The Butcher’s Herd
by Tim Case
art of government is the organization of idolatry."
~ George Bernard Shaw (18561950)
know what is right and not to do it is the worst cowardice."
~ Confucius (ca 551479? B.C.)
only man who makes slavery possible is the slave."
~ John W. Campbell, Jr. (19101971)
preamble to the establishment of any government should begin;
"In the beginning man created god…"
Now if you
think this statement is more polemic than factual then ask yourself
this question: "What is the fundamental promise behind the
institution of government?" If we are to believe those government-think
sluggards who profess judicial enlightenment, it is to end tyranny
and return freedom to the masses
of people. At least that is the selling point, whether those who
will assume the mantel of power believe it or not.
where we go in history we find the same maudlin pabulum being thrust
upon people concerning the changing or instituting of government.
Consider our own Revolution against the English, the French Revolution,
the Russian Revolution of 1918, the present excuse for the invasion
of Iraq and our continuing debacle; the war on terrorism, or the
great conquerors in history.
They all emulate
Alexander the Great, who after leaving Egypt in 331 BC pursued Darius
and the Persian army to the plain of Gaugamela where the next morning
Alexander’s army swept through the Persian army and slaughtered
them. After this decisive victory, Alexander was named King of Asia,
and he sent letters to all of the Greek cities proclaiming that
he had rid Asia of tyranny and freed the people.
peoples of Asia had a far different view of Alexander’s proclamation,
for they never did come to the realization that a foreign power
had rid them of tyranny, nor did they think of themselves as being
Why then does
this ideal, of destroying the fetters of a people’s tyranny and
giving them the blessings of a state sponsored Panglossian freedom,
continue to induce tender the emotions of a benevolent state, regardless
of the brutality inherent in the state’s actions in implementing
the supposed "freedom"?
lays, in part, in man’s inherent longing for emancipation from fear,
which is a very powerful emotion when the daily condition is beset
by an unjust and excessive exercise of power. However, the fallacy
associated with this desire is that the vast majority of people
never see that it is incumbent upon them to change their social
and economic conditions; rather they seek a dynamic leader who will
bring them out from under any unlawful, corrupt exercise of authority
and lead them to the "promised land."
starkest example of this remains Israel’s acceptance of Jesus as
the "promised king" who would throw off the shackles of
Roman oppression, restore Israel’s independence, and "rule
from Jerusalem." This led to Jesus’ "triumphant entry"
into Jerusalem just before His crucifixion. However, neither Scripture
nor the historical record point to any reason for the people’s exuberant
acceptance of Christ, on that day, other than their hope that He
was the promised King.
can also be accredited, in part, to man’s longing to be saved by
that which he has created with his own hands, but which also destroys
his very soul. This has led the mass of mankind to prove correct
the apologists for the state.
One such apologist
was the American nephew and disciple of Sigmund Freud, Edward L.
Bernays. Bernays was an elitist, who despised people he regarded
as inferior, especially because of social or intellectual claims.
Bernays would have made Socrates proud, and he felt the mass of
people could and should be controlled.
principle was the modernization of the ancient teaching attributed
to the god Pan. Bernays’ taught that the bulk of humans were to
be controlled by the chaos that accompanies mob violence and the
passions which escort the panic of the herd.
principle taught that there is a portion of man’s mind which cannot
be affected by logic, thus mankind can be prevented from acting
out of experience and thought. This enabled him to conclude that
man would react in terms of a group long before they would as individuals.
that it was therefore the obligation and duty of an elite circle
of individuals to control the human masses, the same group that
Plato referred to as a herd of ravenous wild beasts and I alternately
call "the majority of the people."
Some may think
it extraordinary, but Bernays even went so far as to proclaim that
not only will the majority of the people NOT think but that, in
all reality, the majority CANNOT think for themselves. Therefore,
it became incumbent upon the elite of any society to save the masses
from themselves by controlling and regimenting that society.
felt the control of society could be accomplished by injecting the
elite’s ideas of morality and spirituality, regardless of outside
religious influences, into daily life and over their objections.
This was to be accomplished by the elite of any society creating
god-men to assert their control over the people and bring society
out of its chaos.
This was not
just idle conjecture for one doesn’t have to look hard into recent
events to prove Bernays’ thesis workable. Although there are many
illustrations of this occurring within Roman society, history has
a far more glaring precedent for Bernays’ thesis.
events which occurred in the ancient North African city of Carthage
which was facing defeat by the Indo-Greek king Agathocles, known
as the tyrant of Syracuse, during the Third Sicilian War (ca 315
The chief god
of Carthage was worshipped under the name of Ba‘al Hammon, which
answers to the Latin god Saturn or Cronus (Kronos). The Carthaginian
people believed that Ba‘al Hammon could only be satisfied and kept
on their side in the war by means of a blood sacrifice.
took an unusual form in the ancient world. Paul
G. Mosca, translating Cleitarchus' paraphrase of a scholia to
Plato's Republic, gives us an idea of what occurred during this
particularly terrifying rite directed at soothing the anger of the
god; Ba‘al Hammon.
translation states: "There stands in their midst a bronze statue
of Kronos (Cronus or Saturn), its hands extended over a bronze brazier,
the flames of which engulf the child. When the flames fall upon
the body, the limbs contract and the open mouth seems almost to
be laughing until the contracted body slips quietly into the brazier.
Thus it is that the 'grin' is known as 'sardonic laughter,' since
they die laughing."
relates that relatives of the children were forbidden to weep and
that when Agathocles finally defeated Carthage, the Carthaginian
nobles believed they had fallen into disfavor with Ba‘al Hammon
because they sacrificed low-born children instead of their own children.
In a desperate attempt to make amends and regain favor with their
aggrieved god they decided to sacrifice 200 children from the elite
families of Carthage. However in their enthusiasm they actually
sacrificed 300 children.
stand as a stark monument to what lengths an oligarchy of god-men,
or the insanity of a charismatic individual, will go in their messianic
reasoning, in foisting their will on the biddable masses, under
the fallacy of remaining "free."
So then the
question follows; can the institution of government and these inner
circles of elitists either give or guarantee our freedom?
I would answer
an emphatic; NO! The simple reason being, that a continuance of
arbitrary law which emanates from those who flaunt the malapropos
mantel of "the government" can never be a source of freedom.
these laws spring not from any source of altruism on the part of
government officialdom, but from the unrelenting fact that government
in and of itself is incapable of creating wealth. Thus, any government
must, by its nature, continue to indenture its population to accumulate
the capital it needs to continue its own existence. This then is
the reason for so many capricious laws.
We should be
constantly reminded that any economic, social, or moral freedom
must stand as the antitheses to the state’s force of arms. Therefore,
when the state relinquishes any property or authority, by allowing
the citizens more freedom, the act must be viewed with suspicion,
if not dread.
We have conformation
of this in chapter 8 of The
Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli, who writes: "For injuries
ought to be done all at one time, so that, being tasted less, they
ought to be given little by little, so that the flavor of them may
Again in chapter
15 Machiavelli pens: "A man who wishes to act entirely up to his
professions of virtue soon meets with what destroys him among so
much that is evil."
necessary for a prince wishing to hold his own to know how to do
wrong, and to make use of it
according to necessity."
16 Machiavelli admonishes the prince; "We have not seen great things
done in our time except by those who have been considered mean;
the rest have failed."
We should not
be surprised, then, when we hear President Clinton in his 1993 speech
of August 12th, declare: "If the personal freedoms guaranteed
by the Constitution inhibit the government’s ability to govern the
people, we should look to limit those guarantees."
it be shocking to hear that George Bush stated: "There aught
to be limits to freedom" in a speech he delivered on May 22nd,
axiomatic then that as long as man continues in his adoration of
and subjection to a governmental enterprise he will never find a
means of obtaining manumission from the force exerted by the greed
of those in power.
was not always so; the ancients fully understood and practiced the
law of manumission.
after all, is that rara avis which is entirely dependant upon the
individual and independent of the state.
of manumission was much older than even the Hellenistic Kingdom
and had been in effect, with records kept among the priests of different
pantheons, as far back as the priests of Delphi in the seventh century
B.C., and the oracle of Apollo.
various ways in which the manumission of a slave could take place
in the ancient law, but the ancient records show that the solemn
rite of a fictitious purchase of the slave by some divinity stood
as the most common. Thus the slave owner goes with his slave to
the temple, selling him there to the god. The slave owner then receives
the purchase money from the temple treasury since the slave has
previously paid it in there out of his savings. The slave then becomes
the property of the god; not a slave of the temple, but a protégé
of the god. The slave then stands before the entire world, and especially
his former master, as a completely free man; at the very worst the
former slave will have imposed on him a few pious obligations toward
his old master.
in his brilliant work, Light
from the Ancient East describes how this rite was preformed.
rite takes place before witnesses; a record is taken, and often
perpetuated on stone."
stone inscription from 200 B.C., on the polygonal wall at Delphi,
will serve as an example:
Apollo the Pythian bought from Sosibius of Amphissa, for freedom,
a female slave, whose name is Nicaea, by race a Roman, with a price
of three minae of silver and a half-mina. Former seller according
to the law: Eumnastus of Amphissa. The price he hath received. The
purchase, however, Nicaea hath committed unto Apollo, for freedom."
The price of
freedom was everything to the ancient slave. He/she may be destitute,
due to the purchase price, but they were FREE and totally responsible
for their continued freedom.
and common was this idea of freedom being granted by divine authority
among those of the ancient world that edicts issued from the imperial
throne in Roman were called "divine commandments," "divine
writings," and if one was pardoned by the emperor, the freed
individual would say his freedom came by "divine grace."
an act of "divine grace?" Some Christians (I among them)
would answer with a resounding; Yes. However, that is not the point
here. The point is that freedom always has been and always will
be an act of an individual’s volition, yearning, courage, burden,
and resolve while remaining, ultimately, the central characteristic
along with the sole responsibility of each person.
What is truly
amazing is not the number of people who are given their freedom
but rather the number who are willing to give it up on the first
pretence of danger.
To stand silently
and wait for another messiah to lead us to the "promised land"
is a pipe dream. To wait for the masses of peoples to rise up and
"put the government back into its Constitutional cage"
is equally delusional. To assume that the masses will "revolt"
in righteous indignation when "things get worse" is barely
intelligible, as recent events during the collapse of the Soviet
exists as a cumulative action by a select group of individuals,
(the "Remnant" of Albert Jay Nock’s, Isaiah’s
Job), who refusing the servility foisted on them, compel change
by refusing to be obedient to odious ordinances of man’s worst creation.
There are only
two states to which the human condition consistently and truly aspires.
The first is
the state of action in which there are those who, against all odds,
take it upon themselves to reject and work around or in contradiction
to the fiats of the present and reoccurring nightmarish governmental
The other is
the state of inaction, which is the state of the majorities, who
do nothing but wish, hope and lie to each other about the better
world to come. Being left enervated, they continue to stand passively
on the butcher’s ramp, nose to tail with the rest of the herd, awaiting
their turn before the butcher and his death blow.
Case [send him mail]
is a 30-year student of the ancient histories who agrees with the
first century stoic Epictetus on this one point: "Only the educated
© 2005 LewRockwell.com