Hoisted from July 3, 2008: Optimal Control

Arthur Eckstein: Mediterranean Anarchy, Interstate War, and the Rise of Rome: "The history of the next fifty years [after 390 BC] in Latium appears to be a repeat of the fifth century, with Rome fighting the same rivals for power in the same geographical realm as before (Aequi, Volsci, Latin and Etruscan city-states, primarily in Latium and extreme southern Etruria)—and with the same equivocal success. In the 350s the Romans were still fighting wars with Latin Tibur and Praeneste, only thirty miles away. The evidence of the second Ro- man treaty with Carthage (ca. 348 b.c.) shows a Rome that has not advanced the geographical scope of its power much beyond the first treaty with Carthage, 150 years previously: Roman power is still limited to Latium, and does not control all states even there (see Polyb. 2.24.5). As Oakley says, no state can have benefited much from having its city destroyed...