False Hope Great Depression

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"In other periods of depression, it has always been possible to see some things which were solid and upon which you could base hope, but as I look about, I now see nothing to give ground to hope—nothing of man" (qtd. in “False Hope: Famous Quotes during the Great Depression”). The Great Depression was the worst and longest economic downturn of the United States. It left 13 to 15 million Americans out of work, hundreds of thousands of businesses to close down, and almost half of the country’s banks to fail (Sennholz). Although many think the Great Depression was caused by the stock market crash of 1929, it was only a symptom of a slowing economy that had gone unnoticed, and the most significant cause of the Great Depression was the overproduction…show more content…
Prices for farm products dangerously fell because of such large United States crop surpluses. Farm expenses had also risen much faster than the prices that farmers received and they did not reduce production, so prices for farm products stayed low and farmers’ income fell (McNeil, R. Hanes, and M. Hanes). President Coolidge had not taken much interest in the situation and said that farmers never made money (West and Stoff). Efforts from Congress that failed to protect United States farmers from foreign competition caused most United States farmers to take loans for their land and homes that they could not repay, which weakened their local banks and left them in debt (West and Stoff). On average, over six hundred banks failed every year between 1921 and 1929 (West and…show more content…
Although the Republican administration of Presidents Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover followed the laissez-faire approach of the government playing as small a role as possible in the economy, they could have analyzed statistics to see if there were problems and found ways for them to be solved without the government intervening (McNeil, R. Hanes, and M. Hanes). For example if overproduction would have been noticed by the government earlier through statistics or a specialized agency, they could have notified the farmers to lower the amounts of production, which would have benefitted the farmers and the American economy as a whole. Keeping statistics or an agency to monitor agricultural overproduction would have prevented not only the debt of the farmers, but the problems in other industries due to the domino effect could have been
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