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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The cycles of history

There were wars and revolutions overseas and terrorist attacks in New York and on Wall Street. The country was in recession and the outgoing president was increasingly unpopular. Unlikely dark horse candidates were chosen by the Democrats and the Republicans to run for president.

One publication suggested party platforms containing four planks. Those planks were: America, Law, Order, Work. Taken together, those spelled no more than common sense. Taken together they would automatically end hysteria. They also would automatically dispose of the question of which shall occupy the grave...Europeanism or Americanism. They were disposed to assign the role of the deceased to the former. It was time to bury anarchy in America and open up a new country to actual law, actual order, and actual work.

Pray observe, there is no labor plank in that platform. There was a better word. It meant much that "labor" does not mean today. It was a short word, but one of the biggest and best in our language: Work!

Wall Street was in a chronic state of being reviled, and more or less rightly so, for its part in absorbing credit. It was a place where, among other activities, men had formed a habit of buying more stocks than they could afford to pay for out of their own resources. These purchasers borrowed money from their brokers to make payment, and in turn the brokers borrowed from such banks as would lend to them.

Does the above piece sound familiar? We know about terrorist attacks in New York, not just on 9-11 but the attack on the twin towers in 1993. We still have Iraq and Afghanistan overseas. We know about recession and a departing unpopular president and I would consider Obama and McCain as dark horse candidates.

Many want a strong America and have no interest in global poverty taxes to fix up the rest of the world that hates us anyway. Law, Order, and Work are still strong points for many regardless of the push for more welfare plans and looking the other way on illegal immigration..

Wall Street is a mess and the credit situation is out of control. Unemployment and foreclosures are increasing every day.

By the way, the above italicized comments were printed on the Opinion page of The Saturday Evening Post on February 14, 1920. Who says history doesn’t repeat itself?

NOTE TO READERS: I also write for azcentral in Arizona. Some of the blogs are duplicates of what you read here but contain many comments from local readers. To check it out click "Jim's azcentral Blog" under links on the sidebar. Thanks, JM

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