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  1. Could the (western) Roman Empire have survived?

    I have the impression that the historiography of the Roman Empire in recent decades has emphasized military defeat as the cause of the western empire's collapse rather than the older explanations of internal decadence (corruption and power seeking by the elites, agricultural decline, tax...
  2. An alternative Forbidden Planet

    Last night I watched Forbidden Planet for about the 10th time and as much as I enjoy it, over the years I've become increasingly aware of its flaws. Leslie Nielsen is no leading man; Walter Pidgeon is not a tragedian; Anne Francis is a fine actress but is miscast. The dialogue is generally...
  3. Walter Cronkite for VP!

    Years ago I read that in the run-up to the Democratic convention in 1972, someone on George McGovern's staff seriously suggested that Walter Cronkite throw his hat in the ring for the vice-presidential nomination. Assuming that Cronkite was nominated, and given that McGovern's campaign was...
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