Essay on Franklin D. Roosevelt: an Influential Leader

1333 Words Mar 30th, 2005 6 Pages
Franklin D. Roosevelt: An Influential Leader Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) was a man of unusual charm and great optimism, which he was able to communicate to others. He had a broad smile and was a charismatic optimist whose confidence helped sustain the nation through its darkest moments during crisis like the Great Depression and World War II. He became one of the most beloved of U.S. presidents for four terms in office. But beneath his outward friendliness was an inner reserve and an iron will. His admirers emphasized the way in which he met the nation's problems. They praised him for insisting that the federal government must help the underprivileged and that the United States must share in the responsibility for …show more content…
Roosevelt recognized that if he kept the banks open, panicked depositors would withdraw their money and more banks would fail. FDR declared a "bank holiday" during which time a hastily prepared emergency banking bill gave the Secretary of the Treasury the power to investigate all banks and then reopen those strong enough to survive (Boorstin 624). As the number of radios grew in the U.S., more people relied on this media for obtaining information and entertainment. During the Great Depression, when disappointment in the economy reached its peak, FDR resorted to speeches on the radio. These became known as "Fireside Chats" (Boorstin 624) during which FDR talked about the banking system and other economic concerns. In these chats, he could describe his actions and his reasoning so that everyone would understand what the government was doing (The Great Depression). The New Deal was a program designed to reverse the effects of the Depression. Some of the successful programs that it encompassed were ones such as the following:
1. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) which provided jobs for single men between the ages of 18 and 25 and earned $1.00 each day.
2. The Agricultural Adjustment Administration (AAA), which helped farmers by paying them not to produce crops; thereby, keeping their income from dropping by overproducing certain crops. Since less was being grown, the price for farm goods
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