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January 20, 2012     Post-Gazette
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January 20, 2012

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Page 2 POST-GAZETTE, JANUARY 20, 2012 by Prof. Edmund NOS[Ta Turie.o A weekly column highlighting some of the more interesting aspects of our ancestry.., our lineage.., our roots. LUCIUS VERUS, Joy Boy of the Roman Empire Bust of Lucius Verus Lucius was eventually sent out to supervise the conduct of the Parthian War, and was accompanied by Marcus for a small portion of the trip. As soon as Marcus departed, Verus glutted himself in the villas along the way, and while the east- ern provinces were being devastated and legions were being slaughtered, Verus went on a hunting trip in southern Italy, toured Greece, and for four glorious years cordpletely gave him- self up to wine, women and song. He further dishonored himself by constant com- panionship with adulter- esses, and by love affairs with nice young men. Verus spent his winters on the Mediterannean at Laodicae (modern Latakia), his sum- mers amid the pleasure gar- dens and vice at Daphne, in Syria, the rest of his time amid the debaucheries at Antioch, and he became an object of ridicule throughout the empire. He abandoned his morally polluted life style only after learning that Marcus Aurelius and his own wife Lucilla were plan- ning to visit him. News of this proposed visit caused Verus to return to Ephesus so that his visitors would not go to Syria and dis- cover, first hand, about his escapades. At the conclusion of the Parthian War, Lucius as- signed the rule of certain provinces to members of his staff and reluctantly re- turned to Rome, taking with him much of the scum that had been the object of his licentious preoccupa- tion. Within a matter of months the Marcomannic War broke out and the two emperors traveled to Ger- many together. Marcus realizing that he had a tiger by the tail could not send Verus to prosecute the war alone, and yet, because of his debaucherous life style, could not leave him alone in the city. After concluding one phase of the war, they were returning to northern Italy for some recreation and relaxation, when Lucius was suddenly stricken with apo- plexy (shock), and died about three days later. As is most common with famous or infamous men, after they are taken by death, Stories or gossip finds a way into common circula- tion, and in the case of Lucius Verus there was no exception. The first story to hit the gossip trail was his intimacy with his mother- in-law Faustina, and be- cause Lucius had boasted of this fact to the daughter (Verus's wife), poison was sprinkled on his oysters. A second story alludes to his intimacy with his sister Fabia, and their conspiracy to do away with Marcus. In this case the finger of sus- picion was pointed toward the wife, Lucilla. Still a third story tells how Marcus cut a sow's womb with a knife that was smeared on one side with poison, then handed the poisoned side to Lucius. In retrospect, it can be said that Lucius Verus was tall, well proportioned, had a pleasant expression, and of- ten sifted gold dust on his good looking blond hair in order to brighten it. His life style rivaled that of Nero except that he was not an actor and was not cruel. His joint reign with Marcus lasted for eleven years before his death took him at the age of forty-two. His remains were placed along side of his father's in Hadrian's Tomb. NEXT WEEK: Commodus, the Bastard of the Roman Empire f NOBILE INSURANCE ALBANO F. PONTE, CEP Financial and Estate Planning Emai/ a fponte @ msn. com Phone 617-320-0022 MICHAEL F. NOBILE, CPCU ARLINGTON 148A Massachusetts Avenue Arlington, MA 02474 (781 ) 646-1200 ' Fax (781) 646-1148 MEDFORD 39 Salem Street Medforcl, MA 02155 (781) 395-4200 Fax (781) 391-8493 BOSTON 30 Prince Street Boston, MA 02113 (617) 523-6766 Fax (617) 523-0078 J Res Publica by David Tntmbull Common Sense About the Economy Twenty-five years ago the United States and Canada finalized a free trade agree- ment ("FTA") between these North American neighbors. It was only the second free trade agreement the U.S. was party to -- the first was the U.S.-Israel FTA. It would lead, in 1994, to the North American Free Trade Agree- ment or NAFTA, which abol- ished tariffs and other bar- riers to the free flow of goods among the U.S., Mexico, and Canada. The Canadian and Mexi- can agreements marked the beginning of a new re- gime in Washington, with both major parties pushing for more and more bilateral and regional FTAs. With FTAs .with 20 nations: Aus- tralia, Bahrain, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, E1 Sal- vador, Guatemala, Hondu- ras, Israel, Jordan, Mexico, Morocco, Nicaragua, Oman, Panama, Peru, Singapore, and South Korea. Our government has also begun negotiations on FTAs with Botswana, Brunei, Ec- uador, Lesotho, Malaysia, Namibia, New Zealand, South Africa, Swaziland, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates, and Vietnam. Elimination of U.S. import duties has been going on for 90 years. There was a brief reversal in the late 1920s when a Republican congress nd president brought tariffs back up near their 19  cen- tury levels, but the Demo- crats undid that starting in the 1930s. Students of American history know that tariffs were the largest source of federal revenue from the 1790s until World War I. That's when the income tax became -- as it is now -- the principle source of funding our over-bloated bureau- cracy. Through the 194 cen- tury the tariff protected American industry (and, therefore, the American worker). Since we were blessed with ample natural resources and a large labor force America could produce most everything she needed internally, making the tar- iff, in effect, a voluntary tax that could be avoided by spurning foreign imports. Under that American Sys- tem we quickly passed the British, who practiced free trade, and became the most prosperous nation. Now both parties in Wash- ington are totally in the grip of free-trade ideologues who believe that we should get all our goods and services from workers in other nations (or from illegal aliens within our borders); rely on an in- trusive and abusive system of direct taxation; and pay for the whole thing through per- sonal and public indebted- ness. Common sense tells us that we cannot borrow our way to prosperity. Sadly for our future, none of the leading presidential candi- dates in either party seems to have common sense. husetts Department of Transportation REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS FOR THE LONG TERM LEASE OF REAL PROPERTY PARCEL 9 The Massachusetts Department of Transportation is seeking proposals for the Long Term Lease of a parcel of land in downtown Boston. The Parcel is approximately 29,400 square feet (0.67 acres) directly adjacent to the Rose Kennedy Greenway, strategically located near major tourist and visitor attractions, and served by major local roads, the MBTA mass transit system, and New England's regional rail and highway system. DEADLINES: Pre-Submission Meeting and Site Tour: 1:00 pm, Wednesday, January 25, 2012 Written Questions are due: 2:00 pm, Wednesday, February 8, 2012 Proposal Due Date: 2:00 pm, Friday, March 9, 2012 To receive an electronic copy of the RFP, please visit our website at: RealEstateAssetDevelopment.aspx Email address for questions: MASSACHUSETTS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION R/CHARD DA VEY, SECRETARY & CEO iii!i!!iii!il !i !!iill ili00 :!ii ii !i :' 'i,,  iiiiiii!i!iii ,