This concluding chapter argues that the civil servants described here saw themselves as defenders, not betrayers, of fundamental American values such as egalitarianism and democracy. Not only does acknowledging their presence in the Roosevelt and Truman administrations yield a more accurate history, but a broader understanding of how the right misrepresented and curtailed their influence may contribute to a more informed political discourse. Indeed, correcting the historical record seems especially important now, in the early twenty-first century, when conservatives have returned to arguing that goals such as a more equitable distribution of wealth are alien to the American tradition and to demonizing any deviation from free-market economic policy as socialistic.
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