Jorge Lagunas History 100 May 12, 2012 The New Deal One of the worst periods of American history was in the 1930s. It was in this time when the unemployment rate had increased significantly and poverty increased as well. The entire country was in poverty and the economy was spiraling down. This time is now known as the Great Depression. It seemed the situation will not end and there was no plan to stop it. When Franklin Roosevelt was elected he purpose for a change. He purposed the New Deal. The New Deal was a series of economic programs implemented in the United States. The programs were Roosevelt's responses to the Great Depression, and focused on three main points: relief, recovery, and reform. That is, relief for the unemployed and poor, recovery of the economy and reform of the financial system to prevent a depression from occurring again. The origin of the term “new deal” comes from FDR using it in his campaign. The term was popularized and people expected Roosevelt to change or improve the economy. Sadly, Roosevelt had no sure or rational plan on what to do yet. He had only the idea that a change must occur. In his first hundred days in office Roosevelt was willing to try anything to get the nation of the depression. Roosevelt introduced many programs to improve the economy and help the unemployed some programs were effective and some did not work. One of Roosevelt’s program was The Agricultural Adjustment Act or AAA. The AAA purposed that farmers will decrease their supply of crops so the price will increase. In return the government will pay the farmers for not farming on all their land thus keeping their amount of crops low. This benefitted the farmers and since the depression effected them the worst. However, the AAA was declared unconstitutional because it gave the executive branch too much power. Another of Roosevelt’s programs that was a failure was the National Recovery Administration or NRA. The NRA’s goal was to create "codes of fair competition" among American industries in an attempt to reduce destructive and set prices. Also to help workers by setting minimum wages and maximum weekly hours, as well as minimum prices at which products could be sold. The concept was that the Great Depression was caused by market instability and that government needed to get involved to balance the interests of farmers, business and labor. However, like the AAA it was unpopular by the American people and in 1935 the U.S. Supreme Court declared it to be unconstitutional. The programs that Roosevelt introduced were political failures but thanks for his political successes he was re-elected in 1936. Critics hated Roosevelt for his New Deal and everyone turned on his’ New Deal; they thought for sure he will lose the election. However, Roosevelt maintained his popularity to the American people. FDR’s “fireside chats” on radio made many Americans feel personally connected to him, which maintained his popularity. Also his attempt to help certain groups like farmers, immigrant groups, African Americans, labors and corporations drew support which helped him the election of 1936. In the end the New Deal and Roosevelt had successes and failures but the New Deal worked politically by providing relief and entitlements to groups. Also Roosevelt was successful by taking initiatives to end the depression. Jorge Lagunas History 100 May 14, 2012 World War II When Germany started invading other countries it led to a second war starting in Europe. Although, the United States was worried about the events overseas it did not want to get involve after the First World War. Thus, non-interventionism was a common feeling among the United States. As for President Roosevelt he was more concern about domestic affairs rather than international. He supported the Munich appeasement to stay out of war. He also seemed to follow what the public opinion was about war, which was to be neutral. As a result, U.S. Congress passed the Neutrality Acts in 1935, which meant the prohibition against the sale of weapons to belligerents, whether aggressor or victim. As the war went on and Germans were oppressing the Jews FDR’s view of was changing and so was people’s. When the public started worrying about the expansion of Germany, FDR called for a military buildup and strategy planning with Britain. Soon FDR and the public seemed to change their minds. FDR planned a budget for defense and than in 1939 Congress lifted the Neutrality Acts and permitted “cash-and-carry.”As time passed the view of fighting was changing in America. Later cash-and-carry was replaced with lend-lease to provide Britain with weapons. This caused German U-boats to sink U.S merchant ships and resulted in undeclared sea war between German and United States. The final event which caused the United States to enter the war was in 1941 when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. This led the hatred towards the Japanese and supported war against them. However, Americans still did not want to fight Germany, but Hitler made the mistake of declaring on the U.S, which angered Americans and caused U.S to declare war on Germany. The reason why Germany declared war on the United States was because since Japan attacked U.S and Germany both had a common enemy then maybe Japan will declare war and attack Germany’s enemy, the Soviet Union. However, Japan did not do so. The reason why Japan attacked the United States on December 7 was because Japan tried to expand and acquire more resources by conquering other countries. American then embargoed trade with Japan. Japan feared it would be economically strangled by the U.S. embargo so the Japanese military strategists decided the best way to guarantee access to resources was by destroying the U.S. fleet at Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941. The motivation of the Axis Powers differed from Germany and Japan. Germany main goal was sum up to two words: race and space. Hitler and Germany attempted to exterminate the Jews in Germany and to conquer Europe. He thought other races were inferior and should be wipe out. Also, since they are inferior their land should be taken and also to get back the land that was taken from Germany during the First World War. Japan’s goal was sum up to one word: economics. Japan expanded because it had little resources and wanted access other countries natural resources. Although, the Japanese thought other races were inferior as well they were not exterminationists like the Germans, they were ethnocentric.