- The Washington Times - Friday, July 3, 2009

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

During our last major financial crisis, in the 1930s, President Franklin D. Roosevelt pushed government-driven solutions - massive spending, economic protectionism, making gold the property of the U.S. Treasury, creating shovel-ready projects to get people to work, raising taxes and adding the Social Security income tax.

Roosevelt created Social Security and, in 1938, the Fannie Mae program. Those who defended Fannie from regulation, encouraged its semi-privatization and changed banking laws to assist it are the people responsible for our current crisis. Thanks to them, Supplemental Security Income, Medicare and Medicaid threaten America’s economic future.

After nearly two terms in office, Roosevelt watched as the U.S. economy hit a new low in 1938, during the depression within a depression. This was despite - or because of - what Roosevelt did. Not until World War II increased demand and left America as the world’s leading manufacturer did we come out of the Great Depression.

Given that we are still suffering from the impact of the New Deal’s experimental programs, why on Earth would anyone think that President Obama’s government motors, “buy America” stimulus measures, nationalized health care, massive tax increases and other programs will not haunt us half a century later. Perhaps Mr. Obama could first fix Roosevelt’s messes before he creates his own.

ED JOHNSON

Royal Oak, Mich.

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