I agree on both accounts. And clearly I messed it up. I settled six cities myself and also annexed Venice. And yes I got Hubble, even if Rome had the tech before me. When I reached Plastics, I still needed 25 more techs to finish. However there were other extraordinary circumstances. The only way to get coal was to buy it, but it was so late that I researched plastics before I got my factories. My own border growth didn´t prioritise the coal tile until about t300. Rome had all the money (at one point over 80.000) and all the city states and 53 cities. I was number 2 in production, but my output was only 18,2% of Rome´s output. That is how I finally got scared and settled cities five and six (for the oil and the aluminium). The only nearby oil was the sea tile NW of Venice, and clearly I should have built more culture buildings there. But I was not sure that four oil would have been enough to defend myself. The aluminium tile was a similar story. I should have built at least one of the guilds in Kar-Tukulti-Ninurta to ensure timely border expansion (but there was no way of knowing it at the time). I tried to compensate by building Neuschwanstein there, but it was probably too late. If I had had Freedom (or Order) I am sure that I could have won this, but the ideology pressure was too massive.