Friday, April 25, 2008


Well, I was not yet born, but I know my American history better than a good portion of those living in the nation today. And history speaks of the time when one just could not stroll into the market to buy certain items whenever one wished. There was a "no excuses" policy called food and gasoline rationing in place. Pearl Harbor changed the pace and purpose of every American. Almost overnight the economy shifted to war production. Consumer goods now took a back seat to military production as nationwide rationing began almost immediately.

The word on the street was, "There's a war on, you know."

Everyone understood, and most dealt with the new restrictions with patriotic fervor and civic pride.

The news today is grim. Food shortages worldwide, an obese population nationally. Spiraling gasoline prices. The falling dollar. An unstable stock market. Global warming. A public bored with consumer habits, itching for a defining spirit of purpose, a purpose greater than oneself, one favoring the nation (or as some might put it, the world) rather than the individual. Could it be that the Bush administration made his critical error in winning American hearts and minds in suggesting that "business as usual" was the tact to take while he conducted his war on terror.

There's no answer to that question, but rationing could again be on America's plate. China, Russia, Iran, Al-Qeada. All in the news, and seemingly wanted our national head on a platter. Our enemies are great and persistent. Perhaps we should all reacquire a sense of political humility. Perhaps, despite the initial pain and rebrokering of a system already teetering on the brink of collapse, our financial leadership should be seriously considering how a well-regulated regimen of product rationing would help steer this country back to the mindset that will prepare us for what is certainly in store.

Such a tactic would certainly put a heavy spray of starch into the britches of both the control-freaked Leftists and the grab-grubby Rightists. That would be fun to watch. Now what was I just writing about F.A Hayek?

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