5 Lies Your Teacher Told You About The Great Depression

By: Laura Meyers

1. The Great Depression Was Because of Capitalism



It makes sense that mandated, public school systems propped up by the state would tell you that the reason the Great Depression lasted so long and was so detrimental was because of evil capitalism- not, in fact, the government itself.

But in reality, the Great Depression was so great because of intervention. The Great Depression was not the first depression in American history, and most that preceded the Great Depression were over and done in just two short years. The crash of 1929 lasted at least three times longer than any previous recession because the government compounded its initial errors with a series of additional and harmful interventions.

2. The Feds Were The Good Guys



Actually, you can thank the Federal Reserve for motivating the fall of the economy in 1929. In 1913, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act into law, and a decade and half later, the Fed was raising interest rates and choking off the money supply as they increased the discount rate for member banks’ loans four times. Furthermore, they deflated rates even further by selling government securities for months after the crash. If the free-market really had “self-destructed” as the Keynesians tend to claim, hard times would have only ensued for only a couple of years rather than a decade and a half.

3. President Hoover Was a Free Market Guy that Set Us Up to Crash



In fact, one of Franklin Roosevelt’s top aides later said that, “practically the whole New Deal was extrapolated from programs that Hoover started.” Even more, when Roosevelt ran against Hoover in 1932, he grilled Hoover for spending and taxing too much, racking up the national debt and killing trade. Roosevelt’s vice presidential running mate said that Hoover was, “leading the country down the path of socialism.” Started with a free market now we’re here. Not to mention the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act, passed in 1930 in an effort to stimulate American agricultural economic growth, which virtually closed the borders to foreign goods and ignited an international trade war and led to commodity prices skyrocketing upwards of 30-60 percent. Not to mention the thousands of farmers that went bankrupt and fell out of work. Thanks Obama.

4. The New Deal Was The Only/Best Solution



Before Roosevelt was sworn in as president, he campaigned on a platform that promoted a 25 percent reduction in federal spending, a balanced federal budget, a sound gold currency “to be preserved at all hazards,” the removal of government from areas that belonged more appropriately to private enterprise and an end to the “extravagance” of Hoover’s farm programs.

But like many politicians, his intent and reality were very different from each other. With “nothing to fear but fear itself,” Roosevelt went back on all his promises and expanded and created coercive government programs that would forever redesign the economic layout of America.

Dr. Hans Sennholz of Grove City College says it was FDR’s policies that were to fear: “In his first 100 days, he swung hard at the profit order. Instead of clearing away the prosperity barriers erected by his predecessor, he built new ones of his own.”

5. The United States Is Better Off Because of The New Deal



So happy to be paying my payroll taxes out of my already-minimal paychecks into Social Security; an investment that I will most likely never see the return on. That’s fair, right? The financial crisis in 2008 should be a loud wake-up call. The government left a trail of fingerprints all over the crime scene and housing crisis, with the Federal Reserve revving up the money supply, expanding at insane rates, and risky loans were handed out like candy thanks to cash liquidity from endless printing of money. Now we only have to look to the student loan bubble- brace, and wait for the pop.


  • RigPig

    Liberal indoctrination in public schools? Tell me it ain’t so!!

    • jim NY

      I can’t tell you. Its so!!

    • Ewa Wdzięczak

      What, are you into bring god back to public schools instead?

      • RigPig

        So it’s either God or Liberal indoctrination?
        Something’s broken, both in our educational system and in your head.
        I advocate for the Feds to get out of the business of educating our children. That should be a state matter.

        • Ewa Wdzięczak

          I actually agree with you on that one. Education should be a state matter.

      • SirVesa

        Jeez…another buffoon that deals in absolutes. Don’t believe in abortion? Well, you must be for rape and incest. Against illegal immigration? Well, you’re a racist xenophobe. Don’t believe the gender wage gap myth? Well, you’re a sexist pig and rapist. Jiminy Cricket…try not to be such an absolute douche!!!

        • Ewa Wdzięczak

          How can one “believe in abortion”?

          • SirVesa

            I apologize. I didn’t phrase that so that someone with a mental handicap could understand. ‘Believe in abortion’ should perhaps have said ‘believe that abortion is moral/not murder’. How’s that, princess?

          • Ewa Wdzięczak

            An ad hominem attack. How utterly original.

        • Ewa Wdzięczak

          Wow… speechless.

      • Al’s Not So Sad Grampa

        If you want to go down that path, then it should be noted that this country started to really go to hell when God was removed from school.

        • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          Correlation is not causation, so it wasn’t necessarily that taking God outta the schools as wot dun it, but that the same people that set us on this path at that time were the same people who didn’t want God in the schools.

          I kinda get the willies anytime I hear “[X] happened/has been happening as a token of God’s wrath!” I kinda wanna know where the person got that choice bit of info from…

          • Al’s Not So Sad Grampa

            You make a fair point. I just like to irritate the less than bright leftists who believe that absolutes are the only choices. Besides, brighty here probably thinks the indoctrination by progressives is amazing and (s)he is a shining example of such indoctrination as evidence that it works.

        • Ewa Wdzięczak

          Yeah, it was really bad during Ronnie’s presidency, too.

    • cmjapnea

      I went to Wisconsin schools and this is what I was taught. Progressive Left indoctrination! Of course now I know better!

      • RigPig

        That’s good that you now know better. Unfortunately, the indoctrination works on a little more than 50% of the population…

  • Mike P

    Not this teacher.

  • Chris Cumbie

    I don’t know where exactly you get your information but the Great Depression was caused by the terms set upon Germany by The Treaty of Versailles. Almost every country in Europe was in financial dire straights following WWI, the Treaty of Versailles called for insane payments to he made to France and other countries who opposed Germany. Germany however was not allowed to rebuild their industrial base for fear of another German war machine. Without the factories that once made Germany a economic powerhouse they could not pay the steep reperations set on them. This led to inflation across Europe, when Europe is broke they don’t buy American goods, and the domino’s fell until the rise of Trump..oh excuse me I meant Hitler.

    • Ivan Rohde

      Trump=Hitler, got it. How original.

      • Chris Cumbie

        It’s kinda telling how that little snippit at the end is all you gleaned from the entire post. It doesn’t need to be original because it’s true.

    • Matthew T. Costello

      well then the depression should have continued as Germany didn’t finish paying the reparations til about 6 yrs ago

      • Chris Cumbie

        Nope, the United States had the Lend Lease agreement with England to manufacture their means of war in return for control over certain islands, thus the jobs market on the US was picking up substantially before Pearl Harbor was attacked. Once that happened the United States became the largest provider/producer of goods in the world, both military and civilian. Thus no more Great Depression.

        • mark abrams

          nonsense. How did the workers get paid , in islands ? Did the USSR ever pay anything for all the goods commies in Roosevelt’s administration shipped to them at a time america was rationing its own citizens ? Lend Lease was charity and charity doesn’t make you rich . Neither does war . Wars are immensely expensive .

          • Chris Cumbie

            Okay, let’s talk basic economics as this applies to our country today. Yes, wars are very expensive, but with a depression in full swing and unemployment at obscene high, the war put thd United States men and women go work. What do people who have stuggled for years suddenly have money do? They spend it! They bought anything anything and everything? When the money stared flowing again the US economy grew. The US was may not have received payment for the majority of Lend Lease, but the military bases the military received as well as putting an end to Hitler’a power grab worked for “that Commie Roosevelt” and the American people who elected him FOUR TIMES. As far as the USSR goes, I’m pretty sure the damn near 6 million (66%) Russian people who died during the war made up for the food stuffs, ships, etc.

    • Al’s Not So Sad Grampa

      I think you’ve just proven the point the author was making about public schools.

    • Resister

      The Great Depression was only great in this country so that line of BS doesn’t really hold water does it. The cause was allowing the buying stocks with loaned money at ten cents on the dollar in this country creating a valuation bubble. Weakness in the economy of Europe did not help but it was far from a cause.

      • mark abrams

        The Austrian school of economics has a compelling theory of money and credit which explains depressions as being the natural result of an excessive supply of credit resulting in bad loans and investments/ Thus excessive stock speculation was only one result of easy money and credit . The very tools that Keynesians invariably use to stimulate the economy must inevitably be withdrawn causing the “boom” to turn to bust.

  • Fred Bastiat

    Great list! It seems like, “WWII helped end the recession” deserves some sort of honorable mention as a falsehood. Yes, most of the planet’s other governments burning cities, infrastructure, and murdering their working citizens helped the US ‘compete’ after the war. But notwithstanding having roads and cities not blown to ruble, the confiscation and destruction of private wealth on war does not grow prosperity.

  • Hank Phillips

    Herbert Hoover denounced “dog-eat-dog” capitalism and used asset forfeiture and income taxes to enforce prohibition after the GOP made beer a felony with the Jones 5&10 law. Prohibition and the Crash are cause and effect.

  • wintermute2

    In my dad’s WW2 diary, he wrote ” That SOB Roosevelt is dead, I’ll be home in 6 months.” He was home in 4.
    He did almost as much long term damage as Wilson.