Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Why Didn't We Listen To Thomas Jefferson?

In 1816 Jefferson wrote a letter to George Logan that contained the following warning:
"I hope we shall take warning from the example and crush in it’s birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength, and to bid defiance to the laws of their country."
It's cold comfort that people in Jefferson's time also seemed to ignore his warnings.  In 1825 he wrote to William Branch Giles and expressed some concerns about "the federal party:"
"But this opens with a vast accession of strength from their younger recruits, who, having nothing in them of the feelings or principles of '76, now look to a single and splendid government of an aristocracy, founded on banking institutions, and monied incorporations under the guise and cloak of their favored branches of manufactures, commerce and navigation, riding and ruling over the plundered ploughman and beggared yeomanry."
There's enough blame to spread to both parties, but something about that last statement brings to mind this picture of Eric Cantor:

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