Why “delendam”?

Where the heck did that come from?

In the 150’s, ie 150 AD, after the 3rd Punic war, Rome had conquered Carthage and taken away her empire ( and its associated costs) but left her free.  Free to pursue trade and the fruits of independent capitlaism.  And to compete with the less capable burdened Rome.  Cato the Elder, a senator with a great ability to speak, took the lead in arguing whether it was “fair” that Carthage flourished while Rome struggled.

He made a campaign of it.  In every speach, in every Roman equivalent of a townhall meeting, he made a point to endlessly bring up “Carthago delenda est”.  Carthage must be destroyed.  “Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam”.  It is obvious that Carthage MUST be destroyed (for civilzation to continue).  No teleprompter but he always ended something equivalant to that phrase.  He was the first crony capitalist as his fellow senators competed with Carthage in trading olives and grain.  Compelling oratory.  Roman government regulations had disarmed the Carthaginians and set a boundary past which they were prohibited from venturing.  Tribes around Carthage began using this to their advantage, raiding the city and then retreating back beyond the Roman imposed border.  When Carthage rebelled, rearming and then following the raiders back to their camps, Rome was already stoked up from Cato the Elder organizer and declared a seige on the Carthaginians.

Carthage was put to the torch and its people sold into slavery.

Of COURSE, Carthage MUST be destroyed.

When you spread the wealth, it’s good for EVERYBODY.

History doesn’t repeat, but per Mr. Clemons, it does rhyme.


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