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cunt sauce

The Teachings of B

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Signs of distress 5000-3000 B.C.

 

It was getting crowded. Think of that. People used to imagine that history is inevitable cyclical, but what I'm describing here has never happened before. In all of three million years, humans have never been crowded anywhere. But now the people of a single culture - our culture - are learning what it means to be crowded. It was getting crowded, and overworked, overgrazed land was becoming less and less productive. There were more people, and they were competing for dwindling resources.

 

What happens when more people begin competing for less? That's obvious. Every schoolchild knows that. When more people start competing for less, they start fighting. But of course they don't just fight at random. The town butcher doesn't battle the town baker, the town tailor doesn't battle the town shoemaker. No, the town's butcher, baker, tailor, and shoemaker get together to battle some other town's butcher, baker, tailor, and shoemaker.

 

We don't have to see bodies lying in the field to know that this was the beginning of the age of war that has continued to the present moment. What we have to see is war-making machinery. I don't mean mechanical machinery - chariots, catapults, siege machines, and so on. I mean political machinery. Butchers, bakers, tailors, and shoemakers don't organize themselves into armies. They need warlords - kings, princes, emperors.

 

It's during this period, starting around five thousand years ago, that we see the first states formed for the purpose of armed defense and aggression. It's during this period that we see the standing army forged as the monarch's sword of power. Without a standing army, a king is just a windbag in fancy clothes. You know that. But with a standing army, a king can impose his will on his enemies and engrave his name in history - and absolutely the names we have from this era are the names of conquering kings. No scientists, no philosophers, no historians, no prophets, just conquerors. Again, nothing cyclic going on here. For the first time in history, the important people are the people with armies.

 

Now note well that no one thought that the appearance of armies was a bad sign - a sign of distress. They thought it was a good sign. They thought the armies represented an improvement.

 

After this point military needs became the chief stimulus for technological advancement in our culture. Nothing wrong with that, is there? Our soldiers need better armor, better swords, better chariots, better bows and arrows, better scaling machines, better rams, better artillery, better guns, better tanks, better planes, better bombs, better rockets, better nerve gas... well, you see what I mean. At this point no one saw technology in the service of warfare as a sign that something bad was going on. They thought it was an improvement.

 

Signs of distress: 3000-1400 B.C.

 

The next doubling of our population took only sixteen hundred years. There were a hundred million humans now, at 1400 B.C., probably ninety percent of them being members of our culture. The Near East hadn't been big enough for us for a long time. Totalitarian agriculture had moved northward and eastward into Russia and India and China, northward and westward into Asia Minor and Europe. Other kinds of agriculture had once been practiced in all these lands, but now - need I say it - agriculture meant our style of agriculture.

 

War? The wars of the previous age were piddling affairs compared with the wars of this age. This is the Bronze Age! Real weapons, by God! Real armor! Vast standing armies, supported by unbelievable imperial wealth!

 

Unlike signs of war, other signs of distress aren't cast in bronze or chiseled in stone. No one's sculpting friezes to depict life in the slums of Memphis or Troy. No one's writing news stories to expose official corruption in Knossos or Mohenjo-Daro. No one's putting together film documentaries about the slave trade. Nonetheless, there's at least one sign that can be read in the evidence: Crime was emerging as a problem. Looking out into your faces, I see how unimpressed you are with this news. Crime? Crime is universal among humans, isn't it? No, actually it isn't. Misbehavior, yes. Unpleasant behavior, disruptive behavior, yes. People can always be counted on to fall in love with the wrong person or to lose their tempers or to be stupid or greedy or vengeful. Crime is something else, and we all know that. What we mean by crime doesn't exist among tribal peoples, but this isn't because they're nicer people than we are, it's because they're organized in a different way. This is worth spending a moment on.

 

If someone irritates you- let's say by constantly interrupting you while you're talking - this isn't a crime. This means you have to handle it yourself, whatever way you can. But if this same person walks onto your property and refuses to leave, this is a trespass - a crime - and you can absolutely call the police and have this person arrested, tried, and maybe even sent to prison. In other words, crimes engage the machinery of the state, while unpleasant behaviors don't. Crimes are what the state defines as crimes. Trespassing is a crime, but interrupting is not, and we therefore have two entirely different ways of handling them - which people in tribal societies do not. Whatever the trouble is, whether it's bad manners or murder, they handle it themselves, the way you handle the interrupter. Evoking the power of the state isn't an option for them, because they have no state. In tribal societies, crime simply doesn't exist as a separate category of human behavior.

 

Note again: There's nothing cyclical about the appearance of crime in human society. For the first time in history, people were dealing with crime. And note that crime made its appearance during the dawning age of literacy. What this means is that, as soon as people started to write, they started writing laws; this is because writing enabled them to do something they hadn't been able to do before. Writing enabled them to define in exact, fixed terms the behaviors they wanted the state to regulate, punish, and suppress.

 

From this point on, crime would have an identity of its own as "a problem" in our culture. Like war, it was destined to stay with us - East and West - right up to the present moment.

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good book, great ideas, was kinda repetitive if youve read ishmael. but worth repeating i guess..

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are you going to continue or what...?

 

I would but I hand typed it straight from the book and I don't have the energy, time or will to go on retyping something that I have already read. I'm sure its at your local library. It's a good book, If you want you could read parts of it on Google books, I provided a link below. "The Teachings of B" are towards the back of The Story of B

 

http://books.google.com/books?id=L6UmGqI9QG4C&printsec=frontcover&dq=the+story+of+B&hl=en&ei=ImVOTIPTI8WsngfUwp24Ag&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CC0Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

 

Many of the books you can preview on Google Books are still in copyright, and are displayed with the permission of publishers and authors. You can browse these "limited preview" titles just as you would in a bookstore, but you won't be able to see more pages than the copyright holder has made available.

 

When you've accessed the maximum number of pages allowed for a book, any remaining pages will be omitted from your preview.

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