Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The New Deal sucked

Sarah just linked to THE.BEST.EVER. article explaining why the New Deal wasn't all it was cracked up to be. I mean, this article is so good, I just want to roll around in it, like a cat does catnip...I can't get enough...I want him to write more!

If you don't want to read it all (your loss), this conclusion from it, pretty much hits the nail on the head:

I will finish with a quotation from Roosevelt's secretary of treasury, Henry Morganthau. He admits, the whole thing failed. Again, the quote, you will never see in a textbook, but I have it right here. I went to the Roosevelt Library and dug this one out. Henry Morganthau, Secretary of Treasury, in May, 1939, years after the New Deal, said, "We have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. And I have just one interest, and now if I am wrong somebody else can have my job. I want to see this country prosper. I want to see people get a job. I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises. I say after eight years of this administration, we have just as much unemployment as when we started. And enormous debt to boot." That is the secretary of treasury in charge of the money disbursement and statistics collection during the 1930s, making that statement.

Yeah...got to admire his honesty, but for some reason it was ignored and we continue to throw money at problems, villify the wealthy, and turn everyone else into "victims" of the capitalist machine.

5 Comments:

Blogger John said...

Of course, the Democrats would say they just didn't spend enough. Apparently they are trying to fix that now...

2:35 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

I think the Morganthau quote fairly sums up what 7+ years of federal spending can do when not spent in the right areas. We are no where near that right now. The quote, however, leaves out a lot of other very positive things Morganthau had to say about the New Deal. Plus, the New Deal was more than just government spending. It was also savings for private individuals like Social Security.

I suppose if we really wanted to we could look at quotes from Reagan's budget director, David Stockman and what he had to say about Reaganomics. Calling it a trojan horse and cattle feeding at the troughs isn't very flattering. That doesn't mean some aspects of Reaganomics didn't work because some were successful.

I just don't think highlighting one quote proves the New Deal sucked or didn't work, just like highlighting Stockman quotes proves the same for the so-called conservative version of bliss for this country.

Good to see you still writing CVG.

10:56 PM  
Blogger CaliValleyGirl said...

Chris, Touche about the quotes, but the question begs: what would be the "right areas" to spend, and how can you assure quality of results when funding is assured?

11:01 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Thanks for the acknowledgment on the quotes. I didn't see the question in your original post about what are the right areas to spend. I only recall it saying that the New Deal sucked and that it wasn't at all what it was cracked up to be or something like that, and that we should consider that before we vilify the wealthy.

I would have to say that's a rather harsh conclusion from a quote, wouldn't you?

But some areas that would definitely benefit the country as a whole from government spending is infrastructure and new technologies (green and otherwise).

1:19 AM  
Blogger CaliValleyGirl said...

Well, the original article (not my post) says that a lot of the public works projects were shoddy and had to be done over again. He also mentions issues with agricultural subsidies and how these were abused.

I agree that infrastructure projects are a good expenditure of tax money, in fact that is what taxes SHOULD go towards. Why aren’t they now? What happens a lot in America is that although the cost of building something is considered, they never seem to budget in upkeep of things. So we build bridges, streets etc, and then we ignore the upkeep and start other projects and programs. I know that a lot of the money has been earmarked to go to updating infrastructure, but to me it is outrageous that maintenance was deferred on those structures in the first place.

I just have a problem with government spending and incentives for success of those projects. If private companies are going to be offered the contracts and they are going to have to compete for a certain amount of money awarded. But I am not for just having those projects given to government employees with no incentive to finish them up in a timely manner. I don’t want to pay overtime.

Grants for private companies to do research I could go with.

1:35 AM  

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