We bought the HBO Rome DVD set and watched an episode a night until we were done and Caesar was undone. It was enthralling to watch a great power tear itself apart. Funny how history seems to be repeating itself as the Left does its best to help Iran and Al Qaeda defeat the US in Iraq. Any Democrat leader with an ounce of sense would do well to heed Lawrence Haas, who writes:

The parallels are striking. In 1975, a Democratic Congress cut off funds for the U.S. effort in Vietnam. The public, disillusioned over Vietnam and Watergate, elected Jimmy Carter, who promised honesty and applauded the end of “our irrational fear of Communism.”

As America turned inward in the late 1970s, enemies sensed our vulnerability and dangers mounted. The fear of communism was not so irrational after all. In Ethiopia, Angola, Rhodesia and elsewhere, the Soviet Union or Cuba worked to stoke Third World revolution. The Soviets more openly laid bare their expansionist agenda in late 1979 by invading Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, the Islamic Revolution in Iran of 1979 toppled a staunch U.S. ally. The student seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran, leading to a 444-day hostage crisis, painted a picture of American impotence.

But, as the decade came to a close, Americans had had enough of defeat and humiliation. Just five years after Americans had bid goodbye to Vietnam and turned inward, they elected Ronald Reagan, who promised to rebuild the nation’s defenses and stop the drift of U.S. foreign policy. Indeed, in that campaign season, Reagan called Vietnam a “noble cause.”

Reagan’s election initiated a long period of Democratic struggle to compete for the White House. While Reagan looked ahead and projected strength, Democrats looked back, focused on the failure of Vietnam, and expressed hesitancy about America’s role in the world. Not surprisingly, voters came to question the Democrats’ ability to protect the nation.

Will history repeat itself? To be sure, the White House seems an achievable target for Democrats in 2008, just as it was in 1976. Public disenchantment with President Bush in general, and with the war in Iraq in particular, should give Democrats a good head start.

Americans don’t like losers but the Democrats seem determined to make America lose.

The Libby trial has been covered by Tom Maguire, Clarice Feldman and an army of able commenters. The difference between Just One Minute and the MSM coverage is dramatic. The one post that I’ve linked to has 573 comments (when I linked). My guilty pleasure has been reading through them and comparing them with MSM reports. Here’s Clarice in one comment:

I want to say that after all the build up about this case, the jury will certainly be comparing the sloppy, often contradictory testimony of the prosecution’s witnesses, with the crisp clear narrative of the defendant’s. And it will not be overlooked how quickly the defense completed its case and the prosecutor offered no rebuttal.
The sense that this is a trivial matter, not proven beyond a reasonable doubt was conveyed by the choreography.

Despite Judge Walton’s siding with the prosecution by, for example, not allowing Andrea Mitchell to be cross-examined, my sense from following the trial via JOM is that Libby will win. Of course, if I relied on the NYT, I might not be so confident.

This trial came about because the elites in this country are bitterly divided, just as they were in Ancient Rome. A power so divided cannot long survive in this dangerous world.