New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR's Economic Legacy Has Damaged America

New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR's Economic Legacy Has Damaged America

by Burton W. Folsom Jr.
4.0 51

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New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR's Economic Legacy Has Damaged America by Burton W. Folsom Jr.

A sharply critical new look at Franklin D. Roosevelt's presidency reveals government policies that hindered economic recovery from the Great Depression -- and are still hurting America today.

In this shocking and groundbreaking new book, economic historian Burton W. Folsom exposes the idyllic legend of Franklin D. Roosevelt as a myth of epic proportions. With questionable moral character and a vendetta against the business elite, Roosevelt created New Deal programs marked by inconsistent planning, wasteful spending, and opportunity for political gain -- ultimately elevating public opinion of his administration but falling flat in achieving the economic revitalization that America so desperately needed from the Great Depression. Folsom takes a critical, revisionist look at Roosevelt's presidency, his economic policies, and his personal life.

Elected in 1932 on a buoyant tide of promises to balance the increasingly uncontrollable national budget and reduce the catastrophic unemployment rate, the charismatic thirty-second president not only neglected to pursue those goals, he made dramatic changes to federal programming that directly contradicted his campaign promises. Price fixing, court packing, regressive taxes, and patronism were all hidden inside the alphabet soup of his popular New Deal, putting a financial strain on the already suffering lower classes and discouraging the upper classes from taking business risks that potentially could have jostled national cash flow from dormancy. Many government programs that are widely used today have their seeds in the New Deal. Farm subsidies, minimum wage, and welfare, among others, all stifle economic growth -- encouraging decreased productivity and exacerbating unemployment.

Roosevelt's imperious approach to the presidency changed American politics forever, and as he manipulated public opinion, American citizens became unwitting accomplices to the stilted economic growth of the 1930s. More than sixty years after FDR died in office, we still struggle with the damaging repercussions of his legacy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781416596318
Publisher: Threshold Editions
Publication date: 11/04/2008
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 370,307
File size: 488 KB

About the Author

Burton W. Folsom, Jr., Ph.D., a professor of history at Hillsdale College in Michigan, is the author of several books. A regular columnist for The Freeman, he has also written for The Wall Street Journal, American Spectator, Policy Review, and Human Events.

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New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR's Economic Legacy Has Damaged America 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 51 reviews.
OurHistoryOurHeritage More than 1 year ago
To the previous reviewer -- those entitlement programs are broke, so I guess they didn't work, did they? The book is well-researched and even offers citations. Its hard to argue with any conclusions that the author draws, because the facts back them up. This book is full of information that you didn't learn in school. The Obama administration looks moderate, when you read what happened in the Roosevelt years. If you're want to know where Obama is taking our country, read this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was honestly hoping for this book to be great, and while exposing the New Deal for the sham that it was isn't all that difficult, the author unfortunately fails to deliver. I'm not a leftist, a Socialist, a Democrat, or a Progressive. I'm a Conservative, Republican, and a Capitalist. This book was actually difficult to get through, it was written from an extremely biased point of view, which you would expect, however the bias at some points was so thick, it caused this book to lose relevance. It could have been a great book, and if nothing else is an anthology of the failings of FDR and the New Deal, however this cannot be considered a serious academic work.
BPAIZZY More than 1 year ago
This is excellent reading, although it deals with the process of converting the US into a welfare and government depending state in the early 1900s (Depression Era), it is completely relevant today. Socialists always try to gain control of the population with ill conceived plans during trying and desperate times. This book isn't deep or confusing, it is simple and easy to grasp. I will definitely pass along my copy to others.
hoopbh More than 1 year ago
Raw Deal is what this book is about. It tells you what really happened in the the great depression. It tell how the polices of FDR made things worse. Also it the same plan Oboma is using to try and run this country He is trying the same things that did not work then and will not work know.
GT-Colorado More than 1 year ago
This was an excellent book and it points out how misguided government policies, programs, and federal spending prolonged the Great Depression. It gives you a glimpse into what is occurring today and possible outcomes. The book illustrates how government intervention in the free market can lead to market distortions and unintended consequences. What sounds good and popular to the average person on the street inevitably creates more problems than are solved and unfortunately it is the avearge person on the street that gets hurt. I was also captivated by FDR's ego and how destructive he could be if you opposed him. What a shame. After reading this book, I was left with a much different attitude about FDR, politicians, and government over-reach. Hence, the less government the better. It is simply wrong to use taxpayer money to curry favor through "patronage." FDR was a master of this, along with using other arms of the government to manipulate the voters: "the dole spoils the soul" or to attack his opponents e.g. IRS. Couldn't agree more. Fasinating book. A must read for anyone who is trying to understand why we are where we are today.
Indiapapa More than 1 year ago
This is the first book that I've read by this author. I've read other books on the subject matter. The author does not go into exhaustive detail to make his points, and the book is not replete with economic idiom. The book's content is shaped around his argument, and he discusses causality of the depression, as well as impacts of the NRA, AAA, TVA, WPA, taxation, FERA, financial interference, patronage, IRS abuses, attempts at court packing, labor relations, social security, and minimum wages. Once again he does not go into great detail in discussing the impacts. Readers looking for a more in depth read may be disappointed. He also discusses the abilities, ethics, and actions of FDR. FDR evangelists will also not be pleased with this book's subject matter. The book is an easy read. The subject matter is clearly germane to present day events.
Sheldon81 More than 1 year ago
FDR is overrated and the myth of the New Deal is exposed. This is a must read for younger people as well as older. You won't learn this in school and a true story of history that must be shared. I would first like to debunk  one argument: That is the notion if the government doesn't spend people will go hungry well people did go hungry because of the government. When government chooses winners only small groups will benefit and the majority of the people suffer. You don't punish good behavior and subsidize bad behavior. More people suffered for more years under these policies than in anytime in the history of the US. 
Russell_Kirk More than 1 year ago
Easy flow of content; draw your own conclusion on subject matter.
Marvin Stone More than 1 year ago
The previous review was nothing but liberal rant. You will learn that FDR ruled by executive order rather than let our system work the way in which our founders intended. You will learn about FDR's Second bill of rights granted by FDR rather than by your Creator. You will learn that FDR ruled by intimidation and threat of imprisonment to have his way. You will understand that FDR was the father of the entitlement system in the U.S. and that he taught our people to speak out loud and to demand entitlements as though they were rights granted by our Creator. FDR believed that people were entitled to a home and a living wage. He believed that these were rights. But who grants these rights...another man...or our Creator? Rights can only be granted by the Creator and no man can take them away. The Creator grants no rights that man can provide. FDR believed in the redisribution of wealth in order to grant 'his' rights. Socialism. Another step down the road to serfdom. The myth of FDR is exposed in this great book. You will be glad that you read it and it will give you some words to use in the battle for freedom.
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This book is worth reading in the times we live in today. The author chronicles FDR's faults as well as his achievements. I did have a problem with some quotes being repeated in different chapters. I recommend this for people who want to argue with New Deal supporters. It will make them think about their ideology and what is best for individual people.
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