Fancy That

13 05 2008

I’m not a fan of Churchill by any stretch of the imagination, but I saw this quote recently and thought it was good:

Fancy cutting down all those lovely trees to make pulp for bloody newspapers and calling it civilization. — Winston Churchill, 1929

But the Cult of Capitalism keeps heaping sacrilege upon sacrilege, as pointed out over at Dry Creek Chronicles:

The Mises Circle goes to Seattle to address contemporary issues in liberty, and the role of Capitalism as the main Force for every form of progress in our age. We live amidst its fruits—technology, culture, philanthropy, human well being—and have yet to appreciate the Source. Indeed, among the most passionate opponents of the Free Market are those who have benefited most enormously from it. Here we have a profound failure of understanding at work.

Wowsers. Fancy trashing God’s law and calling it progress, and worshiping it no less.

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13 05 2008
floydturbeville

In The Machine Stops by E. M. Forster, he describes a vision (in 1909) of the internet age where “The Machine” serves us as isolated individuals and we become unable to see that it is replacing our humanity. It could just as well describe our modern economy, which deludes us similarly with

some invincible pressure, which came no one knew whither, and which, when gratified, was succeeded by some new pressure equally invincible. To such a state of affairs it is convenient to give the name of progress. No one confessed the Machine was out of hand. Year by year it was served with increased efficiency and decreased intelligence. The better a man knew his own duties upon it, the less he understood the duties of his neighbour, and in all the world there was not one who understood the monster as a whole. Those master brains had perished. They had left full directions, it is true, and their successors had each of them mastered a portion of those directions. But Humanity, in its desire for comfort, had over-reached itself. It had exploited the riches of nature too far. Quietly and complacently, it was sinking into decadence, and progress had come to mean the progress of the Machine.

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