Obama’s New “New Deal”: Planned Economy or Planned Destruction?

With Barack Obama and the U.S. Congress pushing their corporatist, new “New Deal”, could the following editorial cartoon once again be timely? Entitled “Planned Economy or Planned Destruction?” the cartoon first appeared during the Great Depression in the Chicago Tribune on April 21, 1934, and features New Deal economist Rexford G. Tugwell (Head, Resettlement Administration) riding a donkey pulling a wagon load of key members of FDR’s first “Brain Trust”, including Harold L. Ickes (Secretary of the Interior; Director, Public Works Administration), Henry A. Wallace (Secretary of Agriculture), Donald R. Richberg (Executive Director, National Recovery Administration), and assorted, foolhardy enthusiasts from Columbia and Harvard universities, indiscriminately shoveling out the cash and drunk on power. Looking on as the spectacle of the parade rolls by are the enthusiastically scheming Leon Trotsky and a patiently sober Joseph Stalin.

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David J. Theroux is Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Independent Institute.
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