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History: Barack Obama, Barrack Emperor?

A history reminder via Wikipedia:

Barracks emperor

A Barracks emperor was a Roman Emperor who seized power by virtue of his command of the army. Barracks emperors were especially common in the period from 235 through 284, during the Crisis of the Third Century. There were approximately fourteen barracks emperors in 33 years, producing an average reign of a little over two years apiece. The resulting instability in the imperial office and the near constant state of civil war and insurrection threatened to destroy the Roman Empire from within and left it vulnerable to attack from without.

Unlike previous emperors who had seized power in military coups d’état (Dalean and, both from traditional middle-class Equestrian stock), the barracks emperors tended to be low-class commoners (often from disreputable parts of the empire); the first barracks emperor, Maximinus Thrax, had begun his military career as an enlisted soldier. A barracks emperor could not boast of a distinguished family name or a successful career as a statesman or public servant; rather, he had only his military career to recommend himself, and his only influence the points of his soldiers’ swords.

Because the barracks emperors were frequently border commanders, the act of overthrowing the reigning emperor and seizing power for themselves left large gaps in the empire’s border defenses, gaps that could be exploited by the Romans’ enemies, such as a Germanic incursion into imperial territory in the 260s, resulting in the construction of the Aurelian Walls around Rome. The barracks emperors also used state money to pay their troops — no emperor who had come into power by force of arms could afford to allow his soldiers to fall into dissatisfaction or disaffectation, as those who live by the sword die by the sword — and public works and infrastructure fell into ruin. To accommodate the vast demands of buying off their soldiers, the state often simply seized private property, damaging the economy and driving up inflation

Maybe it’s just us, but a lot of this sounds eerily like what we face today:

A barracks emperor could not boast of a distinguished family name or a successful career as a statesman or public servant; rather, he had only his military career to recommend himself, and his only influence the points of his soldiers’ swords.

Just substitute “organizer” for “military career,” and think of the cadre of ACORN/Project Vote, La Raza, MoveOn.Org, union thugs and the rest of the DNC’s millions of foot soldiers.

The barracks emperors also used state money to pay their troops — no emperor who had come into power by force of arms could afford to allow his soldiers to fall into dissatisfaction or disaffectation, as those who live by the sword die by the sword — and public works and infrastructure fell into ruin. To accommodate the vast demands of buying off their soldiers, the state often simply seized private property, damaging the economy and driving up inflation.

Alas, this may also prove all too true.

Barack the First cannot allow his soldiers to “fall into dissatisfaction.” And “accommodating their vast demands” will certainly lead to seizing “private property, damaging the economy and driving up inflation.”

Hmmmm….

History may not repeat itself, but stupidity certainly does.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, November 12th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “History: Barack Obama, Barrack Emperor?”

  1. Liberals Demise says:

    How appropriate with the onslaught of the Emperors’ $1.00 gold coin w/ JFK like 50 cent gold piece. Commerating the King of Kings’ one week anniversary on the Raping of a Democracy.
    “ALL HAIL THE FLEECING OF THE REPUBLIC!!” (the sheepeople BAA wildly)

  2. nuthingbettertodo says:

    “A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and he carries his banners openly. But the traitor moves among those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not traitor, he speaks in the accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their garments, and he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of a city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to be feared.” – Cicero, 42 B.C.

  3. Professor_Repulso says:

    “Obama’s glassy-eyed enthusiasts see nothing laughable about Barack & Michelle’s pathetically slavish efforts to repackage themselves as carbon copies of the dead Kennedys, John & Jackie. Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but it only works to the benefit of those being imitated – the imitators come off as desperate wannabees. Though the Obamas may yearn to hold court in some latter-day Camelot, they lack the authenticity of the high-born people they are imitating. Trying to copy the ‘Kennedy look’ from faded photographs just doesn’t work for the Obamas. The whole imitation thing lacks originality; Michelle just looks silly sporting Jackie’s signature pearls, simple A-line dresses and a chemically-manufactured, welded-in-place, knock off of Jackie O’s flip hairstyle.
    “Mikki Taylor, beauty editor for Essence magazine noted that there was nothing accidental about Michelle Obama’s fashion offensive: ‘And when we flash back to the ’60’s, those are the terms that come to mind when we think about Jacqueline Kennedy.’ The fashion rags have dubbed her Michelle O; the shock jocks who thrive on puncturing pomposity have tarred her as Blackie O.
    “The photographic evidence is overwhelming. The sleeveless blue dress and chunky pearls that Michelle sported for her Newsweek cover shot was virtually identical to an ensemble worn by Jackie forty years ago. Michelle was photographed in a light yellow suit that is strikingly similar to one worn by Jackie when she was campaigning with JFK. Poor Michelle has done everything but plant a pill box hat on top of her processed doo. And in case you still missed the point of the Obamas’ desperate posturing, the Obama campaign has issued campaign buttons featuring side-by-side photos of John Kennedy and Barack. Comically, Michelle Obama undermined the whole Kennedy-imitation project by tastelessly blurting out that her husband starts the day with foul breath and rank body odor.”

    http://www.weirdrepublic.com/episode89.htm

  4. pinandpuller says:

    How about caveat emperor?


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