As I sort out the events of a particular week, it is increasingly evident that events in the United States predominate. This is not exactly wrong, but it is somewhat inconvenient, since I have to work through quite a few other subjects in order to examine them as I would like to.
In order to get to this, I need to deal with Anglo-American peoples. In order to get to these, I need to develop Western Civilization. I’m making progress, but, as always, more slowly than I would like.
The week-by-week analysis of prominent current events has a certain rhythm to it. I usually don;t work on the Knowledge Base on Sundays, and i spend most of Monday setting up for the new week, and outlining what few events have occurred over the weekend. Then, the rest of the week, I can broaden the connections with more nations and peoples and work back into earlier periods of history. At least, that’s the program as it currently stands.
I have managed to separate Anglo-American peoples (the United States, Canada, and eventually the British Caribbean) from the general mass of Anglic peoples, in the current quarter and month. Many of a given week’s events are associated with these, and it will require significantly more development of nations before I can analyze these further. I note again that I am not following the US Presidential election cycle all that closely.
I take note of the murders of a couple of US citizens who were advocates of LGBT positions in Bangladesh, and I have to ask myself “What were they thinking!?! For one, the strong violent streak (terrorism, civil war) that has emerged all over in Islam in the past three decades ought to have been a warning. Second, Islam is extremely conservative on matters of sexual conduct and behavior. Add the two, and going into an Islamic country (which Bangladesh is…as any student of the history of India especially in the 20th century ought to be aware) to advocate for LGBT issues could have been predicted in advance as reckless folly.
These posts are still not as regular as I would like them to be. I keep creating new links..,just a little more work before I take a break and write about what I have accomplished…and before I know it, it’s late and I’m too tired to write, so I save it for the next day,,,and the next…and the next, and before I know it, three or four days have gone and still no post. The blogs I like to follow have fresh content almost daily, and I’m working on doing that. Not quite there, yet.
I have been more interested in events of the Middle East than many other areas. Not only is this the center of the oldest known civilizations, it is still a central focus of three world religions and some Asian religions. Since the Iranian revolution in the late 1970s, it has been a center of violent conflict and world attention. It is a complex region, and has several cultural areas to consider. I expect to be giving more attention to Egypt.
In the process of adding nations and working back through weeks of history, the first nation to emerge out of the mass is typically India. So far, for April, I now have a list of events that have occurred in India. These events don’t yet appear to be closely related, but as I go back through earlier weeks, I expect more of a pattern to emerge. I do note, however, that India is having its own problems with court-ordered change that affects religious custom and beliefs.
I thought I had already created a post to follow up on the last one, but apparently not. Apparently my connection to my web host has been misbehaving and it’s hard to create this post. Generally speaking, my analysis of events will lag behind the actual events: this is not a blog to watch for the latest news.
The terrorist bombings in Paris last November and in Brussels last month, and the broader European emigration problems all have roots in the Middle East, and much of the conflict is fundamentally religious in nature. I see it as not so much a conflict between Christianity and Islam, as between Islam and modern secularism. Although I do not yet have strong evidence for this view, it is something I will be looking at.
I had been going to mention the impeachment proceedings against Dilma Rouseff in Brazil, although there isn’t really much I can say. I have never like the politics she represents, although they are not really my concern. The aftermath of the earthquake in Ecuador may get more attention.
I saw an interesting post by Ardis Parshall at Keepapitchinin, A “Big-N” Narrative of Church History One of the goals I have been working toward is constructing a similar narrative of world history. It’s one of those projects that is way too big for me, but keeps me off the streets and out of the opium dens and cathouses.
Most recently, I’ve been taking current events and trying to investigate the historical background. There is about a two-year gap in my history when I wasn’t keeping track of current events on a week-by-week basis, although the Wikipedia summaries fill in something on a month-by-month basis. I’m giving more attention to cities and to the application of social mechanics to history, examining social changes and structure. The chief emphasis is on the industrial revolution and subsequent developments. I don’t quite have this categorized into finer levels of development, but I’m working on it. Although most history (and current events) deal with government and politics, I am putting more of an emphasis on religion. Abrahamic religion (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), Asian religion, and pagan religion are the traditional ones, but in more recent times, secularism has become predominant among the leadership of society. Although secularism has many religious characteristics and is quasi-religious in character, many of its adherents deny that it is a religion. The connection to politics and government, economic and educational institutions can be found. I want to put more emphasis on families. The customs, beliefs, and materials of society can also be connected.
In composing the narrative, I intend to be guided by events and personalities that have had the greatest and most lasting impact. These may or may not be those that appear most prominently in news accounts of the day.
The immigration problem in Europe has been a persistent and problem for the past several years, and is likely to persist for many more. The United Stats has long experience with assimilating immigrants, but its historical solution may not be accepted in Europe. I note that there is continuing fallout from the Panama Papers.
I am not following the US Presidential campaign closely. I lost all enthusiasm for national politics in 2012, when Barak Obama was re-elected over Mitt Romney, who was in my opinion obviously better qualified in every way. I do not like either of the major Democratic candidates, and I am highly unimpressed with Donald Trump. Of the major candidates remaining , my preferences is for Ted Cruz, but I don’t expect my preferences to be persuasive.
I am rather more concerned with the LGBT movement and the political backing it is getting. I suspect that there is political machination and arm-twisting going on behind the scenes, but I don’t yet have the tools to trace it.
I’m not so directly concerned with events in Asia or Africa, but I mention one. North Korea reminds me of a small dog I encountered years ago, one of those that tried to make up in its ferocity of barking for its diminutive size. I was ignoring it, until it decided that it could deal with me and bit me on the ankle. I kicked, by reflex, and it flew off several feet. It didn’t come back. I’m not much worried about its development of nuclear and ballistic capabilities, but there are people who should be taking it seriously.
Once again, I have the review of history down to the level of current events. It seems a bit easier to keep current than it was the last time I tried this a year or so ago, but we shall see. I note that there have been continuing consequences from the revelations in the Panama Papers, but this is still not something I can really investigate well.
The European immigration crisis, in which European governments have been practically overwhelmed by masses of immigrants and refugees from the Middle East, is something for me to watch rather than actively get involved in. There is a need for humanitarian relief for refugees, but when there is a massive influx of refugees in large numbers, they tend to bring elements of their culture which helped create the very conditions they are fleeing. There is also the possibility that the streams of refugees are intentionally seeded with agents of discord (such as terrorists) who can hide among them. It is a complex problem.
I’ve tried keeping up with day-to-day discussions of world events, and there is just too much happening at any given time. I found myself going back to get historical background or more detail on particular nations and lose track of the day-to-day thread. Events relentlessly march on. I’m going to give this another try.
One of the more recent events that has gained world attention is the release of the “Panama Papers”, which documents a great number of corporations and their investors and activities in countries with few taxes and few regulations. This is the sort of thing I would like to investigate, but these papers have a tremendous glut of information that I don’t have much hope of digesting. However, I will continue to watch the topic for future developments.
I haven’t been following the news that closely, in part because the maneuverings and meanderings of political leaders don’t mean that much to me; in part because a great deal of the news deals with celebrities, who usually don’t impress me at all, and in part because what is covered is so superficial. At the fine scale of months and weeks, it’s difficult to observe a pattern and events seem random. It’s only at a broader scale, and at the cost of ignoring many events, that trends seem to emerge.
One of my major areas of interest is in looking at events from a religious point of view, and I ought to mention that I consider atheism and secularism as quasi-religious. Political maneuvering is less important to me.
I decided to shift back to examining more recent events and developments rather than going back to the beginning. I’ve been connecting major nations to cities, and I’m faced with a decision to go broad and slow, or narrow and quicker. Which I do depends a great deal on whether I have energy or whether I’m tired out. At present, India and Indonesia have been going the fastest. I’ve also been looking at specific social changes and movements, particularly at the industrial revolution. It’s about time for me to to continue developing this with more specific detail on the social, institutional,, and cultural changes involved. I need more of a story than I have.