"Roosevelt's New Deal and Stalins Five Year Plan: Compare and Contrast"

Essay by folkrockprincessHigh School, 12th gradeA+, October 2006

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Franklin Roosevelt and Josef Stalin were both key players in politics during the inter-war period. Though in drastically different countries; one a democracy in the western world, and one a communist totalitarian state in the east, their plans of action to pick their countries up after different defeats do have some similarities. Granted their actions also have drastic differences, parallels can also be drawn between the New Deal and the Five Year plan.

Franklin Roosevelt was first elected in 1933. He set in place The New Deal, which revolutionized social works and programs for the average people of America. With the Alphabet agencies he was able to provide jobs, guarantee workers rights and minimum wage. He also controversially subsidized farmers into producing less food, to raise food prices on the market. Also, Roosevelt believed in financial reform, and brought people's confidence back concerning banking and currency. Roosevelt welcomed critics and used statistics as an offensive.

He did so much for the people that he was re-elected three consecutive times and died in office.

Meanwhile, in communist Russia Stalin had taken the reigns of the Bolshevik party, having exiled Trotsky completely from Russia. Stalin set in place the first five-year plan, with GOSPLAN, the national planning agency in control of everything. He abolished the NEP and banned small industry, while rapidly trying to collectivize farms, believing they would be far more efficient as larger industrially run machines. He encouraged many peasants to move to the cities and become involved in the industrial revolution taking part. Stakhanovism became a prominent ideology, and in the footsteps of great achiever Stakhanov, many men tried very hard to beat quotas to receive raises, better housing and special treatment. Another facet of the five-year plan was the purges. Stalin purged the government, the army and the...