I was discussing the decline and fall of civilizations with some folks and a commenter had this to say:


Metahistory (cyclical history theories – Spengler, Toynbee, Polybius’ Kyklos, Turchin’s Cliodynamics) has been a fascination of mine for going on 15 years. Entropy is the nature of the universe, and so everything runs down to ruin (or more accurately, bloats to collapse) eventually. I was also lucky enough to discover and be able to interact with an inspired mind on the topic – the now-late John J. Reilly.

I responded:

Restricting the number of allowed states is the very definition of entropy and government. That is why I would do as much as possible to limit government. Not a very popular idea these days.

The cry is maximum restrictions (mine, not yours) are the best way to organize. We thus have two Progressive parties. Because progressives believe in the value of multiplied restriction.

A careless rigidity will be our downfall. Chesterton alluded to it.

The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected. Even when the revolutionist might himself repent of his revolution, the traditionalist is already defending it as part of his tradition. Thus we have two great types — the advanced person who rushes us into ruin, and the retrospective person who admires the ruins. He admires them especially by moonlight, not to say moonshine. Each new blunder of the progressive or prig becomes instantly a legend of immemorial antiquity for the snob. This is called the balance, or mutual check, in our Constitution. — G.K. Chesterton

What passes for eternal truth these days? Eighty year old Progressive initiatives.

We used to know that minimum restriction was the way to organize that was the most resilient.

I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it. — Thomas Jefferson

We have lost our way in the name of Power and Control. We can FORCE people into the correct state. For a while. And then you can’t.

The best leaders are those their people hardly know exist.
The next best is a leader who is loved and praised.
Next comes the one who is feared.
The worst one is the leader that is despised … Lao Tzu


The rule of a Caesar is always only “for the duration of the emergency,” an emergency that never ends. But so long as the emergency continues, all red tape may be cut at the Caesar’s whim to “address the problems confronting us.”

Well that is the problem isn’t it? Red tape. Restriction. The only people I know in favor of cutting it are the libertarians and they are universally despised by the left and the right.

We do have some advantages in the US. The entropics on the right are dying off and the old religions are losing their hold.

A new birth of freedom is a distinct possibility. I have been fanning that flame since 1988.

We may get a new lease on life with the end of Prohibition. About 60 years more. But that gives us 60 years to teach entropy. I should do a blog post. Probably 20 of them.

Well, this is the first.