Herbert Hoover Great Depression Essay

Roosevelt Vs. Hoover And The Great Depression

Roosevelt and Hoover

The Great Depression drastically changed America's definition of Liberalism. Prior to the onset of the depression, in the roaring twenties, policies of laissez-faire were considered liberal, radical, revolutionary, and even democratic. This was due to the fact that revolution was a horrifying notion and not until after the laissez-faire and the system of free market fails in the 1920's do people begin to look about for alternatives. The time when people starting to seek alternatives was at the onset of the depression when America's political views drastically change. As the Great Depression, started in 1929, America began to view conservatives as following the policies of social Darwinism, laissez-faire, and having small governments. In contrast, liberals were seen as following polices of having more government regulation and large governments. Thus because the Great Depression started and America's views of liberalism changed, Hoover was seen as a conservative and Franklin D. Roosevelt as a liberal despite occasional occasions where they supported polices not characterized as liberal or conservative.

Due to the fact that the Great Depression changed the definition of liberalism, President Herbert Hoover began as a liberal but by the end of his term was considered a conservative although occasionally advocating liberal policies. When Hoover came into office big business flourished attributable to prior Republican presidents of Harding and Coolidge. Hoover kept the government from intervening in the economy because of the success of the big businesses, the public's fear of revolution, and the public being contentment with the politics. In addition, the invention of the production line, which instigated the Second Industrial Revolution, allowed businessmen to prosper, and automobiles and electrical appliances become available to the public and ease the public's life. Thus this contributed to America's success and auspicious attitude towards supporting the liberal policies of laissez- affaire in the 1920's

Contrarily before the Depression, there were signs that pointed to President Herbert Hoover becoming more conservative. Document A suggests that Herbert Hoover didn't want' do be considered strictly laissez-faire. Document A proposes that Herbert Hoover wanted to liberalism to be found not " in striving to spread bureaucracy but striving to set its bounds, " but also wanted The United States to know that, " he doesn't want to be misinterpreted as believing that the Untied States ins a free for all, or system of laissez-faire." Hoover appeared as if he was less determined to preserve the capitalistic society of the 1920's seeing that he argued that capitalism also has social obligations. However, the success of the American economy under presidents Hading and Coolidge who believed in private interest beliefs required him to make sure that the lack of intervention in the economy would be maintained. Also...

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The Impact of the Great Depression Essay

926 Words4 Pages

The Impact of the Great Depression

The stock market crash of 1929 sent the nation spiraling into a state of economic paralysis that became known as the Great Depression. As industries shrank and businesses collapsed or cut back, up to 25% of Americans were left unemployed. At the same time, the financial crisis destroyed the life savings of countless Americans (Modern American Poetry). Food, housing and other consumable goods were in short supply for most people (Zinn 282). This widespread state of poverty had serious social repercussions for the country.

America’s agricultural economy had already been suffering for a decade when nature conspired against the country to exacerbate the Great Depression. From 1931 through 1939,…show more content…

Everyone scrounged about for small, labor intensive jobs at low wages. Even women and children had to work to subsidize the family income. The recently homeless lived in shantytowns nicknamed “Hoovervilles” after President Hoover who was moving slowly and ineffectually to deal with the Depression (Wikipedia). Little food was available and many had to search garbage heaps and other such locations for any kind of sustenance. The economic crisis had ushered in a decade of unprecedented mass poverty and poor living conditions.

Herbert Hoover, the president in office when the Great Depression hit the country, did very little to ameliorate the devastating situation. Hoover underestimated the seriousness of the crisis, misdiagnosed the causes of the problems, and clung to his beliefs in individual achievement and self-help. His corrective measures, aimed at inflation and the federal budget, were thus damaging themselves. Furthermore, he hesitated to mobilize government resources to aid Americans and instead appealed to private groups to lend a hand (Encarta). Thus Hoover’s administration did little to mitigate the impact of the Depression.

With no relief in sight from the government or anyone else, people’s anger and resentment grew. The Communist party and other socialist groups saw a swell in their numbers. Labor strikes and protests against the government began to erupt. The most notable of these was the Bonus Army March on Washington. More than

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