Halfway through an interminable week that will, on Friday, see yr. obdt. departing the frigid environs of the Upper Midwest for the warmer, sunnier home stomping grounds of Denver. At least for a week.
Over at PJMedia is an article that echoes a concern I’ve had for some time: Is It Over, and We Just Don’t Know It? Excerpt:
Historians have a tough time agreeing on many of the turning points in ancient history.
One of them, in light of events during the past several years and the tone of President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address on January 28, seems particularly relevant. That’s the question of when the Roman Republic ended:
(The republic) began with the overthrow of the Roman monarchy, c. 509 BC, and lasted over 450 years.
* * * * * *
Towards the end of the period a selection of Roman leaders came to so dominate the political arena that they exceeded the limitations of the Republic as a matter of course. Historians have variously proposed the appointment of Julius Caesar as perpetual dictator in 44 BC, the defeat of Mark Antony at the Battle of Actium in 31 BC, and the Roman Senate’s grant of extraordinary powers to Octavian (Augustus) under the first settlement in 27 BC, as candidates for the defining pivotal event ending the Republic.
There’s little doubt that the United States of America has reached a point where, relatively unhampered by legislative or judicial barriers, its president and his bureaucracy exceed the limits of the nation’s Constitution “as a matter of course.” They in turn are quietly but effectively under the control of our “independent” central bank.
Decades from now, it’s possible that historians will look back and conclude that the American experiment, which began with its declaration of independence from and defeat of Great Britain, ended sometime between 1999 and 2014. As with Rome, the pivotal event isn’t obvious, and the list which follows isn’t all-inclusive.
For several years now I’ve been saying that the parallels between the dying Roman Republic and the present situation in our own republic are a little too uncanny.
There seems to be one difference; what in Rome was largely done by individuals (Sulla, Caesar, Octavian) is in the United States being done by the governing bodies. The House of Representatives, the Senate, the Supreme Court and several Presidents have all had a hand in the consolidation of power in Washington and the overrunning of the governing principles on which the Republic was founded, and which served its citizens for over two hundred years.
Is it too late to turn back? Republics, when they fall, do not generally give rise to new republics.