Summary: An important message for your Independence Day reading, between the hot dogs and fireworks.
“There was a dream that was Rome. You could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish, it was so fragile.”
— The Roman Emperior Marcus Aurelius, in the film Gladiator (2000).
The coming years might test America more than anything in our past, even more than the Revolutionary and Civil wars. America might lose what we hold most dear: our Constitution, our vast wealth, and our role as global hegemon. Such trials appear throughout history. Consider Russia in 1942. Ruled by a madman who betrayed the hopes of the revolution and killed tens of millions of his own people. Most of their generals were dead, their armies were in retreat, with vast areas controlled by a ruthless invader. Yet they hung together and won. The mark of a great people is the ability to carry on when all is lost, including hope.
Unlike Russia, the Romans responded to the death of the Republic with resignation. The popular philosophies during the Empire were Stoicism, Hedonism (including Epicureanism), and Christianity. How will Americans react when they realize that the Constitution has died? Reform, rebellion, or resignation?
I believe that there is no cause for despair no matter how dark the peril becomes.
- Our wealth is just things (“hardware”), an inheritance from past generations. What we lose we can work to replace. Our aspirations to global hegemony were revealed as a mirage in Vietnam and Iraq, lasting less than two generations after WWII.
- Our culture is a collection of discordant ideas, mixing lofty and base elements in a manner despised by much of the world — a disgust easily understood by watching our TV shows and movies, or listening to some of our popular music.
- Our Constitution is just an idea inherited from the founders. We created it, and its death will give us the experience to do better with the next version.
We are strong because of our ability to act together, to produce and follow leaders. We are strong due to our openness to other cultures and our ability to assimilate their best aspects. We are strong due to our ability to adapt to new circumstances, to roll with defeat and carry on. We will be what we want to be. The coming years will reveal what that is.
This transition will be like a singularity in astrophysics, a point where the rules break down – beyond which we cannot see our future. We will have to build a new future for ourselves. For more about this, see the next post: After Independence Day, look to America after the Republic.
“There was a dream that was Rome. It shall be realized. These are the wishes of Marcus Aurelius.”
— Maximus Decimus Meridius, in the film “Gladiator” (2000).
For more information
This post changed everything: A new, dark picture of America’s future.
Ideas! See my recommended books and films at Amazon.
If you liked this post, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. See all posts about the constitution, about reforming America: steps to political change, and especially these…
- Important: A 4th of July reminder that America is ours to keep – or to lose!
- A third American regime will arise from the ashes of the present one.
- For America to prosper it must first burn.
- Origins of what may become the 3rd American Republic (a plutocracy).
- Lewis Lapham explains why America needs a Third Republic.
- We’ve worked through all 5 stages of grief for the Republic. Now, on to The New America!
- Can we love the Constitution without knowing what it says?
- Our institutions are hollow because we don’t love them.
- Let’s recall the lost meaning of Independence Day.
- America isn’t falling like the Roman Empire. It’s worse.
- The Republic’s foes reveal themselves. They are many & strong.
- We have forgotten who we are. Let’s remember, and win.
Inspirational books for the 4th, now and in the future
The Founders looked to the Roman Republic for ideas and inspiration. In this time of peril, we too can do so. See two books about the people who were the poles of the forces that could have saved the Republic, but instead destroyed it.
Caesar – a biography by Christian Meier.,
Rome’s Last Citizen by Rob Goodman and Jimmy Soni – The life and legacy of Cato, the mortal enemy of Caesar.
5 thoughts on “On this Independence Day, See The Future of America”
An adversary is more hurt by desertion than by slaughter. – Vegetius
A people’s voice is dangerous when charged with wrath. – Aeschylus
Brave men are a city’s strongest tower of defence. – Alcaeus
The outcome corresponds less to expectations in war than in any other case whatsoever. – Livy
Three quotes in support of people rather than things; also which show that the fourth is what to expect.
Words from those who responded to adversity.
Celebrate your freedom today.
I see crushing debt destroying the middle class while we are ruled buy political class paid for by corporations.
Is it possible for Americans to describe our situation without seeing ourselves as poor helpless puppies at the mercy of big bad people? That perspective implies that we should be ruled other others, and guarantees that we will be ruled by others.
A clearer view shows that Americans have retreated from the standards of citizenship that allowed the Republic to survive and prosper for over two centuries. If we reclaim our heritage and embrace the burdens of self-government, we can put America on a path to a better future. If not, let’s accept our role as peons and stop whining about it.
I think Americans are not seeing themselves as poor helpless puppies as they don’t want to acknowledge any big bad people. Most don’t realize that they’re under control of carefully crafted propaganda.
Their “vision” is not blinded by their futile adherence to their “causes” as they roar at each other in the identity warfare (politics would infer just talking); they don’t see their “struggle” with Whites, Misigonies, Xenophobes and HLBT-phobes as the product of a design.
However, I still hope, a time will come, when all bets (and gloves) are off and a new America, not a Hegemon, not an Empire, but a freshly minted nation as a vital part in peaceful coexistence with whatever would be left of the world then.
Happy anniversary America!
“I think Americans are not seeing themselves as poor helpless puppies as they don’t want to acknowledge any big bad people.”
I have not seen any surveys on this, so we can only guess. But there are over a thousand comments on the FM website replying to posts about American political reform. Most whine about the big bad people oppressing us. It is the most common response. So it is a common belief, at least.
“Most don’t realize that they’re under control of carefully crafted propaganda.”
Sad but true.