You say you want a revolution?

We in the United States of America romanticize revolution.  After all, our revolution ended in the greatest country in the world, so it must be good for others, right?

Well, not always. 

Take, for example, the French Revolution of 1789.  It occurred 13 years after our Declaration of Independence, but ended in the Reign of Terror and Napoleon steamrolling Europe and Russia.  France is now on their 5th Republic and still trying to get it right.  You say you want a revolution?

Or, take the Russian Revolution of 1917.  It was supposed to free the oppressed people of Russia from the yoke of the Czar (isn’t it mind-boggling that we now use this term to denote our government figures: Auto Czar, Drug Czar, Energy Czar, etc.?).  Instead of a worker’s paradise, they got Stalin, purges, millions dead by murder and famine, and Nazi slaughter.

Or, for instance, the Chinese Revolution of 1949.  Chairman Mao, millions dead of murder and famine, Cultural Revolution (there’s that word again!), etc.  You say you want a revolution?  Okay this story is, currently, going better than France and Russia, but that came about without a revolution. 

For those who think potential revolutions in the Middle East are necessarily a good thing, it’s time to review the history of revolutions.  They don’t all end happily.

The western press was quick to assume the 1979 Iranian Revolution was a good thing, too.  It wasn’t (unless you’re one of the goons in charge, I suppose).  The press thought the English speaking people they interviewed represented the revolution, but Islamic clerics were pulling the strings and ended up in charge.  You say you want a revolution?

I’m not saying all revolutions end badly, but enough of them do that they shouldn’t all be greeted gladly.  Things in the Middle East may get better through revolution, but don’t count on it. 

Nothing in this blog should be considered investment, financial, tax, or legal advice. The opinions, estimates and projections contained herein are subject to change without notice. Information throughout this blog has been obtained from sources believed to be accurate and reliable, but such accuracy cannot be guaranteed.

You say you want a revolution?