Sunday, July 8, 2007

"Misplaced filial piety…"

How were the spectacular failures of the New Deal's economic policies gilded over to make Franklin D. Roosevelt a central figure in the myth of 20th century American prosperity? Amity Shlaes has a few suggestions

…and to which Billy Beck has a few worthwhile comments to add.

As an aside, the title of Shlaes' new history of the Great Depression is an ironic take on Roosevelt's iconic Forgotten Man — a political totem for the ordinary and unassuming American left behind by an undisciplined free market and whose independence and self-reliance he would assume in exchange for economic protection under the New Deal's central planning wing. But, as Shlaes notes, the Forgotten Man moniker was in fact coined fifty years earlier by William Graham Sumner who used it to describe the ordinary and unassuming citizen whose independence, self-reliance and industry built American prosperity in the first place and, only eventually, rescued it in spite of economic policies inspired by the pilgrimages to the Soviet Union by Roosevelt's Brain Trusters.

See also Declaration of Dependence (link via Paul Tuns).

1 Comment:

Anonymous said...

As for the Dow, it did not come back to its 1929 level until the 1950s. International factors and monetary errors cannot entirely account for these abysmal showings.

Looking in the rear-view mirror is a worthwhile exercise, but of course the real trick is to look all around you at what's happening right now, and recognizing the same scams even though they are diguised in different ways.

Fer instance, the Powers That Be would never allow the embarrassment of seeing the DJIA plunge too deeply for too long.

Austrian economics is the best tool for penetrating economic and especially governmental rackets of all kinds.