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Roosevelt And Hoover Dbq Essay

1478 words - 6 pages

Roosevelt and Hoover DBQ
The Great Depression quickly altered America's view of liberalism and therefore, Roosevelt can be considered a liberal and Hoover a conservative, despite the fact that they did occasionally support very similar policies. The United States experienced political shifts during the Great Depression, which are described by Arthur Schlesinger’s analysis of eras in which public objectives were placed before personal concerns. It seems that the public view of what constitutes as liberal beliefs versus what is thought to be conservative beliefs shifts in a similar way.
Laissez-faire ideas were considered liberal during the 1920s, but the coming of the Great Depression in 1929 altered the American view of liberalism. The American people began to view Hoover’s ideas of the ideal small government to be conservative, while Roosevelt’s progressive policies became the representation of liberalism. Therefore, it can be said that the Great Depression was a major contributing factor in changing the way in which American differentiated between liberalist and conservative beliefs. As a result of this shift in America’s perception of these policies, Roosevelt became a liberal in the eyes of the people, whereas Hoover gained the reputation of a conservative. However, these former presidents are noted for occasionally supporting similar policies.
The Great Depression hit the United States while Hoover was serving his first and only term as president. In the end, the public saw Hoover as a man who began his presidency as a liberal, but who’s beliefs began to resemble those of a conservative towards the end of his term. The Progressive Age had come to an end by 1910 and big business thrived as Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover worked to secure that the government did not interfere in the economy. The laissez-faire principles of these presidents were considered extremely liberal in comparison to Theodore Roosevelt’s public purpose plans. The Second Industrial Revolution was ushered in with the invention of the production line. This made it possible for businessmen, such as Henry Ford, to prosper. Automobiles and a variety of other useful electrical appliances became accessible to the masses. The United States had become more success and this instilled a new confidence in the American people, which caused people to support the liberal policies of the 1920s.
Hoover was beginning to demonstrate conservative beliefs even before the onset of the Great Depression. Document A shows Hoover’s wish to avoid being thought of as a complete supporter of laissez-faire ideas. He appeared irresolute when it came to preserving the capitalistic society of the 1920s. During this time, society was managed by corrupt political bosses, such as Tweed. The American economy had flourished under the private interest policies of Harding and Coolidge, which forced Hoover to promise the American people that he would not abandon the laissez-faire...

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