A short (yet long enough to be plenty depressing) history of the New Deal and why it extended the Great Depression
If you want more detail that can be covered in this blog explaining how the New Deal made the Great Depression worse, increasing suffering, and extending the pain by years, check out Great Myths of the Great Depression By Lawrence W. Reed.
At a mere 47 pages, about 40 pages without the voluminous footnotes, you can get a survey of the destruction caused by FDR and the self-declared wizards who thought they could control all the details of the economy.
Here is a very short summary of the government-extended disaster.
In sharp contrast to his reputation as a laid-back, do-nothing, free-marketeer, President Herbert Hoover was quite the activist. He tried all the same tricks FDR tried, although FDR was even more aggressive.
Both Hoover and FDR took a bad situation and made it far worse.
Compressing much of the story into one paragraph, here is a key explanation of the fiasco from the book:
The genesis of the Great Depression lay in the irresponsible monetary and fiscal policies of the U.S. government in the late 1920s and early 1930s. These policies included a litany of political missteps: central bank mismanagement, trade-crushing tariffs, incentive-sapping taxes, mind-numbing controls on production and competition, senseless destruction of crops and cattle, and coercive labor laws, to recount just a few. It was not the free-market that produced 12 years of agony; rather, it was political bungling on a grand scale.
Like I said, a short primer on the disaster which extended the Great Depression through the end of WWII.