Homework Help

How did R.B. Bennett assist during Great Depression.  Why did he fail?

user profile pic

channing97 | Valedictorian

Posted July 20, 2012 at 2:57 PM via web

dislike 1 like

How did R.B. Bennett assist during Great Depression.  Why did he fail?

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

lprono | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted July 23, 2012 at 11:36 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 1 like

Conservative Canadian politician Richard Bedford Bennett was Prime Minister from 1930 to 1935 at the peak of the Great Depression. Historians generally agree that his policies to solve the severe economic recession were ineffectual and made the Conservative Party's return to power impossible until 1957. After winning the 1930 general election, Bennett also assumed the powers of Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and Minister of Finance. This concentration of power, as well as Bennett's reluctance to consult other respected politician began to alienate him the sympathies of the Canadian electorate as did his choice of living in the luxurious Chateau Laurier, Ottawa's best hotel. 

In addition to these problems relating to his image in the minds of Canadian citizens, Bennett was unable to take the bold steps required by the economic situation. He was always opposed to increase social spending fearing to create a deficit, so the only action he took to improve Canada's economic condition was to raise tariffs on imported goods. He devised this plan in order to protect Canadian products, but he obtained the opposite as foreign companies retaliated and Canadian exports fell considerably causing more factory closures and job losses.

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes