Gary Rea (c)Copyright 2010 All Rights Reserved

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Our prehistoric ancestors were hunter-gatherers. They lived in and with nature, as a part of it. All of their time and efforts were spent in hunting and gathering food, creating shelter, clothing, tools and all the necessities of their survival. They were more free, in the truest sense of the word freedom, than any human beings have been since.

Some ten thousand years ago, this all began to change as humans began to cultivate wild grains and to domesticate animals. As agriculture replaced hunting and gathering, a new paradigm was entered into. No longer were humans nomadic, following the herds of animals they subsisted on. Now they were tied to the land they farmed and permanent settlements became the norm. Out of these early settlements grew the first villages, which evolved into towns, then cities, then city-states.

At the same time this shift in the way humans lived was taking place, there were other changes being made, as well. Agriculture afforded more leisure time for other pursuits. As settlements became increasingly sophisticated, there evolved a division of labor. Not everyone was involved in food production anymore. There were new trades and these demanded new skills and people who could perform them. Over the course of generations, this trend accelerated and grew to become yet another new paradigm.

Even as late as the early twentieth century, most humans still lived on farms and were involved in food production, but, following WWII, the trend toward diversification of jobs and trades accelerated like never before in history, until today only 1% of humanity are involved in the production of food.

Along side this trend away from food production was the increasing use of money and credit, which ultimately eclipsed barter as the medium of exchange. This trend also accelerated and expanded greatly until, today, all human beings find themselves living in a society in which they must do some form of work, usually for others, in order to earn money and credit.

Notice that the emphasis is now upon the creation of an artificial medium of exchange – money and credit – and not on the creation of food. We have all become divorced from our place in nature. We have all become divorced from our involvement in the acquisition of food, shelter, clothing and the other necessities of life. Other people make these things for us now. It was only a few generations ago that many people were still acquiring their own food, building their own shelter, making their own clothes, tools and so on. In just a few generations, we have become a society of people who are cut off from any personal involvement in the means of our own survival. Instead of creating the things we need to survive, we are forced to depend upon others to create these things for us. What’s more – and this is the central thesis of this article – we must have money and credit to obtain the daily necessities of life. Our very survival is now dependent upon an artificial intermediary, i.e., money and credit, which have become a tool for getting the necessities of life. Indeed, it is a very powerful tool, which allows us to do much more beyond seeing to our survival. It has enabled us to gain further leisure and to spare ourselves from manual labor. Indeed, it has made living so pleasurable and so devoid of any real hardship that most of us have become so accustomed to this we could not very easily do without it, if we had to.

And therein lies the danger we face. We are fine as long as we continue to have money and credit to get the things we need and desire. But, remove the use of money and credit, or devalue the money so that it buys far less than it once did, and we face a great hardship. Our very lives become threatened because, here we are without the means to get food, clothing and shelter.

To make matters worse, laws have closed off our access to the old ways of survival. One may not hunt without a license and may only hunt in certain designated areas, at certain times of the year, and only for certain species of animals and there are strict limits upon how many animals one may hunt at any one time. In any practical sense, hunting for one’s food has been made quite challenging, if not virtually impossible.

Similarly, even agriculture has been made largely off-limits to most of us. It takes land to farm crops and raise cattle, etc. Without significant amounts of money and credit to obtain the land and the animals and the seeds, one cannot even begin to farm. One could, however, grow a small garden at home, assuming one still had a home, of course. Even if there is no land area, one can use hydroponics to grow food without the need for soil. However, the problem then becomes insufficient yield. You will not be able to grow enough to feed yourself, let alone you and your family.

As for building your own shelter, this has been made even more restricted by zoning laws, building covenants, building codes, as well as the need for credit to acquire land to build on and the materials and tools with which to build. Even if you are willing to settle for building your own primitive shelter in the wilderness, there are few wilderness areas where you can do so, legally, and most of us lack the skills, knowledge and tenacity to make a go of it and succeed.

All of this is to say nothing of the fact that the money and credit system we have been enslaved by is a usurious one that keeps us all in a perpetual cycle of debt bondage and wage slavery, and none of this has happened by accident, but rather, by design. This all combines to create what could be called a matrix of control and the power elite who issue the money and credit are the architects and benefactors of this matrix of control.