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Civilization is an agreement among most of the people in a given area to not flip the fuck out and slaughter each other. Even those who are no strangers to love and don't know the rules.
More formally, Civilization is characterized by the struggle to eliminate intelligence, also called Progress.
Consequently, civilization is not popular with many young people, who decide to walk around like jackasses with their pants hanging down and pieces of metal stuck where metal really ought not be. They often listen to annoying music, like Chris Brown, or that Souldjah Boy shit.
However, Education has been used with great efficiency to eradicate intelligence amongst children and teenagers, and whatever residue is left is dealt in modern times through Leadership and other Management Science disciplines.
Civilization is based on agriculture. Prior to agriculture Man lived in a state of nature as a nomadic hunter gatherer. When he had depleted the food groups in one area he would just move on to the next, leaving the first area to regrow its food groups for a later "harvesting." Then Man said, "Enough with all this walking! Lets pen up our favorite food animals so when we want to eat one we won't have to chase it. And we'll grow plants to feed the animals." Woman knew better, but then as now no one listened.
As settled agriculturalists those people were well on the road to civilization. With a steady supply of food their numbers soon increased and they were able to support specialists to make luxury products no one could do without as soon as they were invented. Everyone had plenty of everything and no one was above or below anyone else- they weren't fully civilized yet.
Then came the raiders. They swooped in from the scenery itself, killing, burning and looting. The settled peoples scattered to survive. After the raiders were gone they returned to rebuild, replant and regrow. Once this was done, the raiders came again. And again and again; as soon as they had restored all they lost, the nomads were there to take it.
One day the nomads said, "Enough with all this riding! Lets pen up our victims so when we want to loot them we won't have to chase them. And instead of taking everything and killing them lets just take a little at a time, so instead of raiding them every few years we can tax them year-round."
Then they built high walls around the settlements and said, "It is for your protection." Also they moved into the biggest, nicest houses, which was also, "for your protection" and began making laws and dispensing justice, which was "for your protection" as well, though by this time "for your protection" clearly meant "for your protection from us."
Thereafter the people lived crowded within stone walls and oppressed by the administration of the nomads and their extortion racket. Now at last civilization had begun.
Civilization began in Ancient Europe around 1918 AD. Two guys, This Guy(America) and That Guy(Germany) were sitting on their mud huts whacking each other on the head, and That Guy decided to take his anger out on the helpless not-at-all racist Germany.
That Guy said to This Guy, "Did you ever notice our bodies don't hurt so much when we DON'T press these little trigger-thinger-maggigers when pointed at each other?"
That Guy responded, "No shit! You're right", but strangely, they continued the ritual without knowledge one can only take a certain amount of damage before they start to see pretty rainbows. duh.............. jackasses.
edit Marriage and Infidelity
Civilization further expanded as This Guy and That Guy realized other things worked better if they didn't always treat each other like shit.
For example, That Guy was pounding This Guy's Old Lady for several years. This Guy would catch his wife with That Guy, beat the shit out of That Guy, and then madly hate fuck his old lady until she was disabled that she couldn't do the dishes, even with a proper beating.
This became a biohazard in the This household.
Then one day, That Guy came over to apologize (actually a cover for getting at This Guy's wife, again).
This Guy knew why he was there, and said, "Dude, seriously, if you wouldn't bang my wife, our house would probably smell better, because then she'd probably recover from all the hate fucking and the beatings."
That Guy agreed, "Your house does smell like ass."
In truth, That Guy was tiring of fucking a woman who smelled like garbage and with bruises all over her.
Once more, civilization triumphed and the dishes were cleaned a week later.
As civilization spread, it became apparent that being civilized didn't always get it done.
This Guy and That Guy sat down, and concluded that an organized effort would probably be more productive.
Thus began the first war.
These People, instead of stealing Those People's cows, decided to enter Those People's town. They burned down all the shanties, raped the woman, raped the men, and killed the men. They thought about killing the women, but then This Guy said to That Guy, "Remember how you could never get some good ass and were banging my wife?"
Thus, war also gave rise to sex slaves, still one of the more popular aspects of civilization.
As war became totally popular and the leading employer of people on This Planet, everything else languished.
This Guy, being a sharp dude, realized there was huge wealth waiting to be made by NOT going to war. Instead, he let That Guy be drafted, while he stayed home and sold This Government weapons to help That Guy fight the war.
Thus, civilization gave rise to the economy.
edit What's Happened Since
History has since born out a mixed record for civilization. On the one hand you had Nazis which are way cool and make it easy for screen writers to model bad guys against a caricature of evil. On the other hand, you have the Confederacy; kind of a low point for civilization, what with all the ragged beards and fat-based fat products being eaten.
edit Much Later
edit Quotes on civilization
“England spread civilization through the seven seas, and now it is coming back to hunt us!”
“You have found an advanced civilization. Build city, Y or N?”
“Civilized my ass!”
“The only thing that is good about civilization is how damn funny it is to blow it to smithereens!”
“Civilizations are good, because if someone hadn't invented the civilization, we would probably still be living in caves using kerosene lamps and cooking off Trangia stoves.”
“Civilization is all wrong. Savages didn't go to school or learn Latin.”
“Civilized are you? What know you of civilized? For eight hundred years have I trained anarchists. My own counsel will I keep on who is to be trained! An anarchist must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind. Civilization. Heh! Law and order. Heh! An anarchist craves not these things.”