The Globalist Poetry of Stephen Harper

The Globalist Poetry of Stephen Harper

By Peter Dudink

Ironically, secretive meetings seem all the rage in the information age. We have summits, forums and meetings about which the public learns only what selected journalists are permitted to hear and paid to report. Fortunately, sometimes our elected readers issue short bytes of information laden with so much meaning and metaphor that it rivals poetry for sheer semantic density. Just consider Prime Minister Harper’s recent prose-poem, “Washington Summit” (2013), delivered at the recent World Economic Forum (alas, it is not posted at the PM’s website, but a true gentleman and lover of poetry posted it at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1S3X5Pooqto).

Let’s have a look and analyze the seven scintillating verses of “Washington Summit” (2013). I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

Verse 1.    Nations whose interests have often been at odds, nations with different traditions of governance, rivals, even former enemies, found themselves addressing common problems with a common will.

Admittedly, it’s not a strong start to the poem, but don’t overlook the subtle genius of it; notice that “nations” is actually a metaphor! When Harper speaks of nations, he means those politicians who act on behalf of nations! And his genius goes further, as he dares to repeat both “nations” and “common” twice in the same sentence.

Perhaps more deserving of our attention is Harper’s teasing, nebulosa effect. When he speaks about the most serious summit of our time, he skillfully avoids dropping names and avoids flushing out concrete details. Consequently, we can only guess at the identities of the “former enemies” and at the precise nature of our both “common problems” and our “common will.” This evasiveness on the poet’s part produces an exhilaratingly tantalizing sensation.

Sometimes Harper invests incredible meaning in a single word. Consider the meaning of “found” in the phrase “[they] found themselves addressing [their common problems].” What does it mean? I think “found” implies that the world leaders did not decide to address their common problems but addressed them by chance. In other words, neither God nor wisdom compelled them to permanently grow up and work together; instead, mere current circumstances forced (and forces) them to cooperate for their common good.

The word “problems” is certainly an instance of incredible understatement. In all likelihood, the Prime Minister’s “problems” refers to the devastating economic crisis that continues to reverse decades of progress and which brave leaders of affected nations are doing their best to hide from voters.

Now, are you ready to unpack the secrets of the next verse?

Verse 2.    In this globalized economy they recognized that a flood engulfing one [nation] would soon swamp them all.

A flood! That is a daring image! This image alludes to the flood that—according to the Bible—swamped every nation when God had seen enough, meaning he had seen … too little globalism?

The poet’s profound insight into the economic interdependence of the world’s nations is mind boggling. Stephen Harper clearly suggests that nations have become so economically dependent on one another that if one nation has an economic meltdown all the others will go down with it. It’s quite an incredible phenomenon that he’s isolated. Nature knows nothing like it. It’s as if a pack of wolves were to die if just one wolf keeled over. It’s as if the global economy had merged all nations into one giant organism whose nervous system consists of millions of lines of credit while somewhere in cerebral space a giant debt bubble threatens to destroy the fragile system.

Verse 3.    So even though 20-some global leaders all represented sovereign states, they agreed to common and synchronized actions to chart the same course toward calmer waters.

 

This is brilliant. In verse 2 Harper mentioned the possibility of a flood; now, in verse 3, he imagines the world already covered in water and humanity caught in a storm, on the brink of sinking but saved by the captains who know the oceans so well that they will steer us to “calmer waters” (i.e. greater stability and less market volatility).

Verse 4.    Ideological differences were set aside, old enmities were not raised … I would say this: if you had arrived from another planet, you could never have guessed which nations had spent decades mired in hostilities.

The first line of verse 4 emphasizes the incredible feat achieved by world leaders. Then, Harper’s bold ellipsis (admittedly it was just a well-timed pause) is followed by an explanation that employs a hypothetical, science-fiction scenario of ignorant aliens having a peek at the Washington Summit. This scenario is brilliant, for most of us do feel alienated by the summiteers—I mean by the captains who busily plot the course of humanity in secret meetings.

Verse 5.    You might call it the fellowship of the lifeboat.

Here, in one masterful breath, Harper alludes to Tolkien’s escapist The Fellowship of the Ring and ironically calls the great fellowship he feels with other world leaders a “fellowship of the lifeboat.” How is this ironic? Well, obviously it is actually a fellowship of the deathboat! But the good poet did not wish to disturb us and, for our sake he offered a gentle euphemism: lifeboat. We should thank him for being so considerate. Obviously he knew very well that the last time leaders united in a similar emergency “fellowship” the West was mired in the Great Depression and Communism looked to many people like a good solution to economic distress. That terrified western capitalists. Nazism was the solution. U.S. and British political leaders gladly held back their troops in the hope that the Nazis would destroy the Soviet Union, and American corporate leaders supported Nazism for the same reason and because they profited from war (Internet search: “corporations that helped the Nazis”). They only turned against the Nazis after the Nazis had begun mounting attacks against the U.S.

Today we are proud not to be in the Great Depression, although many social and economic statistics in Europe and the United States look worse than they did during the Great Depression. Just as Germany staggered beneath the demands of the Treaty of Versailles, the fragile “global economy” is staggering beneath the weight of massive private, corporate and national debts. Today we don’t work with Nazis, we are the Nazis. And when that doesn’t suffice, we fund violent groups and tyrants, as we funded Saddam Hussein when that was convenient, and we support Al Qaeda when that is convenient. Today, our globalist, neocon free-market fundamentalist neo-Nazis don’t face a Communists or Jewish threat to their domination of the world; instead their domination is threatened by unions and environmentalists at home, by anti-usury Muslims in Asia, by socialists in Latin America, by the pseudo-Communists running China, and by still other threats to their wealth extraction machinations. A wealth of parallels between then and now exists.

Thank God the Canadian poet spared us these harsh realities and gave us a dash of optimism:

Verse 6.    But, ladies and gentlemen, in the brief parting of the veil, I saw world leadership at its best; a glimpse of a hopeful future; one where we act together for the good of all … the world we have been trying to build since 1945, the world we want for our children and grandchildren.

Behold the poet’s grandiose metaphor: “the … parting of the veil”! Granted, it is “brief parting of the veil. We cannot expect to get more than a brief glimpse of a “hopeful future,” one in which “WE act for the good of all” to create “the world we want for our children.” What world do we want for our children? Rather than spelling everything out for us, the good Canadian poet tantalized us with his mastery of the nebulosa effect.

Did I overlook a startling piece of clarity provided by Harper? After all, he said we have been trying to build this enlightened world “since 1945.” This date is crucial. It is the date Western powers began having secret meetings that led to the formation of the UN, NATO, and other organizations that are busy promoting the globalist agenda that our children want.

Finally, to grasp the incredible courage the poet employed in verse 6, consider the phrase “we act for the good of all.” This seemingly innocent phrase exposes the poet to very serious accusations of socialism and Communism. But Harper trusted that the pro-globalism verses of his poem would lead readers to understand that “we act for the good of all” refers to the opposite of what those words mean to socialists, Communists, and other anti-globalists. Luckily no one misunderstood him, but that’s no reason to doubt that he required courage to voice those words.

Verse 7.    It shows it can be done if we act together, and we call this … I call this enlightened sovereignty.

This verse is another excellent example of the nebulosa effect. We are strongly encouraged to act together, but how shall we act together? That is not so clear, and that is what makes this verse so tantalizing. How will our leaders synchronize their efforts and find calmer waters? The poet leaves this world of possibilities open to our imagination. How will our leaders unite their powers and respond to our common danger with an invincible front? Will they fight the enemy with fresh mountains of credit, emergency auctions of public infrastructure and property, financial confiscations, national austerity programs and other Canon-Fodder policies? Ah, we can only imagine.

Harper ends his poem by inventing a completely new phrase, even a new concept! “Enlightened sovereignty” takes the cake! Here is a euphemism and a clandestine oxymoron all wrapped up in one. Yes—an oxymoron! Good listeners understand that Harper thinks sovereign nations will act in their best interest if they sacrifice a bit of their sovereignty to the globalist agenda!

I know, the good poet never mentioned the “globalist agenda,” but that is just more evidence of his poetic genius. You see, nowadays such phrases as “globalist agenda” and “economic rape” are not very fashionable, so the good poet skillfully invented an entirely new phrase for the world.

Have you ever read such scintillating political poetry? I have not seen its like since Buffalo Springfield. Unfortunately, I hesitate to credit Stephen Harper with writing “Washington Summit.” The poetic genius displayed in its verses quite exceeds the level he typically delivers. Moreover, as the people at Global Research have pointed out in “Are Stephen Harper’s Speeches Drafted in Washington DC?” some shadow authors might be writing the poetry of G20 puppets … I mean poets.

 

 

Is President Obama the Scariest President Ever?

In a world run by emperors or presidents, perhaps we should ignore Socrates’ injunction to know ourselves and instead know those who rule us. During his recent speech to Ohio University graduates, posted at wsj.com, President Barack Obama delivered a message that certainly deserves scrutiny.

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The speech began in the classic manner, with some light-hearted joking to ease the resistance. You have to admire the President’s jokes. Twice he joked that he saw students have breakfast at 11:30 AM at their restaurant and bar. But the joke won a very muted response. I wonder why. Perhaps that crowd of over a thousand young men and women didn’t like the suggestion that they were all in the habit of slacking.

In the context of an unflattering joke that makes Obama’s only concrete reference to student behavior, we have good reason to wonder what he thinks of the new generation. Was his statement “from what I’ve seen of your generation” (25:54) a flattering one infused with hope and encouragement, or was it ironic and infused with contempt?

Does the President have a poor sense of humor? In his opening words, he joked that he would tell his wife all the good things the university president said about him despite suspecting that he had suppressed his criticisms. This joke won hardly a snicker. Indeed, it hardly qualifies as a joke. Who would laugh about suppressing criticism about the government after the Occupy movement was so violently repressed?

I realize that my analysis defies the widespread impression that President Obama is an excellent speaker. Certainly, he fares better than his blundering predecessor, George W. Bush. But all the polished rhetorical flourishes cannot conceal the liar. Twice the President employed the euphemism “self-government” to describe America’s democracy. By what stretch of the imagination can we say that Americans rule themselves? Is the U.S. not the most heavily policed state on the face of the Earth? While Obama said America is a “creative, and unique experiment in self-rule,” we know it to be an experiment in tyranny. Common demands like ending the wars have gone ignored, and presidential powers steadily increase under Obama.

And here again, the President’s language is informed by a malicious irony. For while the euphemism “self-government” may strike a certain surface appeal, one must not overlook the fact that the entire speech implied that President Obama and his administration would not do anything to help citizens and that citizens must help themselves, or—to paraphrase the president—be more active and with dogged determination make their hopes and dreams come true. Gone was the illusion that he, Obama, could fulfill hopes; indeed, how could that illusion survive the past five years of his presidency?

And here again, the President’s language is informed by a malicious irony. For while the euphemism “self-government” may have strike a certain surface appeal, one must not overlook the fact that the entire speech implied that President Obama and his administration would not do anything to help citizens and that citizens must help themselves, be more active, and with dogged determination make their hopes and dreams come true without his help. Gone was the illusion that he, Obama, could fulfill hopes; indeed, how could that illusion survive the past five years of his presidency?

If the allegation of malicious irony seems untenable, consider that the President repeatedly denounced government practices that he is complicit in facilitating if not personally directing. Thus, while he denounced the power of lobbyists, his own administration is obviously been captured by lobbyists for Monsanto, Goldman Sachs and others. The recently appointed FCC chairman Tom Wheeler and newly named Comnerce Secretary Penny Pritzker are just two more eyesores (read “Billionaire Burglar Breaks into Obama’s Cabinet”).

If you doubt that Obama is capable of manipulating and deceveing listeners, consider that while insisting graduates “reject” critics who claim that the U.S. government is a tyran, he referred to his critics as “the voices you hear.” I doubt this can be an innocent slip of the tongue. To refer to one’s critics as “voices” heard by others is to say that those who listen to the critics are hearing voices, which implies that they are crazy. But such insidious and slanderous phrasing goes largely ignored by people who continue to hope that the president is their friend.

We must also fault President Obama for telling young, educated adults to “reject” the government’s critics without offering a good reason to do so. Worse yet, on what pedagogical grounds does one tell university grads just what ideas and opinions they should listen to? Voicing such brazenly dogmatic advise in a university setting seems almost an act of terrorism—certainly an act of intellectual tyranny.

Of course, Obama knows he lies and utters contradictions, but this disease has a life of its own. Lying is so essential to his thinking that when he spoke of accomplishing “great” things (15:30) his right index finger and thumb made the sign of a small thing, as you can see in the photo. It’s funny, yes, but it’s also a symptom.

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While I don’t make a habit of judging by appearances, on close examination, Obama’s appearance is worth judging. There is something intimidating, frightful and even ghoulish about him. At approximately the 16:30 mark of his Ohio commencement speech, after commanding graduates to be “involved in that process” of “self-government,” he flexed his shifting lower jaw again and gave the assembly what a young student of mine described as a 10-second death stare.

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And consider his expression in this photo, taken as Obama quoted President Wilson on the subject of making enemies (14:09). His almost perpetual frown, and the occassional snarl-like expression on his lips, seem more than a bad omen.Other images of the President are equally unsettling. Even by imperial standards set by Roman emperors, Obama is frightening. He often flexes his jaw and presses his lips together and moves them up, producing an expression of fierce, uncompromising intimidation. Perhaps we could tolerate such expressions if they were made while vowing to stop government and corporate tyranny, but this photo was taken moments after Obama warned students against listening to critics who warn that the government is a tyrant “always lurking just around the corner.”

obama snarl

Naturally, a president moved by the spirit of malicious irony, hypocrisy and intellectual tyranny cannot be expected to offer many smiles or signs of compassion. The Ohio address does mark a new low, but it also struck Obama’s usual tone of a general directing the troops. He blamed the enemy and encouraged, warned and instructed his listeners, but he did not reach out. He certainly did not promise to help today’s or tomorrow’s graduates escape from a system that burdens them with low wages and debts; instead, he held students responsible for fixing problems themselves. And, instead of encouraging activism and protest to effect change, students got vague platitudes and directives to be good and active citizens and were indirectly told to trust the government.

How different was Martin Luther King? Ah, you would never see Obama’s scowls and ghoulish frowns on that good man. Rather, even at his angriest, he was passionate, never scary. And in his last speech, when he again spoke of his great hope for his country, he more than once intimated that he knew his days were numbered, yet even then, while fear spoke so clearly from his eyes, he did not cease to criticize his country’s leadership and give clear and meaningful advice to his fellow citizens.

MLK

A History of Imperial Bullshit, Vol. 4, The Old Testament

It’s finally ready and available at Amazon, Kobo and Smashwords.

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A History of Imperial Bullshit, Volume 4, makes a thoroughly compelling argument that the Old Testament is a devious work of propaganda designed to profit wealthy European war mongers and fraudsters. Moreover, the author makes a strong case for the O.T.’s ongoing corrupting influence.

 In the spirit of its title, Bullshit is a passionate re-evaluation that will stir the conscience. But this isn’t a rant. Bullshit 4 is a close reading of the Old Testament that, at times, goes verse by verse.

 Most of its 159 sections not only expose the immorality in the Old Testament but find real parallels in the modern world, thus supporting its argument that we continue to live in a Biblical world and will continue to do so until we consciously reject it values.  

 Finally, perhaps its most shocking argument, though really a distraction to its point about morality, is its evidence of a late medieval and Renaissance forgery written in Western Europe.

 And the evidence is ample.

Rumplestiltskin

Popular readings of “Rumplestiltskin” testify to the barbarism we still live in, as least, they testify to the lack of sophistication among readers. I am sorry, but Rumplestiltskin is not the villain of this story and he likely never entertained the idea of boiling and eating the newborn prince. He is the only one who says anything remotely humane: “I value living things more than all the treasures of the world.” Contrast this to the greedy king and the woman who traded her unborn child for a chance to become queen… Indeed, she valued being the queen more than life itself. If she had valued life, she could have escaped with Rumplestiltskin three times over, as he entered and left the tower at will.

Rumplestiltskin is the only humane being in the story. Three times he saves the ungrateful and foolish woman from her death, and each time did not ask his name or thank him. Ingrate!

Why did Rumplestiltskin ask the woman to pay for his first favor with her necklace if he does not care for all the treasures of the world? If he can make gold quite easily?

Why did the wealth-making Rumplestiltskin ask the woman to pay for his second favor with her ring? Does the ring symbolize a wedding ring and marriage” Did old Rumel dream of marriage, something most dwarves in the Middle Ages could only have dreamed of?

In return for his third gift, Rumplestiltskin requested the firstborn child. Why? Because he loved children, and–as he said–he valued life more than anything, and a request for a child is a normal request after a man receives the “ring” of marriage. His request for a child was a desperate but wholly forgivable request. His love of life is evident later, when the King’s messenger overhears him singing with pleasure about the child he expected to receive.

What horrors did Rumplestiltskin commit to be perceived as the villain? Nothing, but he was shortchanged for his good deeds, and left childless and without anyone to love, he committed suicide.

The greater villains are the miller, the father who risked his daughter’s life with his lie that she would make the king rich. The king is another villain, for he thrice threatened to kill the woman and married her only for her gold. The young woman is a villain, too, for she traded her child’s life for her own and never thanked her dwarf savior and instead married the man who threatened her life and cared for nothing but his filthy gold.

Rumplestiltskin did not only commit suicide. His grabbing his foot and tearing himself in half is merely an allusion to the truth that he was captured by the King’s men and torn in half by horses, or by machine, a fate common enough in medieval Europe.

“Rumplestiltskin” is anything but a conventional work of folklore. It is a folk tale that challenges the most popular conventions of late European and Asian folklore. Moreover, as a tale that asks us to consider the social status of the dwarf and of all visible minorities, and ask us to reflect on the consequences of our dreams…

The following interpretations also work in German and/or Dutch, both of which the Grimm brothers were likely familiar:

RUMPLE: a possible variant of wrinkle – as in skin, or Rumple—-skin. A wrinkle is also a fold, or double. Rumplestiltskin tears himself in two, down the middle, along the spine. Stilt: A stick to walk, to make a short person taller – or perhaps a reference to stylus, the medieval writing instrument—though this word-meaning first appeared in 1807, just as the Grimm brothers collected their tales. Skin: Vellum? Parchment? Material used for writing medieval manuscripts. CONCLUSION: “Rumplestiltskin” is not oral literature, or certainly not a fairy tale.

Dickens’s Twist

Charles Dickens’s Oliver Twist – a remarkable novel; it bristles with irony – like a porcupine. Its subject is the heart of injustice insofar as injustice is commonly conceived: poverty, class differences and income inequality. Its solution to this injustice? Is it that the wealthy should be nicer to the poor? Share more? Have pity on them?

I would prefer a book that recommended nobility in moderate poverty and laziness—assuming that book writing counts as a noble laziness.

On the surface, or, as a work with emotional appeal, pity is at the heart of Oliver Twist. The hero is a figure of exaggerated, pre-Lapsarian innocence; he is an unfortunate orphan, a victim of fate, a victim of society and so on and so forth. Who dares deny Oliver pity?

Perhaps, Charles Dickens himself? Given the relentless irony with which every page bristles, I think Charles viewed Oliver as a parody of himself—as an autobiographical joke.

Much irony is needed to make too much injustice palatable. Too much pity makes men insipid and life tasteless. Irony is the necessary antidote and invigorator.

Why not dispense with pity entirely and free mind and literature for unrestricted humor? Why feed the world the lie of good and evil characters candied over with feelings of pity and moral outrage? Why? Though Dickens was no simpleton, he did, however, depend on his writing for income. (Dickens the pick-pocket.)

To teach children to read Oliver Twist without teaching them to bristle with irony—does a great disservice to education. One cannot squeeze Oliver Twist into a handful of lessons. Oliver Twist, like all great art, can only be learned over years.

Thus spoke Dewey Dink.

I Have A Dream—Beyond Copenhagen

The 2009 Copenhagen climate talks amounted to another waiting game among countries eager to protect their industrial economies or—and this is also appalling—gain financial compensation for ecological crimes committed by others. Perhaps one bright spot came from a contingent of 150 peasant farmers from the “global South.” While endangered by the global economy, they came to communicate that their non-industrial model of farming could save the planet.

They might well be right, but only if that model is also applied to the global North. And yet, in the North, the movement away from industrial farming is too slow, and might remain so unless governments get involved.

Presently that hardly seems possible, but reasons for getting involved are multiplying at a dizzying rate. In the U.S. alone, prisoners and persons on parole or on probation number over 7 million; persons in danger of losing their homes number in the millions; and, the unemployment number is above 15 million. Furthermore, these numbers are growing in most developed countries.

What can a government do with millions of homeless, unemployed people while the biosphere is under assault? What can any government do while desertification and drought begin to take their toll on agriculture, while peak oil is poised to ruin the industrial agricultural model, and while ailing “developed” economies struggle to subsidize agriculture?

Will it occur to governments that in just a few months they could train millions of unemployed people to grow food in desert-like conditions using permaculture or agroforestry techniques? Will it occur to governments that soldiers might be better employed building swales, cob and adobe houses, temporary wells and whatever else is needed to improve our environment and help create local food security?

If not, they have not considered the other likely benefits of such projects, especially if such a project is pursued in the U.S. Though it would be a social-ecological experiment, the outcomes are unknowns, those outcomes could hardly be worse than the current situation. Very likely, if such a resettlement project occurred in the U.S., the national crime rate would plunge, wars would cease, desertification would be stopped and reversed, carbon points would be scored, and participating ‘farmers’ could be taxed in the form of an organic food tax that would feed millions of ‘normal’ workers.

Why not?  Why shouldn’t an environmental solution also be a solution to poverty, crime and war? After all, all things are connected.

Before and Beyond Nietzsche

We mostly know Friedrich Nietzsche as a destroyer of metaphysics, religion, nationalism, and so on. However, wWhen he took stock of his life in the last section of his final work, Ecce Homo, he stated that philosophers had thus far been obsessing over moral and metaphysical daydreams while “the things in life which require serious attention, the questions of nutriment, residence, cleanliness [and] weather.” remained ignored—by everyone except, most startlingly, by his predecessor, Thoreaux.

1. Nutriment

Nietzsche experimented with vegetarianism, and just imagine how that went in 19th century Germany. Nutrition should concern philosophers not only because its production via agriculture is implicated in the ongoing destruction of the biosphere, but, because proper nutrition is vital to human health. Though I feel crude in admitting it, I have never known an elephant capable of writing anything worth reading. And with nutrition we should also mention exercise, as scientific studies show that daily physical activity boosts intellectual performance. With all due respect to the chair-bound, the mind is not benefited by extreme inactivity—a great temptation for philosophers who have already made up their minds.

2.  Residence

The home should never become its own world, a place of refuge from an uncomfortable and frightening outside world. If the outside world must be averted, find a new neighbourhood or a new country, or busy yourself creating a foundation for one. A house should be designed to ensure the highest quality sleep, for sleep too is essential to human health and thinking. A house should be practical, functional, designed with children and the elderly in mind. A house should not be treated as an art project, as architecture, as something worth admiring for its symmetry, aesthetic quality, luxury, spaciousness, and so on. Nor should having a house and land demand years or decades of work because they are treated as possessions and objects of pride for which much is sacrificed. Do I even need to say that the problem of ownership and fear of loss, as well as possessiveness and greed, should be among the foremost concerns of every philosopher, psychologist and teacher?

3. Cleanliness

Nietzsche may have had some tragic understanding of how cleanliness applies to sexual matters, but this topic also applies to burial, garbage disposal, water use contact with animals and contact with the corrupt—if I my use the word in its broadest sense. If you think such matters unworthy of a philosopher’s thoughts, then philosophy is irrelevant, not only because higher standards of cleanliness could have prevented all contagious plagues and epidemics, but because the ability to identify and avoid mental corruption is crucial to intellectual development. Without it, entire generations become hopelessly infected and—to use a misnomer—‘brainwashed.’ In an industrial world, the question of cleanliness also involves urbanization, chemistry, engineering, and pollution. The challenge for philosophers, if they are not to become chemists and engineers themselves, is to conceive of a form of consciousness whose outward expression, with regards to all aspects of life, is unified in sustainability and cleanliness.

4. Weather

The common people’s concern about the weather is a standard joke among us. And yet, 120 years later, Nietzsche’s concern is a prophetic concern, though, in contrast to us, weather concerned him for entirely personal and physiological reasons. His doctors recommended warmer climes, and Nietzsche—if he had bothered to criticize Western imperialism—might well have concluded that cruel environments, and especially the cruel climate of the north, produced peoples and civilizations marked by a spirit of cruelty, destruction, and an almost understandable drive to conquer and settle other lands, especially southern lands. Does anyone subscribe to the idea that the Inuit settled in the far north because it seemed a nice place to be? I prefer the argument that the net effect of the Norse or Viking conquests and settlements of the dreary lowlands and British Isles was that the natives became vikinnized, infected with a taste for blood, which unleashed upon the world the colonial period of Western imperialism. To paraphrase Conrad’s Marlow: In contrast to that period, imperial and Mediterranean Rome represents a much gentler imperial period.

But we indulge in unnecessary speculations about the past. The future alone should concern us.

The question of weather is topical; it concerns the subject of Vitamin D and the human immune system, and it concerns the subjects of eating locally and living sustainably.

Ultimately, for the philosopher, more than our previous questions, the question of weather is one that best questions the historical assumption that humans are above the Earth, virtually immortals immune to their environments, actually both capable and authorized to live everywhere. Viewed as such, the question of weather should concern every philosopher.