Thursday, December 24, 2009

The "Bad" Old Days? Compared to What?

Cramer finds that the Ruling Class hasn't really changed too much in 600 years...

...Other means being exhausted, funds for an expedition to Brittany were raised in 1379 by a graduated poll (or head) tax, a new device designed to cover clergy and peasants at lower income levels than before. Calculated, with the usual vagueness about population figures, to bring in £50,000, it produced only £20,000, all of it invested in a fleet commanded by Sir John Arundel.

Delayed until winter by lack of wind and then by threat of a French raid, Arundel took part of his force to Southampton to guard against an enemy landing and, why there, to conduct himself indistinguishably from the enemy. Beside robbing the countryside, he quartered his men-at-arms and archers in a convent, allowing them to violate at will the nuns and a number of poor widows who lived there, and to carry them off to the ships when ready to sail. Arundel was the man who had demanded money in hand before he would defend the south-coast towns against earlier French raids. If Walsingham may be believed, he used it for ostentation as extreme as his brutality. He is said to have embarked with a wardrobe of 52 suits embroidered in gold, and horses and equipment to the value of £7,000.

Sailing in December, his convoy was caught by a violent storm during which he ordered the kidnapped women thrown overboard to lighten the ships, maltreated the crew,...

Parallels are hardly lacking. Obama's travel-and-(self)-entertainment bills are comparable to those of QueenNancy (but gaining fast); abusing troops with ROE's such as those favored by Teh Won in Afghanistan continues; and raising taxes on medical equipment and HSA's is called "healthcare reform."

Raping nuns has not recurred........yet.

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