New Deal

New Deal

Overview

The New Deal was a series of economic programs implemented in the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 between 1933 and 1936. They were passed by the U.S. Congress
United States Congress
The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States, consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C....

 during the first term of President Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin Delano Roosevelt , also known by his initials, FDR, was the 32nd President of the United States and a central figure in world events during the mid-20th century, leading the United States during a time of worldwide economic crisis and world war...

. The programs were Roosevelt's responses to the Great Depression
Great Depression in the United States
The Great Depression began with the Wall Street Crash of October, 1929 and rapidly spread worldwide. The market crash marked the beginning of a decade of high unemployment, poverty, low profits, deflation, plunging farm incomes, and lost opportunities for economic growth and personal advancement...

, and focused on what historians call the "3 Rs": Relief, Recovery, and Reform. That is, Relief for the unemployed and poor; Recovery of the economy to normal levels; and Reform of the financial system to prevent a repeat depression.
Discussion
Ask a question about 'New Deal'
Start a new discussion about 'New Deal'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Unanswered Questions
Recent Discussions
Quotations

I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people.

Franklin D. Roosevelt, accepting the Democratic nomination for President - July 2, 1932.

Fascism was really the basis for the New Deal. It was Benito Mussolini|Mussolini's success in Italy, with his government-directed economy, that led the early New Dealers to say "But Mussolini keeps the trains running on time."

Ronald Reagan in May 17, 1976 Time Magazine.
Encyclopedia

The New Deal was a series of economic programs implemented in the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 between 1933 and 1936. They were passed by the U.S. Congress
United States Congress
The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States, consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C....

 during the first term of President Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin Delano Roosevelt , also known by his initials, FDR, was the 32nd President of the United States and a central figure in world events during the mid-20th century, leading the United States during a time of worldwide economic crisis and world war...

. The programs were Roosevelt's responses to the Great Depression
Great Depression in the United States
The Great Depression began with the Wall Street Crash of October, 1929 and rapidly spread worldwide. The market crash marked the beginning of a decade of high unemployment, poverty, low profits, deflation, plunging farm incomes, and lost opportunities for economic growth and personal advancement...

, and focused on what historians call the "3 Rs": Relief, Recovery, and Reform. That is, Relief for the unemployed and poor; Recovery of the economy to normal levels; and Reform of the financial system to prevent a repeat depression. The New Deal produced a political realignment, making the Democratic Party the majority (as well as the party which held the White House for seven out of nine Presidential terms from 1933 to 1969), with its base in liberal ideas, big city machines, and newly empowered labor unions, ethnic minorities, and the white South. The Republicans were split, either opposing the entire New Deal as an enemy of business and growth, or accepting some of it and promising to make it more efficient. The realignment crystallized into the New Deal Coalition
New Deal coalition
The New Deal Coalition was the alignment of interest groups and voting blocs that supported the New Deal and voted for Democratic presidential candidates from 1932 until the late 1960s. It made the Democratic Party the majority party during that period, losing only to Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1952...

 that dominated most American elections into the 1960s, while the opposition Conservative Coalition
Conservative coalition
In the United States, the conservative coalition was an unofficial Congressional coalition bringing together the conservative majority of the Republican Party and the conservative, mostly Southern, wing of the Democratic Party...

 largely controlled Congress from 1938 to 1964.

Historians distinguish a "First New Deal" (1933) and a "Second New Deal" (1934–36). Some programs were declared unconstitutional
Constitutionality
Constitutionality is the condition of acting in accordance with an applicable constitution. Acts that are not in accordance with the rules laid down in the constitution are deemed to be ultra vires.-See also:*ultra vires*Company law*Constitutional law...

, and others were repealed during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. The "First New Deal" (1933) dealt with diverse groups, from banking and railroads to industry and farming, all of which demanded help for economic recovery. A "Second New Deal" in 1934–36 included the Wagner Act
National Labor Relations Act
The National Labor Relations Act or Wagner Act , is a 1935 United States federal law that limits the means with which employers may react to workers in the private sector who create labor unions , engage in collective bargaining, and take part in strikes and other forms of concerted activity in...

 to promote labor unions, the Works Progress Administration
Works Progress Administration
The Works Progress Administration was the largest and most ambitious New Deal agency, employing millions of unskilled workers to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads, and operated large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects...

 (WPA) relief program, the Social Security Act
Social Security (United States)
In the United States, Social Security refers to the federal Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance program.The original Social Security Act and the current version of the Act, as amended encompass several social welfare and social insurance programs...

, and new programs to aid tenant farmers and migrant workers. The final major items of New Deal legislation were the creation of the United States Housing Authority
United States Housing Authority
The United States Housing Authority, or USHA, was an agency created during 1937 as part of the New Deal.It was designed to lend money to the states or communities for low-cost construction. Units for about 650,000 low-income people but mostly homeless were started...

 and Farm Security Administration
Farm Security Administration
Initially created as the Resettlement Administration in 1935 as part of the New Deal in the United States, the Farm Security Administration was an effort during the Depression to combat American rural poverty...

, both in 1937, then the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which set maximum hours and minimum wages for most categories of workers and the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938
Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938
The Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938 was legislation in the United States that was enacted as an alternative and replacement for the farm subsidy policies, in previous New Deal farm legislation , that had been found unconstitutional...

.

Despite Roosevelt campaigning heavily against anti-New Deal Republicans and anti-New Deal Democrats, Republicans gained many seats in Congress in the 1938 midterm elections and the Democrats opponents of the New Deal retained their seats, resulting in the WPA, CCC
Civilian Conservation Corps
The Civilian Conservation Corps was a public work relief program that operated from 1933 to 1942 in the United States for unemployed, unmarried men from relief families, ages 18–25. A part of the New Deal of President Franklin D...

 and other relief programs being shut down during World War II by the Conservative Coalition
Conservative coalition
In the United States, the conservative coalition was an unofficial Congressional coalition bringing together the conservative majority of the Republican Party and the conservative, mostly Southern, wing of the Democratic Party...

 (i.e., the opponents of the New Deal in Congress); they argued the return of full employment
Full employment
In macroeconomics, full employment is a condition of the national economy, where all or nearly all persons willing and able to work at the prevailing wages and working conditions are able to do so....

 made them superfluous. As a Republican President in the 1950s, Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower was the 34th President of the United States, from 1953 until 1961. He was a five-star general in the United States Army...

 left the New Deal largely intact. In the 1960s, Lyndon B. Johnson
Lyndon B. Johnson
Lyndon Baines Johnson , often referred to as LBJ, was the 36th President of the United States after his service as the 37th Vice President of the United States...

's Great Society
Great Society
The Great Society was a set of domestic programs in the United States promoted by President Lyndon B. Johnson and fellow Democrats in Congress in the 1960s. Two main goals of the Great Society social reforms were the elimination of poverty and racial injustice...

 took New Deal policies further. After 1974, laissez faire views grew in support, calling for deregulation of the economy and ending New Deal regulation of transportation, banking and communications in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Several New Deal programs remain active, with some still operating under the original names, including the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is a United States government corporation created by the Glass–Steagall Act of 1933. It provides deposit insurance, which guarantees the safety of deposits in member banks, currently up to $250,000 per depositor per bank. , the FDIC insures deposits at...

 (FDIC), the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation
Federal Crop Insurance Corporation
The Federal Crop Insurance Corporation is a wholly owned Government corporation managed by the Risk Management Agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. FCIC manages the Federal crop insurance program which provides U.S...

 (FCIC), the Federal Housing Administration
Federal Housing Administration
The Federal Housing Administration is a United States government agency created as part of the National Housing Act of 1934. It insured loans made by banks and other private lenders for home building and home buying...

 (FHA), and the Tennessee Valley Authority
Tennessee Valley Authority
The Tennessee Valley Authority is a federally owned corporation in the United States created by congressional charter in May 1933 to provide navigation, flood control, electricity generation, fertilizer manufacturing, and economic development in the Tennessee Valley, a region particularly affected...

 (TVA). The largest programs still in existence today are the Social Security System
Social Security (United States)
In the United States, Social Security refers to the federal Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance program.The original Social Security Act and the current version of the Act, as amended encompass several social welfare and social insurance programs...

 and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Origins


The New Deal represented a significant shift in political
Politics of the United States
The United States is a federal constitutional republic, in which the President of the United States , Congress, and judiciary share powers reserved to the national government, and the federal government shares sovereignty with the state governments.The executive branch is headed by the President...

 and domestic policy
Domestic policy
Domestic policy, also known as public policy, presents decisions, laws, and programs made by the government which are directly related to all issues and activity within the country....

 in the USA, its more lasting changes being increased federal government regulation of the economy. It also marked the beginning of complex social programs and growing power of labor unions. The effects of the New Deal remain a source of controversy and debate amongst economists and historians.

Economists debate whether the causes of the depression and the effect of the 1929 stock market crash can be seen as a signal of the underlying economic issues, as opposed to a trigger for the crisis. Federal Reserve policy, the monetary rigidity of the gold standard
Gold standard
The gold standard is a monetary system in which the standard economic unit of account is a fixed mass of gold. There are distinct kinds of gold standard...

, and overproduction are offered as possible factors in turning a cyclical downturn into a worldwide depression.

From 1929 to 1933, unemployment in the U.S. increased from 4% to 25%, and manufacturing output decreased by one third. Prices fell by 20%, causing a deflation which made the repayments of debts much harder. The mining, lumber, construction, and farming sectors were hit especially hard, along with railroads and heavy industries such as steel and automobiles. The impact was much less severe in the white-collar
White-collar worker
The term white-collar worker refers to a person who performs professional, managerial, or administrative work, in contrast with a blue-collar worker, whose job requires manual labor...

 and service sectors.

Upon accepting the 1932 Democratic
History of the United States Democratic Party
The history of the Democratic Party of the United States is an account of the oldest political party in the United States and arguably the oldest democratic party in the world....

 nomination for president, Franklin Roosevelt promised "a new deal for the American people".:
The Great Depression had devastated the nation. As Roosevelt took the oath of office at noon on March 4, 1933, the state governors had closed every bank in the nation; no one could cash a check or get at their savings.
The unemployment rate was 25% and higher in major industrial and mining centers. Farm income had fallen by over 50% since 1929. 844,000 nonfarm mortgages had been foreclosed, 1930–33, out of five million in all. Political and business leaders feared revolution and anarchy. Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr.
Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr.
Joseph Patrick "Joe" Kennedy, Sr. was a prominent American businessman, investor, and government official....

, who remained wealthy during the Depression, stated years later that "in those days I felt and said I would be willing to part with half of what I had if I could be sure of keeping, under law and order, the other half."

Roosevelt entered office without a specific set of plans for dealing with the Great Depression; so he improvised as Congress listened to a very wide variety of voices. The "First New Deal" (1933–34) encompassed the proposals offered by a wide spectrum of groups. (Not included was the Socialist Party
Socialist Party of America
The Socialist Party of America was a multi-tendency democratic-socialist political party in the United States, formed in 1901 by a merger between the three-year-old Social Democratic Party of America and disaffected elements of the Socialist Labor Party which had split from the main organization...

, whose influence was all but destroyed.) This first phase of the New Deal was also characterized by fiscal conservatism (see Economy Act
Economy Act
The Economy Act of 1933, officially titled the Act of March 20, 1933 , is an Act of Congress that cut the salaries of federal workers and reduced benefit payments to veterans, moves intended to reduce the federal deficit in the United States....

, below) and experimentation with several different, sometimes contradictory, cures for economic ills. The consequences were uneven. Some programs, especially the National Recovery Administration
National Recovery Administration
The National Recovery Administration was the primary New Deal agency established by U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933. The goal was to eliminate "cut-throat competition" by bringing industry, labor and government together to create codes of "fair practices" and set prices...

 (NRA) and the silver program, have been widely seen as failures. Other programs lasted about a decade; some became permanent. The economy shot upward, with FDR's first term marking one of the fastest periods of GDP growth in history. However a downturn in 1937–38 raised questions about just how successful the policies were, with the great majority of economists and historians agreeing they were an overall benefit.

The New Deal policies drew from many different ideas proposed earlier in the 20th century. Assistant Attorney General Thurman Arnold
Thurman Arnold
Thurman Wesley Arnold was an iconoclastic Washington, D.C. lawyer. He was best known for his trust-busting campaign as Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Antitrust Division in Franklin Delano Roosevelt's Department of Justice from 1938 to 1943...

 led efforts that hearkened back to an anti-monopoly tradition rooted in American politics by figures such as Andrew Jackson and Thomas Jefferson. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis
Louis Brandeis
Louis Dembitz Brandeis ; November 13, 1856 – October 5, 1941) was an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court of the United States from 1916 to 1939.He was born in Louisville, Kentucky, to Jewish immigrant parents who raised him in a secular mode...

, an influential adviser to many New Dealers, argued that "bigness" (referring, presumably, to corporations) was a negative economic force, producing waste and inefficiency. However, the anti-monopoly group never had a major impact on New Deal policy. Other leaders such as Hugh Johnson
Hugh Samuel Johnson
Hugh Samuel "Iron Pants" Johnson American Army officer, businessman, speech writer, government official and newspaper columnist. He is best known as a member of the Brain Trust of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932-34. He wrote numerous speeches for FDR and helped plan the New Deal...

 of the NRA took ideas from the Woodrow Wilson
Woodrow Wilson
Thomas Woodrow Wilson was the 28th President of the United States, from 1913 to 1921. A leader of the Progressive Movement, he served as President of Princeton University from 1902 to 1910, and then as the Governor of New Jersey from 1911 to 1913...

 Administration, advocating techniques used to mobilize the economy for World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

. They brought ideas and experience from the government controls and spending of 1917–18. Other New Deal planners revived experiments suggested in the 1920s, such as the TVA.

Among Roosevelt's more famous advisers was an informal "Brain Trust
Brain Trust
Brain trust began as a term for a group of close advisors to a political candidate or incumbent, prized for their expertise in particular fields. The term is most associated with the group of advisors to Franklin Roosevelt during his presidential administration...

": a group that tended to view pragmatic government intervention in the economy positively. Donald Richberg
Donald Richberg
Donald Randall Richberg was an American attorney, civil servant, and author who was one of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's key aides and who played a critical role in the New Deal. He co-wrote the National Industrial Recovery Act, was general counsel and executive director of the National...

, the second head of the NRA, said "A nationally planned economy
Planned economy
A planned economy is an economic system in which decisions regarding production and investment are embodied in a plan formulated by a central authority, usually by a government agency...

 is the only salvation of our present situation and the only hope for the future."

The New Deal faced some vocal conservative opposition. The first organized opposition in 1934 came from the American Liberty League
American Liberty League
The American Liberty League was an American political organization formed in 1934 by conservative Democrats to oppose the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt. It was active for just two years...

 led by conservative Democrats such as 1924 and 1928 presidential candidates John W. Davis
John W. Davis
John William Davis was an American politician, diplomat and lawyer. He served as a United States Representative from West Virginia , then as Solicitor General of the United States and US Ambassador to the UK under President Woodrow Wilson...

 and Al Smith
Al Smith
Alfred Emanuel Smith. , known in private and public life as Al Smith, was an American statesman who was elected the 42nd Governor of New York three times, and was the Democratic U.S. presidential candidate in 1928...

. There was also a large but loosely affiliated group of New Deal opponents, who are commonly called the Old Right
Old Right (United States)
The Old Right was a conservative faction in the United States that opposed both New Deal domestic programs and U.S. entry into World War II. Many members of this faction were associated with the Republicans of the interwar years led by Robert Taft, but some were Democrats...

. This group included politicians, intellectuals, writers, and newspaper editors of various philosophical persuasions including classical liberals and conservatives, both Democrats and Republicans.

World comparisons



Europe

  • Britain was unable to agree on major programs to stop its depression. This led to the collapse of the Labour Party
    Labour Party (UK)
    The Labour Party is a centre-left democratic socialist party in the United Kingdom. It surpassed the Liberal Party in general elections during the early 1920s, forming minority governments under Ramsay MacDonald in 1924 and 1929-1931. The party was in a wartime coalition from 1940 to 1945, after...

     government and its replacement in 1931 by a National Coalition dominated by Conservatives. However, the Depression affected Britain less than most countries due to Britain's exit from the gold standard in 1931 (which deal crisis and the Third Republic
    French Third Republic
    The French Third Republic was the republican government of France from 1870, when the Second French Empire collapsed due to the French defeat in the Franco-Prussian War, to 1940, when France was overrun by Nazi Germany during World War II, resulting in the German and Italian occupations of France...

     very much contested.)
  • In France
    France
    The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

    , the "Front Populaire
    Popular Front (France)
    The Popular Front was an alliance of left-wing movements, including the French Communist Party , the French Section of the Workers' International and the Radical and Socialist Party, during the interwar period...

    " government, led by Léon Blum
    Léon Blum
    André Léon Blum was a French politician, usually identified with the moderate left, and three times the Prime Minister of France.-First political experiences:...

    , in power 1936–1938, instigated major social reforms. As the coalition united representatives from the center-left to the communist party, right-wing opposition was very strong and social turmoil marred the Front Populaire term. This division left the country bitterly divided in 1938–1939.
  • In Germany
    Germany
    Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

     during the Weimar Republic
    Weimar Republic
    The Weimar Republic is the name given by historians to the parliamentary republic established in 1919 in Germany to replace the imperial form of government...

    , the economy spiraled down, leading to a political crisis and the rise to power of the Nazis in January 1933. Economic recovery was pursued through autarky
    Autarky
    Autarky is the quality of being self-sufficient. Usually the term is applied to political states or their economic policies. Autarky exists whenever an entity can survive or continue its activities without external assistance. Autarky is not necessarily economic. For example, a military autarky...

    , wage controls, price controls, and spending programs such as public works
    Public works
    Public works are a broad category of projects, financed and constructed by the government, for recreational, employment, and health and safety uses in the greater community...

     and, especially, military spending.
  • Spain
    Spain
    Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

     endured mounting political crises that led in 1936 to civil war.
  • In Benito Mussolini
    Benito Mussolini
    Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini was an Italian politician who led the National Fascist Party and is credited with being one of the key figures in the creation of Fascism....

    's Italy, the economic controls of his corporate state were tightened.
  • The Soviet Union
    Soviet Union
    The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

     was mostly isolated from the world trading system during the 1930s.
  • Roosevelt's deal helped foreign economies recover, as well as the US's.

Canada & the Caribbean

  • In Canada
    Great Depression in Canada
    Canada was hit hard by the Great Depression. Between 1929 and 1939, the gross national product dropped 40% . Unemployment reached 27% at the depth of the Depression in 1933...

    , Between 1929 and 1939, the gross national product dropped 40%, compared to 37% in the U.S. Unemployment reached 28% at the depth of the Depression in 1933. Many businesses closed, as corporate profits of C$396 million in 1929 turned into losses of $98 million in 1933. Exports shrank by 50% from 1929 to 1933. Worst hit were areas dependent on primary industries such as farming, mining and logging, as prices fell and there were few alternative jobs. Families saw most or all of their assets disappear and their debts became heavier as prices fell. Local and provincial government set up relief programs but there was no nationwide New-Deal-like program. The Conservative government of Prime Minister R. B. Bennett
    R. B. Bennett
    Richard Bedford Bennett, 1st Viscount Bennett, PC, KC was a Canadian lawyer, businessman, politician, and philanthropist. He served as the 11th Prime Minister of Canada from August 7, 1930, to October 23, 1935, during the worst of the Great Depression years...

     retaliated against the Smoot–Hawley tariff by raising tariffs against the U.S. but lowered them on British Empire goods. Nevertheless the economy suffered. In 1935, Bennett proposed a series of programs that resembled the New Deal; the proposals were all rejected and led to his defeat in the elections of 1935
    Canadian federal election, 1935
    The Canadian federal election of 1935 was held on October 14, 1935 to elect members of the Canadian House of Commons of the 18th Parliament of Canada. The Liberal Party of William Lyon Mackenzie King won a majority government, defeating Prime Minister R.B. Bennett's Conservative Party.The central...

    .
  • The Caribbean saw its greatest unemployment during the 1930s because of a decline in exports to the U.S., and a fall in export prices.

Asia

  • China was at war with Japan during most of the 1930s, in addition to internal struggles between Chiang Kai Shek's nationalists and Mao Zedong
    Mao Zedong
    Mao Zedong, also transliterated as Mao Tse-tung , and commonly referred to as Chairman Mao , was a Chinese Communist revolutionary, guerrilla warfare strategist, Marxist political philosopher, and leader of the Chinese Revolution...

    's communists.
  • Japan's economy expanded at the rate of 5% of GDP per year after the years of modernization. Manufacturing and mining came to account for more than 30% of GDP, more than twice the value for the agricultural sector. Most industrial growth, however, was geared toward expanding the nation's military power. Beginning in 1937 with significant land seizures in China, and then to a much greater extent after 1941, which saw annexations and invasions all across Southeast Asia and the Pacific, Japan seized and developed natural resources such as: sugarcane in the Philippines; petroleum from the Dutch East Indies and Burma; tin and bauxite from the Dutch East Indies and Malaya; and coal in China (where production increased from 15000000 t (16,534,669.7 ST) in 1936, to 58000000 t (63,934,056 ST) in 1942) . During the early stages of Japan's expansion, its economy expanded considerably. Iron production rose from 3355000 t (3,698,254.4 ST) in 1937 to 6148000 t (6,777,009.9 ST) in 1943 . Steel production rose from 6442000 t (7,101,089.5 ST) to 8838000 t (9,742,227.4 ST) over the same time period. In 1941, Japanese aircraft industries had capacity to manufacture 10,000 aircraft per year. From 1941–September 1944, defense production (including airplanes and vessels) rose by 94% .

Australia & New Zealand

  • In Australia
    Great Depression in Australia
    Australia suffered badly during the period of the Great Depression of the 1930s. The Depression began with the Wall Street Crash of October, 1929 and rapidly spread worldwide. As in other nations, Australia suffered years of high unemployment, poverty, low profits, deflation, plunging incomes, and...

    , 1930s conservative and Labor-led governments concentrated on cutting spending and reducing the national debt. It was not until World War II that the Australian government (first conservative, then Labor) introduced Keynesian policies
    Keynesian economics
    Keynesian economics is a school of macroeconomic thought based on the ideas of 20th-century English economist John Maynard Keynes.Keynesian economics argues that private sector decisions sometimes lead to inefficient macroeconomic outcomes and, therefore, advocates active policy responses by the...

     similar to the New Deal; increasing taxes in order to fund stimulative spending, economic oversight/regulation, and rationing of petroleum products are prominent examples of an evolving view of the role of government in Australia throughout that period. Many progressive policies remained in place after the end of World War II. Labor Prime Minister Ben Chifley
    Ben Chifley
    Joseph Benedict Chifley , Australian politician, was the 16th Prime Minister of Australia. He took over the Australian Labor Party leadership and Prime Ministership after the death of John Curtin in 1945, and went on to retain government at the 1946 election, before being defeated at the 1949...

     outlined these policies in his "The light on the hill
    The light on the hill
    "The light on the hill" is a phrase used to describe the objective of the Australian Labor Party. The phrase was coined in a 1949 conference speech by then Prime Minister Ben Chifley....

    " speech.
  • In New Zealand
    New Zealand
    New Zealand is an island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses and numerous smaller islands. The country is situated some east of Australia across the Tasman Sea, and roughly south of the Pacific island nations of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga...

    , a series of economic and social policies similar to the New Deal were adopted after the election of the first Labour Government in 1935.

The First Hundred Days



Roosevelt entered office with enormous political capital
Political capital
Political capital is primarily based on a public figure's favorable image among the populace and among other important factors in or out of the government. Political capital is essentially the opinion of another person, group of people, or nation about you, your organization, or your government...

. Americans of all political persuasions were demanding immediate action, and Roosevelt responded with a remarkable series of new programs in the “first hundred days” of the administration, in which he met with Congress for 100 days. During those 100 days of lawmaking, Congress granted every request Roosevelt asked, and passed a few programs (such as the FDIC to insure bank accounts) that he opposed. Ever since, presidents have been judged against FDR for what they accomplished in their first 100 days.

Bank and monetary reforms


With strident language Roosevelt took credit for dethroning the bankers he alleged had caused the debacle. On March 4, 1933, in his first inaugural address
Franklin D. Roosevelt 1933 presidential inauguration
The first inauguration of Franklin D. Roosevelt as the 32nd President of the United States was held on Saturday, March 4, 1933. The inauguration marked the commencement of the first four-year term of Franklin D. Roosevelt as President and John Nance Garner as Vice President...

, he proclaimed:
He closed all the banks in the country and kept them all closed until he could pass new legislation. On March 9, Roosevelt sent to Congress the Emergency Banking Act
Emergency Banking Act
The Emergency Banking Act was an act of the United States Congress spearheaded by President Franklin D. Roosevelt during the Great Depression. It was passed on March 9, 1933...

, drafted in large part by Hoover's top advisors. The act was passed and signed into law the same day. It provided for a system of reopening sound banks under Treasury supervision, with federal loans available if needed. Three-quarters of the banks in the Federal Reserve System
Federal Reserve System
The Federal Reserve System is the central banking system of the United States. It was created on December 23, 1913 with the enactment of the Federal Reserve Act, largely in response to a series of financial panics, particularly a severe panic in 1907...

 reopened within the next three days. Billions of dollars in hoarded currency and gold flowed back into them within a month, thus stabilizing the banking system. By the end of 1933, 4,004 small local banks were permanently closed and merged into larger banks. (Their depositors eventually received on average 86 cents on the dollar of their deposits; it is a common false myth that they received nothing back.) In June 1933, over Roosevelt's objections, Congress created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is a United States government corporation created by the Glass–Steagall Act of 1933. It provides deposit insurance, which guarantees the safety of deposits in member banks, currently up to $250,000 per depositor per bank. , the FDIC insures deposits at...

 (FDIC), which insured deposits for up to $2,500 beginning January 1, 1934; this amount was increased to $5,000 on July 1, 1934.
To deal with deflation, the nation went off the gold standard. In March and April in a series of laws and executive orders, the government suspended the gold standard
Gold standard
The gold standard is a monetary system in which the standard economic unit of account is a fixed mass of gold. There are distinct kinds of gold standard...

 for United States currency
United States dollar
The United States dollar , also referred to as the American dollar, is the official currency of the United States of America. It is divided into 100 smaller units called cents or pennies....

. Anyone holding significant amounts of gold coinage was mandated to exchange it for the existing fixed price of US dollars, after which the US would no longer pay gold on demand for the dollar, and gold would no longer be considered valid legal tender
Legal tender
Legal tender is a medium of payment allowed by law or recognized by a legal system to be valid for meeting a financial obligation. Paper currency is a common form of legal tender in many countries....

 for debts in private and public contracts. The dollar was allowed to float freely on foreign exchange market
Foreign exchange market
The foreign exchange market is a global, worldwide decentralized financial market for trading currencies. Financial centers around the world function as anchors of trading between a wide range of different types of buyers and sellers around the clock, with the exception of weekends...

s with no guaranteed price in gold, only to be fixed again at a significantly lower level a year later with the passage of the Gold Reserve Act
Gold Reserve Act
The United States Gold Reserve Act of January 30, 1934 required that all gold and gold certificates held by the Federal Reserve be surrendered and vested in the sole title of the United States Department of the Treasury....

 in 1934. Markets immediately responded well to the suspension, in the hope that the decline in prices would finally end.

The economy had hit bottom in March 1933 and then started to expand. Economic indicators show the economy reached nadir in the first days of March, then began a steady, sharp upward recovery. Thus the Federal Reserve Index of Industrial Production sank to its lowest point of 52.8 in July 1932 (with 1935–39 = 100) and was practically unchanged at 54.3 in March 1933; however by July 1933, it reached 85.5, a dramatic rebound of 57% in four months. Recovery was steady and strong until 1937. Except for employment, the economy by 1937 surpassed the levels of the late 1920s. The Recession of 1937
Recession of 1937
The Recession of 1937–1938 was a temporary reversal of the pre-war 1933 to 1941 economic recovery from the Great Depression in the United States.-Background:...

 was a temporary downturn. Private sector employment, especially in manufacturing, recovered to the level of the 1920s but failed to advance further until the war. Chart 2 below shows the growth in employment without adjusting for population growth. The U.S. population was 124,840,471 in 1932 and 128,824,829 in 1937, an increase of 3,984,468. The ratio of these numbers, times the number of jobs in 1932, means there was a need for 938,000 more 1937 jobs to maintain the same employment level.


Economy Act


The Economy Act
Economy Act
The Economy Act of 1933, officially titled the Act of March 20, 1933 , is an Act of Congress that cut the salaries of federal workers and reduced benefit payments to veterans, moves intended to reduce the federal deficit in the United States....

, drafted by Budget Director Christian McDonald was passed on March 14, 1933. The act proposed to balance the "regular" (non-emergency) federal budget by cutting the salaries of government employees and cutting pensions to veterans by fifteen percent. It saved $500 million per year and reassured deficit hawks, such as Douglas, that the new President was fiscally conservative. Roosevelt argued there were two budgets: the "regular" federal budget, which he balanced, and the "emergency budget", which was needed to defeat the depression; it was imbalanced on a temporary basis.

Roosevelt was initially in favor of balancing the budget, but he soon found himself running spending deficits in order to fund the numerous programs he created. Douglas, however, rejecting the distinction between a regular and emergency budget, resigned in 1934 and became an outspoken critic of the New Deal. Roosevelt strenuously opposed the Bonus Bill
World War Adjusted Compensation Act
The World War Adjusted Compensation Act, or Bonus Act, was a United States federal law passed on May 19, 1924, that granted a benefit to veterans of American military service in World War I.-Provisions:...

 that would give World War I veterans a cash bonus. Finally, Congress passed it over his veto in 1936, and the Treasury distributed $1.5 billion in cash as bonus welfare benefits to 4 million veterans just before the 1936 election.

New Dealers never accepted the Keynesian
Keynesian economics
Keynesian economics is a school of macroeconomic thought based on the ideas of 20th-century English economist John Maynard Keynes.Keynesian economics argues that private sector decisions sometimes lead to inefficient macroeconomic outcomes and, therefore, advocates active policy responses by the...

 argument for government spending as a vehicle for recovery. Most economists of the era, along with Henry Morgenthau
Henry Morgenthau, Jr.
Henry Morgenthau, Jr. was the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury during the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt. He played a major role in designing and financing the New Deal...

 of the Treasury Department, rejected Keynesian solutions and favored balanced budgets.

Women and the New Deal


At first the New Deal created programs primarily for men. It was assumed that the husband was the "breadwinner" (the provider) and if they had jobs, whole families would benefit. It was the social norm for women to give up jobs when they married; in many states there were laws that prevented both husband and wife holding regular jobs with the government. So too in the relief world, it was rare for both husband and wife to have a relief job on FERA or the WPA. This prevailing social norm of the breadwinner failed to take into account the numerous households headed by women, but it soon became clear that the government needed to help women as well.

Many women were employed on FERA projects run by the states with federal funds. The first New Deal program to directly assist women was the Works Progress Administration (WPA), begun in 1935. It hired single women, widows, or women with disabled or absent husbands. While men were given unskilled manual labor jobs, usually on construction projects, women were assigned mostly to sewing projects. They made clothing and bedding to be given away to charities and hospitals. Women also were hired for the WPA's school lunch program. Both men and women were hired for the arts programs (such as music, theater and writing). The Social Security program was designed to help retired workers and widows, but did not include domestic workers, farmers or farm laborers, the jobs most often held by blacks. Social Security however was not a relief program and it was not designed for short-term needs, as very few people received benefits before 1942.

Artist Programs


An unusual branch of the WPA, Federal One, gave jobs to writers, musicians, artists, and theater personnel. Under the Federal Writer’s Project, a detailed guide book was prepared for every state, local archives were catalogued, and writers such as Margaret Walker
Margaret Walker
Margaret Abigail Walker Alexander was an African-American poet and writer. Born in Birmingham, Alabama, she wrote as Margaret Walker. One of her best-known poems is For My People.-Biography:...

, Zora Neale Hurston
Zora Neale Hurston
Zora Neale Hurston was an American folklorist, anthropologist, and author during the time of the Harlem Renaissance...

, and Anzia Yezierska
Anzia Yezierska
Anzia Yezierska was a Polish-American novelist born in Maly Plock, Poland.- Personal life :Anzia Yezierska was born in the 1880s in Maly Plock to Bernard and Pearl Yezierski. Her family immigrated to America around 1890, following in the footsteps of her eldest brother Meyer, who arrived to the...

 were hired to document folklore. Other writers interviewed elderly ex-slaves and recorded their stories. Under the Federal Theater Project, headed by charismatic Hallie Flanagan
Hallie Flanagan
Hallie Flanagan was an American theatrical producer and director, playwright, and author, best known as director of the Federal Theatre Project, a part of the Works Progress Administration .-Background:...

, actresses and actors, technicians, writers, and directors put on stage productions. The tickets were inexpensive or sometimes free, making theater available to audiences unaccustomed to attending plays. One Federal Art Project paid 162 trained woman artists on relief to paint murals or create statues for newly built post offices and courthouses. Many of these works of art can still be seen in public buildings around the country, along with murals sponsored by the Treasury Relief Art Project of the Treasury Department.


Farm and rural programs


Many rural people lived in severe poverty, especially in the South. Major programs addressed to their needs included the Resettlement Administration
Resettlement Administration
The Resettlement Administration was a U.S. federal agency that, between April 1935 and December 1936, relocated struggling urban and rural families to communities planned by the federal government....

 (RA), the Rural Electrification Administration (REA), rural welfare projects sponsored by the WPA, NYA, Forest Service and CCC, including school lunches, building new schools, opening roads in remote areas, reforestation, and purchase of marginal lands to enlarge national forests. In 1933, the Administration launched the Tennessee Valley Authority
Tennessee Valley Authority
The Tennessee Valley Authority is a federally owned corporation in the United States created by congressional charter in May 1933 to provide navigation, flood control, electricity generation, fertilizer manufacturing, and economic development in the Tennessee Valley, a region particularly affected...

, a project involving dam construction planning on an unprecedented scale in order to curb flooding, generate electricity, and modernize the very poor farms in the Tennessee Valley
Tennessee Valley
The Tennessee Valley is the drainage basin of the Tennessee River and is largely within the U.S. state of Tennessee. It stretches from southwest Kentucky to northwest Georgia and from northeast Mississippi to the mountains of Virginia and North Carolina...

 region of the Southern United States
Southern United States
The Southern United States—commonly referred to as the American South, Dixie, or simply the South—constitutes a large distinctive area in the southeastern and south-central United States...

.

Roosevelt was keenly interested in farm issues and believed that true prosperity would not return until farming was prosperous. Many different programs were directed at farmers. The first 100 days produced the Farm Security Act to raise farm incomes by raising the prices farmers received, which was achieved by reducing total farm output. The Agricultural Adjustment Act
Agricultural Adjustment Act
The Agricultural Adjustment Act was a United States federal law of the New Deal era which restricted agricultural production by paying farmers subsidies not to plant part of their land and to kill off excess livestock...

 created the Agricultural Adjustment Administration (AAA) in May 1933. The act reflected the demands of leaders of major farm organizations, especially the Farm Bureau, and reflected debates among Roosevelt's farm advisers such as Secretary of Agriculture Henry A. Wallace
Henry A. Wallace
Henry Agard Wallace was the 33rd Vice President of the United States , the Secretary of Agriculture , and the Secretary of Commerce . In the 1948 presidential election, Wallace was the nominee of the Progressive Party.-Early life:Henry A...

, M.L. Wilson, Rexford Tugwell
Rexford Tugwell
Rexford Guy Tugwell was an agricultural economist who became part of Franklin D. Roosevelt's first "Brain Trust," a group of Columbia academics who helped develop policy recommendations leading up to Roosevelt's 1932 election as President...

, and George Peek
George Peek
George Nelson Peek was an American agricultural economist, business executive, and civil servant. He was the first Administrator of the Agricultural Adjustment Administration and the first President of the two banks that would become the Export-Import Bank of the United States.-Early life and...

.

The aim of the AAA was to raise prices for commodities through artificial scarcity. The AAA used a system of "domestic allotments", setting total output of corn, cotton, dairy products, hogs, rice, tobacco, and wheat. The farmers themselves had a voice in the process of using government to benefit their incomes. The AAA paid land owners subsidies for leaving some of their land idle with funds provided by a new tax on food processing. The goal was to force up farm prices to the point of "parity", an index based on 1910–1914 prices. To meet 1933 goals, 10 million acres (40,468.6 km²) of growing cotton was plowed up, bountiful crops were left to rot, and six million baby pigs were killed and discarded. The idea was the less produced, the higher the wholesale price and the higher income to the farmer. Farm incomes increased significantly in the first three years of the New Deal, as prices for commodities rose. Food prices remained well below 1929 levels. A Gallup Poll printed in the Washington Post revealed that a majority of the American public opposed the AAA.

The AAA established an important and long-lasting federal role in the planning on the entire agricultural sector of the economy and was the first program on such a scale on behalf of the troubled agricultural economy. The original AAA did not provide for any sharecroppers or tenants or farm laborers who might become unemployed, but there were other New Deal programs especially for them.

In 1936, the Supreme Court declared the AAA to be unconstitutional
Constitutionality
Constitutionality is the condition of acting in accordance with an applicable constitution. Acts that are not in accordance with the rules laid down in the constitution are deemed to be ultra vires.-See also:*ultra vires*Company law*Constitutional law...

, stating that "a statutory plan to regulate and control agricultural production, [is] a matter beyond the powers delegated to the federal government..." The AAA was replaced by a similar program that did win Court approval. Instead of paying farmers for letting fields lie barren, this program instead subsidized them for planting soil enriching crops such as alfalfa
Alfalfa
Alfalfa is a flowering plant in the pea family Fabaceae cultivated as an important forage crop in the US, Canada, Argentina, France, Australia, the Middle East, South Africa, and many other countries. It is known as lucerne in the UK, France, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand, and known as...

 that would not be sold on the market. Federal regulation of agricultural production has been modified many times since then, but together with large subsidies it is still in effect in 2010.

The last major New Deal legislation concerning farming was in 1937, when the Farm Tenancy Act was created which in turn created the Farm Security Administration
Farm Security Administration
Initially created as the Resettlement Administration in 1935 as part of the New Deal in the United States, the Farm Security Administration was an effort during the Depression to combat American rural poverty...

 (FSA), replacing the Resettlement Administration.

A major new welfare program was the Food Stamp Plan established in 1939. It survives into the 21st century with little controversy because it benefits the urban poor, food producers, grocers and wholesalers, as well as farmers, thereby winning support from both liberal and conservative Congressmen.

Repeal of Prohibition


In a measure that garnered substantial popular support for his New Deal, Roosevelt, on March 13, 1933, moved to put to rest one of the most divisive cultural issues of the 1920s. Just nine days later he signed the bill to legalize the manufacture and sale of alcohol, an interim measure pending the repeal of Prohibition
Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Eighteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution established Prohibition in the United States. The separate Volstead Act set down methods of enforcing the Eighteenth Amendment, and defined which "intoxicating liquors" were prohibited, and which were excluded from prohibition...

, for which a constitutional amendment (the 21st
Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution
The Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution repealed the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which had mandated nationwide Prohibition...

) was already in process. The repeal amendment was ratified later in 1933. States and cities gained additional new revenue, and Roosevelt secured his popularity in the cities for supporting or permitting the legal production and sale of alcoholic beverages.

Puerto Rico


A separate set of programs operated in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico , officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico , is an unincorporated territory of the United States, located in the northeastern Caribbean, east of the Dominican Republic and west of both the United States Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands.Puerto Rico comprises an...

, headed by the Puerto Rico Reconstruction Administration
Puerto Rico Reconstruction Administration
Puerto Rico Reconstruction Administration was one of the alphabet agencies, created during the American New Deal. It was established in the Department of the Interior by Executive Order 7057 of May 28, 1935, and eliminated as of February 26, 1940, by act of August 15, 1953 .The objectives of the...

. It promoted land reform
Land reform
[Image:Jakarta farmers protest23.jpg|300px|thumb|right|Farmers protesting for Land Reform in Indonesia]Land reform involves the changing of laws, regulations or customs regarding land ownership. Land reform may consist of a government-initiated or government-backed property redistribution,...

 and helped small farms; it set up farm cooperatives, promoted crop diversification, and helped local industry. The Puerto Rico Reconstruction Administration was directed by Juan Pablo Montoya Sr. from 1935 to 1937.

Tax increases


In 1935, Roosevelt called for a tax program called the Wealth Tax Act to redistribute wealth, in which he proposed to increase inheritance tax, a gift tax, a severely graduated income tax, and a corporate income tax scaled according to income. However, Congress watered it down, by dropping the inheritance tax and only mildly increased the corporate tax.

A tax called the Undistributed profits tax
Undistributed profits tax
The Undistributed Profits Tax was enacted in 1936 by the United States administration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt , during the Great Depression . The UP Tax was a revenue program for FDR's New Deal. The act was controversial even within FDR's United States Treasury Department, as some noted...

 was enacted in 1936. The idea was to force businesses to distribute profits in dividend and wages, instead of saving or reinvesting them. Business profits were taxed on a sliding scale; if a company kept 1% of their net income, 10% of that amount would be taxed under the UP Tax. If a company kept 70% of their net income, the company would be taxed at a rate of 73.91% on that amount. Facing widespread and fierce criticism, the tax was reduced to 2½% in 1938 and completely eliminated in 1939.

Business, labor, and government cooperation


Besides all the programs for immediate relief, the federal government embarked quickly on an agenda of long-term reform aimed at avoiding another depression. The New Dealers responded to demands to inflate the currency by a variety of means. Another group of reformers sought to build consumer and farmer co-ops as a counterweight to big business. The consumer co-ops did not take off, but the Rural Electrification Administration used co-ops to bring electricity to rural areas, many of which still operate.

From 1929 to 1933, the industrial economy had been suffering from a vicious cycle of deflation
Deflation (economics)
In economics, deflation is a decrease in the general price level of goods and services. Deflation occurs when the inflation rate falls below 0% . This should not be confused with disinflation, a slow-down in the inflation rate...

. Since 1931, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the voice of the nation's organized business, promoted an anti-deflationary scheme that would permit trade associations to cooperate in government-instigated cartels to stabilize prices within their industries. While existing antitrust laws clearly forbade such practices, organized business found a receptive ear in the Roosevelt Administration. The Roosevelt Administration, packed with reformers aspiring to forge all elements of society into a cooperative unit (a reaction to the worldwide specter of business-labor "class struggle"), was fairly amenable to the idea of cooperation among producers. FDR closed national banks on March 6, 1933, a day before he was officially inaugurated, to help stabilize the economy. Then three days later on March 9, he passed the Emergency Banking Relief Act to jumpstart money to flow in the economy.

The administration insisted that business would have to ensure that the incomes of workers would rise along with their prices. The product of all these impulses and pressures was the National Industrial Recovery Act
National Industrial Recovery Act
The National Industrial Recovery Act , officially known as the Act of June 16, 1933 The National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA), officially known as the Act of June 16, 1933 The National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA), officially known as the Act of June 16, 1933 (Ch. 90, 48 Stat. 195, formerly...

 (NIRA) which was passed by Congress in June 1933. The NIRA established the National Planning Board, also called the National Resources Planning Board (NRPB), to assist in planning the economy by providing recommendations and information. Fredric A. Delano, the president's uncle, was appointed head of the NRPB.

The NIRA guaranteed to workers the right of collective bargaining and helped spur some union organizing activity, but much faster growth of union membership came before the 1935 Wagner Act. The NIRA established the National Recovery Administration
National Recovery Administration
The National Recovery Administration was the primary New Deal agency established by U.S. president Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933. The goal was to eliminate "cut-throat competition" by bringing industry, labor and government together to create codes of "fair practices" and set prices...

 (NRA), which attempted to stabilize prices and wages through cooperative "code authorities" involving government, business, and labor. The NRA allowed business to create a multitude of regulations imposing the pricing and production standards for all sorts of goods and services. Most economists were dubious because it was based on fixing prices to reduce competition; the NRA was ended by the Supreme Court in 1935, and no one tried to revive it.

To prime the pump and cut unemployment, the NIRA created the Public Works Administration
Public Works Administration
The Public Works Administration , part of the New Deal of 1933, was a large-scale public works construction agency in the United States headed by Secretary of the Interior Harold L. Ickes. It was created by the National Industrial Recovery Act in June 1933 in response to the Great Depression...

 (PWA), a major program of public works. From 1933 to 1935 PWA spent $3.3 billion with private companies to build 34,599 projects, many of them quite large.

NRA "Blue Eagle" campaign




Roosevelt believed that the severity of the Depression was due to excessive business competition that lowered wages and prices, which he believed lowered demand and employment. He argued that government economic planning was necessary to remedy this:

...A mere builder of more industrial plants, a creator of more railroad systems, an organizer of more corporations, is as likely to be a danger as a help. Our task is not ... necessarily producing more goods. It is the soberer, less dramatic business of administering resources
and plants already in hand.


New Deal economists argued that cut-throat competition had hurt many businesses and that with prices having fallen 20% and more, "deflation" exacerbated the burden of debt and would delay recovery. They rejected a strong move in Congress to limit the workweek to 30 hours. Instead their remedy, designed in cooperation with big business, was the NIRA. It included stimulus funds for the WPA to spend, and sought to raise prices, give more bargaining power
Bargaining power
Bargaining power is a concept related to the relative abilities of parties in a situation to exert influence over each other. If both parties are on an equal footing in a debate, then they will have equal bargaining power, such as in a perfectly competitive market, or between an evenly matched...

 for unions (so the workers could purchase more) and reduce harmful competition. At the center of the NIRA was the National Recovery Administration (NRA), headed by former General Hugh Johnson
Hugh Samuel Johnson
Hugh Samuel "Iron Pants" Johnson American Army officer, businessman, speech writer, government official and newspaper columnist. He is best known as a member of the Brain Trust of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932-34. He wrote numerous speeches for FDR and helped plan the New Deal...

, who had been a senior economic official in World War I. Johnson called on every business establishment in the nation to accept a stopgap "blanket code": a minimum wage of between 20 and 45 cents per hour, a maximum workweek of 35–45 hours, and the abolition of child labor
Child labor
Child labour refers to the employment of children at regular and sustained labour. This practice is considered exploitative by many international organizations and is illegal in many countries...

. Johnson and Roosevelt contended that the "blanket code" would raise consumer purchasing power and increase employment.

To mobilize political support for the NRA, Johnson launched the "NRA Blue Eagle
Blue Eagle
The Blue Eagle, a blue-colored representation of the American thunderbird, with outspread wings, was a symbol used in the United States by companies to show compliance with the National Industrial Recovery Act...

" publicity campaign to boost what he called "industrial self-government". The NRA brought together leaders in each industry to design specific sets of codes for that industry; the most important provisions were anti-deflationary floors below which no company would lower prices or wages, and agreements on maintaining employment and production. In a remarkably short time, the NRA announced agreements from almost every major industry in the nation. By March 1934, industrial production was 45% higher than in March 1933. Donald Richberg, who soon replaced Johnson as the head of the NRA said:

There is no choice presented to American business between intelligently planned and uncontrolled industrial operations and a return to the gold-plated anarchy that masqueraded as "rugged individualism" ... Unless industry is sufficiently socialized by its private owners and managers so that great essential industries are operated under public obligation appropriate to the public interest in them, the advance of political control over private industry is inevitable.


By the time NRA ended in May 1935, industrial production was 55% higher than in May 1933. On May 27, 1935, the NRA was found to be unconstitutional by a unanimous decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Schechter v. United States. On that same day, the Court unanimously struck down the Frazier-Lemke Act portion of the New Deal as unconstitutional. Libertarian Richard Ebeling
Richard Ebeling
Richard M. Ebeling is an American libertarian author, and was president of the Foundation for Economic Education from 2003 to 2008....

 believes these and other rulings striking down portions of the New Deal prevented the U.S. economic system from becoming a planned economy
Planned economy
A planned economy is an economic system in which decisions regarding production and investment are embodied in a plan formulated by a central authority, usually by a government agency...

 corporate state. Governor Huey Long
Huey Long
Huey Pierce Long, Jr. , nicknamed The Kingfish, served as the 40th Governor of Louisiana from 1928–1932 and as a U.S. Senator from 1932 to 1935. A Democrat, he was noted for his radical populist policies. Though a backer of Franklin D...

 of Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

 said, "I raise my hand in reverence to the Supreme Court that saved this nation from fascism
Fascism
Fascism is a radical authoritarian nationalist political ideology. Fascists seek to rejuvenate their nation based on commitment to the national community as an organic entity, in which individuals are bound together in national identity by suprapersonal connections of ancestry, culture, and blood...

."

However, soon after, on June 27, 1935, the NLRA was passed, which gave even more power to unions. It forced employees to join unions if a majority of employers voted in favor of unionizing and prohibited business management from declining to engage in collective bargaining with the unions. The Act also established the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to enforce the rules of the NLRA and enforce wage agreements.

Employment in private sector factories recovered to the level of the late 1920s by 1937 but did not grow much bigger until the war came and manufacturing employment leaped from 11 million in 1940 to 18 million in 1943.

Housing Sector


The New Deal had an important impact in the housing field. The New Deal followed and increased President Hoover's lead and seek measures. The New Deal sought to stimulate the private home building industry and increase the number of individuals who owned homes. The New Deal implemented two new housing agencies; Home Owners' Loan Corporation
Home Owners' Loan Corporation
The Home Owners' Loan Corporation was a New Deal agency established in 1933 by the Home Owners' Loan Corporation Act under President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Its purpose was to refinance home mortgages currently in default to prevent foreclosure. This was accomplished by selling bonds to lenders in...

 (HOLC) and the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). HOLC “facilitated nation-wide lending and encouraged uniform national appraisal methods”. The Federal Housing Administration
Federal Housing Administration
The Federal Housing Administration is a United States government agency created as part of the National Housing Act of 1934. It insured loans made by banks and other private lenders for home building and home buying...

 (FHA) created national standards for home construction. The New Deal helped increase the number of Americans who owned homes. Before the New Deal only four out of 10 Americans owned homes; this was because the standard mortgage lasted only five to 10 years and had interest as high as 8%. These conditions severely limited the accessibility to housing for most Americans. Under the New Deal, Americans had access to 30-year mortgages, the standardized appraisal and construction standards helped open up the housing market to more Americans. Forty years after the implementation of the New Deal, ⅔ of Americans were home owners.

Legislative successes and failures


In the spring of 1935, responding to the setbacks in the Court, a new skepticism in Congress, and the growing popular clamor for more dramatic action, the Administration proposed or endorsed several important new initiatives. Historians refer to them as the "Second New Deal" and note that it was more radical, more pro-labor and anti-business than the "First New Deal" of 1933–34. The National Labor Relations Act
National Labor Relations Act
The National Labor Relations Act or Wagner Act , is a 1935 United States federal law that limits the means with which employers may react to workers in the private sector who create labor unions , engage in collective bargaining, and take part in strikes and other forms of concerted activity in...

, also known as the Wagner Act, revived and strengthened the protections of collective bargaining contained in the original NIRA. The result was a tremendous growth of membership in the labor unions composing the American Federation of Labor
American Federation of Labor
The American Federation of Labor was one of the first federations of labor unions in the United States. It was founded in 1886 by an alliance of craft unions disaffected from the Knights of Labor, a national labor association. Samuel Gompers was elected president of the Federation at its...

. Labor thus became a major component of the New Deal political coalition. Roosevelt nationalized unemployment relief through the Works Progress Administration
Works Progress Administration
The Works Progress Administration was the largest and most ambitious New Deal agency, employing millions of unskilled workers to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads, and operated large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects...

 (WPA), headed by close friend Harry Hopkins
Harry Hopkins
Harry Lloyd Hopkins was one of Franklin Delano Roosevelt's closest advisers. He was one of the architects of the New Deal, especially the relief programs of the Works Progress Administration , which he directed and built into the largest employer in the country...

. It created hundreds of thousands of low-skilled blue collar jobs for unemployed men (and some for unemployed women and white collar workers). The National Youth Administration
National Youth Administration
The National Youth Administration was a New Deal agency in the United States that focused on providing work and education for Americans between the ages of 16 and 24. It operated from 1935 to 1939 as part of the Works Progress Administration . Following the passage of the Reorganization Act of...

 was the semi-autonomous WPA program for youth. Its Texas
Texas
Texas is the second largest U.S. state by both area and population, and the largest state by area in the contiguous United States.The name, based on the Caddo word "Tejas" meaning "friends" or "allies", was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in...

 director, Lyndon Baines Johnson, later used the NYA as a model for some of his Great Society
Great Society
The Great Society was a set of domestic programs in the United States promoted by President Lyndon B. Johnson and fellow Democrats in Congress in the 1960s. Two main goals of the Great Society social reforms were the elimination of poverty and racial injustice...

 programs in the 1960s.

The most important program of 1935, and perhaps the New Deal as a whole, was the Social Security Act
Social Security (United States)
In the United States, Social Security refers to the federal Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance program.The original Social Security Act and the current version of the Act, as amended encompass several social welfare and social insurance programs...

, which established a system of universal retirement pensions, unemployment insurance, and welfare benefits for poor families and the handicapped. It established the framework for the U.S. welfare system. Roosevelt insisted that it should be funded by payroll taxes rather than from the general fund; he said, "We put those payroll contributions there so as to give the contributors a legal, moral, and political right to collect their pensions and unemployment benefits. With those taxes in there, no damn politician can ever scrap my social security program." One of the last New Deal agencies was the United States Housing Authority
United States Housing Authority
The United States Housing Authority, or USHA, was an agency created during 1937 as part of the New Deal.It was designed to lend money to the states or communities for low-cost construction. Units for about 650,000 low-income people but mostly homeless were started...

, created in 1937 with some Republican support to abolish slum
Slum
A slum, as defined by United Nations agency UN-HABITAT, is a run-down area of a city characterized by substandard housing and squalor and lacking in tenure security. According to the United Nations, the percentage of urban dwellers living in slums decreased from 47 percent to 37 percent in the...

s.

Defeat: court packing and executive reorganization


Roosevelt, however, emboldened by the triumphs of his first term, set out in 1937 to consolidate authority within the government in ways that provoked powerful opposition. Early in the year, he asked Congress to expand the number of justices on the Supreme Court
Judiciary Reorganization Bill of 1937
The Judicial Procedures Reform Bill of 1937, frequently called the court-packing plan, was a legislative initiative proposed by U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt to add more justices to the U.S. Supreme Court. Roosevelt's purpose was to obtain favorable rulings regarding New Deal legislation that...

 so as to allow him to appoint members sympathetic to his ideas and hence tip the ideological balance of the Court. This proposal provoked a storm of protest.

In one sense, however, it succeeded: Justice Owen Roberts
Owen Josephus Roberts
Owen Josephus Roberts was an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court for fifteen years. He also led the fact-finding commission that investigated the attack on Pearl Harbor. At the time of World War II, he was the only Republican appointed Judge on the Supreme Court of the United...

 switched positions and began voting to uphold New Deal measures, effectively creating a liberal majority in West Coast Hotel Co. v. Parrish
West Coast Hotel Co. v. Parrish
West Coast Hotel Co. v. Parrish, , was a decision by the United States Supreme Court upholding the constitutionality of minimum wage legislation enacted by the State of Washington, overturning an earlier decision in Adkins v. Children's Hospital,...

and National Labor Relations Board v. Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation
National Labor Relations Board v. Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation
National Labor Relations Board v. Jones & Laughlin Steel Corporation, 301 U.S. 1 , was a United States Supreme Court case that declared that the National Labor Relations Act of 1935 was constitutional...

, thus departing from the Lochner v. New York
Lochner v. New York
Lochner vs. New York, , was a landmark United States Supreme Court case that held a "liberty of contract" was implicit in the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The case involved a New York law that limited the number of hours that a baker could work each day to ten, and limited the...

era and giving the government more power in questions of economic policies. Journalists called this change "the switch in time that saved nine
The switch in time that saved nine
“The switch in time that saved nine” is the name given to what was perceived as the sudden jurisprudential shift by Associate Justice Owen J. Roberts of the U.S. Supreme Court in West Coast Hotel Co. v. Parrish...

". Recent scholars have noted that since the vote in Parrish took place several months before the court-packing plan was announced, other factors, like evolving jurisprudence, must have contributed to the Court's swing. The opinions handed down in the spring of 1937, favorable to the government, also contributed to the downfall of the plan. In any case, the "court packing plan", as it was known, did lasting political damage to Roosevelt and was finally rejected by Congress in July.

Government role: balance labor, business, and farming


The number of unemployed in 1929 was estimated at less than 4%, but by 1933 the unemployment rate had jumped up to approximately 25%.
The New Deal was designed for complete economic recovery during the depression. However, the New Deal did not achieve full economic recovery. It actually had a limited economic impact. The New Deal failed to lower the unemployment rate below 14%. However, the New Deal did help maintain an average of 17% level the unemployment throughout the 1930s. Most scholars believe that there were three versions of the New Deal in between 1933 and 1940. The first New Deal took place between 1933 and 1935 and was focused on both farm and factory. The second New Deal was introduced in 1935. In this New Deal, the country's welfare system was dramatically changed and expanded. One example of the New Deal’s new welfare programs was the Works Progress Administration (WPA), which was created to “return the unemployed to the work force”.

During the New Deal period, the federal government evolved into an arbitrator in the competition among elements and classes of society, acting as a force to help some groups and limit the power of others. This elevated and strengthened newer interest groups which allowed these to compete more effectively.

By the end of the 1930s, business found itself competing for influence with an increasingly powerful labor movement, with an organized agricultural economy, and occasionally with aroused consumers. This was accomplished by creating a series of government institutions that greatly and permanently expanded the role of the federal government. Thus, perhaps the strongest legacy of the New Deal was to make the federal government a protector of interest groups and a supervisor of competition among them.

As a result of the New Deal, political and economic life became more competitive than before, with workers, farmers, consumers, and others now able to press their demands upon the government in ways that in the past had been available only to the corporate world. Hence the frequent description of the government the New Deal created as the "broker state", a state brokering the competing claims of numerous groups. If there was more political competition, there was less market competition. Farmers were not allowed to sell for less than the official price. The transportation industry was tightly regulated so that every firm had a guaranteed market and management and labor had high profits and high wages, all at the cost of high prices and much inefficiency . Quotas in the oil industry were fixed by the Railroad Commission of Texas
Railroad Commission of Texas
The Railroad Commission of Texas is the state agency that regulates the oil and gas industry, gas utilities, pipeline safety, safety in the liquefied petroleum gas industry, and surface coal and uranium mining .Established by the Texas Legislature in 1891, it is the state's oldest regulatory...

 with Tom Connally's federal Hot Oil Act of 1935
Connally Hot Oil Act of 1935
The Connally Hot Oil Act of 1935 was enacted in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision to strike down Section 9 of the National Industrial Recovery Act in Panama Refining Co. v. Ryan, which gave the President authority "to prohibit the transportation in interstate and foreign commerce of...

, which guaranteed that illegal "hot oil" would not be sold. To the New Dealers, the free market meant "cut-throat competition" and they considered that evil. It was not until the 1970s and 1980s that most of the New Deal regulations were relaxed.

African Americans


Although many Americans suffered economically during the Great Depression, African Americans also had to deal with social ills, such as racism, discrimination, and segregation.

Many leading New Dealers, including Eleanor Roosevelt
Eleanor Roosevelt
Anna Eleanor Roosevelt was the First Lady of the United States from 1933 to 1945. She supported the New Deal policies of her husband, distant cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and became an advocate for civil rights. After her husband's death in 1945, Roosevelt continued to be an international...

, Harold Ickes
Harold L. Ickes
Harold LeClair Ickes was a United States administrator and politician. He served as United States Secretary of the Interior for 13 years, from 1933 to 1946, the longest tenure of anyone to hold the office, and the second longest serving Cabinet member in U.S. history next to James Wilson. Ickes...

, Aubrey Williams
Aubrey Willis Williams
Aubrey Willis Williams was an American social and civil rights activist who headed the National Youth Administration during the New Deal.-Biography:...

, and John Flores Sr. worked to ensure blacks received at least 10% of welfare assistance payments. There was no attempt whatsoever to end segregation, or to increase black rights in the South. Roosevelt appointed an unprecedented number of blacks to second-level positions in his administration; these appointees were collectively called the Black Cabinet
Black Cabinet
The Black Cabinet was first known as the Federal Council of Negro Affairs, an informal group of African-American public policy advisors to United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt. It was supported by the first lady Eleanor Roosevelt...

. Roosevelt and Hopkins worked with several big city mayors to encourage the transition of black political organizations from the Republican Party to the Democratic Party from 1934 to 1936, most notably in Chicago. The black community responded favorably, so that by 1936 the majority who voted (usually in the North) were voting Democratic. This was a sharp realignment from 1932, when most African Americans voted the Republican ticket. New Deal policies helped establish a political alliance between blacks and the Democratic Party that survives into the 21st century.

The WPA, NYA, and CCC relief programs allocated 10% of their budgets to blacks (who comprised about 10% of the total population, and 20% of the poor). They operated separate all-black units with the same pay and conditions as white units.

However, these benefits were small in comparison to the economic and political advantages that whites received. Social Security
Social Security (United States)
In the United States, Social Security refers to the federal Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance program.The original Social Security Act and the current version of the Act, as amended encompass several social welfare and social insurance programs...

 was denied to blacks, and most unions excluded blacks from joining. Enforcement of anti-discrimination laws in the South was virtually impossible, especially since most blacks worked in hospitality and agricultural sectors.
The Farm Service Agency (FSA), a government relief agency for tenant farmers, created in 1937, made efforts to empower African Americans by appointing them to agency committees in the South. Senator James F. Byrnes of South Carolina raised opposition to the appointments because he stood for white farmers who were threatened by an agency that could organize and empower tenant farmers.

Initially, the FSA stood behind their appointments, but after feeling national pressure FSA was forced to release the African Americans of their positions. The goals of the FSA were notoriously liberal and not cohesive with the southern voting elite.

Recession of 1937 and recovery


The Roosevelt Administration was under assault during FDR's second term, which presided over a new dip in the Great Depression in the fall of 1937 that continued through most of 1938. Production declined sharply, as did profits and employment. Unemployment jumped from 14.3% in 1937 to 19.0% in 1938. Keynesian economists speculated that this was a result of a premature effort to curb government spending and balance the budget, while conservatives said it was caused by attacks on business and by the huge strikes caused by the organizing activities of the Congress of Industrial Organizations
Congress of Industrial Organizations
The Congress of Industrial Organizations, or CIO, proposed by John L. Lewis in 1932, was a federation of unions that organized workers in industrial unions in the United States and Canada from 1935 to 1955. The Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 required union leaders to swear that they were not...

 (CIO) and the American Federation of Labor
American Federation of Labor
The American Federation of Labor was one of the first federations of labor unions in the United States. It was founded in 1886 by an alliance of craft unions disaffected from the Knights of Labor, a national labor association. Samuel Gompers was elected president of the Federation at its...

 (AFL).

Roosevelt rejected the advice of Morgenthau to cut spending and decided big business were trying to ruin the New Deal by causing another depression that voters would react against by voting Republican. It was a "capital strike" said Roosevelt, and he ordered the Federal Bureau of Investigation
Federal Bureau of Investigation
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is an agency of the United States Department of Justice that serves as both a federal criminal investigative body and an internal intelligence agency . The FBI has investigative jurisdiction over violations of more than 200 categories of federal crime...

 to look for a criminal conspiracy (they found none). Roosevelt moved left and unleashed a rhetorical campaign against monopoly power, which was cast as the cause of the new crisis. Ickes attacked automaker Henry Ford
Henry Ford
Henry Ford was an American industrialist, the founder of the Ford Motor Company, and sponsor of the development of the assembly line technique of mass production. His introduction of the Model T automobile revolutionized transportation and American industry...

, steelmaker Tom Girdler
Republic Steel
Republic Steel was once the third largest steel producer in the United States.The Republic Iron and Steel Company was founded in Youngstown, Ohio in 1899....

, and the superrich "Sixty Families
America's Sixty Families
America's 60 Families is a critical exposure by Ferdinand Lundberg of the leading groups in business and finance from 1896 to 1936. It traces the rise of the biggest industrial trusts from 1900 to 1920 and how their control passed over to finance capital after 1920...

" who supposedly comprised "the living center of the modern industrial oligarchy
Oligarchy
Oligarchy is a form of power structure in which power effectively rests with an elite class distinguished by royalty, wealth, family ties, commercial, and/or military legitimacy...

 which dominates the United States". Left unchecked, Ickes warned, they would create "big-business Fascist America—an enslaved America". The President appointed Robert Jackson as the aggressive new director of the antitrust division of the Justice Department
United States Department of Justice
The United States Department of Justice , is the United States federal executive department responsible for the enforcement of the law and administration of justice, equivalent to the justice or interior ministries of other countries.The Department is led by the Attorney General, who is nominated...

, but this effort lost its effectiveness once World War II began and big business was urgently needed to produce war supplies.

But the Administration's other response to the 1937 dip that stalled recovery from of the Great Depression had more tangible results. Ignoring the requests of the Treasury Department and responding to the urgings of the converts to Keynesian economics
Keynesian economics
Keynesian economics is a school of macroeconomic thought based on the ideas of 20th-century English economist John Maynard Keynes.Keynesian economics argues that private sector decisions sometimes lead to inefficient macroeconomic outcomes and, therefore, advocates active policy responses by the...

 and others in his Administration, Roosevelt embarked on an antidote to the depression, reluctantly abandoning his efforts to balance the budget and launching a $5 billion spending program in the spring of 1938, an effort to increase mass purchasing power. The New Deal had in fact engaged in deficit spending since 1933. Now they had a theory to justify what they were doing. Roosevelt explained his program in a fireside chat
Fireside chats
The fireside chats were a series of thirty evening radio addresses given by United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt between 1933 and 1944.-Origin of radio address:...

 in which he told the American people that it was up to the government to "create an economic upturn" by making "additions to the purchasing power of the nation".

Business-oriented observers explained the recession and recovery in very different terms from the Keynesians. They argued that the New Deal had been very hostile to business expansion in 1935–37, had encouraged massive strikes which had a negative impact on major industries such as automobiles, and had threatened massive anti-trust legal attacks on big corporations. All those threats diminished sharply after 1938. For example, the antitrust efforts fizzled out without major cases. The CIO and AFL unions started battling each other more than corporations, and tax policy became more favorable to long-term growth.

"When the Gallup poll in 1939 asked, 'Do you think the attitude of the Roosevelt administration toward business is delaying business recovery?' the American people responded 'yes' by a margin of more than two-to-one. The business community felt even more strongly so." Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau, angry at the Keynesian spenders, confided to his diary May 1939: "We have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. And I have just one interest, and now if I am wrong somebody else can have my job. I want to see this country prosper. I want to see people get a job. I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises. I say after eight years of this administration, we have just as much unemployment as when we started. And enormous debt to boot."

World War II and the end of the Great Depression


The Depression continued with decreasing effect until the U.S. entered World War II in December 1941. Under the special circumstances of war mobilization, massive war spending doubled the GNP (Gross National Product). Civilian unemployment was reduced from 14% in 1940 to less than 2% in 1943 as the labor force grew by ten million. Millions of farmers left marginal operations, students quit school, and housewives joined the labor force. The effect continued into 1946, the first postwar year, where federal spending remained high at $62 billion (30% of GNP).

The emphasis was for war supplies as soon as possible, regardless of cost and efficiencies. Industry quickly absorbed the slack in the labor force, and the tables turned such that employers needed to actively and aggressively recruit workers. As the military grew, new labor sources were needed to replace the 12 million men serving in the military. These events magnified the role of the federal government in the national economy. In 1929, federal expenditures accounted for only 3% of GNP. Between 1933 and 1939, federal expenditure tripled, but the national debt as percent of GNP hardly changed. However, spending on the New Deal was far smaller than spending on the war effort, which passed 40% of GNP in 1944. The war economy grew so fast after deemphasizing free enterprise and imposing strict controls on prices and wages, as a result of government/business cooperation, with government subsidizing business, directly and indirectly.

A major result of the full employment at high wages was a sharp, permanent decrease in the level of income inequality. The gap between rich and poor narrowed dramatically in the area of nutrition, because food rationing and price controls provided a reasonably priced diet to everyone. White collar workers did not typically receive overtime thus the gap between white collar and blue collar income narrowed. Large families that had been poor during the 1930s had four or more wage earners, and these families shot to the top one-third income bracket. Overtime provided large paychecks in war industries.

Critical interpretations of New Deal economic policies


Many historians argue that Roosevelt restored hope and self-respect to tens of millions of desperate people, built labor unions, upgraded the national infrastructure and saved capitalism in his first term when he could have destroyed it and easily nationalized the banks and the railroads. Some critics from the left, however, have denounced Roosevelt for rescuing capitalism when the opportunity was at hand to nationalize banking, railroads and other industries. Still others have complained that he enlarged the powers of the federal government, built up labor unions, slowed long-term economic growth, and weakened the business community. In his 1968 memoir The Brains Trust, Rexford Tugwell
Rexford Tugwell
Rexford Guy Tugwell was an agricultural economist who became part of Franklin D. Roosevelt's first "Brain Trust," a group of Columbia academics who helped develop policy recommendations leading up to Roosevelt's 1932 election as President...

 (a member of Roosevelt's Brain Trust
Brain Trust
Brain trust began as a term for a group of close advisors to a political candidate or incumbent, prized for their expertise in particular fields. The term is most associated with the group of advisors to Franklin Roosevelt during his presidential administration...

) wrote that many New Deal laws “were tortured interpretations of a document
United States Constitution
The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the United States of America. It is the framework for the organization of the United States government and for the relationship of the federal government with the states, citizens, and all people within the United States.The first three...

 intended to prevent them.”

Keynesian and monetarist interpretations


The New Deal tried public works, farm subsidies, and other devices to reduce unemployment, but Roosevelt never completely gave up trying to balance the budget. Unemployment remained high throughout the New Deal years though greatly reduced from the much higher rates before the New Deal; business simply would not hire more people, especially the low skilled and supposedly "untrainable" men who had been unemployed for years and lost any job skill they once had. Keynesians later argued that by spending vastly more money — using fiscal policy
Fiscal policy
In economics and political science, fiscal policy is the use of government expenditure and revenue collection to influence the economy....

 — the government could provide the needed stimulus through the multiplier effect. Critics of Keynesian economic theories said that government spending would "crowd out" private investment and spending and thus not have any effect on the economy, a proposition known as the Treasury view
Treasury View
In macroeconomics, particularly in the history of economic thought, the Treasury view is the assertion that fiscal policy has no effect on the total amount of economic activity and unemployment, even during times of economic recession. This view was most famously advanced in the 1930s by the staff...

, which Keynesian economics reject.

In recent years more influential among economists has been the monetarist interpretation of Milton Friedman
Milton Friedman
Milton Friedman was an American economist, statistician, academic, and author who taught at the University of Chicago for more than three decades...

, which did include a full-scale monetary history of what he calls the "Great Contraction". Friedman concentrated on the failures before 1933, particularly those of the Federal Reserve, and in his memoirs said the relief programs were an appropriate response.

Historians generally agree that apart from building up labor unions, the New Deal did not substantially alter the distribution of power within American capitalism. "The New Deal brought about limited change in the nation's power structure."

Keynes visited the White House in 1934 to urge President Roosevelt to increase deficit spending
Deficit spending
Deficit spending is the amount by which a government, private company, or individual's spending exceeds income over a particular period of time, also called simply "deficit," or "budget deficit," the opposite of budget surplus....

. Roosevelt afterwards complained that, "he left a whole rigmarole of figures — he must be a mathematician rather than a political economist."

Fiscal conservatism


Julian Zelizer (2000) has argued that fiscal conservatism was a key component of the New Deal. A fiscally conservative approach was supported by Wall Street
Wall Street
Wall Street refers to the financial district of New York City, named after and centered on the eight-block-long street running from Broadway to South Street on the East River in Lower Manhattan. Over time, the term has become a metonym for the financial markets of the United States as a whole, or...

 and local investors and most of the business community; mainstream academic economists believed in it, as apparently did the majority of the public. Conservative southern Democrats, who favored balanced budgets and opposed new taxes, controlled Congress and its major committees. Even liberal Democrats at the time regarded balanced budgets as essential to economic stability in the long run, although they were more willing to accept short-term deficits. Public opinion polls consistently showed public opposition to deficits and debt. Throughout his terms, Roosevelt recruited fiscal conservatives to serve in his Administration, most notably Lewis Douglas the Director of Budget in 1933–1934, and Henry Morgenthau Jr., Secretary of the Treasury from 1934 to 1945. They defined policy in terms of budgetary cost and tax burdens rather than needs, rights, obligations, or political benefits. Personally the President embraced their fiscal conservatism. Politically, he realized that fiscal conservatism enjoyed a strong wide base of support among voters, leading Democrats, and businessmen. On the other hand, there was enormous pressure to act — and spending money on high visibility work programs with millions of paychecks a week.

Douglas proved too inflexible, and he quit in 1934. Morgenthau made it his highest priority to stay close to Roosevelt, no matter what. Douglas's position, like many of the Old Right
Old Right (United States)
The Old Right was a conservative faction in the United States that opposed both New Deal domestic programs and U.S. entry into World War II. Many members of this faction were associated with the Republicans of the interwar years led by Robert Taft, but some were Democrats...

, was grounded in a basic distrust of politicians and the deeply ingrained fear that government spending always involved a degree of patronage and corruption that offended his Progressive sense of efficiency. The Economy Act of 1933, passed early in the Hundred Days, was Douglas' great achievement. It reduced federal expenditures by $500 million, to be achieved by reducing veterans’ payments and federal salaries. Douglas cut government spending through executive orders that cut the military budget by $125 million, $75 million from the Post Office, $12 million from Commerce, $75 million from government salaries, and $100 million from staff layoffs. As Freidel concludes, "The economy program was not a minor aberration of the spring of 1933, or a hypocritical concession to delighted conservatives. Rather it was an integral part of Roosevelt's overall New Deal." Revenues were so low that borrowing was necessary (only the richest 3% paid any income tax between 1926 and 1940.) Douglas therefore hated the relief programs, which he said reduced business confidence, threatened the government’s future credit, and had the "destructive psychological effects of making mendicants of self-respecting American citizens". Roosevelt was pulled toward greater spending by Hopkins and Ickes, and as the 1936 election approached he decided to gain votes by attacking big business.

Morgenthau shifted with FDR, but at all times tried to inject fiscal responsibility; he deeply believed in balanced budgets, stable currency, reduction of the national debt, and the need for more private investment. The Wagner Act met Morgenthau’s requirement because it strengthened the party’s political base and involved no new spending. In contrast to Douglas, Morgenthau accepted Roosevelt’s double budget as legitimate — that is a balanced regular budget, and an “emergency” budget for agencies, like the WPA, PWA and CCC, that would be temporary until full recovery was at hand. He fought against the veterans’ bonus until Congress finally overrode Roosevelt’s veto and gave out $2.2 billion in 1936. His biggest success was the new Social Security program; he managed to reverse the proposals to fund it from general revenue and insisted it be funded by new taxes on employees. It was Morgenthau who insisted on excluding farm workers and domestic servants from Social Security because workers outside industry would not be paying their way.

Prolonged/worsened the Depression



In a survey of economic historians conducted by Robert Whaples, Professor of Economics at Wake Forest University
Wake Forest University
Wake Forest University is a private, coeducational university in the U.S. state of North Carolina, founded in 1834. The university received its name from its original location in Wake Forest, north of Raleigh, North Carolina, the state capital. The Reynolda Campus, the university's main campus, is...

, Whaples sent out anonymous questionnaires to members of the Economic History Association. Members were asked to either disagree, agree, or agree with provisos with the statement that read: "Taken as a whole, government policies of the New Deal served to lengthen and deepen the Great Depression." While only 6% of economic historians who worked in the history department of their universities agreed with the statement, 27% of those that work in the economics department agreed. Almost an identical percent of the two groups (21% and 22%) agreed with the statement "with provisos" (a conditional stipulation), while 74% of those who worked in the history department, and 51% in the economic department disagreed with the statement outright.

UCLA economists Harold L. Cole and Lee E. Ohanian are among those who believe the New Deal caused the Depression to persist longer than it would otherwise have, concluding in a study that the "New Deal labor and industrial policies did not lift the economy out of the Depression as President Roosevelt and his economic planners had hoped," but that the "New Deal policies are an important contributing factor to the persistence of the Great Depression." They claim that the New Deal "cartelization policies are a key factor behind the weak recovery". They say that the "abandonment of these policies coincided with the strong economic recovery of the 1940s". Cole and Ohanian claimed that FDR's policies prolonged the Depression by 7 years. However, Cole and Ohanian's argument relies on hypotheticals, including an unprecedented growth rate necessary to end the Depression by 1936, and by not counting workers employed through New Deal programs. Such programs built or renovated 2,500 hospitals, 45,000 schools, 13,000 parks and playgrounds, 7,800 bridges, 700000 miles (1,126,538 km) of roads, 1,000 airfields and employed 50,000 teachers through programs that rebuilt the country's entire rural school system.

Lowell E. Gallaway and Richard K. Vedder argue that the "Great Depression was very significantly prolonged in both its duration and its magnitude by the impact of New Deal programs." They suggest that without Social Security, work relief, unemployment insurance, mandatory minimum wages, and without special government-granted privileges for labor unions, business would have hired more workers and the unemployment rate during the New Deal years would have been 6.7% instead of 17.2%. In reply, Brad DeLong
J. Bradford DeLong
James Bradford DeLong commonly known as Brad DeLong, is a professor of Economics and chair of the Political Economy major at the University of California, Berkeley. He served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the United States Department of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration under Lawrence...

, economics professor and Deputy Assistant Secretary of the United States Department of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration under Lawrence Summers wrote that there is "literally nothing" to the arguments made by Gallaway and Vedder, and the duo made "flawed conclusions" based on "flawed foundations", and the entire foundation "is made out of mud".

Contemporary public and business views about the economic effects of the New Deal were mixed and varied. In The Gallup Organization
The Gallup Organization
The Gallup Organization, is primarily a research-based performance-management consulting company. Some of Gallup's key practice areas are - Employee Engagement, Customer Engagement and Well-Being. Gallup has over 40 offices in 27 countries. World headquarters are in Washington, D.C. Operational...

's May 1936 and March 1939 American Institute of Public Opinion (AIPO) polls, more than half of Americans reported that they felt the administration's policies were aiding recovery overall. Fortunes
Fortune (magazine)
Fortune is a global business magazine published by Time Inc. Founded by Henry Luce in 1930, the publishing business, consisting of Time, Life, Fortune, and Sports Illustrated, grew to become Time Warner. In turn, AOL grew as it acquired Time Warner in 2000 when Time Warner was the world's largest...

 Roper poll found in May 1939 that 39% of Americans thought the administration had been delaying recovery by undermining business confidence, while 37% thought it had not. But it also found that opinions on the issue were highly polarized by economic status and occupation. In addition, AIPO found in the same time that 57% believed that business attitudes toward the administration were delaying recovery, while 26% thought they were not emphasizing that fairly subtle differences in wording can evoke substantially different polling responses.

Left-wing criticism


Historians on the left have denounced the New Deal as a conservative phenomenon that let slip the opportunity to radically reform capitalism. Since the 1960s, "New Left
New Left
The New Left was a term used mainly in the United Kingdom and United States in reference to activists, educators, agitators and others in the 1960s and 1970s who sought to implement a broad range of reforms, in contrast to earlier leftist or Marxist movements that had taken a more vanguardist...

" historians have been among the New Deal's harsh critics. Barton J. Bernstein, in a 1968 essay, compiled a chronicle of missed opportunities and inadequate responses to problems. The New Deal may have saved capitalism from itself, Bernstein charged, but it had failed to help — and in many cases actually harmed — those groups most in need of assistance. Paul K. Conkin in The New Deal (1967) similarly chastised the government of the 1930s for its policies toward marginal farmers, for its failure to institute sufficiently progressive tax reform, and its excessive generosity toward select business interests. Howard Zinn
Howard Zinn
Howard Zinn was an American historian, academic, author, playwright, and social activist. Before and during his tenure as a political science professor at Boston University from 1964-88 he wrote more than 20 books, which included his best-selling and influential A People's History of the United...

, in 1966, criticized the New Deal for working actively to actually preserve the worst evils of capitalism.

Since the 1970s, research on the New Deal has been less interested in the question of whether the New Deal was a "conservative", "liberal", or "revolutionary" phenomenon than in the question of constraints within which it was operating. Political sociologist Theda Skocpol
Theda Skocpol
Theda Skocpol is an American sociologist and political scientist at Harvard University. She served from 2005 to 2007 as Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. She is influential in sociology as an advocate of the historical-institutional and comparative approaches, and well-known in...

, in a series of articles, has emphasized the issue of "state capacity" as an often-crippling constraint. Ambitious reform ideas often failed, she argued, because of the absence of a government bureaucracy with significant strength and expertise to administer them. Other more recent works have stressed the political constraints that the New Deal encountered. Conservative skepticism about government remained strong both in Congress and among certain segments of the population. Thus some scholars have stressed that the New Deal was not just a product of its liberal backers, but also a product of the pressures of its conservative opponents.

Charges of communism


Certain critics have complained that the New Deal was infiltrated with communists. The most influential group was in the Department of Agriculture; its leaders fired in 1934, but one of them Alger Hiss
Alger Hiss
Alger Hiss was an American lawyer, government official, author, and lecturer. He was involved in the establishment of the United Nations both as a U.S. State Department and U.N. official...

 went on to senior positions in foreign policy, while spying for the Soviet Union.
Outside government, the far-left was exerting considerable influence in the labor movement (it dominated parts of the new Congress of Industrial Organizations
Congress of Industrial Organizations
The Congress of Industrial Organizations, or CIO, proposed by John L. Lewis in 1932, was a federation of unions that organized workers in industrial unions in the United States and Canada from 1935 to 1955. The Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 required union leaders to swear that they were not...

) and appealed to activists and intellectuals in building a network of front organizations that advocated policies approved by the Kremlin. Thus the American League Against War and Fascism
American League Against War and Fascism
The American League Against War and Fascism was an organization formed in 1933 by the Communist Party USA and pacifists united by their concern as Nazism and Fascism rose in Europe...

 was formed in 1933 and, in 1937, became the American League for Peace and Democracy. There followed the America Youth Congress, 1934; League of American Writers, 1935; National Negro Congress, 1936; and the American Congress for Democracy and Intellectual Freedom, 1939. All had significant Communist elements, and fought furious battles with the anti-communist left.

Charges of fascism


In the 1930s fascism was considered a legitimate political ideology, combining an intense, authoritarian nationalism with a planned economy
Planned economy
A planned economy is an economic system in which decisions regarding production and investment are embodied in a plan formulated by a central authority, usually by a government agency...

 and corporativism exemplified by the economic plans of Benito Mussolini
Benito Mussolini
Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini was an Italian politician who led the National Fascist Party and is credited with being one of the key figures in the creation of Fascism....

 in Italy. Enemies of the New Deal sometimes called it "fascist", but meant very different things. Communists, for example, meant control of the New Deal by big business. Classical liberals and conservatives meant control of big business by bureaucrats (also labeled with the term of "socialism," as in Ludwig von Mises
Ludwig von Mises
Ludwig Heinrich Edler von Mises was an Austrian economist, philosopher, and classical liberal who had a significant influence on the modern Libertarian movement and the "Austrian School" of economic thought.-Biography:-Early life:...

' book, The Free and Prosperous Commonwealth
Liberalism (book)
Liberalism is an influential book by Austrian School economist and libertarian thinker Ludwig von Mises, containing economic analysis and indicting critique of socialism. It was first published in 1927 by Gustav Fischer Verlag in Jena and defending classical liberal ideology based on individual...

).

Former President Herbert Hoover argued that some (but not all) New Deal programs were "fascist":

"Among the early Roosevelt fascist measures was the National Industry Recovery Act (NRA) of June 16, 1933 .... These ideas were first suggested by Gerald Swope (of the General Electric Company)... [and] the United States Chamber of Commerce. During the campaign of 1932, Henry I. Harriman
Henry I. Harriman
Henry I. Harriman was an American public utility executive and President of the United States Chamber of Commerce from 1932 to 1935.-Early life and career:...

, president of that body, urged that I agree to support these proposals, informing me that Mr. Roosevelt had agreed to do so. I tried to show him that this stuff was pure fascism; that it was a remaking of Mussolini's "corporate state" and refused to agree to any of it. He informed me that in view of my attitude, the business world would support Roosevelt with money and influence. That for the most part proved true."


In 1934, Roosevelt defended himself against his critics, and attacked them in his "fireside chat" radio audiences. Some people, he said:

will try to give you new and strange names for what we are doing. Sometimes they will call it 'Fascism,' sometimes 'Communism,' sometimes 'Regimentation,' sometimes 'Socialism.' But, in so doing, they are trying to make very complex and theoretical something that is really very simple and very practical.... Plausible self-seekers and theoretical die-hards will tell you of the loss of individual liberty. Answer this question out of the facts of your own life. Have you lost any of your rights or liberty or constitutional freedom of action and choice?

In September 1934, Roosevelt defended a more powerful national government which he believed was necessary to control the economy, by quoting conservative Republican Elihu Root
Elihu Root
Elihu Root was an American lawyer and statesman and the 1912 recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. He was the prototype of the 20th century "wise man", who shuttled between high-level government positions in Washington, D.C...

:

The tremendous power of organization [Root had said] has combined great aggregations of capital in enormous industrial establishments... so great in the mass that each individual concerned in them is quite helpless by himself.... The old reliance upon the free action of individual wills appears quite inadequate.... The intervention of that organized control we call government seems necessary.... Men may differ as to the particular form of governmental activity with respect to industry or business, but nearly all are agreed that private enterprise in times such as these cannot be left without assistance and without reasonable safeguards lest it destroy not only itself but also our process of civilization.


Other scholars reject linking the New Deal to fascism as overly simplistic. As a leading historian of fascism explains, "What Fascist corporatism and the New Deal had in common was a certain amount of state intervention in the economy. Beyond that, the only figure who seemed to look on Fascist corporatism as a kind of model was Hugh Johnson
Hugh Samuel Johnson
Hugh Samuel "Iron Pants" Johnson American Army officer, businessman, speech writer, government official and newspaper columnist. He is best known as a member of the Brain Trust of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932-34. He wrote numerous speeches for FDR and helped plan the New Deal...

, head of the National Recovery Administration", Johnson had been distributing copies of a Fascist tract called "The Corporate State" by one of Mussolini's favorite economists, including giving one to Labor Secretary Frances Perkins
Frances Perkins
Frances Perkins , born Fannie Coralie Perkins, was the U.S. Secretary of Labor from 1933 to 1945, and the first woman appointed to the U.S. Cabinet. As a loyal supporter of her friend, Franklin D. Roosevelt, she helped pull the labor movement into the New Deal coalition...

 and asking her give copies to her cabinet. Johnson strenuously denied any association with Mussolini, saying the NRA "is being organized almost as you would organize a business. I want to avoid any Mussolini appearance—the President calls this Act industrial self-government." Donald Richberg eventually replaced Johnson as head of NRA, and speaking before a Senate committee said "A nationally planned economy
Planned economy
A planned economy is an economic system in which decisions regarding production and investment are embodied in a plan formulated by a central authority, usually by a government agency...

 is the only salvation of our present situation and the only hope for the future." Historians such as Hawley (1966) have examined the origins of the NRA in detail, showing the main inspiration came from Senators Hugo Black
Hugo Black
Hugo Lafayette Black was an American politician and jurist. A member of the Democratic Party, Black represented Alabama in the United States Senate from 1927 to 1937, and served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1937 to 1971. Black was nominated to the Supreme...

 and Robert F. Wagner
Robert F. Wagner
Robert Ferdinand Wagner I was an American politician. He was a Democratic U.S. Senator from New York from 1927 to 1949.-Origin and early life:...

 and from American business leaders such as the Chamber of Commerce. The main model was Woodrow Wilson's War Industries Board
War Industries Board
The War Industries Board was a United States government agency established on July 28, 1917, during World War I, to coordinate the purchase of war supplies. The organization encouraged companies to use mass-production techniques to increase efficiency and urged them to eliminate waste by...

, in which Johnson had been involved.

The works of art and music


The Works Progress Administration
Works Progress Administration
The Works Progress Administration was the largest and most ambitious New Deal agency, employing millions of unskilled workers to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads, and operated large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects...

 subsidized artists, musicians, painters and writers on relief with a group of projects called Federal One
Federal One
Federal Project Number One was the collective name for a group of projects under the Work Projects Administration, a New Deal program in the United States. The five elements of the program were:*Mathematical Tables Project*Harry Hopkins-External links:...

. While the WPA program was by the most widespread, it was preceded by three programs administered by the US Treasury
United States Department of the Treasury
The Department of the Treasury is an executive department and the treasury of the United States federal government. It was established by an Act of Congress in 1789 to manage government revenue...

 which hired commercial artists at usual commissions to add murals and sculptures to federal buildings. The first of these efforts was the short-lived Public Works of Art Project
Public Works of Art Project
The Public Works of Art Project was a program to employ artists, as part of the New Deal, during the Great Depression. It was the first such program, running from December 1933 to June 1934...

, organized by Edward Bruce
Edward Bruce (New Deal)
Edward Bruce was the director of the Public Works of Art Project and the Section of Painting and Sculpture, two New Deal relief efforts that provided work for artists in the United States during the Great Depression...

, an American businessman and artist. Bruce also led the Treasury Department's Section of Painting and Sculpture
Section of Painting and Sculpture
The Treasury Section of Painting and Sculpture , commonly known as "the Section," was established in 1934 and administered by the Procurement Division of the United States Department of the Treasury....

 (later renamed the Section of Fine Arts) and the Treasury Relief Art Project (TRAP). The Resettlement Administration
Resettlement Administration
The Resettlement Administration was a U.S. federal agency that, between April 1935 and December 1936, relocated struggling urban and rural families to communities planned by the federal government....

 (RA) and Farm Security Administration
Farm Security Administration
Initially created as the Resettlement Administration in 1935 as part of the New Deal in the United States, the Farm Security Administration was an effort during the Depression to combat American rural poverty...

 (FSA) had major photography programs. The New Deal arts programs emphasized regionalism
Regionalism (art)
Regionalism is an American realist modern art movement that was popular during the 1930s. The artistic focus was from artists who shunned city life, and rapidly developing technological advances, to create scenes of rural life...

, social realism
Social realism
Social Realism, also known as Socio-Realism, is an artistic movement, expressed in the visual and other realist arts, which depicts social and racial injustice, economic hardship, through unvarnished pictures of life's struggles; often depicting working class activities as heroic...

, class conflict
Class conflict
Class conflict is the tension or antagonism which exists in society due to competing socioeconomic interests between people of different classes....

, proletarian interpretations, and audience participation. The unstoppable collective powers of common man, contrasted to the failure of individualism
Individualism
Individualism is the moral stance, political philosophy, ideology, or social outlook that stresses "the moral worth of the individual". Individualists promote the exercise of one's goals and desires and so value independence and self-reliance while opposing most external interference upon one's own...

, was a favorite theme.

Post Office murals and other public art, painted by artists in this time, can still be found at many locations around the U.S. The New Deal particularly helped American novelists. For journalists, and the novelists who wrote non-fiction, the agencies and programs that the New Deal provided, allowed these writers to describe about what they really saw around the country.

Many writers chose to write about the New Deal, and whether they were for or against it, and if it was helping the country out. Some of these writers were Ruth McKenney, Edmund Wilson, and Scott Fitzgerald. Another subject that was very popular for novelists was the condition of labor. They ranged from subjects on social protest, to strikes.

Under the WPA, the Federal Theatre project flourished. Countless theatre productions around the country were staged. This allowed thousands of actors and directors to be employed, among them were Orson Welles, and John Huston.

The FSA photography
Photography
Photography is the art, science and practice of creating durable images by recording light or other electromagnetic radiation, either electronically by means of an image sensor or chemically by means of a light-sensitive material such as photographic film...

 project is most responsible for creating the image of the Depression in the U.S. Many of the images appeared in popular magazines. The photographers were under instruction from Washington as to what overall impression the New Deal wanted to give out. Director Roy Stryker
Roy Stryker
Roy Emerson Stryker was an American economist, government official, and photographer. He is most famous for heading the Information Division of the Farm Security Administration during the Great Depression and launching the documentary photography movement of the FSA.After serving in the infantry...

's agenda focused on his faith in social engineering
Social engineering (political science)
Social engineering is a discipline in political science that refers to efforts to influence popular attitudes and social behaviors on a large scale, whether by governments or private groups. In the political arena, the counterpart of social engineering is political engineering.For various reasons,...

, the poor conditions among cotton tenant farmers, and the very poor conditions among migrant farm workers; above all he was committed to social reform through New Deal intervention in people's lives. Stryker demanded photographs that "related people to the land and vice versa" because these photographs reinforced the RA's position that poverty could be controlled by "changing land practices". Though Stryker did not dictate to his photographers how they should compose the shots, he did send them lists of desirable themes, such as "church", "court day", "barns". Films of the late New Deal era such as Citizen Kane
Citizen Kane
Citizen Kane is a 1941 American drama film, directed by and starring Orson Welles. Many critics consider it the greatest American film of all time, especially for its innovative cinematography, music and narrative structure. Citizen Kane was Welles' first feature film...

(1941) ridiculed so-called "great men", while class warfare (typified by new taxes on the rich) appeared in numerous movies, such as The Grapes of Wrath
The Grapes of Wrath (film)
The Grapes of Wrath is a 1940 drama film directed by John Ford. It was based on John Steinbeck's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. The screenplay was written by Nunnally Johnson and the executive producer was Darryl F...

(1940). Thus in Frank Capra
Frank Capra
Frank Russell Capra was a Sicilian-born American film director. He emigrated to the U.S. when he was six, and eventually became a creative force behind major award-winning films during the 1930s and 1940s...

's famous films, including
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington is a 1939 American drama film starring Jean Arthur and James Stewart about one man's effect on American politics. It was directed by Frank Capra and written by Sidney Buchman, based on Lewis R. Foster's unpublished story. Mr...

(1939), Meet John Doe
Meet John Doe
Meet John Doe is a 1941 American comedy drama film directed and produced by Frank Capra, and starring Gary Cooper and Barbara Stanwyck. The film is about a "grassroots" political campaign created unwittingly by a newspaper columnist and pursued by a wealthy businessman. It became a box office hit...

(1941) and It's a Wonderful Life
It's a Wonderful Life
It's a Wonderful Life is a 1946 American Christmas drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra and based on the short story "The Greatest Gift" written by Philip Van Doren Stern....

 (1946), the common people come together to battle and overcome villains who are corrupt politicians controlled by very rich, greedy capitalists.

By contrast there was also a smaller but influential stream of anti-New Deal art. Thus Gutzon Borglum
Gutzon Borglum
Gutzon de la Mothe Borglum was an American artist and sculptor famous for creating the monumental presidents' heads at Mount Rushmore, South Dakota, the famous carving on Stone Mountain near Atlanta, as well as other public works of art.- Background :The son of Mormon Danish immigrants, Gutzon...

's sculptures on Mount Rushmore
Mount Rushmore
Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a sculpture carved into the granite face of Mount Rushmore near Keystone, South Dakota, in the United States...

 emphasized great men in history (his designs had the approval of Calvin Coolidge
Calvin Coolidge
John Calvin Coolidge, Jr. was the 30th President of the United States . A Republican lawyer from Vermont, Coolidge worked his way up the ladder of Massachusetts state politics, eventually becoming governor of that state...

). Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein was an American writer, poet and art collector who spent most of her life in France.-Early life:...

 and Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Miller Hemingway was an American author and journalist. His economic and understated style had a strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his life of adventure and his public image influenced later generations. Hemingway produced most of his work between the mid-1920s and the...

 disliked the New Deal and celebrated the organic
Organic (model)
Organic describes forms, methods and patterns found in living systems such as the organisation of cells, to populations, communities, and ecosystems.Typically organic models stress the interdependence of the component parts, as well as their differentiation...

 autonomy
Autonomy
Autonomy is a concept found in moral, political and bioethical philosophy. Within these contexts, it is the capacity of a rational individual to make an informed, un-coerced decision...

 of perfected written work in opposition to the New Deal trope of writing as performative labor. The Southern Agrarians
Southern Agrarians
The Southern Agrarians were a group of twelve American writers, poets, essayists, and novelists, all with roots in the Southern United States, who joined together to write a pro-Southern agrarian manifesto, a...

 celebrated a premodern regionalism and opposed the TVA as a modernizing, disruptive force. Cass Gilbert
Cass Gilbert
- Historical impact :Gilbert is considered a skyscraper pioneer; when designing the Woolworth Building he moved into unproven ground — though he certainly was aware of the ground-breaking work done by Chicago architects on skyscrapers and once discussed merging firms with the legendary Daniel...

, a conservative who believed architecture should reflect historic traditions and the established social order, designed the new Supreme Court building (1935). Its classical lines and small size contrasted sharply with the gargantuan modernistic
Modernism
Modernism, in its broadest definition, is modern thought, character, or practice. More specifically, the term describes the modernist movement, its set of cultural tendencies and array of associated cultural movements, originally arising from wide-scale and far-reaching changes to Western society...

 federal buildings going up in the Washington Mall that he detested. Hollywood managed to synthesize liberal and conservative streams, as in Busby Berkeley
Busby Berkeley
Busby Berkeley was a highly influential Hollywood movie director and musical choreographer. Berkeley was famous for his elaborate musical production numbers that often involved complex geometric patterns...

's Gold Digger musicals, where the storylines exalt individual autonomy while the spectacular musical numbers show abstract populations of interchangeable dancers securely contained within patterns beyond their control.

Legacies


Analysts agree the New Deal produced a new political coalition that sustained the Democratic Party as the majority party in national politics for more than a generation after its own end.

During Roosevelt's 12 years in office, there was a dramatic increase in the power of the federal government as a whole. Roosevelt also established the presidency as the prominent center of authority within the federal government. Roosevelt created a large array of agencies protecting various groups of citizens — workers, farmers, and others — who suffered from the crisis, and thus enabled them to challenge the powers of the corporations. In this way, the Roosevelt Administration generated a set of political ideas — known as New Deal liberalism — that remained a source of inspiration and controversy for decades and that helped shape the next great experiment in liberal reform, the Great Society of the 1960s.

The wartime FEPC
Fair Employment Practices Commission
The Fair Employment Practices Commission implemented US Executive Order 8802, requiring that companies with government contracts not to discriminate on the basis of race or religion. It was intended to help African Americans and other minorities obtain jobs in the homefront industry...

 executive orders that forbade job discrimination against African Americans, women, and ethnic groups was a major breakthrough that brought better jobs and pay to millions of minority Americans. Historians usually treat FEPC as part of the war effort and not part of the New Deal itself.

Political metaphor


Since 1933, politicians and pundits have often called for a "new deal" regarding an object. That is, they demand a completely new, large-scale approach to a project. As Arthur A. Ekirch Jr. (1971) has shown, the New Deal stimulated utopianism in American political and social thought on a wide range of issues. In Canada, Conservative Prime Minister Richard B. Bennett in 1935 proposed a "new deal" of regulation, taxation, and social insurance that was a copy of the American program; Bennett's proposals were not enacted, and he was defeated for reelection in October 1935. In accordance with the rise of the use of U.S. political phraseology in Britain, the Labour Government of Tony Blair
Tony Blair
Anthony Charles Lynton Blair is a former British Labour Party politician who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 2 May 1997 to 27 June 2007. He was the Member of Parliament for Sedgefield from 1983 to 2007 and Leader of the Labour Party from 1994 to 2007...

 has termed some of its employment programs "new deal", in contrast to the Conservative Party's promise of the 'British Dream'.

New Deal Programs


The New Deal had many programs and new agencies, most of which were universally known by their initials
Alphabet agencies
In total, at least 100 offices were created during Roosevelt's terms of office as part of the New Deal, and "even the Comptroller-General of the United States, who audits the government's accounts, declared he had never heard of some of them." While previously all monetary appropriations had been...

. They included the following. Most were abolished during World War II; others remain in operation today:
  • Reconstruction Finance Corporation
    Reconstruction Finance Corporation
    The Reconstruction Finance Corporation was an independent agency of the United States government, established and chartered by the US Congress in 1932, Act of January 22, 1932, c. 8, 47 Stat. 5, during the administration of President Herbert Hoover. It was modeled after the War Finance Corporation...

     (RFC) a Hoover agency expanded under Jesse Holman Jones
    Jesse Holman Jones
    Jesse Holman Jones was a Houston, Texas politician and entrepreneur. He served as United States Secretary of Commerce from 1940 to 1945...

     to make large loans to big business. Ended in 1954.
  • Federal Emergency Relief Administration
    Federal Emergency Relief Administration
    Federal Emergency Relief Administration was the new name given by the Roosevelt Administration to the Emergency Relief Administration which President Herbert Hoover had created in 1932...

     (FERA) a Hoover program to create unskilled jobs for relief; replaced by WPA in 1935.
  • United States bank holiday, 1933: closed all banks until they became certified by federal reviewers
  • Abandonment of gold standard
    Gold standard
    The gold standard is a monetary system in which the standard economic unit of account is a fixed mass of gold. There are distinct kinds of gold standard...

    , 1933: gold reserves no longer backed currency; still exists
  • Civilian Conservation Corps
    Civilian Conservation Corps
    The Civilian Conservation Corps was a public work relief program that operated from 1933 to 1942 in the United States for unemployed, unmarried men from relief families, ages 18–25. A part of the New Deal of President Franklin D...

     (CCC), 1933–1942: employed young men to perform unskilled work in rural areas; under United States Army
    United States Army
    The United States Army is the main branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is the largest and oldest established branch of the U.S. military, and is one of seven U.S. uniformed services...

     supervision; separate program for Native Americans
    Native Americans in the United States
    Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

  • Homeowners Loan Corporation
    Home Owners' Loan Corporation
    The Home Owners' Loan Corporation was a New Deal agency established in 1933 by the Home Owners' Loan Corporation Act under President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Its purpose was to refinance home mortgages currently in default to prevent foreclosure. This was accomplished by selling bonds to lenders in...

     (HOLC) helped people keep their homes, the government bought properties from the bank allowing people to pay the government instead of the banks in installments they could afford, keeping people in their homes and banks afloat.
  • Tennessee Valley Authority
    Tennessee Valley Authority
    The Tennessee Valley Authority is a federally owned corporation in the United States created by congressional charter in May 1933 to provide navigation, flood control, electricity generation, fertilizer manufacturing, and economic development in the Tennessee Valley, a region particularly affected...

     (TVA), 1933: effort to modernize very poor region (most of Tennessee
    Tennessee
    Tennessee is a U.S. state located in the Southeastern United States. It has a population of 6,346,105, making it the nation's 17th-largest state by population, and covers , making it the 36th-largest by total land area...

    ), centered on dams that generated electricity on the Tennessee River
    Tennessee River
    The Tennessee River is the largest tributary of the Ohio River. It is approximately 652 miles long and is located in the southeastern United States in the Tennessee Valley. The river was once popularly known as the Cherokee River, among other names...

    ; still exists
  • Agricultural Adjustment Act
    Agricultural Adjustment Act
    The Agricultural Adjustment Act was a United States federal law of the New Deal era which restricted agricultural production by paying farmers subsidies not to plant part of their land and to kill off excess livestock...

     (AAA), 1933: raised farm prices by cutting total farm output of major crops and livestock; replaced by a new AAA because the Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional.
  • National Industrial Recovery Act
    National Industrial Recovery Act
    The National Industrial Recovery Act , officially known as the Act of June 16, 1933 The National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA), officially known as the Act of June 16, 1933 The National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA), officially known as the Act of June 16, 1933 (Ch. 90, 48 Stat. 195, formerly...

     (NIRA), 1933: industries set up codes to reduce unfair competition, raise wages and prices; ended 1935. The US Supreme Court ruled the NIRA unconstitutional
  • Public Works Administration
    Public Works Administration
    The Public Works Administration , part of the New Deal of 1933, was a large-scale public works construction agency in the United States headed by Secretary of the Interior Harold L. Ickes. It was created by the National Industrial Recovery Act in June 1933 in response to the Great Depression...

     (PWA), 1933: built large public works projects; used private contractors (did not directly hire unemployed). Ended 1938.
  • Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
    Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
    The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is a United States government corporation created by the Glass–Steagall Act of 1933. It provides deposit insurance, which guarantees the safety of deposits in member banks, currently up to $250,000 per depositor per bank. , the FDIC insures deposits at...

     (FDIC) insures bank deposits and supervises state banks; still exists
  • Glass–Steagall Act regulates investment banking; repealed 1999
  • Securities Act of 1933
    Securities Act of 1933
    Congress enacted the Securities Act of 1933 , in the aftermath of the stock market crash of 1929 and during the ensuing Great Depression...

    , created the SEC, 1933: codified standards for sale and purchase of stock, required awareness of investments to be accurately disclosed; still exists
  • Civil Works Administration
    Civil Works Administration
    The Civil Works Administration was established by the New Deal during the Great Depression to create manual labor jobs for millions of unemployed. The jobs were merely temporary, for the duration of the hard winter. Harry L. Hopkins was put in charge of the organization. President Franklin D...

     (CWA), 1933–34: provided temporary jobs to millions of unemployed
  • Indian Reorganization Act
    Indian Reorganization Act
    The Indian Reorganization Act of June 18, 1934 the Indian New Deal, was U.S. federal legislation that secured certain rights to Native Americans, including Alaska Natives...

    , 1934: moved away from assimilation; policy dropped
  • Social Security Act
    Social Security (United States)
    In the United States, Social Security refers to the federal Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance program.The original Social Security Act and the current version of the Act, as amended encompass several social welfare and social insurance programs...

     (SSA), 1935: provided financial assistance to: elderly, handicapped, paid for by employee and employer payroll contributions; required 7 years contributions, so first payouts were in 1942; still exists
  • Works Progress Administration
    Works Progress Administration
    The Works Progress Administration was the largest and most ambitious New Deal agency, employing millions of unskilled workers to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads, and operated large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects...

     (WPA), 1935: a national labor program for more than 2 million unemployed; created useful construction work for unskilled men; also sewing projects for women and arts projects for unemployed artists, musicians and writers; ended 1943.
  • National Labor Relations Act
    National Labor Relations Act
    The National Labor Relations Act or Wagner Act , is a 1935 United States federal law that limits the means with which employers may react to workers in the private sector who create labor unions , engage in collective bargaining, and take part in strikes and other forms of concerted activity in...

     (NLRA) / Wagner Act, 1935: set up National Labor Relations Board to supervise labor-management relations; In the 1930s, it strongly favored labor union
    Trade union
    A trade union, trades union or labor union is an organization of workers that have banded together to achieve common goals such as better working conditions. The trade union, through its leadership, bargains with the employer on behalf of union members and negotiates labour contracts with...

    s. Modified by the Taft-Hartley Act
    Taft-Hartley Act
    The Labor–Management Relations Act is a United States federal law that monitors the activities and power of labor unions. The act, still effective, was sponsored by Senator Robert Taft and Representative Fred A. Hartley, Jr. and became law by overriding U.S. President Harry S...

     (1947); still exists
  • Judicial Reorganization Bill, 1937: gave the President power to appoint a new Supreme Court judge for every judge 70 years or older; failed to pass Congress
  • Federal Crop Insurance Corporation
    Federal Crop Insurance Corporation
    The Federal Crop Insurance Corporation is a wholly owned Government corporation managed by the Risk Management Agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. FCIC manages the Federal crop insurance program which provides U.S...

     (FCIC), 1938: Insures crops and livestock against loss of production or revenue. Was restructured during the creation of the Risk Management Agency
    Risk Management Agency
    The Risk Management Agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture helps producers manage their business risks through effective, market-based risk management solutions. RMA's mission is to promote, support, and regulate sound risk management solutions to preserve and strengthen the economic...

     in 1996 but continues to exist.
  • Surplus Commodities Program (1936); gives away food to poor; still exists as Food Stamp Program
    Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program
    The United States Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program , historically and commonly known as the Food Stamp Program, is a federal-assistance program that provides assistance to low- and no-income people and families living in the U.S. Though the program is administered by the U.S. Department of...

  • Fair Labor Standards Act
    Fair Labor Standards Act
    The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 is a federal statute of the United States. The FLSA established a national minimum wage, guaranteed 'time-and-a-half' for overtime in certain jobs, and prohibited most employment of minors in "oppressive child labor," a term that is defined in the statute...

     1938: established a maximum normal work week of 44 hours and a minimum wage
    Minimum wage
    A minimum wage is the lowest hourly, daily or monthly remuneration that employers may legally pay to workers. Equivalently, it is the lowest wage at which workers may sell their labour. Although minimum wage laws are in effect in a great many jurisdictions, there are differences of opinion about...

     of 40 cents/hour and outlawed most forms of child labor; still exists, hours have been lowered to 40 hours over the years.
  • Rural Electrification Administration, (REA)one of the federal executive departments of the United States government charged with providing public utilities (electricity, telephone, water, sewer) to rural areas in the U.S. via public-private partnerships. still exists.
  • Resettlement Administration
    Resettlement Administration
    The Resettlement Administration was a U.S. federal agency that, between April 1935 and December 1936, relocated struggling urban and rural families to communities planned by the federal government....

     (RA), Resettled poor tenant farmers; replaced by Farm Security Administration in 1935.
  • Farm Security Administration
    Farm Security Administration
    Initially created as the Resettlement Administration in 1935 as part of the New Deal in the United States, the Farm Security Administration was an effort during the Depression to combat American rural poverty...

     (FSA), Helped poor farmers by a variety of economic and educational programs; still exists as Farmers Home Administration.

Depression statistics


"Most indexes worsened until the summer of 1932, which may be called the low point of the depression economically and psychologically." Economic indicators show the American economy reached nadir in summer 1932 to February 1933, then began recovering until the recession of 1937–1938. Thus the Federal Reserve Industrial Production Index
Industrial Production Index
The Industrial Production Index is an economic indicator which measures real production output, which includes manufacturing, mining, and utilities. Production indexes are computed mainly as fisher indexes with the weights based on annual estimates of value added...

 hit its low of 52.8 on 1932-07-01 and was practically unchanged at 54.3 on 1933-03-01; however by 1933-07-01, it reached 85.5 (with 1935–39 = 100, and for comparison 2005 = 1,342).
In Roosevelt's 12 years in office, the economy had an 8.5% compound annual growth of GDP, the highest growth rate in the history of any industrial country, however, recovery was slow; by 1939, Gross Domestic Product
Gross domestic product
Gross domestic product refers to the market value of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given period. GDP per capita is often considered an indicator of a country's standard of living....

 (GDP) per adult was still 27% below trend.
Table 1: Statistics
1929 1931 1933 1937 1938 1940
Real Gross National Product (GNP) (1) 101.4 84.3 68.3 103.9 96.7 113.0
Consumer Price Index (2) 122.5 108.7 92.4 102.7 99.4 100.2
Index of Industrial Production (2) 109 75 69 112 89 126
Money Supply M2
Money supply
In economics, the money supply or money stock, is the total amount of money available in an economy at a specific time. There are several ways to define "money," but standard measures usually include currency in circulation and demand deposits .Money supply data are recorded and published, usually...

 ($ billions)
46.6 42.7 32.2 45.7 49.3 55.2
Exports ($ billions) 5.24 2.42 1.67 3.35 3.18 4.02
Unemployment (% of civilian work force) 3.1 16.1 25.2 13.8 16.5 13.9

  • (1) in 1929 dollars
  • (2) 1935–39 = 100

Table 2: Unemployment
(% labor force)
Year Lebergott Darby
1933 24.9 20.6
1934 21.7 16.0
1935 20.1 14.2
1936 16.9 9.9
1937 14.3 9.1
1938 19.0 12.5
1939 17.2 11.3
1940 14.6 9.5
1941 9.9 8.0
1942 4.7 4.7
1943 1.9 1.9
1944 1.2 1.2
1945 1.9 1.9

  • Darby counts WPA workers as employed; Lebergott as unemployed
  • Source: Historical Statistics US (1976) series D-86; Smiley 1983

Relief statistics

Families on Relief 1936–41
Relief Cases 1936–1941 (monthly average in 1,000)
1936 1937 1938 1939 1940 1941
Workers employed:
WPA 1,995 2,227 1,932 2,911 1,971 1,638
CCC and NYA 712 801 643 793 877 919
Other federal work projects 554 663 452 488 468 681
Public assistance cases:
Social security programs 602 1,306 1,852 2,132 2,308 2,517
General relief 2,946 1,484 1,611 1,647 1,570 1,206
Total families helped 5,886 5,660 5,474 6,751 5,860 5,167
Unemployed workers (Bur Lab Stat) 9,030 7,700 10,390 9,480 8,120 5,560
Coverage (cases/unemployed) 65% 74% 53% 71% 72% 93%

See also


  • Arthurdale, West Virginia
    Arthurdale, West Virginia
    Arthurdale is an unincorporated community in Preston County, West Virginia, United States. Arthurdale was named for Richard Arthur, former owner of the land on which it was built, who had sold the land to the federal government under a tax default....

    , New Deal planned community.
  • Interest group democracy
    Interest group democracy
    Interest group democracy was an attempt by the American President Franklin D. Roosevelt to create broad support for the New Deal by giving major interest groups at least part of what they wanted...

  • Liberalism
    Liberalism
    Liberalism is the belief in the importance of liberty and equal rights. Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of these principles, but generally, liberals support ideas such as constitutionalism, liberal democracy, free and fair elections, human rights,...

  • Liberalism in the United States
    Liberalism in the United States
    Liberalism in the United States is a broad political philosophy centered on the unalienable rights of the individual. The fundamental liberal ideals of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion for all belief systems, and the separation of church and state, right to due process...

  • Mixed economy
    Mixed economy
    Mixed economy is an economic system in which both the state and private sector direct the economy, reflecting characteristics of both market economies and planned economies. Most mixed economies can be described as market economies with strong regulatory oversight, in addition to having a variety...

  • Modern liberalism in the United States
  • Social liberalism
    Social liberalism
    Social liberalism is the belief that liberalism should include social justice. It differs from classical liberalism in that it believes the legitimate role of the state includes addressing economic and social issues such as unemployment, health care, and education while simultaneously expanding...

  • Social safety net
    Social safety net
    Social safety nets, or "socioeconomic safety nets", are non-contributory transfer programs seeking to prevent the poor or those vulnerable to shocks and poverty from falling below a certain poverty level. Safety net programs can be provided by the public sector or by the private sector...

  • The New Deal and the arts in New Mexico
  • Timeline of the Great Depression
    Timeline of the Great Depression
    The Great Depression era can be divided into two parts. The initial decline lasted from mid-1929 to mid-1931. Around mid-1931, there was a change in people’s expectations about the future of the economy. This fear of reduced future income coupled by the Fed’s deflationary monetary policy resulted...

  • United States welfare state
  • Welfare
    Welfare
    Welfare refers to a broad discourse which may hold certain implications regarding the provision of a minimal level of wellbeing and social support for all citizens without the stigma of charity. This is termed "social solidarity"...

  • Welfare economics
    Welfare economics
    Welfare economics is a branch of economics that uses microeconomic techniques to evaluate economic well-being, especially relative to competitive general equilibrium within an economy as to economic efficiency and the resulting income distribution associated with it...

  • Welfare state
    Welfare state
    A welfare state is a "concept of government in which the state plays a key role in the protection and promotion of the economic and social well-being of its citizens. It is based on the principles of equality of opportunity, equitable distribution of wealth, and public responsibility for those...


Further reading

  • Alswang, John. The New Deal and American Politics (1978), voting analysis
  • Alter, Jonathan. The Defining Moment: FDR's Hundred Days and the Triumph of Hope (2006), popular account
  • Badger, Anthony J. The New Deal: The Depression Years, 1933–1940. (2002) general survey from British perspective
  • Badger, Anthony J. FDR: The First Hundred Days (2008)
  • Badger, Anthony J. New Deal / New South: An Anthony J. Badger Reader (2007)
  • Beasley, Maurine H., Holly C. Shulman, Henry R. Beasley. The Eleanor Roosevelt Encyclopedia (2001)
  • Bernstein, Barton J. "The New Deal: The Conservative Achievements of Liberal Reform". In Barton J. Bernstein, ed., Towards a New Past: Dissenting Essays in American History, pp. 263–88. (1968), an influential New Left attack on the New Deal.
  • Bernstein, Irving
    Irving Bernstein
    Irving Bernstein was an American professor of political science at the University of California, Los Angeles and a noted labor historian.-Childhood and education:Bernstein was born in 1916 in Ellensville, New York...

    .
    Turbulent Years: A History of the American Worker, 1933–1941 (1970), cover labor unions
  • Best, Gary Dean. The Critical Press and the New Deal: The Press Versus Presidential Power, 1933–1938 (1993) ISBN 027594350X
  • Best, Gary Dean. Pride, Prejudice, and Politics: Roosevelt Versus Recovery, 1933–1938. (1990) ISBN 0275935248
  • Best, Gary Dean. Retreat from Liberalism: Collectivists versus Progressives in the New Deal Years (2002) ISBN 0275946568
  • Blumberg Barbara. The New Deal and the Unemployed: The View from New York City (1977).
  • Brands, H.W. Traitor to His Class: The Privileged Life and Radical Presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt (2008)
  • Bremer William W. "Along the American Way: The New Deal's Work Relief Programs for the Unemployed". Journal of American History 62 (December 1975): 636–652. online at JSTOR in most academic libraries
  • Brock William R. Welfare, Democracy and the New Deal (1988), a British view
  • Brinkley, Alan. The End Of Reform: New Deal Liberalism in Recession and War. (1995) what happened after 1937
  • Burns, Helen M. The American Banking Community and New Deal Banking Reforms, 1933–1935 (1974)
  • Chafe, William H. ed. The Achievement of American Liberalism: The New Deal and its Legacies (2003)
  • Charles, Searle F. Minister of Relief: Harry Hopkins and the Depression (1963)
  • Cobb, James and Michael Namaroto, eds. The New Deal and the South (1984).
  • Cohen, Adam, Nothing to Fear: FDR's Inner Circle and the Hundred Days that Created Modern America (2009)
  • Conkin, Paul K. The New Deal. (1967), a brief New Left critique.
  • Conklin, Paul K. "The Myth of New Deal Radicalism". In Myth America: A Historical Anthology, Volume II. 1997. Gerster, Patrick, and Cords, Nicholas. (editors.) Brandywine Press, ISBN 1-881-089-97-5
  • Domhoff, G. William, and Michael J. Webber. Class and Power in the New Deal: Corporate Moderates, Southern Democrats, and the Liberal-Labor Coalition (Stanford University Press; 2011) 304 pages; uses class dominance theory to examine the Agricultural Adjustment Act, the National Labor Relations Act, and the Social Security Act.
  • Dubofsky, Melvyn, ed. The New Deal: Conflicting Interpretations and Shifting Perspectives. (1992), reader
  • Eden, Robert, ed. New Deal and Its Legacy: Critique and Reappraisal (1989), essays by scholars
  • Ekirch Jr., Arthur A. Ideologies and Utopias: The Impact of the New Deal on American Thought (1971)
  • Folsom, Burton
    Burton W. Folsom, Jr.
    Burton W. Folsom, Jr. is an American historian and author who holds the Charles F. Kline chair in history and management at Hillsdale College. He received his BA from Indiana University in 1970, his M.A. from the University of Nebraska in 1973, and his doctorate in history from the University of...

    .
    New Deal or Raw Deal? : How FDR's Economic Legacy has Damaged America (2008) ISBN 1416592229
  • Fraser, Steve and Gary Gerstle, eds., The Rise and Fall of the New Deal Order, (1989), essays focused on the long-term results.
  • Garraty, John A. "The New Deal, National Socialism, and the Great Depression", American Historical Review, 78, 4 (1973), pp. 907–44. in JSTOR
  • Goldman, Eric F. Rendezvous with Destiny: A History of Modern American Reform. New York: Alfred A. Knopf (1952) ISBN 1566633699
  • Gordon, Colin. New Deals: Business, Labor, and Politics, 1920–1935 (1994)
  • Graham, Otis L. and Meghan Robinson Wander, eds. Franklin D. Roosevelt: His Life and Times. (1985). An encyclopedic reference.
  • Grant, Michael Johnston. Down and Out on the Family Farm: Rural Rehabilitation in the Great Plains, 1929–1945 (2002)
  • Hawley, Ellis W. The New Deal and the Problem of Monopoly (1966)
  • Higgs, Robert. Crisis and Leviathan: Critical Episodes in the Growth of American Government (1987), libertarian critique
  • Howard, Donald S. The WPA and Federal Relief Policy (1943)
  • Huibregtse, Jon R. American Railroad Labor and the Genesis of the New Deal, 1919–1935; (University Press of Florida; 2010; 172 pages)
  • Ingalls, Robert P. Herbert H. Lehman and New York's Little New Deal (1975)
  • Jensen, Richard J. "The Causes and Cures of Unemployment in the Great Depression", Journal of Interdisciplinary History 19 (1989) 553–83. in JSTOR
  • Kennedy, David M., “What the New Deal Did,” Political Science Quarterly, 124 (Summer 2009), 251–68.
  • Kennedy, David M. Freedom From Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929–1945. (1999), survey
  • Kirkendall, Richard S. "The New Deal As Watershed: The Recent Literature", The Journal of American History, Vol. 54, No. 4. (Mar., 1968), pp. 839–852. in JSTOR, historiography
  • Ladd, Everett Carll and Charles D. Hadley. Transformations of the American Party System: Political Coalitions from the New Deal to the 1970s (1975), voting behavior
  • Leff, Mark H. The Limits of Symbolic Reform: The New Deal and Taxation (1984)
  • Leuchtenburg, William E. Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal, 1932–1940. (1963). A standard interpretive history.
  • Lindley, Betty Grimes and Ernest K. Lindley. A New Deal for Youth: The Story of the National Youth Administration (1938)
  • Lowitt, Richard. The New Deal and the West (1984).
  • McElvaine Robert S. The Great Depression 2nd ed (1993), social history
  • Neil M. Maher, Nature's New Deal: The Civilian Conservation Corps and the Roots of the American Environmental Movement (New York: Oxford University Press, 2008).
  • Manza; Jeff. "Political Sociological Models of the U.S. New Deal" Annual Review of Sociology: 2000, 26 (2000): 297–322.
  • Mathews, Jane De Hart. "Arts and the People: The New Deal Quest for a Cultural Democracy", Journal of American History 62 (1975): 316–39, in JSTOR
  • Malamud; Deborah C. "'Who They Are—or Were': Middle-Class Welfare in the Early New Deal" University of Pennsylvania Law Review v 151 #6 2003. pp 2019+.
  • McKinzie, Richard. The New Deal for Artists (1984), well illustrated scholarly study
  • Meriam; Lewis. Relief and Social Security The Brookings Institution. 1946. Highly detailed analysis and statistical summary of all New Deal relief programs
  • Milkis, Sidney M. and Jerome M. Mileur, eds. The New Deal and the Triumph of Liberalism (2002)
  • Mitchell, Broadus. Depression Decade: From New Era through New Deal, 1929–1941 (1947), survey by economic historian
  • Parker, Randall E. Reflections on the Great Depression (2002) interviews with 11 leading economists
  • Patterson, James T. The New Deal and the States: Federalism in Transition (Princeton UP, 1969).
  • Pederson, William D. ed. A Companion to Franklin D. Roosevelt (Blackwell Companions to American History) (2011); 35 essays by scholars; many deal with politics
  • Powell, Jim FDR's Folly: How Roosevelt and His New Deal Prolonged the Great Depression (2003) ISBN 0761501657
  • Polenberg, Richard. "The Era of Franklin D. Roosevelt 1933–1945 A Brief History with Documents" ISBN 0312133103
  • Rosenof, Theodore. Economics in the Long Run: New Deal Theorists and Their Legacies, 1933–1993 (1997)
  • Rosen, Elliot A. Roosevelt, the Great Depression, and the Economics of Recovery (2005) ISBN 0813923689
  • http://www.mises.org/rothbard/agd.pdf Rothbard, Murray. America's Great Depression
    America's Great Depression
    America's Great Depression is a 1963 treatise on the 1930s Great Depression and its root causes, written by Austrian School economist and author Murray Rothbard. The fifth edition was released in 2000.-Brief summary:...

    (1963).
  • Saloutos, Theodore. The American Farmer and the New Deal (1982).
  • Savage, James D. Balanced Budgets & American Politics. Cornell University Press. 1988.
  • Schlesinger, Arthur M. Jr., The Age of Roosevelt, 3 vols, (1957–1960), the classic narrative history.
  • Shlaes, Amity. The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression (2007) ISBN 0066211700
  • Singleton, Jeff. The American Dole: Unemployment Relief and the Welfare State in the Great Depression (2000)
  • Sitkoff, Harvard. A New Deal for Blacks: The Emergence of Civil Rights as a National Issue: The Depression Decade (2008)
  • Sitkoff, Harvard. ed. Fifty Years Later: The New Deal Evaluated. (1984). A friendly liberal evaluation.
  • Skocpol, Theda, and Kenneth Finegold. "State Capacity and Economic Intervention in the Early New Deal". Political Science Quarterly 97 (1982): 255–78. Online at JSTOR.
  • Skocpol, Theda, and Kenneth Finegold. "Explaining New Deal Labor Policy" American Political Science Reform (1977) 84:1297–1304 in JSTOR
  • Smith, Jason Scott. Building New Deal Liberalism: The Political Economy of Public Works, 1933–1956 (2005).
  • Sternsher, Bernard ed., Hitting Home: The Great Depression in Town and Country (1970), essays by scholars on local history
  • Szalay, Michael. New Deal Modernism: American Literature and the Invention of the Welfare State (2000)
  • Tindall George B. The Emergence of the New South, 1915–1945 (1967). survey of entire South
  • Trout Charles H. Boston, the Great Depression, and the New Deal (1977)
  • Ware, Susan. Beyond Suffrage: Women and the New Deal (1981)
  • Wecter, Dixon. The Age of the Great Depression, 1929–1941 (1948), social history
  • Zelizer; Julian E. "The Forgotten Legacy of the New Deal: Fiscal Conservatism and the Roosevelt Administration, 1933–1938" Presidential Studies Quarterly . Volume: 30. Issue: 2. pp: 331+. (2000)

Primary sources

  • Bureau of the Census, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 1951 (1951) full of useful data; online
  • Bureau of the Census, Historical Statistics of the United States: Colonial Times to 1970 (1976) part 1 online; part 2 online
  • Cantril, Hadley and Mildred Strunk, eds. Public Opinion, 1935–1946 (1951), massive compilation of many public opinion polls
  • Carter, Susan B. et al. eds. The Historical Statistics of the United States (6 vol: Cambridge UP, 2006); huge compilation of statistical data; online at some universities
  • Gallup, George Horace, ed. The Gallup Poll; Public Opinion, 1935–1971 3 vol (1972) summarizes results of each poll.
  • Lowitt, Richard and Beardsley Maurice, eds. One Third of a Nation: Lorena Hickock Reports on the Great Depression (1981)
  • Moley, Raymond. After Seven Years (1939), conservative memoir by ex-Brain Truster
  • Nixon, Edgar B. ed. Franklin D. Roosevelt and Foreign Affairs (3 vol 1969), covers 1933–37. 2nd series 1937–39 available on microfiche and in a 14 vol print edition at some academic libraries.
  • Roosevelt, Franklin D.; Rosenman, Samuel Irving, ed. The Public Papers and Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt (13 vol, 1938, 1945); public material only (no letters); covers 1928–1945.
  • Zinn, Howard, ed. New Deal Thought (1966), a compilation of primary sources.

External links