Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Well on our way to repeat history........


A selection from the book, "Cicero: The Life and Times of Rome's Greatest Politician" by Anthony Everitt. Random House, 2001.

"Clodius's originality lay in his perception of what could be achieved by consistent violence on the streets and in the Forum.  For half a century politicians of every persuasion had resorted to force from time to time.  The scale of public spaces in the city center, the absence of wide streets or avenues and the facts that there was no police force and that soldiers were forbidden to cross the pomoerium [sacred boundary of the city of Rome] meant that gangs could temporarily take over the seat of government, terrorize the officeholders and force legislation through or impede it.  Clodius saw that this could be turned into a permanent state of affairs.  he developed the concept of the standing gang, equipped and ready to act at any time.  Once his Tribuneship was over in December 58, this would become his power base.  He realized that this private army would need an operational headquarters and, apparently, took over the Temple of the Castors in the Forum for a time, turning the building into a fortress by demolishing the steps that led down from its high podium.  This was insurrection as a means of government rather than as a means of overthrowing a government." pp140-141.

The use of organized gangs (Mexico, Southern California), the manipulation of mobs (Egypt, France) and areas of ethnic urban lawlessness (France, England) show where we are going in modern times.  The neutering of the Chicago Police Department and the disarmament of the people of Illinois combine to enable the rise of lawlessness as a form of government.  Obviously, the incipient demise of the NYPD shows that New York City is the next most visible example.

If we enable "consistent violence" in our society at the same time we disarm the people, the only result is terror.  

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