PODCAST EPISODE # 12 – What are Governments # 2

To fully understand what governments are, we must look to the bible and read the book of Daniel 2 and look into King Nebuchadnezzars dream.

Governments are a group of people that governs a community or unit. It sets and administers public policy and exercises executive, political and sovereign power through customs, institutions, and laws within a state. A government can be classified into many types–democracy, republic, monarchy, aristocracy, and dictatorship are just a few.As a side note, The USA started out as a Representative Republic, but throughout its 240 year existence it has decayed into a Democracy. Democracies are known to become totalitarian. A classic example of this was the Roman Empire, which started out as a Republic. It assured its down fall once it became a Democracy. This insured Romes down fall after a 2000 year reign. A Great book to read is Mark Levins Liberty and Tyranny, which shows us how the United States is slowly falling into a soft tyrannical Government with all of its socialists policies.

Read more: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/government.html

At certain times, God has used dreams to communicate with people. One of those people was King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. Daniel 2 tells us how Daniel interpreted Nebuchadnezzars dream, in which God provided an overview of world events in the millennia yet to come.

Character Backgrounds

King Nebuchadnezzar reigned from 605 to 562 B.C., greatly expanding the Babylonian Empire, conquering Jerusalem and deporting the Jews in the process. Daniel was one of those deported from Israel and granted an education in the kings palace. When God granted Daniel the wisdom to interpret the kings dream, it launched Daniels long career as a political leader, trusted advisor, and well-known prophet.

Nebuchadnezzars Threat

One night, Nebuchadnezzar awoke frightened by a dream. The king called for his magi to interpret the nightmare. This was standard procedure in a culture that placed a high importance on dreams and their meaning. However, he added an unprecedented requirement: Tell me what my dream was and interpret it (Daniel 2:5). So, not only did the royal wise men have to provide the interpretation of the dream, they had to recount the dream itself. The penalty for failure was death: every magician, enchanter, sorcerer and astrologer in the kingdom would be executed. The worried magi replied, What the king asks is too difficult. No one can reveal it to the king except the gods, and they do not live among men (Daniel 2:11). When Daniel heard of this, he was determined to prove Gods power to the king (Daniel 2:18).

Daniels Response: The Dream

Daniel asked the king for some time to discover the dream, and then he proceeded to pray all night with three of his fellow exiles. God revealed the dream to him, and Daniel and his friends praised God (Daniel 2:19-23). The next morning, he went to the king and told him about the dream.

The dream featured a huge, glorious statue of a man. Its head was made of pure gold, its chest and arms of silver, its belly and thighs of bronze, its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of baked clay (Daniel 2:32-33). Then a rock cut not by human hands (Daniel 2:34) hit the foot of the statue, and the whole image became like chaff on a threshing floor, while the rock became a huge mountain and filled the whole earth (Daniel 2:35). This vision, by the way, gives us our modern idiom feet of clay, meaning a hidden fault or weakness.

Daniels Response: The Interpretation

Daniels interpretation, given to him by God, explains that the statue represents a series of kingdoms, each less glorious than the one before, as indicated by the decreasing value of the metals. Daniel identifies Nebuchadnezzar as the head of gold, stating that God had given Nebuchadnezzar much power (Daniel 2:37-38). The next kingdom to arise will be inferior to Babylon, as will the next. Finally, there will come a fourth kingdom, strong as iron. . . . It will crush and break all the others (Daniel 2:40).

Finally, the feet of mixed clay and iron will be a divided kingdom (Daniel 2:41). During the time of this final world empire, the rock will smash them all to bits, a prediction that God . . . will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed (Daniel 2:44). All previous earthly kingdoms will be brought to an end.

The Dream 2,500+ Years Later

The first four kingdoms have been identified as the Babylonian, Persian, Greek and Roman Empires. This identification has come from the workings of history matching further prophecies. Daniel already said that Babylon, specifically Nebuchadnezzar, was the head of gold (Daniel 2:38). Babylon fell to the kingdom of the Medes and the Persians (Daniel 5:26-31). Greece became the successor to the Medo-Persian Empire (Daniel 8:20-21; 10:20 – 11:14). The iron empire can only be Rome.

Opinions differ on the fifth empire. Some have tried to identify various periods in Europes history as the clay-and-iron feet; others claim the feet represent the divided remnants of Rome before supposedly being conquered by Christianity. Still others believe that the clay/iron empire is yet to come: the kingdom of the Antichrist will be a revived Roman Empire. The last theory seems to be the best. We know, according to Revelation 17:12-13, that the Antichrist will lead a coalition of ten nations (the statues ten toes?). And we know that Christ will defeat the forces of the Antichrist (Revelation 17:14). After that, Jesus will set up His kingdomthe rock smashes the imageand the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and ever (Revelation 11:15).

Many scholars have contrasted Nebuchadnezzars dream in Daniel 2 with Daniels vision in chapter 7. Both passages reveal the coming world kingdoms, but the symbolism is strikingly different in each. The pagan king sees the kingdoms of this world as a towering work of art, impressive in size, value, and grandeur (albeit with feet of clay). Gods prophet sees the same kingdoms as bizarre, unnatural beasts, terrifying in aspect and behavior. Its a difference of perspective: where man sees a stately, glittering tribute to himself, God sees a menagerie of aberrations. Let us not be desirous of vain glory (Galatians 5:26, KJV).

https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/bob-black-anarchy-101

Bob Black

Anarchy 101

What is anarchism? What is anarchy? Who are anarchists?

Anarchism is an idea about the best way to live. Anarchy is a way of living.

Anarchism is the idea that government (the state) is unnecessary and harmful. Anarchy is society without government. Anarchists are people who believe in anarchism and desire to live in anarchy as all our ancestors supposedly once did. People who believe in government (such as liberals, conservatives, socialists and fascists) are known as statists.

It might sound like anarchism is purely negative that its just against something. Actually, anarchists have many positive ideas about life in a stateless society.

But, unlike Marxists, liberals and conservatives, they dont offer a blueprint.

Arent anarchists bomb-throwers?

No at least not compared to, say the United States Government, which drops more bombs every day on Iraq than anarchists have thrown in the almost 150 years they have been a political movement. Why do we never hear of bomb-throwing Presidents? Does it matter if bombs are delivered horizontally by anarchists rather than vertically by the U.S. Government?

Anarchists have been active for many years and in many countries, under autocratic as well as democratic governments. Sometimes, especially under conditions of severe repression, some anarchists have thrown bombs. But that has been the exception. The bomb-throwing anarchist stereotype was concocted by politicians and journalists in the late 19th century, and they still wont let go of it, but even back then it was a gross exaggeration.

Has there ever been an anarchist society that worked?

Yes, many thousands of them. For their first million years or more, all humans lived as hunter-gatherers in small bands of equals, without hierarchy or authority.

Note: The author of this article, Bob Black is coming at you from a secular mind set due to saying that For their first million years or more, all humans lived as hunter-gatherers. Man Kind has been here on earth for about 6,000 years and governments known as kingdoms existed before the flood.

A great series of books that goes into the first kingdoms are a series of books by Michael Hur titled The First Kingdom Volume 1,2 and 3, which goes into what the first governments looked like pre flood.

These are our ancestors. Anarchist societies must have been successful, otherwise none of us would be here. The state is only a few thousand years old, and it has taken that long for it to subdue the last anarchist societies, such as the San (Bushmen), the Pygmies and the Australian aborigines.

But we cant go back to that way of life.

Nearly all anarchists would agree. But its still an eye-opener, even for anarchists, to study these societies, and perhaps to pick up some ideas on how a completely voluntary, highly individualistic, yet cooperative society might work. To take just one example, anarchist foragers and tribesmen often have highly effective methods of conflict resolution including mediation and nonbinding arbitration. Their methods work better than our legal system because family, friends and neighbors of the disputants encourage disputants to agree, helped by sympathetic and trustworthy go-betweens, to find some reasonable resolution of the problem. In the 1970s and 1980s, academic supposed experts tried to transplant some of these methods into the American legal system. Naturally the transplants withered and died, because they only live in a free society.

Anarchists are nave: they think human nature is essentially good.

Not so. Its true that anarchists reject ideas of innate depravity or Original Sin. Those are religious ideas which most people no longer believe in. But anarchists dont usually believe that human nature is essentially good either. They take people as they are. Human beings arent essentially anything. We who live under capitalism and its ally, the state, are just people who have never had a chance to be everything we can be.

Although anarchists often make moral appeals to the best in people, just as often they appeal to enlightened self-interest. Anarchism is not a doctrine of self-sacrifice, although anarchists have fought and died for what they believe in. Anarchists believe that the carrying-out of their basic idea would mean a better life for almost everyone.

How can you trust people not to victimize each other without the state to control crime?

If you cant trust ordinary people not to victimize each other, how can you trust the state not to victimize us all? Are the people who get into power so unselfish, so dedicated, so superior to the ones they rule? The more you distrust your fellows, the more reason there is for you to become an anarchist. Under anarchy, power is reduced and spread around. Everybody has some, but nobody has very much. Under the state, power is concentrated, and most people have none, really. Which kind of power would you like to go up against?

But lets get real what would happen if there were no police?

As anarchist Allen Thornton observes, Police arent in the protection business; theyre in the revenge business. Forget about Batman driving around interrupting crimes in progress. Police patrol does not prevent crime or catch criminals. When police patrol was discontinued secretly and selectively in Kansas City neighborhoods, the crime rate stayed the same. Other research likewise finds that detective work, crime labs, etc. have no effect on the crime rate. But when neighbors get together to watch over each other and warn off would-be criminals, criminals try another neighborhood which is protected only by the police. The criminals know that they are in little danger there.

But the modern state is deeply involved in the regulation of everyday life. Almost every activity has some sort of state connection.

Thats true but when you think about it, everyday life is almost entirely anarchist. Rarely does one encounter a policeman, unless he is writing you a traffic ticket for speeding. Voluntary arrangements and understandings prevail almost everywhere. As anarchist Rudolph Rocker wrote: The fact is that even under the worst despotism most of mans personal relations with his fellows are arranged by free agreement and solidaric cooperation, without which social life would not be possible at all.

Family life, buying and selling, friendship, worship, sex, and leisure are anarchist. Even in the workplace, which many anarchists consider to be as coercive as the state, workers notoriously cooperate, independent of the boss, both to minimize work and to get it done. Some people say anarchy doesnt work. But its almost the only thing that does! The state rests, uneasily, on a foundation of anarchy, and so does the economy.

Culture?

Anarchism has always attracted generous and creative spirits who have enriched our culture. Anarchist poets include Percy Bysshe Shelley, William Blake, Arthur Rimbaud, and Lawrence Ferlinghetti. American anarchist essayists include Henry David Thoreau and, in the 20th century, the Catholic anarchist Dorothy Day, Paul Goodman, and Alex Comfort (author of The Joy of Sex). Anarchist scholars include the linguist Noam Chomsky, the historian Howard Zinn, and the anthropologists A.R. Radcliffe-Brown and Pierre Clastres. Anarchist literary figures are way too numerous to list but include Leo Tolstoy, Oscar Wilde, and Mary Shelley (author of Frankenstein). Anarchist painters include Gustav Courbet, Georges Seurat, Camille Pissarro, and Jackson Pollock. Other creative anarchists include such musicians as John Cage, John Lennon, the band CRASS, etc.

Supposing youre right, that anarchy is a better way to live than what we have now, how can we possibly overthrow the state if its as powerful and oppressive as you say it is?

Anarchists have always thought about this question. They have no single, simple answer. In Spain, where there were one million anarchists in 1936 when the military attempted a coup, they fought the Fascists at the front at the same time that they supported workers in taking over the factories, and the peasants in forming collectives on the land. Anarchists did the same thing in the Ukraine in 19181920, where they had to fight both the Czarists and the Communists. But thats not how we will bring down the system in the world of the 21st century.

Consider the revolutions that overthrew Communism in Eastern Europe. There was some violence and death involved, more in some countries than in others. But what brought down the politicians, bureaucrats and generals the same enemy we face was most of the population just refusing to work or do anything else to keep a rotten system going. What were the commissars in Moscow or Warsaw to do, drop nuclear weapons on themselves? Exterminate the workers that they were living off?

Most anarchists have long believed that what they call a general strike could play a large part in crumbling the state. That is, a collective refusal to work.

If youre against all government, you must be against democracy.

If democracy means that people control their own lives, then all anarchists would be, as American anarchist Benjamin Tucker called them, unterrified Jeffersonian democrats they would be the only true democrats. But thats not what democracy really is. In real life, a part of the people (in America, almost always a minority of the people) elect a handful of politicians who control our lives by passing laws and using unelected bureaucrats and police to enforce them whether the majority want it or not.

As the French philosopher Rousseau (not an anarchist) once wrote, in a democracy, people are only free at the moment they vote, the rest of the time they are government slaves. The politicians in office and the bureaucrats are usually under the powerful influence of big business and often other special interest groups. Everyone knows this. But some people keep silent because they are getting benefits from the powerholders. Many others keep silent because they know that protesting does no good and they might be called extremists or even anarchists (!) if they tell it like it is. Some democracy!

Well, if you dont elect officials to make the decisions, who does make them? You cant tell me that everybody can do as he personally pleases without regard for others.

Anarchists have many ideas about how decisions would be made in a truly voluntary and cooperative society. Most anarchists believe that such a society must be based on local communities small enough for people know each other, or people at least would share ties of family, friendship, opinions or interests with almost everybody else. And because this is a local community, people also share common knowledge of their community and its environment. They know that they will have to live with the consequences of their decisions. Unlike politicians or bureaucrats, who decide for other people.

Anarchists believe that decisions should always be made at the smallest possible level. Every decision which individuals can make for themselves, without interfering with anybody elses decisions for themselves, they should make for themselves. Every decision made in small groups (such as the family, religious congregations, co-workers, etc.) is again theirs to make as far as it doesnt interfere with others. Decisions with significant wider impact, if anyone is concerned about them, would go to an occasional face-to-face community assembly.

The community assembly, however, is not a legislature. No one is elected. Anyone may attend. People speak for themselves. But as they speak about specific issues, they are very aware that for them, winning is not, as it was for football coach Vince Lombardi, the only thing. They want everyone to win. They value fellowship with their neighbors. They try, first, to reduce misunderstanding and clarify the issue. Often thats enough to produce agreement. If thats not enough, they work for a compromise. Very often they accomplish it. If not, the assembly may put off the issue, if its something that doesnt require an immediate decision, so the entire community can reflect on and discuss the matter prior to another meeting. If that fails, the community will explore whether theres a way the majority and minority can temporarily separate, each carrying out its preference.

If people still have irreconcilable differences about the issue, the minority has two choices. It can go along with the majority this time, because community harmony is more important than the issue. Maybe the majority can conciliate the minority with a decision about something else. If all else fails, and if the issue is so important to the minority, it may separate to form a separate community, just as various American states (Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, Kentucky, Maine, Utah, West Virginia, etc.) have done. If their secession isnt an argument against statism, then it isnt an argument against anarchy. Thats not a failure for anarchy, because the new community will recreate anarchy. Anarchy isnt a perfect system its just better than all the others.

We cant satisfy all our needs or wants at the local level.

Maybe not all of them, but theres evidence from archaeology of long-distance trade, over hundreds or even thousands of miles, in anarchist, prehistoric Europe. Anarchist primitive societies visited by anthropologists in the 20th century, such as the San (Bushmen) hunter-gatherers and the tribal Trobriand Islanders, conducted such trade between individual trade-partners. Practical anarchy has never depended on total local self-sufficiency. But many modern anarchists have urged that communities, and regions, should be as self-sufficient as possible, so as not to depend on distant, impersonal outsiders for necessities. Even with modern technology, which was often designed specifically to enlarge commercial markets by breaking down self-sufficiency, much more local self-sufficiency is possible than governments and corporations want us to know.

One definition of anarchy is chaos. Isnt that what anarchy would be chaos?

Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, the first person to call himself an anarchist, wrote that liberty is the mother, not the daughter of order. Anarchist order is superior to state-enforced order because it is not a system of coercive laws, it is simply how communities of people who know each other decide how to live together. Anarchist order is based on common consent and common sense.

When was the philosophy of anarchism formulated?

Some anarchists think that anarchist ideas were expressed by Diogenes the Cynic in ancient Greece, by Lao Tse in ancient China, and by certain medieval mystics and also during the 17th century English Civil War. But modern anarchism began with William Godwins Political Justice published in England in 1793. It was revived in France by Pierre-Joseph Proudhon in the 1840s (What Is Property?). He inspired an anarchist movement among French workers. Max Stirner in The Ego and His Own (1844) defined the enlightened egoism which is a basic anarchist value. An American, Josiah Warren, independently arrived at similar ideas at the same time and influenced the large-scale movement at the time to found utopian communities. Anarchist ideas were developed further by the great Russian revolutionary Michael Bakunin and by the respected Russian scholar Peter Kropotkin. Anarchists hope that their ideas continue to develop in a changing world.

This revolutionary stuff sounds a lot like Communism, which nobody wants.

Anarchists and Marxists have been enemies since the 1860s. Although they have sometimes cooperated against common enemies like the Czarists during the Russian Revolution and the Spanish Fascists during the Spanish Civil War, the Communists have always betrayed the anarchists. From Karl Marx to Joseph Stalin, Marxists have denounced anarchism.

Some anarchists, followers of Kropotkin, call themselves communists not Communists. But they contrast their free communism, arising from below the voluntary pooling of land, facilities and labor in local communities where people know each other to a Communism imposed by force by the state, nationalizing land and productive facilities, denying all local autonomy, and reducing workers to state employees. How could the two systems be more different?

Anarchists welcomed and in fact participated in the fall of European Communism. Some foreign anarchists had been assisting Eastern Bloc dissidents as the U.S. Government had not for many years. Anarchists are now active in all the former Communist countries.

The Communist collapse certainly did discredit much of the American left, but not the anarchists, many of whom do not consider themselves leftists anyway. Anarchists were around before Marxism and we are still around after it.

Dont anarchists advocate violence?

Anarchists arent nearly as violent as Democrats, Republicans, liberals and conservatives. Those people only seem to be nonviolent because they use the state to do their dirty work to be violent for them. But violence is violence. Wearing a uniform or waving a flag does not change that. The state is violent by definition. Without violence against our anarchist ancestors hunter-gatherers and farmers there would be no states today. Some anarchists advocate violence but all states engage in violence every day.

Some anarchists, in the tradition of Tolstoy, are pacifist and nonviolent on principle. A relatively small number of anarchists believe in going on the offensive against the state. Most anarchists believe in self-defense and would accept some level of violence in a revolutionary situation.

The issue is not really violence vs. nonviolence. The issue is direct action. Anarchists believe that people all people should take their fate into their own hands, individually or collectively, whether doing that is legal or illegal and whether it has to involve violence or it can be accomplished nonviolently.

What exactly is the social structure of an anarchist society?

Most anarchists are not exactly sure. The world will be a very different place after government has been abolished.

Anarchists dont usually offer blueprints, but they propose some guiding principles. They say that mutual aid cooperation rather than competition is the soundest basis for social life. They are individualists in the sense that they think society exists for the benefit of the individual, not the other way around. They favor decentralization, meaning that the foundations of society should be local, face-to-face communities. These communities then federate in relations of mutual aid but only to coordinate activities which cant be carried on by local communities. Anarchist decentralization turns the existing hierarchy upside down. Right now, the higher the level of government, the more power it has. Under anarchy, higher levels of association arent governments at all. They have no coercive power, and the higher you go, the less responsibility is delegated to them from below. Still, anarchists are aware of the risk that these federations might become bureaucratic and statist. We are utopians but we are also realists. We will have to monitor those federations closely. As Thomas Jefferson put it, eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

Any last words?

Winston Churchill, a deceased alcoholic English politician and war criminal, once wrote that democracy is the worst system of government, except for all the others. Anarchy is the worst system of society except for all the others. So far, all civilizations (state societies) have collapsed and have been succeeded by anarchist societies. State societies are inherently unstable. Sooner or later, ours will also collapse. Its not too soon to start thinking about what to put in its place. Anarchists have been thinking about that for over 200 years. We have a head start. We invite you to explore our ideas and to join us in trying to make the world a better place.

Bob Black

PO Box 3142

Albany, NY 122030142 USA

Abobob51@peoplepc.com

 

Published on Feb 19, 2017

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