Metallurgy and agriculture were the two arts whose invention produced this great revolution. With the poet, it is gold and silver, but with the philosopher, it is iron and corn, which have civilized men, and ruined mankind.
Riches, before the invention of signs to represent them, could scarce consist in anything but lands and cattle, the only real goods which men can possess. But when estates increased so much in number and in extent as to take in whole countries and touch each other, it became impossible for one man to aggrandize himself but at the expense of some other; and the supernumerary inhabitants, who were too weak or too indolent to make such acquisitions in their turn, impoverished without losing anything, because while everything about them changed they alone remained the same, were obliged to receive or force their subsistence from the hands of the rich. And hence began to flow, according to the different characters of each, domination and slavery, or violence and rapine. The rich on their side scarce began to taste the pleasure of commanding, when they preferred it to every other; and making use of their old slaves to acquire new ones, they no longer thought of anything but subduing and enslaving their neighbors; like those ravenous wolves, who having once tasted human flesh, despise every other food, and devour nothing but men for the future.
A Discourse Upon the Origin and the Foundation of the Inequality Among Mankind
While foreign policy ineptitude and the inability to put together an e-commerce website - in an age when such sites are erected daily - come from the same wellspring of arrogance, in the end it's the anemic economy that's slowing down the Utopian dreams of President Obama. And that force is slowing the chance to replace the core of America for something it has never been. Nonetheless, their fight goes on with profit-motivation still the villain, even though it has propelled America and mankind to a pinnacle of existence.
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