You know, the only trouble with capitalism
capitalists; the)"re too
- Herbert Hoover
When Herbert Hoover was inaugurated on March 4, 1929, wrote jour-
nalist Anne O'Hare McConnick, "[w]e were in a mood for magic
[T]he whole country was a vast, expectant gallery, its eyes focused on
Washington. We had summoned a great engineer 10 solve our problems
for us; now we sat back comfortably and confidently to watch the prob-
lems being solved. The modern technical mind was for the first time at
the head of a government.
... Almost with the air of giving genius its
chance, we waited for the performance to begin.'" The wait was not
long, as Hoover promptly summoned Congress into special session to
deal with the stubborn depression in agriculture.
Convening on April 15, the representatives quickly learned that the
new president would not tolerate any revival of McNary-Haugen pro-
posals for export subsidies. Instead, Hoover demanded "the creation of
a great instrumentality clothed with sufficient authority and resources to
... transfer the agricultur;I1 question from the field of politics into the
realm of economics."Z Awed by Hoover's aura of command, Congress
swiftly obliged. "The President is so immensely popular over the coun-
said one senator, "that the Republicans here are on their knees and
the Democrats have their hats off.
15 the president signed
Anne O'Hare McCormick, "A Year of the Hoovf>r Method," NI!II'
I, 1930, sec. 5,
Quoted in Harris Gaylord Warren,
Herbert Hoover and the Great
York: Oxford University Press, 1959), 169.
South Dakota Republican senator Peter Norbeck to C. J. Moen, April 20.
quoted in Jordan A. Schwarz.
The Interrl!gnum of Despair: Hoover, Congress, and the
(Urbana: University of lIIinois Press. 1970). 6.