Full Employment

From Planet Earth Demands (unpublished ms.) regarding a proposal for full employment:

While there will always be periodic changes in business activity, it may be maintained at levels that are at all times satisfactory. While some may still dislike their jobs, it is possible, in view of our many urgent options, to offer a choice of several jobs to any applicant. The Kennedy Administration planned a supersurvey that would list resources, manpower and potentials and thus put the entire nation to work based, less on workers’ previous experience, rather on being taught and trained at work in the new procedures of coming decades.

A slam-bang meeting, a talkaton of all the groups working on various parts of this jigsaw puzzle was planned when tragedy struck. [the assassination of Kennedy] These workers, who had toiled with financial nightmares in many corners of the world, scattered. The effort collapsed.

These repeated efforts to bring sense and reason into the chaos of our economy has been followed by keen observers abroad, not the least because the whole world’s economy and happiness is so closely related to America’s. Sir William Beveridge, one of England’s clearest and most dedicated thinkers, said on various occasions, “If the United States, possibly the only nation able to achieve full employment here and now — would actually accomplish this, she would thereby do more good than by all her aid and all her wars — not only for herself but for all of us.”

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Filed under 1975-1980, Shamcher

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