Wednesday, May 24, 2017

And the Dying Cheer

“The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime.”
-        Edward Grey, Secretary for Foreign Affairs, on the eve of the Great War


Genesis 2: 9 The Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

16 And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”

Genesis 3: Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”

4 “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

You know the story: they ate the fruit, their eyes were opened, God banished them from the Garden, and man has been cursed to toil and eternal damnation ever since.

Of course, I am not insisting that you believe the story. 

The Middle Ages

For us law needs only one attribute in order to give it validity; it must, directly or indirectly, be sanctioned by the State.  But in the Middle Ages, different attributes altogether were essential; mediaeval law must be “old” law and must be “good” law….If law were not old and good law, it was not law at all, even though it were formally enacted by the State.

Law was in fact custom.  Immemorial usage, testified to by the eldest and most credible people; the leges partum….

Where we moderns have erected three separate alters, to Law, to Politics, and to Conscience, and have sacrificed to each of them as sovereign godheads, for the mediaeval mind the goddess of Justice is enthroned, with only God and Faith above her, and no one beside her.

Another who has written of this time is Jacques Barzun, a phenomenal scholar of European history and culture.  His book, “From Dawn to Decadence,” is a must read for anyone interested in European history of the last 500 years.  Barzun offers, regarding the law of the Middle Ages and the Middle Ages generally:

The truth is that during the 1,000 years before 1500 a new civilization grew from beginnings that were uncommonly difficult….showing the world two renaissances before the one that has monopolized the name.

…the Germanic invaders brought a type of custom law that some later thinkers have credited with the idea of individual freedom.…no rule was held valid if not approved by those it affected.

Anglo-Saxon law…defined crime literally as breaking the peace.

Such was a nation of laws, not men; every noble vested with veto power; the king below the law, whose duty was limited to enforcing the law – not creating the law; law based on oath – sacred oath between the parties and including God.

All in a cultural milieu that fully incorporated the Church; kingly authority tempered by the competing governance structure that the Church offered. 

Returning to Kern:

For us, the actually valid or positive law is not immoral but amoral; its origin is not in conscience, God, nature, ideals, ideas, equity or the like, but simply in the will of the State, and its sanction is the coercive power of the State.  On the other hand, the State for us is something holier than for mediaeval people….

Such is our lot: legislation and regulation by men wiser than us and wiser than God.  I know many readers don’t like the “God” part of this; just stick to customary law as it was known in the Middle Ages: the old and good law, with crime defined as breaking the peace.  I can live with this if you can.

Law must come from somewhere.  Which of these two models is more predictable, less arbitrary, more libertarian?  To ask the question is to answer it; yet, many libertarians (and most everyone else) avoid (or even fight against the logical answer to) this question.

The Renaissance

The one that monopolized the name….

The Renaissance was a period in European history, from the 14th to the 17th century, regarded as the cultural bridge between the Middle Ages and modern history. It started as a cultural movement in Italy in the Late Medieval period and later spread to the rest of Europe, marking the beginning of the Early Modern Age.

The intellectual basis of the Renaissance was its own invented version of humanism, derived from the rediscovery of classical Greek philosophy, such as that of Protagoras, who said that "Man is the measure of all things."

That Protagoras; in seven simple words he said so much.  Man is the measure; of all things; science advances; progress, always progress; we know better today than yesterday. 

Man is the measure.  Talk about a flexible standard.  Those of you who value Austrian Economics might consider how well this has worked out regarding money: the flexibility of man-made money as opposed to the standard offered by commodity, market-derived money.

As opposed to custom, man can make better laws, scientific laws.  How is that working out for you?

The Enlightenment

The Enlightenment was an intellectual and philosophical movement which dominated the world of ideas in Europe during the 18th century, The Century of Philosophy. The Enlightenment included a range of ideas centered on reason as the primary source of authority and legitimacy, and came to advance ideals like liberty, progress, tolerance, fraternity, constitutional government, and separation of church and state.

“…a range of ideas centered on reason as the primary source of authority and legitimacy…”  Where else would the Renaissance lead?

In the West, we are trained to believe that this is the height of man’s achievement.  All men created equal and all that.  Well, if all men are created equal, those who create and enforce the law due to man’s reason being superior to God’s reason (or to custom, if you prefer) must be more equal.  This reasoned, intellectual, more equal man will do all in his power to remind you of his more equal status.

Laws to make all men – around the world – equal.  How is that working out for you?

The Progressive Era

The Progressive Era was a period of widespread social activism and political reform across the United States, from the 1890s to the 1920s.

Some Progressives strongly supported scientific methods as applied to economics, government, industry, finance, medicine, schooling, theology, education, and even the family. They closely followed advances underway at the time in Western Europe and adopted numerous policies, such as a major transformation of the banking system by creating the Federal Reserve System in 1913. Reformers felt that old-fashioned ways meant waste and inefficiency, and eagerly sought out the "one best system".

You cannot have the Enlightenment without also accepting the Progressive Era, I am afraid.  Once you accept the wisdom of man’s laws, you must accept the wisdom of man’s laws (funny how that works).  Was Woodrow Wilson an inevitable consequence of Denis Diderot, Adam Smith, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson?  Hard to escape this possibility…or likelihood…or certainty.

Man’s wisdom regarding law as opposed to God’s wisdom (or custom and culture, if you prefer).  Are you sure you know the libertarian answer?

Return to the Garden

But wait!  One can certainly suggest that the tremendous advances in our economic lives all occurred around 225 years ago, about the same time as the Enlightenment.  Correlation or causation?

For this, I offer Deirdre McCloskey.  She (or he) is perhaps the most informed student of the transformation: for countless thousands of years, man has lived as he always did – basically an agrarian life, basically a simple village life.  You could transport someone from 2000 BC to 1700 AD and they would have little trouble adapting.

But not so from 1700 to 1900 – certainly not to 2000.  The advances since around 1800 have been exponential.  McCloskey explains, offering the seven Bourgeois Virtues:

Seven. That's the number of the primary virtues according to the Western tradition from Plato through Adam Smith. Or according to the Confucian tradition since 479 BCE. Or according to a startling book, published in 2004 under the auspices of the American Psychological Association, written by forty professors of psychology and edited by Christopher Peterson and Martin E. P. Seligman, Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification. Or, when you come to think about it, according to pretty much any theory of what makes for a flourishing human life.

Justice; Temperance; Courage; Prudence; Faith; Hope; Love.  Seven.  All pre-dating the Enlightenment.

Who can say how Medieval Law might have developed if not consumed by man’s reason?  Was air conditioning only possible due to Diderot’s Encyclopédie?  One can say that man’s reason (regarding law) was not necessary to bring on the economic progress of the last two hundred years; after all, these “Bourgeois Virtues” predate or otherwise come from outside of the Enlightenment tradition.

Yet, man’s reason was chosen: law by science; law placing some men above the law, making some men more equal than others.  To whose benefit would this be?  Yours?

The Culmination

So, we come full circle.  For this, I return to Barzun:

The blow that hurled the modern world on its course of self-destruction was the Great War of 1914-18.

The suicide of the West.  Barzun offers, and this is quite consistent with his view of “Dawn” and “Decadence,” that there was what he calls The Great Switch – from liberalism to socialism:

It was the pressure of Socialist ideas, and mainly the Reformed groups in parliaments and the Fabian outside, that brought it about.  By Great Switch I mean the reversal of Liberalism into its opposite.

Liberalism triumphed on the principle that the best government is that which governs least; now for all the western nations political wisdom has recast this ideal of liberty into liberality.  The shift has thrown the vocabulary into disorder.

But what if the switch was inevitable?  What if the seeds were sown in the Renaissance?  What if, once man decided he was brighter than God, eventually man’s scientifically enacted laws would destroy man’s freedom?  What if communism is the inevitable extension of “all men are created equal”? 

I recall reading often enough: communists in the early years referred to their political philosophy as “democracy.”  America’s founding generation feared “democracy.”  Yet, is communism / democracy what they ushered in?

I am with you on this; it is difficult for me to grasp the possibility.  It is completely contrary to 100% of all we are taught.  Yet there it is.  I will say…it is easier for me to accept this today than it would have been ten years ago.


It is interesting: reaching the height of western liberal values immediately preceded the destruction of the West.  The nineteenth century, in many ways, was the most liberal, free, equal period for the West – perhaps in its history.  And then the Great War – suicide, built on the scientific wisdom of man’s reason.

What’s new?  Many revolutions follow the liberalization of the old order.  It was true in France; it was true in Russia.  A disaster for both.

The Great War accelerated and exaggerated the “all men are created equal” stuff.  Political, economic, cultural, and social life were all completely transformed throughout the West after this war.


1 Corinthians 3: 18 Do not deceive yourselves. If any of you think you are wise by the standards of this age, you should become “fools” so that you may become wise.

19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s sight. As it is written: “He catches the wise in their craftiness”; 20 and again, “The Lord knows that the thoughts of the wise are futile.”

21 So then, no more boasting about human leaders!

Recall the Edward Grey quote with which I opened this post.  Note that when news of the war broke out, in every European capital the crowds flooded the streets…

…to cheer.


  1. Hi from a fan in the albania of the west (the former most catholic nation known as Portugal).

    Thank you for your effort in conjoining "libertarianism" with "culture" (what 99% of libertarians miss, in my view)!

    As a complement to your thoughts, I take the liberty of leaving this GK Chesterton quote from his book "Orthodoxy" (I searched for Chesterton in the blog, but found no results).

    “Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead. Tradition refuses to submit to the small and arrogant oligarchy of those who merely happen to be walking about. All democrats object to men being disqualified by the accident of birth; tradition objects to their being disqualified by the accident of death. Democracy tells us not to neglect a good man’s opinion, even if he is our groom; tradition asks us not to neglect a good man’s opinion, even if he is our father. I, at any rate, cannot separate the two ideas of democracy and tradition; it seems evident to me that they are the same idea. We will have the dead at our councils. The ancient Greeks voted by stones; these shall vote by tombstones. It is all quite regular and official, for most tombstones, like most ballot papers, are marked with a cross.”


    1. Thank you for the comment and quote.

      You might consider yourself in the Albania of the west, but I am sure you cannot complain regarding the seafood, wine, and weather. I especially enjoy a refreshing vino verde; a wonderful way to begin an evening meal.

    2. You're absolutely right. I should have only referred to the current version of Portuguese Banana-welfare Republic, of course!

      I'm from the Vinho Verde region (Braga, "the Portuguese Rome"), btw, and my grandmother had "hangman's vines" - a vineyard grown in height, supported by granite pillars, so that the field could be used to grow potatoes/corn).

      The Portuguese history is very rich, and the last 200 years have been vastly dominated by jacobin/free-masonic "liberalism" (except for the 40 year period of the "Estado Novo" regime of Salazar - which was not fascist, though authoritarian and ultra-anti socialism/communism).

      Those 200 (minus 40) have been quite anti-clerical/anti-religion (one of the first decrees of the "liberal" regime post-civil war (between the free-mason D. Pedro IV/Pedro I of Brazil - the "liberal" - and his traditionalist brother "D. Miguel" - "the Absolutist") was the end and confiscation of property/wealth of all religious orders.
      In the 1910s, the Republican "revolutionaries" (more jacobin scum) actually wanted to "erradicate catholicism in a 20 year period", but the whole "Fatima and the 3 little sheperds/seers" story, true or not, was actually the bottom-up (with a little bit of "help" from the persecuted Church) a glorious "reactionary" event against them.

      The said "Estado Novo" was profoundly Catholic and, for that reason, anti-communist. Since the communists where the only organized (underground) opposition, right after the April 25, 1974 coup (which was only the military dissatisfied with corporate matters regarding officialdom, related to the "colonial wars" in Africa), the Communists were heralded as "true and democrat resistants (r)", the Right (liberal and non-liberal) was automatically branded as "fascists" and 40 years later the effects of the "deCatholization" is in full force (hand in hand, ironically, to the steady growth of "Fatimism".

      Progress for us is 3 bankrupcies in 40 years, an aging and emigrating population, undiscussed political "dirigism"/interventionism and rampannt fragilism across the political and intellectual spectra.

      But hey, "refugees" actually don't want to stay in our country (they flee to more welfare friendly countries) and there's always vinho verde :)

  2. The serpent added "and you must not touch it".

    Adam and Eve knew evil/sin in the hypothetical/potential way until the serpent, used by Satan. Eve in being tempted then knew evil by experiencing evil, evil realized. My guess is that Eve concluded that God must have been wrong when she first picked, touched, the forbidden fruit and did not die. When Eve ate, she then knew sin realized. Then Adam also knew evil and sin, but through Eve, when Eve tempted him and, then, when he ate of the forbidden fruit. They both did indeed die at the moment of eating -- their innocence died. God's warning that "in dying you will die" was that death was the inescapable consequence. Their physical bodies began to die -- God's mercy is that justice is not meted out immediately but that we are given a grace period whereby we can repent and restore the relationship, imperfect but restored nevertheless.

    I would not agree that "seeds were sown in the Reformation" because the Reformation was the removal of putting God's Law from under an interpreter that added to it. Like you say

    "In the West, we are trained to believe that this is the height of man’s achievement. All men created equal and all that. Well, if all men are created equal, those who create and enforce the law due to man’s reason being superior to God’s reason (or to custom, if you prefer) must be more equal. This reasoned, intellectual, more equal man will do all in his power to remind you of his more equal status."

    This is a rabbit hole. Customs are made by man, the Scriptures were written by man and its authority depends on acceptance of divine inspiration.

    Mark 7
    5 So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, “Why don’t your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands?” 6 He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: “‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. 7 They worship me in vain; their teachings are merely human rules.’[b] 8 You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.”

    There is no human solution to the human condition.

    John 17:
    9 I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours.
    15 My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.

    Modernity has accepted that by doing X, Y and Z we can, in essence, establish heaven on Earth. How can that be accomplished without the intellectuals telling us how to live (by multitude of laws or adherence to unworkable principles) in order to bring it? Their heaven is hell brought on.

    1. Jaime

      You have done me a great service - I did not intend to write "Reformation," as I did not include this in my essay. I meant to write "Renaissance." I have edited the text accordingly.

      "There is no human solution to the human condition."

      Amen. Those who believe otherwise have left hundreds of millions of dead in their wake.

    2. ""There is no human solution to the human condition." - Yes, but it is not void of human involvement - as in Matthew 28:18-20 - when the church (churchianity) defaulted to the humanists during the 1890-1920 launch of the progressive era as you wrote yourself, the die was cast.
      In fact, I put the primary onus on us Christians for allowing the progs to essentially take over the church, which I explain at my website.
      BTW - discussing this with fellow believers starts a fight almost every time.:)

    3. "...but it is not void of human involvement..."

      Because nowhere is "do nothing" a winning strategy. Hence, among other things, I write.

      "...discussing this with fellow believers starts a fight almost every time."

      They may not be fellow believers - just people who sit in the pew on Sunday, nothing more.

      BTW, how about a link to your website? I am curious.

    4. Thank you for your response, bm - - which also links to my archive as explained at the website. Just googling my name usually finds me.
      I'm just an ordinary schlock who's waking up.

    5. Not the serpent but EVE added/altered God's Word by adding not touch it;

      Genesis 3:1-4 KJV 1 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3 But of the fruit of the tree which [is] in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

      God only told them not to eat it. Once she added to God's commandment Satan knew he had his sucker.

  3. I believe you on the right path, as usual, and I thank you. I use the term “Rule of Law” to describe ‘mala in se’ crime, such as murder, robbery, rape, where there is an actual victim and everyone recognizes the “evil” of the act.

    I use the term “law of rules” to describe ‘mala prohibita’ or those “crimes” that are made up violations by the state, either for profit, control or in a misguided effort to ‘help’.

    "Mala in se (the singular is malum in se) is a term that signifies crime that is considered wrong in and of itself. The phrase is Latin and literally means wrong in itself. This class of crime is contrasted by crimes mala prohibita, the Latin term for "wrong because they are prohibited."

  4. Beautiful. And I will add Romans 1:

    20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

    21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being...

    25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator — who is forever praised. Amen.

  5. Edward Grey, a central figure of the "War Party", did more than most to bring the Great War about.

  6. This bit: I recall reading often enough: communists in the early years referred to their political philosophy as “democracy.” America’s founding generation feared “democracy.” Yet, is communism / democracy what they ushered in? reminded me to post for you the link to the article that first introduced me to this idea: "America is a communist country."

    Also, if you haven't read it, Russian sociologist, when sociology MEANT something, Pitirim Sorokin's book The Crisis of our Age is a fandango on the ideas in your first conclusion paragraph. Well worth a read.

  7. A lot of food for thought here. I believe the seeds for America's current state were sown at the founding. I have Lysander Spooner's writings on that period on my reading list. However, I am not sure that I would take such a dim view of the Renaissance and Enlightenment (Although the naming of that period as Enlightenment smacks of hubris and arrogance) I think it was all a natural part of man's desire to define and understand himself and the world in which we live. To contradict myself though, I do believe the complete abandonment of faith in the West has been catastrophic. The pendulum swung too far. To me, it was through faith that man initially began exploring reason. But without that foundation, we are adrift. Man without faith in something greater sees himself as Arbiter of all that is. One consequence is the poison of nihilism that then seeped in and dealt a near fatal blow. I wonder if things might have turned out differently (even with the Renaissance and Enlightenment) if there was no pervasive and monopolizing form of governance like the current State.

    I apologize for any errors in grammar or typos. Doing this on my phone and it is very difficult to edit with the tiny box for text. Great column Bionic!

    1. Thank you for the comment.

      Regarding your seeming contradiction, etc., I, too, struggle with the entire issue, for the reasons mentioned in the essay.

  8. Deracinated left-libertarians are fond of invoking Diderot. "Man," they gleefully assure us, "will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest."

    That's right. Because human freedom and dignity took such large steps forward under the rabid anti-clericalism of the French Revolutionaries, the Bolsheviks, and the Calles Law-enforcing Freemasonic government of late 1920s Mexico.

    Of course we would have developed air conditioning without Diderot. We may have well done it sooner.

    1. "Of course we would have developed air conditioning without Diderot. We may have well done it sooner."

      Absent the millions of dead and the wealth destruction of the enlightened and progressive wars, you are very likely correct.

      Who knows what heights man might have achieved if left alone?

    2. Perhaps it is man being "left alone" that is the issue. The Bible is full of cases where God "turned them over to the way of their thinking". Then there is the passage about, "There is a way that seems right to a man but leads to destruction." If we were TRULY left alone, I think things would be FAR worse than they are now. Whatever the flaws of believers down through the centuries, I do think their presence in the world has had some restraining affect on mankind. Admittedly, that restraint appears to be weakening in our times...

    3. "Who knows what heights man might have achieved if left alone?"

      Oh that's easy, just look at history before the influence of the Christianity; man will go back to that. But since Man loves Pandora and Prometheus because they are the spirit of the middle finger that wave in the face of Christ, Man will rather burn the earth to a husk before they will allow God to be acknowledge on His throne.

      If Christ and Satan appeared before Western man and offered their view of the future, man would accept Satan's immediately. For it would offer man the fantasy that he can rule better than God and still enjoy his flesh.

      I find it odd that rebellious Western man thinks that he could do a better job administering Free Will and creation than God. Doesn't he realize that if man had all of God's power, foreknowledge, imagination and wisdom; that if God handed it over to man, that Mankind would then recreate the universe in the EXACT same way God did because His plan was perfect from the start and Man cannot exceed the limits of his Creator?!

      Vanity, vanity all is vanity.

    4. Scott, your clarification is appropriate; I should have been clear: left alone by whom.

      Thomas, I agree.

  9. Excellent post, bionic mosquito. I think (hope) you may be nearing the time of getting these thoughts together into a more comprehensive, formal treatise (article, book?). I can hope, right? :-)

    Your post reminded me of the excellent quote that ends Frederic Bastiat's "What is Seen and What is Not Seen":

    "There are two consequences in history: one immediate and instantaneously recognized; the other distant and unperceived at first. These consequences often contradict each other; the former come from our short-run wisdom, the latter from long-run wisdom. The providential event appears after the human event. Behind men rises God. Deny as much as you wish the Supreme Wisdom, do not believe in its action, dispute over words, call what the common man calls Providence “the force of circumstances” or “reason”; but look at the end of an accomplished fact, and you will see that it has always produced the opposite of what was expected when it has not been founded from the first on morality and justice." - Vicomte François René de Chateaubriand, "Memoirs from beyond the Tomb"

    1. Thank you for the reminder of this quote. As to a treatise, or something mind freezes at the thought of the discipline and drudgery that this would involve.

      However, I have at least begun the process with two of the tabs, above - "BU2B" and "Libertarians and Culture." I irregularly update both.

    2. Have to agree with AN on hoping you produce something more formal and comprehensive. Some of your writings on (specifically) libertarians and culture is quite new, at least to me. That's unusual among libertarian writers who seem to increasingly focus on minuet of little practical interest. Your work deserves a stronger medium than a blog and a few links on Lew Rockwell's site.

      Jeff Bell

    3. Thank you, Jeff.

      On and off I think about things like twitter and Facebook - I know these will further the reach my posts...

      But I fight against my desire to not burden my writing with the expectations or demands that come with this.

      For example, as valuable as I know the tabs at the top of the page can be (the timelines, libertarians and culture, etc.), I really don’t like being forced to update these. But I do it because I know they have some worth.

      I enjoy just learning and writing. I don’t like the idea of changing my relationship with this blog or my writing. But I suspect one day the time will come when I will have to do so.

    4. If you published a book, I would purchase a copy for myself and all of my family and friends.

    5. The writing is the process of taking all that you have been ingesting and processing it into a logical system of thought. I go through binges of reading, usually followed by irresistible binges of writing. Unlike you, I have never done a blog because I find even that to be a burden in terms of expectations, like continued and regular entries ;-) I tried and just couldn't stick with it.

      That said, I have been fortunate to have a diverse circle of close friends that go back some nearly 40 years. After an intense session of writing, I often fire off the results as an email to this group. That provides the discussion that usually leads to the next round of reading and the cycle starts over.

      I very much enjoy your blog and your exploration of ideas and issues. It takes a lot of effort and courage to tear down the sacred shrines built in our minds by our former "education" and to truly begin to question things anew... It can be an uncomfortable and painful process, especially if you try to share your results with others unwilling to follow your example, but it is worth it! Please carry on!

    6. Thank you, Scott. One benefit of the blog for me is the learning it affords to me. The comments often open as many new roads as does my other reading.

  10. Dear, Mr. Bionic >>> this needs to be put in the links on the top of the page!!! Seriously.
    God bless your work.

  11. Dear Mr. Bionic >>> this must be put in the links on the top of your page!!! Seriously.
    God bless your work!

    Dont pay taxes stay safe

  12. Dear Bionic Mosquito,

    Great post!

    Otto von Habsburg wrote that it was the Enlightenment (not the French Revolution) that opened the gate for tyranny by both single, strong men and the masses, by replacing divine law with man-made law.

  13. Dear BM, thank you for your great work.

    Have you ever read Julius Evola or Rene Guenon? I suspect you would get a lot out of them.

    1. I have not. Unfortunately I have a stack of about a dozen books I have in queue....

  14. To contrast with Protagoras, this from Julius Evola: "All in man is beyond himself" (Meditation on the Peaks).

    The Traditionalist School is really worth checking out. Hans Hoppe from ground up, Evola (and the divine speaking through the Old and Good) from top down.

    1. The Traditionalist School sounds interesting. I will keep this on the list.

  15. Re human condition being as it is, it is amazing that there was not more political centralization during the Middle Ages. I've realized a long time that those years were not so "dark". The anti-Christian intellectuals of later years have reframed much of that history.

    But the corruption in the Papacy must accept its blame in birthing the Reformation. Rome was the spiritual head, but was breaking its own declared law, and had set up the human Pope's word equal to God's word.

  16. This is so brilliant. Got the link from a recent post at LRC. I thought I’d read al the pertinent parts from Barzun’s summa, but now I must go back and revisit! Thank you!