Saturday, February 4, 2012

Good Saturday morning, All.  A dusting of snow fell over night.  It looks like we are catching the northern edge of that system that dropped snow by the foot on Colorado and points east.  Kuma cried so pitifully that I let him out.  He was't happy when he came in and is now skulking upstairs.  Glad to see you are back, Lois.  Hope your internet problems are solved.  Given the snow out your way I gathered your boys would be sulking, also.

There isn't much in the news I really feel like commenting on so I will go off on a tangent.  Every now and then I get a feeling of deja vu looking at the events of today.  Not that I feel that I have been in the same place personally but rather that as a society we have been here before.  It comes I think from having studied history for way too much of my adult life.  As I watched the Occupy movement take shape and the 'official' response (i.e., sending in the 'troops,' a.k.a. police) the deja vu feeling was especially strong.  It didn't take long to recall my readings on the Great Depression and the Bonus Army.  In 1932, a bit over 30k people (men, women, and children) including 17k veterans of WWI camped on the Mall in Washington, D.C. demanding that the government honor immediately the bonus certificates given veterans in lieu of part of their military pay.  The certificates were not due to mature until 1945 when the government was obligated to pay the back pay plus interest.  However most of the veterans had been unemployed since the beginning of the Depression 2+ years earlier.  After the city police met with resistance during which some of the veterans were killed, Hoover sent in the army which cleared the National Mall and set fire to the tent city.  Commanding officer was General Douglas MacArthur with junior aid Major D.D. Eisenhower supported by 6 tanks under General John.

The military roll in the suppression of the Bonus Army tickled another memory in my mind and I finally tracked it down:  Coxey's Army of 1894.  In the wake of the depression of 1894, Jacob Coxey inspired several groups of varying sizes across the U.S.  All demanded government help for the unemployed and others hurt during the severe economic crisis.  Coxey led a band from Ohio through a large swath of Pennsylvania while another band took over a train in the Northwest which they rode through Montana.  Large numbers of supporters prevented U.S. marshals from arresting the party so the government sent in the army which succeeded in intercepting and ending the ride in Missoula.  The army was used to disband other segments of Coxey's 'Army' providing the blueprint for the use of Federal troops against the demonstrations during the Pullman Strike in Chicago a few months later.  Though all of these groups intended to carry their protest and demands to Washington itself,  none made it that far.

I guess we have been there and done that.


Looking to the Stars said...

Thanks for the welcome back & yes my boys did not like the snow. But, we got less than the west side and Denver. It blew really hard and most of the front yard snow ended up in the next door neighbors yard.

I remember reading about the 1930's one but didn't know about the 1800's. Yes, we have been there and done that. Looks like history repeating itself and we never learn, do we.

Have a had a very bad day (I posted it in my blog). If I could drink, I'd have a stiff one, lol

take care

Gina said...

Wow, deja vu is right. You've inspired me to read more about these folks. I guess history does repeat itself (over and over).