Back on July 19th, 64 AD
TIGELLINUS: Thank you for joining us today. It is very important as the fires are still smoldering and people are still suffering to not politicize this tragedy. It’s not time for the blame game. The Emperor left his vacation at his ranch in Anzio early, in order to come down and view the damage for himself. Now Nero would like to make a statement.
NERO: No one anticipated the burning of Rome. Our faith-based and community groups are responding. As some of you may know, a senator lost his home as well. Out of the rubbles of the senator’s home — there’s going to be a fantastic house. And I’m looking forward to sitting on the porch. We will re-build this city better than before the fire. It will create jobs.
TIGELLINUS: We will now open this press conference up to questions.
Q. Emperor, who will be held accountable for the slow response to this tragedy?
A. NERO: I consult with the gods on a regular basis, and we haven’t made that determination yet. There will be a full investigation by those that I trust, I can assure you. We are focused on the recovery efforts.
Q. Emperor Nero, what about those that have been made homeless by the fire?
A. NERO: Those that chose not to evacuate will be placed in temporary shelters. We are very focused on the recovery efforts.
Q. Biggest tax cut, permanent tax cut for the richest people in the empire — in view of the national crisis, in view of the deficit —
TIGELLINUS: The highest priority for this administration right now is the ongoing response and recovery efforts.
Q. With such a slow response to the city burning, and our defenses sent to foreign lands, what if Rome were attacked by our enemies?
NERO: Hehehe. We are securing the Roman people by staying on the offensive abroad. It is important to realize that Rome is at war with violent extremists and this should not deter our efforts to hunt down those that are called ‘Christians’. They never stop thinking about how to harm and kill Romans and neither do we.
TIGELLINUS: That is all the questions we have time for today. I know that tempers are flaring right now but I have confidence that history will record the truth about this event. We are very busy focusing on recovery efforts. Thank you for stopping by.
And present day: