OTHER PEOPLE THINK
John Cage, 1927
in Richard Kostelantez (ed.), John Cage. An Anthology, New York, Da
Capo Press, 1991, p. 45-48:
"Today the United States is a world power. [.] It is the popular
belief that we have promoted friendly relations with all Latin America.
Our Foreign Policy has, in general, aimed to promote the general welfare
of the southern people. Without our intervention in Ecuador, that country,
because of its unsanitary conditions, would be spilling its poison over
the New World. [.] Because of Uncle Sam's military power, Venezuela
has been protected from Germany, Cuba from Spain, Mexico from France;
we have defended all weak countries from European domination. [.] All
in all, our intervention in Latin America has been actuated by altruistic
Why, then, is there any misunderstanding between the Latins and the
Anglo-Saxons of this continent? There are two sides to every question.
For other people think otherwise.
Concerning the question of American Intervention in Latin America, many
people are thinking otherwise. [.] This thought, that has penetrated
the intellectual life of the Latin Republics so effectively, has been
influenced by the actions of certain citizens of the United States.
The great majority of these are capitalists who have zealously invested
money in the Southern Republics and eagerly exploited them. They have
not the hope of progress of others, but only the desire for their own
material advancement. They are of the family of the utterly selfish.
[.] In the eyes of the Southern People, these men are the United States.
was to protect the 'Lives and Property' of just such money-grasping
men as those in Bolivia that the United States Marines entered Nicaragua
fifteen years ago. They are still there. Having taken charge of the
politics of that country, they have been careful to keep a Conservative
in the Presidency. The Admiral in charge, reporting to Washington, noticed
that only one-fourth of the country was Conservative, and that all of
his actions were done against three-fourth of the Nicaraguans. [.] Other
people began to think that no government could exist in Central America
without the sanction of the United States. [.]
have feared our interference in the past. Many will hate our intervention
in the future. [.]
What are we going to do? What ought we to do? One of the greatest blessings
that the United States could receive in the near future would be to
have her industries halted, her business discontinued, her people speechless,
a great pause in her world of affairs created, and finally to have everything
stopped that runs, until everyone should hear the last wheel go around
and the last echo fade away. [.] Then we should be capable of answering
the question, 'What ought we to do?' For we should be hushed and silent,
and we should have the opportunity to learn that other people think".
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