Oh, boy. Author has a very weak understanding of the period.
For one thing, Pompey’s campaign against the pirates could not have been facilitated by his conquest of Mithridates, since it preceded that conquest. His being given command in the war against Mithridates was a result of the pirate campaign, not the other way around.
For another, the Republic’s institutions were already in tatters at this time, with a major civil war, including the conquest of Rome by its own armies, and the installation of Sulla as a military dictator with absolute power something like 10 years earlier. Sulla used his dictatorship to completely remodel the constitution and to proscribe and excecute his enemies without trial.
Sulla’s dictatorship was a MUCH more consequential episode in Roman history than the Lex Gabinia. It demonstrated beyond any doubt that real power was wielded by the warlords, not the Senate or the People.
Also, while I guess it’s a bit of a nit, the Senate did not pass laws. Those were passed by a variety of Assemblies of the People.
I think you are correct.
It almost seems that this author is saying the victory over Mithridates happens in 66 BC, and then two years later, in 68 BC, Pompey takes on the pirates. Ummmmmmm. Hello? It's BC, and that's not how the years work.
Personally, I think the US should have adopted a strategy of nuking (yup: I said it) countries that fostered terrorism. Hey, nation state -- it's your job to keep your people in line. Any Saudis come over here and cause trouble, you lose a city. You do what you have to do to stamp out terrorism among your people. We will do likewise.
You are absolutely right. Sulla destroyed what little chance the Republic had to deal effectively with a growing chronically underemployed urban population and a sprawling empire. However what is true is that the proletariat cared far more for their personal well being than civic virtue. They could not be considered “patriotic”. The celebrated “values” of the Republic, acknowledged but not really practiced by the wealthy, were with few exceptions almost absent in that era.
Thank you for those corrections. I was having some questions, as I read, but my knowledge of this period is quite limited, so I was unsure of the validity of my own doubts.
As to this statement:
We retain the ballot and with it we can elect men and women committed to preserving and protecting the Constitution and the sovereignty of the citizens of our own Republic.
That part I can definitely say is untrue; as of November 6, 2012, I now realize that we no longer have that.