Recovery and reform

Many people attribute Franklin D. Roosevelt with recovery from the Great Depression. However, the United People tend to disagree with this view. A renowned economist, John Stossel, says that FDR actually slowed recovery by attempting reform:

“This is not the first time a president chose reform over recovery. Franklin Roosevelt did it with his New Deal, and the result was long years of depression and deprivation. Roosevelt’s priorities were criticized not just by opponents of big government but by none other than John Maynard Keynes, the British economist whose theories rationalized big government. Before FDR had been in office a year, Keynes wrote him an open letter, which was printed in the New York Times:

“You are engaged on a double task, Recovery and Reform; — recovery from the slump and the passage of those business and social reforms which are long overdue. For the first, speed and quick results are essential. The second may be urgent, too; but haste will be injurious. … [E]ven wise and necessary Reform may, in some respects, impede and complicate Recovery. For it will upset the confidence of the business world and weaken their existing motives to action. … Now I am not clear, looking back over the last nine months, that the order of urgency between measures of Recovery and measures of Reform has been duly observed, or that the latter has not sometimes been mistaken for the former.””

Just because the economy recovered from the Great Depression does not mean that FDR’s new deal was the cause. Just because the whole is good does not mean the part contributed to it. The economy always recovers, given time, freedom, and basic human protections. Economies that don’t recover, such as the Soviet Union’s, fail because of socialism and centralized planning. No single human being can make decisions to supply everyone’s needs in a country; to think so is foolish.


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