history

Santayana's revenge

Those who misquote Jorge Augustin Nicolas de Santayana y Borras are condemned to paraphrase him.

What George Santayana actually wrote was, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."

No doubt in view of the fact that the Obama administration has been buying and storing vast amounts of ammunition in recent months, once again the story about how the young Bill Ayers & Company in the Weather Underground had no problem with the idea of murdering millions of recalcitrant Americans in order to birth their brave new world is being reiterated:

Mark Levin has his own ideas about all that ammo-buying by the government, but as far as Ayers is concerned, I think he long ago figured out that he didn't need to murder millions of Americans nor did he have to lock up the survivors in re-education camps...all he had to do is help ensure that public education in the US was entirely—lock, stock, and barrel—in the hands of his fellow Marxists. The public schools would be his "re-education camps."

Think about it...how much American history—never mind world history—do you or your family members actually know?  Now be honest. Would you recognize that history is being repeated if you saw it happening in front of your eyes?

Take a look at this collection of political cartoons from the Great Depression era (and the collection is from 2009, so it's been around awhile itself).  Here's a sample:

That one's from 1931.  There's nothing new under the sun, is there?

Check out the rest of the cartoons here and here.

Since a picture really is worth a thousand words, I'd suggest passing these along to the low-information voters you know.  Just be aware that 1) they will likely be suspicious of the messenger and so not especially receptive to the message, and 2) they will be reluctant to admit that they've been hoodwinked by the left and so will be unwilling to change course.

But we must persist.

At the very least, educate yourself and if you have school-age children at home, homeschool—while you still can.
 

Learning from history...and economics

Now listen up, class.  This is a teachable moment.

In his recent column in the Washington Examiner, the Blogfather, Professor Glenn Reynolds, reminds us of a 1953 short entitled "The Case Against the 20% Federal Admissions Tax on Motion Picture Theatres" 

At the time this film was made, motion picture theaters were required to pay a 20% tax on gross ticket sales, and Congress was debating lowering this tax (as well as others) in a bill being considered by a Congressional committee. This film, which was made especially to be shown to members of the committee, sets forth the motion picture industry's case for reducing, if not eliminating, the tax. It presents statistics regarding the closing of theaters in general (approximately 4500 US theaters, or about 25%, from 1946 through 1952), and the number of theaters that have closed in each committee member's state. These closings have caused a steady decline of revenues. Additionally, theater owners in various midwestern cities tell how this tax has adversely affected their businesses. In the small town of Holton, Kansas, merchants state that the closed movie theater was the city's main entertainment center. Without it to draw people into the city, business has fallen greatly. In closing, a spokesman states that the industry is not asking for special favors, but wants to be treated the same as any other industry when it comes to taxes.

Who knew?  And the irony is wonderful, no?  As Reynolds writes

In the film, figures ranging from industry big shots to humble ticket collectors talk about how the tax is hurting their industry and killing jobs, and ask Congress to repeal the tax.

They even explain, in a sort of pre-Art Laffer supply-side way, that a cut in theater taxes might actually produce an increase in federal revenues as the result of greater economic growth.

No...really?  You mean sorta like this?

Laffer Curve - Govt Revenues v Tax Rates

And how ironic that the entertainment industry complained bitterly about being unfairly singled out for confiscatory taxes and demanded repeal:

When, since, have we seen such a firmly expressed appreciation of the harm that excessive taxation can do to the economy, voiced by representatives of the entertainment industries?

Today, those industries are a major source of Democratic contributions and spread-the-wealth rhetoric [think Michael Moore--tvm], even as they prosper based on this tax cut, and numerous other bits of favorable treatment scattered throughout the Internal Revenue Code. It's time for a change.

Were I a Republican senator or representative, I would be agitating to repeal the "Eisenhower tax cut" on the movie industry and restore the excise tax. I think I would also look at imposing similar taxes on sales of DVDs, pay-per-view movies, CDs, downloadable music, and related products...

....America, after all, is facing the largest national debt in relation to GDP that it has faced since the end of World War II, so a return to the measures deemed necessary then is surely justifiable now...

....And, given the entertainment industries' role as the Democrats' campaign finance ATM, it seems likely that the president might soon reconsider his rhetoric as well...

Read the whole thing.

And remember, class—this has been a 

h/t Tom

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