By Neil Lock
In the first part of this essay, Indictments – which you can find at [] – I was in scientific mode. I was seeking objective, verifiable evidence that the claimed problem of global “climate change” caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases was a real and significant one. And I found no such evidence. Climate alarmists have been proclaiming that “the end of the world is nigh” for half a century now. Yet there’s no objective evidence that the world actually has ended due to human emissions of greenhouse gases. Or, indeed, to suggest that it will end any time soon. Instead, there is plenty to suggest that most of the claimed “evidence” in this matter either has no substance, or has been doctored, spun or hyped.
In any case, even if greenhouse gases do cause significant warming, wouldn’t a warmer world be a better world? In my area, we’ve had an unusually warm spring this year; and the wildlife are loving it! There are more new goslings around my local lake than I’ve ever seen before. I knew the spring would be warm, as soon as the tits who nest in the tree outside my bedroom window arrived in January, instead of their usual March. The wildlife know what the weather will do! It’s built into their natures. And for them, as for us, warmer is better.
In this, the second part of the essay, I shall look at how and why the situation we face today has come about. This will require a different approach, with more emphasis on the so called “humanities.” In particular, I shall be looking at history, seeking to put today’s state of affairs into its large-scale context.
Where we are right now (May 2022)
When, in the first part of this essay, I looked at the facts of the “climate change” matter, I found that views contrary to the alarmist narrative have been and are being suppressed. Which is suggestive. For, if there really was hard evidence to support the alarmist cause, would it not have been easier simply to present it?
I found much evidence, on the other hand, that those with power in the current political system are treating us without any of the concern or respect which is due to all human beings worth the name. Over the environment, for example, they have behaved dishonestly towards us, corrupted science, whitewashed wrongdoings by our accusers, and moved the goalposts again and again. They have required us to prove a negative, yet they also seek to suppress our voices. They have violated our rights to the presumption of innocence, and to a fair and public hearing to enable us to defend ourselves against their accusations. They seek to impose on us policies that, far from bringing any gain to us, will cause us, or have already caused us, chaos, inconvenience, and loss of independence. As well as huge economic costs that are already starting to force many of us down into poverty. And they have failed to do any objective and unbiased feasibility or cost-benefit analysis on these policies, or to prototype their effects by testing them on volunteers.
Moreover, people – far too many people – seem frightened to say what they think. Not just on this subject, but on other controversies, such as COVID-19 lockdowns and vaccinations. That suggests bad faith and even bullying by those that don’t want the truth brought out into the open.
Then there’s Extinction Rebellion. A group with rich backing from the international establishment, and tactics I can only describe as terrorist. They claim that humans today are causing a “sixth mass extinction.” I have asked environmentalists, several times, to name a species to whose extinction I have contributed. And to say what, and approximately when, I did to contribute to that extinction. I have never got even one species name, or any factual evidence. So, I conclude that the entire extinction scare must be a fraud.
Despite not having any objective evidence for their main accusation, in April 2022 Extinction Rebellion organized “mass protests” against human use of fossil fuels. They claimed they would “mobilize” three and a half per cent of the UK population (that’s more than 2 million people!), yet their actual protests were confined to central London and a few oil depots. And only a few hundred of them were arrested.
For 15 years now, I have been studying the claim that human use of fossil fuels is causing great harm to human health, to human civilization or to the planet. And I know it is a fraud. A fraud that, to anyone who looks at the facts, the full facts and nothing but the facts, becomes obvious. Moreover, fossil fuels are an absolutely vital pillar of human civilization in our present stage of development. Anyone that wants to end, or even to restrict, our use of fossil fuels is a traitor to human civilization. And deserves to be kicked out of our civilization.
Yet, three years ago, this bunch of neo-hippy activists was admitted into the closest councils of the UK government. And the parliament that is supposed to represent and serve the people of the UK kow-towed to these activists, declared a non-existent “climate emergency,” and voted for measures intended to destroy our prosperity and quality of life.
But it isn’t just in environmental matters that those in power are mis-treating us and violating our rights. In particular, they are taxing us ever more and more harshly. According to the TaxPayers’ Alliance, the tax take in the UK increased by 25% in the last year. And that was on top of taxation levels already at their highest in many decades!
They use tax money to reward their cronies with lucrative contracts, which don’t get done properly. They also seek to block people they don’t like from access to the market. Including me. A bad tax law called IR35 has destroyed my career as an independent software consultant. For more than 20 years, it has reduced my earning power to a third or a quarter of what it should be in a free market. Because of this, I am now facing poverty in my old age. More recently, they have used this same bad law to disrupt the UK lorry driving industry, leading to early retirements, and to the departure of many drivers who had come from Europe. This has been a significant cause of the recent “supply chain crisis.”
Some like to moan and wring their hands, and urge that “the rich” should be taxed in order to help “the poor.” But the reality is that taxation today is predatory. It takes from the politically poor, and gives the proceeds to the politically rich. It’s all about “raising revenue” for the political class and their friends, at the expense of the people they are supposed to be serving.
But there are worse schemes yet on the horizon. Interlinked projects of “digital identity” and “central bank digital currencies” are being pursued in the UK and other countries. Each alone is worrying. Digital identity could all too easily become a high-tech repeat of the compulsory ID card scheme, against which I and many others fought in the 2000’s as members of NO2ID. It could even become a “mark of the beast,” without which no-one may buy or sell anything. And a central bank digital currency would likely result not only in the abolition of cash, but also in government being able to trace and to tax even the tiniest and the most personal of transactions. Opening up the possibility of “lifestyle police” monitoring us all for the tiniest deviation from the political correctness of the day.
Moral privileges, dubious laws and violations of rights
Meanwhile, the powerful grant themselves moral privileges. They act as if they were above the rule of law, and violate our right of equality before the law. And they cynically break rules they made themselves, while expecting us to keep to those same rules. As, for example, the “Partygate” scandal, in which government officials, and even the prime minister himself, held and attended parties in flagrant violation of COVID lockdown rules. And they seek to suppress publication of the details of their transgressions.
Many of the lockdown laws they made have been ethically very dubious. For example, they tried to force out of their jobs health care workers who were unwilling to submit to vaccination. Without ever showing evidence that the people targeted were causing any harm, or even any unreasonable risk, to others.
Furthermore, they spy on us with cameras everywhere, and carry out mass surveillance on our e-mail and Internet traffic. And they violate our rights of privacy, freedom of speech, opinion and expression, freedom of movement, and peaceful assembly – and more.
Then there is globalism. We have international élites like the World Economic Forum (WEF), World Bank and International Monetary Fund peddling a “Great Reset.” This has been described as “a new equilibrium among political, economic, social and environmental systems toward common goals.” One of its (in)famous slogans has been: “By 2030, you’ll own nothing and you’ll be happy.” All this comes out of the United Nations’ “2030 Agenda” and “Sustainable Development Goals,” and follows on from the World Economic Forum’s “Global Redesign” initiative. The future, so they say, must be “a globalized world… best managed by a coalition of multinational corporations, governments (including through the UN system) and select civil society organizations.” Which leads to the question: In a supposed democracy, why have we ordinary people never been allowed any opportunity to reject these élitist plans, or even been consulted about them?
The UN secretary-general called in 2019 for “a decade of action on three levels. Global action to secure greater leadership, more resources and smarter solutions for the Sustainable Development Goals. Local action embedding the needed transitions in the policies, budgets, institutions and regulatory frameworks of governments, cities and local authorities. And people action, including by youth, civil society, the media, the private sector, unions, academia and other stakeholders, to generate an unstoppable movement pushing for the required transformations.” []. The “decade of action” calls for “accelerating sustainable solutions to all the world’s biggest challenges – ranging from poverty and gender to climate change, inequality and closing the finance gap.”
It seems pretty obvious what all this is intended to bring about. One, a Big Brother world government, like George Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four” but with Oceania, Eurasia and Eastasia all rolled into one. And two, a world economy completely controlled by an élite “in crowd.” With the rest of us forcibly “transformed” into serfs or slaves, with no rights, no privacy, no control over our own lives, and no say at all in anything.
Then, of course, there is war. This topic has jumped to front and centre recently, with the Russian invasion of Ukraine. War is built in to the foundations of the political system of “Westphalian” nation states, under which we suffer today. As Randolph Bourne put it, “War is the health of the state.” The nation state not only allows, but encourages, inhuman warmongers such as Hitler and now Putin to start wars. And it lets them get away without being held accountable for their crimes.
UK and US politicians are hardly innocent on this score either, having chosen in the last two decades to start or to inflame wars in places like Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. And it seems as if the Machiavellian bunch that run the USA are looking for the slightest excuse to do something silly, and thereby escalate the Ukraine war into a global nuclear conflict.
But Putin’s reckless war (for which, I find myself coming to call him “Rash Putin”) has already prompted some change in the “climate” of thought, in the UK at least. People are coming to see already unaffordable and yet still mounting energy prices as the threat to our civilization which they truly are. And then there’s the danger of millions of innocent people being annihilated in a nuclear war, about which governments appear to have no qualms at all.
Risk and “safety”
Governments today also push a maudlin obsession with “safety,” regardless of costs to the people. This has been responsible for many of the rights violations we have suffered under the excuse of COVID-19. It has also driven the climate “debate.” Yet, in comparison to risks like unaffordable energy and nuclear war, the “threat” arising from some human-caused change in the climate, which has never even been proven to be real, seems completely empty.
A movement is beginning, I sense, towards a more sane and sensible view of risk than Western governments have taken in generations. If not also towards a more rational and critical view of the awful political system we suffer under in today’s age of madness.
The historical context
To wider matters. I will here give a brief summary of my view of human history, and thus of the context in which today’s events are taking place. In this, I have been substantially influenced by an American thinker, who calls himself Jason Alexander. I treated this subject at some length in the second essay of a major set of six, here: []. The first of that set, which introduces some of the ideas of Jason Alexander and of others who have influenced me, can be found at []. Here, I will repeat some summary points from that second essay, and add some brief notes.
I view human history on the large scale as a series of forward-moving revolutions, in each of which we human beings open up, and start to explore, new levels or dimensions of our humanity. And we explore, and develop further, those dimensions which we had previously opened up. But each of these revolutions is followed by a regressive, anti-human counter-revolution from those that are hostile to our progress.
It is as if there are two opposite tendencies at war with each other. I am coming to think of this in terms of a species split among those born with the capability to become human. On one side are we true humans – the revolutionaries. We are naturally progressive, and we want to move forward into a better future. We want only the minimum of government, to enable us to live together peacefully and under justice. And we favour individual freedom and economic progress for all. On the other side are our reactionary enemies. They like “authority,” orthodoxy and oppressive government, and hate freedom, independence and earned prosperity. They seek to hold back the progress which is natural to us, and even to haul us back down towards where we started from.
The Neolithic revolution and the political state
From the starting point of the Neanderthal extinction, I see the Neolithic revolution in agriculture as our first revolution, a revolution which turned us from mere predator animals into human beings capable of civilization. Its paradigm was Humanity. It made us human.
We learned to cultivate crops, and to domesticate animals. And we developed new ideas of how to relate to each other, such as the concept of private property. In my view, this was the point at which we differentiated from, and became superior to, animals. And it started us on our journey towards taking control of, and leaving our mark on, our surroundings.
In contrast, the rise of the political state was our enemies’ first counter-revolution. And the state itself – a top-down system that enables an élite forcibly to rule over a, potentially large, group of people – was its counter-paradigm.
There are many theories on how the first states came about. One I find reasonably believable is Robert Carneiro’s. In bad times, groups that were short of food might seek to use force to take for themselves the product of the labours of other villages. Or, even in time of plenty, groups might plan attacks on other villages to secure valuable resources, such as more fertile land. This led to wars. Often, the losers could not flee. Or, they realized that they would be better off joining the winners, even as conquered subordinates, than if they tried to flee. In such cases, the conquerors subjected the conquered to taxation in the form of their produce. From there, it was not a huge step further to subject them to slavery, in whatever form.
Thus, the state arose out of wars, and out of the coercive measures taken by the winners of those wars against the losers. And the leaders of such a state were its most successful military leaders, along with a coterie of warriors personally loyal to them.
Ancient Greece, Rome, the dark ages and the church
Our second revolution was seeded in ancient Greece. Its paradigm was Reason. It taught us to think rationally and abstractly; for example, to do mathematics and philosophy. And it enabled us to build new and better kinds of civilization. Athenian democracy, for example, was a great advance on what had preceded it. And among the civilizations which grew out of our second revolution was Rome, which managed to incorporate, and to build on, some of the best of the Greek culture.
Our enemies’ second counter-revolution produced the dark ages, and a powerful church, to go with the state which had been the product of the first. Its counter-paradigm, I think, was institutional religion, together with the church that embodied it. This church, a hierarchical system of institutionalized mental control and mumbo-jumbo, enabled an élite to control people mentally, just as the state empowered its élite to control them physically.
The Renaissance, sovereignty, the social contract and Machiavellian behaviours
Our third revolution began at the Renaissance. Its paradigm was Discovery. Of ideas both old and new, of new places, of ourselves.
The Renaissance did not just revive the ancient learning from Greece and Rome. It brought about changes for the better in many aspects of human life in Europe. People began to emerge from the mind-numbing tyranny of the church and the top-down feudal political system. They felt renewed confidence in their own faculties. They felt a new sense of freedom for the human spirit, that had been for so long suppressed by orthodoxy. Inquiry, discovery and criticism became new norms; if not also satire. And the Renaissance laid the groundwork for the later development of science.
In response to our third revolution, our enemies made a counter-revolution with two components: a religious and a secular. The religious part produced a series of destructive wars. It also led to moral panics, including Inquisitions and witch-hunts. Even so, the power of the church, or at least of the papacy, was significantly reduced.
But the secular part was far more damaging to us. Jean Bodin (1530-1596) articulated a new theoretical basis for political states, sovereignty. This not only greatly increased the power of the state, but made it more tyrannical, too. His system, which was later to produce rulers like the “Sun King” Louis XIV, was rolled out across Europe as the Westphalian nation state. Since then, it has spread all over the world. And despite the “bags on the side” we have tried since then – like constitutions, bills of rights and democracy – we still suffer under it today.
I’ll summarize the basic principles of Bodin’s system, which you can find in Book I, Chapter X of his Six Books of the Commonwealth: []. In Bodin’s scheme, the “sovereign” – the king or ruling élite – is fundamentally different from, and superior to, the rest of the population in its territory, the “subjects.” The sovereign is, in Bodin’s words, “in the image of God.” It has a divine right to rule. And the only laws which can bind it are “the laws of God and of nature.” If it even recognizes the existence of such laws, of course.
In particular, the sovereign has moral privileges. That is, it has rights to do certain things, which others don’t share. It can make laws to bind the subjects, and give privileges to those it chooses to. It can make war and peace. It appoints the top officials of the state. It is the final court of appeal. It can pardon guilty individuals if it so wishes. It can issue a currency. It can levy taxes and impositions, and exempt at will certain individuals or groups from payment. Furthermore, the sovereign isn’t bound by the laws it makes. And it isn’t responsible for the consequences to anyone of what it does (also known as “the king can do no wrong.”)
Looking at what is going on today, you can see these privileges being used by those in power to harm ordinary people. Unjust, harmful, constraining laws; but dispensations for friends. (IR35 for me, but £6,000 a man-day of government money for “approved” consultants.) Wars. Dishonest officials, and burgeoning bureaucracy. Innocent people being unjustly harmed, while buddies receive unearned titles and favours. Currency inflation. Heavy taxes on ordinary people, but lucrative contracts and subsidies for cronies. Disregard by those in power of rules they themselves made. Greed, arrogance, petulance, lies and dishonesty, insincerity, selfishness, corruption, bullying, hypocrisy, virtue signalling, untrustworthiness, recklessness, lack of concern for the victims of their schemes, lack of remorse, avoidance of accountability.
In the 17th century, there arose also the fiction of a “social contract,” seemingly invented by Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679). According to this fiction, at some time in the past, a group of people (or, at least, a majority of them) consented to be ruled over despotically by an absolute sovereign. They committed to each other, that they would authorize and approve whatever the sovereign chose to do. Moreover, once the system has been set up, there is no possibility of changing it, or of escape from it. This extremely dangerous fiction was, unfortunately, taken on board even by later revolutionary thinkers of the Enlightenment, including John Locke. And it still persists today.
Furthermore, the advice of Niccolò Machiavelli (1469-1527) that rulers should be sly, deceitful and unscrupulous – not to mention cruel, oppressive and heartless – has been followed by the majority of the political class and their cronies ever since. Leading to the psychopathic behaviours, that seem to have become endemic in today’s political class.
The main thrusts of the third counter-revolution, then, were new “justifications” for the state, and encouragement of political dishonesty and the Machiavellian behaviours that go with it.
The Enlightenment, political -isms and democracy
Our fourth revolution was the Enlightenment. Its paradigm was Freedom. From it have flowed all the (relative) freedoms we have enjoyed in the West over the last three centuries.
In my essay at , I listed some Enlightenment values. “The use and celebration of human reason. Rational inquiry, and the pursuit of science. Greater tolerance in religion. Individual liberty and independence; freedom of thought and action. The pursuit of happiness. Natural rights, natural equality of all human beings, and human dignity. The idea that society exists for the individual, not the individual for society. Constitutional government, for the benefit of, and with the consent of, the governed. The rule of law; that is, those with government power, such as lawmakers, officials and judges, should have to obey the same rules as everyone else. An ideal of justice which, per Immanuel Kant, allows that ‘the freedom of the will of each can coexist together with the freedom of everyone in accordance with a universal law.’ A desire for human progress, and a rational optimism for the future.”
But our enemies responded with a counter-revolution of many strands. They brought the Enlightenment to a halt with the failure of the French Revolution. They promoted nationalism, with the state-worship and the wars that it brings. They promoted a slew of bad political ideologies: socialism, communism and fascism, to name but three. All these ideologies are collectivist. None of them shows any regard for the human individual. And all these ideologies inexorably increased the power of the state, and the scope of what it does. At its root, their counter-paradigm was collectivism.
Moreover, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, at heart a collectivist and not at all the Enlightenment thinker some like to make him out to be, posited that the population of an area has a “general will,” which makes them into a unity. “Each of us puts his person and all his power in common under the supreme direction of the general will, and, in our corporate capacity, we receive each member as an indivisible part of the whole.” And he demanded “the total alienation of each associate, together with all his rights, to the whole community.”
At a stroke, this ruse takes away our rights and our freedom to be ourselves, and makes us no more than cogs in a political machine. A machine which, like any purported “unity,” can only be driven and steered by a centralized ruling class. And such a centralized power will, inevitably, end up ruling without regard to the needs or desires of the ruled. Moreover, rather than lessen the power of the political state, Rousseau’s scam actually increased it, because it led to the (false) idea that the state is in some sense “us.” In reality, though, the state as it is today is a creation of 16th-century monarchists. And it is the tool of preference that their modern successors use to drain us and oppress us.
Beyond this, the counter-revolutionaries perverted “democracy” – the idea that ordinary people should have a full and fair say in how they are governed – into a system that delivers nothing of the kind. For first, it gives a false legitimacy to the policies of whatever faction is in power, even when those policies are objectively harmful or unjust. Second, democracy inexorably tends towards a situation as we have today, in which all the supposedly competing factions favour the same, bad policies, such as high taxes and green pipedreams. And third, a vote is completely useless, unless there is someone who both is worth voting for and has a decent chance of being elected into power. But almost no-one in any of the mainstream political parties is worth voting for. The main reason for this is that political power tends to attract exactly the kind of devious psychopaths that want to rule over others, and to evade accountability for the consequences. Far from democracy giving us our say, the current political party system produces kakistocracy – the rule of the worst.
At this point, I think it’s time to identify explicitly the two major reasons why democracy as it is today doesn’t work, and never can work. I myself have only recently come to understand the significance of these two problems. First, democracy is only a veneer on top of, or a “bag on the side” of, the state. Underneath, the state and the political government it supports are as vicious, as violent, as unjust, as corrupt as they ever were. Trying to build democracy on top of a state is akin to trying to put lipstick on a tyrannosaurus.
Second, the idea of “one man one vote,” however well it may work within a voluntary society, is not appropriate when applied to the people who live in a particular geographical territory. For these people, in reality, have not voluntarily agreed to form a society, but are only a community. Thus, they cannot reasonably be expected to have common interests or desires, beyond wanting the community to be as good as possible a place to live for everyone in it. Rousseau’s idea that such a group of people has a “general will” is false. And since they are not all members of one voluntary society, the people in an area cannot reasonably be expected to keep to rules or policies imposed by any particular political tendency.
The Industrial Revolution and the suppression of humanity
Our fifth revolution was the Industrial Revolution. From it has flowed the (relative) prosperity we have enjoyed in the West for much of the last three generations. Its paradigm was, and is, Creativity. And the environment it nurtured is the free market. In which everyone is free to ply their own particular industries, trades or professions for mutual benefit.
The Industrial Revolution has enabled us human beings, at last, to start to take control over our surroundings. Moreover, it has enabled us to open up our creative abilities. And the technical progress it began has continued. We have had the “green revolution” in agriculture, which has brought greatly increased crop yields. We have had nuclear energy. We have had television. We in the West have had affordable travel, both by air and on land. We have had computers, and in recent decades the personal computer. We have had the Internet and the mobile phone. Artificial intelligence is, perhaps, on the horizon.
But our enemies, as always, have responded with a counter-revolution. The main thrust of our enemies’ fifth counter-revolution is a push to suppress our industrial civilization, to shut down the free market and to regulate economies, and to destroy prosperity for everyone but a clique of élites. Their primary tools today are the globalization agenda and the deep green agenda. But they have many other tools as well. Such as: violating our human rights, making bad, oppressive and restrictive laws, and arbitrary and unjust taxation.
As to deep green environmentalism, I find myself thinking of it as a religion. An extremely intolerant one, at that; like the Catholic church from the late 15th century through the Counter-Reformation. And its leaders and acolytes behave like those that sought to subject innocent people to the Inquisitions.
But it isn’t only in environmental matters that we are under attack. Enlightenment ideas like government for the sake of the governed, the rule of law and justice, and the dignity and worth of the individual human being, are being trashed. Our human rights and freedoms are being trashed, too. Moreover, Rash Putin has chosen to unleash all-out war on millions of innocent Ukrainians. And who may be next?
Meanwhile, the media keep up a torrent of hype, with lies, misrepresentations and “fake news” everywhere. They call those they don’t like nasty names like “denier,” and seek to “cancel” the views of those who oppose their narrative. Truth and justice become submerged in an ocean of propaganda and collectivist dogma, through which the political élites seek to force their particular view of the world on to ordinary people, and even try to make us – against all the evidence – feel grateful to them for what they do to us. And they accuse us of being the ones peddling fake news! Further, they seek to indoctrinate people with falsehoods or emotional manipulation, to create a mental atmosphere of unreasoning fear, and to silence contrarian viewpoints.
And even our core humanity is under attack. The “humans are bad” brigade are having a field day, as shown by those that think the COVID virus has been a good thing, and by refrains like “we are trashing nature” and “there are too many human beings on the planet.” They hate and castigate us human beings. And yet, they consider themselves to be above reproach.
In summary, the counter-paradigm of our enemies’ fifth counter-revolution is suppression. Suppression of truth, suppression of rights, suppression of freedom, suppression of prosperity. Suppression of our humanity and our creativity. Suppression of us.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is where we’re at today.
Human interactions and bonding
Next, I’ll take a look at how human societies have developed over time, and the different kinds of bonding which have arisen as a result.
First, there are blood ties. Of which, the “nuclear family” is by far the strongest. These have always been, and still are, important, particularly for the bringing up of children.
Second, there are voluntary associations with others, which people make for mutual benefit. In our hunter-gatherer days, people organized themselves into bands, and later into settled tribes; the main benefit being the division of labour. They were initially blood-tie based, but the bigger they got, the less close the blood ties became.
We can also form voluntary societies of many kinds. Their purposes can range, for example, from the performance of a common hobby, to a business enterprise, to a society of people with similar goals and interests, to a society of people with shared ideas and values.
Third, there are ties of culture, such as shared language, or history, or religion, or political ideas of how groups of humans should best be organized. These, again, can have a blood-tie element, but often do not. People who share a language or a set of values do not always share an ancestry or a skin colour, or vice versa. There is also a love, which many people feel, for the land and people of their particular area. That is the love, which I refer to as patriotism.
Fourth, there are political ties, and, in particular the “nation.” Nationalism, at its root, is an attachment to a political state. But many people today seem to think of the nation state and its politics as the primary force that binds the people in an area together. And too many seem to think of politics as a replacement for and consummation of the older binding forces, such as shared ancestry, culture, language, religion, or place of origin or residence.
“Society” and the implied social contract
The rise of politicized views on human bonding has led to an idea accepted by far too many, that there is a political unit called “society” in the singular, to which everyone in a particular area – such as the territory claimed by a nation state – belongs, whether they want to or not. According to the narrative, all of us have agreed to an implied contract, that makes us part of this “society,” and thus subjects of a Hobbesian sovereign. This, in turn, makes us subject to a political government, and to the decrees of its leaders and officials for the time being.
But wait a moment… This social contract narrative is simply absurd. Even if my ancestors might have subscribed to such a thing (and, as far as I know, they didn’t), I as an individual have never agreed to any social contract! Where is my signature on any such damn thing? Moreover, where are the statements of the benefits I am supposed to get from it, and the procedures for me to get justice and redress if the government party fails to deliver?
Besides, what honest, truthful, productive human being would ever want to join a society run by the present breed of lying, dishonest, scamming politicians? Come to think of it, why should any human being want to join any society that would even accept those scumbag politicians and their cronies as members?
John Locke’s view
The social contract idea was developed mainly by three thinkers. Two of these, Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, were bad guys. In my terms, they were counter-revolutionaries. But the third, John Locke, was a true revolutionary, and the father of the Enlightenment.
Locke’s greatest work, by far, is his Second Treatise of Government, first published in 1690. You can find it here, together with his First Treatise, which debunks absolute monarchy: [].
Locke started from a view of humans being naturally in “a state of perfect freedom to order their actions, and dispose of their possessions and persons as they think fit, within the bounds of the law of Nature. A state also of equality, wherein all the power and jurisdiction is reciprocal, no one having more than another.” Of this law of Nature, he says: “The state of Nature has a law of Nature to govern it, which obliges every one, and reason, which is that law, teaches all mankind who will but consult it, that being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty or possessions.”
He also understood that, among those born human, some fail to keep to this law of Nature. They kill people, or injure them, or try to enslave them or otherwise take away their freedoms, or steal, damage or destroy their property. To counter the dangers posed by these individuals, he posited that a group of people may choose to form a “political society.” This they do “by agreeing to join and unite into a community for their comfortable, safe and peaceable living.” This is Locke’s idea of a social contract.
But he was very clear about the purposes of such an agreement. “The great and chief end, therefore, of men uniting into commonwealths, and putting themselves under government,” he said, “is the preservation of their property.” And: “The end of law is not to abolish or restrain, but to preserve and enlarge freedom.” He cautioned that many of the “municipal laws of countries” were no more than “the fancies and intricate contrivances of men, following contrary and hidden interests put into words.” And such laws are “only so far right as they are founded on the law of Nature.”
He says also, of the individual under the law of Nature: “By which law, common to them all, he and all the rest of mankind are one community, make up one society distinct from all other creatures.” And “were it not for the corruption and viciousness of degenerate men, there would be… no necessity that men should separate from this great and natural community, and associate into lesser combinations.” So, if it wasn’t for these sub-human degenerates, we wouldn’t need political societies, or governments.
Of governments, he said: “Their power in the utmost bounds of it is limited to the public good of the society. It is a power that hath no other end but preservation, and therefore can never have a right to destroy, enslave, or designedly to impoverish the subjects.” And the public good is: “the good of every particular member of that society, as far as by common rules it can be provided for.”
Moreover: “Wherever the power that is put in any hands for the government of the people… is applied to other ends, and used to impoverish, harass or subdue them to the arbitrary and irregular commands of those that have it, there it presently becomes tyranny.” And: “All power given with trust for the attaining an end being limited by that end, whenever that end is manifestly neglected or opposed, the trust must necessarily be forfeited, and the power devolve into the hands of those that gave it.”
The people always retain “a supreme power to remove or alter the legislative, when they find the legislative act contrary to the trust reposed in them.” And they are entitled “to resume their original liberty,” and “to endeavour to put the rule into such hands which may secure to them the ends for which government was at first erected.”
Changes in bonding
Today, the bonds, which historically have held groups of people together, are increasingly failing. Ties of ancestry and race have become less and less important, as people of different races have migrated across the world, and interbred, over the last century and more. Indeed, there is a body of opinion that now sees those, who find these ties important, as “racists.” Language and culture, too, are losing their power to bind. When I walk around my area in Surrey, I am as likely to hear Polish, or Italian, or some Romance-style language I can’t even identify, as I am to hear English. And when I go into my local convenience store, the radio is often on in a language such as Urdu or Bengali.
Meanwhile, religion is coming to be seen by many as increasingly irrelevant to modern life. Migrations and ease of travel have made patriotism and mere physical proximity no longer the binding forces they used to be. And politics, far from uniting people, has become strongly divisive.
The twilight of political government
Today, political governments have lost respect for the people they are supposed to be serving. Not to mention losing contact with reality, too. And in return, the governed are rapidly losing respect for governments.
Further, political governments press ahead manically with destructive policies based on no more than lies and scares. And the system is rigged, so that ordinary people cannot obtain redress, or even get our objections heard. Moreover, governments often disobey their own rules. It’s not surprising, then, that the ethical, moral and political foundations of those governments are crumbling. And that the ruse that governments “serve” and “protect” people is wearing increasingly thin. Indeed, an ancient question seems to be re-surfacing in people’s minds: Quis custodiet custodes? Who will guard the guardians? Who will protect us from the “protectors?”
You can see this crumbling of foundations in the way that many people actively hate at least one of the major political parties. In the UK over the last 75 years or so, many Labour supporters have come to hate the Tories, and many Tory supporters have come to hate Labour. What is relatively new is the growth in the number of people who are actively disenchanted, not just with the party in power, but with all the main parties and with the whole system. If you count together the people whose political and social views are not represented by any of the main parties, and the people who feel disengaged from the whole political circus, recent research [] suggests that as much as half the population may fall into this category. That turns all pretence of “democracy” into a charade.
As I wrote at : “Democracy divides people from each other. The victims of unjust policies feel harshly treated, and become disaffected. Moreover, those who have been harmed by the policies of particular parties come to hate those parties. And people – and eventually, many people – lose all sense of affinity with all of the major parties. They come to see a vote for any of the mainstream parties as an act of aggression against those who are harmed by that party’s policies. They come to view politics, politicians, the establishment and government as a whole with contempt and loathing. And eventually, they lose all sense of belonging, and of fellow feeling for those that continue to support the system. Thus, democracy ends up breaking apart the very sense of ‘we’ that seemed to give it legitimacy in the first place. It destroys the cohesion, the ‘glue’ which ought to keep a community of people together.”
It goes further. If government themselves don’t obey the rules they make, you will think, why in hell should we obey them? And, if you didn’t vote for a political party, why should you be subjected to any laws made by that party?
Myself, I haven’t voted in a general election since 1987. At every election but one from 1992 onwards, I have been a conscientious non-voter, because none of the parties that have any chance of winning can possibly “represent” me. The exception was 2019, where I was ready to vote for the Brexit party candidate. But he was withdrawn, and chose not to stand as an Independent. And he wouldn’t have won, anyway.
How, then, can I have consented to any of the bad laws that have been made since 1992? Including IR35, which has destroyed my career and left me facing poverty in my old age? And all the green taxes, levies and policies, which have not only impoverished many people and created an energy crisis that was entirely avoidable, but also threaten to take away our mobility and our ability to heat our homes? I have never given my consent to any of these bad laws. So, why should I have had to suffer them being forced upon me?
And even if I had signed a social contract, those that have done these bad things to me have forfeited my trust. That means, as John Locke told us, that even if I had granted power to a government, that power would now devolve back to me, and entitle me to reject that government, with all its bad laws and policies, and to look for something better to replace it.
I’ll park those thoughts for now, and move to another aspect. I’ll re-state, and develop, a fundamental idea put forward by the German Jewish thinker Franz Oppenheimer (1864-1943) in his 1908 book “The State” []. I gave a very brief summary of Oppenheimer’s career, and the influence his book has had on my thinking, in the essay at .
Oppenheimer did not mince his words when it came to the origins and purpose of the state. “The State, completely in its genesis, essentially and almost completely during the first stages of its existence, is a social institution, forced by a victorious group of men on a defeated group, with the sole purpose of regulating the dominion of the victorious group over the vanquished, and securing itself against revolt from within and attacks from abroad. Teleologically, this dominion had no other purpose than the economic exploitation of the vanquished by the victors.” It’s interesting to see how close Franz Oppenheimer’s view of the origin of the state is to Robert Carneiro’s theory that I outlined above.
Economic means versus political means
Oppenheimer’s greatest insight is his famous distinction between the economic means and the political means. “There are two fundamentally opposed means whereby man, requiring sustenance, is impelled to obtain the necessary means for satisfying his desires. These are work and robbery, one’s own labor and the forcible appropriation of the labor of others. Robbery! Forcible appropriation! These words convey to us ideas of crime and the penitentiary, since we are the contemporaries of a developed civilization, specifically based on the inviolability of property. And this tang is not lost when we are convinced that land and sea robbery is the primitive relation of life, just as the warriors’ trade – which also for a long time is only organized mass robbery – constitutes the most respected of occupations…
… I propose in the following discussion to call one’s own labor and the equivalent exchange of one’s own labor for the labor of others, the ‘economic means’ for the satisfaction of needs, while the unrequited appropriation of the labor of others will be called the ‘political means.’”
Oppenheimer commented further: “All world history, from primitive times up to our own civilization, presents a single phase, a contest namely between the economic and the political means.” And: “The state is an organization of the political means.”
Parasites and pests
The essence of the political means, as Franz Oppenheimer saw it, is taking resources from others without their consent. The takers then use these resources to enrich themselves or their cronies. In my terms, they are parasites on the people from whom the resources are taken.
Those that use the political means in this way include all those that take money, extracted through taxation, to do “jobs” that do not provide equivalent value in return to the individuals who paid those taxes. Or those – a lot of them – that simply take tax money, and waste it on things that bring no benefit at all to us. This cabal of parasites also includes many, if not most, politicians. It includes a very high proportion of government officials, bureaucrats and jobsworths. And it includes many government “experts,” “advisors” and technocrats.
The parasite cabal also includes a lot of big company bosses, “money men” such as bankers, and other corporate cronies. They take subsidies or bail-outs, or lobby for advantages for themselves, or profit from bad laws. Or they secure lucrative government contracts, which they perform incompetently.
But there is another, even more malicious group, which Oppenheimer for some reason failed to call out when he wrote his book. I call them pests. Pests want power for the sake of what they can do with it. Pests want to control people, to persecute, and to screw up people’s lives.
The most virulent pests seek political power in order to pull policy strings. They want to do things to us, that we do not want, and that often cause us actual or even serious harm. So, they lobby, inside or outside government, for policies that harm certain groups or types of people. In this highly virulent group, too, are those – including globalist activists such as the UN and the WEF – that seek to force on us a particular agenda of how the world or some aspect of it should be, whether or not we want it. Most church leaders are in on this scam, too. And environmentalist groups, including Extinction Rebellion, are pests par excellence.
Politicians that promote, support or vote for harmful policies, including aggressive wars, globalist or green policies, and violations of our human rights, are pests too. As are government employees, sub-contractors and “non-governmental organizations,” that help along such policies. Corrupt academics and other “experts” that attempt to stamp these bad policies with a seal of “authority.” Media hacks that perpetuate the narratives behind the harmful policies, or seek to “cancel” opposition and deny freedom of speech. And corporate bosses, that lobby government to get policies made to restrict their competitors.
Under the heading of pests also come those that actually carry out government violations of human rights. Such as: Police that harass, or unjustly stop, innocent people, or enforce bad laws. Soldiers that take part in aggressive wars. Those that tax us, seek to impoverish us or cause unnecessary expenditure to us, spy on us or violate our rights or freedoms in any way.
Even those that do not seek to use politics to enrich themselves personally, are nevertheless pests if they promote, support, make or enforce bad laws that harm innocent people. I see them, therefore, as users of the political means. Like the parasites, but in many ways worse.
Economic species versus political species
As I said earlier, I see the division between us progressive humans and our reactionary enemies as a species split. I will call the true humans, we who by our nature use the economic means, the economic species. I also call us as a group simply human beings, or sometimes human beings worth the name. The parasites and pests, on the other hand, I call the political species. And the blade, that divides human beings (the economic species) from parasites and pests (the political species), I dub Oppenheimer’s Razor.
There is today a third, and very numerous, group of people. While they use the economic means in many aspects of their lives, they nevertheless support the current political set-up. They do this, primarily, by continuing to vote for mainstream political parties, and so underwriting the charade of sham democracy.
I call these people pawns. For that is what they are; foot-soldiers, that allow themselves to be used by the political parasites and pests for their own ends. But they also buy, with far too little scrutiny if any at all, the narratives of the mainstream media. They do not have enough skepticism about what they are told, or enough desire to find out the facts. And they often let themselves be swayed by falsehoods or by emotional manipulation. Thus, they fail to see through agendas such as nationalism, environmentalism and globalism.
Indeed, some among the pawns come to support the bad agendas they have been spoon-fed. And they feel a desire to force those agendas on to others. These pawns are in serious danger of making themselves into pests. This danger is especially great for “celebrities,” whose fame may give their words undue weight in helping to persuade other pawns into supporting these bad agendas.
Most pawns do not have a strong ethical sense. They cannot see that many of the laws being made by politicians are bad, and harm the people they are supposed to be serving; which is not at all what government should be doing. They fail to see violations by governments of the rights of innocent people as the very serious crimes they are. They tend to accept the narrative that they are part of some political “society,” and that government, and others with power in this “society,” are morally OK, and on their side. And they still do so even when the actions of government and those with power are unjustly harmful to them or to others.
Profiling our enemies
So, what can we deduce about our enemies – be they parasites, pests or both?
It’s clear that neither parasites nor pests measure up to John Locke’s “law of Nature” standard of not harming others in “life, health, liberty or possessions.” That they can even contemplate starting wars shows their disrespect for human life. That they want to restrict free speech or other freedoms shows that they have no respect for liberty. They routinely take away our earned prosperity, and so eat away at our possessions. They do this not only directly through taxation, but also indirectly through laws that impoverish people, currency inflation, and regulations that suppress the economy. And they have perverted the idea of not harming others’ health into an excuse to violate the rights and freedoms of innocent people.
Moreover, they do not see our planet as a resource for us human beings to exploit and to take control of, in order to build a home and garden fit for a civilized species. Instead, they use politics in order to exploit or to control us.
I myself, in the third essay of my set of six – which you can find at [], wrote a more expansive specification of the behaviours natural for all human beings worth the name. “Be peaceful. Seek the facts, and tell the truth. Be honest. Strive always to behave with justice, integrity and good faith. Be tolerant of those who are tolerant towards you. Respect the rights and freedoms of those who respect your equal rights and freedoms. Don’t interfere in other people’s business without a very good, objective reason. And take responsibility for the effects of your voluntary actions on others.”
You need only re-read the section entitled “Where we are right now,” near the beginning of this essay, to see the huge margins, by which the behaviours of parasites and pests fall below these standards. And yet, my brief list represents only a minimal level of standards of civilized conduct, which ought to be easily attainable by any human being. Ought it not?
Next, what are our enemies’ values? As political parasites and pests exist in all countries, not just the UK or even the West, the philosopher in me will consider only those values which are reckoned to be humanity-wide. That is, what sociologists call “universal values.” According to Wikipedia: “A value is a universal value if it has the same value or worth for all, or almost all, people.” Another definition is: “conceptions of the desirable that influence the way people select action and evaluate events.”
But I can name many values I would categorize as universal, which many of our enemies –the pests, in particular – do not seem to place any value on. They do not value human individuality or independence. They do not show concern and respect for all those who measure up to human standards of behaviour. They do not value honesty, integrity, rationality or consistency. They are not peaceful. They do not keep good faith in dealing with others. They have little or no concern for human rights or freedoms. They do not value freedom in the abstract, either. Nor do they value facts and truth.
They do not value justice. At least, in the sense in which I define that word: “The condition in which each individual is treated, over the long run, in the round and as far as practicable, as he or she treats others.” Instead, they spout nonsense ideas like “social justice,” “climate justice” and “environmental justice.” “Social justice,” if it means anything at all, can only make sense within a society. But the people in the area ruled over by a government do not form a society, only a community. And “climate justice” and “environmental justice” ought to mean the advocates of green policies being made to compensate those who have been harmed by them.
Moreover, both parasites and pests have a warped idea of “equality.” Which seems to reduce to riches and power for them, and for everyone else whatever shit they decide to throw at us.
Among our enemies, many do not respect the Enlightenment values which I listed above. In particular, they do not respect the rule of law. They do not respect the values of the Industrial Revolution, either. They do not value the free market. They do not value honest business, except as something they can exploit to enrich themselves. And they do not value prosperity, except for themselves and their cronies.
I do not have access to the minds of our enemies. I must, therefore, try to deduce their mind-set from what they say. And when I do that, the results are fascinating, if not also amusing. It is fair to say that the attitudes I discuss here are more common among pests than among mere parasites; and they are commonest of all among green activists.
They moan that “we” are a “scab,” or a “cancer,” or a “blight on the planet.” Do they not understand how right they are? They are a scab, a cancer, a blight on the planet.
They rant that human industrial civilization is “unsustainable.” Do they not understand that what is truly unsustainable is the political state, and the bad governments it supports? It is the political means, their life support system, that is unsustainable, not ours.
They rant about humans “destroying habitat” for animals. Do they not know that they are the real habitat destroyers? For they are seeking to destroy our natural habitat: the economic means, the free market and free trade which underpin it, and the prosperity it engenders.
They rant that “there are too many of us” humans on the planet, and desire to cull the population. Do they not see how right they are when they say “too many of us?” The reality is, not that there are too many of us human beings, but that there are far too many of them. There are far too many political parasites and pests on this planet! They need to be culled.
They scaremonger, and try to make us feel collective guilt. For them, the future is to be feared. Everything is always “worse than we thought,” and “it’s all our fault.” Do they not see that their fear for the future, and their feelings of guilt, are entirely justified? And that they will fully deserve what they will get when, finally, we bring them to justice?
They rant about the urgency of “doing something” about their panics. They even claim that their fake crises are “existential.” This is why they keep on demanding action NOW, and keep on moving the goalposts and bringing forward the implementation dates for their bad laws. Do they not see that they are the ones that are headed towards existential crisis? That crisis will come, when enough human beings finally wake up to the fact that our enemies’ entire caboodle of lies and scares has been fake news all along.
And why are they so worried about extinctions, when they can show no hard evidence at all to back up their accusations? Could they, perhaps, have sensed, deep down, that they are the ones that deserve extinction? Imagine if every political parasite, and every political pest, on the planet died in its sleep tonight. Wouldn’t the world be a far better place in the morning?
Here are some words I wrote in the last of my set of six essays – at [], when I was trying to understand why our enemies exude so much fear in almost everything they say. “I am coming to think that the lies, hype, fear and ad hominems our enemies spout may be more than just propaganda tools. I think our enemies may be genuinely afraid of something. Deep down inside, do they perhaps feel panic and fear for their own futures? Might they have divined, for example, that the political system, on which their entire privileged, parasitic way of life depends, is not sustainable? That the state is, ethically, already bankrupt; and perilously close to financial bankruptcy, too? And that, on its present course, it will soon fail?”
In a nutshell
To put all this together: Human beings naturally use the economic means to get their needs and desires satisfied. But our enemies, the parasites and pests, use the political means instead. Parasites use political power to enrich themselves and their buddies. Pests use political power to screw up the lives of people they don’t like. Some are more parasites than pests, some more pests than parasites, and some both.
Parasites and pests fail to respect many of the values common to all human beings worth the name. The mind-set of many of them, particularly pests, sees us human beings as the source of all problems. But in reality, they are the ones that cause all today’s problems.
Parasites and pests are not us. They do not behave as is natural to human beings. Thus, they are not fit to be accepted into any community of human beings worth the name; let alone into a society.
To sum up
What I see is that in the UK and many other places, government, the very institution that is supposed to defend and uphold the rights of human beings against criminals and wrongdoers, has been taken over and is being run by those same criminals and wrongdoers. As a result, both governments, and the political state that supports them, have become unsustainable. There is a palpable and growing sense that the current political system, including democracy, has failed. It has passed its last-use-by date.
Franz Oppenheimer was right when he said that all world history is a contest between the economic and political means. Now, we are approaching a crux point in that contest. The parasites and pests, the users of the political means, have had it almost all their own way for a century and more. It is now high time for us human beings to wake up and, as J.R.R. Tolkien said of the Ents, find that we are strong.
We human beings must take back our “supreme power to remove or alter” the government. And we must create a new system of government, which can achieve, in John Locke’s words, “the ends for which government was at first erected.” Those ends? “Being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty or possessions.”
We must shrug the parasites and the pests off our shoulders, and bring them to justice. We must ditch politics, and the state that supports it. We must return to our human nature as users of the economic means. And we must find again the original force, which binds together all human beings worth the name. That binding force is shared humanity; together with the economic means, and the free market and free trade which underpin it.
How to make that happen? And where do we go from there? As Michael Ende has said: “But that is another story and shall be told another time.”
[] My thoughts on, and a link to, this research can be found at https://libertarianism.uk/2022/03/23/some-thoughts-on-the-uks-culture-wars/