, ,

The attack on “economic royalists,” by Roosevelt and many others, did not go unanswered. In a staunchly antibusiness environment, a strategic defense of corporate capitalism was organized. From 1935 onward, American corporations, under the umbrella of the National Association of Manufacturers, launched a well-funded The American Way campaign that sought to create a mental association between democratic ideals and the private-enterprise system, meanwhile tarnishing the New Deal with the brand of “socialism.” Throughout the campaign–which was realized through billboards, radio programming, brochures, educational materials, and packaged news items–the vision of a happy and prosperous America resurrected a traditional Anglo-American iconography: parents with northern European features and tow-headed children were depicted on generic Main Streets, far distanced from the sinister environs of the city. Within this propaganda campaign, those who questioned the values and practices of free-market capitalism were stereotyped as foreigners, Bolsheviks, and ill-adjusted malcontents, distinctly un-American.

Typecasting by Ewen and Ewen, pg. 475.