This guy has a good grip on the issue.
...Nevertheless, the term was used in the common colloquial sense that suggests that power is the capacity to do what one wills, as one wills. This sense of power as arbitrary application of force over/against someone or something else certainly corresponds to the arbitrariness associated with modern notions of freedom. It also is what gave rise to the Hegelian-Marxist-Nietzschean view that conflict is in someway a necessary part of the natural order. This defective philosophy permeates many aspects of our society.
He points to Ockham (Occam's Razor fame) as one source--and tells us that Ockham was influenced by Mohammedan thought (!)
It's not a lenghty post--read the rest.
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As to the conflict part, wasn't that sort of the way Wilson and the Progressives of the early 20th century thought? You were right, though. Good post.
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