Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal was William E.
Leuchtenburg’s review on the political and social issues of the 1930s. It began with the end of Herbert Hoover’s presidency and the nation in conflict due to industrial downfall, stock market crashes, and great unemployment. The country looked to Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal with the American people. Leuchtenburg analyzed the many relief efforts and legislation in a very careful way. The story ended with war approaching and Franklin Roosevelt successfully winning his third run for the presidency, a unique feat.
The primary strength of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal was its reliable nature. Every cause and effect was conveyed in a manner that felt more like reality than a story. The article demonstrates just why the country’s attitude was able to turn around so quickly after the election of Roosevelt. The beginning looked so bad for the new executive; “Thirty eight states closed their banks on inauguration day,” the New York Stock Exchange shut its doors, and the country had over ten million unemployed. Leuchtenburg showed that it was more than just Roosevelt’s inauguration speech of “There’s nothing to fear but fear itself.” Roosevelt actually used some of Hoover’s economic advisors to create a banking measure to reopen the banks within eight days. It was so successful that people were depositing more cash than they were withdrawing. A few days later, Roosevelt asked for the end of prohibition. In a month, it was done, and the sale of alcohol refreshed the country’s “spirits.” Yet, Leuchtenburg’s analysis revealed that this turn around was more emotional than economical. The measures Roosevelt used were actually worse than Hoover’s. Leuchtenburg continued by revealing the execution and effects of the Social Security Act. Not only did the act create old age insurance and unemployment return, but it also built a basis that would aid the crippled, and blind. His analysis...
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