“The Senate, in truth, has no right to censure me for anything, for I did but my duty and exposed traitors and treason against the State. If that is a crime, then I am indeed a criminal. A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murderer is less to be feared. The traitor is the carrier of the plague. You have unbarred the gates of Rome to him.”
A paraphrase from a 1965 essay by Justice Millard Caldwell often attributed to Marcus Tullius Cicero. The paraphrase appears to be from the Second Catiline Oration but drastically changes the rhetoric.
This video pretty much says it all. Traitors, aka Collaborators. Is it any wonder that you usually find some of the sorriest people on Earth comprising their ranks? I mean, in the simplest terms possible, they are at the very least dishonest. Worse than that, they are invisible. If they have an Achilles Heel then it is that of identification and exposure. Justice need not be totally denied, merely delayed.
When their plans are finally realized and the world is turned on its head, people will be looking for those responsible. It won’t be in any sort of structured way either, for all of societies major institutions will have lost the public’s faith long ago. Chaos will be the order of the day, the rule of law will be that of the natural rather than the contrived. When people’s faith and trust have been violated there will be only the visceral and immediate expedience of survival, fear and vengeance. That’s what we’re being driven to and the Traitors, the Collaborators are to blame. Without them, this synthetic Hell would not have been possible.
Quotes about Cicero
- As all the ages of the world have not produced a greater statesman and philosopher united in the same character, his authority should have great weight.
- John Adams, A Defence of the Constitutions of Government (1787), Preface
- If I could have known Cicero, and been his friend, and talked with him in his retirement at Tusculum (beau-ti-ful Tusculum l), I could have died contented.
- Charles Dickens, Mrs. Blimlier in Dombey and Son (1848), Ch. XI, p. 105.
- But to confess the truth boldly (for once you have crossed over the barriers of impudence there is no more curb), his way of writing, and every other similar way, seems to me boring. For his prefaces, definitions, partitions, etymologies, consume the greater part of his work; what life and marrow there is, is smothered by his long-winded preparations. If I have spent an hour in reading him, which is a lot for me, and I remember what juice and substance I have derived, most of the time I find nothing but wind; for he has not yet come to the arguments that serve his purpose and the reasons that properly touch on the crux, which I am looking for.
- Michel de Montaigne, ‘Of Books’, 1580, in The Complete Essays of Montaigne, ed. D. Frame (1958)