Friday, August 21, 2015

History does not repeat itself, but nonetheless...

As I see it, the Roman political system facilitated a most intense and ultimately destructive economic exploitation of the great mass of the people, whether slave or free, and it made radical reform impossible. The result was that the propertied class, the men of real wealth, who had deliberately created the system for their own benefit, drained the life-blood from their world, and thus destroyed the Greco-Roman civilization over a large part of the empire...If I were in search of a metaphor to describe the great and growing concentration of wealth in the hands of the upper classes, I would not incline to anything so innocent and so automatic as drainage: I should want to think in terms of something much more purposive and deliberate — perhaps the vampire bat.
G.E.M. de Sainte Croix

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