Talk:Bread and circuses

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Hwat? Scarlet A.pngd hominem 22:19, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

It's a "religion is the opiate of the masses" sort of thing. Get the public riled up about gays and flag burning to distract them from income inequality and human rights abuses (just examples, no particular nations in mind).--Brxbrx 22:44, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
I wouldn't call bread a triviality, either. That said, yes it's the idea that authoritarian regimes stay in power by providing basic needs and distracting people from other problems with entertainments. Which is why the Soviet Union, for instance, had a state-funded orchestra in every city, and Franco's Spain bankrolled Real Madrid, the most successful football team in Europe. Sophiebecause liberals 21:09, 22 March 2012 (UTC)
Seems I got it wrong, it's not an opiate of the masses sort of thing. Sophie got it right.--"Shut up, Brx." 02:52, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
Why can't the opiate of the masses ever just be opium? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 03:22, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
That's why we put poppy seeds on the bread. Тyrant 03:23, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
Ohoh, clever, clever. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 03:24, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
Wait till you see the circus. Тycommunications wire 03:28, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
...Never seen the circus.--Dumpling (talk) 03:32, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
I've been to the Circus World Museum. ТyComplaints 03:34, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
The modern equivalent is cheep tv and facebook. Give em distractions, or a way to "feel" involved (i'm posting about this or that horror; i'm an ACTIVIST!!!!) and they won't actually go out and riot. --Pink mowse.pngGodot What do cats dream about? 03:40, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
I 'grr' at you Ty. Grr! --Dumpling (talk) 03:41, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
For a bunch of people claiming to never have seen the circus, there sure are a lot of clowns here. ±Knightoftldrsig.pngKnightOfTL;DRgoing galt: the literal crazy train 03:44, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
We're all just really big fans of Stephen King's It. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 04:29, 3 April 2012 (UTC)
...No. --Dumpling (talk) 04:34, 3 April 2012 (UTC)

I think that this article misses the mark a bit on the definition. "Bread and circuses" are the two things a government has to make sure the people have in order to remain in power, to justify its rule, whatever. "Bread" is food and other basic requirements. Without food, etc., the people will simply revolt. "Circuses" are (what this article mostly focuses on in a way) the distractions which make a six day week of 14 hour days in the salt mines bearable - entertainments. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:53, 1 March 2015 (UTC)

Godwin's Law (I am NOT sorry) and other dictatorships[edit]

I think that this article should be rewritten and focusing not only in ridiculous conspiracy theories but also real world examples and attempts at bread and circuses. In fact, both the German Empire and later Nazi Germany played this role straight (although the German Empire was actually a constitutional monarchy with universal suffrage and elections that would raise eyebrows today but were quite progressive for its time). Nazi Germany's Strength Through Joy program was bread and circuses up to 11. Modern day Russia can be considered this under Putin. (talk) 20:16, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

Feel free to edit it up to reflect that! FuzzyCatPotato™ (talk/stalk) 22:34, 1 June 2015 (UTC)
I get the Nazi Germany and perhaps Putinist Russia, but Imperial Germany? Eh, why, exactly? Just off the bat, I can't see Wilhelmine Germany being markedly more or less bread & circuses than the other imperial powers at the time, but I'm looking forward to reasons to change my mind. Btw, the USSR also engaged in various attempts at bread & circuses (well, circuses, at least, to make Soviet citizens pay less attention to the shortage of bread...), such as the early phase of agitprop, or Stalin's revamping of Russian nationalism during WWII (e.g. endless showings of Eisenstein's Alexander NevskyWikipedia), but also literally the bread example with the price of bread being kept artificially and ridiculously low east of the Iron Curtain (leading to, for instance, the use of subsidised bread as pig fodder). This particular bread fetish may also be due to Soviet history (the February Revolution began with bread riots as had its 1789 French granddaddy). ScepticWombat (talk) 23:02, 1 June 2015 (UTC)