New Deal A Modern History

ISBN-10: 143915449X
ISBN-13: 9781439154496
Edition: N/A
Authors: Michael Hiltzik
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Description: Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal began as a program of short-term emergency relief measures and evolved into a truly transformative concept of the federal government’s role in Americans’ lives. More than an economic recovery plan, it was a reordering  More...

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Book details

List price: $21.00
Publisher: Free Press
Publication date: 5/8/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 512
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 1.386
Language: English

Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal began as a program of short-term emergency relief measures and evolved into a truly transformative concept of the federal government’s role in Americans’ lives. More than an economic recovery plan, it was a reordering of the political system that continues to define America to this day.With The New Deal: A Modern History, Pulitzer Prize–winning writer Michael Hiltzik offers fresh insights into this inflection point in the American experience. Here is an intimate look at the alchemy that allowed FDR to mold his multifaceted and contentious inner circle into a formidable political team. The New Deal: A Modern History shows how Roosevelt, through the force of his personality, commanded the loyalty of the rock-ribbed fiscal conservative Lewis Douglas and the radical agrarian Rexford Tugwell alike; of Harold Ickes and Harry Hopkins, one a curmudgeonly miser, the other a spendthrift idealist; of Henry Morgenthau, gentleman farmer of upstate New York; and of Frances Perkins, a prim social activist with her roots in Brahmin New England. Yet the same character traits that made him so supple and self-confident a leader would sow the seeds of the New Deal’s end, with a shocking surge of Rooseveltian misjudgments.Understanding the New Deal may be more important today than at any time in the last eight decades. Conceived in response to a devastating financial crisis very similar to America’s most recent downturn—born of excessive speculation, indifferent regulation of banks and investment houses, and disproportionate corporate influence over the White House and Congress—the New Deal remade the country’s economic and political environment in six years of intensive experimentation. FDR had no effective model for fighting the worst economic downturn in his generation’s experience; but the New Deal has provided a model for subsequent presidents who faced challenging economic conditions, right up to the present. Hiltzik tells the story of how the New Deal was made, demonstrating that its precepts did not spring fully conceived from the mind of FDR—before or after he took office. From first to last the New Deal was a work in progress, a patchwork of often contradictory ideas. Far from reflecting solely progressive principles, the New Deal also accommodated such conservative goals as a balanced budget and the suspension of antitrust enforcement. Some programs that became part of the New Deal were borrowed from the Republican administration of Herbert Hoover; indeed, some of its most successful elements were enacted over FDR’s opposition.In this bold reevaluation of a decisive moment in American history, Michael Hiltzik dispels decades of accumulated myths and misconceptions about the New Deal to capture with clarity and immediacy its origins, its legacy, and its genius.

Michael Hiltzik is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author who has covered business, technology, and public policy fornbsp;the Los Angeles Times for three decades. He currently serves as the Times's business columnist and hosts its business blog, The Economy Hub. His books include The New Deal, Colossus, Dealers of Lightning, and The Plot Against Social Security. Mr. Hiltzik received the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for articles exposing corruption in the entertainment industry. He lives in Southern California with his wife and two children. Follow him @HiltzikM.

Prologue: The Long Winter
The Hundred Days
"Action Now"
A Good Crisis
A River Out of Eden
Wall Street in the Dock
Agony on the Land
The New Deal Rising
The General
The Gold Standard on the Booze
Harry and Harold
So Many Sinners
The Little Red House
Pied Pipers
The Cornerstone
Black Monday
Federal One
The Most Forgotten Man
Return to Earth
Backlash
Nine Old Men
Roosevelt's Recession
Purgatory
Epilogue: Defining the New Deal
Notes
Bibliography
Acknowledgments
Index

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