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COMMONWEALTH FEDERATION OF NEW YORK, INCORPORATED 315 FOURTH AVENUE, NEW YORK, N. Y. R O O M 1711 TELEPHONE STUYVESANT 9-0516 IRVING B. A L T M A N , CHAIRMAN ESTHER SCHWARTZ, VICE-CHAIRMAN CURWEN STODDART, SECRETARY W I L L I A M H. SPENCER, TREASURER ADVANCEMENT COMMITTEE WM. J. F. HANNEMANN, CHAIRMAN HAROLD O'NEILL. SECRETARY MAURICE GANS M. S. SCHOENBAUM ALFRED M. BINGHAM JOSEPH SCHNEIDER CURWEN STODDART AFFILIATED WITH THE AMERICAN COMMONWEALTH FEDERATION NATIONAL OFFICERS REP. THOMAS R. AMLIE JOHN H. BOSCH PROF. PAUL DOUGLAS HOWARD Y. WILLIAMS ALFRED M. BINGHAM NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE PROF. HENRY PRATT FAIRCHILD LILLIAN HERSTEIN SENATOR ERNEST LUNDEEN FRANK ROSENBLUM REP. GEORGE J. SCHNEIDER JUDGE JOHN F. WIRDS ORGANIZATION 280 Broadway, New York City December 16, 1938 Hon. Marriner S. Eccles, Chairman Board of (Governors Federal Reserve System Washington, D, C. Dear Chairman Secies: We are enclosing a summary statement of an economic program recently adopted "by the Commonwealth Federation of Hew York, !Qie object is to obtain national action, and responsibility for organization has been placed with the •undersigned special committee* We should appreciate it very much if at your convenience we could present our ideas before your special Committee appointed by the President to consider financial means for the attairment and maintenance of economic recovery. We feel that the first requisite of the desired economic stability is continuity of full employment in useful production, and that this requires positive responsibility on the part of the federal government, with suitable physical and financial program. While we probably cannot add materially to the basic data which you have at your disposal, we feel that our interpretation and proposals would be significant for the formulation of an effective and sound national policy. Our ideas probably are close in line with your personal thinking, as we have interpreted it from time to time. At any rate, we should appreciate very much an opportunity to discuss with your Committee or yourself both the physical and financial phases of our proposals. Very sincerely yours, o Please reply to:"Organization Committee11 Room 620, 280 Broadway, New York City COMMITTEE John Bauer, Chairman Wn# J.F. Hannemann Maurice } THE oCOMMONWEALTH FEDERATION ECONOMIC PROGRAM and PLAN OF ACTION 1. ECONOMIC CONDITIONS AND NEEDS The welfare of the American people depends on the natural resources, farms, industries, financial institutions, and the government of the United States. When these are functioning harmoniously, they provide for a high standard of living. When they are in disharmony, economic activity collapses, and the masses of people are subjected to the ravages of unemployment, poverty and demoralization. Economic harmony means continuity of full employment and maximum production according to the technological capacity of the country. Planning and coordination are necessary to meet the needs and provide for the welfare of the masses of people. Such harmony cannot be achieved and maintained under prevailing private enterprise, because this cannot assume the necessary responsibility toward the welfare of the country as a whole; consequently the existing private economy is extremely unstable and inadequate, as tragically demonstrated by the past ten years of depression. By itself, it cannot maintain full employment, and cannot provide adequacy, abundance and continuity of production. The federal government is the only agency which, acting in cooperation with the states, local governments, private industry and labor, can attain and preserve the needed harmony. It represents all economic groups of the country on a democratic basis and has the central power of planning and coordination. For the purpose of placing responsibility definitely upon the government for the maintenance of economic stability and progress, the Commonwealth Federation submits an immediate two-phase program to be established through national legislation. 2. THE IMMEDIATE ECONOMIC PROpRAM The first and direct phase applies to the federal government itself. This should assure jobs to everybody through useful public developments and activities carried out by a suitable planning and administrative agency. Such governmental employment should be extended promptly on an adequate scale to bring everybody capable of work back into useful production, and subsequently should be systematically coordinated with private business so as to maintain constantly full employment and production. The kinds of developments and activities would consist primarily of economic fields which are important to national welfare, but are not being adequately taken care of by private enterprise, and do not fit the normal pattern of private economy. The most important of these is housing. Other important fields are flood control, highway development, reforestation, soil conservation, health, educational and recreational facilities, scientific research, and like enterprises contributing to tho welfare of the country at large. The second phase consists of governmental efforts to bring about and maintain maximum balanced production and employment of private business. Every industry should produce constantly as much as possible according to mass needs and welfare. To this end, government should establish close cooperation with all private industries, develop standards of interindustrial coordination and democratic planning, and furnish such financial assistance as may be justified for stimulation of maximum production for national welfare. The two phases of governmental effort to bring about promptly a national economy of balanced abundance are represented by two bills sponsored by the Commonwealth Federaton and offered for consideration by Congress. The first is "The National Development Authority Act," which provides for governmental projects and activities as the direct means of assuring constantly full employment and production. The second is "The Industrial Expansion Act," which seeks maximum balanced production by private business through democratic coordination and an assured market. The two are directed to the same objective of maintaining constancy of full employment and maximum production obtainable through the country's natural, technological and human resources, Digitized for the welfare of the masses of people. for FRASER 3. ORGANIZATION AND ACTIVITIES TO ATTAIN THE PROGRAM The sponsorship of these bills will include appropriate and vigorous efforts to bring about their enactment by Congress. To this end the Federation will exert its energies and will stress particularly the following special activities: • Conduct an educational and publicity campaign regarding the program through newspapers, periodicals, radios and public meetings. Organize membership groups in the various cities for local sponsorship of the program. Induce joint sponsorship by all other groups interested in the same purposes. Focus public attention upon the bills before Congress, and induce members to support the measures. 4. MEMBERSHIPS AND FEES To pay the expense of the campaign for the attainment of the program requires substantial funds. These are derived through membership fees and contributions. Membership fees are $1.00 a year for associate members, and $3.00 for regular members. The contributions come from sustaining memberships, based upon the ability and interest of the individuals or groups. • • Because of the vital national importance of meeting promptly the terrible unemployment situation, and then maintaining constantly full employment and (maximum production, extraordinary efforts and united support of mass membership are required. Everybody should join and contribute as liberally as he can to the funds needed for successful attainment of the program. All funds are fully safeguarded for their purposes, and there is complete accounting to the membership. THE COMMONWEALTH FEDERATION Fill out following blank and mail to: COMMONWEALTH FEDERATION OF NEW YORE Room 1711 315 FOURTH AVENUE NEW YORK CITY Telephone STuyvesant 9-0516 Date. I hereby apply for membership in the Commonwealth Federation, and pledge myself to give of my time, energy and resources, so far as I am able, to promote its economic program and plan of action. Signed. Q ASSOCIATE ($1 per year) [j REGULAR ($3 or more per year) (Check membership desired) (Dues are payable quarterly or annually in advance. First payment must accompany this application.) Name Address 5M: 12-6-38 O December 25, Hr, John Bailor* Chairman Organization Cosraittee Cozraionwealth Federation of Sev? York, I n c . Room 620 230 Broadway Hew York, Hew York Dear Mr* Bauer: This will acknowledge your letter of December 16 enclosing the printed outline of the Economic Program and Plan of Action of the Commonwealth Federation, In your letter you request an opportunity to present the ideas of your organization before the Fiscal and Honetary Advisory Board, of which I as a meiaber. However, since the Secretary of the Treasury i i chainaan of the Board, f it is suggested that you address your request to him. I took occasion to read through your outline and found much therein with i-hich I can agree. Your organisation ie to be complimented on its intelligent attitude toward the responsibilities of the federal government respecting econcaic stability. lours sincerely, it. S. Eccles Chairman