"Sed fortuna, quae plurimum potest cum in reliquis rebus tum praecipue in bello, parvis momentis magnas rerum commutationes efficit; ut tum accidit."

C. Iulius Caesar - Commentarii de Bello Civili Bk III.68

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Optimate smugness

At first sight the paucity of the Libra Alliance's policies make it seem indeed trite. The very absence of substance in favor of a faint whiff of European Union froth is suspicious.

Of course there had to be something more, so a return to their website and a re-examination of the sketchy comments was in order. Lo and behold, there it was buried in Point 5 of their "Platform", the key to how they think and what lies in front of us:

"At this period in Nova Roma's history, we have to protect the rights of the populus".

Of course they have to protect us. Nova Roma is just teeming with demagogues and tyrants. On a regular basis people are persecuted and thrown into exile for offering the slightest resistance to the ruling clique. Aren't they?

Strange, I never felt persecuted or oppressed. So if it isn't happening now, well the Libra's must have (in keeping with their astrological name) equipped themselves with a crystal ball and seen that this state of doom was about to fall on Nova Roma in the near future. From who does this threat emanate?

Well of course it has to be the Boni! They are responsible for just about every plot against the people of Nova Roma. Such a wicked governing party! Oh, yes that is right, they are not the governing party! So it can't be the Boni can it?

The Libra Alliance has thrown their magic political fairy dust into the air and into the faces of the voters of Nova Roma and conjured up some mythical tyrant. I am sure that when pressed they will say it is a purely preventative commitment, unless they intend to target the Collegium Pontificum, since that is the only body that has consistently opposed the attempts of the Libra to mangle the mos maiorum in respect of the Religio,

They quote Polybius and thoughtfully provide a link, so here are a few extracts from his work they rely on and base they ideology on:

"The people again, on their part, are held in dependence on the senate, both to the particular members, and to the general body"

"The people, therefore, being by these means held under due subjection and restraint, and doubtful of obtaining that protection, which they foresee that they may at some time want, are always cautious of exciting any opposition to the measures of the senate"

So Nova Roma is breeding its own clique of optimates. What the Libra's choose to ignore is that in this fascinating balance that Polybius describes the usual checks that the populace had over the Senate and the magistrates simply don't exist in Nova Roma. No secession of the people would make on whit of difference to our gang of optimates. A refusal to pay taxes would just disenfranchise the opponents of the Libras. Few of us are in a position to camp out on their front lawns with placards condemning abuses of power.

It is interesting to note the only exercise of authoritarian power, is that being cooked up to remove Lucius Sicinius Drusus from the senate and send him into exile - banned from Nova Roma. Who is responsible for that? A number of key figures in the Libra Alliance as well as a few of their toadies and flunkies is the answer.

Drusus would have to go, since he consistently pricks the bloated balloon of self-satisfied smug hypocrisy that floats over the Libra camp (this incarnation is only the latest name under which this beast has been known in the past).

Nova Roma needs saving, but only from the optimate superiority of the Libra Alliance.