The difference between the past and the present is that individual freedom and security no longer fall to be protected solely through the D vehicle of common-law maxims and presumptions which may be altered or repealed by statute, but are now protected by entrenched constitutional provisions which neither the Legislature nor the Executive may abridge. It would accordingly be improper for us to hold constitutional a system which, as Sachs J has noted, confers on creditors the power to consign the person of an impecunious debtor to prison at will and without the interposition at the crucial time of a judicial officer.
America runs on credit darling. Why do you worry, our credit will take care of this payment. It is not saving or cash in hand that matters. We do not need cash, we just need potential. The system in the US believes in potential. That isthe model of the future. You need not be born rich, but you should be in the league that can make it big.
She planted that terror of debt so deeply in her children that even now, in a changed economic pattern where indebtedness is a part of living, I become restless when a bill is two days overdue. Olive never accepted the time-payment plan when it became popular. A thing bought on time was a thing you did not own and for which you were in debt. She saved for things she wanted, and this meant that the neighbours had new gadgets as much as two years before we did.
Beautiful credit! The foundation of modern society. Who shall say that this is not the golden age of mutual trust, of unlimited reliance upon human promises? That is a peculiar condition of society which enables a whole nation to instantly recognize point and meaning in the familiar newspaper anecdote, which puts into the mouth of a distinguished speculator in lands and mines this remark: 'I wasn't worth a cent two years ago, and now I owe two millions of dollars.
The only grown-up other than Jacob who ever came into his schoolroom was Eli Willard. School was in session one day when the Connecticut itinerant reappeared after long absence, bringing Jacob's glass and other merchandise. Jacob seized him and presented him to the class. 'Boys and girls, this specimen here is a Peddler. You don't see them very often. They migrate, like the geese flying over. This one comes maybe once a year, like Christmas. But he ain't dependable, like Christmas. He's dependable like rainfall. A Peddler is a feller who has got things you ain't got, and he'll give 'em to ye, and then after you're glad you got 'em he'll tell ye how much cash money you owe him fer 'em. If you ain't got cash money, he'll give credit, and collect the next time he comes 'round, and meantime you work hard to git the money someway so's ye kin pay him off. Look at his eyes. Notice how they are kinder shiftly-like. Now, class, the first question is: why is this feller's eyes shiftly-like?