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Radio Address to the Nation on the Observance of Labor Day

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  • hjr_phoenix
    September 1, 1984 My fellow Americans: This weekend marks the 90th observance of Labor Day, a well-deserved tribute to the working men and women whose dreams
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 2, 2002
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      September 1, 1984

      My fellow Americans:

      This weekend marks the 90th observance of Labor Day, a well-deserved
      tribute to the working men and women whose dreams and hard work
      helped build America into the greatest Nation in the world. We know
      that what is good for the American worker is good for America. And as
      we prepare for a new season of work, I believe there's good reason
      for giving a hopeful thumbs up.

      The outlook on Labor Day weekend 1984 is for a continuation of
      strong, steady economic growth, more jobs, and low inflation. We
      still have great challenges to meet, which I'll speak about in a
      moment. But we should also recognize the progress we've made
      together. It's an important source of confidence and inspiration for
      our future.

      In the last 19 months, the jobless rate has fallen farther and faster
      then any recovery in the last 30 years. We've seen the creation of 6
      \1/2\ million new jobs. The United States has created, on average,
      more jobs each month than all the Common Market countries combined in
      the last 10 years. The Europeans are calling our success the American
      miracle.

      A case in point is the automobile industry. Unemployment peaked at 28
      percent in 1980. By this July, auto industry unemployment was down to
      6.1 percent, and there were 153,000 more people at work in auto
      industry jobs than 4 years ago.

      A key reason the job growth has been so strong is our success in
      keeping inflation down. We haven't seen unemployment and inflation
      drop during any term since the Kennedy administration. And we're
      determined to bring inflation further down, just as we're determined
      to simplify our tax system so we can bring your tax rates further
      down, not up, as my opponent would do, harming the growth and
      progress we've made.

      With inflation and tax rates down, the American miracle can continue:
      interest rates can come down further; peoples' earnings can continue
      to buy more; investment and productivity can keep on growing; new
      businesses can develop new products and markets; more jobs can be
      created; and all Americans can share in a dynamic, exciting future.

      Our future can be one of boundless opportunity if we challenge the
      limits of growth through reforms like tax simplification and fight
      inflation by passing two long-overdue reforms: the balanced budget
      spending limitation amendment and the line-item veto.

      We must also meet the challenge of pushing back our newest frontiers
      of science, high technology, and space. It's been estimated that high
      technology industries create jobs eight times as fast as low
      technology industries. Just as important, the knowledge we gain from
      the technological revolution enables our older industries to
      modernize their plants and equipment, increase their ability to
      compete in the world, and maintain and expand their work force.

      Our citizens need training to step into these jobs, and that's why we
      initiated the Job Training Partnership Act. That act will train more
      than 1 million people a year to become productive, self-supporting
      citizens in the private economy.

      One sure way to spur jobs through new technology is by promoting more
      research. On Thursday morning I visited the employees of Goddard
      Space Flight Center and assured them our administration will continue
      its strong support for research and development, particularly in our
      universities. Between 1981 and '85, Federal investment in basic
      research will have increased by almost 30 percent in real terms. The
      importance of research work in universities reminds us that we must
      go forward with our agenda for excellence in education so today's
      students at the elementary and secondary school level can go on to
      college and acquire the knowledge to work in our rapidly changing
      world.

      At the same time, we must stimulate economic development in inner
      city areas that have not benefited from technological innovation or
      the economic expansion. We've proposed enterprise zones, offering
      strong incentives for people to start up new businesses in up to 75
      areas of high unemployment, and a youth employment opportunity wage
      to open up job opportunities and reduce the high levels of teenage
      unemployment, especially among black youth.

      Both enterprise zones and the youth employment opportunity wage would
      reduce dependency -- providing new hope for millions -- and they're
      supported by a broad coalition of minorities. But both have been
      blocked by the Democratic House leadership, the very people who
      profess compassion. Americans aspiring to lift themselves up should
      never be held down by partisan politics. We will keep our economy
      strong, and we will not rest until it can bring a job to the home of
      every American.

      Until next week, thanks for listening. God bless you.

      -The Great Ronald Reagan

      Note: The President spoke at 12:06 p.m. from the Oval Office at the
      White House.
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