For almost 20 years, the author has had the honor of practicing law with the primary emphasis on helping, as de Tocqueville put it, to unite "into one channel the efforts of divergent minds." It has been our task to bring these united, association views to the attention of legislators and regulators. The forces which come to bear in this process are uniquely dynamic. They bring into rapid play sophisticated fact-gathering from a superbly informed cross section of experts, as well as assimilation and interpretation of the data collected. From this process, which includes rationalization and compromises on philosophical issues, emerge recommendations for action based on a convergence of fact and a desire to solve problems realistically. Today, American manufacturers find themselves under a new and rather terrifying sort of cloud. The threat flows from a confluence of circumstances, but the one thing it makes clear is that you no longer have a real choice as to whether you can afford to build and support your group effort- it is a matter of survival. In the relatively short time we have had exposure to this new magnitude of government control, it has become completely apparent that the businessman must now view his trade association and its needs as an essential element of doing business. The association, or a group of manufacturers in some frame work, is uniquely equipped together the data necessary to convince government officials that a class of products should be allowed an opportunity to compete in the marketplace. Only such an association can unite the efforts of divergent minds interested in the many classes of products involved, collate all existing data and use the information to bring about the desired end. Associations will not succeed in every instance, but it is obvious that a group effort will have a chance, where most individual efforts will not. The trade association has proved it can handle severe attacks and prevail, not merely survive. To continue to do so, the association will need a much greater measure of support and participation by industry.