Stumbled upon this in my list of quotes... true then, true now.
Last edited Tue Sep 6, 2022, 02:26 PM - Edit history (1)
"A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banners openly.
But the traitor moves among those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the galleys, heard in the very hall of government itself.
For the traitor appears not a traitor...He speaks in the accents familiar to his victims, and wears their face and their garment, and he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men.
He rots the soul of a nation...he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of a city...he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to be feared."
-- Taylor Caldwell, playwright, often incorrectly attributed to Cicero
Hat tip to mahatmakanejeeves, in post 10 below, who researched the quote and pointed out the correct attribution.
relate to poetry, music, art, and stories produced millennia ago.
He was beheaded on the order of Mark Antony, who was instrumental in the transformation of Rome from a democratic republic to an autocratic empire. Sound familiar?
Roe, Roe, Roe your vote
Republicans revoke your rights
and kill democracy!
Donate to 38 House candidates: https://www.democraticunderground.com/100217067267
Stick 'em up for a blue wave: https://www.democraticunderground.com/100217078977
Most of the population couldn't vote - women, freedmen and slaves. Mark Antony got in on the tail end of the Republic's downfall. What led to it was nearly a century of civil war, corruption and political in fighting. The people became fed up and backed anyone who could promise and bring them peace and bread. That turned out to be Augustus aka J. Caesar's great nephew and adopted son. Jules put the Republic on its death bed; Augie pulled the plug.
Please consider it a Freudian slip rather than ignorance on my part.
Rome made a credible attempt at maintaining a republic. 300 more or less years isn't a bad run.
For critics of President Trump, an old quotation about "treason from within" was relevant in 2018. But who actually came up with it?
Published 31 July 2018
The Roman orator Cicero issued a warning about a nation's being destroyed by "treason from within."
Against that background, an old warning about a nations being destroyed by treason from within, purporting to be from the Roman orator Marcus Tullius Cicero (better known as Cicero), found popularity on social media after a Facebook page called Impeach Trump, Impeach Pence, Keep Impeaching posted it in the form of a meme on 14 July 2018, two days before the Helsinki summit:
Although these words are now widely attributed to Cicero, in fact they originated in the 20th century, with novelist Taylor Caldwells 1965 book A Pillar of Iron. Even though that work often drew directly from the recorded speeches and letters of Cicero for its dialogue, it was nonetheless a work of fiction, and the warning from Cicero about treason from within was an invention of Caldwells and not a reproduction of Ciceros own words.
A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to fear.
― Taylor Caldwell, A Pillar of Iron
Everything we know is wrong.
I had to say that to a friend recently, half jokingly, half seriously as we discussed current events and truths being revealed. He believed a lot of what he was told growing up, I was skeptical from the start and labeled a problem child because I questioned everything.
Much to my dismay, much of what I doubted turned out to be what I had speculated rather than not. Sometimes take years for the truth to come out but I grown to accept and be patient.
I have heard many misdirected attributes, the majority regarding Machiavelli who was not who people think. He did not describe the machinations of corruption in government as concepts of his and plots he planned to undertake for power and gain. He was a civil servant who was well traveled and observed all of these things in his work as such yet wrote about them to, hopefully, inform future rulers of the dangers of going off the rails so to speak. The Prince was kind of an attempt at a job application to new, young ruler who didn't hire him, or if he did it didn't last long... it wasn't a positive relationship from what I recall. His writings, Discourses was an informational about the dangers of ill ruler-ship. He did not condone these things and they cost him dearly in his later years.
He was, over time, demonized for these writings, even long past his death, as they described bad things that the powerful did and so they had to take away his power of informing his readers. So over time we have come to accept the demonizing of Machiavelli rather than heed his warnings. Kind of similar to the plea of John Trudell in his poem, Look At Us where he asks god to send jesus back and tell the people to listen to him rather than kill him this time.
We humans, well some of us, don't learn very well.
I always wondered why Machiavelli, a supposedly corrupt and evil person, offered such good advice. My favorite is:
"A prince need trouble little about conspiracies when the people are well disposed, but when they are hostile and hold him in hatred, then he must fear everything and everybody."
My source (and thus my notes) was wrong. Im glad to correct my error.
Abraham Lincoln or Thomas Jefferson.
As Cleopatra said,
Full disclosure: I have no idea who said that. I got it from https://www.amazon.co.uk/Decoding-Secrets-Egyptian-Hieroglyphs/dp/B0752RJ1QJ