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Download FDR’s Folly: How Roosevelt and His New Deal Prolonged the Great Depression Audiobook

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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (218 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jim Powell Narrator: William Hughes Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Think FDR was a great president? Think again.

The Great Depression and the New Deal—for generations, the collective American consciousness has believed that the former ruined the country and the latter saved it. Endless praise has been heaped upon President Franklin Delano Roosevelt for masterfully reining in the Depression’s destructive effects and propping up the country on his New Deal platform. In fact, FDR has achieved mythical status in American history and is considered to be, along with Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln, one of the greatest presidents of all time. But would the Great Depression have been so catastrophic had the New Deal never been implemented?

In FDR’s Folly, historian Jim Powell argues that it was in fact the New Deal itself, with its shortsighted programs, that deepened the Great Depression, swelled the federal government, and prevented the country from turning around quickly. You’ll discover in alarming detail how FDR’s federal programs hurt America more than helped it, with effects we still feel today, including how Social Security actually increased unemployment, how higher taxes undermined good businesses, how new labor laws threw people out of work, and much more.

This groundbreaking book pulls back the shroud of awe and the cloak of time enveloping FDR to prove convincingly how flawed his economic policies actually were, despite his good intentions and the astounding intellect of his circle of advisers. In today’s turbulent domestic and global environment, eerily similar to that of the 1930s, it’s more important than ever before to uncover and understand the truth of our history, lest we be doomed to repeat it. You’ll never look at FDR in the same way again.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Very readable, factual, and insightful—and endorsed by two Nobel Prize–winning economists.”

    Thomas Sowell, nationally syndicated columnist

  • “[Powell] has demonstrated that (a) not only did Roosevelt not end the Depression, but (b) by incompetent measures, he prolonged it.”

    Chicago Sun-Times

  • “The next time economic cataclysm looms, leaders should read Jim Powell’s book.”

    National Review

  • “A case that has rarely been presented to the general public by hagiographic historians.”

    American Spectator

  • “There is a critical and often forgotten difference between disaster and tragedy. Disasters happen to us all, no matter what we do. Tragedies are brought upon ourselves by hubris. The Depression of the 1930s would have been a brief disaster if it hadn’t been for the national tragedy of the New Deal. Jim Powell has proven this.”

    P.J. O’Rourke, author of Parliament of Whores and Eat the Rich

  • “The material laid out in this book desperately needs to be available to a much wider audience than the ranks of professional economists and economic historians, if policy confusion similar to the New Deal is to be avoided in the future.”

    James M. Buchanan, Nobel Laureate, George Mason University

  • “Admirers of FDR credit his New Deal with restoring the American economy after the disastrous contraction of 1929–33. Truth to tell—as Powell demonstrates without a shadow of a doubt—the New Deal hampered recovery from the contraction, prolonged and added to unemployment, and set the stage for ever more intrusive and costly government. Powell’s analysis is thoroughly documented, relying on an impressive variety of popular and academic literature both contemporary and historical.”

    Milton Friedman, Nobel Laureate, Hoover Institution

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Jim | 1/8/2014

    " I didn't agree with everything in here, but I thought the author made a good case that the actual impacts of the New Deal were more negative than positive, quite the opposite of the conventional wisdom. He provides a lot of details into some of the more questionable practices of the New Deal that never made it into my high school history book, like the seizure of all the country's gold bullion. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Oliver | 11/29/2013

    " Well worth another read. And an outline. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Terry | 11/17/2013

    " This is a very tedious read. The powerful point is that FDR cost this country a great deal through his "government solutions" to the depression, probably extending it by 5 years. History is repeating itself today with the same failed policies! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Lynn | 8/11/2013

    " This is a really good summary of FDR's policies. A different viewpoint that you probably never heard in school "

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About the Author

Jim Powell graduated from the University of Chicago with a BA in history. There, as an editor of New Individualist Review, he helped publish articles by future Nobel Laureates F. A. Hayek, Milton Friedman, and George J. Stigler. He has written for several dozen publications, including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and Esquire. He has lectured in several countries as well as at Harvard and Stanford universities. He is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and is editor of Laissez Faire Books. Powell lives with his family in Westport, Connecticut.