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This article will appear in the June 20, 2008 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

How To Shape History

by Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr.

June 9, 2008

[PDF version of this article]

Hillary might still become President!

Since Friday, June 6, I have been occupied in, as it is often said, "picking people up off the floor." This on both sides of the Atlantic. Whereas, people, including relatively many among my own associates, were reacting to the leading vote-swindle of Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's forced retirement from her candidacy, I have been warning folk that their view was mistaken. What actually happened in the U.S.A. election-campaigning during the close of last week, was not the end, but the beginning of what will prove to have been the real contest yet to be fought. The error which many people, from various camps, made, was a result of their failure to understand the way in which real history works. So, my very short piece entitled, "For the Moment, Now There Are Two Candidates,"[1] was written in anticipation of the need that I act, personally, to head off what I feared would be the expected pathetic, widespread, alternating rage and depression among some leading figures, as much as some ordinary folk.

One of the typically malignant effects of the influence of Anglo-Dutch Liberalism on the mental condition of most people throughout today's world, is the way the victims of such influence think of notable events in history, mechanistically: of both those events experienced by society generally, or only by the individual person seen as being essentially what each presumes to be virtually the effect of receiving a sudden kick-in-the-rear-end. I mean: "mechanistic" in the sense of what are the intrinsically incompetent, but customary, "Cartesian-like" methods of economic and related modes of economic and other forecasting by people, and by their usual choices of mass media, today.

Elections of some Presidents, for example.

Contrary to most opinion today, history is not something which has been experienced. History is, among other things, what you yourself are about to do, or which you will have failed to expect until after it has happened. Take such a case as the trajectory of a planet in the Solar System. How do we know where that planet is going? The orbit is predetermined by a universal physical principle, a principle commonly identified as universal gravitation. This is a principle, which, as Albert Einstein emphasized the deeper implications of Kepler's uniquely original discovery, encloses the universe; it is, therefore, a choice of a universal principle whose efficient action, by some one, God or man, has always pre-determined our future, not our past.[2]

Human upward progress, such as economic progress in physical science, were inevitable, unless you chose the pathway down, instead.

Take the fact that, without fear of exaggeration in this, the evidence at hand so far implies, that, during recent decades, I have often been the only known case of a competent long-term economic forecaster in the U.S.A. and some other places. An important part of the reason for this widespread effect to be observed on two continents or more, is that virtually all prominent economic forecasters have failed because they have usually adhered to an academically certifiable, statistical method, such as that of Galileo or Descartes, an error caused by the statistician's implied working assumption that our society were a cage full of monkeys, not people.

Since about 1987, the world, including our U.S., for example, has entered into what has now become a plunging down-phase in the economy and culture of our planet taken as a whole. This is a plunge, which, if continued, would mean an accelerating collapse of physical conditions of life and of population, down to a level of misery of a world population which would, itself, shrink rapidly from a present level of about six-and-a-half billions human beings, to such goals as the reduced level of about two billions maximum demanded by Britain's Prince Philip of the World Wildlife Fund, or to the one billion or less demanded by even more radical, present-day neo-Malthusians looking back fondly to the so-called "Middle Ages."

This collapse is presently accelerating at what now threatens to become, like the rising price of "spot market" petroleum, awesome rates. It is being caused by nothing as much as the policies radiated from past and present Malthusians, as from the time of the satanic H.G. Wells and Bertrand Russell, through those present co-thinkers of former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore, circles which share the pro-"environmentalist" world-outlook of the neo-Malthusian Prince Philip. So far, admittedly, the relative rate of collapse toward a condition of virtual world famine, is apparently more acute in rate among the relatively poor strata of so-called developed nations, such as North America and western and central Europe; but this is temporary, and that because of the more immediate effects of long-term Malthusian strategy, also called "globalization," which is fairly named "a New Tower of Babel" policy. That policy is premised on the assumption, that the presently ongoing collapse and depopulation of the previously more developed regions of the world, as in western and central Europe and North America, like that done to the former Soviet Union after 1990, would soon ensure the general collapse of all civilization, world-wide, a general collapse which is presently under way, unless some leading nations decide, soon, to change their present ways.

The effects of the explicitly pro-genocidal, current, neo-Malthusian cultural and economic policies of Prince Philip's World Wildlife Fund, confront us with relevant evidence of the reason that my principles of successful long-range economic and related forecasting have succeeded where my so-called competition was wrong.

Economic Forecasting Generally

For example, for precisely the reason of that kind of implicit error of assumption to which I have already pointed here, the typically incompetent, but widely admired forecaster of economic trends, or similar public events, is identified by the popularity of demanding a relatively simple "Yes, or no" answer from anyone making a forecast. The same error is made by those who suggest, "take a number from one to ten," concerning a debate over the likelihood of a future development.

The commonplace error among sundry varieties of forecasters, is their attempt to derive what they see as the future from real or unreal, past events. Competent forecasting depends, partly, upon knowledge of universal principles; sometimes, that requires knowledge of what may be about to be introduced to practice as a newly adopted principle or policy, as I have done sometimes.

Thus, where other notable forecasters have failed, it was sometimes relatively easy for me to foresee the long-term pattern of probable developments, that over an interval from 1956 to what actually happened on July 31, 1971, as no other forecaster known to me had matched my success in this. True, I had not forecast that exact date of that forecast event, but, from 1965 onward, only as something likely, under then persisting policy-shaping conditions, for a time-frame somewhere between the close of the 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s. My forecasting recognized, and also stipulated the kinds of changes in policy which would determine the future trends, policies which I identified as the trend which will either be allowed to continue, or must be overturned. Thus, my forecasts have always included consideration of the existence of one or more alternate choice of policy: chiefly, either the policy underlying current trends, or the suitable replacement, as I have done during the course of the recent ten months.[3]

A more important factor in my success, was my insight into the minds of those various social strata which were, collectively, most influential in shaping policies, and, therefore, thus generating the results which I have forecast as the likely outcome of their continuing such forms of their currently ongoing behavior.

One of the chief reasons I have succeeded, where most leading economic forecasters have failed, is that most professional economists and their patrons forecast the wrong kind of event. They make the serious mistake of forecasting markets not as I do, but as ruling policy-shaping circles do. To be competent, it is essential to forecast the behavior of those, in government, finance, press, and universities, who are shaping the policies which pre-shape current history, and select attention to the more influential policy-shapers who will steer developments in such a direction.

For example: if President Herbert Hoover had been re-elected in 1932, Adolf Hitler would almost surely have won World War II. The danger lay in the influence and policies of those who, like the grandfather of President George W. Bush, Jr., were backing Hitler during the early 1930s, and were in the opposition to Franklin Roosevelt's 1932 nomination and election.[4] So, the assassination of U.S. President McKinley, which was an event produced by an assassin, imported from Europe, and steered through the premises of New York City's Henry Street Settlement House; this caused an abrupt and profound change in the circles controlling the U.S. government from the inauguration of Vice-President Theodore Roosevelt as President, until the 1932 election of his distant cousin, Franklin Roosevelt.

Think about those examples I have just referenced. The particular problem to be emphasized in treating the subject of forecasting here, is the fact that many people, are much less intelligent than they imagine themselves to be, often, such as George H.W. Bush and his son, a lot less intelligent than their acquired university degrees might suggest that some of them had become.

Such people might prefer to imagine themselves able not only to change things, but imagine that they are changing them for the better, not for the worse; but, they often deceive themselves in the same way as an hypothetical President of the United States who might report that he has decided to change the orbit of the planet Earth by means of a mere majority of assenting votes in today's U.S. Senate. "Things could not possibly be as bad as you say," they argue, or, "You must agree with us, to see that the present problems are only temporary; soon, everything will return to normal."[5]

Recently the number saying such silly things as that, is becoming fewer, and fewer, but there are still many still saying the same kinds of silly things they were saying, inside relevant places such as the U.S. Congress, and elsewhere, as recently as the middle of Summer 2007.

For example, since President Nixon announced that he was adopting Adam Smith and Milton Friedman as his administration's economic saints and gurus, the U.S. economy has actually been in a continuing, long-ranging decline in physical output and per-capita real consumption, a collapse in net useful consumption and production per capita and per square kilometer of territory. However, since Nixon and others had insisted that the continuation of their policies defined the "good," they read the fact of the continued toleration and growing influence of their ruinous policy-changes of the 1970s, as sufficient evidence that progress was still on the way up, when, in fact, the net physical output and consumption of the U.S.A. has been declining over the entire interval 1969-2008 to the present instant, when it is falling faster than ever before. "Things are getting better?" Not, certainly, since March 1, 1968, and absolutely not since August 15, 1971.

The success of the manned Moon landing, was purely an intentional, not a statistical event; but, when we take into account the changes in U.S. policy since 1967, it was, after all, speaking historically, a temporarily glorious fluke, an achievement created by policies which, in large degree, had ceased to exist. The development of technologies which made the specific achievement of the Moon-landing possible, was already in the process of being pulled back since U.S. fiscal year 1967-68, and at an accelerating rate in our U.S.A., in particular, more or less continuously, since that time, especially since the Trilateral Commission's influence expressed in the takedown of essential safety measures, during the early 1980s.

Today, whatever a dwindling number of some scientists do, in fact, know, the economic fact of the matter is, that the U.S. economy could no longer accomplish the quality of things we did so proudly before the late 1960s after-effects of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy kicked in. Yes, there were particular improvements during the late 1960s and some parts of the 1970s, as, for example, in new plant, some new technologies, and so forth; but, through the net effect of decadence overall, progress has been in a downward direction, in net effect, since that time. How is your pension and your health-care package doing, for example?

Your choice of Presidential candidate today, could put your grandchildren in Hell in their time. What you choose to consume, because you like it, or what you refuse because you don't, could be the choice which kills you.

For Example: How Economies Work

A competent sort of systemic understanding of how a modern economy actually works, or does not, requires the adoption of the kind of view which I have adopted toward the physical-scientific methods associated with the refined conception of dynamics introduced by Bernhard Riemann from 1854 onward. Take a relatively simple example of this.

For example, even to maintain a constant standard of living for the general human population, requires a degree of net technological and related progress sufficient to overcome the effect of society's drawing down the best quality of the stock of those physical and related cultural resources on which a certain level of existence for the entire society had depended. To compensate for the unavoidable, and also necessary increase of the population of any nation with a viable future, a still greater rate of realized scientific-technological and cultural advances is necessary: to more than overcome the relative marginalization of stocks of previously standard resources.

This is true for physical science and its role in the economy. It is also true for the case of Classical forms of art, as we are able to trace progress in musical polyphony from such ancient roots as the most significant case, the track of the development of the use of Lydian modalities by all great musicians, through the work of J.S. Bach, Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven's late string quartets. Or, the revolution in the concept of perspective in painting which was introduced by an important predecessor of the astrophysicist Johannes Kepler, Leonardo da Vinci. Or, as the great Classical English poet Percy Bysshe Shelley emphasized in the course of his In Defence of Poetry, the role of development of language and the arts, combined, in bringing on periods of splendid "increase in the power of imparting profound and impassioned conceptions of man and nature."

Progress is not optional; it is an endless imperative of all civilized mankind.

In all of these essential elements of the progress required to maintain a society, and prevent it from sinking into decay through attrition, we must act upon society as a whole in a literally dynamic way, as the ancient Classical Greeks, and as Gottfried Leibniz, Bernhard Riemann, Max Planck, and Albert Einstein fought for scientific progress, against the decadence of those modern empiricists and positivists, who are the present-day followers of the medieval irrationalist William of Ockham.

The Effect of the Denial of "Progress"

The rise of the scientist and statesman Benjamin Franklin, the follower of the Massachusetts Winthrops and Mathers, and of Pennsylvania's James Logan, coincided with a post-1750, to 1789 period of Renaissance of science and Classical culture throughout much of globally extended European civilization. This was a period of the resurgence of scientific and Classical artistic achievement coinciding with the spreading influence of the sons of Johann Sebastian Bach and such figures of both physical science and Classical art as the Leipzig-born, great mathematician Abraham Kästner. This phase lasted, essentially, until the British Foreign Office's deploying its agent, the Duke of Orleans ("Philippe Egalité"), in support of that Duke's colleague, Lord Shelburne asset, and Swiss banker Jacques Necker, for the siege of the Bastille. This was a siege of the Bastille, conducted for no different purpose, than the purpose of compelling Louis XVI to appoint Necker Prime Minister of France.[6] The period of the Jacobin Terror and the rise of Napoleon Bonaparte, defined a relative dark age which persisted through the notorious 1815 Congress of Vienna.

The poet, dramatist and historian Friedrich Schiller said of the French Revolution, "a great moment had found a little people." In the main, during the period following the French "Reign of Terror" and the Napoleonic wars, art and politics, and to a significant degree, science, too, declined into what the poet Heinrich Heine would denounce as "The Romantic School." These were hard times for the newly constituted U.S. Federal Republic, but times out of which came patriots such as Mathew Carey and his son Henry C. Carey, in concert with U.S. figures who combined the heroic role of being simultaneously statesmen, diplomats, and spies, such as John Quincy Adams and James Fenimore Cooper. It was to these figures, who stayed the course in perilous times for our republic, to which we all owe the frequently betrayed, but still precious legacy of both the founders of our republic, and of those who stayed the course through the death of figures such as John Quincy Adams and Cooper.

The great struggle against British imperial oppression of the North American English colonies actually began in the immediate aftermath of the February 1763 Peace of Paris, from which the London which had orchestrated the mutual ruin of the nations of continental Europe through the so-called "Seven Years War," thus emerged triumphant under its own domination by an Anglo-Dutch Liberal, imperial form of financier interest known as Lord Shelburne's British East India Company, a Company which, with its bastard, or other financial offspring, has been the core of the permanent party of treason within our U.S.A., to the present date.

I refer, although briefly, to that piece of our history here, not only because that history of London-steered agents and treason among us, is of singular relevance, again, at this immediate time. I reference it for the even far more significant reason, that it is only to the degree that we are led as a nation by figures among us who locate their personal identity as patriots in the legacy of many preceding generations before us, and in their deep commitment to service of intentions for at least several generations after we have lived out our own personal time.

The progress of mankind, as also our republic in particular, depends upon a continuity of passing of the proverbial torch, a passing which spans such a lapse of past, into future times. The most essential of all patriotic values on this account, is the idea of progress which gripped the work of the mature lifetime of the founders of our republic, especially the span of developments during the contested years 1763-1789. Our sense of such spans of time is the strongest when we trace the history of physical science from such ancients as the Pythagoreans and Plato through to the most recent accomplishments respecting the discovery and realization of discoveries of physical principle. This sense of scientific progress, where it prevails, is a model of reference for the idea of human individual immortality, a sense of immortality which could not exist unless it were expressed as an impassioned concern for relevant future accomplishments by those creative powers of the individual mind which are to be identified with the discovery of true universal physical and comparable principles.

For the same reason, that denial of the progress which is the characteristic lack of true morality in the "Malthusians" of past and present times, such as the World Wildlife Fund's Prince Philip and his lackey and former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore, is the greatest threat to our republic's continued existence today, precisely because it denies the existence of the principle of morality which can not truly exist without an efficient sense of an immortal purpose for a mortal human existence.

It is the sense of scientific and technological progress in the functioning of economies across successive generations which is the characteristic expression of a moral basis for patriotic commitments. It is the extension of that sense of the role of scientific-technological progress, which ties the goals of physical progress in the productive powers of labor, to the Classical spirit of artistry which links the inner living person to a sense of a personal participation in the existence of those who either lived in our time with us, or who preceded our birth, or follow us when we are gone.

Creativity as Morality

For as far back in history as we know, the prevalent curse upon mankind has been the doctrine typified as that of the Olympian Zeus of Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound, the ban on allowing the lower social classes of mankind the right to know the principle of "fire." In practice, the term "fire," so employed, signifies the innate, potential creative powers of the individual person, the powers which distinguish the human species absolutely from all lower forms of life. "Fire" signifies, as controlled nuclear fission illustrates the point for today, the discovery of usable universal physical, or comparable principles, through which mankind is enabled to increase both the potential relative population-density of mankind, and also to raise the standard of living and life-expectancy of the population generally.

Throughout the history of empires, as known best to us through study of the history of the principle of empire since ancient Babylon, or earlier, the characteristic of most cultures and societies has been the encultured degradation of the intellectual life of the greatest portion of the subject population to a policy tantamount to the ideology called "Malthusianism" today.

In earlier forms of imperialism, as in ancient Rome, the suppression of scientific-technological conceptions of progress was enforced with the gibbet and knout. In modern Europe, this was changed in form, but not much in effect. The change was made by Paolo Sarpi, the founder of modern European philosophical-political Liberalism.

Sarpi proceeded as follows.

The 1439 A.D. great ecumenical Council of Florence and the related founding of modern European science by later Cardinal Nicholas of Cusa, led to the establishment of the first modern nation-states under, first, France's Louis XI and, then, England's Henry VII. The old Venetian faction which had been set back temporarily by the mid-Fifteenth-Century Renaissance, struck back through the Habsburgs with such methods as the rise of the Inquisition under Spain's Tomas de Torquemada. Torquemada's mass-murderous actions, prefiguring those of Adolf Hitler later, as typified by the expulsion of the Jews from Spain, launched a period of religious warfare throughout Europe, which continued from 1492 until the 1648 Peace of Westphalia.

In the midst of the Sixteenth Century's epidemic religious wars, Venice's Paolo Sarpi recognized that the Habsburgs' policy of pro-Aristotelean Inquisitional methods was doomed to fail, because of the factor of urban development unleashed by such expressions of the 1439 Council and Cusa's launching of modern science as the role of technology developed in cities and their countryside, as this strategic effect was described in the writings of Niccolo Machiavelli.

Sarpi had no love for science, as his promotion of a revival of the medieval irrationalist William of Ockham attests to this fact. However, he recognized that the Venetian type of financier interest and power could not succeed unless it adapted itself to a certain amount of technological and related innovations. Sarpi's love for Ockham was rooted entirely in his hatred of science as such. On this account, Sarpi's influence produced a policy of practice known today as the type of irrationalism respecting science as such, which is called today Anglo-Dutch Liberalism.

Under Liberalism, mathematical recipes, used as substitutes for notions of scientific principle, are often allowed (except by today's post-1968, hardened neo-Malthusian fanatics), but the principles of science of Nicholas of Cusa, Leonardo da Vinci, Johannes Kepler, Pierre de Fermat, and Gottfried Leibniz, are either banned or rendered harmless to the Liberal ideological cause through sophistical "explanations."

This is not a narrowly scientific concern. This is the issue of the human freedom to be truly human. That is to say, fostering the development of those creative mental powers which are the essential distinction of the human being from the beasts. It is the same expression of creative mental powers associated with truly Classical art-forms and political institutions. True freedom to be truly human, is not a matter of money, nor can freedom descend like manna (or, money) from Heaven upon a waiting, slavishly minded people below; freedom, in the sense of a Classical practice and knowledge of art and science, must spring like a bright young plant, from within the mind and the practiced social relations of the people.

Although the expression of such human freedom is the moral right and obligation of practice by the individual member of society, like all good things in life, this, too, must be earned, not handed out as a passer-by's guilty conscience utters token gifts to poor beggars.

The source of the gift of culture is historical. The accumulation of discoveries of truthful forms of expression of scientific and Classical artistic principles, from generation to generation, both within cultures and across their boundaries, works as the practice of fundamental progress in discovery of universal physical principles. This is the immortal font of goodness which one generation must pass to the next, and to the persons of other nations and peoples as freely as to our own.

The essential point of principle here, is the need to love humanity and its individual person, the strangers as much as the children and youth of one's own tribe, for what society might be able to become. It was this quality of optimism which was shared, not only among the American freedom-fighters opposed to British oppression during 1763-1789, but also the English, American, and French peers of the German Classic of Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Kästner, Lessing, Mendelssohn, and Friedrich Schiller. This, as echoed in the 1776 Declaration of Independence and the Preamble of the U.S. Federal Constitution: such are, and remain the emblems of the Idea of Progress of peoples throughout the planet today.

The Classical conception of European culture in general, as opposed to the Romantics and other popularized perversions, is the generalization of, a fuller expression of, the principle of freedom expressed by the ancient Pythagoreans and Plato, by the great ecumenical Council of Florence, by Kepler, Fermat, and Leibniz, and those who follow them still today.

The physical benefits of science and technological progress are indispensable, but it is the moral quality of the broader cultural development of the peoples who benefit from science, which must be combined with true science as a true, united cause of human science and Classical art.

There Are No Limits to Growth

The great conception on which all those desirable qualities of true human freedom depend, is the conception of one's self, and of other persons, as implicitly immortal in respect to the permanent intention of their mission in mortal existence. Although, much of the task which each generation and nation must adopt as its own, in its own time, is bounded by pressing necessity of improvements in that time, as now, the essential motive for the work of each of many successive generations, is the grand conception of the immortality of the individual human mind, as the soul which inhabits the mortal human body. It is, therefore, the immortality of what is passed on in the form of the essential ideas of the human species' and individual sovereign nation's contribution to the furthest conceivable reach into a future consequence which is ever better, which must be recognized as the most essential self-interest of the human individual's personality as an implicitly immortal personality.

It is the devotion to that immortal cause which is the only true scientific test for what should be considered to be morality. It is that conviction which makes some leaders good, as also strong, and the lack of which weakens the will to do good, the will to do whatever is required to contribute to that end in the limited time allotted to each to live.

The same principle, is the required standard of leadership of our republic. It is urgent that we recapture that notion of leadership for the grave crisis which grips the world today. Such must be the selection of the composition of our republic's Presidency under the grave peril threatening all humanity now.

[1] See last week's EIR, June 13.

[2] The relevant necessary corrective for the fallacies implicit in ordinary mathematics is identified by the concept of analysis situs, as introduced to modern science by Gottfried Leibniz, and as treated by Bernhard Riemann.

[3] Since just prior to my July 25, 2007 webcast.

[4] Back in those times, this included persons such as Prescott Bush and Ambassador Joseph Kennedy, who professed a certain discomfort with the character of Adolf Hitler, but stated, as Joe Kennedy did, their real preference was Hermann Göring.

[5] The decision made may be arbitrary, but the effects of enforcing it are not.

[6] The mob, hired and armed by Philippe Egalité, accepted the surrender of the guards, and then killed and butchered them, putting the butchered guards' heads on pike-staffs, and carrying the gibbering idiots, who had been the only remaining inmates of the Bastille, off to the famous insane asylum where they were released to the custody of the latter institution.

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