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Friday, October 10

THE GREAT MADNESS -A Victory for the American Plutocracy -by Scott Nearing — 1917

Here's some background on Scott Nearing:

Scott Nearing (August 6, 1883 – August 24, 1983) was an American conservationist, peace activist, educator, writer and economist.
In 1954 he co-authored Living the Good Life: How to Live Simply and Sanely in a Troubled World with his wife Helen . The book, in which war, famine, and poverty were discussed, described a nineteen-year "back to the land experiment," and also advocated a modern day "homesteading." Eugene V. Debs, the five-time Socialist presidential candidate, called Nearing the "greatest teacher in the United States,"

Read some excerpts from THE GREAT MADNESS - written in 1917...

The entrance of the United States into the world war on April 6, 1917, was the greatest victory that the American PLUTOCRACY has won over the American democracy since the declaration of war with Spain in 1898. The American plutocracy urged the war; shouted for it; demanded it; insisted upon it, and finally got it.

The plutocracy welcomed the war not because it was a war, but because it meant a chance to get a stronger grip on the United States.

[The plutocrats believe there are some things worse than war]: the confiscation of special privileges; the abolition of unearned income; the overthrow of the economic parasitism; the establishment of industrial democracy. The plutocrats would welcome a war that promised salvation from any such calamities; they would also welcome a war that promised greater foreign markets, the destruction of foreign competition, more security for property rights and a longer lease on life for plutocratic despotism.

The plutocrats, or wealth lords, ... were for the war from the beginning. They urged preparedness; they demanded national defense; they cried aloud for reprisals upon Germany because ... it gave them a chance to deliver a knock-out blow to the American democracy.

Big business was in public disfavor. Advertisements, "boiler-plate," news stories, press agents and blatant philanthropies had little effect. The people would not forget the "public be damned" days of the business buccaneers. They had learned about the rebates, the unfair rates, the debauchery of public officials and the criminal practices by which many of the most successful of the big business men had climbed into power. The people were "wise" to big business, and they were getting wiser every day.

The immense success of the parcels post sounded an ominous warning to special privilege. There was general talk that the telephone and telegraph industry would be nationalized next, and that the railroads would follow suit at an early date. If this socializing of industry was once begun, where was it to end?

The public had been educated, through many years, by progressive and radical political leaders, newspaper men, and social workers. There was the labor movement in its various phases - unions, socialism, I. W. W. The people were learning the lesson rapidly. Laws were passed; commissions were appointed; regulations were imposed. Most of the laws were violated; most of the commissions were captured by the plutocrats and most of the regulations were evaded. Still public opposition rose stubbornly and surely..........................

Wait until you read the rest. I'm pounding my head - I don't know what to say. 1917!!!-???????

"I'm a little verklempt"?

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