The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression

The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression William Kristol writes in a blurb on the back cover of this book revisionist history at its best Not true at all this book is an ill matched, selective hodgepodge of a book very thin on real history Hopefully in the future this book will be forgotten. This book is marketed as A History , when in fact, it is a pro right wing set of talking points The right conservative wing in American politics has never liked FDR or his policies They didn t like FDR in 1932 or 1940 or 1950 or 1960 or any day of any year since the day FDR got the Democratic nomination for the presidency The author, Amity Shales, trained as a journalist Her job before writing this book was as a Wall Street Journal editorial writer The book she has written is best seen as This book is marketed as A History , when in fact, it is a pro right wing set of talking points The right conservative wing in American politics has never liked FDR or his policies They didn t like FDR in 1932 or 1940 or 1950 or 1960 or any day of any year since the day FDR got the Democratic nomination for the presidency The author, Amity Shales, trained as a journalist Her job before writing this book was as a Wall Street Journal editorial writer The book she has written is best seen as a partisan rant against FDR and all his policies There is a place for partisan rants see books by Rush Limbaugh or Al Franken I d have a less hostile reaction to this book if it was clearly labelled as a political tract But it is labelled and marketed as a history , implying a dispassionate look at America in the 1930s And it s not that The Hoover FDR policies Really REALLY Neither Hoover nor FDR would have described FDR s policies as the Hoover FDR policies Ms Shales attempts to link FDR with Hoover is an attempt to link the popular FDR with the failed policies of the unpopular Hoover An examination of the Great Depression by a fiscal conservative This book has been avidly read within Republican circles, and ideas from the book are lacing GOP rhetoric on the faltering economy That s a shame, as the book is an example of very sloppy scholarship Shlaes s main thrust is that Franklin Roosevelt s policies served to worsen the Depression She explains that the flurry of New Deal policies, fired by FDR s hostility to business, created a chaotic environment in which business was An examination of the Great Depression by a fiscal conservative This book has been avidly read within Republican circles, and ideas from the book are lacing GOP rhetoric on the faltering economy That s a shame, as the book is an example of very sloppy scholarship Shlaes s main thrust is that Franklin Roosevelt s policies served to worsen the Depression She explains that the flurry of New Deal policies, fired by FDR s hostility to business, created a chaotic environment in which business was afraid to grow She minimizes the near collapse of the banking sector, the moribund state of international trade, and the economy s crippling deflationary spiral She also falls into the fallacy that the Depression began with the stock market crash, when in the farm and many industrial sectors, it had begun in the mid 1920s, a decline that had been hidden by a raging stock speculation bubble Shlaes might ignore the earlier manifestations of depression in the 1920s because it casts some of her heroes specifically President Coolidge and Treasury Secretary Mellon in a negative light Strangely, for a book on an economic depression, Shlaes barely includes any economic statistics She isinterested in the governmental infighting of the period Her account isabout ideology than anything else business is good and should always act in its own best interest, which benefits society as a whole She never considers that the Depression might have been the result of a supine government allowing self destructive corporate excesses to cannibalize the economy.All in all, Shlaes s book is a mess and not worth reading a miserable little book from its subtitle, you might imagine it has something to do with the great depression its not actually a history of the depression at all instead, its an intertwined biography of a set of variably prominent public features from the 1930 s rather than reading about the lives of the millions of jobless, homeless and dispossessed you ll be treated to paeans to the unjust suffering of andrew mellon at the hands of heartless new dealers rather than learning how new deal e a miserable little book from its subtitle, you might imagine it has something to do with the great depression its not actually a history of the depression at all instead, its an intertwined biography of a set of variably prominent public features from the 1930 s rather than reading about the lives of the millions of jobless, homeless and dispossessed you ll be treated to paeans to the unjust suffering of andrew mellon at the hands of heartless new dealers rather than learning how new deal economic policies effected actual americans, you ll find endless references to businessman who were frustrated by their failure to extend their benificencewidely by overreaching tax policy the book is nothingthan a collection of disorganized, imprecisely argued, undersupported spasms of disdain directed at the new deal as far as i can tell, the cast of characters the author has chosen were selected primarily on whether she was able to select unflattering although typically insignificant fdr anecdotes by including them the book is written in a snide style constantly sniping at the apparent villains of the new deal variously demonized as being mean, self absorbed, communist sympathizers who were engaged in a monstrous power grab at the cost of all else funny how they kept getting reelected in terms of the author s primary themes, however, her greatest failure is that she doesn t remotely demonstrate that the new deal didn t work prior to the war, fdr presided over a 50% fall in unemployment and a doubling of the dow all the while the material circumstances of the poor and middle class improved significantly certainly, 1939 wasn t the greatest of american times, but it was a heck of a lot better than 1931 you might imagine that a book whose afterword bemoans the exaggerated successes of the new deal, would carefully describe the relevant economic changes and point to the temporal relationships between economic policy and output you would, of course, be wrong the author s economic analysis instead involves frequent off the cuff comments about how new deal taxes choked business, how roosevelt s experimentation caused markets to remain unstable and generally how big government kept big business down those things may or may not be true, but you ll not glean any insight into their truth reading this book.apparently, modern conservatives have failed to learn the lesson that largely generated fdr s pre war popularity economic success and failure is not measured by gdp growth or the dow, instead its measured by the relative well being of the population while certainly, numerous new deal policies were either ineffective, counter productive or constitutionally questionable their immediate goals of improving lives is what counted both politically and economically i get the feeling the real purpose of this book was to unearth some new anti new deal talking points to hold off a grand government revival in the context of our modern reprisal of the great depression W hen wages moved ahead, profits narrowed and shareholders lost Shlaes 337 Essentially if capitalism is to fulfill itself, and succeed , wages must be suppressed Amazing what you can learn from a conservative screed that simplifies the Depression into Hoover did too little and Roosevelt went over the top The Forgotten Man also completely forgets to talk about the forgotten man If you want to read a ton about the minutia of who was involved with a cornucopia of public and fiscal policy, W hen wages moved ahead, profits narrowed and shareholders lost Shlaes 337 Essentially if capitalism is to fulfill itself, and succeed , wages must be suppressed Amazing what you can learn from a conservative screed that simplifies the Depression into Hoover did too little and Roosevelt went over the top The Forgotten Man also completely forgets to talk about the forgotten man If you want to read a ton about the minutia of who was involved with a cornucopia of public and fiscal policy, then look no further This is a name drop extravaganza within a thinly veiled prosecution of the left as being not only ineffective in making America great, but red to the core and to never be trusted If, however you were looking for a balanced review of what occurred to the man who was supposedly the object of all the attempts to right the economy, you d best keep lookin Funny political joke book At first, I thought Stephen Colbert wrote it Haven t finished, because I couldn t stop laughing after the first chapter The whole gist of this book is that FDR worsened the Great Depression because he secretly admired Joe Stalin s Five Year Plans instead of kissing the Invisible Hand of Adam Smith Now Wendell Wilkie, he was A STUD Worthy as a topic for a Beavis and Butthead episode. This was a tremendously informative book about the Great Depression For me, at least, it debunked a lot of the myths about the New Deal and Roosevelt s first one hundred days in office I felt Amity Shlaes did a monumental and extremely thorough job of researching the economic history of this era Having recently read up to 1940 in David Kennedy s Freedom from Fear, I had begun to understand why the business community greatly disliked the Roosevelt Administration I had always been curious ab This was a tremendously informative book about the Great Depression For me, at least, it debunked a lot of the myths about the New Deal and Roosevelt s first one hundred days in office I felt Amity Shlaes did a monumental and extremely thorough job of researching the economic history of this era Having recently read up to 1940 in David Kennedy s Freedom from Fear, I had begun to understand why the business community greatly disliked the Roosevelt Administration I had always been curious about this, since I recall my Dad telling me how his father would never even allow Roosevelt s name to be mentioned in their household, preferring as did many others to simply refer to him as that man in the White House After reading Shlaes account of Roosevelt s handing or rather mis handling of the U.S economy, I came away with a much greater understanding of why the business community felt the way they did about Roosevelt and his advisors I have only two complaints about the book The first is the lack of any footnotes and the very incomplete bibliographic references this despite the nearly 10 years and interminable research that was performed to write this book My second complaint is that Shlaes really never cut Roosevelt any slack at all She did not go easy on Hoover either, but also never mentions any of the good that came from the Roosevelt years, such as the sense of security that stemmed from the Social Security Act Even though David Kennedy s Freedom from Fear was willing to point out the shortcomings of Roosevelt s handling of the U.S economy, he did it with abalanced and I thinkfair approach.I d have given this book 4.5 stars if that were an option I was sorry that this book had to end Readable but a little dense it s never taken me 3 weeks to read 400 pages before This sounds like the kind of book that would only be of interest to a history nerd, but with the current situation it s an absolutely imperative read for all voters We re all fed one version of the Depression and the New Deal as inevitable and necessary, respectively, and that war was the only thing that shocked us out of it Reading this book forces you to realize that the Depression didn t have to be either Gre Readable but a little dense it s never taken me 3 weeks to read 400 pages before This sounds like the kind of book that would only be of interest to a history nerd, but with the current situation it s an absolutely imperative read for all voters We re all fed one version of the Depression and the New Deal as inevitable and necessary, respectively, and that war was the only thing that shocked us out of it Reading this book forces you to realize that the Depression didn t have to be either Great or really a Depression, but the panicked populace pushed politicians haha into interfering, and the results landed us into a black hole of poverty that we were over a decade recovering from The parallels between the economic conditions and the political scene between then and now are too frightening to ignore The realization that demagogues and whiners who can t take a bit of belt tightening could push us into the same situation very, very easily is ghastly, but we can t afford to ignore the possibility Learn from history, don t repeat it I encourage the reading of this book When I was in school we all came away with a certain vision or narrative of about the period known as the Great Depression It was a fairly simple view FDR was the hero who led us through the depression and out the other end Frankly I don t know what children young people today come away with as I m not that thrilled with what passes for education now I doubt however it would be that different.My parents and grandparents having lived through that era I encourage the reading of this book When I was in school we all came away with a certain vision or narrative of about the period known as the Great Depression It was a fairly simple view FDR was the hero who led us through the depression and out the other end Frankly I don t know what children young people today come away with as I m not that thrilled with what passes for education now I doubt however it would be that different.My parents and grandparents having lived through that era as did my great grandparents and others I knew growing up did not hold quite as monolithic an opinion as thatthough my dad a died in the wool Democrat pretty much did Being a reader from an early age I knew early on that the view I d been taught was simplistic I ve recently come to the conclusion it was simply wrong.Interestingly a side note here from my dad He was as noted a dyed in the wool or Southern Democrat He voted the straight Democrat ticket But at our dinner table one night I asked about the Depression Dad observed that all the governmental programs came about because the churches dropped the ball Now, I m a Christian and an assistant pastor and unlike my dad I register Republican though I m often closer to Libertarian in my beliefs BUT I tend to at least partly agree with my dad on that Christians on the whole who had the means to change things during the Great Depression did nothan anyone else Just another thought as you read this book.This book admittedly can be a bit of a chore to read through at times as it builds on facts, quotes and documented evidence It covers pretty much the entire period of the Great Depression looking at policies, programs, people, plans and events giving a fairly comprehensive view of that period, the people in it and the New Deal polices I don t think today we realize how nation changing the laws enacted and the actions taken during that time were.The only reason I give this book a 4 star rating instead of a 5 is that the ground it covers and the amount of information it throws makes it difficult to manage Concentrate on it See where it s going and where we as a nation have been It s there.The events here will at times sound very familiar to you if you follow the political and legal landscape in America Roosevelt was a president who was beloved by the majority of the press corps They did by in large line up behind and even offer cover for him They attacked his opponents and sadly there were few articulate opponents to be found If you read this and compare the actions taken and let me say that I know the majority of those actions were taken because the majority of the people supporting them wanted to make life better for the forgotten men changed America fundamentally from what it was, at least in some ways.There s a quote in this book that reminded me of a quote I read elsewhere and the author here did not point this out it was just something I remembered There s a quote here from someone who was asked if they weren t losing their liberty They answered that if they were, the liberty they were losing was the liberty to starve Have you read William L Shirer s The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich A History of Nazi Germany In it there s a quote from a German worker after Hitler has taken power He was asked if they the German people hadn t lost their freedom His answer He said, they were no longer free to starve Challenging conventional history, Amity Shlaes offers a reinterpretation of the Great Depression She shows how both Presidents Hoover and Roosevelt failed to understand the prosperity of the s and heaped massive burdens on the country thatthan offset the benefit of New Deal programs [Ebook] ➧ Paid Boyfriend ➦ kimpyvon – Kleankitchen.co.uk Amity Shlaes offers a reinterpretation of the Great Depression She shows how both Presidents Hoover and Roosevelt failed to understand the prosperity of the s and heaped massive burdens on the country thatthan offset the benefit of New Deal programs

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