February 16, 2012

The Collapse Of Societies And Cultures

Britannia Radio


Guy Leven-Torres

15th February 2012


Marx was almost correct when he said that history is cyclical, or words to that effect. However this much vaunted, overrated hero of the Left was something of a rather mediocre thinker, although like most of his political 'philosophical' ilk, he would not agree with this judgement. Many of his kind spent their lives existing on the good intentions of others and Marx like so many Marxists, of which he was the pre-production model and template for the rest, usually applied what they thought after long hours of thinking, to others not themselves- 'Do as I think, not what I do'. In truth a better maxim would be,'Do as I think, not what I fail to do'. This latter maxim could be applied across the political class of today and George Orwell was quite correct in his portrayal of Socialism in his book 'Animal Farm'. As the saying goes 'The pigs have it!'

Actually from what I have observed of swine kind, they are quite happy with a nice sty, plenty of garbage food, lots of mud, plenty of poop for a good roll about in. In the simplicity of their manner they are noble and unambitious creatures. They are also the finest recycling centre in Nature. Why the Moslems and Jews fail to appreciate sus scrofa domesticus -common pig and its virtues, as in the fact that every part of it can be used for something or other to feed and clothe humans, is simply quite unfair. Roast pork is sumptuous and delightful to eat. It is one of my favourite meats. Pigs are also rather intelligent, which is more than one could say for most of those who emulate Marx.

Marx was supported in much of his writings by Friedrich Engels, a Capitalist/Industrialist who wrote several pieces attacking the dire poverty of their day. Both came from religious families but they themselves were Atheist. Marx is said to have failed to practice his beliefs in respect of his wife and children, doing very little around the domestic scene and in rather reduced circumstances. Despite Engels' wealth and background, he held very similar views to his protege.

I would restate Marx's idea that 'history is cyclical' by replacing it with a better definition- 'History does not so much repeat itself as plays itself out in a variation upon a theme'. History is not so much 'cyclical' as thematically repetitive. Let me explain...

When one reads of the behaviour in the Late Roman Period, we see the entrenchment of a political Hellenic-Romano caste, whose close links and 'social cohesion' based itself upon a commonality of shared knowledge and outlook reflected in the upper class educational normality of the time, that saw philosophy and rhetoric as the leading requirements for a political career or conditional to membership of the Upper Class. These august luminaries, of which there were thousands were commonly educated in early writers and thinkers like Aristotle, Zeno, Lucretius, Plato, Tacitus, Cicero, but also Symmachus (Quintus Aurelius) a late Roman pagan author, who wrote several works and letters in defence of traditional Roman beliefs along with his hero Julian the Apostate, who in the earlier years of his life, tried in vain to restore the ancient gods, much to the anger of the Church established as the official religion of the Imperium by Constantine. Many of Symmachus' fellow senators were converting to the new faith. Notice above I have stated 'Hellenic- Romano' not the usual Romano-Hellenic. This is because the culture and thought of Greece dominated the elite of the day. Ranged against Symmachus were fellow aristocrats like Ambrose of Milan, who wrote a rebuttal of an appeal by Symmachus to the Princeps Valentinian II, to be tolerant towards pagans and the restoration of its temples and in particular, the famous statue of Victory in the Senate House in Rome banned by Gratian.

These men lived in a world of their own- a type 'Known World' global village. They knew very little of the sufferings of the poor, or the lesser humiliores that numbered in the millions across the East and West of the Imperium. While these luminaries argued over the physical and spiritual nature of Christ exemplified by the Arian controversy that following the ideas of Plato, believed that Christ was simply human as opposed to the Trinitarian aspects of the Nicean Creed, their populations suffered increasing depredations.

Interestingly, the Trinity itself is a very Roman idea as in the Capitoline Triad of Jupiter, Juno and Minerva but predated by an all male triad Jupiter, Mars and Quirinus based it seems, upon the Etruscan Triad of Tinia as the supreme being, husband of Uni accompanied by a goddess of war called Menrva- pronounced menrua? Romans being the very conservative types they were applied the same system of thought and logic they did to law and all other practical matters. A Threesome in Indo-European religion is rather unsual but is more akin to eastern religio-philosphical ideas and postulates such an origin for the Etruscans themselves.

As these heated heretical arguments went on the Roman armies tried to stem the advance of the barbarians. The life of the Empire existed in the cities. It was herein that these controversies raged, while the legions fought, defended and perished on the frontiers of the North and East. The military men had little time for the Socratic and dialectical niceties of the ruling caste. Armies went years without pay, often given food, lodging and gear in kind rather than the money they would have preferred. The lowly serf population now tied to the land or some country estate, had lost the ancient freedom of the older respublica, and reports from the time, tell of a diseased, starving state impoverished population, increasingly overburdened by crippling taxes and a massive bureaucracy, every bit as corrupt as our own Kleptocracy. Form and appearance played far more important part than fact and reality. Look at the Notitia Dignitatum from around the end of the Fifth Century, that sought to list the legions and units of Rome around the 'empire' that no longer existed, except in the imaginations of the flatulent self-regarding bureaucrats. These awarded themselves huge honorariums, grand titles, dripping in silk and gold, cryptically jealous of their position in the hierarchy and the forms of address and expected forms of obeisance, while their populations starved or took to brigandage. A good example is the reaction of Honorius to being informed that a major disaster had taken place- the sack of Rome itself- he thought his pet chickens had died. The currency was unfit for purpose and like our own money printing 'quantitative easing' the silver coinage still extant was simply a coin dipped in a wash glaze. Armies and barbarians fought, died and suffered simply because an entrenched elite could not face the fact that days of Rome's glory were over.

As I said, history is not so much cyclical but more a repeating variation upon a common theme or themes. And here we go again in 2012 it seems....The populations cannot afford to heat their homes or even feed themselves, or pay the rising fuel prices, or the banker's and bureaucrat's bonuses and salaries. The unemployment in parts of Europe are nearing 40% and the old are dying in the coldest winter for years and parents hand their children to social services unable to keep them.. ..Riots take place across the Continent, people die and buildings burn and the barbarians like their Germanic ancestors that once bled Rome dry through reliance upon state benefits, are again in our midst and as in those days the elite once again worries about its chickens, rather than admit their megalomaniac dreams are long over....

Guy

http://britanniaradio.blogspot.com/2012/02/collapse-of-societies-and-cultures-guy.html

No comments: