The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, Digital Edition > My Day
My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK—Listening to Secretary of State John Foster Dulles the other night, I wonder if anyone was struck, as I was, by the fact that while he spoke of explaining how and why we sent arms to Pakistan, he never once mentioned Prime Minister Nehru by name. Considering the fact that he has invited the Prime Minister to our country it would have seemed natural to mention his name in the report. This is one of the little things, I think, that make us more trouble than we quite realize.

On Thursday and Friday of last week my cough finally caught up with me. I was miserable all day Thursday, and on Friday I was laid low for a day. By late afternoon I began to feel better, but I had to give up all my engagements for the day and I was very sorry to inconvenience so many people.

I was particularly sorry about my promise to speak at an Austrian meeting in the evening. I thought they really fared better without me, however, for Mrs. Joseph P. Lash went in my place and was able to make part of her speech in German—which I am sure gave them more pleasure than any speech I could possibly have made.

My day in bed brought me one bit of reading that was very stimulating and left me with a feeling that here was an idea really possessing possibilities of development.

If you have not read Peter F. Drucker's article, "America Becomes a 'Have-Not' Nation," be sure to do so. He suggests we do away with "foreign aid" and with "giveaways," and to base our whole foreign policy on our own self-interest, working out a permanent policy that will ensure us raw materials in the future because we will be helping nations who have the potential ability to grow. Not only will this help us but it will help all other developing countries who are constantly needing more raw materials.

He lays out a new economic policy for us and he gives as the basic aims of this economic policy the following:

"It will have to be a policy that will make it possible for us to increase exports fast enough to pay our international bills. The second aim must be an expansion of raw-material production throughout the world. The third goal for a permanent international economic policy must obviously be to harmonize our own self-interest with the aspirations and interests of the free world.

"Finally, such a policy must strengthen the free world socially and politically, that is, it must symbolize its beliefs and values, and must express the reality of responsible American leadership.

"There is one and only one policy that will answer all these requirements—that is for America to take the lead in promoting the rapid economic growth, and especially the rapid industrial growth of the raw-material-producing countries."

He makes one point that we so often overlook—the need for trained people in the countries themselves. And he says:

"Any policy which tries to supply money or facilities, without at the same time providing people in quantity, and in quality, must inevitably fail."

I hope I have whetted your curiosity and that you will read this article. It gave me much food for thought and I hope that some of our statesmen will give it their serious consideration in the next little while.


(Copyright, 1956, by United Feature Syndicate, Inc.)

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About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, March 27, 1956

Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
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Digital edition created by The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project The George Washington University 312 Academic Building 2100 Foxhall Road, NW Washington, DC 20007

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Digital edition published 2008, 2017 by
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MEP edition publlished on June 30, 2008.

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Transcription created from a photocopy of a UFS wire copy of a My Day column instance archived at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library.