Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.
NewsOpinionReaders Respond

Government can spur a slumping economy by rebuilding the nation's infrastructure

U.S. Department of the InteriorFranklin Delano Roosevelt

America is at its best when our guiding principles of free enterprise and giving people a helping hand work together. The free enterprise system created our national wealth and employment opportunities. However, free enterprise also eliminated 3 million American jobs in the 2000s while creating 2.4 million new jobs overseas. Meanwhile, Apple set new records for "legal" tax evasion.

The free enterprise system is focused on creating jobs for minimum wages, not necessarily in the U.S. That implies that the best opportunities for creating jobs are in the public sector. What can government do?

Well, the nation's infrastructure is in crisis, and we need action now to rebuild and maintain the nation's ports, roads, bridges, rail and air transport systems. Harold Ickes at the Interior Department could hardly spend a dime, like today's infrastructure managers, so President Franklin Roosevelt appointed Harry Hopkins, a social worker, to head CWA.

Within 10 days, he had put 800,000 people to work, 4 million in a few months. Less than 2 percent of the money spent during the entire program went to overhead, and there was never a whisper of scandal. We need similarly bold action today. Repairing a leaking roof is not a partisan issue.

James Lefter, Bel Air

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
U.S. Department of the InteriorFranklin Delano Roosevelt
  • Left wing ignores economic realities

    As I read the editorial, "Rejecting austerity" (May 9), I couldn't help but think of how well it echoes the left-wing agenda. I disagree with almost every point made, as it only showcases conservatives as the problem. It is all parties and the incessant games they play to keep...

  • Schaller fails to see danger of U.S. debt

    Columnist Thomas F. Schaller's analysis is incredibly myopic ("Avoiding Europe's austerity nightmare," April 18). To compare the economic condition of the U.S. to those of Greece or Spain at the beginning of the economic crisis is comparing apples and oranges.

  • The wealthy pay more than their fair share

    Your recent editorial on the elections in Europe states that you believe Americans are now ready to embrace tax increases rather than voting for "conservatives and further cuts to government spending" due to the "widening gulf between the haves and have-nots, the 1 percent and...

  • Europe's lesson for the GOP
    Europe's lesson for the GOP

    Our view: Voter revolt against austerity measures in France, Greece and elsewhere offer a warning to U.S. conservatives so determined to shield the rich from higher taxes

  • Baltimore County Council doesn't need another career politician
    Baltimore County Council doesn't need another career politician

    I was surprised by The Sun's endorsement of Wade Kach for Baltimore County Council ("Baltimore County endorsements," Oct. 27).

  • Why should we have to pay for others' irresponsibility?
    Why should we have to pay for others' irresponsibility?

    Your report on the need for Section 8 housing described a young woman who was 23 years old, with two children and a third on the way, but no mention of a job, husband or other means of support ("Thousands sign up as city's Section 8 wait list opens for first time in a decade,"...

Comments
Loading