The Weimar Republic Was Failed from the Beginning

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The Weimar republic was failed from the beginning. It began with the collapses of political governments within the Weimar republic. Stresemann’s government collapsed in late 1923 to be replaced by another government led by Wilhelm Marx of the Centre party. However the main contributing catalyst to the failure of the Weimar republic was the ever rising inflation in the country. The Weimar republic was failed from the start as the inflation started at the begging of the war as Bonnel points out “Inflation began in 1914 and was linked to the way in which the imperial government chose to pay for the war effort. Undoubtedly the imperial government had indirectly doomed the Weimar republic. This was the reason for the growing disillusionment within the Weimar Republic.

The growing disillusion with the Weimar Republic was the deteriorating economy . This view is generally accepted but most historians are that of the German economist Kurt Borchardt (1982) . Borchardt suggests the slow growth within the Weimar republic was because that the trade union power kept wages high and therefore squeezed profits and middle class income. Borchardt believes that the Weimar Republic was unstably weak before 1929. This backs up Bonnels statement and is supported by K.J.Mason statement “The economic prosperity of the 1920s, however, was built on weak foundations” . However there are historians such as C-L Holtfrerich that have challenged such a view that high wages were the cause of the Weimar unstable economy . The weight of the evidence shows that C-L Holtfrerich could not have a significantly large change in the economy as the economy was already plummeting into inflation.

Hyper-inflation initiated by the government to pay back reparations however it was blamed on the invasion of the Ruhr. There response to the economic situation was to print more money. Salmon suggests “The government simply printed more money…. Banknotes became increasingly worthless”. By 1923 the Reichsmarck became so worthless that 4 200 000 000 000 was worth one U.S. dollar. This alienated the middle class from the regime. The social and political cost of the hyperinflation was high. Scholars note that the inflation did more to undermine the middle classes than the ostensibly socialist revolution of 1918. A lifetime of savings would no longer buy a loaf of bread. Money was being carried in a wheel barrow to carry money to buy loaves of bread, it end up that the wheel barrow was worth more than the money in it. Trade union funds wiped out the middle classes and Capitalists losing there savings there for making the rich poor over night. Pensions planned for a lifetime were wiped out completely. Politically, the hyperinflation fuelled radicalism on both the left and the right. The Communists, badly damaged by their failure in January 1919, saw greatly improved prospects for a successful revolution. In Munich the leader of the small National Socialist German Workers' (Nazi) Party, Adolf Hitler, used the turmoil to fashion an alliance with other right-wing groups and attempt a coup in November 1923—the Beer of the left succeeded in imposing their will. In the short run they did not succeed because of ineptitude and miscalculation; in the long run they failed because the government sponsored a currency reform that restabilized the mark and also decided to end its policy of passive resistance in the Ruhr in exchange for an end to the occupation and a rescheduling of the reparation payments that it owed to the Allies . Hall Putsch—that sought to use Bavaria as a base for a nationalist march on Berlin. He hoped to overthrow the democratic system of Weimar that he believed was responsible for Germany's political and economic humiliation. Neither the radicals of the right nor those of the left succeeded in imposing their will . In the short run they did not succeed because of ineptitude and miscalculation; in the long run they failed because the government...
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