After 6 months at sea, a group of English entrepreneurs reached land at Cape Henry in May 1607.  They moved inland approximately 40 miles and established their colony on the James River.  By that winter, Jamestown Settlement was well on its way to extinction much like the 18 attempted colonial settlements before it.

 

Populated by European aristocrats who perceived manual labor as beneath them, the expectation was that a few would do the work for all…America’s first attempts at redistribution of wealth.  Problem was, no one thought they should be the few that had to work.  Facing starvation and extinction, changes were implemented, as evidenced by Captain John Smith’s edict that “if you don’t work {today}, you don’t eat {today}. The work was now communal with very little incentive for productivity. The colony continued to flounder. 

 

In 1611 Sir Thomas Dale, deputy governor, assigned a 3 acre plot of land to each settler with the incentive of consuming for themselves or selling whatever they produced.  Smaller plots were also allotted for those who came to the Settlement later. 

 

Socialism had failed miserably in European attempts to colonize the New World. 

 

Capitalism was introduced. 

 

Within one year of Dale’s change promoting personal accountability, Jamestown residents had completely altered the way they conducted themselves.  Their entrepreneurial spirit was reborn and the colony began to grow and prosper.  Today we know that Jamestown was the first permanent English settlement in this country, following a string of failed European attempts to colonize North America with a system based in socialism that fell flat on its face.

 

This week in Colorado Springs where I live, and, dare I say in cities all across this great nation, socialism is being revisited with attempts to resurrect the failures inherent in such a system.  A local college hosted “Fireside chats” complete with an actor playing the role of FDR, no doubt  intent on convincing the “socially aware” that poverty & injustice can be conquered simply by expanding government and the US Constitution to include “guarantees” of housing, and jobs, and education.  And heaven knows what else…all compliments of U.S. government coffers. 

 COMPUTER DETECTIVE

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