The spawn of a recent article by Richard Fernandez (https://pjmedia.com/richardfernandez/surprise-collapse/) is a rather gloomy extended thought on my part. It is my tendency to be gloomy, true, but that aside, I have the habit of seeing analogy in most of what I hear and read. This is like a constant echo going on in my head, a second voice not unlike my own, and often results in a stupid slack jawed look on my face when I am engaged in listening to others (either that or I’m just tired). I have even been known to drool on the page of a book in my hands—something akin for me to farting in church. But back to my thesis: The Bronze Age Collapse in our time.
As alchemists discovered long ago, and apparently continue to rediscover to this very day, lead cannot be made into gold, and socialism cannot be worked in a free society. The authoritarian state cannot brook individual freedom anymore than physics will allow an atom of Pb. (207.2) to become an atom of Au (196.96655). Because the enforcers will naturally look after themselves first, enforced equality quickly disintegrates into a state of some being more equal than others. That is the elemental physics of politics. Alchemists (i.e., politicians) continue to further their own interests by offering the promise of equality to those who feel slighted by life but can’t see the inevitable consequence of giving power to some in order to take from others by force, as well as to those who strangely see some sort of ideal in the possibility of everyone else being made the same as bees in a hive—excepting for themselves, of course, for they are obviously exceptional because they can see the greater need for this procrustean form of levelling.
Now, you ask, why did the Bronze Age collapse? A definitive answer is still to be found but the mystery might be made more accessible by looking beyond the elemental physics of a simple transmutation from bronze to iron. Actually known history tells us that this change did not occur suddenly at all, but continued into fairly recent times. It certainly did not befall mankind entirely in the posited frame of: ”Within a period of forty to fifty years at the end of the thirteenth and the beginning of the twelfth century [BC] almost every significant city in the eastern Mediterranean world was destroyed, many of them never to be occupied again,” even if that particular geography was in fact affected thus. Disease and pestilence have destroyed many civilizations before and since, including the recent aboriginal cultures of native Americans. Certainly some form of militant holocaust might have occurred by the wine dark sea just as we know it has happened repeatedly elsewhere—again including the recent willful extermination of some native Americans.
As noted in the article, climate change has been occurring non-stop since well before the advent of carbon credits and the political goring of the public by a state supported establishment promising settled science to gain their own ends. A more recent and clearly opportunistic excuse for the Bronze Age Collapse has even been posited by some woolly-brained and tie-dyed socialists that there was some sort of trade imbalance between the bronze and iron age cultures of the period—akin to the world trade deficits of our own moment—making the need for political control of the economy ever more necessary today.
You see, (as you must see, or else) this sudden altering of strategic metals was devastating to a human society that was unable to cope with such change. Right. As if the iron mines of Minnesota and the steel mills of 20th century Youngstown were suddenly teleported to the Bronze Age suburbs of Athens. My, my. I think the transition of these useful metals took a bit longer than fifty years, given the primitive organization of the United Mine Workers of the time. And I don’t believe the Hittite kingdom of Anatolia was all that fragile. Egypt’s certainly wasn’t.
Overpopulation doesn’t occur suddenly or in a single location, while migration was always common, as you might imagine. We certainly have the linguistic evidence for that. More importantly the cultures of the Mediterranean were not isolated but already trading with others as far away as China. In betwixt the powerhouse cultures of the Fertile Crescent, the Indus River Valley and China were hundreds of other cultures each carrying its own social DNA and living in various stages of human progress from the discovery of fire to the invention of zero. All of these societies were very used to conflict, invasion, volcanic activity, and the onslaught of disease as well as their own internal political power struggles. Fragile is not a word that easily applies, I think. Many lasted for hundreds and thousands of years.
The point of this is that the alchemists are still busily peddling their wares. The three-card monte or three-cup switcheroo has been the same since our language was first aborning somewhere north of the Indus and the grifters will likely still be putting their mats down along the canals of Mars one day. The collapse of cultures on the Mediterranean happened. The reasons will be fascinating to discover. But they will more than likely be causes and effects with which we are already very familiar. And as an authority of human foolishness, I predict it will have something to do with “methylethylpropylbutyl,” an alchemy that ought to be withheld from the public for their own good as well as the good of baseball.
Which reminds me, for the good of civilization in general, what with diversion being a necessary part of politics as well as military strategy and with Brady finally off the field for the next few months, it’s time for pitchers and catchers.