The Steel Crisis of 1962, wherein President Kennedy took the public stage to denounce price increases by the then-powerful steel industry, and succeeded in winning a rollback, stands in contrast to government inaction in the face of ever-rising energy costs today. What is the proper role of government in a free economy? What importance should be given to a term heard less and less but invoked repeatedly by Kennedy: the "public interest?"
This essay by Rex Bradford, entitled JFK & Steel, Bush and Oil, explores the Steel Crisis and how far the country has moved from an earlier consensus that government had a proper role in mediating the free enterprise system. Now, the current president laments the lack of a "magic wand" to fix oil prices.
An accompanying starting point, Kennedy Domestic Policy, provides links to essays and other resources concerned with economic and other domestic policies of President John F. Kennedy.