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Garet Garrett's The People's Pottage: The Revolution Was, Ex America, The Rise of Empire Paperback – December, 1992

4.3 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Everything that has happened to money was done to it by government, beginning with the deceptive separation of people from their own gold, then a confiscation of the gold, then making it a crime for a private citizen to own gold, together with a law forbidding contracts to be made in any kind of money but irredeemable paper currency, and finally the dishonorable repudiation of the promissory words engraved on its bonds. All of this with an air of leave-these-things-to-the-wisdom-of-the-government, as if people could not understand the mysteries of money. That was absurd. The controlling facts about money are not mysterious. By contrast, in 1896, there was a very grave monetary question to be settled. It was silver versus gold; or inflation versus sound money. It was taken to the people, and the people, not the government decided it. The people voted for sound money.

About the Author

Garet Garrett was born in Illinois in 1878. When he was twenty-five he was star writer for the old New York Sun. Thirteen years later he was executive editor of the New York Tribune, having been in the meanwhile financial writer with the New York Times, the Evening Post and Wall Street Journal, and editor of the New York Time Annalist. At thirty-eight he retired from newspaper work to devote himself to free-lance writing. Between 1920 and 1932 he published eight books and a number of widely circulated articles on financial and economic matters. With the advent of the New Deal he vigorously attacked its neo-Marxian premises and its economic fallacies in a series of articles that appeared in the Saturday Evening Post. His writing there created much bitter controversy and caused the New Deal to threaten the life of that magazine. In 1940 he became editorial-writer-in-chief of the Saturday Evening Post, after the death of its famous editor, George Horace Lorimer. In 1944 he wrote the notable political monograph entitled The Revolution Was, which went through many editions. This was followed in 1951 by ExAmerica and in 1952 by The Rise of Empire. These three essays, taken serially, give a dramatic account of what has happened in this country during the last twenty years - to the spirit, to the mind, and to the social environment of a people who after a century and a half of being wonderfully free began to ask, "What is freedom?" Mr. Garrett has recently retired to a cave on a river bank at Tuckahoe, New Jersey, where he lives very quietly with his wife, still making notes and comments on the passing show of monstrous human folly. He has just finished a book entitled The Wild Wheel, the theme of which is the death of Henry Ford's world of laissez-faire. Mr. Garrett died in 1954. The above page of biographical notes appeared on the jacket of the first edition of The People's Pottage in 1953.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 116 pages
  • Publisher: The Truth Seeker Company; TS ed edition (December 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0840379943
  • ISBN-13: 978-0840379948
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,065,996 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By B. King on December 27, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In November, 1932 the American people, frustrated with the failure of the Hoover administration to lead the nation out of financial panic, elected the patrician Franklin Roosevelt as president. The FDR campaign platform called for balancing the federal budget by curtailing wasteful and excessive federal expenditures, encouraging private investment and job creation, and keeping the dollar stong. Immediately after FDR's landslide election, the national banking crisis worsened. Capital fled the U.S., via boatloads of gold headed overseas. Banks failed by the thousands. Millions were thus impoverished and ruined.
In the four months between election day of 1932 and his swearing-in in March of 1933, FDR refused all opportunities to cooperate with the outgoing President Hoover in dealing with the banking crisis. By the day FDR ascended to office, the Great Depression had reached a nadir of national despair.
Immediately upon entering the White House, FDR closed the banks, using a document that had been prepared months earlier by Hoover's Secretary of the Treasury. Soon thereafter, departing from the script left by Hoover, FDR called in the nation's gold. That is, FDR asked the American people to assist their government by lending it their gold for the duration of the crisis. Trusting citizens by the millions went to their banks and handed over gold coins and bullion, in return for which the U.S. government issued gold certificates that specifically promised to repay the bearer in an equal sum of the yellow metal. But by mid-1934, FDR had devalued the nation's currency by over 40% and repudiated the promise to return the gold to the people.
This tyrannical act of gold confiscation, and numerous other of FDR's imperial actions as president, form the subject of Garet Garrett's writing.
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An excellent overview of the gradual infection by socialism of the once healthy American republic. If Mr. Garret had understood the federal taxing scheme as it actually exists (and did so even in his time), his understanding of the usurpation by the Momey Power would have been complete.
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Garet Garrett was one of the standard-bearers of the Old Right: the pre-war conservatives who opposed the expansion of both the welfare and the warfare state. In this book, a collection of three long essays, he details powerfully and compellingly the course the United States took to transform itself from a limited, constitutional Republic, into a voracious, insatiable empire, regulating every detail of its citizens' lives at home and thrusting itself into every possible context abroad. This is the most important book I read this year, and it receives my highest recommendation.

Note: This book is available for free download on the von Mises website.

The first essay, "The Revolution Was", is the most important in the book. It was written in 1938, and Garrett shows how the Roosevelt New Deal constituted a revolution that overthrew the American form of government. The first two paragraphs are so powerful, I will simply quote them: "There are those who still think they are holding the pass against a revolution that may be coming up the road. But they are gazing in the wrong direction. The revolution is behind them. It went by in the Night of Depression, singing songs to freedom. There are those who have never ceased to say very earnestly, `Something is going to happen to the American form of government if we don't watch out.' Those were the innocent disarmers. Their trust was in words. They had forgotten their Aristotle. More than 2,000 years ago he wrote of what can happen within the form, when `one thing takes the place of another, so that the ancient laws will remain, while the power will be in the hands of those who have brought about revolution in the state.
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In my book selections, every once in a while I will come across a long lost gem of historical truth that utterly casts down popular rationale. This book is one of those gems.

From the first glance at this book it is obvious that it isn't your normal read. The dust jacket for this book is not the normal monocolor jacket you would expect from similar books. The jacket consists of two pages of reviews from important figures from every niche of society that praise the book. On my particular copy, a widow had written a note to the recipient who was a friend of the deceased husband. She took the time to note that "he would want you to have this book". It was so important to the husband, he had stamped the book in several places with his name and address. It is quite obvious that the people of the time looked at this book as something special.

The book is a collection of three essays by Garet Garrett which were snapshot's of our country politically and economically that harpooned the actions of our government and casted down a ray of light on truths that were ignored. Three main topics were the actions of the government during The Great Depression, the movement of the country toward socialism and the American empire. There is a great deal of excellent journalism in this book with quotes from leaders all along the political spectrum that make the disingenuity of our actions blatantly obvious. Garrett takes time to show how both sides of the isle have succombed to political pressures to the detriment of our country.

Rarely have I found someone capture a period with such clarity. This is a true gem that any person who values truth or is interested in economics, politics or history whould have in their collection.
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