Comment: Rummel's arguments about Government Killing Millions is true

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Rummel's arguments about Government Killing Millions is true

But he failed to see an even bigger picture. So don't let Rummel cloud or blind your vision to see the long term trend line, ie the BIG PICTURE on Human Violence and "Democide"-death by govt. For the story of Human Freedom and of course Human Violence, begins in hunter-gatherer societies.

For Instance, the following is also true and I submit it for your full consideration: Though Burke is quite dead and could not have known at the time,....Speaking of "natural societies", the most natural are the ones studied by anthropologists and evolutionists such as Professors Leaky & Dart. Since Man has walked the Earth, the majority of that time, well over a million years, has been during our time in Africa. We walked. We walked up and down the Nile and down to the tip of South Africa, always following grazing animals. Indeed, grazing animals travel about 12-26 miles per day, and we humans are built to comfortably walk as much. Even the pace of our gate is at grazing animal speed. Over 95% of our time on Earth has been spent, walking. To put it another way, if Man's time on Earth was a 24 hour day, the last 10,000 years was less than 5 minutes.

Yes, Man, was walking and tracking animals up and down rivers and lakes, up and down lowlands and highlands, and we followed the seasons. We walked and followed the great grazing herds, culling them from the herd, and gathering what we could along the way. Our bodies reflect this "follower-culler-gather" way of life.

So in 2013 we can say to our dear wonderful Burke that our "natural society" appears to be, as best we can tell, one of few physical possessions, and egalitarian or low hierarchical society. Indeed, most of our foodstuffs today come from these places: various citrus, wheat, barley, rice, almonds, olives, carrots, onions, walnuts, pistachios, apricots, peaches, apples and most of all, large ground fowl (chicken), a highly prized variety of Ox (the cow), goats, sheep and perhaps most importantly, Man's best friend, the dog. The horse appears to have come to us late in the game when were just starting to build our first cities and it from the Steps much farther north. So it took hundreds of thousands of years, walking up and down the Nile and to other places as the seasons change to domesticate our nightly dinner, but we did it. This is the "natural society" that gave birth to Man. This is the "natural society" that gave us freedom and violence.

Meanwhile, hierarchical societies with lots of varied property, from rooms, vats, halls, and walls, do not appear until 10,000 years ago; in our first cities in Iraq (just 5 minutes ago sort of speak).

Now, the question arises, how much violence was there in those low hierarchy, low property, walking-culling-gathering tribes sprinkled over the African plain? Apparently, a lot. Yes, one hell of a lot if we compare it to today. Today, you and I have according to many, and I doubt Rummel disputes this, a 1% chance of dying a violent death and less than that in a government war. For women, it much less. But the evidence that we have gathered from modern day "hunter-gatherers" tells us and from the fossil and written historical records, tells of violence so great that you wouldn't believe it. The evidence tells us that in these low hierarchy, low property, egalitarian societies from which we were "birthed" on the plains of Africa and spent most of our time on earth are very violent. You and I would have whopping 25-35% chance of dying a violent death. What would we be fighting about? Well women for one. Yes, it tops the list. Next comes insults & disrespect, that is damaged reputation. Third comes territory, and of course with territory come food & water.

And what is amazing, is the journey back through the last 10,000 years and how horribly violent and murderous it was. From the great empires to the Dark Ages, it was one torturous, bloody mess. Our chances of dying a violent death during this period was only slightly better, perhaps 15-25%. This high chance of dying a violent death, at the hands of your neighbors or marching to the steps of an army, did not drop until the late 1700's, ie the beginnings of the Renaissance. And it has continued decreasing! Violence has been dropping like a stone in water. And that is despite the two world wars and all the horrible things done by governments. That is the data that Dr. Pinker presents. Now stop and think about this, as he did.

What is causing this great drop in violence? His answer may not sit well with anarcho-capitalists, but according to Dr. Pinker it is because of two things: A market based economy and an effective government (Somalia = ineffective and bordering on anarchy, or the "natural state" of Man's social relations with low hierarchy, low property, egalitarian...etc.

So I invite you again, please read his book. And then lets chat. You will see that Dr. Pinker cover's Rummel's work thoroughly and does not detract from it. But the big picture is bigger than Rummel has put forth.

Treg

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