Grabbed from my furl.
“I decree the spirit of conviction on this intersection,” Mr. Williams boomed from a podium decorated with red, white and blue bunting. “This statue proves that Jesus Christ is Lord over America, he is Lord over Tennessee, he is Lord over Memphis.”
Referring to the Marshall Plan, which helped Europe recover from the economic devastation of World War II, Gore said what is needed today is a “global Marshall Plan” to save the world’s environment and give billions of dispossessed people the tools needed to participate in the marketplace in a rational way. “I want to challenge you to make a personal commitment [to this] regardless of where you end up,” he said. “Remember that right is still right even if nobody is doing it. Wrong is still wrong even if everybody is doing it. These values have to be integrated. It is not too extreme to say our survival depends on it. Be the change you want to see in the world.”
worthy article, though they soured it by closing with Trump’s vapid platitudes
His views seem to reflect those of many Americans. A USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken June 23-25 shows that most continue to embrace the core values espoused by the Founding Fathers. More than 70% say most Americans still respect freedom of speech and religion. But when asked to compare today’s values with those of five years ago, 68% say Americans are more materialistic now, and almost half — 48% — say Americans are less tolerant of the views of others.
If you think of Pittsburgh as an aging industrial relic, you might be surprised to learn that it ranked number one last year in a study of farmers’ markets and community gardens per capita. (Philadelphia came in second in the survey by SustainLane.com, an online resource for urban sustainability.) It’s no big news to locals, though, who have long enjoyed ready access to fresh food from nearby farms–including one within city limits. Pittsburgh and its surrounding area have 31 farmers’ markets and farm stands, many of which accept food stamps, and urban and suburban neighborhoods are clamoring for more.
In his mind, Carnegie had not earned this fortune as an individual, but held it as a “trustee” for the larger community, which was the source of all wealth. “Wealth is not chiefly the product of the individual,” he wrote, “but largely the joint product of the community.” […] While we can only applaud the decision by Mr. Buffett and Mr. Gates to give away so much of their fortunes, their gifts raise questions not unlike those that confronted Andrew Carnegie a century ago. Is society served by permitting so much capital to be accumulated by so few? Should we have to rely on the usually unfulfilled hope that fortunes of this magnitude will be put to a good cause? What becomes of a society that must rely on “gifts” from a handful of socially conscious billionaires to save its schools, cure disease and alleviate poverty?
In the process, Weems helped make Washington into the nation’s common father. “Our children,” he predicted, “and our children’s children, hearing the great name of Washington re-echoed from every lip with such veneration and delight, shall ask their fathers, ‘What was it that raised Washington to this godlike height of glory?’ ” His writings would provide the answer. Indeed, in many respects, the national symbols Americans revere today — the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the founding fathers — entered our canon not through the work of men like Thomas Jefferson, James Madison or Washington, but through the work of far less celebrated figures like Weems.