Monday, August 1, 2011
The American Harware Company
American Hardware Co.
It's an oft told tale, one man or woman, through inspiration, luck or fate sees an opportunity to offer a service or product to his fellow man. More hard work, luck and inspiration finds him or her a success, the monetary rewards are secondary to the sense of accomplishment and pride in effort. The guiding principles of the enterprise are sound enough to outlive his death. The following generations, no longer imbued with the dream,see the enterprise not as a dream or service to others, but a road to riches and leisure. Soon, it is shuttered or sold off to more aggressive competitors. The dream was not transferable.
What we call history is actually the same tale told many times over in many tongues. Since venturing from the cave, man has sought to organize himself in such a manner that he and his kind might live in safety and ease. Stone Age, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Industrial Age, Atomic Age and now the Paper/Digital Age, it is the same story only the furniture and hair styles change.
Each great power of the age believes they are the everlasting order. As late as the 1930's Adolf Hitler believed his Reich would last one thousand years. The durability of today is a delusion, based in fear of the unknown.
Take the United States of America for example. Remember, ours is an young experiment in social order, not nearly as old as the empires we study in schools. Those long dead empires. Ask any man or woman on the street, they assume their great grandchildren will live in a country much as it is today. The odds of history are against it. Actually, our great grand parents would not recognize America today.
This experiment was to test the theory that the Common man could be trusted to live his own life as he pleased. No longer were you born to a class, never to rise above it. The Common man was challenged to grasp his freedom to peruse his happiness in any manner he chose. Only here is the rags to riches story possible on such a common scale.
Like the local hardware store in its third generation, America is suffering from the death of the dream, the absence of vision. Everyone wants to hit the jackpot, to cash the winning lottery ticket or win the Readers Digest Sweepstakes so they can drop out of the race.
Today, patriotism is considered corny by the popular press and the Hollywood crowd. Our President tours Europe, the one we rescued with the Marshall Plan, apologizing for America's actions in the world while defeating Communism to assure their freedom.
Now we are fighting over how much or our grandchildren's money to borrow from the Chinese to finance our life style.
America has lost its way. The dream, the vision and the inspiration is gone, stolen by a cyclical political ruling class and their cousins the mavens of Wall Street.
This country was born of a dream and a revolution, we need both today.