Heroyalwhyness sent us a photocopy of the following political cartoon, which was published on April 21, 1934, in the Chicago Tribune — just over seventy-five years ago.
It’s funny how the mistakes of history recur. Heck, this isn’t even a rhyming exercise: this is history xeroxing itself.
Just change the names and faces of the major players to upgrade your New Deal version 1934 to AmSoc 2009:
Some of the labels and captions may be hard to make out, so here’s a transcription of what’s in the cartoon. Seated at the left is Trotsky, who says, “It worked in Russia!” as he writes the following “Plan of Action for U.S.”:
– – – – – – – – –
Spend! Spend! Spend under the guise of recovery — bust the government — blame the capitalists for the failure — junk the Constitution and declare a dictatorship
The sign on the back of the cart reads “depleting the resources of the soundest government in the world.” The professor with the flail riding on the mule is “[Rexford G.] Tugwell — Brain Truster”. Riding in the cart, brandishing a bottle labeled “Power”, are “young pinkies from Columbia and Harvard”, along with:
- [Harold] Ickes [Senior] — the daddy of the more recent and familiar apparatchik from the Clinton Administration.
- [Henry] Wallace — a Progressive, Stalin apologist, and future Vice President, to whom the epithet “pinkie” fails to do justice.
- [Donald] Richberg— the Progressive director of the NRA (not the gun nuts, but the fascist National Recovery Administration).
In the distance on the right stands Stalin, who says, “How red the sunrise is getting!”
Plus ça change…