Friday, July 19, 2013
"The Only History That Is Worth a Tinker's Damn"
That's Henry Ford as quoted in an interview with the Chicago Tribune in 1916.
Of course, the portion of that quote which has gone down in...uh, history, is the first line. But it is actually the last line that is the most relevant to modern culture.
Indeed, it's pretty obvious that the cultural "powers that be" (politics, academia, Hollywood) are determined to escape what they believe are the shackles of the past. They are progressives through and through who believe that civilization is like detergent or breakfast cereal -- only the "new and improved" brands should be allowed on the shelves. Everything else should go to the trash bin.
Therefore, the virtues of Western culture, no matter how beautiful, ennobling or indispensable for a society's health (think of the U.S. Constitution, religion, marriage, family, etc.) are ignored if not mocked and vilified.
History is made an ally of this bold social transformation; that is, a distinctly progressive version of history, a twisted thing that is much more propaganda than it is precision. It is a thing that is quite willing to drastically distort the actual record, to carefully omit (even conceal) those things that do not fit with the desired political conclusions, to engage in outright invention -- all to create an ideologically favorable product.
"History is more or less bunk. It's tradition. We don't want tradition. We want to live in the present, and the only history that is worth a tinker's damn is the history that we make today."
Yes, the words are Henry Ford's. But the sentiment is alive and well in the hearts of today's progressives.