AN EXERPT FROM”": Decline of The American Empire, Part Two" by James Quinn
When I was researching the similarities between the fall of the Roman Empire and our American Empire fall in progress, I stumbled across an essay written in 1956 by Ben Moreell called "Of Bread and Circuses."
Toxic Bread, iGadgets, Circuses, & Zoloft: “The evil was not in bread and circuses, per se, but in the willingness of the people to sell their rights as free men for full bellies and the excitement of the games which would serve to distract them from the other human hungers which bread and circuses can never appease. The moral decay of the people was not caused by the doles and the games. These merely provided a measure of their degradation. Things that were originally good had become perverted and, as Shakespeare reminds us, ‘Lilies that fester smell far worse than weeds.'” – Ben Moreell, 1956, "Of Bread and Circuses"
There is nothing inherently evil about food, iPhones, professional sports, television, computers, music or medicine. Human beings need food to sustain them, entertainment to provide relaxation and diversion from their daily labors, and medicine to alleviate illness and prolong their lives. Only when the people allow themselves to be lured into servitude by malevolent purveyors of bread and circuses doe6s the perversion of seemingly harmless things begin to fester and overwhelm a nation with the fetid stench of decay and decadence. The moral degeneration of the American populace, like the Roman people before them, happened slowly over time as they sold their liberty, freedom, and self-respect for full bellies, an endless array of modern day distractions, and promises from their highly educated rulers they would be taken care of and protected from all threats to their well-being, whether foreign, domestic, physical, mental, or social.
It did not happen all at once. It happened gradually over time. We allowed the weaker facets of our human nature to succumb to the pleasurable promises of a minority of power seeking manipulative men who always attempt to control and influence the majority because they believe they are wiser and deserving of riches, glory and supremacy. The greediest, most arrogant, ambitious and well educated amongst us tend to rise to the top in all societies. As Ben Franklin stated, only a virtuous people can keep sociopaths from gaining control of our political, economic and financial systems and perverting a republic built upon a foundation of free markets, liberty, and self-sufficiency.
My comments: I just felt this explained our culture today better than I ever could.
I sent part one a couple weeks ago (not on the blog but to my Musings subscribers)... did you read it?
Answers: No, mostly. No? Too long, you said. Football is coming on TV, you said. Or NASCAR - gotta sit and stare at cars running around and around and around... like the cat stares at the hamster running on its exercise wheel. Too long, you said. World Series is on the tube! (I don’t even know who was playing – or who won. Dumb me.) Gotta go to the corner store – out of beer. BBL.
How do you block out the world? How do you hide from YOURSELF?