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February 25, 2011

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Page 2 POST-GAZETTE, FEBRUARY 25, 2011 A study of all the stories, events, and the characters associated with the rise and fall of the Roman Empire would be like reading an entire library, and would probably take a'100 years to fully understand and record its beauties. A capsule explanation divides the his- tory of Classical Rome into three distinct periods: 1. The Regal Period (the leg- endary kings like Romulus) 753 to 510 B.C.; 2. The Re- public (the time of the great Roman Senate and ending with the death of Julius Caesar) 510 to 27 B.C.; 3. The Empire (the period of Roman emperors starting with the great Augustus and ending with the pitiful Romulus Augustulus) 27 B.C. to 365 A.D. During the period called the "Empire," there were many good emperors like Nerva, Trajan, Hadrian, Antoninous Plus, and Marcus Aurelius. Unfortu- nately, along with the good, they also had to contend with the bad. There were rulers like Caracalla who, not only built one of the world's larg- est bath tubs, but was also noted for his brutality, Heliogabalas, who was noted for his debauchery, and Commodus, the son of Marcus Aurelius who was reD0rtecl t0 n3Vt 0tin tilt most blood thirsty and un- ruly emperor that has ever been recorded in all of his- tory. Those of us who are in good health pay a daily trib- ute to the memory of this character. Then there was Nero, the archenemy of all Chris- tians, who was one of the most cruel, depraved, and despotic emperors that ever ruled Rome. by Prof. Edmund Turiello A.weekly column highlighting some of the.more interesting aspects of our ancestry.., our lineage.., our roots. CALIGULA Finally there was a nutcake named Caligula, who was just plain off his "Roman rocker". His reign got off to a pretty good start, but the finish just defies de- scription. Caesar was the family name of Gaius Julius Caesar, and after his death the title of Caesar was given to all of the Roman emperors from Augustus to Hadrian. References are still being made to these 12 Caesars whose popular names, in chronological or- der are: Julius Caesar, Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Vespasian, Titus, Domitian, Nerva, Trajan, and Hadrian. Caligula was born of Germanicus and Agrippina, in an army camp, in the year 12 A.D., and was brought up among the legions. The name Caligula as given to him by the soldiers because of the "caligae" or army boot that he was required to wear. His proper name was Gaius Caesar Augustus Germanicus and it was the name he preferred. As a young man, while in the court of his grandfather Tiberius, he displayed a naturally mean and vicious temper, a wanton love of cruelty towards persons of lesser rank, and a most :tl infl0ilcfl anti llI1DrillCil]lCfl debauchery. He became a most eager witness to tortures and executions of prisoners, and he reveled at night in adultery and glut- tony. Greek and Roman mythol- ogy tells of Phaethon, the son of Helios the sun god who borrowed his father's sun chariot and through reck- less driving was about to set the world on fire when Zeus destroyed him with a thun- derbolt. Tiberius often said that to allow Caligula to live would prove to be the ruin of all men and that he (Tiberius) was breeding a viper for the Roman people and a second Phaethon for the destruction of the world. The will of Tiberius made his two grandsons, Druses and Caligula, joint heirs to his private property. (What a mistake that wasl) There are some conflicting reports about the death of Tiberius. One sure bet was that he did not die of natural causes. It was known that his death was not too far off and one day he fainted, consequently he was thought to be dead. Caligula was being saluted as the new emperor when he was informed that Tiberius was still conscious. One re- port claims that Caligula immediately smothered his grandfather with a pillow and a second report tells of Tiberius being poisoned. Caligula succeeded in having himself proclaimed emperor and this appoint- ment was received with great joy throughout the empire. The early days were marked with moderation, liberality and justice. He freed all state prisoners, recalled all of those persons WlIO IrerC I}[[VIOtl I)r I]tlll- ished from the empire, for- bade all prosecutions for treason, conferred free and independent power on the magistrates and distin- guished the first eight months of his reign with generosity and nobility in the eyes of the world. He was the nicest guy you'd ever want to meet ... this week. Just wait until next issue and Caligula the Murderer. R Publica by David Trumbull Massachusetts Republican Liberty Caucus Chartering Ceremony February 28 It's politics-as-usual on Beacon Hill. We have a governor who defends criminals but won't support his taxpayers. We have elected officials who love raising our taxes but do little to increase small business growth and job creation. We have unemployed citizens struggling to find work while our state senators refuse to cut their own salaries and stop spend- ing taxpayer money on failing government programs. Where is the representation Massachusetts needs to transform the way our state is governed? The recent election only rendered more of the same with little hope of reform. The Massachusetts Republican Liberty Caucus, a state affiliate of the National Republican Liberty Caucus, is work- ing to change the tax and spend mentality on Beacon Hill by holding its first official chartering ceremony Monday, February 28 at 7:00 pm at Vlora Restaurant in Copley Square, Boston. All are welcome to attend. Founded in 1991, the RLC exists to promote individual liberty, limited government, and free enterprise within the Republican Party. With these principles in mind, the Mass RLC aims to challenge and change the way the state is governed, and support elected officials who will actually cut spending, limit government power, preserve individual freedoms, and end fiscal irresponsibility. The Mass RLC wants to revolutionize the way the state is governed by running local issue campaigns and advocat- ing for legislation that supports the RLC positions and values. Ultimately, their goal is to form a PAC (political action committee) in Massachusetts to effectively influ- ence campaigns and voters' decisions. "This is a major step in the right direction in changing the political and economic future of Massachusetts," says Shelly Ortelt, one of the Mass RLC's organizing committee chairs. "Our organization is very grassroots and is open to anyone who believes in our principles. After the disappoint- ing November elections, we said "enough is enough." So here we are trying to make a difference." 80, if you are tired of the Deacon Hill status quo and want to be part of this unique opportunity to bring individual liberty, limited government, and free enterprise to Massa- chusetts then please join the MassRLC on February 28th. For more information please visit the Mass RLC website at Dc~d ~ tl~.~ c#~r~7~al~ oj~ ~e Boston Ward Three Republican Committee. Boston's Ward Three includes the North End, West End, part of Beacon Hill, downtown, waterfront, Chinatown, and part of the South End. LAW OFFICES OF FRANK J. CIANO GENERAL PRACTICE OF LA W DIVORCE WILLS * ESTATE PLANNING TRUSTS CRIMINAL * PERSONAL INJURY WORKERS COMP. 617-354-9400 Si Parla Italiano AAA Likes Primary Seat Belt Laws I was reading The Provi- dence Journal recently and caught the story about the primary seat law for Rhode Island. Little Rhody will have a primary seat belt law by June 30 if Lloyd Albert, se- nior vice president for pub- lic and government affairs at AAA Southern New England 230 MSGP~ O'BRIEN HIGHWAY * CAMBRIDGE. MASSACHUSETTS 02141 by Sal Giarratani .... ~:"~: ~" :'~ ~ >" has anything to do with it. tive of federal funds totaling ~W~~. ~.