君臣 之 礼 [Chaos Between Rulers and Officials]

君臣 之 礼 [Chaos between rulers and officials]…the endless lament about those who presume to govern us:

乌呼! 君臣 之 礼 既 坏 矣, 则 天下 以 智力 相 雄 长, 遂 使 圣贤 之后 为 诸侯 者, 社稷 无不 泯 绝, 生民 之类 糜 灭 几 尽, 岂不 哀哉![Sima Kuang 司马光 (2012-11-23). Comprehensive Mirror 资治通鉴(1) (Kindle Locations 42-43).  . Kindle Edition.]

More subtle than the commonly criticized tendency of the powerful to believe that the people exist for their pleasure, rather than that they serve for the people’s benefit, is the cancerous corruption of competition between the leader and the elite—the high officials, local barons, major CEO’s, and generally the super-rich. The elite always strive to select, manipulate, and bribe the leader. Any leader with a spine will naturally struggle for independence, which may serendipitously lead to some benefit for the oppressed if not forgotten masses…albeit perhaps only after centuries (e.g., the Magna Carta contest opening the door to democracy) or to the people becoming grass under the feet of political elephants. This corrupt and self-serving contest of elephants seems independent of time and culture.

“Chaos between rulers and officials!”The endless lament about those who presume to govern us:

乌呼! 君臣 之 礼 既 坏 矣, 则 天下 以 智力 相 雄 长, 遂 使 圣贤 之后 为 诸侯 者, 社稷 无不 泯 绝, 生民 之类 糜 灭 几 尽, 岂不 哀哉![Sima Kuang 司马光 (2012-11-23). Comprehensive Mirror 资治通鉴(1) (Kindle Locations 42-43).  . Kindle Edition.]

More subtle than the commonly criticized tendency of the powerful to believe that the people exist for their pleasure, rather than that they serve for the people’s benefit, is the cancerous corruption of competition between the leader and the elite—the high officials, local barons, major CEO’s, and generally the super-rich. The elite always strive to select, manipulate, and bribe the leader. Any leader with a spine will naturally struggle for independence, which may serendipitously lead to some benefit for the oppressed if not forgotten masses…albeit perhaps only after centuries (e.g., the Magna Carta contest opening the door to democracy) or to the people becoming grass under the feet of political elephants. This corrupt and self-serving contest of elephants seems independent of time and culture.

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