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The New Deal was designed to put people back to work, but also to create a social safety net. During the Great Depression there were too many people out of work and suffering financially, and the public works projects, social security, and Medicare we now have are a result.
Most of the programs of the First New Deal were aimed at relief, putting unemployed people back to work, and what we might today call economic stimulus. They included the Agricultural Adjustment Act, which was intended to help farmers plagued by falling crop prices; the National Industrial Recovery Act, aimed at promoting key failing industries; the creation of the Civilian Conservation Corps, which put thousands of young men to work on environmental reclamation projects; the Emergency Banking Relief Act, which propped up beleaguered banks in the midst of the financial panic of 1933; and the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, which provided funds to city and state budgets straining to meet their obligations. It was not until the Second New Deal, and particularly Roosevelt's second term as president, when many of the more radical reform initiatives were passed (or attempted.)
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