Monday, October 01, 2007

Babel State

Gen 11:4 describes the thinking behind the Tower of Babel.

Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth."
At first glance this seems like a statement of the “general will”, as per Rousseau. The reality was probably different. No doubt a few powerful leaders said, “Let us build ourselves a tower that reaches to the heavens”. Most of the people would sucked in to go along. Many would have had to work as slaves on the project, as that is the only way it could have been built.

The Tower of Babel is a probably the first example of a grandiose state. A few people have a “big idea”, and the rest of the population were conned or forced into making it happen.

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