The holidays are a time to celebrate and be joyful and thankful. The stock market has gone up and held onto gains while extreme poverty has declined from 90 percent to 9 percent over the long run! There is a lot right with the world!

November 2021 Newsletter

The holidays are a time to celebrate and be joyful and thankful. The stock market has gone up and held onto gains while extreme poverty has declined from 90 percent to 9 percent over the long run! (Professor Steven Pinker, Harvard University, ‘Cato Institute Quarterly’, Fall, 2020) There is a lot right with the world!

How does it happen? Is it people with ideas who are free and happy?  People who spur us on with achievement – like the framers of the Constitution and their perseverance which has allowed us to benefit from a system for over 200 years – far longer than any other country?  Most of the signers lost their lives and their fortunes for their efforts.  And the oppressors – did they stand for something far better…or…far worse?

I read that “peaceful protest movements produce meaningful, positive change when just 3.5% of a population participates.”  Surely that is a reason the Berlin Wall came down in 1989.  Perhaps the “handwriting was on the Berlin wall” when Mikhail Gorbachev came to power for the Soviet Union in 1985. Churches had reopened with small groups convening. In Leipzig, East Germany, in 1982 peaceful protests began and on October 9,1989, 70,000 people marched around the iron curtain walls of Leipzig.  One month later the Berlin Wall toppled.  All because a small group of people began to desire it and think it, so I understand.

Poland has emerged as a country continually fighting for freedom. It has come a long way from years wrapped in communism. Three other countries, Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia have stuck to capitalism after the Soviet Union breakup in 1991.  But many of us are concerned with negative movements we see in the United States today and wonder what we can do.  It may seem like a small thing but then I read about the power of a 3.5% group and realize it does not have to be dramatic.  I can join a U.S. Constitution study group or join and support increasing numbers of people running for local offices who want to build up our nation. What else are you seeing?

Our office will be closed on Thanksgiving and “Black” Friday.  I won’t be shopping, but I will be thankful to live in this country.  To paraphrase Soviet born Ukranian-American comedian Yakov Smirnoff, heard in Branson, Missouri many years ago: “AMERICA! WHAT A COUNTRY!” and the response of Benjamin Franklin in 1787 to the query, “Doctor Franklin, what have we – a Monarch or a Republic?”

“A Republic – if you can keep it!”

Happy Thanksgiving!

 

Louise Googins, President, Investment Advisor

Michael Googins, Administrator

Kim Rankin, Accountant,

Richard Martin, Investment Advisor

Lynne Goldsmith, Investment Assistant

Brady Peat, UW-Madison Intern

Kyra Meach UW-Madison Intern