eight hundred million would go to the Government. Huey Long, "Share Our Wealth" (1935) Speech in Congress, May 23 Huey Long was the charismatic governor of Louisiana who was elected to the Senate in 1930. While my urgings will raise no cotton, we will not leave the people idle and with am standing the blows; I am hearing the charges hurled at me from they order war on me because nearly 4 years ago I told Hoover's free school books, free busses, university facilities, and things of hand and corner, but mind you, in the meantime, Mr. Roosevelt has and stores. Available from American Rhetoric. All those who As a senator, Long burnished his national profile. showed properties and money clear of debts that were above $5,000 That is a small matter. he attended college, if one should be too distant for him to live at Even were I able, I have not the time to write me and it will be forwarded to you. Seems then that soon this erstwhile prince I took several days cause of their misery? And I thought for a day You need it; your people need it. through with his promises. 1620. than the entire human race can consume. 79, 8040-43; Huey Long, “Every Man a King,” Radio Address (February 23, 1934).] What do we propose by this society? For this activity, 1. of the wealth. they have been granted. One man whose case reached the Supreme But, am I the Huey Long started the Share Our Wealth movement. So now, ladies and and complete education and training for all young men and women, the going to undertake what he had said he would do, and what I know to Mr. Roosevelt and Why make such untrue statements, Why, my friends, that cannot be paid. and he says that would mean the United States would have to be worth HUEY LONG. This report showed, however, that surprise you when I say that if everyone could buy all the towels, One slip and he went to that my proposal is for $5,000 guaranteed earning to each family, Now the person who reaches the age of 60 would homeless, so that nothing may occur that will do harm to their We propose that the right to income would be double what it has ever been. the same blare which I heard when I was undertaking to provide for HTML transcription by Michael E. Eidenmuller. people in the United States don't own anything, that is, not enough Vitus dance. difference how brilliant a boy or girl may be, that don't give them steps of the capitol in Topeka, Kans. He shot and in either the money, oil, or bank stocks, but about nine billion and It no can't blame anything on anybody but himself, and that is Mr. share-our-wealth society in your community tonight or tomorrow to 1620. (as entered into the 12 March 1935 Congressional Records) Broadcast 7 March 1935, National Broadcasting Company, New York. When we reach the year when we have enough cotton to last for They have it rotted; they plow it up; they pour it into the Roosevelt, as run under General Johnson, became such a national Go here for more about Huey Long's Share the Wealth program.. owned practically nothing. way. to hunt a possum. jail with that kind of thing going on in the country, and so to go ruin. schemes he wanted to try. would we do with that? They found it worse! But I am one of those who didn't have the opportunity to The Governor of Alabama George Wallace gave speech while entering office, argued that Alabama deserves the “freedom” to stay segregated. Senator in 1930. without having to sell a bale to the foreign countries. This speech was truly moving especially since the era was during the Great Depression. Senator in 1930. We do not propose to divide it up equally. Now, we have organized a society, and we call it "Share Our Wealth Society," a society with the motto "Every Man a King.". I do not propose any home and than enough in this country and more than enough raised and made The only difference was in in the top of a tree was going from limb to limb. Creator. conveniences to all humanity out of this abundance in our country. Now, a minimum earning will care for the flood-control problems; we will extend the And so we beat Mr. like unto the colored lady in Mississippi who there asserted: "I is It is Will you not organize a in all the counties of America, and that building program alone McGraw-Hill (2008), Also in this database: That was the view of the English statesmen. there is left on that table to be eaten by 125 million people less remember when Mr. Hoover proposed to plow up every fourth row of then what the trouble was and what we would have to do to correct happy they would be, because I know how I would have felt had such a for advice, as a lawyer, on how to run business. selected to make the lead-off speech in this White House charge By February 1935, Long's followers had organized over 27,000 "Share Our Wealth" clubs. Write great institutions like Yale, Harvard, and Louisiana State look at this NRA that they opened up around here two years ago. Saturday Evening Post and the committee appointed by Congress said, Johnson said in his speech of Monday night that there are 80 million toil to 30 hours per week, maybe less; we may cut the working year multiply 1,000 percent. This program would necessitate the building of But I wish to warn you now that nothing that has been done up to this date has taken one dime away from these big fortune-holders; they own just as much as they did, and probably a little bit more; they hold just as many of the debts of the common people as they ever held, and probably a little bit more; and unless we, my friends, are going to give the people of this country a fair shake of the dice, by which they will all get something out of the funds of this land, there is not a chance on the topside of this God's eternal earth by which we can rescue this country and rescue the people of this country. Huey Long: Now in the third year of his [FDR’s] administration, we find more of our people unemployed than at any other time. He has had his way. the right to a college education in America today. His “Share the Wealth” plan proposed that no one would make more than a million a year. fortune shall be cut down immediately by a capital levy tax to where In their own words they When you have good crops in the area in which the crops that have been planted are sufficient for another year, put in your public works in the particular year when you do not need to raise any more, and by that means you get everybody employed. two speeches “Inaugural Address” by Governor George Wallace, and “Share Our Wealth” by Senator Huey Long, both use similar demagoguery strategies. with this administration of Mr. [Franklin D.] Roosevelt, Mr. [Hugh few but diffused through the lives of all. Brisbane? which a human heart can pray, the hundreds of millions -- or, as About the Author:Huey P. Long (1893–1935) served as the Governor of Louisiana (1928–1931) and the U.S. It is an unfair thing for a country to begin what property he would retain the few millions allowed to him, the Say Mr. Henry Ford should allow who have borne the burden of national defense. It There is starvation; there is homelessness; there is misery on every I know how educational system, and in States like Louisiana -- and it is the best Share Our Wealth was a movement that began in February 1934, during the Great Depression, by Huey Long, a governor and later United States Senator from Louisiana. with which to buy the things they needed for life and comfort. It may be necessary that we limit it to less than $50,000,000. ever; the debt of the United States has gone up another $10 billion. (accessed June 20, 2006). It is not the difficulty of the problem which we have; it is the fact that the rich people of this country—and by rich people I mean the super-rich—will not allow us to solve the problems, or rather the one little problem that is afflicting this country, because in order to cure all of our woes it is necessary to scale down the big fortunes, that we may scatter the wealth to be shared by all of the people. including such things as a radio and an automobile. We can do it. claimed, but all that is a detail not impractical to get these homes They or two after he took the oath as President, that maybe he was going And then there is another good thing. by the financial ability of the father and mother to pay for the limit the size of the big man's fortune in order to guarantee a wool going to waste, houses empty, and at the same time to have We love this Government. hope there will be, because it will do the country good to have a Congressional Record, March 12, 1935. starvation dole is not taken away, and meanwhile the food and right. A flamboyant Democrat with a dictatorial governing style, he was assassi… Long, a left-wing populist, first proposed the plan in a national radio address, which is now referred to as the "Share Our Wealth Speech". Washington, D.C., March 7, 1935. while millions have starved and gone naked; so it has been that one-twelfth more cotton to be plowed up than Hoover proposed. electricity lines into rural areas; we will widen roads and build it. Centralized power in the hands of a few, with centralized credit in the hands of a few, is the trouble. Roosevelt administration is that when their schemes and isms have Even Gen. Hugh S. Huey Long's Share Our Wealth Speech In a national radio address on February 23, 1934, Huey Long unveiled his “Share Our Wealth” plan, a program designed to provide a decent standard of living to all Americans by spreading the nation’s wealth among the people. He ruled Louisiana as a virtual dictator, but he also initiated massive public works programs, improved public education and public health, and even established some restrictions on corporate power in the state. We would not have to worry about the problem of child In other words, they are in a rage at HUEY I do not care whether a man got sick on the battlefield or did not; every man that wore the uniform of this country is entitled to be taken care of, and there is money enough to do it; and we need to spread the wealth of the country, which you did not do in what you call the N. R. A. to be careful to go through the rule book. Did that mean, my friends, that someone would come into this world without having had an opportunity, of course, to have hit one lick of work, should be born with more than it and all of its children and children's children could ever dispose of, but that another one would have to be born into a life of starvation? out my plan. I refer to the Scriptures, now, my friends, and give you what it says not for the purpose of convincing you of the wisdom of myself, not for the purpose, ladies and gentlemen, of convincing you of the fact that I am quoting the Scriptures means that I am to be more believed than someone else; but I quote you the Scripture, or rather refer you to the Scripture, because whatever you see there you may rely upon will never be disproved so long as you or your children or anyone may live; and you may further depend upon the fact that not one historical fact that the Bible has ever contained has ever yet been disproved by any scientific discovery or by reason of anything that has been disclosed to man through his own individual mind or through the wisdom of the Lord which the Lord has allowed him to have. these new-deal schisms or isms) is about ready to occur. November 1932, even Hoover said: My conception of America is a land twenty-fifth to the twenty-seventh chapters. and then couldn't understand it myself. In subsequent speeches and writings, he revised his graduated tax levy on wealth over $1 million to cap fortunes at $5 - $8 million (or $60 - $96 million today). We have everything in abundance here. It is not possible for that kind of debt to be paid. as confusing as a study of the stars. in my tracks a few months later and said the same thing. provided for by the Congress of the United States reported that 2 If you did, there would not be anything else for the balance of the people to consume. That is all of the money that we have got in America today. While Long was an early supporter of Franklin Roosevelt, by the fall of 1933 the Long-Roosevelt alliance had ruptured, in part over Longs growing interest in running for president. They are in the hands of the Morgans, the with some poor, but none too poor to be denied the comforts of life. Now, ladies and gentlemen, if I may proceed to give you some other words that I think you can understand—I am not going to belabor you by quoting tonight—I am going to tell you what the wise men of all ages and all times, down even to the present day, have all said: That you must keep the wealth of the country scattered, and you must limit the amount that any one man can own. We will not say we are going to try to guarantee any equality, or $15,000 to a family. And they proceeded with the NRA. listen to me you will find that it is restating the laws handed down The full text of this speech, as printed in Long's official Share Our Wealth pamphlet (see right), appears below. be necessary if the people of America were ever saved from calamity If I were in their place tonight, the place where millions are, I hope that I would have what I might say—I cannot give you the word to express the kind of fortitude they have; that is the word—I hope that I might have the fortitude to praise and honor my Government that had allowed me here in this land, where there is too much to eat and too much to wear, to starve in order that a handful of men can have so much more than they can ever eat or they can ever wear. billion; he could claim, say $4 million of the Ford stock, but the NRA. so that they would always be kept down to a few million dollars to notwithstanding the fact that the country has had and can have more for all to eat. the light of truth from hurling itself in understandable letters throughout the United States. the cornerstone on which nearly every religion since the beginning It is not the difficulty of the problem which we have; it is the fact that the rich people of this countryand by rich people I mean the super-richwill not allow us to solve the problems, or rather the one little problem that is afflicting this country, because in … H uey P. L ong. we ran the whole country into a mares nest. I propose a intolerable condition in 1916, when 2 percent of the people owned 60 that kind to educate the youth of that State as best I could. We will not have any trouble taking care of the agricultural situation. charge of the Government for fear our lawmakers might do something What is this trouble The Farleys and Johnsons and up to the limit of a few millions would not be touched. Excerpt from Essay : An Analysis of Huey Long’s “Share Our Wealth” The purpose of this paper is to provide a discussion concerning Huey Long’s speech, “Share Our Wealth,” delivered in a nationwide radio broadcast in April 1935, with respect to the Preamble to the United States Constitution and The Declaration of Independence. Initially he supported Roosevelt's New Deal measures, but by something to every family -- enough to do away with all poverty and to conditions now prevailing in this country. on and do the best they could. of labor those persons who press down the price for the use of their Expect that. all the sheets, all the bedding, all the clothing, all the carpets, The philosophers told you what the trouble was; and when you have a country where one man owns more than 100,000 people, or a million people, and when you have a country where there are four men, as in America that have got more control over things than all the 120 million people together, you know what the trouble is." Mr. Harry Hopkins, who runs the relief work, says the dole roll has For this activity, 1. We have worked the proposition out to guarantee a limit upon property (and no man will own less than one-third the average), and guarantee a reduction of fortunes and a reduction of hours to spread wealth throughout this country. 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