March 13, 2015 - Friday Webcast with Jeffrey Steinberg
MEGAN BEETS: Good evening. Today is Friday, March 13th, 2015, and I'd like to welcome everyone to our regular Friday evening broadcast on larouchepac.com. My name is Megan Beets, and I'm joined tonight in the studio by Jason Ross of the LaRouche PAC Science Team, and Jeffrey Steinberg of Executive Intelligence Review.
The three of us have been in discussion with both Helga and Lyndon LaRouche over the course of the day, so the answers that you hear will reflect their outlook on the current world strategic situation.
So, I'm going to begin with tonight's institutional question, which reads as follows:
"Mr. LaRouche, the series of Chinese and BRICS initiatives around the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the AIIB, the BRICS New Development Bank, the Silk Road Fund, etc. has sparked a global debate over the economic future of the planet. This issue was highlighted when, during the APEC summit in Beijing last year, China's President Xi Jinping invited the United States to join the AIIB. Now, in the last 48 hours, the British have announced their intention to join the AIIB, and the Obama Administration immediately came out attacking the British decision.
"You, Mr. LaRouche, have long highlighted the bankruptcy of the trans-Atlantic financial system, which is a further factor highlighting the significance of the BRICS initiatives. Mr. LaRouche, in your view, what is the appropriate U.S. role in Eurasian development?"
So, I'd like to ask Jeff to come to the podium to deliver Mr. LaRouche's response.
JEFFREY STEINBERG: The first thing that Mr. LaRouche said in response to this question was that you've got to immediately cancel every policy associated with the last two Presidencies, namely the Presidency of George W. Bush and the current Presidency of Barack Obama. And we've got to start by going back to the policies that were last reflected in the period of the Clinton Presidency, prior to the time that the British Monarchy launched and successfully carried out the operation to destroy the Clinton Presidency in its final several years. And of course, the hallmark and motive behind that action initiated by the British Crown, carried out by people like Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, was the fact that in response to the 1997-1998 crisis that began in Asia but was in fact a manifestation of the beginnings of the breakdown of the entire global financial system, President Clinton at that time began explicitly talking about a major overhaul of the world financial architecture.
And during that period, Mr. LaRouche was already deeply involved in promoting the need for a New Bretton Woods conference, a return to some of the cornerstone principles of Franklin Roosevelt as he envisioned the revitalization of the world economy and the restructuring of the global financial system in 1944, as the Second World War was clearly about to be a victory for the Allied forces.
Now, I want to begin, however, by referencing a number of developments over the last several days that both Lyndon and Helga LaRouche consider to be extremely significant, and you'll see where they very much relate to the question that we're dealing with right now.
Over the past several days, you've had three leading elder statesmen, if you will—experienced politicians from the United States and Western Europe, particularly Germany—coming out with dramatic statements attacking the entire underpinning of the policies coming out of the Obama Administration.
First of all, you have former Maryland Governor, former Baltimore Mayor as well, Martin O'Malley, who has basically thrown his hat into the ring as a candidate for the Democratic Presidential nomination, and has been touring the country, and has given a series of interviews on major TV shows as well. He was out in Iowa, he'll be in New Hampshire, and he was interviewed on MSNBC on Thursday morning. And the fundamental point that he made, is that the defining issue for the 2016 Presidential elections is the reinstatement of Glass-Steagall.
Now, of course, the 2016 Presidential elections are a long way off, but the fact is that today, now, at this moment, at this critical moment, putting the issue of Glass-Steagall immediately back on the table is absolutely central to any kind of productive engagement that the United States can have in Eurasia, in the Asia-Pacific region, and frankly here in the United States as well, where there is absolutely no economic recovery, and we are at a point where once again the too-big-to-fail banks are on the verge of a major blowout.
I want to read a few quotes from O'Malley, and then also reference some of the recent comments by two leading senior German statesmen, the current German Foreign Minister Steinmeier, and also the former German Chancellor and very clearly qualified elder statesman Helmut Schmidt, who is 92 or 93 years old, but still extremely vocal and active.
So, first, with Martin O'Malley. He was interviewed, as I said, yesterday morning on MSNBC, and he was asked to address some of the leading issues that he considers vital for the future of the country. He said, and this is a quote:
"Our problems are not going to solve themselves. Many of the things that we did to disconnect the hard work of American workers from the productivity of corporations are things that we did. So these are things we brought upon ourselves. We'd like to pretend that the economy blew in here on some sort of Gulf Stream or Jet Stream. But the fact is, we make these rules. And we can make better rules in order to restore that link between hard work and the opportunity to get ahead....
"One thing that would [be vital—JS], would be to re-instate Glass-Steagall. For 70 years, we prevented banks from gambling with our money, and wrecking our economy and running roughshod over the common good that we share as a people; and having a stable and good economy. Everybody—I mean on both sides of the aisle—I mean, so many people say we should do that, and yet it remains undone. And some people in my own party are holding themselves out as promoting some sort of a Dodd-Frank Lite—'We don't want to offend anyone on Wall Street, so let us not talk honestly about how we can rein in this excessive behavior.'
"Because one of the things we haven't talked about too much, is that for all of the pain from the home foreclosures and the job losses, the concentration of wealth after each of these last two busts on the stock market actually increased! In other words, while other people lost homes, the people at the top came out even further ahead."
So, Mr. LaRouche emphasized that there should be total support—active, aggressive support for the ideas that O'Malley has injected into this early phase of the Presidential debate. The bottom line is that Congress needs to pass Glass-Steagall immediately. It's the only measure that will adequately deal with the looming blowout of the entire trans-Atlantic system. And only by reinstating Glass-Steagall now, can we put the United States in the position to play a constructive role in the new paradigm of economic development that has been put forward under Chinese leadership in particular by the BRICS countries.
So, the United States, yes, must join the BRICS. But in order to do that, we must first repudiate all of the ongoing policies that are carry-overs from the Bush-Cheney Administration in through the Obama Administration. If we don't do that, we are facing the imminent prospect of global war, even thermonuclear war.
And these were the issues that were addressed over the last several days by German Foreign Minister Steinmeier and by former Chancellor Helmut Schmidt. Now, again I've got some relevant quotes here from both of them. Steinmeier was here in Washington yesterday, and spoke at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. He said,
"It is obvious to me that" the continuation and expansion of U.S. and European sanctions against Russia and the eastern Ukrainians "would expand the conflict, and would move the crisis to a new phase and beyond the point of no return.... What we need," he said, "is strategic patience. If we insist on resolving the crisis immediately, we may set it back. As often in diplomacy, a crisis can start in days, but it may require decades to end."
He was not only referring to the threat of sanctions, but he was referring as well to the continuing U.S. plans to provide lethal aid to the Ukrainian government—an action that would actually escalate the bloodshed. And of course the problem that very few people in the West are willing to address, is the Victoria Nuland problem: the fact that we have installed a government that is rife with neo-Nazis from the Bandera movement into power in Kiev, and they are the driving force behind the war danger. To put weapons, even so-called "defensive" weapons, into their hands would be a recipe for expanding the war and leading almost inexorably to a direct U.S.-Russia confrontation, and that would mean thermonuclear war.
So, Steinmeier continued. He said,
"We must be aware that Russia raises in some countries of Europe some long historical memories which we have to understand. But Russia will always be our biggest neighbor and German foreign policy can only work in and through Europe."
So, he was very clear, and Helmut Schmidt was even clearer. Schmidt gave an interview to the widely-read German tabloid newspaper Bild-Zeitung, and subsequently published a bylined article in the much more prestigious weekly publication out of his home-down of Hamburg, Die Zeit. In Bild-Zeitung, Helmut Schmidt warned that if the West failed to note Putin's real concerns—his legitimate concerns—the conflict in Ukraine could escalate "even into a real hot war." He said Putin is less concerned about Ukraine, Poland, or Lithuania, than about neighbors China, Pakistan, Central Asia, and that basically this provocation against Putin is leading the world in a very dangerous direction.
Now, I think, more broadly what we're seeing is an emergence of certain leading senior figures in the trans-Atlantic establishment who have genuine diplomatic experience in the pre-Bush, pre-Obama period, and who are coming out now, because they see the incompetence and insanity coming from this Administration and from certain quarters in Europe, that must be defeated and must be stopped.
Mr. LaRouche emphasized that we've reached the point where there can no longer be a toleration for the continuation of the policies of the Obama Administration, which, in all crucial strategic areas, have been actually a continuation of the war policies of the Bush-Cheney Administration that preceded Obama. In the case of Obama, immediate impeachment is the only solution. Otherwise, people are running the risk that a continuation of this Administration represents a threat of general war, even thermonuclear war.
So, those are some of the critical factors. Yes, the United States can play an enormously constructive role in the Asia-Pacific region, in Eurasia more broadly, but it means a complete abandonment of the policies that have dominated Washington, both in the Executive branch and on Capitol Hill, for the last 14 years—really the last 16 years, because the end of the Clinton Presidency really can be dated back to 1998, when the British Monarchy unleashed an all-out assault which led to Clinton's impeachment and essentially the curtailing of exactly the kind of direction that Clinton was moving in in a step-by-step fashion when he talked about the need for a "new global financial architecture."
So, we've got to go back to that, and the first step is cancelling all of the Bush and Obama policies, and removing Obama from office before we go any steps further down the path to direct confrontation with Russia.
BEETS: So, by way of a follow-up question, I'd like to pick up on two aspects of what you just addressed, Jeff, the first being more on the role of these elder statesmen, and the second being the issue of Bill Clinton.
Now, on the first—the issue of the senior officials such as Steinmeier and Schmidt in Germany, their action of weighing in and intervening into the world strategic situation in the way that they have—there's obviously been a pattern of this over the past few weeks, not in Germany only, but emphatically coming from the United States. For example, on Feb. 11th, Jack Matlock, the former ambassador to the Soviet Union under President Reagan, warned in a speech in Washington, D.C. emphatically against the lie that Russia is nothing but a regional power to be dealt with as such, and also against the current Administration's policies, and said emphatically that these will lead to nothing but a new war. A similar warning came from two former Senators just a few weeks prior to that, Sen. Sam Nunn and Richard Lugar, who in 1991 together authored the legislation for U.S.-Russian cooperation in securing our two nations' nuclear arsenals. A similar warning also came from William Polk, who is a veteran of the State Department, and who served as a member of President John F. Kennedy's three-man crisis-management team during the Cuban Missile Crisis, and Polk warns that we as a nation are walking into just such a Cuban Missile Crisis, in reverse, today.
Now in our discussion earlier today with Mr. LaRouche, he underscored what has been expressed by some of these senior circles in the United States, as an extremely dangerous lack of understanding on the part of the younger generations, meaning the generations that are currently in positions of power, and additionally, the generations which are upcoming and preparing to take positions of power.
So I'd like to ask you to elaborate on that. But also in that context, I'd also like to ask you to address something which is not at all unrelated, which is what was done to President Clinton. And again, Mr. LaRouche was very emphatic about the fact that the attack on Clinton, and the demotion of President Clinton, was directed by the British Empire, and was a key inflection point in bringing us up to where we are today. So Jeff, I'd ask if you could develop that point further, since I think a lot of our viewers may not be familiar with that history in detail.
STEINBERG: As I said a few moments ago, for all intents and purposes, the British Monarchy, using a well-known asset, ostensibly deployed into Washington as a journalist, but really a high-level intelligence operative on behalf of the British Crown, named Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, was deployed to bring down the Clinton Presidency, and it didn't begin in 1998, it began a number of years earlier. Virtually as soon as President Clinton took office, he immediately became a target. People may remember that at one point, around 1995, there were very serious and credible threats to President Clinton and to the First Family. In fact, a small plane crashed into one of the windows of the White House. There were snipers directing fire at the White House.
There was a genuine freak-out over the fact that Clinton had been elected President. It was during the early years of the Clinton Presidency, that Lyndon LaRouche was let out of jail. Had George H.W. Bush been re-elected in 1992, there is no doubt whatsoever that Mr. LaRouche would have remained in jail, the victim of what Ramsey Clark called one of the biggest political frame-ups that he had ever seen.
So Clinton for many reasons stood out as a President who had both the intellectual capacity and the understanding of the nature of the British Empire and the Wall Street problem, to take action, particularly as the financial system began to go through the first series of major shocks, with the 1997-1998 crises that nominally took place in Asian countries — you had Malaysia, you had South Korea, and ultimately, in 1998, the major default crisis in Russia; but these were all symptomatic of the fact that the entire de-regulated global financial system had been effectively turned into one gigantic gambling den.
And in 1998, not only did President Clinton address a meeting at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York — sort of, if you will, going into the belly of the Wall Street beast — and announcing that he was looking at measures that would curb the flow of short-term capital that was purely speculative, and was wreaking havoc on many critical countries around the globe. When he delivered that speech, and then followed it up by announcing that he was forming a group of countries to deliberate on a new economic and financial order, what became the Group of 22 — it was a combination of advance-sector and leading developing-sector countries that did in fact have a series of meetings in Washington, D.C. — all of that represented an escalation-point for the British Crown to go all-out to bring down the Clinton Presidency.
But it's important to understand, what was the motive, what was the issue behind which that attack was launched. Forget about Monica Lewinsky and all of the sort of stories that will begin to be churned up again, now for fairly obvious reasons as we go into the next Presidential cycle. The British targetted President Clinton for one and only one reason. He represented the potential for a U.S. President to return back to the kinds of policies that were last seen in the United States with Franklin Roosevelt, and then we saw glimmers of a return to those policies again in the thousand days of the John F. Kennedy Presidency.
Clinton was no fan of the British. He made very early on, that he was far more interested in developing a clear strategic partnership with Germany, and in fact he had a series of meetings with German Chancellor Helmut Kohl, and later Gerhard Schröder, that represented an impulse towards forming a different set of relations.
Now in reviewing this and discussing this, one of the points that Mr. LaRouche made this afternoon, is that there is a clear reference point in recent European history, for the kinds of policies that are necessary if we are going to get ourselves out of this economic and war-danger mess that we're in very deeply right now. You have to go back to Europe of the 1950s and '60s — the period when you had Charles de Gaulle in power in France, when you had Konrad Adenauer in Germany, and when you had first Eisenhower but then more importantly John Kennedy in the United States. There was a clear commitment on the part of these leaders for not only an economic revival, but for a policy that would bring an immediate end to the Cold War. De Gaulle famously talked about one integrated Europe from the Atlantic to the Urals — in other words, a Europe that incorporated Russia fully as a leading strategic partner, and as an integral part of European policy and European culture.
So, unfortunately there are very few leading politicians today who are young and active figures, who have even a glimmer of those policies and of the kinds of personalities of leadership that we had at that time.
So what we're dealing with right now, is a crisis that has a number of dimensions. One of the dimensions is the immediate crisis — the war danger, the imminent collapse of the trans-Atlantic financial system. And we've seen in the statements by Helmut Schmidt, by Steinmeier, by O'Malley, by some of the other elder diplomats that Megan just cited, and invoking of those policies.
But there's a deeper issue as well. The current generation of new, emerging political leaders, and even more so, the generation that will step into those positions 20 or 20 years from now, is pathetically undereducated, has no sense of world history, of world culture, and on a much more profound level, really does not understand what it is that differentiates man from the beasts. And so this is an issue that is of profound concern to Mr. LaRouche and for starters, if we're going to get anywhere in terms of bringing the United States back into harmony with the BRICS process and with any potential, viable future for mankind, we've got to start by returning to the point, prior to the British Empire's takedown of the Clinton Presidency.
I should say that, interestingly, in an interview that O'Malley gave today to Salon magazine, he noted that he had had a number of discussions with Bill Clinton and that Bill Clinton, he said, was well aware, that after his Presidency had been virtually taken away from him, one of the worst mistakes that he had made under the gun of the British Empire attack, was allowing the repeal of Glass-Steagall. And of course, it was largely an action of Wall Street and an action of the Congress, where the real heart of that treachery occurred. But it's notable that that O'Malley specifically says, ironically, both Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich have stated to him directly, that the worst mistake was the repeal of Glass-Steagall.
So let's start by going back, to reinstating Glass-Steagall immediately, and just simply looking to reverse and negate every significant policy that occurred in the aftermath of that.
Of course, Clinton remained in office through till January of 2001, and I think it's important to remember another incident. Clinton very much wanted to establish a solid foundation of relations between the United States and Russia. And when Mr [yevgeni]. Primakov was briefly the Prime Minister of Russia in 1999, President Clinton very much wanted to have a face-to-face meeting with Primakov. Prior to that he had maintained a certain dialogue with Mr. LaRouche about Russian policy which was an extremely important background process. But the actual management day to day of the U.S.-Russian relationship was unfortunately in the hands of Al Gore and Viktor Chernomyrdin, who had been previously the prime minister of Russia.
So with Primakov's accession to Prime Minister, it afforded an opportunity for a genuine and fundamental reset of the U.S.-Russia relationship, and President Clinton very much wanted to pursue that opportunity. And unfortunately, as Primakov literally was in the air, flying from Moscow to Washington, Vice President Gore got Primakov on the phone and said, we are about to start bombing Serbia, and I suspect you will not want to be on American soil when that happens. And literally, Primakov's plane was turned around.
He went back to Moscow, and the efforts of President Clinton to restore some semblance of U.S.-Russian genuine cooperation were scuttled. I think that's indicative of the fact that he no longer was really in possession of his own Presidency at that point. And that's the period of the repeal of Glass-Steagall. And so, back to 1998, back to that effort to establish a new, just world economic order.
Today, we are far more advanced in that process because of the initiatives coming out of China and the other BRICS countries. So let's realign the United States with that process and then we've got to really address the deeper issue of how are we going to educate the never several generations of leaders, so we don't find ourselves continuously facing a profound crisis that could be literally a crisis of extinction for mankind.
BEETS: Well, I think that what you just brought up about the absolute urgency of reversing the degeneration in the thinking of our citizens, really begins to get at the more fundamental issue of the crisis in civilization itself, which is the loss of identity within mankind, and particularly the citizens of the United States of the sense of the difference between man and beast.
Now, this past Wednesday, we had on the weekly New Paradigm Show, which Mr. LaRouche placed a certain emphasis on, because, as he put it in discussion later that day, it provided "a different view of things which is crucially different than most people would assume." Mr. LaRouche said, "The problem is the idiocy of presuming that mankind is an animal. Practically all assumptions made in science and in other circles by and large, define mankind as nothing but another animal, perhaps a more elegant animal, perhaps a more talented animal, but still, a mere animal. And most people of the United States live as animals, not as human beings. That's the crucial problem. That is the key to the demoralization of the American citizen, that they believe that they have to triumph as animals, or by an animal form of existence."
I'd like to invite Jason to the podium to give him a chance to address this.
JASON ROSS: Thanks. There's a couple of ways to get at this, and let bring up what those two are, and then we'll pursue one of them. In looking at what it is that distinguishes human being beings from animals, we can take the approach of looking at the behavior of the human species as a phenomenon. In other words, as we study physics, as we study biology, we can study what is the human species do, how does it behave? We can look at it as if from the outside, even though, of course, we're not outside ourselves. That's one aspect.
The other aspect is of getting inside what the process is, whereby human beings create this uniquely human character; getting inside that process of making a discovery. So about a month ago on this show, we went through an example of Kepler and how he had created a new concept. This time we're going to take the other side of things, and look at what the human species does, from Vernadsky's standpoint, to understand what is it that most characterizes the species.
So, there's a couple of different ways of this connection between mankind and the universe, to be explored. In one respect, you could look at what occurs in the work of a scientist. This is a person who, if they're successful at discovering something new, has created a new understanding about the universe that changes our power in it, allows us to do new things, has increased our understanding. They've discovered something. They've directly, through the use of their mind, come into coherence, with a new aspect of how the universe operates, an aspect that the mind can understand.
If there wasn't a coherence between our minds and the universe, then how could thoughts have any power over it? The fact that we change how we live from generation to generation, I think, makes it very clear that the power of the mind is in coherence with an actual physical principle in nature. If not, how would it have an effect?
Another aspect: Look at political leaders. We've been looking recently, as Megan went through last week, in the case of Joan of Arc, who — she didn't have votes, she didn't have a political position, she didn't have a powerful lobbying firm, she didn't receive large amounts of corporate contributions, you know, she didn't do any of these things. But as a person who made a decision to be the person who was going to make sure that France was saved from the English, at that time, she changed history.
She was a person. Dr. Martin Luther King, was a person. You are a person. Lyndon LaRouche is a person. In all of these cases, although there are backgrounds to them; take the case of LaRouche, for example — he didn't have a movement, he didn't just come out of the blue. After World War II, he made a decision based on what he recognized was his unique knowledge about the economy, and the responsibility that went with, and that also drove that discovery, to make sure that the U.S. didn't go down a track which he recognized very early on, was going to be one of an economic collapse and as he later saw, would create fascism inside the United States.
He did it, as an individual person, he's changed history. Joan of Arc changed history. Martin Luther King changed history. Individual people can reshape the direction that the world goes.
Now, individuals wanting to do that today, of course it would be foolish to ignore the possibilities of what's been created and just go off on their own; but individual human beings are able to shape the direction of humanity, just as we see in science, people are able to change the direction of humanity by increasing our power in nature.
So, let's take a look and focus now, on the personalities and world, of Vernadsky and of Cusa.
Vladimir Vernadsky was a Russian-Ukrainian scientist, who regulars to our website I think are somewhat familiar with. He lived around the time of the late 1800s through into World War II. And he was adamant that the cosmos of Newton was holding thought back. What he meant by that, and he pointed it out in detail, was how Isaac Newton had laid out some groundwork ideas for science. One of them was there was a universe outside of us, and then there was us, who are investigating it, and that there was an independence between them. Although our minds might understand the universe, they didn't actually exist in it, there was a distinction.
The other aspects of what he had done, were to take concepts that were alive before and kill them: Two in particular, those of space and time, which Newton turned, instead of having any characteristics of their own, to basically being a box in which things occur — space; and time which flows on without any characteristics of its own.
So Vernadsky pointed out the possibility of making discoveries that were biological discoveries, of making discoveries that where about how the human species operated, and that science should be free to make those kinds of breakthroughs, develop those kinds of concepts without feeling obliged to explain them in terms of chemistry, something like that.
So I'll give an example, and there's much more on this on the show from Wednesday, as Megan had said, so this won't be complete or anything; but in a very provocative paper Vernadsky wrote in 1930, called The Study of Life and the New Physics, he points out how the concepts of space, time, energy and matter are all different for a scientist in the year 1929, than they had been in the year 1900. Vernadsky asks, "are these concepts enough to explain everything?" and also, as he's pointed out, these concepts aren't fixed, and we shouldn't expect them to remain fixed into the future as well.
To fill that out a bit, the work of Einstein removed the independence of space and time. Einstein showed that not only was space not flat, it was actually curved, due to gravitational effects; he showed that processes in time could unfold at different rates depending on the motion of two different systems; and he showed that there was no independence between time and space. There's no "moment in time" that is the same moment in time across all of space.
He gave examples with moving trains and things like this, which showed that the idea of whether two things were at the same time, depended upon the motion of who it was that was trying to determine that. That two things could be at the same time for one person and yet appear to be at different times to another observer.
Newton was out the window.
So what this means — we don't need to dwell on the specifics of what Einstein had done, but Vernadsky's point about this is that what seemed to be the most basic concepts you could even imagine, space and time, had totally different meanings after a period of only 30 years!
He brought up how energy and matter had totally changed their meanings over 30 years. Again thanks to the work of Einstein and Max Planck, energy and matter were no longer separate. Einstein's famous formula e=mc 2 described a process that we see in nuclear physics, where mass and energy can be turned into each other: That's what occurs in nuclear power. We found out that energy came in pieces. This is from the work of Planck and Einstein, again.
So, if the most basic concepts that we use to understand things are changing over time, what does it mean to develop new knowledge? It doesn't mean to create a new idea, that can be expressed in the world that already exists, because what if the language itself has to change, as these words, space, time, energy and matter have already changed?
So I think that the very important point that Vernadsky's getting at with this, is that these concepts, in one way reflect things about the universe outside of us, but also their mental apparatus. There's the scientific apparatus of the mind, there are tools that we use to change our power over nature, to do new things, to use nuclear power, to use electricity, etc. That these thoughts, these discoveries, don't occur in the abstract. They don't occur in a sort of spaceless time. They occur in the work of human beings, they're made by human minds. Science is a human thing. It doesn't occur out there on its own. People make it happen.
So, one of the other implications of this, is that, although there's no independence between space and time any more, there's still, in the process of discovery, a way to step outside of that — let's get back to that in a minute.
First, let's say a couple of things about Nicholas of Cusa. Now, Cusa, who lived in the 1400s, he did it all, really: He created modern science, he was working with the Vatican on an attempt to bridge the separation between the churches, between the Orthodox Churches and the Church of Rome, and in doing this work, he took issue with, and really demolished, the central feature of Aristotle's thinking. That central feature, that feature of logic, was that you can't have opposites. Something can't both be a certain way and not be that way at the same time. You can't have A and not-A. It's one or the other.
And Cusa developed why it was that in any uniquely human thought, any new thought, that concept was always violated. He did it first by looking at God, and expressing how our ability to understand God required us to develop specific ways that we didn't understand that. He wrote that, it was by bringing people to a very specific kind of darkness, that you would have an idea of what the light was.
To give just a couple of examples, he remarked that God was a maximum, which nothing was opposed, not even a minimum. What does that mean? A light to which darkness is not opposed. What's that?
So, by combining opposites, a new idea can be created, and that's what Johannes Kepler had done, by showing how opposite interpretations of geometry forced astronomy into physics, and not trying to explain everything in terms of math and circles and geometry.
It's what Cusa had used in his work on uniting the religions, in his work On the Peace of Faith, he expressed his belief that rather than fighting among the different rites of various religions, that the true religion could express itself — let me get this quote — that the truest religion could express itself in a way that would be clear, based on reason itself, that it should be reasonable that we should be able to come to understand these things.
So, I'd like to not say much more about this. It's difficult to go through the whole thing in a short period of time, and I refer people also to Wednesday; but I think it's very important to point out that this characteristic of ourselves, of being about to create things that artificial intelligence could never create: for example, what Kepler had done, basically, he was asked a question and he tried to answer the question that other astronomers tried to answer, what is the eccentricity of Mars's orbit? How far away are all these points from each other, how big are the circles, etc? He showed that that didn't have an answer, and that it couldn't.
How would a computer asked that question, reveal to the programmer, that they should think in a different way? And then provide an entirely new concept and a language that it didn't have to express anything with? It's not possible.
So this distinction between human beings and computers is definitely challenged today by people who are fretting about artificial intelligence taking over — you know, robots becoming more intelligent than people, like this is going to occur tomorrow and it's going to be terrible, because the robots'll realize they don't need us, etc. You really don't have to worry about those things! It can't possibly happen.
What makes people susceptible to those kinds of worries is not having an idea of what discovery is in the first place, so you think a computer might even be able to do it.
So, the joy of discovery, of going back through the work of these people, of working on music, of really getting into great art, you get a sense that's very refreshing, not just in the emotional sense of having a great joy in doing, but also it enlivens in the mind that sense of universality that we all have in common as people, both across space and across time.
You know, Lyndon LaRouche speaks about a "simultaneity of eternity." Think about that, the "simultaneity of eternity," that all moments in the past and the future somehow have a simultaneity. Cusa spoke about a "timeless time" in the experience of the human being, where as we take on historical challenges, as we take on scientific challenges, as we work on things of this sort, we recognize a universality in sharing things not only with people in different parts of the world, we recognize we're all human; the feeling of discovery isn't something that has a particular — it has a cultural flavor to it, but that knowledge that exists now as a power, is something certainly universal to all people.
And it also takes us out of time. When we do that, we're in the same time as Kepler, we're in the same time, in the same direction as Ben Franklin, for example.
I'd like to read the conclusion of the ending of a paper — you'll find
"Contrary to Aristotle's view that opposites could not co-exist, or the logician's view that all conclusions exist inherently in the original premises, Cusa maintained the primacy of the process of discovery itself, whereby contradictions drive the mind to hypothesize a new concept, not derivable from the past—a conclusion that defies the premises, rather than following from them. Cusa held that it was through this process, of knowing through specific ignorance, that one could come the closest to seeing God. Resolving paradoxes through developing new metaphors for understanding is not a technique for arriving at physical truths: this process is the truest substance of nature."
As we saw, there isn't an actual "space" it makes sense to talk about, there isn't an actual "time" that makes sense to talk about in nature. Those concepts had changed in just three decades at the beginning of the last century.
"Every human being is born with the potential to apply this process of discovery: to exist in the efficient immortality of discovering principles and applying them for the betterment of society, where betterment is seen in increasing the capability of fellow people to participate in this most characteristically human of behaviors.
"The creation of such a society, free from the oligarchism that currently threatens global thermonuclear warfare, is the most beautiful, the most human, and the most urgently pressing task facing mankind today."
And I hope it's a task that we'll all be taking up.
BEETS: Thank you very much Jason. And with that, I'd like bring a conclusion to tonight's broadcast. I'd like to thank both Jeff and Jason for joining me here, tonight. Thank you all for watching. Stay tuned to larouchepac.com. Good night.