xt7wwp9t2q46_46 https://nyx.uky.edu/dips/xt7wwp9t2q46/data/mets.xml https://nyx.uky.edu/dips/xt7wwp9t2q46/data/59m61.dao.xml American Liberty League 19341936 37 linear feet archival material English University of Kentucky This digital resource may be freely searched and displayed.  Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically.  Physical rights are retained by the owning repository.  Copyright is retained in accordance with U. S. copyright laws.  For information about permissions to reproduce or publish, contact the Special Collections Research Center. Jouett Shouse Collection (American Liberty League Pamphlets), No. 49 "Two Amazing Years" Speech of Nicholas Roosevelt Of the Editorial Staff of the New York Herald Tribune, July 8, 1935 text No. 49 "Two Amazing Years" Speech of Nicholas Roosevelt Of the Editorial Staff of the New York Herald Tribune, July 8, 1935 2013 section false xt7wwp9t2q46_46 xt7wwp9t2q46 IN THESE two amazing years nothing, I think, I —_—_"`*—m———"`_`“"`
has been more amazing than this-——that thought- * * I
ful men, Democrats as well as Republicans, are ·
seriously alarmed at the reforms introduced,  
many of them in the name of recovery, and that,
like myself, they honestly believe that an almost Am 
unseen revolution has been attempted. Thank
God it is not yet completed—and will not be so  
long as meetings like this can be held without
fear of punishment.
Let us by all means discuss proposed remedies
for our troubles. Let us improve our political
machine wherever possible. Let us amend the * * *
Constitution if, after full discussion, this proves -
desirable and the amendment promises genuine
benefits to the country as a whole. But let us
refuse to accept meekly the undermining of the * Speech of
structure of the American democratic system by NICHOLAS ROOSEVELT
those who follow the false gods of planned Of the Editorial Stan, of the
economy. I do not quest1on the s1ncer1ty of _
. . New York Herald Tribune
their desire to make over the form of our gov-
ernment so that it may the easier control our in
economic activities. But I question their wisdom Round Tobio Discussion of
and I challenge their right to attempt these re- “Th€ Constitution and the N€wD€al,,
forms subtly and even covertly. Let the people
know frankly whither the New Deal is tending · Institute of Public Affairs
and none of us need doubt what the people University of Virginia
will do. July 8, 1935
I always remember a chance remark of the
late Theodore Roosevelt to a group of us `
youngsters during the Bull Moose campaign.
Something came up about the soundness of
nopular judgment and T. R. remarked that one Je f `4
of the things that had struck him most forcibly v   4,
in his political career was how inevitably the   ;*
American people, once they had all the facts in ‘°.p  `  VP
a case before them, decided it rightly. It was '
only when they had only part of the facts before
them, or when under emotional stress they were _
forced into some hasty decision, that they de-
cided wrongly. I, for one, have no hesitation in s I
accepting the verdict of the American people y AMERICAN LIBERTY LEAGUE
about these issues——provided all the facts are I Natiaaal H°ad*1aa"t°"·‘
laid before them. It is the duty—and the NATIONAL PRESS BUILDING
. . . . WASHINGTON, D. C.
pr1v1lege—of such a meeting as this to help
marshall the facts for the people. * *
16 ..........................._ ......... .................... »..
Document No. 49

 TWO Amazing Yggyg demned the activities of the Farm Board. His
* platform rejected "the unsound policy of re-
stricting agricultural production to the demands
THE thrill that ran through the country on rf domfzstlc markets}, H8 advocnrnd rstrict and
the fourth of March, 1933, when the vibrant, p Euparual enfnlncmcnr Or the nnrnrrnst laws},
vigorous voice of Franklin Delano Roosevelt i Dem were policies whlch Rcpnnncnns as Wan as
sounded a new note of confidence in the har- cmocmts understgod _ and Supported- The
ried confusion of the depression was un- country at last was rm its way], R€c0V‘>`rY was
doubtedly one of the most important psycho- around the corner"
logical events of our times. The nation felt
I that it had at last a leader, and that Mr. Roose- ONLY a few professed doubts. They were
velt would not falter in the arduous task of troubled to see him from the beginning ignore
bringing order out of chaos. all the important leaders of his art . With
The people’s faith in him seemed justified by ’ such men as Owen D. Young, Newfzon   Baker,
his deeds. In quick succession he struck blow A1 Smith, Carter Glass, Albert Ritchie, John W.
after blow, reviving business activities and re- Davis and Harry Byrd to call upon for help he
I storing hope. He took charge of the banking vi turned instead to Jim Farley, whose sense of the
situation and reopened those banks that had Q practical was untroubled b idealism and to a
been closed. He bespoke balancing the budget group of “brain trusters” rwhose idealism was
and forced reductions in the pay of government unchecked by practical experience and whose
employees and pensioners. `He provided relief p judgment was too often colored by their objec-
for farm mortgages, and shortly thereafter for . tives. lt was unofficially explained that as the
urban mortgages. He helped the railroads. He A old doctors had failed to cure the patient we
obtained from Congress $3,500,000,000 for Q must have new doctors.
public works to stimulate heavy industries and i Incidentally, it is interesting at this point to
put men back to work. He created the Federal pause for a moment to note how the human
Relief Administration to look after the millions mind, when faced by economic crises, tends to
of unemployed. react in the same manner. I have here an ex-
All of this was within the famous first hun- tract from a book by a famous historian. Let
dred days. It was a triumph of national leader- me read it to you:
ship. Gladly · the people saw the President eqn Speeches, newspapers and pamphlets
clothed with d1ctator1al powers. He would ease about this time, we begin to {ind it declared
them of their burdens. He would lead them to that, after all, a depreciated currency is a
the promised land of profits and contentment. blessings that gold and silver form an un-
His measures must not be questioned. He must Slitlsffactory Standard r°r measuring Values?
be spared Criticism. g 51;; lt   a good thing to have a currency
_ _ _ wi not go out of the country and
With €aS€d mmds people t¤1‘11€d again to which separates (this country) from other
their own affairs. They knew that the President nations: that thus shall manufacturers be
was pledged to a reduction in expenditures, a nncnnragadi that C0mm€1`0€ with other
balanced budget, sound currency and the cessa- nauons may ba a cnrsnt and nrndrnnce
tion of government interference in business. In thereto may be 8 blcssmg; that th? laws of
_ _ _ » p0l1t1CHl economy, however applicable in
h1S Campalgll speeches hc had V1g01‘0l1S]Y at- other times, are not applicable to this par-
tacked Mr. Hoover’s deficit. “I regard reduc- ticlllar period, and however operative in
tion in Federal spending as the most important other nnthmae ata not HOW S0 in (this
issue in this campaign,” were his very words. gnintry); that the wdmary ruins Or P°nr'
He opposed taxes on food and clothing. He con- mr · Economy are- perhaps Suited to the
minions of despotism but not to the free
2 ' 3

 and enlightened inhabitants of (this _ _
ccuntr-y)," ;;‘gl§i7‘;•;n9;I¤$P10¤0HSly out of a side dom- of
It has, you must admit, a very familiar sound! Of tcacliiig 1:3;; 2237 rtctufncd ne hm SPBCHRY
But it describes conditions in France just be- Warren gold them waso ei Eiorg °ggS• The
fore the great revolution. It was written by January 1934 the gouarpomg fiy_ ensenen In
Andrew D. White, of Cornell, a half century ago. at the céuivalimt of 59 05“(;aS t 6 Flu? Y mvalucd
Interestingly enough the new doctors——or per- Vclt gold Value ' en S 0 Its Pr€'R°°SC'
haps I should say the New Deal doctors- But curmncér tinkcrin b
brought forward as “new” almost all of these A Powerful gmu of lg Wa;_mi; a andoncd
tried—and discarded—panaceas. It was those backed the (QSi1VCr@’cnat0rSiw bo? _SPC°u1at°rS
which affected the currency, however, that most to bear on the President t Bhd rmgmg  cssurc
You all remember that in the campaign Mr. is stm being ..d0n€,,__;rnd th ' Omithjng
so much as hinting that the United States might In recent month? howlgrgr if are em ag?m‘
havc ee go en gold' He eeek Speciailpains ne tionists have made; little heailwa;   Rlxlelifi-
reject the Republican charges that t e Demo- ; . .·
crats would tamper with the dollar and called · gliggiogcmc of them are bankmg OH cmdlt
attention to the Democratic platform pledge · . .
which reads: “W`e advocate a sound currency to m (E1 (;n;l1;;r(;?;§ dgxha Jgct gcvaluzifmn hcxpcrb
be preserved at all hazards.” He even went so aspcnding our wa to I; 6 am); Cr td €0r¥—
far as to taunt Mr. Hoover with having visions Sponsored by the Eliwlish cc0V€ry_—; hoctrmc
of a °‘rubber dollar”——thereby showing that Mr. Hard Keynes but I_6,€‘;t€d Ecoglomlgsh _°h H May'
Hoover saw more clearly than did Mr. Roosevelt. and government Dir RODS; lf {nge dpeoplc
Doubts persisted in the public mind as to Mr. ducc cxpcnditules {ind b {TG ’ P ilgcb ne m'
Roosevelt’s intentions about gold even after he began Spending mom? on aa mace tl C udgcte
·was elected, but these were allayed by the cate- during the War carsy His iiaficfmfy cycedcd
gorical and emphatic declaration of the new I two years was Igom Qhan $7 3031500%.0018 first
_ Secretary of the Treasury on March 6, 1933, debt which was 3521000000600 ’ h ’ h' The
that "We are still on the gold standard.” Six imoiomcc is now $2,8 060 001) OOOW in S (ialnc
weeks later, however, without notice—and some the govengmcm has mimi; 2 l_ 'b_l_n_ a dlnen
of us still claim, without need-—Mr. Roosevelt Wards Of $8 000 000 000 M gen hm gltlcsilof up'
took the country oif gold. In June he repu- out to ahmist azl Dim wlrhooaray lim Emi andcd
diated the gold clause in the bonds of the hundred million; were a,d in htafcim Twe I
Genennenene ef the Unned Seenee-e ennenins the cmp. they as not .-gs; Eiiiijnsaigiirs iii
blow ne the cmdlt Structure ef the country in doles. Other billions were loaned to farnlfers,
urban home owners, corporations and railroads.
NOT content with this, he soon decided to test The spending is still in progress, but we are still
out the "W`arren theory," which holds that on our way to recovery,
internal prices will rise as the gold content. of ‘ Even before the end of the iirst hundred days
the dollar is lowered. The rubber dollar which 1n which so much was done to restore faith in
Mr. Hoover dreaded had come into existence, America there were signs that important social
and no one knew how much 1t would shrink. reforms were in preparation. The list of them
Throughout the summer of 1933, the dollar was is now large. Let me remind you of the leadinv
depressed———but prices refused to obey the Pro- ones: First in order (March, 1933), was th;
fessor. Finally, one afternoon, that gentleman A.A.A. program for subsidizing the farmers.
4 s

 Shortly afterwards the President announced his havoc and a half billion dollars was voted for
policy of raising commodity prices. In May of . drought relief. In addition, the versatile brain
1933, the Federal Relief Administration was trusters devised a scheme for preventing future
created to look after the unemployed, the T.V.A. droughts by planting a shelter belt of trees one
was launched as a step in socializing the util- hundred miles wide from Canada to Mexico.
ities, and the Securities control bill was passed. When foresters pointed out that trees could only i
In lgune came tlge N.R.A. that was to reform as bl? mam to grow in much of this area by nursing
we as restore usiness. t em ' e garden lants and when climat '
During the whole summer of 1933, the insisted that dro1i)ghts were cyclical, thezdoweesrte
emphasis was on the N.R.A. as the chief bulwark derided as mere obstructionists.
of the New Deal. General Johnson announced In October the slum clearance projects were
that four million men would be given jobs be- announced and a National Economic Council
fore winter. The N.R.A. was to regulate work- was created with Donald Richberg at its head
ing hours, abolish child labor, fix prices and _ to coordinate recovery. November was a com- ‘
prevent unfair competition. Instead of the paratively quiet month, but in December the
"strict and impartial enforcement of the anti- President announced that the N.R.A., inaugu-
trust laws” pledged in the Democratic plati`01111, l 4 r3ted 3S 311 €111€I‘g€11CY measure, would be made
the N.R.A. provided for the virtual suspension permanent and Secretary Wallace announced
of those laws. With an emotional fervor only more crop curtailments. In the meantime the
surpassed in war, people were dragooned into cotton farmers who had been receiving money
doing homage to the blue eagle. ‘ pnder the Bankhead bill voted in_ referendum
i 3 or its extension. Early in 1935, the social
AS THE winter of 193334 approachcir the securities legislation was introduced, and the
President found new vents for his energies. The Wagner L_et°er Bet The deatn sentence on the
stock exchanges were slated for reform in Febru- Pubhe uutmss was Ptanned¤ tne Federal R8-
m_y· In March the A·A.A.,S Powers to collect serve System was threatened with absorption by
processing taxes were extended to cover almost the governmene and the President was grttntett
every major cmp down to and including peanuts $4,880,000,000 for relief. At first he demanded
————this despite the President’s categorical state- that thm Sure bdwlthent any atrtngsv not 13te1`
mem on July 30 previously that he was Opposed general class1ficat1ons ofexpenditure were voted.
r to taxes on food and clothing. In April the The country was promised that 3,500,000 men
Bankhead bill was signed reducing the acreage Wmtld be Put beek te w°tk• AS tne Present
of cotton and providing fine or imprisonment for iesswn Of Congress drew neat tts otosev 3 ntnn·
those who disobeyed the A.A.A.’s orders. In Mer Of, new_ meeeutee were added to a nst et
June he signed the Railroad pension bill oblig- must legleleued These tnetddedt Arnentt
ing the railroads to pension retired employees; meme to the d’A'A‘ extending tts Powers vt
the Federal Housing Bill for financing home reguletmg fermlng and lndustry; amendments
improvements; and the Farm Bankruptcy Bill to the T.V.A. so as to enable that body to do
(better known as the F1_azic1__Lcmk6 Act). In . legally what the courts declared it cannot do;
July the Federal Power Commission was created. the tus end ttnek regulation nin? the GHEBY I
In that Same month Secretary of Agriculture A coal stabilization bill; the utilities holding bill
Wallace, returning from the West, contributed i (tn tts tnodtned form); and nn3nY the Share-
the startling information—or rather I should 4 tne'Weattn tax Programs se sndd€n1Y Sprung on
Say, Opinionmthat the farmers wanted m0rC__ the nation shortly after the President’s specific
not ]€SS...1·cgu]atiOn_ statement that he would present no further tax
During this summer the drought wrought n1€3S\11’€S· IH Colmection with this project I
  6 7

 merely note that in its submission Mr. Roosevelt departures were inaugurated. Not only did the
implied distinctly that it was not for immediate Federal government undertake to tell farmers
consideration. Shortly thereafter, however, Sen- what and hew much they might grow, but by
ator Harrison, emerging from 3 White House the system of a flexible processing tax the execu-
conference, announced that tl1iS bill 111USt be tive branch exercised the right to fix tax rates
passed before the end of the week. The country, heretofore jealously reserved to Congress. In
regardless of party, at once expressed its resent- the Spring of ’34 the President was given ex-
ment against trying to rush through such a far- tensive rate making powers in the tariif—also a
reaching reform without study, discussion or function previously reserved exclusively to Con-
public hearings. Two days later the President gress. At a later date, as already mentioned, the
disavowed Senator Harrison. The circumstance Administration through the banking bill sought
is so recent and the sequence of events so control of the credit system of the country. By
eloquent that I refrain from comment. controlling finance it could direct the economic
· life of the country.
IT MAKES one rather breathless even thus 3 Not ·content with this, the Administration
hurriedly to sum up all that was done in these ‘ early IP Its career coluplctcly reversed the
two amazing years. As a matter of fact this was 3 pledge m the D°m°crf’mC platform to take Ihc
not an There Were, besides, a number of fab government out of business, and, by the creat1on
reaching political reforms. Of these the most °f the T’V'A' émd later through Some 0f_thc
widely heralded was the N.R.A., which, h?m€St°¤d P*`_°§€°'¢S» _P“* thc g?V“”m?”* mm
although introduced as an emergency measure direct competition with private 1ndustr1es.
to speed recovery, rapidly developed into a `
bureaucracy exercising legislative and judicial TIME does not permit an appraisal of the
as well as executive functions. The American usefulness of all these measures. Long needed
Bar Association estimated last summer that 10,- social reforms have been inaugurated. As a
000 pages of regulations, most of which had the matter of fact, with many of the social objec-
binding effect of law and many of which in- tives of the New Deal most of us are in sym-
volved penalties, had been drawn up by these pathy, though we differ as to how they may be
young bureaucrats. Never before had the Ex- reached. There is no doubt that conditions in
ecutive enjoyed the law-making power on such the country are better now than when Mr.
a scale. The young bureaucrats used it to make Roosevelt came into office, despite the fact that
business come to heel. Business men found it there are today as many unemployed as in the
impossible to discover what they might or might autumn of 1933, and that the business indices
not do. In numerous instances they were pun- show little improvement since July, 1933. In-
ished for acts which they never suspected were cidentally many sound observers insist that the
unlawful. In July, by the device of the blanket N.R.A. retarded recovery. Whether or not it
code, the Administration virtually fixed the did, there is no question that recovery in Amer-
hours of labor throughout the country. Under ica has been slower than in countries untroubled
the N.R.A. in a number of lines prices were by so many social and economic experiments.
fixed. By an order of October 7, 1934, non-   Figures published last winter by the League of
union coal miners were placed on the same Nations show that, in point of recovery of in-
footing as the union men with respect to col-   dustrial output, the United States ranked at that
lective bargaining. Thus were exercised more time sixteenth out of eighteen leading nations.
new powers by the Central government, with We have today, furthermore, four million more
y far-reaching implications. people on relief than we had in the autumn of
Under the A.A.A. even more radical political · ’33. And who can deny that the relief system
8 9 .

 devised bY the Prcscm edminienetisu hss Mark Sullivan’s monotonous insistence that de-
brought upon this country the gravest sort of mocracy was being threatened by a new {01111 6t
problems affecting not only government, finance collectivism, was exaggerated. Even Wh611 t16
and business but also the very morale of the reeeived the Support of the more piCt111`6$qt16
American PEOPIC? Frank Kent I was not convinced. The texts and
As for the measures to help the farmers- eases dug up by David Lawrence, however,
some, undoubtedly, have been of distinct value e began to make me see the light, and What has
to the country at large as well as to the farmers. happened Since the fateful decision of the Su-
I f°f°r° Pfimafilm tn the St€PS taken to 6a66 tt16 preme Court in the N.R.A. case has left no more
farm mortgage situation. It is, of course, clear doubt in my mind. The issue is plain--the
that th6 b6116tttS paid to th6 fa1`m61`6 haV6 iD' American system of checks and balances versus
creased retail business, but it is not so clear that the European system of a strongly centralized,
the principle of the payments benefits the all-powerful executive. It is not only the issue
country as a whole. Why should one group be _ of the Federal government against the States,
subsidized by the nation? if but of the President against Congress and the
As fst th6 Phi10S6PhY of th6 6u1`tai1m6¤t sf Supreme Court. Are we to substitute autocracy
production and its extension to embrace eco- fel- (lemooraoy?
nomic nationalism, I confess that I side with i
th k t‘.W’k 1 dthtth‘ 1° . .
. C S CP lcs · C mmf a ma Y · a li P0 my LEST you think I am an alarmist, let me list
has led to the importation of foreign grams and , . . . . F d
· · · for you briefly the various activities of the e -
to the reduction of the sales of American agri- t d the New Deal until the
cultural products abroad. The export of Amer- ° ’ ennl govirnmcn unucr h lt_
ican cotton, for example, during the period end- country Egan to ca a a `
ing March 31 last was 42 per cent less in volume Controlling farm production.
than during the corresponding period last year. Controlling the manufacture of articles
This is almost entirely due to the artificially mehdeout of_fa1‘m p1‘0d116tS·
. . . . ixmg prices. - _
jen   nnnnnnnen by the ennennnene en M.....f.C......, ...1.., ....1 t......l...t....... of
merican cotton. l · · . electric powee l
As to the principle of regimentation involved Coordination of transportation.
in the A.A.A. program, I, for one, oppose it Reg11lat1011 of Cammumcatmna
whole-heartedly. I believe it to be contrary to Undenvnnnns fm?rtgagcS' . . .
· . . . . Loamng of b1ll1ons to 1nd1v1duals and
the spirit of America and fraught with grave Cor (nations
dangers to our political and economic structure. Clzmetruetieh ef public w0rkg_ _
In fact, through nearly all the New Deal legis- Building towns.
lation there ru s h°l h — I . .
· H fl new P. 1 fsop Y nBW° The Federal government has, besides this,
should say, 1n American public l1fe, but very old _ . .
. . . . . deliberately clubbed a number of key industries
1n Europe. It 1S the pol1t1cal philosophy of .
· . . by threats (against the bankers), attempts at
central1zat1on. It rests on the assumption that , . . .
. . . destruction (the ut1l1t1es) , and actual confisca-
It IS not only the r1ght but the duty of the · e, . . . . h
. t1on (the airmail contracts). In add1t1on t e
Central Government to exercise powers over the » . 1 d
Whole industrial financial and a tic It 1 Hf · Executive branch of the government, as a rea y
f th t ° I d 1 g u uri, ,6 i described, has exercised the powers to make
011 dc calm rye n mo Ban anguggc t E 1S   laws (through the N.R.A. decrees) and to alter
fa C afilagme economy nmorc Ouest ays taxes (tariffs and the processing tax). It has
It ¥aS ca 8 faut0cr;?y°_ drawn up and forced the passage (often largely
` _ _ 0 most 0 Yau t IS IS not nCwS’ and to Some unread) of important pieces of legislation. It
it 1S not true. am one of those who felt that has used, to e degree heretofore unknown? el]
10 °

 . · . ‘ he
. . . . ‘ l f funds no President of t
the pol1t1cal weapons 1n the hands of the Presi- bllbene of rc le .° d d h et ewers
· United States has ever w1el e suc va p ·
dency to extract obedience from Congress.
Finally, when the Supreme Court declared part
of one of the most useful of the newly expanded I KNOW` that many people honestly bel1eve
executive machines (the N.R.A.) unconstitu- that these new trends in government are te the
tional, the President made it plain that he best interests gf the country. Of these, m mY
favored a modification of the Constitution so as opinion, one of the clearest-minded and most (Ile"
te Pei`mii birn te wieiii bie new Peweis nn' interested is Professor Charles A. Beard. His
checked by the courts. He even went so far as study of the New Deal called ‘ The Future
to imply that he would welcome a campaign Comes” sets forth clearly the demand fortsub-
based on a iight (by him) against states’ rights. stituting a governmentally controlled national
When this proposition met with widespread planned economy for our old system. Of the
criticism he hastily beat a retreat. N.R.A. he writes that it:
We hee me e ieee We ence Mech e 1933   ··.ooogouo. the existence of these historical
—a long way en e eeeeee which wee never even mevemente toward group solidarity, 0P€1”·
hinted at during the campaign. To be strictly ates to accelerate the process, and by gov-
accurate, I should say that we have followed a ; ernment enC0l11‘¤g