Labour Government 1945

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“The Labour government of 1945-51 slayed the five Giants and their policies represented a revolutionary break from the past?” How valid is this claim? During the period of 1945-51, the Labour government was, for the most part, successful in slaying the “five giants.” The “five giants” were contained within the Beveridge report, the key document that outlined the government’s intentions for reconstruction, they include; Idleness, Squalor, Want, Ignorance and Disease. The government was most successful within tackling the issue of ‘disease’ however there was limited change within ‘education’. In regards to how revolutionary Labour’ policies are vary with each giant, although overall they were quite successful. The most revolutionary case was that of ‘idleness’ and ‘disease’ where the revolutionary change within ‘squalor’ was limited. The giant of Idleness overall was slayed successfully by Labour and was arguably the most revolutionary change of the five. The main cause for Labour’s success was for their new approach to dealing with the economy and unemployment. Labour followed the policies of John Maynard Keynes, the basic principles of Keynesian Economics is when Unemployment starts to rise, the government must invest more money back into the economy to create more jobs resulting in greater economic activity. The government can be seen to be doing this through the vast amount of Council house’s that were built. This new approach was revolutionary compared to the previous Conservative government with Classical Economics where if Unemployment was low the government would not intervene; for the first time action was being down to prevent Unemployment. There were problems however, inflation had started to rise and by nationalising the Coal industry, mining became inefficient as there were now too many people working after the government overmanning of the mines.
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