A column about history, culture, policy, and things in between.
We recently returned from a tremendous trip to the Rocky Mountains, the subject of which might prove fodder for a subsequent submission. We drove there and back, taking us across a great breadth of this Country, and as the miles clicked away, I thought about our Country, its history, and given the season of the Fourth, its founding.
A friend of mine lent me a tremendous book last winter entitled Vindicating the Founders - Race, Sex, Class, and Justice in the Origins of America. Written by Thomas G. West, a professor of politics at the University of Dallas, it is a scholarly and penetrating analysis. As its title suggests, his work is a vindication of The Founders with respect to their reasoning, rationale, and ultimately their work in laying the legal, political, and social foundations of our Country. Specifically, Mr. West serves as an erudite and articulate apologist for the work of the Founders in the areas identified by his book's title: race, sex, class, and justice; a dynamic which has probably rendered him as "persona non grata" in much of his peer group.
Harper Lee's timeless book, To Kill A Mockingbird turns fifty this month. It is a cornerstone of American letters; firmly ensconced on my short list of "greatest novels". And in the broader culture and media, it stands tied with Gone With the Wind as the greatest book/movie combination of all time.
Lee's winsome and lyrical prose drips off the pages of Mockingbird like so much honey from a comb. It is a masterpiece of American literature, a coming of age story, set against the backdrop of racism and the drama of the human spirit in a small southern town.
The United States Congress is woefully ignorant on this topic. That's not a shot at the Democrats, for I would levy the same criticism of the Republican suits that once lounged in the sunshine of a strong majority. Just as Nancy Pelosi might glower imperially at the camera if faced with a question on this topic, so too would the moribund figure of Denny Hastert have balefully blundered his way through a response to the same query. It's not so much that they would resent the question - they simply wouldn't understand it.
Washington's ignorance of the laws of economics has been pandemic for decades, and has flourished on both sides of the political aisle. The formation and deployment of capital is the Sine Qua Non of economic development, and it is time to give this matter consideration as the Badger State approaches an election season. There are business leaders and entrepreneurs out there sitting on capital, one of the big reasons for the stalled "recovery". They are waiting................waiting to see what happens to the environment for deployed capital. And it is certainly what the managers of Harley Davidson are pondering. It is going to take more than rhetoric to keep Harley here. It is going to take an environment that both fosters and rewards the deployment of capital.