. This culminated in the official re-establishment of the Roman empire in 800 CE (when Charlemagne was the one and only Augustus of the entire Roman empire, all the way to Constantinople!).

The important point: the fundamental renaissance, after the death of Antiquity under slavery, contradiction and superstition, was the Imperium Francorum. So I propose this date: 486 CE for the renaissance that counted (some French nationalists will start singing; however, the Franks themselves put the context of their renaissance in a world perspective, from Troy to Europe, and in these words; plus, they spoke Old Dutch). 

(Islam was a neglectable quantity, because it did not make the transition out of slavery, so was stuck in the same philosophical trap as the Greco-Romans, and even worse, because it did not have secular law, and, thus, free men. Still a problem today.)

This technological drive launched by the Romanized Celto-Germans-Franks did not abate.

Even after plutocracy came back big time by 1100 CE (First Crusade). And the technological drive actually protected against plutocracy.

Massive iron architecture appeared by 1150 CE in the cathedrals (in Frankish style, insulted as “Gothic in 16C). That was rendered possible by hydraulic presses, an example of the mechanical advantage that was used all over the European Middle Ages (allowing to run a society with a much higher AWE per capita than China: machines and animals were doing the work down by armies of men in China, as travelers related at the time). By 1200 CE, gravity clocks were developed (they embodied most of the mechanics of the 17C).  

By 1300 CE the considerable development, now ahead of what Rome had known, collided with the exhaustion of resources wall. Within 50 years, the population had been cut by more than half.

However, the collapse of civilization did not happen. Why? Because it’s intellectual fascism, and the stupidity it led to, that collapsed the Romans. When technology and minds are moving ahead, that cannot happen.  

Before 1350 CE, Buridan, a secular cleric, advisers to several kings, twice rector of the university of Paris, a philosopher (and not a theologian!), physicist, mathematician had invented the principle of inertia (now stupidly attributed to Newton… who was born three centuries later!!!!). Also graphs, the heliocentric system, etc. by the time the Plague struck…

So, when the Plague struck, the nobles knew what to do: few, if any, died! (governments took the ultimate measures to prevent the spreading of the Plague, such as shooting on sight).

So the Middle Ages did not renew the Roman catastrophe because the technological drive did not abate. That, in turn was rendered possible by the fact that the moral system of those in power, that of the aristocrats, was not that of Christianity (whereas in the Late Roman empire, the emperors themselves were Christian fanatics).

Nietzsche insisted upon that fact (but he does not seem to have noticed the effect on science, technology and thing in general).

The case of Buridan is illuminative that way: in 1471 CE (that was 113 years after Buridan’s death!) Louis XI and the terrorizing Vatican made the reading of Buridan unlawful (however, the university that Copernicus attended made the reading of Buridan mandatory! Something to do with Jan Hus’ martyrdom… another, but related story).

Copernicus, an abbot, parroted Buridan’s work, but it would take much more than a century for the most obscure corners of the plutocracy to accept that ideas could change… and thus, to admit to the changed mood that intellectual fascism was not perfect. The changed mood that thinking about things actually improved things. And that poor thinking led to poor things (watch the Obamacare debacle for poor thinking!).

So how do we make technology into god, full steam ahead, as we need and in our image again? And not into that financial disease that is presently devouring the planet? Well, we keep plutocracy under control. And how do we do that? Well, we do it the old fashion way, exactly as the Roman Republic did it!

We cap wealth!

***

Patrice Ayme

God Is Weak

October 24, 2011

“GOD WILLING” AS THE SCOURGE THAT KEEPS ON TAKING.

Abstract: In India, religion allowed the reign of racist terror and racial segregation for three millennia. The Celtic religion had also a metaphysical lock on privilege, and human sacrifices helped enforce that. Christianity prevented democracy in the parts of Rome it ruled, for more than 11 centuries. 

As in India, the genetic make-up of the elite which professed Christian values came to diverge from that of the general population.

Similarly, Islam has prevented democracy for up to 13 centuries in the areas it ruled. Some Muslim dynasties have reigned for centuries. The Gaddafi dynasty has been brutally cut short, but Assad’s or Mohammed VI of Morocco (with his Shariah state!) are surviving. 

Clearly, elites can profit from the appropriate metaphysics. And that is why metaphysics can promote the worst exactions, just those the elites need to rule. However the pernicious metaphysical influence can be more subtle.

Nietzsche, the son of a pastor, evoking Christianity, spoke of a “slave religion“. Hitler declared Islam to be superior to Christianism, because it was more war like. So the Guide Adolf advertized “Gott mit Uns” as a slogan for his military and SS (never mind that the translation of “God With US”, is contracted in the Hebrew name “Emanuel“).

However, there are even worse perspectives. Not just what is subhuman, but even, inasmuch as it may stretch the imagination, subcanid. As we will show below.

As the Arab-Muslim revolutions roll in, the organized Islamist parties, long in opposition, stand ready to profit at the ballot box. There are more than a thousand parties trying to get elected in Tunisia. But only one Islamist party, Ennahda (“Renaissance”). Its chief went to vote, passing in front of the line, accompanied by bodyguards. He was booed.

Ennahda got 90 seats out of 217 in the Constitutional Assembly. Then fighting broke out in the city where the Tunisian revolution started. Why? Because many in the Arabo-Muslim area know that Islam is more a problem than a solution. But many are also imprinted on what subjugates them. 

Plutocracy has reigned through theocracy in much of Western Eurasia, for millennia. Europe improved considerably when God was put in a cage by the Franks, or, even better, when he was outright killed in the modern era. The death of superstition in Europe has a lot to do with European superiority.

Many have wondered why Europe became so dominant in the last millennium. The main reason is very simple: the cult of reason replaced the cult of superstition.

Deprived of its main justification, mighty God itself, the reason without any reason, plutocracy, its grip weakened, jumped incoherently from one strife to another.

Superstition was still around, but it was paid lip service. This became obvious when Abelard, in the early 1100s published “Sic & Non” (“Yes and No”, where the principal Christian divagations were looked at in equal and opposite ways). The fascist top crusader fanatic, Saint Bernard, tried his best to destroy Abelard. 900 years later, we can safely say that he failed, and “Saint” Bernard would now be put in jail (for hate mongering). 

In the modern era, “God Willing!”, known in the European Middle Ages as “Deo Volente!”, the celebration of submission in heart and mind, was further displaced by “People Willing!”  

“People Willing” is the very notion of democracy. Those who say that Islam ought to rule where it is influential are saying that they want superstition to forbid democracy.

Those who want to be ruled by a big guy in the sky don’t want democracy, they want submission (which happens to be exactly what “Islam” means: the braying of the ass could not be clearer).

How does theocracy undermines minds? Through superstition. Denying People are free, by submitting them to arbitrary rules, superstition. How does superstition show up? Through ridiculous incantations, and “God Willing” is the first of them all. Europe has forgotten this, but not the area Islam infuses.

Many in the West affect a pose they advocate as civilized, by saying that respect for superstitious theocracy is an indispensable component of the Middle East. They are hypocrites of the exploitative type, anxious to ingratiate themselves with the local potentates.

Killing the Ghadafis as if they were dogs, is more of the same contempt for man and advanced civilization that the Qur’an pounds in the minds. The rule of superstition is antinomic to the rule of law, another aspect of the rule of reason. As long as Islam will not be subjugated by democracy, the Islamist zone will not progress significantly, which means that, as I will show, most people are treated as if they were less than dogs, and they are supposed to do it to themselves. 

***

END OF A TYRANT:

The dictator Ghadafi, instead of surrendering calmly in a timely manner, spent the last few weeks of his life reading the Qu’ran. Finally the fighters of the National Transition Council closed in. After several days of intense bombardements and house to house fighting, Ghadafi and his closest clique embarked in a convoy of 175 vehicles (said NATO officially). They rushed out of the main fortress area in Surt, Libya.

French fighter-bombers found them half an hour after they left. The convoy was engaged, many vehicles were destroyed, burned to a crisp, they dispersed, and broke down in the surrounding ditches. An American predator drone was also involved (but small drones carry much less bombs than bombers, with their air fuel explosives). The French started it, outside of Benghazi, and finished it at Sirte. The NATO argument, presented a few days later, was that the convoy was laden with huge amount of weaponry, including anti-aircraft and rocket launchers, and thus constituted a threat to civilians (a towering hypocrisy as the aim was obviously to flee in the desert, and as if the French had asked for anyone’s authorization before dispatching an air armada to the huge convoy.)

Plutocrat in chief Gaddafi traveled in a Toyota Land Cruiser with his chief of security, a relative, the driver, and Mr. Dhao, a cousin, leader of the feared “People’s Guard”… The effort to extract Gaddafi from Libya was spearheaded by white ex-military South African mercenaries. They did not expect the French aerial attack, as they thought NATO wanted to extract Gaddafi from Libya. Two South Africans were killed, others are in hospitals. Danie Odendaal, one of them, said that the NTC fighters spared the white foreign mercenaries.

According to the New York Times, “When a missile struck near the car, the airbags deployed”, said Mr. Dhao, who was hit by shrapnel in the strike. He said he tried to escape with Colonel Gaddafi and other men, walking first to a farm, then to the main road, toward some drainage pipes. “The shelling was constant,” Mr. Dhao said, adding that he was struck by shrapnel again and fell unconscious. When he woke up, he was in the hospital.”

Gaddafi loyalists fled on foot, to the woods, in firefights with NTC freedom fighters. Gaddafi, who used to criticize rats, was found in a water tunnel. He was captured, manhandled, bloodied, lynched and subsequently killed. The Libyan government claims the dictator died in crossfire, between his bodyguards and freedom fighters. But a rather meek looking local fighter was presented by an officer, to a French TV crew. The ebullient officer boasted  that the fighter, after kicking Gaddafi in the head, shot the tyrant deliberately, in the gut, on the right side. The meek guy opined, meekly.

Confronted later by Bernard Henri Levy, the commander of the unit who captured Gaddafi said that: “He treated us like rats, but he was the rat, down in his sewer pipe, and it was my fighters who found him, pulled him out of his hole, and subdued him.”

I can understand the rage. I certainly approve of it. I approve of it, because only rage allows to not suffer the intolerable, when the odds are impossible.

However there are lines not to be crossed. Those lines were crossed when Gaddafi and his son were eliminated as if they were mosquitoes. It’s not because Obama did something similar a few months before, that he should be imitated.

Civilization, not rage, needs to be defended

There is no doubt that one of Kaddafi’s sons, Mo’tassim, was assassinated. He had been captured in perfect health, and was offered water. His verbal exchanges with his captors were dismissive: he would not talk to teenagers, he said, they called him a “dog“. He was the military commander of the most powerful division of his father’s army, and directed the absurd, two month resistance of Surt (where quite a few war crimes may have been committed… by both sides, but especially Gaddafi’s side). I hated him personally. His picture, towering a bit more than a year ago with a meekly smiling Hillary Clinton, too hilarious by half, irritated me.

But, once again, killing people as if they were dogs is the best way to make sure that humankind does not rise above dogs. Ever. However bad Mo’tassim was, validating his acts by doing just like him, killing out of rage, was to become a brother in mind to him, and honor his malevolence.

Those who God knows what they want, don’t want a mind of their own. A mind is a terrible thing not to have. No mind, no strength.

***

MANY REASONS FOR JUSTICE. IN A SOPHISTICATED SOCIETY, VENGEANCE IS NOT ONE OF THEM:

I detested Gaddafi and his sons. And I view them as criminals of the very worst kind. This being said, assassinating captured criminals is intolerable. It was of paramount importance to try Kaddafi, and his clique. Clearly he would have received life in prison. But, meanwhile, in his trial:

1) Qaddafi would have had to explain his role in the plutocratic web, and, in particular, all the collaboration he and his clans profited from in the West. This is justice as exploration of past crime to dismantle further crime by the same criminal conspiracy. It is also what needs to be done with the banks.

And, of course, the assassination of bin Laden prevented to ask the right questions to the perpetrator of 9/11, and enlarge the inquiry. By this I do not mean that the CIA planed 9/11. I do not surmise this. But I mean that bin Laden was imprinted on a particular way to solve some problems, by the CIA and its subsidiaries, such as the ISI, or Saudi intelligence (which recruited bin Laden).

Not having Gadddafi around to tell us what some of his ex-colleagues used to do when they were not heading the NTC, is most convenient for the latter. An example: Mr. Jibril was the head judge who condemned the Bulgar nurses to death, and is now number two of the NTC. This, we know. and then there is all we do not know, and never will, as the main witness, the dictator himself, was dispatched beyond our reach.

2) Qaddafi also would have been able to explain how his mind and that of his clique worked. The Nuremberg tribunal helped to reveal how the Third Reich worked. This offered a paradigm on a fascist system. Kaddafi’s was another occasion to reveal such a paradigm of evil. This is justice as exploration of the Dark Side.

3)  Showing mercy and refusing to go down the road of the decay of man. This is Justice to lift civilization up, by enforcing higher values.   

***

SCREAM “GOD WILLING” AS MUCH AS YOU WISH; WHO HAS NO WANTS DOES NOT EXIST:

When asked this that and the other thing, enraged Muslims in the streets these days tend to start with :”If God wants it” Soon they will all vote for Islamist parties, and spend their time reading the Qur’an, like Gaddafi.

If God wants it“: What a useless declamation! Indeed, God is supposed to be all powerful. So, if He wants it, it happens. Why to talk about it? Why to express an opinion? If God wants it, it does not matter what we want. If God does not want it, it does not matter what we want either.

What are those people who evoke God at every turn of their logic trying to say? That it does not matter what they want, or what they don’t want? Are they practicing a nihilism not just of value, but of desire itself? Since being a good Muslim is all about obeying God, are they saying that they have no desire, whatsoever? Thus, no desire to have any values, in particular?

Then why do they vociferate so much? Why to scream “Insha Allah” at every turn? Does not God knows that what He wants is the only thing that matters? Why to get agitated about anything at all, if, in the end, only “If God wants it” matters? Is not that a contradiction, to have an emotional human discourse, when only God’s emotion is the necessary item (“IF”)?

This usage of Insha’ Allāh comes from Islamic scripture, the Qu’ran. The Sura Al Kahf, the Cave,  (18):24: “And never say of anything, ‘I shall do such and such thing tomorrow. Except (with the saying): ‘If God wills!’ And remember your Lord when you forget…’

Muslims are ordered to never say they will do a particular thing in the future without adding “Insha’Allah” to the statement. That was very practical for the generals who had written the Qur’an, as it insured that their troops had no control of their own volition.

In practice, some people gets things done, whether God wants it, or not. Typically they are dictators. Then they can turn around, and say they did them because Allah wanted it. Indeed, as things happen only when Allah wants them: the religion says that. Thus, when Gaddafi established his bloody rule, he could say:”God wanted it!” at this point, anybody resisting Gaddafi was resisting God’s will itself. No wonder it took 42 years to bring him down.

The dictator Assad in Syria can kill 4,000 people, and then say:”Insha’ Allah!” God is a gift that keeps on giving.

***

GOD WILLING” AS THE DISASTER OF THE EUROPEAN MIDDLE AGES:

The European Middle Ages long have had a bad reputation. This is strange, as, by the year 1000 CE, Western Europe was very peaceful, and had become the world’s richest region, per capita. In the following centuries, it would become ever, richer, per head. However, the region was wracked by religious wars, starting with the first crusade in 1100 CE. The first thing the first wave of crusaders did was to kill many thousands Jews in Germany.

What happened? “God Willing“.

God willing” will sound all too familiar to those Europeans who have been educated enough to study a bit of history.

The idea of God’s desire had been adapted, and adopted, from the Middle East and its hydraulic dictatorships. The Ancient Babylonian religion had a good god, and a very bad one. Ahura Mazda‘s counterpart is Angra Mainyu, the “evil spirit”, creator of evil. Soon the rulers were deified, which is most appropriate when assuming God like powers.

The identification of the ruler with God was brought back by Alexander (a mass murderer, so called the “Great”). What the systematic application of “Insha’ Allah” to all thought does is to identify God, thus the ruler, with all thinking, and all desire. It’s not:”I think, therefore I am”, but “I think, whatever God wants.”

Alexander made a superstitious pilgrimage to a sacred oasis in Egypt, deep in the Libyan desert. The fascist generals who succeeded him gave divine powers to the sovereigns, that is, themselves, and made God all powerful.

As Rome became ever more fascist, and ever more dysfunctional, God again came to the rescue, as “Sol Invictis“. Constantine saw the interest to adopt the Christian church, with its powerful pseudo military organization.

It helped that the mythical Jesus had been considerate to Caesar, and had said nothing against slavery. Jesus respected the two pillars of the Roman plutocracy. The idea of “God Willing” came to thrive over the entire empire, and the Mediterranean.

Nothing got done, as it was all about “God Willing“. Why to want anything, when God is willing for you? Serious: nothing much was done, even to highway men. Highway robbery was a growth industry of the Late Roman empire, wrecking the economy as road travel became too dangerous (think Somali pirates, for a modern analogy; or, for that matter, piracy in the Caribbean, around 1700).

Constantine’s Frankish troops begged to differ with the God imposed order. The Germans were intrinsically more democratic, because Frankish power rested on a profusion of small family farms (such family, small holder farming had long been forgotten in Rome, where giant agribusinesses produced the food, often brought from overseas).

Germans formed democracies, Rome was a plutocracy, and plutocracy was entangled with all the details of food production, and the entire society. From the Frankish point of view, the rule of God and the Roman absolutism attached to it, was an unmitigated disaster.

After 150 years of a succession of struggles, coups and civil wars, the Franks finally took power in Francia, as the Roman army. The first kings of the Franks were elected (at least by their troops, exactly like Roman imperators). As the Merovingian and later Carolingian empires ruled over most of Europe, elections were still to be had.

Meanwhile, the Eastern Roman empire, an hereditary, fiercely religious monarchy,  reconquered most of the Mediterranean. Clearly there the political leaders and their terrorist government were in place because of “God”. Muslim generals naturally adopted in turn this idea to defeat their main enemy, the Roman empire.

The Carolingian empire split later. The Western third (“Francia”), based in already arrogant Paris, neglected its duties, and refused to bother with presenting a candidate for the election of the eastern two-thirds. Thus was born the so called “Holly German Roman empire”, were elections were held for centuries (until the Habsburg took over).

The last real French election was that of Hughes Capet (“Hugo Magnus“), who was elected Rex Francorum, on July 3, 987 CE. His distant namesake, the semi revolutionary Louis XVI was executed on January 21, 1793 CE, under the name “Louis Capet”.

Why did the Frankish kingship become purely hereditary? What happened? God, also known as Allah.

One should never forget that the Muslims occupied part of France for generations in the period 721 CE to, say, well in the late Tenth Century (when a combined Frankish army-Roman navy military coalition ejected the Muslim army; yes, Rome existed in the tenth century, it was based in Constantinople).

In the end, Muslim families in Francia were not chased out, or converted forcefully, but discreetly absorbed; only the invading armies were defeated, nothing happened in France similar to the forceful evacuation of Muslims from Iberia by the Inquisition, five centuries later.

Around the year 1,000 CE, Muslim Spain was viewed as superior, by the Franks themselves, and was actually superior in many economic and cultural indicators. Thus some of the Muslim philosophy of governance percolated to the French system (one can surmise).

The Frankish rulers, by 1100 CE, adopted two main Muslim ideas: Jihad, which became the crusades, and the pretention that they were reigning, by “the Grace of God” (“par la grace de Dieu“).

In the end, fascism and theocracy, entangled together, caused centuries of wars in Europe, from 1100 CE, literally until the 1700s (when nationalism took over as the main cause of mayhem). The height of religious wars was in the thirteenth and sixteenth century in France, in the twelfth and seventeenth in Germany (when a third of the population died during one war). Religious mayhem peaked in Seventeenth Century England.

The French revolution decapitated the ancient plutocracy, and its associated theocracy. Just as the hydraulic dictatorships had inspired the ancient world to govern “God Willing“, the French revolution inspired the European people to trash the old theocracy. Although it was done first, and violently in England, the French example showed that it was time to trash God. That was done later more discreetly in the rest of Europe (although one can view anti-Judaism as a relapse of what happened in 1100 CE).

It finally dawned on the European citizens thatGod Willing” is the exact opposite of “People Willing“.

***

YOU CAN’T ALWAYS GOD WHAT YOU WANT:

“God Willing” is the scourge of the primitive. That “God Willing” was an inferior metaprinciple was demonstrated, if need be, in the Iberian Caliphate.

God Willing” throned at the top of the passive, submissive, valueless philosophical complex of metaprinciples rotten at the core which caused the implosion of the advanced Muslim Iberian culture.

Indeed the Iberian caliphate imploded first, without being pressed by the Catholic sovereigns; later North African savages were successful in re-establishing two rounds of barbaric Islamist strength. But those military reigns were paid with considerable philosophical regression. That regression, in turn, favored the reconquista, as the Catholics became relatively superior on many cultural indicators, to the barbarized Muslims.

To the superstitious, if something does not get done, it may be surmised, that God did not want it. This is highly convenient to all those who want nothing done. If nothing gets done, it has nothing to do with people being lazy, unmotivated, corrupt, indolent, incompetent, stupid, ignorant, sexist, superstitious, violent, barbaric, living out of time, mentally blocked by the weight of eons, etc. It’s all God’s fault. The Dog stole lunch.

Nihilism a la Dostoyevsky: if God does not exist, everything is permitted.

Nihilism a la “God Willing“: whatever we want does not matter, because the universe is all about what God wants. It does not even matter if it is permitted or not. We want not, God does it for us. And if you ask too many questions and make too many observations, like drawing God, or something, we get enraged.

That brings us back to  the assassination of Kaddafi, or to violence in general in any area dominated by a “God Willing” religion. God, as represented in Jewish scripture, is most enraged most of the time. He resembles the most intersidereal jealous homicidal maniac from hell ever imagined. Obviously a most edifying example for the bloodiest dictators. But that is the god of Christ and Muhammad. God as a jealous homicidal maniac is not just about mainstream Judaism, but about its heresies too.

Assassinating Ghadafi was more than stupid. It was a post mortem validation of the dictator’s way of being. (Desmond Tutu, and many other well known celebrities expressed the same view.)

Democracy is the rule of the People, but it does not mean that rule is just, or even clever. For example, in today’s Israel the government is democratically elected, but it does not respect the spirit of the UN (which makes clear that any People has a right to a state, something both the Palestinians and the Kurds deserve).

A sure way to be unjust, and stupid is to chant superstitions all day. Evoking “God Willing” all day long, does that very well. It undermines not just logics and knowledge, or the will, but even desire itself.

God Willing, is not just a question of becoming subhuman. If you don’t know what you want, should we step in, and tell you what you want?

Even dogs know what they want. Thus, chanting “God Willing” all day long is a question of aspiring to be less than dogs. Those believers in the overwhelming desire of God have even renounced the status of canid. At least inside their own minds. Why would others expect that they would treat other people better than dogs, then? When they cannot treat themselves as well as dogs would treat themselves?

God is weak. God is a weak excuse for eschewing responsibility, and assuming the freedom that is both the strength and bane of man. God is what tyrants need the naive to believe in, so that they can rule unjustly, and unwisely.

God is the convenient excuse civilization has to forget if it wants to face our mighty fate to the best of our abilities. It is also what North Africa and the Middle East will have to learn to do without, if they want to grow up into the might of reason.

***

Patrice Ayme

***

P/S1: IDEAS HAVE A LIFE OF THEIR OWN: An argument above was that the idea of making the sovereign into God, and God into everything, all the way down to the inner sanctum of what one wants, circled around western Eurasia like a vulture. First from the fertile Crescent, and Egypt to Rome, and from there back to Arabia, and then from Islam into the Frankish area. It was accompanied by the dictatorships it emotionally fostered.  

Something similar happened in reverse after the Franco-Normands invaded England in 1066: much of the Angle, Saxon, British and Viking system of local councils was preserved, as Guillaume le Conquérant found to his advantage to establish his authority directly with the People, a good counter-weight to his presumptuous suzerain in Paris… Another idea which made the rounds was parliament, which went from Greece, to Rome to Toulouse, to London…

P/S2: A popular thesis among Anglo-Saxons of the Germanoid persuasion (a class the proto Nazi economist Keynes belongs to), is that it is the Anglo-Saxon type “Reformation” made Europe superior. It is obviously absurd, as the Catholic dominated areas (south Germany, France, Italian republics, Iberia) contributed as much, if not more, to European supremacy (besides Protestantism started in France three centuries before Luther).

Instead I hold that it is the reign of reason, against superstition, which made the difference. That has the merit to explain why Europe jetted ahead of the military societies of Asia. Military order was very good at feeding people, and so their populations exploded. But they were not good at feeding ideas, and the disorder allowing to implement them. Order itself had become a superstition.

P/S 3: France (representing Roman republican civilization, dura lex, sed lex!), and Gaddafi (representing, say, Jugurtha) have come full circle. When some say: why not Darfur (forgetting for a moment French soldier have died in combat in Darfur), they forget that both Libya and France were parts of the Roman empire. The mighty Severine dynasty, and its Augustas, came from Libya, and was ethnically Libyan (not like emperor Claudius who was born in Lyon, from a Roman family). What goes around in a small box, comes around in that same small box. The French will to terminate Gaddafi the gad fly was no accident (and it does not compare to bin Laden’s assassination, as Gaddafi’s force were still engage in combat).

Several decades ago, when Gaddafi invaded Chad, supported by supersonic fighter bombers from the Soviet empire, a French counter-attack nearly got him killed (as the dictator found himself in the midst of a fast moving French air raid conducted at dune level, on an airport inside chad).

Gaddafi was not so bad to start with, when he toppled the king. Then, he introduced genuine reforms. He grabbed back lots of money from foreign oil companies, and redistributed it to the Libyan people. A heftier dose of the French civil code was added to Libyan law.  Women’s right were advanced, and the sexist Sharia rolled back. The Shariah and the Qur’an consider women to be fractions of men, in several important ways. (When the president of the NTC announces, as he did, that the Sharia was back, it is a huge step backwards.)

However, as time went by, Gaddafi and his clique and clan enriched themselves ever more. And therein a warning: absolute wealth makes one ever closer to Pluto, the Dark Underground. It does not just corrupt absolutely, it makes people into living Satans. The richer Gaddafi and his entourage became, the worse they got. Let’s just hope that his son and heir apparent, Saif Al islam makes it to La Hague, to be tried, square and fair. But there is little doubt that many in the world plutocratic organization, his friends, are not looking forward to it…

Thought Systems Rule, Men Follow.

November 3, 2009

 

Roger Cohen compares the fall of the Wall, the "Iron Curtain", across Europe in 1989, and the revolution that-was-not this year in Iran. Cohen ponders events driven by systems of thought:

"In 1989, the revolutionary year, the Tiananmen Square massacre happened in Beijing and, five months later, the division of Europe ended with the fall of the Wall in Berlin. Could it have been otherwise? Might China have opened to greater democracy while European uprisings were shot down? "

No. These things do not happen by accident. When the proto-revolutionary American leaders went to Paris, in the 18th century, they learned by the feet of the Enlightenment (itself partially a product of the English "Glorious Revolution", itself in turn the fruit of a long democratic process in England and France which had its root in Rome, Greece, even Phocea…).

American leaders were told, by the police of the French Ancient Regime, that slavery was not lawful in France, that they had to free and pay their slaves minimum wage. Thus, when France was shaken later by a tremendous revolution, going much further than the English one, and the American one, it ought to have been no surprise: even under the French Ancient Regime, the system of thought in force was more advanced than anywhere else, including the USA.

Thought systems tell people what to think, what to feel, what to expect, what to be. People learn, and follow.

Relative to the advanced system of thought Europe had known, the Stalinist system imposed on Eastern Europe was incredibly primitive, and intolerably rapacious. It was an anachronism, and an exploitation. In the Middle East Islam is not viewed as the anachronism it is, and the exploitation of the many by the few that it is, and can only be. Cohen overlooks this when he says: "Iran is experiencing a brutal clampdown, but memories of 1989 suggest that the dam must break when a repressive regime and the society it rules march in opposite directions."

In China, the repression in 1989 worked, because the communist leadership of the People’s republic was not anachronistic, relative to the history of China. It was a relative advance, of civilization. The argument could be made that it was primordial for China not to fall into the anarchy, and primitivism of the past, and keep on developing as fast as possible under various Western European thought systems (at least four of them: technical and scientific development, communism, Colbert (French) like central economic planning, and free enterprise capitalism). To force onto China Western European thought systems that it was deeply foreign to, ever since Confucius, 26 centuries before, required pretty ferocious methods (and thus it is a meta argument in favor of the People’s republic political system; India had been much more in contact with Europe, ever since the early Greeks, so democracy is much more natural there.)

A society thinks according to the system of thought it uses. Left to their own instruments, evolutions of societies are all about the systems of thought they use. The system of thought of the so called "communist" Eastern European LEADERSHIP was fully self contradictory: supposedly it served the People, such was its fundamental axiom. So how could the "communist" leadership prevent the People to walk, if the People wanted to walk? The East European crowd’s thought system had no such contradiction, though: since the official socialist system was supposed to serve them, they wanted to serve themselves accordingly. So they walked. What were the leaders going to say, to try to contradict them?

The present Iranian thought system is an obvious contradiction onto itself: it wants to be medieval, superstitious and fascist (because it follows the Qur’an to the letter, and so are many of the fundamental statements in the 400 pages Qur’an). But Iran also claims to be a "republic". Res-publica: the public -thing. But only professionals can interpret the sacred writings, not the "public". Hence the so called Iranian republic is also a theocracy, where professional specialists of the study of God have an oversight position.

Iran is equipped with a fascist, non publicly elected leadership made of Shiite Muslim priests, one them being the "supreme leader" (chief of the armed forces), a "council of Guardians", and an "Assembly of Experts". I call them "priests" just as I would call Aztecs religious professionals "priests". Nothing mistaken or biased there (I know perfectly well that Muslim propaganda claims that nothing stands between man and God, so there are no "priest" in Islam, they claim, to try to distinguish themselves from the Medieval Christian Inquisition; this claim does not resist the simplest of observations).

In any case, once the public uses in its mind the Quranist thought system, in its Shia variant, to the letter, that is, a thought system which is, among other things, superstitious and fascist, how could it become democratic and rational? It would be as if one could be a sincere Nazi, and then claim to be a democrat (this is not an insult, but a description of fact: Hitler knew Islam very well, and was inspired by it, or at least so he claimed explicitly).

The "communist" Wall in Europe was bound to fall, because not just of the self contradictions of the thinking of the pseudo "socialist" system, but also from the fact that its most fundamental axioms were supposedly rational and democratic.

Thus the repression of the most primitive communist leaders kept on going down in the intensity of its ferocity. Germany, however culprit, was treated in an abominable way by the "communist" and Stalinist leadership during and after the fall of the Nazis. But then, of course, Stalinist leadership was in charge, with the explicit approval of the leadership of the USA (Roosevelt gave half of Europe to Stalin at the Yalta conference).

Soviet tanks in Hungary killed 40,000 in 1956, with more or less explicit American approbation. In 1968, a similar scenario in Czechoslovakia was much milder: only 72 killed. Moreover the Soviet invasion force was invading a fellow communist country, led by communists: Dubcek, who led Czechoslovakia, was the leader of the communist party. Dubcek had gone to the end of the logic of the fundamental axioms of the communist system, and was serving the People. Whereas the invader, Brezhnev, was contradicting these fundamental axioms, an UNSUSTAINABLE logic.

As long as the fundamental axioms of the Iranian thought system come from an analphabetic culturally challenged epileptic desert bandit thriving 14 centuries ago in the desiccated wilds, it will be friendly to Ayatollahs, and not to republican, democratic, secular, rational, informed politics. The very fact that the opponents to the Ayatollahs rally with the cry:"God is great!" show that there is no hope: they do not even know that religion is central to the repression they whine under. Let the raiders of the lost desert take care.

In 132 BC, having supported the revolt led by Aristonicus against the Romans, the Greek city-state of Phocaea was saved from destruction thanks to the intercession of Massilia, the Roman republic’s oldest ally. Massilia had been founded as a Phocean colony in southern France, six centuries before. Phoceea, the modern Foca (Fossa), is in present day Turkey. To this day, this vast history is part of the system of thought of Western Europe: thus empathy, freedom, republican principles have been long anchored in the collective semi conscious. Of Europeans.

To this day, Marseille remembers, and celebrates its Phocean origin. In the same area as Phocea, 500 kms to the south-east, the country of Phrygia long maintained its independence (1200 BCE to 600 BCE), and so its characteristic red bonnet became the symbol of liberty, worn by Macedonians, Thracians, and later freed slaves in republican Rome. Eighteen centuries later, American and especially French revolutionary would wear the Phrygian "liberty cap", a red bonnet worn forward, ubiquitous in French republican iconography to this day. Meanwhile 12th century Normans had worn it, making their steel helmets in its shape, as they fought Islam all over Europe.

Thus freedom, revolt, republicanism, secularism, and not the mindless and obsequious adulation of the desert God, are mainstays of the European thought system. And deliberately, symbolically so. Not such an importance of liberty in Iran, and for Iranians. Who momentarily interrupted the independence of Phrygia? Well, Iranian Cimmerian invaders (circa 690 CE). But, beyond this, most Iranian religious holidays, to this day, are celebrations of their tremendous defeats and victimizations at the hands of (Sunni) Muslims. Celebrate torture and horror, rejoice in pain, and enjoy Ayatollahs! To each his own desire and must!

Patrice Ayme

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/

P/S 1: On Iran’s fascist theocratic leadership: The "Supreme Leader" is Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, controls the military intelligence and security operations; and has sole power to declare war or peace. The heads of the judiciary, state radio and television networks, the commanders of the police and military forces and six of the twelve members of the Council of Guardians are appointed by the Supreme Leader. The Assembly of Experts comprises 86 "virtuous and learned" clerics elected by adult suffrage for eight-year terms. As with the presidential and parliamentary elections, the Council of Guardians determines candidates’ eligibility.

P/S 2: The French revolution of 1789 was very anti-clerical. Although the Ancient regime was not theocratic.

P/S 3: Oh, and when will Americans start to wear the red bonnet Phrygian cap again, to free themselves from Gold-Man Sacks? Stay tuned…


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