Absurdity Then, Absurdity Now


There’s a famous quip by one English intellectual about another. “Oh, you know what so-and-so’s idea of a tragedy is: A beautiful theory killed by an ugly fact.”

Well, don’t I know it.

I wrote a column, recently, for Townhall.com, entitled “The Buxom Bailout Babes of the Umpteenth Brumaire.” In it I noted that while the Great Depression was a tragedy, today’s economic debacle, though a repeat of it, is more farce. To demonstrate its farcical nature I noted that some people are seriously talking about bailing out the newspapers, which have hit hard times.

And nothing, I assured my readers, could be more absurd than that. The point of having newspapers is to be critical of government. To have government support them would turn them into worse propaganda rags than they now are.

The trouble with this? Well, FDR, way back in the tragedy, also subsidized newspapers. Well, at least one.

Bailouts weren’t exactly the main thrust of the New Deal, but they happened. And, like most political acts, they were politically motivated. FDR was worried about Philadelphia, which was solidly Republican. The Democratic newspaper was failing.

So he bailed it out.

Simultaneously he set the IRS on the publisher of the Republican newspaper. In the next election, the area turned Democrat.

Here’s one theory that won’t be disproven: In government, it’s politics that matters.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

2 Comments so far ↓

  1. Feb
    Joe Chapala


    Sadly, I agree, In government, it’s politics that matters.

    The common citizen gets the short end.

    Joe Chapala
    Casa Preciosa Ajijic, Mexico

  2. Feb
    paul farlow

    well ……history is going to prove a lot of people wrong …….again………so b it if the people take things into thear own hands…….im for it

Spruce up your comments with
<a href="" title=""><abbr title=""><acronym title=""><b><blockquote cite=""><cite><code><del datetime=""><em><i><q cite=""><strike><strong>
New comments are moderated before being shown * = required field Be sure to answer the simple math problem below to help demonstrate that you are a human rather than a spambot.

Leave a Comment

three + = 8

1 Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. The New THOMA$ REPORT