By Robert F. Sanchez, JMI Policy Director
Most Americans instantly know the significance of “9/11,” shorthand for that awful day – September 11, 2001 — when deadly attacks on our homeland awakened us to the dangers of terrorism. Conversely, few of us have given much thought to the significance of “11/9,” the ninth day of November. Maybe we should. Here’s why:In 1989, that was the date when the Berlin Wall began to fall. A year ago, on the 20th anniversary, Germans staged a joyous celebration to mark this major turning point in the Cold War against an enemy that Ronald Reagan had aptly called “the evil empire.” Surely some of the credit must go to President Reagan. In a June 12,1987 speech at Berlin’s historic Brandenburg Gate, he boldly implored, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!”Yet the major factor in the collapse of the wall and the “evil empire” was internal discontent. Oppressed citizens finally realized that despite all the Marxist rhetoric about sharing and equality, rank-and-file citizens were being denied the meager fruits of their labor while bureaucrats and Communist party hacks prospered.Moreover, because socialism discourages productivity by limiting incentives, the Soviet bloc’s centrally-planned economy stagnated for decades. This meant that the privileged classes got a big slice of a paltry pie while the workers and peasants hungered.Fortunately, Americans concerned about the recent unparalleled the growth in the size and scope of our own central government have pulled back on the reins. Voters on Election Day 2010 reflected a growing realization that yielding to the federal government’s seemingly insatiable appetite for more money and authority would weaken our private economy and give the government and inordinate amount of power.So there’s renewed hope. Even so, advocates of limited government and individual liberty must continue to take two important steps: pay attention to what’s going on and show up to vote at every opportunity. That’s what many concerned Americans did on 11/2 in the hope that we won’t ever need to worry about our own 11/9.Celebrate 11/9 with JMI at the Madison Movie Nights presentation of Rockin’ The Wall, the compelling story of Rock n’ Roll’s part in tearing down the Berlin Wall and smashing the Iron Curtain.