“The Economic Bill of Rights” as defined by FDR
FDR’s strategy for winning lasting peace with World leading American living standard included the right to a good job, food and clothing, decent living, freedom from monopolies, a decent home, medical care to enjoy good health, protection from fears of old age, and a good education.
No faction of our people can be ill-fed, ill-clothed, ill-housed, and insecure.
This Republic grew under the protection of certain inalienable political rights—The right of free speech, free press, free worship, trial by jury, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures. They were our rights to life and liberty.
These political rights proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness. But true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. People who are hungry and out of a job are the stuff of which dictatorships are made. A second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all—regardless of station, race, or creed.
Among these are:
The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation;
The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;
The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living;
The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad;
The right of every family to a decent home;
The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;
The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment;
The right to a good education.
All of these rights spell security. And after this war is won we must be prepared to move forward, in the implementation of these rights, to new goals of human happiness and well-being.
America’s own rightful place in the world depends in large part upon how fully these and similar rights have been carried into practice for all our citizens.
For unless there is security here at home there cannot be lasting peace in the world.