Calvin Coolidge Says, February 26, 1931

Date: February 26, 1931

Location: Northampton, MA

(Original document available here)

The coming season will test the ability and the disposition of agriculture to co-operate with the Farm Board. As a temporary expedient the board stepped in under the law which seemed to justify it and supported the price of wheat and cotton produced last year. Probably it prevented a real panic in wheat. But members of the board have constantly made it plain that they do not propose to continue a policy which is dangerous and unsound and, in the end, bound to fail.

Beginning months ago both the Secretary of Agriculture and the board gave constant warning that the sound solution of the surplus problem lay with the farmers themselves. Unless they solve it no one can provide a permanent solution for them.

The results of government action have emphasized that the only way to deal effectively and permanently with a surplus under present world conditions is to reduce acreage. The planting time is beginning. The farmer will have to decide whether he wants ten acres of production costing at the rate of $10 and selling at the rate of $15, or whether he wants twenty acres costing $20 and selling for $18. No government can make an oversupply profitable.

Citation: Calvin Coolidge Says: Dispatches Written by Former-President Coolidge and Syndicated to Newspapers in 1930-1931 (Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation)

The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Pamela Mett who prepared this document for digital publication.

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