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The Effectiveness of the 1930s American New Deal

  • Date Submitted: 09/02/2011 03:30 PM
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“How Effective were the increased powers of the Federal Government, adopted during the New Deal, in solving problems of the times?”
                                                                                                                                        The 1930s were hard times for Americans; this was due to a number of reasons. The Great Depression, mass unemployment, the loss of confidence in banks and the government itself. The man voted into power to tackle these mounting problems was Franklin D. Roosevelt. On 4th March 1933, Roosevelt, the newly elected 32nd President of the United States, told his citizens that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”. A fairly bold, optimistic statement for a man who had inherited a country suffering from a crippling economic depression. Roosevelt deeply sympathised with his people; he was determined to help them, and so he then demised a plan to confront the country’s economic difficulties. He restores confidence in the American public and makes them believe in the capitalist system again. To do so effectively, he increases his powers and uses the alphabet agencies and the new deals to tackle the problems of the time.

    The New Deal had three aims: Relief - Roosevelt was determined to help the victims of the depression, many of whom faced unemployment, hunger and poverty; recovery - rebuild the economy and create the conditions needed for optimum economic growth; and reform - create a more just society by giving a fairer distribution of wealth. To achieve these objectives, Roosevelt decided that direct action and intervention by the federal government would be necessary. The New Deal challenged the power of the federal government whilst increasing the power of the president, as Roosevelt was able to regulate businesses and industries in a manner, which, prior to the depression, would have been unacceptable. The days of laissez-faire and “rugged individualism”, were over.

    FDR’s first 100...


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