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The New Deal and American Economy

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    Have you ever thought to yourself why paychecks get taxed for Social Security or asked who even created the Social Security Administration? Seems to be unfair to be obligated to give your hard earned money towards a program that most millennials and future generations may not receive back. The great and powerful Franklin Delano Roosevelt is the man to give thanks too. FDR and the U. S. Congress created the (SSA) and many other government programs through The New Deal (Brooks, 2013).

    The New Deal was established to get The United States’ economy out of the Great Depression through relief, recovery, and reform programs; however, not everyone benefited equally through these government agencies (Brooks, 2013). Development and Implementation When FDR took the presidential office in 1932 “Roosevelt promised a “new deal for America” during his acceptance speech at the 1932 Democratic National Convention” (Brooks, 2013). According to Gordon, the New Deal was separated into multiple eras. The first New Deal era was between (1933-1935) focused more on unemployment relief, business recovery, and the stabilization of the banking system (2018). Furthermore, during the second New Deal era (1935-1937) FDR implemented reform agencies such as the National Recovery Act (NRA), the Social Security Act (SSA), and the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) (Gordon, 2018). The implementation of these government agencies was FDR’s plan of action to provide help to millions of suffering Americans and to normalize the US economy from the economic catastrophe known as the Great Depression. Objectives of the 3R’s During the first hundred days of FDR’s presidency, most of the New Deals legislation was passed (Gordon, 2018). Roosevelt first course of action was to recover from the economic crisis and give relief to the citizens by creating jobs (Bryant, 2018). He implemented two acts for the banking crisis. The Per the Trading with the Enemies Act of 1917. Which demanded the closure of all US banks (Gordon, 2018). The Emergency Banking Relief Act which permanently closed five percent of the US banks (Gordon, 2018). The remaining banks were loaned money to be reopened and were back up by the Federal Reserve (Gordon, 2018). Next, he turned his focus on agriculture and the industry. Roosevelt passed two acts on the same day; the Agricultural Adjustment Act that paid farmers to reduce the size of their crops; therefore, increasing the income of the farmers, and the Emergency Farm Mortgage Act which gave the opportunity to farmers to receive lower interest rates on their mortgages (Gordon, 2018). Furthermore, Roosevelt sought out to relief the unemployment issue. He did this by creating many work relief programs.

    The most known was the Civilian Conservation Corps and the Tennessee Valley Authority (Gordon, 2018). However, I will elaborate more on these agencies in my next paragraph. Finally, reform of the economic system had to be changed to reassure that a future economic crash would not happen. So, Roosevelt’s answer was to eliminate fraud and protect investors through the Wall Street Stock Market exchange by implementing the Securities Act and Securities Exchange Commission (Gordon, 2018). The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation also is known as the (FDIC) was created to back up bank deposit in case of bank failure (Gordon, 2018). Also, the most highly known program of the New Deal that helped the poor, disabled, and elderly with unemployment insurance and pension checks known as the Social Security Act was created as well (Gordon, 2018).

    Alphabet Soup Agencies

    The Alphabet Agencies were known as work relief and recovery programs that were created by the government to help decrease the unemployment rate and boost business (Kowalski, 2008).

    • The Agricultural Adjustment Act: Stated in my previous paragraphs, the (AAA) compensated farmers with subsidies to reduce the growth of their crops. The reduction of crops kept the demand up for production: therefore; increasing the earnings of the farmers (Kowalski, 2008).
    • The Tennessee Valley Authority: The (TVA) is known as a public project power because the program created hydroelectric dams on the Tennessee River that generated cheap power to rural areas and helped control flooding (Kowalski, 2008). Also, helped create jobs, and the (TVA) agency is still being used to this day (Gordon, 2018).
    • Civilian Conservation Corps: The (CCC) employed more than a few million men to rehabilitate forest, beaches, rivers, and parks (Gordon, 2018). As reward for their service they earned thirty dollars a month, and which eighty-five percent of that went back to support their families (Kowalski, 2008).
    • Public Works Administration: According to Kowalski the (PWA) sponsored more than 34,000 public infrastructure construction projects such as roads, airports, dams, and power – generating plants (2008).
    • National Youth Administration: The (NYA) offered the youth the Works Project Program and the Students Aid Program which helped them exceed in their career and education (Roosevelt Institute, 2011).

    Unfair Inequality Even though many Americans found relief through the New Deal. There were a few groups of citizens that did not receive the same benefits as everyone else did. The most notable group that faced discrimination and inequality were Black African Americans. The main reason was that Roosevelt highly depended on southern white congressmen for votes to pass New Deal programs (Bryant, 2018). So, he tended to look the opposite way when it came to segregation and discrimination against Black African Americans. For example, African Americans received lower pay than whites. the (CCC) segregated the living homes where whites and African Americans stayed at (Bryant, 2018). Furthermore, the (NRA) gave white people jobs first, and the (FHA) declined mortgages to African Americans who tried to live in white communities (Digital History, 2016).

    Another group that did not receive the same benefits were women. During this time many married women were refused to work for work relief programs because men were looked as the main supporters of their families (Gordon, 2018). Therefore, Women relatively took on the traditional housewife role (Gordon,2018). Conclusion Through America’s most devastating economic era was, the New Deal really that important? Yes, because Roosevelt was able to establish work relief programs that provided thousands of Americans jobs; therefore, reducing the unemployment rate. He reformed the banking system by backing up citizen’s currency by the (FDIC) and changed the laws in how businesses and people would be able to invest in the stock market exchange. Through it all, Franklin D. Roosevelt gave hope to millions of Americans during a hardship time.

    References

    1. Brooks, S. (2013). New Deal. Salem Press Encyclopedia. Retrieved from http://eds.a.ebscohost.com/eds/detail/detail?vid=1&sid=5213bf63-38e2-4448-97b1-94faca74a385%40sessionmgr4010&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWRzLWxpdmUmc2NvcGU9c2l0ZQ%3d%3d#AN=89129525&db=ers
    2. Bryant, Joyce. (2018). The Great Depression and New Deal. Yale – New Haven Teachers Institute. Retrieved from http://teachersinstitute.yale.edu/curriculum/units/1998/4/98.04.04.x.html
    3. Digital History. (2016). African Americans and the New Deal. Retrieved from http://www.digitalhistory.uh.edu/disp_textbook.cfm?smtid=2&psid=3447 Gordon, C. (2018).
    4. New deal. In S. Bronner (Ed.), Encyclopedia of American studies. MD: Johns Hopkins University Press. Retrieved from http://proxygsu-cht2.galileo.usg.edu/login?url=https://search.credoreference.com/content/topic/new_deal?institutionId=3554
    5. Kowalski, K. M. (2008). ALPHABET AGENCIES. Cobblestone, 29(3), 16-18. Retrieved from http://eds.b.ebscohost.com/eds/detail/detail?vid=4&sid=cc8de257-6986-4620-8952-95dab9242350%40sessionmgr120&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWRzLWxpdmUmc2NvcGU9c2l0ZQ%3d%3d#AN=31212253&db=khh
    6. Roosevelt Institute. (Aug.08,2011). National Youth Administration. Retrieved from http://rooseveltinstitute.org/national-youth-administration/

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