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5. Why did the Roman Empire fall? THAT'S THE WRONG F*K*NG QUESTION. The question you should be answering is "Why did the Roman Empire last so long?" The US is barely 200 years old; the Roman _Rebublic_ lasted 500, the empire another 500, and the Eastern Roman Empire didn't kick off until the 15th century. It's 300 years too early for you to be feeling smug toward them just because they are no longer around. Why did they last so long? It wasn't because they had a small, weak central government with low taxes, low spending, and no support or respect from the public.
4. Don't blame unions. States with weak unions have as bad or worse (like Texas) problems than states with strong unions. The main impact that unions have on states is keeping the poverty rate down. As for destroying the country to consolidate political power, isn't that what the Republicans are doing? Destroying the federal government to get votes? The US Federal government makes success in this country possible, but the Republicans act as if it was the enemy of all things good. Too many people are drinking that kool-aid, ignoring the fact that it's the Republicans who are screwing them over.
3. Almost all of the European countries have too low birth rates, not just Italy. Germany's fertility rate is 1.4, and their economy is one of the strongest in the world. And btw, Italy's is also 1.4. So maybe the problem lies elsewhere? As for who immigrates to the US, have you looked at the names on research papers and technology companies and hospital doctor lists? Half of them are not americanized names. We've been sucking the brains out of the rest of the world since WWII. Unfortunately, we do seem to be changing immigration policy to change that. Also, the children of immigrants are the main driving force in our economy; they are the ones who get the advanced degrees, and start the companies.
2. Nobody should be surprised by the problems the Greeks are having, or causing for the Euro; they have NEVER had monetary discipline.
1. Economists thought the Soviet Union had a superior economy? With their shortages? A joke in Russia was that if you saw a queue, you got in line and asked what it was for afterwards. The only economists who thought the Soviet Union had a superior economy were Soviet economists. By the late 70's, the Soviet Union was moribund and on the verge of collapse. Then Reagan got elected and started poking it with a sharp stick. He really got them roused up with his infamous crack about outlawing the Soviet Union. Their last show of strength was fueled by fear and adrenaline. Reagan didn't cause the Soviet Union to collapse; he delayed it.
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