The Collapse Of The Roman Empire Is The Story Of America In 2014

Will and Ariel Durant wrote this about 70 years ago. It is the story of the fall of Rome, and also appears to be Obama’s plan for the US.

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51 Responses to The Collapse Of The Roman Empire Is The Story Of America In 2014

  1. Shazaam says:

    Oddly enough, by the end, Roman citizenship was such a liability that some of the citizens ran off to join the Gauls and Vandals. They were escaping Rome’s massive inflation and punitive taxes. Others sold themselves into servitude to escape the taxes citizens were required to pay.

    US citizens are screwed. Inflation reduces the value of your savings, and taxes multiply.

    We live in such interesting times.

  2. Gail Combs says:

    The Saddest part is the destruction of the USA was planned and executed by those we elected to office who then betrayed us for Thirty Pieces of Silver.

    Sen. Dick Durbin, on a local Chicago radio station this week, blurted out an obvious truth about Congress that, despite being blindingly obvious, is rarely spoken: “And the banks — hard to believe in a time when we’re facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created — are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place.” The blunt acknowledgment that the same banks that caused the financial crisis “own” the U.S. Congress — according to one of that institution’s most powerful members — demonstrates just how extreme this institutional corruption is….

    http://www.salon.com/2009/04/30/ownership/

    • kuhnkat says:

      Durbin, along with the rest of the leeches, is responsible for leaving the power of the Fed intact…

      • Gail Combs says:

        Federal politicians have had 100 years to de-fang the FED yet only Congressmen Louis McFadden, Wright Patmam, Henry Reuss, Ron Paul, and Henry B. Gonzalez have made any attempt. Instead the power of the FED has only increased.
        From: A PRIMER ON MONEY
        COMMITTEE ON BANKING AND CURRENCY
        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
        WRIGHT PATMAN (D) Chairman 1964
        If you have not read this primer, I strongly suggest you do.

        The make-up of the Federal Reserve Directors changed in favor of the bankers
        The Federal Open Market Committee.
        There are 19 participants in this powerful body, 7 appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the Senate of the United States. Once appointed, however, a man serves for a period of 14 years, and cannot be removed by the President or by any other official body, except for cause. The other 12 men in this select group are elected to their places through the votes of private commercial bankers. there are 12 voting members of the Federal Open Market Committee. The voting members consist of 7 members of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, plus some 5 of the 12 Federal Reserve bank residents. [pg 65]

        Because of this, the balance of power over the money supply lay securely, it was thought, with the public side of the System through authority of the Board of Governors. But when the move toward the alternative open-market technique of control was given legislative blessing by Congress in 1933 and 1935 and a full-fledged central bank thereby created the balance shifted radically toward the private, commercial banking side of the System. [pg 72]

        In mid-August of 1950, however, the Federal Reserve raised the discount rate and short-term Treasury bills jumped toward 11/2 percent, although there were requests from the Secretary of the Treasury and the President for the System to continue a low-rate policy. It was later revealed by testimony of some of the Federal Reserve officials to committees of Congress that the Open Market Committee had held a meeting on August 18 and decided not only t o raise the discount rate, but to “go their own way” on the Government longer term bond rate as well, despite what the President, the Secretary of the Treasury, and the head of the Office of Defense Mobilization might do….

        Since the signing of the so-called accord, in March of 1951, this event has been widely interpreted as an understanding, reached between the Treasury and the Federal Reserve, that the Federal Reserve would henceforth be “independent.” It would no longer ” peg Government bond prices. It would raise or lower interest rates as it might see fit, as a means of trying to prevent inflation or deflation. These are understandings which have been grafted onto the accord over the years. Certainly, no such understandings were universal at the time the accord was signed. …. At the end of 1951, then, the Federal Reserve had both self-proclaimed independence, as a result of the accord, and an operational policy which aimed at maximum credit effects through minimum changes in interest rates….. the Federal Reserve people were quite sure that they could do a better job of running the country than the President….

        Since there is no way that the Federal Politicians are going to bite the hand that financies their campaigns and makes them rich (Have you ever heard of a poor senator or Congressman once in office?) Michael Boldin suggests a method to End the Fed! Whether Congress Wants us to or Not!

        … a large number of people across the political spectrum want to know what goes on behind the Fed’s curtain. And with calls to audit the federal reserve reaching a fevered pitch, it’s a good time to ask the basic question – is this even a worthy effort?

        Not to say that you should want a secret national bank, but rather – is this kind of activism the best place for you to put your energy…and hope? Will lobbying the Senate get Harry Reid to allow a vote? Will calling Mitch McConnell change anything? Will Barack Obama or Mitt Romney allow such a bill to pass without their veto?

        I believe the answer to all these questions is a big, fat NO.

        PULLING THE RUG OUT

        On the other hand, in contrast to attempts to put a stop to the Fed at the national level, a paper that William Greene presented at the Mises Institute’s “Austrian Scholars Conference” proposes an alternative approach to ending the Federal Reserve’s monopoly on money. The “Constitutional Tender Act” is a bill template that can be introduced in every State legislature in the nation. Passage would return each of them to the Constitution’s “legal tender” provisions of Article I, Section 10:

        “No State Shall…make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts”

        Such a tactic would achieve the desired goal of abolishing the Federal Reserve system by attacking it from the bottom up – pulling the rug out from under it by working to make its functions irrelevant at the State and local level….

        I would certainly like to see this happen but I think it is too much of a political hot potato. So here is an alternate suggestion that might work within the Federal Reserve System.

        TURNING THE TABLES ON WALL STREET: NORTH DAKOTA SHOWS CASH-STARVED STATES HOW THEY CAN CREATE THEIR OWN CREDIT

        Forty-six of fifty states are now reported to be so insolvent that they could be filing Chapter 9 bankruptcy proceedings within the next two years.1 Of the four that are not in that category, one is the isolated farming state of North Dakota. What does it have that other states don’t? …

        The secret of its success seems to be the state-owned Bank of North Dakota, which was established by the state legislature in 1919 specifically to free farmers and small businessmen from the clutches of out-of-state bankers and railroad men. By law, the state must deposit all its funds in the bank, and the state guarantees its deposits. The bank’s stated mission is to deliver sound financial services that promote agriculture, commerce and industry in North Dakota…..

        Given that the BRICS countries (Russia, China, India, Brazil and South Africa ) are amassing Gold by mining/buying gold as fast as they can and the BRICS countries set-up a bank to go head to head against the World Bank/IMF AND China is offloading US $$$ and buying hard assets like land, ALL with the intentions of ousting the World Bank, IMF and the US dollar reserve currency monopoly, I would certainly suggest states go for the first option – A Return to Sound Money

        You can add in Russia’s grab for the bread basket of Europe and China’s grab for control of the China Sea, both challenges to the USA. I really do not want the Chinese to start refusing the dollar as a trade currency and come knocking on the door demanding goods and land instead to repay our trade deficit instead of Federal Reserve Funny Money.

        I am sure the Fabian Banksters are gnashing teeth behind closed doors as their carefully orchestrated Convergence and Interdependence, ===> a World government goes down the toilet with the moves made by Russia and China.

        …Sound money still means today what it meant in the nineteenth century: the gold standard.

        The eminence of the gold standard consists in the fact that it makes the determination of the monetary unit’s purchasing power independent of the measures of governments. It wrests from the hands of the “economic tsars” their most redoubtable instrument. It makes it impossible for them to inflate. This is why the gold standard is furiously attacked by all those who expect that they will be benefited by bounties from the seemingly inexhaustible government purse.”The advocates of public control cannot do without inflation. They need it in order to finance their policy of reckless spending and of lavishly subsidizing and bribing the voters.”

        What is needed first of all is to force the rulers to spend only what, by virtue of duly promulgated laws, they have collected as taxes. Whether governments should borrow from the public at all and, if so, to what extent are questions that are irrelevant to the treatment of monetary problems. The main thing is that the government should no longer be in a position to increase the quantity of money in circulation and the amount of checkbook money not fully — that is, 100 percent — covered by deposits paid in by the public. No backdoor must be left open where inflation can slip in. No emergency can justify a return to inflation. Inflation can provide neither the weapons a nation needs to defend its independence nor the capital goods required for any project. It does not cure unsatisfactory conditions. It merely helps the rulers whose policies brought about the catastrophe to exculpate themselves….

        As a side note, an interesting article: Gadhafi’s Gold-money Plan Would Have Devastated Dollar

      • There Is No Substitute for Victory. says:

        What your really talking about are so called “watermelons,” Environmentalist who are green on the outside but who are flaming red on the inside. That covers about 99% of self identified Environmentalist. Sorry if I stepped on any toes but it is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

        • Gail Combs says:

          That is why I use the word Conservationist instead.

        • Herve D says:

          Correct: History shows that by 1972, after the german reds lost political influence, they met with other foreign losing reds in a brainstorming meeting. Finally they selected 2 new “devils” to fight, in order for these agitators to survive: Commercial Airlines or Nuclear. They selected the latter. These people infect population as AIDS infects a human body, by destroying its natural defences.

        • tom0mason says:

          “…green on the outside but who are flaming red on the inside..” and self-righteously destroying human life and the planet.

    • tom0mason says:

      Some more betryers are seen here in this enlightened piece –

      http://naturalgasnow.org/americas-plutocrats/

  3. Probably a more relevant example of what not to do is Venezuela, where a toxic mix of socialism and popularism has essentially destroyed their economy.

  4. There Is No Substitute for Victory. says:

    Go here to read the whole story, for free. This is volume one of I think 6 volumes that rival the encyclopedia in length. If my memory serves me right the abridged version of volume one is only 2,000 pages. Regardless of what some think I doubt many will find that Edward Gibbon’s “Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire” will reinforce their preconceived notions of why the Roman Empire collapsed. If the truth was known the Roman Empire didn’t collapse until 1453.

    http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/890

    • Jason Calley says:

      “If the truth was known the Roman Empire didn’t collapse until 1453.”

      Good point and one which not many people think about.
      One implication is that perhaps the collapse of the US does not mirror the fall of Rome, but rather it mirrors the fall of Constantinople. (The political/economic collapse of Great Britain during WWI -WWII mirrors Rome.)

    • … Roman Empire didn’t collapse until 1453

      True, but the western part was dismembered a millennium earlier. If the United States follows suit then the original 13 states and other traditional parts will be long gone while its government survives in later acquired territories, maybe in Alaska and Guam (if the island doesn’t tip over under the weight of D.C. bureaucracy).

    • Dave1billion says:

      The historiography of the Fall of the Roman Empire is a good study in and of itself.

      For example, Enlightenment writers blamed the Church for the Decline and Fall.

      Every generation a new group of historians come up with their own take.

      Just look at the way that many current scholars now blame climate change for the collapse of various cultures around the world.

  5. Gamecock says:

    Here’s the story: “From Dawn to Decadence” by Jacques Barzun.

  6. Janet S says:

    This exactly describes the UK too.

  7. If you are interested in this topic, I much prefer “The Path to Tyranny: A History of Free Society’s Descent into Tyranny” by Michael E. Newton. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0982604017 Admittedly, I am a little biased.

    • Gail Combs says:

      SIGHHhhhhh Another good book to buy and read…

    • Jason Calley says:

      Hey Michael! I have not read your book, but as I often do, I went to Amazon and read some of the reviews — especially the negative reviews. Based on my reading of the negative reviews, you must really have a great book! The nay-sayers sounded very much like reading comments by CAGW folk bad mouthing the sceptics who use actual data and real science. One of them actually wrote, “Government in the United States has been growing SMALLER in the last 30 years.” Whoa! Guess he must not have been paying attention…

      As I say, I have not read your book, but if we are judged by the enemies we gather, then you are probably on the right track. :)

      • Gail Combs says:

        +1
        From another spelunker, but I hate water and do not dive esp. after Sheck Exley died. (And yes I knew him many many moons ago.)

        • Jason Calley says:

          You knew Sheck Exley? Amazing guy, and what a loss that he is gone. I never did any cave diving. The sad joke among cavers is “What is the difference between dry caving and cave diving?” The answer? “There are no cave diving rescue teams.” Still, there caves in the Ocala area that have plenty of swimming, but no diving (although I did do a hold-your-breath-and-dive-through-a-sump once). Swimming through passages with boots, gear, pack and helmet? That’s fun! But actual cave diving? Brrrr! That scares me!

      • Thank you. Yes, I’ve taken a lot of flack from the left.

  8. Ken Lutich says:

    Decline of Rome, yes but … The Eastern Roman Empire survived for a 1000 years after the collapse of the Western Empire. What vices of the West were missing in the East?

  9. mellyrn says:

    Wars are fought to keep nations from bypassing the banks.

    Let us then bypass the banks, not as nations but as fellow humans. Make them (whoever you conceive “them” to be) irrelevant. Barter; build each others’ houses (think “barn raising”); lend each other interest-free money or use crowdfunding. I get my zucchini from the break room at work where co-workers bring in stuff that will otherwise morph and take over their homes in the middle of the night, kind of thing. Feed each other. Make art for each other. And (!!) defend each other. I have already passed the point where, if someone breaks into my home, I will first determine that he is NOT “police” — and then I will make him a sandwich and help him carry stuff out just because I am that glad he isn’t “police”.

    One other point: get mobile. Do whatever it takes such that, if push comes to shove, you can simply relocate in a different jurisdiction.

    Seriously, as long as your government knows, or believes, you’re stuck with it, it can and will do what it pleases — but if intelligent, competent, skill-wielding (wealth-building) citizens are able to relocate on a moment’s notice, governments will then have to COMPETE for citizens. Just as a business competes by offering more attractive deals than other, similar businesses, so will governments.

    It is the responsible 21st-century citizen’s civic DUTY to be mobile — to force governments to compete for quality citizenry, and thereby raise the quality of governance for everyone.

    That, or face facts: that government works even as well as it does, is THE best argument FOR anarchy. Think about it: governments are formed to protect us from each other. “Government” means to take (some) power from the masses and give it, this “extra” power, to certain individuals (who are just as human as the rest of us, with ALL that that means), lest we of the masses use our (ordinary) power against each other. Yes, there are corrupt politicians, judges, lawyers and police — but consider that most police (for example) really are decent guys trying to do right by their community; consider how many people, given EXTRA power (compared to the rest of us) are NOT abusing it.

    If we humans don’t instantly and completely abuse extra power even when it’s straight-up handed to us, why would we abuse power that was equal to what everybody else has?

    Feed yourselves and your neighbors. Lend a hand. Make “Them” irrelevant. Above all, defend each other. If we give a sh*t about each other, who needs Them?

    • Jason Calley says:

      That is perhaps the best and most thought provoking comment I have read in a while. Thanks!

      It is said that “nature abhors a vacuum.” Maybe true, maybe not — and even if true, nature sure made a LOT of it! But we do know that “Power abhors a vacuum”. Any time we, as individuals, give up power, that power will flow to some other person or group. If the power of the individual flows too much outward, we have tyranny. Conversely, when we individuals retain and express our power, we have freedom.

      As you say, “Feed yourselves and your neighbors. Lend a hand. Make “Them” irrelevant. Above all, defend each other. If we give a sh*t about each other, who needs Them?”

      Brilliant! And ethical.

    • cdquarles says:

      This, my friends, is what liberty and a free market mean.

      Money is determined by the actors, not the government. Governments may make ‘legal tender currency’ but when WE the PEOPLE refuse to hold it or use it, then the ‘currency’ is not money any more.

      The Feds make us buy their bonds, directly or indirectly. That’s why they nationalized the banks 97 years ago. They did it to control us. They made ‘drugs’ illegal to control us. They made monopoly government schools to control us. Americans don’t cotton to being controlled, but we do hold the Rule of Law as something akin to the 10 commandments. They use THAT against us. Americans love to make their own communities from the ground up, not from the top down and especially when ‘social engineers’ employ ‘community organizers’ to incite ri—, er, trouble.

      America, Wake UP! Your destiny is calling.

  10. _Jim says:

    I read that somewhere before … might be from my copy of Gibbon; The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire …

  11. Beale says:

    It occurs to me that inflation (in the form of debasement of the coinage) was a major factor in the collapse of Rome.

    • Jason Calley says:

      Yes, exactly! It may even be the main reason (though any complex event always has multiple causes). I have a good friend who is something of an expert on ancient coinage of the Roman and Eastern Roman Empires. One day when he mentioned that the Eastern Roman Empire lasted almost a thousand years, my response was “How did they keep the politicians from debasing the money?” Well, it turns out that they did, in fact, keep the economy stable by refraining from the usual debasement. They had a series of severe laws against any degradation of their coins, and even their highest rulers were liable to execution for doing so. Having seen what happened in old Rome, the people of Constantinople understood just how much was at stake in keeping honest money.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solidus_%28coin%29

    • Jason Calley says:

      One more quick comment on inflation and monetary debasement. Today, of course, we see a similar inflation of the monetary supply, but it is done with paper and binary numbers.

      In Roman times the only two practical ways to squeeze money from the citizens was to either tax them directly or to recall, melt down, alloy, recast and reissue the coinage. Both ways are messy. Direct taxes mean tax collectors and soldiers coming to you for the money. Debasement means money recalled and coming back lighter or otherwise different. Today, the taxes are collected as painlessly as possible, taken from your from e employers before you even see it — but the debasement is more wonderfully, even magically, unnoticed! A few computer entries or perhaps some printing, the monetary supply increases, and the Powers That Be have invisibly reached into the pockets of everyone with dollar denominated assets and siphoned off a small fraction of their value. The process is so slow and relentless that not one person in a thousand notices when it is done. We have even been brainwashed to approve of the process, and have professional economists telling us “Our economy needs a little inflation! A few percent a year is good for everyone!”

      Whenever I think that the CAGW crowd are the greatest liars, I just remember the economists. What a scam!

      • cdquarles says:

        One other little thing, the PTB want you to never know about the Austrian School of Economics. The one that gave us Karl Menger (Capital and Interest), Ludwig von Mises (Theory of Money and Credit and Socialism) and Frederick von Hayek (The Road to Serfdom).

      • Gail Combs says:

        Biggest scam ever and it has been running for hundreds of years, thousands if you include Rome.

        ….speech of Sen. Daniel Webster, during the debate over the reauthorization of the Second National Bank of the U.S. in 1832, summed up much of the American view toward money in general…

        “A disordered currency is one of the greatest of evils. It wars against industry, frugality, and economy. And it fosters the evil spirits of extravagance and speculation. Of all the contrivances for cheating the laboring classes of mankind, none has been more effectual than that which deludes them with paper money. This is one of the most effectual of inventions to fertilize the rich man’s field by the sweat of the poor man’s brow. Ordinary tyranny, oppression, excessive taxation: These bear lightly the happiness of the mass of the community, compared with fraudulent currencies and robberies committed with depreciated paper.”

        http://whiskeyandgunpowder.com/a-suggestion-of-bankruptcy-part-i/

        A scant 70 years later they got the Fed entrenched and have been siphoning off America’s wealth ever since.

        Notice how most school kids have never even heard of Webster.

        • cdquarles says:

          Nice. I wonder how many people know that the Bank of the US caused a depression, the greatest one in our history at that point. This depression was never exceeded until the Fed’s Great Depression of the 30s and that one will be exceeded by the Fed’s current Great Depression v2.0.

          You can only get a national great depression where your government 1. has nationalized the banks and 2. allows or mandates a fractional reserve system, so that the banks must, one way or another, monetize government bonds.

  12. kuhnkat says:

    Another book with new insights from recent archaeology and literature research you may find interesting is:

    Title: Mohammed & Charlemagne Revisited: The History of a Controversy
    Authors: Scott, Emmet
    Formats: EPUB
    Ids: 9780985439439
    Path: Click to open
    Publisher: New English Review Press

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