Saturday, November 15, 2008

A Chilling Parallel

As much as I love Ronald Reagan, the previous post today is bumpable in light of what I just discovered in my study for tomorrow's Bible class. I just had to share it because of the obvious parallels for today.

Take a gander at this statement from the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. The subject is what befell the Roman Republic, ending up in dictatorship . . .

Inability of either aristocracy or democracy to hold equilibrium. Previous events had proved that a narrow, exclusive aristocracy was incapable of good government because of its selfishness and disregard for the rights of lower classes.

The heterogeneous population of later Rome was not disciplined to obey or to initiate just government when it seized power. This anarchy in the body politic opened the way to usurpation by individuals. No form of free popular government could live under such conditions.

Caesar said of the republic that it was “a name without any substance.” The law courts shared in the general corruption. The judicia became a prey to party interests. It succumbed to bribery and became the agent of oppression and injustice. Justice for all, and especially for conquered peoples, was impossible.

Bribery and candidates in arms prevented the proper functioning of elective assemblies. The whole people had become incapable of self-government, and were willing -- almost glad -- to be relieved of the necessity, even though this favored despotic authority.

Chilling, isn't it?

1 comment:

Phil Perkins said...

Yes, very chilling. Great article. Notice the root problem? Whatever governmental tools, method, or structures were employed, corruption af groups and the individuals in those groups thwarted them.

Is this really parallel to our situation? Then is the problem political or spiritual?

Are we losing our democracy because our voting machines don't work and can't be fixed? Or because no one on the whole US can design a paper ballot that can be understood or one that can be folded properly?

Or are we losing our democracy because we can't trust voter registration groups and election officials?

In Christ,
Phil Perkins