FDR's Folly: How Roosevelt and His New Deal Prolonged the Great Depression

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Crown/Archetype, Dec 18, 2007 - History - 352 pages
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The Great Depression and the New Deal. For generations, the collective American consciousness has believed that the former ruined the country and the latter saved it. Endless praise has been heaped upon President Franklin Delano Roosevelt for masterfully reining in the Depression’s destructive effects and propping up the
country on his New Deal platform. In fact, FDR has achieved mythical status in American history and is considered to be, along with Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln, one of the greatest presidents of all time. But would the Great Depression have been so catastrophic had the New Deal never been implemented?

In FDR’s Folly, historian Jim Powell argues that it was in fact the New Deal itself, with its shortsighted programs, that deepened the Great Depression, swelled the federal government, and prevented the country from turning around quickly. You’ll discover in alarming detail how FDR’s federal programs hurt America more than helped it, with effects we still feel today, including:

• How Social Security actually increased unemployment
• How higher taxes undermined good businesses
• How new labor laws threw people out of work
• And much more

This groundbreaking book pulls back the shroud of awe and the cloak of time enveloping FDR to prove convincingly how flawed his economic policies actually were, despite his good intentions and the astounding intellect of his circle of advisers. In today’s turbulent domestic and global environment, eerily similar to that of the 1930s, it’s more important than ever before to uncover and understand the truth of our history, lest we be doomed to repeat it.


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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Angelic55blonde - LibraryThing

This is a good book for everyone. It gives a perspective that you don't see often in history books about FDR. Since FDR was a great president, it's easy to write a pro-FDR history book but this book ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - WarnerToddHuston - LibraryThing

FDR- Not as Great as You're Told! Want a counterpoint to the conventional wisdom that FDR was a great president? Get this book! Jim Powell informs us, in a conversational style that is free of long ... Read full review


How Could Such Bright
What Caused the Great Depression?
What Did FDR Borrow from Hoover?
Why Did New Dealers Break
Why Did FDR Seize Everybodys Gold?
Why Did FDR Triple Taxes
Why Didnt New Deal Securities Laws
Why Did New Dealers Make Everything
How Did Social Security
How Did New Deal Labor Laws
How Did FDRs Supreme Court
How Did New Deal Policies Cause
What Have Been the Effects of the New Deal
What Can We Learn from
Selected Bibliography

Depress the Tennessee Economy?
Why Did the Supreme Court Strike Down

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About the author (2007)

JIM POWELL, editor of Laissez Faire Books, has been a senior fellow at the Cato Institute since 1988. He is the author of the bestselling book The Triumph of Liberty, which the Wall Street Journal called “a literary achievement,” and he has written more than 400 articles for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, Money magazine, Reason, and numerous other national publications. A world-renowned historian, Mr. Powell studied under Daniel Boorstin and William McNeill at the University of Chicago, and he has lectured across the United States as well as in England, Germany, Japan, Brazil, and Argentina. He lives in Connecticut.

From the Hardcover edition.

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