In Reply to: Re: Guns before butter posted by Smokey Stover on December 22, 2009 at 04:08:
: : 'Guns before butter' - where did this phrase originate from?
: I'm going to make a guess. Someone else can look it up and make me look a fool.
: My guess is World War II. But I don't actually remember the phrase. After all, the resources employed in making butter are of no avail in making guns. But it's true that in the U.S. and the U.K., butter was pretty scarce. That was because it went to feed soldiers. Those on the home front learned (painfully) to eat oleomargarine. In the U.S., dairy interests got federal legislation requiring the sellers of margarine NOT to color the white substance yellow. They included, with the bars of margarine, some separately wrapped coloring that you could apply to the margarine yourself at home. Fortunately, them days is gone forever. Or at least so I hope.
It usually gets attributed to Hermann Goering, in the form "Guns will make us powerful; butter will only make us fat." But according to this Wikipedia entry, he wasn't being entirely original: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guns_versus_butter_model (VSD)