Three years after the end of the second world war, the drums are beating for a third. Civil
liberties are being destroyed. Millions cry out for relief from unbearably high prices. The
American way of life is in danger.
The root cause of this crisis is Big Business control of our economy and government.
With toil and enterprise the American people have created from their rich resources the world's
greatest productive machine. This machine no longer belongs to the people. Its ownership is
concentrated in the hands of a few and its product used for their enrichment.
Never before have so few owned so much at the expense of so many.
Ten years ago Franklin Delano Roosevelt warned: "The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the
people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their
democratic state. That, in its essence, is fascism."
Today that private power has constituted itself an invisible government which pulls the strings of
its puppet Republican and Democratic parties. Two sets of candidates compete for votes
under the outworn emblems of the old parties. But both represent a single program—a
program of monopoly profits through war preparations, lower living standards, and
suppression of dissent.
For generations the common man of America has resisted this concentration of economic and
political power in the hands of a few. The great¬est of America's political leaders have led the
people into battle against the money power, the railroads, the trusts, the economic royalists.
We of the Progressive Party are the present-day descendants of these people's movements
and fighting leaders. We are the political heirs of Jefferson, Jackson and Lincoln — of
Frederick Douglass, Altgeld and Debs—of "Fighting Bob" LaFolIette, George Norris, and
Throughout our history new parties have arisen when the old parties have betrayed the people.
As Jefferson headed a new party to defeat the reactionaries of his day, and as Lincoln led a
new party to victory over the slave-owners, so today the people, inspired and led by Henry
Wallace, have created a new party to secure peace, freedom, and abundance.