A recent letter to the editor was off the mark in denigrating “Bidenomics,” Roosevelt’s New Deal and Johnson’s “Great Society” efforts (“Letter to the editor: ‘Bidenomics’ has learned nothing from past failures,” Oct. 11). All three initiatives involved investing in the American people or in the underpinnings of a robust economy.

The Great Depression saw the collapse of the banking system, nearly 25% unemployment and a 50% decrease in international trade. The federal government was compelled to employ Americans in programs like the Works Progress Administration that built roads and public buildings, and the Civilian Conservation Corps that developed natural resources on public lands. The creation of Social Security and unemployment insurance were part of Roosevelt’s New Deal.

The “Great Society” effort sought to improve lives of everyday Americans, one quarter of whom were living below the poverty line and others denied basic protections of their civil rights. Medicare and Medicaid, the food stamp program, federal investments in public education, Head Start, environmental and consumer safety regulations, and more interventions followed from “Great Society” efforts.

The Biden administration’s passage of the Chips and Science Act, the Inflation Reduction Act and the bipartisan Infrastructure Bill are all aimed at creating a more resilient economy for 21st-century challenges. Supply chains are being reestablished here, inflation has fallen dramatically, manufacturing is making a comeback and there’s no recession on the horizon. Record numbers of jobs are being created, and wages are increasing in many sectors.

Mary Ann Larson

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