A New Deal for America
A New Deal for America HIST 2112
Popular in American History Since 1865
Popular in History
This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Carina Sauter on Sunday March 13, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to HIST 2112 at University of Georgia taught by Dr. Rohrer in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 20 views. For similar materials see American History Since 1865 in History at University of Georgia.
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Date Created: 03/13/16
A New Deal for America I. Hoover and the Depression • WWII brings us out of the depression • New role for federal government compared to pro-business and laissez-faire government in 1920’s • Herbert Hoover at the end of the 20’s – tried to address economic collapse – relatively proactive o Funded government agencies o Labor harmony o Local aid for public works o Cooperation between federal government and business o Struggled to balance budget o Indirect relief from private sources and local governments – not federal o Ultimately too little and too late • Beliefs o Too much intervention from government would destroy American individualists and self reliance o Refuse to consider direct relief payments from federal government to individuals § Would reduce incentive to work o Believe in balanced budgets § No programs to bring others out of debt o Refused to destroy America with socialist sounding institutions • Conditions o 25% unemployment o 250,000 of farmer’s mortgages were dead o 1.2 million homeless o shanty towns/ hoovervilles all over America o 1929: about 900 banks (27 million American’s savings) failed § 1500 died in 1932 alone II. Election of 1932 • Herbert Hoover (republican) vs. Franklin Roosevelt (democrat) o Hoover: 59 electoral votes o FDR: 472 electoral votes • Americans wanted change • Re-elected in 1936, 1940 and 1944 • Move farthest to the left (liberal) in American history III. FDR’s New Deal • series of domestic federal programs by congress between 1933 and 1938 • “new deal” originated in his speech o “I pledge you to a new deal for the American people” • what is it? o laws by congress and presidential orders o support direct federal aid o tighten government control over industry o reject voluntarism in favor of deficit spending § consumer spending and government o government programs would materialize immediately • all committed to idea of federal government needed to get out of Great Depression o democrats are committed o “counter cyclical management” à deficit spending (government spends more money than they have in paper – borrowing instead of taxing) à economy is flagging – government needs to spend more money to support expanding government programs • New Dealers o Influenced by progressives at the turn of the century § Wanted to revive model § Still different: don’t care much about morals – more practical • Ex. Should we supply American troops with condoms? – FDR: pragmatism – passes law o Pragmatism > moral preaching o Disagree how to end Great Depression § 1. Trust busters: call for vigorous enforcement of anti-trust laws – break up concentrate individual/business power § 2. Associationalists: encourage cooperation between business and federal government with associations and codes (government, big business, labor) § 3. Economic planners: want to create system of centralized planning o FDR is the ultimate pragmatist § “take a method and try it, then, try another, try something” § did not take any sides IV. First 100 Days • Roosevelt passes banking reform laws, emergency and work relief programs and agricultural programs • 4 Main Priorities: o get Americans back to work o protect Americans’ savings and create prosperity o prove relief for the sick and elderly (social security) o get industry and agriculture back on their feed V. First New Deal (1933-1935) • Banking and Finance o Emergency Banking Relief Act § Attack bank prices th § National bank holiday on March 5 , 1933 • Closed all banks • 500 banks reopened under government oversight • led to Emergency banking relief act o radically revamped banking system o Homeowners Loan Act § Mortgages and loan guarantees § > 1 million loans = $3 million o Glass-Steagall Act § Federal government guarantees loans under $5000 § Still exists § Separate commercial banking § Give power to federal reserve § FDR takes us off gold standard § “fire-side chats” on radio • explain his actions in simple terms • have confidence and courage • Agriculture o Hit the hardest – farmers and farm laborers o 1/5 of Americans lived on farms before Great Depression o income dropped 2/3 § bushel of wheat • 1920: $2.94 • 1929: $1 • 1933: $.30 o land often auctioned off o overproduction § more effective farming machines § plant variety § new fertilizers § lower demand § eat less bread § Europeans place tariffs on their products § Farm tendency soars o 2/3 of farmers work on farm they don’t own § sharecropping o New Deal helps agriculture o Rural electrification programs § Opportunity to have electricity and running water o Tennessee Valley Authority § Government built 21 dams to generate electricity for 10,000’s of families § Jobs for thousands o Soil conservation service § battle erosion due to dust bowl § Farm credit administration – help farm foreclosures (from 20,000 per month) o Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA) § Huge § Established the nations first system of agricultural price and production support § Partnership between government and main agricultural producers § Agree to raise prices by reducing farm goods § Assign acreage quotas to specific crops and their farmers § Voluntary participation § Raised farmer income § Did not help share croppers § Did not help small farmers, mostly large – overall still see today • Industry and Labor o National Recovery Administration § Help revive industry through national planning § Set prices, producing levels, minimum wage, # of hours elicited to work per week § Labor unions § End labor conflicts, overproduction, etc. § Over 500 NRA Codes signed only a few months after FDR was elected § Major industries won over by NRA § Blue eagle: the insignia of the NRA § Posters proudly displayed in businesses across the nation § NRA sought to stabilize the economy by ending ruinous competition, overproduction and labor conflicts as well as deflating prices § NRA achieved only limited success § Boards are mainly drafted by big business • Resent NRA for interfering with private sector § “National Run Around” nnickname § labor workers: • mixed • abolish child labor • establish the federal regulation of minimum wage and hours o national minimum wage law • boosted labor movement with unions • set wages in many industritiries low • farmers are not covered o Public Works Administration (PWA) § “make work programs” for unemployment § provide money to spend on industrial projects - $6 million (ports, dams, sewer systems) thousands employed o Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) § 1933 § hired more than 2.5 million young men, 18-25, to work in the nation’s parks and forests § men planted saplings; built fire towers; restocked depleted streams and restored historic battlefields § $30/month much of which they sent back to their families § “free army” § failed to make serious dent § excluded women and African Americans § only miniscule number of young who needed work § lived together in wilderness camps § program lasted until 1942 o Works Progress Administration (WPA) § 1933 § employed more in the first month than the CCC § 100,000’s of miles of paved roads § ~4,000 playgrounds § employed several million § 2.7 million first month o 1934 § Great Depression is dispersing § Federal government slows money § 500,000 government workers strike • largest strike in US history § attack FDR – not doing enough § wanted more change, action, government • FDR needs bolder actions o Deficit spending VI. Second New Deal • Farther to the left • January, 1935 – congress makes new proposal of employment programs • Works Progress Association o Still below what was needed o Pay was a compromise o Quick employment o Labor intensive – make things just for jobs § 2,500 hospitals § 5,900 schools § 1000 airport fields § 13,000 playgrounds § ex. LeConte Hall, Park Hall, Baldwin Hall o cultural programs – alphabet soup programs § paint murals in post offices § oral historians § musicologists • Social Security o August, 1935 o Unemployment, elderly, safety rut for disabled, death benefits o Relatively unchanged since then VII. FDR and the Deal Detractors • Fiscal Conservatives vs. Fiscal Liberals • Fiscal Conservatives o Big business o Right wing conservatism o Liberals o Republicans o Don’t like extensive economic extensionism o Government planning was unnecessary and counter productive o Laissez-faire • Fiscal Liberals o Even farther left o Socialist/communist o Not far-reaching enough o Charge FDR with being a fascist dictator • FDR still wins again in 1936, 1940 and 1944 VIII. End of the Great Depression • Did the new deal end the Great Depression? o Some recovery o But no, did not end depression o WII ended the Great Depression § Industries and farm at 100% § New industries § Close to full employment • Ex. manufacturing and military o Assimilation § 3 generations
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