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To induce other industries and unions to adopt

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Unformatted text preview: policies. The facts of the matter are that there is no justification for an increase in the steel prices. The recent settlement between the industry and the union, which does not even take place until July 1st, was widely acknowledged to be non-inflationary, and the whole purpose and effect of this Administration’s role, which both parties understood, was to achieve an agreement which would make unnecessary any increase in prices. Steel output per man is rising so fast that labor costs per ton of steel can actually be expected to decline in the next twelve months. And in fact, the Acting Commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics informed me this morning that, and I quote: “Employment costs per unit of steel output in 1961 were essentially the same as they were in 1958.” The cost of the major raw materials, steel scrap and coal, has also been declining, and for an industry which has been generally operating at less than twothirds of capacity, its profit rate has been normal and can be expected to rise sharply this year in view of the reduction in idle capacity. Their lot has been easier than that of a hundred thousand steel workers thrown out of work in the last three years. The industry’s cash dividends have exceeded 600 million dollars in each of the last five years, and earnings in the first quarter of this year were estimated in the February 28th Wall Street Journal to be among the highest in history. In short, at a time when they could be exploring how more efficiency and better prices could be obtained, reducing prices in this industry in recognition of lower costs, their unusually good labor contract, their foreign competition and their increase in production and profits which are coming © 2012 The College Board. Visit the College Board on the Web: www.collegeboard.org. GO ON TO THE NEXT PAGE. -10- 2012 AP® ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND COMPOSITION FREE-RESPONSE QUESTIONS 85 90 95 this year, a few gigantic corporations have decided to increase prices in ruthless disregard of their public responsibilities. The Steel Workers Union can be proud that it abided by its responsibilities in this agreement, and this government also has responsibilities, which we intend to meet. The Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission are examining the significance of this action in a free, competitive economy. The Department of Defense and other agencies are reviewing its impact on their policies of procurement, and I am informed that steps are underway by those Members of the Congress who plan appropriate inquiries into how these price 100 105 110 decisions are so quickly made, and reached, and what legislative safeguards may be needed to protect the public interest. Price and wage decisions in this country, except for very limited restrictions in the case of monopolies and national emergency strikes, are and ought to be freely and privately made, but the American people have a right to expect in return for that freedom, a higher sense of business responsibility for the welfare of their country than has been shown in the last two days. Some time ago I asked each American to consider what he would do for his country and I asked the steel companies. In the last 24 hours we had their answer. * Robert S. McNamara, secretary of defense from 1961 to 1968 © 2012 The College Board. Visit the College Board on the Web: www.collegeboard.org. GO ON TO THE NEXT PAGE. -11- 2012 AP® ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND COMPOSITION FREE-RESPONSE QUESTIONS Question 3 (Suggested time—40 minutes. This question counts for one-third of the total essay section score.) Consider the distinct perspectives expressed in the following statements. If you develop the absolute sense of certainty that powerful beliefs provide, then you can get yourself to accomplish virtually anything, including those things that other people are certain are impossible. William Lyon Phelps, American educator, journalist, and professor (1865–1943) I think we ought always to entertain our opinions with some measure of doubt. I shouldn’t wish people dogmatically to believe any philosophy, not even mine. Bertrand Russell, British author, mathematician, and philosopher (1872–1970) In a well-organized essay, take a position on the relationship between certainty and doubt. Support your argument with appropriate evidence and examples. STOP END OF EXAM © 2012 The College Board. Visit the College Board on the Web: www.collegeboard.org. -12-...
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