Monday, November 01, 2021

[jgqdshmk] no Roman Second Republic

the Roman Republic transitioned into the Roman Empire and never looked back.  why not?

certainly some must have been uneasy with mistakes an absolute ruler could unilaterally make.  certainly some must have thought there are better ways of choosing leaders.  certainly the ideas and ideals of Greek democracy remained accessible.

optimistically, despite nominal autocracy, perhaps the Romans and Byzantines built in a lot of mechanisms to prevent things from going wrong.  the Roman and Byzantine empire lasted a very long time, so it seems likely they were doing some things right.  (though it's also possible they were lucky.)  what, if anything, did they do?

or, pessimistically, once an autocracy is established, there is no way of transitioning back even if it is preferable.  but the story of Cincinnatus was well-preserved and easily accessible, especially to those who could shape government.

perhaps the empire tried to revert to a republic, but I don't know enough Roman history.  Quora says the Senate made some attempts to seize back control.

could the United States become an autocracy and never look back?  there seem to be many (on both sides) wishing for strong leadership.  (are we already an autocracy?  it still seems that Congress has considerable power to make things difficult for the president.  however, whenever it exercises that power, there are calls to decrease Congress's power.)

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