Has there ever been a Conservative Era? hardly found..since by today standards of "conservative religion" even Republicans such as Nixon and Reagan are liberals who help build our country alongside progressives thru many liberal policies..The (Progressive) New Deal was a series of economic programs implemented in the United States between 1933 and 1936. They were passed by the U.S. Congress during the first term of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The programs were Roosevelt's responses to the Great Depression, and focused on what historians call the "3 Rs":
Relief, Recovery, and Reform. That is, Relief for the unemployed and poor; Recovery of the economy to normal and Reform of the financial system to prevent a repeat depression. The New Deal produced a political realignment, making the Democratic Party the majority (as well as the party that held the White House for seven out of nine
Presidential terms from 1933 to 1969), with its base in liberal ideas, the white South, big city machines, and the empowered labor unions and ethnic minorities. The Republicans were split, either opposing the entire New Deal an enemy of business and growth, or accepting some of it and promising to make it more efficient. The realignment
crystallized into the New Deal Coalition that dominated most presidential elections into the 1960s, while the opposition Conservative Coalition largely controlled Congress from 1937 to 1963.
Many historians such as Thomas A. Bailey distinguish a "First New Deal" (1933) and a "Second New Deal" (1934–36). Some programs were declared unconstitutional, and others were repealed during World War II. The "First Deal" (1933) dealt with diverse groups, from banking and railroads to industry and farming, all of which demanded help for economic recovery. A "Second New Deal" in 1934–36 included the Wagner Act to promote labor unions, Works Progress Administration (WPA) relief program, the Social Security Act, and new programs to aid tenant farmers and migrant workers. The final major items of New Deal legislation were the creation of the United States Housing
Authority and Farm Security Administration, both in 1937, and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which set maximum hours and minimum wages for most categories of workers. By 1936 the term "liberal" typically was for supporters of the New Deal, and "conservative" for its opponents.
The economic downturn of 1937-38, and the bitter split between the AFL and CIO labor unions led to major Republican gains in Congress in 1938. Conservative Republicans and Democrats in Congress joined in the informal Conservative Coalition. By 1942-43 they shut down the WPA, CCC and other relief programs and blocked major proposals. Roosevelt himself turned his attention to the war effort, and won reelection in 1940 and 1944. As the Republican president elected after FDR, Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953-61) left the New Deal largely intact. In the 1960s, Lyndon B. Johnson's Great Society used the New Deal as inspiration for a dramatic expansion of liberal
programs, which Republican Richard M. Nixon generally retained. After 1974, however, libertarian views gained bipartisan support, calling for deregulation of the economy and ending New Deal regulation of transportation, banking and communications. Several New Deal programs remain active, with some still operating under the original names, including the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). The largest programs still existence today are the Social Security System and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Business, labor, and government cooperation Besides all the programs for immediate relief, the federal government embarked quickly on an agenda of long-reform aimed at avoiding another depression. The New Dealers responded to demands to inflate the currency variety of means. Another group of reformers sought to build consumer and farmer co-ops as a counterweight big business. The consumer co-ops did not take off, but the Rural Electrification Administration used co-ops to electricity to rural areas, many of which still operate.
From 1929 to 1933, the industrial economy had been suffering from a vicious cycle of deflation. Since 1931, the Chamber of Commerce, the voice of the nation's organized business, promoted an anti-deflationary scheme that would permit trade associations to cooperate in government-instigated cartels to stabilize prices within their industries. While existing antitrust laws clearly forbade such practices, organized business found a receptive ear the Roosevelt Administration. The Roosevelt Administration, packed with reformers aspiring to forge all elements of society into a cooperative unit (a reaction to the worldwide specter of business-labor "class struggle"), was fairly
amenable to the idea of cooperation among producers. FDR closed national banks on March 6, 1933, a day before he was officially inaugurated, to help stabilize the economy. Then three days later on March he passed the Emergency Banking Relief Act to jumpstart money to flow in the economy.
The administration insisted that business would have to ensure that the incomes of workers would rise along with their prices. The product of all these impulses and pressures was the National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA) which was passed by Congress in June 1933. The NIRA established the National Planning Board, also called the National
Resources Planning Board (NRPB), to assist in planning the economy by providing recommendations and information. Fredric A. Delano, the president's uncle, was appointed head of the NRPB.
The NIRA guaranteed to workers the right of collective bargaining and helped spur some union organizing activity, much faster growth of union membership came before the 1935 Wagner Act. The NIRA established the National
Recovery Administration (NRA), which attempted to stabilize prices and wages through cooperative "code authorities"
involving government, business, and labor. The NRA allowed business to create a multitude of regulations imposing the pricing and production standards for all sorts of goods and services. Most economists were dubious because was based on fixing prices to reduce competition; the NRA was ended by the Supreme Court in 1935, and no one
tried to revive it.
To prime the pump and cut unemployment, the NIRA created the Public Works Administration (PWA), a major program of public works. From 1933 to 1935 PWA spent $3.3 billion with private companies to build 34,599 projects, many them quite large.
Under Roosevelt, many unemployed persons were put to work on a wide range of government financed public projects, building bridges, airports, dams, post offices, courthouses, and thousands of kilometres of road. Through reforestation and flood control, they reclaimed millions of hectares of soil from erosion and devastation. As noted one authority, Roosevelt’s New Deal "was literally stamped on the American landscape".NRA "Blue Eagle" campaign Main article: National Recovery Administration NRA Blue Eagle Roosevelt believed that the severity of the Depression was due to excessive business competition that lowered wages and prices, which he believed lowered demand and employment. He argued that government economic
planning was necessary to remedy this:
...A mere builder of more industrial plants, a creator of more railroad systems, an organizer of more corporations, as likely to be a danger as a help. Our task is not ... necessarily producing more goods. It is the soberer, less dramatic business of administering resources and plants already in hand.
New Deal economists argued that cut-throat competition had hurt many businesses and that with prices having 20% and more, "deflation" exacerbated the burden of debt and would delay recovery. They rejected a strong move Congress to limit the workweek to 30 hours. Instead their remedy, designed in cooperation with big business, the NIRA. It included stimulus funds for the WPA to spend, and sought to raise prices, give more bargaining power unions (so the workers could purchase more) and reduce HARMFUL COMPETITION.
At the center of the NIRA was the National Recovery Administration (NRA), headed by former General Hugh Johnson, who had been a senior economic official in World War I. Johnson called on every business establishment in the nation to accept a stopgap "blanket code": a minimum wage of between 20 and 45 cents per hour, a maximum workweek of 35–45 hours, and the abolition of child labor. Johnson and Roosevelt contended that the "blanket would raise consumer purchasing power and increase employment.
To mobilize political support for the NRA, Johnson launched the "NRA Blue Eagle" publicity campaign to boost he called "industrial self-government". The NRA brought together leaders in each industry to design specific sets codes for that industry; the most important provisions were anti-deflationary floors below which no company lower prices or wages, and agreements on maintaining employment and production. In a remarkably short time, NRA announced agreements from almost every major industry in the nation. By March 1934, industrial production 45% higher than in March 1933. Donald Richberg, who soon replaced Johnson as the head of the NRA said:
There is no choice presented to American business between intelligently planned and uncontrolled industrial operations and a return to the gold-plated anarchy that masqueraded as "RUGGED INDIVIDUALISM" ... (so religiously worshiped by Libertarians)
Unless industry is sufficiently socialized by its private owners and managers so that great essential industries operated under public obligation appropriate to the public interest in them, the advance of political control over private industry is inevitable.
By the time NRA ended in May 1935, industrial production was 55% higher than in May 1933. On May 27, 1935, NRA was found to be unconstitutional by a unanimous decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Schechter United States. On that same day, the Court unanimously struck down the Frazier-Lemke Act portion of the New as unconstitutional. Libertarian Richard Ebeling believes these and other rulings striking down portions of the New
Deal prevented the U.S. economic system from becoming a planned economy corporate state. Governor Huey Long of Louisiana said, "I raise my hand in reverence to the Supreme Court that saved this nation from fascism."[However, soon after, on June 27, 1935, the NLRA was passed, which gave even more power to unions. It forced employees to join unions if a majority of employers voted in favor of unionizing and prohibited business management
from declining to engage in collective bargaining with the unions. The Act also established the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to enforce the rules of the NLRA and enforce wage agreements.
Chart 3: Manufacturing employment in the United States from 1920 to 1940
Employment in private sector factories recovered to the level of the late 1920s by 1937 but did not grow much bigger until the war came and manufacturing employment leaped from 11 million in 1940 to 18 million in 1943.