Saturday, November 21, 2020

How Do Tyrants Rule?

History and human nature, two things inextricably intertwined. Technology changes, but human nature remains the same.

I often think about these things, as you are no doubt aware by now. Why does tyranny thrive? Why are tyrants allowed to rise, rule, and subjugate people? The answer is as simple as it is frustrating; because there are always those who will allow them to. Just look around you.

You can go back through history (Let's just stay with the 20th and 21st centuries) and find myriad examples. Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Mao, Pol Pot, Castro, and many others. These men rose to power because they had people who helped them. People who followed their orders, killed their enemies, imprisoned dissidents, and simply did what they were told. Why? Why did these useful idiots follow the orders of someone who was obviously deranged, an obvious tyrant? Maybe it was because they thought that they would be exempt from the tyranny if they were on "the right side." They would have a place to live, food to eat, clothes to wear, and remain free of prison, if they just followed orders and helped the tyrant rule.

The thing I find so frustrating about all of it, throughout history, is that none of it had to happen. It could have been, as that intrepid lawman, Barney Fife, used to say, "Nipped in the bud." Someone close to those tyrants could have killed them before anything could have been done to stop them. Some liberty-loving person in the tyrants inner-circle could have ended the reign of terror with the squeeze of a trigger or the thrust of a knife. Why didn't they? Oh to be sure there are examples of that happening, as well, but given the number of tyrants we have read about, not nearly enough.

And today, as you sit at home wondering if you can go out without a mask, or gather with friends and family, or own certain items, or keep your own money, one has to wonder why this happens. Why are people so ready for, so desirous of being told what to do, of being "ruled?" What is it that scares them so? What makes them incapable of making their own decisions for their own life, rather than waiting to be told what to do and then obediently complying with each and every order? I wish I knew. I wish I could understand that way of thinking, but I cannot.

The bottom line is this; tyranny reigns where people allow it to reign. There have always been and always will be the "order followers." Those who go along in the hopes that they will be spared in the end. It is also worth noting that freedom/liberty was never achieved by asking for it or voting for it. Freedom can only be achieved by TAKING IT and being ever vigilant against those who would seek to impose tyranny again.

Change my mind.