Forbes, the New Deal and Jobs 5-14-12

The 2nd WW, the Crash, the New Deal and the recovery are incredibly complex historical and economic events that cannot be summarized, no less explained by trumpeting one philosophy over another with cavalier confidence. On one hand, right-wing revisionists have stated from Milton Friedman to Amity Schlaes, that with all the money thrown at the economy from the New Deal, the Depression was never really ended. And it took WWII to do the job.

Doesn’t that logic beg the issue? Who would have allowed $350 billion, which was borrowed and spent on the war to bring us out of the economic malaise brought on by the Crash? So spending actually ended the Depression! But, we needed a war to justify the means to the end. But, in fact the recovery was well on its way until late 1937 when those Federal Reserve, Dixiecrat conservative Democrats and Republicans pressured FDR to balance the budget. FDR, certainly wanted a balanced budget and talked about it from day one, and when he went in that direction, with the urging of Fed Chairman Morris Eccles, the bottom fell out of the economy, and we had the short but vicious Recession of 1937. By the way, it quickly ended, by loosening credit once again and priming the pump. More Keynesian economic philosophy at work!

Look at the size of the 1929 economic downturn and compare it with today. We are still reeling from the 2008 crash and it maybe years ahead before we return to the artificial heights brought on by the “Housing Bubble,” created, and delivered by cheap credit, phony oversight, and de-regulation by industry groups like FINRA that failed, and private sector ratings companies like; Moody’s, D & B, S & P and Weiss Reports who were either bribed or incompetent. The halcyon days of the Bull Market of 1929 were not reached until 1950, when the DJIA again reached the levels before the October Crash. Many on the right seem to have forgotten that the DJIA average has doubled in 3 years since the double bottom of the Dow from the lows in the 6000’s.

American big business and capitalism did the job of creating the “Arsenal of Democracy,” but with two essential components, the great leadership, foresight and brilliance of FDR and enough money and monopoly power thrown at under utilized capacity. Do not forget that in 1928, US Steel had 220, 000 employees and at the time of FDR’s inauguration in March of 1933, it had one.

As to who won WWII, the argument is moot; Russian blood and American production and know how. But, don’t short change the Russians on their production. Their tank and aircraft production was remarkable and their courage and sacrifice was great.

In spite of Forbes, Schlaes, Friedman, Rand along with other revisionists and proponents of de-regulators, the New Deal worked, the country survived, CCC built up our manpower along with its parks and forests and creation, and the WPA and PWA built the rest of the country. The infrastructure of this country was built by the New Deal and its legacy is irreversible. What we needed could have never been done with the “free market” alone. Today is a prime example of that reality. After decades of starving our infrastructure, only government with big dollars, fed into the private sector can rescue a rotting system.

The Intercontinental Railroad, the Civil War, the Interstate Highway, the Space Program, the New Deal, WWII and the Cold War put trillions of dollars back into American industry and created 10’s of millions of jobs. To deny that is to deny history. By the way, during the so-called wonderful Eisenhower Years we created only 3 million jobs in eight years and endured three recessions. That period was one of our worse job creation periods in the 20th century. Also, do not forget, from Truman on today, who created the most jobs.
Wall Street Journal
Jobs created:
GW Bush 3.0 million
Clinton 23.1
GHW Bush 2.5
Reagan 16.0
Carter 10.5
Ford 1.6
Nixon 9.4
LBJ 11.9
JFK 3.6
Eisenhower 3.5
Truman 8.4
For all you doubters, Democrats have created far more jobs than the GOP.
On a year by year basis- Clinton, Carter, Reagan, LBJ, Truman, Nixon and JFK lead Ford, Bush I and II and Eisenhower by a wide margin. In 28 years the Democrats created 57 million jobs to the GOP’s 36 million in 36 years. Those are the facts. Look it up from the WSJ.
Typical insincere title. That was not an attack on capitalism, but on Romney’ s sorry record regarding job creation and workers. He was constantly attacked by your favorites on the right-wing and now you are attacking the President on the same exact issues. That’s hypocrisy and a lack of real world thinking.

In truth, 200 of the 400 billionaires in America do not work, many are heirs and like Romney the bulk of their fortune’s are parked off shore in tax shelters like the Cayman Islands, Switzerland, Monaco and Luxemburg. Many, like Romney, are paying less than 15% federal taxes.

Of course, every suggestion of tax reform and regulation: the Volcker Rule, Dodd- Frank or even the Buffett tax is decried by the folks who benefit from de-regulation and low taxes. Few of these folks even pay the Reagan 28% bracket. We should go back to Clinton’s 39.5% on incomes above $250K, go back to inheritance taxes on the rich and the Buffett tax on the 1% earners. There are 375K American who make more than $1 million per year. As many of you may know, JP Morgan just lost $2 billion of their depositor’s money. Their CEO has been at the fore front of decrying and opposing regulation. Which way do you want it?

If there is such a deficit crises start there with more revenues on those who can afford to pay.. As for cuts, there are three sectors where the money is spent: the military, vets, homeland security and debt service in the discretionary budget. We can’t touch debt service so, there isn’t much wiggle room. The long-term entitlement budget obligations :SSI and Medicare will affect you if they are cut, but have little to do with current economic needs. Your choice. But the Medicare tax is only 1.45% and the SS pay roll tax is cut off at $106K in earnings. If you are concerned about more taxes on businesses, raise the pay roll tax only on the workers who will get the benefits in 40 years or less. Meanwhile you had better have an idea for the 100 million pre and post baby boomers. But let us face it, there are huge infrastructure needs, jobs for returning vets, and there is always budget creep. You don’t want federal workers to be paid a middle class wage or to have raises, well apply that to yourself and to your progeny.

All this talk about socialism and communism is bunk. Long term benefits exist in every Western country of the world and they are tweaked upward when needed. You may not like taxes, but a raise in the middle class federal withholding taxes is not being considered. Just remember we have an expensive country, a large world-wide volunteer military, and police, fire, sanitation on the local and state level. We also must maintain roads, harbors, airports, all sorts of aging infrastructure, national parks, clean water and clean air. Don’t depend on the private sector. They have no interest except the accumulation of wealth for succeeding generations.

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About admin

A lifelong New Yorker, who now lives full-time in Palm Beach County, Richard was raised in Mount Vernon, New York and he was educated in the Mount Vernon public schools He graduated from Boston University with a BA in American History. After spending a year on Wall Street as a research analyst with Bache & Co., he joined a manufacturing and importing firm, where over the next twenty-five years he rose to the position of chief operating officer. After the sale of that business, Richard entered into the financial services field with Metropolitan Life and is a Registered Representative, who has been associated with Acorn Financial Services which is affiliated with John Hancock Life Insurance Company of Boston, Ma. Today, he is a retired broker who had specialized in long-term care insurance and financial planning. One of Richard’s recent activities was to advise and encourage communities to seek ways to incorporate “sustainability and resiliency” into their future infrastructure planning. After a lifetime in politics, with many years working as a district leader, which involved party organizational work, campaign chair activity and numerous other political tasks, Richard has been involved with numerous civic and social causes. In recent years, Richard served in 2005 as the campaign coordinator of the Re-Elect Paul Feiner Campaign in Greenburgh, NY and he again chaired Supervisor Feiner’s successful landslide victory in 2007. Over the next few years, he advised a number of political candidates. He has served as an appointed Deputy Supervisor of the Town of Greenburgh, with responsibilities regarding the town’s “liaison program.” He was a member of the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board of the Town of Greenburgh, NY. Richard has lectured on FDR, The New Deal and 20th century American history in the Mount Vernon schools, at the Westchester Council of Social Studies annual conference in White Plains, and at many senior citizen groups, which include appearances at the Old Guard of White Plains, the Rotary Clubs of Elmsford and White Plains, and various synagogue groups around Westchester. In the winter of 2006 Richard was the leader of the VOCAL forum, sponsored by the Westchester County Office of Aging, which addresses the concerns of Westchester County’s Intergenerational Advocacy Educational Speak-out forums for senior citizens. Richard has given lectures for the Active Retirement Project, which is co-sponsored by the Jewish Community Center on the Hudson, the Greenburgh Hebrew Center, and other groups around Westchester County. Richard also is the founder and Chairperson of the Jon Breen Memorial Fund, that judges and grants annual prizes to students at Mount Vernon High School who submit essays on public policy themes. He also sponsors the Henry M. Littlefield History Prize for the leading MVHS history student. Richard serves on the Student College Scholarship Committee of Mount Vernon High School. In past years Richard chaired and moderated the Jon Breen Fund Award’s cablecast program with the Mayor and local and school officials. Richard has been a member of Blythedale Children’s Hospital’s Planned Giving Professional Advisory Board, and was a founding member of the committee to re-new the FDR Birthday Balls of the 1930’s and 1940’s with the March of Dimes’ effort to eliminate birth defects. Their renewal dinner was held at Hyde Park on January 30, 2003. Richard is currently an active contributor to the Roosevelt Institute, which is involved in many pursuits which included the opening of the Henry A. Wallace Center at Hyde Park, and the Eleanor Roosevelt – Val-Kill Foundation. In 2007, he proposed to the City of Mount Vernon an effort to develop an arts, educational, and cultural center as part of a downtown re-development effort. Richard was a team partner with the Infrastructure & Energy Solutions Group. IEFG which has developed innovative strategies for the 21st Century. Richard hosted a weekly program on WVOX-1460 AM radio, called “The Advocates,” which was concerned with “public policy” issues. The show, which was aired from 2007 until May 15, 2013, has had amongst its guests; Representative Charles Rangel, Chairperson of the House Ways and Means Committee, Mr. Jonathan Alter of Newsweek, along with hundreds of others. All the 300 shows are archived at Richard currently gives lectures on Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, FDR and the Jewish Community, The New Deal, FDR and Douglas MacArthur, 20th Century American Foreign Policy Resulting in Conflict, and Israel’s Right to Exist. Richard lives in Boynton Beach, Fl, with his wife Linda of 44 years. They have two married children. Their daughter Dana is a Rutgers College graduate, with a MS from Boston University, and is the Assistant Director of Recruitment at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Their son Jon is an electrical engineering graduate of Princeton University and a senior software architect at NY/Mellon Bank in NYC. Richard J. Garfunkel Recent Appearances: KTI Synagogue, Rye Brook, NY- Long Term Care & Estate Conservation- Anshe Shalom Synagogue, New Rochelle, NY- Long Term Care- American Legion Post, Valhalla, NY- Long Term Care and Asset Protection- Doyle Senior Ctr, New Rochelle, NY-Long Term Care and Asset Protection- AME Methodist Ministers, New Rochelle, NY, LTC and Charitable Giving- Profession Women in Construction, Elmsford, NY, LTC and Business Benefits- Kol Ami Synagogue- White Plains, NY, Long Term Care and Disability - Beth El Men's Club-New Rochelle, NY-Long Term Care-Is it Necessary- Greater NY Dental Meeting Javits Ctr, NY, NY- LTC and Disability- IBEW Local #3 , White Plains, NY, Long Term Care and Asset Protection, Health Fair -Bethel Synagogue, New Rochelle, NY-LTC and Disability, Heath Fair- Riverdale Mens Club CSAIR- Riverdale, NY- LTC- Life Weight Watchers of Westchester and the Bronx-LTC and Tax Implications Sunrise Assisted Living of Fleetwood, Mount Vernon, NY-LTC Sprain Brook Manor of Scarsdale-LTC- November 15, 2001 Sunrise Assisted Living of Stamford, Connecticut, February 2002 Kol Ami Synagogue, White Plains, NY, February, 2002 The Old Guard Society of White Plains, NY, April, 2002 The Westchester Meadows, Valhalla, NY August, 2002 Kol Ami Synagogue, White Plains, NY, October, 2002 JCC of Scarsdale, Scarsdale, NY, November, 2002 The Westchester Meadows, Valhalla, NY, January, 2003 The Rotary Club of White Plains, NY January, 2003 The Westchester Meadows, Valhalla, NY April, 2003 Westchester Reform Temple, Scarsdale, NY January, 2004 Mount Vernon High School, Mount Vernon, NY March 2004 Kol Ami/JCC of White Plains, NY November, 2004 The Westchester Reform Temple, Scarsdale, January 2005 The Sunrise of Fleetwood, Mount Vernon, April, 2005 The Woodlands of Ardsley, assisted living, November, 2005 The Woodlands of Ardsley, assisted living, December, 2005 The Woodlands of Ardsley, assisted living, January, 2005 Rotary Club of Elmsford, April, 2006 Kiwanis Club of Yonkers, June, 2006 Greenburgh Jewish Center, November, 2006 Temple Kol Ami, White Plains, February, 2007 Hebrew Institute, White Plains, March, 2007 Temple Kol Ami, White Plains, NY, April, 2007 Westchester Meadows. Valhalla, November, 2007 Hebrew Institute. White Plains, November, 2007 Art Zuckerman Radio Show- January, 2008 JCC of the Hudson, Tarrytown, February, 2008 Matt O’Shaughnessy Radio Show, March, 2008 WVOX –Election Night Coverage, November, 2008 WVOX – Inaugural Coverage, January 20, 2009 The Advocates-host of the WVOX Radio Show, 2007- 2010 Rotary Club of Pleasantville, February, 2009 Hebrew Institute of White Plains, May, 2009 JCC Hudson, Tarrytown, December, 2009-10-11-12 Brandeis Club, Yonkers, March 25, 2010

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