A Guide to the New World: Why Mutual Guarantee is the Key to our Recovery from the Global Crisis

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While the regular Army and Navy budgets were reduced, Roosevelt juggled relief funds to provide for their claimed needs. All of the CCC camps were directed by army officers, whose salaries came from the relief budget. To prime the pump and cut unemployment, the NIRA created the Public Works Administration PWA , a major program of public works, which organized and provided funds for the building of useful works such as government buildings, airports, hospitals, schools, roads, bridges and dams.

Under Roosevelt, many unemployed persons were put to work on a wide range of government financed public works projects, building bridges, airports, dams, post offices, hospitals and hundreds of thousands of miles of road. Through reforestation and flood control, they reclaimed millions of hectares of soil from erosion and devastation. As noted by one authority, Roosevelt's New Deal "was literally stamped on the American landscape".

The rural U. Roosevelt believed that full economic recovery depended upon the recovery of agriculture and raising farm prices was a major tool, even though it meant higher food prices for the poor living in cities. Many rural people lived in severe poverty, especially in the South. In , the Roosevelt administration launched the Tennessee Valley Authority , a project involving dam construction planning on an unprecedented scale to curb flooding, generate electricity and modernize poor farms in the Tennessee Valley region of the Southern United States.

Under the Farmers' Relief Act of , the government paid compensation to farmers who reduced output, thereby raising prices. As a result of this legislation, the average income of farmers almost doubled by In the s, farm production had increased dramatically thanks to mechanization, more potent insecticides and increased use of fertilizer. Due to an overproduction of agricultural products, farmers faced a severe and chronic agricultural depression throughout the s.

The Great Depression even worsened the agricultural crises and at the beginning of agricultural markets nearly faced collapse. In Oregon, sheep were slaughtered and left to the buzzards because meat prices were not sufficient to warrant transportation to markets. Roosevelt was keenly interested in farm issues and believed that true prosperity would not return until farming was prosperous. Many different programs were directed at farmers. The first days produced the Farm Security Act to raise farm incomes by raising the prices farmers received, which was achieved by reducing total farm output.

The act reflected the demands of leaders of major farm organizations especially the Farm Bureau and reflected debates among Roosevelt's farm advisers such as Secretary of Agriculture Henry A. Wallace, M. Wilson , Rexford Tugwell and George Peek. The AAA aimed to raise prices for commodities through artificial scarcity. The AAA used a system of domestic allotments, setting total output of corn, cotton, dairy products, hogs, rice, tobacco and wheat.


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The farmers themselves had a voice in the process of using government to benefit their incomes. The AAA paid land owners subsidies for leaving some of their land idle with funds provided by a new tax on food processing. The idea was to give farmers a "fair exchange value" for their products in relation to the general economy "parity level".

The original AAA did not provide for any sharecroppers or tenants or farm laborers who might become unemployed, but there were other New Deal programs especially for them. The AAA was replaced by a similar program that did win Court approval. Instead of paying farmers for letting fields lie barren, this program subsidized them for planting soil-enriching crops such as alfalfa that would not be sold on the market.

Federal regulation of agricultural production has been modified many times since then, but together with large subsidies is still in effect today. The Food Stamp Plan —a major new welfare program for urban poor—was established in to provide stamps to poor people who could use them to purchase food at retail outlets. The program ended during wartime prosperity in , but was restored in It survived into the 21st century with little controversy because it was seen to benefit the urban poor, food producers, grocers and wholesalers as well as farmers, thus it gained support from both liberal and conservative Congressmen.

In , Tea Party activists in the House nonetheless tried to end the program, now known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program , while the Senate fought to preserve it. Recovery was the effort in numerous programs to restore the economy to normal health. By most economic indicators, this was achieved by —except for unemployment, which remained stubbornly high until World War II began.

Recovery was designed to help the economy bounce back from depression. Economic historians led by Price Fishback have examined the impact of New Deal spending on improving health conditions in the largest cities, — From to , the industrial economy suffered from a vicious cycle of deflation. Since , the U. Chamber of Commerce , the voice of the nation's organized business, promoted an anti-deflationary scheme that would permit trade associations to cooperate in government-instigated cartels to stabilize prices within their industries.

While existing antitrust laws clearly forbade such practices, organized business found a receptive ear in the Roosevelt Administration. Roosevelt's advisers believed that excessive competition and technical progress had led to overproduction and lowered wages and prices, which they believed lowered demand and employment deflation. He argued that government economic planning was necessary to remedy this. They rejected a strong move in Congress to limit the workweek to 30 hours. It included stimulus funds for the WPA to spend and sought to raise prices, give more bargaining power for unions so the workers could purchase more and reduce harmful competition.

Johnson , who had been a senior economic official in World War I. Johnson called on every business establishment in the nation to accept a stopgap "blanket code": a minimum wage of between 20 and 45 cents per hour, a maximum workweek of 35—45 hours and the abolition of child labor. Johnson and Roosevelt contended that the "blanket code" would raise consumer purchasing power and increase employment.

The NRA brought together leaders in each industry to design specific sets of codes for that industry—the most important provisions were anti-deflationary floors below which no company would lower prices or wages and agreements on maintaining employment and production. In a remarkably short time, the NRA announced agreements from almost every major industry in the nation.

NRA Administrator Hugh Johnson was showing signs of mental breakdown due to the extreme pressure and workload of running the National Recovery Administration. Supreme Court in the case of Schechter v. United States. After the end of the NRA, quotas in the oil industry were fixed by the Railroad Commission of Texas with Tom Connally 's federal Hot Oil Act of , which guaranteed that illegal "hot oil" would not be sold.

The New Deal had an important impact in the housing field. The New Deal followed and increased President Hoover's lead and seek measures. The New Deal sought to stimulate the private home building industry and increase the number of individuals who owned homes. HOLC set uniform national appraisal methods and simplified the mortgage process. Reform was based on the assumption that the depression was caused by the inherent instability of the market and that government intervention was necessary to rationalize and stabilize the economy and to balance the interests of farmers, business and labor.

Reforms targeted the causes of the depression and sought to prevent a crisis like it from happening again. In other words, financially rebuilding the U. There is consensus amongst economic historians that protectionist policies, culminating in the Smoot-Hawley Act of , worsened the Depression. It gave the president power to negotiate bilateral, reciprocal trade agreements with other countries. The act enabled Roosevelt to liberalize American trade policy around the globe and it is widely credited with ushering in the era of liberal trade policy that persists to this day.

It promoted land reform and helped small farms, it set up farm cooperatives, promoted crop diversification and helped local industry. In the spring of , responding to the setbacks in the Court, a new skepticism in Congress and the growing popular clamor for more dramatic action, New Dealers passed important new initiatives.

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Historians refer to them as the "Second New Deal" and note that it was more liberal and more controversial than the "First New Deal" of — Until there were just a dozen states that had old age insurance laws, but these programs were woefully underfunded and therefore almost worthless. Just one state Wisconsin had an insurance program. The United States was the only modern industrial country where people faced the Depression without any national system of social security.

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It established a permanent system of universal retirement pensions Social Security , unemployment insurance and welfare benefits for the handicapped and needy children in families without a father present. Roosevelt insisted that it should be funded by payroll taxes rather than from the general fund — he said: "We put those payroll contributions there so as to give the contributors a legal, moral, and political right to collect their pensions and unemployment benefits. With those taxes in there, no damn politician can ever scrap my social security program".

Compared to the social security systems in western European countries, the Social Security Act of was rather conservative, but for the first time the federal government took responsibility for the economic security of the aged, the temporarily unemployed, dependent children and the handicapped. The National Labor Relations Act of , also known as the Wagner Act , finally guaranteed workers the rights to collective bargaining through unions of their own choice. The Wagner Act did not compel employers to reach agreement with their employees, but it opened possibilities for American labor. Labor thus became a major component of the New Deal political coalition.

The Fair Labor Standards Act of set maximum hours 44 per week and minimum wages 25 cents per hour for most categories of workers. Child labour of children under the age of 16 was forbidden, children under 18 years were forbidden to work in hazardous employment. As a result, the wages of , workers, especially in the South, were increased and the hours of 1.

Roosevelt had insisted that the projects had to be costly in terms of labor, long-term beneficial and the WPA was forbidden to compete with private enterprises—therefore the workers had to be paid smaller wages. Its Texas director, Lyndon B. It became a hunting ground for conservatives searching for communist employees. The Federal Writers' Project operated in every state, where it created a famous guide book—it also catalogued local archives and hired many writers, including Margaret Walker , Zora Neale Hurston and Anzia Yezierska , to document folklore.

Other writers interviewed elderly ex-slaves and recorded their stories. Under the Federal Theater Project, headed by charismatic Hallie Flanagan , actresses and actors, technicians, writers and directors put on stage productions. The tickets were inexpensive or sometimes free, making theater available to audiences unaccustomed to attending plays.

One Federal Art Project paid trained woman artists on relief to paint murals or create statues for newly built post offices and courthouses. Many of these works of art can still be seen in public buildings around the country, along with murals sponsored by the Treasury Relief Art Project of the Treasury Department. Since that was an extraordinary high income in the s, the highest tax rate actually covered just one individual— John D.

Morgenthau called it "more or less a campaign document". In a private conversation with Raymond Moley, Roosevelt admitted that the purpose of the bill was "stealing Huey Long 's thunder" by making Long's supporters of his own. At the same time, it raised the bitterness of the rich who called Roosevelt "a traitor to his class" and the wealth tax act a "soak the rich tax".

A tax called the undistributed profits tax was enacted in The bill established the persisting principle that retained corporate earnings could be taxed. Paid dividends were tax deductible by corporations. Its proponents intended the bill to replace all other corporation taxes—believing this would stimulate corporations to distribute earnings and thus put more cash and spending power in the hands of individuals.

Department of the Interior. It was one of the last New Deal agencies created.

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A Guide to the New World

The bill passed in with some Republican support to abolish slums. When the Supreme Court started abolishing New Deal programs as unconstitutional, Roosevelt launched a surprise counter-attack in early He proposed adding five new justices, but conservative Democrats revolted, led by the Vice President. The Judiciary Reorganization Bill of failed—it never reached a vote. Momentum in Congress and public opinion shifted to the right and very little new legislation was passed expanding the New Deal. However, retirements allowed Roosevelt to put supporters on the Court and it stopped killing New Deal programs.

The Roosevelt administration was under assault during Roosevelt's second term, which presided over a new dip in the Great Depression in the fall of that continued through most of Production and profits declined sharply. Unemployment jumped from The downturn was perhaps due to nothing more than the familiar rhythms of the business cycle, but until Roosevelt had claimed responsibility for the excellent economic performance.

That backfired in the recession and the heated political atmosphere of Keynes did not think that The New Deal under Roosevelt ended the Great Depression: "It is, it seems, politically impossible for a capitalistic democracy to organize expenditure on the scale necessary to make the grand experiments which would prove my case — except in war conditions.

Under the special circumstances of war mobilization, massive war spending doubled the gross national product GNP. Instead of competitive bidding to get lower prices, the government gave out contracts that promised to pay all the expenses plus a modest profit. Factories hired everyone they could find regardless of their lack of skills—they simplified work tasks and trained the workers, with the federal government paying all the costs. Millions of farmers left marginal operations, students quit school and housewives joined the labor force. The emphasis was for war supplies as soon as possible, regardless of cost and inefficiencies.

Industry quickly absorbed the slack in the labor force and the tables turned such that employers needed to actively and aggressively recruit workers. Propaganda campaigns started pleading for people to work in the war factories. The barriers for married women, the old, the unskilled—and in the North and West the barriers for racial minorities—were lowered. Between and , federal expenditures tripled, but the national debt as a percent of GNP showed little change. Spending on the war effort quickly eclipsed spending on New Deal programs. These controls shared broad support among labor and business, resulting in cooperation between the two groups and the U.

This cooperation resulted in the government subsidizing business and labor through both direct and indirect methods. Conservative domination of Congress during the war meant that all welfare projects and reforms had to have their approval, which was given when business supported the project. For example, the Coal Mines Inspection and Investigation Act of significantly reduced fatality rates in the coal-mining industry, saving workers' lives and company money.

However, conservatives proposed benefits based on national service—especially tied to military service or working in war industries—and their approach won out. The Community Facilities Act of the Lanham Act provided federal funds to defense-impacted communities where the population had soared and local facilities were overwhelmed. It provided money for the building of housing for war workers as well as recreational facilities, water and sanitation plants, hospitals, day care centers and schools.

The Servicemen's Dependents Allowance Act of provided family allowances for dependents of enlisted men. Emergency grants to states were authorized in for programs for day care for children of working mothers. In , pensions were authorized for all physically or mentally helpless children of deceased veterans regardless of the age of the child at the date the claim was filed or at the time of the veteran's death, provided the child was disabled at the age of sixteen and that the disability continued to the date of the claim. The Public Health Service Act, which was passed that same year, expanded federal-state public health programs and increased the annual amount for grants for public health services.

The Emergency Maternity and Infant Care Program EMIC , introduced in March by the Children's Bureau , provided free maternity care and medical treatment during an infant's first year for the wives and children of military personnel in the four lowest enlisted pay grades.

One out of seven births was covered during its operation. A striking effect was the sudden rapid decline in home births as most mothers now had paid hospital maternity care. Under the Disabled Veterans Rehabilitation Act, vocational rehabilitation services were offered to wounded World War II veterans and some , veterans would go on to receive assistance under this program. In response to the March on Washington Movement led by A. Philip Randolph, Roosevelt promulgated Executive Order in June , which established the President's Committee on Fair Employment Practices FEPC "to receive and investigate complaints of discrimination" so that "there shall be no discrimination in the employment of workers in defense industries or government because of race, creed, color, or national origin".

A major result of the full employment at high wages was a sharp, long lasting decrease in the level of income inequality Great Compression. The gap between rich and poor narrowed dramatically in the area of nutrition because food rationing and price controls provided a reasonably priced diet to everyone. White collar workers did not typically receive overtime and therefore the gap between white collar and blue collar income narrowed.

Large families that had been poor during the s had four or more wage earners and these families shot to the top one-third income bracket. As noted by William H. Chafe, "with full employment, higher wages and social welfare benefits provided under government regulations, American workers experienced a level of well-being that, for many, had never occurred before". Individual savings accounts climbed almost sevenfold during the course of the war.

A Guide to the New World: Why Mutual Guarantee Is the Key to Our Recovery from the Global Crisis

Analysts agree the New Deal produced a new political coalition that sustained the Democratic Party as the majority party in national politics into the s. The estimated persistence of this shift suggests that New Deal spending increased long-term Democratic support by 2 to 2. Thus, it appears that Roosevelt's early, decisive actions created long-lasting positive benefits for the Democratic party The New Deal did play an important role in consolidating Democratic gains for at least two decades". However, there is disagreement about whether it marked a permanent change in values.

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Cowie and Salvatore in argued that it was a response to Depression and did not mark a commitment to a welfare state because the U. She says they overemphasized individualism and ignored the enormous power that big capital wields, the Constitutional restraints on radicalism and the role of racism, antifeminism and homophobia. She warns that accepting Cowie and Salvatore's argument that conservatism's ascendancy is inevitable would dismay and discourage activists on the left.

Historians generally agree that during Roosevelt's 12 years in office there was a dramatic increase in the power of the federal government as a whole. Roosevelt created a large array of agencies protecting various groups of citizens—workers, farmers and others—who suffered from the crisis and thus enabled them to challenge the powers of the corporations.

In this way, the Roosevelt administration generated a set of political ideas—known as New Deal liberalism—that remained a source of inspiration and controversy for decades. New Deal liberalism lay the foundation of a new consensus. Between and , there was the liberal consensus about the prospects for the widespread distribution of prosperity within an expanding capitalist economy. Truman 's Fair Deal and in the s Lyndon B. Johnson 's Great Society used the New Deal as inspiration for a dramatic expansion of liberal programs.

The New Deal's enduring appeal on voters fostered its acceptance by moderate and liberal Republicans. Eisenhower — built on the New Deal in a manner that embodied his thoughts on efficiency and cost-effectiveness. He sanctioned a major expansion of Social Security by a self-financed program. Should any party attempt to abolish social security and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history.

There is a tiny splinter group of course, that believes you can do these things [ In , Barry Goldwater , an unreconstructed anti-New Dealer, was the Republican presidential candidate on a platform that attacked the New Deal. The Democrats under Lyndon B. However, the supporters of Goldwater formed the New Right which helped to bring Ronald Reagan into the White House in the presidential election.


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  • Once an ardent supporter of the New Deal, Reagan turned against it, now viewing government as the problem rather than solution and, as president, moved the nation away from the New Deal model of government activism, shifting greater emphasis to the private sector. A review study of the existing literature in the Journal of Economic Literature summarized the findings of the research as follows: []. The studies find that public works and relief spending had state income multipliers of around one, increased consumption activity, attracted internal migration, reduced crime rates, and lowered several types of mortality.

    The farm programs typically aided large farm owners but eliminated opportunities for share croppers, tenants, and farm workers. The Home Owners' Loan Corporation's purchases and refinancing of troubled mortgages staved off drops in housing prices and home ownership rates at relatively low ex post cost to taxpayers. The Reconstruction Finance Corporation's loans to banks and railroads appear to have had little positive impact, although the banks were aided when the RFC took ownership stakes.

    Historians debating the New Deal have generally divided between liberals who support it, conservatives who oppose it and some New Left historians who complain it was too favorable to capitalism and did too little for minorities. Consensus historians of the s , such as Richard Hofstadter , according to Lary May:.

    Liberal historians argue that Roosevelt restored hope and self-respect to tens of millions of desperate people, built labor unions, upgraded the national infrastructure and saved capitalism in his first term when he could have destroyed it and easily nationalized the banks and the railroads.

    Julian Zelizer has argued that fiscal conservatism was a key component of the New Deal. Conservative southern Democrats, who favored balanced budgets and opposed new taxes, controlled Congress and its major committees. Even liberal Democrats at the time regarded balanced budgets as essential to economic stability in the long run, although they were more willing to accept short-term deficits. As Zelizer notes, public opinion polls consistently showed public opposition to deficits and debt. Throughout his terms, Roosevelt recruited fiscal conservatives to serve in his administration, most notably Lewis Douglas the Director of Budget in —; and Henry Morgenthau Jr.

    They defined policy in terms of budgetary cost and tax burdens rather than needs, rights, obligations, or political benefits. Personally, Roosevelt embraced their fiscal conservatism, but politically he realized that fiscal conservatism enjoyed a strong wide base of support among voters, leading Democrats and businessmen. On the other hand, there was enormous pressure to act and spending money on high visibility work programs with millions of paychecks a week. Douglas proved too inflexible and he quit in Morgenthau made it his highest priority to stay close to Roosevelt, no matter what.

    Douglas's position, like many of the Old Right , was grounded in a basic distrust of politicians and the deeply ingrained fear that government spending always involved a degree of patronage and corruption that offended his Progressive sense of efficiency. As Freidel concludes: "The economy program was not a minor aberration of the spring of , or a hypocritical concession to delighted conservatives.

    Rather it was an integral part of Roosevelt's overall New Deal". Morgenthau shifted with Roosevelt, but at all times tried to inject fiscal responsibility—he deeply believed in balanced budgets, stable currency, reduction of the national debt and the need for more private investment. The Wagner Act met Morgenthau's requirement because it strengthened the party's political base and involved no new spending. In contrast to Douglas, Morgenthau accepted Roosevelt's double budget as legitimate—that is a balanced regular budget and an "emergency" budget for agencies, like the WPA, PWA and CCC, that would be temporary until full recovery was at hand.

    His biggest success was the new Social Security program as he managed to reverse the proposals to fund it from general revenue and insisted it be funded by new taxes on employees. It was Morgenthau who insisted on excluding farm workers and domestic servants from Social Security because workers outside industry would not be paying their way. While many Americans suffered economically during the Great Depression, African Americans also had to deal with social ills, such as racism, discrimination and segregation.

    Black workers were especially vulnerable to the economic downturn since most of them worked the most marginal jobs such as unskilled or service-oriented work, therefore they were the first to be discharged and additionally many employers preferred white workers. When jobs were scarce some employers even dismissed black workers to create jobs for white citizens.

    In the end there were three times more African American workers on public assistance or relief than white workers. Roosevelt appointed an unprecedented number of African Americans to second-level positions in his administration—these appointees were collectively called the Black Cabinet. They operated separate all-black units with the same pay and conditions as white units. Most unions excluded blacks from joining and enforcement of anti-discrimination laws in the South was virtually impossible, especially since most blacks worked in hospitality and agricultural sectors. The New Deal programs put millions of Americans immediately back to work or at least helped them to survive.

    The Agricultural Adjustment Acts for example helped farmers which were predominantly white, but reduced the need of farmers to hire tenant farmers or sharecroppers which were predominantly black. While the AAA stipulated that a farmer had to share the payments with those who worked the land this policy was never enforced. Senator James F. Byrnes of South Carolina raised opposition to the appointments because he stood for white farmers who were threatened by an agency that could organize and empower tenant farmers. Initially, the FSA stood behind their appointments, but after feeling national pressure FSA was forced to release the African Americans of their positions.

    The goals of the FSA were notoriously liberal and not cohesive with the southern voting elite.

    Why Mutual Guarantee is the Key to our Recovery from the Global Crisis

    Some New Deal measures inadvertently discriminated against harmed blacks. Thousands of blacks were thrown out of work and replaced by whites on jobs where they were paid less than the NRA's wage minimums because some white employers considered the NRA's minimum wage "too much money for Negroes". However, since blacks felt the sting of the depression's wrath even more severely than whites they welcomed any help. New Deal policies helped establish a political alliance between blacks and the Democratic Party that survives into the 21st century.

    There was no attempt whatsoever to end segregation, or to increase black rights in the South, and a number of leaders that promoted the New Deal were racist and anti semites. The wartime Fair Employment Practices Commission FEPC executive orders that forbade job discrimination against African Americans, women and ethnic groups was a major breakthrough that brought better jobs and pay to millions of minority Americans.

    The New Deal was racially segregated as blacks and whites rarely worked alongside each other in New Deal programs. By July , practically all the camps in the United States were segregated, and blacks were strictly limited in the supervisory roles they were assigned. In , when Senator Josiah Bailey Democrat of North Carolina accused him of trying to break down segregation laws Ickes wrote him to deny that:.

    The New Deal's record came under attack by New Left historians in the s for its pusillanimity in not attacking capitalism more vigorously, nor helping blacks achieve equality. The critics emphasize the absence of a philosophy of reform to explain the failure of New Dealers to attack fundamental social problems. They demonstrate the New Deal's commitment to save capitalism and its refusal to strip away private property.

    They detect a remoteness from the people and indifference to participatory democracy and call instead for more emphasis on conflict and exploitation. At first, the New Deal created programs primarily for men as it was assumed that the husband was the " breadwinner " the provider and if they had jobs the whole family would benefit. It was the social norm for women to give up jobs when they married—in many states, there were laws that prevented both husband and wife holding regular jobs with the government.

    Many women were employed on FERA projects run by the states with federal funds. It hired single women, widows, or women with disabled or absent husbands. The WPA employed about , women and they were assigned mostly to unskilled jobs. Women also were hired for the WPA's school lunch program. The Social Security program was designed to help retired workers and widows but did not include domestic workers, farmers or farm laborers, the jobs most often held by blacks. However, Social Security was not a relief program and it was not designed for short-term needs, as very few people received benefits before The New Deal expanded the role of the federal government, particularly to help the poor, the unemployed, youth, the elderly and stranded rural communities.

    The Hoover administration started the system of funding state relief programs, whereby the states hired people on relief. With the CCC in and the WPA in , the federal government now became involved in directly hiring people on relief in granting direct relief or benefits. Total federal, state and local spending on relief rose from 3. He and his wife were not on relief, but they were employed by the WPA as statisticians. Friedman said that Roosevelt deserved considerable credit for relieving immediate distress and restoring confidence.

    In a survey of economic historians conducted by Robert Whaples, Professor of Economics at Wake Forest University , anonymous questionnaires were sent to members of the Economic History Association. Members were asked to disagree, agree, or agree with provisos with the statement that read: "Taken as a whole, government policies of the New Deal served to lengthen and deepen the Great Depression".

    From to , the economy expanded at an average rate of 7. John Maynard Keynes explained that situation as an underemployment equilibrium where skeptic business prospects prevent companies from hiring new employees. It was seen as a form of cyclical unemployment. There are different assumptions as well. According to Richard L. Jensen , cyclical unemployment was a grave matter primarily until Between and , structural unemployment became the bigger problem. Especially the unions successes in demanding higher wages pushed management into introducing new efficiency-oriented hiring standards.

    It ended inefficient labor such as child labor, casual unskilled work for subminimum wages and sweatshop conditions. In the long term, the shift to efficiency wages led to high productivity, high wages and a high standard of living, but it necessitated a well-educated, well-trained, hard-working labor force. The authors make an intriguing argument that draws strength from its simplicity. A Guide to the New World is more of a manifesto that expresses a philosophical perspective than a comprehensive plan for implementing mutual guarantee.

    As a result, some readers may be left questioning exactly how such a major shift in thinking would take place. There can be no doubt, however, that the book is provocative and refreshing in its approach to viewing globalization as a potential force for positive good. Reviewed by Barry Silverstein October 18, Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review.

    A Guide to the New World by Michael Laitman (ebook)

    But how such transactions are managed is political. To political economists, it is clear that how national societies manage debt within the borders of state authority differs fundamentally from how the collectivity of national governments manage transnational debts. Within national market economies, it became clear even in the nineteenth century that the national economic interest was not well served by a legal system that relied on deterrence, by punishing debtors when they failed to meet their obligations to creditors.

    Prison was no solution. Either arrangement had to have the legitimacy of an enforceable legal contract. Bankruptcy therefore, whether temporary or permanent, could be imposed on debtors—and their creditors—only with the authority of the state. Susan Strange The New World of Debt T he debtors and how best to deal with them is surely one of the continuing but unresolved issues for the international financial system. Email required. Password required. Create an account Forgot your password?