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09 July 2013 @ 04:02 pm
 
"Before their empire fell, the Romans built walls. They began by erecting barriers along the border following the death of the Emperor Trajan in 117 A.D., notably Hadrian's Wall, which belted Britain. Later emperors erected internal walls, even around the great city itself, to ward off barbarians. After 300 A.D., the Emperor Diocletian effectively converted the entire Roman populace into feudal serfs, walling them off from internal movement in a vain effort to stabilize the chaotic economy.

"Despite the cautionary tale of Rome, building walls, both literal and figurative, has remained a habit of great powers in decline -- the fateful course taken not only by Ming China, but also Soviet Russia, and even Great Britain. Sadly, many Americans are all too eager to repeat history."

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Vince Conawayvconaway on July 10th, 2013 04:48 am (UTC)
The empire outlasted Diocletian by 150 years (1150 if the Eastern Empire counts), and the Servian Wall of Rome proper is a 4th century BC construction. Whether from left or right, I find any comparison between the US and Ancient Rome utterly unsupportable.
PMMJ: Propagandacheetahmaster on July 10th, 2013 11:29 am (UTC)
I think they were going for the metaphor, mostly.
Vince Conawayvconaway on July 10th, 2013 12:50 pm (UTC)
I know they were going for a metaphor, but my point is that it's a bad metaphor: we are so completely different from Rome as to make any comparison useless.
shannonlj2shannonlj2 on July 12th, 2013 02:49 pm (UTC)
George Friedman believes that within 20 some years the U.S. (like all nations) will be so desperate for immigrants that it will actually be likely to pay them to come here. For me his argument puts the Dream Act in a really interesting (and U.S. self-serving and ahead of the curve) light.
PMMJ: Darkseid is.cheetahmaster on July 12th, 2013 03:00 pm (UTC)
Ehn, maybe. I don't have the highest opinion of Friedman, or his prophetic powers, but it will be an interesting couple of decades either way.