How would you compare the government's reaction to the Great Depression in the 1930's to its reaction to the recent recession?
The governmental response to the recent recession has much in common with the New Deal, but was on a much smaller scale.
First, the Obama Administration tried to spend money on infrastructure and such as a way of getting people back to work. This was similar to programs like the WPA, but rather smaller.
Second, the government tried to institute major reforms of the financial industry and of health care. The New Deal did similar things to try to reform the US economy. Examples of this are things like the creation of the SEC and of Social Security.
Because the Depression was much worse than the current recession, and because of the strength of Republicans in Congress, Obama's responses to the recession have been similar to, but much less revolutionary and sweeping than, FDR's New Deal.