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Study the French Revolution

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posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 09:17 PM
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I have noted similar thoughts elsewhere, but I would like to start a thread on this topic in particular.

I encourage people to study the French Revolution because the parallels with our own time are striking. I would not say we will follow exactly the same paths, but we face similar dangers ("History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme." - Mark Twain).

First of all, let's roll the clock back to the 1600s for a moment. You have a complex balance of power, resulting in the 30-Years-War. After this war, most of the major continental powers (Hapsburg Austria, Holy Roman Empire, Eastern Europe and Germany in general) were utterly smashed....Germany lost 1/3 of its population and cannibalism was rampant, for example. England stayed aloof but irrelevant. Spain, the major hegemonic power of the late 1500s, was not so utterly destroyed, but its massive power was collapsing and it was becoming irrelevant for its own reasons.

The only major continental European power to stay out of this mess was France. This resulted briefly in France's status as a "hyperpower." It was a similar situation to the USA after WWII, when all of Europe and Asia was a smoking ruin and only the USA escaped unscathed. But in this scenario there was no major rival like the USSR to the USA. So it was a bit like a combo of WWII-plus-the-end-of-the-cold-war, with France a "unipolar," triumphant power...much as has been claimed for the USA after the fall of Communism.

As a result of this power, the French government seemed mighty and many expensive wars and colonial adventures in far-flung parts of the world began (sound familiar?). As time went on and we moved into the 1700s, the French govt relied increasingly on CREDIT to finance massive govt spending on wars, domestic luxury, and so on.

A decadent leisure class of ultra-wealthy aristocrats thriving on a CREDIT-BASED economy emerged....you have the languor of Versailles. Meanwhile to pay for all this the average Frenchman was squeezed harder and harder for taxes, and saw himself becoming poorer and poorer. A number of bad harvests led to real famine. The result was a massive polarization between rich and poor.

When the Revolution began, the biggest single item the government budget was INTEREST ON DEBT OWED. The once-mighty hyperpower had been "hollowed out." That shows how horrific the debt was. We aren't quite at this level ourselves, but we are fast .ed there.

The system was not flexible enough to change itself. Instead the govt just kept borrowing and borrowing up to the hilt, until the last possible minute. The result was extreme polarization of rich and poor, leading to populist rage, and then the revolution. This was a very chaotic time...you have "the Terror" followed by the "Great Terror," when the guillotine swung sickeningly and the dark speeches of Marat, Danton, and Robespierre incited the masses to ever more violent actions. Eventually, after playing with fire, all three men found themselves burnt...they, too, were killed by the horrible machinery of terror they had set in motion.

Parts of the country entered near anarchy, peasants refused to take taxes. Smaller countries began to "nibble around the edges" of France, fermenting trouble and war. It was a long time before order was finally restored, under the iron rule of Napoleon. Like Genghis Khan, he quelled internal disorder by turning the forces of violence outward and rampaging across a continent.

Besides being fascinating in itself, the whole episode is very instructive in how a hyperpower was ruined by debt, inflexibility, and inequality, resulting in chaos and eventual dictatorship.

[edit on 7/21/09 by silent thunder]




posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 09:53 PM
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reply to post by silent thunder
 



Originally posted by warrenb
reply to post by Tom_Proctor
 


I know quite a few on ATS are in agreement.

Organize in advance and rally on a chosen date


these kinds of things need advance planning
just like a military campaign

The French revolution was organized by citizens distributing pamphlets in advance of the chosen day


if the French could rid themselves of their aristocratic bloat...






posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 10:43 PM
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Originally posted by warrenb

The French revolution was organized by citizens distributing pamphlets in advance of the chosen day


And we have the Internet...another interesting parallel, perhaps...



posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 10:48 PM
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Originally posted by silent thunder
And we have the Internet...another interesting parallel, perhaps...


We do have internet. But for how long?
I spend a lot of time on the web, and i just know that someday, controls will be omnipresent, meaning the control of the flow and content of internet. But that's just my personal opinion.

Edit to add: i will opt for the "revolution of the mind".

[edit on 21-7-2009 by lagenese]



posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 10:58 PM
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Originally posted by lagenese

Originally posted by silent thunder
And we have the Internet...another interesting parallel, perhaps...


We do have internet. But for how long?
I spend a lot of time on the web, and i just know that someday, controls will be omnipresent, meaning the control of the flow and content of internet. But that's just my personal opinion.

Edit to add: i will opt for the "revolution of the mind".

[edit on 21-7-2009 by lagenese]


This is why I encourage everyone to start DOWNLOADING and SAVING as much "alternative" and "fringe" content as they can...I've got gigs and gigs of saved info on everything from ancient religions to wild-eyed conspiracies...I have a separate hard drive dedicated to this purpose and I'm fast building it into something the equivalent of a respectable mid-sized-city library. My gut instinct is that most of this kind of writing won't be freely available in a few years, so I encourage people to act like "info packrats" and get what they can while the getting's good. Many horde bullets, guns, and food, but how many are hoarding info?

Of course, I am obliged to remind everyone to be safe and not to break the laws. But I truly encourage as much "info-hording" (especially among aware ATS types) as possible....before it is too late.



posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 11:04 PM
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The thing with the French Revolution is that they had people willing to speak out and in doing so swing the public's attention to all the mess, causing anger, hence the revolt.

Who do we have speaking out?



posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 11:10 PM
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reply to post by silent thunder
 


I have the equivalent of about 400 DVD's full of different info, and media.
It may not be much for some, but for me, it's sufficient. I've been collecting for some time now, and it's a good thing. I especiallly like documentaries, because i consider them as sort of the "universal library of mankind".



posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 11:18 PM
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Originally posted by serbsta
The thing with the French Revolution is that they had people willing to speak out and in doing so swing the public's attention to all the mess, causing anger, hence the revolt.

Who do we have speaking out?


I increasingly see angry people who are nearing desperation. I see rage simmering everywhere. It may take some time, but explosive conditions are not to be ruled out.

It has often been said, "as long as the American people have a remote control for their big-screen TV and a six-pack of beer they will be complacent and nothing will happen." But what happens when there's no more beer in the fridge and the repo man comes for the plasma screen?

A lot of Americans are soft and lazy. But a lot of Americans are hard working, ambitious, and well-armed.

There is a quote from a British general (I don't remember his name) who once said something to the effect of: "Even the mightiest nation is two missed meals away from anarchy." Believe it.



posted on Jul, 21 2009 @ 11:21 PM
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Originally posted by lagenese
reply to post by silent thunder
 


I have the equivalent of about 400 DVD's full of different info, and media.
It may not be much for some, but for me, it's sufficient. I've been collecting for some time now, and it's a good thing. I especiallly like documentaries, because i consider them as sort of the "universal library of mankind".


Excellent.
This is exactly what I am talking about.

The nature of electronic communications is such that even if the "internet proper" is shut down, they cannot stop communication among aware people. The corporations and Powers that Be have in a way boxed themselves in with the Internet because restricting the free flow of information too much or in the wrong way will also negatively effect the "shadowside activitites" of these big businesses and powers, who also derive great benefits from the open-ended aspect of the Interent. Still, a battle is brewing and we must stand firmly for TOTAL INTERNET FREEDOM.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 09:08 AM
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Originally posted by serbsta
The thing with the French Revolution is that they had people willing to speak out and in doing so swing the public's attention to all the mess, causing anger, hence the revolt.

Who do we have speaking out?


exactly

the very reason the french have been vocal in protesting earlier this year regarding the banks and the political nonsense is because their MEDIA IS NOT CONTROLLED to the degree ours is.

You put just a touch of Real non-partisian read thru the lines stuff on TV in america and you light a match .....wether you are lighting a fire under civilized protests and walkouts or a crazy armed revolt ...well i don't know...but i can tell you TPTB are not going to try and find out

[edit on 25-7-2009 by cpdaman]



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