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Social Security Act Essay

Shortly after the Hoover Administration was out of the presidential office the next president to be elected would be walking into one of the worst situations one could think of. During the 1920s Americans were forced to basically fend for themselves and save all that they possessed. President Hoover was the 31st president and was also the president prior the SSA. During his time in office we literally watched America crumble into one of its worst if not the worst depressions of all time. The Great Depression of the late 1920s was one in which everyone suffered, the richest of the richest and the poorest of the poorest.

Banks, Farmers, Philanthropist and etc…If it was an American it took some type of hit during the great depression. With all the positive things happening in the late 1910’s early 1920’s such as Harlem Renaissance the spread of Baseball across America the industrialization period and also elite entrepreneurs such as John D. Rockefeller. People like Andrew Carnegie and Cornelius Vanderbilt where making their name much known throughout America with their contributions and profit being earned from their entrepreneurships.

America was expanding financially during the early 1900’s but would be rudely awakened by the Great Depression and the prohibition of alcohol throughout America. Prohibition in the United States focused on the manufacture and sale of alcohol. Drinking itself was never illegal, and there were exceptions for medicinal and religious uses. Prohibition was a major reform movement from the 1840s into the 1920s, and was sponsored by evangelical Protestant churches, especially the Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians, Disciples and Congregationalists.

The Prohibition Era in American History Suzanne Lieurance) Prohibition was instituted with ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution on January 16, 1919. The constitution states “After one year from the ratification of this article the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors within, the importation thereof into, or the exportation thereof from the United States and all territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage purposes is hereby prohibited. ” the liquor license and the license of every brewery in America was revoked during the prohibition era.

Also in 1929 the stock market crash occurred sending many people into a panic state and set many records in the suicide rate in America. The leaders of plenty of fortune 500 companies in America where killing themselves because of the fall of their unbreakable businesses. Banks where begging to collapse during the times it was as if know would be able to survive this Depression if the financially strongest where losing their minds during the times. President Herbert Hoover’s term was one of the most memorable terms of all the presidential terms we have had.

With the crash of America during his term the Social Security Act was much needed. More than 50% of senior citizens in America were either homeless or living in extreme poverty infested situations. The Social Security Act (SSA) including different aids to help those in need such as senior citizens and single mothers without work. When the Social Security Act bill was being established it was originally broken down into different areas they wanted to attack with aid to help. The different areas where distinguished by different titles to insure that the area would receive aid.

If you filed for assistance and met at least one of the requirements you’d be granted assistance with the new SSA. The Act provided benefits to retirees and the unemployed, and a lump-sum benefit at death. Payments to current retirees are financed by a payroll tax on current workers’ wages, half directly as a payroll tax and half paid by the employer. The act also gave money to states to provide assistance to aged individuals (Title I), for unemployment insurance (Title III), Aid to Families with Dependent Children (Title IV), Maternal and Child Welfare (Title V), public health services (Title VI), and the blind (Title X).

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the first president to pass a federal assistant aid to Americas people with the Social Security Act after being vetoed/ rejected on his Railroad Retirement Act; The Court threw out a centerpiece of the New Deal, the National Industrial Recovery Act, the Agricultural Adjustment Act, and New York State’s minimum-wage law. While the Aid of the SSA was created to help those in need many felt as if it was like a crutch to the American people and once there Financial stable they’d continue to depend on the welfare from the Aid their receiving.

In other words when certain people receive aid they would never plan on bettering themselves. They rather sit and collect a free check for their own mishaps with having to work. Many of the Upper class Americans completely disagreed with the SSA and felt as if they should work their way out of their problems. But FDR knew that would be impossible with way the economy is crashing and depleting in his own eyes. Their simply weren’t any jobs and more and more people began losing their jobs throughout America. Industrialization was at an all-time high until the Great Depression took its luster.

Entire plants where beginning to shut down one by one during the Great Depression. The roaring 20s had to have been one of the best time in the industrial spread of technology throughout the United States but with all the positives it still lead to the great depression. Shortly before the crash, economist Irving Fisher famously proclaimed, “Stock prices have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau. ” But with that statement Fisher was terribly wrong in his predictions. But who would’ve ever known that the country would crash so badly after the uprising of the country.

Farming was even on the up rise they were to the point where they produced much more products than they needed to sell. Until the Great depression occurred they began to lose all funds tied to the government it simply seemed as if no one in America had money. Even the fat cats of America suffered from the crash of the stock market to the great depression. The crash signaled the beginning of the 10-year Great Depression that affected all Western industrialized countries. [1]

Anyone who bought stocks in mid-1929 and held onto them saw most of his or her adult life pass by before getting back to even-Richard M. Salsman [2] People who grew up during the Depression said, No one had any money. During the Hoover years families and communities learned to stick together and attack all obstacles as a team; they took the approach as if they could defeat us alone but together as a team they could go on further than ever imagined. With all the negativity going on in America the Social Security Act of 1935 was much needed to aid the single women and senior citizens of America. The Social Security Act of 1935 was introduced because of the lack of federal assistance for the single mothers and senior citizens.

Post Herbert Hoover Presidential the United States was on a down fall headed for destruction. No one person was on the winning side during the Great Depression everyone took major losses. From the smallest farmer in Kansas to one of the biggest Bosses of a fortune 500 company felt the raft of the Great depression. Major companies where on downfalls throughout America many began to leave their families and some began to commit suicides. With all the negativity going on Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s election in 1932 was exactly the change that the US needed. With everyone and everything at its lowest point ever there was no way to go but up.

Families where in shambles and communities had banned together just to help each other get by. When I was younger I always heard my grandmother telling us to save up and keep meats and perishable items in an extra fridge because you never knew another Hoover era would arrive. I never really understood her reasoning until I read and understood how families had absolutely nothing and only survived off scraps. She also told me how they went with out electricity and only ate one meal a day because her family had to make sure they have enough food to survive the depression.

She would always mention an FDR I never knew or understood who he was. She explained how he was the savior of America and brought America out of its lowest points. She also told me about how the social security saved her family with the medicade and assistance her grandmother received. FDR was considered the savior of America. The country had taken so much they needed someone to rescue them. In his first hundred days in office, which began March 4, 1933, Roosevelt spearheaded major legislation and issued a profusion of executive orders that instituted the New Deal.

The variety of programs were designed to produce relief from many stand points mainly, government jobs for the unemployed, economic growth, and reform through regulation of Wall Street, banks and transportation. FDR came into the office simply with one thing on his mind and that was recovering America and getting things back on track to America being a successful country. With all that in mind FDR between the years 1933-1937 he simply set his sights on repairing this broken country. The New Deal Plan was mainly driven by the three R’s Relief, Recovery, and Reform.

The New Deal was led by a group of a couple social reformers who were looking for a permanent solution to the unemployment problems of America. Many believed it was wrong for the U. S. citizens to have to suffer for the fall of the economy. The jobs they created through many agencies were designed to use and restore the recipient’s self-respect. The programs went on to change America economically and put many back on their feet. Those three R’s would be exactly what America needs because its Relief took immediate action.

The relief was there to create jobs for the unemployed Americans. The Relief also aimed and brought upon other programs such as Bank Holiday/Emergency Banking Relief Act, Civilian Conservation Corps Federal Emergency Relief Administration Civil Works Administration Works Progress Administration (WPA). The Relief program brought among programs such Public Works Administration (PWA) put hundreds of thousands of Americans to work on a wide variety of different heavy construction projects and machinery that gave a face-lift to the nation’s already crumbling infrastructure.

Roads, rail roads, bridges and dams were repaired and upgraded during relief. Plenty of new schools, libraries, hospitals, post offices and playgrounds were built for the expanding population. FDR and Congress introduced the program Works Progress Administration (WPA), which went on to put nearly three million people to work, including the semi-skilled and unskilled Americans. Both skilled and unskilled worked on projects as diverse as building sports stadiums, creating books for the blind, stuffing rare birds and improving airplane landing fields and army camps.

Bank Holiday or the Emergency Banking Relief Act of 1933 was one of the programs which set America back on its equilibrium. Roosevelt ordered that all Banks should be shut down mandatorily for approximately 4 days. FDR declared the nationwide bank holiday, combined with the Federal Reserve’s commitment to supply unlimited amounts of currency to banks. Much to America’s enjoyment, when the institutions grand opening for business on March 13 of 1933, depositors stood in line to redeposit their long time stashed cash to their local neighborhood banks.

Within the next two weeks, Americans had nearly deposited more than half of the funds that they had lost to the Great Depression before the bank suspension. March 15 of 1933, the first day of stock trading began after the elongated closure of Wall Street, New York’s Stock Exchange recorded the largest one-day percentage price increase ever the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining a whopping 8. 26 points to close at 62. 10. In grand total a gain of 15. 34 percent. With the benefit, the nationwide Bank Holiday and the Emergency Banking Act of March, 1933, ended the slump banks had been plagued by during the Great Depression.

The CWA created construction works, mainly aiming to improve or construct buildings and bridges. The program came to an end on March 31, 1934, under the advice of leader Lewis Douglas, after racking up a cost of $200 million a month. So many funds were spent on this administration because it hired 4 million people and was mostly concerned with paying high wages. Also there was the Federal Emergency Relief Administration or (FERA). FERA’s primary mission was to alleviate household unemployment by creating new jobs for mainly the unskilled in local and state government.

Jobs were more expensive than direct cash payments, more beneficial to the unemployed, who wanted any sort of job, for self-esteem, to play the role of male breadwinner. From May 1933 until the FERA program closed in December, 1935, FERA funded states and localities $3. 1 billion. FERA through its span reached out to provide work for over 20 million people and developed facilities on public lands across the country. FERA also provided its adult education program in the year 1933; classes for its workers were included.

Between 1933 and 1943 at least thirty-six states went on to participate in the federal experiment for workers education, 17 of the states for a full ten years the program existed. Nearly two thousand teachers were employed by FERA at one time; officials estimated that the program reached to at least one million workers nation-wide until it was ended during World War II. Roosevelt even thought of way to help the world and create jobs for Americans with the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).

The CCC, was also popular for Roosevelt’s Tree Army, it was credited with renewing many of the nation’s nearly depleted forests by planting almost three billion trees from the years 1933 to 1942. This program was crucial, especially in south western states affected by the Dust Bowl, where reforestation was needed greatly to start over. The expansion of the jobs and work was the CCC’s reforestation program; it was responsible for more than half the reforestation, public and private, accomplish in the nation’s history.

SSA played a major role in changing the culture of America through various federal and state programs. The programs where all created for one purpose and that simple purpose is to fix the economy and help those in need; let it unemployment or failure to sustain enough funds to survive with the basic of necessities. The Recovery time during the New Deal process to help the economy had its share of different programs that intended to take the US out of the depression we were facing.

President Roosevelt signed the Tennessee Valley Authority Act on May 18, 1933, as part of the small change of legislation that marked one of Roosevelt`s changes during his first 100 days in office. The TVA program would improve the navigability on the Tennessee River, as well as pledge to provide flood control, reforestation and to improve the marginal farm land also assist in industrial and agricultural development, and assist in the creation of government nitrate and phosphorus manufacturing facility. The TVA was one of the, if not the most ambitious projects of the New Deal in its overall conception and attempt.

The TVA ran into many setbacks and constant failures and also was involved in countless controversies, but through it all TVA brought electricity to thousands of people for an affordable price. TVA controlled the flood waters of the Tennessee River and improved its navigation; it also introduced modern agriculture techniques. Prior the Tennessee Valley Authority Act, the Tennessee Valley region was one of the most disadvantaged in the whole South. The TVA gave an assignment to improve the economic and social lives of the people living in Tennessee Valley river basin.

In the middle of October 1933, construction began on Norris Dam in order to retrieve and help those in the Tennessee Valley area. Also in 1933 another program was brought in to existence the Home Owners’ Loan Corporation (HOLC). During the short but plentiful HOLC period the former American government agency was established in 1933 to help stabilize the real estate that had depreciated during the depression and also to refinance the urban mortgage debt. It granted a long-term mortgage of loans to some 1 million homeowners facing loss of their property.

The HOLC came to an end fairly soon its lending activities ceased in June, 1936, by the terms of the Home Owners Loan Act. Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA) was one of the larger roles played in the farmers lives. The AAA program evened out the balance of supply and demand for the farm commodities so that their prices would support a decent purchasing power for farmers. The AAA controlled the supply of seven the “basic crops” such as wheat, corn, rice, tobacco, peanuts and milk; by offering payments to farmers in return for farmers not planting those crops.

The AAA also played a large role in WWII. During World War II, AAA turned its attention to pumping up the food production to meet the war’s needs. The AAA in fact did not end the Great Depression or drought, but the legislation of AAA remained the basis for all farm programs for the next 70 years. The Resettlement Administrations main focus of the RA was to now build relief camps in California for migratory workers, especially the refugees from the drought-stricken Dust Bowl of the Southwest.


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