Ask a Bastard: First Answer of the New Year


Jack, who no longer blogs because, “it’s weird,” asked the following two questions:

AAB: Does history repeat itself?
Obviously, specific events don’t repeat themselves. However there are certain historic trends that repeated throughout the world. Napoleon’s winter campaign in Russia was paralleled by Hitler’s campaign in the Soviet Union. Our own “War on Terror” has borrowed the same (and least effective) methods of prosecution used by other governments (I’m thinking the UK in dealing with the Irish Question, Israel’s methods of addressing Palestinians).

I believe this occurs outside of the military and political spheres. Speculation and leverage are both considered to be factors in the Great Depression and in today’s economic problems (and both have been overseen by ineffective presidents). On a more personal level, I do believe that people without enough insight are more than likely prone to repeat their mistakes. Hell, even well adjusted people with good insight tend towards repeating mistakes–continuous procrastination, poor eating habits, always dating the wrong person– which leads to a repeat of personal history.

There are certainly elements of history that repeat themselves. The key is learning from history, including personal history.

AAB2: Can you believe how cold it is outside?
Holy crap, NO! Seriously, it’s frigid outside! It’s a balmy 25 right now! Last week, it was -30 with windchill. Fuck this crap. I’m staying indoors.

6 thoughts on “Ask a Bastard: First Answer of the New Year

  1. Very nice. I ask because a friend of mine said that she had a history teacher last semester who made a big deal about how history does not repeat itself and its only a lie you’ve been told blah blah blah. Apparently a student in the back rose his hand and asked, “then why do we study it?” The teacher had no answer.

  2. This is what the teacher’s answer should have been:

    “You want to know where people are coming from, no matter who or where they are?” He points at the blackboard, where the word HISTORY is written in handsome letters. “Here. This is where everyone is coming from.”

  3. I don’t think that you are weird for doing it and I don’t think that writing down how you feel about your life is weird. It was just my own weirdness– i.e. becoming obsessed with the stats and how many views I was recieving. Even in like 3 days I could tell that I was caring more about that stuff than the actual blogging. I’m much happier with my spiral notebook.

  4. I’m sure Jack can elaborate on that point, though. I’m not even arguing that blogging isn’t “weird.” It certainly can be.

    But I’m genuinely curious, Jack: Why do you say it’s weird?

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