“The writing down of history turned out to be a self-perpetuating activity. Anytime kids asked questions, adults would yell, ‘READ THE FUCKING MANUAL!’ (later shortened to ‘BECAUSE I SAID SO’). These kids, when they grew up, tended to reproduce this behavior. This was called culture.”
“Armed with priestly justifications, and supported by good people, political leaders could finally begin going beyond mere intentions and retcons and actually begin inventing history. They were no longer limited to merely encountering it in the form of unpleasant surprises, and reacting to it on an improvised case-by-case basis. The ability to separately define ‘good’ and ‘people’ allowed history writing to become truly predictable, proactive, scalable and deployable to large populations. Sometimes history could even be written before it happened.”
Quotes from Venkatesh Rao’s very entertaining satirical history of history.