Letters to the Editor

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PROTESTS: Occupy solution has already failed

Letter by Richard M. Radford, Steilacoom on Nov. 21, 2011 at 2:30 pm with 5 Comments »
November 22, 2011 10:15 am

The first European settlers at Plymouth Colony experimented with a socialist economic model and it failed miserably – so miserably that the colonists nearly perished.

All land was to be held in common, and all production was to be divided equally. Trouble was there was very little produced, so there was little to divide. Near starvation was the result.

Realizing that model wasn’t working, the Pilgrims divided the land among the settlers, allowing each family to keep the fruits of its efforts. That strategy created so much prosperity that it begot the holiday of Thanksgiving to celebrate not only the prosperity but the means of actualizing it. Thanksgiving was created to honor the free market and private property.

Now there is a strong, vocal movement to return to an economic model that has already failed on this continent. Do we have to repeat the experience of those first settlers to relearn the lesson that socialistic economics just doesn’t work? Since we have modern-day Europe to drive that home, we shouldn’t have to emulate it in order to relearn something we well know.

Leave a comment Comments → 5
  1. Richard, where is the world did you get the idea that the OWSers are advocating socialism for America?

    You really need to read the letter by Timm Stone in this same issue of the Trib, before you go off half-cocked and claiming that they want American socialism. I have read quite a bit about the movemeon and found no one who has proposed that as a solution.

    Click on the PREVIOUS link below, and read Timm’s letter: PROTESTS: Specific goals for a healthy debate

  2. “Socialism” – part of the talking points created by conservative interests who oppose the OWS message.

    There is a lobbying group offering their services to smear OWS.

  3. alindasue says:

    “Realizing that model wasn’t working, the Pilgrims divided the land among the settlers, allowing each family to keep the fruits of its efforts.”

    I would like to point out that difference between starvation and not in the Plymouth Colony had little to do with how the food was distributed. Allowing the colonists to each keep what they produce did not magically create more food. The fact is that they had a bad harvest year; there was less food to distribute. If allowing the farmers to keep what they produced was the only difference, then the following year would have seen many prosper while others who produced less still died of starvation. Weather, earlier planting, and other growing conditions led to a better harvest overall the following year.

    I’m not debating the pros and cons of socialism here. I’m merely pointing out that your example of the Plymouth Colonies doesn’t make the case either way.

  4. aislander says:

    It seems logical to infer, alindasue, that those who are allowed to profit from their efforts would apply themselves more assiduously, work harder, and, with more favorable conditions, produce more.

    There must have been a reason the original share agreement was scrapped…

  5. Vox_clamantis_in_deserto says:

    muck… the letter by Timm Stone merely itemizes his suggestions to the OWS’ers, and are in no way representative of some kind of official OWS doctrine. The stated objectives are his idea of worthy goals and, shockingly, not official OWS goals… because theirs are unofficial, disjointed, diverse and, polluted by everything from communist to Nazi dogma (please keep in mind, before your nose becomes disjointed, there is a lot of room in between these extremes).

    The only things on which all parties agree about the OWS’ers is their lack of a cohesive voice and stated purpose/ goals. Their are more POV’s in these bands of gypsies than a bowl of fruit salad.

    Therefor, their is no credible way to claim that socialism is not a goal of the OWS, and much evidence exists in support of the advocacy of (at least) socialist doctrine by many OWS participants.

    As to the letter you referenced, I could agree with better than 50% of the objectives he lists. The devil is in the details though. How is the operative here, not what.

    But don’t worry, muck, I would never suggest that you have a reading comprehension problem.

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