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  • rogerglewis 8:42 am on June 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply  

    ‘admit the facts of life in international political relationships.” Brexit and facts of geo politics 

    This is a blog post incorporating a comment I made in a long discussion I became involved in on the Golem XIV blog in January this year, the original Blog by David malone ( currently contesting the Green Party leadership of the UK  is here. http://www.golemxiv.co.uk/2016/01/re-branding-dissent/
    I have been juggleing with notions of the Spanish inquisiton   1480 and 1530. The desolution of the monastries 
    between 1536 and 1541 and the rise of Neo Liberalism since 1971 and the so called Nixon shock 
    These 3 cut and pastes set out the main drive of my anaologies of the 3 events to what Brexit means in the washington Consensus context which I feel is missing form the binary EU / UK context which I set out in this blog. http://letthemconfectsweeterlies.blogspot.se/2016/03/brexit-smexit-why-we-should-all-be.html

    Thomas Madden describes the world that formed medieval politics: “The Inquisition was not born out of desire to crush diversity or oppress people; it was rather an attempt to stop unjust executions. Yes, you read that correctly. Heresy was a crime against the state. Roman law in the Code of Justinian made it a capital offense. Rulers, whose authority was believed to come from God, had no patience for heretics”.[19] The monarchs decided to introduce the Inquisition to Castile to discover and punish crypto-Jews, and requested the pope’s assent. Ferdinand II of Aragon pressured Pope Sixtus IV to agree to an Inquisition controlled by the monarchy by threatening to withdraw military support at a time when the Turks were a threat to Rome. The pope issued a bull to stop the Inquisition but was pressured into withdrawing it. On 1 November 1478, Pope Sixtus IV published the Papal bullExigit Sinceras Devotionis Affectus, through which he gave the monarchs exclusive authority to name the inquisitors in their kingdoms. The first two inquisitors, Miguel de Morillo and Juan de San Martín, were not named, however, until two years later, on 27 September 1480 in Medina del Campo.



    Dissatisfaction with the general state of regular religious life, and with the gross extent of monastic wealth, was near to universal amongst late medieval secular and ecclesiastical rulers in the Latin West. Bernard says there was
    widespread concern in the later fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries about the condition of the monasteries. A leading figure here is the scholar and theologian Desiderius Erasmus who satirized monasteries as lax, as comfortably worldly, as wasteful of scarce resources, and as superstitious; he also thought it would be better if monks were brought more directly under the authority of bishops. At that time, quite a few bishops across Europe had come to believe that resources expensively deployed on an unceasing round of services by men and women in theory set apart from the world [would] be better spent on endowing grammar schools and university colleges to train men who would then serve the laity as parish priests, and on reforming the antiquated structures of over-large diocese such as that of Lincoln. Pastoral care was seen as much more important and vital than the monastic focus on contemplation, prayer and performance of the daily office.[4]
    Erasmus’s criticisms of the monks and nuns of his day were threefold:
    • that, in withdrawing from the world into their own communal life, they elevated man-made monastic vows of poverty, chastity and obedience above the God-given vows of sacramental baptism; and elevated man-made monastic rules for religious life above the God-given teachings of the Gospels;
    • that, notwithstanding exceptional communities of genuine austere life and exemplary charity, the overwhelming majority of abbeys and priories were havens for idle drones; concerned only for their own existence, reserving for themselves an excessive share of the commonwealth’s religious assets, and contributing little or nothing to the spiritual needs of ordinary people;
    • that the monasteries, almost without exception, were heavily involved in promoting and profiting from the veneration of relics, in the form of pilgrimages and purported miraculous tokens. The cult of relics was by no means specific to monasteries, but Erasmus was scandalised by the extent to which well-educated and highly regarded monks and nuns would participate in the perpetration of obvious frauds against gullible and credulous lay believers.
    Summarising the state of monastic life across Western Europe, David Knowles said,
    The verdict of unprejudiced historians at the present day would probably be—abstracting from all ideological considerations for or against monasticism—that there were far too many religious houses in existence in view of the widespread decline of the fervent monastic vocation, and that in every country the monks possessed too much of wealth and of the sources of production both for their own well-being and for the material good of the economy.

    In February 1965 President Charles de Gaulle announced his intention to exchange its U.S. dollar reserves for gold at the official exchange rate.[5]
    By 1966, non-US central banks held $14 billion, while the United States had only $13.2 billion in gold reserve. Of those reserves, only $3.2 billion was able to cover foreign holdings as the rest was covering domestic holdings.[6]
    By 1971, the money supply had increased by 10%.[7] In May 1971, West Germany left the Bretton Woods system, unwilling to revalue the Deutsche Mark.[8] In the following three months, this move strengthened its economy. Simultaneously, the dollar dropped 7.5% against the Deutsche Mark.[8] Other nations began to demand redemption of their dollars for gold.Switzerland redeemed $50 million in July.[8] France acquired $191 million in gold.[8] On August 5, 1971, the United States Congress released a report recommending devaluation of the dollar, in an effort to protect the dollar against “foreign price-gougers”.[8] On August 9, 1971, as the dollar dropped in value against European currencies, Switzerland left the Bretton Woods system.[8] The pressure began to intensify on the United States to leave Bretton Woods.


    At the time, the U.S. also had an unemployment rate of 6.1% (August 1971)[9][notes 1] and an inflation rate of 5.84% (1971).[10]
    To combat these issues, President Nixon consulted Federal Reserve chairman Arthur Burns, incoming Treasury Secretary John Connally, and then Undersecretary for International Monetary Affairs and future Fed Chairman Paul Volcker.
    On the afternoon of Friday, August 13, 1971, these officials along with twelve other high-ranking White House and Treasury advisors met secretly with Nixon at Camp David. There was great debate about what Nixon should do, but ultimately Nixon, relying heavily on the advice of the self-confident Connally, decided to break up Bretton Woods by suspending the convertibility of the dollar into gold; freezing wages and prices for 90 days to combat potential inflationary effects; and impose an import surcharge of 10 percent,[11] to prevent a run on the dollar, stabilize the US economy, and decrease US unemployment and inflation rates, on August 15, 1971:[12][13]
    1. Nixon directed Treasury Secretary Connally to suspend, with certain exceptions, the convertibility of the dollar into gold or other reserve assets, ordering the gold window to be closed such that foreign governments could no longer exchange their dollars for gold.
    2. Nixon issued Executive Order 11615 (pursuant to the Economic Stabilization Act of 1970), imposing a 90-day freeze on wages and prices in order to counter inflation. This was the first time the U.S. government enacted wage and price controls since World War II.
    3. An import surcharge of 10 percent was set to ensure that American products would not be at a disadvantage because of the expected fluctuation in exchange rates.
    Speaking on television on August 15, the Sunday before the markets opened, Nixon said the following:
    The third indispensable element in building the new prosperity is closely related to creating new jobs and halting inflation. We must protect the position of the American dollar as a pillar of monetary stability around the world.
    In the past 7 years, there has been an average of one international monetary crisis every year…
    I have directed Secretary Connally to suspend temporarily the convertibility of the dollar into gold or other reserve assets, except in amounts and conditions determined to be in the interest of monetary stability and in the best interests of the United States.
    Now, what is this action — which is very technical — what does it mean for you?
    Let me lay to rest the bugaboo of what is called devaluation.
    If you want to buy a foreign car or take a trip abroad, market conditions may cause your dollar to buy slightly less. But if you are among the overwhelming majority of Americans who buy American-made products in America, your dollar will be worth just as much tomorrow as it is today.
    The effect of this action, in other words, will be to stabilize the dollar.[14]
    Shortly after taking the Treasury post, Connally famously told a group of European finance ministers worried about the export of American inflation that the dollar “is our currency, but your problem.”[25]
    Exhorbitant privelidge.
    And from here to neo Liberalism. The post ends with this quote from Tragedy and hope about the narratives which had mislead the electorates to devastating war and could not be admitted after the event and the need for reconcilliation.  ”No settlements could ever have been made on any other bases. The failure of the chief negotiators (at least the Anglo-Americans) to admit this is regrettable, but behind their
    reluctance to admit it is the even more regrettable fact that the lack of political experience and political education of the American and English electorates made it dangerous for the negotiators to admit the facts of life in international political relationships.”
    With Brexit we same the same problems a binary procrusteun lie to settle what is infact an integral problem AQAL. 
    Ken Wilber’s AQAL, pronounced “ah-qwul”, is the basic framework of Integral Theory. It suggests that all human knowledge and experience can be placed in a four-quadrant grid, along the axes of “interior-exterior” and “individual-collective”. According to Wilber, it is one of the most comprehensive approaches to reality, a metatheory that attempts to explain how academic disciplines and every form of knowledge and experience fit together coherently.[20]
    Without all quadrants and all levels which are discrete to the essential identity of this mathematical equation being made explicit solutions will not be seen by the blind and deaf elites who no longer see or hear what the elcetorate is shouting at them, The emperor has no clothes!
    Roger January 14, 2016 at 8:18 pm # 
    Believe it or not this is a nice bit of light relief as I am in my Third day of reading in detail Tragedy and Hope which touches on all aspects of Wesley´s ire and is also quite good on looking at the left as well up until now. As an Anarchist from the Kropotkin mould Quiggley does not spare me either with his short shrift for alledged Russian Nihilism and Christian Orthodoxy.and the necessary cultural flaws in Bolchevism and Anarchist ideology.
    Quiqgley Dismisses Marx as well but I would say the period from 1966 when the Book was published to now has actually seen history moving more in Marx’s favour.
    All of our Arguments are really with Neo Liberalism today, Neo Liberalism didn´t really exist in quiggleys day as the force it is today but of course Classical liberalism did.Neo Liberalism is the hedgemonic ideology across western power and business elites also in Academia lack of balance leaves us in the mess we are in.
    If most Libertarians identify with the Austrian School, what Quiggley has to say about German(Teutonic) Nobility and also my earlier comment about Frank Harris is quite interesting vis the German Nobility versus the British Oligarchy and Aristocracy. The distinctions are subtle on paper but the social fabric of different cultures is a great driver of what ultimately provides the straw that breaks the camels back, the Masses under most systems are pretty much ignored always.
    Libertarianism in the US is quite different i think to its conception in Europe and in Europe its conception in England, France or Germany would be very different to each other and of course to that of an American context. I do wonder how different its conception is in the US. Quiqqley is very good in bringing out the Southern states and their mistrust of Republicanism post the civil war and the machinations of the Oligarchy to get control of the US congress without the South. There is a Libertarian Party in the US, so its perfectly easy to look at its manifesto, Ron Paul is its most well known representative I think this side of the pond, some of us remember Ross Perot, His running mate was I recall a Famous Stoic philisophically, always a plus point for me given my weakness for Epictetus.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-g1TaYYGv8Q This Ron Paul speech is interesting, also this article in which Skousen and Quiggley discuss interpretation of Tragedy and hope in The Naked Capitalist, Ron Pauls is Skaussian in a Naked Capitalist sense. Paul has his own Agenda to advance and dissembles as much as Clinton I think, The American problem is huge , that we seem to be adopting their customs in politics is hugely worrying.
    I fail to see how Clinton could claim Quiqqley as a mentor, he took a two term course and was awarded a B Grade according to Wikipedia. Quiggley as a historian attempts to set out facts from research as such the commentary can be used as a handbook for different ways of doing things. I think Clinton will have learned a lot about how things were back in the 60´s which is a huge advantage in deciding where to focus ones efforts to achieve Power and Wealth, ”The value of goods,
    expressed in money, is called “prices,” while the value of money, expressed in goods, is
    called “value.” p.49 (Commercial Capitalism) Quiqqley shows how Bankers make the distinction and real power lays in the Value of money and not the prices of goods. Ruskin who Quiqqley cites as a huge influence on the Round Table and Rhodes etc ( Clinton Rhodes Scholar) says this in Unto this last. John Ruskin, Unto this Last 1860, Critique of Classical Political Economy.
    Pardon me. Men of business do indeed know how they themselves
    made their money, or how, on occasion, they lost it. Playing a
    long-practised game, they are familiar with the chances of its
    cards, and can rightly explain their losses and gains. But they
    neither know who keeps the bank of the gambling-house, nor what
    other games may be played with the same cards, nor what other
    losses and gains, far away among the dark streets, are
    essentially, though invisibly, dependent on theirs in the lighted
    rooms. They have learned a few, and only a few, of the laws of
    mercantile economy; but not one of those of political economy.´´
    http://letthemconfectsweeterlies.blogspot.se/2014/08/government-of-poor-by-rich-for.html . My notes are evolving regarding the clear lapse back into 19th Century classical Liberalism, the present Neo Liberal Ideology seems sadly to apply all of the lessons which do not bear repeating and ignores all the ones which Quiggley warns against. If Clintons application of Quiggleys own Hopes were judged by his results I think the Viva voce ( practical examination sense) )would see Clinton Failing the course) .
    I´m 3 days into Tragedy and Hope and will be working on it probably for another fortnight, I am making Notes as I go along and will probably write an essay when I have finished my analysis of it. Meanwhile Wesley and John g, dialogue is always fruitful, I don’t advocate a policy of appeasement but certainly one of dialogue. This is the challenge we face in Quiggleys words.p.232 tragedy and Hope.
    ´´but criticism should have been directed rather at the hypocrisy and lack
    of realism in the ideals of the wartime propaganda and at the lack of honesty of the chief negotiators in carrying on the pretense that these ideals were still in effect while they violated them daily, and necessarily violated them. The settlements were clearly made by secret negotiations, by the Great Powers exclusively, and by power politics. They had to be. No settlements could ever have been made on any other bases. The failure of the chief negotiators (at least the Anglo-Americans) to admit this is regrettable, but behind their
    reluctance to admit it is the even more regrettable fact that the lack of political experience and political education of the American and English electorates made it dangerous for the negotiators to admit the facts of life in international political relationships.”
    To Change the money system we have to explain it to a much wider constituency than we have reached so far this task if accomplished will maybe one day make our political differences relevant again in a democratic context.
  • rogerglewis 8:28 pm on June 26, 2016 Permalink | Reply  

    the stagnation of Social technologies. ( Post Brexit anxiety elexir!) 

    Sunday, 26 June 2016

    William Goodwin, Shelly and the stagnation of Social technologies. ( Post Brexit anxiety elexir!)

    William Goodwin, Shelly and the stagnation of Social technologies. ( Post Brexit anxiety elexir!)

    Paul Foot wrote this wonderful piece in the International Socialist review I read it several years ago and in all the furore of Post Brexit Angst I re-visited it today.  http://www.isreview.org/issues/46/shelley.shtml

    Reading the notes this re prineted article from Godwins enquirer took my     eye. One always finds so much more to read. Please take some time if you   have any when you are done to, visit my own Epic Poem, Usury Hells Fuel and Mans oppressor.http://letthemconfectsweeterlies.blogspot.se/2016/02/usury-hells-fuel-and-mans-oppressor.html 

    and more of my own poetry can be fiound at this link.


    Percy Bysshe Shelley 1813

    Queen Mab 

    A Philosophical Poem (in 9 parts)
    V. Page 37.

    And statesmen boast
    Of wealth :

    There is no real wealth but the labour of man. Were the
    mountains of gold, and the valleys of silver, the world would
    added to the human race. In consequence of our conside-
    not be one grain of corn the richer ; no one comfort would be
    ration for the precious metals, one man is enabled to heap
    rieties of disease and crime, which never fail to characterize
    to himself luxuries at the expense of the necessaries of his
    neighbour ; a system admirably fitted to produce all the va-
    the two extremes of opulence and penury. A speculator
    the unhallowed cravings of luxury and ostentation. The
    takes pride to himself as the promoter of his country’s pros-
    perity, who employs a number of hands in the manufacture
    of articles avowedly destitute of use, or subservient only to
    nobleman, who employs the peasants of his neighbourhood
    vanity. The shew and pomp of courts adduce the same
    in building his palaces, until “jam pauca aratrojvgera


    74 NOTES.

    regies moles relinquunt,”* flatters himself that he has
    gained the title of a patriot by yielding to the impulses of
    apology for its continuance ; and many a fete has been given,
    famish ; not the blankets for want of which their babes are
    many a woman has eclipsed her beauty by her dress, to be-
    nefit the labouring poor, and to encourage trade. Who does
    not see that this is a remedy which aggravates, whilst it
    palliates the countless diseases of society ? The poor are
    set to labour, — for what 1 Not the food for which they ;
    no : for the pride of power, for the miserable isolation of
    frozen by the cold of their miserable hovels : not those com-
    forts of civilization without which civilized man is far more
    miserable than the meanest savage ; oppressed as he is by
    all its insidious evils, within the daily and taunting prospect
    of its innumerable benefits assiduously exhibited before him :
    ratio to their usefulness ;f the jeweller, the toyman, the ac-
    pride, for the false pleasures of the hundredth part of socie-
    ty. No greater evidence is afforded of the wide, extended,
    and radical mistakes of civilized man than this fact ; those
    arts which are essential to his very being are held in the
    greatest contempt ; employments are lucrative in an inverse
    tor, gains fame and wealth by the exercise of his useless
    concerning its desirableness, but its practicability : so far as
    and ridiculous art ; whilst the cultivator of the earth, he,
    without whom society must cease to subsist, struggles
    through contempt and penury, and perishes by that famine
    which, but for his unceasing exertions, would annihilate
    the rest of mankind.

    I will not insult common sense by insisting on the doc-
    trine of the natural equality of man. The question is not
    tion of a few of its members, is defensible on the ground of
    it is practicable, it is desirable. That state of human socie-
    ty which approaches nearer to an equal partition of its be-
    nefits and evils should, c&teris paribus, I be preferred: but
    so long as we conceive that a wanton expenditure of hu-
    man labour, not for the necessities, not even for the luxu-
    ries of the mass of society, but for the egotism and ostenta-
    public justice, so long we neglect to approximate to the re-
    their respective situations, are precluded. A state which
    demption of the human race.

    * These piles of royal structure, will soon leave but few acres for the

    t See Rousseau, ” L’Inegalite parmi les Hommes,” note 7.
    j Making allowances on both sides.

    NOTES. 75

    Labour is required for physical, and leisure for moral im-
    provement : from the former of these advantages the rich,
    and from the latter the poor, by the inevitable conditions of
    should combine the advantages of both, would be subjected
    English reformers exclaim against sinecures, — but the
    to the evils of neither. He that is deficient in firm health,
    or vigorous intellect is but half a man ; hence it follows,
    that, to subject the labouring classes to unnecessary labour,
    is wantonly depriving them of any opportunities of intel-
    lectual improvement ; and that the rich are heaping up for
    their own mischief the disease, lassitude, and ennui by
    which their existence is rendered an intolerable burthen.

    true pension-list is the rent-roll of the landed proprietors :
    they demand from us but a slender portion of industry. If
    wealth is a power usurped by the few, to compel the many
    to labour for their benefit. The laws which support this
    system derive their force from the ignorance and credulity
    of its victims : they are the result of a conspiracy of the
    few against the many, who are themselves obliged to pur-
    chase this pre-eminence by the loss of all real comfort.

    The commodities that substantially contribute to the sub-
    sistence of the human species form a very short catalogue,
    these only were produced, and sufficiently produced, the
    life, may be devoted to the cultivation of the understanding,
    species of man would be continued. If the labour necessa-
    rily required to produce them were equitably 3ivi3ed among
    the poor, and still more, if it were equitably divided among
    all, each man’s share of labour would be light, and his por-
    tion of leisure would be ample. There was a time when
    this leisure would have been of small comparative value :
    it is to be hoped that the time will come, when it will be ap-
    plied to the most important purposes. Those hours which
    are not required for the production of the necessaries of
    monopoly and oppression cannot be necessary to prevent
    the enlarging our stock of knowledge, the refining our
    taste, and thus opening to us new and more exquisite sour-
    ces of enjoyment.


    It was perhaps necessary that a period of monopoly and
    oppression should subsist, before a period of cultivated
    equality could subsist. Savages perhaps would never have
    been excited to the discovery of truth and the invention of
    art, but by the narrow motives which such a period affords.
    But, surely, after the savage state has ceased, and men have

    76 NOTES.

    set out in the glorious career of discovery and invention,
    the day.
    them from returning to a state of barbarism. — Godwin’s En~
    quirer, Essay II. See also Pol. Jus. Book VIII. ch. 11.

    It is a calculation of this admirable author, that all the
    conveniences of a civilized life might be produced, if socie-
    ty would divide the labour equally among its members, by
    each individual being employed in labour two hours during
    William Godwin (3 March 1756 – 7 April 1836)
    was an English journalist, political philosopher and novelist.
    He is considered one of the first exponents of utilitarianism,
    and the first modern proponent of anarchism.[1]

    Some Passages that Fired me up.


    ‘I am the Fairy Mab: to me ‘tis given The wonders of the human world to keep; The secrets of the immeasurable past, In the unfailing consciences of men,  Those stern, unflattering chroniclers, I find; The future, from the causes which arise In each event, I gather; not the sting Which retributive memory implants In the hard bosom of the selfish man, Nor that ecstatic and exulting throb Which virtue’s votary feels when he sums up The thoughts and actions of a well-spent day, Are unforeseen, unregistered by me; And it is yet permitted me to rend  The veil of mortal frailty, that the spirit, Clothed in its changeless purity, may know How soonest to accomplish the great end For which it hath its being, and may taste That peace which in the end all life will share. This is the meed of virtue; happy Soul, Ascend the car with me!’
    ‘Where Athens, Rome, and Sparta stood, There is a moral desert now. The mean and miserable huts, The yet more wretched palaces, Contrasted with those ancient fanes Now crumbling to oblivion, – The long and lonely colonnades Through which the ghost of Freedom stalks, – Seem like a well-known tune,  Which in some dear scene we have loved to hear, Remembered now in sadness. But, oh! how much more changed, How gloomier is the contrast Of human nature there!
    ‘Spirit! ten thousand years Have scarcely passed away, Since in the waste, where now the savage drinks His enemy’s blood, and, aping Europe’s sons, Wakes the unholy song of war, Arose a stately city, Metropolis of the western continent. There, now, the mossy column-stone, Indented by time’s unrelaxing grasp,  Which once appeared to brave All, save its country’s ruin, – There the wide forest scene, Rude in the uncultivated loveliness Of gardens long run wild, – Seems, to the unwilling sojourner whose steps Chance in that desert has delayed, Thus to have stood since earth was what it is. Yet once it was the busiest haunt, Whither, as to a common centre, flocked  Strangers, and ships, and merchandise; Once peace and freedom blest The cultivated plain; But wealth, that curse of man, Blighted the bud of its prosperity; Virtue and wisdom, truth and liberty, Fled, to return not, until man shall know That they alone can give the bliss Worthy a soul that claims Its kindred with eternity.
    ‘How strange is human pride! I tell thee that those living things, To whom the fragile blade of grass That springeth in the morn And perisheth ere noon, Is an unbounded world;  I tell thee that those viewless beings, Whose mansion is the smallest particle Of the impassive atmosphere, Think, feel and live like man; That their affections and antipathies, Like his, produce the laws Ruling their moral state; And the minutest throb That through their frame diffuses The slightest, faintest motion,  Is fixed and indispensable As the majestic laws That rule yon rolling orbs.’
    The Fairy paused. The Spirit, In ecstasy of admiration, felt All knowledge of the past revived; the events Of old and wondrous times, Which dim tradition interruptedly Teaches the credulous vulgar, were unfolded In just perspective to the view;  Yet dim from their infinitude. The Spirit seemed to stand High on an isolated pinnacle; The flood of ages combating below, The depth of the unbounded universe Above, and all around Nature’s unchanging harmony.
    Those gilded flies
    That, basking in the sunshine of a court,
    Fatten on its corruption! what are they? –
    The drones of the community; they feed
    On the mechanic’s labor; the starved hind
    For them compels the stubborn glebe to yield
    Its unshared harvests; and yon squalid form,
    Leaner than fleshless misery, that wastes
    A sunless life in the unwholesome mine,
    Drags out in labor a protracted death
    To glut their grandeur; many faint with toil
    That few may know the cares and woe of sloth.
    Whence, thinkest thou, kings and parasites arose?
    Whence that unnatural line of drones who heap
    Toil and unvanquishable penury
    On those who build their palaces and bring
    Their daily bread? -From vice, black loathsome vice;
    From rapine, madness, treachery, and wrong;
    From all that genders misery, and makes
    Of earth this thorny wilderness; from lust,
    Revenge, and murder. -And when reason’s voice,
    Loud as the voice of Nature, shall have waked
    The nations; and mankind perceive that vice
    Is discord, war and misery; that virtue
    Is peace and happiness and harmony;
    When man’s maturer nature shall disdain
    The playthings of its childhood; -kingly glare
    Will lose its power to dazzle, its authority
    Will silently pass by; the gorgeous throne
    Shall stand unnoticed in the regal hall,
    Fast falling to decay; whilst falsehood’s trade
    Shall be as hateful and unprofitable
    As that of truth is now.
    ‘Nature rejects the monarch, not the man;  The subject, not the citizen;
    for kings And subjects, mutual foes, forever play A losing game into
    each other’s hands, Whose stakes are vice and misery. The man Of virtuous
    soul commands not, nor obeys. Power, like a desolating pestilence, Pollutes
    whate’er it touches; and obedience, Bane of all genius, virtue, freedom, truth,
    Makes slaves of men, and of the human frame A mechanized automaton.
    Nature! -no! Kings, priests and statesmen blast the human flower Even in
    its tender bud; their influence darts Like subtle poison through the bloodless veins
    Of desolate society. The child, Ere he can lisp his mother’s sacred name,
     Swells with the unnatural pride of crime, and lifts His baby-sword even in a hero’s
    mood.  This infant arm becomes the bloodiest scourge Of devastated earth;
    whilst specious names, Learnt in soft childhood’s unsuspecting hour,
     Serve as the sophisms with which manhood dims Bright reason’s ray and sanctifies
    the sword Upraised to shed a brother’s innocent blood. Let priest-led slaves cease
    to proclaim that man Inherits vice and misery, when force And falsehood hang
    even o’er the cradled babe, Stifling with rudest grasp all natural good.
    44 1v ‘War is the statesman’s game, the priest’s delight, The lawyer’s jest,
    the hired assassin’s trade, And to those royal murderers whose mean
    thrones  Are bought by crimes of treachery and gore,
    The bread they eat, the staff on which they lean.
     Guards, garbed in blood-red livery, surround Their palaces,
     participate the crimes That force defends and from a nation’s rage
     Secures the crown, which all the curses reach That famine, frenzy,
    woe and penury breathe.
    These are the hired bravos who defend The tyrant’s throne -the
    bullies of his fear; These are the sinks and channels of worst vice,
     The refuse of society, the dregs Of all that is most vile;
     their cold hearts blend Deceit with sternness, ignorance with pride,
    All that is mean and villainous with rage Which hopelessness of good
    and self-contempt Alone might kindle; they are decked in wealth,
    Honor and power, then are sent abroad To do their work.
    The pestilence that stalks In gloomy triumph through some eastern land
     Is less destroying. They cajole with gold  And promises of fame
     the thoughtless youth Already crushed with servitude;
     he knows His wretchedness too late, and cherishes Repentance for
    his ruin, when his doom Is sealed in gold and blood!
    Those too the tyrant serve, who, skilled to snare The feet of justice
     in the toils of law, Stand ready to oppress the weaker still,
     And right or wrong will vindicate for gold, Sneering at public virtue,
     which beneath  Their pitiless tread lies torn and trampled where
    Honor sits smiling at the sale of truth.
    ‘Then grave and hoary-headed hypocrites, Without a hope,
     a passion or a love, Who through a life of luxury and lies Have crept
     by flattery to the seats of power, Support the system whence their
     honors flow. They have three words -well tyrants know their use,
    Well pay them for the loan with usury Torn from a bleeding world!
    -God, Hell and Heaven:  A vengeful, pitiless, and almighty fiend,
    Whose mercy is a nickname for the rage Of tameless tigers hungering
     for blood; Hell, a red gulf of everlasting fire,
    Where poisonous and undying worms prolong Eternal misery
     to those hapless slaves Whose life has been a penance for its crimes;
    And Heaven, a meed for those who dare belie Their human nature,
    quake, believe and cringe Before the mockeries of earthly power.
    ‘Hence commerce springs, the venal interchange
    Of all that human art or Nature yield;
    Which wealth should purchase not, but want demand,
    And natural kindness hasten to supply
    From the full fountain of its boundless love,
    Forever stifled, drained and tainted now.
    Commerce! beneath whose poison-breathing shade
    No solitary virtue dares to spring,
    But poverty and wealth with equal hand
    Scatter their withering curses, and unfold
    The doors of premature and violent death
    To pining famine and full-fed disease,
    To all that shares the lot of human life,
    Which, poisoned body and soul, scarce drags the chain
    That lengthens as it goes and clanks behind.
    ‘Commerce has set the mark of selfishness,
    The signet of its all-enslaving power,
    Upon a shining ore, and called it gold;
    Before whose image bow the vulgar great,
    The vainly rich, the miserable proud,
    The mob of peasants, nobles, priests and kings,
    And with blind feelings reverence the power
    That grinds them to the dust of misery.
    But in the temple of their hireling hearts
    Gold is a living god and rules in scorn
    All earthly things but virtue.
    ‘Since tyrants by the sale of human life
    Heap luxuries to their sensualism, and fame
    To their wide-wasting and insatiate pride,
    Success has sanctioned to a credulous world
    The ruin, the disgrace, the woe of war.
    His hosts of blind and unresisting dupes
    The despot numbers; from his cabinet
    These puppets of his schemes he moves at will,
    Even as the slaves by force or famine driven,
    Beneath a vulgar master, to perform
    A task of cold and brutal drudgery; –
    Hardened to hope, insensible to fear,
    Scarce living pulleys of a dead machine,
    Mere wheels of work and articles of trade,
    That grace the proud and noisy pomp of wealth!
    But mean lust
    Has bound its chains so tight about the earth
    That all within it but the virtuous man
    Is venal; gold or fame will surely reach
    The price prefixed by Selfishness to all
    But him of resolute and unchanging will;
    Whom nor the plaudits of a servile crowd,
    Nor the vile joys of tainting luxury,
    Can bribe to yield his elevated soul
    To Tyranny or Falsehood, though they wield
    With blood-red hand the sceptre of the world.
    ‘All things are sold: the very light of heaven
    Is venal; earth’s unsparing gifts of love,
    The smallest and most despicable things
    That lurk in the abysses of the deep,
    All objects of our life, even life itself,
    And the poor pittance which the laws allow
    Of liberty, the fellowship of man,
    Now, to the scene I show, in silence turn, And read the
    blood-stained charter of all woe, Which Nature soon
    with recreating hand Will blot in mercy from the book of earth.
    How bold the flight of passion’s wandering wing,
    How swift the step of reason’s firmer tread,
    How calm and sweet the victories of life,
    How terrorless the triumph of the grave!
    How powerless were the mightiest monarch’s arm,
    Vain his loud threat, and impotent his frown!
    How ludicrous the priest’s dogmatic roar!
    The weight of his exterminating curse How light!
    and his affected charity, To suit the pressure of the changing times,
     What palpable deceit! -but for thy aid, Religion!
    but for thee, prolific fiend, Who peoplest earth with demons,
     hell with men,  And heaven with slaves!

  • rogerglewis 10:37 am on June 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply  

    Brexit. A triumph of people power. Neither left nor Right population holdiing political class accountable. 

    By Definition in a 72% turnout where the Right Wing is no more than 50% i.e the tories (Cameron had 24% of the election in May last year.)excludes a generalisation that this vote was decided on narrow jingoistic matters of immigration in an argument carried by the far right.( Bear in mind that UK one nation toryism is very different in character to American Exceptionalism. Many of the Left such as myself advocated reform of both the EU and of Westminster. Neo Liberalism is what the British people have rejected a very substantial part of the remain vote also abhor Neo Liberalism. Let us not forget US geo political interests have pushed the Uk from post wwii to engage with the EU. This is not about Xenophobia or racism or left or Right it is about demanding proper respect of democracy with consent to government coming from the people not the other way around. The Syria bombing vote was the first sign That Westminster was getting it that the electorate was fed up with being ignored, low poll turnouts were a symptom of this realisation paradoxically the very high turnout in the Referendum is also a symptom of this realisation and discontent. This is a process as is democracy participative democracy is always a process and the potential for a change in direction opens up not just for the Uk but for the rest of Europe with this vote in the UK to Leave. The Scots position is interesting as is the Irish Nationalist position. Wales , Cornwall and England outside of metropolitan London overwhelmingly voted for out. This is good news for the peoples of Europe full stop the US population should take a leaf out of the British book and start to make and hold their political class and Presstitute class accountable. Neo Liberalism and Neo Conservatism stems from the Washington and Wall street Elite, US foreign policy ( Take Ukraine, Libya and Syria as recent examples IRAQ 2 is of course the biggie but US meddling in European politics is a bad idea European populations are simply not so accepting of a hierarchical pecking order as the US society is in general due to lots of historical reasons well explained by Carol Quigley in Tragedy and hope. This vote is one of Hope not a tragedy of narrow jingoism. Time will tell. “Rise like Lions after slumber In unvanquishable number- Shake your chains to earth like dew Which in sleep had fallen on you Ye are many-they are few.” ― Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Masque of Anarchy: Written on Occasion of the Massacre at Manchestera little blog on the nature of representative democracy.http://letthemconfectsweeterlies.blogspot.se/2015/03/on-may-2015-uk-election.html
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