I only know that December 13 was Jane Addams day because there was on an advert on a Red Line train, complete with a quote:
The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life.
Is this conventional wisdom? Merely the hopeful yearnings of someone who thinks we should all live for each other rather than for ourselves? Or is there something more to this? I think there's something more. The likes of Jane Addams, who have the ears of legislators who can enact "reforms" into law and make them happen, do not merely sigh and fancifully wish the world should be a better place. I have a few questions:
I think the last century of life in the United States shows that there is no saying "no" to the welfare/warfare state -- that is, after all, what Addams was pining for when she sighed about the "common life." This "common life" is life in, with and under the state, and there is no choice about being a citizen of an Enlightenment-industrial state. The state, after all, can and will shoot you if don't want to play.