Friday, January 13, 2012

Radical Responses to the Great Depression

You tell me it's the institution
Well, you know
You better free your mind instead
--The Beatles

Interesting U of Michigan exhibit on docs associated with labor, social justice movements during the Great Depression. As I have been doing a fair amount of self-study of this period, many of the names served up here are now familiar to me.

One lesson that I have learned from other studies, and reinforced by this exhibit, is how organized various flavors of socialism were in the United States by this time. Labor was the primary conduit, but other areas of public policy were in play as well.

I do find the title interesting: "Radical Responses to the Great Depression." Indeed, 'radical' or 'revolutionary' have often been associated with socialistic movements.

But what is so radical about using government to force some to cater to others' needs? This idea is as old and pervasive as human society.

The truly revolutionary idea remains that people should govern themselves. And that individuals should be able to pursue their interests unencumbered by the State.

1 comment:

dgeorge12358 said...

There is simply no other choice than this: either to abstain from interference in the free play of the market, or to delegate the entire management of production and distribution to the government. Either capitalism or socialism: there exists no middle way.
~Ludwig von Mises