Cliches of History


Did FDR really "save capitalism"? David Beito doesn't buy it:

I have yet to see any evidence that the U.S. was ever on the verge of revolution either before or after the rise of FDR. In 1932, for example, the Communists and the Socialists (primary indicators of radical or revolutionary sentiment on the left) scored between them a measly 2.5 percent of the vote. They did not elect a single member to Congress.

In 1932, FDR campaigned on a platform that differed little from that [of] Al Smith in 1928 or, for that matter, his opponent Herbert Hoover. While he vaguely promised an undefined New Deal, he just as often attacked Hoover as a spendthrift. Politicians who promised retrenchment and low taxes, such as Governor Harry G. Leslie of Indiana, were often just as popular at the polls as those who promised more government….

While quasi-fascists (actually populists) like Huey Long and Father Coughlin made waves, this was mostly in 1934 and 1935. If FDR "saved" the United States from the likes of them, why did they have their best years after his New Deal was implemented?