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Return to the Method of FDR and
Harry Hopkins To Create Jobs

July 7, 2009 (EIRNS)—The President of the International Association of Machinists (IAM), R. Thomas Buffenbarger, has issued a public, three-page letter to President Obama today, calling on the Administration to recognize the failure of their policies and return to the proven policies of Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Hopkins to put millions of people to work immediately and rebuild American manufacturing capacity.

Buffenbarger quotes Department of Labor figures which show that 30.2 million Americans are unemployed or underemployed, and that all sectors of economic employment are collapsing. "It holds both peril and opportunity," he writes, "for the political party that first recognizes this isn't your father's recession—or your grandfather's depression, for that matter [referring to the delusion of some Democrats—ed.]." He adds:

To those who see green shoots, I urge them to look closer. They may notice how the soil seems to be drying out and cracking across the entire corn field. No one should expect the crop to be knee high by the Fourth of July—this year or next.

He calls for a second stimulus package, noting that the first was a failure. However, he adds that it must first be acknowledged that

For much of the last decade, our banks and investment firms printed commercial paper, stamped it 'Made in America,' and lived off the commissions and interest generated by those now-toxic assets. We cannot go down that path again....

I would recommend that we employ a Works Progress Administration approach. Harry Hopkins proved that the Roosevelt Administration could put 3.4 million Americans to work in one year—1935—in thousands of projects that had a lasting impact on our national life.... President Roosevelt's basic strategy can be re-engineered for the modern manufacturing sector. Today's unemployed can be put to work renovating factories and installing new equipment

as well as other public works projects.

Buffenbarger also calls for a 10% investment-tax credit for new equipment, so that "businesses could retool their factories."

He concludes:

I urge you to make JOBS Now! the highest priority of your Administration. And I pledge to you an unprecedented level of political activity by the Machinists Union in support of such an initiative.