Monday, 16 August 2010

Lessons From Recent History

Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from ...creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty. This is known as "bad luck."
-- R.A.Heinlein

Take sex away from people. Make it forbidden, evil. Limit it to ritualistic breeding. Force it to back up into suppressed sadism. Then hand the people a scapegoat to hate. Let them kill a scapegoat occasionally for cathartic release. The mechanism is ages old. Tyrants used it centuries before the word "psychology" was ever invented. It works, too.
-- R.A. Heinlein

The Park in the picture retained its 1969 character until 1989, when the Soviets withdrew. By 2001, after just 10 years of feudal infighting and Theocratic rule, it was in the same state it is now.


Nikola Kovacs said...

Religious fundamentalism.

A sure way to go back in time!

Unknown said...

This is why America, and Europe, need to stay in Afghanistan. To help recreate a stable society.

Hamid Karzai notwithstanding (or particularly helping), of course.

Zimbel said...

The 1969 image is 9 years prior to Ratebzad's New Kabul Times "War against the Planet" editorial: Privileges which women, by right, must have are equal education, job security, health services, and free time to rear a healthy generation for building the future of the country .... Educating and enlightening women is now the subject of close government attention..

I don't think I would have wanted to be in the first image, either.

Joseph said...

I think both of Heinlein statements need controlled experiments.

On the other hand, in an SF context they make more sense since we can always assume that the futuristic society in question has the data, which our society doesn't.