Roman History - ancient history


Finder
#1
Anyone else here interested in discussing and or debating Roman and ancient history.

Such topics as the
Roman Monarchy
Roman Republic
Roman Empire
Byzantine Empire
City State(republic) of Sparta
Athens
Ancient Eygpt (kingdoms)
Republic of Carthage
Kingdom/Empire of Macedonia
 
the caracal kid
#2
perhaps.

i am rather rusty on the topics though. the last time i actively studied ancient Rome in depth I was 9 years old.
 
I think not
#3
Yeah, the Golden Age of Athens sounds pretty cool to me
 
jimmoyer
#4
The elite of 1776 knew fundamentally more about
all of the dilemnas that beset the Roman Empire than
we do today.

Many of the stories of the Roman Republic before it
became an Empire informed many ideas concerning
the pitfalls of democracy.

The legend of Cincinatus is huge.

The powerful ideas of the Senate and the Plebians
of a bicameral legislature has begot many versions
from England to Canada to France to America.

National Geographic did two back to back issues
on all of the Roman sayings and Roman references that
exist in all English speaking societies today.
 
Finder
#5
You can't forget during the renaissance and even in the middle ages, different classes in europe used there Roman Imperial ties as legitimacy. First in the middle ages as to legitimize there claim as monarch, Lord, prince and noble and then in the renaissance to give legitimacy to the form of government they wished to use. Such as that of the Republican government in the UK, Canada and the USA. You must remember the facade of the Republic was still used even during the empire. there was always a senate. The main difference is that the Tribune of the Pleb and the executive powers of the Consol and the pontifix (sp) was given to the emperor. Thus the system of checks and balances did not work properly in the empire as it did in the republic.

I am a republican historian when it comes to Rome. I've studied the Republican system in great detale and I have to say it's one of the best systems out there. Sure you can remove class from it as you still would for a Athenian style democracy, but truly a republic in my eye's protects the rights of the minorities better then a democracy does. Plus democracy is actually apart of the republic. The Assembly of the plebs was basically the democracy.

I may not like the American government, and I think some asspects of even how they elect there government can change but the system in my eye's is close to perfection. I wish Canada would look at that system and see the benifits of running a government closer to republican principals. I know some of you might say Canada isn't a republic, but our government is based on basterdized forms of the classical republican government. But ours are more based if you ask me on the early Roman Empire.
 
the caracal kid
#6
agreed finder,

the US does have as close to a "perfect" system of governance yet established by any nation. Canadiana could learn quite a bit about how to democratize its system by looking south.
 
FiveParadox
#7
On that point, the caracal kid , I must with all due respect disagree.

Electing one person by popular vote, with the sweeping powers that we have been used in the United States, and locking that person into a four-year term with no chance to eject him or her if the need arises (barring legal action such as impeachment) is certainly not the "perfect" system, in my opinion.

I far prefer, personally, the Westminster system of responsible government.
 
the caracal kid
#8
I am not saying the US system is perfect. There are areas where it could be improved upon. The base process and system itself though is, IMO, the closest we have seen to a "perfect" system of governance developed by any nation. The president of the US does not hold that many "sweeping powers". He is checked by the congress and the senate. The classical saying is "a system of checks and balances". The pres really only commands the purse and the sword.
 
FiveParadox
#9
I would maintain that the United States could perhaps benefit from something similar to censure, or non-confidence, in its Executive Government, if the need were to ever arise (I would contend that His Excellency the Honourable President of the United States would have been removed long ago if such were the case).
 
the caracal kid
#10
Change requires a stimulus to occur.

Perhaps GWB will be the stimulus that sees the introduction of some form of "non-confidence" amendment.

As it is now, any investigation into the alleged misdeeds of a president can leave him pretty much a "lame duck" and hold up the houses.

For the most part though, this has been a non-issue for the US system of government. It is not like misdeeds are any less prone to happen in the Canadian government given the concentration of power in the PM's office.
 
Finder
#11
"Westminster" system is based on the Roman Republican government.

Also the President is not elected by populer vote and is checked by both the Congress and Senate and in a sence the Supreme court.

In Canada we elect a government in which we entrust all of our rights into the leader of which party gets the most seats. Rarely does this party have the support of the magority of Canadians and he may appoint Senators who he believes will look after his agenda. After which he can also appoint a Governor General.

Like it our not the purer form to the Roman Republican government, the USA has has very well beat for accountability, checks and balances. We have none... AT ALL.

Also another purer form to the republican government then the basterdized form of the "Westminster" module, the president is limited to just two terms. Thus the farmer after serving his nation goes back to being a farmer. In Canada once your king of Canada, you can be pretty much king of Canada for life if you party can hold onto power. To hold onto power too here in Canada you don't even need a magority!

So yeah the "Westminster" module has many republican aspects, but is flawed. I prefer the American module, to which is more closely moduled after the Roman Republican system as the Westminster is closer to the Roman Empire system.

Though I'm dumbing this down as I have to run. I'll be back to make a longer post.

Paradox, just incase you missed it, the President is not chosen by PR but by the electoral collage which is a pure form of FPTP really. Thus the reason behind Bush's first victory. Yet again FPTP kills. So your argument there is somewhat..... nill.


BBL
 
Blackleaf
#12
England and Wales used to be a part of the Roman Empire. Unlike young countries with no history, such as the US and Canada, England is full of towns and cities founded by the Romans - London (Londinium), Manchester (Mamucium), Chester (Castrum, and it has the largest Roman Ampitheatre in Britain).

However, Britain has still had more of an impact on the world than Rome. Britain is the world's oldest surviving democracy and gave the world parliamentary democracy, not to mention the train, the computer, the jet engine, the World Wide Web, innoculation, the lawnmower, the pacemaker, blood transfusions, the radio, the television, the microwave over, the lightbulb, radar.
 
Finder
#13
Anyhow Paradox. It would appear you have a few misconceptions of Republicanism in Constitutional monarchies, and of the governorance of the system you say is your preferance. I know this topic has come up in many other threads, but the widely known, "Westminster" module of government, is being used in many nations around the world. Mostly in those with ties or former ties to the British Empire. In fact the Westminster government borrows many aspects of the classical aspects of the Republic. Checks and balances, an executive, judicial and lawmaking or democratic fuctionaries. As listed, the King(GG), the Senate/house of lords, and the commons, all came from Republican concepts.

The Westminster form of government if you wish to call it that is not truly an electoral system per say. Nowhere do you have to have FPTP, STV, PR or MMP. Actually you will notice many of the nations which use the so called "Westminster" system do not elect using FPTP... or at least not Pure PR. Not EVEN THE UK.

The "Westminster" form of government used in the following nations actually us far pretty far systems if you ask me. I may not like the Westminster module but if Canada was to get MMP or any voting system I'd like us to look like them.
- New Zealand
- Scotland
- Republic of Ireland
- Wales

Anyhow the Westminster module may have been a good module when we believed in the divine right of kings, and nobility being born better then the rest of us. But because we live today in a Liberal-socialist world were we are supposed to believe everyone is born equally the checks and balances of the Westminster module are completely and utterly usless and nerffed. Thus all the power is basically in the hands of the commons (common people/plebs... The mob) and well, you have pretty much a default Athanian state because the Senate/House of lord, and the Head of state (The king or GG) don't have the mandate to do jack all.

In the purer republican system both the Senate and the president have the mandate to act because there is no birth right attached to them. Of course Paradox if you believe in divine right and that it matter's what sheets you are born between, then I can see why you would have these ultra conservative notions that the westminster works....


Of course as I already said, because of our more liberal society we've been lazy and extead of removing the westminster module we've nerffed the fascist aspects of it.

(Thinks about spell checking but has to go to the washroom really badly.....)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Westminster_system
 
Finder
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf

England and Wales used to be a part of the Roman Empire. Unlike young countries with no history, such as the US and Canada, England is full of towns and cities founded by the Romans - London (Londinium), Manchester (Mamucium), Chester (Castrum, and it has the largest Roman Ampitheatre in Britain).

However, Britain has still had more of an impact on the world than Rome. Britain is the world's oldest surviving democracy and gave the world parliamentary democracy, not to mention the train, the computer, the jet engine, the World Wide Web, innoculation, the lawnmower, the pacemaker, blood transfusions, the radio, the television, the microwave over, the lightbulb, radar.

Yes but England has based a lot of it's imperial right and legitimasy on the fact it was once a Roman province (Imperial roots).

Also you may wish to study all the things the Romans have done and improved on or at least made it so it was widely used... Do you like getting places at all, the trains you talked about would not have been built without the roads the romans built and brought across the empire.

Anyhow I'm not going to debate the accomplishments of Rome to England as in the sence of time they are too far apart. Yes the Roman Empire was great and the English Empire as well. Was one better then the other, I don't think we could even debate this since they were at different times under different surcumstances and you could not have had the english empire without that of the Roman Republic--- Empire.
 
I think not
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by FiveParadox

I would maintain that the United States could perhaps benefit from something similar to censure, or non-confidence, in its Executive Government, if the need were to ever arise (I would contend that His Excellency the Honourable President of the United States would have been removed long ago if such were the case).

The motion of no confidence wouldn't (cannot) apply in the US, since the President is elected separately from the Senate and House of Representatives. Removing a President from office can only be achieved through impeachment (high crimes and misdemeanors) or for the President to resign.

I personally see no reason for a President to be removed simply because he cannot pass a law in Congress (as is done in your system of governance), there is alot more to governing than simply passing laws. Additionally, a motion of no confidence is also largely seen as causes for instability, you can see evidence of this in the French Fourth Republic which prompted them to make the office of the President immune to a motion of no confidence (although in their case, they gave the President to much executive power).

You can see the same problems of no confidence in Japan and Italy, although Italy has Proportional Representation and makes matters worse IMO.

It is stability that was the driving force behind how the President is elected, even if the President were to be impeached, resign or die in office, there is a line of succession that would fill the Presidency. So either way, there are elections every 4 years with a set term limit of two.
 
I think not
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf

However, Britain has still had more of an impact on the world than Rome. Britain is the world's oldest surviving democracy and gave the world parliamentary democracy, not to mention the train, the computer, the jet engine, the World Wide Web, innoculation, the lawnmower, the pacemaker, blood transfusions, the radio, the television, the microwave over, the lightbulb, radar.

Monarchy and Democracy don't belong in the same sentance, the word Monarchy originates from the Greek word monos "one" and archein "to rule". I would refuse to be led by someone simply because they claim their blood is blue, implying they are better than everyone else. Lift yourselves from the anachronistic status and get rid of the monarchy, there is nothing remotely "majestic" or royal about the so called "Royal" family, well, other than their wealth, Britain's wealth, actually. They act appaulingly and live off their inheritance and handouts, expecting the rest of the simple folk to call them by their honorary titles, bow to them ,etc. Puh-leaze.
 
Jay
#17
That would be "Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith" to you.

Those aren't honorary titles, they are legal titles.

It isn't my fault my blue blood makes me better than you! :P
 
I think not
#18
 
#juan
#19
The only thing Canada needs is

a workable recall system that would make the politicians accountable and keep a majority government from becoming a dictatorship for four or five years. I don't know how this would be done, but the invincibility of a majority government is our biggest problem in my estimation.
 
Jay
#20
Quote: Originally Posted by I think not

Do you like my new avatar?
 
I think not
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

Quote: Originally Posted by I think not

Do you like my new avatar?

For pete's sake mate, get your head out of the 15th century , what's next, jousting?
 
Jay
#22
If you're up for a match...sure. Me thinks you haven't even seen a horse let alone ride one, though.... :P
 
I think not
#23
Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

If you're up for a match...sure. Me thinks you haven't even seen a horse let alone ride one, though.... :P

Well I did see a horse once on a Seinfeld episode.
 
Jay
#24
Anglo-Norman Horse and 3 Palominos




Jousting...




A fair maiden...



Me kicking your butt....

 
I think not
#25
I like the fair maiden, I wonder if we can reverse this dumb republic into a monarchy. :P
 
Jay
#26
Just ask and I will send the Queen's troops south!!

(Led by General Brock, assuring our success)
 
Finder
#27
Ok honestly we are just a little off topic here. Next people are going to be talking about George w Bush jr or something.
 
jimmoyer
#28
The only thing Canada needs is: a workable recall system that would make the politicians accountable and keep a majority government from becoming a dictatorship for four or five years.
___________________________#juan__________________

Instutionalizing RECALL as a normal everyday event
will bring chaos, and a lack of discipline and will cause
your leaders to be less brave and honorable as they
are always in fear of a whimsical ephemeral majority.

It brings too close the tyranny of the mob, the tyranny
of the majority bringing to you exactly what you
suggested you are against.

It is human nature to do endless tinkering and tweaking
of the rules and it is nothing but the little Dutch boy
putting his finger in the hole of the dyke.

Our desire for perfection reaches robotic proportions.

This desire to fix, is ultimately dehumanizing and kills
all manner of honor and bravery.

RECALL is a notion best left for only extraordinary
circumstances.

As is the case for IMPEACHMENT.

This is the microwave mentality. We need our food
NOW. We must eat now. No time for ambience.
No time for the beauty of preparation. No time.

No time left for you.

GUESS WHO.

Great song.
 
iamcanadian
#29
I would agree that the US democracy as close to perfect as a democracy can get.

It has its problems like any form of government but has less problems and is more dynamic, self-healing and improving over time.

Canada's democracy us virtually non-existent. We are as a majority of the people ruled by a class of immigrants that arrive here earlier and took control of government and the political systems at all levels and mantains it for their own exclusive advantages, at the expense of the majority of immigrants that came after them.
 
FiveParadox
#30
I would agree that some sort of "recall" system, in terms of the Canadian system of governance, would be unprecedented and could seize the House of Commons with by-elections.

However, I would assert that there should be some mechanism by which a Government of Canada could have "censure" invoked over it (perhaps by a more accountable Senate), something similar to a vote of non-confidence, but done from the other Chamber.