In response to the letter, “Will we allow capitalism to work?”: There are several things I’d like to clarify. To begin, the post-World War I Depression happened due to two main reasons; one, many people lost their manufacturing jobs, as war goods were no longer needed, and two, there were 4,700,000 Americans who had just returned from the war and were in need of a job.
These two factors led to the post-World War I depression, not “Wilson’s hostility towards the U.S. Constitution.” The writer further criticizes Wilson for creating the federal income tax and The Federal Reserve. Well, what other way can America get her income? The days of import and export taxes are long dead, and being the world’s police isn’t a cheap occupation. Further, it was Lincoln, during the Civil War, who created the first income tax — not Wilson. He is right to dislike the Fed, as it gives billions to corrupt investment banks; money which would be better spent on education and infrastructure, but hindsight is 20-20.
Then the writer goes on to talk about how the Roaring 20s were brought about by good old laissez-faire capitalism. This is somewhat true, as the rise of consumerism and buying on easily-begotten credit did lead to a time of great economic growth, but this growth was temporary, as others have said, this conveniently fails to mention the little thing that happened after the Roaring 20s. You know the Great Depression? And who, pray tell, was in office at its beginning? Herbert Hoover, a hands-off capitalist. And who was in office at its end? Franklin Roosevelt, a economic liberal who ended the Depression in 1940.
Also, who was in office during the sub-prime housing crash? Bush, whose policy of anti-regulation led to economic ruin. Who was the last president to have a surplus under their administration? Bill Clinton. Need I say more?