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T OF THE
I NATIONAL PRESS BUILDING P WASHINGTON, D. G.
VOL. 1 _ APRIL 15,1936 Ne. 9
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President Roosevelt's promise of a "breathing spell" to business has gone the way of
a long list of other New Deal promises. A
It has followed 1nto the waste paper.basket the Democratic platform pledge of a 25%
reduction 1n the cost of the Federal Government, the platform pledge for maintenance of
national credit by a Federal budget annually balanced, the platform pledge of a sound
currency to be preserved at all hazards, the platform pledge favoring unemployment relief
through the extension of Federal credit to the States, the platform pledge for the removal
y of government from all fields of private industry except where necessary to develop public
works and national resources in the common lnterest. The "breathing spell" has likewise
gone the way of the platform declaration thatl "A party platform 1s a covenant with the
people to be faithfully kept by the party when entrusted with power;" and lastly, lt has
gone the way of Mr. Roosevelt's declaration that he was for the 1932 platform 100%.
Of course, only the very gullible ever took the "breathing spell" promise seriously.
The phrase or1g1nated.1n an interchange of letters between Mr. Roy Howard, a prominent
newspaper apologlst for the New Deal, and the President. One of Mr. Howard's employees,
Mr. Heywood Broun, characterized 1t at the time as "a daisy cha1n." It was generally
accepted as an arranged publicity stunt. But whatever the circumstances surrounding the
promise, the "breathing spell" is now definitely ended, 1f indeed it ever existed.
The most recent evidence of the death and burial of the "breathlng spell" ls to be
found fn Mr. Roosevelts socalled tax program, as outlined In his special message to
Congress last month, and in his request for an addltlonal $l,500,000,000 to supplement the
$4,880,000,000 blank check approprfation which Congress gave to him last year for relief
The tax program is an amplification and an aggravation of the "soakther1ch" propos-
al enacted 1nto law on the Pres1dent's recommendation last year at a time when the
administration was seeking tolsteal the thunder of the late Huey Long's "sharethewealth"
project. The request for the addftlonal $l,500,000,000 for relief purposes illustrates
that the administration cannot or will not profit by its own mistakes. Adequate appropria-
tions for direct relief to prevent suffering are approved by the American people. But
experience with the spending of the $4,880,000,000 appropriation demonstrates clearly that
the so-called work relief program is wasteful, inefficient and inevitably tainted with
politics. That such a program has temporary political advantages for the party in power
may be conceded, but the day of reckoning is certain to come. .
In any event, the "breathlng spell" 1s over. The nation may as well face that fact.
Actions speak louder than words.