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Publisher Description

The Great Depression and the New Deal. For generations, the collective American consciousness has believed that the former ruined the country and the latter saved it. Endless praise has been heaped upon President Franklin Delano Roosevelt for masterfully reining in the Depression’s destructive effects and propping up the
country on his New Deal platform. In fact, FDR has achieved mythical status in American history and is considered to be, along with Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln, one of the greatest presidents of all time. But would the Great Depression have been so catastrophic had the New Deal never been implemented?

In FDR’s Folly, historian Jim Powell argues that it was in fact the New Deal itself, with its shortsighted programs, that deepened the Great Depression, swelled the federal government, and prevented the country from turning around quickly. You’ll discover in alarming detail how FDR’s federal programs hurt America more than helped it, with effects we still feel today, including:

• How Social Security actually increased unemployment
• How higher taxes undermined good businesses
• How new labor laws threw people out of work
• And much more

This groundbreaking book pulls back the shroud of awe and the cloak of time enveloping FDR to prove convincingly how flawed his economic policies actually were, despite his good intentions and the astounding intellect of his circle of advisers. In today’s turbulent domestic and global environment, eerily similar to that of the 1930s, it’s more important than ever before to uncover and understand the truth of our history, lest we be doomed to repeat it.

September 23
Penguin Random House LLC

Customer Reviews

JerusalemDave ,

Excellent and Challenging

This was an excellent read, needing both concentration and patience with anger. I have questioned what I had learn about FDR in school, after I entered the real working world. I have seen that big government does not produce a growing economy only takes away from the working people; taxation takes people who works money and puts in the hands of people who misuse and put us farther in debt; unions do not favor the workers only those who control the union and personal liberty is squashed by those who are incompetent in the work place.

This book gives painstaking detail to the incompetence of the New Deal and how it furthered the ambition and power and wealth of politicians at the expense of the people the so brazen claim to support and help. Every US History teacher should read this book. If you do not like the premises, then check the sources for yourself!

Anti-Luddite ,

FDR worsened the Great Depression

Powell lays out how the major policies of the New Deal made the Depression longer and deeper, and were inherently unfair to those who most needed help. Even worse, these damaging, arbitrary, policies continued causing damage for decades.

FDR's administration had a deep mistrust of the price mechanism and the power of markets. And that fundamental fear of the market resulted in policies that harmed the US for many years. What is odd is today we admire policies that resulted in a decade-long contraction with unemployment never falling below 15%.

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