WEEKEND WEB: Those of us who cherish liberty must be vigilant against these despots
It is commonly said that those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it. Until recently, this might have been taken as an obvious truth. Yet we understand less of the past now than previous generations knew. Just think of the paucity of most modern opinion formers’ knowledge of the ancient world, even though so much of what we think and do – not least democratic politics – has its philosophical origins in ancient Greece or Rome.