Time: Sat Oct 11 21:13:41 1997
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Date: Sat, 11 Oct 1997 21:00:05 -0700
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From: Paul Andrew Mitchell [address in tool bar]
Subject: SLS: Paper Terrorism -- Shades of the Fall of Rome (fwd)

>Thanks to Dave Wren for the following excellent, timely and thought 
>provoking information and commentary related to the recent postings 
>on "Paper Terrorism"  HT
>> SNIP__________________________________________________
>Harold said: 
>> >Where people have no hope, peace has no hope. Somebody had better 
>> >start trying to listen to the other side and darn fast.  If all 
>> >"paper" remedies are criminalized, human suffering in the U.S. of A. 
>> >may just take a quantum leap.
>> >
>> >Would it not be bitter irony if the very same stripe of people who 
>> >gave birth to Liberty in America over two hundred years ago, were 
>> >today used by their gov't as the pretext to extinguish that very Liberty.
>Dave Wren responds:
>> I was reading "Europe In the Middle Ages" by Hoyt, since it was written in
>> 1957, that removes most of the PC revisionist crap found in later
>> publications. Once before a great republic rotted from within, I was struck
>> by some of the quotes written in the 300s, are we not saying the same words
>> 1700 years later?  
>> Most people then, even as today, blamed the government or public and
>> private morals for all the ills of society. Salvian, a Christian critic of
>> his age,
>> asked:
>> "Why are these disorders seen now, when peace and security have vanished
>> from the whole Empire! Only the vices remain."
>> Another Christian contemporary, Lactantius, complained of the extortions of
>> the bureaucracy:
>> "Revenue officers are everywhere. Every clod of a field is measured, as
>> as the number of feet in a vineyard, the number of trees is recorded, each
>> kind of animal inventoried, and men are counted by heads."
>> Whatever the explanation of the decline of the Roman Empire one fact is
>> certain: there was a failure of nerve and an atrophy of public spirit. The
>> imperial government's effort to meet the difficulties succeeded only in
>> perpetuating a crisis.
>> Runaway taxes on home owners is nothing new, read this quote from The
>> Cambridge Ancient History:
>> "Thus began the fierce endeavor of the State to squeeze the population to
>> the last drop. Since economic resources fell short of what was needed the
>> strong fought to secure the chief share for themselves with a violence and
>> unscrupulousness well in keeping with the origin of those in power and
with a
>> soldiery accustomed to plunder. The full rigor of the law was let loose on
>> the population. Soldiers acted as bailiffs or wandered as secret police
>> through the land. Those who suffered most were, of course, the propertied
>> class. It was relatively easy to lay hands on their property, and in an
>> emergency, they were the class from whom something could be extorted
>> most frequently and quickly."
>> Or this quote from The Cambridge Ancient History: "If the propertied class
>> buried their money, or sacrificed two-thirds of their estate to escape
from a
>> magistracy, or went so far as to give up their whole property in order
to get
>> free of the domains rent, and the non-propertied class ran away, the State
>> replied by increasing the pressure.
>> This is worth remembering as you plan ahead. The twilight of state systems
>> in the past has seldom been a polite, orderly process. The large numbers of
>> agri deserti, or abandoned farms, in Western Europe after the collapse of
>> the Roman Empire reflected only a small part of a wider problem. In fact,
>> exactions tended to be relatively mild in Gaul, and in the frontier
areas that
>> comprise current-day Luxembourg and Germany. In Rome's most fertile
>> region, Egypt, where farming was more productive because of irrigation,
>> desertion by owners was an even bigger problem. The question of whether
>> to attempt escape, the ultimum refugium, as it was known in Latin, became
>> the overriding quandary of almost everyone with property. Records show
>> that "among the common questions which used to be put to an oracle in
>> Egypt three standard types were: "Am I to become a beggar?" or ''Shall I
>> take to flight?' and "Is my flight to be stopped?"
>> Remember, we started with a republic, Franklin taunted the public to
>> preserve that republic, we failed. Now each again must ask the same three
>> questions.
>> Dave Wren

Paul Andrew Mitchell, Sui Juris      : Counselor at Law, federal witness 01
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