Friday, June 11, 2004

what seems usually to happen to empires, in a nutshell, is that they overestimate their capacity to administer effectively right out to the edges and finally implode at the centre under the stress (cite: Roman, Spanish, French, Russian, British). the more successful (ie longer-lived) empires tend to have combined a rigidly inflexible, divinely authorised centre with only a moderately expansionist policy (cite: Egyptian, Chinese, Japanese).
it's difficult to guess which model the leader of the free world is working with, but, as a figurehead, the monkey's clearly modelling himself on Caligula rather than Hadrian - someone whom the contemporary international (and, incidentally, domestic) community learnt to treat with the utmost caution.
unfortunately for us, the current 'international community' is also controlled by a busload of paranoid twitchers whose morals make the average smack dealer smell sweeter than Mother Teresa.
I'm fairly sure that the vast majority of the citizens of China, Russia, France, Iran, Paraguay, Iceland, wherever, shares the same dream of co-operation and the fruitful exchange of ideas and experience that has driven the engines of international creativity in the arts and sciences for many many years. the number of Reykjavik townsfolk who are lusting to rape and pillage the townsfolk of Portland, Oregon, let's say (substitute any other two random towns on the planet), is really very small indeed. and yet our great leaders insist that this is not the case, and that, since certain evil foreign people are determined to try to kill them, personally, we - the people - are obliged to defend them from them.
either they're wrong or I'm wrong.
it might be me.
well - it might be.

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