Imperialism for Good

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Whatever happened to good, old-fashioned imperialism?

Speaking historically, I mean.

We have tens of millions of refugees, mostly men of military age, fleeing their homelands trying to reach northwestern Europe and North America. They are fleeing states that would be complimented to be considered failed states. Places that teach Anarchists errors from which those anarchists  could learn much were they to attend to them. Venezuela, El Salvador, Aleppo, Libya, Spanish Sahara, Mali, Darfur, Sudan, Somalia. Can anyone deny that such refugee movements brand these countries as abject failures? There is a scarlet letter, and it is written across these countries in blood.

There is a name for such epic failure and tragedy: Opportunity.

When a company such as American Motors fails, we do not burn it to the ground and euthanise the employees. Different people take over the land and buildings and hire workers. Who will take over Venezuela? Water, good soil, excellent climate, many natural resources. What am I bid? Somalia is attractive to pirates because of its value to shipping.

The techniques are well-known. Establish an enclave. Vikings conquered. Carthaginians purchased. Many find abandoned land. Create a border. An impermeable border. Within the enclave establish fair laws justly enforced. Develop firm prejudices against corruption. The kingly way is only to allow the families of the original members and those they adopt. The utopian way is to only allow those in who are smart enough, or brave enough, or have found the revealed religion. The American way is to allow in those who agree with a written social contract. Accept civil rights, learn the language, swear to look after the other citizens as an extended family and you are in. These are important. If you cannot or will not talk out your problems from a common set of assumptions, then you have no society.

I hesitate to mention the repugnant Spartan method, but I must if only as a warning.It is one of the most common methods and the worst.  Conquer a large area and then hold the inhabitants as helots or slaves. Before industrialisation it was tempting to keep others to do the hard and dangerous jobs. But it warps your society. In extreme cases it creates a ruling class that disdains work in favor of fighting. It teaches the young to be ruthless and cruel. Improvements are disincentivised. Spending so much time in the presence of the same sex warps even the sexuality of the rulers. And there is the continual knowledge that a rebellion of the helots is not only preordained, but also just. A resistance to change is fetishised as any change is liable to set off such a powder keg.

In any of these systems the rules are straight forward. Do not let in anyone whose religion says you are worth less and must be changed. Do not let in those who hate the society. Forbid those who condemn your lifestyles. Expel those who hate the ideas your new society is built upon. Don’t be too restrictive or your society will choke. Preserve people who argue civilly. Grow as fast as stability permits. Floreat! [I said straight forward, not easy.]

If your new society is good it will grow. If the society outside is corrupt your new state will expand. Expand the border with it. From such beginnings grew Rome and Carthage. If your new society doesn’t grow you are another failed state. And someone should try again.

A new imperialism seems needed. Refugees from these areas shouldn’t have to go far away to find order. And some of these countries deserve to die. Am I judging them? No. The processes of history and the actions of their own citizens have condemned them. Don’t look too much behind. They may be gaining on us.

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Edward Bulwer-Lytton Did Not Live in Vain

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In these days of political, despair, world-historical troubles, and near universal brouhaha-ha, it is good to take a break into the realm of serious literature. Yes, it is time for the Edward Bulwer-Lytton literary contest results.

I, of course, have nothing to do with this other than standing in awe. I am filled full of awe by these awful sentences. I encourage you to visit the web site. These excerpts are in a random order based on my whim.

She was like my ex-girlfriend Ashley, who’d stolen my car, broken my heart, murdered my father, robbed a bank, and set off a pipe bomb in Central Park—tall.

Rachel Nirenberg, Toronto, Canada

When Glenn left the house, the sky was a satin Spinnaker Blue with White Feather clouds, the still-moist lawn and street were glossy Sunlit Glade and Bastion Grey, and, contemplating the to-do list jotted on Ivory Cream notepaper as he started the Sundance Yellow hatchback, Glenn knew he would go flat Condition Red berserk if his wife didn’t hurry up and select a color for the dining room.

David Franks, Greenland, AR

She wanted—no—she needed Robert, oh, what she would give if he knew that he was the first thing on her mind at the start of each day, if he knew that she yearned, yearned to be happily by his side at the spring dance, yes, she needed Robert—unless Brian dumped that bleach blond snob Leah in time, in which case she’d need Brian.

Heather Armstrong, Williamsburg, VA

Following my successful career as chief medical officer of the Horus 7 on its extended mission to explore the Galaxy, I returned to Earth—what follows chronicles the first seven years of the orthodontics practice I opened in Michigan.

Phillip Davies, Cardiff, Wales

“Nurse, I need more blankets, and my water pitcher is empty, and also my bedside lamp isn’t working,” Tom said coldly, dryly, and darkly, yet at the same time patiently.

Kimberly Baer, Woodbridge, VA

We got a stiff on the sidewalk all bled out; a stiff on a tugboat tied up with enough cement to build the Hoover Dam; Louie Miller empties out his bank account and falls off the face of the planet; Jenny Diver, Sukey Tawdry, Lotte Lenya, and Lucy Brown all get death threats . . . I got no goddamned proof, but five’ll get ya ten that Macky’s back in town.”

William Lattanzio, Boyertown, PA

Bulwer-Lytton is actually an interesting man. He turned down the throne of Greece. And his atrocious novels ignited the imaginations of crazy people. There is a lesson there – somewhere. But this is not a day for lessons.

Addendum: The Lovely Terry says nobody remembers ‘Mack the Knife’ and ‘Three Penny Opera.’

Nay I say! Nay! Can Louis Armstrong be forgotten? Nay!

Forthwith, ‘Mack the Knife.’

www.threepennyopera.org