Second Greatest Generation

by: Brooke Allen
brooke@brookeallen.com www.BrookeAllen.com

Paul Krugman wrote a piece in the New York Times in which he wonders if Congress will vote on a stimulus package to head off the Great Depression II.

Some believe that it was World War 2 that got us out of the depression because it was the greatest stimulus spending package of all.

I disagree. I believe it was my father’s generation, the Greatest Generation that fought the War and that got us out of the Great Depression.

People, not policies, got us out of our predicament.

The NY Times published my letter.

 

GreatestGeneration2

Recently, I reprinted the letter and illustrated it with stamps from my collection. The top contains U. S. stamps, and I notice they feature leaders and statesmen. The 3 cent stamp to the right commemorates the National Recovery Act of 1933, and it shows a woman, a businessman, a factory worker (with a hammer over his shoulder), and a farmer with a sickle, all walking side by side. There was no inflation during the depression (in fact, there was deflation.)

By way of contrast, Germany had rampant inflation. All the German stamps in my collection are un-cancelled. By the time a postage stamp made it to the post office it was worthless. The left-most stamp is for 10 marks, the rightmost 20 billion! Eventually it took a strong leader to get the economy under control… and we see who that was.

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Author: Brooke Allen

A social entrepreneur and retired Wall Street executive.

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