With the summing-up address of Adolph A. Berle, Jr. '13 on "The Role of Government in the National Economy" at the Plenary Session in Emerson D Saturday afternoon, the second annual HYP Conference on Public Affairs was concluded.
Berle's summary of the Conference was largely based upon ten minute reports previously submitted at this meeting by the undergraduate chairman of the five round tables. Although each of the chairmen prefaced his remarks with a statement to the effect that few definite conclusions had been reached by the conferees, Mr. Berle was able to pick out several trends of thought which seemed fairly universal for all five groups.
In general, he thought that there was a majority tendency which felt that more government supervision in industry would have to be accepted in the future, although just how much or in what form were vigorously picked bones of contention.
There was equal agreement that there is no static state of Utopia, that there should be no discussion of a possible condition of perpetual prosperity. Anything that is done is merely a stage in the development of civilization, and the term "the present economic system" was seldom hard.
After summing up the results of the conference, Berle touched more broadly upon the problems constantly faced by government officials. He pointed to the fact that, after three sessions of intensive discussion, few definite laws of right and wrong regarding the issues in question could be agreed upon. In a conference, this mattered little, because interchange of ideas, not decisions, was the objective. But in government, these same problems were met every day and demanded immediate decision and action. Those upon whose shoulders such responsibility rests dare not look at the problems ahead with such careful scrutiny for fear that the difficulties which present themselves would freeze the spectator into inaction.
Following Borle's talk, William H. Orrick of the Yale News, adjourned the meeting and officially closed the 1937 Conference, promising at the same time that when the 1938 edition opens in New Haven, Yale will endeavor to maintain the high standard of interest set by Princeton and Harvard