Wednesday, August 26, 2015

FDR, the minimum wage, and "calamity-howling" executives

(President Roosevelt and his son Elliot in France, 1931. Photo courtesy of the FDR Presidential Library and Museum.)
Discussing the soon-to-be minimum wage during a Fireside Chat on June 24, 1938, President Roosevelt told Americans: "Do not let any calamity-howling executive with an income of $1,000 a day, who has been turning his employees over to the Government relief rolls in order to preserve his company's undistributed reserves, tell you--using his stockholders' money to pay the postage for his personal opinions--that a wage of $11 a week is going to have a disastrous effect on all American industry."

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