Open Thread

NB Staff
November 30th, 2008 11:09 AM

For general discussion and debate. Possible talking point: Did the New Deal work?

The New Deal is Mr. Obama's context for the giant infrastructure plan his new team is developing. If he proposes FDR-style recovery programs, then it is useful to establish whether those original programs actually brought recovery. The answer is, they didn't. New Deal spending provided jobs but did not get the country back to where it was before.

It goes without saying that most liberals errantly believe the New Deal got America out of the depression, even though our economy didn't return to pre-depression levels until World War II began. Given the current fascination with FDR, and government-spending to solve today's financial crisis, is it important for America to re-analyze what did or didn't work back then?

Maybe more important, given the left's love affair with FDR, is it even possible to have such a review without liberal bias skewing the analysis?