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Was the New Deal a success? (Source based questions)

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Introduction

Luka Nikolic WAS THE NEW DEAL A SUCCESS? Roosevelt was supported by the masses in the 1932 election for a number of reasons. Arguably the main factor was the failure of Hoover and the Republican Party. Hoover was seen as a ?do nothing? President and had lost almost all support from the Americans. Hoover failed to accept that there was a major economic problem after the Wall Street Crash: he insisted that ?prosperity was just around the corner?. Roosevelt realised that the American people wanted ?action, and action now? so that was what he offered. In Source A Roosevelt mentions a ?New Deal?, this shows the citizens that change is on its way. For the people of America, a different leader and a different party was their best hope. Roosevelt?s main objective was to restore confidence after the Depression. This was not to be a gradual process, but an immediate, drastic change in the way the country was run. Roosevelt did this by making a ?pledge? to the American people that a new start was coming. By promoting the New Deal so enthusiastically, the people gained confidence not only in the new scheme to deal with the Depression, but in Roosevelt himself. Roosevelt represented the ordinary American throughout his political career; in Source A he identifies his audience, ?the American people?, showing his honesty and relatability. Lines like ?Give me your help? show his sincerity and willingness to admit that the USA was in economic exigency. Contending with polio since the age of 39, Roosevelt managed to become Governor of New York State and pass on the message of determination and hard work to America. Roosevelt was so far proving to be the unmitigated opposite of a ?do nothing? president. His fighting spirit emerged magnificently in his election campaign with expressions such as ?call to arms?, ?crusade? and ?waging war?. A ?call to arms? was Roosevelt?s manner of saying that America need to act against the Depression instantly. ...read more.

Middle

was a New Deal agency that was used to extend loans on home mortgages. The tone of the letter is very much casual and friendly rather than a formal thank you. This indicates that the public could relate to Roosevelt easily and feel a stronger sense of security and trust. Roosevelt amplified this by holding 30 ?fireside chats? from 1933-44. Roosevelt received ?up to 8,000 letters a day? that were similar to Source G, and the author of Source G definitely believes that the public have a positive opinion of Roosevelt: ?we join those millions of other in praying for you every night.? However, this letter was clearly selected as the best from a massive pile for it to be used as part of the election campaign. ?I have never heard of a President like you? is highly complementary of Roosevelt and is exactly the type of evidence his campaign required. The various other letters are undoubtedly not as celebratory as this one is meaning that the source might not express the general public?s opinion, just this particular person?s. Also, the writer of Source G is a poor man ? ?losing the furniture? ? and not everyone will have been affected in the same way. For example, the rich didn?t benefit at all from the New Deal and their taxes were raised significantly. Source H is joyous, jubilant and optimistic. It also portrays happiness and approval of the public for Roosevelt. The fact that it is a ?popular song? is very important; it shows us that it definitely was not just a one-off opinion, but widely believed throughout the USA. Lines like ?we?re all working and getting our pay? show the complete assurance in Roosevelt. It also shows that schemes like the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) were genuinely working and had increased employment rates. Despite its popularity, the reliability of Source H is still weak. ...read more.

Conclusion

They may continue by saying that it was only World War Two which actually got America out of the depression. Roosevelt certainly did an amazing job of bringing out confidence and determination in the Americans and managed keep the economy at a relatively steady pace for at least 4 years. Source I, however, feels it was the wrong kind of confidence; it expresses that although the Americans had confidence in Roosevelt, ?men lost confidence in themselves? and were too enclosed by the easy, boondoggling lifestyle that they didn?t have the motivation to work hard and earn a living for themselves. In conclusion, one could establish that the New Deal had its fair share of success and failure, as well as controversy. Writings like Source G praise Roosevelt and the New Deal immensely but clash with the opinions of others such as Source I. Although the New Deal created jobs for millions of men, it was by no means a costless effort. The amount of money put into the New Deal, and consequently taken from the American people, could be said to have outweighed the good that has come out of it. Nonetheless, no-one doubts the fact that Roosevelt physically rebuilt the country and provided jobs for desperate citizens. The New Deal hardly solved America?s economic problems at all, especially after the slight increase in unemployment in 1938. The Second World War was the critical moment in the turnaround of the American economy. I believe that the New Deal was a favourable idea that wasn?t executed to its full potential. Roosevelt managed to deliver in almost every other part of his presidency, including ?fireside chats.? The sources are more supportive of the New Deal than not, but fully show both sides of the argument. I think that the paper ultimately allows the reader to decipher and choose whether or not the New Deal was a complete success. The New Deal did not, however, completely solve America?s economic problems. Au contraire, it was merely a short term boost of confidence and employment for the depressed and desperate people. ...read more.

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