Thursday, November 29, 2007

Whip Inflation Now

On October 8th, 1974, new President Gerald Ford addressed Congress and the American people. He delivered a speech about America's number one enemy. The Soviets or Communism? Nope, he went after inflation.

Wikipedia notes, "Whip Inflation Now (WIN) was an attempt to spur a grassroots movement to combat inflation, by encouraging personal savings and disciplined spending habits in combination with public measures, urged by U.S. President Gerald Ford. People who supported the mandatory and voluntary measures were encouraged to wear 'WIN' buttons, perhaps in hope of evoking in peacetime the kind of solidarity and voluntarism symbolized by the V-campaign during World War II."

The campaign did not work as President Ford had hoped. Inflation remained a threat to the economy well into the Reagan Presidency. However, the pins were widely mocked and it gave Ford's opponents an easy target for criticism.

Here is part of the Whip Inflation Now speech:

My conclusions are very simply stated. There is only one point on which all advisers have agreed: We must whip inflation right now.

None of the remedies proposed, great or small, compulsory or voluntary, stands a chance unless they are combined in a considered package, in a concerted effort, in a grand design.

I have reviewed the past and the present efforts of our Federal Government to help the economy. They are simply not good enough, nor sufficiently broad, nor do they pack the punch that will turn America's economy on.

A stable American economy cannot be sustained if the world's economy is in chaos. International cooperation is absolutely essential and vital. But while we seek agreements with other nations, let us put our own economic house in order. Today, I have identified 10 areas for our joint action, the executive and the legislative branches of our Government.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have a red pencil box.