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The Depression and the New Deal the USA 1929-41.

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The Depression and the New Deal the USA 1929-41 The three presidents, Harding, Coolidge and Hoover, all believed that the federal government should not impede in the economy. They did not want anything to do with business as they thought they can look after there selves. They thought that they would have an increase in profits would mean higher wages and greater affluence this was later to hinder the increase of people being unemployed. The Congress passed Fordney-McCumber tariff in 1922 , which put high duties on many imports into the USA. This protected US industry and made it hard for other nations to sell to the USA. USA industry did well supplying food, weapons and ammunition to the fighting nations in Europe and this increased in the USA profits on the whole as they got other countries to buy their products as a result US trade increased, while European nations were fighting, US took over their customers. The German chemical industry had a major set back as they wanted to put all the money they towards the war; the USA quickly benefited in this and took the lead in this industry, making dyes, fertilisers, plastics. US farmers increased exports of food to Europe 300% US investors did well from the interest on loans to Europe of $10,300,000,000. After the war they had money to invest in the USA. ...read more.


In the 1932 presidential election, the Democrat candidate was Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Roosevelt came from a rich family, had suffered from polio and, as Governor of New York, had tried to help those suffering in the Great Depression. In the campaign he promised a 'New Deal' for the American people and was elected. The impact of the Depression on people's lives throughout US society many were ruined. They had borrowed more than they could pay back. There were several suicides. Banks began to fail as they lent money, which was not going to be paid back, so this is the main cause why banks went broke. This hit those who were not speculators and pulled down even more people. The banks failed, the was a rise in the unemployed as a result lost many people lost confidence in the USA; no one spent money so demand for goods fell. This resulted in the industry declining. With no new investment and falling demand, workers were laid off. Unemployment reached 14 million by 1933. Americans believed in 'rugged individualism' - everyone should look after himself or herself. There was therefore no dole, no state welfare. People were in dire poverty. Many lost their homes. Many became ashamed and depressed; they were made to feel it was their own fault. People begged, or sold possessions on street-corners. They slept on park-benches or cardboard shacks. ...read more.


In 1935 Senator Huey Long of Louisiana started the 'Share our Wealth' campaign, and planned to tax the rich to give every family an income of $5,000. He intended to stand against Roosevelt in the 1936 presidential election, but was murdered earlier in the year. The success of the new deal was that the unemployment in America had fallen by about 40% since 1933 1940. Blacks were given access to CCCs, although they had separate camps. Black leaders voted strongly for Roosevelt as a result. Roosevelt gave people hope and restored their confidence in the government and the financial system. The Fireside Chats and the replies to letters to the White House convinced many Americans that the USA would pull through. It was the Second World War, which really made the difference. When America joined the war in December 1941, unemployment fell to almost nothing. The main reason why the Recovery was failure in 1937 was because the industry was still only working at 75% of its 1929 level. Many of the schemes that Roosevelt started only lasted for a few months. The CCC provided work for six to nine months only. Some men went on a whole series of CCC camps, as they were called, and still could not find a job at the end. Roosevelt's wife, Eleanor, constantly criticised him for not doing more for blacks and women. When Roosevelt tried to reduce spending in 1937 unemployment rose again to 10,000,000. More spending was needed to bring unemployment down again. By 1941 it stood at 8,000,000. 1 1 ...read more.

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