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Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Comes the Revolution...





Sarah Hoyt has posted an interesting piece arguing that the times are ripe for revolution. I think she is right.

“This means that the leaders appear incompetent. Really incompetent. Crowds smell fear, like any wild animal. The other things crowds do is notice failure, and the collapse and insanity of the press makes it hard for them to hide it.”

Anyone who has taken Poli Sci 101 should assent to her observation that revolutions do not come as a result of oppressive government. Craine Brinton demonstrated this generations ago. They come when a government, or a leadership, is revealed as incompetent, or uncertain. Moreover, they come in a context of generally rising expectations. Russia was the fastest-growing economy in the world when the Russian Revolution hit. Czar Nicholas or Louis XVI were not strong, but weak, leaders.

And that is indeed the sort of time we are in. Quickly improving technology has revealed our “elite,” in many or all fields, as being uncertain and comparatively clueless.

“If you look around in the fields you know, the feeling is always that the worst possible bozos are in charge.
This is not true. It’s easier to adapt when you don’t carry the responsibility for others, and for picking the right change for others.”

I would differ with Hoyt, mind, in her assertion that they are not really incompetent, but only appear so because of the times. My own suspicion is that the rulers re usually incompetent, but only exposed as so at such times. There are natural pressures ensuring that the best do not rise to the top.

Hoyt points out that this explains the bizarre recent behaviour of the press and other “elites”over the election of Donald Trump.

“Because the confused and shell-shocked elites have started fighting back. This is most obvious after the elections, and in politics, but it’s happening at all levels. And because they don’t know why things are failing, they’re starting to get paranoid.”

And this, of course, is what tends to make revolutions inevitable.

I guess we have been forewarned. Things are about to “go upside down.”


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