Tuesday, November 13, 2012

When Will we Ever Learn?

from Wikipedia on Jonathan Swift's "Gulliver's Travels:
Laputa had several methods of enforcing obedience from its subject towns. The island could be made to hover over a city indefinitely, depriving them of sunlight and rain. In more extreme situations, this would be combined with dropping large rocks on the inhabitants (which seems the first time that aerial bombardment was conceived as a method of warfare). Finally, the Laputans had the ability to lower their island directly onto a town, utterly destroying it. This was exceedingly rare, due to the risk it would pose to the integrity of Laputa itself.

As a result of oppressions and tribute demanded from them by Laputa, the Lindalinians rebelled against their governor and constructed tall towers at each of the four corners of the city. On top of these, they placed powerful lodestones, or magnets. The result of this was that when Laputa approached them, it was pulled toward these towers more swiftly than the king had expected. As a test, the Laputans then dropped several pieces of adamant, the substance from which their island was constructed. These were violently drawn to the towers. Realizing the situation, the king of Laputa had no choice but to give in to Lindalino's conditions. If he had not, the island would have been fixed in place and overthrown.

4 comments:

Always On Watch said...

What would a modern revolution look like?

-FJ said...

I don't think that I know of anyone who is ready to find out.

Always On Watch said...

The pain would have to be so bad that revolution would be seen as the only possibility.

I don't mean ideological pain, either.

I do wonder if the 21st Century marks the time that people traded in ideology and freedom for freebies. If so, it's been along time coming for America.

Is there really anyway to turn back time?

-FJ said...

The problem with democracy, is that ALL the voters need to "learn their lessons", and unfortunately that generally means that they must experience/suffer a castastrophe... as in the day that the water or food runs out in the lifeboat.... and on THAT day, it's too late.