Tumblr pulled down his blog. His rampant anti-Semitism and racism had to be addressed. This (!) is how a social media platform should respond to people promoting hate speech and entertaining violence against other racial groups. Twitter should have done that with Trump’s profile long ago, especially because he’s also using the site to promote false and misleading information. That makes his profile as dangerous as the profile Tumblr took down. I thank the Tumblr staff for taking swift action as they always have. Consider this a warning issued to any blogger who promotes hate speech and calls for violence toward people on the basis of their religion, ethnicity, or sexual orientation.
Welcome Back to 100 Days of Trump, where I try to explain WTF happened in 2016 through 100 works of fiction, and I think we haven’t had quite enough video games in the last three days, lets talk fallout. Now the Fallout series has a lot of depth, good characters, fun gameplay and interesting ideas so generally I recommend all of it….except Fallout 3….and Fallout 4….and Brotherhood of Steel…..Ok really just the first two games and this one, but the point is only New Vegas is really relevant to Trump, but play the first two if you like classic RPGs.
So everybody knows that Fallout is a post nuclear world, but the premise of the…good games is that society collapsed…..nothing really changed. People are exactly the same just with less fancy houses and and the sins of the Old World continue on to the future. So ok, sounds like post Great Recession America, how is this about Trump? Well FallOut New Vegas is about the player being trapped between three factions
Caesar’s Legion, a violent reactionary sexist, racist, right wing militant extremist group who advocate racial supremacy, and a return to an idealized past that never existed.
The New Californian Republic, A bunch of corrupt moderates who couch their language in the ideals of democracy and progressive ideals but are duplicitous, warmongering, and have become increasingly sexist, racist, classist, and undemocratic but look good compared to the first group.
Mr. House, a completely amoral rich plutocrat whose utter selfishness and open hostility to submitting to any form of control are mixed with surprisingly progressive social policies and honest look at the problems.
So New Vegas is an alternate universe if Bloomberg actually ran third party, and Trump wasn’t a complete idiot.
Today though, I want to focus on Caesar’s Legion. One of the themes of New Vegas is even though the US has been wiped out, everybody is clinging to symbols of the past, clinging to them out of context and justifying their actions by claiming continuity with the past. The NCR claims to literally be the US goverment despite a century long gap between the fall of the US and the NCR’s founding, or the fact that it doesn’t use our constitution, or the fact that it is only located in California. And its desire to seize control of all the American land means it prioritizes war over its citizen’s well being (stop me if this sounds familiar). Mr. House is determined to preserve the culture of Las Vegas, or rather the way we imagine Las Vegas, with all of the actual realities of Vegas culture removed, its the city center without the city around it, forcibly preserved by an immortal dictator. All the factions try to link themselves to a mystical past (a past we know is utterly whitewashed cause its our present), but the worst of them all, is Caesar’s Legion
See, Edward Sallow was a history nut of the old world when he read about the Roman Empire, and sought to recreate it anew in post apocalyptic Nevada, arguing that since Rome is the foundation of Western Civilization, a return to true Western Greatness. Wherever they go, they bring cultural purity, slavery, Roman era gender relations, and require absolute conformity to their way of life. According to Caesar
“Pax Romana=It means a nationalist, imperialist, totalitarian, homo genius culture that obliterates the identity of every group it conquers. Long term stability at all costs. The individual has no value beyond his utility to the state, whether as an instrument of war or production”
But here is the thing, speaking as a big roman history nut…..THAT ISN’T TRUE. Pax Romonus means “Roman Peace” and means just that, peace. Rome was an Imperialistic, slave owning, genocidal empire that could be extraordinarily brutal, but guess what? It wasn’t nationalistic, the Roman Empire was always borrowing ideas from other cultured cultures in order to improve their empire, it was extremely multicultural and interventionist. I mean
The Roman Navy was Carthaginian
The Roman Gods were Greek
Later they converted to a monotheistic Sect from Judea
For a while they worshiped a Syrian god named Sol Invictus
Most of the Elites Spoke Greek
The Roman Legionary Structure was influenced by the neighboring Samnites
The roman Calvary was almost always Gallic, North Africa, German or Syria
Trajan and Hadrien were Spanish
The Severun dynasty was North African/Syrian (and btw the dynasty that most resembled New Vegas)
The Ilyrian Emperors who saved rome from the Crisis of the Third Century AD, like Aurelian, Diocletion, Claudius Gothicus) were from the Balkans
Constantine was Balkan/British
Flavius Aetius (who defeated Atilla the Hun) was Scythian
Justinian and Belisarius weren’t Latin Roman
Hell after a certain point, almost none of the Emperors are Roman any more, instead they are German, or Hunnic, Syrian or Raba, Spanish or African, Gaulic or Balkan, non Roman Italian,
In fact, one of the main reasons why Western Roman Empire fell is that it didn’t allow the various Gothic/Germanic strongmen to become Emperor in their own RIght.
Rome was never a homogeneous unchanging culture, from Romulus to Constantine XI Roman is defined by its capacity to change and adapt, and its multi cultural empire gave it a lot of ideas to draw upon. And when you look at White Nationalists today who fetishist Rome, it is a rome they don’t understand. By the Way, that Hegelian view of history, that is believed by Steave Bannon.
Also…the transformation to dictatorship doesn’t go as Caesar claims, cause guess what? Julius Caesar didn’t invade a foreign nation, he had a civil war with his own country. And Augustus Caesar took pains to ensure that his Empire was a soft and nonthreatening as possible, the more authoritarian emperors like Septimius Severus were terrible rulers.
Also The Julians didn’t claim to be “Son of Mars” they claimed to be descended from Venus Goddess of Love, hence her role in the Aeneid.
Also Rome didn’t emerge out of a harsh brutal land to fight against the weak fat settled people, Rome emerged in Central Italy, a lush fertile climate. Hell according to legend, Rome was founded by the refuse and exiles from all the surrounding societies, who came to Rome for a second chance and married Sabine women. Honestly Caesar (the in game Caesar not real life, not Julius Caesar) seems to be confusing Rome with Sparta, and which of those two civilizations conquered the known world? I’ll give you a hint, it wasn’t the one with the eugenics model. It was the one with the independent aristocracy, and a Republic who did most of the conquest of Rome. This is a map of Rome at its height
and this is how much of that was taken by the Republic, not the empire
That is more than half, and a great deal of the remaining was conquered by Emperor Claudius, you know, this guy?
the one with the limp and the stammer and the twitch. Rome’s Empire mostly fought Romans, Rome’s Republic conquered.
And when the Legion tries to Cosplay as Real Rome, it never quite matches the true stories.
This stories resembles Roman propaganda, except…Rome rarely wiped out the entire population, in fact their empire was supported by a network of client kingdoms who betrayed their former rulers to side with Rome. One of the most important pieces of Roman rule that if you surrendered, you were treated fairly, if you fought a bit and then surrendered, you were treated well. If you fought to the death, stuck to your principles as Vulpes implies, then you were wiped out. Just ask the Jews at Masada how Rome respects those who fight to the last.
So we have a violent, militant, reactionary culture fetishistic a past that never truly existed and they don’t seem to understand to justify extreme racism, violence, and horrifying sexism in order to fight against a corrupt hypocritical but far less awful democratic regime. Sound Familiar
oh…..well that too but also this
Those who idealize history are always those who understand it the least, and New Vegas for all its buggy often frustrating gameplay glory, understands what happens when history is co-opted by those who don’t understand it but wish to use the symbols of nostalgia to justify their own atrocities. Isn’t that Right Ulysses, so named after the man who traveled the ocean for 10 year trying to find home and then freed all the Slave?
Edit: I also want to talk about this real quick
Yeah that whole “War is great for its own sake” macho bullshit? The Romans weren’t so into that, they were much more into “Hey, work for us, and you can keep all your stuff” There is a reason why all of the ancient rome spoke of Roman Treachery.