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Oct 13, 2008

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Sue

Never mind that the European white man actually stole much of the land and the wealth, and the lives, from the natives in their former colonies al over the world.

It is now called "crown" land in Canada, New Zealand and Australia for instance.

They even used the law to steal land too. As in the case of Hawaii where the whiteys used their superior knowledge of the law to buy up most of the land. The natives Hawaii
were completely ignorant of how the law worked and of how they were being duped.

And didnt the white man steal, by a massive sustained exercise in SUPER GRAND THEFT the lands of the native "americans" in what is now the USA. And then they used what were essentially genocidal policies to get rid of the natives who were quite rightly resisting the theft of their lands.

Check out references under THE TRAIL OF TEARS on your google.

Plus the whiteys broke most of hundreds of treaties that were made with the natives. And that process of treaty breaking is still occuring.

Check out the superb Columbus and Other Cannibals by Jack Forbes for the heart-breaking truth about what actually happened---from the victims point of view.

A time for weeping.

Plus God IS Red by Vin Deloria Jr.

Plus for a superb revisionist history why not check out American Holocaust by David Stannard.

Michael W. Kruse

Sue, thanks for these obeservations.

In this series I'm merely skimming the top of some very broad themes that relate prosperity. I heartily agree with the historical accounts you are raising here. I'd add the following observations.

If you've ever read books like Diamond's "Guns, Germs, and Steel," then you know that this process of conquering, dehumanizing, and displacing others has been the standard human behavior throughout history. Many of the peoples Whites displaced in America were people who had previously displaced other native Americans. (ex. Aztecs had conquered their region less than 200 years before the Spaniards arrived.) So I'm less inclined to attribute this domineering quality to being White and more inclined to attribute it to being human. People with inordinate power tend to use irresponsibly. Whites have been the latest in a long line of elitists.

But what is unique about European culture is that the idea of each person being in the "image of God" has never been far below the surface. (See my earlier post in this series, "Respect for the Individual.") As European explorers began to encounter Africans and peoples of the "New World" they justified slavery on the grounds that these people were uncivilized and sub-human. The Popes beginning in the 1400s denounced this interpretation and practice but were without the political clout to prevail against such efforts. From the beginning, there were always at least a minority of Christians who acted on the impulse that others were created in the image of God just as they were. Over the centuries their view has won the day either through explicit Christian efforts or secular humanist efforts whose conception of the value of the individual is inescapably bound to the Judeo-Christian heritage.

In some ways, your comment is making my point. Had Whites honored others equal human beings and respected property rights it would have checked their domineering ambitions.

Britain had the largest Empire. Historical economists note that resources coming in from the colonies, and goods shipped out to the colonies, never made up more than 5-10% of England's economy. Yet a tremendous amount of resources were spent to control the colonies and suppress any local economic development that would challenge British production. Economist conclude that not only was such action morally unjustifiable it was economically unjustifiable as well. Had the Brits engaged in trade and allowed industry to flourish elsewhere, both Britain and others would have been far better off.


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