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New Deal Descendant Dr. June Hopkins talks about Harry Hopkins' WPA, & the Need for a Job Guarantee

“The private sector will never be able to absorb every worker who wants a job, good times or bad times, it'll never happen. So my theory and the theory of my colleagues of the new deal descendants believe that the government has to be the employer of last resort and that's why the jobs programs are such an important part of Biden's administration.”

Welcome to the Harmony of Interest series where we explore ideas that positively shape our world.

Dr. June Hopkins is author of Harry Hopkins: Sudden Hero, Brash Reformer and received her PhD in American History from Georgetown University and is Professor Emerita at Georgia Southern University.

She is also the granddaughter of one of my heroes, Harry Hopkins, who was an architect of the New Deal, and Administrator of the Works Progress Administration that created millions of government jobs during the last great depression while building the nation’s infrastructure through public works.

In World War II, Harry Hopkins was Roosevelt's chief diplomatic advisor and liaison with Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin. He supervised the $50 billion Lend-Lease program of military aid to the Allies.

In this conversation, we discuss:

  • Dr. June Hopkins background;

  • Harry Hopkins early years growing up in Iowa and as a social worker in New York City;

  • Hopkins working with FDR and Secretary of Labor Francis Perkins on the Temporary Emergency Relief Administration (TERA);

  • Hopkins time as Administrator for the Works Progress Administration (WPA);

  • World War II and being FDR’s main advisor; and

  • The Descendants of the New Deal’s call to President Biden for a Government Guarantee Job’s Program

You can learn more about the New Deal and their work at:

Short #1

Short #2

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About Empathy Media Lab

Empathy Media Lab is produced by Evan Matthew Papp and we are a proud member of the Labor Radio Podcast Network. Support media, authors, artists, historians, and journalists, who are fighting to improve the prosperity of the working class.


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