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FROM MY CORNER, The Cleverest System

Howell Hurst Economy & Finance, People, People Politics


The Cleverest System

One of the most cunning methods some people ever devised to help them manage others is the Caste system. Caste is based on the idea of hierarchy: a forceful tool to control vital differences in people’s wealth and privileged power, or lack of privileged power.

It first developed in what was known as the Indus Valley. Today in India a division that precedes Christ starts at the top with Brahman priests, then below them warriors, commoners or merchants, and at the bottom laborers and artisans.

Something akin to it, although far more loosely defined, exists in our country. The priests and preachers still claim a pretty high spot, but today they have to share it with the bankers and financiers, whose enforcers – the politicians, attorneys, police and military – fall under them.

Entrepreneur business people still come next, and at the bottom is the same group of laboring specialists supplying the moneyed, preachers, and various associates with luxury services and goods to keep them snug and comfortable.

Quite ambiguous aspects of a hierarchical caste system are the positions for formally educated people and for self educated thinkers, writers, and – of course – for the many various artists and entertainers.

Not ambiguous is that all people falling into the several categories below preachers, financial types, politicos, attorneys and politicians constitute the majority. You’d think they’d organize to get out of the bottom ring, but it always eludes them.

Notably, those many of the majority at the bottom, instead, rather passively accept it, which keeps the system going century after century. This universal “going along” with things keeps them in intellectual chains of their own choice and design.

Unique is that most people, when in company of people of different castes, don’t feel particularly comfortable and usually return to their own group. Truck drivers don’t commonly hang with bankers, and preachers don’t pal with plumbers.

That’s not always true. Some people have such clear vision that they pay more than lip service and try to remain cordially in touch with all people. These folks don’t have a separate caste; they come from a wide range of the others.

How might we name such people, those with the ability to view all humanity as the most refining aspect of our combined purpose in life on this Earth? Well, to hazard a guess, I suppose we would have to dub them: The Enlightened.

Not many of them exist. Sometimes they are visible; more often than not they keep a low profile. I’ll have additional thoughts about this in a future commentary. In the meantime, would you care to hazard a guess where you fit in the system?

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