Hogeye Bill, Oct. 18, 2012

Future History #1

Class, please hit the URL for the history learn. We’re covering pre-panarch society in this vidlearn, the period prior to mid 21st century, before the Great State Collapse.

But let’s go back to an earlier period, to put things in context. From roughly the 11th to the 16th century in Europe, religious institutions called ”churches” dominated mankind, decreeing laws at their pleasure, and stealing people’s production at will. This is called “the Age of Religion.”

Churches ruled by outsourcing most direct oversight and “taxation” (the ancient word for theft by violence-backed institutions.) The actual control of individuals was done by traditional secular systems called monarchies, with a complex hierarchy of sub “lords” down to the local level, each usurping a share of productive people’s wealth.

Two major technological innovations changed things: Gunpowder weaponry and the Gutenberg press. In terms of plunder, the return on brute force rose significantly. The monarchical hierarchy evolved into a corporate state - a fictional entity that did not die when a king did, but lived on “forever,” and could in theory commit its subjects to anything, forever. This institution of state quickly eclipsed the church in importance. Beginning in the late 18th century, the state evolved from monarchy to electoral forms, but historical research has shown that elections of the period were little more than self-serving circuses used to promote a state’s own importance and legitimacy. This period is called “the Age of Statism.”

When there is an institution, like a church or a state, having great power over the minds of many men, there is usually an ideology, belief, or propaganda system that most people have accepted. Rule by brute force is not sustainable - the church or state must get general support, or at least acquiescence, of the masses to last very long. During the Age of Religion, supernatural religious doctrines were the mind-submission belief systems. People were united and divided according to what religious sect they professed allegiance. Great numbers were killed in wars over it, and dissenting “heretics” were tortured and killed for it.

During the Age of State, religion was a relatively insignificant issue; people often wouldn’t know or care what “denomination” of church others professed. During this age, the most important ideological value was what state a person “belonged to.” During the Age of State, state worshipping doctrines and nationalistic identification with the rulers were the mind-submission belief systems. Even more people were killed, and greater, more brutal wars were fought over state “sect,” while dissenting “traitors” were imprisoned or killed.

Education was quite different in those days. Instead of learning what you want or need from wherever you are, children and even young adults were herded into central locations called "schools," where they were subjected to state approved "lessons." You wouldn't like it at all!

The parallel between people’s subservience to church and people’s subservience to state is instructive. “God’s Will” changed to “General Will;” “Holy Ghost” changed to “Public Good,” but the function if not exact form of the mythology remained the same. Another parallel is the decaying of belief-based divisions that were once very important. In the same way church sect membership became insignificant, so did allegiance to a particular rights defense organization.*

* Obviously, after states devolved, there can be no allegiance to state. The closest parallel may be our current RDOs. What was formerly lifetime allegiance is now a decision generally based on cost, legal convention preferences, and reputation of firm; and of course we can switch RDOs if dissatisfied. One might think of a state as a monopoly RDO with mind-controlled customers.

A great man once said that he was an enemy of every authority over the mind of man. The points to remember from this lesson are:

1) During the Age of Church, the “authority over man’s mind” was the church. 2) During the Age of State, the “authority over man’s mind” was the state.

During these periods, people believed that they owed their earnings, their allegiance, and even their lives to these institutions. How fast opinions changed! But that’s next learn.

I hope you enjoyed this intro video. Most of the art was contemporary to the time, as were the photos. As usual, I hope you will visit all the links. Some are primary documents, some are modern historians’ papers. May your intellectual pleasure be great!

Next Learn: “The Great State Collapse: Hyperinflation and Devolution.”