This has floated around the interwebs for a while, but I thought it apropros considering our modern American experience:

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 fall. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance.

                                           -   Cicero  – 55 BC

As has been aptly noted elsewhere: looks like the old proverb is true, that all we learn from history is that we learn nothing from history.