Imperial Rome and the USA

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Time to put on our tin hats...



It's no revelation that their are some very interesting simularities between Great Rome and the United States today. Rome did not fall in a few years (read E. Gibbons, et al...), indeed the whole of Rome's decline arguably took much longer than the US has existed. Nonetheless, I think we can all agree that societies change and evolve faster than they use to.



That being the case, and for the sake of discussion, will the US be able to maintain it's technological, economical and arguably, cultural dominance 100 years from now without the US resorting to become the world's 800lbs. military gorrilla? I know many people feel that describes the US now. It doesn't, yet.



Is it possible that 100 years from now the world will be under the influence of an Asian hegemony with China as the top dog? I'd like you smart cookies to look forward 100 years. Can the USA continue to hold on to it's democratic ideals? None of us are going to be around, what world will your great grandchildren inherit?
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 62
    powerdocpowerdoc Posts: 8,123member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by hardhead

    Time to put on our tin hats...



    It's no revelation that their are some very interesting simularities between Great Rome and the United States today. Rome did not fall in a few years (read E. Gibbons, et al...), indeed the whole of Rome's decline arguably took much longer than the US has existed. Nonetheless, I think we can all agree that societies change and evolve faster than they use to.



    That being the case, and for the sake of discussion, will the US be able to maintain it's technological, economical and arguably, cultural dominance 100 years from now without the US resorting to become the world's 800lbs. military gorrilla? I know many people feel that describes the US now. It doesn't, yet.



    Is it possible that 100 years from now the world will be under the influence of an Asian hegemony with China as the top dog? I'd like you smart cookies to look forward 100 years. Can the USA continue to hold on to it's democratic ideals? None of us are going to be around, what world will your great grandchildren inherit?




    We will be martians's slaves.

    These silly green horrible troglodytes creatures, will invade us. Ours problems of religions, freedoom culture racism and others will be forgetten. For martians we will only represent beef
  • Reply 2 of 62
    jimdreamworxjimdreamworx Posts: 1,063member
    Wasn't this the title of a booklet put out by the Worldwide Church of God in the late 70s and early 80s? No, that was called "The Modern Romans", and the whole idea behind this is that when a society is focused on fulfilling its wants rather than pursuing its needs, it will crumble.



    Will it? There is a difference to the USA from Rome. North America is pretty isolated from invading hordes, and I can't see any other nation spending crazy amounts of money to setup a military force to overthrow the USA from continental distances. The USSR tried and failed, China would sooner march westward that try to go beyond the Pacific Ocean.
  • Reply 3 of 62
    hardheadhardhead Posts: 644member
    J.D., fair enough.



    Powerdoc, you are a moderator? I posted for a legitimate discussion and this is your contribution.

    You little punk-ass...
  • Reply 4 of 62
    giaguaragiaguara Posts: 2,724member
    and in what sense would rome and usa be similar???





    wouldn't it make more sense to say that the actual european union is that already? too big to administrate...
  • Reply 5 of 62
    Hooray!
  • Reply 6 of 62
    709709 Posts: 2,016member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by hardhead

    J.D., fair enough.



    Powerdoc, you are a moderator? I posted for a legitimate discussion and this is your contribution.

    You little punk-ass...




    I smell a name-change....



    GrannySmithPistachio I presume?
  • Reply 7 of 62
    Regardless of the similarity to Rome or not I think the Pendulum theory will always apply.



    We've alwas seen the pendulum swing and different empires were greatest and number 1, such as the Roman, Ottoman, Chinese, etc. but none of them ever lasted for ever because the pendulum swings.



    I think the pendulum will still apply today.



    Don't know if it will be China as top dog in 100 years but I'm pretty sure there can only be 1 distinguished number 1 one at a time to be able to have relative peace.
  • Reply 8 of 62
    Quote:

    Originally posted by JimDreamworx





    Will it? There is a difference to the USA from Rome. North America is pretty isolated from invading hordes, and I can't see any other nation spending crazy amounts of money to setup a military force to overthrow the USA from continental distances. The USSR tried and failed, China would sooner march westward that try to go beyond the Pacific Ocean.




    I don't think I can agree. I really don't think being no. 1 means to dominate using military power.



    We Chinese have always hated imperialism. (China never really tried to expand it's boarders. Modern day China is very similar to China thousands of years ago. In fact, China is smaller cause Mongolia became independent) (For the misinformed, Tibet was a part of China for thousands of years and communication with China was lost only for a small amount of time due to the rising of the warlords in China...so it doesn't count as imperialism)
  • Reply 9 of 62
    matsumatsu Posts: 6,558member
    HA!



    riight. China isn't imperialist. Beijing isn't trying to dominate at least a dozen major lingiustic and cultural groups "within it's own borders"



    The Imperialists cry "history" first. Welcome to the club.
  • Reply 10 of 62
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Matsu

    HA!



    riight. China isn't imperialist. Beijing isn't trying to dominate at least a dozen major lingiustic and cultural groups "within it's own borders"



    The Imperialists cry "history" first. Welcome to the club.




    Not at all, there are many programmes trying to save the 56 ethnic groups.



    If you've ever watched chinese tv there are lots of tv programmes to promote understanding of the ethnic groups.



    WTF are you saying? And why by default do Americans hate China?



    Have you ever been to China? I had an american the other day who thought that you cannot be a Christian and can only be one in secret.





    I think a lot of the media is very one sided and is giving a false or one sided report on what China is.
  • Reply 11 of 62
    crusadercrusader Posts: 1,129member
    Personally I think a decline in American power would be good. The country needs to turn inwards and fade off the world stage.



    Unfortunately this will never happen. Globalization has so swept the world, that every country is tied to another. The U.S. turning inward would put a serious hurt on the world economy. We would turn our backs on free trade. As much as I hate free-trade, we can't abandon it when we were the main instigators for that change. Just because it doesn't befit us AS MUCH as it used to, doesn't mean we can tear it up and throw it out the window because we may or may not be losing jobs to outsourcing in other countries.\\



    America isn't like Rome as of yet. Rome went through three distinct phases in government: The Kings, The Counsels, and the Emperors. I was going to make some point about America being founded on the ideas of the Enlightenment and such, but alas, I am tired.



    China scares me.
  • Reply 12 of 62
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Crusader





    China scares me.




    I think you should plan a trip to China.



    I can guarantee that you will have a different view of China and that you will have a great time.
  • Reply 13 of 62
    matsumatsu Posts: 6,558member
    Did I say "bad China" somewhere? I may have said "Imperialist", but that's not neccessarily a slight. Yes, we've all become afraid of the term these days, even China, so they play a semantic game.



    Take one of those groups and promote a little too much preservation or independence and see what happens. Who's in China's prisons, and why? Who's in America's prisons, and why? Different kinds of Empire, but Empires they both remain.



    Just pointing out some of the rhetoric, Empire isn't a bad word, just a name.



    To relegate China to a historical boundary, that is imposed by a one time empire, then say that it is not now empire because it was then empire and this is merely the preservation of same... that's bad argument at best. Ask the Tibetans, or the Falun Gong?



    Maybe China is justified in her actions, maybe China is effective, maybe it is both, maybe neither. None of that is in play except the extremely naive idea that China is not an empire.



    History, power, control, scale, all of these denote "Empire" but more than that, the ideological march leaves no question as to what China is, and that is, you guessed it, an Empire.



    I know this sounds like a strong repraisal to your ears. To me it has little to do with what China might be like -- I sure it's lovely for the right kind of people, and that's true everywhere.
  • Reply 14 of 62
    splinemodelsplinemodel Posts: 7,311member
    China will never be the way America is unless it has something of a revolution. But hey, it could happen.



    I see America's best days ahead. I think Bush will be the last Republican to ever make it to the White House, at least from a traditional understanding of "Republican." Puritans can rattle their sabers every now and then, but they're fading away. Social Security is near reform-time, and all in all I'm pretty pleased to be where I am right now.



    Did I just write this a second ago?
  • Reply 15 of 62
    matsumatsu Posts: 6,558member
    To say both are empires is not say they are both alike, not even in the way they are empires. They could be, but I'm not arguing that.
  • Reply 16 of 62
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Splinemodel

    China will never be the way America is unless it has something of a revolution. But hey, it could happen.



    Well, I wouldn't say they would need a revolution. Look at where china is now compared to 10 years ago (not just economically but things like communication with the outside, human rights etc.) China has changed immensely.



    The reason why China cannot become a democracy overnight like the USSR did is...pretty self explanatory (look at what it brought, people didn't know what to do when everything was changed all of a sudden).



    China is going the gradual way. So with time it will change and I am almost certain it will be a democracy with direct voting from the citizens (there is voting today but at a lower and indirect level).



    Remember, China is changing, it's not as you think: stuck with a government that oppresses the people.





    I'm not sure what you mean by "the way america is" and I probably don't want China to be the way america is, but do you see what I'm saying with the whole gradual change thing?
  • Reply 17 of 62
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Matsu



    Take one of those groups and promote a little too much preservation or independence and see what happens.




    What you say is very correct. China is very scared of separatists, which is why they are trying to make them happy, by making them known and appreciated and also by giving them a lot of developmental help.



    I think they are ok to be scared. Once one province is granted independence, a lot of more provinces will have a reason to.



    I am sure that if a state like Texas were to want to become autonomous the white house would react in the same way. I would very much doubt that they would grant Texas independence.



    what do you think?
  • Reply 18 of 62
    Quote:

    Originally posted by stevegongrui

    What you say is very correct. China is very scared of separatists, which is why they are trying to make them happy, by making them known and appreciated and also by giving them a lot of developmental help.



    I think they are ok to be scared. Once one province is granted independence, a lot of more provinces will have a reason to.



    I am sure that if a state like Texas were to want to become autonomous the white house would react in the same way. I would very much doubt that they would grant Texas independence.



    what do you think?



    oh, and I acknowledge the point about both being empires.







  • Reply 19 of 62
    pfflampfflam Posts: 5,053member
    What claim could China possibly have on Tibet?

    Tibet developed a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT culture over a period of hundreds of years

    Tibet has no resources and has no desire to be Chinese

    What lies are being told to the Chineses people about Tibet that can make you say that the invasion of Tibet was remotely justified?



    Tibet was in China . . . when was that? . . . Do you mean back when China was ruled by the Mongols and was part of the Largest Empire ever on earth?

    Tibet is far more Mongolian than Chinese

    But better yet, Tibet is Tibetan . . . or at least it should be!
  • Reply 20 of 62
    splinemodelsplinemodel Posts: 7,311member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by stevegongrui

    I'm not sure what you mean by "the way america is" and I probably don't want China to be the way america is, but do you see what I'm saying with the whole gradual change thing?



    There are too many cultural problems in China for it to become a serious contender for one thing. There's no respect for authenticity. That is, the country is full of pirates. Try developing a meaningful electronics or pharmaceutical R&D lab in a place like that. Sure, you can have American R&D labs outsource the plant to China, but patent protection in China is nonexistant and the Chinese I've met seem to argue that this is a good thing.



    It's not.



    Secondly, they don't have a constitution that is particularly protective. That's one of those things that separates a modern nation from a developing nation. Without a constitution, a bill of rights, and a stable forum for fair and judicious issue resolution (i.e. a good court system), it's difficult to play the part of a 1st world nation.



    Now, the revolution doesn't have to be a war, but it'll be a big change, at least in writing.



    Lastly, Texas doesn't want to seceede. You can try to make the comparison, but it's not relevant because the US Constitution and all further declarations of states' rights have made each state quite content to be a part of the union for quite a while now. Texas, indeed, has fair representation. Hell, even Puerto Rico is represented.
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