(Ben Sellers, Headline USA) If men (with the exception of Mike Pence) somehow were not thinking several times a day about the Roman Empire, you can bet that recent media attention has all but assured that they now are.
Of course, conservative radio listeners know that pundits like Glenn Beck and Buck Sexton have been discussing this particular epoch with some regularity for at least the past decade.
Still, it seems no coincidence that it has entered into the national Zeitgeist at this current juncture, with a growing consensus of what Beck has long warned: that America is an empire in decline.
It isn’t my intention here to delve into the various parallels between modern and Roman times—open borders, devaluation of the currency and whatnot. Those cases have all been made elsewhere, and better than I can make them myself.
To paraphrase Shakespeare’s Marc Antony, I come to bury America, not to save it.
The Biden administration and its cabal of traitorous Brutes have already stabbed us dead in the back. When one side in a democracy acts, as they have, in bad faith, we can no longer have a functioning democracy.
It cannot be restored simply by letting the other side win, because the source of the corruption will only grow emboldened in its resistance. If the ends justify the means regardless of the circumstances, clearly defeat indicates that the means must grow even more drastic.
And yet, paradoxically, for Republicans to settle political scores after four years of lopsided, two-tiered justice by holding the other side wholly accountable in kind would be to become exactly what they condemned in the first place.
For more on this fascinating topic, it is worth checking out the Epoch Times‘s interview with pedagogical researcher Peter Boghossian about the “paradox of tolerance.”
From his academic standpoint, Boghossian—a classical liberal and charter fellow at the groundbreaking University of Austin—argues that the only way to defeat the pernicious influence of neo-Marxist cancel-culture is to embrace it.
Conservative institutions, he claims, must not only to permit but actively seek out avowed socialists to promote their ideas, if only for the sake of empowering the enemy to discredit themselves.
Of course, the inverse is not true in institutions where leftism prevails, which have now become the dominant force in academia after decades of letting liberals like Boghossian guide the way. They are more than willing to censor and push disinformation in service of their agenda, to ensure that no rational points of view threaten to topple their precarious dogma.
In reality, if UATX does not aggressively work to counter the toxic mentality that forced many of its founders from “mainstream” scholarship, it, too, may be another woke institution in the making, just a few stages behind in its entropic de-evolution.
The same, I fear, is true of America, even if a red wave does, by some miracle, manage to overcome the now-systemic cheating that blue states have entrenched via mail-in ballots, and to stave off the republic’s final coup de grâce for a few more election cycles.
A Trump victory—or that of any GOP candidate, for that matter—would, of course, result in considerable weeping and gnashing of teeth from the Left, and likely pose the first of many constitutional crises.
If rioting or election denialism were to occur, should the new leader follow recent precedent and crack down mercilessly—even if that results in a dissolution of the union as it did once before, when Democrats lost in 1860?
According to Claremont Institute classicist Spencer Klavan—the author of the recently published How to Save the West and son of Daily Wire personality Andrew Klavan—one of the final resorts of many empires in decline, starting with the Roman Empire, is that the citizens “took up swords against one another,” as he told Beck during a podcast interview that aired last week (go to the very end of the episode at 39:30 for the specific remarks).
“It wasn’t until civil bloodshed … when people started to kill their leaders in order to get rid of them, that things were destined to fall apart,” Klavan said. ” … Thank God we’re not there yet.”
But we know it will happen eventually, and we know exactly where it will originate. Of the assassins or would-be assassins of U.S presidents and prominent American political figures from Abraham Lincoln onward, nearly all have been either Marxists, anarchists or members of the Democratic Party.
Ironically, individuals who laid the foundation for sedition during President Donald Trump’s first term are now priming the public for the inevitable reckoning that they face should he return to power.
James Clapper, the former Obama director of national intelligence, and Mark Esper, Trump’s disloyal former defense secretary, recently sounded the alarm that they feared for their lives if the Republican frontrunner were to be re-elected and seek retaliation.
“I think there are probably a lot of people that are potentially on all sorts of lists,” whined Clapper in a recent CNN interview.
He noted that members of the deep state had emerged from the shadows and openly criticized Trump under the assumption that he wouldn’t be re-elected.
“Well, I’m not so sure about that,” Clapper said. “So, that’s a real concern for many of us.”
Former DNI James Clapper says General Milley’s belief that if Trump were reelected, he would jail his enemies is correct. “There are probably a lot of people that are potentially on such a list… That’s a concern for many of us” pic.twitter.com/gYZD5wsvdC
— Abby D. Phillip (@abbydphillip) September 26, 2023
The same is true of former military leader Mark Milley, who admitted to maintaining a secret back-channel of communication with China that effectively undermined Trump’s foreign policy, among other things.
“He’ll start throwing people in jail, and I’d be on the top of the list,” Milley bitched to The Atlantic.
What both men seemed to omit from their fear-stoking interviews with far-left outlets was the possibility that they likely are guilty of the crimes for which they would be answering.
They are fearful now because the efforts to indict Trump and his allies for 91 phony charges have failed. The American people see through the ruse, and it is the justice system itself that has now been damaged and discredited.
In turn, after failing in such a high-stakes gambit, if Trump were re-elected in spite of all odds, it would be a clear mandate for him to settle his personal scores, not only for his own sake but on behalf of the American people.
It would only be by cutting out the corruption and making examples of those who dared to abuse the system—and holding them accountable according to the rules that they, themselves, established—that we could begin to see some measure of equal protection under the law, which is the cornerstone of democracy.
In short, it is obvious why Democrats may dread all talk of the Roman Empire, because even in its darkest days no Roman leader was assured of the ability to maintain absolute power for very long.
There was always someone coming along behind him who would mete out to a tyrannical leader—and those loyal to him—the same justice that they themselves abused during their reign of terror.
If Clapper, Milley and the like think that painting Trump as vindictive and motivated by revenge will deter voters who have stood behind him thus far, they are sorely mistaken. Their only way out, short of exile, might involve committing even more treason and showing the world just who they really are.
What follows after that is anyone’s guess. Would Trump, coming into office at age 78, be able to achieve any more in his second four years than he did the first time around? And then what? Will an even darker succession crisis await?
There are no easy answers ahead, but one thing is certain: We cannot let the need to preserve our sacred democracy be the guiding principle used to show mercy in the face of corrupt and evil influences, because once they have taken root, democracy is already gone.
Ben Sellers is the editor of Headline USA. Follow him at twitter.com/realbensellers.