What Caused The Dust Bowl Essay

What Caused The Dust Bowl Essay.

During the 1930’s a massive dust and sand storm hit the western horizon. Families across the nation were struck with the Depression, however, people living in the Southern Great Plains were not only affected by the Depression, but also by the 300 dust storms that destroyed their land. The three main reasons for the cause of the Dust Bowl were: the geography of the Southern Plains, heavy machinery used to farm, and dry climate. The main cause of the Dust Bowl was the geography of the Southern Plains.

A sheepherder from texas said: “Grass is what hold the earth together” (Doc B). The grass in the Dust Bowl region was not very tall, however, the grass and its roots were a barrier that kept the sand and soil in place. Wheat farmers plowed the short grass prairie to create wheat farms, therefore leaving the dirt exposed and unprotected when the strong winds struck.

The heavy farm machinery being used destroyed the plains and led to the Dust Bowl.

Farmers, like Fred Folkers, purchased a tractor that had the capacity of doing the job of ten horses (Doc C). With the new tractor, Folkers was able to produce a greater deal of goods than before. Unfortunately, Folkers’s tractor also increased the amount of shortgrass destroyed. The number of acres that were harvested between 1899 and 1929 doubled in eight Great Plains states (Doc D). The new heavy machinery that Folkers and other farmers were using crushed the dirt and soil into smaller pieces that could easily blow into the air.

What Caused The Dust Bowl Essay

Great Depression DBQ Essay

Great Depression DBQ Essay.

Roosevelts responses aided curtail the problems of the Great Depression by employing the unemployed, aiding the businesses, and restoring confidence in a very panicked public. He alleviated the poorest classes by enacting laws that provided them with safety nets and even some capital to get started with. By raising the standard of living for the desperately poor, he increased the number of able consumers to buy businesses goods and decreased the number of people living in the streets, which in turn set off the reactions that improved all other aspects of American life, thereby beginning to restore the pre-depression conditions.

The Chinese proverb goes, Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. This teaching a man to fish was exactly what Roosevelt did to millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans. He reallocated wealth to those who truly needed it. He didnt want the recipients to remain entirely dependent on the help, as demonstrated by the New Deal act that gave those in poverty a little bit of money so that they had somewhere to start from when getting up and going job-hunting.

There was some uneven distribution of this help, as clearly illustrated in Document I. Blacks, women, and immigrants were clearly discriminated against everywhere. As illustrated by Document J, the number of unemployed citizens dropped significantly during the Roosevelt years.

Sometimes he would attack multiple issues with his programs, such as when he fought both unemployment and lack of natural resource conservation by creating the CCC. One fascinating thing that Document J reveals is how much more unemployment there was in the urban areas, since taking away the low unemployment rates of the farm-workers raised the overall rate from about 25 to 37, a total of about 12% change. It was because of this why so many of Roosevelts programs were focused on unskilled workers, such that are normally found in the urban areas.

As Document H demonstrates, Roosevelt redeveloped a very large chunk of American industry. He formed many agencies that eliminated wasteful competition and worked with companies to improve their employee relations. Though portraying the New Deal somewhat negatively, Document D portrays some of the sheer quantity of programs that Roosevelt enacted. These programs improved the ways of life of countless Americans, from getting businesses to agree to recognize unions and their powers of collective bargaining to regulating maximum employee work hours. Document G supports this claim best by agreeing that one of the largest faults of employers is their unwillingness to give workers more power (in this case, that was collective bargaining). Roosevelt had to fight through some very tough criticism of his plans, such as the one in Document G. Nevertheless, he persisted in Roosevelt believed that helping these employees was the key of getting out of depression.

Though Document B is a complaint, it too displays values of what Roosevelt was trying to do. The worker was his top priority; if it meant that helping him would hurt the company, then so be it. He believed that it was most important for the worker to get back on his feet because he was the main consumer in America. It was because of this immense care Roosevelt demanded for the worker that the worker ended up with a new deal.One of the key things that Roosevelts New Deal did was calm the mass hysteria that was beginning to develop from the Depression. For them, the world seemed to be irrevocably falling apart. When Roosevelt stepped in, they could see that someone was actually trying to do something about their problems. Somebody was actually working on ending their grief. This is demonstrated clearly in Document C, where the caricature depicts Roosevelt as explaining that it was natural for the New Deal programs to develop, that it is human nature to want to help others.

Roosevelt attacked problems of people from all walks of life, as demonstrated in Document E, where the elderly are being reassured by being given information about the then newly enacted Social Security, which would provide them with an income for the rest of their lives. Document A discusses how unw illing women seemed to be to publicly accept charity. This was another obstacle in Roosevelts course, for women were half the population, and they needed to be calmed as well as the men. Roosevelt certainly faced opposition even when his motives appeared to be so sincere. Document F displays the Supreme Courts majority opinion after deeming one of his acts as unconstitutional. They claimed that he was too invasive with the government into peoples lives. Though this may be true, government intervention is sometimes the only way to fix a vast dilemma, as it was the case here for Roosevelt.

By directing the aid from his New Deal at the worker, the lowest level on the salary scale, Roosevelt worked from the bottom up to bring the country out of the recession. When the workers could afford to pay for goods, companies could reopen and receive revenue, thusly hiring more workers. The inherencies that Roosevelt attacked most were public panic, the poor state of businesses, and a huge mass of unemployed citizens. By focusing on the consumers of America, Roosevelt ended up restoring both them and the producers.


:America Past and Present, AP* Edition, Revised Seventh EditionWikipedia contributors. “Great Depression.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 25 Feb. 2010. Web. 2 Mar. 2010.

Great Depression DBQ Essay

Why did Hitler become Chancellor in January 1933? Essay

Why did Hitler become Chancellor in January 1933? Essay.

On 30th January, 1933, Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany by President Hindenburg, but why did he get this prestigious honour – why did Hitler become Chancellor? There are four main reasons as to why this happened, and they are as follows: the Weimar government’s weaknesses; his own leadership skills and the Nazis tactics; the Great Depression; and political manoeuvring between von Schleicher and von Papen. It is to be shown, however, that it really down to the involvement of von Schleicher and von Papen that Hitler became the Chancellor of Germany, when he did.

Firstly, Hitler was only able to come to power due to the failure of the previous government, the Weimar Republic. From the start, the Republic had weaknesses, such as its unstable economic situation and its bad image, mainly down to the Versailles Treaty. Hitler was able to use these weaknesses to his advantage by telling the people of Germany that he knew how to solve the economic unrest, and banish the Versailles Treaty, and that only he could do it.

The weakness of the Weimar also encouraged the public to vote for extremists parties, like the Nazis, in the hope that they would be the lesser of evils.

Next, Hitler was able to use his leadership skills, and the Nazi Party’s tactics to win over the voters. He had a natural gift for propaganda and an extremely aggressive speech style to whip the crowd into a Nazi fuelled frenzy. He also believed that it was his destiny to become the German Fuhrer, which he called the Inevitable Truth, and was based on a social adaptation of Darwin’s Evolution Theory. While this may seem like a ridiculous claim, he did in fact become the Fuhrer, so it is not as far-fetched as it sounds. Hitler was very clever, and while he was remembered for his failure in the Munich Putsch of 1923, it seemed to most of the public that he was now intent on achieving his power legally.

Thirdly, a reason that Hitler became Chancellor in 1933 was because of the Great Depression. Having just recovered from one major economic crisis by borrowing huge sums of money from the Americans, Weimar Germany was hit very hard by the world depression, as the loans from the USA were called in. The Great Depression was a huge blessing for Hitler, as it meant that he could “show-up” the failing Weimar government once and for all, by lying to the public and blaming the Depression on the government. All of Germany’s social classes were hit by the Depression, as it caused huge unemployment, and the largest five banks in the country to close.

In 1928, a year before the Crash, a government report was published stating that the Nazi Party had “no notable influence” on the German public, but after the Wall Street Crash, 1929, suddenly Hitler’s demands started to be accepted, and by the elections of 1930, the Nazis seats in the Reichstag had risen from 12 to 107. During these years, Hitler made many promises to the German people, including a free Volkswagen Beetle to every member of the working class, which led him to a landslide victory in the Reichstag in 1932, with 230 seats.

Finally, it could be argued that Hitler came to power due to other events, particularly political manoeuvring between von Schleicher and von Papen. However, the unstable situation was pushed even closer to the edge when Stresemann died of a sudden heart attack in the same month as the Wall Street Crash. Not only this, but in a government report at roughly the same time, it was announced that the Army was not strong enough to fight off both the Communists, a growing threat, and the Nazis, at the same time. This was a particular threat, as a fear of Communism began to develop throughout Germany, but luckily for the Nazis, Hitler was viewed as the lesser of the two evils. The political manoeuvring by von Schleicher started when he was appointed Chancellor by Hindenburg on 3rd December 1932.

Von Papen saw that by early January 1933, von Schleicher was having trouble keeping a majority in the Reichstag, and seeing his chance to win back power, secretly agrees to help Hitler become Chancellor, as long as he gets a place in the Cabinet. By mid-January, von Papen’s requests to Hindenburg for Hitler to become Chancellor are refused, and within a few days, von Schleicher had to resign, due to lack of support from the Reichstag. On 30th January, 1933, persuaded by von Papen, Hindenburg finally concedes to Hitler’s demands, and he and von Papen agree to limit the amount of seats that the Nazis can get in the Reichstag, and use Hitler as a “puppet” Chancellor, hoping that some of the most extreme Nazi policies would be easily rejected, and that by instating Hitler, a civil war could be avoided. Von Papen is appointed as Hitler’s vice-Chancellor, and without knowing it, collectively, the leading German politicians started the road to World War II.

The meddling with the unstable political situation by von Schleicher and von Papen is the most important reason as top why Hitler became Chancellor in 1933, as they actually instated him, giving him the power to effectively do what he wanted with a country that were willing to do anything he wanted, taken in by all of his lies and propaganda.


Weimar and Nazi Germany – Stephen Lee

Why did Hitler become Chancellor in January 1933? Essay

Commanding Heights: Battle of Ideas Essay

Commanding Heights: Battle of Ideas Essay.

_The Commanding Heights: The Battle of Ideas_ episode explains the economy’s change in structure between 1914 and 1970, as well as the functioning of the markets and government during that time. John Maynard Keynes and Friedrich von Hayek both had influential roles on the economy in the 20th century due to their opposing arguments regarding aggregate demand and classical liberalism, respectively. Keynes’ “planned economy” idea and Hayek’s “market economy” both fought to shape the economy into what they hoped was ideal for modern day society.

Between the two, Keynes’ argument seemed to have the most success, especially in times of great need, which is why I found his the most compelling.

After World War I, Germany and Austria were forced to pay the costs of the war, which was near impossible for them, until they began to print more money in order to compensate for their lack of funds. Printing more money caused a hyperinflation to occur, where prices skyrocketed and people’s savings decreased in value.

By 1929, the market began to crash; banks started closing and millions of people lost all of their money. It was at this time that the government and the economy were in desperate need of a plan that would revive them from this devastating crash.

At this point, John Maynard Keynes came in with his theory in an attempt to save the economy from the Great Depression. He wrote a book explaining why the Great Depression occurred and what the government should do to prevent such an economic downfall from ever happening again. As Robert Skidelsky, a British economist, said, “Concepts we take for granted today, like gross domestic product, the level of unemployment, the rate of inflation, all to do with general features of the economy, were invented by [Keynes]” (Ch.4 Europe, 1931). His idea was that the government should spend money in order to keep full employment, even if it meant bringing about a deficit. In the long run, the increase in spending would benefit the economy overall. Roosevelt, being the President of the United States during this period, used this idea by creating government agencies to give citizens work.

As Daniel Yergin, an American author, mentions, “[Roosevelt and the New Deal] instituted a program of regulating capitalism in a way that had never been done before, in order to protect people from what they saw as the recklessness of the unfettered market” (Ch.5 Washington, D.C., 1933). Regardless of the effort Friedrich Hayek put in to convince citizens that the government should not be given more control over the economy, the majority followed Keynes’ view. Once World War II hit, numerous job opportunities opened up for the preparation of the war, and the Great Depression was defeated. After the war ended, many countries took to following Keynes theory, resulting in successful economies and in some cases, socialism.

Hayek still did not think Keynes’ plan was going to work and wrote a sarcastic novel to disclaim this. The message he was getting across with this book was that “too much government planning means too much government power, and too much government power over the economy destroys freedom and makes men slaves” (Ch.6 London, 1944). In truth, Germany’s market had diminished and hyperinflation had caused the German currency to become worthless, leaving them in need of a new leader to change their situation. This is when a new director of economic affairs, Ludwig Erhard, was appointed. He had similar views to Hayek, including the belief that price controls were not stopping inflation from occurring, nor were they helping the economy in any way.

For this reason, Erhard got rid of price controls, leaving citizens with more freedom, and less desire to make trades in the black market. This is an example of Friedrich von Hayek’s view of how the economy should be run. He thought Keynes’ idea was giving the government too much power over the economy instead of giving that influence to the citizens. Hayek followed the view of a libertarian named Ludwig von Mises who believed “markets, like people, needed to be free from government meddling” (Ch.3 Vienna, 1919). He thought that the economy would fail because of the control over wages and prices.

In the end, Keynes theory prevailed, which is why I find his argument more compelling. With the evidence to back him up, he seemed to be on the right track in terms of how the government should react and how the economy should be run. Many people prospered from his ideas and beliefs. I believe that he made society feel more secure in terms of finances and their overall style of living.

Commanding Heights: Battle of Ideas Essay

Successes and Failures of Roosevelt’s New Deal Essay

Successes and Failures of Roosevelt’s New Deal Essay.

A. IntroductionOn July 2, 1932, at the Democratic National Convention, the crowd listened intently to the phrase:” I pledge you, I pledge myself to a new deal for the American people.” This was the first time when the term” New Deal” was mentioned by Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd president of the United States. Since then, the New Deal name was soon applied to the programs instituted by Roosevelt from 1933 to 1939 with the goal of relief, recovery and reform of the United States economy, in order to solve the economic problems created by the depression of the 1930’s.

The New Deal legislation was enacted mainly in the first three months of 1933 (Roosevelt’s “hundred days”) and dozens of alphabet agencies were created as a result. The New Deal is generally considered to have consisted of two phases. The first phase (1933-34) attempted to provide recovery and relief from the Great Depression through programs of agricultural and business regulation, inflation, price stabilization, and public works.

The second phase of the New Deal (1935-39), while continuing with relief and recovery measures, provided for social and economic legislation to benefit the mass of working people.

After 1937 the New Deal met with increasing criticism and the speed of reform slackened, and there was growing Republican opposition to the huge public spending, high taxes, and centralization of power in the executive branch of government; within the Democratic Party itself there was strong disapproval from the “old guard” and from disgruntled members of the Brain Trust. As the prospect of war in Europe increased, the emphasis of government shifted to foreign affairs. There was little retreat from reform, however; at the end of World War II, most of the New Deal legislation was still intact, and it remains the foundation for American social policy.

The New Deal remains controversial from its birth to the present days, some have insisted that the New Deal was an appropriate response to desperate conditions and produced programs of continuing value; others have criticized it because it prolonged and worsened the Great Depression instead of saving the country from it and have called it an inadvisable expansion of federal control over the American economy. Then what specific measures that Roosevelt took as the “New Deal”? Was the New Deal more of a success or a failure? In what way should we evaluate the New Deal?B. The Great Depression and the New Deala. The Great Depression and the Hoover ResponseWhen Herbert Hoover was inaugurated as the thirty-first President of the United States early in 1929, the nation was enjoying unprecedented prosperity. But by the end of the year, the stock market had crashed and the country was headed for the Great Depression, which was a watershed in American history.

The roaring twenties came to a screeching halt and many Americans faced absolute poverty. Human suffering was widespread, and it affected all aspects of the economy. Shopkeepers lost their stores and farmers lost their farms. Banks failed and savings accounts were wiped out. Investors lost their stock market investments. At one point nearly half of American home mortgages were in default. Little was being done about this issue, especially by Herbert Hoover, the current president, whose “hands -off” approach to government did little to fix the dire situation Americans found themselves in.

Although at end Hoover did realized the seriousness of the situation and did take some action to try and end the depression. But as he neared the end of his term, the American economy was in its worst state yet, and many fearful citizens wanted a leader who would do more to alleviate the crisis. They found that leader in Franklin D. Roosevelt, who promised the nation a “New Deal” and with that promise won the election of 1932.

b. The New Deal: Measures of Relief, Recovery, and ReformWe often say that the New Deal had three components: direct relief, economic recovery, and financial reform. These were also called the ‘Three Rs’. Via these three Rs, Roosevelt targeted many aspects of the economy from banks to the living conditions of the people.

Relief was the immediate actions taken to halt the economies deterioration. Roosevelt’s administration’s relief policies led to the formation of many “alphabetical” agencies between 1933 and 1935. For example, the Federal Emergency Relief Act (FERA) aimed to give money to state and local governments for relief efforts; the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) aimed to create jobs for young men to work in parks, forests, and farms; the Civil Works Administration (CWA) aimed to provide jobs on public works projects such as roads, buildings, and parks.

Recovery was the effort in numerous programs to restore the economy to normal health. It was focused on longer-term stability in employment, agriculture and businesses. For instance, the Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA) tried to raise farm prices by inducing shortages; the National Industrial Recovery Act tried to stimulate business and offer rights and security to the laborer; the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was created to help prospective homeowners and builders; the Public Works Administration (PWA) was established to simulate jobs by building new public buildings; the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) was created to provide jobs, cheap electricity, and flood control in the South. And prohibition repealed by the Twenty-First Amendment. By most economic indicators this was achieved by 1937–except for unemployment, which remained stubbornly high until World War II began.

Reform was permanent programs to avoid another depression and insure citizens against economic disasters, which was based on the assumption that the depression was caused by the inherent instability of the market and that government intervention was necessary to rationalize and stabilize the economy, and to balance the interests of farmers, business and labor. It included the National Recovery Administration (1933), regulation of Wall Street (SEC, 1933), the Agricultural Adjustment Act farm programs (1933 and later), insurance of bank deposits (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation 1933) and the Wagner Act encouraging labor unions (1935).

The New Deal measures included almost every aspect of the society: relief programs for the unemployed, the expanded regulation of agriculture, industry, finance, the establishment of a legal minimum wage, creation of Social Security, unemployment insurance, and income supplements for dependent children in single-parent families, the aged poor, the physically handicapped, and the blind. By 1939 public attention focused increasingly on foreign policy and national defense. The New Deal was over, but it had permanently expanded the role of the federal government, particularly in economic regulation, resource development, and income maintenance.

C. The Debate over the New Deal: Success or Failure?The argument that began in the 1930s about whether the New Deal was a success is as hot today as it was seven decades ago. A 1995 survey of economic historians and economists asked “Taken as a whole, government policies of the New Deal served to lengthen and deepen the Great Depression.” Of the economists 27% agreed and 51% disagreed. Of the economic historians, only 6% agreed and 74% disagreed. (The rest were in the partly agree/disagree group). Some people still consider Franklin D. Roosevelt a personal hero for trying to soften the blows of the Great Depression.

They argue that although the New Deal did not end the depression, all in all it helped to prevent the economy from decaying further by increasing the regulatory functions of the federal government in ways that helped stabilize previous trouble areas of the economy: the stock market, the banking system, and others. Others today, however, consider Roosevelt the president who steered the nation toward socialism, or they argue that the New Deal worsened and prolonged the depression. Although the people who hold the view that the New Deal was a failure are minority, their views are strong enough to influence millions of people.

a. The Significance of the New DealSupport for the New Deal and Roosevelt came from almost all walks of life. One representative is William Leuchtenberg. In his essay, “The achievement of the New Deal,” Leuchtenberg argues that the New Deal, though not effectively ending the Depression, helped millions of American survive the brutal poverty, economic hardship, and loss of hope that the Depression created. People who support Leuchtenberg do realize that the New Deal had its shortcomings and it had not brought the country back to full employment nor really restored prosperity. However, on balance, it should be considered a success. They agree that the New Deal was a defining moment in American history comparable in impact to the Civil War. Never before had so much change in legislation and policy emanated from the federal government, which, in the process, became the center of American political authority.

The significance of the New Deal was mainly showed in the following three aspects:First, the New Deal had an immense constructive impact on the nation. At the very outset, it brought the country through the crisis that Roosevelt had inherited, and it did a whole lot to ameliorate the worst hardships of the depression. Because of New Deal decisions, many areas of American life formerly left unregulated became henceforth subject to federal authority: the stock exchange; agricultural prices and production; labor relations; relief of the needy. By encouraging the growth of labor unions the New Deal probably helped workers obtain a larger share of the profits of industry.

By putting a floor under the income of many farmers it checked the decline of the agricultural classes. As a result of the legislation of the Hundred Days, debt-ridden city families were safeguarded from dispossession of their homes. Throughout the 1930’s, work was found for millions of unemployed in a series of projects from the FERA to the WPA. The social security program, with all its inadequacies, also lessened the impact of bad times on an increasingly large proportion of the population and provided immense psychological benefits to all the people. In general, after the New Deal years the government accepted its obligation to try to provide all the people with a decent standard of living and to pay some attention to achieving the Jeffersonian goal of happiness for all as well.

Secondly, the New Deal hastened several major changes in the United States. One of the most dramatic shifts of the era was the movement of Negro voters from the Republican to the Democratic Party.

And among other important social changes, the New Deal rural electrification program made farm life literally more civilized. All in all, the spirit of the new Deal heightened the people’s sense of community, revitalized national energies, and stimulated the imagination and creative instincts of countless citizens.

Many achievements were made by the New Deal for America; not only bringing the United States out of the depression, but bringing positive changes for racial equality and opening doors for farmers and blue-collar workers as well. Roosevelt helped the American people regain faith in themselves while at the same time bringing hope as he promised prompt and vigorous action while asserting in his Inaugural Address that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” As a result of Roosevelt’s efforts and with a shift of the government in the people’s lives from being passive to active, America was able to walk on more stable ground, even with a few stumbles here and there.

b. Was the New Deal a Failure?However, not all Americans supported President Roosevelt or embraced New Deal programs and policies. The debate over the New Deal’s role in the Great Depression is still alive today. One representative is Gary Best who argues in his essay, “Pride, Prejudice, and Politics: Roosevelt versus Recovery, 1933-1938,” that the very New Deal programs Roosevelt created to help Americans overcome the Depression actually made it worse and increased suffering. And some others felt that Roosevelt was taking the nation down the road to socialism or even communism with his works programs and with the Social Security Act. These people could also have many reasonable arguments sometimes about the negative economic consequences of the New Deal and their connection to the magnitude and length of the Great Depression. Although the criticisms included many aspects, the dominating point of the criticisms against the New Deal is that it prolonged and worsened the Great Depression. Some even use the word “disaster” in describing the New Deal.

Was the New Deal really such a disaster as they described? Was the New Deal a failure? No doubt, despite all that the New Deal had accomplished, the New Deal experienced some failure with its success and there were still obstacles facing Roosevelt. Some of the programs and legislation were struck down and deemed unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Because of the situation Roosevelt found himself in he attempted to increase the size of the Supreme Court with his court packing scandal which was his attempt, which proved unsuccessful, to increase the number of justices and appoint his own justices that supported the New Deal.

The final nail in the coffin for The New Deal was the recession that Roosevelt faced from 1937 to 1938. With the economy recovering nicely Roosevelt listened to his secretary of the treasury and decided to cut relief programs and shut down federal job programs. However, this proved disastrous and unemployment went up to 19 percent. Because of this, what economic recovery we were experiencing fell through. Despite the attempts to revive what he had destroyed, it was too late since a conservative congress prevented Roosevelt from doing so.

Another thing that the critics mention against the New Deal is that the unemployment stayed high throughout the 1930’s. The employment schemes did not provide work for everyone. The black people in America were still in a bad state. There were a number of improvements such as 200,000 black people were helped by the CCC and other alphabet agencies, but they also had a major burden that no laws were passed to stop the Ku Klux Klan or anyone else lynching them for sometimes no apparent reason because Roosevelt feared that the Democrats in the southern states wouldn’t support him. The poorest people in America often didn’t get help during these years of benefit, and stayed as poor as they were. And the role of women was often ignored during the New Deal; though it benefited many Americans. Federal job programs permitted only one person per family to hold a job in the program; this excluded women because the men would take the job.

Critics of the New Deal have always argued that it should have done more, that it should have done less, and that it should have done things differently. Yet some of these may be criticisms after the fact, they ignore the complexities of the pressures of those years. Roosevelt’s willingness to experiment with different means of combating the depression made sense because no one really knew what to do. No doubt that the New Deal was deficient in a number of respects. Nevertheless, compared with its achievements, the shortcomings of the New Deal seem less impressive.

D. ConclusionSince the day of its birth, the New Deal received millions of contradictory ideas: Roosevelt’s ideas of a big government were opposed by conservatives and businesses, which had enjoyed years of laissez-faire practices. However, most Americans gladly embraced the New Deal as saving the country despite its relatively small accomplishments. Roosevelt was criticized for spending too much on his programs, but some economists believe that he should have spent even much more.

Except for its failures and many criticisms, the New Deal can be considered of mostly a success. Overall the New Deal was the change that was needed to bring the United States out of the Depression and improve the lives of Americans. It accomplished exactly what was necessary to keep America afloat: the new deal programs aided and preserved different businesses and established future economic practices without radically changing the previous Business policies; it met the needs of the millions of penniless people who needed the support immediately; it ultimately served its purpose of protecting the economy from complete collapse and preserving the economic structure of the previous generation; it changed the role of government in the lives of Americans and increased the government’s sense of social responsibility for its citizens; and some of its programs and legislation the American people still benefit today, such as the Social Security and the Wagner Act.

Roosevelt’s New Deal was a brand new approach to government that greatly limited states rights, strongly favored workers and unions, and formed programs that for many critics were borderline socialist. It was the enthusiasm and optimism that President Roosevelt held for his New Deal made it a key factor for holding the country together through one of its most tumultuous periods. After all is said and done, Roosevelt’s Administration and New Deal were in a way a break with the old America and an entry in the new America.

Works Cited

Badger, Anthony J. The New Deal. The Depression Years, 1933-40. New York: Hill and Wang, 1989.

Garraty, John, A. The American Nation. New York: American Heritage Publishing Co., Inc, 1971.

Hermann, William. “Debate Over New Deal’s Role in Great Depression Still Alive .” 13 Jan.2007.

Morrison, Samuel, E., Commager, Henry, S. and Leuchtenburg, William, E., The Growth of American Republic, New York: Oxford University Press, 1983.

Schultz, Stanley, K. and Tishler, William, P. “”Dr. New Deal” Becomes “Dr. Win-the-War”” 13 Jan, 2007
http://us.history.wisc.edu/hist102/lectures/lecture20.html>••. . :1997.

Successes and Failures of Roosevelt’s New Deal Essay

The Cause and Effects of the Great Depression Essay

The Cause and Effects of the Great Depression Essay.

Many people speculate that the stock market crash of 1929 was the main cause of The Great Depression. In fact, The Great Depression was caused by a series of factors, and the effects of the depression were felt for many years after the stock market crash of 1929. By looking at the stock market crash of 1929, bank failures, reduction of purchasing, American economic policy with Europe, and drought conditions, it becomes apparent that The Great Depression was caused by more than just the stock market crash.

The effects were detrimental beyond the financial crisis experienced during this time period.

The first and most obvious known factor in the development of The Great Depression is the stock market crash of 1929. The Money Alert website states that, “When the stock market crashed in 1929, it didn’t happen on a single day. Instead, the stock market continued to plummet over the course of a few days setting in motion one of the most devastating periods in the history of the United States” (The Money Alert).

Many investors would buy stocks on a margin where they would purchase the stocks with borrowed money. This was a great option for buyers when the stock market was on the rise.

However, when the stocks plummeted, the financial institutions that had loaned the money for the stock purchase went to collect the capital that had been loaned out and were unable to do so. This, in effect, caused banks to lose money as a result of being unable to collect on the debt, and the investors were unable to collect their losses. In addition to private investors, banks and businesses were investing in margin loans as well. So, these poor investment strategies led the banking industry to lose the majority of their assets, including money from bank customers that had no knowledge that their money was being used for this purpose.

Since no government regulations were in place to protect investors and banks in this circumstance, this ultimately led to the effect of the stock market crash, which paved the way for America to go into The Great Depression. The banking industry’s reaction to the stock market crash, would be the next major cause of the Great Depression. The banking industry as a whole after the stock market crashed was going bankrupt due to not being able to carry the “bad debt” that was created from using customer money to buy stock.

Because the banks were out of money, they were unable to cover customer withdrawals from their bank, causing many bank customers to lose all of their savings. With the uncertainty of the future of the banking industry, many people withdrew all of their savings, which caused more than 9,000 banks to close their doors and go out of business (Kelly). Due to the effects of the Great Depression, and the collapse of the banking industry, the government created regulations to prevent similar failure in the future.

For Example, the SEC, (or Securities Exchange Commission), which regulates the sell and trade of stocks, bonds and other investments was created as a result of The Great Depression. The FDIC (or Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation), was created to insure bank accounts so that that the consumer would be protected if the bank were to go out of business (Kelly). The Great Depression’s effect on the banking industry led to many useful changes to the banking industry and helped restore confidence in banks in the American people.

The next major factor that contributed to the Great Depression was the reduction of goods being purchased during the time period. After the stock market crashed, consumers from all economic classes in America were uncertain of the stability of the economy, and stopped purchasing consumer goods. The effect of not purchasing goods caused many companies to begin to produce a surplus, or an excess of goods, which caused companies to reduce their unneeded workforce (Kelly). Since so many people were out of work, they too were unable to purchase goods, and soon a domino effect was created and many companies went out of business.

During this time period, many people purchased goods on payment plans, similar to the modern credit system we use today, and their inability to pay caused many companies to repossess the purchased goods. This caused companies to have additional inventory of products that contributed to the lack of need to manufacture additional products (Kelly). By this time, more than 25% of the workforce was now out of work, and due to the overproduction of goods and overstock of inventory, there weren’t enough consumers to purchase these goods (Kelly).

Another major contributing factor to The Great Depression was America’s economic policy with Europe. During the midst of the depression, the government decided to create the Smoot-Hawley Tariff to help protect American companies by taxing import goods from Europe. The government initially created the Smoot-Hawley Tariff to protect America by making foreign agricultural goods more expensive than domestic products so that foreign goods would cost more than local grown goods(Kelly). Due to many revisions during the initial stages of the tariff, many other American businesses were included in its protection.

The effect of the tariff on trade with Europe caused unstable relations with European countries. Also, many of the European nations began to boycott goods sold by American companies in an act of retaliation for the tariff (Kelly). Having this tariff in effect during the Great Depression caused a prolonged recovery in the American economy due to the decline in Europe purchasing consumer goods from America, in addition to the decline of domestic goods purchases. The final major contributing factor in the great depression was the massive drought that took place during the 1930’s.

Though the drought wasn’t a direct cause to the depression, it did, however, add to the turmoil that was taking place during this time period. The drought of the 1930’s had a very drastic effect on many reigns of the United States which caused both economic and ecologic problems to the country. The economic problems caused by the Great Depression were mostly concentrated in the Mississippi valley, where farmers were unable to pay the tax on the land and most were left no choice but to sell their farms for no profit. This caused a decline in agriculture goods available in America, due to the lack of farming during this time period (Kelly).

The ecological effects of the drought, combined with the effects of over-farming the land, caused the Dust Bowl. The Dust Bowl was caused by over-farming the land and not correctly rotating the crops. By not rotating the crops correctly, the top soil became damaged. Because of the damages to the top soil, the land became infertile, and many people were forced to abandon their land or sell off their property. The timing of the drought, along with the effects that it had on the economy, forced the Great Depression further into turmoil and made recovery even more out of reach for the country (Bonnifield).

The stock market crash did, however, act as the match that lit the fire that was The Great Depression. Along with the stock market, the cause of the depression was also contributed to the banking industry’s inability to cover losses sustained during the stock market crash. Also, the reduction of manufacturing and purchasing goods caused a toxic cycle of workers not being able to work, in turn not being able to consume goods, which further sank the country into financial hardship.

With the tariffs in effect with Europe, the consumption of America’s goods by foreign nations greatly decreased, which caused the country to fall further behind in recovery of the economic turn-down. In addition to these circumstances, the timing of the drought that occurred in this time period caused many of the farmers supporting our agriculture to fold, and created one of the largest man-made natural disasters in history. Careful of these factors shows that it took more than a crisis in the stock market to cause America to go into the greatest economic slump ever experienced in the history of our country.

The Cause and Effects of the Great Depression Essay