This video from 1933 on the solution to the Great Depression, namely inflation.
I love the condescending tone throughout the video - you're too stupid to understand, so let me speak freely. And the belief that economic activity is controllable through just a few movement of the levers by those in power is just laughable.
My only question - Does Paul Krugman believe this bullsh!t?
H/T to Russell Roberts @ Cafe Hayek who provides this description:
This video from 1933 touts the virtues of inflation for ending the Great Depression. How will that work? When people see prices rising, they'll buy now before the prices go up. That will stimulate aggregate demand and the multiplier will kick in. Really. That's the argument. Along with some bizarre arguments along the way about high prices leading to higher incomes. Watch the video. It's good for some laughs and illustrates how hard it is to keep multiples things in mind at the same time. Thanks to Walter Williams for the pointer.
And if only the screenwriter, producer, and narrator could see into the future, this film would've never been created. As Mark Steyn often points out, only in the US do people refer to this time period as the Great Depression; elsewhere it's simply the depression.
If only they knew that there were 8 more years of economic disaster followed by years of death in World War II.
This is the same logic that saw entire herds of livestock slaughtered by the Fedsand left to decay in their pens. The same logic that saw wheat fields burned to the ground.
This fireside chat by FDR in 1938 only proves the point:
Five years ago we faced a very serious problem of economic and social recovery. For four and a half years that recovery proceeded apace. It is only in the past seven months that it has received a visible setback.
And it is only within the past two months, as we have waited patiently to see whether the forces of business itself would counteract it, that it has become apparent that government itself can no longer safely fail to take aggressive government steps to meet it.
This recession has not returned to us (to) the disasters and suffering of the beginning of 1933. Your money in the bank is safe; farmers are no longer in deep distress and have greater purchasing power; dangers of security speculation have been minimized; national income is almost 50% higher than it was in 1932; and government has an established and accepted responsibility for relief.
But I know that many of you have lost your jobs or have seen your friends or members of your families lose their jobs, and I do not propose that the Government shall pretend not to see these things. I know that the effect of our present difficulties has been uneven; that they have affected some groups and some localities seriously but that they have been scarcely felt in others. But I conceive the first duty of government is to protect the economic welfare of all the people in all sections and in all groups. I said in my Message opening the last session of the Congress that if private enterprise did not provide jobs this spring, government would take up the slack -- that I would not let the people down. We have all learned the lesson that government cannot afford to wait until it has lost the power to act.
Our innate desire to "fix" our problems through government action will doom us.
ARC: St Wendeler