Sunday, October 9, 2011

Over the Rainbow


Rick Perry smeared us all by averring that anyone who doesn't favor in-state tuition for illegal immigrants "has no heart..."

The serial screw-ups that define the Obama presidency leave people wondering if he has a brain...

Obama's bouquet of apologies and appeasement has our enemies confident we have lost our nerve...

The Wizard of Oz is one of my favorite movies. It's a beautiful classic with wonderful characters and great musical numbers.  I snuggle up with my kiddos at least twice a year to enjoy this uniquely American masterpiece.

The Frank L Baum classic is an allegory written for his era, but it could easily apply to our own times as well, writes Steven Lindman.  I'd read much of this before in different places, but he ties it up all in one convenient source.

Dorothy and her companions are ordinary workaday Americans beset by powerful, greedy forces bent on their destruction.  Little do they know that they have the power within them to thwart the designs of the evil malefactors.  Sound familiar?

Here a a few excerpts from Lindman's piece:
Today, international bankers are looting world economies with the aim of turning them into Guatemala - subjugated, unempowered, enslaved, and impoverished like in Orwell's classic dystopian novel - "Nineteen Eighty-Four." He warned that: "Big Brother is watching you (and) If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face - forever."
In "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz," Baum struck a different theme even though he claimed to have written it "solely to pleasure the children." Some scholars, however, see another purpose, allegorically portrayed in his characters:
-- Dorothy is the typical American girl; in her case, a rural Midwestern one;
-- the Scarecrow is the American farmer;
-- the Tin Woodman is the American factory worker;
-- the Cowardly Lion is silver advocate William Jennings Bryan, best remembered for his 1896 Democratic National Convention "Cross of Gold" speech in which he railed against banker-controlled gold-backed money;
-- the Munchkins are Eastern "little people" who didn't understand how banking wizards control money, the economy and government - much like how ignorant most people are today (Steven Lindman - Over the Rainbow)
If that's too fantastical for you, then try this on for size.  Jeffrey Snider explains how The Federal Government and The Federal Reserve brought us to the brink of total calamity.  It is a very interesting read.  Snider is no Alex Jones kook; he's a buttoned-down president of an investment advisory firm.
It is a well-known and well-worn trope that you don't fight the Fed, it will run you over no matter how right you think you may be.
This cliché is an extraction from Keynes and his observation that the markets can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent. In our modern world, the Fed has become the irrational market, backed by the supposition of unlimited money printing. [...]
The economy needs to be returned to its foundation of capital allocation, free from constraining intervention. Stability is found there, under the cover of market discipline and real price discovery. There is no happiness at the end of the paper chase since sustainable enterprises never follow from it. (Jeffrey Snider - The Aura of The Fed is Gone: Good Riddance)
Somewhere...  Over the rainbow, I suppose...

Other Links:
How the DC-NY Axis of Evil Screws Ordinary Americans

52 comments:

Ducky's here said...

Dorothy and friends are all down at the "occupy Wall street" protest, flying monkeys and all.

Most of the right seems unsympathetic.

Silverfiddle said...

We've already had this discussion, Ducky.

We agree it's broken. We disagree on how to fix it.

I've seen some of the protester demands. I understand that they are not a monolith. I do know from what I see so far that they are not advocating Snider's remedies.

No, those protesters are not Dorothy and her trio of friends; they are munchkins.

Bd said...

Oh, it was the Fed who put us on the bring of economic disaster, lol! NOT the Banks, eh? LOL!!

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

I do not see the protesters at all as the munchkins but rather as the messy tornado that was the root cause of Dorothy's troubles and her eventual awakening.

I like the parallel but when using it you have to use the entire tale.

Silverfiddle said...

No Christopher, the financial crisis is the tornado. It brings both danger and destruction, but also a chance to sweep away the ill.

Bd: You obviously didn't read the entire Snider article. The Fed and the banks are partners in crime.

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

Silver, Not in the original tale but the financial crisis was a Hurricane.

Now these kinds of storms are known to spawn Tornado's and as such I will stick to my take.

As an aside related to Oz, the flying monkeys represent lobbyist's to me.

Hugh Farnham said...

The Wizard of Oz... like Troy gold Oz. Like what's not at Fort Knox anymore.

A currency backed by commodities is difficult to inflate or to fund the social program of the day.

Fiat currencies allow for all sorts of evil to commence; like unjust wars, bread and circuses, and funneling assets into the elite's pockets.

I'm a die hard capitalist, but not a crony capitalist.

There's a lesson here. The forces of right in 1908 - 1913 failed this battle to retain solid currency, and generations have paid dearly for it.

What should they have done against the banking elite of the time? Should they have written more books? Or should they have been more aggressive? What would have stopped the banking elite from starting the Federal Reserve in 1913?

I highly encourage you to watch Money Masters and know thy enemy:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXt1cayx0hs

Hugh Farnham said...

Here's another, far more entertaining video on the history and mechanics of the vile Federal Reserve:

http://www.disclose.tv/action/viewvideo/63832/_quot_the__american_dream_quot_/

Silverfiddle said...

Christopher:

Differing interpretations are part of the magic.

Baum wrote the book in 1900, while William Jennings Bryan was still alive, so the issues he wrote about predated the great depression.

The movie debuted in 1939, and people going through the depression could identify with the 40 year old story.

I think Baum has written a timeless tale.

The Observer said...

You draw a very good analogy.

Anonymous said...

The Wizard of OZ a politically-motivated allegory?

PIFFLE!

It's a uniquely American fairy tale that does make a point very beautifully, but Willam Jennings Bryan? PLEASE!

Here's what I see in The Wonderful Wizard of OZ:

Dorothy finds dull, gray Kansas and life on the farm with its endless chores boring. She longs for something brilliant and beautiful "beyond the rainbow."

She gets her wish when a cyclone comes, lifts her up then deposits her and her little dog Toto in The Land of Oz.

It's brilliant and beautiful all right, but also bizarre and frightening. Dorothy worries what her aunt and uncle must be feeling about her sudden absence, and wants to go home to reassure them and let them know she is all right.

From then on all her incredible adventures are part of a Quest to find her way back to Auntie Em and Uncle Henry in Kansas.

On her way she meets wonderful, whimsical characters each one of whom SHE helps with natural friendliness, absolute sincerity, good common sense, an unfailing sense of mission, and a complete lack of guile. She also meets terrifying forces of darkness and wickedness, but she and her new friends are always able to overcome their fright, take refuge in encouraging and protecting each other, and proceed in spite of the challenges they meet.

When Dorothy and her traveling companions finally arrive at the fabled Emerald City, the Wizard, of course, proves to be a charlatan who, it turns out, doesn't begin to have anywhere near as much power as Dorothy. So, he winds up using Dorothy to defeat The Wicked Witch of the West, whom he greatly fears.

This might see callous of him, but Dorothy doesn't see it that way. She's scared, of course, but her desire to help overcomes her fear.

In the end we become aware that Dorothy's innate goodness and natural affection are all the "power" she's ever needed to take her where she truly wants and needs to be.

I've believed for many years the true charm of this beloved story lies in the way it clearly indicates that we don't need to fly "over the rainbow" to find what we really need to be happy. We already have it right within our hearts. We are born with it. All we need is to become aware of it.

Since it's Sunday, I will dare to say this capacity we have to love and to face adversity and even terror for the sake of those we love is "The Kingdom of God" that Jesus said lies within each of us.

So, the whole thing is just a uniquely charming way of illustrating once again that Amor vincit omnia.

And it does -- if you believe it.

~ FreeThinke

Proof said...

In the analogy, is the Wizard's hot air balloon filled with empty promises of "hope and change"?

tha malcontent said...

It’s no secret what the true and final agenda of the Progressives really is all about. It’s an agenda that wants a one world government, and to impose Socialism to the world....
And this is what the Soros/Obama agenda has been all about all along. They have been trying to regulate us in every way imaginable. In what we eat, in how we drive, in what we drive, in the of money we make and how we make it and spend it. And lets not forget Obama’s Healthcate plan. Marxism never rests until they Conquer.

Mark my words these riots in the streets is only the beginning.

Anonymous said...

"I think Baum has written a timeless tale."

Yes, SilverFiddle, absolutely. Like all truly great stories it illustrates the truth of fundamental principles that give hope and joy to human existence.

As I amply indicated above, I don't like the idea of looking at The Wizard as political allegory. Clearly it transcends politics, but Ducky's quip made me think that Dorothy and her friends would never let themselves be caught dead among the rabble in the Occupy Wall Street movement. That crowd, one of whom was caught on video this morning defecating on a police car, is more the moral equivalent of the Flying Monkeys.

I see Hugh's point too that "The Wizard" might be seen today as a stand-in for The Fed who presides over the illusory, insubstantial, evanescent value of our FIAT currency.

Nevertheless, at root Dorothy's story is about the power of Love, Devotion, Loyalty and Truth -- it's definitely not about Money.

~ FreeThinke

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

Silver,

"Differing interpretations are part of the magic"

Indeed my friend.

Anonymous said...

Hear! Hear! Malcontent!

I agree with one exception: Soros and Obama are not and never have been the prime movers in the century-old scheme you refer to. They are but pimples on the Face of Evil -- or tiny tips of The Mammoth Iceberg that lurks and grows exponentially far beneath the surface waiting to sink the good ship known as Western Civilization.

The formation of the Fed and the initiation of the Income Tax were a BIG part of the scheme early on.

"We are grateful to the Washington Post, The New York Times, Time Magazine and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected their promises of discretion for almost forty years. It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the world if we had been subjected to the lights of publicity during those years. But, the world is now more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a world government. The supranational sovereignty of an intellectual elite and world bankers is surely preferable to the national auto-determination practiced in past centuries."

- David Rockefeller Baden-Baden, Germany 1991

WHY do so many intelligent people want to dismiss these direct quotations from the mouths of horses directly involved in the machinations that have corrupted and perverted our government and created so much unnecessary misery for millions as the ravings of cranks and lunatics I can't imagine.

Once again I refer everyone to the story of Cassandra.

But silly as it may sound, little Dorothy still carries a message that could trump all that.
 

~ FreeThinke

PS: The verification word is EXAMMENS. can ya beat that? ;-)

bunkerville said...

Guess we better all go out and get us some medical Marihuna! Oz will look a whole lot better I hear.

Finntann said...

Or some tinfoil hats

Bd said...

OWS vrs. Tea Party:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_X5NiGJBys&feature=player_embedded

Bd said...

Show me where Obama has 'apologized.'

republicanmother said...

Great analysis and zooming in on the real villains. I get real tired of the peat and repeat of bloggers who just regurgitate the talking points.

I've heard this theory that Mr. Baum was more in the know than we'd been led to imagine. Will have to look into that.

Silverfiddle said...

@Bd: Show me where Obama has 'apologized.'

This is the last time I do your research for you, Bd. You are a willfully ignorant hopium smoker.

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=32296

And I hope you realize that youtube link is a produced propaganda piece, and not a real news interview.

If you don't, then you are farther out there than I imagined.

pursuitoftruth said...

Bd said...
Show me where Obama has 'apologized.


Shoe ME anything that you had posted that made any sense, you don't have a blog of your own, and thank God for that because if you did it would be full of BS anyway.
But you like the rest of the liberals on this blogesphere seem to invent history and facts that do not and di not ever happen.
So my advice to you is if you care, and I don't it, because people like you never bother with facts. But my advice to you is to get a life other than commenting on blogs, there must be something better that you can do that would be useful.

Leticia said...

I must commend you for breaking down the Wizard Oz as it correlates with today's society.

Well-done, my friend.

I don’t fear Islam, I detest Islam said...

Funny how Ducky rhymes with Schumcky.

Anonymous said...

Blessed are the wise who walketh not in the way of the Brain Dead, nor standeth 'neath the source of Bull Droppings, nor sitteth in the seat of the Brashly Dimwitted.

For their delight shall be in accord with Truth, Love, Intelligence and Principle, and on these Divine Attributes shall they meditate and give respectful service day and night.

And they shall be like an orchard planted by the rivers of water that bringeth forth fruit in its season. Their leaves shall not whither, and whatsoever they do shall prosper, for the Brain Dead are not so, but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away

Therefore, the Brain Dead shall have no hope of attaining Fulfillment, nor shall they be welcome among the Wise and Loving.

For the Lord knoweth the way of the Wise and Loving: but the way of the Brain Dead shall lead only through the brambles and get its followers forever lost in the Wilderness.


~ FreeThinke

Anonymous said...

"Or some tinfoil hats"

Oh no, Finntann, the Tin Woodsmen's head was cleverly protected by an upside-down funnel made of a substantial white metal. All the illustrations show that very clearly.

~ FreeThinke

Anonymous said...

Ducky also rhymes with LUCKY and PLUCKY.

~ FreeThinke

Anonymous said...

The extended quotation seems to complement Hugh's contribution prety well:


From the WIKI article on Joseph Schumpeter”

Joseph Schumpeter recognized the implication of a gold monetary standard compared to a fiat monetary standard. In History of Economic Analysis he stated the following:


”An ‘automatic’ gold currency is part and parcel of a laissez-faire and free-trade economy. It links every nation’s money rates and price levels with the money-rates and price levels of all the other nations that are ‘on gold.’


”It is extremely sensitive to government expenditure and even to attitudes or policies that do not involve expenditure directly, for example, to foreign policy, to certain policies of taxation, and, in general, to precisely all those policies that violate the principles of [classical] liberalism.

“This is the reason why gold is so unpopular now and also why it was so popular in a Bourgeois era. It imposes restrictions upon governments or bureaucracies that are much more powerful than is parliamentary criticism. It is both the badge and the guarantee of bourgeois freedom -- of freedom not simply of the bourgeois INTEREST, but of freedom in the bourgeois SENSE.


“From this standpoint a man may quite rationally fight for it, even if fully convinced of the validity of all that has ever been urged against it on economic grounds.

From the standpoint of [statism] and [central] planning, a man may not less rationally condemn it, even if fully convinced of the validity of all that has ever been urged for it on economic grounds.


- Joseph Schumpeter, History of Economic Analysis

Submitted by FreeThinke

Anonymous said...

FYI: Apparently they've pulled the Snider article.

This is the link you provided, SF, but I have not been able to get anything there to show other than the site name.

http://www.realclearmarkets.com/articles/2011/08/12/the_aura_of_the_fed_is_gone_good_riddance_99185.html

~ FT

Silverfiddle said...

FreeThinke: The article is still there...

http://www.realclearmarkets.com/articles/2011/08/12/the_aura_of_the_fed_is_gone_good_riddance_99185.html

Anonymous said...

Yes, it is -- now --, SilverFiddle. I tried to access it several times earlier and could not get it to show. Who knows why?

It's a bit late to discuss it now, but I've copied it, and archived it in Word.

Thanks for bringing Dorothy into our discussions. The Wizard of Oz has had a profound effect on my development. I first saw the movie at age 9, and was so caught up in its magic I had to write my own dramatization of it using all the songs from the movie. Believe it or not my best friend and I wrote, produced, directed, prepared the music and starred in it in fifth grade with the full cooperation of our teacher.

Nearly everybody in the class was involved. It was probably terrible, but we had the time of our lives. People in my class were still talking about it sixty years later when we reunited last month to celebrate our 70th Birthday Year.

A trivial achievement by some standards but not to those of us fortunate enough to have experienced it.

By the way, Hans Christian Andersen's The Snow Queen makes the same point as Baum's masterpiece, and follows a similar episodic plot line, but in an entirely different style. You should read that to your children sometime, if you haven't already.

I believe there's probably far more truth in good poetry and beautifully written fairy tales than may be found in statistics.

As you've doubtless surmised already, I am not a modern man.

Take care,

FreeThinke

Always On Watch said...

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz as political allegory?

I'm not sure about that. At least for myself.

Is there anything from Baum to indicate that such was his intention?

Baum wrote sequels to The Wizard of Oz. There are some 18 Oz books!

Much of Baum's work (Prolific writer!) could be classified as science fiction.

He did some political writing. In one essay, he advocated the extermination of Native Americans.

Take a look a the Wikipedia entry.

This entry discusses The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, including political interpretations. HERE is a separate entry about political interpretations. Apparently, those political interpretations commenced in 1964.

Anonymous said...

Good morning, AOW.

Once upon a time and not so very long ago, what-we-now-call "racism" was as normal a part of American life (and all human existence!) as motherhood and apple pie.

It may not be true in your case or mine, but Caucasians of British and European descent simply took it for granted that they were innately superior to all other ethnic groups, and that "primitive" peoples were subhuman barbarians who were obviously "meant" by God and Nature to be either exploited or exterminated.

Not pretty but that was the reality. We have moved past that, thank God, but at tremendous cost. The inappropriate, almost ritualistic self-hatred and the vicious inanity of political correctness we now live with as a result of trying to compensate for the sins of the past has done incalculable harm to the best aspects of who and what we once were. We've lost faith in ourselves. We've lost pride in our great accomplishments, and now we feel "obliged" to indulge in orgies of recrimination that are tearing us to pieces.

I just can't be right to supplant one form of evil with another equally pernicious, but that's what "revolutions" tend to do almost invariably.

I've said it so often for so many years I'm practically blue in the face, but it is not legitimate to judge individuals who lived in former times by contemporary standards.

It would be better if we just followed the yellow brick road -- an appealing symbol for the path to Truth and Enlightenment, of course.

Have a good day!

~ FreeThinke

Silverfiddle said...

AOW: That's what I find intriguing about the subject. As you say, Baum insisted that his stories were just that: Children's stories.
Apparently, other came in afterwards and overlaid their own allegories on top of his stories, which in itself is a tribute to his good and evil story.

-FJ said...

Politics... perish the thought!

-FJ said...

What is innocence, but a lack a experience? What are goodness and evil, but the perceived results of said experience?

The layering of interpretations upon experiences never ends.

-FJ said...

There's good... there's bad... and then, there's evil...

THREE metamorphoses of the spirit do I designate to you: how the spirit becometh a camel, the camel a lion, and the lion at last a child.
Many heavy things are there for the spirit, the strong load-bearing spirit in which reverence dwelleth: for the heavy and the heaviest longeth its strength.


Try defying "gravity" my camel-like load bearers longing for strength. The dark-side is always calling for another spin of Ixion's Wheel. All it needs is an opportunity to create an relatively-new experience. Let what was once old, become "new again"...

-FJ said...

Diploma's, testimonials and medals all await the results of gaining of experience... but can we ever return to innocence? Is purposeful forgetfulness so easy?

-FJ said...

Such foolishness...

-FJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
-FJ said...

...but then what greater purpose could memory serve, but to remove some of the "sting" from our collective cynicism.

Alzheimers, a blessing which grants eternal peace? Or a curse which steals personal identity? A circle within a greater circle of mortality.

-FJ said...

Putting the bite back into Eve's apple is not as easy as it looks. ;)

Prometheus can only stave of Zeus for so long before he needs to invent a new trick. And who of us is so focused in their daily occupations as to not be tempted to sneak a peak at Icarus?

-FJ said...

...and improve upon his invention in the hope of making "right" what he obviously got "wrong"?

-FJ said...

Chronos, father of Zeus. You are a cruel taskmaster. Grant me the Olympian strength of your son, Heracles. Set me to my labours, and I, too, shall don the lion's skin.

-FJ said...

Grant me an opportunity to earn redemption.

-FJ said...

...and clean out the Augean stables on the Potomac. ;)


...before the circle is made complete.

Anonymous said...

"Putting the bite back into Eve's apple is not as easy as it looks.'

Indeed! Here's another way of putting it:

The Brain, within its Groove
Runs evenly — and true —
But let a Splinter swerve —
'Twere easier for You —

To put a Current back —
When Floods have slit the Hills —
And scooped a Turnpike for Themselves —
And trodden out the Mills.


~ Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

Or National Brain "slipped its groove" a long time ago. The madness takes a greater toll each year exponentially since it began.

Even so, we still have Life, and "Where's there's Life, there's hope." We may yet discover the immense power of Love and Loyalty to conquer the rottenness that surrounds us. When we learn to love our families more than we hate our enemies we may begin to heal and gather strength once again.

~ FreeThinke

Speedy G said...

Amen!

Ducky's here said...

@Freethinker -- Even so, we still have Life, and "Where's there's Life, there's hope."

-----

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1LRD3DtFAo

Anonymous said...

Ahem!

HAIR is not exactly what I had in mind, Ducky, but I'm sure you knew that, right?

Beauty may beat banality
But banality beats brutality

Sensuality beats venality
But nothing beats spirituality.


Cheerio, my deario!

~ FT

PS: Halitosis may be preferable to having no breath at all, but "kissing sweetness" is always preferable to the stench of sewermouth, n'est-ce-pas? - FT

MK said...

Perry is not going to win Conservative hearts by arguing for liberal stupidity from california.

There's a reason people moved from california to Texas and it ain't because they love liberal stupidity.