Enter 2014 with a wary eye toward the past

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  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 2, 2014 9:57 a.m.


    If you mean that similar results sometimes come from similar causes, That's possible. But history as we know it comes from someone's of thousands of recollections of the event and we tend to choose one of many versions depending on our need.

    Remembering history is good, it sometimes keeps us from touching the red hot stove again. But remembering just for the sake of remembering is no good if we don't change the behavior that caused the pain.

    We've got thousands of monuments to remember war and disaster but we have done little to change the causes. In the long run it might be better to keep our eyes to the front and make our decisions on current things than be looking back on what went before.

  • Gemini Australia, 00
    Jan. 2, 2014 8:07 a.m.


    Well you know what truth I hope is - surprised you don't know what righteousness is as you placed it in parenthesis.

    It is the noun of righteous "righteous observance of laws; morally right or justifyable; acting in a moral way". Did you need a defninition you could not look up or did you feel I used it in the wrong place?

    I made a remark about spell checking a newspaper article because it's important to get it right before it goes to print. It was meant for Deseret News - not you! The standing for truth and righteousness part was something I ended on to say that if we all stood for those 2 qualities all the finger pointing and preludes to previous pre-war times would not happen. Peace is what we all seek in any era. It is the "behind the scenes" people who push the buttons for countries to go to war.

    Find peace in 2014!

  • SCfan clearfield, UT
    Jan. 2, 2014 6:55 a.m.

    Ultra Bob

    No, the most important lesson to learn from history is that history repeats itself. That is why the 2nd most important lesson to learn from history is that those who forget history, particularly the bad stuff, are going to repeat it too. For instance Bob, you won't meet many Jews who want the world to forget WW11.

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    Jan. 1, 2014 6:52 p.m.

    Some good thoughts here. The opinion writer states, however, that the U.S. has the largest military on earth. That all depends on what you are counting. We certainly have the most expensive military on earth, spending more than the next 10 countries combined. But in terms of number of soldiers, the United States' 2.29 million combined active and reserve personnel pales in comparison to China's 4.59 million, Vietnam's 5.5 million, South Korea's 5.19 million, or North Korea's 9.5 million. Just counting active personnel, China has twice as many soldiers as we do.

  • RWSmith6 Providence, UT
    Jan. 1, 2014 11:45 a.m.

    The editorial writer's attitude is, to me, scarier than the prospects described. We are to supervise the world and its ever-blooming possibilities for friction and war, remain strongest in case our might is needed? Do we never learn?
    Been there done that since the early 1950's when, flush with great successes in WWII and an economic boom to underwrite the expense, we volunteered ourselves as SuperPower on Call to the world. And ever since it's been one intervention and war after the other for us. It is VERY easy to show that our economic woes today are directly tied to the growing expense, in far leaner times, of maintaining that might and fighting the fights other countries seem easily to avoid.
    Being the world's policeman seems very foolish when infrastructure needs go a-begging, public education needs national planning AND funding if we're to keep up with other countries, and myriad domestic programs are threatened with dollar cutting.
    As I said, do we ever learn?

  • antodav TAMPA, FL
    Jan. 1, 2014 10:19 a.m.

    The United States' "big stick" is more often used to bludgeon rising powers into submission than it is used as a tool for leverage in diplomacy. The situation between China and Japan can best be resolved by the U.S. allowing Japan to develop itself into the military power that it used to be—there will not be another Pearl Harbor, I assure you. The United States needs to withdraw from affairs outside of our own hemisphere and focus on resolving our numerous problems at home. We cannot afford—nor do we have the right—to play policeman of the world any longer.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 1, 2014 9:45 a.m.

    The most important lesson to learn from history is that there are no important lessons to be learned from history.

  • Beverly Eden, UT
    Jan. 1, 2014 9:26 a.m.

    Those who fail to study history tend to become its victims. In Utah, we have failed to study the consequences created by treating African Americans inappropriately. Currently, we are following the same path with Gay Marriages. Utah was on the wrong side of history with African Americans and Utah, failing to study history, will be on the wrong side again with Gay Marriage.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    Jan. 1, 2014 8:56 a.m.

    Gemini, Just what is truth and "righteousness"?

  • Gemini Australia, 00
    Jan. 1, 2014 5:31 a.m.

    Does anyone spell check these articles?? Paragraph nine the word roll should be "role". Really - in a newspaper!!!??? I have found other errors in the past so rather than relying on computers to spell check - people ought to proof read like they used to before. Nothing beats the human touch in our digital age!

    Regarding the article itsef - very interesting comparisons. And "neat" or not history does tend to repeat itself if we do not learn from it. Let's sit up and take notice and not repeat such mistakes. We don't want WW3 starting as a 100th anniversary this year now do we?

    Let's not fall in love with technology so much so that we neglect good old fashioned values which were abandoned in the name of progress on the lead up to may battles and wars. Stand for truth and righteousness wherever you are.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 1, 2014 2:54 a.m.

    This sounds like Niall Ferguson's analysis in his documentary "The Ascent of Money." The year 1914 marked the end of the first era of internationalism, and the same thing could happen between the U.S. and China to end the current era of internationalism. It's a provocative analysis. But his analysis and yours ignores the role the U.S. invasion of Russia had in destroying relations between the U.S. and Russia, resulting in the cold war. But clearly there is a lot to learn from the World War I period. I'm glad you are taking a look at it.