Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Rome Burns

The state of TIAH

July 18th, 2006

in 817 AUC, members of the cult of Christos set fire to a shop in the market area of Rome. The shopkeep had whipped his daughter for joining the Christians, and the cultists wanted revenge against him. Unfortunately, the fire soon spread throughout the entire market, and from there, to the city at large. Hundreds of Romans died and thousands were injured as most of the city was reduced to ashes. When Emperor Nero returned from Antium to survey the damage, the shopkeep, who had escaped the fire by the will of the gods, told the emperor who had set the fire and why. Nero set aside traditional Roman tolerance for other religions and declared the Christians an outlaw cult, and forbade its practice within the borders of Rome. Within a generation, there were no Christians left, but Rome was rebuilt even more magnificently than before.

in 1925, a young Austrian Fascist rabble-rouser by the name of Adolf Hitler published a manifesto of his cause, arrogantly titled Mein Kampf, or My Struggle. The rambling, virtually incoherent tome rattled on for a couple of hundred pages and detailed the Austrian's insane views of the world, which included the thought that some vast conspiracy of Jews ran the world and were responsible for Germany's defeat in the Great War. Most Germans, realizing that Jewish people were a relatively powerless minority in the world, saw the book as a joke, and when Hitler's National Socialist Worker's Party failed to win a single seat in the German Parliament in the 1928 elections, he was laughed back to Austria, where he made a small living painting racist and anti-Semitic art for other lunatics.

in 1969, Senator Edward Kennedy is caught by his wife attempting to leave a party with attractive young Mary Jo Kopechne. The resulting divorce causes havoc with Kennedy’s political career, as details of his womanizing and drinking become public. Kennedy pledges to his constituents that he will reform, and after a brief period in a rehabilitation clinic, he comes out sober and focused. After winning the presidency in 1976, he entered his second marriage – also the second marriage of a President in the White House – to Victoria Reggie in 1977. He narrowly won re-election in 1980 in a hard-fought political campaign against conservative California Governor Ronald Reagan, and the triumph of his liberal programs over the Republican conservative movement caused the GOP to abandon many of the right-leaning ideals that had been dominant in the party since Goldwater's ascendancy in 1964. The newly moderate Republicans then wrested the presidency for themselves with candidate John Anderson of Illinois in 1984. President Anderson continued most of Kennedy's programs, and conservatism, which had once been a thriving movement in American politics, seemed relegated to the dustbin of history.

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