I often think I should have lived during my grandfather’s generation. He was in his early 40s during the Great Depression. He seemed to understand the importance of future generations. What a difference from today where money is key component of people’s desire. Today, most love money and most of my grandfathers generation loved the future.
I believe President Roosevelt was a reflection of my grandfather’s generation. I recently read FDR’s first inaugural address. He understood money creation through credit and the underlying cause of the economic turmoil the nation was facing in the 1930s. I quote from his speech: “Practices of the unscrupulous money changers stand indicted in the court of public opinion, rejected by the hearts and minds of men. True they have tried, but their efforts have been cast in the pattern of an outworn tradition. Faced by failure of credit they have proposed only the lending of more money. Stripped of the lure of profit by which to induce our people to follow their false leadership, they have resorted to exhortations, pleading tearfully for restored confidence. They know only the rules of a generation of self-seekers. They have no vision, and when there is no vision the people perish. The money changers have fled from their high seats in the temple of our civilization. We may now restore that temple to the ancient truths. The measure of the restoration lies in the extent to which we apply social values more noble than mere monetary profit. Happiness lies not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort. ”
President Roosevelt understood the failings of speculative investment banking. He pushed through the Glass-Steagall Act and created credit, through government, to build infrastructure. Today, people are blind, lost in “the rules of a generation of self seekers.” Washington DC will not change. There is a lot of money to be made (for some) in this current failed economic system.
It is my hope that Alaskans are different. That we reflect the thoughts of my grandfather’s generation. “Happiness lies not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort.”
Alaska can close down the money changers of Wall Street and establish credit as spoken of by President Roosevelt. Just establish a public Bank of Alaska and create credit to expand the productivity of all Alaskans. Or perhaps we reflect the thinking of Wall Street gamblers and our federal politicians. Roosevelt said it best: “They have no vision, and when there is no vision the people perish.”