The fictional tales of The Gentleman from Massachusetts
Circa 2014. Massachusetts.
If we simply look at what policies were in place during particular periods of history, we can know which path to take if we want to emulate those particular conditions. For instance, during the 50s and 60s, the Golden Era of American life, we can observe high-quality public education, strong unions, extensive economic regulations, income equality supported through severe taxation of high-income wages and wealth, affordable healthcare, and livable retirement benefits.
If we want to bring about such prosperity for our own generation, we would therefore support those that would enact similar policies. We would subsequently not support those who want an unregulated free-market with minimal worker protections, weakened unions, the defunding of public education, the privatization of retirement benefits, for-profit healthcare, and low taxes on high-income wages and wealth.
From the periods preceding the 50s and 60s, we can observe the cruelty and unfairness that caused such protective and equalizing policies to be sought in the first place. One must wonder if those against the policies of the 50s and 60s are either woefully, or willfully, ignorant of the past. Theirs is not simply a differing opinion of how to govern a nation, where one path is just as valid as another — we can see quite clearly the distinction of outcomes within the historic narrative.
And to be clear, this is not a battle against particular people, it never is. Throughout history, alliances shift with time, enemies become allies who become enemies who become allies. This is a battle of ideas. In one corner, a self-serving and self-defeating race to the bottom, as the nation’s institutions and infrastructure crumble — and in the other corner, a cooperative to reestablish an age of general prosperity and decency, based on proven policies of the past.