Watching Colbert right now, as self-righteous but befuddled liberals who think the New Deal ended the Depression are bashing self-righteous but befuddled conservatives who think World War II ended the Depression. Drag this New Republic hack off and bring on Gaiman already!
I have been amazed at the backlash against New Deal revisionism. I thought the matter was more or less settled against FDR and his gang that couldn’t shoot straight a few years back, when even left leaning economists began to re-asses the effectiveness of the New Deal.
Hmm . . . well, I’m only five years out of high school and at the time my school’s US History classes were definitely teaching that the New Deal ended the Depression, and of course that Herbert Hoover was a laissez-faire advocate who sat on hands instead of taking action when he should have. I’ll let other people draw conclusions from this.
I only thing the pro-New Deal brigade hang onto is the quick recovery in GDP after Roosevelt came to power. You can hurl all the anti-New Deal arguments you want against them but they’ll always bring up the GDP statistic. This needs to be addressed by the revisionists, I have yet to read a revisionist book that takes on this argument directly.
Bob Higgs talks about GDP in this talk:
Here’s a recent talk at Mises which discusses the New Deal:
Richard have you never read anything from any economist debating the merit of the GDP statistic as a valid measure? I’ve read quite a few detailed criticisms of GDP measures.