May 6, 1933: President Franklin Roosevelt created the Works Progress Administration (WPA). The WPA put three million people to work in return for giving them financial assistance. FDR was opposed to welfare for people who were able to work. Those getting assistance were required to help build schools, roads, and hospitals; others restored theaters, wrote plays, etc. Congressional opponents of the WPA scaled it back over time; it was suspended during World War II, when the U.S. economy quickly returned to full employment.
Quote of the day
"Where the press is free and every man able to read, all is safe." — Thomas Jefferson
More from West Wing Reports...
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- The U.S. Marines are developing laser weapons. Here's why.
- Why the Supreme Court is allowing Texas to hold an unconstitutional election
- 3 horrific inaccuracies in Homeland's depiction of Islamabad
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Gamergate has backfired spectacularly on its nincompoop perpetrators
- How 1,000-year lifespans could remake the economy
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Why you should absolutely watch this confounding, wonderful World Series
- Rise of the machines
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
Subscribe to the Week