Saturday, January 17, 2009

FDR's First Inaugural

Seems appropriate:
. . . the rulers of the exchange of mankind's goods have failed, through their own stubbornness and their own incompetence, have admitted their failure, and have abdicated. Practices of the unscrupulous money changers stand indicted in the court of public opinion, rejected by the hearts and minds of men.

True, they have tried. But their efforts have been cast in the pattern of an outworn tradition. Faced by failure of credit, they have proposed only the lending of more money. Stripped of the lure of profit by which to induce our people to follow their false leadership, they have resorted to exhortations, pleading tearfully for restored confidence. They only know the rules of a generation of self-seekers. They have no vision, and when there is no vision the people perish.

Yes, the money changers have fled from their high seats in the temple of our civilization. We may now restore that temple to the ancient truths. The measure of that restoration lies in the extent to which we apply social values more noble than mere monetary profit.

Happiness lies not in the mere possession of money; it lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of creative effort. The joy, the moral stimulation of work no longer must be forgotten in the mad chase of evanescent profits. These dark days, my friends, will be worth all they cost us if they teach us that our true destiny is not to be ministered unto but to minister to ourselves, to our fellow men. . . .

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Utterly Predictable

But no less awful for that:
  • In July - November 2008, compared with the same period in 2007, the number of families entering New York City homeless shelters jumped by 40 percent.[2]

  • Massachusetts reports a 32 percent increase between November 2007 and November 2008 in the number of homeless families residing in state-supported emergency shelters.[3]

  • In Connecticut, family homeless shelters turned away 30 percent more families due to lack of bed space in September 2008 than in September 2007.[4]

  • Hennepin County, Minnesota (Minneapolis) reports a 20 percent increase between the first 10 months of 2008 and the comparable period in 2007 in the number of homeless families in emergency shelters.[5]

  • Los Angeles County reports a 12 percent increase between September 2007 and September 2008 in the number of families receiving welfare assistance who are known to be homeless.[6]

Read the full report from CBPP here.

Saturday, January 03, 2009