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The Great Depression I: Challenging the American Way of Life I: The Crash of Consumption II: The Corporate Welfare State III: Ironies of the Depression Terms Samuel Insull John Mayward Keynes Herbert Hoover “Blue Eagle” Franklin D. Roosevelt “The Folk” New Deal: Aaron Copeland CCC WPA Thomas Hart Benton PWA NRA Woody Guthrie TVASEC 1929, crash of stock market o Continued spiraling downward o Biggest depression I: The Crash of Consumption Fundamental weakness in business structures Saw prosperity (on surface) Felicity (weakness underneath) o Bank ruptcy’s (a lot) 1926 (most prosperous year) 22,000 businesses failures (declared bank ruptcy) 1927, 23,000 bank ruptcy’s declared by businesses o Employment beginning to fall Automobile industry Construction (leading industry) o Samuel Insull Head of electrical empire Provided electricity for 39 states Built on shaky foundation Holding company for local companies Local companies bought stock, inflated it’s value (appear more prosperous) Value of little electric companies began to go down (domino effect) Bubble in economy Uneven distribution of wealth (extreme in 1920’s) o Top (well), Bottom (not well) o Wealthy increased buying habit by 75% (192029) o Top 10% owned national wealth o Bottom ½ expected to go under International market o End of WWI, European economies in bad shape o Tremendous demand for American goods (England and France) o Paid for goods with the help of Germany o Demanded payments from Germans (millions) o Germans got money from Big American Banks o Americans loaning money to themselves o Bubble style prosperity October 1929, biggest economy in the world collapses (until early winter 1930) Businessmen commit suicide on Wall Street Scenes of ordinary life o Soup kitchens (urban) o Long lines of men looking for work o Business going bank rupt o Factories closing down o Desperate poverty (rural) Atmosphere of failure/dread, psychological and emotional depression o Dread of future o New to America II: The Corporate Welfare State Herbert Hoover (elected year before depression, 1928) o Golden by the Republican Party o Born in Iowa o Orphan o Horatio Alger tale come to life o Stanford University (studied engineering) o Drifts into government (engineering and government) o Woodrow Wilson Head of food relief program in Europe (aid program) o Worked high government positions o Spokesman of corporation (business and government) o Responses with continue with corporation of business and government (didn’t work) o Begins to lose creditability o Collection of huts (in public parks) Referred to ask Hoovervilles o Americans expected the government to look over them economically Hoover wasn’t meeting it 1932, renominated Hoover (republican) vs. Franklin D. Roosevelt (democrat) o Didn’t have to do much o Just don’t do anything stupid o Became president o Wave of energy that exploded o The 100 days, announces a New Deal Tsunami in legislation Number of programs Several goals Restore consuming power o Do something about banks o Urgency relief baking bill (federal government stands behind banks, had no money, psychological) Restore financial power in federal government o Tax revenue dried up o End of prohibition, tax alcohol Provide relief o Agriculture, extend credit to farmers (buy seed, keep up with payments) o Large number of agencies (civilization conversation care), make work, hired young men, low wages o PWA (public works administration) build roads and bridges, low wages o Economic philosophy, John Maynard Keynes (English) Modern economy, needed government that relied on deficit spending Good for government to spend more money Cycles in economy, downdeficit spend (stimulate economy) Get more tax money in return Roosevelt adopted idea Ex. Tennessee Valley Authority o Lack of power o Building domes to create hydroelectric power, send out power to poor households (Roosevelt) TVA WPA, government program to build roads, schools, public buildings Central thrust of New Deal o Use government to stimulate economy o Corporate liberalism o Government leading economy to prosperity Ex: NRA (national recovery administration) Blue Eagle (logo) Drafted codes in competition Limited production Assigned markets Intervened to set prices SEC (securities exchange commission) Regulate stock market Set regulations and codes of conduct Roosevelt saved Capitalism by reforming some of it’s abuses III: Ironies of the Depression Cultural dimension No big revolution during 1930’s Ironies: o Reacted by blaming themselves People who lost homes, etc. Personal failure Old American tradition (responsible for your own fate) Private failure o Turn to the past Looked back for inspiration Folk (emphasized) Reliance on common, ordinary working Americans Americans survived everything in past and will survive the depression Country values guided them through hard times Music – Aaron Copeland o Drew upon old fashion rural tradition o “A Rodeo”, “Fanfare for the Common Man” Art – Thomas Hart Benton o Great murals In past, Americans working hard and carrying through Fold singer – Woody Guthrie o “This is your land” The Great Depression II: Demagogues, Radicals, and the New Deal I: Demagogues II: Radical Dissent III: The Second New Deal Terms Dr. Francis Townsend Partisan Review Father Charles Coughlin Popular Front Huey Long WPA Mike Gold Social Security Act New Masses Wagner Act (NLRA) Franklin Roosevelt o Instill confidence in American people Made speeches Attacking problems, things were going to get better o Value of activity, government programs Progress was being made effectively 193536 the New Deal wasn’t working or very slowly and weakly o Unemployment – 2530% o Farm Income – 50% of what it had been o Food shortages, rural people couldn’t get food o Business failures/foreclosures American economy was ½ what it was in 1929 Criticism began, unhappiness o From demagogues and radicals I: Demagogues Upper working/middle working class = unhappy social group Fearful of going up or going under Against New Deal and Roosevelt Dr. Francs Townsend o Mid 60’s o Made heated speeches about older people suffering from Great Depression o 60+ should get $200 a month form government = life saver Never said where the money was supposed to come from ½ of national wealth o Very popular Father Charles Coughlin o Radio priest, local in Detroit, expanded o Originally fan of New Deal o No changes = critizes the New Deal o Blame depression on conspiracy on Wall Street = profits to themselves Jewish conspiracy, antiSemitism Jewish bankers wanted to bring wealth and power to their culture Huey Long o Great political character o “Kingfish” in Louisiana (govern/senator) o Flamboyant, ruthless, shroud, ambitious o Gets national audience o 1934, national aspirations (presidential) o Share our wealth program “Every man a king” o Guarantee an income of $2,500 to every family and house worth $5,000 o Proposal to pay the government should sees the land of wealth, 100% tax on millionaires o Roosevelt thought of him as a threat and most dangerous man in politics Important of display of feelings of desperation in working/lower class people II: Radical Dissent Depression represented bank ruptcy of American capitalism Mike Gold o Socialist, later radical o Flirted with communism o Working class background o With the IWW o Influenced by Mexican Revolution o Editorial of New Masses (socialist) Clasp of system Rise of workers democracy Partisan Review o Intellectual version o Influential journal (new york 1934) o Leading venue to write about problems and political solutions o Various arguments on behalf of democratic system o Argued for democratic socialism o Try to include modern art is liberating and goes hand in hand with democratic socialism Popular Front o Announced by American communist party (1936) o Great danger was fashion coming to America o Need a ground alliance (liberalist, socialist, and communist = popular front) III: The Second New Deal Roosevelt = shrude o Understand American political scene o Aware of demagogues o Adjustment in New Deal. The second New Deal Takes a few steps to the left Greater government involvement Sympathy with working people Attempts to insure wellbeing of ordering American o Understood modern media Fire side chats (radio discussions) WPA (works progress administration) o Huge government program o $5 million o Promote/over saw work projects Build roads Build public buildings Artist Theatre o Employed 2 million people Social security act (1935) o Aid at Townsend crowd o National old age insurance, funded by taxes and contributions (would get pension) o 1970, covers everybody Wagner Act (NLRA), 1935 o Named after senator Wagner (NY) o National Labor Relations Act o Support labor unions/organizations Workers created company unions Wagner out lawed that o Free election system back by federal government o Workers wanted to organize, free election o Power of federal government being behind labor unions/worker Roosevelt because 2 New Deal. Remained popular (1936) nd Despite 2 new deal, in 1930’s great depression was bad o Progress was small o Economy/state was still bad Pulled out of great depression by WW2