Book Review by Michael McKay
Finally! Entertainment with Reality Economics!
You may be, like me, near the end of your rope with Movies, TV and “entertainment” that as a persistent basic premise show Capitalists as ‘Evil Doer’s’ rather than potential upholders of Righteousness, Peace and Prosperity.
Usually added to the common drek we’re exposed to are those wonderful Government Saviors who selflessly protect us mere CITIZEN-WEAKLINGS from all those Evil Doers out there.
Of course this plays well to the Socialist-Fear-Based-Crowd and all others who have so long ago swallowed the propaganda to move along and get along and whatever you do, don’t try to learn Reality Economics or Reality History.
Enter Jack England’s new (first!) novel “Sword of Marathon”.
Starting out in Ancient Northern Europe and then onward – in pure adventure style – to Ancient Greece and Persia, our young hero-brothers Luke (whose given name is Ludwig) and Hal start out as simple Amber traders and progress through clashes, trials, trysts and epic climatic battles learning how to be men and how to be – inspiringly – more human as well.
Some of you may have found libertarianism through an early reading of Ayn Rand or Robert Heinlein, like I did. These books focused on the individual-as-special and thus taught why we all, individually, deserve respect.
Some may have been more lucky and, against the odds, found Garret’s The Driver (here), Russell’s The Great Explosion (still hard to find), or – if you were supremely lucky – Henry Hazlitt’s Time Will Run Back (here and here). I recall this jewel from Hazlitt’s introduction to his book:
“capitalism is merely a name for freedom in the economic sphere”
This comment has been a compass for me ever since.
Some had the bejesus scared out of you by the dystopias of Orwell’s 1984, Rand’s Anthem or Ira Levin’s This Perfect Day.
None of you are ready for the delight you are about to find in England’s fresh approach to introducing Sanity and Reality into the conversation, amazingly even while presenting what in largest part, is a fantasy adventure novel.
With a delicate and confident hand England sneaks up on you and provides a first rate page blazing adventure novel that every so often pauses for a thoughtful sentence or two and shows us a deeper understanding of our world today as well as of ancient times.
– Regarding the lust for power that leads to tyranny:
“Once a man succumbs to the pressures of ordering others around the vice always grows stronger over time. This is unlike most other vices, which fade away with age.”
– Showing an accurate understanding of how State Power, Taxation and Militarism are intimately interlinked:
“[Emperors] need to suck in ever more wealth to keep the whole show moving. His armies and fleets consume silver and gold by the ton. Without the conquest of new territories, those unleashed forces would soon turn in and destroy him instead.”
– On the inevitability of the corruption of Democracy and on the mindless complicity of “voting”.
“The tyrant with the most freemen behind him wins the contest. They usually do this by promising to rob one group of voters on behalf of all the other groups of voters. Soon, everyone is being robbed by everyone else, with two similar-sized voting groups who end up taking turns to steal from each other, with their secretly co-operating leaders getting ever-richer in the process.”
Remember; I told you that England sneaks up on you with these and other fascinating tidbits, like how the Banks and Bankers back then were really the Temples and Trusted Priests.
Fascinating Tidbits like this only deepened the hook in me.
The way England writes is like a river that is ever increasing in speed, strength and cross currents until I, the swimmer, am trapped and I start missing sleep, being late for appointments and otherwise keep people (that I shouldn’t) waiting while I am entranced in his book.
I cannot wait to see this made into a Movie – something I can truly enjoy and not have to feign ignorance to get through.
Damn Good Read…and very welcome indeed.
You will love it.
Available on Amazon.com in print and for kindle: