Lessons from history with Schon

In a recent presentation, I did for our forum on Bankruptcy, I looked for the origins of the three-year term of a Bankruptcy and found the origins in Republican Rome in the “Great Reform Bill of Rome” dated 377BC. It was here that the original three-year period of Bankruptcy was first established.

The insight struck many in the room and drew much comment in the informal gathering afterwards. A number of people suggested that they found such an early reference to be surprising. One such intrepid researcher is Rob Stewart of 180 Corporate who followed up today with this wonderful period quote:

“The Budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed, lest Rome will become bankrupt. People must again learn to work instead of living on public assistance.” – Cicero, 55 BC

It is really interesting that today’s problems are not always new ones, but of greater concern is the fact that we as a race, in certain areas, seem to find it impossible to ever learn lessons from the past! As Rob put it in his email: – “So, evidently we’ve learned very little in 2,069 years.” Interestingly about 11 years after Cicero’s statement above was published Rome became an Empire and its period of astronomical growth (and then ultimate collapse) was to begin.

As I have often found, it seems that ‘it’s all been done before!’ Thanks Rob for passing it on.

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