In many respects, the twentieth century has been the most disappointing period in modern human history. We have witnessed the failure of the so-called ”western democracies” to solve their most pressing internal problems, the failure of Marxist-Leninism to come to grips with the issues of bureaucracy, authoritarianism, and the self-interest of newly-empowered elites, the failure of so-called mass education, the failure of technology, the failure of organized religion, and the failure of the most highly-trained and ”educated” generations of human beings in all of history to do more than paper over the great problems facing the world.
We have witnessed devastating wars, the deaths of millions upon millions, the squandering of earth’s resources, and the continuing exploitation of the smaller nationalities (especially of folk peoples) and the politically weak in general.
The brutality and hypocrisy of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries would not be so frightening if, indeed, the leadership of the world were in the hands of uneducated soldiers (of the Idi Amin type) or of openly criminal elements. But by and large such is not the case. People like Idi Amin and Saddam Hussein could not stay in power without ”technocrats” and trained civil servants who collect necessary revenues and maintain a structure of governance. Neither Joseph Stalin, Adolph Hitler, Huey Long, Ferdinand Marcos, nor Augusto Pinochet could govern without without the active support or cooperation of many thousands of ”educated” experts, technicians and bureaucrats. All of the modern secret police of the world depend upon well-trained personnel, scientific equipment, advanced social science studies of human behavior, and bureaucratic management systems (either pre-computer or post-computer). Even organized crime depend upon college-trained lawyers, administrators and executives, and upon the technology of modern society.
The people who rule the world today are, on the whole, highly educated (or at least highly trained). They are graduates of the ”great” military schools or elite universities of the respective countries. They have (by and large) ”refined” tastes and cultivate the ”finer” thing of life (at least for pubic consumption). In spite of this, they have given us the most brutal epoch in history and, currently, a collection of military dictatorships, totalitarian societies, racist-exploitative ”representative” republics and resource-gobbling states of such nature as to lead one to predict that there may soon be very few places in the world where a nonaggressive person can survive except as a lackey or slave.
excerpt from the introduction to the book Colombus and Other Cannibals, written by Jack D. Forbes originally released in -79. Reprinted in 2008.