FDR warned about "economic royalists" (Ted Kaufman)

Over half of this column consists of a verbatim extract from FDR’s acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention in 1936, which was entitled “A Rendezvous with Destiny.”

According to Kaufman, the message remains as relevant today as it was then. Once again (or perhaps still), we face the challenge of new technology (different specifics of course) that have led to “giant steps forward for the economy” with “a number of ugly side effects.” And the only solution for the side effects is government action to offset the influence of what FDR called “economic royalists,” who had feathered their own nests by dint of “concentration of control.”

A closing thought: “The United States behind FDR’s leadership brought us back into economic balance. There is no reason through dedication and hard work we cannot do the same.”

The current situation seems very different from that in 1936. The US economy is currently booming, due in large part to concerted efforts to clip the wings of government bureaucrats (the true power brokers at this point), whereas in 1936 this country was mired in the Great Depression and pursuing government policies that would perpetuate the downturn until the outbreak of World Wat II.

Also, FDR and Trump have more in common than is commonly recognized, i.e., FDR was – like Trump today - a disruptor who zig-zagged on policy matters and kept everyone guessing as to what he would do next. New Deal or raw deal, Burton Folsom,
2009.

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