In God We Trust, Inc. is a hardcore punk EP by the Dead Kennedys; it is now reissued with the Plastic Surgery Disasters album. The thrashing, lightning-fast beats and shouted (often jumbled) vocals, on the first six tracks, resembles Washington D.C.'s punk bands of the time; more than on any other Dead Kennedys release, the music here is conventionally "hardcore." The album spends the first two tracks attacking organized religion before going on to attack such diverse topics as Neo Nazis, PresidentRonald Reagan, the pesticideKepone, and the kind of governmental indifference that vastly worsened the effects of catastrophes like the Minamata disease. "We've Got a Bigger Problem Now" is a lounge jazz remake of "California Über Alles" from the previous album with Ronald Reagan instated in place of Jerry Brown. The EP also includes a cover of the theme song from the 1960s show, Rawhide. The album cover depicts a golden Jesus crucified on a cross of dollar bills, with a background of a shiny metal material. On the original vinyl version, Side A was tracks 1-5 and Side B was tracks 6-8. On the original cassette version, Side A contained all 8 songs, with Side B being left intentionally blank. Printed on Side B was the explanation, "Home taping is killing record industry profits! We left this side blank so you can help."
During 1980 and 1981 the American punk scene saw an influx of 7" EPs from Washington D.C.'s Dischord Records from bands like Minor Threat and Teen Idles. These little high-tempo records packed in 7 to 10 songs each and helped define the 1980s genre of hardcore punk. In wanting to pay tribute to this faster form of punk rock, and to showcase the talents of their new drummer D.H. Peligro, the Dead Kennedys put together some new material and amped up a few songs that had only been heard on their 1978 demo and in early live shows. These songs became the basis for In God We Trust, Inc. Keeping with the rough-hewn style of D.C. hardcore, bits of tape leads announcing the take number and including drumstick clicks and count-offs precede many of the record's songs.
The Dead Kennedys entered tiny Subterranean Studios to record eight songs on June 19, 1981. All tracks were recorded live without overdubs to ½" 8-track reel and with the band determining some of the songs' arrangements between takes. The session was videotaped by Joe Rees of Target Video with Mike Fox, the session engineer, sending the rough mix to the video feed. When the group took the tracks to be mixed, they discovered that the magnetic tape used for the recording was defective—the oxide surface of the tape began to peel during playback, thereby destroying the recordings. The band then re-recorded all eight songs on August 22nd at Mobius Music, and these recordings were used for the record's release.
Years later, enhanced restoration techniques allowed for five tracks to be recovered off of the master tapes from the earlier Subterranean sessions. These, along with the rough video mixes of the remaining three songs, appear on the DVD The Lost Tapes.