Image from The Past Is Unwritten
Bruce Wilder of The Coming Perfect Storm dropped this comment over at Ian's place (excerpted, my bold):
...The long history of the hereditary European landed aristocracy, as a rapacious warrior class, certainly qualifies anyone’s optimism about rational governance, let alone egalitarian and humanitarian values prevailing. The substitution of machines for slaves in the Industrial Revolution gave some hope of moral redemption through technology, but the real history of the Industrial Revolution was that it required the proceeds of world conquest and a massive wastage of the natural world to jumpstart “progress”. If the European world is driving us off the cliff of the earth’s limited carrying capacity, it is from the force of an elite habit of ruthless waste and abuse, acquired in the Dark Ages, and practiced by conservatives for more than a milennium."Rapacious warrior class." That sounds about right, and it set me to thinking of the proletarian relationship with this "warrior class."