(Bloomberg) Hillary Clinton didn't mention 1934 in her speech last week about fighting short-termism, but she could have. The last time the U.S. taxed capital gains roughly the way she wants to was from 1934 to 1941, from the depths of the Great Depression to the eve of World War II.

In other words, when it comes to tax policy, everything old is new again. In a speech at New York University's Stern School of Business, the Democratic presidential candidate said that giving preferential tax treatment to investments that are held longer would give investors an incentive to be more patient so companies could embark on projects with big upfront costs and long-term payoffs. "We need a new generation of committed, long-term investors to provide a counterweight to the hit-and-run activists," Clinton said.

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