Student Question

Discuss a significant political change that arises from the Great Depression.

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I think that the transformed role of government is probably one of the most significant political changes that comes out of the Great Depression.  In a stark change to his predecessors, President Roosevelt changed how people view the government.  In the Roosevelt Administration, Roosevelt argued that government can be a tool to help individuals and to make institutions more responsive to it.  The laissez- faire and classically liberal approaches of minimal intervention were inverted and discarded.  In its place, the power and authority of the government as an agent of positive change was suggested.  This becomes one of the most significant political changes that we see from the Great Depression.  The role of government in the modern setting is an outgrowth of what was seen in the Great Depression.  The same charges leveled against Roosevelt for what he was attempting as "Socialist" or "Communist" are still waged today when the debate about the role of government and its size and effectiveness is waged on with a similar level of passion and intensity.

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