The paradigm of progressive socialists in both the Democrat and Republican parties of the United States of America allows only one means to the comfort, security and well being of the American People, bigger government. Calvin Coolidge “Silent Cal”, 30th President of the United States, had a much different view of the role of government and the results were astounding. During his Administration, the top marginal income tax rates were lowered from 73% to 24%. By the end of his term, 98% of the population paid no income tax at all. The federal budget was reduced by 35% and per capita income increased more than 30%. Unemployment averaged 3.3% and the GNP grew at the fastest compound rate of any eight-year period in U.S. history. And, the National debt was lowered from $22.3 billion in 1923 to $16.9 billion in 1929. Perhaps his philosophical views on the role of government are best expressed in his own words:
“I favor the policy of economy, not because I wish to save money, but because I wish to save people. The men and women of this country who toil are the ones who bear the cost of the Government. Every dollar that we carelessly waste means that their life will be so much the more meager. Every dollar that we prudently save means that their life will be so much the more abundant. Economy is idealism in its most practical form. If extravagance were not reflected in taxation, and through taxation both directly and indirectly injuriously affecting the people, it would not be of so much consequence.”
The progressive socialist paradigm has no use for history. To those that have adopted this standard as their religion only the present and their idealized infallibility on what is best for all mankind are preeminent. In their minds there are no lessons in history only obstacles to be overcome in their quest for utopian glory. To them the likes of Calvin Coolidge need only to be assigned to the ash bin of a history ignored. Yet, in their own words on their campaign trails and in Congress they espouse the exact goals that Coolidge actually accomplished. God forbid they follow his example and reduce the size and omnipresence of government. These do-gooders have caused more harm to the American People than freedom and small government ever will. They believe that the property of the country belongs to the government, not as Coolidge believed when he said,
“Under this republic the rewards of industry belong to those who earn them. The only constitutional tax is the tax which ministers to public necessity. The property of the country belongs to the people of the country. Their title is absolute. They do not support any privileged class; they do not need to maintain great military forces; they ought not to be burdened with a great array of public employees. They are not required to make any contribution to Government expenditures except that which they voluntarily assess upon themselves through the action of their own representatives.”
The United States can continue on the path that is the the anthesis of Calvin Coolidge’s philosophy with its high unemployment, high taxes, massive government programs and increasing debt or adopt his views and expect the accompanying prosperity. We can continue on the spiraling downward slide of today or embrace the upward swing of the “Roaring Twenties”. History holds the answer. If only we will embrace it.
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