The Menace of Overproduction: Its Cause, Extent, and Cure

The Menace of Overproduction: Its Cause, Extent, and Cure

The Menace of Overproduction: Its Cause, Extent, and Cure

The Menace of Overproduction: Its Cause, Extent, and Cure

Excerpt

The Machine Age has presented us with a great variety of new products fabricated with an unheard-of ingenuity and efficiency. But it has also deposited on our doorsteps certain grave problems of adjustment to these billion odd horses of mechanical energy now running in tangents more or less unchecked and untamed. Of all problems none are more immediately pressing than overproduction and its twin, unemployment. The two are inseparably linked. One demoralizes us with the burden of idle plant and capital, the other with idle men and women. This book is extraordinarily timely. It gives us first the facts as to the extent of overproduction-defined primarily as plant capacity in excess of market demands -- in many fields, competently summarized by experts. Secondly, it gives us many valuable hints and suggestions for constructive action. Symposiums are all too frequently unwieldy documents, but in approaching this particular menace of the Machine Age, a symposium, it seems to me, is an apt and logical vehicle. We receive not one student's view with its inevitable personal bias, but the composite view of many able specialists, each dealing with that aspect of industry which he knows as he knows his own profit and loss account. The result is unity in diversity. Each contributor has his own special problem but all unite in condemning the waste, loss, friction, and great financial burden of more machines, more capital equipment, than can be effectively utilized under present economic conditions. I never encountered a more unanimous chorus. The situation holds in fat years, as well as lean, and appears to be growing progressively worse With the advance of the technical arts. The . . .

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