Consolidating power ancient rome

Both republics emerged victorious and exploited their victories to dominate a unipolar world. Founders were steeped in the Roman story, particularly the hundred year “revolution” that led to the republic’s demise.

As Gene Callahan, economics professor at SUNY Purchase (and occasional American Conservative contributor), has written, Rome and America are “arguably the two most influential republics in world history.” Perhaps the most fascinating aspect of this is that the American republic was born in the cradle of the Roman example. “The founders’ intense scrutiny of the late Roman republic resembled an autopsy,” writes Professor Carl J.

More likely it will simply heighten civic fears that the democracy is on a downward spiral of dysfunction, thus exacerbating the syndrome described by Plato.

This ignores the deterministic question unleashed by Plato’s ponderings about democracy—whether it inevitably breeds tyranny because of inevitable internal decay.

The neoconservative thinker Irving Kristol put it well in debunking Francis Fukuyama’s harebrained thesis that, after the Cold War, the world had reached “the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government.” Said Kristol: “I don’t believe a word of it.” Citing Aristotle, he argued that “all forms of government—democracy, oligarchy, aristocracy, monarchy, tyranny—are inherently unstable…all political regimes are inherently transitional…the stability of all regimes is corrupted by the corrosive power of time.” But if we are to explore this troubling reality against the backdrop of America’s current political breakdown and civic disharmony, we might do better to bounce off Plato’s philosophical musings and go to the real world, where the lessons seem starker.

Each, as noted, was led initially by kings, but each threw over its kings out of fear and disgust at what it considered tyranny.

Each then crafted a delicately balanced governmental system designed to protect citizens from arbitrary governmental actions.

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Each thrust itself into the world ostensibly to help other beleaguered peoples tied to their civilizational heritage.

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