The Future of Freedom Foundation posted online today my article on how the feds seized control of American agriculture in the late 1920s and early 1930s. This story is not conducive to trust in either politicians or intellectuals.
Here’s the wrapup of the piece:
Though much of the farm crisis of the early 1930s was the result of high taxes and government mismanagement of the currency, many agricultural economists and politicians insisted that the problem was in the inherent nature of the business and could be solved only by a government takeover of agriculture.
It is ironic that the college professors who made up Roosevelt’s Brain Trust were so ignorant or contemptuous of the failures of federal farm policy before Roosevelt took office in 1933. Instead, these geniuses were convinced that there was no problem that the Iron Fist could not solve.
Many of the architects of federal agricultural policy in the 1930s — a policy that continues to the present day — thought the Soviet economic system was superior to that of the United States. Rexford Tugwell, the assistant secretary of agriculture, praised the Soviet Union for its “operation of industry in the public interest rather than for profits.