1964 Prohibition Party Platform
We, the representatives of the Prohibition Party, assembled in National Convention at St. Louis, Missouri, August 29-30, 1963, recognizing Almighty God as the source of all just government, and with faith in the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ, do solemnly promise that, if our party is chosen to administer the affairs of the nation, we will, with earnest dedication to the principles of righteousness, seek to serve the needs and to preserve the rights, the prerogatives and the basic freedoms, of the people of the United States. For the realization of these ends we propose the following program of government:
We affirm our sincere loyalty to the Constitution of the United States, and express our deep confidence in that document as the basic law of our land. We deplore all attempts to violate it, whether by legislation, by means of evasion, or through judicial interpretation. We believe in the principles of liberty and justice enunciated in the Declaration of Independence and in the Preamble and Bill of Rights of our Constitution. We declare ourselves in hearty support of our system of representative government, with its plan of checks and balances, and express our firm intent to serve the people of our nation with a constructive, forward-looking program of good government, dedicated to the general welfare.
Communism - Totalitarianism
We are positively, aggressively and unalterably, opposed to Communism as a way of life or as a governmental system. We believe that the program of Communism, with its intent to infiltrate and to overthrow our present form of government, must be pitilessly exposed. We challenge all loyal citizens to become fully aware of this menace to civilization, to exert every effort to defeat these 'masters of deceit,' and to help preserve our American way of life.
We also declare ourselves opposed to any other form of totalitarian philosophy or form of government. We endorse the efforts of those agencies which have been honestly and earnestly exposing subversive activities and groups.
Governmental Economy and Taxation
We live in an era of extravagance and wasteful spending. This spirit has invaded government at all levels, demanding an ever-increasing tax load upon our people. The constant increase in taxation, requiring nearly one-third of the total income of our citizens to pay the expenses of government, is approaching the point of confiscation, leading to economic bankruptcy. We believe that good government ought not to attempt to do for people what they can do for themselves. With proper economy, governmental costs can be lowered, the tax load can be lightened, and the public debt can be reduced. We promise to devote ourselves to such an end, even though it involves the reorganization and/or abolition of certain departments, bureaus and vested interests.
Money and Finance
A sound financial program and a dependable monetary policy are fundamental to a stable economy. Our Constitution gives to Congress the power to 'coin money' and to 'regulate the value thereof.' We believe that Congress, working with the executive department of our government, should take immediate steps to establish a financial program that will block inflationary trends, insure a sound currency, stabilize price levels and provide for systematic retirement of the national debt. We urge that careful consideration be given to a return to the gold standard, suggesting that such a step would help stabilize our economy, would promote confidence in our monetary system and would underwrite a continuing program of sound finance and expanding industrial progress.
The Federal Budget
Good government and a sound economy demand a balanced federal budget. The inflationary effects and the disturbing influence of unbalanced budgets must be eliminated. We cannot, with impunity, continue to increase the mortgage on our future and the interest load of the present. As the level of taxation is already excessive, there must be either a decided reduction in governmental services and federal spending or a substantial improvement in efficiency, with consequent elimination of waste in both personnel and materials. Actually, both areas need careful exploration with a view not only to maintaining a balanced budget, but also to reduction of the national debt.
Many billions of dollars of our taxpayers' money have been and are still being given to foreign countries. Unfortunately, substantial portions have been used to support governments and programs considerably at variance with American ideals and concepts. It is frankly recognized that complex and baffling problems are involved in this area of international relations, but it is likewise believed that the practice needs most careful scrutiny and review.
We are srongly opposed to governmental restraints on our free enterprise system, to detailed regulation of our economic life and to federal interference with individual initiative. We believe that free enterprise is threatened in three ways: (1) by excessive governmental regulation, (2) by growth of public and/or private monopoly, and (3) by unethical practices of unscrupulous groups.
It will be the policy of our administration to encourage independent, non-monopolistic business enterprises which serve genuine consumer needs and are operated with a sense of responsibility to the public. We will take necessary steps to prevent the evils both of monopoly, and of excessive regulation by government and to protect adequately the consuming public from irresponsible or deceptive practices contrary to public welfare.
We propose that our government withdraw, with reasonable promptness, from the field of business activity and sell to private industry, at proper investment prices, those business enterprises now owned and operated by the federal government.
Labor and Industry
In the area of labor and industrial relations we believe that the public welfare must be given paramount consideration. Both management and labor must be held responsible for their economic and their social behavior. Neither should be permitted to dominate at the expense of the other or of the common good. Rather, the anti-trust laws must be applied equally to all monopolies, whether of business or labor. Whenever the public welfare is seriously endangered because of disputes affecting quasi-public businesses and utilities we favor the compulsory arbitration of labor-management disputes.
Employee - Employer Rights
Every individual has certain basic and fundamental rights. A person's right to join or not to join a labor union without affecting his employment and his right to work for an employer willing to hire him must be protected. Likewise, employees and employers must be free to bargain and to contract as they wish. Mass picketing, rioting, terrorism, and all other forms of violence and coercion, secondary boycotts and industry-wide bargaining should be prohibited.
Individual and States' Rights
Our founding fathers recognized the importance of both individual and states' rights, and determined to preserve them by making the Bill of Rights an integral part of our Constitution. During recent years there has been an increasing tendency toward an undesirable concentration of power and authority in the federal government.
This tendency has two principal causes: (1) the ever-growing power and influence of the 'military - industrial complex,' and (2) a widespread tendency of groups of citizens to look to the federal government for the protection of rights and the satisfaction of needs which they feel are not adequately cared for by state and local governments or by private enterprise.
To deal with the first of these causes, we pledge the utmost vigilance in resisting the growth of militarism and to maintain the constitutional principle of civilian supremacy over the military.
To deal with over centralization we urge more vigorous action by state and local governments for the protection of the rights and the promotion of the welfare of their people, greater resort to the solution of local community problems through the voluntary action of existing or new civic and other non-governmental assocations, where this is feasible, and the increasing pursuit by private business concerns of policies which promote the public interest.
We pledge ourselves to action that will preserve all legitimate individual rights and will maintain among the several states their constitutional place in our system of government.
We maintain that all American citizens, regardless of race, religion, or National origin, are entitled to equality of treatment under the provisions of our constitution and under the laws of our land. No person or group of persons shall be subjected to ostracism, humiliation, or embarrassment because of color or national background. At the same time we must deplore the use of violence and/or arbitrary pressure tactics, from whatever source, as a means of seeking to resolve tensions and divergencies of opinion among our citizens.
We are opposed to those proposals which would destroy our neighborhood school systems through a program of artificial integration or convey special privileges to any minority group.
Public Morality and Law Enforcement
Moral and spiritual considerations must be primary factors in determining both state and national policies. We deplore the gross neglect of such matters by the dominant political parties, culminating in the shocking revelations of crime and of political and economic corruption which have characterized recent years. We charge these parties with basic responsibility for the rapid decline in moral standards which followed repeal of the Eighteenth Amendment. We believe that the program of nullification of law through non-enforcement which led to repeal contributed greatly to the disintegration of public morals, to a general deterioration of standards and to a lowering of values among our people.
We pledge ourselves to break the unholy alliance which has made these things possible. We propose to strengthen and to enforce laws against gambling, narcotics, and commercialized vice, to emphasize the basic importance of spiritual and moral values to the development and growth of an enduring nation, and to maintain the integrity of of democracy by careful enforcement of law and loyal support of our Constitution.
We live in an age of atomic and hydrogen bombs, in an era of missiles and jet propulsion, in a world filled with animosities and cruel hatreds. Instruments for the destruction of civilization have been developed. Under these conditions, we pledge ourselves to search for peaceful solutions to international conflict, by seeking to deal creatively and constructively with the underlying causes of international tension, and, to strive for world peace and order based upon the teachings and practices of the Prince of Peace.
We declare our belief in national sovereignty and oppose surrender of this sovereignty to any international group.
Although we seek for world peace and order, we declare our firm belief, under existing world conditions, in a sound program of national preparedness. At the same time, we seriously question the desirability of the existing program of peacetime compulsory military training. We doubt that it represents a genuine safeguard to world peace. Rather, we believe it to be contrary, in principle, to our American way of life, to place an unnecessary burden upon our peacetime economy, to threaten us with possible military dictatorship, and, as currently conducted, to permit and very often to promote the moral and spiritual deterioration of our Youth. Therefore, we declare our opposition to any program of peacetime compulsory military training and urge a complete evaluation and re-orientation of our entire program of national preparedness.
Nuclear Weapons Testing
Many of the leading scientists of our day have warned that radioactive fallout, resulting from testing of nuclear weapons, endangers the health of human beings throughout the world, and, if continued, will increase the number of seriously defective children who will be born to future generations. It is unjust that the people of the world, and especially those of nations not engaged in the development of nuclear weapons, should be exposed to such peril. The danger and the injustice will become progressively greater with any additional testing. In addition, there is the danger that continuation of the armaments race will lead to an atomic war of annihilation.
In our 1960 platform, we urged that, 'as a step toward world disarmament, all testing of nuclear weapons be indefinitely suspended on a multilateral basis and that our government seek with renewed vigor and persistence an agreement among all nuclear powers for the permanent and complete cessation of nuclear tests for military purposes.' It appears that some progress has been made toward realization of this goal. We insist that continual attention must be given to this problem.
We believe in religious liberty. Freedom of the individual to worship, to fellowship with others of similar faith, to evangelize, to educate and to establish religious institutions, must be preserved. When religious liberty is lost political liberty will perish with it. We believe, also, that our government should take a firm, positive position against religious intolerance and persecution anywhere in the world.
Marriage and Divorce
Ordained of God, the home is a sacred institution. Its sanctity must be protected and preserved. We favor the enactment of uniform marriage and divorce laws in the various states as an aid to building strong and enduring homes throughout our nation.
Old Age Insurance
We endorse the general principle of an actuarially sound voluntary social security program which includes all employed groups. We question the soundness of the existing program. We deplore the widespread current abuse of the privileges involved; we condemn the maladministration of its provisions for political ends; we pledge ourselves to correct these evils.
Ballot Law Reform
True democracy requires that the needs and interests of minority groups be given fair, honest and appropriate consideration. Instead, in many of our states, ballot laws have been enacted which are designed to make a two-party system into a bipartisan political monopoly, keeping minor parties off the ballot. We demand the repeal of all laws which deny to independent voters and to loyal minority groups the fundamental right of free political expression.
Separation of Church and State
We affirm our continuing loyalty to the constitutional principle of separation of Church and State. We will expose, and resist vigorously, any attempt from whatever source to weaken or subvert this fundamental principle.
We declare our belief that the Bible is not a sectarian book, but is a volume of universal appeal and application which is woven into our history, our laws, and our culture. We deplore any interpretation which would limit its use in any area of our national life.
In the area of government, we endorse encouragement of non-profit educational and religious institutions on a tax-exempt basis, but we declare strong opposition to all efforts, direct or indirect, to secure appropriations of public money for private religious or sectarian purposes.
It is altogether appropriate that our federal government should be interested in and concerned about matters pertaining to all areas of educational growth and development. However, under the Tenth Amendment, public education is clearly a matter of state concern. We approve of the work of the Office of Education in collecting and disseminating essential educational information, but we are opposed to any sort of direct federal aid to education, believing that each state should both support and control its own educational program.
The production and distribution of agricultural products is of vital importance to the economy of any people. We believe that those engaged in agricultural pursuits, like other American citzens, should be free from authoritarian control and coercion. Hence we declare ourselves opposed to regimentation of farms and farmers and urge a sensible and orderly return to a free market program.
The health of our people is a matter of high importance. We are deeply concerned with this problem in its numerous aspects. In particular, we insist that genuine caution be taken when dealing with mental health cases lest there be unjust and prejudiced incarcerations. Also we deplore those programs of mass medication which many maintain are in violation of the rights of individuals under our Constitution.
Service, not Spoils
In spite of our 'civil service' system, first sponsored by the Prohibition Party, the dominant political parties are positively committed to the 'spoils' system and, when in office, have prostituted governmental power to serve their own selfish party interests instead of the whole people. This has led to excessive expenditures, higher taxes and, in some situations, to an unfortunate alliance of crime with politics. We pledge ourselves to an honest, efficient and economical administration.
The Alcohol Problem
The widespread and increasing use of alcoholic beverages has now become a national tragedy and must be recognized as a major cause of poverty, broken homes, juvenile delinquency, vice, crime, political corruption, wasted manpower, and highway accidents. Of all the unfortunate mistakes of our government and people, none has been worse than the legalization of the liquor traffic. It can be legitimately said that no political issue confronting the citizens of our land compares in magnitude with the need for suppressing the beverage alcohol industry.
The sponsors of this national curse are not only highly capitalized and strongly organized, but are also socially irresponsible. Out of enormous profits the liquor industry spends huge sums to promote sales, to create habitual use of its products by both youth and adults and to encourage a weakening of moral resistance to its program of social and economic exploitation. It is linked with and supports a nationwide network of organized gambling, vice and crime. Through its advertising it has corrupted large segments of the nation's press, and it is endeavoring to extend its control increasingly to both radio and television.
Unfortunately, the liquor traffic has been able to extend its power until, in all too many instances, it dominates our political life and controls our governmental officials. Both of our major political parties are dominated by it, and neither dares to take a stand against it. And so long as they continue to be yoked by party membership with the liquor traffic and the underworld, just so long will they be unable to make moral principles prevail.
The beverage alcohol problem is a matter of national concern. It has reached proportions which demand immediate action looking to a solution. First of all, scientific facts about beverage alcohol must be widely publicized. People must come to know and to understand the demon which we harbor. Secondly, a program of publicity, education, legislation and administration, leading to the elimination of the beverage alcohol industry, must be developed. People must come to know that there is no satisfactory solution to the problem except through political action which suppresses it and a political administration which destroys it.
Accordingly the Prohibition Party demands the repeal of all laws which legalize the liquor traffic and the enactment and rigorous enforcement of new laws which prohibit the manufacture, distribution and sale of alcoholic beverages. You are urged to elect an administration pledged to the above program. Such is essential to the permanent solution of this devastating problem.