The New Deal Questions and Answers

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What were some of the criticisms of the New Deal? Were the complaints justified, or was the New Deal an appropriate plan?

The New Deal had many detractors, both conservatives and liberals. Conservatives stated that the New Deal was too costly and would not bring back permanent jobs. Liberals stated that the New Deal did not do enough and that the program should have taken a more socialistic approach. Though the New Deal did not end the Great Depression, it did prevent the United States from pursuing the radical approaches of Italy and Germany.

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The New Deal had and continues to have many detractors among conservatives. Some conservative lawmakers saw New Deal spending projects as ways to ensure Washington spending helped a few people in Democratic districts—these pork projects would have less incentive to be effective since there would be no competition from the private sector. Conservatives in the Depression-era also saw New Deal projects as being too expensive. Many libertarian conservatives did not like the idea of government regulation of banks and the stock market. Others thought that price controls and government work projects took away the individual's incentive to work and find ways to increase personal income. Other conservatives, such as Justice Charles Evans Hughes, worried that the federal government was using the New Deal to establish too much power that would ultimately ruin the country.

Some liberals thought that the New Deal did too little. There was a great deal of...

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