Archive for January 9th, 2009

Temporal Provincialism – Again

Everything here relates. I have written before about how everyone is shocked if I know some detail of the latest news everybody is talking about, but they are equally shocked if I remember the same detail a month later. By then, they’ve forgotten all about THAT Big News Story.

The same is true of history. It is grudgingly admitted that the coded language in Revelations might have something to do with Nero. Which is exactly like saying that a Christian document written in a world ruled by Stalin might have some reference to Uncle Joe.

But I have had people tell me in earnest in the 1960s that John was actually talking not about Nero, but about the Cuban Missile Crisis, while in 2001 he was referring to the Twin Towers.

In all but intent, this is the Big Lie technique. The big difference is that these people are lying to THEMSELVES. As I said before, most people can’t remember what news they were obsessed with six months ago. You can tell about what year a history book was written, which means is not a good history. A historian can either get published or discuss real history.

It is the same with past, present, and future. I keep repeating that it matters not [at] all whether a futurologist predicts correctly. He is getting published NOW. He is an official futurologist because he is getting grants NOW. The more provincially NOW he is the better.

Which is why [some] of the most entertaining humor you will ever read consist[s] of the confident predictions of Experts. Historians are the same about yesterday. News commentators forget everything before they comment. They have to have something for TONIGHT, and everything in history and all in future has to be related to NOW.

You cannot understand history or the future if you do not keep Temporal Provincialism firmly in mind at all times. If you do, it gives you a huge understanding denied the “professionals.”

Almost everybody who has known me for a while considers my predictions correct to the point of being creepy, even ones I had forgotten until they mentioned them. But the secret is simple: Look at history as if you were in THAT time. Look at the future not in terms of what might seem plausible now, but beyond the welter of Latest News.