The weakening of Rome…similarities to the U.S. today

November 23, 2008 at 1:58 pm | Posted in Dissection, Lifescape, Lifestyle, Mindscape, People, Reactions, Reviews | Leave a comment
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Comune di Roma

Image via Wikipedia

This description of the years preceeding the fall of Rome reminds me a lot of the culture of the United States these days. The pride, hard work, humility and dedication of generation’s past seems gone. We watch shows like Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, Biggest Loser, Dancing with the Stars and don’t want to be bothered by real issues, real concerns, real challenges. We drive SUVs that eat up tremendous amounts of gas, despite knowing the political and environmental side effects of doing so. And our smartest go straight to wall street to manage hedge funds that get in and out of stocks with indifference…without any output or benefit to the world other than to squeeze money out of the system (more money that actually exists it turns out). I hope that we are somehow strong and honest enough to recognize the errors of our ways and get so that we can someday get back to better days.
clipped from www.financialsense.com
What led to Rome’s weakening? In describing the city of Rome in the middle of the fourth century, Ammianus Marcellinus wrote of the vanity and materialism of his contemporaries. Rome became great through virtue, he argued, and virtue had given way to vice. Decades before the barbarians broke into the empire, causing the economy to unravel, the Romans were focused on entertainment and self-gratification. “In this state of things,” wrote Marcellinus, “the few houses which once had the reputation of being centers of serious culture are now given over to the trivial pursuits of passive idleness…
(‘the’ is a basic word)
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