“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana 1863 – 1952
by Jeff Nielson, Bullion Bulls Canada:
Human history is a depressing cycle of repetition. Societies/economies rise; societies/economies crumble. The patterns of these cycles are virtually identical, yet living through thousands of years of this “history”, we have learned nothing.
Indeed, our understanding (and thus our “memory”) of history is worse than useless, as it is characterized by fundamental misconceptions which guarantee the repetition of this Cycle of Futility.
Ironically, just a few years before Santayana’s time, an economist (and Jack-of-all-trades) named Vilfredo Pareto was born (1848 – 1923) in Italy. Pareto himself was not a “thinker” he was an observer. What Pareto observed around him was that he quite often encountered bizarre “80/20 splits” in the allocation of a particular resource (or resources), where a 20% minority held an (inverse) 80% share – while the 80% majority held only a 20% share.
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