“Power is in the hands not of the minority but of the whole people.When it is a question of settling private disputes,everyone is equal before the law; when it is a question of putting one person before another in positions of public responsibility,what counts is not the membership of a particular class,but the actual ability which the man possesses.No one so long as he has it in him to be of service to the state,should be kept in political obscurity because of poverty………..” Pericles view on democracy
“When your spirit is strained and you limited to change
The lyrics in your limericks will change
A different hook, the way the sentences arranged
More demented in your deliverance, more sinister in your slang..” Lupe Fiasco – Glory
The Question :“Are Political structure and Ideological developments Independent of Economic changes?”
Early historians believed that history was primarily influenced by spiritual and intellectual changes.This idea progressively changed as historians in the early 20th century put materialist and economic explanations at the centre of historical change. The logic of industrial capitalism was and is still the dominant force explaining major changes in human affairs. This however, does not mean that political changes depend solely on economic developments. A more pertinent example being the Mau Mau movement in Kenya which was in essence a social/political movement that advocated for and in the offing prompted major economic changes in the then colony.
Even in feudal societies ,political/ideological changes affected the entire population ranging from the aristocrats to the peasants a clear indication that changes such as these were not based on economic status rather were based on ideas and constructs whose time had either come or whose time was long gone .It is important to note that historical development is determined by an interaction of forces:economic changes,ideological developments and mechanisms of state. Therefore economic,political and ideological factors are in themselves inalienable and synchronously serve to bring about historical changes that have shaped the world as it is today.
So where does technology come in? Fast forward to today and by today I mean this hour,this minute and this very second and I set aside economic,political or even ideological developments for something greater,something urgent ,something more “sophisticated”… Technology. Technology which in itself is a historical change chronicled by the gradual and painful shift from manual to automated systems in the world over. Take for instance the internet and the revolutionary aspects that have accompanied it such as social networking,in this day and age the internet offers governments unprecedented access to information about us, and a level of control previous generations of politicians could only dream about (“The Kernel”). In the most basic yet most pre-eminent of ways the internet has led to the complete erasure of geographical boundaries which until recently were a major limitation to communication in terms of urgency,speed and even cost.
The Cold war was chiefly ideological “Yesterdays communism without freedom,Today’s capitalism without justice” that was then today’s wars are Cyber wars. Industrial espionage is carried out by intelligent programs and neatly designed algorithms are just about all that is needed to bring down nuclear reactants. Safe to say that in technology, confrontations between the east and west have found a “peaceful” outlet an outlet which has not yet struck fear into the heart of the world.An outlet that may seem subtle at this point but may prove terribly destructive in years to come.
Could it be that we are part of a crucial time in history? A time in which technology plays a central role in the life of man ? A time in which man dethroned man in favour of machine ? Could it be that future generations will study our ways and the decisions we made ? And whether these decisions led to our prosperity or our ultimate ruin?
As a coder I often wonder whether futuristic ages will look at software developed during my era as simple,too basic and in the worst case utterly and completely rudimentary , and the answer is yes they probably will. That generations to come will be by far more sophisticated than we are , the answer is yes ,they will. That our activities today will be the history that they study and that our mistakes they may learn from,yes that will happen. That they will laugh at the sheer absurdity of some of the ways in which we handled our business , the answer is yes , that they will. Yet in all this we should find repose in what we have done and the accomplishments we have made,the foundations we have laid and the strides we have unwittingly managed to take.
“Are Political structure and Ideological developments Independent of Economic changes?” to this I say yes and no ,maybe or maybe not. Then again maybe the question I should be asking is “Are Political structure, Ideological developments and Economic changes Independent of Technological Changes?” to this I say no , not at all. Political structure, Ideological developments and Economic changes are entirely dependent on Technological changes.That very statement is applicable to today and the events that have made today as it is, that statement marks the point where history changes,that very statement marks the point where history is made.
“But you gotta understand our differences is the same
What starts in clouded minds, finishes in the rain
Of the fools that are used that’s instruments in the game
Where oppression is the queen and ignorance is the king
Where revolution is dead…”
“And you’ve got to respect the position in which you playing.Never let your heart reflect the conditions in which you staying.Even if it’s dark, and the temperature is the same..”