Sunday, October 3, 2010

Herbert Hoover Started the New Deal...and a Political Trend....

Beware “Moderate” Republicans Bearing Gifts

Herbert Hoover (pictured above) was the first “Progressive” American President. His progressive mantra was, “Every problem has a scientific solution, best implemented by a competent and benevolent government”.

That mantra is completely antithetical to the mantra of America's Founders, "He governs BEST who governs LEAST".

In fact, Herbert Hoover, like Jimmy Carter, was a hapless egghead who handicapped whatever great intelligence he may have had with a stultifying lack of common sense, each delivering Keynesian inspired economic disasters of mammoth proportions.

Much like today’s “progressives”, Hoover canceled private oil leases, began the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC) and signed onto the Federal Home Loan bank Act. His one major voluntary initiative, the National Credit Corporation (NCC) was quickly replaced by the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC).

Ironically enough, it was Hoover who signed the Glass-Steagall Act into law, as well as the ill-fated (but loved by protectionist liberals) the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act AND he actually RAISED the top personal income tax rate from 25 to 63 percent!

Even the ardent New Dealer Rexford Tugwell later remarked that although no one would say so it at the time, "practically the whole New Deal was extrapolated from programs that Hoover started."

Andrew J. Dunar, who teaches history at the University of Alabama in Huntsville adds, “The Bureau of Reclamation began planning in the 1920s for major dams, and supervised their construction in the 1930s. President Hoover's Reconstruction Finance Corporation remained a vehicle for financing projects under the Roosevelt administration.”

Professor Dunar added, “Historians now acknowledge (Hoover’s) progressive inclinations, and his commitment to counter-cyclical planning and the belief that the nation ought to have a reservoir of big projects in the planning stages that could be executed when the time was right. Programs begun during the Hoover years, such as the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, were forerunners of the New Deal."

Look at some of the “other hallmarks” of Hoover’s progressive administration; his wife, Lou Henry Hoover, unlike previous first ladies, came to the White House, having already carved out a reputation of her own, having graduated from Stanford as the only woman in her class with a degree in geology. “Although she had never practiced her profession formally, she remained very much a new woman of the post-World War I era: intelligent, robust, and possessed of a sense of female possibilities,”...WoW! That’s just great.

Hoover’s Vice President Charles Curtis was the nation's first Native American (from the Kaw tribe in Kansas) Vice President. Sadly, all Charles Curtis was “famous for” was being the 1st Native American VP. Unfortunately the times required far more than a mere “First”.

Hoover publicly supported Prohibition (the Volstead Act), calling it an “experiment noble in purpose” and in 1928, when he ran against the only slightly more Libertarian Al Smith (who opposed it) he did so by labeling Smith as an “anti-Prohibitionist drunkard” and a “Papist”, to cash in on the widespread anti-Catholic sentiments across much of America at the time.

The most dangerous political transformation was the Democrats’ embracing the fascism of the European “Christian Democrats” (the “Social Democrats” of an earlier age) and signing onto the post WW II fascist strategy of de-emphasizing ethnicity, while pushing for consolidating more and more power in a central authority (the federal government here in the U.S.) in the guise of “advancing aid to the poor, improving overall health (via smoking and trans fat bans, etc.) and the environment”.

Hoover was a prototypical “Country Club Republican, a man who’d fit in perfectly with the so-called “Moderate-wing” of the GOP today. He was an ardent Keynesian and an advocate of big government “Corporatism” – a partnership between business and government.

The Hoover-FDR (GOP Keynesian to Democratic Keynesian) trend has been often repeated since that time, with the predictable disastrous results.

In 1976 Jimmy Carter (D) followed Republican Richard (“We are ALL Keynesians now”) Nixon and both inflation and unemployment kept on rising, along with interest rates! By the end of Jimmy Carter’s star-crossed one term, the Misery Index (the inflation and unemployment rates added together) was at a post Great Depression high of 22 points and the prime lending rate stood at 23%!

The dreaded term “Stagflation” (double digit inflation, unemployment and interest rates) had crept into the American psyche.

As a result, Ronald Reagan inherited the REAL “worst U.S. economy since the Great Depression”).

Today, in the wake of G W Bush’s six-year Keynesian spending orgy, Barack Obama has found the solution to Keynesianism...MORE Keynesianism! Very much like the old Saturday Night Live skit with Christopher Walken (“More Cow Bell”)...only a LOT less funny.


Skunkfeathers said...

Keynesian economic philosophy needs to go the way of much of the Democrat Party in 2010: into the trash heap. Both are consistently proven failures. Both are laden with consistently proven "unintended consequences" of the negative kind.

But any Republicans elected, need to remember well that the keynesian inclinations of Hoover and Nixon will lead to their -- and our -- undoing, if they dally into the RINO realm of sucking up to a failed ideology and economic model.

JMK said...

You're right, as usual SF!

I just hope that the momentum that's projected in the Tea Paerty shift carries on well beyond this election. People HAVE TO stay involved and focused on what's going on.

I love how some folks still ask, "How could you vote for an O'Donnell (Delaware) and a Palladino (NY)?"

I always answer, "Their political inexperience is a PLUS to me, moreover, if they screw up, they'll be out in the next election cycle".

What I'm most concerned about today is the possibility of our repeating TWO of the Great Depression's biggest mistakes; Hoover raised the top tax rate from 25% to 65% AND signed onto the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act.

Today, this administration is looking to let the Bush tax cuts expire AND hike tariffs, especially those on China! If those two things go downm, the dreaded "double dip" could really be a Doussy!

Joe said...

I hope that most of the Republicans elected in November are of the "new breed," firm in their conservative convictions and determined to move us as far from Keynesianism as possible.

Skunkfeathers said...

The Republicans took power in '94 after putting up a very credible 'Contract with America'. Abandoning the contract is what cost them in '06 and '08.

The party hierarchy in '10 hasn't stood behind some of the Tea Party 'new' candidates; the Republican Party hierarchy stands to be relegated to the same trash heap, if they don't get their heads out of their elitist butts.

At the same time...the new blood better show morale fiber and ethical backbone once they get to DC; or our ability to get rid of Barry in '12 could be undermined.

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