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Huey P. Long, “Every male a King” and also “Share ours Wealth” (1934)

Huey P. Long, “Every man a King” and “Share ours Wealth” (1934)

Amid the economic indignities the the good Depression, Huey P. Long of Louisiana championed one aggressive regime of public spending and also wealth redistribution. Movie critics denounced Long, who served as both governor and a senator from Louisiana, as a corrupt demagogue, yet “the Kingfish” appealed to impoverished Louisianans and Americans wracked by joblessness and also resentful that American financial inequality. He was assassinated before he might mount his elevation bid for the White residence in 1936. In the adhering to extracts from 2 of his most famed speeches, lengthy outlines his politics program.

You are watching: Every man a king: the autobiography of huey p. long

“Every guy a King”

We have actually a marvelous love because that this government of ours; in fact, it is virtually a religion, and also it is well the it must be, since we have actually a splendid form of government and we have a splendid collection of laws. Us have whatever here that we need, other than that we have actually neglected the fundamentals upon which the American government was principally predicated.

How countless of you remember the an initial thing that the explanation of independence said? the said: “We host these truths to be self-evident, that there are certain inalienable rights for the people, and among them space life, liberty, and also the pursuit of happiness;” and it stated further, “We host the watch that all men are created equal.”

Now, what did they average by that? did they mean, my friends, to say that all guys are developed equal and also that that meant that any one man was born to inherit $10,000,000,000 and also that another child was to it is in born to inherit nothing?

Did that mean, my friends, the someone would come right into this world without having had actually an opportunity, that course, to have hit one lick of work, should be born with more than the and all of its children and also children’s children could ever before dispose of, yet that an additional one would need to be born into a life the starvation?

That was no the definition of the declaration of freedom when it said that all males are developed equal or “That we hold that all guys are developed equal.”

Nor was it the definition of the explanation of freedom when it claimed that they held that over there were details rights that were inalienable—the appropriate of life, liberty, and the quest of happiness.

Is that right of life, my friends, when the young children of this nation are gift reared into a ball which is much more owned by 12 men than that by 120,000,000 people?

Is that, mine friends, providing them a same shake that the dice or anything choose the inalienable appropriate of life, liberty, and also the pursuit of happiness, or anything the same, similar thing the fact that all people are produced equal; as soon as we have actually today in America thousands and also hundreds that thousands and millions of children on the verge of starvation in a land that is overflowing v too much to eat and also too much to wear?

I execute not think friend will complete that, and also I execute not think because that a moment that lock will compete it.

Now, mine friends, if friend were turn off on an island wherein there were 100 lunches, you could not allow one male eat increase the hundred lunches, or take it the hundred lunches and also not permit anybody else eat any kind of of them. If friend did, there would not it is in anything else because that the balance that the civilization to consume.

Now, we have actually organized a society, and we contact it “Share Our wealth Society,” a culture with the motto “Every guy a King.”

Every man a king, for this reason there would certainly be no such point as a guy or woman who did not have actually the necessities of life, who would no be dependent upon the whims and caprices and ipsi dixit the the financial barons for a living. What carry out we propose by this society? us propose to limit the wide range of huge men in the country. Over there is an typical of $15,000 in riches to every family members in America. The is right below today.

We perform not suggest to divide it increase equally. We execute not suggest a division of wealth, however we suggest to border poverty that we will allow to it is in inflicted upon any man’s family. We will not speak we are going to shot to guarantee any kind of equality, or $15,000 to a family. No; however we perform say the one third of the typical is low enough for any kind of one household to hold, the there need to be a guarantee of a household wealth of about $5,000; enough for a home, one automobile, a radio, and also the plain conveniences, and the possibility to educate your children; a fair share that the earnings of this land after that to that family so there will certainly be no such point as simply the pick to have actually those things, and so there will certainly be no such thing as a household living in poverty and distress.

We need to limit fortunes. Our present arrangement is that we will permit no one male to own much more that $50,000,000. We think that v that limit we will have the ability to carry out the balance the the program. It may be important that we limit it to much less than $50,000,000. It might be necessary, in functioning out the the plans the no man’s fortune would certainly be an ext than $10,000,000 or $15,000,000. Yet be that together it may, it will still be much more than any kind of one man, or any one man and also his children and also their children, will be able to spend in your lifetimes; and it is not necessary or reasonable to have actually wealth piled up past that allude where we cannot avoid poverty amongst the masses.

Those space the things we propose to do. “Every man a King.” Every guy to eat when there is something to eat; every to undertake something when there is something to wear. That makes us all a sovereign.

“Share our Wealth”

For two decades I have remained in the battle to carry out that, so lengthy as America has, or deserve to produce, an abundance of the points which do life comfortable and happy, that none have to own so lot of the things which that does no need and also cannot use regarding deprive the balance of the people of a reasonable relationship of the necessities and conveniences the life. The entirety line of mine political believed has always been the America must confront the time once the whole nation would shoulder the obligation which it fan to every child born ~ above earth—that is, a fair opportunity to life, liberty, and happiness.

n the floor of plenty there shall be comfort because that all. The arranged 600 households who regulate the wide range of America have been maybe to keep the 125,000,000 world in bondage due to the fact that they have actually never when known how to effectually win for their fair demands.

It is impossible for the United says to keep itself together a republic or as a democracy once 600 families own much more of this nation’s wealth—in fact, twice as much—as all the balance of the human being put together. Ninety-six percent that our people live below the poverty line, when 4 percent own 87 percent that the wealth. America have the right to have enough for every to live in comfort and also still permit millionaires come own much more than lock can ever spend and to have much more than lock can ever use; but America cannot enable the multimillionaires and also the billionaires, a mere handful of them, to own whatever unless we space willing come inflict starvation upon 125,000,000 people.

Here is the entirety sum and also substance of the share-our-wealth movement:

Every family members to it is in furnished through the federal government a house allowance, totally free of debt, of not much less than one-third the average family members wealth the the country, which means, in ~ the lowest, the every household shall have the reasonable comforts the life approximately a worth of native $5,000 come $6,000. No person to have actually a fortune of more than 100 come 300 times the average household fortune, which means that the border to fortunes is in between $1,500,000 and also $5,000,000, with annual capital raise taxes enforced on all over $1,000,000.The yearly revenue of every family members shall be not much less than one-third of the average family income, which method that, according to the approximates of the statisticians that the unified States federal government and wall surface Street, no family’s annual income would certainly be less than native $2,000 to $2,500. No yearly earnings shall be allowed to any type of person bigger than indigenous 100 come 300 times the dimension of the average household income, which means; that no person would be allowed to earn in any year much more than from $600,000 to $1,800,000, every to be topic to current income-tax laws.To limit or control the hrs of job-related to such an extent regarding prevent overproduction; the most modern and efficient machinery would certainly be encouraged, so the as lot would be produced as possible so regarding satisfy all needs of the people, but to also permit the maximum time come the workers for recreation, convenience, education, and also luxuries that life.An old-age pension come the persons of 60.To balance farming production v what have the right to be spend according to the laws of

God, which includes the preserving and storage that surplus products to be paid for and also held by the federal government for the emergencies when such are needed. …

To pay the veterans the our wars what we owe them and to care for your disabled.Education and also training because that all kids to be equal in chance in all schools, colleges, universities, and also other organizations for training in the professions and also vocations the life; to be regulated on the capacity of kids to learn, and not top top the ability of parental to pay the costs. Training for life’s occupational to it is in as much universal and also thorough for every walks in life as has been the maintain in the arts of killing.The raising of revenue and also taxes because that the support of this regime to come from the reduction of swollen fortunes native the top, and for the support of public functions to give employment at any time there may be any kind of slackening crucial in private enterprise.

I currently ask those who check out this one to help us at once in this work-related of giving life and happiness come our people — no a famine dole upon which someone might live in misery from week come week. Before this miserable device of wreckage has destroyed the life germ the respect and culture in ours American civilization let us conserve what was here, just by having actually none too poor and also none too rich. The concept of the Share our Wealth society is come have sufficient for all, but not to have one with so lot that much less than enough remains because that the balance of the people.

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Let everyone that feels he wishes to assist in our job-related start best out and go ahead. One man or mrs is as vital as any other. Take it up the fight! execute not wait for someone else to tell girlfriend what to do. There are no high lamp in this effort. We have actually no State managers and also no city managers. Everyone have the right to take increase the work, and as countless societies deserve to be organized as over there are civilization to organize them. One is the exact same as another. The reward and also compensation is the salvation of humanity. Are afraid no opposition. “He who fails in this fight falls in the radiance that the future!”

Yours sincerely,

Huey P. Long,

United says Senator, Washington, D.C.

Congressional Record, 74th Cong., first sess., Vol. 79, 8040-43; Huey Long, “Every man a King,” Radio attend to (February 23, 1934).>